Bible Study - Section 2 - Lesson 4

Content Author: 
Melton, Donnie
Scripture Passage: 
2 Timothy 3:15-17
Go to the opening page of the That You May Grow Discipleship Series or back to Lesson Three: Church Membership.
2 Timothy 3:15 - And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

Introduction:

It is the will of God that you grow spiritually.  God has given His Word so young Christians can begin to grow.  Of this early growth, Peter wrote, “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby” (1 Peter 2:2).  In fact, God desires that you grow into full Christian maturity.  Of this further growth, Paul said, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).  God has given you the Bible so you may grow from a spiritual babe to full spiritual maturity.

The key to all spiritual growth is the Bible.  Your spiritual growth is directly related to your willingness to spend time studying your Bible.  To help you to grow, there are three things you should recognize about the Bible, the Holy Scriptures.  You will consider these three important things in this lesson.

The Source of the Scriptures

First, it is essential that you recognize the source of the Scriptures.  From Genesis to Revelation, the Bible is the very Word of God.  As you read it, you can learn what  “thus saith the Lord.”

There are two important terms which will help you to understand about the source of the Scriptures.

Inspiration of the Scriptures

The first term associated with the source of the Scriptures is inspiration.  Concerning the source of the Scriptures, Paul wrote, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God. . . .”  This means every (all) written word (Scripture) inspired (was given by inspiration).  Though God used men to write the Scriptures, He so controlled the process that every word they wrote was from Him.  Peter explained this process of inspiration saying, “Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.  The prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost” (2 Peter 1:20-21).

This process is illustrated in Acts as Luke wrote, “Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the [HOLY GHOST] by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus” (Acts 1:16).  Though David wrote this in the Book of Psalms, it was the Holy Ghost of God which gave him the words to write.

The source of the words found in the Bible is God.  While He used men as writers of the Scriptures, He alone was the author.  The Bible does not just contain the Word of God, it is the very Word of God!  For “All scripture is given by inspiration of God...”

Inerrancy of the Scriptures

Another important term associated with the source of the Scriptures is the word inerrancy.  Inerrant means to be free from error.  It stands to reason that if the source of the Bible (word-for-word) is Almighty God, it will be perfect and free from error.

The key thought is that the Bible is trustworthy.  It is  a book which can be depended on for all spiritual matters.  In fact, it is trustworthy for all matters of life.  Because the Scriptures are inerrant, they are also infallible.  Of this word, Webster says it means “not liable to mislead, deceive or disappoint.”  You have the Bible to guide you from earth to heaven.  It is no wonder that Baptists have acclaimed the Bible to be their authority for faith and for practice.

Survival of the Scriptures

The second thing you should recognize about the Bible is the survival of the Scriptures.  It is miraculous that a book written over a period of fifteen hundred years with forty–something different writers could have survived for thousands of years.  The same God that inspired the Scriptures has also preserved them down through the years.

The survival of the Scriptures is often referred to as the preservation of the Scriptures.  There are two related terms which are important to understanding what preservation means.

Canonization of the Scriptures

The first term important to understanding preservation is canonization.  Since the Bible was written over a period of fifteen hundred years by forty–some different writers, how did we get the sixty-six books we have in our English Bible?  God has preserved His Word by the canonization of the Scriptures.

The canonization of the Scriptures is the process of recognizing and of collecting those writings which were sacred and were given under divine inspiration.  The thirty-nine books of the Old Testament had already been canonized by the time the New Testament was written.  By late AD 300, the sixty-six books which make up the Bible were canonized.

It is important to remember that these books were sacred when they were written.  The fact that they were included in the canon of Scriptures did not make them sacred.  Because they were sacred, those who canonized the various books of the Bible included them in the canon.  The God who inspired the writing of these books also guided the Church in recognition of these sacred writings.  Those involved in collecting these writings just simply recognized them to be that which they were already, the inspired Word of God.

The proof is evident that the early church fathers considered the Scriptures to be more than the mere writings of men.  They included some writings while rejecting others.  Not all writings of books or letters were included in the canon.  Only the sacred writings of the sixty-six books of our present English Bible were included in the canon of the Scriptures.

