Biblical Inerrancy; Chicago Statement

Theology Thursday . . . on Friday: The Chicago Statement on Inerrancy (Part 3)

This is the last portion of the “Exposition” section from the 1978 Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. It gets right to the heart of the issue about inerrancy. For some recent media resources about the inerrancy issue, see the 2015 Shepherd’s Conference and Ligonier’s 2015 Winter Conference.

Infallibility, Inerrancy, Interpretation

Holy Scripture, as the inspired Word of God witnessing authoritatively to Jesus Christ, may properly be called infallible and inerrant. These negative terms have a special value, for they explicitly safeguard crucial positive truths.

lnfallible signifies the quality of neither misleading nor being misled and so safeguards in categorical terms the truth that Holy Scripture is a sure, safe, and reliable rule and guide in all matters.

Similarly, inerrant signifies the quality of being free from all falsehood or mistake and so safeguards the truth that Holy Scripture is entirely true and trustworthy in all its assertions.

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Theology Thursday - 1978 Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy

The International Council on Biblical Inerrancy (ICBI) was founded in 1977 to clarify and defend the doctrine of biblical inerrancy. The Council sponsored three major “summits,” each producing an important statement.

Summit I met in Chicago on October 26–28, 1978. Over 300 Christian leaders, theologians and pastors attended and adopted the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy, consisting of nineteen articles with brief exposition. Papers delivered at the conference were published as Norman L. Geisler, ed., Inerrancy (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1980).

Dr. Jay Grimstead, one of the organizers of the ICBI, describes the statement as “a landmark church document” created “by the then largest, broadest, group of evangelical protestant scholars that ever came together to create a common, theological document in the 20th century. It is probably the first systematically comprehensive, broadly based, scholarly, creed–like statement on the inspiration and authority of Scripture in the history of the church.” Read more about Theology Thursday - 1978 Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy