Bible skeptics and critics dismiss the Bible as a collection of fables and myths, or stories made up by the powerful to control others. How do you answer someone who holds this view? You can answer quite powerfully utilizing the secular world standards used to evaluate the accuracy of ancient literature. We reviewed last month how the Bible is easily the best Preserved and most Accurately Transmitted ancient manuscript, and that it is so reliable that it is THE BEST ancient resource for Archeological work.
This month we will continue to review the trustworthiness of the Bible. We will start with Prophecy, then look at Unity, and finish with Resonance.
Prophecy – how accurate is the weather forecast for tomorrow? How about for a day one year from now? Pick your favorite sports team. Have you been disappointed by the expert predictions for the season? I saw a recent 2019 chart depicting the points during the year when most of the major financial giants predicted the next recession would start. The most credible voices on Wall Street all said sell and run for the hills. Yet if you listened to them, you would have missed out on the BEST stock market run up in recent history. We are surrounded by secular prophets with dismal accuracy.
The Bible, by contrast, has over 300 fulfilled prophecies. None of them are for the next day, or the next year. Most of them were made many hundreds of years prior. By modern standards, accurate prophecy hundreds of years away is a mathematical impossibility. Even a 1% accuracy rate would be unimaginable. What’s more, while there are over 300 fulfilled prophecies, there are none that are wrong. Zero. So far, the Bible is 100% accurate.
Now, there remains some unfulfilled prophecies – see Revelation – they relate to the End Times. We can’t answer the accuracy of those prophecies until the End Times – but would you bet against a 300+ to 0 record? The Qu’ran, in contrast, contains no prophecy at all. There is no continuing work of God among His people in the Qu’ran. The Bible stands alone among ancient manuscripts for accurate information on future events. Alone.
Unity is also a remarkable differentiator. The Bible is actually 66 books, written over 2000 years, by 40 different authors, on 3 different continents, writing in 3 different languages, and many different styles and yet the message through out each book of the Bible hangs together with the whole in perfect unity. The Message is not just consistent; it is the same. Writers, without good knowledge of previous or future cultures and events somehow managed to cobble together a single unified story from vastly different vantage points over 2 centuries. No other ancient text compares in unity across the entire manuscript, and yet most claim just 1 author writing at one point in time, writing in one place in one language and one writing style. The remarkable Unity of the Bible stands alone among all texts.
Resonance - The Bible and its message resonates with people when they read it. The text is alive. How often have you have read a well-known passage and yet seen something completely new? This is because the Bible is not just a collection of stories and words. It is one of two primary ways we commune with God – the other being prayer and meditation. Reading the Bible is an encounter with God – and so it resonates with people in a way no other ancient or modern text can possibly do.
Be encouraged, then, that the Bible you read and distribute is what it claims to be, and stands far apart from any ancient or modern man-made text.
Give Hope. Give Life. Give Bibles!