Thursday, September 16, 2010

By What Authority?

"The framers of the [Westminster Confession of Faith], by treating the topic of Holy Scripture in chapter one, show their theological astuteness. They were acutely aware that the primary issue in religion is an epistemological one, that of authority. No matter what they later confessed, they knew that they could always be challenged with the questions: "How do you know that what you confess is so? What is your authority for saying what you do?" Accordingly, they address this epistemological issue at the outset, even prior to their treatment of the doctrine of God." Robert L. Reymond, A New Systematic Theology of the Christian Faith, Second Edition, (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 1998), 55.

"Then the article [WCF 1.4] states the sole reason why the Bible ought to be believed and obeyed: because God, who is truth itself, is in a unique sense its author, and therefore because it is the very Word of the one living and true God. In sum, it receives its authority from heaven; it requires no earthly advocacy in regard to the issue of its authority. Its authority is intrinsic and inherent; that is, it is self-validating. In no sense is its authority derived from human testimony." Ibid., 73.