on my first fundamentalist hero opposing modernism part 2

This is the second installment in my series exemplifying a militant spirit within a compromising denomination. Here you will see my dad taking on the editor of the denominational paper on the subject of inerrancy, a vital topic for orthodox Christianity.

April 22, 1980

The Editor
Gospel Contact
4703 – 56 Street
Camrose, Alberta

Dear Sir:

Re. your editorial – March/April issue as to the matter of belief in the inerrancy of the Bible.

You suggest the matter of belief or disbelief in the inerrancy of the Bible as a standard of Christian orthodoxy is unnecessarily divisive and should be scrapped. You also suggest that belief in the inerrancy of the Bible is not scientifically accurate and you stress the value of personal experience with person of Christ as the primary evaluation of personal Christian faith.

In effect you are saying there should no standard as to Christian doctrine, Christian belief or Christian conduct except the vagaries of personal experience and the self qualified claims of those who may claim to be “true Christians”, whatever that may be taken to be.

What would you or anyone know of Christ except for the revelation of Christ that is made known to man in the Bible? What is to be the qualification of a “true Christian” if the standards for belief and conduct set out in the Bible are not used? Whose “experience” is to be the authority in these matters, as personal experience is a very variegated thing? Many have been known to have had deluded experiences.

What is your motivation in taking the position that belief in the inerrancy of the Bible should not be a standard of orthodoxy? Are you an apologist for some person or persons who are unorthodox, and if so, what is their relationship to yourself? What are their supposed Christian qualifications and beliefs?

As to the “scientific” accuracy of a belief in the Bible, possibly you could explain as to what “scientific” accuracy is, and in so doing you might comment on the numerous “scientifically accurate” opinions that have later been invalidated by new discoveries in various fields of learning.

Sincerely,

[signed]

T. W. D. Johnson

The doctrine of inerrancy is usually at the heart of controversies with modernism and evangelicalism. This is the crux of ‘the faith’. If we lose ground here, we lose ground everywhere. Those who waver have wavered somewhere either in their belief in the inerrant Word or in their submission to it.

Regards,
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3

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