Re: help on graphe artios

From: David Moore (
Date: Tue Feb 27 1996 - 16:41:14 EST

"Carl W. Conrad" <> wrote:

>brent justin anduaga-arias <> wrote:
>> Regardless of which is correct, I also would like to know (since I am
>> just beginning to learn Greek) if the three verses are truly conveying
>> the thought that ALL doctrine necessary for faith and practice are found
>> in scripture, or is this idea something that has been read into the text
>> for Reformation polemics?
>Well, there are plenty of polemics apart from the Reformation ones. Some
>may even now surface if I express my opinion that the "scripture" here
>spoken of, in its own context, very likely (I really can't conceive an
>alternative) refers to the Old Testament, and perhaps not even to all of
>the OT, but certainly to the Torah, or five books of Moses, perhaps the
>Prophets as well, but rather questionably the "Writings." Although Paul's
>letters may have some authority by the time 2 Tim is composed, it still is
>not, nor would I think any of the NT literature is as yet canonized

        Although, IMO, PASA GRAFH refers to all of OT Scripture because
that is what is implied by PASA without other modifiers (Cf. also v. 15,
hIERA GRAMMATA.), the real _crux interpretum_ (I hope I got the Latin
right.) for this passage is *where* the verb ESTIN is to be supplied for
v. 16: with QEOPNEUSTOS (wich is how the writer takes it) or with
WFELIMOS. The first construction expresses that all Scripture is inspired
by God, the second, that all (or every) God-inspired Scripture is
useful... Some have objected to the latter because it may be taken to
mean that not all the Scripture is inspired. Reference to a good
commentary on the Pastoral Epistles should give the arguments proposed for
each view. An interesting note: Calvin's commentary on this passage makes
no mention of the possibility of supplying the verb with WFELIMOS. Might
this indicate that the interpretation of this verse was not in question at
the time of the Reformation? Cf. also _Institutes_ I:ix:1.

        In answer to Brent's question, although Carl Conrad has hinted at
an answer already, it appears that what is being expressed here is that
the Scriptures, which Timothy knows from his childhood form an adequate
basis for sound faith and practice; it doesn't really express exclusion of
other sources. IMO, one would have to take into consideration the epoch
for which Timothy was being prepared to serve. Reliance on the OT alone
would hobble ministers of our generation. So, in terms of application to
our own spiritual lives, this passage should be understood in spirit
rather than it its literal interpretation to Timothy, pointing us to the
Scriptures (as we understand that term) as a faithful guide for faith and

David L. Moore Southeastern Spanish District
Miami, Florida of the Assemblies of God Department of Education

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