Edward Hills claims that the presuppositions of those adhering to “naturalistic” methods of textual criticism are in error. Since God’s providence had special care for the Scriptures, they must be handled differently than other written works.
This mindset seems to draw a false division between the ecclesiastical and the secular, as if God’s providence controls the religious affairs of men but not all affairs of men.
In my estimation that is an improper presupposition. God is God both of the ecclesiastical and of the secular. His providential hand guides all matters, not only matters specifically pertaining to His Church.
Furthermore, God’s providence has lead to many non-Scripture writings to be studied under the science of textual criticism. What’s to say that He didn’t do that in order to better prepare us for extracting His word from the various manuscripts that we have today?
Perhaps God’s whole purpose in these non-Scripture writings and methods was to give us an example of how to handle His word.