The Most Important Belief that a Christian Can Have...
There are two ways that God has revealed himself to us:
General Revelation - God’s glory is evident to everyone through nature.
“For His invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been
clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world…”
“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.”
Through general revelation, we know that there is a god.
But nature is not enough for us to know God.
Thankfully, He has also given us:
Special Revelation - knowledge of God through supernatural means.
Christianity teaches that the Bible is God’s special revelation to us.
The Bible is the written word of God, inspired by Him.
2 Timothy 3:16
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for
correction, and for training in righteousness.”
1) The Bible is undoubtedly a special book…
It was written over 1600 years starting in (1200 B.C.), over 60 generations,
by more than 40 authors, on 3 continents (Africa, Asia, Europe),
and in 3 languages (Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic).
Plus, over 20 million Bibles are sold each year in America.
These are astonishing facts! But they don’t exactly prove anything…
Since our entire faith rests on the information on those pages:
What we believe about the Bible is crucial, because without it
we can not know the truth about God.
How do we know that the Bible is the book?
Get ready to learn a new word: axiomatic...it means self-evident.
Something is axiomatic if it can prove itself to be true.
For instance, you could ask around to see if Pastor Joe is preaching on Sunday.
But, a better way is to go to church and find the proof.
In the same way, the Bible is axiomatic.
2) We can tell if the Bible is from God by looking inside of it for evidence.
God's knowledge of the future is one way He uses to prove that the Bible is legit.
While on earth, Jesus fulfilled at least 332 distinct Old Testament predictions.
His birth in Bethlehem - (Micah 5:2, Matthew 2:1-2)
His entry on a donkey - (Zechariah 9:9, Mark 11:7)
His healing of the sick - (Isaiah 35:5-6, Luke 7:20-22)
His death on the cross - (Psalms 22:16, John 19:37)
Professors have calculated that the probability of any one man fulfilling just 8 of these prophecies is 1/100,000,000,000,000,000 (1 in 100 quintillion).
Realize that books like Zechariah and Isaiah were written around 600 B.C.
So, how could men, hundreds of years before Jesus, write 332 things about Him?..
Because their source of knowledge was the source of time - God.
He gave these men information and they faithfully recorded it.
3) Therefore, Christians don’t need blind-faith, because we have eye-witnesses.
People like Moses, Jeremiah, Mary Magdalene, and Peter experienced events with their own eyes and were trusted to report it to others.
Not convincing enough? How about this:
4) Many of the Bible’s writers were killed because they stuck to their story.
Why would an eye-witness lie if it costs them their life?
Short answer - They wouldn’t!
God chose reliable sources to write the Bible.
But have the words been changed since the 1st century? No.
Here’s how we know: a concept called textual criticism.
This is a process of gathering all the hand-written copies of scripture and comparing them side by side.
We have access to thousands of manuscripts, and after much research,
this is the conclusion:
The Bible contains about 800,000 words.
And only 700 of the words have uncertain meanings. In mathematical terms:
We have thousands of hand-written copies and they are all 99.9% identical.
We trust God and know that the Bible contains His words which never change.
“The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever.”