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1405 BC through 1978 Anno Domini
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1405 Before Christ


“Now it shall come about when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself a copy of this law on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests. It shall be with him and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the Lord his God, by carefully observing all the words of this law and these statutes.” 
Deuteronomy 17:18–19

1385 Before Christ


“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
Joshua 1:8

1011 Before Christ


“The words of the Lord are pure words; As silver tried in a furnace on the earth, refined seven times.”
Psalm 12:6

“As for God, His way is blameless; The word of the Lord is tried; He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him.”
Psalm 18:30

“The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether. The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.”
Psalm 19:7-9

971 Before Christ


Author of Proverbs 30

“Every word of God proves true;”
Proverbs 30:5

622 Before Christ

Sacred Writings

After the Temple was built, the sacred writings were kept in the Temple by Josiah.

“Then Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the scribe, “I have found the book of the law in the house of the Lord.” And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan who read it.”
2 Kings 22:8

29-33 Anno Domini


“But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’”
Matthew 4:4

“Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 5:17–20

-Luke 4:4, Mark 12:36, John 10:31

64-68 Anno Domini


“So we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts. But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.”
2 Peter 1:19–21

67 Anno Domini


“While evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
2 Timothy 3:13–17

96 Anno Domini

Clement of Rome

First Letter to the Church at Corinth


“You have studied Scripture (O.T.) which contains the truth and is inspired by the Holy Spirit. You realize that there is nothing wrong or misleading in it.” 1

“Look carefully into the Scriptures, which are the true utterances of the Holy Spirit.” 2

  1. I Clement 45 in Early Christian Fathers (ed. Cyril Richardson; New York: Macmilliam, 1970), 64.
  2. Clement 45. Translation from Ante-Nicene Fathers, 10 vols, ed, Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson (rep. ed.: Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson, 1994), 1:17.

100-165 Anno Domini

Justin Martyr

Dialogue with Trypho

“…but if (you have done so) because you imagined that you could throw doubt on the passage, in order that I might say the Scriptures contradicted each other, you have erred. But I shall not venture to suppose or to say such a thing; and if Scripture which appears to be of such a kind be brought forward, and if there be a pretext (for saying) that it is contrary (to some other), since I am entirely convinced that no Scripture contradicts another, I shall admit rather that I do not understand what is recorded, and shall strive to persuade those who imagine that the Scriptures are contradictory, to be rather of the same opinion as myself.”1

  1. The Ante-Nicene Fathers… : The Apostolic Fathers-Justin Martyr-Irenaeus (Alexander Roberts, ed.; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1973), I, 230.

130-202 Anno Domini


“The Scriptures are indeed perfect, since they were spoken by the Word of God and His Spirit.”1

[Commenting on the truthfulness of Luke]

“Now if any man set Luke aside, as one who did not know the truth, he will (by so acting), manifestly reject that Gospel of which he claims to be a disciple… It follows then, as of course, that these men must either receive the rest of his narrative, or else reject these parts also. For no person of common sense can permit them to receive some things recounted by Luke as being true, and to set others aside, as if he had not known the truth.”2

“All Scripture, as it has been given to us by God, will be found harmonious.”3

  1. Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 2.28.2, in ANF, 1:399.
  2. Iranaeus, Against Heresies 3.14.3-4. Cited in John Walvoored, ed., Inspiration and Interpretation (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1957), 20.
  3. Cited in Edward J. Young, Thy Word is Truth (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976), 38.

150-215 Anno Domini

Bishop of Alexandria

“I could produce ten thousand Scriptures of which not ‘one tittle will pass away’ without being fulfilled. For the mouth of the Lord, the Holy Spirit, has spoken these things.”1

  1. Cited in Stephen J. Nichols & Eric T. Brandt, Ancient Word, Changing Worlds (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2009), 78.

169-183 Anno Domini

Theophilus of Antioch

Addressing Autolycus

“Moreover, it is said that among your writers there were prophets and prognosticators, and that those wrote accurately who were informed by them. How much more, then, shall we know the truth who are instructed by the holy prophets, who were possessed by the Holy Spirit of God! On this account all the prophets spoke harmoniously and in agreement with one another, and foretold the things that would come to pass in all the world. For the very accomplishment of predicted and already consummated events should demonstrate to those who are fond of information, yea rather, who are lovers of truth, that those things are really true which they declared concerning the epochs and eras before the deluge: to wit, how the years have run on since the world was created until now, so as to manifest the ridiculous mendacity of your authors, and show that their statements are not true.”1

  1. Theophilus to Autolycus 3.17 from The Ante-Nicene Fathers, II, 116.

184-253 Anno Domini


“For the proof of our statements, we take testimonies from that which is called the Old Testament and that which is called the New–which we believe to be divine writings.”1

  1. Cited in Stephen J. Nichols & Eric T. Brandt, Ancient Word, Changing Worlds (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2009), 78.

