Theories of Biblical Inspiration
Holy as it may be, the Bible is a subject of much debate, whether its inspiration is truly from the works of the Holy Spirit or only written by the hands of man.
Over the years, the Bible was spread and taught in every Christian teaching. The Holy Scripture states that “God breathed out all the scripture” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Many believe that every single word is given from the Father to guide us in our darkest path.
Let’s take a look at different biblical theories and weigh down which sounds plausible.
This biblical theory cites that the writers of the scripture are gifted with the insight to uncover the divine truths. This view believes that the writers can deliver God’s words because they possessed an “illumination.”
This view stresses that the Holy Scripture is neither special nor sacred in context. And that the word of God is naturally written by man. There is no divine aspect involve, and the Bible is only a pure compilation of books and authors, nothing more.
This states that there are only certain parts of the Bible inspired by God, and others are only inspired by man. Prophetic verses, songs, and revelations are some of the few portions in the Bible that contains divine truth, while other scriptures are basically composed by man.
The thoughts of the Holy Scripture are wholly inspired by God, from God’s mind, but the written words are originally from man. The divine nature is only attributed to the concepts and ideas, while the words are humanly in nature—imperfect and erroneous.
This view (also called as Orthodox View) is completely in line with the Gospel of Peter. Verbal indicates that God chose the words used in the Bible and Plenary means that all the words used are inspired by divine truths. This view shows that the Bible is without error and absolutely holy in both words and ideas.
The writers of the Holy Scripture are instruments to interpret the words of God. This theory believes that man only followed what God had commanded and wrote what God had dictated.
The Neo-orthodox theory of inspiration focuses solely on the inner and religious experience of the individual. The Bible is considered as a channel by which the divine truths flow and permeate into the individual.
The theories mentioned have different angles, variations, and approaches to the Holy Scripture. One may argue at flaws and strengths of every theory, yet there is one theory we cannot but agree on its correct view of biblical inspiration.
This is the Verbal, Plenary Inspiration or the Orthodox Theory of Inspiration which completely agrees on the gospel of Peter, as he noted that “for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God” (2 Peter 1:21).