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God’s Own Defense of Scripture, Part 1

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
December 3, 2021 3:00 am

God’s Own Defense of Scripture, Part 1

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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December 3, 2021 3:00 am

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The Bible the word of the one true and living God is the truth, and the only source of truth that convicts of sin, warns of judgment saves the center purifies, cleanses, matures, the believer and gives the hope of eternal glory. It says salvation is by grace through faith, not by works and it says that every word of Scripture is from God. So how can you be sure all of that is true if you were asked to prove the Bible's veracity what you say. Keep those questions in mind as John MacArthur looks at the greatest defense of Scripture ever written.

It's part of the study he's launching today titled God's own defense of Scripture. And if you have your Bible turn to Psalm 19.

As John begins today's lesson the Bible the word of the one true and living God is the truth, and the only source of truth that convicts of sin, warns of judgment saves the center purifies, cleanses, matures, the believer and gives the hope of eternal glory. And because it is the revelation of God by which God does his work to his own everlasting glory. It is the priority for the church and for every believer.

It is also always under attack always under assault by Satan and his demons, and the people in the kingdom of darkness. Attacks on the Bible have never ceased. They've only accumulated through the years in the early years the Bible was attacked as to its veracity, its truthfulness as to its inspiration, its inerrancy, it was attacked as to its completeness. Is it all the revelation we have, or isn't God giving more art there more revelations in visions and dreams and words of wisdom and words of knowledge and is the Bible the singular inspired text of God or other, not other texts that are equally inspired of God is the Bible relevant is not the fact that it is an antiquated book and ancient book if you will, written in another context and other languages in another time and another place lesson that set it on the shelf and make it virtually irrelevant to this modern world and is the Bible actually comprehensible.

Is it clear can it be understood. There has been another battle that just goes along all the time and that is assaults on the sufficiency of Scripture as if somehow the Bible wasn't enough. You need more than the Bible to make the gospel attractive. You need more than the Bible to solve your marital problems. You need more than the Bible to get a grip on your own life you got certain kinds of personality quirks that can only be resolved through psychology we have been embroiled in battles for the sufficiency of Scripture throughout the years.

It is an issue that is not only an issue in our culture, but it's been an issue all over the world. Everywhere I have gone, of necessity, I have preached on the sufficiency of Scripture that the word of God is true, it is inerrant.

It is inspired. It is complete it brings all revelation to an end. Nothing more is needed, then the truth of the word of God applied by the power of the spirit of God.

It is clear and it is sufficient. It is sufficient. Not all these attacks by the way, come from people outside Christianity. Most of them come from people who call themselves Christians. So were always going to need to go back and defend Scripture. How do we do that whether or two possibilities you could defend Scripture from outside of Scripture, then you would make human reason.

The ultimate determiner of Scripture's truth.

Far better to let Scripture defend itself and then you let Scripture be the ultimate determiner of its own veracity and so we take what is called a preset positional approach to the defense of Scripture, we presuppose the truthfulness of Scripture, we assume it to be so in any faithful diligent exercise in studying Scripture will yield the fact that this is truly the word of God, we let Scripture speak for it self, not trying to defend Scripture from outside Scripture, but from inside Scripture let God speak in defense of the word which he has written. I want to talk to you about God's own defense of Scripture sufficiency from Psalm 19 Psalm 19. Along the way as we talk about this.

I want to make a comparison with Psalm 119 Psalm 119 much longer 176 versus what basically built around the same theme as Psalm 19.

So will make some comparisons as we go. It goes without saying.

I think you're very much aware of it that through the centuries since the arrival of the revelation of God. God's true people have been the protectors and the preservers and the stewards of his truth by God's providential care, they have guarded the truth to bring it down to us in tact. We have been given an incalculable treasure by those who were faithful to protect and preserve and fight for Scripture through the centuries many of them gave their lives martyred, bloodied in defense of Scripture martyred for no other reason than that they translated printed prepared the word of God so that the people could hear his truth.

There is a high price has been paid through the centuries by many, many souls to get the word of God into our hands. One of the men who gave me some of the most prized Bibles that I have is a Bible collector now with the Lord. He had one Bible that was most notable.