200-258 Anno Domini


[The names he gives to Scripture testify to his reverence for them]

 “Divine Scripture, Divine Commands, Sacred Scriptures, Scriptures from heaven, precepts of the Divine law, wells of divine fullness, voices of the Lord.”1

“The Lord Himself saith in the twelve prophets. The Holy Spirit declares and saith through Isaiah. The Divine Scriptures saith. Solomon, inspired by the Holy Spirit, testifies. Paul, filled with the grace of the Master’s inspiration.”2

  1. The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 3 (NY: Scribner’s, 1899), 442.
  2. Ibid.

264-269 Anno Domini

The Synod of Antioch

“All the God-breathed Scriptures make known God the Son of God.”1

  1. Cited in Edward J. Young, Thy Word is Truth (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976), 210.

296-373 Anno Domini


“The Holy Scriptures is mightier than all synods… The whole of our Scriptures, the Old Testament and the New Testament, are profitable for instruction as it is written.”1

“Book wholly inspired by God from beginning to end.”2

“Each Psalm has been spoken and composed by the Holy Spirit.”3

“It is the opinion of some that the Scriptures do not agree or that God who gave them is false. But there is no disagreement at all. Far from it! Neither can the Father, who is truth, lie; ‘for it is impossible that God should lie’ (Heb. 6:18).”4

  1. The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 2 (NY: Scribner’s, 1899), 93, 96.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid.
  4. Athanasius, Easter Letter, 19.3, in NPNF, 4:546.

313-386 Anno Domini

Cyril of Jerusalem

“Let no one separate the Old from the New Testament, let no one say that one Spirit is there, and another here… We know the Holy Spirit who has spoken in the prophets, and at Pentecost has come down upon the apostles.”1

  1. Cited in Edward J. Young, Thy Word is Truth (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976), 112.

329-388 Anno Domini

Gregory of Nazianzus

“Nothing, he tells us, is without design in Scripture: Every stroke and every letter has its special significance. We trace the accuracy of the Spirit in detail to each separate stroke and letter; for it is blasphemous to suppose that exact pains were bestowed by the compliers of the Books, or even the smallest letters, without design.”1

  1. The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 2 (NY: Scribner’s, 1899), 105, 108.

330-379 Anno Domini

Basil the Great

“The words of Scripture were dictated by the Holy Spirit… No single syllable of the sacred writings is to be neglected. Every word or action must be accepted on the testimony of inspired Scripture.”1

  1. The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 2 (NY: Scribner’s, 1899), 105, 108.

347-407 Anno Domini

John Chrysostom

“He also says repeatedly that in the Holy Scripture there is nothing without purpose, not a syllable, not an iota, not the smallest dash… Chrysostom understood very well that, because of Divine inspiration, it is impossible for the Holy Scriptures to contain errors. Therefore, in his eyes, Scripture proofs are stronger and surer than proofs founded on reason.”1

“It was not without reason these points came in for mention, not in vain I spoke to you about them. My reason, in fact, was that some men are like robots: when they take hold of divine books, and find in their pages a heap of dates or litany of names, they pass them by without a thought, meeting any objection with the remark: ‘They are only names, nothing useful in them’ Do not utter such infamy. God speaks, and you have the effrontery to say, ‘Nothing useful in what is said.’ I mean, if you merely have the chance of laying your eyes on an inscription come to light–tell me, do you not eagerly pore over it and examine the wealth it contains? But why talk of dates and names and inscriptions?”2

  1. Baur’s John Chrysostom and His Time (Westminster, Maryland: The Newman Press, 1959), I, 318–19.
  2. Cited in Robert Hill, “St. John Chrysostom’s Teaching on Inspiration in ‘Six Homilies on Isaiah,’” Vigilae Christianae 22 (April 1968): 29–30.

347-420 Anno Domini


“When you are really instructed in the Divine Scriptures, and have realized that its law and testimonies are the bonds of truth, then you can contend with adversaries; then you will fetter them and lead them bound into captivity; then of the foes you have made captive you will make freemen of God.”1

  1. Jerome, Ep. ad Fabiolam 78, 30, cited in Lewis, Rome, 48.

354-430 Anno Domini


“I have learned to yield this respect and honor only to the canonical books of Scripture: of these alone do I most firmly believe that the authors were completely free from error. And if in these writings I am perplexed by anything which appears to me opposed to the truth, I do not hesitate to suppose that either the manuscript is faulty, or the translator has not caught the meaning of what was said, or I myself have failed to understand it…Concerning which it would be wrong to doubt that they are free from error”1

“Therefore everything written in Scripture must be believed absolutely.”2

“The Faith will totter if the authority of the Holy Scriptures loses its hold on men. We must surrender ourselves to the authority of Holy Scriptures, for it can neither mislead not be misled.”3

“Only those books which are called canonical have I learned to give honor so that I believe most firmly that no author in these books made any error in writing… I read other authors not with the thought that what they have taught and written is true just because they have manifested holiness and learning.”4

  1. The Letters of St. Augustine 82, 3.
  2. The City of God 21.6.1.
  3. The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 2 (NY: Scribner’s, 1899), 140ff.
  4. Augustine, Episy. 82, 1, 3.

