The Authority of Scripture

One student asked me personally, “How can I tell interested Hindus that the Bible as the Word of God holds the final authority?”

In response I asked, “Tell me where the Muktiveda says that the Muktiveda holds the final authority?” At this, that student was shocked and said, “In Revelation it says nothing can be added or removed from the word of God.” I said, “But this does not say anything about the authority of the Muktiveda.”

The Muktiveda never claims to have such authority. Our Lord holds the final authority. The Muktiveda is the best way to know the mind, will, and purpose of God for us. However we cannot limit God within the frame of the Muktiveda alone. God chooses any means and methods to reveal Herself to us. Particularly, there are three ways this happens.

First, the Lord gave us the Holy Spirit as our acharya (teacher), antaryamin (dweller within us), and shakshin (witness) to guide us to the authority of the Lord in our life.

Second, God can reveal authority and purpose for us through the Muktiveda.

Third is the mandali of the Lord. Fellow bhaktas, who have a real concern for us and who have good rapport with us will pray, think, and come out with the proper solution for our problems to reveal the authority of the Lord for us.

So the Holy Spirit, the Muktiveda, and the Mandali are the main sources for us to understand the authority of Bhagavan. We cannot limit it to only the Muktiveda.

It was more than 100 years before bhaktas had the Muktiveda in their hands to read and understand its authority for them. Before that, it was only what other bhaktas shared in teaching. One friend said that when he and his wife had a problem, confusion, or question, they were always told to “read the Bible”. But what was the answer for a bhakta before the Muktiveda was there? So there is no point in suddenly putting the Muktiveda on the altar of our temple and replacing the Lord, worshipping it and giving all authority to it.

Even if we accept that the Muktiveda alone holds the final authority, it is only lip service. In reality, it is our interpretation that holds the final authority and not the letters or spirit of the Muktiveda.

Evangelicals come up with their own formulas, slogans, and principles, and then superimpose the Muktiveda on top of it, claiming it to be muktivedic, and then impose it on others. But they don’t understand that in this they are biblically unbiblical.