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Don Stewart :: Is the Doctrine of Inerrancy Important?

Don Stewart

Some argue that the doctrine of inerrancy is not important. They believe the key issue is a person's relationship to Jesus Christ - not the nature of the Bible. However those who advocate an errant Scripture have seriously undermined the Bible's authority.

A Person Is Denying God's Word Is Totally True

If a person denies the doctrine of inerrancy, in effect, they are denying God's Word. God tells us His Word is pure. In the Book of Proverbs we read.

Every word of God is pure . . . Do not add to his words, lest he reprove you, and you be found a liar (Proverbs 30:5,6).

If there are any mistakes in that Word, then it is not pure. The Bible says that His Word is truth. Jesus said.

Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth (John 17:17).

Yet if it contains errors, then it is not truth.

Is God A Liar?

If there are errors in Scripture, then God simply has not told us the truth concerning it. This would make God a liar. Can we, therefore, trust anything that the Bible says? If God is capable of speaking falsely on some matters, then He is capable of speaking falsely on all matters. We would never know when we could trust Him.

All Of Scripture Becomes Open To Suspicion

Even if the so-called errors are in "minor" matters, the Bible is now opened up to suspicion in all other areas-including the major doctrines of the faith. If inerrancy falls, then all other Bible doctrines will eventually fall also. Without a clear Word from God we are left without a firm foundation on any subject. Each individual would be the final determiner as to what is God's truth and what is not. The Christian faith would be built upon sand, not upon the solid foundation of God's Word. Jesus, however, said His Word was built upon a rock.

Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock (Matthew 7:24).

The words of Scripture are built either on the rock or on sand.

If He Spoke Falsely Then He Would Be The God Of Untruth

If God somehow spoke falsely, no matter how incidental the reference, this still constitutes an untruth. God cannot be both the God of truth and the God of untruth at the same time.

Should We Imitate An Untruthful God?

If one is convinced that God, on occasion, spoke untruthful things, then it should be right for believers to do the same thing in certain situations. The Bible commands believers to imitate God.

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children (Ephesians 5:1)

Does this allow believers to speak untruths in certain situations?

The Bible Would Be Testifying Falsely

A denial of inerrancy not only means that God is wrong but it also means that Scripture is wrong when declaring God's words are never wrong. Consequently when the Bible says that God's words are true it is telling a lie.

People May Turn To Other Sources For Answers

If someone does not believe the Bible is the divinely inspired and inerrant Word of God, then what is to stop them from turning to other sources as their ultimate authority? What they believe and practice will now be based upon church tradition, experience, unaided human reason, science, or mysticism. All of these avenues will lead them astray from the truth of God

It Is Possible To Miss The Main Message

If the inerrancy of the Bible is rejected, either completely or partly, then it is possible to miss the main message-salvation from sin, which is offered in the person of Jesus Christ.

The Behavior Of The Individual May Change

The denial or even diluting of inerrancy may result in lack of confidence in God's Word. This, in turn, may affect the way in which we behave. If we do not believe everything that the Bible teaches, then why should we follow any of it?

While not everyone who denies inerrancy necessarily follows these steps, there is certainly no logical reason why they should not.

Summary

The doctrine of inerrancy is important. Denial of inerrancy would be a denial of God's truthfulness to us. He would be a liar if the Bible contained error. In addition, if one denies inerrancy, then the truth of the entire Bible becomes under suspicion. Believers would be left without any solid foundation for faith. No one would be certain what was true and what was not. Lack of belief in inerrancy opens the door to denying the major doctrines of the faith. While this may not happen with each person who rejects an inerrant Scripture, it is the logical result of denying inerrancy.

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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