Question: "Is the Bible truly God's Word?"
Answer: Our answer to this question will not only determine how we view the Bible and its importance to our lives, but also it will ultimately will have an eternal impact on us. If the Bible is truly Godís Word, then we should cherish it, study it, obey it, and ultimately trust it. If the Bible is the Word of God then to dismiss it is to dismiss God Himself.
The fact that God gave us the Bible is an evidence and illustration of His love for us. The term "revelation" simply means that God communicated to mankind what He is like and how we can have a right relationship with Him. These are things that we could not have known had not God divinely revealed them to us in the Bible. Although Godís revelation of Himself in the Bible was given progressively over approximately 1500 years, it has always contained everything that man needed to know about God in order to have a right relationship with Him. If the Bible is truly the Word of God, then it is the final authority for all matters of faith, religious practice, and morals.
The question we must ask ourselves is how can we know that the Bible is the Word of God and not just a good book? What is unique about the Bible that sets it apart from all other religious books ever written? Is there any evidence that the Bible is truly Godís Word? These are the type of questions that must be looked at if we are to seriously examine the biblical claim that the Bible is the very Word of God, divinely inspired, and totally sufficient for all matters of faith and practice.
There can be no doubt about the fact that the Bible does claim to be the very Word of God. This is clearly seen in verses like 2 Timothy 3:15-17, which say, ď. . .from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.Ē
In order to answer these questions we must look at both the internal and external evidences that the Bible is truly Godís Word. The internal evidences are those things internal to the Bible itself that testify of its divine origin. One of the first internal evidences that the Bible is truly Godís Word is seen in its unity. Even though it is really sixty-six individual books, written on three continents, in three different languages, over a period of approximately 1500 years, by more that 40 authors (who came from many walks of life), the Bible remains one unified book from beginning to end without contradiction. This unity is unique from all other books and is evidence of the divine origin of the words as God moved men in such a way that they recorded His very words.
Another of the internal evidences that indicate the Bible is truly Godís Word is seen in the detailed prophecies contained within its pages. The Bible contains hundreds of detailed prophecies relating to the future of individual nations including Israel, to the future of certain cities, to the future of mankind, and to the coming of one who would be the Messiah, the Savior of not only Israel, but all who would believe in Him. Unlike the prophecies found in other religious books or those done by Nostradamus, the biblical prophecies are extremely detailed and have never failed to come true. There are over three hundred prophecies concerning Jesus Christ in the Old Testament alone. Not only was it foretold where He would be born and what family He would come from, but also how He would die and that He would rise again on the third day. There simply is no logical way to explain the fulfilled prophecies in the Bible other than by divine origin. There is no other religious book with the extent or type of predictive prophecy that the Bible has.
A third internal evidence of the divine origin of the Bible is seen in its unique authority and power. While this evidence is more subjective than the first two internal evidences, it is no less a very powerful testimony of the divine origin of the Bible. The Bible has a unique authority that is unlike any other book ever written. This authority and power are best seen in the way countless lives have been transformed by reading the Bible. Drug addicts have been cured by it, homosexuals have been set free by it, derelicts and deadbeats have been transformed by it, hardened criminals reformed by it, sinners are rebuked by it, and hate has been turned to love by reading it. The Bible does possess a dynamic and transforming power that is only possible because it is truly Godís Word.
Besides the internal evidence that the Bible is truly Godís Word there are also external evidences that indicate the Bible is truly the Word of God. One of those evidences is the historicity of the Bible. Because the Bible details historical events its truthfulness and accuracy is subject to verification like any other historical documentation. Through both archaeological evidences and other written documents, the historical accounts of the Bible have been proven time and time again to be accurate and true. In fact all the archaeological and manuscript evidence supporting the Bible makes it the best documented book from the ancient world. The fact that the Bible accurately and truthfully records historically verifiable events is a great indication of its truthfulness when dealing with religious subjects and doctrines and helps substantiate its claim that it is the very Word of God.
Another external evidence that the Bible is truly Godís Word is the integrity of the human authors. As mentioned earlier, God used men from many walks of life to record His Words to us. In studying the lives of these men, there is no good reason to believe that they were not honest and sincere men. Examining their lives and the fact that they were willing to die (often excruciating deaths) for what they believed in, it quickly becomes clear that these ordinary yet honest men truly believed that God had spoken to them. The men who wrote the New Testament and many hundreds of other believers (1 Corinthians 15:6) knew the truth of their message because they had seen and spent time with Jesus Christ after He had risen from the dead. The transformation of seeing the Risen Christ had a tremendous impact on these men. They went from hiding in fear, to being willing to die for the message God had revealed to them. Their lives and deaths testify to the fact that the Bible truly is Godís Word.
A final external evidence that the Bible is truly Godís Word is the indestructibility of the Bible. Because of its importance and its claim to be the very word of God, the Bible has suffered more vicious attacks and attempts to destroy it than any other book in history. From early Roman Emperors like Diocletian, through communist dictators and on to modern day atheists and agnostics, the Bible has withstood and outlasted all of its attackers and is still the most widely published book in the world today.
Throughout time, skeptics have regarded the Bible as mythological, but archeology has established it as historical. Opponents have attacked its teaching as primitive and outdated, but its moral and legal concepts and teachings have had a positive influence on societies and cultures throughout the world. It continues to be attacked by science, psychology, and political movements and yet remains just as true and relevant today as it was when it was first written. It is a book that has transformed countless lives and cultures throughout the last 2000 years. No matter how its opponents try to attack, destroy, or discredit it, the Bible remains just as strong, just a true, and just as relevant after the attacks as it was before. The accuracy which has been preserved despite every attempt to corrupt, attack, or destroy it, is clear testimony to the fact that the Bible is truly Godís Word. It should not surprise us that no matter how the Bible is attacked, it always comes out unchanged and unscathed. After all, Jesus said, ďHeaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass awayĒ (Mark 13:31). After looking at the evidence one can say without a doubt that ďYes the Bible is truly Godís Word.Ē