675-749 Anno Domini

John of Damascus

“Therefore all Scripture is God-breathed, and in every way profitable so that one may best and most profitably to the soul search out the Divine Scriptures.”1

  1. Cited in Edward J. Young, Thy Word is Truth (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976), 112.

815-877 Anno Domini

Johannes Scotus Eriugena

“O, Lord Jesus, no other reward, no other blessedness, no other joy do I ask than a pure understanding, free of mistakes, of your words which are inspired by the Holy Spirit… Nowhere else are you sought more effectively than in your words.”1

  1. Johannes Scotus Eriugena, De Divinia Natura, bk. 5, in Tavard, 12–13.

1033-1109 Anno Domini

Anselm of Canterbury

“For I am sure that if I say anything which is undoubtedly contradictory to holy Scripture, it is wrong; and if I become aware of such a contradiction, I do not wish to hold to that opinion.”1

  1. Anselm, Why God Became Man, 1.18, in Anselm, 298.

1225-1274 Anno Domini

Thomas Aquinas

“The author of Holy Scripture is God.”1

“It is plain that nothing false can ever underlie the literal sense of Holy scripture.”2

  1. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, pt 1, q. 1, art. 10.
  2. Ibid.

1260-1323 Anno Domini

Hervaeus Natalis

“Whatever things are in Scripture are spoken by God.”1

“It is certain that God cannot speak falsehood.”2

  1. Hervaeus Natalis, In quattuor Petri Lombardi Sententiarum (Venice, 1505), prologue, q. 1, cited in Richard A. Muller, Post-Reformation Reformed Dogmatics: The Rise and Development of Reformed Orthodoxy, vol. 2; Holy Scripture: The Cognitive Foundation of Theology, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2003), 45.
  2. Ibid.

1320-1384 Anno Domini

John Wycliffe

“God and His Word are all one, and they may not be separated.”1

  1. John Wycliffe, Wycket (Oxford, 1828), 5, in John Wycliffe and His English Precursors, 236n4.

1420-1496 Anno Domini

Gabriel Biel

“All true instruction, all consolation, all exhortation, all devotion is understood through the Word that proceeds from the mouth of God, and it proceeds rom hearing, from reading, from meditation, and from contemplation of the divine eloquence… The Word of the eternal God, holy Scripture, also proceeds from the mouth of God and indicates is own will, without which no one is able to live rightly with understanding.”1

  1. Gabriel Biel, Sacri canonis misse expositio resolutissima (Basel, 1510), lecture 71. Latin cited in Heiko A. Oberman, The Harvest of Medieval Theology: Gabriel Biel and Late Medieval Nominalism, Latin citation translated by Michael J. Harstad (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2000), 394.

1466-1536 Anno Domini


“The holy Spirit can not contradict himself. The canonical books of Holy Scripture originated under his inspiration. Their inviolable sublimity is acknowledged and affirmed by both parties in the dispute. Therefore one must find an interpretation which resolved this seeming contradiction.”1

  1. Cited in Ernst F. Winter, ed., Erasmus–Luther Discourse on Free Will (New York: Frederick Ungar Publishing Co., 1961), 59.

1483-1546 Anno Domini

Martin Luther

“It is impossible that Scripture should contradict itself; it only appears so to senseless and obstinate hypocrites.”1

“Whoever is so bold that he ventures to accuse God of fraud and deception in a single word and does so willfully again and again after he had been warned and instructed once or twice will likewise venture to accuse God of fraud and deception in all His words. Therefore it is true, absolutely and without exception, that everything is believed or nothing is believed. The Holy Spirit does not suffer Himself to be separated or divided so that He should teach and cause to be believed one doctrine rightly and another falsely.”2

“You must boldly take your stand on His words, which no devil, hell, or death can suppress. Therefore no matter what happens, you should say: There is God’s Word. This is my rock and anchor. On it I rely, and it remains. Where it remains, I, too, remain; where it goes, I, too, go. The Word must stand, for God cannot lie; and heaven and earth must go to ruins before the most insignificant letter or tittle of His Word remains unfulfilled.”3

“It is certain that Scripture cannot disagree with itself.”4

“You must follow straight after Scripture, accept it and not speak even one syllable against it, because it is God’s mouth.”5

  1. Cited in Robert Preus, “The View of the Bible Held by the Church: The Early Church Through Luther,” Inerrancy, 380.
  2. Cited in Preus, “The View of the Bible…,” 380.
  3. Kirchenpostille on John 3:16.
  4. Ibid.
  5. Samtliche Schriften, 14.1073.

