Why does it matter what I or you believe?
Let’s explore these and so many more questions on why, not only is God important, but why Christ is all that matters.
Since we mere humans are not infallible, since we make mistakes, since we cannot possibly know everything — we have one option to get this right — get direct revelation from the one who DOES know everything. The one who created us and whom we daily rely upon for so much as a breath. The great I AM.
Statistically, logically, rationally it is simply impossible that it can be otherwise. As Greg Bahnsen once said “we can prove the existence of God from the impossibility of the contrary.”
The Plan of Salvation is:
Faith in God:
“But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name.” (John 20:31) [See also Hebrews 11:6; Romans 10:17; and James 2:24
Repentance from Sin:
“The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30) [See also Luke 24:46-47; Acts 2:38]
Confession of Faith in Christ:
“So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven,” (Matthew 10:32) [See also 1 Timothy 6:12; Romans 10:9-10]
Baptism for the Remission of Sins:
“And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on His name.” (Acts 22:16) And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38) [See also Romans 6:2-5; Colossians 2:12; Galatians 3:26-27; Mark 16:16 and
1 Peter 3:21]
Walking in Obedience:
“He that says, I know him, and yet does not keep His commandments, is a liar, the truth is not in him.” (1 John 2:4)[See also Matthew 7:21; James 2:14, 24; John 3:36; 1 Thess 1:3; and 2 Peter 1:10-11]
WHY 66 BOOKS?
Is the Bible the Inspired Word of God?
19 Dec 2008
By: Ron Carlson
During a question and answer session at a recent speaking engagement, a university student asked me, “Why do you believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God?” Now this is a very interesting question; and probably one of the most important questions any Christian could ask themselves. What is so special, so unique about the Bible that Christians believe it is literally the inspired word of God?
In answering this student’s question, I encouraged him to consider the following facts about the Bible:
First, the Bible is not just one single book. This is a more common misconception than many people realize, especially with people who do not come from a Judeo-Christian background. Rather than being a single book, the Bible is actually a collection of 66 books, which is called the canon of scriptures. These 66 books contain a variety of genres: history, poetry, prophecy, wisdom literature, letters, and apocalyptic just to name a few.
Second, these 66 books were written by 40 different authors. These authors came from a variety of backgrounds: shepherds, fishermen, doctors, kings, prophets, and others. And most of these authors never knew one another personally.
Third, these 66 books were written over a period of 1500 years. Yet again, this is another reminder that many of these authors never knew or collaborated with one another in writing these books.
Fourth, the 66 books of the Bible were written in 3 different languages. In the Bible we have books that were written in the ancient languages of Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic; a reflection of the historical and cultural circumstances in which each of these books was written.
And finally, these 66 books were written on 3 different continents: Africa, Asia, and Europe. Once again, this is a testament to the varied historical and cultural circumstances of God’s people.
Think about the above realities: 66 books, written by 40 different authors, over 1500 years, in 3 different languages, on 3 different continents. What’s more, this collection of books shares a common story line- the creation, fall, and redemption of God’s people; a common theme- God’s universal love for all of humanity; and a common message- salvation is available to all who repent of their sins and commit to following God with all of their heart, soul, mind and strength. In addition to sharing these commonalities, these 66 books contain no historical errors or contradictions. God’s word truly is an amazing collection of writings!
After I had shared the above facts with this student, I offered him the following challenge: I said to him, “If you do not believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God, if you do not believe that the Bible is of a supernatural origin, then I challenge you to a test.” I said to the student, “I challenge you to go to any library in the world, you can choose any library you like, and find 66 books which match the characteristics of the 66 books in the Bible. You must choose 66 books, written by 40 different authors, over 1500 years, in 3 different languages, written on 3 different continents. However, they must share a common story line, a common theme, and a common message, with no historical errors or contradictions.” I went on to say, “If you can produce such a collection of books, I will admit that the Bible is not the inspired word of God.” The student’s reply was almost instantaneous, he emphatically stated, “But that’s impossible!”
