Project: Your Statement of Faith - Lesson 2

Article One: Scripture

This lesson covers the topics of the Bible and its authority, the interpretation of scripture, and the bible and science. It also covers the nature and resolution of contradictions in the Bible. The introduction provides a brief overview of the Bible and its historical context, as well as its literary structure. The lesson then explores the Bible's authority, the process of interpretation, and the relationship between the Bible and science. It also examines the nature of contradictions in the Bible and how they can be resolved. The conclusion provides a summary of the lesson and some conclusions.

Bill Mounce
Project: Your Statement of Faith
Lesson 2
Watching Now
Article One: Scripture

TH099-02: Article One: Scripture

I. Overview of Scripture

A. Introduction

B. Definition

C. Canon

II. Nature of Scripture

A. Divine Inspiration

B. Authority of Scripture

C. Necessity of Scripture

III. Interpretation of Scripture

A. Clarify the Meaning of the Text

B. Apply the Text to Life

C. Use the Text for Teaching

  • You will learn the definition, purpose, and components of a statement of faith, as well as how to create one by considering a set of questions and following a process.
  • You will gain an understanding of the Bible, its authority, interpretation, and its relationship with science, as well as an exploration of contradictions in the Bible and how to resolve them.
  • This lesson teaches you about God's nature, character, and activity, including his oneness, triune nature, attributes, holiness, love, sovereignty, and his activity in creation, providence, and redemption.
  • This lesson explores the person and work of Jesus Christ, providing a comprehensive understanding of His divine and human natures, humiliation, exaltation, redemption, and resurrection.
  • You will gain knowledge about the nature, work, and experience of the Holy Spirit from this lesson, including its definition and names, its relationship to the Father and the Son, and its baptism, filling, and gifts.
  • Gain insight into the doctrine of man and its implications, including the Biblical anthropology, the image of God, and the consequences of sin, and how it affects our daily lives and understanding of the human condition.
  • You will gain an understanding of the doctrine of salvation and its implications in this life and afterlife.
  • You will gain a better understanding of the doctrine of sanctification and its importance in the life of a believer. You will learn the definition of sanctification, the distinctions and degrees of sanctification, and the progressive nature of sanctification. You will also learn the means of sanctification and the goal of sanctification, which is transformation, holiness, and glorification. Finally, you will understand the significance of sanctification, which is to live a life of obedience, experience joy and abundance, and represent Christ in the world.
  • This lesson examines the doctrine of the church, exploring its definition, purpose, and mission. It also examines the relationship between the church, the Kingdom of God, and the Bible.
  • This lesson explores the Doctrine of Last Things, helping you to understand the theological implications, events, and applications of Eschatology.

Now that you have listened to the lectures it is time for you decide on the three things enumerated above: What you believe; What your church needs to believe; What is primary and secondary.

The best way to for this is to write out and then explain your own statement of faith. In this class you will see how Bill Mounce, the President of BiblicalTraining, does this for himself and his church. After listening to what he has to say, then your project is to do the same for yourself.

Dr. Bill Mounce
Project: Your Statement of Faith
Article One Scripture
Lesson Transcript

[00:00:02] Article one is on our view as Scripture. The Bible is the infallible Word of God, the Supreme rule for faith and practice. A couple of very important words there. We settled on the word infallible. Now, in certain traditions, the word infallible has a different meaning than the word inerrancy. I personally am an emeritus. I believe that Scripture is fully without error. But because some people have some baggage with the word inerrancy and because of other things, we decided to stick with the word infallible. And yet, if you look down to the second paragraph, you'll see that we're saying that Scripture is without error in the originals, but infallible is a good word and means that Scripture is true and everything that it says, it doesn't make any mistakes. So we believe in the infallible Word of God, and therefore, because scriptures infallible, it therefore becomes our supreme rule for faith and practice. The idea is that God is true and only speaks that which is true. Scripture is an accurate reflection of His word. So they are his words, and therefore the words carry his authority. And so the words of Scripture become the supreme rule for what we believe and how we behave. The second paragraph reads the 66 books of the old. The New Testament came from the very mouth of God and are without error in the originals scriptures. Therefore, the unique and supreme guide for all of the firms, including both belief and behavior. Okay, Again, a couple of very important words or phrases. We believe in the 66 books of the Old and New Testament. We don't accept the veracity of the Apocrypha, the pocket for a series of books that have been around for a couple thousand years, thereabouts.

[00:01:56] They made it into the Catholic Church's canon. The Catholic Church accepts those extra books as authoritative, like as dress and several others. And but by the time of the Reformation came looser and singly, and these guys pulled them up because it said they've always been viewed as something different from the rest of Scripture. And in the Protestant tradition, we don't accept these books as authoritative. So we accept the 66 all of the old and all of the New Testament. And we believe that these books came from the very mouth of God that comes out of the passage. And second, Timothy 316 that says that all Scripture is and then Paul didn't have the word to describe it. So he made one up. He took the word for God and he took the word for breathed and he stuck them together. So Scripture is God reads that it comes from his very mouth. This is the doctrine of inspiration. And inspiration in its purest form isn't concerned with mode. It isn't concerned with how God went about inspiring. But the doctrine of inspiration first and foremost, says Scripture, comes from the very mouth of God, is the doctrine about the origin of Scripture. And so we believe that God breathes doubt that he spoke these very words. And it's a little repetitive in the second half of the phrase. This means us without error in the originals. When Paul actually wrote the book of Romans. That document is without error. It's a whole another issue about how we got the book of Romans, and we left it outside the Statement of Faith. But again, because Scripture comes from the very models of God, then it is therefore unique because there's only one God and because it comes from the very mouth of God, it is our supreme God.

