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Is the Bible Just Another Book?

Renewing Your Mind / R.C. Sproul
The Truth Network Radio
September 21, 2021 12:01 am

Is the Bible Just Another Book?

Renewing Your Mind / R.C. Sproul

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September 21, 2021 12:01 am

Why do Christians believe that Scripture is the Word of God? Today, Steven Lawson sets forth several stirring reasons why it is impossible for the Bible to be "just another book."

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How would you respond to someone who says the Bible is just another book. The rational argument should be known by each one of us here today. There needs to be more going in our heads than simply I was raised this way or I was brought up this way.

There needs to be some strong pillars that uphold our convictions that the Bible is the very word of God is weak on Renewing Your Mind.

Were hoping respond to the objections that people have about the Christian. Some of the messages from our 2010. Would you your ministry's national conference or theme was tough questions Christians face and Dr. Steven Lawson was more than up for the challenge to defend the Bible as the very word of God. I like you to God's word and turn with me to the book of second Timothy second Timothy chapter 3 and I want to begin by reading verses 16 and 17 which will be a launching point for us in this message. The title that I have been assigned.

Is this is the Bible.

Just another book. Second Timothy three want to begin in verse 16 I think addresses this issue directly and it needs to be before us, and deeply embedded in our heart and in our sole word of God reads all Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. I will begin by asking you this question. Why do you believe that the Bible is the word of God. Why do you believe that this book is not just another book. Why are you convinced that the Bible is a supernatural book written by our sovereign God. That is a very important question before each and every one of us here today and from a divine perspective. We believe that the Bible is God's word because it's also there. The Holy Spirit has borne witness to our spirit into our hearts that this book contains the very voice of the living God to us. It is the Holy Spirit who has convinced us of the veracity of Scripture.

The spirit has brought its inward testimony into our hearts, and he has persuaded us that this book is like no other book in the world that this book is God's book and this is an inside witness that the author himself.

The Holy Spirit has brought home to our hearts, but this is not mean that there are no rational supports for this conviction because there are many sound evidences had many convincing proofs that the Bible is God's word.

Our faith is built upon facts, the foundation of our faith is this book and there are many convincing and compelling reasons why we believe that this book is like no other book. Now, it still requires a step of faith. But I trust that as a result of our time together for this session and that you will see that it is a reasonable step of faith in this message I want to present the case why the Bible is God's word. The rational argument should be known by each one of us here today. There needs to be more going in our heads than simply I was raised this way or I was brought up this way for I went to VBS as a child and I just always have believe that this book is the Bible there needs to be some strong pillars that uphold our convictions that the Bible is the very word of God. So I want to lay out for you.

10 reasons why we believe the Bible is the word of God. I would urge you, even to write these down in your Bible to have these inside the front cover on the back cover as a reference point to come back to again and again that yes this is why I am persuaded that the Bible is the word of the living God and reason number one. We want to begin at the most basic entry-level place and number one is the direct claims of the Bible.

The Bible is authoritative in all matters that it addresses and this includes its own direct claims about itself. The Bible actually claims to be the word of God. And when a defendant is brought into a court room. He is allowed to testify for himself in this passage. Second Timothy three and verse 16 we read all Scripture is inspired by God, the Bible claims not to be the word of men, not to be the word of culture or society.

The Bible claims to be God breeze.

The ESV translates it breezed out by God. Is this word inspired by God.

These three words come from one Greek word Seo new stylus CRS for God new stylus is breath or spirit Seo new stylus means God breeze that God literally breezed out the Scriptures as it was recorded by secondary human authors of this verse says nothing about God inspiring the authors of the authors were moved by the Holy Spirit.

Second Peter one verse 21, but this does not say that the officers were inspired as this says that the text of Scripture is inspired by the Scripture is not breezed into by God, such that what men wrote suddenly became inspired. Rather, what this is saying is that all Scripture is breathed out by God for God is the source, God is the ultimate author of Scripture that the Bible is the product of the divine breasts. Scripture is the product of the supernatural divine operation over 2000 times in the Old Testament we read statements like this, thus says the Lord, or the Lord said or something like this. The word of the Lord came to me saying for the law of the Lord of the precepts of the Lord again and again and again we read these direct claims by Scripture. I will put my words in your mouth, says the Lord. And when we come to the New Testament week we read verses that are equally emphatic. We read, for example, in first Thessalonians 410 verse 15 for this we say to you by the word of the Lord because the authors were very aware that their message did not originate within themselves. It was not dredged up from the culture or the society, but that this is a transcendent message that is coming down out of heaven further pin to us. Moreover, we read statements like this in first Corinthians 11 verse 23, for I received from the Lord that which I delivered to you. Moreover, when we compare Old Testament verses with New Testament versus many times what God says in the Old Testament. It is recorded as the Scripture says it in the New Testament because Scripture is the voice of God Augustine and Calvin both said when the Bible speaks God speaks so this is where we begin the direct claims of Scripture.

