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Can the Bible Be Trusted?

Words of Life / Salvation Army
The Truth Network Radio
May 16, 2021 1:54 am

Can the Bible Be Trusted?

Words of Life / Salvation Army

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May 16, 2021 1:54 am

There are over 100 Billion, (yes, billion) Bibles sold or given away around the world each year. While no one can deny the popularity of the Bible, in today’s episode, Ken discusses the question, “Can the Bible be Trusted?”

 

Series: SKEPTICS WELCOME

https://salvationarmysoundcast.org/wordsoflife

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Hi, this is Bernie Dake. Welcome to the Salvation Army's Words of Life.

Hi, I'm Megan Hoffer. And if you're enjoying Words of Life, I want to invite you to check out another show brought to you by the Salvation Army. Heartbeat is a one minute show about real life. Heartbeat touches on topics ranging from finances and prayer to dating and mental health. If you're looking for a short message of hope to challenge you and brighten up your day, subscribe to Heartbeat wherever you get your podcast or visit salvationarmysoundcast.org. Hi, for Words of Life, this is Cheryl Gillum.

And I'm Bernie Dake. Hey Bernie, how many languages has the Bible been translated into? I honestly would have no idea. That would be more than 250 languages. Wow. Yeah, that's pretty amazing, isn't it?

Absolutely. How many Bibles are sold or given away each year, do you know? A few million.

More? Whoa. Yeah, over 100 billion or 100 every minute. Wow. Isn't that amazing?

That's incredible. So we know the popularity and availability of the Bible, but another big question for a lot of people is how can it be trusted? We live in a world now where we're told not to believe everything that we read. So why should we believe the Bible?

Interesting. Obviously, our perspective as believers is going to be slanted. If you're not someone who believes in the Bible and you're listening to this program, I can tell you that there's a section in the middle, Psalm 34, eight, there's a scripture there that says, taste and see the Lord is good. I always used to think that said, test and see. And I honestly, as a young person, and even as an adult, in a sense, have tested God and he has proven himself true to his word. I can't tell you the number of times I've been delivered from danger or protected from a perceived threat or harm.

And just recently having come through a colon cancer surgery, where now the doctors tell me there's no evidence of disease. It is the grace of God. He is true.

He's proven himself to me. And I beg you, test and see if the Lord is good to you. Now, there are some of you who have been through a trial that feel you weren't delivered because maybe a family member did die and they're no longer with you and there's a sorrow and there's a pain there. In our case, I have a brother-in-law who was not delivered from cancer.

How in the world could that be good? But in fact, the goodness that came out of that is our family learned how to deal with that grief. And in celebrating the life of my brother-in-law realized that we could come alongside other people in those moments of grief.

They've been delivered. And if we know in our case that he had a right relationship with Jesus Christ. So, you know, we believe that he's in a much better place and there is no more pain and no more suffering. Now, the other side of this is some of you, if you're skeptics and you haven't read the Bible, the challenge is read it, see if it's true, try to prove that it doesn't work. And I think you'll be surprised that God will make himself known to you in a very real way through his word.

Well, good morning and welcome again to our show Skeptics Welcome. Do you believe it just because it was said? Do you believe everything just because it's on social media? It's on the internet.

It must be true. Well, what about the Bible? Is the Bible true?

Is it accurate? I mean, we're talking about 40 authors over 1500 plus years. Can we really trust that everything in it should be taken at face value? How is the Bible even relevant in 2021? Ask anybody's opinion about something that's in the Bible.

You might actually even get 15 different answers. See, the words have been through a process of analysis and translation that sometimes can even point to multiple conclusion based upon which scholar you're actually asking. But if this is so, then how can we be sure that what we are getting is actually accurate? And that my friends is why Bible study is so important. And not only individual study, but study with persons of various background and experience. Don't just stay in your own little echo chamber where everybody believes the same thing that you believe about the Bible, but come in contact with other people who believe something maybe even different about the Bible.

Get into some conversations. It's what Wesley called Christian conferencing, coming together for debate and understanding, not in violent disagreement, but to reason over the scriptures. Maybe even as the Lord said, come let us reason together.

It's something that we don't do as much as maybe we should. You see, in the beginning, when the church was first starting out, they had multiple church conferences or councils. First couple centuries, they're trying to figure out what actually is Orthodox teaching. You don't have the word Trinity in the Bible anywhere, and yet this is a concept that we understand as true because it came to us through debate, through these councils of Nicaea and Laodicea and Constantinople. The first Jerusalem council you might even remember is in the Bible.

It's Acts chapter 15, where the Gentiles are being told they have to believe like Jews. They have to do everything the Jews do, including being circumcised in order to become a Christian. And through that conference, they say, no, there's only two things. One is keep yourself from sexual immorality. And don't eat food sacrificed to idols. That's it.

