Monday, April 8, 2013

My View of Inerrancy

Inerrancy is not a topic often discussed in our everyday conversations (generally, unless you are a theologian). No matter who you are though you have a stance on the inerrancy of Scripture and where you take that stand determines not only how you view the Bible, but ultimately God himself. According to Mark Driscoll in his work Doctrine, “The doctrine of inerrancy posits that because God does not lie or speak falsely in any way, and because the Scriptures are God’s Word they are perfect. As a result the entire Bible is without any error.”[1] I do want to be clear that there is a difference between three terms that are often thrown around interchangeably inerrancy, infallibility, and inspiration. To one degree or another each may interact with the other, or in the case of inerrancy it is reliant upon divine inspiration. Infallibility on the other hand argues that the Bible can and should be trusted as unfailing in all things pertaining to the Christian faith and living.[2]
So if we take the stance that Scripture is infallible we can then also develop an argument for inerrancy because Scripture testifies about itself being the Word of God. Driscoll says, “The Bible claims to be wholly true and therefore inerrant. We find such explicit statements in passages such as 2 Samuel 7:28, …, Psalm 19:7-10, which uses words such as perfect, sure, right, pure, true, and righteous; Psalm 119:42-43, 142,151,160,163 which uses the specific word truth or true; and John 17:17, “Your word is truth.”[3] Of course you will always have people who will try and say that there are explicit errors to be found throughout the Bible, Gregory Boyd, suggest, “…inerrantists do not claim that the Bible is not without any apparent errors, only that it is without any real errors. They readily admit that there are things about the Bible our finite minds cannot explain. It is incorrect and arrogant, however, to locate the problem in the Bible itself rather than in our limited understanding of the Bible.”[4] A great argument for the accuracy of the Bible is made by Driscoll when he says, “A telling example of the Bible’s accuracy is in the transliteration of the names of foreign kings in the Old Testament as compared to contemporary extra-biblical records, such as the monuments and tablets. The Bible is accurate in every detail in the thirty-six instances of comparison, a total of 183 syllables.”[5]
So while there may be things in the Bible that can appear as errors we should not assume that it is in the Scripture but first start with examining our own understanding. God is gracious and will reveal what He chooses to us and other things we may just have to wait until we reach the other side of glory to understand. I place my trust in Scripture, because I first place my trust in God.
Boyd, Gregory A., and Paul R. Eddy. Across the Spectrum, Second Edition. Baker : Grand Rapids, 2009.
Driscoll, Mark, and Gerry Breshears. Doctrine: What Christians Should Believe. Wheaton: Crossway, 2010.

[1] Mark Driscoll, and Gerry Breshears. Doctrine: What Christians Should Believe. (Wheaton: Crossway, 2010)58.
[2]Gregory A. Boyd, and Paul R. Eddy. Across the Spectrum, Second Edition. (Baker : Grand Rapids, 2009)24.
[3] Driscoll, Doctrine, 58.
[4] Boyd, Across, 17.
[5] Driscoll, Doctrine, 60.

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