I have made the above statement numerous times in class at the risk of being called a heretic. I follow it up by saying that, “Jesus is the Word of God.” See John 1:1. I do not believe we should make statements about the Bible that the Bible does not claim for itself. Indeed, we could say that it is idolatry to claim that the Bible is the Word of God. We worship God, not the Bible. The Bible contains or proclaims the Word of God.

The reason I thought of this today is that I was looking at some 16th century documents in preparation for teaching an Anabaptist seminar and came across the following quote by Hans Denck.

“I value the Holy Scipture above all human treasures but not as high as the Word of God, which is living, powerful and eternal, and which is free and unencumbered by all the elements of this world. For insofar as it is God himself it is spirit and not letter, written without pen and paper that it may never be expunged.”