View 1 Denial of a Doctrine of Preservation. View 2 Preservation in the KJV/TR/MT Tradition. View 3 Preservation in the Totality of Manuscripts

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1 1 Sunday, Octber 30, 2016 Grace Life Schl f Thelgy Frm This Generatin Fr Ever Lessn 33 Preservatin: Examining the Relevant Passages, Psalm 119 Intrductin In Lessns 31 and 32 we cmmenced ur study f whether r nt the Bible teaches its wn preservatin by lking at Psalm 12:6-7. Recall frm Lessn 30 that we laid ut the fllwing three views f preservatin. View 1 Denial f a Dctrine f Preservatin View 2 Preservatin in the KJV/TR/MT Traditin View 3 Preservatin in the Ttality f Manuscripts Please remember that we are in the prcess f lking at passages that establish the fundamental prmise f preservatin befre we cnsider the extant and lcatin f preservatin. In summatin f Lessns 31 and 32, I presented the reasns why I believe that Psalms 12:6-7 des teach the preservatin f the written wrd. In this Lessn we want t cntinue ur examinatin f the relevant passages regarding preservatin. We will d this by cnsidering a cluster f verses frm Psalm 119. General Cmments n Psalm 119 Psalm 119 is the lngest chapter in the entire Bible. Mst cmmentatrs and Bible students acknwledge that the entire chapter is speaking abut the Law r Gd s written wrd t the natin f Israel. Thrughut the chapter a hst f different yet synnymus wrds are used interchangeably t refer t the scriptures. Please nte that the number in parenthesis indicates that number f times that the wrd r phrase ccurs in Psalm 119. Psalm 119:1 law f the Lrd (24x) Psalm 119:2 testimnies (22x) Psalm 119:3 his ways (6x) Psalm 119:4 thy precepts (21x) Psalm 119:5 thy statutes (22x) Psalm 119:6 thy cmmandments (21x) Psalm 119:7 righteus judgements (18x) Psalm 119:9, 11 thy wrd (38x) Pastr Bryan Rss

2 2 Virtually every verse in Psalm 119 cntains a reference t the wrds f Gd. There are 176 verses in the Psalm and 172 f them cntain ne f the wrds identified abve. Please bear these facts in mind as we lk a few f the verses. Psalm 119:89 King James advcate D.A. Waite lists this verse as ne f the texts supprting the dctrine f preservatin in his bk, Defending the King James Bible. Waite reasns: Gd s wrds are nt in dubt. It is permanent. It is uncnfused and plain. Gd has settled, that means it has been preserved, kept pure. Nthing has been lst... Sme peple say, Well, its settled in Heaven but nt n earth. But Gd needs it less than we d; He knws His Wrds. WE are the nes wh need it. He is using this verse, Psalm 119:89, t shw us that Gd has given us Wrds that are settled... It is true that Gd s Wrds are nt nly preserved and settled in heaven but they are als preserved by Heaven s Omniptent Gd. (Waite, 7-8). In shrt Waite is arguing that there is perfect archetypal Bible in heaven which mandates and necessitates a crllary Bible n earth. Fr Waite this archetypal Bible exists n earth via preservatin. Please nte that Waite s definitin f perfect in this case assumes identical wrding as the standard. Meanwhile, Dr. Cmbs f Detrit Baptist Thelgical Seminary views the verse as cntaining n direct reference t Gd s written revelatin at all. Using A.A. Andersn s wrk The Psalms t buttress his argument, Cmbs states: It seems mre likely that yur wrd in verse 89 has n direct reference t Gd s written revelatin. As Andersn ntes, thy wrd... is prbably the expressin f Gd s all-embracing purpse and will (cf. Isaiah 40:8). Gd s purpse, His will, is firmly fixed in heaven beynd the reach f all disturbing causes.... Thus, it wuld appear that this verse has n direct applicatin t the dctrine f preservatin. (Cmbs, 17) Ultimately, I agree with Cmbs that Psalm 119:89 is nt a direct prmise f preservatin. That being said, the assertin that thy wrd is in n way related t Gd s written revelatin is a bit trubling. Why wuld the phrase thy wrd within the cntext f Psalm 119 nt be referring t Gd s written revelatin? I have used the Psalm 119:89 in this class as ur third presuppsitin, nt as a verse that directly prmises the preservatin f Gd s wrd n earth. Gd exists. (Psalm 14:1) Gd has magnified His wrd abve His wn name. (Psalms 138:2) Pastr Bryan Rss

