Nov 18, 2008

Canonical Rule 1 (cont.)

What is the first criterion for deciding full inspiration or canonicity? It is the Messianic criterion (which would include what some called the "prophetic" test or criterion).

Does the book speak of Christ? In my previous chapter, I showed from Luke 24: 27, 44 that Christ made this a rule for calling something "scripture."

In this chapter I will enlarge upon the "messianic test (rule)" and show that "the scriptures" are defined by this rule.

"But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?...But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled." (Matthew 26: 54, 56 KJV)

"Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem." (Luke 24: 45-47 KJV)

"Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me." (John 5: 39 KJV)

"And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures, Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ." (Acts 17: 2, 3 KJV)

"For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publicly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ." (Acts 18: 28 KJV)

"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures." (I Corinthians 15: 3, 4 KJV)

"Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen." (Romans 16: 25-27 KJV)

From these verses we are given a further description and definition of what constitutes "scripture."

Scripture testifies of Christ. Whatever does not testify of Christ is not "scripture." It discusses repentance and remission of sins. Thus, "content" or "theme" is a sub category within the "messianic rule."

From "the scriptures" one may learn of Christ and the gospel. None of this, however, can be learned from the Book of Esther.

We also learn that "scripture" may be "fulfilled." This makes "scripture," by biblical definition, "prophetic," whether outright or by way of symbolism and analogy. Strictly "historical" and "romance" books of Hebrew literature, are not capable of being "fulfilled."

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