“The necessity we feel to bring this truth to our fellow believers, I believe, is from the unction of the Holy Spirit Himself. To show that the “TRUTH” is the only thing that is infallible… To make anything else infallible is Idolatry” – Wayburn Paul Walls
What many modern Christian preachers fail to teach their congregations when preaching from scriptures such as 2 Peter 1:20 and 2 Timothy 2:15 is that the Holy Bible as we know it today did not yet exist at the time the apostle penned these words to paper. The Holy Bible would obviously not have been compiled and published in mass until hundreds of years after the apostles had written their letters. When the apostles were speaking of prophecy, they were always referring to specific passages recorded by the Old Testament prophets, and not their own letters to the church.
We must understand; context is of the upmost importance when trying to decipher modern church doctrine.
When Peter wrote his letter to the church, he mentioned the apostles were given “a more sure word of prophecy” (2 Peter 1:19) before reminding the church that “no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation” (v.20). This passage concerning “the scripture” and the “more sure word of prophecy” was not referring to the New Testament as we know it today. It was referring to the prophecies written about Christ which are recorded in the various books of the Old Testament. This word “private” (2398; idios) in 2 Peter 1 indicates “pertaining to self”, or “one’s own” understanding. Peter is not referring to himself, nor to Paul, nor to the other apostles. He is in fact referring to the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies. A fulfillment they had witnessed come to pass with their own eyes (2 Peter 1:16).
In Paul’s second letter to Timothy, Paul reminds Timothy that he should “study to show thyself approved unto God” (2 Timothy 2:15). But what exactly is Timothy supposed to be studying if the “New Testament” as we know it today had not yet been written? This is a very important question! We can know of course, Paul was referring to “the Old Testament”. These were the only “scriptures” available to them at that time. He also mentions “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” (2 Timothy 3:16). Once again, Paul is not referring to his own letters to the church, or in this case, his second letter to Timothy. He is referring to what they knew at that time as the “scriptures”; which is known to us here in the 21st century as, “the Old Testament”. These are the scriptures which prophesied about Christ fulfilling the law and the divine responsibilities of his role as the Messiah. Remember, what we know today as “the scriptures” (the Holy Bible), had not yet been written!
Without mincing words, Peter and Paul were not associating “scripture” with their own letters to the church or what we now today as the New Testament in its various alterations from translation to translation. The various translations of the New Testament we know today did not yet exist when the apostles sent their letters to the church. These two apostles were referring to the truths found in the Old Testament prophecies regarding the coming of the Messiah. More specifically, Peter is referring to the “gift of prophecy” given to the authors of the Old Testament later to be written down and preserved for the edification of Gods people.
In the previous chapter, we discussed the many names of God. We will see now, as recorded in the Holy Bible, a name of God that is often significantly misunderstood.
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