In connection with a divine-human work like the Bible, insoluble difficulties may be expected to present themselves. So long, however, as its inspiration is sustained by competent and sufficient evidence, these difficulties cannot justly prevent our full acceptance of the doctrine, any more than disorder and mystery in nature warrant us in setting aside the proofs of its divine authorship. These difficulties are lessened with time; some have already disappeared; many may be due to ignorance, and may be removed hereafter; those which are permanent may be intended to stimulate inquiry and to discipline faith.
It is noticeable that the common objections to inspiration are urged, not so much against the religions teaching of the Scriptures, as against certain errors in secular matters, which are supposed to be interwoven with it. But if these are proved to be errors indeed, it will not necessarily overthrow the doctrine of inspiration; it will only compel us to give a larger place to the human element in the composition of the Scriptures, and to regard them more exclusively as a text-book of religion. As a rule of religious faith and practice, they will still be the infallible word of God. The Bible is to be judged as a book whose one aim is man?s rescue from sin and reconciliation to God, and in these respects it will still be found a record of substantial truth. This will appear more fully as we examine the objections one by one.
?The Scriptures are given to teach us, not how the heavens go, but how to go to heaven.? Their aim is certainly not to teach science or history, except so far as science or history is essential to their moral and religious purpose. Certain of their doctrines, like the virgin birth of Christ and his
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