[00:03:46] We can look at other things. We can look at church history. We can look at reason, we can look at logic, those kinds of things. But ultimately, we believe that Scripture is the ultimate guide for everything that it affirms, for all that it affirms. This is called the plenary view of inspiration, not parts of Scripture inspired, but all the Scriptures inspired. The third paragraph then, is the teachings of the Bible are sufficient. They're sufficient for salvation and they're sufficient for sanctification. While there are questions of meaning and application over which we may agree to disagree. There is nothing for which we are responsible to God in terms of our salvation and sanctification that is not expressed in Scripture either in precept, which means it's explicitly stated or in principle. Now that's a mouthful, but it's a very important one. It's important to us to affirm not only that what we believe comes from Scripture, which comes from God and is therefore true, but we don't want to go beyond Scripture. And there are some traditions that say, yes, the Bible is good and we need to believe this and do this. But we also have all these other things that we have to do as well. And what this paragraph says that in terms of our salvation and in terms of our sanctification, in terms of us becoming more like Christ and growing in holiness, maturing in our spiritual walk, if we do this, that's all we need to do. There's nothing else. And so it keeps us from adding to or subtracting from Scripture as we try to obey it. Now, there's one very practical application to this in this particular church, and it was interesting to write the Statement of Faith, not only to decide what do we believe, but also to decide what are we going to agree to disagree about? In other words, there were a lot of other things we could have put in the statement of faith, but we didn't because we said there are some things that are primary and there are some things that are secondary and we don't want to get off into secondary issues.

[00:05:51] We want to settle on what is primary. So we in terms of practical application, here's how we work out this paragraph in this church, one nobody may teach what is contrary to the statement of faith. There are people here in this church that believe things different from our statement of faith. There are some people here who believe that Jesus has already come again. And you know what? They're welcome to be here. This is not a cult and not in the mind control. And people can believe what they want, but nothing contrary to the statement of faith can ever be taught in this church. So a wide variety of people are welcome to come. But in terms of what is actually taught from the pulpit, from classrooms into the junior high program to the kids programs, nothing can be taught That is that is contrary to the statement of faith. Now, there's a second half to that, and that is what about all those things that most of us believe that are of secondary significance? Now we have to be able to talk about these things, especially when I preach. I'm going to be dealing with issues that are outside the statement of faith. It'll come up in Sunday school class. We have a class going on right now on the Book of Revelation. The speaker is going to be taking positions that are not contrary to the statement of faith, but aren't stipulated in the statement of faith. And that's fine. But what we cannot do in these secondary issues of interpretation, nobody can insist that everyone believe what they believe. So, in other words, we can't teach anything that's contrary to this. We can talk about other things, but we can't insist on those other things.

[00:07:32] Now, as a caveat to that is, I guess in a sense, I'm the exception to that because every Sunday I have to get up and preach from Scripture. I get to preach from Scripture, and every day I have to make decisions on what the text means. So that puts me in a little awkward position. But what I can't do when I'm preaching even I can't do it as the preacher is get up and insist that this is the only possible interpretation. I won't do that. At least I'll try not to do that. And if I do, I'm sure my elders, my friends will let me know about it. In other words, we're going to agree to disagree on a lot of things. There's issues of charismatic theology. There's issues of dispensation, of theology, of color. An IT versus reformed theology. There's a lot of things that we've agreed to disagree on because we're just not going to make a big issue of it. We're not going to do that. That's not the kind of church we are. We're going to agree on the major things and we're going to agree to treat each other with grace and respect on those secondary issues. This then leads to the final paragraph on this article, and it reads From these convictions flow the following articles of faith. Now, a lot of the old creeds started with a doctrine of God, started with theology proper, or sometimes they start with creation. In this day and age, in a pluralistic society where people deny even the existence of truth, we have to have a starting point. And so we decided, let's make our view of Scripture the starting point, and then everything that flows out of it, our doctrine of God, our doctrine of Jesus, our doctrine of the end times, everything flows out of Scripture.

[00:09:16] So the placement of our view of Scripture at the very beginning was very deliberate and was very important. So that's Article one, our view of Scripture. I meant to add one other thing, and that is as we try to explain the Trinity, sometimes there's analogies that kind of help steam, water, ice. The same thing in three different forms the egg in the yolk and the shell, that kind of stuff. I would urge you to be very, very careful with those analogies because God has no analogy. There's nothing that you can compare him to. And so if you compare them to anything on creation, it just doesn't fit. And we have to be careful, especially in dealing with our children, that we understand that God is beyond description and that He exists as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. There are not three different forms of the same person. They are three different people. They are three different persons. And yet there is one God. So urge you to be really cautious when it comes to the use of analogies in trying to explain the Trinity, as tempting as it might be.


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