The Bible Is The Authority
by Dr. Ken Matto
(Jer 36:23 KJV) And it came to pass, that when Jehudi had read three or four leaves, he cut it with the penknife, and cast it into the fire that was on the hearth, until all the roll was consumed in the fire that was on the hearth.

One of the saddest statements in the Bible is the one above, yet this very act represents what is going on today. King Jehoiakim was listening to Jehudi read from the word of God, but obviously the king did not like the message being given, so instead of aligning his life with the Word of God, he did what many Christians do today, and that is avoid the portions of Scripture that does not agree with their life’s philosophy. How many times have you heard Christians say, when confronted with biblical truth, that they would never serve a God like that? We have all heard the following statements at various times in our lives: “I believe…, This is the position I take…, Here is how I interpret that passage…, I view it in this way, etc.

The few statements that I listed represent the mindset of many Christians. Basically, what is being said by these people is that they have transferred authority from the Bible to themselves. No longer is the Bible the authority but their authority is now how they view what the Bible teaches. For example, in Ephesians 2:1-5, we read that the sinner is dead in their sins and dead is dead. I have heard it explained that sinners are not dead to choice. There is not a word in that passage which gives any exclusion to choice. If a person is spiritually dead, they are spiritually dead. This belief system where this originates claims that anyone can accept Christ at any time. The free will camp refuses to believe and acknowledge that if a person is dead, the only way they can become saved is through God opening their spiritual ears and eyes and then saving them. This is reprehensible to the free will camp because they believe that they are sovereign in the area of salvation and can command God at any time in the area of salvation. Am I stretching that point? Have you ever heard people say that “they made God Lord of their life?” How can a reprobate sinner make the sovereign God of this universe do anything? It is just pride and is a rejection of the plain teachings of Scripture that God is the one who is in charge of salvation. The problem is that the free will camp is following the words of Satan.
(Gen 3:5 KJV) For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

Satan promised Eve that if she followed his “innocent” advice, then she would be as God. Well, we all know what happened and man became estranged from God. However, because sin was now infesting the human race with all its evil tenets, man became spiritually dead. In their spiritual deadness they believe they can be like God and command God to grant them salvation! Man is not a god and will never be equal to God. Yet free will challenges the authority of God by believing that a person can make God Lord of their life. People need to compare their actions and mindset to the Scriptures but since many Christians have deleted the Bible and its teachings from their lives, they will come up with all kinds of “spiritual sounding” teachings.

For example, here is another teaching that I recently heard. “God will not hold anyone accountable if they have not heard the Gospel.” Did you hear the ludicrous essence of that statement? If God will not hold anyone accountable for their sins, who has not heard the gospel, then wouldn’t it make sense to burn every bible, destroy every church, bring every missionary home, shut down every ministry on TV, Short-wave, FM & AM Radio, and the Internet. For if salvation is obtained by not hearing the Gospel, then we have stumbled on to the perfect evangelistic tool. By stopping all evangelistic efforts, we will have the best evangelistic method ever known to man. Can anyone show me in Scripture where this is found? NOWHERE! The man who came up with this nonsense prefaces his belief with, “I take the position of…” which I have personally heard him say. The sorry fact is that this man has many disciples who blindly follow his pernicious teachings. What does the Bible say on this subject?

(Rom 5:12 KJV) Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

(Rom 14:12 KJV) So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.

I don’t see a qualifier in either verse stating that only those who have heard are accountable, do you? If God does not send the Gospel to a certain area, it is because there is no Elect in that area but according to the Scriptures they will have sufficient evidence pointing them to a creator.

(Rom 1:20 KJV) For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

No one will have an excuse on Judgment Day that they did not know there was a Creator. The creation testifies to the fact that God created this world and universe and all will be held accountable, without any excuse. Do you see the evil fallaciousness in this man’s teaching? The reason he has a following is because Christians do not check things out in their Bibles, they have made man their Savior.
(Jer 17:5 KJV) Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD. We have entered the age of Bible-less Christianity and that is the reason that Satan can get such a strong foothold in the body of Christ.

In the Garden of Eden, Satan had asked Eve, “Yeah, Hath God said?” and that same lie is being used to derail the body of Christ. Remember the few sayings I listed above? It smells of the same corruption as the statement Satan made to Eve. Christians are replacing their Bibles with leaders and allowing them to do their thinking for them. It is such a shame that so many Christians I meet and hear are so confused on so many issues. Partly to blame is the churches which have helped Christians replace the Bible with the words of men. So when Christians get used to following a leader, they adopt that same practice when outside the church. Protestant Christianity should no longer condemn the Roman Catholic Institution for demanding that only the clergy interpret the Bible or that the Pope is the final authority on issues. The majority of Protestant Christians are relegating their thoughts and understanding to leaders, whether they are clergy, someone’s group, or someone’s on line group, it doesn’t matter. Christians have forsaken the Scriptures and have transferred the inspiration of the Holy Scriptures to the assumed authority of others. Don’t be surprised when you meet other Christians and then listen to their beliefs, and find them to be as heretical as can be. It is because they have transferred authority from God to men. This is happening at an alarming rate, both inside and outside of the churches.

During the end of the Renaissance period in the late 1400’s and early 1500’s there was a cry in the seminaries that the original language of the Scriptures need to be studied so there will be a greater understanding of Scripture. Today we have discarded the greater understanding of Scripture and have relegated the truths of Scripture to personal interpretation. We gain Bible truth by what we believe, not what the Scriptures authoritatively teach. Going back to the two heretical examples I gave, do you honestly think that a person could arrive at these conclusions if they were seriously studying the Bible? I think not! The Apostle Paul said it best:
(Acts 20:29-30 KJV) For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. {30} Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Verse 30 is the present day situation that Christianity is in. It is becoming a compartmentalized religion instead of it being a unified faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  (6/18/04)