Statement on Scripture
Our Statement of Faith begins:
"The Bible is God's unique revelation to mankind. It is the inspired, infallible Word of God, and the supreme and final authority in what it teaches and affirms. No other writings are vested with such divine authority."
We also state that we have agreed to disagree on certain issues:
"except that we hold to the trustworthiness and authority of the written text."
And finally, after the Statement of Faith we assert,
"BiblicalTraining Library reserves the right to interpret the implications of the Statement of Faith as it pertains to accepting and disallowing articles and edits."
So what does this mean, practically?
Freedom of Thought
There is nothing wrong with using BiblicalTraining Library ("BTL") to explore issues outside of our Statement of Faith or positions that are contrary to it. In fact, without exploration we personally would never come to any degree of conviction. And so you will find articles on BTL that may raise uncomfortable questions and make you think. That is a good thing, as long as there is no intent to undermine the reader's faith. But at the end of the day, "Freedom of Thought" does come under the Statement of Faith, and the final position of all articles must agree with this policy.
Authority of Scripture
Specifically on the issue of inerrancy and infallibility of the biblical text, the authority of the text is the key issue. Qualified evangelical scholars have differed on this point for some time.
- Inerrancy is the belief that Scripture is true in all that it affirms, while not specifying the means by which this was done. Inerrancy does not require divine dictation.
- Infallibility is the belief (as we use the term) that Scripture is true in areas of faith and practice, but not necessarily in areas of history and science.
- This is an area in which we have agreed to disagree. However, no article in BTL, after it has discussed the issues, argued the different positions, critiqued and evaluated, may conclude that the biblical text is untrustworthy. If you find an article that does, we ask that you report it to BTL's administrators.
There are remaining issues, and part of the role of BTL's board is to make determination on these issues. For example,
- If the text claims authorship by a specific person, we hold to that claim. Pseudonymity is outside the scope of our Statement of Faith as are compilation theories of the writing of the Pentateuch, Isaiah, etc.
- If a writer holds to historical error in the biblical text, it must be couched within ancient standards of historical writing.