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Last updated: Sep 23, 2013
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What's New: Is the Bible "inspired"?
Question: How do you know the Bible is "holy" and the only words of God?
Answer: The Bible is unique among all the writings of man, and claims, in itself, to be The Inspired Word of God.
Jesus stated, in Matthew 4:4 "ůMan shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."
2nd Timothy 3:16 proclaims, "ALL SCRIPTURE is given by inspiration of God (God breathed) and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."
So, where can we find the "God breathed" Words, out of the "mouth of God"?
Our Bible is 66 individual "books", written over a 1,500 year period, with a 400 year "silent" interlude between Malachi and the birth of Jesus, and it was authored by some 33 different men as God's Holy Spirit moved through them. There is NO earthly way possible that so many men (most of whom never met each other), could have written so many different writings, and in different styles, that all perfectly merge into one meaningful Book, that fits together like a hand in a glove. But, as the Scripture states, "with God all things are possible"!!!
The Old Testament books were given to God's chosen nation of Israel and they preserved them, even though the writings condemned the people of Israel, and exposed their errors. Man would not have written the bible. Man couldn't have written the Bible if he wanted to, and wouldn't if he could have. Why would men write a book that condemned themselves? Not one book throughout history even comes close to the Bible's description of mankind. Jeremiah 17:9 reads, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" What man could write such a thing, that condemns mankind?
The New Testament Books also fit with the Old Testament Books like a hand in a glove. Jesus quoted the Old Testament Books some 55 times, from twenty-four of the books of the Old Testament, and never once criticized or corrected them, but said, in John 5:39&46, "the Scriptures testify of me" and "Moses wrote of me", and in John 10:35, Jesus said "...the scripture cannot be broken"!
The New Testament writers, as a whole, quote from 34 of the Old Testament Books, and never once criticize them.
Jesus said, in Luke 24:44, "These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled."
The Word of God is replete with fulfilled prophecy. There were over 300 prophesies fulfilled during the First Advent of Jesus, and there are over 500 prophesies yet to be fulfilled by the Second Advent of Jesus. It would be astronomically impossible for one man to have attempted to fulfill all of the prophecies which Christ fulfilled.
Read Psalm 22:1-22, and Isaiah Chapter 53, to see the accurate prophesy of Jesus on the Cross, written many hundreds of years before Jesus was born, and before death by crucifixion was even invented! The more I study the Scriptures, the more convinced I am that they really are the eternal Word of God, preserved for us to this day.
Jude 3 States "Earnestly contend for THE FAITH (with the Greek article "the" - a "title", the completed Word of God) which was ONCE FOR ALL (Greek aorist tense) given to the saints. ONCE FOR ALL. It was FINISHED in 96 AD with the writing of the Book of Revelation by the Apostle John.
An amazing thing happened just before Jesus was born on the earth. Alexander the Great ruled the whole known world, and his Grecian Empire stretched all the way from the Mediterranean Sea to India. To enable him to rule such a vast empire, he demanded that everyone in his Empire speak his Greek language. Before 332 BC, the "Classical Greek" was spoken by the citizens of Greece itself, but after that time, as the Greek language spread to the rest of Alexander's great empire, all the Greek dialects were merged into one universal language called "Koine" (coin-a) Greek.
Koine means "common". It became the "street language" of everyone in the whole known world. No matter what their native language was, everyone in Alexander's Empire had to be fluent in Koine Greek. During the time of Christ, the Koine Greek language was the most explicit, precise and unambiguous language the world has ever seen! A veritable peak of human communication by words!
The Koine Greek New Testament epistles were written in all capitol letters, and without any punctuation marks! The Koine Greek is so explicit, that the endings on the Greek words tell the reader the "subject" and "object" of the sentence, the tense of the action, whether a word is a noun, or verb, and even whether the sentence was a question or statement. The Koine Greek had no need for punctuation! This language of the New Testament is so explicit that it even has four "classes" of "if" statements. The reader can see whether an "if" statement, is "true", or "false", or "doubtful-maybe yes, maybe no", and even "if and it isn't true, but I wish it was true".
The first colleges and universities in America were established to teach pastors and missionaries the Hebrew and Greek of the Bible.
When the Apostles began to write the books of the New Testament, they used the Koine Greek, which was still being spoken all over the known world. All the "epistles" of the New Testament were written in "Koine" Greek, so everyone in the whole known world could read them during the time of Christ.
