I listened to a message from Bob Utley last night regarding the authenticity of the Bible and how it is the only inspired and holy book given by God.
This is already what I believe.. infact, not just believe but know, but it still amazes me how many Christians even question the authenticity of the bible nevermind people who are non-christians.
Bob utley offers some evidence to show how the bible remains true and inspired and how the translation from the original language did not take anything away from Gods word to us.
There are many prophesies in the Bible, but some try to say that when Jesus came in the flesh he manipulated things in order for prophesy to be fulfilled. Yet even looking at his birth we can see prophesy fulfilled where there is no way it could have been manipulated by Jesus since he was not yet born.
Scholars say that this text was written around 750bc. It is a prophesy concerning the birthplace of Jesus; Bethlehem. There was nothing overly special about Bethlehem, neither was it a landmark place. It was known because it was the birthplace of King David.
Before Jesus was born, King Herod would question the chief priests and scribes as to where Jesus would be born. They told the King that he would be born in Bethlehem and quoted the prophesy in Micah. Matt 2:4-6
Luke tells us in Luke 2:1-7 how Mary and Joseph ended up in Bethlehem. Caesar Augustus had made a command that everyone in the world should be registered, and in order for people to be registered, they had to return to the town which they were born. Joseph and Mary at the time were in Galilee, yet Joseph was from Judea, the City of David, known as Bethlehem. so Joseph had to return to Bethlehem in order to register.
This is how Mary and Joseph ended up in Bethlehem, and whilst they were there, Mary gave birth to Jesus and the 750yr prophesy was fulfilled.
Many people when thinking about the Bible think it is a made up book, they are unaware that infact the Bible is a book which is not only historical itself, but contains events in history.
Archeology probably began with Napoleon in Egypt. Much of our history has been dug up in middle eastern areas, yet nothing as far as we know has ever been dug up that discredits historical events in the bible. Infact, quite the opposite. There are many archeological discoveries that have confirmed the writings in scripture.
Bob Utley uses the example of the Hittites.
The Hittites are first mentioned in the bible in Gen 15:20 and a number of times in the OT after that, yet for years there was no record in history that such people existed. Because of this, people would say the Bible could not be true since there is no proof of the Hittite people therefore it must have been a name that was made up. However, in 1950, Turkish archeologists found a royal library which contained 2000 tablets (cuneiform letters) confirming that the Hittite people did infact exist. Hittites also went by the name of Anatolia. Read about the Hittite Empire .
Consistency of Scripture
From Genesis to Revelation, the bible takes us from Adam to the Second coming of Jesus (the first being his birth), it talks about the fall of man and how since that time God has been outworking his plan to bring us back into relationship with Him. The bible shows us events unfolding in history which lead us right up to the present day as well as events that will happen in the future.
We see through the OT the outworking of Gods plan which led up to the birth of Jesus. Scholars can date events because of the information that is given in scripture as well as confirming these events through history.
There are some paradoxes in scripture, but scripture does not contradict itself. The consistency of the bible is a miracle in itself. There is no other book like it.
The bible was written over a period of 1400 to 1600 years, it was written in three languages Hebrew, Aramaic and Koine Greek and translated into many other languages over the years, yet the message is still universal and unchanged.
The Bible is not just ink on paper nor is it just a historical book. The divine inspiration of the bible is evident in the way it changes peoples lives. God does not honor what is not from him. The bible is the living word of God. There are many testimonies from people from how their lives have changed since reading the bible. Infact someone told me the other day that they came into the knowledge of the truth of Jesus from reading Isaiah 53. Another amazing prophetic chapter from the 8th century prophet Isaiah, talking about God sending Jesus into the world so that we could be reconciled to God through Jesus sacrifice.
How anyone who really studies scripture could question its authenticity is quite amazing to me, but people do, non-Christians as well as Christians. Yet, if there is so much in scripture which can be tested in relation to historical events which prove to be true, how much more should we believe the rest of the message?