Thursday, July 12, 2012

The Reliability of Scriptures


     'Can we trust the Scriptures?'
     'Is the Bible error-free?'
     'Is the Word of God relevant in this age?'

     Such are the questions asked by many regarding the Bible. Throughout the history the Scriptures have been receiving countless attacks from the skeptics. Yet many claim that it has been transforming their lives since they took hold of it.

     Can we really prove the reliability of the Scriptures? Are its claims worthy of our faith? Were its writers moved by God? Let the following proofs shed light to its veracity.
Passages from Isaiah
  1. The New Testament ranks first in manuscript count. Having 20,000 copies, it had beaten the number of Aristotle's copies.
  2. The writers of the Scriptures, 40 in number, were saying the same thing, affirming God's attributes and decrees and claiming that the Messiah is the solution to man's sinfulness. such authors came from different background, locations and generations. Many of these firsthand witnesses died for their faith. Who would die for an unworthy cause?
  3. It is filled with fulfilled prophecies; not one of them failed. A great example will be the incarnation, death and resurrection of Christ which was foretold in Isaiah 53, Psalm 22 and Genesis 4:15. The miraculous existence of the Jews also confirmed the prophecies made about them in Genesis 12:2-3 and Ezekiel 37:21.
  4. The Bible mentioned accurate scientific facts. The Hydrologic Cycle was described in Ecc. 1:7, Is. 55:10, Ps. 135:7; Earth's shape in Is. 40:22 and its activities in Job 38:12, 14; blood circulation in Lev. 17:11, nature of the flesh in 1 Peter 1:24-25; atomic disintegration in 2 Peter 3:10.
  5. Historical records affirm it. It says in 1 Cor. 15:17, 'If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.' Luke, a historian, made a careful report of the early churches' activities in Acts. Archaeology confirmed the details explained in that book. Old Testament-related documents were reported to be unearthed. Tacitus, a secular historian, mentioned in his book (The Annals) a group who worships Jesus.
  6. The Scripture passages themselves provide that the Scriptures is the inspired Word of God (1 Tim.3:16, 2 Pet. 1:21). Scripture authors also considered inspired their co-authors' writings. In 2 Pet. 3:15-16, the author mentioned Paul and his letters, considering them as Scriptures. Paul also mentioned Deut. 25:4 in one of his teachings. Even Jesus quoted numerous passages from the OT.
     Believing the Scriptures doesn't mean committing intellectual suicide for its claims are rational. They passed the logical, historical, empirical and scientific tests. With all the evidences presented, we could not just brush such claims off with the question, 'So what?'.


Sources:
Josh McDowell. More Than a Carpenter.
Morris, Henry. Many Infallible Proofs.