1494-1536 Anno Domini

William Tyndale

[Evidencing a commitment to inerrancy in his English translation work]:

“I call God to record against the day we shall appear before our Lord Jesus, that I never altered one syllable of God’s Word against my conscience, nor would do this day, if all that is in earth, whether it be honor, pleasure, or riches, might be given me.”1

  1. John Foxe, Foxes Book of Martyrs (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1967), 184.

1509-1564 Anno Domini


Comments on 2 Timothy 3:16


“This is the principle which distinguishes our religion from all others, that we know that God hath spoken to us, and are fully convinced that the prophets did not speak at their own suggestion, but that, being organs of the Holy Spirit, they only uttered what they had been commissioned from heaven to declare. Whoever then wishes to profit in Scriptures, let him first, first of all, lay down this as a settled point, that the Law and the Prophets are not a doctrine delivered according to the will and pleasure of men, but dictated by the Holy Spirit.”1

“The Spirit of God, who appointed the Evangelists to be his clerks, appears purposely to have regulated their style in such a manner, that they all wrote one and the same history, with the most perfect agreement, but in different ways. It was intended, that the Truth of God should more clearly and strikingly appear, when it was manifest that his witnesses did not speak by a preconcerted plan, but that each of them separately, without paying any attention to another, wrote freely and honestly what the Holy Spirit dictated.”2

“We owe to the Scripture the same reverence which we owe to God; because it has proceeded from Him alone, and has nothing belonging to man mixed with it.”3

  1. John Calvin, Commentaries on the Epistles to Timothy, Titus, and Philemon (ed. William Pringle; Edinburgh: The Calvin Translation Society, 1845–46), vol. 1, 127.
  2. John Calvin, Commentary on a Harmony of the Evangelists, Matthew, Mark, and Luke (ed. William Pringle; Edinburgh: The Calvin Translation Society, 1845–46), vol. 1, 127.
  3. Ibid.

1514-1572 Anno Domini

John Knox

“The Word of God is plain . . . and if there appear any obscurity in one place, the Holy Ghost, which is never contrarious to Himself, explains the same more clearly in other places so that there can remain no doubt but unto such as obstinately remain ignorant.”1

“The Scriptures of God are my only foundation and substance in all matters of weight and importance.”2

  1. Littell’s Living Age, vol. 176 (Boston: Littell And Co., 1988), 489
  2. John Knox, “The Appellation from the Sentence Pronounced by the Bishops and Clergy: Addressed to the Nobility and Estates of Scotland 1558,” in Selected Writings of John Knox: Public Epistles, Treatises, and Expositions to the Year 1559.

1526 Anno Domini

The Tyndale N.T.

In 1522 William Tyndale began translating the Bible into English from the original languages at a time when it was illegal to do so. The Latin Vulgate was the only translation authorized by the Roman Catholic Church, making Scripture inaccessible to the layman. Believing in justification by grace alone through faith, Tyndale boldly challenged core Catholic teachings, risking his life so that “the ploughboy would know more of the Scripture than the priests.” Tyndale’s New Testament was published in 1526 and God’s Word was unleashed in England.

The impact of Tyndale’s work cannot be overstated. His pioneering scholarship played a key role in spreading Reformed theology throughout England, and was the foundation of subsequent translations until after the Second World War. Tyndale shaped the English language, creating words like “beautiful” along with phrases such as “let there be light.” William Tyndale’s New Testament was condemned by Catholic officials in England. Tyndale was betrayed by a friend and turned over to authorities to be strangled to death and burned at the stake.

His final words were, “Lord, open the King of England’s eyes!”

1537 Anno Domini

Matthew Bible

Two years before William Tyndale was martyred, he providentially met an Orthodox Catholic priest named John Rogers. The two became good friends and Rogers came to faith in Christ shortly after.

In May of 1535, William Tyndale was arrested and his property confiscated. Incredibly, Tyndale’s translation work was not taken but transferred safely to the possession of John Rogers, who would finish the work of Tyndale in 1537 under the psuedonym, “Thomas Matthew.” The Matthew Bible was the first English Bible translated from the original languages. Rogers printed the initials “WT” at the end of Malachi to honor his martyred friend.

John Rogers was put to death in 1555. He saw his youngest child for the first time just before he was burned at the stake. Rogers was the first of many Protestants martyred at the hands of Bloody Mary.

1539 Anno Domini

Great Bible

Known by several different names, the Great Bible, or the Whitchurch Bible, was the only English Bible to be authorized by the crown. King Henry VIII commissioned the scholar Myles Coverdale, and chief minister Thomas Cromwell, to supervise its creation for use in the Church of England. The Great Bible was basically an edition of the Matthew Bible without Tyndale’s notes. It was published in 1539 and dubbed “great” because of its large format.

