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Encyclopedia > Biblical inerrancy
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Biblical inerrancy is the doctrinal position [1] that in its original form, the Bible is totally without error, and free from all contradiction; "referring to the complete accuracy of Scripture, including the historical and scientific parts". [2] Inerrancy is distinguished from Biblical infallibility (or limited inerrancy), which holds that the Bible is inerrant on issues of faith and practice but not history or science. This Gutenberg Bible is displayed by the United States Library. ... Biblical infallibility is the theological term to describe the belief that the Bible is free from errors on issues of faith and practice. ...

Contents

Inerrancy in context

Many denominations believe that the Bible is inspired by God, who through the human authors is the divine author of the Bible. This is expressed in the following Bible passage: This Gutenberg Bible is displayed by the United States Library. ... Biblical inspiration is the doctrine in Christian theology concerned with the divine origin of the Bible and what the Bible teaches about itself. ... This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ...

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 2 Timothy 3:16 NIV This article or section should be merged with First Epistle to Timothy The Second Epistle to Timothy is a book of the canonic New Testament, one of the three so-called pastoral epistles (1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, and the Epistle to Titus). ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ...

Many who believe in the Inspiration of scripture teach that it is infallible. Those who subscribe to infallibility believe that what the scriptures say regarding matters of faith and Christian practice are wholly useful and true. Some denominations that teach infallibility hold that the historical or scientific details, which may be irrelevant to matters of faith and Christian practice, may contain errors. Those who believe in inerrancy hold that the scientific, geographic, and historic details and of the scriptural texts in their original manuscripts are completely true and without error.[2] Biblical infallibility is the theological term to describe the belief that the Bible is free from errors on issues of faith and practice. ...


Many religions include texts other than the Bible under various categorizations of inspiration. For example, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) consider the teachings of Joseph Smith and The Book of Mormon along with the Bible as being the "word of God", but recognize translation issues.[3] For other uses, see Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (disambiguation). ... Joseph Smith redirects here. ... Book of Mormon (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints edition) The Book of Mormon is a sacred text of Mormonism first published in Palmyra, New York, USA, in March 1830 by Joseph Smith, Jr. ...


On the other hand, the Roman Catholic Church considers some teachings of the Church, such as solemn definitions issued by an Ecumenical council or the Pope, to be infallible in the sense that they are preserved from error. However, the Roman Catholic doctrine of Papal Infallibility is limited in application and is subject to contingencies. Since the doctrine was formally defined at the first Vatican Council in 1870, it has been invoked once, in 1950.[4][5] Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      An Ecumenical Council (also sometimes Oecumenical... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Wycliffe Tyndale · Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      The Pope (from Latin... In Catholic theology, papal infallibility is the dogma that, by action of the Holy Spirit, the Pope is preserved from even the possibility of error[1] when he solemnly declares or promulgates to the Church a dogmatic teaching on faith or morals as being contained in divine revelation, or at... The First Vatican Council was summoned by Pope Pius IX by the bull Aeterni Patris of June 29, 1868. ...


Basis of belief

The theological basis of the belief, in its simplest form, is that as God is perfect, the Bible, as the word of God, must also be perfect, thus, free from error. This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... This Gutenberg Bible is displayed by the United States Library. ...


Proponents of biblical inerrancy also teach that God used the "distinctive personalities and literary styles of the writers" of scripture but that God's inspiration guided them to flawlessly project his message through their own language and personality. Infallibility and inerrancy refer to the original texts of the Bible. And while conservative scholars acknowledge the potential for human error in transmission and translation, modern translations are considered to "faithfully represent the originals".[6] Biblical inspiration is the doctrine in Christian theology concerned with the divine origin of the Bible and what the Bible teaches about itself. ...


In their text on the subject, Geisler & Nix (1986) claim that scriptural inerrancy is established by a number of observations and processes, which include:[2]

  • the historical accuracy of the Bible
  • the Bible's claims of its own inerrancy
  • church history and tradition
  • one's individual experience with God

