There is a tendency nowadays to avoid using “big words” when speaking about the faith. While we want to avoid a stale spirituality that is unnecessarily intellectual, we must be aware that there are certain lofty concepts that are important to our faith. One such concept is the doctrine of inerrancy. The word refers to “the theological conviction that the Bible is accurate in every respect about all it affirms.” Plain and simple, inerrancy means the Bible is without error. Consider five reasons why this is true.
God inspired Scripture.
The New Testament affirms that the Bible was produced by Divine inspiration. Paul said, “All Scripture is inspired by God” (2 Timothy 3:16). Peter said, “No prophecy ever came by the will of man; instead, men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21). Later in his writings, Peter would place the writings of Paul on par with the Old Testament (2 Peter 3:15-16), making our New Testament tantamount to Holy Writ. When we read the Good Book, we should be aware that we are not reading just an ordinary book. The Bible is the only book God wrote!
God is perfect.
Jesus said, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48). The biblical concept of perfection involves ideas of impeccability, blamelessness, and completeness. Because God is perfect, it is contrary to His nature to provide an imperfect book. David linked these two ideas together in the Psalms. He said, “God—his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is pure” (Psalm 18:30). The perfection of God demands a pure Book.
God does not lie.
The author of Hebrews said, “It is impossible for God to lie” (Hebrews 6:18). Through the prophet Malachi, the Lord proclaimed, “I change not” (Malachi 3:6). It is impossible for deceit or corruption to accompany the Lord’s character. When He speaks, He speaks truth, and He doesn’t change His mind. He cannot lie, and He will not lie. As a result, His inspired Book is trustworthy.
God promised to preserve Scripture.
When He was on earth, Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away” (Matthew 24:35). Our Lord’s claim was in alignment with what God said about His Word elsewhere. Isaiah declared, “The grass withers, the flowers fade, but the word of our God remains forever” (Isaiah 40:8). God didn’t just produce Scripture, He promised to preserve it. It cannot be diluted, damaged, defiled, or destroyed. The Bible is an indestructible and incorruptible volume; thus, it is unchanged from the Lord’s original intent!
The Bible is without error.
The aforementioned truths bring us to this final reality. The Psalmist said, “The words of the Lord are pure words, like silver refined in an earthen furnace, purified seven times” (Psalm 12:6). Because Scripture was produced by a perfect God who does not lie, and who promised to preserve it forever, it is completely accurate and without error! I like the way in which J.C. Ryle expressed his trust in the Bible — “If the Bible told me that Jonah swallowed the whale, I would believe it!”
Dr. Patrick Latham