Michael Kruger’s book, Canon Revisited, is a wonderful and well written polemic for the self-authenticating model of canon. He sets forth and explains the 3 criteria to know is a particular text is, or is not, of God and therefore necessarily a part of the Canon that we have today.
It should be noted that Kruger does not set out to convince the atheist or the skeptic about what is and is not canon, for two reasons, first it is not possible to proof to them in a way that would satisfy them and secondly, it is really an intramural debate anyways. We need to take a man work for what he sets it out to be. It is in this regard that we judge it. It would be foolish o f me to judge a poetic peace for its historical accuracy and a historical narrative for its lack of beauty and poetic nature. Moving on, below are the 3 criteria that we may ascertain if a book belongs in the sacred Scriptures:
Providential Exposure: Simply put, we cannot include a text in the canon if we do not have it. God must reveal this text to us, so therefore we can logically rule out ‘missing’ gospels and such. If God did not reveal them, then He had a reason for doing so.
Attributes of Canonicity: This criteria refers to the power (efficacy), beauty, and authority of the Scriptures that are evident to all.
Internal testimony of the Holy Spirit: This is not saying that Holy Spirit gives us new revelation, but that it is a corollary based on the fact that our Lord Jesus said, ‘My sheep will hear my voice and follow.” The Holy Spirit in us, gives us assurance that we are hearing the Lord’s voice.
Kruger deals with the notion that such is circular reasoning, as well as many more objections and issues. The book is incredibly thorough and well thought out. It is rather academic, but not above your average person’s ability to understand. If you put the time and patience into it, reading it multiple times, you will understand the material in much greater depth. I found this necessary for this particular book. I would not be able to get into a discussion with someone after having read it; it will take time to master.
I can find no real qualms about the writing. It is wonderfully suited for defense against the Roman Catholic Church who says that we must have the pope decide what is canon. I recommend this book to all pastors, clergy, apologists and seminary students.
You can purchase a copy here.