Communication of the Scriptures

The second term important to understanding preservation is communication.  God has communicated His Word through the use of various languages of the times.  The first language He used for the New Testament was Koine Greek.  At the time of the writing of the New Testament, the Roman Civilization was a world empire.  It had adopted as its universal language that of the previous Grecian Empire.  God communicated His Word in the worldwide language of that day.  In fact, the Koine Greek in which the New Testament was written was the common man’s language of that day.

Again, God communicated His Word to the masses as another empire dominated the world.  This was the British Empire.  This Empire boasted that “the sun never sets on the British Empire.”  It had colonies all over the world.  It was during this time that the Bible was translated from its original languages into the English language.  Once again, the Word of God was made available in the common language of the world.

This translation is known as the King James Bible.  It was translated into English in 1611. Those who undertook this work of translation were some of the world’s most gifted men in linguistics.  They also understood the sacredness of the Scriptures and diligently sought to translate it correctly.

Authorized by King James of England, these translators divided into six committees.  Each committee was assigned a certain portion of the Scriptures to translate.  The work of each person on a committee was reviewed by the other members of that committee.  The work of the committee was then reviewed by other committees to ensure accurate translation.  The completed work underwent a final review.  Indeed, these men diligently sought to translate accurately the Scriptures.  God used these men of unique abilities to communicate His Word to the world.

The same God who inspired the writing of the Bible did a wondrous work of preservation as well.  The result is that you have a trustworthy authoritative Bible which is free from human error!

Success of the Scriptures

The third thing you should recognize is the success of the Scriptures.  God spoke of this success to Joshua as he took over leadership of Israel, saying, “Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper wheithersoever thou goest.  This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt mediate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success” (Joshua 1:7-8).  You may have success by utilization of the Scriptures. The more you utilize the Scriptures, the more success you will have spiritually.

It is the Bible which can help you to enjoy success.  In your quest for success, be very mindful of one thing.  Though you succeed in every other area of life, if you fail spiritually, you fail totally.

This spiritual success may be accomplished in two important areas.

Salvation through the Scriptures

Of the area of salvation, Paul wrote, “And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:15).  There cannot be real success until you get saved.  That is why Jesus asked, “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Mark 8:36).

As you exercise your faith in Christ Jesus, you are saved.  You succeed by gaining eternal life.  It is the Scriptures which enables you to be saved.

Service through the Scriptures

The second important area of success is Christian service.  The same Scriptures which are able to bring you to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ are able to make you prosperous in Christian service.  Paul wrote of this profitability of the Scriptures, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable . . . that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good words” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).  The Bible enables you to achieve spiritual maturity.

As you use the teachings and the principles of the Bible, you are able to serve successfully as a Christian.  Your success results in a life evidenced by good works.

The Bible is the resource for your spiritual growth.  Three words describe those things you need to know about the Bible.  The first word is inspiration.  The source of the Bible is by inspiration.  Preservation is the word which describes the survival of the Word of God.  The third word which describes the way you may have success is utilization.  God has given you the Scriptures that you may grow.

                   Section Two–Lesson Four

                                  Bible Study

  1. God has given you the Bible so you may grow from a spiritual                   to full spiritual _________________.
  2. Though God used men to write the Scriptures, He so controlled the process  that every word they wrote was from __________________.
  3. The Bible is inerrant which means that it is free from ______________.
  4. The ________________ of the Scriptures is the process of recognizing and of collecting those writings which were sacred and given under inspiration.
  5. God preserved His word by __________________ it through the use of various languages of the times.
  6. The result of inspiration and of preservation is that you have a _________________ Bible.
  7. The first area in which the Bible enables you to succeed is that of _______________ through the Scriptures.
  8. As you use the teachings and the principles of the Bible, you are able to _______________ successfully as a Christian.
  9. Three words which describe those things you need to know about the Bible are _________________, ___________________, and __________________.

Go Forward to Lesson Five: Get Through Prayer

Donnie Melton
Daily Proverb

Proverbs 21:12

The righteous man wisely considereth the house of the wicked: but God overthroweth the wicked for their wickedness.