Revelation And Inspiration -- By: E. P. Barrows

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 030:118 (Apr 1873)
Article: Revelation And Inspiration
Author: E. P. Barrows

Revelation And Inspiration

Rev. E. P. Barrows

No. XII.

the quotations of the new testament in their relation to the question of inspiration.

In the series of Articles which we bring to a close with the present number, the relation of the quotations of the New Testament to the question of inspiration has been, of necessity, considered to some extent. It seems desirable, however, to devote a separate Article to the more particular examination of this subject.

No candid reader of the New Testament can doubt the position of Christ and his apostles in respect to the scriptures of the Old Testament. If anything in the compass of sacred literature is indisputable it is that they everywhere regard these books as of divine authority, and appeal to them as the end of controversy. If only one or two among the New Testament writers took this attitude in respect to the Hebrew scriptures, there would be more show of reason in the favorite hypothesis of rationalism, that the disciples misapprehended their Lord. But we find not only “the very chiefest apostles,” as Peter, John, and Paul, but Christ himself testifying in every possible way to the divine authority of the things written “in the law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms.” We need not assume here the inspiration of the evangelists. It is enough to show that they were honest and competent men, and that they have faithfully reported the substance of their Lord’s teachings. Had there been, in the discourses, only here and there an incidental allusion to the Hebrew scriptures, the case would have been different. But they constitute, so to speak, the warp into which the Saviour wove the woof of his daily instruction.

The explicit declaration of the apostle Paul, that “All scripture is given by inspiration of God”;1 and of Peter, that “holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost”;2 — these declarations are but the formal statement of what everywhere appears, as well on the face of the evangelic narratives as in the apostolic epistles. The position that the scriptures of the Old Testament were given by inspiration of God is, to use a military illustration, commanded by the position of the New Testament writers that Jesus is the Son of God, and that he commissioned and qualified in a supernatural way the twelve apostles to preach the doctrines which they received from him, and to lay the foundations of his church. Whoever would successfully assail the former position, must begin by demolishing the latter. B...

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