Monday, November 02, 2009

Scripture and Confession


The slogan "No creed but the Bible" is totally unsustainable in practice. The Bible, after all, is a big book. What does it teach?
A man may accept as the rule of his faith the same inspired books as yourself, while he rejects every important article of the faith you find in these books.

If, therefore, we are to know who believe as we do, and who dissent from our faith, we must state our creed in language explicitly rejecting such interpretations of Scripture as we deem to be false. Papists, Unitarians, Arminians, all profess to find their doctrines in Scripture; but they do not find them in the Westminster Confession.


No one calling himself a Christian will deny that 'Christ died for our sins;' but out of these words of Scripture a Socinian will bring a meaning which is utterly subversive of what we hold as essential to salvation.


The Church, therefore, gathers her symbol, and utters her Confession, in order that the truth contained in Scripture may be recognised and held in opposition to, or in distinction from, the errors which some have maintained, and which, while they claim to be found in Scripture, are really subversive of the truth therein delivered.
Marcus Dods (of all people) quoted by James Bannerman, The Church of Christ Volume 1, p. 298

4 comments:

Jeff said...

Dr. Pipa (president at GPTS) will give a lecture on this topic at the 2010 conference titled "Why Creeds if Bible is Sufficienct and Final Rule of Authority."

Reformation said...

Are there folks who still use this brain-dead phrase?

From a dinosaur.

cath said...

Interesting how people like Marcus Dods never thought that they were terribly out of line with the truth. Interesting too that a lot of what they were saying sounds relatively tame today, yet their more orthodox colleagues had the discernment to react against it with great horror and vigour! (On scripture, atonement, etc)

Nathan said...

Isn't one's view of scripture the main reason there is a differnce in belief about what is meant by what one read in the bible? In fact, see how most evangelicals (the word itself is a statement about how we view scripture. From the Greek eungellion referes to the good news) maintain very simular views regarding doctrine and especually critial doctrine. They are united in their view of the bible as God's inspired word. True evangelist do not live by what one writer called the UOC (Unless of Course) version of the bible that many people live by.

Some denominations and Christian sects (even more ancient sects) also determine doctrine by the UOC. I'm afraid most differnces have to do with denying what its clear than they have to do with the lack of clearity.