WE BELIEVE that in creation God has given a revelation of his power and glory leaving all men without excuse before him, but none by the light of nature alone can attain to a saving knowledge of God. This revelation leaves all men without excuse before God. For this reason it pleased God to give by the Scriptures a written revelation of that knowledge of himself and his will necessary to salvation.
Rom. 1 :18-21; 2:14, 15; Psa. 19:1; Heb. 1 :1; Rom. 3:1, 2.
By the Scriptures, or Bible, we mean only the sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments. The books known as the Apocrypha, not being inspired, form no part of the Scriptures. In the absence of the original manuscripts, God has divinely preserved his work in many faithful copies. Careful translations are to be made that all men might personally read God’s Word in their own language.
Isa. 40:8; Mat. 5:18; John 5:39
The Scriptures have their origin in God himself; they are God-breathed, given by inspiration of God. This inspiration extends to all the books in their totality, down to the very words used, and is not limited in any way whatever either by man’s understanding or response. The Scriptures do not therefore merely contain God’s Word, they are God’s Word.
Ex. 4:10-15; 2 Sam. 23: 1-2; Jer. 1:9; 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1 :19-21; John 17:17.
The authority of the Bible depends wholly upon God and is unique and supreme. It alone is the only sufficient, certain and infallible rule of saving knowledge, faith and obedience. Therefore the Bible is the authoritative Word of God to all people, and a sure and complete guide in all matters of christian thinking, living and service.
2 Tim. 3:15-17; 2 Pet. 1:19-21; Heb, 1:1; Rom. 15:4; Isa. 8:19, 20; Psa. 19; 119:105; 1 Cor. 2:13; 1 Thess. 2:13.
The Bible attests its own divine authority and this is not contrary to human reason, but is demonstrated by convincing evidence. This authority, however, is only experienced by faith, through the inward working of the Holy Spirit bearing witness by and with the Word in our hearts. In this way the power and teaching of the Holy Spirit in the Bible itself are made clear in the understanding, assurance, joy and eternal good of the individual believer.
1 Cor. 2: 4; 15:1-6; 1 Thess. 1:5; Luke 1:1-4; John 6:45; John 16:13, 14; 1 Cor. 2:9-14.
The Bible is its own interpreter, and so we compare Scripture with Scripture. The Bible is a unity of truth and contains no real contradictions. When, therefore, there is a question about the true meaning or full sense of any part of the Bible, it must be determined by other parts that speak more clearly.
1 Cor. 2:13; 2 Pet. 1 :20-21; Acts 15:15-16.
The Bible is to be proclaimed and taught as having power in itself, through the Holy Spirit, to regenerate, convince, convert, save and keep all of God’s children. God may use other means to these ends, but never without, or in a way inconsistent with, the truth of the Bible.
Heb. 4:12; 1 Pet. 1 :23-25; Eph. 5:26; Acts 2:37.
In all controversial matters, whether of religion or life, the teaching of the Bible is to be taken as decisive and final. If in anything the Bible appears to be silent, we cannot allow or approve of that which is inconsistent with any clearly defined principle or teaching of the Bible.
Isa. 8:20: Mat. 22:29-31; Acts 28:23; Rom. 4:3.