What Role Does The Bible Play In Christianity?
Some of the questions that often come up for new believers are:
- What role does the Bible play in the life of the Christian?
- Does the Bible save us?
- How important is Bible Study?
The Bible is very important to the Christian, as it is the written revelation of God. The Written Word. Its job is to point us to Jesus Christ, the Living Word of God.
John 1:1-3 KJV
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The same was in the beginning with God.
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
By itself, the Bible cannot save us. Intellectual study of the Bible is nice, but is not the path to Salvation. Salvation is of Jesus Christ.
John 5:39 EMTV
You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and these are they which testify about Me.
Acts 4:12 KJV
Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
Acts 16:30-31 KJV
And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?
And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.
The Bible's role, then, is to point us to Jesus Christ who can save us. It helps to point out our condition -- the human condition -- and highlight the need for a Savior. It is the written revelation of God's will for mankind, and shows us how to build a vibrant relationship with God. And the Bible shows us how to live in Jesus.
Bible Study is very important, because after it points us to Jesus, it enables us to grow in Jesus. It is valuable for instruction, reproof, edification, and strengthening our faith.
2 Timothy 3:15-17 KJV
And that from a child thou hast known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
2 Peter 1:19-21 KJV
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the Scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
2 Timothy 2:15 KJV
Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
Romans 10:17 KJV
So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Jesus warned us that in the last days, false Christs and false prophets would come claiming to be Him or claiming to come in His name, but would deceive many people. The only way we can discern the veracity of these pretenders if by matching up with what God has told us in His word.
If we try to use our own senses, and gauge by what the message is, or how we feel, then we will be lost. But God has given us the measuring stick by which we can determine the truth about those who supposedly come in His name. This is why we have to study the Bible for ourselves and not just take the word of those who preach or teach.
There's no point in settling for third-party information when we all have access to the information first hand.
Matthew 24:4-13 KJV
And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
Numbers 12:6 KJV
And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.
Deuteronomy 13:1-3 KJV
If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spoke unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
Deuteronomy 18:20-22 KJV
But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
If we try to distinguish between truth and error with the Bible and the Holy Spirit, then we will be deceived because the Devil knows the Bible better than we do, and he has the powers and abilities that far exceed our own.
Ephesians 6:11-13 KJV
Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Revelation 16:13-14 KJV
And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
Our only hope is to trust the Written Word, and put our faith in Jesus through daily communion and fellowship with Him, so that we will be able to withstand all of the attacks of the Devil. If we simply rely on our senses, we will be fooled at the most critical moment. Satan lied to Eve about what God had said, "you will not surely die...", and he continues to lie to us today. If we rely on other, more current, information as the ultimate source of truth, we have the potential to be led astray unless we corroborate all new information against the teachings and principles of the Bible. That is our ultimate truth and guide.
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