t{squared}: What do we need the Bible for?

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 The Necessity of Scripture

Mmm... French bread

We’ve spent roughly the last two months establishing Scripture as God’s Words and therefore truthful and authoritative. Have you stopped to wonder what God’s purpose is in giving us the Bible? What need does the Bible meet that cannot be met elsewhere?

First we need the Bible to learn and understand the Gospel. Let’s consider two new terms: general revelation and special revelation.

Grudem defines general revelation as “the knowledge of God’s existence, character, and moral law, which comes through creation to all humanity” (122). In more simple terms, general revelation is the stuff that anyone can know generally about God without ever reading the Bible–by observing nature, history, and our inner being (Rom. 1: 19-21; 2:14-15) . This knowledge, however, cannot be held as certain because it is filtered through our faulty perceptions.

Grudem defines special revelation as “God’s words addressed to specific people, such as the words of the Bible, the words of the Old Testament prophets and New Testament apostles, and the words of God spoken in personal address” (123). More plainly, special revelation is God’s Words sent directly to a group of people. Through special revelation we know for certain facts about God and salvation. In fact, it is only through special revelation that we can know the Gospel (Rom. 10:13-17).

Individuals from before Christ were saved by looking forward in faith towards the coming Messiah found in the Bible. Individuals from after Christ are saved by looking back in faith at what Christ has done according the Scripture.

Second, the Bible is a necessary tool for spiritual growth. Scripture is referred to as our daily bread (Mat. 4:4) our life (Deut. 32:47) and pure spiritual milk (1 Peter 2:2). The Bible is our true source for learning about God and growing in relationship with Him. We must study and learn from His words.

Finally, we need the Bible to understand God’s will for us. Through careful study of Scripture, we learn how God created us to function in relationships, families, and marriages. While we may know something of God’s moral law from our conscience outside of a study of Scripture, we learn specifics of God’s plan and can understand it more accurately directly from Scripture.

Why do we need the Bible? To know the Gospel, grow spiritually, and discern God’s will. <—Click to Tweet!


We have established that the Bible is necessary for (1) salvation (2) spiritual growth and (3) understanding God’s will. Which of these areas needs to be your top priority of attention? I encourage to take some time right now and allow God to meet your need using Scripture. To read more about salvation click here or email me (button in top right corner).

How has Scripture met your need? Share in the comments.

If you are new to t{squared}, I am using Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine to guide this study! The numbers you see in parenthesis refer to page numbers in this text.

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This post is linked with thanks to:

Thought Provoking Thursday
Thoughtful Thursday
Thankful Thursday
Proverbs 31 Thursday
Life in Bloom
Thrive at Home Thursday

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Photo Credit: JeffreyW


  1. Sisterlisa says:

    Good question. Honestly, as a cult exit counselor, I can say this with certainty… just reading the bible isn’t enough. Here’s why..(and it’s in scripture) we must have the Holy Spirit to guide us into truth. The words won’t mean much without his intervention. I’m not saying the bible isn’t important, just that we must rely on his Spirit to guide us through it. Some days some passages do nothing for me…. a month or so later that same passage opens up and comes fully alive for me. Anyway..just my thoughts. :)

    • I agree that the Bible and the guidance of the Holy Spirit go hand in hand. That goes with my post from today (8/30), we cannot know God unless he reveals himself to us.

  2. Thank you for such a wonderful study friend! I am always searching His word for direction with the goings on in our lives! You are such a blessing!

  3. Wonderful truths shared, as always! Thanks for linking up at Thrive @ Home link-up this week. :)

  4. I always love your posts! Thanks for linking with Thankful Thursday!

  5. You do such a wonderful job on these studies!! Thank you!!

  6. Mary Beth, I have always loved to study the Bible and commune with God through his word. Knowing that God loves us and wanted to communicate with us in this way, makes it so special to me. I noticed so much scripture taken out of context and misused where we used to be. I was brave enough to (respectfully) point things out to the shepherd in the beginning. I soon became the target of public reprimands as a result. I learned to be more careful and prayerful in my approach. He began to place guilt on those who spent “too much time in Bible study” because we were not trusting his authority. The more scripture was “taken away” from me, the more I craved it. I am so thankful for the strong biblical foundation both my husband and I had. I often wondered if I had been wrong in my interpretation, because a lot of what the shepherd said made sense. In the end, I trusted my roots. Why? Because I knew that the Holy Spirit had been with me all along and had already seen his fruit in my life *before* these strange teachings. Mary Beth, I am sorry. When I read these post, I see the importance of what you are saying and it sends me down so many thought roads.

    • Do not apologize!! Hearing your thoughts makes me appreciate being able to freely read and study Scripture all the more. We don’t realize that there are those even here in “free” countries that are held captive by people “leading” them. Thank you for sharing your insight–and for your boldness to protect you family along with your husband. I just know the Lord is using your words to encourage those in similar situations.

  7. As I read your post (I’m visiting from Life in Bloom) and ponder on your question regarding “how has Scripture met my needs”, I have to say that Scripture meets my needs on a daily basis. Every since I began to have a relationship with Christ and started digging into the Bible, The Word has become the air I breathe! Lately, Exodus 15, Moses Song, has been in my heart, particularly the part about His Unfailing Love. Even though His love is indeed unfailing and always abiding, sometimes we take it for granted, at least I do, but during the last few days it has come to the forefront of my life. It is palpable and glorious. Thank you for your work and blessings to you always

    • I’m so glad His love has been so real for you lately! It’s so important that we cherish those times to remind ourselves when it feels distant. Thanks for stopping by!

  8. Jonathan Mansur says:

    Thanks for the reminder today that the Word is my DAILY bread, life, and spiritual milk – in need of some nourishment. Hoping we get to see you in TX sometime soon.

  9. Pamela Kuhn says:

    “Oh how I love thy Law!” Excellent.


  1. […] below, but I highly recommend that the bulk of your time be spent actually reading and studying Scripture itself. There are lots of awesome books out there (I know…I have a stack to read too!)(check out […]

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