How God’s Word Was Completed

Whereof I [Paul] am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill [complete] the Word of God (Colossians 1:25).

How did the early saints know that a particular book or letter was to be a part of the Word of God? They had special divine gifts in lieu of the Word of God not being yet complete! They could accurately – beyond any doubt whatsoever – identify and assemble the Word of God with these gifts!

I Corinthians 14:37

Here is an example of how these gifts worked in the identification and assembly of the Word of God:

If any man thinks himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord (I Corinthians 14:37).

The major function of the Acts-period prophets was to acknowledge the true Word of God … so that it might be identified and assembled!

I Corinthians 13:8-10

Love never fails: but whether there are prophecies, they shall fail; whether there are tongues, they shall cease; whether there is knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away (I Corinthians 13:8-10).

The gifts were until “that which is perfect is come.” At the time of the writing of First Corinthians the knowledge and prophecy were only in part. That which was perfect is that which has reached its end; that which is complete. When the fullness of the revelation of the mystery was complete – so were the Scriptures.

Little wonder Paul said in his last letter:

Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known (II Timothy 4:17).

Ephesians 4:13

Until we all come in the unity of the Faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ (Ephesians 4:13).

Notice the word “until.” The supernatural gifts and abilities of “apostles… prophets… evangelists… pastors and teachers” (Ephesians 4:11) were:

(1) given “for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ” (Ephesians 4:12);

(2) “Until we all come in the unity of the Faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.”

These divine –supernatural “giftswere given at a specific time in the past, but they had an expiration date on them – “until.”

With the completion of Paul’s last epistle – II Timothy – God’s work and process of revelation and inspiration closes, the gifts cease, and the Word of God was full and completed. The so-called “canon” was sealed! This all took place some 300 years before any religious counsel made a decree.

We will look into this passage in more detail tomorrow.

Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
Bible Student’s Notebook
© 2004, 2009 Bible Student’s Press

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One Comment on “How God’s Word Was Completed”

  1. hirokiosame Says:

    Wow! All I can say is,.. GREAT POST!!

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