If there was no Bible, there would be no church. That is to say, you go to church because of the existence of the Bible. This isn’t a particularly profound statement, but it has significant implications.
If the church exists because the Bible exists, what is the connection between the two? Why does the church exist because of the Bible? What is the significance of the Bible?
There are numerous ways to answer that question. The impact the Bible has had on the world is beyond estimation, being seen primarily through its influence in the lives of people throughout the ages, who then go on to influence others, and leaving a footprint on the world that is difficult to fully determine. Yet, the question here is not how the Bible has influenced the world, but what is the significance of the Bible for the church?
The church is the assembly of the people of God who are united by a common faith and enlivened by the indwelling Holy Spirit, whose task is to proclaim the glories of the one who called you (1 Pet 2:9). The significance of the Bible for the church is that we don’t know about the one who called us apart from the Bible. Nor do we have a basis for a common faith without the Bible. The Bible is the source for all that we claim to be as Christians.
In other words, the Bible is the founding document for those who call themselves the people of the living God.
Why is this significant? Simply because, if you call yourself a Christian, all that you say you are is determined by the Bible. How well do you know the Bible? Are you aware of what it says about you? Do you know the riches it says you have? These are not the riches that television evangelists or even many church preachers say you have (or should have). The Bible tells us about true riches, riches that are imperishable, undefiled and unfading (1 Pet 1:4). Riches so great, that even the worst suffering we can go through on this earth is not worth comparing to it (Rom 8:18).
The Bible is the source of our hope. It is given to teach us, to reprove us, to correct us and to train us (2 Tim 3:16-17) so that we can be sufficient to do the good works that God has prepared for us to do (Eph 2:10).
One of the reasons The Shepherd’s Bible College is here is to accelerate the learning of those in the church who want to increase their knowledge of the Bible so that they can serve effectively. We exist to serve you by using what God has given to us in order that you would be fully equipped for the good works the Lord has prepared for you.