This is a Bible from the 16th century. This is a Bible. It is a large Bible very large in the way that they were first printed, and if you open it you notice that it has been saturated with fluid up to about three quarters of the page. All through the entire Bible. Every single page has a water line about three quarters of the way up the interesting thing about it is that water line is a faded red, the color or a pink color, the history of that one Bible is a remarkable history when in the 16th century buddy Mary was massacring Christians because of the Bible because of the word of God. One of the things they like to do was to take those believers and before they would burn them at the stake.

They would slit their wrists and they would bleed them and fill a bowl with their blood. And then take a Bible and dump it into the bowl blood. This book has to be treated with a great amount of sacredness. Listen to the testimony of God. Psalm 19 verse seven the law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul. The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart the commandment of the Lord is pure or enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever.

The judgments of the Lord are true. They are righteous altogether, they are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover by them, thy servant is warned in keeping them there is great reward who can discern his errors acquit me of hidden faults also keep back thy servant from presumptuous sins. Let them not rule over me, then I shall be blameless, and I shall be acquitted of great transgression, but the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, oh Lord, my rock and my Redeemer. In Psalm 19. Starting in verse seven and running to the end of the chapter want to call your attention to three specific emphases one the sufficiency of Scripture to the value of Scripture and three. The right response.

That's what were going to look at not just backing up a little bit you say, what about the opening six versus the opening six verses of Psalm 19 are also about God's revelation, but not his written revelation. The opening six verses are about God revealing himself in creation.

The heavens tell of the glory of God, who would not conclude that God is all glorious who looks into the heavens. The expanse of the universe, declares the work of his hands every day. Every night is a declaration of the mighty power of God. He is revealed in his creation and it runs all through the conscious life that exists on this earth that God is a great creator and has told us a lot about himself in his creation about his power and his design in his order is intelligence, etc. uses an illustration of the sun. The sun literally rising from one end of the heavens and its circuit to the under other end of them, nothing being hidden from its heat what he's talking about something inside us now know to be true that the sun has a massive orbit from one end of the infinite universe to the other and it drags our entire solar system with it. These kinds of discoveries that we may clearly indicate the greatness and the power of our God. God has then exalted himself in nature. He has revealed himself in nature as Romans one says we can know his eternal power and Godhead that is that he is the sovereign God and that he is powerful, but more importantly, and saving only God is revealed himself in Scripture. There is his unwritten revelation and his written revelation when you come to verse seven. The transition is made from God revealing himself in nature to God revealing himself in Scripture. In Scripture the structure of these verses from verse seven through nine. Notice that there is a series of parallel statements versus seven, eight and nine here. There are six titles for Scripture law of the Lord. The testimony of the Lord in verse seven in verse eight the precepts of the Lord, and the commandment of the Lord in verse nine, the fear of the Lord, and the judgments of the Lord. Six titles for Scripture. Scripture is law, testimony, precepts, commandment, fear, and judgments. There are also six characteristics of Scripture notice is perfect. Sure right, pure, clean and true, and there are six benefits of Scripture.

It restores the soul makes wise the simple rejoices the heart enlightens the eyes endures forever, and the final one produces comprehensive righteousness. That's what it means when it says righteous altogether, it converts it makes wise, it brings joy it enlightens. It purifies it is relevant in every time it endures forever, and it produces comprehensive righteousness. This is magnificent. Here you have God in his inimitable way, speaking the vast glories of Scripture. In brief sentences.

In a few words, he captures the magnitude of the full sufficiency of Scripture. Please notice one other component here six times is repeated this phrase of the Lord of the Lord of the Lord of the Lord of the Lord of the Lord, bless there be some confusion about who is the author it is redundant six times the covenant name of Yahweh. The covenant name of the creator God is used here then is God's own testimony to God's own revelation in Scripture God's witness to the sufficiency and the adequacy of his word, which restores the soul makes wise the simple rejoices the heart enlightens the eyes endures forever, and produces comprehensive righteousness. This is sweeping even in just a few statements but take them one at a time. First of all, the law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul is called the law Torah favorite biblical word for Scripture.

