The Unity of the Bible

Discussion on the theological significance of the unity of the Bible.

December 25, 1973

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Since the Biblical Research Committee’s earlier inserts in the Ministry magazine have drawn favorable response, the committee is pleased to present this paper on “The Unity of the Bible,” by Dr. Gerhard F. Hasel, professor of Old Testament Studies and chairman of that department at Andrews University. This paper was presented to and recommended for publication by the Biblical Research Committee at its annual meeting of 1973 as a part of its investigation of Biblical hermeneutics—the science of Biblical interpretation. How one looks at the Bible predisposes his methods of exegesis and the resultant interpretation. In the critical approach to Biblical studies there is little assumption of an essential unity, either within or between the Testaments, or, for that matter, within a single book or chapter of the Bible. Critical Biblical studies tend to see small segments of a book or chapter standing virtually in isolation and to study them in such a limited context. Believing the Holy Spirit to be the Author of both Testaments, Seventh-day Adventists have always seen a strong link and continuity between the Testaments, and have based their interpretation of the Bible on that presupposition. Their raison d’être, as a people, is found in Bible prophecy with its recognition of the interdependence of the Testaments. This paper by Dr. Hasel draws significant support for the unity of the Bible from standard theological literature, and therefore offers valuable endorsement for the posture of the church in a vital matter.