The Standard of Truth

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Do you speak only of Scripture’s authority without letting it shape your life and your faith? Endeavor to live out your confidence in biblical authority through obedience to the Bible’s commands.

“For I too am a man set under authority, with soldiers under me: and I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it” (Luke 7:8).

- Luke 7:1–10

Regrettably, the denial of the authority of the Bible continues in our own day. The debate over biblical authority has raged throughout the centuries. Liberal “higher critics” have routinely attacked the trustworthiness of the Bible. Roman Catholicism does not deny the authority of Scripture but posits its traditions to be an equal, if not higher, authority to that of Scripture.

Though the debate has taken different forms, the question of authority remains of primary importance for every believer. What can bind the conscience of the Christian? What is the ultimate standard by which we differentiate between right and wrong? Where is the infallible source that gives us the will of God?

The errors of church councils bear indirect witness to the Bible’s specific teaching that Scripture alone is the final, infallible, and inerrant source of authority for the church. Tradition may help us understand Scripture, but if it ever disagrees with the Bible, it is the authority of the biblical teaching to which we must submit.

Therefore, before we look at biblical authority in a broader fashion, we will conclude today with a simple definition of authority, namely, the right to impose obligation. Today’s passage is a helpful illustration of this concept. Roman soldiers were obligated to obey the commands of the supervising centurion. Like the soldier’s relationship to the centurion, when we confess biblical authority we confess that we are obligated to believe and obey the words of the Bible.

Coram Deo

Biblical authority does not mean that there are not other authorities for the Christian. The concept of sola Scriptura simply means that the Bible is the final and unquestionable authority for the church and the individual in all matters of life. What is your view of biblical authority? Do you only speak of Scripture’s authority without letting it shape your life and faith? Endeavor to live out your confidence in biblical authority through obedience to the Bible’s commands.

Biblical authority does not mean that there are not other authorities for the Christian. The concept of sola Scriptura simply means that the Bible is the final and unquestionable authority for the church and the individual in all matters of life. What is your view of biblical authority? Do you only speak of Scripture’s authority without letting it shape your life and faith? Endeavor to live out your confidence in biblical authority through obedience to the Bible’s commands.

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