For quite a while I have had this series about “The Doctrine of Scripture" on my mind. In this introductory post, I want to give you a general survey of the “Doctrine of Scripture”, otherwise known as “Bibliology”. Before we do that survey, let me first introduce the Bible itself.
What is "The Holy Bible"?
Whenever we think of the doctrine of Scripture, what comes to mind? Let me draw your attention to some opening thoughts.
1. To begin, we think of course about our Bibles. Most Bibles still have written on their spines on front covers “Holy Bible”. That term “holy” speaks of a uniqueness, a “set-apart” quality that makes the Bible different from any other book.
2. Then, when we see that second term “Bible”, we encounter an English word, transliterated from the Latin “biblia”, which in turn is a carryover from the Greek term “biblos”, meaning “Book”. Hence, to say “Holy Bible” means “a set-apart Book”.
3. Now, once you begin to study the Bible, you discover it is composed of sixty-six individual books, sub-divided into two main sections – Old Testament and New Testament. The term "testament" derives from a Latin term that our English Translations have used for centuries to describe our two major sections of the Bible. The term "testamentum", was translated from a Hebrew term ("berith") and a Greek term ("diatheke"), both of which mean "covenant".
5. The New Testament (or "Covenant") consists of 27 books, originally composed in Koine Greek, containing over 138,000 words. Everyone of these words are classified together by the simple term “Scripture”, meaning “that which is written”. Jesus certainly came to ratify the "New Covenant", a better covenant, with His blood, which He shed on the cross as man (see Hebrews 9:16-17). What makes the 27 books the "New Covenant Scriptures" is in how Jesus Christ, being also truly God, demonstrated Himself forever alive by His physical resurrection from the dead, remaining truly man - and thus being forever God and man.
The Bible is a library of Divinely inspired books
Now these introductory remarks serve to tell you what is inside your Bibles, and why they are called “The Holy Bible”. We see a Divinely inspired library of books, all expressing a unity of message, ranging over 1500 years, through 40 authors, in three languages, displaying all sorts of literary types such as narrative, poetry, letters, and prophecy.
There are over 700 prophecies, many of which have demonstrated fulfillment in history. No other book in the world, secular or religious, boasts such features. Physical description alone would draw the conclusion that the Bible is a most remarkable book.
However, in talking about the Bible, I'm not content to just say the Bible is a “remarkable book” (though it most certainly is remarkable!) Rather, in exploring the doctrine of Scripture, we will discover that this most remarkable book is a “revealed book”. When I talk of "The Doctrine of Scripture", I mean the following qualities or headings.
1. Clarity of God’s words – their
2. Authority of God’s words – that’s
3. Inerrancy and infallibility of God’s words –
5. Sufficiency of God’s words – life
6. The writing down of God’s words – that’s
In the next post, we will begin to explain what each of these characteristics mean, and why they matter today.