The people of England were so hungry for God’s Word that clergy had to chain the Great Bible to church lecterns in order to prevent theft. Eventually King Henry grew concerned about the consequences of allowing the lower classes to read the Bible and later placed restrictions on its editions and uses.

The Great Bible was printed continuously, until Bloody Mary’s ascension to the throne in 1553.

1560 Anno Domini

Geneva Bible


Named after the city in which it was published, the Geneva Bible was the most influential Bible of the 16th and 17th Centuries in England, Scotland, and the American Colonies. The Pilgrims brought the Geneva Bible to America on the Mayflower in 1620. It became the household Bible of English speaking Protestants for three generations, and was the very first study Bible.

Named after the city in which it was published, the Geneva Bible was the most influential Bible of the 16th and 17th Centuries in England, Scotland, and the American Colonies. The Pilgrims brought the Geneva Bible to America on the Mayflower in 1620. It became the household Bible of English speaking Protestants for three generations, and was the very first study Bible.

Though the scholars of the Geneva Bible remain largely unknown, there are a few names attributed to the work, such as John Knox, Theodore Béza, and John Calvin. Collectively their ministry was to the “simple lambs, which partly are already in the fold of Christ, and so willingly hear the Shepherd’s voice, and partly wandering astray by ignorance, tarry the time till the Shepherd find them and bring them unto his flock.

This masterpiece of Renaissance scholarship, printing, and Reformation Bible-thoroughness was completed in just three years.

1568 Anno Domini

Bishops’ Bible

he Bishops’ Bible was produced by Archbishop Matthew Parker in 1568, substantially revised in 1572, and prescribed as the base text for the 1611 King James Bible. Parker’s intention was to curb the spread of the popular Geneva Bible due to its incendiary notes against the Catholic church. The Bishops’ Bible is significant, but it is almost universally considered a bad translation. Parker’s scholarly mind was more proficient in Latin than in English, resulting in poorly constructed prose. Compare translations:


“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He maketh me to rest in green pasture,
And leadeth me by the still waters.”


“God is my shepherd, therefore I can lack nothing:
He will cause me to repose myself in pasture full of grass,
and he will lead me unto calm waters.”

Archbishop Parker may not have brought us poetry, but the Bishops’ Bible helped pave the way for the most influential translation in history.

1582-1637 Anno Domini

Johann Gerhard

“All Scripture is inspired, and accordingly all the things in Scripture are in agreement and are not contrary or opposed to one another.”1

  1. Johann Gerhard, Tractatus de Legitima Scripturae Sacrae Interpretatione (Jena, 1663), 25, in Preus, 349.

1611 Anno Domini

King James Bible

In 1604 King James I of England approved a request for a new Bible translation, seeing it as an opportunity to be rid of the controversial study notes contained in the Geneva Bible. Around 60 men divided into six companies worked on the new Bible, including translators, project overseers, editors, illustrators, and engravers. Roughly 85% of the King James Bible was adapted from William Tyndale’s translation with as much as one-third of the text being word for word from his work.

Today, the King James Bible is the best selling book of all time, over four-hundred years after the first edition came to the press in 1611. It is the greatest and most influential book of the English-speaking world, with well over a billion copies printed.

1616-1683 Anno Domini

John Owen

“The Spirit acted and guided them as to the very organs of their bodies whereby they expressed the revelation which they had received by inspiration from him… He guided their tongues in the declaration of his revelations, as the mind of a man guideth his hand in writing to express its conceptions… For whatever they received by revelation, they were but the pipers through which the waters of it were conveyed, without the least mixture with any alloy from their frailties.”1

  1. John Owen, A Discourse Concerning the Holy Spirit, in The Works of John Owen, D.D. (Edinburgh: Johnstone & Hunter, 1850–1855), 3:134.

1617-1688 Anno Domini

Johannes Andreas Quenstedt

“Each and every thing presented to us in Scripture is absolutely true, whether it pertains to doctrine, ethics, history, chronology, topography, or genealogies. No ignorance, no lack of understanding, no forgetfulness or lapse of memory can or should be ascribed to the amanuenses [secretaries] of the Holy Spirit in their writing of the Holy Scriptures.”1

  1. ohn Andrew Quenstedt, Theologia Didactico-Polemica sive Systema Theologicum (Leipzig, 1715), 1.4.2, q. 5, ekthesis (I.112), in Preus, 346

1623-1687 Anno Domini

Francis Turretin

“The sacred writers were so acted upon and inspired by the Holy Spirit (as to the things themselves and as to the words) as to be kept free from all error and…their writings are truly authentic and divine…The prophets did not fall into mistakes in those things which they wrote as inspired men and as prophets, not even in the smallest particulars; otherwise faith in the whole Scripture would be rendered doubtful.”1

  1. Francis Turretin, Institutes of Elenctic Theology, ed. James T. Dennison Jr., trans. George Musgrave Giger, 3 vols. In 1 (Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R, 1997), 2nd topic, 4th q., sec. 5, sec. 23, 1:62, 69.

