THIS is from a small portion of the Westminister Confession of Faith drawn up in 1646. A confession of faith is a teaching and assertion of beliefs based on the scripture. It is also a defense of the faith. I find that it is absolutely beautiful in its theology and expression. While many in my circles still try to reinvent the theological wheel God has given us such documents that we can draw wonderful biblical teaching.

“There is but one only, living, and true God, who is infinite in being and perfection, a most pure spirit, invisible,  without body, parts, or passions; immutable, immense, eternal, incomprehensible, almighty, most wise, most holy, most free, most absolute; working all things according to the counsel of His own immutable and most righteous will, for His own glory; most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering, abundant in goodness and truth, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and sin; the rewarder of them that diligently seek Him; and withal, most just, and terrible in His judgments, hating all sin, and who will by no means clear the guilty.”

“God has all life, glory, goodness, blessedness, in and of Himself; and is alone in and unto Himself all-sufficient, not standing in need of any creatures which He has made, nor deriving any glory from them, but only manifesting His own glory in, by, unto, and upon them. He is the alone fountain of all being, of whom, through whom, and to whom are all things;and has most sovereign dominion over them, to do by them, for them, or upon them whatsoever Himself pleases. In His sight all things are open and manifest, His knowledge is infinite, infallible, and independent upon the creature, so as nothing is to Him contingent, or uncertain. He is most holy in all His counsels, in all His works, and in all His commands. To Him is due from angels and men, and every other creature, whatsoever worship, service, or obedience He is pleased to require of them.”

“In the unity of the Godhead there be three Persons of one substance, power, and eternity: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. The Father is of none, neither begotten nor proceeding; the Son is eternally begotten of the Father; the Holy Ghost eternally proceeding from the Father and the Son.”

Sola Scriptura: Christ is the Final Word

Great BibleSola Scriptura or “the scripture alone” was not just a term born out of the Reformation but it is the heart of the gospel. If John Piper is right and “God is the Gospel” then I believe that God is The Word.  Imagine, the Apostle John breathing out the words that were breathed into him, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was God and the Word was God.” (John 1:1 cf. 2 Tim. 3:16). 

In Genesis We see God’s presence moving like the brooding dove, and a gentle wind in the cool of the day (ruach) but when He speaks us when we know Him. How clear can Almighty God be as he inaugurates the universe with the words, “And God said…” (Gen 1:3)? He also framed or arranged the world by His Word (Heb. 11:3). God is always speaking. His Deity, eternality, power are seen in his creation (Romans 1:20) and that Creation never keeps silent: “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. (Psalm 19:1-3). His words are translated into every form of known language.

You will notice the Johannine language in the way God relates to Christ. God and His Word and then Father and Son (John 1:1, 14). God and the Logos were of course, the Eternal Father and Eternal Son. The Invisible Word of God becomes the Visible Son of God. We see God speaking or “with the Word” as He declares himself intimate with his Word. God is invisible dwelling in an inaccessible light (1 Tim 6:16). He has to allow us access. he did this by faith in Christ (Romans 5:1-4). It is like a person who reveals the hidden thoughts and expression of his spirit and mind as he expresses his thoughts to us (1 Cor. 2:10-11). Without his Word we would know nothing of God except he declared him. “No man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.” (John 1:18).He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known.” (AMP).

Then he identifies Himself as His Word, The Logos.  “Forever O, Lord, thy word is settled in heaven (Ps. 119:89).  Besides the scriptures the fact that scriptures were not the afterthought of God but were his intention from the beginning, God was speaking unaffected by time. God’s law, his Word, testimonies, statutes, commandments are the perfect expression of who He is (Psalm 19: 7-9). Logos to the Greek mind means definition, and reasoning, and calculation. But he is so much more to the Christian mind than an equation. The identity of the Word is God the Son. His unique identity is more than logic and thought, because while he does not contradict them, he does transcend them.  Not only does he transcend them but he alone is His Word. Obviously, these words are the direct revelation of God in the scriptures written by the finger of God (Ex 31:18). 

God’s ultimate Word in the scriptures is Christ. Christ’s testimony is in the Old Covenant (John 5:39) and the spirit of prophecy in the New Covenant is “the testimony of Jesus.” ( 19:10). Woven through the fabric of all God has written is Christ. He is the final Word. But we could ask what impressed John the most about Jesus Christ? The answer: His Words. We all know Peter’s confession of faith when faced with thought of leaving Christ. He asked, “Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.” (John 6:68).  You would think there were be more sentimentality in his words. Such as “We love you too much to leave you, Lord.” But we see the bare truth of the matter. Going back to apostate religion with all its fleshly inventions was out of the question.  There was no other recourse in life once these men were exposed to the Words of the Son of God! They were ruined after a godly manner as far as the world was concerned. Oh that they would have that effect on us!  His words bring to worthless ruins all the man made religion we used to trust in and they bring rebirth to a new life.

Of course, the Word was more than Christ articulating vocal sounds. It is not their beauty or their sagacity. Christ spoke the truth from a perspective no one else in the universe could. His very word is by which all things consist (Col. 1:17) and the universe is upheld by his Word (Heb. 1:3). Because he is the Truth. He is the Word. The Word of God took on an existence of its own. The Word was alive, walking, talking and communicating as a human being. This is the heart of the doctrine of the incarnation. The implications of this are mind boggling at it is, but think of it! God spoke to us in the Older Covenant “at sundry times and divers manners” (Heb. 1:1) but in the New Covenant as he speaks his Word, God “tabernacles” and lives among us as the Son of God (John 1:14) who is “the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person.” (Hebrews 1:3). The Word personified. The Word becomes the man Christ Jesus. After that everything becomes only “a word” as compared with “the Word.”  Christ is the Final Word.