Many claim to have a “high view” and believe in the “authority” of Scripture, but be careful.
Often, they are playing verbal games rooted in the existential philosophy of “theologians” like Karl Barth.
He taught that Scripture is “authoritative” only as a helpful – but flawed – jumping point to personal experiences and “revelation” which, he claimed, are more authentic than Scripture itself.
To those trapped in that philosophy, their higher “revelation” may be their own concept of some novel “gospel” or assertion of “eternal purpose”, their own mystic or existential perception of Jesus rooted in their own sensibilities, their own claims of going “beyond” Biblical Christianity into “deeper life” …
Or any number of existential reactions to Scripture which they then elevate over Scrupture itself.
But they don’t want to come right out and say their “revelation” is more authentic than the Bible itself. They know that won’t sit well with others.
So they say they have a “high view” or believe in the “authority” of the Bible, but don’t outright say they mean “only so far” and no further.
Instead, they submit to their own extraneous sensibilities, experiences and perceptions inspired by the Bible as their jumping point, rather than reference point.
In doing so, they are being disingenuous in their use of words …
In order to demean even Scripture itself as God’s written Word.
The central question comes down to this:
Is Scripture – in and of itself – God’s written Word, and if so, does it carry His plenary (ultimate) authority between us as to all it addresses …
Including faith, experience, perceptions, sensibilities, doctrine and life itself?
Or is it “authoritative” only to the extent that it leads to some additional, existential, private perception or “revelation” that transcends Scripture itself?
On this, there can be no compromise:
God’s plenary authority of Scripture as His written Word is a true “essential” of the faith.
Otherwise, there is no basis for any other essential, because everyone then becomes their own ultimate standard for whatever they want to believe.
Nor is there any basis for finding common, external criteria for the validity of our important – but nonetheless subjective – individual relationships with Christ …
Which is why existential “Christians” never seem able to form and sustain viable local churches or make mature, Biblical disciples.
Don’t be deceived by those who twist them to promote novel ideologies that lead away from a vibrant relationship with Christ as the Living Word …
In submission to the authority and discipline of Scripture as His written Word.
Anything less is a lie.