The Book of 2 TIMOTHY
James J. Barker


Lesson 10
THE BIBLE IS THE WORD OF GOD

Text: 2 TIMOTHY 3:14-17


INTRODUCTION:


  1. Over and over, the Bible is referred to as “the Word of God.”
  2. Proverbs 30:5, 6 says, “Every word of God is pure: He is a shield unto them that put their trust in Him. Add thou not unto His words, lest He reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.”
  3. In Luke 4:4, Jesus said to the devil, “It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.”
  4. In Luke 11:28, our Lord said, “Blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.”
  5. The Bible is not the word of men; it is the Word of God (cf. I Thess. 2:13). The expression, “Thus saith the LORD” is found 430 times in the Bible.
  6. The Bible is the direct revelation from God concerning His plan and purpose for the earth and the human race.
  7. Oftentimes, the Word of God is referred to as “Scripture" (cf. II Tim. 3:15). Second Peter 1:20, 21 says, “Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.”
  8. The Bible was written over a period of about 1600 years – from approximately 1500 BC to about 100 AD.
  9. The Bible consists of 66 separate books: 39 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament.
  10. These 66 separate books were written by about 40 different writers: kings, such as David and Solomon; statesmen, such as Daniel and Nehemiah; priests, such as Ezra; herdsmen, such as Amos; fishermen, such as Peter, James, and John.
  11. There were educated men such as Moses, taught in the wisdom of Egypt, and men taught in the Jewish Law, such as Paul.
  12. A Jewish tax collector, such as Matthew; and a Gentile physician, such as Luke. And great prophets such as Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, and Zechariah.
  13. Yet one of the most amazing and miraculous things about all of this, is that after 1600 years and 40 different writers, there is an amazing consistency and unity. There are no contradictions and no errors.
  14. All of the writers speak of the plan of God for man. The Old Testament points to the cross. The four Gospels bring us right to the cross. And the book of Acts and the epistles look back to the cross.
  15. The book of Revelation tells us of the events surrounding the second coming of Christ.
  16. Everything recorded between the opening pages of the book of Genesis and the closing pages of Revelation was divinely inspired by the Holy Spirit.
  17. Second Timothy 3:16 says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God...”
  18. The Bible is a book that man would not write even if he could. Because from Genesis to Revelation the Bible reveals that the human race as being wicked sinners.

 

I. THE BIBLE IS THE ONLY BOOK THAT CAN MAKE US WISE UNTO SALVATION (II TIM. 3:15).

  1. The Bible is not a book to be studied as one studies geology and astronomy, merely to find out about the earth’s formation and the structure of the universe; but it is a book revealing the mind of God.
  2. Every word in the Bible is true, and was designed to bring us into living union with God.
  3. However, though the Bible is not a science book, when it does deal with scientific matters we can be sure that it is accurate.
  4. I am not minimizing the importance of science, but scientific knowledge has no power to change our characters or to make us better persons or to save us from sin.
  5. But the Bible has in it a vital power. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
  6. James 1:21 says we are to “receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.”
  7. "From a child," Timothy knew the Scriptures (3:15). He learned the Word of God from his Christian mother Eunice, and his Christian grandmother Lois (II Tim. 1:5).
  8. Daniel Webster said, "If there is anything in my thoughts or style to commend, the credit is due to my parents for instilling in me an early love of the Scriptures. If we abide by the principles taught in the Bible, our country will go on prospering and to prosper; but if we and our posterity neglect the instructions and authority; no man can tell how sudden a catastrophe may overwhelm us and bury all our glory in profound obscurity."

