A 21st Century Reformation Movement for the Verbal and Plenary Preservation of the Holy Scriptures

Jeffrey Khoo

The Far Eastern Bible College (FEBC) remains a Bible-believing and Bible-defending institution. The Burning Bush since 1997 has defended the biblical doctrine of the verbal and plenary preservation of Scripture from assaults made by anti-reformed and neo-fundamental textual critics. As a confessional school, FEBC affirms its faith on a forever infallible and inerrant Scriptures not just in the Autographs but also the Apographs as spelt out in the Westminster Confession of Faith, “The Old Testament in Hebrew … and the New Testament in Greek … being immediately inspired by God, and, by his singular care and providence, kept pure in all ages, are therefore authentical.”

The College Board and Faculty affirm the 100% inspiration and 100% preservation of the Holy Scriptures (2 Tim 3:16, 2 Pet 1:20–21, Ps 12:6–7, Matt 5:18, 24:35), and take this solemn oath in all sincerity believing that “the Bible is none other than the voice of Him that sitteth upon the throne. Every book of it, every chapter of it, every verse of it, every word of it, every syllable of it, every letter of it, is direct utterance of the Most High. The Bible is none other than the Word of God, not some part of it more, some part of it less, but all alike the utterance of Him that sitteth upon the throne, faultless, unerring, supreme.”

FEBC stands against modern textual criticism and the modern perversions of the Scriptures that are based on the corrupt Westcott and Hort Text by declaring univocally that the traditional Hebrew Masoretic Text and Greek Textus Receptus underlying the King James Bible to be the totally inspired and entirely preserved Word of God.

FEBC champions the International Council of Christian Churches’ (ICCC) resolution on the preservation of Scripture passed at its 16th World Congress in Jerusalem in the year 2000. The ICCC statement #11 affirmed, “Believing the OT has been preserved in the Masoretic text and the NT in the Textus Receptus, combined they gave us the complete Word of God.”

In an effort to undermine the Reformation doctrine of the verbal and plenary preservation of Scripture, anti-preservationists and anti-KJVists have concocted lies to cause confusion. What are these lies? Lie #1: that the KJV is as or more inspired than the original language Scriptures. Lie #2: that believers who do not use the KJV are condemned to hell. Let it be known that FEBC holds to no such absurd views; never had, never will! Propagators of such lies ought to cease and desist from transgressing any further the 9th commandment.

Persecution came. The college was ordered to stop teaching the truth of God’s 100% preservation of His Word and words. No one is to defend it, not even to breathe a word about it; it is merely personal conviction not dogma. But we respond in the spirit of Luther, “If I profess with the loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except precisely that little point that the world and the devil are at the moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages is where the loyalty of the soldier is proved, and to be steady on all the battlefield besides is merely flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point.”

Some say it is “foolish faith” to believe that God has indeed preserved His Word to the jot and tittle, that we do certainly have all of His words today. In reply, let me quote Luther, “Unless you prove to me by Scripture and plain reason that I am wrong, I cannot and will not recant. My conscience is captive to the Word of God. To go against conscience is neither right nor safe [it endangers the soul]. Here I stand. There is nothing else I can do. God help me. Amen.” This is the logic of faith (Heb 11:3, 6). “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear” (Matt 11:15).

FEBC stands by her Statement of Faith as written in her Constitution, Article #4.

