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How to Know the Bible Is True #2

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green
The Truth Network Radio
March 1, 2024 12:00 am

How to Know the Bible Is True #2

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green

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March 1, 2024 12:00 am

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Welcome to The Truth Pulpit with Don Green, Founding Pastor of Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Hello again, I'm Bill Wright. It is our joy to continue our commitment to teaching God's people God's Word. Today Don is continuing with the second part of a message we started last time. So let's get right to it. Open your Bible as we join Don now in The Truth Pulpit.

Jesus Christ. That's the start of the Biblical approach. And here's what we need to remember.

Here's what we need to remember, beloved. In one sense, I can sympathetically appreciate what the evidential argument is trying to do. You know, trying to get something that can be presented to an unbelieving man to consider and to dislodge him from his, you know, dislodge him from his presuppositions. But it's fundamentally flawed.

It's all fundamentally flawed. First of all, unbelieving men, by definition, are dead in their trespasses and sins. He's not going to receive these things the way that the evidentialist thinks. If it was such a conclusive argument, then it would settle it for everybody.

But these things are routinely rejected. Here's what you and I have to remember as Christians, beloved. If the Bible is true, our goal is not to craft an argument that will please unbelieving men.

Let me say that again. Our goal is not to craft an argument that will please unbelieving men. Look over at 1 Corinthians 2 verses 12 through 14. The Apostle Paul says, Now we have received not the Spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. 1 Corinthians 2.

I still hear some pages turning. 1 Corinthians 2. Then in verse 14, he says, The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him. And he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. My point here is that it is a fool's errand to try to build an argument that will satisfy an unbelieving mind about the authority of God. We're not trying to impress them in what we're saying here. I would stand on the pulpit table in order to emphasize it if only I could.

If only that were appropriate, but it's not. Our goal is not to start by saying, How can I make this palatable to an unbeliever? To someone who is hostile to the faith? That's not my job to start there.

It's not your job to start there either. Beloved, your first responsibility, your primary essential duty from which all other duties flow, is to be faithful to Christ, to be loyal to Christ, to love the Lord your God with all of your heart, soul, strength, and mind. Obedient loyalty to Christ. To be faithful to him. Look over at 1 Corinthians chapter 4 verse 2 here and you see this. 1 Corinthians 4 verse 2. It is required of stewards that they be found faithful.

It is required of stewards that they must be found faithful. Let's deal with Christianity 101 here. Who is the supreme authority in the universe? It's Jesus Christ. Who is the supreme authority in your life as a Christian?

It's Jesus Christ. We must start our consideration of how to know the Bible is true by remembering who the ultimate authority is. And the ultimate authority is not you. It's not your judgment on the evidence. The ultimate authority is Jesus Christ.

Let me just remind you of that principle. Philippians 2 verses 10 and 11. At the name of Jesus every knee should bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father. In Matthew 28 verse 18 Jesus said all authority has been given to me. All authority given to Christ.

Every knee will bow, every tongue will confess that he is Lord to the glory of God the Father. Now, Jesus made point of this as he spoke to the disciples on the eve of his crucifixion. Look over at John 13. The Gospel of John chapter 13. We're making not just a case for how to know the Bible is true. We are reminding ourselves of who the authority is in our lives as Christians. In John chapter 13 verse 13 Jesus says this to the disciples whose feet he had just washed. He said, you call me teacher and Lord and you are right for so I am.

Look at that again. You call me teacher and Lord and you are right for so I am. Beloved, we don't look to Christ simply as, only as our Savior from sin. He is that and we thank God for that. But as a Christian we don't only receive him as our Savior.

We don't simply believe in him in a moment of time in order to get deliverance from eternal damnation and then go on living how we were beforehand. That's not Christianity. That's a false view that would separate the Saviorhood of Christ from the Lordship of Christ. No.

No. When we believed in Christ we received him for all that he is. His person and his offices are indivisible. They can be distinguished to help us understand but we receive Christ for who he is, the one indivisible eternal Son of God manifested in human flesh. And that has implications. It means that Christ is our teacher. It means that Christ is not only the Savior of your soul.

