Just before one of the strongest statements regarding the uniqueness and sufficiency of Scripture, the Bible warns us that as time marches on “evil people and imposters will go on from bad to worse” (2 Timothy 3:13). The threat of “evil people” opposing the truth has certainly been harmful, but at least they are easy for Christians to spot. Unfortunately, it is the “imposters” that often cause the most harm because their injury to the people of God is rarely realized until a great deal of damage has already been done. These “imposters” we are told are “deceiving and being deceived” (2 Timothy 3:13). Their deception is effective because they don’t blatantly attack the truth of Scripture head on, but instead they undermine the Scripture’s authority by advocating a rival source of authority. Sometimes it is the norms of our culture that are exalted to co-regent status. Other times it is the tradition of the church. Often it is the authority given to the impressions and impulses of the human heart. But no matter what it is we must remember Satan’s insidious strategy, that whenever impostors campaign for two sources of authority, the Bible always loses. They may say it won’t, but God has warned that when these deceived deceivers set up anything to be on par with Scripture, the Bible ends up being ignored. So, as our spiritual forefathers have rightly insisted upon, when it comes to hearing God’s authoritative voice of truth it must continue to be Sola Scriptura – the Scripture alone.
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