Textual tradition of the New Testament

See also: Biblical canon and Bible translations

There are over 5,600 Greek manuscripts containing all or part of the New Testament. Most of these manuscripts date to the Middle Ages. The oldest complete copy of the New Testament, the Codex Sinaiticus, dates to the 4th century. The earliest fragment of a New Testament book is the Rylands Library Papyrus P52 which dates to the mid 2nd century and is the size of a business card. Very early manuscripts are rare. A biblical canon is a list of Biblical books which establishes the set of books which are considered to be authoritative as scripture by a particular Jewish or Christian community. ... The Bible has been translated into many languages. ... Image File history File links Question_book-3. ... A manuscript (Latin manu scriptus, written by hand), strictly speaking, is any written document that is put down by hand, in contrast to being printed or reproduced some other way. ... This article is about the Christian scriptures. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ... A portion of the Codex Sinaiticus, containing Esther 2:3-8. ... As a means of recording the passage of time, the 4th century was that century which lasted from 301 to 400. ... John Rylands Library Papyrus P52, recto The Rylands Library Papyrus P52, also known as the St Johns fragment, is a papyrus conserved at the John Rylands Library, Manchester, UK. The front (recto) contains lines from the Gospel of John 18:31-33, in Greek, and the back (verso) contains... The 2nd century is the period from 101 - 200 in accordance with the Julian calendar in the Christian Era. ...


No two manuscripts are identical, except in the smallest fragments and the many manuscripts which preserve New Testament texts differ among themselves in many respects, with some estimates of 200,000 to 300,000 differences among the various manuscripts.[7] According to Ehrman,[8] Bart D. Ehrman is a New Testament scholar and an expert on early Christianity. ...

Most changes are careless errors that are easily recognized and corrected. Christian scribes often made mistakes simply because they were tired or inattentive or, sometimes, inept. Indeed, the single most common mistake in our manuscripts involves "orthography", significant for little more than showing that scribes in antiquity could spell no better than most of us can today. In addition, we have numerous manuscripts in which scribes have left out entire words, verses, or even pages of a book, presumably by accident. Sometimes scribes rearranged the words on the page, for example, by leaving out a word and then reinserting it later in the sentence.

Some familiar examples of Gospel passages thought to have been added by later interpolators include the Pericope Adulteræ (John 7:53 - 8:11), the Comma Johanneum (1 John 5:7–8), and the longer ending in Mark 16 (Mark 16:9-20). The Pericope Adulteræ (Latin pronunciation ; English pronunciation ; Latin for the passage of the adulterous woman) is the name traditionally given to verses 7:53–8:11 of the Gospel of John, which describe the attempted stoning by Pharisees of an accused adulterous woman, and Jesus defense of her. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      The Comma... Mark 16 is the final chapter of the Gospel of Mark in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. ...


For hundreds of years, biblical and textual scholars have examined the manuscripts extensively. Since the eighteenth century, they have employed the techniques of textual criticism to reconstruct how the extant manuscripts of the New Testament texts might have descended, and to recover earlier recensions of the texts. Many inerrantists believe that the authorial recensions of New Testament texts are not only accessible, but accurately represented by modern translation.[citation needed] Though some inerrantists often prefer the traditional texts used in their churches to modern attempts of reconstruction, arguing that the Holy Spirit is just as active in the preservation of the scriptures as in their creation. These inerrantists are found particularly in non-Protestant churches, but also a few Protestant groups hold such views. Carmina Cantabrigiensia, Manuscript C, folio 436v, 11th century Textual criticism or lower criticism is a branch of philology or bibliography that is concerned with the identification and removal of errors from texts and manuscripts. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      In mainstream...


The books that are included and excluded from the Bible are the result of a long historical process, which was only finalised during the reign of Constantine, when finally certain books were included and others excluded as Apocrypha from the Biblical canon. For a position of Biblical inerrancy to be accepted, those holding this view must also believe that the separation of Canon from Apocrypha was also divinely inspired[citation needed] (for example Catholics accept 1 & 2 Maccabees within the Canon, Protestants exclude it). Look up Constantine in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Apocrypha (from the Greek word , meaning those having been hidden away[1]) are texts of uncertain authenticity or writings where the authorship is questioned. ... Wojciech Stattlers Machabeusze (Maccabees), 1844 The Maccabees (Hebrew: מכבים or מקבים, Makabim) were Jewish rebels who fought against the rule of Antiochus IV Epiphanes of the Hellenistic Seleucid dynasty, who was succeeded by his infant son Antiochus V Eupator. ...