4. Statement of Faith

1.1 The Statement of Faith of the College shall be in accordance with that system commonly called “the Reformed Faith” as expressed in the Confession of Faith as set forth by the historic Westminster Assembly together with the Larger and Shorter Catechisms.
1.2 In abbreviated form, the chief tenets of the doctrine of the College, apart from the Doctrinal Position Statement of the College, shall be as follows:
1.2.1 We believe in the divine, Verbal Plenary Inspiration (Autographs) and Verbal Plenary Preservation (Apographs) of the Scriptures in the original languages, their consequent inerrancy and infallibility, and as the perfect Word of God, the supreme and final authority in faith and life (2 Tim 3:16, 2 Pet 1:20–21, Ps 12:6–7, Matt 5:18, 24:35). We believe the Hebrew Old Testament and the Greek New Testament underlying the Authorised (King James) Version to be the very Word of God, infallible and inerrant. We uphold the Authorised (King James) Version to be the Word of God—the best, most faithful, most accurate, most beautiful translation of the Bible in the English language, and do employ it alone as our primary scriptural text in the public reading, preaching, and teaching of the English Bible. The Board of Directors and Faculty shall affirm their allegiance to the Word of God by taking the Dean Burgon Oath at every annual convocation: “I swear in the Name of the Triune God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit that I believe “the Bible is none other than the voice of Him that sitteth upon the throne. Every book of it, every chapter of it, every verse of it, every word of it, every syllable of it, every letter of it, is direct utterance of the Most High. The Bible is none other than the Word of God, not some part of it more, some part of it less, but all alike the utterance of Him that sitteth upon the throne, faultless, unerring, supreme.”
1.2.2 We believe in one God existing in three co-equal and co-eternal Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Deut 6:4, 1 John 5:7).
1.2.3 We believe that Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, and is true God and true man in complete and direct fulfilment of Isaiah 7:14 (Matt 1:20–23, John 1:1, 14, Col 2:9).
1.2.4 We believe God created the whole universe ex nihilo (out of nothing) by the Word of His mouth, and all very good, in the space of six literal or natural days (Gen 1:1, Exod 20:11, Ps 148:5, John 1:3, Col 1:16, Heb 11:3).
1.2.5 We believe that man was created in the image of God, but sinned through the fall of Adam, thereby incurring not only physical death but also spiritual death, which is separation from God and that all human beings are born with a sinful nature and become sinners in thought, word and deed (Gen 1:26–27, Rom 3:19–20, 5:12, 6:23).
1.2.6 We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died a propitiatory and expiatory death as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice, and that all who repent of their sins and believe in Him are justified before God on the grounds of His shed blood (Rom 5:8–11, 1 John 2:2, 1 Pet 1:18–19).
1.2.7 We believe in the bodily resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His ascension into Heaven, and in His exaltation at the right hand of God, where He intercedes for us as our High Priest and Advocate (1 Cor 15:1–4, 15–19, Phil 2:9–11, Heb 3:1, 4:14–16).
1.2.8 We believe in the personal, visible and premillennial return of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to judge this world, restore His chosen nation Israel to greatness, and bring peace to the nations as King of kings and Lord of lords (Jer 3:17, Zech 14:9, Acts 1:6, Rom 11:26, Rev 20:1–7).
1.2.9 We believe that salvation is by grace through faith alone, not by works, and that all who repent and receive the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour are born again by the Holy Spirit and thereby become the children of God (Rom 5:1, 8:14–16, Eph 2:8–10, 1 Tim 2:5, Tit 3:5).
1.2.10 We believe that the ministry of the Holy Spirit is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ and to convict and regenerate the sinner, and indwell, guide, instruct and empower the believer for godly living and service (John 16:7–14, Rom 8:1–2).
1.2.11 We believe that Christ instituted the Sacrament of Baptism for believers and their children and the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, which sacraments shall be observed by His Church till He comes (Matt 28:19, 1 Cor 11:23–26).
1.2.12 We believe in the eternal security, bodily resurrection and eternal blessedness of the saved, and in the bodily resurrection and eternal conscious punishment of the lost (John 10:27–29, 1 Cor 15:51–53, 1 Thess 4:13–18, Rev 20:11–15).
1.2.13 We believe in the real, spiritual unity in Christ of all redeemed by His precious blood and the necessity of faithfully maintaining the purity of the Church in doctrine and life according to the Word of God, and the principle and practice of biblical separation from the apostasy of the day being spearheaded by the ecumenical movement, charismatic movement and other false movements that contradict the Holy Scriptures and the Historic Christian Faith (2 Cor 6:14–7:1, Jude 3, Rev 18:4).

By the grace of God, FEBC will remain true to its fundamentalist ethos, “earnestly contending for the faith once delivered unto the saints,” to the glory of God until Christ returns. Amen.

Rev Dr Jeffrey Khoo is the academic dean of Far Eastern Bible College.

Published in The Burning Bush, Volume 10 Number 2 (July 2004)