Why do we call the Bible inerrant? Carl Trueman

carl-truemanCarl, you mentioned that the British don’t use that word so much. Is it because British evangelicals don’t believe in inerrancy?

Carl Trueman:

No, I think there are a number of reasons. One, is the word infallibility is by and large done the work of inerrancy in Britain. If you look at Jim Packer’s book ‘Fundamentalism in the Word of God’, I think it’s written in the 1960’s, when Packer was still packed in Britain, he argues basically the inerrantists position. So, it’s definitely present in evangelicalism. It’s just that the term is not as familiar to many, as it would be over here. 

What about the concept of Scripture not being inerrant, or infallible, but, being authoritative. Does that work?

Carl Trueman:

No. I think your problem with saying that Scripture is authoritative , but is not infallible or inerrant is: If Scripture is authoritative, you have to take Scripture’s own claim about itself seriously. And if those claims are that it is inerrant, inspired, then for it to be authoritative, those claims have to be true. I think therein lies the problem. So, if Scripture is authoritative , but it isn’t inerrant- well, then you’d have to say, „Scripture is authoritative except when it speaks about itself.” That, I think is problematic. 

I think you should talk to people and find out why they’re afraid of terms such as infallible or inerrant. Those terms don’t exist in Scripture, one wouldn’t want to go to the stake for those terms, and sometimes people object to those terms because they think it reduces Scripture to a book of logarithms, that it’s just propositions, and it isn’t relational, personal. So. somebody can reject the term and still hold to the orthodox concept. So, if someone rejects the term of inerrancy, I’d want to know why, (and ask) „Do you know what it means? What are your concerns with it?” 

What are the parameters to its scope, its intentions? Is it a science book? Sometimes that’s used, people discredit Scripture in form or another because it says the sun rises.

Carl Trueman:

Well, we all say the sun rises, in my experience. I talk about the sun rising, the sun setting, Scripture offers phenomenological accounts of what’s going on there. I don’t think it’s a science textbook. I don’t think it’s irrelevant to science, though. Clearly, it teaches that there’s a Creator and a creation. The distinction is taught in Scripture, which must have implications as to how you understand the world, and the cultures, science, etc… It’s not a scientific textbook, but it clearly has implications for science.

G. K. Beale, Carl Trueman, and Ryan KellyApril 30, 2011
Clarus 2011 – Scripture: God Speaks
The SW Regional Conference of The Gospel Coalition
http://www.clarusabq.comVIDEO by DESERT SPRINGS CHURCH

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