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A biblical canon is a list of Biblical books which establishes the set of books which are considered to be authoritative as scripture by a particular Jewish or Christian community. ... The Bible comprises 24 books for Jews, 66 for Protestants, 73 for Catholics, and 78 for most Orthodox Christians. ... 11th century manuscript of the Hebrew Bible with Targum Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the common portions of the Jewish canon and the Christian canons. ... For the musical collective, see Tanakh (band). ... Template:Jews and Jewdaism Template:The Holy Book Named TorRah The Torah () is the most valuable Holy Doctrine within Judaism,(and for muslims) revered as the first relenting Word of Ulllah, traditionally thought to have been revealed to Blessed Moosah, An Apostle of Ulllah. ... Neviim [נביאים] (Heb: Prophets) is the second of the three major sections in the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible), following the Torah and preceding Ketuvim (writings). ... Ketuvim is the third and final section of the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible). ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Note: Judaism... Deuterocanonical books is a term used since the sixteenth century in the Roman Catholic Church and Eastern Christianity to describe certain books and passages of the Christian Bible, in contrast to the protocanonical books which are contained in the Hebrew Bible. ... This article is about the Christian scriptures. ... Antilegomena (αντιλεγομενα, contradicted or disputed), an epithet used by the early Christian writers to denote those books of the New Testament which, although sometimes publicly read in the churches, were not for a considerable amount of time considered to be genuine, or received into the canon of Scripture. ... The Bible has been translated into many languages. ... The efforts of translating the Bible from its original languages into over 2,000 others have spanned more than two millennia. ... Fragments of the Dead Sea scrolls on display at the Archeological Museum, Amman A biblical manuscript is any handwritten copy of a portion of the text of the Bible. ... A relational diagram describing the various versions postulated by the biblical documentary hypothesis. ... The Quran, the central religious text of Islam, contains references to over fifty people also found in the Bible, typically in the same or similar narratives. ... when thousands of people call a person as thief, he becomes thief. ...

Major religious views on the Bible

Roman Catholics

Roman Catholic Church teaching holds that the resurrection of Jesus affirms his divinity, that Jesus in turn appointed the Pope and the body of Bishops led by the Pope, guided by the Holy Spirit, to offer guidance on questions of faith and morals. Catholics believe this guidance has allowed the teachings of Jesus and the Apostles, in Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture (the Bible), to be preserved and passed down to the present day. Speaking from the claimed authority granted to him by Christ, Pope Pius XII, in his encyclical Divino Afflante Spiritu,[9] denounced those who held that the inerrancy was restricted to matters of faith and morals: Catholic Church redirects here. ... This article is about Jesus of Nazareth. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Wycliffe Tyndale · Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      The Pope (from Latin... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      This article... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      In mainstream... The Catholic Church bases all of its teachings on Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture (The Bible). ... The Venerable Pius XII, born Maria Giuseppe Giovanni Eugenio Pacelli (Rome, March 2, 1876 - October 9, 1958) served as the Pope from March 2, 1939 to 1958. ... Divino Afflante Spiritu was an encyclical letter issued by Pope Pius XII on September 30, 1943. ...

The sacred Council of Trent ordained by solemn decree that "the entire books with all their parts, as they have been wont to be read in the Catholic Church and are contained in the old vulgate Latin edition, are to be held sacred and canonical." [...] When, subsequently, some Catholic writers, in spite of this solemn definition of Catholic doctrine, by which such divine authority is claimed for the "entire books with all their parts" as to secure freedom from any error whatsoever, ventured to restrict the truth of Sacred Scripture solely to matters of faith and morals, and to regard other matters, whether in the domain of physical science or history, as "obiter dicta" and - as they contended - in no wise connected with faith, Our Predecessor of immortal memory, Leo XIII in the Encyclical Letter Providentissimus Deus[10], [...] justly and rightly condemned these errors.[11][12] The Council of Trent is the Nineteenth Ecumenical Council of the Roman Catholic Church. ... Providentissimus Deus, On the Study of Holy Scripture, was an encyclical issued by Pope Leo XIII on 18 November 1893. ...

The Roman Catholic position on the Bible is further clarified in Dei Verbum, one of the principal documents of the Second Vatican Council[13] This document states the Catholic belief that all scripture is sacred and reliable because the biblical authors were inspired by God. However, the human dimension of the Bible is also acknowledged as well as the importance of proper interpretation. Careful attention must be paid to the actual meaning intended by the authors, in order to render a correct interpretation. Genre, modes of expression, historical circumstances, poetic liberty, and church tradition are all factors that must be considered by Catholics when examining scripture. The Roman Catholic Church holds that the authority to declare correct interpretation rests ultimately with the church through its magisterium. This teaching is reiterated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.[14] Dei Verbum, the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation, is one of the principal documents of the Second Vatican Council, indeed their very foundation in the view of one of the leading Council Fathers, Bishop Christopher Butler. ... The Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican, or Vatican II, was the twenty-first Ecumenical Council of the Roman Catholic Church. ... Magisterium (from the Latin magister, teacher) is a technical ecclesiastical term in Catholicism referring to the teaching ability and authority of the Pope and those Bishops who are in union with him. ... The Catechism of the Catholic Church, or CCC, is an official exposition of the teachings of the Catholic Church, first published in French in 1992 by the authority of Pope John Paul II.[1] Subsequently, in 1997, a Latin text was issued which is now the official text of reference...


