Nov 22, 2008

Canonical Rule 3 (cont.)

Three rules have been given thus far for determining inspiration and canonicity.

1) The Messianic rule (test)

2) The Profitability rule (test)

3) The Privacy rule (test)

A popular conservantive web site gives these rules for "Tests of Canonicity."

"Specific tests to consider canonicity may be recognized."

(1) Did the book indicate God was speaking through the writer and that it was considered authoritative?

(2) Was the human author recognized as a spokesman of God, that is, was he a prophet or did he have the prophetic gift?

(3) Was the book historically accurate? Did it reflect a record of actual facts?

There are some 250 quotes from Old Testament books in the New Testament. None are from the Apocrypha. All Old Testament books are quoted except Esther, Ecclesiastes, and the Song of Solomon."

Citations from another bible writer, particularly from a prophet, apostle, or from Christ, is included under canon rule #3, under Peter's rule that said no inspired prophetic work was of any "private interpretation." This will then be an enlargement upon that rule.

No inspired writing (or verbal message) by a prophet (or apostle, but really, all the apostles were prophets too) was capable of self production but was immediate revelation of God. It had to have "come by" the "will of God" and not "come by" the "will of man." The writing must have "come by" the "moving" of God's "Spirit," and not "come by" a self "moving" spirit of man.

Inspiration connects with authority and authority with revelation. A "scripture" or "inspired writing" must have God and his miraculous working as the sole cause of the revelation in order for the "source" to be valid.

According to Peter, if the source be not with God and his will and moving, then it is what is a "personal interpretation," a mere scruple that has no substance of truth to it, and what has arisen from a man's own spirit and imagination.

This third rule for judging canonicity and inspiration, or divine authority for written works of professed revelation, includes the confirmatory "interpretations" and "attestations" given by the prophets themselves to other fellow prophets and to their writings, and of Christ and his apostles, and of those who were companions of the apostles, and recgonized leaders among the apostles.

This third rule for inspiration and canonicity, as I have said, includes the "prophetic rule."

Peter referred to all of Old Testament scripture as being prophetic, being revelation from a God sent prophet.

Hebrews 1:1 says, "God, who at various times and in different ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets. . . ."

Did God speak to the fathers by Mordecai (the supposed author of Esther)? Can we call Esther the prophecy of Mordecai?

What prophecy or revelation is in the Book of Esther?

"To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins." (Acts 10: 43 KJV)

What a canonical rule for judging inspiration! What does the book, claiming inspiration, speak about? Does it speak of God and Christ? Of the forgiveness of sins? Of faith?

Does the Book of Esther give this "witness" that all the prophets give? Is Esther a "prophetic" book?

"...unto them were committed the oracles of God." (Romans 3: 2 KJV)

What are the "oracles" of God? Are all books of a particular "bible" the "oracles" of God? Can we call a particular book, claiming inspiration and canonicity, the "oracles" of God?

Can the Book of Esther be properly called the "oracles" or God? When it has no utterances of God in it?

The three rules I have presented thus far are a trinity that, when taken together and applied, leads one to a correct faith knowledge of inspiration.

No comments: