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Inspiration of the Bible by Finis Jennings Dake

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. 2 Tim. 3:16-17

Inspiration: God-breathed (p. *241, col. 2)

Gr. theopneustos, God-breathed. Only here. It is that special influence of the Holy Spirit in the lives of holy men, which qualified and enabled them to make an infallible record of divine truth concerning the will of God to man.

The purpose of inspiration is to secure truth and unity in record and not sameness of words or statements. Revelation discovers new truth; inspiration superintends the communicating and recording of that truth. We have examples of inspiration without revelation (Lk. 1:1-4); of inspiration including revelation (Rev. 1:1, 11); of inspiration without illumination (1 Pet. 1:11; 1 Cor. 14:13-19); and of revelation and inspiration including illumination (1 Cor. 2:12-16; 1 Cor. 14:30).

We find lies of Satan and men; false doctrines; and many sins listed in Scripture. Inspiration simply guarantees that these lies were actually told; these fallacies were taught by certain men; and that these crimes were committed, but it does not make these lies and fallacies the truth or place God's sanction upon the crimes. One must find out whether Satan, evil men, or God is speaking in Scripture. God is not responsible for what others have said just because He causes what they did say to be recorded by inspiration. All God guarantees is that these things were said and done as they are recorded. Only what God says or teaches is truth which He requires men to obey.

To what degree were writers inspired? (p. *241, col. 2-3)

  1. Some parts of Scripture give the exact words of God (Ex. 32:16; Dt. 5:4, 24; Mt. 3:17)
  2. Some words were put into the mouths of the speakers who spoke as the Spirit inspired them (Ex. 4:12; Num. 23:5; Ezek. 2:7, 3:10-11; Acts 3:21)
  3. Some words were written as the Spirit moved men (Ex. 34:27; 2 Pet. 1:21)
  4. In some parts of Scripture it was left up to the writers to choose their own words and relate truth by the inspiration and guidance of the Spirit (Dan. 12:8-9; Lk. 1:1-4; Jn. 20:30-31; Acts 1:1-2)

The Spirit used the faculties and abilities of the writers to record things, past, present, and future. He gave direct revelations, guided them to choose records of men, and superintended the writers in all their work until we now have a perfect and infallible record of the origin and destiny of all creation.

20 Proofs the Bible Is Inspired: (p. *241, col. 3)

  1. Its wonderful unity. Over 40 authors wrote 66 books in different lands and over a period of 1,800 years. Many never saw the writings of the others and yet there is no contradiction between any two of them. Collect any group of books by any other 40 men on any subject and see if they agree.
  2. Its superiority to other books in its origin, formation, doctrines, principles, claims, moral tone, histories, prophecies, revelations, literature, present redemption and eternal benefits, and its general contents.
  3. Its influence in the world. It has blessed millions in every generation, made the highest civilizations, and given man the highest hope and destiny.
  4. The character and greatness of those who accept it. The wisest, most godly, and honest of men acknowledge it as God's Word. Only infidels and the ungodly reject it.
  5. Man could not have written it if he would, and would not have written it if he could. No critic of Scripture has ever been able to improve or disprove it.
  6. Good men must have written it. It condemns all sin and records the sins and faults of its writers as well as others. This, evil men would not do. Even good men would not do it unless inspired to do so to help others.
  7. All man's present and eternal needs are met by the Bible. Redemption and promised benefits have been given to all who believed in all generations and this will always be so.
  8. Its preservation through the ages. Whole kingdoms and religions have sought in vain to destroy it. It is still victor and indestructible.
  9. The heavenly and eternal character of its contents proves it to be of God.
  10. The response of the soul to it. The Bible fits the soul as a key to a lock.
  11. Its infinite depths and lofty ideals. It is universal in its appeal, reasonable in its teachings, reliable in its promises, durable in its conflicts, everlasting in its usefulness, new and modern in its statements, indispensible to human civilization, indisputable in its authority, interesting in its histories, colorful in its biographies, accurate in its prophecies, individual in its messages, far reaching in its vision, complete in its laws, comprehensive in its knowledge, infinite in its detail, unselfish in its purpose, simple in its application, just in its demands, righteous in its judgments, clear in its application, and masterful in its wisdom.
  12. Fulfilled prophecy. About 3,300 verses of prophecy have been fulfilled, predictions made hundreds and even thousands of years before their fulfillment. Not one detail has failed yet. About 2,908 verses are being fulfilled or will yet be fulfilled.
  13. Miracles. Hundreds are recorded in Scripture and many happen daily among those who pray and claim Bible promises.
  14. Its perfection. It is scientifically and historically correct. No one man has ever found the Bible at fault in any of its many hundreds of statements on history, astronomy, botany, geology, or any other branch of learning.
  15. Its adaptability. It is always up-to-date on any subject. It fits the lives of all people of all ages and all lands.
  16. Its spiritual and moral power. It meets perfectly every spiritual and moral need of man.
  17. Its doctrines. They surpass all human principles in relationship, religion, culture, etc. (1 Cor. 2:14).
  18. Claims of the Bible itself. Over 3,800 times Bible writers claim God spoke what they wrote. The Bible itself claims to be the Word of God.
  19. Secular history. Many pagan as well as Jewish and Christian writers confirm the facts of the Bible, quoting it as being genuine, authentic, and inspired of God.
  20. Its inexhaustible proofs. It would take many volumes to deal fully with the many thousands of facts which confirm the Bible to be the Word of God. The book must be divine. If one will use it properly it will confirm itself to him as the inspired Word of God.

