This book serves as a study guide for messages given at our conference on the sufficiency of Scripture in December 2009. I believe this will stand as one of the most important conferences we have ever conducted.
One thing we want to communicate is that the sufficiency of Scripture is the indispensable doctrine for the 21st century church. A new century needs an old idea. I am abounding in hope and in confidence for what God can do with a people who adore, rely upon, and apply His completely inerrant and fully sufficient Word. I have seen with my own eyes the power of the Word of God. I have seen Him save the unsavable. I have seen Him make dramatic and wonderful transformations in people’s lives as they opened what was to them the lost book of the law. He has graced me with the privilege of seeing Him transform whole churches, turning them back to the fundamental principle of Sola Scriptura.
Though hopeful, I am also in anguish. My heart is broken within me, for the Church of God is in shambles. The house of God has been swallowed up in the ways of the world. It has become a house of the inventions of man. She is now a mirror of the world. Her doctrine is deranged; Her gospel is gutted; Her families are failing; Her influence is insipid. Even the churches which have been planted on this principle are struggling to make Scripture their sole rule for life and godliness. We fall short in so many ways; our sanctification seems so slow. We have imbibed of the world so long that change seems impossible. Our need for both the law and the Gospel is enormous.
But I also see God performing a mighty work in raising up a new army of believers from the ashes of the modern church. They desire Scripture alone to be their guide for church and family life. Many have suffered greatly as a result of their repentance and the changes that were in keeping with that repentance. The result of the repentance and subsequent changes has brought rejection from friends, fellow believers, family members and even church leaders. Yet God has shown them the hold the world had upon them and has given to them new eyes turned towards their Savior.
Our desire is to use this conference to fan the flames of reformation to the glory of God in the modern church—a passion shared by our speakers. They came to shepherd us with the Living Word. Each of them was under divine mandate to inspire confidence in God and His Word and exult in Him alone. Their desire is to show us how we might practice the sufficiency of Scripture, applying its relevance to all aspects of life: in our churches, in our family life, in our spiritual life, in our worship practices, in our education, in our ethics, in our ministries, in our evangelism, in our understanding of manhood and womanhood, in our marriages. As these brothers minister to us, let us recognize,“How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” (Romans 10:15)
I pray that as a result of these messages, we will walk humbly, fully trusting in God’s Word, fearlessly preaching the gospel, lavishly loving the church, and diligently building our families.
I give to you the words of the apostle Paul to the elders of the church in Ephesus,
“And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified ” (Acts 20:32).