The doctrine of scripture and the providence of God
Frost, Roydon James John
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Ever since the Reformation the providence of God has been variously applied in the doctrine of scripture. In the Reformed and Protestant Orthodox traditions, and in the context of polemic surrounding the nature of scripture that has prevailed down the centuries, providence has always played an important supporting role. In the case of inspiration, it is applied to the preparation of God’s spokesmen. In the case of canon, God is understood to have supervised the reception of just those books He intended for His church. In the case of textual transmission, ‘a singular act of God’s providence’ has preserved the scriptures through time. Thus, providence undergirds the Reformed doctrine of scripture. It functions almost at the level of presupposition. However, such usage is seldom justified, and this raises the question of warrant. The Bible itself must be revisited to determine if the application of providence to scripture in Reformed Dogmatics is legitimate by its own standard of Sola Scriptura. A survey and exegesis of a number of important passages confirms that it is. It shows that the application of providence in the doctrine of scripture is not only justified, but is also helpful to a better understanding of the nature of God and His written Word.
- Theology