In Deuteronomy chapter 8 verse 3 the Bible says “man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD.” This quote from the Bible brings up the importance of the doctrine known as the Necessity of Scripture.
In the Systematic Theology book Wayne Grudem wrote, we can read this:
“The Necessity of Scripture may be defined as follows: The Necessity of Scripture means that the Bible is necessary for knowing the gospel, for maintaining spiritual life, and for knowing God’s will, but it is not necessary for knowing that God exists or for knowing something about God’s character and moral laws.”
That may sound complicated if you are hearing this for the first time, but its actually rather simple. What this means can be summarized in two basic statements. The two basic statements are as follows:
- There are things about God you CAN know without access to the Bible.
- There are things about God you CANNOT know without access to a Bible.
This is important because it can help us understand what to expect from people who believe in the Gospel, as well as what to expect from those who do not believe in the Gospel.
So let’s consider the application of the Necessity of Scripture.
In order to make disciples, you will need to help people examine the Bible constantly. The reason for this is fairly simple: Bible study makes it easier to communicate with God. A deeper, more personal relationship with God cannot be obtained without a deep, personal understanding of the entire Bible. You could spend your entire life reading the Bible, and everything you would learn would improve your relationship with God.
Every detail of every part of the Bible can help you live in agreement with God. The opposite is also true: Every detail you overlook can (somehow) hurt your relationship with God.
This last statement brings up another issue known as the Sufficiency of Scripture that we need to look at.
(to be continued…)