Posts Tagged "Holy Bible"

Why I Believe the Bible #15 (The Bible Has Been Tried)

BIble

One of my favorite quotes about the Bible is from Gilbert K. Chesterton. He said:

“Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried.”

Throughout the last 2,000 years, the Bible has been tried and tested and lambasted by people from all different walks of life, all different occupations, all different levels of intelligence and all over the world. Despite this testing, the Bible has withstood every attack.

Nineteenth century writer H.L. Hastings once forcibly illustrated the unique way in which the Bible has withstood the attacks of its skeptics:

““Infidels for eighteen hundred years have been refuting and overthrowing this book, and yet it stands today as solid rock. Its circulation increases, and it is more loved and cherished and read today than ever before. Infidels, with all their assaults, make about as much impression on this book as a man with a tack hammer would on the Pyramids of Egypt.

Read More

Why I Believe the Bible #14 (Extra-Biblical Evidence for the Bible)

BIble

In addition to the evidence of Jesus prophesied in the Old Testament and presented in the New Testament, there are a number of references to Jesus in other ancient literature. This is made all the more remarkable by the fact that the amount of literature from the time period following Jesus’ life. For example, it is said that all the writing of the world between 50 A.D. and 60 A.D. which are still in existence would fit on a bookshelf between bookends one foot apart. Furthermore, Jesus’ life was not spectacular that you would expect other people to write about him. He lived in a small town and ministered for only three years mostly in rural regions. Despite all this, there are ample examples of people writing about Jesus and Christianity following his death.

The following are a few examples:

  • Pliny the younger wrote to Emperor Trajan around 112 A.D. to ask about the proper test for Christians prior to their execution. Pliny was the Roman governor of Bithynia in Asia Minor. Pliny mentions the habit of Christians including on a certain day and singing hymns to Christ.
  • Julius Africanus referred to to the writing of Thallus around A.D. 52 which mention the darkness the fell over Jerusalem at the time of Jesus’ death.
  • Josephus was a Jewish historian working for the Roman Empire in the first century. He mentioned Jesus a number of times.
  • Cornelius Tacitus, who lived from A.D. 64 to 116 referred to followers of Christus and their believe in the resurrection as “pernicious superstition.”
  • Lucian of Samosata, around A.D. 170, was a Greek scientist who wrote about Christians, Christ, the Crucifixion and other Martyrs. He referred to the “novel beliefs” of Christians.
  • The Jewish Talmud compiled during the late first and second centuries makes mention of Jesus hanging on the cross, Jesus and the names of 5 disciples, healings performed in the name of Jesus and scoffs at the claims of a virgin birth.
  • Cornelius Tacitus was a Roman historian who mentions Christ in his Annals written around A.D. 110.
  • Suetonius, who was the Chief Secretary to Emperor Hadrian, indentified Christ and referred to the “mischievous and novel superstition” of the resurrection.
  • The writing of Phlegan around A.D. 140 were referred to by Julius Africanus and Origen. In those writings, Phlegan referred to the earthquake and eclipse at the time of Jesus’ death as well as Jesus’ prophecies.
  • Mara Baar-Serapian was a Syrian philosopher around A.D. 70 who compared Jesus to Socrates and Plato.
Read More

Why I Believe the Bible #13 – (Jesus and Other Writers Confirm Scripture)

BIble

Some Christians who do not hold a high view of scripture hold that Jesus is the Christ and at the same time proclaim that the Old Testament of the Bible is not trustworthy. These people ignore the fact that Jesus and numerous New Testament writers testify to the reliability of the Old Testament.

Jesus referred over and over and over again to the Old Testament in his teaching. He refers to the Old Testament as an authority 56 times as recorded in the New Testament. He quotes the Old Testament 81 including scriptures from 20 different books. When we look at the quotes based on the Old Testament organization of Jesus’ day, he actually quoted from all but four books. He verifies the details of scripture and reality of stories included in the Old Testament by referring to them in his teaching. Indeed Jesus emphasized the accuracy of scripture to the minutest detail:

For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. [Matthew 5:18 ESV]

Indeed, Jesus clearly had a high view of scripture and referred to the Bible in several different ways during his teaching:

Read More

Why I Believe the Bible #12 (The Hardships of Its Authors)

BIble

It’s been way too long since I did an installment in this series, and we’re not even half way through yet.  I am passionate about the Bible because I am passionate about the God that it tells me about.  Since it has been so long, it makes some since to have a look back at what we’ve covered thus far:

With that brief recap, it’s time to move on to reason #12 that I believe the Bible is true and that is the hardships that found its authors and their unwillingness to renounce anything that they had written.

Church history tells us that 11 of the 12 disciples dies a martyr’s death because they refused to renounce the story they were spreading of Jesus Christ. James, Bartholomew, Andrew, Phillip and Simon were crucified.  Peter requested that he be crucified upside down because he did not feel worthy of dying the same way as his Lord.  James and Mathias were stoned to death.  Matthew, James and Thomas died by the sword.  Even Paul was beheaded for his believe in Christ.  John was the only disciple to escape martyrdom, and it wasn’t for lack of trying.  Church tradition tells us the he was boiled in hot oil before being exiled to Patmos.  Many of these disciples penned much of the New Testament, but rather than denounce what they had preached and avoid persecution, they chose to die for what they believed.  In and of itself the martyrdom of these men does not prove the Bible to be true.  However, while it is possible that one man may choose to die for a lie, it is hard to believe that so many would die and none would recount their story if it were not true.

Read More

This Month in the Middle (November 2009)

This Month in the Middle WideEach month this entry provides a categorized listing of the posts from the prior month. So, here is the (slightly delayed) “This Month in the Middle”for November 2009! Make sure you check out our Index Page as well.

Come Ye’ Children Synopsis

Children’s Ministry / Kid’s Stuff

Read More