Tuesday, April 22, 2014
Post #1 (got lost) The inerrancy of Scripture
For my final report, I have decided to elaborate on the philosophy of the existence of God. Part of the reason that I have decided to go down this path is because I feel as if it is not only an important topic but also the source of philosophy itself. In my endeavor, I have decided to not only use scripture to back my claims but also research done by Wayne Grudem, a prominent evangelical theologian, seminary professor and author, and also with the help from his book Systematic Theology. The points that I will discuss are: Humanity’s inner sense of God, Believing the evidence in scripture and nature, Traditional “proofs” for the existence of God and the inerrancy of scripture, which are all points and sub points discussed in Grudem’s Systematic Theology.
1. The Inerrancy of scripture.
Using Grudem’s definition, “the inerrancy of Scripture means that Scripture in the original manuscripts does not affirm anything that is contrary to fact.”(p.91) The reason that I start off with this topic is to both affirm those who may not believe and reaffirm those who do that the references that I make to scripture are in fact reliable sources to help explain the existence of God. To start off, Grudem explains, “The bible can be inerrant and still speak in ordinary language of everyday speech.”(p.91) This claim is absolutely true in historical and scientific statements of events or facts. Referring to the book of Numbers where it states that 8,000 men had died in battle, “without thereby implying that he has counted everyone and that there are not 7,999 or 8,001 dead soldiers. If roughly 8,000 died, it would of course be false to say that 16,000 died, but it would not be false in most contexts for a reporter to say that 8,000 men died when in fact 7,823 or 8,242 had died: the limits on truthfulness would depend on the degree of precision implied the speaker and expected by his original hearers.”(p.91) This statement refutes claims about the precision of the accounts in scripture being inaccurate when, “Inerrancy has to do with truthfulness, not with the degree of precision with which events are reported.” (p.92)
Another argument that is brought to attention on the grounds of the inerrancy of scripture is that, “The Bible is only authoritative for “Faith and Practice”.” Grudem explains that, “ This position would allow for the possibility of false statements in Scripture, for example, in other areas such as in minor historical details or scientific facts - these areas, it is said, do not concern the purpose of the Bible, which is to instruct us in what we should believe and how we are to live…. The response to this objection can be stated as follows: the Bible repeatedly affirms that all of scripture is profitable for us (2 Tim. 3:16) and all of it is “God breathed.” Thus it is completely pure (Ps. 12:6), perfect (Ps. 119:96), and true (Prov. 30:5). The Bible itself does not make any restriction on the kinds of subjects to which it speaks truthfully.”(p.93) In conclusion, “..this first objection to inerrancy makes a wrong use of a summary and thereby incorrectly attempts to impose artificial limits on the kinds of things about which God can speak to us.” (p.95) This particular topic can be explained further but I am bound by time, so there is the inerrancy of scripture and its def. as well as sub points. My next post will elaborate on the meat of my topic, The Existence of God.