Those were the only two. And so in that moment, the things that we had to do or the things that we had to practice changed based upon people coming together, wrestling over the scriptures and coming to an understanding together of what it means to be a Christian. At the council of Nicaea, they agree to the baptismal creed and get the, I believe in the God, the Father, the maker of heaven and earth. Trinity continues to be discussed in this issue of Jesus, whether he's God, whether he's man, whether he's both. And it's not until the council of Laodicea that you actually get 27 books of the New Testament being authorized. It starts by one of the monks called Athanasius.

He's the one who sort of puts forward this list. And we have 27 books in the New Testament. Now what's interesting in that is they had to take others out.

How did they make that choice? Well, one is, did it stand the test of time? Were people inspired by things that were being written in it? And were the people who wrote them actually people who encountered Jesus?

Or was it just maybe somebody who said something along the way? The difference between canonical and apocryphal, which is the word we use for those that were not included, is whether or not they are essential for the faith. Now, some of the other books that you might be able to read, the book of Enoch and various others, they're not bad reading.

Sometimes you can actually even get some insight from it, but it is not essential. And if it contradicts anything in the Bible, then that's why it was made to be apocryphal. Through this process, we have these books of the Old and New Testament that were given by the inspiration of God and that they only constitute the divine rule of Christian faith and practice, as we good salvation say in doctrine number one.

But interestingly enough, even after the 27 books are made to be canonical, which is the word we use there to officially recognize these, you get to Martin Luther and he wants to throw out the book of James because it talks about your works and he wants a grace only. So even in the midst of all of this, there are debates over what the scriptures actually mean and what they say. There are a lot of great resources that we have available to us that we did not have before, in the same way that perhaps those in the Middle Ages couldn't read Latin and therefore had no access to the Bible. When they were given the Bible in their own language, they could finally read it for themselves, study it for themselves, and they found things in there that they had come to believe were true because priests said it so, but were not, and they could counteract that argument now with their own scriptures.

Even more than that, now we have resources available to us that can take us beyond what even some scholars even had available to them at the time. You can actually go back to find what that word in the Greek was, what that word in the Hebrew meant, and can begin to see the nuances of what God was saying that perhaps you would have missed had you just read the English translation, which immediately you continue to ask the question, but how can we believe it all? I mean, if it's been through all these processes, and that's where you have to believe that the process is just as important as what we have, that God was working through people in the issue of Christian conferencing, in studying the Bible together, in making sure each word is there for a specific reason, and if it's not, why is it there?

Through all history, this work has been done for you. Some will point to the fact that, well, the Bible isn't necessarily historically accurate, and yet we can point to non-Christian sources such as Josephus and Tacitus and the works of Philo, and even Herodotus. You can see where the Bible is lining up with extra biblical literature, literature that was written at the same time as the Bible from non-Christian sources. So if that's true, then there is a believability about what's happening in the scriptures.

But let me also say this. The Bible is a story, and in communicating the story, it's not always specific on what historical fact may or may not be. I'm not saying that it's myth, and I'm not saying that it's not true. It just doesn't deal with the details of what we would hope to see, because we read with such a detailed scientific mind. The Bible wasn't really meant for your right to read. It was meant for your right brain, mathematics, science mind.

It was meant for your left brain, the imaginus, the one who can see details in different items that are said through the scriptures. It's a reason why Jesus talked in parables, because he was talking to people. He was talking to you, and he had a point for you that was relevant that could find its way in actual happening, like those parables of a seed in the ground that grows or found itself in a banquet that's prepared for others and no one comes.

We can all identify emotionally with those stories. And God is trying to communicate to you through these passages of the Bible to a point where we take our scientific mind and we analyze all the words and what those words mean and how those words are put together. But at the end of the day, what is the story telling us about God? Where does God want us to be? What kind of people does he want us to be? And he's given us a model all the way through to show us how to live our lives. We thank you for continuing to listen. Next week, we're going to ask the question, can I be a Christian and disagree with the Bible?

Well, there's a loaded question. So I guess we'll see you next week. The Salvation Army's mission, Doing the Most Good, means helping people with material and spiritual needs. You become a part of this mission every time you give to the Salvation Army. Visit salvationarmyusa.org to offer your support.

And we'd love to hear from you. Email us at radio at uss.salvationarmy.org. Call 1-800-229-9965 or write us at P.O.

Box 29972, Atlanta, Georgia 30359. Tell us how we can help. Share prayer requests or share your testimony. We would love to use your story on the air. You can also subscribe to our show on iTunes or your favorite podcast store, and be sure to give us a rating. Just search for The Salvation Army's Words of Life. Follow us on social media for the latest episodes, extended interviews, and more. And if you don't have a church home, we invite you to visit your local Salvation Army worship center. They'll be glad to see you. This is Bernie Dake, inviting you to join us next time for The Salvation Army's Words of Life.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-18 09:51:02 / 2023-11-18 09:56:28 / 5

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