“But that’s impossible!” It truly is impossible, for any collection of human writings. However, the Bible passes this test. The Bible contains 66 books, written by 40 different authors, over 1500 years, in 3 different languages, on 3 different continents, with no historical errors or contradictions. The entire Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, bears the mark of Divine inspiration.
The next time you encounter someone who asks you why you believe the Bible is the inspired word of God, try sharing this challenge with them. Better yet, don’t wait until you’re asked, just go ahead and share this challenge with a friend today. You don’t even have to mention the Bible up front, just ask them if they think it would be realistic to assemble such a collection of books. After they say, “But that’s impossible!” you’ve got a ready-made opportunity for sharing the truth of God’s word with somebody!
[COMING SOON: WHY THE GNOSTIC GOSPELS OR “LOST BOOKS” ARE FICTION]
THEY are without excuse, all know God, most reject Him:
Romans 1:18-22 reads like a commentary on today’s world:
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible at- tributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools…
•••••> QUOTES [man is powerless in diminishing God’s glory]
A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell. — C.S. Lewis
Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened. — Winston Churchill
I do not feel obliged to believe that same God who endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect had intended for us to forgo their use. — Galileo
The atheist can’t find God for the same reason that a thief can’t find a policeman. — Author Unknown
The worst moment for the atheist is when he is really thankful, and has nobody to thank. — Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Humanism or atheism is a wonderful philosophy of life as long as you are big, strong, and between the ages of eighteen and thirty-five. But watch out if you are in a lifeboat and there are others who are younger, bigger, or smarter. — William Murray
The theory that thought is merely a movement in the brain is, in my opinion, nonsense; for if so, that theory itself would be merely a movement, an event among atoms, which may have speed and direction but of which it would be meaningless to use the words ‘true’ or ‘false’. — C.S. Lewis
If there is no God, then all that exists is time and chance acting on matter. If this is true then the difference between your thoughts and mine correspond to the difference between shaking up a bottle of Mountain Dew and a bottle of Dr. Pepper. You simply fizz atheistically and I fizz theistically. This means that you do not hold to atheism because it is true , but rather because of a series of chemical reactions. Morality, tragedy, and sorrow are equally evanescent. They are all empty sensations created by the chemical reactions of the brain, in turn created by too much pizza the night before. If there is no God, then all abstractions are chemical epiphenomena, like swamp gas over fetid water. This means that we have no reason for assigning truth and falsity to the chemical fizz we call reasoning or right and wrong to the irrational reaction we call morality. If no God, mankind is a set of bi-pedal carbon units of mostly water. And nothing else. — Douglas Wilson
The atheist can appeal to nothing absolute, nothing objectively true for all people, it is just mere opinion enforced by might. The Christian appeals to a standard outside himself/herself in which truth and qualitative values can be made sense of. — Peter Huff
My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust? If the whole show was bad and senseless from A to Z, so to speak, why did I, who was supposed to be part of the show, find myself in such a violent reaction against it?… Of course I could have given up my idea of justice by saying it was nothing but a private idea of my own. But if i did that, then my argument against God collapsed too–for the argument depended on saying the world was really unjust, not simply that it did not happen to please my fancies. Thus, in the very act of trying to prove that God did not exist – in other words, that the whole of reality was senseless – I found I was forced to assume that one part of reality – namely my idea of justice – was full of sense. If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never have known it was dark. Dark would be without meaning. — C.S. Lewis
Science can tell us how to do many things, but it can not tell us what ought to be done. — Author Unknown
If the solar system was brought about by an accidental collision, then the appearance of organic life on this planet was also an accident, and the whole evolution of Man was an accident too. If so, then all our present thoughts are mere accidents – the accidental by-product of the movement of atoms. And this holds for the thoughts of the materialists and astronomers as well as for anyone else’s. But if their thoughts – i.e., Materialism and Astronomy – are mere accidental by-products, why should we believe them to be true? I see no reason for believing that one accident should be able to give me a correct account of all the other accidents. It’s like expecting the accidental shape taken by the splash when you upset a milk-jug should give you a correct account of how the jug was made and why it was upset. — C.S. Lewis
