From the Circuit Rider’s Library
Sermon Title: The Centrality and Sufficiency of the Scriptures
The sermon was prepared on Tuesday August 20, 1974 and preached in Rifle, Colorado at the Rifle Southern Baptist Chapel. What is unclear at this moment is if this was intended as a mid-week bible study or sermon notes for the following Lord’s Day.
A little bit of background first: In 1974 Southern Baptists were in conversation with two growing problems in the denomination and the culture at large. First, the battle for life in the womb as a hot topic and Southern Baptists were active in the conversation. And by active I mean among the first to speak out against it. Second, a serious issue was surfacing in churches across America concerning the Bible. This sermon was preached while the Circuit Rider was preaching in New Castle, Colorado and Rifle Colorado. At that time he would preach an early sermon in Rifle and then drive back to New Castle and preach.
I notice that his sermon notes are not copious long-hand notes but rather more outline bullet points. There are no references to quoted statements, it is likely he knew who said it and was not writing a document for publication.
The Centrality and Sufficiency of the Scriptures – 1974
- the Bible is central in Baptist theology; most use the Bible, but with Baptist it is central.
- The Bible is our final authority.
- Catholic’s have the Pope as their final authority.
Where you stand on the Scriptures determines where you stand on all doctrines.
There is enough guidance in the New Testament to direct the New Testament church.
there is no need for other books such as the…
- Christian Science
- Jehovah Witness
Man doesn’t need a new revelation as much as he needs to act on the revelation God has already given.
God has used various ways to contact man in the past but now he has sent his final revelation – His Son (Hebrews 1:1-2)
The Bible is its own defense; like a roaring lion or a two edged sword “Let it loose” it speaks for itself!
When God’s people fail, God’s word is not to be on trial. His people are.
“Thus Saith the LORD” used 361 times in the Bible.
The Bible testifies to itself
- “Lamp unto my feet” (Psalm 119:105)
- “Thy Word have I hid…” (Psalm 119:11)
- “Heaven and earth shall pass away but My Word shall not pass away (Matthew 74:35)
- “The Word of the Lord endureth forever” (1 Peter 1:25)
- “The Word is quick and powerful, sharper than any two edged sword.” (Hebrews 4:12)
I was 8 years old when this sermon was preached by the Circuit Rider. I don’t pretend to remember the sermon but one thing is clear as I remember the Circuit Rider’s life, I had heard this truth and seen this truth lived out as a truth he lived by. The sufficiency of the Scripture is as critical an issue today as it was the day he preached it.