References from Scripture, the Book of Discipline, and L+L Articles
The Scriptures – Authority: ¶108 of the 2019 Book of Discipline
The Bible is God’s written Word, uniquely inspired by the Holy Spirit. It bears unerring witness to Jesus Christ, the living Word. As attested by the early church and subsequent councils, it is the trustworthy record of God’s revelation, completely truthful in all it affirms. It has been faithfully preserved and proves itself true in human experience.
The Scriptures have come to us through human authors who wrote, as God moved them, in the languages and literary forms of their times. God continues, by the illumination of the Holy Spirit, to speak through this Word to each generation and culture.
The Bible has authority over all human life. It teaches the truth about God, His creation, His people, His one and only Son and the destiny of humankind. It also teaches the way of salvation and the life of faith. Whatever is not found in the Bible nor can be proved by it is not to be required as an article of belief or as necessary to salvation.
The Eternal Nature of God’s Word
- Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away. (Matthew 24:35)
The Sustaining Nature of God’s Word
- Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'” (Matthew 4:1-4)
- He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your ancestors had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. (Deuteronomy 8:3)
The Authoritative Nature of God’s Word
- For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, jointsand marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
The Heart that Yearns to Live Obediently to God’s Word.
Psalm 119 is unparalleled in depicting the heart of one who desires to live in obedience to the Word of God. It beautifully depicts the self-awareness of the benefits of living according to the Word of God.
- Blessed are those whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the LORD. Blessed are those who keep his statutes and seek him with all their heart— they do no wrong but follow his ways. You have laid down precepts that are to be fully obeyed. Oh, that my ways were steadfast in obeying your decrees! Then I would not be put to shame when I consider all your commands. I will praise you with an upright heart as I learn your righteous laws. I will obey your decrees; do not utterly forsake me. How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. (Psalms 119:1-11)
The Prophetic Nature of God’s Word
- Where there is no revelation, people cast off restraint; but blessed is the one who heeds wisdom’s instruction. (Proverbs 29:18)
The Unified Authority of the Old and New Testaments
- 63 times in the New Testament (NIV search), the phrase, “it is written” appears, calling forth the prophecies of the Old Testament to substantiate the authority of Christ as our Messiah.
Visit https://lightandlife.fm beginning June 1, 2021 for “God-Given Revelation” by Bishop Matt Whitehead and discipleship materials related to this value of The Free Methodist Way