What Is Inspiration?

Ten people can witness the same bank robbery and give police investigators ten different accounts of what happened. Why, then, should you believe that common shepherds, fishermen, and tax collectors—the biblical authors—can get all the details right?

The Greek word theopneustia, which means “God-breathed out,” appears in 2 Timothy 3:16. This is a great starting point for understanding the concept of biblical inspiration as God breathing his message into his messenger. Some Christians believe that whether God's prophet is speaking or writing, he is guided by God the Holy Spirit, making his message infallible. This supernatural process is called inspiration.

Look in the Book

There are those who do not believe that the Bible is inspired by God. They believe there are historical and scientific errors within the text that disprove this assertion. Whatever your beliefs, the Bible itself does hold that the words therein are inspired, or “breathed,” by God.

The word inspiration may cause you to think of a great work of art or a moving symphony. Of course, this kind of emotional and intellectual inspiration happens to most people. However, Biblical inspiration is the supernatural guidance of God's prophets and apostles to ensure that no errors or omissions occurred in the Biblical writings.

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