This evening we begin our new study I’m calling a “Strategic Grasp of the Bible”. This is one of the greatest studies we could ever share. Why? Because the Bible is the Revelation of all that God wants us to know about everything we need to know. If He hasn”t revealed it – either it is a secret or it is unimportant. So the more of God’s Word you have a grasp on, the more you know about all that really matters in life.
If you would turn with me to John 17.17 we will find the first reason we need God’s Word.
“Thy Word is TRUTH”!
First, why would we even want to grasp the Bible? I hope it is because you believe that this book truly is God’s Word! That is really the only place any study can start. So a strategic grasp BEGINS with a settled conviction of the TRUTHFULNESS OF THE BIBLE. That it says what it means, and means what it says.
Just for a reminder, let me give you a 2 minute summary of the study we did a few years back called THE BOOK YOU CAN TRUST. In that study I shared my personal convictions which I call — Seven Reasons Why I Believe The Bible Is True. Here they are:
- I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRULY GOD’S WORD BECAUSE OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST SAID SO! Our Lord Jesus Christ believed in the verbal inspiration of the Bible. That means every word is inspired by the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 5:18). This means that there are no errors in science, history, or moral areas in the Bible, which we call inerrancy (John 10:35; 17:17). Jesus thus affirmed the historical reliability of the Scriptures by speaking of Adam and Eve as the first two humans (Mt. 19:4-5); by testifying of the reality of Noah and the global catastrophe called the Flood (Mt. 24:37); by speaking of Abraham as a person who lived and who knew Him as God the Son (John 8:56). Jesus even affirmed the reliability of the writings and lives of the major Old Testament personages. Adam and Eve (Mt. 19:4-5); Abel (Mat 23.35); Noah and flood (Mt. 24:37-38); Abraham (John 8:56); Moses and the Bush (Mk 12.26); David (Mt 12.3); Elijah (Luke 4.25); Daniel (Mt 4.17); Jonah (Mt. 12:40-41).
- I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRULY GOD’S WORD BECAUSE ALL THE WRITERS SAID SO. There is a harmony of conviction by the forty plus authors God spoke through. Thousands of times all the writers said so. They were totally convinced that they were sharing words that were not originating with them.
- I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRULY GOD’S WORD BECAUSE OF ITS INCREDIBLE UNITY. Because of its incredible unity demonstrated in the fact that from 40 plus men on 3 continents over 1,600 years and 60 generations comes one unmistakable fabric woven from prison to palace, desert to dungeon, hillside to holy places. There is one common denominator, one shared theme and one united message. There is but one system of doctrine, one system of ethics, one plan of salvation and one rule of faith.
- I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRULY GOD’S WORD BECAUSE OF ITS FULFILLED PROPHECY. What is the simplest and yet most profound evidence the Bible offers? It is prophecy fulfilled, an irrefutable verification reserved to the Judeo-Christian Scriptures alone. Prophecy is the missing element in all other sacred scriptures of the world’s religions; It is not to be found in the Koran, the Hindu Vedas, the Bhagavad-Gita, the Book of Mormon, the sayings of Buddha, the writings of Mary Baker Eddy (Christian Science). By contrast prophecy comprises about one third of the Scriptures! Isaiah 41:21 ” Present your case,” says the LORD. “Bring forth your strong [reasons,”] says the King of Jacob. (NKJV)
- I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRULY GOD’S WORD BECAUSE OF ITS SCIENTIFIC ACCURACY. Just the last few chapters of Job would be enough to prove the extra terrestrial nature of this Book. Have you ever read an old biology book? It is really funny to see how vastly the biological sciences are changing. Have you looked at an old Astronomy textbook? So much has changed. In fact in nearly every area of the Sciences there is flux, change, restatement and casting out the old and disproved statements. Often there is complete error and mistaken theories. But not with God, HE SAYS IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME!
- I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRULY GOD’S WORD BECAUSE OF ITS ARCHAEOLOGICAL VERIFICATION. In the 19th Century Sir William Ramsay an English skeptic set about to disprove the historicity of God’s Word. He took as his target the Book of Acts. He started digging in modern Turkey, ancient Asia Minor. What he found amazed the world of archaeology. Not only were all the cities Paul spoke of traveling through actually there, even the words he used to describe public officials were found beneath centuries of ruins exactly as recorded in Acts by Luke! He became a believer because of the profound historical reliability of God’s Word.
- I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRULY GOD’S WORD BECAUSE OF ITS ENDURANCE THROUGH THE AGES. Because of its endurance through the ages despite being the target of Empires, armies and infidels the Bible stands like a rock undaunted through the raging storms of time. Its pages burn with the truth eternal and they glow with a light divine. The Bible stands though the hills may tumble it will firmly stand though the Earth may crumble. I will take my stand on its firm foundation for the Bible stands!
