The Bible still has its ancient power if read with open heart and receptive mind
There is in modern theology a strange and growing reluctance to refer to the Bible as “the Word of God.” This reluctance has gone so far that many speak of Holy Scripture as merely a human book. While they acknowledge that it bears witness to Christ as the incarnate Word of God, they deny that Scripture is actually God’s Word written. Ignoring the mass of biblical evidence equating Scripture with the utterance of God, and passing by Christ’s own authentication of its divine character, they reduce it to a human work. Others see it as no more than a book that through the agency of the Spirit has the potential of becoming the Word of God in the experience of those confronted by it.
If conservatism has at times slipped into an almost docetic view of Scripture that so stressed its divine character as to forget its human side, liberalism has gone to the opposite extreme of overlooking the truth that Scripture, while indeed written by men who retained their human characteristics and abilities, is nevertheless God-breathed and therefore originated under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
The modern attack upon the reality of Scripture as the Word of God runs counter to the Church’s unbroken testimony to its complete integrity. It does no honor to Jesus Christ to minimize the written Word that he, the incarnate Word, so constantly taught and relied upon. It is indeed passing strange that so many in this generation relegate to mere human effort the book that the apostles, church fathers, Reformers, and the greatest missionary leaders, evangelists, and preachers have all accepted as the Word of God. Had Luther considered Scripture only on its human level, ...1
Already a CT subscriber? Log in for full digital access.
Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 65+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more