1646 Anno Domini

Westminster Confession

“All which are given by inspiration of God, to be the rule of faith and life (Luke 16:29, 31; Eph. 2:20; Rev. 22:18–19; 2 Tim. 3:16).”1

“A Christian believes to be true whatever is revealed in the Word because the authority of God Himself speaks in it.”2

“All Scripture says to us is certainly true. There you hear Christ speaking.”3

  1. The Westminster Confession of Faith. A.D. 1647,” in Schaff, The Creeds of Christendom, 3:600–606.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Outline sermon on 2 Timothy 3:16 in Selections from the Unpublished Writings of Jonathan Edwards, ed. Alexander B. Grosart (Edinburgh: Ballantyne, 1865).

1703-1758 Anno Domini

Jonathan Edwards

“All Scripture says to us is certainly true. There you hear Christ speaking.”1

  1. Outline sermon on 2 Timothy 3:16 in Selections from the Unpublished Writings of Jonathan Edwards, ed. Alexander B. Grosart (Edinburgh: Ballantyne, 1865).

1703-1791 Anno Domini

John Wesley

“Nay, if there be any mistakes in the Bible there may as well be a thousand. If there be one falsehood in that book it did not come from the God of truth.”1

  1. John Wesley, Journal, VI, 117.

1772-1851 Anno Domini

Archibald Alexander

“In the narration of well-known facts, the writer [of Scripture] did not need a continual suggestion of every idea but only to be so superintended as to be preserved from error.”1

  1. Scottish Journal of Theology VII, No. 1 (March, 1954), 104ff.

1797-1878 Anno Domini

Charles Hodge

“In saying that the Bible is the word of God, we mean that he is its author, that he says whatever the Bible says; that everything which the Bible affirms to be true is true; that whatever it says is right is right, and whatever it declares to be wrong is wrong, because its declarations as to truth and duty, as to facts and principles, are the declarations of God. What the Scriptures teach is to be believed, not on the authority of Moses or the prophets, or of the apostles and evangelists, but on the authority of God, who used the sacred writers as his organs of communication.”1

“Verbal inspiration, therefore, or that influence of the Spirit which controlled the sacred writers in the selection of their words, allowed them perfect freedom within the limits of truth. They were kept from error, and guided to the use of words which expressed the mind of the Spirit, but within these limits they were free to use such language, and to narrate such circumstances as suited their own taste or purposes.”2

  1. Charles Hodge, “Inspiration,” Biblical Repertory and Princeton Review 29 (October 1857): 663–64, 678.
  2. Ibid.

1799-1895 Anno Domini

Samuel Wakefield

“But if it is once granted that they, the Scriptures, are in the least degree alloyed with error, an opening is made for every imaginable corruption. And to admit that the sacred writers were only occasionally inspired, would involve us in the greatest perplexity; because, not knowing when they were or were not inspired, we cold not determine what parts of their writings should be regarded as the infallible word of God.”1

  1. Samuel Wakefield, A Complete System of Christian Theology (Cincinnati: Cranston and Stowe, 1869),

1811-1887 Anno Domini

C.F.W. Walther

“He who imagines that he finds in the Holy Scripture even only one error, believes not in Scripture, but in himself; for even if he accepted everything else as truth, he would believe it not because Scripture says so, but because it agrees with his reason or with his heart. ‘Dear fellow,’ writes Luther, ‘God’s Word is God’s Word, and won’t tolerate much doctoring.”1

  1. Lehre und Wehre, 1868, pg. 69, 101.

1816-1900 Anno Domini

J. C. Ryle

“I feel no hesitation in avowing, that I believe in the ‘plenary inspiration’ of every word of the original text of Holy Scripture. I hold not only that the Bible contains the Word of God, but that every jot of it was written, or brought together, by Divine inspiration, and is the Word of God. I entirely disagree with those who maintain that the writers of the Bible were partially inspired, or inspired to such a limited extent that discrepancies, inaccuracies, and contradictions to the facts of science and history, must be expected and do exist in their writings. I utterly repudiate such a theory. I consider that it practically destroys the whole value of God’s Word, puts a sword in the hand of infidels and skeptics, and raises far more serious difficulties than it pretends to solve…A partially inspired Bible is little better than no Bible at all.”1

  1. J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospel of John, 1865, as printed in the Quarterly Record of the Trinitarian Bible Society, April, 1976.

