This is so good that I wanted to share it:
The earliest disciples didn’t believe in Jesus because their Scripture (the OT) proved to them that he was the Son of God. They were rather convinced by Jesus’ claims, his unique life of love, his distinctive authority, his unprecedented miracles, his self-sacrificial death, and especially his resurrection. Once they believed in Jesus, they then looked for him and found him in their scripture. But they never would have been convinced that Jesus was Lord had they started with scripture alone.
Unfortunately, most conservative evangelicals today are taught to do the exact opposite. They base their faith in Jesus’ Lordship (as well as everything else) on their belief that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. This is unfortunate because this way of structuring our faith leverages everything on the supposed perfection of this book (hence all the clamoring over “the inerrancy” of the Bible), forcing the Bible to carry more weight than it was ever meant to carry. In this way of structuring faith, every single problem someone finds in scripture threatens to undermine their faith – and there are, quite honestly, a multitude of these potential threats.
As I flesh out in Benefit of the Doubt, I eventually came to the conclusion that the things about Jesus that convinced the earliest disciples that he was Lord continue to be compelling enough to convince open-minded people today that Jesus is Lord, and they do not presuppose the view that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. Once I was persuaded on the basis of historical, philosophical and personal arguments that Jesus was Lord, I was motivated to also embrace the Bible as God’s Word, for (among other things) this was clearly Jesus’ own view and it’s very hard to confess Jesus to be one’s Lord while correcting his theology, especially on such a fundamental matter. But notice, my reasons for believing in Scripture are now based entirely on my faith in Jesus, which is why my faith need not any longer be threatened by any historical inaccuracies or contradictions or scientific inaccuracies I may find in it.
This is an excerpt from Benefit of the Doubt: Breaking the Idol of Certainty, an interview Greg Boyd did on Frank Viola’s blog.
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