The Scripture is is very crystal clear.

This book is the word of God. Now, second the perfect unity of the Bible is a long one studies the Bible, the more we are impressed with the amazing unity in the midst of its diversity of the amazing diversity of the Scripture 66 different books written over a period of some 15 to 1600 years over 40 different authors on three different continents, writing in three different languages.

Consider the diversity of the authors who were Kings three were priests. One was a physician who were fishermen who were shepherds. One was a former Pharisee to her statesman.

One was a tax collector. One was a military general. One was ascribed.

One was a cupbearer and one was a goat herder and consider the diversity of the literary genre with which they wrote. There's narrative poetry, prophecy, Proverbs, parable gospel epistle allegory song legal writings consider the diversity of where they were when they wrote the Bible. The Sinai desert the palace of Jerusalem for the cave in Judea the palace of shush and by side the river of Babylon, the land of Egypt, Macedonia, Greece, Rome, a barren island on known as Patmos and the diversity of its many parts there are almost 3000 different cast members in the story line of the Bible spanning some 1189 chapters comprising some 31,000 versus requiring 700,000 words containing 3 1/2 million letters and yet despite this complex diversity. This book speaks of one plan of salvation one people of God one story of human history. One problem of mankind. One solution for this problem. One standard of morality. One design for the family. One chief object of its of its message is always speaking with one voice. It never contradicts itself. How can you account for this unity in the midst of such vast diversity and the only reasonable explanation that there is is that there is one author who stands behind this entire book can has breezed it out and that author is God himself. Let me illustrate it this way.

Suppose every state in the union was asked to excavate its natural stone boxing in a crate, put it on a railroad car and send it to the nation's capital. All 50 states would participate there came crates containing limestone other states would send marble other states would send sandstone other states would send granite once those trains arrive in Washington DC. They are uncreated and they are all brought together there seem to be of different size and shape. Summer square summer rectangular summer cubicle.

Some are a cylinder form and as they are brought together all 50 stones interface perfectly and perfectly comprise a replica of the Jefferson Memorial monument with its domes with his sidewalls with its buttresses with its arches with its transept's not a gap not a flaw.

Nothing missing a perfect perfect fit.

How would you account for that any thinking person who had two brain cells that might be touching one another between their two ears. The only explanation that you could come to is that there was a master architect behind the entire project to add send out specific measurements for what he desired.

And as it all came together, he oversaw the project that it would be fitted together. You would have to assume that there was one major architect and so it is with the word of God. Every doctrine, every truth, every principal, every practice, every standard of act of ethics it all fitting together to form one temple of truth. It is the word of the living God not to believe this would be synonymous with there being an explosion in a printshop and all of the letters just happened to land on the ground and form the Oxford English dictionary without a mistake in perfect alphabetical order, and without any misspelled words. Do you think that would just happen absolutely not. The Bible speaks with one voice on every issue that it addresses and we as believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. We ought to have the greatest confidence in the strongest faith that this book is the inspired word of the living God do in class I want to give you 1/3 reason. The third reason is the reliable transmission of the Bible far more than any other book of antiquity. The Bible has been passed down to us with extraordinary precision. Now let's begin with the Old Testament until recently, the oldest known Hebrew manuscript of any length did not date earlier than the first part of the 10th century after Christ event would be a gap of some 13 to 1400 years from the time of the writing of the last book of the Old Testament to the oldest copy of the Old Testament that we had least like that again a gap of some 13 to 1400 years and then in 1947 in 1948 there was a little shepherd boy in the northwest section of the Dead Sea. He was picking up some stones and shocking them into a cave like little boys would be prone to do any herd of sod noise inside that cave he walked in to discover one of the great archaeological treasures of modern history. The dead sea scrolls and over the next months in the next period of time they went into 11 different caves and they found contained a treasure that had been in there for some thousand years. Precious copies of copies of the original text as there were two copies of Isaiah. There was an entire copy of the Psalms there is an entire copy of the book of Leviticus and there were thousands of fragments of different sections of the Old Testament, and when the Hebrew scholars gathered together and when they saw this and began to piece these manuscripts together in a moment in an instant. Our oldest copy of the Old Testament was pushed back a millennium back to the days virtually of the first century church and what they discovered was an astonishing accuracy that over those thousand years. The transmission of the word of God had been passed down with jaw dropping accuracy that there is no other book of antiquity that has been so carefully passed down to us, then this Bible the word of God in the New Testament is even more so we have almost 6000 early Greek manuscripts of the New Testament, and another 10,000 copies in the Latin Vulgate to say nothing of Syriac and other Semitic languages. We compare this with other ancient books written at the same time.