 

II. THE BIBLE IS THE INSPIRED WORD OF GOD (II TIM. 3:16).

  1. "Inspiration is usually defined as a supernatural influence exerted on the sacred writers by the Spirit of God, by virtue of which their writings are given divine trustworthiness" – Benjamin B. Warfield (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia).
  2. When we speak of the inspiration of the Bible, we are not using the word the same way people use it to describe Shakespeare, Milton, Handel, et al.
  3. The word "inspired" literally means "God-breathed."
  4. When we say that the Bible is inspired, we are not saying that the authors were mere pens, passive instruments used by God to record word for word what He dictated to them. This is referred to as the "dictation theory." It emphasizes divine authorship to the exclusion of human authorship.
  5. Referring to the verbal inspiration of the Bible, C.I. Scofield said, "This implies neither mechanical dictation nor the effacement of the writer's personality, but only that the Spirit infallibly guides in the choice of words from the writer's own vocabulary" (Scofield Study Bible, p. 1213).
  6. For example, the apostle Paul's unique personality and style of writing comes through over and over again in his epistles. He says, "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren" five times -- in Romans, I Corinthians, II Corinthians, and I Thessalonians.
  7. Scofield's explanation: the Holy Spirit infallibly guided the writers in the choice of words from their own vocabulary.
  8. Not only must we reject the "dictation theory," we must also reject the "partial inspiration" theory, which holds that the Bible is infallible in matters of faith and practice, but not necessarily in matters of geography, history and science.
  9. "Partial inspiration" is dishonoring to God. "All scripture is given by inspiration of God..." (II Tim. 3:16).
  10. Another error popularly taught is the "concept inspiration" theory. According to this view, the concepts of the Bible are inspired but not the exact wording.
  11. Our Lord said, "For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled" (Matthew 5:18).
  12. It was well known in our Lord's day that the scribes paid the greatest attention to the little marks attached to the letters in the Hebrew Scriptures, the Masoretic Text -- jots and tittles were small strokes or marks, specifically above a letter to denote accent.
  13. To put this into today's vocabulary, we would refer to the dotting of an `i' or the crossing of a `t' being preserved by God.
  14. Finally, we must strenuously oppose the "neo-orthodox theory," propagated by the liberal and influential Karl Barth (1886-1968), which teaches that the Bible "contains the Word of God." To Barth and his deluded followers, the Bible contains numerous mistakes but nevertheless becomes the Word of God when Christ speaks to us through it. In reality, the Bible is the inerrant Word of God.

 

III. THE SCRIPTURES HELP US TO KNOW THE WILL OF GOD

  1. D.L. Moody said, "The Scriptures were not given for our information, but for our transformation." Of course they were given for both.
  2. Moody gave a Bible to his son, and he wrote these words on the flyleaf, “Either this book will keep you from sin, or sin will keep you from this book.”
  3. Psalm 119:105 says, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”
  4. Psalm 119:130 says, “The entrance of thy words giveth light.”
  5. George Pentecost said, “The Word of God is a chart that marks all the rocks and reefs in the sea of life; if we heed, and sail our frail bark by it, we shall come safely into the haven of rest at last" (“What the Bible Contains for the Believer,” The Fundamentals).
  6. The Bible is "profitable" (useful) for":
  • Doctrine -- What is right. Teaching Bible truth.
  • Reproof -- What is not right. Exposing error.
  • Correction -- How to get right. Restoring sinners.
  • Instruction in righteousness -- How to stay right. "Instruction" suggests Christian discipline and development of Christian character.
  1. The Scriptures teach us the way which leads to perfection, and it is impossible to go on to perfection apart from the Bible.

 

CONCLUSION:

“The Bible contains the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers. Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its histories are true, and its decisions are immutable. Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe, and practice it to be holy. It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you.
It is the traveler's map, the pilgrim's staff, the pilot's compass, the soldier's sword, and the Christian's charter. Here Paradise is restored, Heaven opened, and the gates of hell disclosed. Christ is its grand subject, our good the design, and the glory of God its end. It should fill the memory, rule the heart, and guide the feet. Read it slowly, frequently, and prayerfully. It is a mine of wealth, a paradise of glory, and a river of pleasure. It is given you in life, will be opened at the judgment, and be remembered forever. It involves the highest responsibility, will reward the greatest labor, and will condemn all who trifle with its sacred contents” – inscribed inside a Gideon Bible.



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