Eastern Orthodox Christians

The Eastern Orthodox Church also believes in unwritten tradition and the written scriptures, but it has rarely sought to clarify the relationship between them. Contemporary Eastern Orthodox theologians debate whether these are separate deposits of knowledge or different ways of understanding a single dogmatic reality. Father Georges Florovsky, for example, asserted that tradition is no more than "Scripture rightly understood". Because the Eastern Orthodox Church emphasizes the authority of councils, which belong to all the bishops, it stresses the canonical uses more than inspiration of scripture. Unlike the Roman Catholic Church, most Eastern Orthodox theologians also recognize that a final seal of authenticity or ecumenicity is that the body of the church receives the councils. Since the acceptance of the Septuagint and New Testament by leading regional bishops of the second century was based on those texts' faithfulness to the same apostolic teaching to which the church traditions are also faithful. The Eastern Orthodox Church emphasizes that the scriptures can only be understood according to a normative rule of faith (the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed, in short) and way of life that has continued from Christ and the Apostles to this day, and beyond. Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Coptic Orthodox Pope · Roman Catholic Pope Archbishop of Canterbury · Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      Faith... Georges Florovsky (Russian Георгий Васильевич Флоровский; * August 23, 1893 in Odessa; † August 11, 1979 USA), Eastern Orthodox theologian, historian and ecumenist. ... Icon depicting the Holy Fathers of the First Council of Nicaea holding the Nicene Creed. ...


Protestant views

The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy

In 1978 a large gathering of American Protestant churches, including representatives of the Conservative, Reformed and Presbyterian, Lutheran, and Baptist denominations, adopted the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. The Chicago Statement does not imply that any particular traditional translation of the Bible is without error. Instead, it gives primacy to seeking the intention of the author of each original text, and commits itself to receiving the statement as fact depending on whether it can be determined or assumed that the author meant to communicate a statement of fact. Of course, knowing the intent of the original authors is exceptionally difficult, and always includes a subjective element. Acknowledging that there are many kinds of literature in the Bible besides statements of fact, the Statement nevertheless reasserts the authenticity of the Bible in toto as the word of God. Advocates of the Chicago Statement are worried that accepting one error in the Bible leads one down a slippery slope that ends in rejecting that the Bible has any value greater than some other book. "The authority of Scripture is inescapably impaired if this total divine inerrancy is in any way limited or disregarded, or made relative to a view of truth contrary to the Bible's own; and such lapses bring serious loss to both the individual and the church." Year 1978 (MCMLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays the 1978 Gregorian calendar). ... Protestantism is a general grouping of denominations within Christianity. ... The Reformed Church in America (RCA) is a mainline Reformed Protestant denomination that was formerly known as the Dutch Reformed Church. ... Presbyterianism is part of the Reformed churches family of denominations of Christian Protestantism based on the teachings of John Calvin which traces its institutional roots to the Scottish Reformation, especially as led by John Knox. ... The Lutheran movement is a group of denominations of Protestant Christianity by the original definition. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Baptist is... The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy was formulated in October of 1978 by approximately 300 evangelical scholars at a conference sponsored by the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy, held in Chicago. ...


Evangelicals

Evangelical churches, unlike Eastern and Roman churches, reject that there is an infallible authoritative tradition that is held over, or on a par with, scripture. Some Evangelicals hold that the Bible confirms its own authority, pointing out that Jesus frequently quotes scripture as his final "court of appeal".[15] The reasoning is that if the Bible is assumed to be inerrant and the only form of God's word, then that implies that the Bible is fully reliable. Tradition on the other hand is seen to be subject to human memory, and may have many versions of the same events/truths, some of which may be contradictory. Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      The word evangelicalism often refers to... This article is about Jesus of Nazareth. ...


Evangelical churches which hold to Biblical inerrancy will often make a prominent, unambiguous statement supporting this in a list of their beliefs.


