All scripture is given by inspiration
of God, and is profitable for doctrine,
for reproof, for correction, and for
instruction in righteousness.
II Timothy 3:16
The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God's revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter. Therefore, all Scripture is totally true and trustworthy. It reveals the principles by which God judges us, and therefore is, and will remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried. All Scripture is a testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation.
(Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4:1-2; 17:19; Joshua 8:34; Psalms 19:7-10; 119:11,89,105,140; Isaiah 34:16; 40:8; Jeremiah 15:16; 36:1-32;
Matthew 5:17-18; 22:29; Luke 21:33; 24:44-46; John 5:39; 16:13-15; 17:17; Acts 2:16ff.; 17:11; Romans 15:4; 16:25-26; 2 Timothy 3:15-17;
Hebrews 1:1-2; 4:12; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:19-21)
(Article 1 of The Baptist Faith and Message)
So many people think the Holy Bible is obsolete: they say it is archaic, having no meaning in today's world, filled with ridiculous laws and rules.
They say it is filled with inaccuracies and that it contradicts itself, and so cannot be trusted. They say it's just a narrative of history that has no real bearing on our
lives. They even say it's merely fiction, written from man's point of view. They dismiss it with disdain, criticize it, mock it, and despise it.
Within this ample volume lies
The mystery of mysteries:
Happiest they of human race
To whom their God has given grace,
To read, to fear, to hope, to pray,
To lift the latch, to force the way;
And better had they ne'er been born
That read to doubt, or read to scorn.
Sir Walter Scott
Why is there such an effort to discredit the Bible? Because it is where God reveals Himself to us. He reveals Himself as the one true God:
God reveals His holiness, and our sinfulness. He reveals His Sovereignty, His authority, His right as our Creator and Redeemer to rule our lives.
And that is what the world rebels against.
The Bible is composed of 66 different books, (*) by different authors, all of whom were divinely inspired as to what to write. Because they wrote under the leadership of the Holy Spirit of God, we can trust the things the Bible says - it is not merely man's opinion or will. It was written over a period of approximately 1,500 years, from around 1450 B.C. (the time of Moses) to about 100 A.D. (following the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ). The Bible was written in three languages: Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek.
There were more than 40 different authors, who came many different backgrounds: they ranged from shepherds, farmers, tent-makers, physicians, fishermen, priests, philosophers and kings. Yet in spite of their differences in background, education, and personal temperament, there is a cohesiveness to the finished work like no other book in history. Each book is a stand alone work, yet each forms part of the whole. The message of God's eternal love and His redemption plan is revealed in each book individually, and in the whole, from cover to cover.
The New Testament of our Holy Bible was canonized in it's entirety by the year 375 A.D. The Old Testament had been canonized long before the advent of Christ. "Canon" is derived from the Greek word "Kanon". meaning a measuring rod. To be canonized simply means that the fathers of the early church - the scribes, religious leaders, and chief priests - measured every aspect of each work to test it's divine inspiration and authority. Any work that did not meet strict criteria was not included: thus any work containing any fallacy, heresy, or contradiction was eliminated. It became the collection of books or writings accepted by the apostles and leadership of the early Christian church as the sole basis for Christian belief. (*)
Not only has the Holy Bible been around longer than any other book known to man, it has also has been translated in it's entirety into over 2000 languages in print form, (with additional partial translations, and audio translations for unwritten languages). This is far more than any other book in the world; by comparison, Shakespeare has only been translated into about 50 languages. By the way, some people get so upset about all the various translations today: New Internation Version, King James Version, Holman Christian Study Bible, Revised American Standard Version, just to name a few of the more popular ones. But the fact is, the same Holy Spirit who inspired the original writers to bring God's words to the written page can be trusted to guide the translaters who collaborate to make it more understandable to us.
Despite all attempts to discredit it or minimalize it, despite all the opposition to it and persecution of it, the Holy Bible remains the number one
best-seller every single year. It is where God reveals Himself to us. It is a very real and personal love story from our Creator to us. It is just a valid today as it was in the early church. God's word never changes, and is always meaningful and relevent in every
The Bible contains the mind of God,
the state of man, the way of salvation,
the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers.
It's doctrines are holy,
it's precepts are binding,
it's histories are true, and it's decisions are immutable.
Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe,
and practice it to be holy. It contains
light to direct you,
food to support you, and comfort to cheer you.
It is the traveler's map, the pilgrim's staff,
the pilot's compass, the soldier's sword,
and the Christian's charter, where paradise is
restored, Heaven is opened, and the gates of
hell disclosed. Christ is it's grand subject,
our good it's design,
and the glory of God it's end.
It should fill the memory, rule the heart, and guide the feet.
Read it slowly, frequently, and prayerfully. It is a mine of wealth,
a paradise of glory, and a river of pleasure. It is given you
in life, will be open at judgment, and be remembered forever.
It involves the highest responsibility, rewards the greatest labor,
and condemns all who trifle with it's holy contents.
(*) The Roman Catholic Church considers the books known as the Apocrypha to be "deuterocanonical", or a "secondary canon", also inspired by God. Thus these books are always included in Roman Catholic Bibles, usually interspersed among the books of the Old Testament.
However, since neither Jesus nor the apostles make any reference to the apocryphal books, and they contain many doctrinal and historical errors, most Protestants view these writings as historical documents, but not part of the Holy Bible.