The greatest act of faith takes place when a man finally decides that he is not God. — Johann Wolfgang Goethe
There are those who hate Christianity and call their hatred an all-embracing love for all religions. — G.K. Chesterton
Practicing psychiatry without faith in God is like meeting a hungry man and giving him a toothpick. — Author Unknown
We must live with people to know their problems and live with God to ‘help’ solve them. — Author Unknown
Men do not differ much about what things they will call evils; they differ enormously about what evils they will call excusable. — G.K. Chesterton
If you board the wrong train, it is no use running along the corridor in the other direction. — Dietrich Bonhoeffer
I believe in Christianity as I believe that the Sun has risen, not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else. — C.S. Lewis
Some people complain because God puts thorns on roses, while others praise God for putting roses among thorns. — Author Unknown
A heathen philosopher once asked a Christian, ‘Where is God’? The Christian answered, ‘Let me first ask you, Where is He not?’ — Aaron Arrowsmith
I was at this time of living, like so many Atheists or Anti-theists, in a whirl of contradictions. I maintained that God did not exist. I was also very angry with God for not existing. I was equally angry with Him for creating a world. — C.S. Lewis
No philosophical theory which I have yet come across is a radical improvement on the words of Genesis, that ‘In the beginning God made Heaven and Earth’. — C.S. Lewis
There is no neutral ground in the universe: every square inch, every split second, is claimed by God and counterclaimed by Satan. — C.S. Lewis
Whatsoever is good for God’s children they shall have it, for all is theirs to further them to heaven; therefore, if poverty be good, they shall have it; if disgrace be good, they shall have it; if crosses be good, they shall have them; if misery be good, they shall have it; for all is ours, to serve for our greatest good. — Richard Sibbes
For when we cease to worship God, we do not worship nothing, we worship anything. — G. K. Chesterton
How often we look upon God as our last and feeblest resource! We go to him because we have nowhere else to go. And then we learn that the storms of life have driven us, not upon the rocks, but into the desired haven. — George Macdonald
Someone once said that if you sat a million monkeys at a million typewriters for a million years, one of them would eventually type out all of Hamlet by chance. But when we find the text of Hamlet, we don’t wonder whether it came from chance and monkeys. Why then does the atheist use that incredibly improbable explanation for the universe? Clearly, because it is his only chance of remaining an atheist. At this point we need a psychological explanation of the atheist rather than a logical explanation of the universe. — Peter Kreeft
A silly idea is current that good people do not know what temptation means. This is an obvious lie. Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is… A man who gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later. That is why bad people, in one sense, know very little about badness. They have lived a sheltered life by always giving in. — C. S. Lewis
If God were small enough to be understood, He would not be big enough to be worshiped. — Evelyn Underhill
There are no ordinary people.. it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit. — C.S. Lewis
Out of 100 men, one will read the Bible, the other 99 will read the Christian. — D.L. Moody
If you ask why we should obey God, in the last resort the answer is, ‘I am.’ To know God is to know that our obedience is due to Him. — C.S. Lewis
God exist whether or not men may choose to believe in Him. The reason why many people do not believe in God is not so much that it is intellectually impossible to believe in God, but because belief in God forces that thoughtful person to face the fact that he is accountable to such a God. — Robert A. Laidlaw
Atheism is a crutch for those who cannot bear the reality of God. — Tom Stoppard
Still, even the most admirable of atheists is nothing more than a moral parasite, living his life based on borrowed ethics. This is why, when pressed, the atheist will often attempt to hide his lack of conviction in his own beliefs behind some poorly formulated utilitarianism, or argue that he acts out of altruistic self-interest. But this is only post-facto rationalization, not reason or rational behavior. — Vox Day
Nobody talks so constantly about God as those who insist that there is no God. — Heywood Broun
Merely having an open mind is nothing; the object of opening a mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid. — G.K. Chesterton