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Is the Bible the Inspired Word of God?
By Jason Carlson and Ron Carlson
During a question and answer session at a recent
speaking engagement, a university student asked me,
"Why do you believe that the Bible is the inspired word
of God?" Now this is a very interesting question; and
probably one of the most important questions any
Christian could ask themselves. What is so special, so
unique about the Bible that Christians believe it is
literally the inspired word of God?
In answering this student's question, I encouraged him
to consider the following facts about the Bible:
First, the Bible is not just one single book. This is a
more common misconception than many people realize,
especially with people who do not come from a
Judeo-Christian background. Rather than being a single
book, the Bible is actually a collection of 66 books,
which is called the canon of scriptures. These 66 books
contain a variety of genres: history, poetry, prophecy,
wisdom literature, letters, and apocalyptic, just to
name a few.
Second, these 66 books were written by 40 different
authors. These authors came from a variety of
backgrounds: shepherds, fishermen, doctors, kings,
prophets, and others. And most of these authors never
knew one another personally.
Third, these 66 books were written over a period of
1500 years. Yet again, this is another reminder that
many of these authors never knew or collaborated with
one another in writing these books.
Fourth, the 66 books of the Bible were written in 3
different languages. In the Bible we have books that
were written in the ancient languages of Hebrew, Greek,
and Aramaic; a reflection of the historical and
cultural circumstances in which each of these books
And finally, these 66 books were written on 3 different
continents: Africa, Asia, and Europe. Once again, this
is a testament to the varied historical and cultural
circumstances of God's people.
Think about the above realities: 66 books, written by
40 different authors, over 1500 years, in 3 different
languages, on 3 different continents. What's more, this
collection of books shares a common story line--the
creation, fall, and redemption of God's people; a
common theme--God's universal love for all of humanity;
and a common message--salvation is available to all who
repent of their sins and commit to following God with
all of their heart, soul, mind and strength. In
addition to sharing these commonalities, these 66 books
contain no historical errors or contradictions. God's
word truly is an amazing collection of writings!
After I had shared the above facts with this student, I
offered him the following challenge: I said to him, "If
you do not believe that the Bible is the inspired word
of God, if you do not believe that the Bible is of a
supernatural origin, than I challenge you to a test." I
said to the student, "I challenge you to go to any
library in the world; you can choose any library you
like, and find 66 books which match the characteristics
of the 66 books in the Bible. You must choose 66 books,
written by 40 different authors, over 1500 years, in 3
different languages, written on 3 different continents.
However, they must share a common story line, a common
theme, and a common message, with no historical errors
or contradictions." I went on to say, "If you can
produce such a collection of books, I will admit that
the Bible is not the inspired word of God." The
student's reply was almost instantaneous, he
emphatically stated, "But that's impossible!"
It truly is impossible, for any collection of human
writings. However, the Bible passes this test. The
Bible contains 66 books, written by 40 different
authors, over 1500 years, in 3 different languages, on
3 different continents, with no historical errors or
contradictions. The entire Bible, from Genesis to
Revelation, bears the mark of Divine inspiration.
The next time you encounter someone who asks you why
you believe the Bible is the inspired word of God, try
sharing this challenge with them.
Christian Ministries International,
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