line upon line

June 10, 2015

the bible

This is going to sound rather obvious to most people that follow this site, but it is good information to have when the topic comes up.

THE BIBLE

 

Some uninformed Christians or sincere doubters question the authority of the Bible. we may be challenged by those who state that the Bible is just a collection of myths and inaccuracies. Three things characterize almost everyone who has difficulty accepting the authority of the Scripture:

They seldom, if ever, bother to read the Bible.

They approach the Bible with prejudiced ideas learned from Bible critics and their writings.

They are not acquainted with the “Author.”

But, can we trust the Bible? Yes!

What is Our Authority for Believing the Bible?

  1. The Bible itself claims to be the Word of God. “All Scripture is Godbreathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16, 17, NIV).

“Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:20, 21, NIV).

  1. Jesus and the Apostles confirmed its authenticity, quoting it scores of times in their writing and ministries. For example, Jesus’ confirmation: “I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, nor the least stroke of pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished” (Matthew 5:18, NIV). Also, Peter quoted David’s words to substantiate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. (See Acts 2:29-36).

  2. The historical Church has recognized and used the Bible as God’s inspired record of Himself and His will. There are quotations from the Church Fathers which go back to the end of the first century. The Bible has always been the ultimate rule of faith and practice for the true Church.

  1. History and archeology combine to confirm the accuracy of the Bible. The historical record is obvious and indisputable. Many of the places mentioned in the Bible can easily be identified, even today. Hundreds of archeological sites have uncovered ample evidence to substantiate the Christian’s claim that the Bible can be trusted. Ancient manuscripts of the Bible have been preserved to the present day. We mention three:

The Dead Sea Scrolls contain either a fragment or the complete text of all the books of the Old Testament except the Book of Esther. Some of these texts go back to the second and third centuries before Christ.

The Septuagint (Greek Translation) dates from 250 B.C.

Codex Sinaiticus, discovered at the ancient monastery at the foot of Mt. Sinai, dates back to the earliest centuries of the Christian era.

All of these documents, and many more, are available for examination.

  1. Fulfilled Prophecies witness to the Bible’s accuracy. A few examples from the life of Jesus illustrate the point:

He would be born of a virgin: Isaiah 7:14 and Luke 2:26-35.

           He would be born in Bethlehem: Micah 5:2 and Luke 2:4-7

He would live in sinless life: Isaiah 53:9 and 2 Corinthians 5:21.

He was to be killed (crucified): Isaiah 53:5,7 and Matthew 27:35.

He would cry from the Cross, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me”: Psalm 22:1 and Matthew 27:46.

  1. The Bible’s remarkable unity and coherence confirm it. It reveals a single author – the Holy Spirit – behind the diversity of its human writers. It is not just a jumble of characters, places, and dates. It has an amazing continuity, as both the facts and the message of the Bible are closely and amazingly interconnected to reveal God’s Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and His part in human redemption and restoration. One Book, one Theme – Jesus Christ!

  2. The Bible is confirmed by its power to transform lives. Its message exploded on the human scene in New Testament times to turn “the world upside down” (Acts 17:6, KJV). There is power in the message of the Word. From the Apostle Paul’s time down to the present day, the power of the Gospel has changed lives. Only those countries affected by the evangelical message of the Bible have seen any real results in the uplifting of society: human rights, treatment of children and women, medical advances, freedom from slavery, etc. The Bible is the only book which gives answers to life’s ultimate questions: Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? What is the purpose of existence?

Rule number one, never argue about this topic, when emotions run high reason departs.

If the inquirer seems sincere in his doubts, suggest that he pray the prayer suggested by John Stott in his book “Basic Christianity”: “God, if you exist (and I don’t know if you do) and if you can hear this prayer (and I don’t know if you can), I want to tell you that I am an honest seeker after the truth. Show me if Jesus is your Son and the Savior of the world. And if you bring conviction to my mind, I will trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as my Lord.”

You may find it helpful to use D. L. Moody’s approach to the Bible:

“I prayed for faith, and I thought that someday faith would come down and strike me like lightning. But, faith did not come! One day I was reading the 10th chapter of Romans: Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17, KJV). I had closed my Bible and prayed for faith. I now opened my Bible, and began to study, and faith has been growing ever since.”

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

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