All We Get and All We Need

After being up all night assisting the arrival of a downy-soft newborn baby,  I dropped into my in-law’s house for a shower, change of clothes, and nap. I also needed to wash my uniform because the next baby was showing signs of appearing later in the day. Throwing my contaminated clothes into the washing machine, I sank wearily into the recliner for a rest.

Being the incurable read-a-holic that I am, I picked up the FCM Informer magazine lying on the coffee table. Uh-oh. Even my exhausted brain was revved into gear by reading this bit about revelation received through the Bible:

No vital detail is left out of the instructions. Period. When it comes to any necessary spiritual instruction, the Bible, God’s special revelation, is all we get and all we need. As Peter puts it, ‘His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue’ (2 Peter 1:3).” (FCM Informer, Sept/Oct 2016 issue, page 5.)

I saw this statement as strangely contradictory to what the publishers and many readers of this magazine believe.

Scripture is all we need they sing loudly. But when you talk about holy living, the tune abruptly changes. If we truly believe that “no vital detail is left out” and “any necessary spiritual instruction” is found in the Bible, then the Bible will be our guide, not man-made rules. So why the huge emphasis on church rules?

We do not need to hear God’s voice personally, they proclaim, because we have all we need in the Bible! Yet God’s Word is not enough to help us live well, even though “His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness”?




12 thoughts on “All We Get and All We Need

    1. Well, yes, it does sound like that. That is very sad. 😦

      I don’t mean to undermine the beauty and importance of the Bible. It is a very precious gift to us. But we must have the Holy Spirit to help us understand and apply the Bible.

      What puzzled me about the statement I quoted was the contradiction between saying on one hand that the Bible is all-sufficient, but on the other hand not practicing that. If we don’t believe in the Holy Spirit’s work, and don’t believe that the Bible is sufficient for holy living, where do our rules come from? Human reasoning?

      God give us wisdom to listen to His Spirit and to carefully obey His Word in every area of our lives!


    1. I’m still asking questions, and learning… One thing I am pondering is that we must faithfully follow the Holy Spirit and the Bible in tandem or our belief system gets out of whack. Unfortunately, it’s easier to see the flaws in what other people believe than it is to see my own theological errors, so I know that much humility is needed on this journey.

      I’d love to hear more of your thoughts! 😉


  1. Louisa

    Reading this to Mom this morning, I inserted “Uh-oh” after “… lying on the coffee table,” and then laughed to see that I was anticipating what you wrote!

    Well stated.

    Love from your Houston friends. See you soon.


  2. So apparently, God will never tell us what church to go to, who to marry, what car to buy, what house to live in, or expand on His basic child-rearing instructions in Scripture?

    I thank God for the working and leading of His Holy Spirit!

    (PS: I like the comment about the “new Trinity”! :()


    1. If that is what the writer was trying to say, I certainly don’t disagree! 🙂

      What I do have a problem with is a.) elevating the Bible above God, and b.) saying one thing and practicing the opposite. I’m sure we all struggle with the last one at least. May God help us all!


  3. Victoria

    You know what picture that brought to mind? You and I sitting on Dad’s recliner years ago in Pennsylvania, when we were teenagers (me, just barely) and spouting off about certain publications we had laying about the house, not necessarily by our choice. I know this is a serious subject but I am here just cracking up because I can just see the look on your face! 😀 And remember the tone of our voices as we delicately, (or not so delicately) gave our opinions to each other, on the matter. Ah good times good times! You really helped me think in those days and you still do. Coffee soon?


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