as a pastor and seminary student, i am often asked which bible translation i use and why, and what i recommend for others.

in recommending bible translations, another question that comes up is “how did what moses, the old testament prophets, jesus, and the apostles wrote make it into my leather bound copy of “the bible”.

i have written about this topic before for an on-line magazine,, but will revisit it here.

i will divide this up into more than one post, but to get us started…

As Evangelical Christians, inheritors of the Protestant Reformation,
which reclaimed the truth of “Sola Scriptura” (scripture alone), the
Bible is our sole source of Authority. No Popes, creeds, councils, or

other decrees of man supercede the authority of what God has revealed
to us through His word.

God has not left His people to wander aimlessly through life wondering
what it is they are to do and how they are to do it. We are not like the

prophets of Baal who cut themselves in a desperate attempt to
communicate with their God.
We know what pleases Him, and we know what displeases Him.
Our God has spoken clearly to us through His Word, the Bible.
We can know God because He has revealed Himself. We can feel
confident in what we know because neither He nor His word ever
change. We are not governed by emotions or opinions that are always
coming and going and developing. We are not left
under the dictates of men who age, die, and make mistakes.

As John Armstrong puts it;

The authority of the Scripture, then, is not located
in human brilliance or witness. It is not found in the
person of Moses, Paul, or Peter. The authority is f
ound in the sovereign God Himself. The God who
“breathed out”4 the words through human writers
stands behind every statement, every doctrine,
every promise and every command written in
the Scripture.[i]
Scripture itself speaks to the importance of God’s Word. in its existance, uses and application. For example:

…and that from childhood you have known

the sacred writings which are able to give
you the wisdom that leads to salvation
through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
All Scripture is inspired by God and
profitable for teaching, for reproof, for
correction, for training in righteousness;
so that the man of God may be adequate,
equipped for every good work
(2 Timothy 3:15-17)

God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the
prophets in many portions and in many ways, in
these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom
He appointed heir of all things, through whom also
He made the world (Hebrews 1:1-2)

Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth. (John 17:17)

For the word of God is living and active and

sharper than any two-edged sword, and
piercing as far as the division of soul and
spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able
to judge the thoughts and intentions of the
heart (Hebrews 4:12)

The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul;

The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise
the simple. The precepts of the LORD are right,
rejoicing the heart;The commandment of the
LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear
of the LORD is clean, enduring forever;The
judgments of the LORD are true; they are
righteous altogether.(Psalm 19:7-9)

Now these were more noble-minded than those in

Thessalonica, for they received the word with great
eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see
whether these things were so. (Acts 17:11)

How can we be obedient to God when we don’t know what is asked of us?

How can we worship a God we do not know? How can we be saved without
the Gospel being explained? All of these answers are found in the Bible.
Indeed, most of us would agree Scripture is essential to the Christian life.

But how can we be sure that the book that we carry to Church with us and

read during our devotional times is what God intended for us to have?
How did God’s word go from old parchments written in foreign languages
to nice and neatly bound books in our own language? Why are there so
many different versions?
to be continued…..

[i] John H. Armstrong .Chapter 4 Sola Scriptura!:The Protestant Position on the Bible. Don Kistler,
General Editor ,Soli Deo Gloria Publications, 1994.