Do You Know the Bible or the Author of the Bible?

knowing the author

Um, this came across my Facebook feed today and lots of people liked it. Why? I have no idea.

The statement on the photo creates a false dichotomy between knowing the Bible and knowing God. It champions the second and looks down on the first.

The problem is that to know God, one must know his book. The Bible is an autobiography. God, the author, has told us all about himself in his book and if we want to know him, we read, we study and we do it some more.

Now, it is true that you can know all about the author and not know the author. So, you can accomplish the first without the second. However, it is impossible to know the author without knowing the Bible. You cannot accomplish the second without the first!

The picture above would be much better if it said something like:

Do you want to know God? Read his book that tells you all about him.

or

The Bible is not just any book. God wrote it that we may know him and love him.

or

Knowing the Bible is an extremely important thing, because it helps us know the Author.

Consider how important knowing the word of God is according to Scripture:

  • Isaiah 55:10-11 – the word of God accomplishes the will of God.
  • Romans 1:16 and 1 Corinthians 1:18 – the word of God is the power of God for salvation.
  • Romans 10:17 – the word of God creates faith.
  • 1 Thessalonians 2:13 – the word of God performs God’s work in us.
  • Hebrews 4:12 – The word of God is living and active. It convicts.
  • James 1:18 – The word of God brings new birth.
  • James 1:21 – the word of God saves us.

I bristle whenever I hear or read statements like the one in the photo above because of the great necessity of knowing the word of God. God wants us to know him and he has revealed himself to us. He did it through his book. We need to know it.

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2 Responses to Do You Know the Bible or the Author of the Bible?

  1. chaddamitz says:

    Thanks for bringing this issue up. I have seen similar statements on Facebook too. For example, one person said, “It’s not about a religion. It’s about a relationship.” Though that’s partially true, to me it says, “You don’t need to go to church. Instead, just focus on Jesus.”

    This is radical individualism and not biblical. Jesus went to the synagogue every Sabbath. He was highly religious. The point is not to be hypocritical of your belief system because a pure and undefiled religion is to visit orphans and widows in distress. I think it’s an excuse for people not to be committed to their local churches.

    I also saw a statement that said, It’s not about theology, it’s about Jesus. Isn’t that interesting? Theology is what helps you understand the doctrine of Christ, the atonement, and how salvation relates to us based on Scripture. Interesting world we live in today. It’s my hope and prayer that people don’t get misled into these false dichotomies as you mentioned. Unfortunately, it seems like it’s happening everywhere now.

  2. Tim Farley says:

    Thanks for the comment. I agree about all of the examples you bring up. I have seen them as well. They do seem to be excuses for not knowing Scripture, going to church or understanding theology.

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