Bible Reading: Psalm 119:137-144
Your promises have been thoroughly tested; that is why I love them so much. Psalm 119:140
DURING THE LAST few days you’ve figured out some huge facts: (1) the Bible is your primary source for direction in life; (2) the Bible reveals God’s universal will and plays a vital role in helping you discover God’s specific will for your life; and (3) the Bible is your guide for making right choices in life.
But suppose you’re talking with a friend. He says, “But how can you trust the Bible? It’s just like any other religious book.” How would you answer that?
Some significant facts about the Bible contribute to its reliability. Together, these facts are true only of the Bible. These facts don’t prove that the Bible is true, but they prove that the Bible is unique, which is the first step in considering the reliability of what the Bible teaches.
The Bible is unique in its unity. The Bible was written over a 1,600-year span by over forty authors from every walk of life-kings, fishermen, poets, and statesmen. It was written on three different continents (Asia, Africa, and Europe) in three different languages (Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek). Yet the Bible speaks with amazing unity and conformity on hundreds of controversial subjects. No other book can make that claim.
The Bible is unique in its circulation. The Bible is the world’s all-time best-seller by far, with more than 2.5 billion copies!
The Bible is unique in its translation. The Bible has been translated in part or in whole into more than 1,600 languages. It is available in the languages and dialects of 95 percent of the earth’s people. No other book can make that claim.
The Bible is unique in its survival. Six hundred and forty-three manuscript copies of Homer’s Iliad have survived to today. That might seem like a lot, but the Iliad is only a distant second among ancient books to the New Testament’s 24,633 surviving manuscripts-despite many attempts by skeptics over the centuries to destroy God’s Word! Voltaire, a famous French skeptic in the eighteenth century, predicted that Christianity would die out within one hundred years. But fifty years after his death, the Geneva Bible Society moved into his house and used his printing press to produce thousands of Bibles that were distributed worldwide. Voltaire faded into history, but not the Bible! No other book can make that claim.
Why has this unique book survived? Because its Author loves you and wants you to have the guidance you need to get going on a successful and rewarding life.
REFLECT: How would you explain the reliability of the Bible to a non-Christian friend?
PRAY: Thank God today for giving you his utterly reliable Word.