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Biblical Authority

Biblical Authority

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Published by John Marks Sanders
It is hard to converse with Christians and non-Christians because they start in different places. If all recognized that Scripture is the infallible word of God and is absolute truth then progress could be made. Having a firm understand on authority of Scripture is CRUCIAL to the Christian life.
It is hard to converse with Christians and non-Christians because they start in different places. If all recognized that Scripture is the infallible word of God and is absolute truth then progress could be made. Having a firm understand on authority of Scripture is CRUCIAL to the Christian life.

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Published by: John Marks Sanders on Oct 02, 2009
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10/01/2009

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Biblical AuthorityDraper, James T. and Keathley, Kenneth.
 Biblical Authority:The Critical Issue of the Body of Christ.
Nashville: Broadman and Holman Publishers, 2001. 144 pages. Reviewed by JohnSanders
 Biblical Authority
is a co-authored work written and compiled by two great and ableauthors, James Draper Jr. and Kenneth Keathley, that has been revised and edited coming tocompletion in a 2001 edition of the book for all to read.
 Biblical Authority
is a work thatrepresents a concept that should be at the forefront of all believers, especially Southern Baptists.Dr. Keathley shows his competence in this subject especially in Southern Baptist circles havinglife experience in the pulpit and in the classroom at both New Orleans and Southeastern BaptistTheological Seminaries in addition to his Ph.D degree in theology. The same high qualities andmerits can be applied to James Draper Jr. Draper has under his belt pastoral experience,knowledge from being a former president of LifeWay Christian Resources and even a former  president of the Southern Baptist Convention (biographical information for authors from back of  book). These gentlemen have high marks of experience and solid biblical teaching which hasallowed them to produce a literary work that is short, concise, and direct in its intention to showthe importance of biblical authority. Both of these authors have been involved in and SouthernBaptist life which holds a high view of Scripture and qualifies these gentlemen to write a literarywork to those who have allowed Scripture to fall into the gutter. These authors have theexperience, passion, and love for Scripture to write a book to urge all churches to return to biblical authority.Scripture is man’s greatest access to the mind and will of God and should be theguidebook to every evangelical to ascertain the will of God and to live a life that is holy and pure, but this has not always been the case. There was a time when a pastor was the smartest
 
 person in town and when a church service was compiled of deep theological hymns and direct powerful sermons. Times have changed, but this change has not always been for the better. The pressure and urge to be new and creative with the word of God has allowed Pastors to come tothe word with laziness, leaving the church in a state of malnutrition because the focus andemphasis that once was built upon the strong foundation of Scripture has been removed.
 Biblical Authority
leads its readers down a road that allows them to view various philosophical thoughts that could potentially lead to a falling away from Scripture. Man’sintellect and ability to reason is definitely a trait that belongs to the pinnacle of God’s creation, but when coupled with the fall, reason has turned people away from Scripture because it hasshifted the source of authority. The authors declare that “the basic problem that we face todayhas to do with knowledge and truth. It is not the quantity of truth…but is the source of truth.”
1
Evangelicals and others who used to place emphasis on the Bible “have slowly moved awayfrom the historic position of the Bible…and when one takes that step he courts disaster in his lifeand ministry.”
2
 Draper and Keathley also follow the concept and belief of biblical authority back to theearly church proving that Scripture from the beginning was seen as not only important butcritical for evangelicals, until recently. Recently, Scripture has been pushed aside and not kept atthe top where it belongs. Draper and Keathley quote several key figures in evangelical churchhistory including Clement of Rome, Origen, Augustine, Athanasius, and Aquinas which provestheir point of only recent fall from biblical authority but this trend was not only found in theearly church.
1
 
James Draper Jr. and Kenneth Keathley.
 Biblical Authorithy: The Critical Issue for the Body of Christ 
(Nashville:Broadmand and Holman Publishers, 2001), 2
2
Biblical Authority, 1
 
 
 Biblical Authority
was written by Southern Baptists for Southern Baptists and thereforeincludes Baptist history to ascertain its view and how Scripture was viewed in the beginning of the Baptist denomination. Early Baptists held to a high view of Scripture and the reason for looking back and then comparing to now show how far one has come or how far one has goneastray.
 Biblical Authority
seems to point out that evangelicals had their priorities right in the beginning but that statement cannot be made for all modern day evangelicals. Scripture seems tohave lost its supremacy in the eyes of its readers but it is not always the group that should be infocus but rather the content. The Holy Bible is the inerrant word of God meaning that it containsno errors in what it says and if one wanted to see how high the view of Scripture should be, thenone should look at Scripture and see what it says about itself. Scripture affirms itself in several places and is there for all to read and see. However, if a high view of Scripture is not taken, thenthe affirmations are passed off as meaningless. The Holy Bible contains main writings frommany authors in different times. It is therefore complex, but those who put it in its proper placesee that it is without error and sufficient in its purpose.
 Biblical Authority
was written to remind the readers of today that there is power in theword of God and that the word of God is something that is informative and certain and absolutewhich are terms that are now debated in modern circles. The authors of this book had in mindthat Scriptures once were exalted as they should have been but times have changed. Now theBible is debated and questioned. Without a certain source of absolute truth, where will societyend up? The Bible is man’s greatest asset to Christian life and until the day comes when biblicalauthority is practiced, preached, and taught in churches man will wander aimlessly without aguide or light in a world of darkness.

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