In this article, Beale (2011) reflects on the notion of infallibility and inerrancy in the Bible. Aside from the usual arguments that utilize church scripture, he discusses the arguments on the Bible’s infallibility in the book “The Divine Authenticity of Scripture: Retrieving an Evangelical Heritage,” by A. T. B. McGowan.
Beale (2011) points towards the spiritual, historical and divine origins of the bible and utilizes this as the reinforcing factors behind his belief in the bible’s inerrancy and infallibility.
Not only that, he argues based on the views of John the Evangelist on the connection of Jesus Christ’s flawlessness to that of Scripture in the Bible’s Book of Revelation.
He also comments on the confusion on the use of the word inerrancy as a biblical concept and explains its proper usage within the appropriate context.
Combined with the supposedly moral and ethical guidelines set forth by the Old Testament, Beale (2011) believes that what is written in the bible is absolute truth and is the means by which God communicates his plan for us.
From a certain perspective, such a view can be considered accurate given that the original plan for God for humanity was to live moral and ethical lives with the bible acting as the cornerstone of this transformation into a more “humane” society.
The author builds up on this by combining such a perspective with the historical and spiritual origins of the bible in order to justify current church approaches towards aspects related to abortion, birth control, population control and other such factors that are related to current social issues.
Overall, the goal of the author in this particular case was to justify the actions of religious groups (particularly the Roman Catholic Church) on their stance on such issues and the manner in which they actively try to impose religious morals, edicts and doctrines on the rest of the populace.
The inherent problem though with the method utilized by the author is that he tries to justify such concerns by insisting that the bible is truly infallible and inerrant. He did not take into consideration the fact that some aspects of the bible were never meant to apply to present day social issues.
It is only through self-serving reinterpretations by religious groups that certain sections of the bible appear to apply to current issues when in reality they were never meant to apply to such situations.
Beale (2011) never takes into consideration that the bible was only meant as a means of establishing better social relations such as promoting peace, charity, generosity and love.
Instead, what Beale (2011) has done is to apply the same thought process established by numerous religious groups wherein they think that the events, morals and social concepts found within the bible are applicable to the present day social landscape despite the historical, technological and environmental divergence between the time bible was written and the present day era (Beale, 2011).
Overall, it can be stated that the author actually did a great job in justifying the position of religious groups on various social issues based on the inerrancy and ineffability of the bible.
His arguments, which combined a variety of academic sources, revealed a great deal of the manner in which people consider the bible to be inerrant and ineffable.
The only problem though is that the entire work neglects to take into consideration the historical and social context of when the bible was written and immediately assumes that everything within in it is 100% applicable to present day situations.
This leaves people wondering if the concepts of inerrancy and infallibility in the bible can be utilized as sufficient justifications for the legitimacy of religious positions on social issues”.
Beale, G. K. “Can the bible be completely inspired by god and yet still contain errors? A response to some recent “evangelical” proposals.” Westminster Theological Journal 73, no. 1 (2011): 1-22, www.EBSCOhost.com .