Ask ten people on the street this question and most will answer, “The Bible.”
But is that true and what would prompt one to answer in this manner?
2 Timothy 3:16-17
In my so-called Christian upbringing, I was taught that 2 Tim 3:16-17 is proof positive that “The Bible” is Scripture; many today use it as their proof that The Bible is Scripture. But is that what it says?
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Nowhere in 2 Timothy 3:16-17 does it say that the Bible is Scripture. It is falsely assumed that it is. In other words, someone came along and told the world that it is Scripture and it was blindly accepted. Yet, a close look at 2 Timothy 3:16-17does tell us what Scripture is.
All Scripture is God-Breathed
The New International Version of the Bible uses the expression God-breathed. The King James Bible uses the expression inspiration and other translations use the expression inspired to describe what Scripture is.
The expression God-breathed more accurately describes what Scripture is. It is something that God has spoken. When we speak we breathe do we not? Thus, Scripture is anything Spoken By God and it is written down.
For example, if we look at the first Book of Moses – Genesis – we see the first occurrence of God breathing or speaking at Genesis 1:3 where God says,
Let there be light,” and there was light.
Since Moses wrote down the words he claims that God spoke. Genesis 1:3 qualifies as Scripture.
Another example of God breathing or speaking can be seen in His instructions to Adam concerning the two trees in the middle of the Garden: The Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Bad. Concerning those trees God said to Adam at Genesis 2:15-17:
The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.
Again, God is speaking (breathing) and Moses claims that God spoke these words and wrote them down. That qualifies Genesis 2:15-17 as Scripture. One will see many instances where God Himself is breathing or speaking and it is written down. Now, let me show you a few examples within the Bible that are NOT Scripture. I will use Genesis again. Genesis 3:1. Here we have the Serpent speaking (breathing) to the woman Eve these words:
Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?
Here it is not God breathing, it is the Serpent! So is the Serpents words Scripture? He is quoted in “The Bible, is he not? So how can “The Bible” as a whole be Scripture?
Another example of many of what is not Scripture can be seen in Matthew 4:3 where the Devil is speaking (breathing) with Jesus. He says:
The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.
Again, God is not speaking here, the Devil is. So how can “The Bible” as a whole, be Scripture or The Word of God. Satan’s words are quoted in it! Even demons are quoted at Matthew 8:29 where they say to Jesus:
What do you want with us, Son of God?” they shouted. “Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?
So when we read instances in this book called by men – the Bible – of others speaking (other than God), then what THEY say is not Scripture. Scripture can only be what GOD has spoken and it is written down. We have many instances of Adam, Noah, Adam, The Devil, Demons, The Prophets, The Apostles and others speaking under their own accord (that is, not quoting God) and their words do not qualify as Scripture.
The problem and the misleading effect is that someone came along and told the world that a book called “The Bible” is Scripture and The Word of God. That is not true. Yes, God is quoted in the Bible and angels and Prophets spoke what God told them to speak, but the Bible itself is not Scripture or the Word of God. I know that this is shocking to many but one cannot dismiss the many times Satan, for example, is breathing his own words in the Bible and one still maintains that a book given the name Bible by men is Scripture?
Jesus said at Matthew 4:4 when he was speaking with the Devil:
It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.
Two things to note here in Jesus’ words: (1) It is written (actually at Deut 8:3) that “Man must not live on bread alone …” and (2) But on every WORD THAT COMES OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD.
The words of Adam, Moses (if he speaks his own words), Noah (if he speaks his own words), The Prophets (if they speak under their own accord), The Apostles (if they speak their own words), demons, Satan and others in the Bible are not God’s words but theirs. These are words that come out of their mouths and thus are not Scripture. Since the majority of what is written in the book men call the Bible are the words breathed by men, demons, and the devil, the Bible itself is not Scripture and it certainly is not The Word of God.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
So the Word, Son of God that was with his Father in heaven from the beginning and who was dispatched out of heaven became flesh (a man). So this establishes Jesus [the] Christ – not a book called The Bible – as The Word of God.
Revelation 19:13, which out of all of the books in the Bible is pure Scripture because at the very beginning we are told that it is a Revelation from Jesus Christ that God gave him. So the contents of the Book of Revelation is pure Scripture. No other book within this book called The Bible can make that claim. Yet, Revelation 19:13 affirms who is The Word of God.
He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God.
So the Christ – not a book – is The Word of God and since he is God’s spokesman (God’s Word) anything he says and is written down is Scripture. It is for that reason that God has commanded at Luke 9:35:
A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.
