Welcome to The Reasons to Believe podcast, episode #213. My name is Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International.
Our Reasons to Believe Scripture Passage for today is II Samuel 23:2. It reads, “The Spirit of the Lord spake by me, and his word was in my tongue.”
Our Reasons to Believe quote for today is from John Stott. He said, “The particularity of each New Testament author was in no way smothered by the unique process of inspiration. On the contrary, the Holy Spirit first prepared, and then used, their individuality of upbringing, experience, temperament and personality, in order to convey through each some distinctive and appropriate truth….The dual authorship of Scripture is an important truth to be carefully guarded. On the one hand, God spoke, revealing the truth and preserving the human authors from error, yet without violating their personality. On the other hand, men spoke, using their own faculties freely, yet without distorting the divine message. Their words were truly their own words. But they were (and still are) also God’s words, so that what Scripture says, God says.”
Today we are continuing the topic of scripture, its inerrancy, infallibility and inspiration using “Our God-breathed Book: The Bible – The Verbally Inspired, Eternal, Inerrant Word of God” by John R. Rice. Our Reasons to Believe powerpoint today comes from Chapter 3: “The Bible Claims To Be The Inspired Word of God” Part 6.
5. Scriptures Revealed by God’s Spirit Miraculously “in Words Which the Holy Ghost Teacheth”
The most detailed teaching about inspiration in a single passage in the Bible is given, we think, in I Corinthians 2:9-14:
“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”
Dr. Hodge says: “There is neither in the Bible nor in the writings of men a simpler or clearer statement of the doctrines of revelation and inspiration” than this.
Here we are told that the revelation from God which Paul wrote down in his epistles (as other Scriptures were written), did not come from what his eye had seen or what his ear had heard or what he had logically come to understand, by study and investigation, in his heart, but it was revealed by God’s Spirit. And there we are plainly told that these wonderful things that came by divine revelation could not be known by man unless the Spirit of God revealed them. So the apostle says that he has received “not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.” And those things are given “not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual,” that is, Spirit-given ideas or thoughts, in Spirit-given words.
And then verse 14 plainly tells us that the Scripture could not originate with the natural man. If there were a Scripture without clear divine inspiration, if the Scripture were not directly given from God but only originated with man at his highest and best, it would still have human frailty, weakness and limitations. But here we are told that both the matter and the wording of the Scriptures are given by God’s Spirit.
Again, we do not here go into a discussion of the slight difference sometimes between revelation and inspiration. But what was revealed to Paul in “words which the Holy Ghost teacheth was what he wrote down in the inspired New Testament and it was not just in Paul’s heart that the message was given, but it was put into words, words he would give to others.
We dare not neglect what God had Paul so carefully write down for us here about the origin of Scripture. We have not only the positive statement that God’s revelation is given in words “which the Holy Ghost teacheth,” Spirit-given matter and Spirit-given words, but we are also plainly told that the Bible is “not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth.” The Bible was not written as other books are written and the Lord gives even more details in this negative statement of what the Bible is not. The Bible is not “in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth,” that is, “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”
The Bible is not composed of what men have seen, it is not the report of witnesses. The Bible is not what people have heard as they were told by others. Luke did not learn of the virgin birth from Mary. Mark did not learn the facts of his Gospel from Peter. Matthew and Luke did not copy from Mark or from the fictitious “Q” manuscript. Luke did not search out the facts to make his Gospel “certain,” nor did Luke get the details for the book of Acts from Paul. Luke did not search out the facts to make his Gospel “certain,” nor did Luke get the details for the book of Acts from Paul. Old Testament prophets did not find and copy genealogical records.
No, the Scriptures were given of God, “combining spiritual things with spiritual words” (A.S.V.).
The Bible is not what men reasoned out in their hearts, nor even in the spiritual experiences of good men. It is not a revelation of what “entered into the heart of man.” So, we understand that the Bible is “not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Spirit teacheth; combining spiritual things with spiritual words,” as the American Standard Version has it. So, what we have in the Bible came not from what men saw, nor what men got from witnesses, nor what men searched out or investigated, or thought through. Both the matter and the words of the Bible came directly from God, this Scripture says.
Lord willing, we will continue this topic in our next episode.
Now, if you are listening today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, allow me to show you how.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Until next time, my friend, please keep in mind these reasons to believe. God bless!