Inerrancy and Infallibility of Scripture

Discussion in 'Theology and Doctrine' started by Rexlion, Jun 16, 2020.

  1. Phoenix

    Phoenix Moderator Staff Member Anglican

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    It’s just a question of meaning, what something simply means. Does that meaning change, or is it settled. And who settles it.

    In any case I’ll leave you guys to debate that one. For the purposes of forum policy I am mainly interested in the inerrancy debate, where I’m having a very fruitful discussion with @Rexlion.
     
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  2. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

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    Well, I agree, that according to the scripture it is not a matter entirely of one's own interpretation. 2 Peter 1:20.
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  3. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    After all the hits on the words I've thrown out for consideration, because those words were dismissed due to 'potential alternate meanings and misuses,' I would be remiss if I didn't object to Tiffy's use of the word "mythic" on the very same grounds. :laugh: But I can't muster the energy to really pursue that one! :sweating: I might need to lie down.... :friends:
     
  4. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    A question occurs to me. Would the shying away from words like "inerrant" and "infallible" be reflective of a "broad church" view because the words are seen as too narrow and limiting? Or would it be the opposite... would the words be seen as an unwelcome broadening because it moves away from the more narrowly drawn verbiage of the early Church of England (16th & 17th Centuries)?
     
  5. Phoenix

    Phoenix Moderator Staff Member Anglican

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    To my mind they are too broadening, because they attempt to expand the traditional conception (seen as too constricting) with newer concepts that seem more relatable today. And as the centuries roll on, the words which will feel relatable will inevitably change, and therefore be added on.

    Imagine if in 500 years today’s youth word “lit” evolves into something which stands for certainty & truth, and we officially start calling the Word of God “lit”, as a stand-in for “inerrant”, which was a stand in for “Word of God“, which was a stand in for “inspired”.
     
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  6. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    I can respect that. It comes as a surprise to me, though. All along (for many years) I've thought of "inerrant" and "infallible" as concepts fully consistent with and supported by the Apostles and the early church (even though the words themselves were not used specifically, I thought the concepts were present). So I've been laboring under the notion during this discussion that you folks were advocating a more broad-minded, modernist view of the Word of God that would not be hamstrung by the narrowness of those two words. Now I see we're advocating in the same direction.
     
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  7. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

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    Though much of what I say may seem give a contrary indication, I actually have a very high view of scripture. It is just that I consider the use of words like 'infallible', 'inerrant', 'perfect' etc suggestive of a supposed unquestionablity which can be used and abused by unscrupulous manipulators to impose their own interpretations, (or even traditional interpretations which happen to be particularly to their own liking), upon others. Thus using the bible as a weapon in their private armoury, to subject others to a kind of religious bondage, bound by the edicts of an authoritative book of rules.

    However infallible, inerrant or perfect I may think scripture to be, I always refer to it as just 'inspired by God'. That way I give no assent and provide no amunition to those who would misuse it.
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  8. Phoenix

    Phoenix Moderator Staff Member Anglican

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    Absolutely. There are two ways to push against inerrancy: one, that it's too strong; and two, that it's too weak. I have been speaking from the latter perspective, but it is easy to get it rolled up together with those who espouse modernism. Anglicanism (in the West at least) has had no shortage of modernists in leadership positions, so it was a risk for me to take a stand, when being in an official standing, there was a risk of tarnishing the reputation of this website as well.

    However since the site is making a stand on recapturing the traditional standpoint in all things, I figured I'd make an exception and personally wade into this debate, at the risk of getting lumped in with the modernist position; but on the up-side, hopefully recapturing a stronger (obscured) traditional position as well. Plus, we also need to reach clarity with our update to the Terms of Service.
     
  9. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Tiffy, anything can be used or abused. For example, if someone hits you over the head with their heaviest Bible! :laugh:

    Any word can be perverted. As Slick Willie famously said, "It depends on what the meaning of the word, 'is,' is." :biglaugh:

    Not arguing, just having fun. :signpeace:
     

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