3 3 Gd s wrd is eternally settled in heaven. (Psalm 119:89) Gd, thrugh the prcess f inspiratin, has cmmunicated His wrd t mankind. (I Timthy 3:16 & II Peter 1:21) Gd s wrds were written dwn s that they culd be made eternally available t men. (Isaiah 30:8, I Peter 1:23) Gd prmised t preserve that which He inspired. (Psalms 12:6-7) King James advcates are nt the nly nes wh view Psalm 119:89 as a statement as t the eternal existence f Gd s written wrd in heaven. Cmbs qutes Wayne Grudem s essay Scripture s Self-Attestatin and the Prblem f Frmulating a Dctrine f Scripture as fllws:... a cpy f wrds that Gd in heaven has permanently decided n and has subsequently caused t be cmmitted t writing by men. (quted in Cmbs, 16) This is precisely the way I am using the verse in the abve presuppsitins. The verse is referring t the written wrd f Gd in heaven, but is nt speaking abut its preservatin n earth. Other verses in Psalm 119 speak t the issue f preservatin. Galatians 3:8 wuld nt be pssible if Gd s wrd was nt eternally settled upn in heaven. Psalm 119:111 We already encuntered this verse back in Lessn 31 when we were discussing the issue f gender discrdance as it related t Psalm 12:6-7. Please remember that this verse exhibits the same phenmena, yet the translatrs f the mdern versins fllw the King James in giving pririty t prximity ver gender agreeance. KJB NIV NASB ESV Yur statutes (fem. pl.) I have inherited Yur are my heritage testimnies (fem. pl.) frever; they (mas. pl.) frever, fr they (mas. are the jy f my heart. pl.) are the jy f my heart. Thy testimnies (fem. pl.) have I taken as an heritage fr ever: fr they (mas. pl.) are the rejicing f my heart. Yur testimnies (fem. pl.) are my heritage frever, fr they (mas. pl.) are the jy f my heart. Regarding this verse, King James advcate D.A. Waite writes: If yu take Gd s Testimnies as a heritage fr ever, they must be preserved if we are t keep them. (Waite, 8) R.B. Ouellette includes Psalm 119:111 in a list f preservatin passages alng with the fllwing remarks: Pastr Bryan Rss

4 4 The dctrine f preservatin is based n the Bible itself. Since the Bible is t be ur authrity in matters f faith and practice, it is imprtant t see what Gd has stated abut its preservatin fr each generatin... There are seminaries that exist tday that seem t explain away every verse that teaches preservatin. I have a prblem with sme wh feel that verses r dctrine must be explained away. I prefer t read the Bible and understand it literally. When Gd says His wrd will last frever, that it will last fr a thusand generatins, I believe that means Gd will preserve His wrd frever. (Ouellette, 32-33) William W. Cmbs, Daniel B. Wallace, Jhn Rehurek and W. Edward Glenny d nt cmment n this verse in their writings n preservatin. Psalm 119:152 As we already nted in Lessn 31, Dr. Cmbs believes that verse 152 appears t be a fairly direct prmise f preservatin, despite the gender discrdance bservable in the verse. (Cmbes, 18) KJB NIV NASB ESV Lng ag I learned Of ld I have knwn frm yur statutes frm Yur testimnies (fem. pl.) that yu (fem. pl.) that Yu established them (mas. have funded them pl.) t last frever. (mas. pl.) frever. Cncerning thy testimnies (fem. pl.), I have knwn f ld that thu hast funded them (mas. pl.) fr ever. Lng have I knwn frm yur testimnies (fem. pl.) that yu have funded them (mas. pl.) frever. In supprt f his cnclusin that Psalm 119:152 is a direct prmise f preservatin, Cmbes states: This verse wuld seem t ffer strnger supprt (than Psalm 119:89) fr a dctrine f preservatin. The cntext (vv ) makes clear reference t Gd s written revelatin in the Trah. The Psalmist says he will bserve the Lrd s statutes (v. 145) and keep his testimnies (v. 146). He waits fr his wrds (v. 147) and meditates in his wrd (v. 148) and asks t be revived accrding t the Lrd s rdinances (v. 149). The Psalmist bserved that the wicked d nt bey his law (v. 150). Finally, he cncludes in verses These testimnies, have been funded frever, meaning as the NIV puts it, yu established them t last frever. (Cmbs, 18) In cntrast, W. Edward Glenny f Central Baptist Thelgical Seminary denies that the verse has anything t d with preservatin. In Psalm 119:152 the Psalmist states Cncerning thy testimnies, I have knwn f ld that Thu hast funded them frever. In the previus verse he stated that Gd s Wrd is truth and verse 150 teaches that the wicked are far frm Gd s law. In cntrast t the wicked, the Psalmist is trusting in Gd s Wrd (vv ). His cnfidence is that Gd s law is nt fickle, it is trustwrthy and based n Gd s unchanging mral character. That must be the meaning f verse 152 in its cntext. (Glenny, 88) Pastr Bryan Rss

