Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of New Georgia Baptist Church, and tutor/staff member at Sayers Classical Academy.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Charismaticism and Inerrancy

At the Together for the Gospel Conference this week there was a panel discussion on the subject of biblical inerrancy. New Testament scholar Simon Gathercole mentioned two major arguments for inerrancy: 1) The character of God yields inerrancy; 2) The way Jesus handles Scriptures presupposes inerrancy. Key to an understanding of this first argument is the idea that God cannot lie (Num 23:19; Heb 6:18); that is, He cannot communicate error.

Interestingly, there was a rather large group of Reformed Charismatics at the conference; this group holds to the idea that God still gives special revelation in the form of prophecy today, but that-- unlike the prophecies we find in Scripture-- human fallenness may interfere with the prophecy in such a way as to allow for errors in the communication of that prophecy.

Notice that the charismatic view of prophecy mentioned above completely erodes Gathercole's first point in his argument for inerrancy; if the charismatics are correct, then it turns out that God regularly communicates in a way that involves error. The questions that still must be answered are:
  1. Does the Bible itself allow for the idea that true prophets may make errors when delivering a word from the Lord?
  2. If prophets were expected to deliver prophecies without error during the biblical age, is there any hint in the Bible that a lesser type of prophecy-- consisting of prophecies that admit errors-- will be operative in the Church age?
  3. If the answer to both of the above questions is "no," then doesn't the idea of fallible prophecy prone to error, as mentioned above, provide a pathway to Liberalism?

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