It's really it's really embarrassing the full plethora of manuscripts that we have that substantiate the reliable transmission of the word of God down to us in the entire copying process. For example… Take home or they lived 800 years BC there is a time gap between hit between when he wrote what he wrote and the oldest copy of Homer, some 400 years with Plato. It is 1300 years with Caesar and his writings, 1000 years.

But when we come to the New Testament. The earliest documented. We have that has pieces of the Old Testament is not 1300 years is not a millennium it's 50 years and in the earliest copy of an entire New Testament. It's but some 200 years and the copies are not six or seven is 6000 know the confidence that we should have in this book being passed down to it is unsurpassed for any books of antiquity at any level.

Why do we believe that what we hold in our hand is the written word of the living God. There is its direct claims as there is its perfect unity there is. If reliable transmission. Fourth, the historical accuracy of the book I take for example the historical accuracy with which Luke wrote the gospel of Luke and the book of acts FF Bruce of the University of Manchester in England in a work entitled the New Testament documents are they reliable. Bruce writes one of the most remarkable tokens of Luke's accuracy is to ensure familiarity with the proper titles of all the notable persons who are mentioned in his pages. This was by no means an easy feat in his day as it would be an hours because he had it was not so simple to consult convenient books of reference.

Cambridge goes on to talk about is Luke records the book of acts. Not only is he geographically spot on.

At every point without having an Atlas in front of him, but that as he addresses the various titles of Roman officials. He does so with absolute perfection.

Cambridge goes on to argue would be like going to Oxford University your very first day on campus and being able to address everyone on faculty and everyone in higher administration by their proper titles Provost master director, president and many of the original Roman leaders. They were moving up the ladder and some of their titles were being changed and every time that Luke records what they were key has it exactly right. Never mistake historically and the more the archaeologists began to dig into the sand of the Middle East and they uncovered treasures.

They are not finding mistakes in the Bible they are bringing confirmation of the historical accuracy of the Bible that they have undone uncovered the pool of Bethesda in John five verse to that for many years liberals said see the Bible is wrong, it cannot be correct because there is no pool of Bethesda poops the archaeologists have discovered it. Now, many feet below the surface, buried in the sand of time. The Bible is always correct for years the first five books in the Bible, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, liberals fruit through every assault they could at this and said while there wasn't even the use of language in letters that would allow someone to write to the Pentateuch at that time will the archaeologists have discovered not simply that yes Moses was able to write that using the language of the day. There was a postal system that was functioning in that part of the world's people were riding and exchanging letters with one another. There has never been a book written in antiquity with the historical accuracy of the Bible is Dr. Steven Morrison with a message titled use the Bible just another book. After hearing his reason and impression the answer. I think we can respond with an emphatic no. Glad you joined us for Renewing Your Mind today by we Webb all week were featuring messages from the conference tough questions Christians face and is will find the answer to every tough question comes from the pages of Scripture.

That's why we want to get today's resource offer you your hands is Dr. RC Sproul's book, everyone's a theologian in order to answer tough questions we have to work through the key doctrines of the Christian faith diligently and accurately, and in this book. RC teaches us how to do just that. We give you her phone number is 800-435-4343. When you call us with a gift of any amount we will be glad to send you the paperback edition of this book. Everyone's a theologian.

You can also reach out to us with your do appreciate your generosity to look at her ministries. It's only through the gifts of friends like you were able to continue producing and distributing teaching like this. How many times have you heard someone say it's just not fair to say that Christ is the only way the argument is a pretty simple one from those who oppose as it goes around really like this.

You say you are a Christian. While I thought that Christians were supposed to be humble.

If you are humble you would not continue to suggest that Christianity has got it right and others have got it wrong. Alister Begg will be your teacher tomorrow and we hope you'll join us for Renewing Your Mind

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