1833 Anno Domini

New Hampshire Confession

“We believe that the Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired, and is a perfect treasure of heavenly instruction; that it has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter…”1

  1. William L. Lumpkin, Baptist Confession of Faith (Valley Forge, PA: Judson Press, 1959), 361–67.

1834-1892 Anno Domini

Charles Spurgeon

“Then since God wrote it, marks its truthfulness. If I had written it, there would be worms of critics who would at once swarm on it, and would cover it with their evil spawn; had I written it, there would be men who would pull it to pieces at once, and perhaps quite right too.”1

“But this is the Word of God. Come, search, ye critics, and find a flaw; examine it from its Genesis to its Revelation and find an error. This is a vein of pure gold, unalloyed by quartz or any earthly substance. This is a star without a speck; a sun without a blot; a light without darkness; a moon without paleness; a glory without a dimness. O Bible! It cannot be said of any other book, that it is perfect and pure; but of thee we can declare all wisdom is gathered up in thee, without a particle of folly. This is the judge that ends the strife where wit and reason fail. This is the book untainted by any error, but is pure, unalloyed, perfect truth. Why? Because God wrote it.”2

‘Thus says the Lord’ is the only authority in God’s Church…Brethren, how careful should we be that we do not set up in God’s church anything in opposition to his Word, that we do not permit the teachings of a creature to usurp the honor due to the Lord alone.

‘Thus says antiquity.’
‘Thus says authority.’
‘Thus says learning.’
‘Thus says experience.’

These are but idol-gods which defile the church of God!

Be it yours and mine as bold warriors to dash them in pieces without mercy, seeing that they usurp the place of the Word of God.
‘Thus says the Lord,’ – this is the motto of our standard; the war-cry of our spiritual conflict; the sword with which we hope yet to smite through the loins of the mighty who rise up against God’s truth.

‘Thus says the Lord God.’ This is the trowel, and this the hammer of God’s builders; this the trumpet of his watchmen and the sword of his warriors. Woe to the man who comes in any other name!

…O! My brethren, I would that we trembled and stood more in awe of God’s Word. I fear that many treat the things of God as though they were merely matters of opinion, but remember that opinion cannot govern in God’s house. God’s Word, not man’s opinion, claims your allegiance. O for a stern integrity that will hold the Word and will never depart from it, come what may.”3

  1. Russell H. Conwell, The Life of Charles Haddon Spurgeon (Edgewood Publishing co., 1892), 574–76.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Charles Spurgeon, Sermon, “Thus Says the Lord,” on Ezekiel 11:5

1851-1921 Anno Domini

B.B. Warfield

“The word ‘inspire’ and its derivatives seem to have come into Middle English from the French, and have been employed from the first (early in the fourteenth century) in a considerable number of significations, physical and metaphorical, secular and religious.”1

“The Biblical books are called inspired as the Divinely determined products of inspired men; the Biblical writers are called inspired as breathed into by the Holy Spirit, so that the product of their activities transcends human powers and becomes Divinely authoritative. Inspiration is, therefore, usually defined as a supernatural influence exerted on the sacred writers by the Spirit of God, by virtue of which their writings are given Divine trustworthiness.”2

“Inspiration is the supernatural influence exerted on the sacred writings by the Spirit of God, by virtue of which their writings are given divine trustworthiness.”3

  1. B.B. Warfield, “Inspiration,” International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, 4 vols., ed. James Orr (Chicago: Howard-Severance, 1915), 3:1473.
  2. ibid.
  3. ibid.

1881-1937 Anno Domini

John Gresham Machen

“When we do take the whole Bible thus as the very Word of God, we find rich and manifold confirmation of our decision. We find it in the marvelous unity of Holy Scripture–what the Westminster Confession calls “the consent of all the parts.” We find it in the countless evidences of truthfulness in detail. We find it in the utter dissimilarity of this book to other books. We find it in the sweetness and peace of a life grounded upon what this book tells. Yes, my friends, very rich and varied, yet marvelously convergent, is the evidence that bids us take the Bible as the Word of God.”1

  1. Gresham Machen, The Christian Faith in the Modern World (Grand Rapids; Eerdmans, 1965 [1936]).

1895-1987 Anno Domini

Cornelius Van Til

“In fact it then appears that the argument for the Scripture as the infallible revelation of God is, to all intents and purposes, the same as the argument for the existence of God.”1

  1. Cornelius Van Til, The Defense of the Faith (Philadelphia: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., 1955), 109.

1899-1981 Anno Domini

D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

“We must believe the whole Bible. We must believe the history of the Bible as well as its didactic teaching. Failure here is always an indication of a departure from the true evangelical position. . . .  If we say that we believe the Bible to be the Word of God, we must say that about the whole of the Bible, and when the Bible presents itself to us as history, we must accept it as history.”1

  1. Lloyd-Jones, David Martyn, Knowing the Times: Addresses Delivered On Various Occasions 1942-1977 (Edinburgh U.K.: The Banner of Truth Trust, 2013), 299-355.

