Lakewood Baptist Church holds to the time-honored and traditional view of the Bible; that it is the divinely inspired and authoritative Word of God, the sole authority for faith and practice. We believe that its original autographs are infallible in every subject that they touch and that it is our only source of knowledge about God, His person and His plans for His creation. We believe that the transmission of the Bible down through the centuries was superintended by God, such that the Bibles that we have today are trustworthy and reliable copies of the original autographs.
Lakewood Baptist Church believes that the Bible, comprised of the 39 books of the Old Testament and the 27 books of the New Testament, is the complete written revelation of God. We believe that the cannon of Scripture is closed and there is no need to seek further revelation from God. We are committed to the study of the Bible that "we may show ourselves approved unto God, workmen that need not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth (2 Timothy 2:15).
In the past 400 years, many different versions of the Bible have been translated out of the original languages (Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek) into the English language. Not all of these versions are trustworthy or accurate. Some versions are outright paraphrases, that is, the words of the Bible are generally transferred into English with an approximation of the original meaning. Other versions are based on a semi-literal approach called "dynamic equivalency. This approach aims at readability with a secondary goal of accuracy of rendering. A third approach is the literal (word for word) approach, where the words of the original are rendered in English with a primary goal of accurately rendering in English the words of the Greek or Hebrew texts.
In addition to translation methodology, we must also address the quality or trustworthiness of the manuscripts from which the translation is made. Lakewood Baptist Church supports the Majority Text of the New Testament that is represented by over 5000 existing ancient manuscripts. We feel that the minority text manuscripts (quite popular today because of their greater age) are very questionable with regard to their accuracy and are not as reliable as the Majority Text.
Lakewood Baptist supplies the New King James Version (NKJV) as pew Bibles, feeling that they are both readable and reliable. The pastor uses the King James (KVJ) translation for pulpit use. Other translations are used by members of the congregation, with an emphasis on literal (word for word) translations (NASB, ASV, RSV, ESV)
Lakewood Baptist Church sponsors a Bible reading program and a Bible reading accountability group that encourages each of the members of our congregation to read through the Bible every year. Virtually every person attending Lakewood Baptist Church carries their own Bible, since it constitutes the core subject of almost every event conducted by the church. We are serious about our faith, and that faith is spelled out in the Bible, thus our focus is on knowing and practicing what the Bible teaches.
"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works (2 Timothy 3:16, 17).