Bible teacher Beth Moore (I know, she’s a lightning rod right now) said that there are spine issues and rib issues in the church. Meaning, a broken rib is painful and uncomfortable but is not usually life-threatening. But a broken spine can cause paralysis and even death.
There are points we debate in the church that are rib issues. They are really not the mountains we make them out to be. And the enemy uses those issues to cause a great divide in the Body of Christ and bring scorn on her witness in the world.
But then there are matters we confront that are spine issues. They are hills worth dying on and spiritual truths that must not be left up to debate or cultural interpretation.
One of the most crucial is that the Bible is the inerrant Word of God and has complete authority over the church.
In the past, the church argued over matters of doctrine. Was Jesus both fully divine and fully human? Was He even the Son of God or just a holy man? Was His resurrection bodily or only spiritual? Today, the hottest issues are homosexuality, abortion, and the exclusive claim that Jesus is the only way to God.
But all these are only symptoms of a more severe, more deadly disease – disregard for the Word of God. At the very root of all these debates is the question of the authority of the Scriptures. Every discussion the church enters should ask the question: “What does the Bible say?” And we must align ourselves accordingly. Peter said that the Scriptures came to men from the Holy Spirit of God (2 Peter 1:21). If the church is approving of or teaching things that disagree with the Scriptures then that is very much a spine issue. That will cause great damage to the Body.
Okay, but what does that mean for you and me in our daily lives? We also must submit to the authority of the Bible. In matters great and small, the Word of God must have the final say. In your thoughts. In your choices. In your words. In your marriage. In your home. In your relationships. In your job. The Bible is not just “the Good Book.” It is the holy words of the holy God of heaven and earth. Beloved, it is your life (Deut. 32:47).