It means that Christ is the Lord over your mind. Christ is the Lord who tells you what is true, how you are to think, and you respond in obedient faith and say, Lord, I take what you say as true because you are the final authority. All authority is being given to you. You are my authority.

I have yielded to you as Lord. Therefore, my primary responsibility in matters of truth is to understand what you say and then conform my mind to it and affirm what you say as that which is true. Christ is not only the lawgiver over our bodies. The authority of Christ is so much more than the human aspects of the Ten Commandments in the Second Table.

Don't commit adultery, don't lie, all of that. Beloved Christ is the Lord over your mind. He instructs us and we conform our mind to his. We see what he believes, we see what he taught, and we implicitly accept it as a matter of obedient faith to be faithful to him.

He exemplifies attitudes and we adopt them as our own. Look over at the book of Ephesians. Ephesians chapter 1. As you turn past Corinthians and past Galatians, you'll come to Ephesians. In Ephesians chapter 1 beginning in verse 15, the apostle Paul is praying for the church. And he says in verse 15, For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him. Notice how Paul prays and what it is that he wants us to understand and to grasp and to grow in and to expand in our hearts. Having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe according to the working of his great might, that he worked in Christ. Stay with me here.

Follow along. This is about to explode like dynamite on our minds and hearts here. He worked in Christ when God raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion and above every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come. Paul is praying for believers to understand the absolute supremacy of the Lord Jesus Christ, that he is far above every other spiritual power. He is far above every other authority. He is the head of the church. He is Lord over all. We recognize him and give him honor for the surpassing greatness of his position in the universe as Lord over all.

There's no one above him. Now how does that apply to how we know that the Bible is true? Beloved, let's set aside the evidential arguments that we've seen and just start with a far simpler approach to life and to what I am to believe. The question that we always start with is what does Christ think? What does Christ say? What he says is revealed to us in his word.

This is not something that we mystically intuit and we make a subjective guess. I think Christ would say this. I think Christ would say we should accept all religions in a spirit of love and tolerance.

That's not what Christ thinks. We go to his word and we see what he thinks. What does Christ think about scripture? What does Jesus himself say about the word of God? Well, let's start in Matthew chapter 5.

Turn back there with me. Matthew chapter 5. In Matthew chapter 5 verses 17 and 18 we read this.

And remember, beloved, it's so important to receive this not just as printed words on the page, but to remember that the one who speaks is the one who is far... The one who speaks here in Matthew chapter 5 is the one who is far above all rule and authority. The one who speaks here in Matthew chapter 5 is the one whom every tongue will confess that he is Lord and that every knee will bow before him. The one who speaks in Matthew 5 is the one who is our teacher, our supreme teacher and Lord.

We are not at liberty to disagree with him, nor would we even want to. The highest position of the human mind is to be aligned with the mind of Christ. And so what did Christ say about the scriptures as they existed at his time? He says in verse 17, do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets.

I have not come to abolish them, but to fulfill them. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot will pass from the law until all is accomplished. He says the word of God is so certain, so authoritative that not a dot on an i or a cross of the t will fail until it's all fulfilled to perfection.

Listen, this is so important. Does that sound like a probability argument to you? Is Christ speaking in probabilities when he says not a dot, not a tittle will fail?

This is not a probability argument. This is absolute certainty from the Lord of the universe, asserting the inviolable nature of the word of God. Over in Matthew 24, you can turn there with me. Again, we're taking the time to turn. I could just quote them, but we're taking the time to turn so that you can see these with your own eyes, that you can make a little mark in the margin of your Bible.

Oh, this is important. Matthew 24, verse 35. Matthew 24, verse 35, Jesus says, heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

Look at it again. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. The word of God is more certain than everything that you see with your eyes. The word of God is more certain than the passing of human history. The word of God is more certain than anything else. And we say that not as a dogmatic statement based on human opinion. We state that as a dogmatic statement because it's what our Lord said. His words will not pass away.

It cannot be broken. In fact, Jesus said, look over, before we get to, I was going to go to John, but let's go first of all to Luke chapter 24. Luke chapter 24. This is after the resurrection, which in some ways is just an added layer of authority to what we've seen. The passages that we read in Matthew, Matthew 5, Matthew 24, based on the authority of the word of Christ, that's all that we need.

