WCF 1.2 — Pastoral Comments

Posted on Nov 28, 2017 by admin

1.2 Under the name of Holy Scripture, or the Word of God written, are now contained all the books of the Old and New Testament, which are these:


Genesis Joshua Job Hosea
Exodus Judges Psalms Joel
Leviticus Ruth Proverbs Amos
Numbers 1 Samuel Ecclesiastes Obadiah
Deuteronomy 2 Samuel The Song of Songs Jonah
1 Kings Micah
2 Kings Isaiah Nahum
1 Chronicles Jeremiah Habakkuk
2 Chronicles Lamentations Zephaniah
Ezra Ezekiel Haggai
Nehemiah Daniel Zechariah
Esther Malachi



The Gospel according to Matthew Paul’s Epistles to the Romans The Epistle to the Hebrews The Revelation
The Gospel according to Mark 1 Corinthians The Epistle of James
The Gospel according to Luke 2 Corinthians The first and second Epistles of Peter
The Gospel according to John Galatians The first, second, and third Epistles of John
The Acts of the Apostles Ephesians The Epistle of Jude
1 Thessalonians
2 Thessalonians
1 Timothy
2 Timothy

All which are given by inspiration of God to be the rule of faith and life.1

1 Lk 16:29, 31; Eph 2:20; Rev 22:18–19; 2 Tim 3:16.


The Bible is really a library of books. There are 66 books, some longer, some shorter. Out of these 66 books, 39 were written before the Lord Jesus Christ was born and are called The Old Testament. The rest of the 27 books were written after Christ lived, and died and ascended to heaven. They are called the New Testament.
Our Confession of Faith does not call this collection of books Bible because the word Bible is too general. Our Confession calls them, rather, Holy Scripture or “the Word of God written. It is called Holy Scripture because it comprises writings that are set apart for Gods purpose of revealing Himself and His will for our salvation. It is called the Word of God written for the reason that it contains Gods written message to man.
But how is it Gods word when the titles and content of the books suggest that they are written by men? The answer suggested in our Confession is that they are given by inspiration of God. What does that mean? In the first place, it does not mean that it is written by inspired men (in a process known as dynamic inspiration). We know this because there are books written by the biblical writers which are not inspired. For example, Paul was known to have written two other letters to the Corinthian Church which are not inspired or they would have been included in the Scripture for it to be complete. Secondly, it does not mean that God used human authors to pen His word mechanically. This is clear from the fact that we can actually detect different styles of writing in different books. Thirdly, while inspiration of God does mean God-breathed, it does not mean that God breathed His imprimatur on some human writings to make them divine. Rather, what it means is that the Spirit of God employed the writers organically according to their gifts, experiences and character in such a way that every word that is written is Gods word exactly as He God intended.
It is in this way that the Holy Scripture can serve authoritatively as the rule of faith and life for Gods people. Gods people must base their belief upon the Scripture as their primary standard. The Confession is a subordinate standard that must always take second place to the Scripture. Gods people must also base their life upon the Scripture properly interpreted. The Confession of Faith provides us an excellent and corporately received interpretation of the Biblical instruction.