1 January 2010

Opinion Poll - December 2009

"There are also many other things that Jesus did, but if these were to be described individually, I do not think the whole world would contain the books that would be written." (John 21:25).

John 21:25 (see above) is a strong argument against the sufficiency of Scripture (Sola Scriptura).

  • True 32(56%)
  • False 24 (42%)
  • Don't Know 1 (1%)
Total votes: 57. Poll closed.

Comment

A typical argument, taken from the Internet, goes like this: "Matt. 28:20 - "observe ALL I have commanded," but, as we see in John 20:30; 21:25, not ALL Jesus taught is in Scripture. So there must be things outside of Scripture that we must observe. This disproves "Bible alone" theology."

This kind of argument is often make by Roman Catholic apologists to undermine the sufficiency of the Holy Scriptures (a doctrine sometimes known by the Latin motto, sola Scriptura, or Bible alone). They want to suggest another source of revelation, Sacred Tradition, which supposedly brings to us the unwritten teaching of Jesus and the apostles through the succession of Catholic bishops.

Well, first of all, by sola Scriptura we do not mean that the Bible contains everything about what Jesus and the apostles ever did or say. Of course it doesn’t. We would need libraries of books to record all the details. By the way, the so-called sacred tradition does not tell us everything either. In fact, it does not tell us anything substantial at all. Ask someone who believes in Tradition to give you only one sentence that Jesus said which is not recorded in the Bible. He wouldn't know.

The point however is not whether the Bible contains everything but whether the Bible contains enough for our salvation and life. In His wise providence, the Lord God moved certain holy men to write the books of the New Testament, and led his people to recognize them as His Word. He did not give us exhaustive information. But we do not need that kind of knowledge. I don't need to know the physical appearance of Jesus, or every counsel he gave to every man and woman he met. I don't need to know every miracle He ever performed to be convinced that He is the Son of God.

God gave us enough to understand who Jesus is, and the significance of his cross, resurrection, His exaltation and His return. He also gave us abundant teachings and instructions as to how we should live. Yes, the Bible is enough. It is sufficient. The Bible is able to make us wise unto salvation which is by faith in Christ Jesus (2 Timothy 3:15).

But I should write in more detail about this later on...