Vol.XIII No.V Pg.4
July 1976

The Word Of God

Robert F. Turner

In the 1968 Arlington Meeting (book available) Roy Cogdill did a magnificent job of introducing BIBLE AUTHORITY. I would outline some of those thoughts as follows. 1) The Necessity for Authority in Religion. 2) Authority must be Objective, coming from without man. 3) GOD, being sovereign by right of creation and possession, is the Object in Religion. 4) The nature of God, as Creator, and man, as creature (Potter and clay), negate the possibility of mans taking (via philosophy or transcendental meditation) the will of God. God must Reveal Himself — must communicate His sovereign will to His creatures. 5) The Son of God Manifested the Father; is the fullness of deity bodily; and, 6) The Holy Spirit is the Divine Agent by which the manifestation, and the attendant message of Gods will, is made known to man.

God sent His Son; the Son spoke and demonstrated the will of the Father--these are historic acts; occurrences in time and space. To the end that a record might be made and the divine message repeated to subsequent generations, special messengers were chosen and endowed with a miraculous measure of the Holy Spirit — to speak as the Spirit gave them utterance. (Lu. 24:48-49; Jn. 14:25-26; 15:26-27; 16:12-14; Acts 2:1-4; 1 Cor. 2:1-13)

The writings of these inspired men is but an extension of their task to make known to their generation, and to following generations, the will of God. (Eph. 3:1-7; Col. 4:16; 2 Pet. 1:13-15; 3:1-2, 15-16; Jn. 20:30-31; Lu. 1:1-4) These writings are, therefore, authoritative. GOD is the authority, the source of the message; but the written word is the record of Gods acts and message, delivered by inspiration of Gods Holy Spirit through Gods messengers, and therefore it is authoritative. As brother Cogdill put it, The realm of faith lies within that of divine revelation. Paul said: Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Rom. 10:17).

When ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but, as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe (1 Thes. 2:13). The word of God was what they heard of us — the vehicles of speech enunciated by Paul. It was not some spiritual value derived by subjective feeling, but a message, objectively determined by hearing, and effective to the extent the hearer responded to its demands.

This is not Bibliolatry. The words are important because they express Gods message, confirmed by divine power (1 Thes. 1:5), which the Spirit teacheth (1 Cor. 2:4-5,13). The TRUTH makes free, but that truth is couched in words that may be spoken (Jn. 8:30-32). In 1 Thes. 4:1-8 Paul says, Ye have received of us how ye ought to walk. Paul testified of Gods will for them, and declares, He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us His Holy Spirit.

One cannot hold to New Testament Christianity, and reject the word of God concept found in its source book. These words are spirit and life, and shall judge us in the last day. (continued next page)