The Word of God, as a rule of faith and practice, is under attack and will be until Christ comes. What God has said seems outdated to man, and the enemy has always tried to convince man that what God has said is not true.
The doctrine of inerrancy, therefore, is fundamental in our time. But what is inerrancy? It has been said that the Christian faith has three foundations that are not negotiable:
- The inspiration of the Word
- His infallibility
- your inerrancy
The three fundamentals complement each other and it is good that we have this clear.
The inspiration deal with him source from the bible. Evangelicals believe that “God breathed out” the words of the Bible by using humans to write them. Paul writes:
“All Scripture is inspired by God (literally: “God-breathed”) and useful for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for instructing in righteousness, so that the man of God may be perfect, equipped for every good thing”, 2 Timothy 3:16-17.
The infallibility has to do with the authority and enduring nature from the bible. Infallible means that something is incapable of failing and therefore cannot be broken. Peter said: “The word of the Lord stands forever” (1 Pet. 1: 23-25), and therefore his authority cannot be broken.
The inerrancy means that what God has said is no error. It is believing in the “total veracity and reliability of God’s words” (Grudem, Systematic Theology, p. 90). Jesus said, “Your word is true” (Jn. 17:17). This inerrancy is not only in the passages that speak about salvation, but also applies to all historical and scientific statements. The Bible is not only accurate in matters of faith and practice, but it is accurate and without error with respect to any statement (Jn. 3:12).
The Bible is not only accurate in matters of faith and practice, but it is accurate and without error with respect to any statement.
Why is inerrancy important?
Inerrancy is extremely important. Here are 4 reasons:
1. It is based on the character of God.
Inerrancy is based on the character of God who cannot lie (Heb. 6:18; Ti. 1:2). God cannot intentionally lie because he is the one who gave the absolute moral law. He cannot be wrong because he is omniscient. And if the Bible is the written Word of God (and it is), then it is without error.
2. It was taught by Christ and the apostles.
Inerrancy was taught by Christ and the apostles in the New Testament. This should be our main basis for believing this doctrine. B.B. Warfield said:
“We believe in this doctrine of the plenary inspiration of the Scriptures principally because it is the doctrine which Christ and his apostles believed, and which they have taught us” (limited inspiration, quoted by Mohler, p. 42)
To quote Jesus himself: “The Scripture cannot be broken” (Jn. 10:35), and “until heaven and earth pass away, not one iota, not one dot, will pass from the Law until it is all fulfilled.” ” (Matt 5:18).
3. It is the historical position of the Church.
Inerrancy is the historical position of the Christian Church. Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Seminary, notes that even some of those who oppose the doctrine of inerrancy have agreed that inerrancy is the standard position of the Christian Church throughout the centuries. Mohler quotes brothers Anthony and Richard Hanson, Anglican scholars:
“The Christian fathers and the medieval tradition continued this belief, and the Reformation did nothing to weaken it. On the contrary, as for many Reformed theologians the authority of the Bible took the place that the pope had held in the medieval scheme, the inerrancy of the Bible was firmly held and more explicitly defined among some Reformed theologians” (pp. 48 -49).
They also say: “The beliefs here denied were believed by all Christians from the beginning until about one hundred and fifty years ago” (p. 41).
4. It is fundamental to all other doctrines.
The doctrine of salvation has no divine authority apart from the inerrancy and inerrancy of Scripture.
Inerrancy is fundamental to all other essential Christian doctrines. True, there are some doctrines (such as Christ’s atoning death and bodily resurrection) more essential to salvation. However, all doctrines related to salvation derive their divine authority from the Word of God.
So the doctrine of divine authority and the inerrancy of Scripture is the foundation of all foundations. Therefore, although one can be saved without believing in inerrancy, the doctrine of salvation has no divine authority apart from the inerrancy and inerrancy of Scripture.
Inerrancy deserves high regard among evangelicals and has rightly earned the status of being essential to the Christian faith. Therefore, to reduce inerrancy to the level of inessential or incidental in the Christian faith reveals an ignorance of the theological and historical roots of Christianity. Inerrancy is fundamental to a consistent and healthy Christianity. It simply cannot be rejected without serious consequences, both for the individual and for the Church.