There are two types of Christians: those who base their Christian beliefs entirely on “only Bible” (AKA Sola Scriptura) and those who base their Christian beliefs, at least partially, on “dogma” (most famously from the Roman Catholic Church, though dogma can come from anyone seeking to inject his own ideas and fashion his own circular worldview).
The ultimate question between Sola Scriptura and dogma is about whether to function effectively with a good quality of life or whether to think comfortably, regardless of quality of life.
The strong argument for Sola Scriptura is one of the best kept secrets on establishment Sunday Morning. God gave the idea behind Sola Scriptura to Joshua. Peter and Paul explained it. The Declaration of Independence refers to the idea as truths that are “self-evident”. Scripture is Scripture because it claims to come from God and the fact that it works proves that it is what it claims to be.
Joshua 1:8 says how Scripture works: Meditate on it, then you will do it, then you will prosper, then you will succeed in victory.
II Timothy 3:16-17 explains the work it does: All Scripture is useful for all training of all Godly people to do all good things.
II Peter 1:21 explains how it got here: Scripture had no part from opinions of men, nor did it drop from the sky, but God’s Spirit carried Godly writers along as they wrote.
Too many people argue whether the Bible is legitimate based on historical questions of credibility. While that evidence is overwhelming—much more strongly proving Scripture’s origin than any other ancient documents we have today—Scripture’s credibility is that it empowers victory over darkness via thriving abundance after making good choices, only possible from reading the Bible daily.
A professor who read the entire Bible only one hundred times, but not daily, who makes historical attacks against the Bible’s credibility, ignores the Bible’s own claims and has disproven nothing.
The early Church did not “create” or “authenticate” the Bible nor did the Church fathers “decide” or “choose” Scripture by their own authority. If they did, that would conflict with what Peter wrote. They observed that Scripture is that which proves to be Scripture according to Scripture. The external witness is the evidence that it works. Jesus said, “Ye shall know them by their fruit.” And, the fruit of reading the Bible daily is unmistakable as is the fruit of not.
By contrast, dogma is incompatible with the Bible because the Bible teaches that fruit, not fiat authority, is the basis of notoriety. A Christian who bases his ideas on a combination of dogma and the Bible must, by definition, pick and choose. Dogma is essentially circular. It claims that the dogma authority is what it claims to be merely because it says so, without any evidence. Dogma is the height of revered theoretical academia. The function of dogma is provide a place where we can stop thinking, so we don’t need to examine the evidence that speaks for itself. Dogma is for people who don’t know how to recognize evidence in plain sight.
The self-evidential nature of Scripture relates to Scripture’s teaching on morality. Most “Biblical” morality is not directly lined-out in the Bible, apart from the 10 Commandments and the Two Great Commands. The rest of Scripture evidentially assumes which things are moral and immoral, among these fornication. Dogma would have a list of “dos” and “don’ts”, but the Bible isn’t a document of dogma. The Bible claims it comes from the Creator of the human psyche and is intended for daily meditation. It is a document of meditation that trains presuppositions of a worldview.
The belief of Sola Scriptura means that the Bible does not didactically “teach” morality per se; it “leads” it. Morality is a presumption that results from reading the Bible daily.
This has drastic implications for closet dogma Christians, who claim Sola Scriptura, but who don’t or can’t judge evidence. It also has implications for Christians who try to impose morality on each other or even on non-Christians: A list of “moral” dos and don’ts only exists in a worldview of dogma rather than a worldvidew of self-evidence. And, it has implications for anyone who disagrees with the legitimacy of the self-evident morals in a worldview that result from reading the Bible daily—morals are not explicitly listed in the Bible, they are presumed. So, not listing them explicitly in the Bible does not mean they aren’t taught in the Bible.
A “Biblically moral” worldview presumes and holds truths to be self-evident, among them: morality and the benefit thereof. This Biblical worldview would neither seek to deny the existence of those morals nor to impose those morals on others. A truly Biblical worldview creates problems for any entrenched establishment. After all, dogma is the weapon of control for leaders who don’t want gadflies asking questions with self-evident answers.