A Tribute to the Bible: (p. *241)

The Bible is not an amulet, a charm, a fetish, or a book that will work wonders by its very presence.

It is a book that will work wonders in every life, here and hereafter, if acted upon and obeyed in faith and sincerity. It is God's inspired revelation of the origin and destiny of all things, written in the most simple human language possible so that the most unlearned can understand and obey its teachings. It is self-interpreting and covers every subject of human knowledge and need now and forever.

As a literary composition, the Bible is the most remarkable book ever made. It is a divine library of 66 books, some of considerable size, and others no larger than a tract. These books include various forms of literature - history, biography, poetry, proverbial sayings, hymns, letters, directions for elaborate ritualistic worship, laws, parables, riddles, allegories, prophecy, drama, and others. They embrace all manner of literary styles in human expression.

It is the book that reveals the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers. Its doctrines are holy, its precepts binding, its histories true, and its decisions immutable. Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe, and practice it to be holy. The Bible contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you. It is the traveler's map, the pilgrim's staff, the pilot's compass, the soldier's sword, and the Christian's charter. Here heaven is opened, and the gates of hell disclosed. Christ is its grand subject, our good is its design, and the glory of God its end. It should fill your memory, rule your heart, and guide your feet in righteousness and true holiness. Read it slowly, frequently, prayerfully, meditatively, searchingly, devotionally, and study it constantly, perseveringly, and industriously. Read it through and through until it becomes part of your being and generates faith that will move mountains. The Bible is a mine of wealth, the source of health, and a world of pleasure. It is given to you in this life, will be opened at the judgment, and will stand forever. It involves the highest responsibility, will reward the least to the greatest of labor, and will condemn all who trifle with its sacred contents.

What Great Men Have Said About the Bible: (p. *243)

It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible - George Washington

A studious perusal of the sacred volume will make better citizens, better fathers, and better husbands - Thomas Jefferson

The first and almost the only book deserving of universal attention - John Quincy Adams

It is the rock on which our Republic rests - Andrew Jackson

A man has deprived himself of the best there is in the world who has deprived himself of this (a knowledge of the Bible) - Woodrow Wilson

There is no other book so various as the Bible, not one so full of concentrated wisdom - Herbert Hoover

To the influence of this Book we are indebted for the progress made in civilization; and to this we must look as our guide in the future - Ulysses S. Grant

What can I do with respect to the next world without my Bible? - John Bacon

The Bible is more than a book; it is a living being with an action; a power which invades everything that opposes its extension - Napoleon Bonaparte

All other books are of little importance in comparison with the Holy Scriptures - Alexander Cruden

We, the undersigned, Students of the Natural Sciences, desire to express our sincere regret that researchers into scientific truth are perverted by some in our own times into occasion for casting doubt upon the truth and authenticity of the Holy Scriptures. We conceive that it is impossible for the Word of God written in the book of nature, and God's Word written in Holy Scripture, to contradict one another ... physical science is not complete, but is only in a condition of progress - Signed by 800 scientists of Great Britain, recorded in the Bodelian Library, Oxford.

The Bible is the Book of faith, and a Book of doctrine, and a Book of morals, and a Book of religion, of special revelation from God; but it is also a Book which teaches man his responsibility, his own dignity, and his equality with his fellow man - Daniel Webster

This information is taken from Dake's Annotated Reference Bible, © 1961, 1963 by Finis Jennings Dake, and is reproduced on our web site with permission from representatives of Dake Publishing.