The Sufficiency of the Scriptures
(The only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy Him)
by Fred T. Di Lella 


In Salvation 

The Scriptures repeatedly inform us that man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.[1] The Bible also makes it clear that the only rule to direct us how we may glorify God and enjoy Him is the Word of God.[2]

The Scriptures, our only rule for faith and practice, principally teach us what we are to believe concerning God and what duty He requires of us.  The Bible provides all the information required for saving faith[3] and furnishes all the necessary data for godly living. 

Regarding salvation, the Bible instructs us that there is only one God, the living and true God.[4]  There are three persons in the Godhead: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.[5]  He is the Creator,[6] the Sustainer,[7] and Sovereign Ruler over all (people and things).[8]  God is absolutely pure and holy.[9]  As the Creator, the God of providence (the Sustainer), the Ruler, and the infinitely holy God, the Lord demands holiness from all men.[10]  Ephesians 1:3-5 teaches that the Lord predestinated to be His own holy children. 

All men fell with Adam in his first transgression.  Thus, natural man (sinful man) is totally depraved.  He was conceived and born in sin.[11]  His heart is deceitful and desperately wicked.[12]  His mind is at enmity with God.[13]  He cannot understand the things of the Spirit of God and is not seeking God.[14]  The natural man is not subject to the Law of God, nor indeed can he be. His thoughts and actions are sinful.[15]  He is dead in his trespasses and sin, under the wrath of God and alienated from God.  Man’s estate of sinfulness also consists of the guilt of Adam’s first sin, the want of original righteousness, the corruption of his whole nature (which is commonly called original sin), together with all actual transgressions that proceed from his sinfulness.  In the estate of sin and misery man stands depraved and condemned.[16]  

Man’s sinfulness by nature and his continual transgressions of God’s Law poignantly point out his fall with Adam into an estate of sin and misery.  While being under the bondage of sin is in and of itself a wretched condition, the Word of God makes fallen man’s miserable estate even more clear in proclaiming the calamitous, the disastrous, consequences of his sin: The wages of man’s sin is death.[17] 

Although all men deserve all the miseries of this life, death itself, and the pains of hell forever; God did not leave all men to wallow in the estate of sin and misery with all its ruinous consequences.  Rather, God, because of His great love with which He loved His elect, provided a remedy, the only cure, for sin, the Lord Jesus Christ.  

The Lord Jesus, the Son of God, took upon Himself a true body (human flesh) and a reasonable soul. He was (and remains) truly God and truly man yet, absolutely sinless.[18]  By the perfect, predetermined plan of God, Christ came to live an impeccably obedient life and die on the cross for His people (His elect, His sheep).[19]  

During His earthly life the Lord Jesus unwaveringly obeyed God’s will.[20]  His flawless obedience to God’s commandments, His immaculate righteousness was imputed to us.  His holy and sinless life also qualified Him to be the spotless, unblemished Lamb of God, the perfect and untarnished sacrifice for our sins. 

In his death the Lord Jesus paid the penalty for our sins;[21] bore our sins in His body;[22] took our punishment; quieted God’s wrath;[23] redeemed and pardoned us;[24] and reconciled us.[25]  

The Lord Jesus Christ also rose up from the dead on the third day and ascended into heaven, where He sits as Prophet, High priest, and King until all His enemies are made a footstool for His feet.[26] 

This gracious and merciful justification[27] is received by faith alone in the Lord Jesus Christ alone. (Even our faith is a gift of God.)[28]  

God draws His own to Himself by effectually calling them through His irresistible grace.[29]  He regenerates them; so that they are able to understand and believe the gospel.[30]  God effectually calls them by convincing them of their sin and misery, enlightening their minds in the knowledge of Christ, and renewing their wills; He persuades and enables them to embrace Jesus Christ freely offered to them in the Gospel. The Lord graciously grants His elect faith and repentance.[31]  The regenerated elect of God respond confessing the Lord Jesus Christ; believing in Him as their prophet, priest,[32] king, Lord, Savior, and God; and repenting of their sins. 

As the Bible plainly teaches, salvation is from first to last of God.  He foreordained it; prophesied it; performed it; and He also predestinates, regenerates, calls, effectually calls, justifies (pardoning our sins and imputing Christ’s righteousness to us), sanctifies, preserves, and glorifies all His sheep.[33]  

God commands His people go forth into all the world and proclaim this good news of salvation (the gospel) to all men, making disciples of the nations.[34]

“Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” …Romans 10:17.


[1] E.g., Isa.43:7, 21; Rom.11:36; 1 Cor. 10:31; Eph.1:3-14; Col. 3:17.

2 E.g., Pss. 1; 19; 119; Deut. 4:1, 2; 6:1-9; 12:32; Matt.4:4; John 17:17; 2Tim.3:15-17.

[3] E.g., Rom.10:17; 2Tim.3:16, 17; 1Pet.1:23.

[4] E.g., Deut.6:4; 32:39; Isa.43-45.

[5] E.g., John 1:1; 10:30; 14:6-9; 20:28; Acts 5:3f.

[6] E.g., Gen.1:1; Psa.33:6-9.

[7] E.g., Nehem.9:6; Acts 17:25, 28; Col.1:17.

[8] E.g., Psa.103:19; 1Tim.6:15.

[9] E.g., 1Sam.2:2f.; Isa.6:3; Rev.4:8.

[10] E.g., Levit.11:44; 19:2; Matt.5:48; Ephesians 1:3-5; 1Pet.1:14-16.

[11] E.g., Pss.51:5; 58:3; Isa.48:8; Rom.5:12.

[12] E.g., Jer.17:9

[13] E.g., Rom.8:7; Col.1:21.

[14] E.g., Rom.3:10-12; 8:7, 1Cor.2:14.

[15] E.g., Rom.3:10-18, 23.

[16] E.g., John 3:18, 36; Eph.2:1-12; 4:17, 18.

[17] E.g., Matt.25:31f.; 2Thess.1:6-10; Rom.6:23; Rev.20:15.

[18] E.g., John 1:1-18; 8:48-58; 10:30; 20:28, 29; Heb.1; 2; 4:15; 7:26; 1Pet.2:20-24; 1John 3:5.

[19] E.g., Matt.1:21; 20:28; 26:28; John 10; Acts 2:23; 4:28; Heb.10:5f.

[20] E.g., John 4:34; 8:46; 2Cor.5:21; Phil.2:5-11.

[21] E.g., Rom.5:8.

[22] E.g., 2Cor.5:21; 1Pet.2:24.

[23] E.g.,1John 2:2; 4:10.

[24] E.g., Eph.1:7.

[25] E.g., Col.1:21.

[26] E.g., Psa.110; John 20:25-29; 1Cor.15; Heb.1; Rev.1:5.

[27] I.e., Pardon of sins and imputed righteousness.

[28] E.g., Rom.5:1; 1Cor.3:5-7; Eph.2:8,9; Phil.1:29.

[29] E.g., John 6:37, 44, 65; Rom.8:29, 30; 9; Eph.1:3f.

[30] E.g., John 1:13; Rom.9; 1Cor.12:3; 1John 5:1. 

[31] E.g., John 1:13; Acts 11; 13:48; Rom.9; Eph.2:8, 9; Phil.1:29.

[32] The ONLY Savior from sin.

[33] E.g., John 10:27-30; Rom.8:28-39; 1Pet.1:3-5.

[34] E.g., Matt.28:19, 20; Luke 24:44f.


Rev. Fred Di Lella is pastor of Covenanted Reformation Church in TX which is part of The Biblical Reformed Synod of Christ the King.

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