It's sufficient, it's certain, it's conclusive. But as we come to Luke chapter 24, there's another layer of authority that's added to, beyond even what we saw in those two passages from the book of Matthew. Because what we're about to read here in Luke chapter 24 is spoken by the resurrected Christ. He's speaking after he conquered death. He rose from the grave on his own power.

By the power of God, he came out from under death and now is alive forevermore, having shown that he is Lord over all authorities, all spiritual beings, and he's Lord even over the realm of death itself. And what does the resurrected Christ have to say in verse 44, Luke 24, verse 44? He says, these are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me and the law of Moses and the prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled. Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures and said to them, thus it is written that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead and that repentance for the forgiveness of sin should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.

You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you, but stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high. He says in verse 44, everything written about me must be fulfilled. And then in John, the Gospel of John chapter 10, we read in verse 35, Jesus says scripture cannot be broken. Scripture cannot be broken.

Now, let me give you a preview of coming attractions here. What we are saying this morning is conclusive and settles the matter. According to the highest authority in the universe, Jesus Christ affirms the authority of scripture and says that it cannot be broken, that it must be fulfilled, that it will not pass away. That's how we know that the Bible is true. We take it on the authority of Christ himself, not on arguments that we deem sufficient or questionable according to our own judgment. We are not at liberty to disagree with Christ.

This is what he has said about the Word himself. And for those of us that he is saved by grace, that the Spirit worked in our heart to convict us of sin and to lead us to faith in Christ and to trust in the blood shed in an atoning way at the cross of Calvary, that's all the authority we need. I don't need someone with a doctorate at some seminary someplace to strengthen my conviction on this.

If they have something helpful, I'll be happy to listen to it, but they're not the final authority. If they contradict this and write a book of 600 pages to contradict these things, they're wrong. It doesn't matter. If they would contradict Christ, they are wrong by definition. We receive the Word of God as true based on what Christ himself has said about it.

His view is supreme. Christ saw Scripture. Christ said that Scripture is eternally flawless.

The known universe will literally collapse before one dot of the Word of God fails. That's how authoritative and certain this all is. And so, beloved, I ask you, having seen these things side by side, is it historical evidence that certifies this to us and our judgment about that historical evidence that certifies these things to our hearts and gives us confidence that they are true? Or is it the eternal Son of God who loved us and gave himself up for us? Is it he who certifies the Word to us? Beloved, it is Christ. If, and in some ways, beloved, I'm just helping you work out the important implications of what those of you who are Christians would say you believe to be about Christ, what you believe about Christ for yourself personally. Is Christ your Lord? Is Christ your teacher? Is Christ your guide? Is Christ, in the words of Thomas in John 20, is Christ your God? Is Christ your shepherd? I know many of you are saying, you know, your heart is bursting with the desire. You almost want to shout it out.

Yes, yes, yes! My Lord, my God, my teacher, my guide, my shepherd, my rock, my fortress, my Savior, my hope, my peace. Well, beloved, don't you see, then, that what Christ says settles the matter? Not in a probable way, but in a final manner of ultimate certainty, that this is conclusive?

Beloved, this is what it means. This is an outworking of what it means to trust him, not simply to believe in the fact of an atoning work at the cross, not just to believe that he died for my sins, not just that, but to say, I know him. I know that he is God in human flesh.

I know that he is my Lord, and I believe what he says, and that settles it for me with certainty. Beloved, you are not meant, as a Christian, to be tossed about by the waves of changing doctrine and by the waves of conflicting opinions of men. That is not what Christ saved you to. And even though we turned to this passage recently, let's go back to Ephesians chapter 4. There are things in the Christian life, there are things about Scripture where you settle the matter in your mind.