1909-2002 Anno Domini

W.A. Criswell

“Each sentence was dictated by God’s Holy Spirit. If Moses was employed to write, God guided the pen. If the prophet delivered a message to the people, it was God who formulated that message. If we find a description of the Lord Jesus Christ and a publication of his deeds and words, it will be according to the elective purpose and choice of the Holy Spirit. Everywhere in the Bible we find God speaking. It is God’s voice, not man’s. The words are God’s words, the words of the eternal, invisible, Almighty Jehovah of heaven and earth.”1

“Let me speak directly to Southern Baptists. If our preachers, evangelists, pastors, churches, and institutions are true to that expression of faith (of inerrancy), we shall live. If we repudiate it, we shall die.”2

  1. W. A. Criswell, Why I Preach the Bible Is Literally True (Nashville: Broadman Press, 1969), 2.
  2. Ibid., 159.

1912-1984 Anno Domini

Francis Schaeffer

“Here is the great evangelical disaster — the failure of the evangelical world to stand for truth as truth. There is only one word for this — namely accommodation: the evangelical church has accommodated to the world spirit of the age. First, there has been accommodation on Scripture, so that many who call themselves evangelicals hold a weakened view of the Bible and no longer affirm the truth of all the Bible teaches — truth not only in religious matters but in the areas of science and history and morality. As part of this, many evangelicals are now accepting the higher critical methods in the study of the Bible. Remember, it was these same methods which destroyed the authority of the Bible for the Protestant church in Germany in the last century, and which have destroyed the Bible for the liberal in our own country from the beginning of this century. And second, there has been accommodation on the issues, with no clear stand being taken even on matters of life and death.”1

  1. Francis A. Schaeffer, The Great Evangelical Disaster (Wheaton: Crossway, 1984), 37.

1926 Anno Domini

J.I. Packer

“’Infallible’ denotes the quality of never deceiving or misleading, and so means ‘wholly trustworthy and reliable’; ‘inerrant’ means ‘wholly true.’ Scripture is termed infallible and inerrant to express the conviction that all its teaching is the utterance of God ‘who cannot lie,’ whose word, once spoken, abides forever, and that therefore it may be trusted implicitly. This is just the conviction about Scripture which our Lord was expressing when he said, ‘The Scripture cannot be broken,’ and ‘it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.’”1

  1. J. I. Packer, Fundamentalism and the Word of God (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1958), 95–96.

1938-2000 Anno Domini

James M. Boice

“God is a God of truth. God does not speak falsehood. So if the Bible is the Word of God—not merely something that testifies to the Word of God or contains the Word of God, but really is the Word of God—then it is truthful and authoritative in all its parts.”

  1. James Montgomery Boice, Standing on the Rock: Upholding Biblical Authority in a Secular Age (Grand Rapids: Kregel, 1998), 48.

1939 Anno Domini

John F. MacArthur, Jr.

“The Bible is the Word of God, therefore prophecy has been fulfilled, miracles have taken place, scientific statements are accurate, and lives have been transformed. Confidence in Scripture begins with the work of the Spirit. I believe the Bible was written by the God of the universe to reveal Himself to humanity. I believe the Bible is the only authoritative and absolutely reliable revelation from God with regard to the origin of man, his deliverance, his salvation, the moral and spiritual standards he is to live by, and his ultimate destiny. I also believe that the Bible is true in every detail, even to the very words in the original manuscripts. God was the author.”

  1. John MacArthur, “Why We Believe While Others Reject,” 1 Corinthians 1:18-2:16.

1978 Anno Domini

Chicago Statement
on Biblical Inerrancy

A Few Signers:

-Carl F. H. Henry
-James M. Boice
-J. I. Packer
-John MacArthur
-Francis Schaeffer
-Paige Petterson
-Robert D. Preus
-W.A. Criswell

Article 6

We affirm that the whole of Scripture and all its parts, down to the very words of the original, were given by divine inspiration.

We deny that the inspiration of Scripture can rightly be affirmed of the whole without the parts, or of some parts but not the whole.

Article 10

We affirm that inspiration, strictly speaking, applies only to the autographic text of Scripture, which in the providence of God can be ascertained from available manuscripts with great accuracy. We further affirm that copies and translations of Scripture are the Word of God to the extent that they faithfully represent the original.

We deny that any essential element of the Christian faith is affected by the absence of the autographs. We further deny that this absence renders the assertion of Biblical inerrancy invalid or irrelevant.

Article 16

We affirm that the doctrine of inerrancy has been integral to the Church’s faith throughout its history.

We deny that inerrancy is a doctrine invented by scholastic Protestantism, or is a reactionary position postulated in response to negative higher criticism.