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Don Stewart :: Are Some Parts of the Bible More Authoritative than Others?

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Don Stewart

A common mistake among believers is to argue for degrees of authority within the various parts of Scripture. While admitting that all Scripture is God-breathed, there are people who would contend that some parts are more authoritative than others.

We Should Not Compare The Authority Of Different Parts Of Scripture

For example, people will compare the Gospel of John with some of the Old Testament genealogies and conclude that John is more divinely inspired than these genealogies. Or they will make a comparison between some of the statements in the Book of Ecclesiastes and the letter of Paul to the Romans and claim that Romans is somehow more divinely inspired.

It is a mistake to do this. What we have in John's gospel and the Book of Romans is later and fuller revelation of God and His plan. While some of the other parts of Scripture reveal less truth, it is still truth. John's writings or Paul's letters are not more divinely inspired than these sections, the revelation is simply more complete. God equally divinely inspires all Scripture - they all consist of God's divine truth to humanity.

We Must Understand The Progressive Nature Of Revelation

What we have in the later works is the continuance of God's revelation to humanity. Consequently it will be of a more complete character. As God kept revealing His truth over the generation's humanity learned more and more about Him. However, this does not mean that the previously revealed truth was somehow less authoritative.

Some Parts Of Scripture Are More Important

While all parts of Scripture are divinely authoritative there are some parts of Scripture that are more important than other parts. Since the New Testament unveils new truth about God and His program for humanity its teachings are more important. The coming of Christ, His death and resurrection are more important than certain matters contained in the Old Testament because it more fully reveals the fulfillment of God's plan to humanity.

Summary

God's authority covers all Scripture and all of it is important. Everything is there for a reason. However some parts are more important than others. The earlier parts in Scripture are not as complete as some of the later parts. This is to be expected because of the progressive nature of revelation. God did not reveal everything at once - rather He revealed His truth in stages. While God has divinely inspired all Scripture some parts are more relevant than others. Yet all Scripture is God's authoritative Word and all of it should be diligently studied.

CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.

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