Scripture tells us that God reveals Himself in His creation (Romans 1:20). Whether a man or a woman acknowledges it or not, the creation constantly declares God’s great power, His divine nature, and His invisible qualities. We, through the glasses of written word of God -the Bible, can discern the mysteries of the Holy God, and His plan for the man in detail.
Bible is the highest and final authority for Christian truth. Bible is God speaking, and there is no other higher authority in the universe. It is the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit. Bible is sufficient to teach us the way of our salvation. It is sufficient to tell us how our sins can be forgiven. Further, the Scripture is sufficient for our perfection -our sanctification. It is sufficient to make us complete in every good work.
It is important to note that the Bible does not contain all truths. For example, the Bible does not say anything about the molecular formulas for glucose, or the fourth symphony of Beethoven. And, it is true that water can boil and freeze at the same time, but it is not in the Bible. It is true that Lasers can get trapped in a waterfall, but you cannot find that truth in the Bible. So, the Bible does not contain all truth. The Bible, also, does not contain all religious truths. God has only reveled what we need to know. There are so many things that are not revealed in the Bible. There are things that only belong to God that we never find answers. So, if anyone comes to you saying, the Bible gives answers to all your questions, it’s a big lie.
Sufficiency of the scripture
When we claim that the Bible is true and sufficient what we mean is that the Bible is the perfect rule for Faith and godly Life. It is absolutely adequate for teaching man the way of salvation. It is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness (2 Tim 3:16). The scripture is complete for the purpose which it was given. It talks of many things but not everything. It’s message concentrate on God’s glory and human salvation.
When we come to the revelation of God the first requirement is humility. There are things that have been revealed to us, and there are a lot of questions to which the only answer one can give is “I don’t know.” We should not probe beyond the limits of biblical revelation. Of course, it is our task to press our understanding to the limits of biblical revelation, but we must recognize where those limits are and should not go beyond Scripture. Everything God has revealed to us is supposed to make a transforming difference to our lives.
– Dr. Sinclair Ferguson
Westminster Shorter Catechism question 3: What do the scriptures principally teach? The answer: The scriptures principally teach what man is to believe concerning God, and what duty God requires of man. “But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name (John 20:31). For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16). He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8).
Knowledge outside the Scripture
The sufficiency of Scripture does not mean that the Scripture is all we need to live obediently, wisely and safely in this world. You may need to read and study science, nature, economics, business and other rules and regulations governing in the country in order to gain the knowledge from the natural world. If you’re a pilot you need to know airplane systems and aerodynamics, mathematics, learn to obey flight regulation. Those are not stipulated in the Bible. If you want to know how to become a successful stock investor, you won’t find that information in the Bible. If you’re trying to resolve a murder mystery, you need to study the forensic science, DNA, pathology, fingerprinting. Bible does not contain answers to those things.
The sufficiency of Scripture means that we don’t need any more special revelation concerning Faith and life. We don’t need any more inspired, inerrant words from any other sources. We do not need some authority figure to interpret the Bible for us. We do not need councils and edicts, and creeds to establish truths. Scripture does not need to be supplemented by more words of God from anyone claiming to be God. The Scripture alone contains all things necessary for believers. There is no need for anything to be added to them. God’s revelation is not confusing, the scripture interprets scripture. And it has the final authority. We believe, in matters that are not addressed in the Bible, what is true and right is assessed by criteria consistent with the teachings of Scripture.
Warning to the church
The sufficiency of Scripture is under attack all the time, and those attack comes not from outsides. The teachings of many ‘Christian movements’ contain sound biblical teaching. But the system is so overlaid and interwoven with non-biblical and even unbiblical ideas and practices. In many cases, the church traditions take precedence over the inspired Scripture. For example – in the Roman Catholic Church, the Catechism takes precedence over the inspired Scripture. Catholicism teaches the dogma of the infallibility of the Roman pontiff. The pope is often called the “Holy Father” name only apply to God. The Roman Catholic Church has shown a willingness to raise the pope above Jesus Christ and the Bible by giving him the right to nullify Scripture through papal decrees.
Paul in 2 Thessalonians 2:4 described the coming Antichrist “who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God”. Paul warns the church “See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:8). Jude says it even more specifically “I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints” (Jude 1:3). The message has been delivered only one time, and it doesn’t need to be delivered again. We propagate this truth over and over, but it was delivered by God to the world through the apostles and prophets once. There is no other writing, no priest, no pope, no theologian, or denominational church is equal to the written word of God.
The Bible is all that is necessary for the believer to understand the character of God, the nature of man, and the doctrines of sin, heaven, hell, and salvation through Jesus Christ. Paul’s words to the Galatians indicate the seriousness of preaching a message outside the Bible: “If we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!” (Galatians 1:8).