It identifies the Scripture as divine law, divine teaching divine instruction. The term means teaching that is to say, it is God giving instruction to his creature divine instruction relative to man's life and conduct it is a complete explanation of God's will for man's life when you buy an appliance or you by an automobile or anything that is that all technical you get a manual along with it. You get an operators manual so that the manufacturer can direct you and instruct you in the proper use of what it is that you know possess. The Bible is the manufacturers manual for the proper operation of humanity. It is God's instruction for how man is to live it is God's law for man's life that is one way to view Scripture. It is that it is not only that there are six descriptions of Scripture.

But this is true of Scripture.

Scripture is like a many faceted diamond will look at six of those facets. As we examine this Psalm. It is God's manual for man's life. If man is to be everything God wants him to be. If man is to reach the fulfillment of God's intended creation for him. If man is to enjoy the fullness of God's blessing, he must then abide by the instructions given by the manufacturer and this is the only manual the law of the Lord as such notice. Please.

This characteristic is perfect.

It is perfect. James calls it the perfect law, so he uses the same idea. It is perfect, but we take you one step further, not perfect, as opposed to imperfect but perfect as opposed to incomplete, not perfect, as opposed to imperfect though it is that but the primary thrust of this Hebrew word is not about perfect, as opposed to imperfect but it's about perfect, as opposed to incomplete the best Old Testament scholarship gives this meaning. This Hebrew word means all cited SI DED all cited so as to cover completely all aspects of life.

It is comprehensive, it is sufficient.

It leaves nothing out yes that is a feature of being flawless, but it says much more to say something, has no flaws doesn't say that it's complete.

Yes, the Scripture has no flaws with the issue here is that it lacks nothing here is the manual for man's operation written by the manufacturer which leaves nothing needed out and as the all cited fully sufficient comprehensive complete law of the Lord. It has the power, here's the last phrase verse seven to restore the soul.

This is the effect the impact or converting the soul some of your text may say the Hebrew term can be translated, restoring, reviving, refreshing, or converting what the word really means is a total transformation total transformation so were starting to build a really interesting case we got the Scripture which is God's instruction for man's life. Nothing is left out is comprehensive, so comprehensive that it can totally transform what the soul now. This introduces us to a Hebrew word Nefesh Nefesh was a mean probably in your Bible. If you have a new American Standard or new King James or one of those more contemporary translations. Probably if you were to look at a Hebrew Bible and compare it with your English version, you might find that the translators have translated Nefesh about 20 different ways in the Old Testament person self, heart, mind, soul, they translated all kinds of ways, but always means one thing, the inner person the inner person. So what are we learning this first statement, the law of the Lord Scripture is sufficient to totally transform the whole inner person powerful state powerful powerful state it's able to save it's able to regenerate. It's able to convert its able to transform that gets repeated all through Scripture. Peter puts it this way. First Peter 123 being born again, not of corruptible seed, but by incorruptible, by the word of God. We are regenerated born again, given life by the word of God which lives and abides forever, and this is the word by which the gospel is preached to you. That's why Paul says in Romans one. Not ashamed of the gospel of Christ is the power of God and the salvation it gives life its powerful gives life giving illustration of this in Romans 10 Romans chapter 10 Paul says at the beginning of the chapter that his heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is for their salvation. Alright so you want Israel to be saved.

They're not saved.

The Jews are not saved, they don't have their own special way of salvation apart from the gospel. Their problem is not that they're not religious.

Their religious effect verse two says I bear them witness, they have a zeal for God which is not in accordance with knowledge, so having a zeal for God, but not having the right knowledge than Savior. What don't they know what they don't understand God righteousness. They don't know how righteous God is. They seek to establish their own righteousness so they don't know how righteous God is and they don't know how sinful they are as a problem they didn't think God is as righteous as he is so righteous that no one could ever earn salvation. They thought God was less righteous than he is. They thought they were more righteous than they were in so they can earn their salvation.

