Matthew 4:1-4 (p. 1499-1500) October 1, 2017
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live by bread alone,
but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
Intro: 1) Jesus’ response to Satan is to point to God humbling us SO THAT will turn to his word
2) Reformers didn’t need to challenge the inspiration or inerrancy of Scripture
— the Reformers challenged the authority of the church to speak for God
— today, we challenge the authority of the individual (hedonism) to speak for God
Not Soli Scriptura
Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions . . . . Ephesians 6:17-18 (p. 1824)
- I’m NOT alone (even when we “stand alone on the word of God, the B-I-B-L-E”)
- Surrounded by THE HOLY SPIRIT and PRAYER (see Ephesians 6:17-18)
- Scripture is never MY WEAPON (against my brother or sister! –> 2 Timothy 4:2; Titus 2:15)
It’s about AUTHORITY: Who speaks for God?
Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out season; correct, rebuke and encourage –
with great patience and careful instruction.
For the time will come when men will not put up withsound doctrine.
Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them
a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.
2 Timothy 4:2-3 (p. 1855)
- God’s Word CLAIMS AUTHORITY (not a circular argument because of the Jesus factor!)
- The Holy Spirit CONFIRMS THAT AUTHORITY (see the Belgic Confession, Article 5)
- History proves THE CHURCH NEEDS AUTHORITY
- The present age is HUNGRY FOR AUTHORITY
- The future of the church REQUIRES AUTHORITY
Making God’s word mine
He humbled you . . . to teach you that man does not live by bread alone
but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord. Deuteronomy 8:3 (p. 287)
- TRUST the sufficiency of God’s word –> Jesus responded out of weakness, Adam out of abundance
- TEST my own itchy ears (note: the “itch” can even be a good doctrine)
- Defend truth (my doctrine?) CHRISTIANLY (be careful with the “one true meaning” principle)
- PRAYER and THE HOLY SPIRIT –> the spiritual disciplines that will most help me with the sword
Belgic Confession, Article 5: The Authority of Scripture
We receive all these books
and these only
as holy and canonical,
for the regulating, founding, and establishing of our faith.
And we believe without a doubt
all things contained in them—
not so much because the church receives
and approves them as such
but above all because the Holy Spirit
testifies in our hearts that they are from God,
and also because they prove themselves
to be from God.
For even the blind themselves are able to see
that the things predicted in them do happen.
More resources for studying sola Scriptura
Kevin deYoung’s Taking God at His Word (Crossway, 2014). This is where I get the “knowable, necessary and enough” paradigm for thinking about the sufficiency of Scripture.
Ligon Duncan’s message “Temptation and Response” at https://www.fpcjackson.org/resource-library/sermons/jesus-temptation-and-response
Calvin Theological Seminary’s Forum (Spring 2017), “500 Years of the Reformation”.
Bob Deffinbaugh’s wonderful sermon on the temptation of Jesus, “Temptation and Response” at https://bible.org/seriespage/5-temptation-jesus-part-i-matthew-313-44
“Seven Things” blog at https://australia.thegospelcoalition.org/article/sola-scriptura-seven-things-it-is-and-isnt
Belgic Confession, Articles 1-7