THE SUPERNATURAL ORIGINS OF THE WORD OF GOD
Chafer (Chafer, Lewis Sperry; "SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY"; Dallas, TX: Dallas
Seminary Press, 1947) deals at length with the fact that the Bible had supernatural
origins. I have condensed his thoughts into what is presented in this appendix.
He presents 15 topics.
1. THE BOOK OF GOD: The book of God asserts this fact for itself many times
over. The question some raise is whether it was written by a man or revealed
by God and recorded by man. The structure and message of the book demand
a divine author.
Man could not set out to write a book of this size. He would not have the
ideas of it, nor would man be able to produce the detail and precision of
it. It presents God as THE God. It presents God as having a plan. It presents
God only as deserving glory. It presents God as the absolute authority.
The unregenerate man could not subdue his own pride to produce such a
God, nor could he exalt his talents to a level capable of producing such a
2. THE BIBLE AND MONOTHEISM: The Bible presents monotheism - one God, not
many. Mankind has always had many gods, be they wood, clay, gold or silver.
Idolatry is in every civilization to some extent. The Bible presents a one-God
religion. How could man devise such a thought as one God in a world of many
3. THE DOCTRINE OF THE TRINITY: The doctrine of the Trinity is so complex
yet so simple as to demand a divine origin for the Bible. The Trinity is three
persons in one God. Stated it is simple yet the explanation has evaded man
since the subject was undertaken for study. We cannot explain the how of
the Trinity only the fact of it.
The work each member of the Trinity is involved in is also very complicated
- the Fatherhood of God, or the perfections of Christ. Man cannot adequately
explain these things so how could he devise them?
4. CREATION: The creation is the beginning of the content of Scripture.
This creation is presented as fact and is described in Scripture. Man's explanation
of the beginning of the world is tied up in evolution. Even with the best
product evolution could produce, that person could not have produced the
Biblical account. Evolution is shot through with problems and gaps. Man could
not devise a creation as perfectly presented in Scripture.
5. SIN: Sin is presented in Scripture. Forty authors, are in complete agreement
on sin and its existence. Man could not devise such a thing as sin from his
own mind. Sin is a divine statement and idea not a man made doctrine.
6. THE CURE OF EVIL ACCORDING TO THE BIBLE: The Bible's cure for sin is
so divine as to demand divine authorship.
Man would not devise a plan of salvation because without Scripture he doesn't
know he needs it. Even if man knew he needed salvation he could not dream
up a plan whereby all could be saved apart from works or vanity.
Man could not devise a plan of salvation where the one redeeming would
gain all the glory. Man could not come up with such a beautiful plan aside
from having it revealed to him by God.
7. THE EXTENT OF BIBLE REVELATION: The extent of the Bible demands a divine
author. It reaches minutely into eternity past as well as eternity future.
Human authors aside from revelation could not make up such detail nor such
8. THE ETHICS OF THE BIBLE: The ethics that the Bible produces have never
even been hinted at in man's religions. Purity and holiness of life are the
divine standard while in most of man's we find debasement and immorality.
The Bible presents man as an utter failure and unable to help himself.
Man in his vanity even today has trouble comprehending such things, much less
making them up.
Only a divine author could take a moral system such as Judaism and lay
it aside for another system so different yet presenting the same morality
as Christianity. Man could not come up with such a moral standard based on
the teachings of a book without revelation from God.
9. THE CONTINUITY OF THE BIBLE: The continuity of Scripture declares a
divine editor and revealer - 66 books, 40 authors and hundreds of years of
history. The authors are separated by time, space and education. They come
from all walks of life and most of them never met one another, yet they came
together to form one central story of the Son of God, Jesus Christ.
He is shown as pre-incarnate. He is shown in prophecy as coming. He is
shown as here in His first advent. He is shown as coming again in the future.
One man could produce a work with continuity but this combination of authors
and times has to be divinely assembled. Man could not produce such a work.
10. PROPHECY AND ITS FULFILLMENT: Prophecy along with its fulfillment is
proof that the Bible is of divine origin. Man can think and project what
might happen in the future based on knowledge, history and common sense,
but man cannot accurately predict specific occurrences and have those occurrences
come to pass. The Scripture is full of prophecies that have been fulfilled
and which will yet be fulfilled.
11. TYPES WITH THEIR ANTITYPES: The types of the Old Testament and the
antitypes of the New Testament are of such splendor that they must have divine
origin. The fact that the type was set to words by a person other than the
one setting down the antitype, and this being done hundreds of years apart,
shows divine origin. This would require divine intervention!
12. THE BIBLE AS LITERATURE: The Bible is considered great literature even
by the unsaved. If a man had been setting these great words down, he most
surely would have left some personal opinions and pronouns to let the reader
know that it was he that had written the work.
The truths are not from the men but from their God so that they left no
opinion of their own or personal pronouns to lay claim to any of the truths.
Many of the church fathers have been prolific writers, however, none of
these have even touched the clarity and preciseness of Scripture, nor have
they touched the literary quality of the Word.
13. THE BIBLE AND SCIENCE: Science is in constant revision. The world was
flat - remember - and now it is round. The scientific world is always redoing
and redefining to fit the exposed facts. The Bible on the other hand has
always been acceptable in all ages without revision or redefining.
Where the Bible has seemingly contradicted science in the past, the scientists
have found that they were in error in later days.
14. THE BIBLE AND TEMPORAL POWER: The Bible is not dependent upon political
power, or clout to get its job done. The believer can do the work of the Lord
with or without the help of the governmental powers.
Man naturally, when he wants something done, will try any means to achieve
his end. They often use political power, or strings with politicians, to achieve
If man had written the Bible he would not have been able to come up with
the idea that man could do the work of the Lord relying on the heart and
mind of others rather than political power.
15. THE BIBLE'S ENDURING FRESHNESS: The constant new blessing a person
gains from the Word even when he has read, and read, and read a portion there
is always something more to be gleaned from its content. No other literature
can make this claim to freshness and vitality.