Therefore, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. Furthermore, they didn't understand that Christ is an end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes they didn't understand that salvation doesn't come by earning your salvation with God.

It comes only through Christ who brings an end to the law and provides the righteousness that we could never earn if we only believe. So they had their view of God wrong their view of themselves wrong. Their view of Christ and his provision completely wrong. They had a problem got it all wrong. They needed to believe in Jesus Christ you can't be saved unless you call the name of the Lord, you can't be saved unless you believe in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ and confessing him as Lord. You can't be saved unless you know that God is too righteous to accept your works in your too sinful to earn salvation, and that your salvation can only come through faith in Christ who provided a righteousness for you through his sacrifice. There's only one way to be saved and that's to believe the truth, the only way you can believe the truth is to hear the truth. The only way you can hear the truth is for someone to declare that through word Scripture powerful enough visit, the power of God to salvation. Does that word have the saving power of God in it according to the Scripture does according to the testimony of God, the law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul is the word of God have to be helped along because it somehow in kept in adequate your relevant antiquated is insufficient on its own will think so.

I think the testimony of God is unmistakably clear. The word itself is the sea where Christ the Pearl rests the word itself is the field where Christ the treasure is hidden you're listening to Grace to you with John MacArthur, Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary. Today's lesson is from his study, titled God's own defense of Scripture now to turn our attention to the big celebration later this month and the plans you may have. Christmas is coming and if you're looking for a special gift for a loved one, something that will be a benefit long after the holiday we have some helpful suggestions and maybe the most important suggestion. John is to place that order immediately. How would be it. Because this is the last day, we recommend placing Christmas orders using our free standard shipping and deadline for phone orders is 4 PM Pacific time hours, or 2 PM for Internet orders and what I would suggest if you want to get an order and get it in quick you can start with a MacArthur study Bible in the new American Standard. The English standard version. The new King James in a number of non-English translations.

The MacArthur study Bible comes in Spanish, Russian, German, French, Italian, Arabic, Chinese, Portuguese, all kinds of additions hardcover leather additions premium goatskin and we discounted all the MacArthur study Bible 25% and that includes all binding options in all languages so this is a great opportunity for you to order the MacArthur study Bible of your choice and this is just for limited time and then I would mention. Also, the MacArthur New Testament commentary series of 34 volumes that are available on the entire New Testament discount pricing. If you purchase the entire said or you can order them a volume time. Whatever you might be interested in reading commentaries is one of my favorite things to do, have done in my whole life long and that I'm still doing it with great blessing and if you haven't read a commentary.

This is a great opportunity for you to experience something that is the most in-depth way to study the Bible, so the MacArthur New Testament commentary series is available and then I want to mention one of the book of one perfect life. I have one by my chair in the den. I have one on my desk wherever I am.

I love to read this.

This is a blending together of the four Gospels to tell the perfect story of Jesus, the one perfect life. Also some slick notes taken from MacArthur study Bible.

As you read through it, but it's is the full story of Christ combining the four Gospels and you see how they perfectly harmonize one perfect life or the MacArthur New Testament commentaries over the MacArthur study Bible great Christmas present options.

That's right, in any of these resources would make a great gift to something your loved ones will benefit from long after Christmas to order one perfect life. The MacArthur study Bible, or a MacArthur New Testament commentary. Contact us today.

Call our toll-free number 855 Grace or go to our website Jide

Keep in mind right now. All of our study Bibles are 25% off the regular price. And don't forget, this is the last day that we recommend using our free shipping option Christmas orders to place your order. Call 855 Grace or go to Jide TY.and if these Bible teaching broadcasts have encouraged you this year. Please let us know. Perhaps it help you better understand your salvation or equipped you to tell your neighbors and coworkers about Christ or maybe it even led to your salvation. Whatever the case, we'd love to hear your story, send an email to once more that's or you can write to Grace to you. Box 4000 panorama city, CA 91412 now for John MacArthur on Phil Johnson reminding you to watch Grace to you television the Sunday check your local listings for channeling times and then join us next week when John continues his look at God's own defense of Scripture with another 30 minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on race

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