The Baptist Catechism: Q. 5 (Making Use of the Scriptures)

Q. 5: May all men make use of the Holy Scriptures?
Answer: All men are not only permitted, but commanded and exhorted to read, hear, and understand the Holy Scriptures.
Scriptures: John 5:38; Revelation 1:3; Acts 8:30

Comment: This Q/A speaks to the truth that the church does not have authoritative claim over the Scriptures (such as Roman Catholics believe), but that the Scriptures have authority over us, and all are encouraged to read and exhorted to believe the Scriptures.  This, however, does not nullify the fact that the church has the responsibility to guard the truth of God’s word (1 Tim. 3:15).  The Reformers made great strides to translate the Scriptures in the common language so that all could read and understand it.  God, our Creator, has spoken.  As His creatures we ought to have unreserved faith in and heedful obedience to His word (Psa. 119).

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