5 5 King James advcates R.B. Oullette, D.A. Waite, David Clud, and Jack McElry are in agreement with William W. Cmbs that Psalm 119:152 establishes the fundamental prmise f preservatin. Psalm 119:160 This verse is very similar t Psalm 119:152 in that it is part f the sectin where the Psalmist is making numerus references t the Law: law (v. 153), wrd (v. 154), statutes (v. 155), judgments (v. 156), testimnies (v. 157), wrd (v. 158), and precepts (v. 159). Because f these cntextual realities, Cmbs cncludes the fllwing with respect t Psalm 119:160: This verse, then, like 152, wuld als seem t strngly imply a dctrine f preservatin. (Cmbs, 18-19) Once again, W. Edward Glenny denies that Psalm 119:160 teaches a dctrine f preservatin by arguing that the verse is simply speaking abut the infallibility, abslute trustwrthiness, and dependability f Gd s wrd. Glenny writes: The Psalmists hpe is nt based n the belief that the text f Gd s wrd will remain intact centuries after he dies, nr is he cncerned that he has lst part f Gd s Wrd. His cnfidence is in the fact that Gd s wrd is true and infallible. In cntrast with thse wh d nt keep Gd s Wrd (v. 158), he keeps it and is depending upn it t quicken him because it is true (v. 160a). Therefre, when he says, every ne f thy righteus judgements endureth frever, he must be expressing his cnfidence in the infallibility and abslute trustwrthiness f Gd s Wrd. Every statement in Gd s wrd is dependable. (Glenny, 89) Regarding Psalm 119:160, D.A. Waite simply says, endureth frever that is Bible Preservatin! (Waite, 8) Other Passages Frm the Psalms D. A. Waite views these additinal Psalms as dealing with preservatin. In the interest f time and space, I have just prvide the reference fllwed by Waite s cmments n each verse. Psalm 78:1-7 These verses certainly indicate that Gd intended t preserve His Wrds fr all time. (Waite, 7) Psalm 105:8 If a generatin is twenty years, this wuld be 20,000 years. If a generatin were thirty years, it wuld be 30, 000 years! Gd wants us t clearly see His prmise f Bible preservatin. (Waite, 7) Pastr Bryan Rss

6 6 Wrks Cited Cmbs, William W. The Preservatin f Scripture? in Detrit Baptist Seminary Jurnal. Fall Glenny, W. Edward. The Preservatin f Scripture in The Bible Versin Debate: The Perspective f Central Baptist Thelgical Seminary. Minneaplis, MN: Central Baptist Thelgical Seminary, Ouellette, R.B. A Mre Sure Wrd: Which Bible Can yu Trust? Lancaster, CA: Striving Tgether Publicatins, Waite, D.A. Defending the King James Bible. Cllingswd, NJ: The Bible Fr Tday Press, Pastr Bryan Rss

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