King James Only

Another belief, King James Only, holds that the translators of the King James Version English Bible were guided by God, and that the KJV thus is to be taken as the authoritative English Bible. However, those who hold this opinion do not extend it to the KJV translation into English of the Apocryphal books, which were produced along with the rest of the Authorized Version. Modern translations differ from the KJV on numerous points, sometimes resulting from access to different early texts, largely as a result of work in the field of Textual Criticism. Upholders of the KJV nevertheless hold that the Protestant canon of KJV is itself an inspired text and therefore remains authoritative. The King James Only movement asserts that the KJV is the sole English translation free from error. The King-James-Only Movement is a movement within the Protestant fundamentalist Christianity of the English-speaking countries which rejects all modern translations of the Bible, and accepts only the King James Version (KJV). ... This page is about the version of the Bible; for the Harvey Danger album, see King James Version (album). ... The biblical apocrypha includes texts written in the Jewish and Christian religious traditions that either were accepted into the biblical canon by some, but not all, Christian faiths, or are frequently printed in Bibles despite their non-canonical status. ... Carmina Cantabrigiensia, Manuscript C, folio 436v, 11th century Textual criticism or lower criticism is a branch of philology or bibliography that is concerned with the identification and removal of errors from texts and manuscripts. ... Protestantism is a general grouping of denominations within Christianity. ... The King-James-Only Movement is a movement within the Protestant fundamentalist Christianity of the English-speaking countries which rejects all modern translations of the Bible, and accepts only the King James Version (KJV). ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ...


Textus Receptus (non-English speaking cultures)

Similar to the King James Only view is the view that translations must be derived from the Textus Receptus in order to be considered inerrant. As the King James Version is an English translation, this leaves speakers of other languages in a difficult position, hence the belief in the Textus Receptus as the inerrant source text for translations to modern languages. For example, in Spanish-speaking cultures the commonly accepted "KJV-equivalent" is the Reina-Valera 1909 revision (with different groups accepting in addition to the 1909 or in its place the revisions of 1862 or 1960). The King-James-Only Movement is a movement within the Protestant fundamentalist Christianity of the English-speaking countries which rejects all modern translations of the Bible, and accepts only the King James Version (KJV). ... Textus Receptus (Latin: received text) is the name given to the first Greek-language text of the New Testament to be printed on a printing press. ... Bibles title-page traced to the Bavarian printer Mattias Apiarius, the bee-keeper. Note the emblem of a bear tasting honey. ...


Wesleyan and Methodist view of scripture

The Wesleyan and Methodist Christian tradition affirms that the Bible is authoritative on matters concerning faith and practice. The United Methodist Church does not use the word "inerrant" to describe the Bible, but it does believe that the Bible is God's Word, and as such, is the primary authority for faith and practice. For other persons named John Wesley, see John Wesley (disambiguation). ... The Methodist movement is a group of denominations of Protestant Christianity. ... This article is about the current Christian denomination based in the United States. ...


What is of central importance for the Wesleyan Christian tradition is the Bible as a tool which God uses to promote salvation. According to this tradition, the Bible does not itself effect salvation; God initiates salvation and proper creaturely responses consummate salvation. One may be in danger of bibliolatry if one claims that the Bible secures salvation. Bibliolatry is the worship of the Bible or any other text regarded as inerant scripture. ...


With this focus on salvation, Wesleyans need not make claims about inerrancy in the original autographs, subsequent translations, or particular interpretations. And yet Wesleyans affirm the Bible to be principally authoritative for faith and practice, and the Bible is often a principle means for God to promote salvation in the world.


Lutheran views

The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, the Lutheran Church - Canada, the Evangelical Lutheran Synod and many other smaller Lutheran bodies hold to Scriptural inerrancy, though for the most part Lutherans do not consider themselves to be "fundamentalists". The larger Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada do not officially hold to biblical inerrancy, though there are those within the ELCA and ELCIC who are Inerrantists. Official cross symbol of the Missouri Synod The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod (LCMS) is the second-largest Lutheran body in the United States. ... The Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) is a North American religious denomination belonging to the Lutheran tradition within Christianity. ... Logo of Lutheran Church - Canada Lutheran Church – Canada (LCC) was founded in 1988 when the Canadian congregations of St. ... The Evangelical Lutheran Synod or ELS is a US-based Protestant Christian denomination based in Mankato, Minnesota. ... The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) is a mainline Protestant denomination headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. ... The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) (French: Eglise Evangelique Lutherienne au Canada) is Canadas largest Lutheran denomination, with 182,077 baptized members in 624 congregations. ...


