Affirmation of the uniqueness of the Bible At Biblical Foundations Conference – South Africa

Jo Ann Davidson, at the Biblical Foundations Conference held in South Africa, addressed Non-biblical concepts of Scripture.  “The Bible is unique because of its unique origin – so different from other contemporary literature,” she said. The Bible contains consistent history, biography, ethics, etc.  Because God is the author, the Bible is consistent throughout endearing it cross-culturally.

The Bible is Unique because in it we learn:

  1. Monotheism – one true God, both in Old and New Testaments
  2. Prophetic predictions – hundreds of thousands of years into the future
  3. Fulfilled prophecy – (e.g., Daniel ch. 2).  “There is a God in heaven who reveals secrets.”   The Prophecies of the Bible is absolutely unique
  4. Salvific purpose – polytheism is ugly but the God of Scripture uniquely strives for the salvation of humankind.  In the Bible, we see God searching for human beings right after the fall and even closes in the book of Revelation with the same theme.
  5. Historicity – God’s salvific actions are consistent all throughout history.  He even uses his enemies to fulfil his task and he even wants to save his enemies.  The canon shows a unified purpose of God, which is unparalleled in other literature.

False ideas

After the last Bible book was written, false teaching crept into the church leading us into the dark ages.  Why is it called the dark ages?  Light from the Bible was completely eclipsed by the church negating doctrines such as creation, state of the dead, etc.   Scripture was eclipsed.  That is why it is called the dark ages.  Voices were raised at this time and they were silenced.  Tyndale who made the first English translation was martyred.  The Reformation began to restore the Bible to the church.  The reformation resurrected two fundamental foundations of the Christian faith.

  1. Sola scriptura – the Bible and the Bible alone
  2. Solo gratia – salvation solely by faith in Jesus

Seventh-day Adventists stand on the shoulders of giants of the reformers such as Martin Luther and John Wycliffe.  Through the Reformation, the Light of scripture was given again to the church.  And because times have changed, Satan has changed his methods of suppressing the truth.  Because he cannot close it, he uses Christians to discredit it.  Here are some ways that that Satan tries to discredit the Bible:

  1. The rise of the historical-critical method of interpretation, which has been used by critics to attack the bible.  The Genesis narratives were attacked.
  2. Narrative theology
  3. Evolutionary theories – Darwin said that the creation account is mythological constructs, and this has contributed to the discrediting of Bible histories like creation and exodus.  He said that religion is merely the highest achievement of human genius contrary to the biblical account of the condition of man.
  4. Some Christians consider the Bible as Sacred text until they define what they mean as sacred text.  Many consider you arrogant to suggest that your sacred text is better than others.  Ellen White never draws attention to herself.  She calls herself ‘the lesser light’.  Never once is she noted to have said that she is to add or subtract from the bible.
  5. Some Christians piously declare that the Bible is inspired but also Mother Theresa was inspired and Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela.  Pious reflections are considered inspired.  But, the Bible teaches that all believers are to accept the inspiration of God.  The scribes of God wrote as they were dictated by the controlling power of God.  God guarded the biblical process from the beginning to the end.
  6. Some Christians consider themselves New Testament Christians. They ignore the continuity from the Old Testament into the New Testament.
  7. Three prominent theologians: Barth, Bultman and Brunner said that the Bible contains the words of God.  This introduces a subtle difference.  Godman encounters validates and is recognized as the word of God.
  8. Process theology.  God is part of history. God’s self-actualization defines itself in history.

These false ideas of the Bible have led to a false idea of God.

However, God is indeed acting in history.  We don’t tell God who he is but he tells us who he is.  Hearing is not an art that we develop but it is a gift of God.  Scripture expresses God’s voice and God went further when He sent Jesus who is also called the Word. The Bible is its own expositor.

As listeners were digesting the presentation of Dr Jo Ann Davidson, they were reminded by Pastor Edward Zinke:  “If we lose Scripture, we lose Jesus.  His words lead us to him and He leads us to his Word,” in his presentation: “the authority of the Bible in the history of theology.”  During his presentation, he spoke about the role of the Bible in Theology and in understanding the natural world, from the early church to the time of the Reformation and to the present.  He said: “Let us allow the word of God to be the Authority.  When we destroy the Word of God … we destroy the concept of who God is and we make gods of ourselves and that is idolatry!”

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