Inspiration is that influence of the Spirit of God upon the minds of the Scripture writers which made their writings the record of a progressive divine revelation, sufficient, when taken together and interpreted by the same Spirit who inspired them, to lead every honest inquirer to Christ and to salvation.
Notice the significance of each part of this definition:
1. Inspiration is an influence of the Spirit of God. It is not a merely naturalistic phenomenon or psychological vagary, but is rather the effect of the in working of the personal divine Spirit.
2. Yet inspiration is an influence upon the mind, and not upon the body. God secures his end by awakening man?s rational powers, and not by an external or mechanical communication.
3. The writings of inspired men are the record of a revelation. They are not themselves the revelation.
4. The revelation and the record are both progressive, neither one is complete at the beginning.
5. The Scripture writings must be taken together. Each part must be viewed in connection with what precedes and with what follows.
6. The same Holy Spirit who made the original revelations must interpret to us the record of them, if we are to come to the knowledge of the truth.
7. So used and so interpreted, these writings are sufficient, both in quantity and in quality, for their religious purpose.
8. That purpose is, not to furnish us with a model history or with the facts of science, but to lead us to Christ and to salvation.
(a) Inspiration is therefore to be defined, not by its method, but by its result. It is a general term including all those kinds and degrees of the Holy Spirit?s influence which were brought to bear upon the minds of the
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