Criticisms of biblical inerrancy

Proponents of biblical inerrancy often prefer the translations of 2 Timothy 3:16 that render it as "all scripture is given by inspiration of God,", and they interpret this to mean that the whole Bible is inerrant. However, critics of this doctrine think that the Bible makes no direct claim to be inerrant or infallible. However, the same sentence can also be translated "Every inspired scripture is also useful..." nor does the verse define the Biblical canon.[16] In context, this passage refers only to the Old Testament writings understood to be scripture at the time it was written[17]. However there are indications that Paul's writings were being considered, at least by the author of the Second Epistle of Peter (2 Peter 3:16), as comparable to the Old Testament[18]. A biblical canon is a list of Biblical books which establishes the set of books which are considered to be authoritative as scripture by a particular Jewish or Christian community. ... The Second Epistle of Peter is a book of the New Testament of the Bible. ...


The idea that the Bible contains no mistakes is mainly justified by appeal to prooftexts that refer to its divine inspiration. However, this argument has been criticized as circular reasoning, because these statements only have to be accepted as true if the Bible is already thought to be inerrant. None of these texts say that because a text is inspired, it is therefore always correct in its historical or moral statements.


According to Bishop John Shelby Spong, the doctrine of biblical inerrancy has been a historical substitute for papal infallibility. "When Martin Luther countered the authority of the infallible pope, he did so in the name of his new authority, the infallible Scriptures. This point of view was generally embraced by all of the Reformation churches. The Bible thus became the paper pope of Protestantism."[1] John Shelby Spong (born 16 June 1931 in Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S.) is the retired Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Newark (based in Newark, New Jersey). ...


Meaning of "Word of God"

Much debate over the kind of authority that should be accorded biblical texts centres on what is meant by the "Word of God". The term can refer to Christ Himself as well as to the proclamation of his ministry as kerygma. However, biblical inerrancy differs from this orthodoxy in viewing the Word of God to mean the entire text of the Bible when interpreted didactally as God's teaching.[19] The idea of the Bible itself as Word of God, as being itself God's revelation, is criticized in neo-orthodoxy. Here the Bible is seen as a unique witness to the people and deeds that do make up the Word of God. However, it is a wholly human witness.[20] All books of the Bible were written by human persons. Thus, whether the Bible is - in whole or in part[21] - the Word of God is not clear. However, critics argue that the Bible can still be construed as the "Word of God" in the sense that these authors' statements may have been representative of, and perhaps even directly influenced by, God's own knowledge. Kerygma (κηπύσσω, kērússō, “to cry or proclaim as a herald”) (Matthew 3:1; Romans 10:14) is the Greek word used in the New Testament for preaching (see Luke 4:18-19). ... Neo-orthodoxy is an approach to theology that was developed in the aftermath of the First World War (1914-1918). ... This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ...


There is only one instance in the Bible where the phrase "The Word Of God" refers to something "written". The reference is to the "Decalogue" which many Christian denominations consider "passed away". However, most of the other references are to reported speech which is preserved in the Bible. The New Testament also contains a number of statements which refer to passages from the Old Testament as God's words, for instance Romans 3:2 (which says that the Jews have been "entrusted with the very words of God"), or the book of Hebrews, which often prefaces Old Testament quotations with words such as "God says". The bible also contains words spoken by human beings to God, such as the prayers and songs of the Psalter. That these are God's words addressed to us was at the root of a lively mediaeval controversy.[22] The idea of the word of God is more that God is encountered in scripture, than that every line of scripture is a statement made by God.[23] This article is about the list of religious and moral imperatives. ...


The phrase "The Word Of God" is never applied to our modern Bible, within the Bible itself. Supporters of inerrancy argue that that is simply because the Bible canon was not closed.


Falsifiability

Biblical inerrancy has also been criticised on the grounds that many statements about history or science that are found in Scripture may be demonstrated to be untenable. Inerrancy is argued to be a falsifiable proposition: if the Bible is found to contain any mistakes or contradictions, the proposition has been refuted. Opinion is divided over which parts of the Bible are trustworthy in the light of these considerations. Radical theologians answer that the Bible contains at least two divergent views of the nature of God: a bloody tribal deity[24] or a loving father.[25] The choice of which material to value can be based on that which is found to be intellectually coherent and morally challenging, and this is given priority over other teaching found in books of the Bible.[26] This article is about the study of the past in human terms. ... A magnet levitating above a high-temperature superconductor demonstrates the Meissner effect. ... In logic, Modus ponendo tollens (Latin for mode that affirms by denying) is the formal name for indirect proof or proof by contraposition (contrapositive inference), often abbreviated to MT. It can also be referred to as denying the consequent, and is a valid form of argument (unlike similarly-named but... There has long been interest in the whether internal consistency is or isnt present in the Bible. ...


