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the sufficiency of scripture


"I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.  I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.  They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.  Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth."  (John 17:14-17 ESV, underlining added)

John 5 in Codex Sinaiticus, early 4th century

Just as the Lord Jesus Christ is wholly sufficient for us (and all our needs), so also is the word he has given us.  Here's James White on the sufficiency of Scripture:

I have often preached that Christ is a perfect Savior, that He possesses the power and the nature to save without fail, and that He will share His glory with no other. I have used these truths as a basis upon which to exhort believers to rejoice in Christ’s sufficiency. Look to Him for your every need! Do not allow the world to distract you, to draw you away so as to nibble at the worthless crumbs the world would offer you rather than dine at the Lord’s Table, where there is enough spiritual food and drink to satiate the strongest desires. We have a sufficient Savior, fully capable of doing what the Father has willed Him to do (John 6:38–39).

In the very same way, our Lord Jesus Christ has provided His Word to His bride, the church. The Word is His voice, and He has chosen to speak with clarity and with sufficiency. He has given this tremendous gift out of love, for He has protected it and blessed those who have remained faithful to its teachings. Its sufficiency is a great encouragement to His people, for without it they would be left wandering in darkness, always casting about for some other source to guide them to the truth in the kind of certainty needed for a life of godliness and service in a hostile world.

~ James R. White, Scripture Alone: Exploring the Bible's Accuracy, Authority and Authenticity (Bethany House, 2004)


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