Even if you believe in the supreme authority of the scriptures you more than likely WILL get caught at one point or another on its ‘sufficiency.’ So let’s look at what I mean when I say that the word of God is sufficient.
When I state that the scriptures are sufficient for the counsel of man, most people think I am quoting 2 Timothy 3.16-17;
‘All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction,and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
or 2 Peter 1.3-4
‘His divine power has granted to us all things for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence.’
However, as applicable as those verses are, sufficiency is based on a conclusion regarding the whole of the scriptures. It is based on the following absolute truth found throughout the entire book.
Scripture is inerrant, meaning it is infallible. The psalmist in Ps 19.7-11 says that the law (or the words) of the Lord are perfect, sure, right, pure, clean, and true. The word enlightens, revives souls, makes wise the simple, endures and is righteous all together.
Scripture tells us who is its author, In 2 Peter 1:21 the Lord says that His words were written by “men [who] spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”
Scripture tells us it is credible, “God is not man, that he should lie” (Numbers 23:19)
Scripture tells us who God is. Unlike the heavens which declare his majesty, Christ, through Scripture and God’s testimony, through the Scripture is the only way we can know who God is as He reveals Himself to us. He is living and true, (1 Thess 1:9) immutable, “The Father of lights…with whom there is no variableness,” (James 1:17) the only wise God. (1 Timothy 1:17)
Scripture tells us who man is; that is, man in relation to God –Image Bearers, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” (Gen 1.27) And man is imputed throughout his entire being with sin apart from the redemption and salvation provided for us in His Son. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Rom 3.23)
Scripture is how we know salvation, and that we are in need of it “Jesus answered him, truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3.3)
Scripture is how we know sanctification, our blueprint for growing in godliness. ‘I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.’ (Rom 6.19)
Scripture is how we know we need to LOVE God and our neighbor, “And he answered, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10.27) “Above all, keep loving one another earnestly.” (1 Peter 4.8)
Scripture is how we know our goal, to glorify God, “You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” (1 Cor 6. 19, 20)
Scripture reveals man’s heart, “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Hebrews 4.12)
And as stated in that Hebrews verse, the Scriptures are alive.
So the question we need to ask then is;
What other counsel do either we or our counselee’s need?