Translation

One point that has been argued is that, even if the text were guaranteed inerrant in its original language, this no longer holds true after translation, because there is no such thing as a perfect translation. The original texts were primarily written in Hebrew and Greek with translations in several ancient languages - Hebrew, Koine Greek, Coptic and Syriac - which few are now familiar with. Translators from one language to another are often faced with several ways in which a phrase may be translated, particularly in the case of poetic passages, and the language into which the Bible is being translated is constantly evolving and changing. Mistaken translations of the Bible are occasionally proposed or discovered. For instance, scholars write[27] that an early messianic prophecy[28] did not require that the Messiah's mother be a virgin, only young. It has been proposed that the Gospels' description of the Virgin Mary[29] were manufactured to fit with a prophecy they themselves read in a mistranslated version. The word Hebrew most likely means to cross over, referring to the Semitic people crossing over the Euphrates River. ... Koine redirects here. ... The Coptic language is a direct descendant of the ancient Egyptian language which was once written in Egyptian hieroglyphic, hieratic, and demotic scripts. ... Syriac is an Eastern Aramaic language that was once spoken across much of the Fertile Crescent. ... For the genre of Christian-themed music, see gospel music. ...


Some biblical passages are conventionally treated as verse, and others as different kinds of prose: this has not always been the case. Some of the prose contains many linguistic forms that indicate poetry. The two forms have a certain mutual overlap. Inerrancy as a doctrine itself provides no clear hermeneutic for discovering how the literal communications found in prose can be distinguished from the symbolic and metaphorical elements of poetry.


See also

Biblical Hermeneutics, part of the broader hermeneutical question, relates to the problem of how one is to understand Holy Scripture. ... Biblical literalism is the supposed adherence to the explicit and literal sense of the Bible. ... Bibliolatry is the worship of the Bible or any other text regarded as inerant scripture. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into John Calvin. ... The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy was formulated in October of 1978 by approximately 300 evangelical scholars at a conference sponsored by the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy, held in Chicago. ... Higher criticism, also known as historical criticism, is a branch of literary analysis that attempts to investigate the origins of a text, especially the text of the Bible. ... There has long been interest in the whether internal consistency is or isnt present in the Bible. ... Religious skepticism is a type of skepticism relating to religion, but should not be confused with atheism. ... Carmina Cantabrigiensia, Manuscript C, folio 436v, 11th century Textual criticism or lower criticism is a branch of philology or bibliography that is concerned with the identification and removal of errors from texts and manuscripts. ...

Notes

  1. ^ http://www.dts.edu/about/doctrinalstatement/
  2. ^ a b c Geisler & Nix (1986). A General Introduction to the Bible. Moody Press, Chicago. ISBN ISBN 0-8024-2916-5. 
  3. ^ See the Eighth and Ninth Article of Faith
  4. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/5355758.stm
  5. ^ http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,909531,00.html?iid=chix-sphere
  6. ^ The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy
  7. ^ See Ehrman, Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew, p. 219
  8. ^ See Ehrman, Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew, p. 220
  9. ^ "Divino Afflante Spiritu, n. 1". 
  10. ^ "Providentissimus Deus". 
  11. ^ http://www.catholicculture.org/docs/most/getchap.cfm?WorkNum=216&ChapNum=7
  12. ^ Free From All Error: Authorship, Inerrancy, Historicity of Scripture, Church Teaching, and Modern Scripture Scholars. ISBN "0913382515". 
  13. ^ Second Vatican Council, Dei Verbum, n. 11 & 12
  14. ^ Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 105-117
  15. ^ See for example Matthew 4:4,6 & 10; 21:13; Mark 9:12
  16. ^ C H Dodd, 'The Authority of the Bible' page 25, London, 1960.
  17. ^ New Jerusalem Bible, study edition, page 1967, DLT 1994
  18. ^ New Jerusalem Bible, page 2010, footnote (i) DLT 1985
  19. ^ James Barr, 'Fundamentalism' p.72ff, SCM 1977.
  20. ^ James Barr, 'Fundamentalism' pp.218-219 SCM 1977
  21. ^ Exodus claims of the Ethical Decalogue and Ritual Decalogue that these are God's word.
  22. ^ Uriel Simon, "Four Appraoches to the Book of Psalms" chap. 1
  23. ^ Alexander Ryrie "Deliver Us From Evil" DLT 2004
  24. ^ Joshua 10:11
  25. ^ Psalm 103:11-13
  26. ^ http://www.johnhick.org.uk/article13.html
  27. ^ New Jerusalem Bible, note g, page 1201.
  28. ^ Isaiah 7:14
  29. ^ Matthew 1:23