No other name has been given under the sun that we are to listen to other than Christ himself. No, human, human agency and not even a book men all by themselves falsely made Scripture and The Word of God. God did not choose a book, He chooses His Son and told us to listen to him. Why? Because Christ is God’s Word! One should NEVER associate a book by any name as being The Word of God!
Yet, people will stubbornly ignore God’s words at Luke 9:35 and place upon a holy pedestal a book many arrogated himself to call Scripture and holy. They do not realize that they blaspheme God to His very face when they do this.
Who Is The Blame?
Frankly, the religious system called by men, Christianity. In its bulkiness and immenseness, it has taken an entire world into captivity to the lie that The Bible is Scripture and The Word of God. Rather than speaking and teaching the truth as to what is Scripture and who is The Word of God, they have pushed instead that a book is.
To show how deeply indoctrinated the masses are, just listen to the things they say and write with regards the Bible. Instead of ascribing something Christ taught, they will say the Bible teaches it. To illustrate, let’s use John 14:6:
I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Many claiming to follow Christ will say that “The Bible teaches this or The Bible says this.” They would be wrong to say such a thing. The Bible does not say or teach what is written in John 14:6, Jesus does. See how “The Bible” is given more preference than Christ himself! So much so, that many will ascribe to a book what Jesus taught.
Many persons who post replies on this blog almost always mention the Bible as the teacher, sayer, Scripture, and Word of God. Rarely is Christ – who is all of those things – mentioned or given credit. A book has replaced him! It has become a “Golden Calf”, a false god.
Should We Read The Bible?
Of course! I am NOT saying one should not read the Bible because God is breathing in some (not all) parts of it and so is His Son. But we must be wise enough to know what the Bible is not. It is not The Word of God or Scripture or an equal to Christ (Who is the Word of God) or a replacement of Christ. We should not make ourselves students of the Bible because when you do, you will refer to it rather than to our ONLY true Teacher, Christ himself. You will turn to a book rather than turn to the person of Christ – in prayer to the Father – for holy spirit and illumination.
Our discipleship is to Christ, not to a book or religious system.
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.
So Christ’s followers were to teach others what he taught them. It would be a mistake to teach others what a book called the Bible teaches. That is NOT what Christ commanded at Matthew 28:19-20.
Those becoming students (disciples) of Christ MUST became purely his disciples. If one makes themselves Bible students or students of the Bible then they are just that: Disciples of the Bible and NOT disciples (students) of Christ. This is one of the most difficult things to get many persons to see and understand. Most difficult.
By the same token, when one attaches themselves to religious organizations claiming to be of God and Christ then they are not truly disciples of Christ. Why not? Because they will cling to that particular religious organization’s teachings. Case in point: The 1914 teaching of Jehovah’s Witnesses which is not something Christ taught. In fact, Christ taught that such things are not possible to know by humans or angels; not even himself, but only to the Father in heaven.
Yet, this teaching is taught as truth and Biblical (pun intended) by the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society. It is a teaching that opposes what Christ himself taught. So my point is that when one attaches themselves to religious organizations claiming to be of God and Christ, they will listen and obey their teachings and not the things Christ taught.
It takes real courage and prayerful meditation to God to break away from an enslaver. The religious system called by men, Christianity has mechanisms in place that make people afraid to challenge them and get away from them. Those mechanisms come in the form of the things they teach: The threat of eternal torment or loss of eternal life or not going to heaven. These false threats imprison the mind and keep those Christ would want free enslaved.
So let us speak and teach others what Christ himself has taught and is still teaching us. Christ promised that he will still be with us at Matthew 28:20, I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Therefore, he is still able to teach us to this very day. We should never surrender his role as our teacher to any religious system or human entities claiming to teach him. We must recognize and respond only to his voice (teachings) and reject other voices that claim to be teaching what he taught. I cannot over stress this. Jesus says in John 10:3-6:
The doorkeeper opens to this one, and the sheep listen to his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has got all his own out, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, because they know his voice. A stranger they will by no means follow but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers.” Jesus spoke this comparison to them; but they did not know what the things meant that he was speaking to them.
We follow the doorkeeper Christ himself. Not a book men claim is Scripture; not a book men claim is the Word of God; not religious organizations and systems claiming to be of God and Christ. All of these things are strangers.
Yet, millions today do not know what the things meant that he was speaking to them.
No one of importance. A disciple (student) of Christ apart from the established religious systems who reasons, thinks and concludes matters for myself. Something is not right with the state of religion in the world. The real dichotomy is that we live in a world so full of religion, yet is an evil, immoral, and dangerous place to live. A mental and spiritual separation from this world that Jesus said his kingdom is no part of is the first step to a "break-through" to freedom and entry into a much larger spiritual world where God and Christ resides and the wisdom, knowledge, and understanding of God can be accessed.