In the church today, a passion for the Bible and a passion for the Holy Spirit can seem at odds with one another. Churches typically can fall into one of these two camps. You have your “Word” churches and your “Spirit” churches. But when we look at the Bible, we see that we should be a Word and Spirit church.
WHAT WE BELIEVE ABOUT THE BIBLE
We believe that the Bible is the revelation of God. We cannot come to know God apart from the Bible. In the Scriptures, God has revealed himself to us. We see who he is and what he has done. Therefore, the Bible is all about Jesus. From beginning to end, the Bible is revealing the person and work of Jesus to us.
“You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me.” – John 5:39
The Bible is inspired by God. This means that Scriptures are the Word of God. They are God-breathed and are God’s very word to us. Therefore, the Scriptures are infallible and without error since they are first and foremost written by God.
“All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness.” – 2 Timothy 3:16
The Bible is the “Supreme Court” of authority for all matters of faith and practice.
As the Word of God, it has the highest authority for us as a church. Therefore, the Bible is the foundation of all our doctrinal convictions as a church.
“The authority of the Scripture means that all the words in Scripture are God’s words in such a way that to disbelieve or disobey any word of Scripture is to disbelieve or disobey God.” – Dr. Wayne Grudem
Because God has given us the Bible, doctrine matters. It helps us see and know God as he really is, instead of a god of our own making. It empowers us to live in a way that honors God. We believe that good theology will lead to good doxology, which in turn will lead to good praxis.
HOW DO WE READ THE BIBLE?
READ THE BIBLE TO COMMUNE WITH GOD
When we read the Bible, we are not just learning information about God. Rather, reading our Bible is a way we draw near to God and hear his voice. We should come to the Bible with prayer and humility, ready to meet with God the Trinity.
READ THE BIBLE AS ONE GRAND STORY
It’s easy to think that the Bible is a compilation of God’s 66 greatest hits. The truth is so much more beautiful. Though the Bible contains 66 books written by over 40 divinely inspired authors over the course of almost 2000 years, God is the author and he is telling the overarching story of creation, fall, redemption, and restoration.
READ THE BIBLE WITH JESUS IN VIEW
The whole Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, is about the person and work of Jesus. We cannot read Scripture rightly without seeing Jesus in the passage. When we read the Bible, it always points us to him.
“And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.” – Luke 24:27
“Don’t you know, young man, that from every town and every village and every hamlet in England, wherever it may be, there is a road to London? So from every text of Scripture there is a road to Christ. And my dear brother, your business is, when you get to a text, to say, now, what is the road to Christ? I have never found a text that had not got a road to Christ in it, and if ever I do find one, I will go over hedge and ditch but I would get at my Master, for the sermon cannot do any good unless there is a savor of Christ in it.” – Charles Spurgeon
READ THE BIBLE IN CONTEXT
The Bible was written in a particular context for a particular reason. We can take passages and make them mean something the author never intended. We have to look at a whole passage and ask who wrote it and why they wrote it. Some Scriptures are poetry, while other parts are historical records, both of which should be interpreted differently.