In Mormonism, the Articles of Faith are a creed composed by Joseph Smith, Jr. ... This article is about the second book in the Torah. ... The Ethical Decalogue, is one of two Decalogues included in the Bible, and is better known as the Ten Commandments. ... The Ritual Decalogue is one of the two very different lists within the Torah that are known as the Decalogue or Ten Commandments (the name decalogue (δέκα λόγοι) merely means ten sayings). ...

References

  • Gleason Archer, 2001. New Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties. ISBN 0-310-24146-4
  • N. T. Wright, The Last Word: Beyond Bible Wars to a New Understanding of the Authority of Scripture. Harper-San Francisco, 2005. ISBN 0-06-081609-4
  • Kathleen C. Boone: The Bible Tells Them So: The Discourse of Protestant Fundamentalism, State Univ of New York Press 1989, ISBN 0-88706-895-2
  • Ethelbert W.Bullinger, Figures of Speech Used in the Bible Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Book House, 1970.
  • Bart D. Ehrman, 2003. Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew. Oxford University Press, Inc. ISBN 0-19-518249-9
  • Norman Geisler, ed. (1980). Inerrancy. ISBN 0-310-39281-0.
  • Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe, (1999) When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties.
  • Norman Geisler and William E. Nix., A General Introduction to the Bible, Moody Publishers; Rev&Expndd edition (August 1986), ISBN 0-8024-2916-5
  • Walter C. Kaiser, Peter H. Davids, F. F. Bruce, Manfred T. Brauch. (1996). Hard Sayings of the Bible
  • Charles Caldwell Ryrie (1981). What you should know about inerrancy. ISBN 0-8024-8785-8
  • Sproul, R. C.. Hath God Said? (video series).
  • John Walvoord (1990). What We Believe: Understanding and Applying the Basics of Christian Life. ISBN 0-929239-31-8
  • Warfield, B. B. (1977 reprint). Inspiration and Authority of Bible, with a lengthy introductory essay by Cornelius Van Til. ISBN 0-8010-9586-7.
  • Dei Verbum Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation (1965)

Gleason Leonard Archer (May 22, 1916 – April 27, 2004) was a Biblical scholar, theologian, educator, and author. ... Tom (N.T.) Wright, Bishop of Durham Tom (N.T.) Wright is the Bishop of Durham of the Anglican Church and a leading British New Testament scholar. ... Bart D. Ehrman is a New Testament scholar and an expert on early Christianity. ... Dr. Norman L. Geisler is a scholar, contributor to the field of Christian apologetics, and the author or coauthor of some sixty books defending the Christian faith. ... Frederick Fyvie Bruce (12 October 1910 – 11 September 1990) was a Bible scholar, and one of the founders of the modern evangelical understanding of the Bible. ... Charles Caldwell Ryrie (born 1925) is a Christian writer and theologian. ... R.C. Sproul Dr. Robert Charles Sproul (born 1939 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) is an American, Calvinist theologian, and pastor. ... John F. Walvoord (May 1, 1910 - December 20, 2002), was a Christian author and theologian. ... Benjamin Breckinridge (B.B.) Warfield (1851 - 1921) was the principal of Princeton Seminary from 1887 to 1921. ... Cornelius Van Til Cornelius Van Til (May 4, 1895 - April 17, 1987), born in Grootegast, the Netherlands, was a Christian philosopher, Reformed theologian, and presuppositional apologist. ...

External links

Classification

  • The Bible: Is it a True and Accurate Account of Creation? (Part 2): The Position of Major Christian Denominations on Creation and Inerrancy, Walter B. Murfin, David F. Beck, 13 April 1998, hosted on Coalition for Excellence in Science and Math Education website

Supportive links

Tom (N.T.) Wright, Bishop of Durham Tom (N.T.) Wright is the Bishop of Durham of the Anglican Church and a leading British New Testament scholar. ... Benjamin Breckinridge (B.B.) Warfield (1851 - 1921) was the principal of Princeton Seminary from 1887 to 1921. ... Gary Habermas is an American Christian apologist, theologian, and philosopher of religion. ...

Critical links


 
 

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