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Theology 202: Inspiration of Scripture Syllabus

Theology 202
Mark Smith


Pontius Pilate asked Jesus, “What is truth?” This statement continues to be the mantra of our day as many struggle to accept that there is any definitive truth. How can we know what truth is?

In this course, we will investigate the need for and nature of revelation, the four characteristics of Scripture, the historical development of the Old and New Testament canons, the apocrypha, and Bible translation. In short, this class is about the Bible; namely who wrote it, what it is, where it comes from, when it was formed, and why we need it.

Course Objectives

In this course, the student will:

  1. Gain confidence in the authority and sufficiency of the Bible
  2. Gain a context surrounding the debate concerning Biblical Inerrancy
  3. Gain an overview of the canonization of Scripture
  4. Gain a more informed perspective concerning Bible translation

Class Outline

Date Description Reading
1/9 Course Introduction Audio
  Review Syllabus
1/16 Human Intellectual Autonomy Audio
  The Enlightenment
  What is truth?
  The Nature of Revelation
John 18:28-38
1/23 Characteristics of Scripture I
  Authority & Necessity
2 Peter 1:16-21
1/30 Characteristics of Scripture II
  Clarity & Sufficiency
2 Timothy 3:10-17
2/6 The Inerrancy Debate 2 Peter 3:11-18
2/13 Canonization I
  Old Testament I
Psalm 119:1-40
2/20 Canonization II
  Old Testament II
Psalm 119:41-80
2/27 Canonization III
  New Testament I
Psalm 119:81-104
3/6 Canonization IV
  New Testament II
Psalm 119:105-144
3/13 The Apocrypha Psalm 119:145-176
3/20 Bible Translation I 1 Corinthians 8:1 - 9:12
3/27 Bible Translation II 2 Timothy 4:9-13

Additional Resources

This book is available as a free epub or pdf. It contains the documents from the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy (ICBI) and explanatory commentary of the documents.

Satanism, Starbucks, and Other Gospel Challengers Excellent interview with David Wells explaining some of the internal and external truth challenges the church faces in a hostile or indifferent culture.

The Therapeutic Gospel Excellent article by David Powlison explaining the temptation to substitute something more palatable, more like what the world wants, for the gospel.

On youtube Documentary traces the evidence of the Bible’s authority through interviews with some of the world’s most respected biblical scholars. This film answers common objections about the Bible’s reliability and equips believers to confidently base their lives on the power of God’s Word. 

A Response to Philosophical Postmodernism
Norman Geisler describes the rise of postmodernism, what it is, and why it

Escape From Reason, Francis Schaeffer
Truth used to be based on reason. No more. What we feel is now the truest source of reality. Despite our obsession with the emotive and the experiential, we still face anxiety, despair, and purposelessness.

How did we get here? And where do we find a remedy?

In this modern classic, Francis A. Schaeffer traces trends in twentieth-century thought and unpacks how key ideas have shaped our society. Wide-ranging in his analysis, Schaeffer examines philosophy, science, art and popular culture to identify dualism, fragmentation and the decline of reason.

Schaeffer's work takes on a newfound relevance today in his prescient anticipation of the contemporary postmodern ethos. His critique demonstrates Christianity's promise for a new century, one in as much need as ever of purpose and hope.

TableTalk 1/12/2021 Coram Deo
"All human beings are made in God’s image, so fallen human nature is not totally bereft of reason, and rational arguments for Christianity are important. However, we must remember that apart from God’s grace, sinners will not affirm these arguments and bow the knee to the Lord. Let us bathe in prayer our efforts to proclaim and defend the gospel, for people will not believe unless the Lord opens their eyes."

The light has dawned
Andrew T. Walker observing the hunger for truth in the world around us. Comments on recent statements by Jordan Peterson.

Providence Baptist Church Articles of Faith

1689 Baptist Confession of Faith


Bruce, F.F., The Books and the Parchments, 3rd ed. Old Tappan, NJ: Revell, 1963.

Bruce, F.F., The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable?, Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1980.

Frame, John M., The Doctrine of the Word of God (A Theology of Lordship), Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Publishing, 2010.

Grudem, Wayne., Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine, Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1994.

Hill, C.E., Who Chose the Gospels? Probing the Great Gospel Conspiracy, New York: Oxford University Press. 2010.

Plummer, Robert L., 40 Questions About Interpreting the Bible, Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 2010.

White, James R., The King James Only Controversy: Can You Trust the Modern Translations?, Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House. 2009.

White James R., Scripture Alone, Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House. 2004.