10. Scripture is necessary above all other sources. It is impossible to live the Christian life faithfully and fully without the Bible. Scripture is the wellspring of life it is the identity of the church. To misuse, the Scriptures is wrong and dangerous and can cause deep harm and destruction.
The final guideline in applying Scripture to life and situations is the ultimate guideline. Scripture is necessary above all other sources. Scripture must be used if one is to make sound and solid decisions. If we are to live a faithful and full Christian life, we must use Scripture and use it correctly. It is because of this point of using it correctly why this is the tenth guideline. It follows all the guidelines before for this reason: Scripture is the most important and because it is it must be handled rightly (2 Tim. 2:15).
It is the wellspring of life to us. In it, we find truth and life because it is from the truth and life and has been sanctified by the truth because it is truth (John 14:6; 17:17). It is God’s word to us for our benefit and growth, if misused it can lead to spiritual failure and other punishments (2 Tim. 3:16-17; Rev. 22:18-19; c.f. Duet. 4:2; 12:32; Prov. 30:6).
The misuse of Scripture can lead to many leaving Christianity or making up a new Christianity. These are called progressive Christians. They will take Scripture and even say it is inspired but not mean that how we mean that. They will say it is inspired in the same way a good book or painting or even a good sermon is, but not that it is divinely inspired and the absolute word of God. They believe it is up to us to decide which parts work for us and what ones do not. They simply neglect anything that goes against what they want to do. This is a misuse of Scripture of the highest order.
This type of misuse is what can cause deep harm and destruction. But it is not the only way. Many on the conservative historic Christian side misuse it too. These are the ones who will take the man-woman relationship to an extreme. They will say that the Scriptures say that wives are to be completely submissive to the husband in all things. That they are no more than their slaves. This too is very harmful and misusing Scripture.
It is because of the misuse of Scripture why this is the last guideline. If one will adequately apply the first nine, then this point will be handled properly. Scripture is our authority and as such it must absolutely be applied correctly. When it is, one is more apt to make good sound decisions in all of life. Also, following all the principles, or guidelines, that we have discussed these last two weeks, will help the believer correctly contextualize any problem with the correct Scriptures. Not only this, but they will help you to keep your personal biases out of the decision-making process.
This list is not exhaustive nor is it dogmatic. It is simply a list that I believe will help us all to correctly apply Scripture to life and decision-making. They each flow from the one before it and build upon each other. I think that if we all take these guidelines or principles, we will be better at applying Scripture to life and problems. I believe we will be better men and women of the book if we do this. The one thing we must remember in all of these guidelines is Scripture is authoritative because they are from the authority of God and because of this, all other things are subordinate to that. If we keep this thought in mind, I believe we will properly apply the word of God to all things.