You make a conclusion that says, I will not move from this. In Ephesians chapter 4, and again, I realize that I alluded to this recently, Ephesians chapter 4 verse 11, the risen Lord gave to his church apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, and teachers to equip the saints for the work of ministry for building up the body of Christ till we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that here's the purpose of all of that teaching, instructional ministry built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, and then built upon by others whom Christ appointed following the apostolic age. The point of it is this, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves, and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Beloved, you're not meant to be tossed about on these essential fundamental doctrines as if they were actually open for discussion that if what God says in his word could possibly actually not be true. You're not meant to be like that. God intends for you to have a Christian mind that is built on the right presuppositions, that is built on the authority of Christ, and that follows him in what he taught with a calmness of heart, with a satisfied mind, with a resolution of will, that with Luther says, here I stand, I can do no other.

God help me. Verse 15, he says, rather speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ. Into Christ, watch this, from whom? It's from the person of Christ that we grow in doctrine. It's from the person of Christ that we transcend human opinions, human cunning, human contradictions to the truth of God. It's through Christ that we overcome the insinuations of the devil saying the same things that he said to Eve in the garden. Has God really said this? An insinuating doubt by the very question in your mind. It's into Christ, verse 15, from whom the whole body, you and me, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Not tossed about. Not drawing our hope from probability arguments made by human authors on historical matters that are hard to find. We go straight to Christ. We say, Lord, what do you say about the word of God? Christ, as it were, responds, Scripture cannot be broken.

Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. And we, in grateful response, bow before him and confess him as Lord and say, yes, Lord, I believe. Yes, Lord, I accept what you have said.

Yes, Lord, what you said is the attitude that I adopt for my own. Lord, you did not speak in probabilities. You did not leave open the possibility of being wrong.

You couldn't. You're God. You're true.

You're the truth. And as my Lord, my God, my teacher, my guide, my shepherd, my friend, you'd never steer me wrong on such a fundamental matter. So, yes, Lord, I believe.

Help me in those times when I'm tempted to unbelief. Now, what we're going to find over the next couple of times together is we're going to see how this works out in detail. We're going to see how Jesus affirmed so many individual things in the Old Testament to leave beyond question that he was affirming it in all of its totality. We're going to see a little further on how Jesus prepared for the writing of an authoritative New Testament. Beloved, we've only started, in other words, in seeing and embracing what Christ has said.

We've just taken it in the most general way. Looking at the lordship of Christ and seeing what he said about Scripture as a whole. Now what we're going to see in times to come is how incredibly many times, item by item by item, you look at the specifics and you see that they always conform to the general principle of Jesus affirming the authority of Scripture.

As stated in the Old Testament and in the provision that he made for the writing of the New Testament. And what we're going to find are that two words are sufficient to establish in our minds and in our hearts the authority of the Word of God and that the Bible alone, the Bible alone, the Bible alone is the Word of God. Those two words, Jesus Christ, our Lord and our God. Stay with us in the days to come as we establish this most essential block in the building of a Christian mind.

Let's pray together. Christ, we bow before your great authority. You are the one whom heaven and earth adore. The angels bow before you and wonder at the majesty of your being. O Christ, the Father looked down on you from heaven, said, this is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. The Holy Spirit exists.

The Holy Spirit works. And the essential aspect of his ministry is to glorify your name, O Christ. You are high and lifted up, exalted above the heavens, raised from the dead at the right hand of the throne of God interceding for your saints. There is no higher authority in our lives than you, O Lord. We embrace you for all that you are, and we pray for those that are lost in sin and that are hearing these things maybe in a new way, a fresh way for the first time today.

Father, we pray that your Spirit would enliven their hearts to turn to Christ and say, be all of that to me as I repent from my sin and receive you as the Lord over my life, not just in my life but in my very mind and the way that I think. You're worthy of that, O Christ. You can be trusted. You are the way, the truth, and the life, and no one comes to the Father except through you. And you have given us abundant testimony in the Scriptures about what you think about the truthfulness and the trustworthiness of the Bible.

You affirmed it without qualification. And therefore, Lord, following you, so do we, come what may. In Jesus' name, amen. That's Don Green, founding pastor of Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio. Thank you so much, friend, for listening to The Truth Pulpit. Join us again next time as Don begins a new message as we continue teaching God's people God's Word on The Truth Pulpit.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-01 04:59:05 / 2024-03-01 05:09:37 / 11

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