So we need a strategic grasp because God’s Word is TRUTH. Secondly, we need to understand why God gave us these 66 inspired books. To understand why, turn with me to Luke 24.25-27. Here Jesus gives a seven mile Bible study to those on the road to Emmaus. Note what He said THEY (the entire Old Testament) SPEAK (every book, every chapter, even every detail) OF ME (the Bible is Christ centered)!
- Astrophysics of Dark Matter Job 38:19 Where [is] the way [where] light dwelleth? and [as for] darkness, where [is] the place thereof, (KJV) [99% of the mass of the Universe is dark matter we don’t even know what it is]; and Gravity Job 38:31 Canst thou bind the sweet influences of Pleiades, or loose the bands of Orion? (KJV) One of the major areas of study in astronomy is the gravitational tug of stars and systems.
- OceanographyJob 38:16 Hast thou entered into the springs of the sea? or hast thou walked in the search of the depth? (KJV) [there are teeming life systems surrounding the toxic hot springs at volcanic vents, two miles down in the dark ocean depths unknown until this century]
- OrnithologyJob 39:26-30 Doth the hawk fly by thy wisdom, [and] stretch her wings toward the south? 27 Doth the eagle mount up at thy command, and make her nest on high? 28 She dwelleth and abideth on the rock, upon the crag of the rock, and the strong place. 29 From thence she seeketh the prey, [and] her eyes behold afar off. 30 Her young ones also suck up blood: and where the slain [are], there [is] she. (KJV) Animal migratory navigation was not even closely imitated until satellite navigation, yet God built it into fish, birds and even insects!
- ZoologyJob 38:41 Who provideth for the raven his food? when his young ones cry unto God, they wander for lack of meat. (KJV) They arrive with precision against all odds. But how do those 50,000,000 Bristol Bay sockeye salmon get home each year? How do they know the exact time to return to their spawning spot from as far as 4,000 miles away? And to all return every time those same three weeks in June and July! They never miss their mark. Why? God gave them an absolutely focused sense of direction. God has placed some nearly unbelievable senses into the animal world. Look at migratory birds. They fly thousands of miles exactly to their destination. How? Scientists conclude they have a sense of the earth’s magnetic fields, like an internal compass. The King of the Universe, our Creator, didn’t leave us out. How’s your compass? Our directional capacity far exceeds the animal world’s awareness of magnetic fields or one part per billion of where we were spawned. No, we have a direct line to the Creator. We have Him. He starts and finishes all we ever need. LOOK UNTO HIM!
- Meteorology is the study of our atmosphere. Only a few hundred years ago was it found that air above us has mass or weight. However in the first and oldest book of the Bible nearly 4,500 years ago Job saidJob 28:24-25 For He looks to the ends of the earth, [And] sees under the whole heavens, 25 To establish a weight for the wind, And apportion the waters by measure. (NKJV)
- Hydrology is the water cycle of the Earth. Water circulates from the ground and seas to the air and back again. Scripture explicitly documents this fact. Go back 4500 years ago to the oldest book in the world and listen to God discuss Evaporation, Condensation, Vapor Clouds and Precipitation – all the elements of hydrology, through Job.Job 36:27-28 For He draws up drops of water, Which distill as rain from the mist, 28 Which the clouds drop down [And] pour abundantly on man. (NKJV) Now that is Scientific Precision! Job 26:8 He binds up the water in His thick clouds, Yet the clouds are not broken under it. (NKJV) Job 28:10-11 He cuts out channels in the rocks, And his eye sees every precious thing. 11 He dams up the streams from trickling; [What is] hidden he brings forth to light. (NKJV)
- Isostasy is the relatively new study of the rotational balance there is in our global earth between the height of mountains and the depths of the oceans. The desire to understand earthquakes and so on has caused this scientific inquiry. There must be a balance for the earth to not wobble. Did God know about this? He sure does. Listen to Isaiah 600 years before ChristIsaiah 40:12 Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, Measured heaven with a span And calculated the dust of the earth in a measure? Weighed the mountains in scales And the hills in a balance? (NKJV)
- Geodesy studies the shape, size and gravitation forces on the planet. Although science thought the world flat for a time the Scriptures have ALWAYS affirmed the truth. The Earth Rotates (turning on an axis) is a fact that up to the 1400’s was absent from science. The thinkers of the day said the earth was flat. The Hindu writings affirm that it rested on the backs of elephants. But God gives Scriptural truth inJob 38:14 It takes on form like clay [under] a seal (turning a cylinder in a axis to sign documents), And stands out like a garment. (NKJV) Wow, it rotates and Job 26:7 He stretcheth out the north over the empty place, [and] hangeth the earth upon nothing.
- Geology Job 38:4-6 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. 5 Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it? 6 Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof; (KJV)