Thu | Apr 2, 2020

Letter of the Day | The message of salvation is consistent throughout the Bible

Published:Wednesday | January 1, 2020 | 12:29 AM

THE EDITOR, Madam:

I think Dr Michael Abraham’s commentary ‘Bible Is not inerrant. Please stop saying it is’, published by The Gleaner on Monday, December 30, 2019, on the Bible’s inerrant nature is well-intended and does address some legitimate issues, such as the misuse of Scripture. However, I think his conclusions are misapplied. What I get from what Dr. Abrahams is saying is that since the Bible contains literary “errors” and “discrepancies”, then its teachings cannot be trusted.

I think these conclusions are based on a misunderstanding of how inspiration works. Inspiration, as taught by the Bible (2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Peter 1:19-21), does make space for the human element. The writers of the Bible were God’s penmen; not His pen. Therefore, the “holy men” who were inspired expressed the truth that they received from God in their own language, using their own expressions, their own literary abilities and even, in some cases, their own time (some content were written several years after the actual events).

So, in the end, you will find some apparent discrepancies. However, you will not find, (as Dr Abrahams failed to point out) contradictions in doctrines and substantive facts. The overall message of salvation is consistent throughout the Bible.

The Bible is a product of both human and divine. Therefore, to discuss the human element without the divine can and will give an unbalanced view of Scripture. So, since this article did not, let me fill in the divine aspect of Scripture.

Dr Abraham needs to be aware that the Person who supervised the writing of Scripture was no church or human organisation; but the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit supervised its composition over the 1,500 years.

SPOKEN THROUGH HIS WORD

Second, the Bible has proven its authentic and divine nature by its prophecies and timeless presentation of answers to the deepest needs of the human heart. Archaeologists, every day, are discovering facts that have been declared by the Bible many centuries ago, that are now only being confirmed.

The prophecies of Daniel accurately predicted the rise and fall of nations covering more than a 2,000-year span. The Bible gives the perfect explanation of the reason for our existence, the reason behind our predicament and the only solution for it. These cannot be disproved.

So, while we reject “verbal inspiration”, we believe that through “thought inspiration” God has spoken, and I would say, “let the church say amen”.

Of course, we are free to harden our hearts against what God says, but we cannot say He hasn’t said anything, for He has spoken through His prophets, whose words have been preserved for our learning and edification.

DAMIAN CHAMBERS

Seventh-day Adventist pastor