These "Epistles" were passed around among the Churches for almost 300 years, and then, in AD 320, the Roman emperor Diocletian ordered the destruction of all the sacred writings of the Christians, and this was the catalyst for God's people to determine which writings were inspired and which were not. This brought about four great Church councils to determine the Canonicity of the Scriptures ("canon" means "yard stick", and "canonicity' means to "measure" the writings to determine what is God's Word and what is not):
a. The council of Laodicea, in 336 AD.
b. The council of Damascus, in 382 AD.
c. The council of Carthage, in 397 AD.
d. The council of Hippo, in 419 AD.
The result of these councils, as far as the New Testament was concerned, was called the "Textus Receptus", meaning "the Text Received by All". The 14 books of the Apocrypha were rejected and the New Testament books that were determined to be the Word of God formed the "Textus Receptus", which is the Greek text from which our King James and New King James New Testaments are translated.
All the churches agreed that our present 27 Books of the New Testament were to be added to the Old Testament Scriptures to complete God's Word.
Do we still have the correct Greek New Testament today, 2,000 years later? A resounding YES! Over 5,000 pieces of New Testament textural evidence have now been found, dating all the way back to the first century, and there is less than a 1% difference in the ancient evidences and the Textus Receptus New Testament Greek text we have today. Many Bibles and Greek-English Interlinears have all of the textural differences noted, so we can compare the differences. I have not found a single suggested change to the Textus Receptus Greek text that improves its "spiritual", "theological", or "literary" reading.
I believe God Himself is in charge of insuring that His people can have the correct Word of God in their hands.
Psa 138:2 states that God has magnified His Word above His Name! He has staked His Name, or reputation on the accuracy and validity of the Scriptures.
Psalm 119:89, "For ever, O LORD, Thy word is settled in heaven." The Word of God is eternal and the "original" copy is in Heaven.
1 Pet 1:23 states that the Word of God "liveth and abideth for ever".
2 Pet. 1:21 Says "Holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit."
In Matthew 24:35, Jesus said "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away".
I have read the 14 Books of the Apocrypha, and other "Pseudepigrapha" from the first through the 4th century, and I find that they all contradict the Bible in some way. Why would we include writings that contradict the Scriptures? The 66 books of the Bible all "harmonize" and contain a "golden thread" and subject, and a "living continuity" throughout.
Last but not least, we have the life and testimony of Dr. Ivan Panin.
Dr. Ivan Panin was a Russian mathematical genius and Harvard scholar in the early 1900's, who became a citizen of the United States in 1942. Panin was such a firm agnostic in his early years, and so well known, that when he discarded his agnosticism and accepted the Christian faith, the newspapers carried headlines telling of his conversion.
It was in 1890 that Panin made the discovery of the mathematical structure underlining the vocabulary of the Greek New Testament. He was casually reading the first verse of the gospel of John in the Greek: "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with the God and the Word was God. . .", and he became aware of a periodic use of letters, words and phrases. This caused Panin to begin toying with the numbers behind the texts. Sequences and patterns began to emerge. These created such a stirring in the heart of the Russian that he dedicated the next 50 years of his life to painstakingly comb the pages of the Bible, and he discovered that a complex system of numbering visibly and invisibly saturates every book of the scriptures. These patterns of periodic numbering are much too complex to have been contrived by man, and, if they were, all the Bible authors would have had to use computers and conspire with each other. The importance of this is that NO OTHER WRITINGS HE EXAMINED, had an underlying mathematical structure! According to Panin, all other writings were "dead" and the Canon of Scripture appears to be "alive"!
Hebrews 4:12, states "For the word of God is quick (alive), and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Truly God's Word is "alive and powerful".
The Bible is the best selling Book in all of human history. The "Authorized", or "King James New Testament and the New King James Version New Testament, by Nelson Publishers are translated directly from the Textus Receptus Greek, the "Text Received by All".
The more I study the Bible, the more convinced I am that our "Bible" is truly the living, and eternal Word of God, as the Apostle Peter said, the "Word of God, which liveth and abideth forever", and it is the "mind of Christ", God's "Love Letter" to us, and the "Owners Manual" for the human soul.
Your questions are a blessing to me, and I am sure the Scriptures we examine are a blessing to others also. As always, I hope my answers are clear, and an equal blessing.
Yours "in Christ",