The Bible is the most important book in history, and is what defines our faith. Without it we would not know who God is, his will for us, salvation, or the Lord Jesus Christ.
The way to destroy Christianity would be to destroy the Bible. This present evil world knows this and has been attacking the Bible for centuries. No Bible = no Christianity.
As a result of relentless attacks without reply, generations have a view of the Bible that it is an anachronistic book written by men that no one can understand, filled with mistakes, and is unneeded for true spirituality. What lies!
If Christianity is on the wane it is due to a failure to fortify these important doctrines about the Bible. If removing the Bible makes Christianity crumble, returning respect to the Holy Book of Books will strengthen it.
Here are seven important doctrines about the Bible that will strengthen your faith in God’s word and make you a Bible believer.
1. Revelation – God spoke words.
Revelation is the doctrine that God has spoken. The Bible is God’s revelation. This is important because God is true, holy, good, and without error. Therefore, what he says is true, holy, good, and without error. This is where we get the “holy” in Holy Bible. The Bible is sacred because of its author. The Bible was revealed by God.
“For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.” – Galatians 1:12
2. Inspiration – God’s words in writing.
Who doesn’t know the Bible was written by men. The doctrine of inspiration describes how God’s words were put in writing using the instrumentation of humanity. The Bible was not delivered from heaven like the golden plates of Mormonism, or by oral tradition like the Talmud or Koran. Divine inspiration teaches that God wrote the Bible with human pens to write specific words (2 Peter 1:20-21).
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God…” – 2 Timothy 3:16
3. Illumination – God’s words understood.
The Bible can be understood, because of the doctrine of illumination. God did not write a book so that no one could read and understand it. His purpose was for all to know and each to study for themselves (1 Tim 2:4; 2 Tim 2:15). The Bible is not a book God kept in secret, but helps us to understand. How can we understand? First, faith is required (Rom 10:17). Then, you must be spiritually quickened (1 Cor 2:12-13). Thirdly, you must acknowledge Paul’s instruction (2 Tim 2:7).
“But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” – 1 Corinthians 2:14
“Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.” – 2 Timothy 2:7
4. Utilization – God’s words must be used.
It is necessary to have and understand the Bible, because God requires it be utilized. We are told to preach it, teach it, study it, rightly divide it, eat it, believe it, live by it, stand with it, fight with it, and obey it. This doctrine alone should cause us to cherish God’s holy book: we need it! Faith comes by no other way.
“For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning,…” – Romans 15:4
“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” – Romans 10:17
5. Canonization – God’s words complete & sufficient.
This oft neglected doctrine describes how the Bible came to be complete and defined. A corollary to this is the idea that the Bible is all that we need: it is sufficient. There is nothing lacking from it to make us perfect (complete) workmen for the Lord. There is nothing else we need from oral tradition, experience, gut feelings, a Pope, magisterium, deacon board, anointed pastor, or the wisdom of the world. God said many things that are not in the Bible, but the Bible is what God wants us to know, and it is finished, complete, and sufficient in sixty-six books.
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable… that the man of God may be perfect,…” – 2 Timothy 3:16-17
“Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God;” – Colossians 1:25
6. Preservation – God’s words through history.
Without preservation none of the other doctrines matter. God could have revealed, inspired, and completed a Bible to be used and understood, but without the doctrine of preservation it is all for naught, and the Holy Bible was lost thousands of years ago to history. If God wants us to understand and use his words that he inspired, then they must be preserved through history. There are no more original autographs. Preservation is needed for God’s words to endure forever (1 Pet 1:25).
“Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” – Matthew 24:35
“Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.” – Psalm 12:7
7. Identification – God’s words in your hands and heart.
In a world, culture, or church that does not understand and believe the previous six important doctrines this final doctrine is the most offensive. It is also the most important for the word of God to have an effect in your life.
This doctrine describes how you know you hold God’s words in your hand and are reading them with your eyes. If God inspired and preserved his word we should be able to identify it today.
There are so many different books claiming to be the Bible. It was the need to clearly identify the Holy Bible which drove men to reduce the differences and number of Bible translations down to one. After all, God only inspired one, and we only need one, and the church is one, and so which one is it?
When it is said that God’s perfectly preserved words in English are found in the King James Bible this is a statement reflecting the doctrine of identification.
“…when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.” – 1 Thessalonians 2:13
The Effect on Those That Believe
The Thessalonians had to identify by faith the words of God before they had an effect. Perhaps the reason Christians are not being effected by the word of God is that they are not clearly identified amidst hundreds of different translations.
Perhaps you cannot yet identify which Bible is God’s words. Perhaps you have been persuaded that they are all the same, or that God does not preserve his words, or that the Bible is too hard to understand or is not completely sufficient or necessary for us to have.
Denying any one of these important doctrines about the Bible brings confusion and doubt upon the Bible. Without the Bible, Christianity becomes ineffective, or worse.
“For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar.” – Romans 3:3-4
Christians are people of a book. Strengthen your understanding of these important doctrines about the Bible and your faith will grow, and God’s words will work effectually in you.