I have been pondering the Biggest Book, aka, the “Bible.” It is my firm belief that the Bible is the inspired Word of God and reveals the Divine standards for what I believe, teach and strive to do.
This book has taught me twelve principles that guide my life. These Principles are #1: Honesty, #2: Hope, #3: Faith, #4: Courage, #5: Integrity, #6: Willingness, #7: Humility, #8: Brotherly Love, #9: Justice, #10: Perseverance, #11: Spirituality, and #12: Service.
I was just sharing with some friends a few days ago that I am confident that the Bible is inspired. They asked me how so, what do we mean by that? I explained, and I saw their eyes open wide in wonder. So, I thought I would pass on to you what I shared with them. I told them that the Bible is "inspired."
When I usually hear the word "inspired," I think of watching the Northern Lights dance while filling a cold Alaskan night sky as I'm mushing my dog team into a glorious mountain scene. I would get so inspired I would take a photograph, or the next day paint a painting, write a poem or look into the beautiful eyes of my girlfriend who was mushing with me in the silence of the North! But it’s not that type of inspiration.
This inspiration has to do with Divine perfection and direction. This inspiration has to do with God’s control of the production of this Most Holy Book EVER!
There’s a verse that we often refer to, so let us look at the first part of 2 Timothy 3:16.
It reads—“All Scripture is inspired by God." That word "inspired" - in Greek - is “theopneustos,” a Greek word which means, "God Breathed." When we talk about this inspiration, about the Bible, we are saying that God superintended the activity of the human Pen-Pushers so as to guarantee that what they wrote was exactly what He wanted written. That’s what inspiration has to be, it’s what it means. If that is true, then we should have some evidence of that.
If you were on a crime scene and you saw a crime had been committed, you would have those guys out there dusted for fingerprints, right? Because if there is evidence there and someone has been there, their fingerprints are going to be left behind.
With that said God’s fingerprints are all over the Bible. So, I want to bring to the forefront two of these fingerprints. If the Bible is inspired, then we should be able to see some things. Here is one of those things we should be able to see in the miraculous production.
I believe God inspired. He worked through the human Pen-Pushers or what [are] known as a Scribes.
Well, let me tell you the process of that. We are talking about a production of what we have in our hands now that took over 1,500 years to all come together. 1,500 years!
As Americans, we can’t begin to comprehend that.... our country is not even 300 years old. Back in the ’70s, I helped celebrate that day, our 200-year-old birthday as a country. We are talking about 1,500 years in production.
[The Bible] has forty different human authors. These pages were written in three different languages: Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic. The writers lived in 3 different geographical continents. So, 1,500 years of production, 40 different authors, three different languages (and by the way, most of these authors had no contact with one another), three different continents, and yet somehow the Bible flows as one book.
We can take a theme from the book of Genesis and follow it all the way to the end of the book to Revelation. How is that possible?
The oldest book of the Bible is the book of Job, by the way, not the book of Genesis. Job has a fully developed doctrine of redemption and bodily resurrection right there in the book of Job. How does that happen? Because there is only one author behind the production of this book. Again, over 1,500 years, 40 different authors, 3 different languages, and 3 different continents. How?
Let me illustrate it this way. Let’s imagine we get 100 dog mushers in a room. All 100 are in love with the sport of mushing, they are all from Alaska, all speak the same language, all living at the same time. Then we ask them: Each of you write a paper on how to correctly care for, train, and love your dog team.
How many different opinions do you think we would have? About 100, right? You see the facts I give you fly in the face of that. Over 1,500 years, 40 different authors, 3 different languages, and 3 different continents, yet the Bible is one Book. How is this explained? Because there is one Author and that is God. His fingerprints are all over it.
The other fingerprint is a very popular one and I like this one, “Fulfilled Prophecy.” You know, almost everyone I have wrangled with about this would say, "it is not natural to predict the future." They would say it is supernatural. So, the Bible gives evidence that it is a "supernatural" book because it has accurately predicted the future, not half the time, not three quarters of the time, but all the time.
Every time it has made a prediction, that prediction would have been fulfilled and has been fulfilled exactly the way the Bible said it would be fulfilled. In fact, one mathematician by the name of Steven Stoner (this is from Josh McDowell’s book, “Evidence That Demands a Verdict,” a must read as far as I am concerned), outlines eight specific prophecies from the Old Testament written hundreds and some even thousands of years before the birth of Christ.
He outlines eight specific prophecies concerning The Messiah. This is what he discovered in:
(1) Micah 5:2: The Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.
(2) Isaiah 7:14: He would be born of a Virgin.
(3) Zechariah 9:9: He would enter Jerusalem triumphantly.
(4) Psalm 41:9: He would be betrayed by a close personal friend.
(5) Zechariah 11:12-13: He would be betrayed for the price, the specific price of 30 pieces of silver.
(6) Psalm 22:14-16: He would have a death similar to that of a crucifixion. At the time Psalm 22 was written, crucifixion had not been invented. However, what it does is to accurately describe that form of death.
(7) Psalm 22:18: His clothes would be divided by lots.
(8) Isaiah 53:9: He would be buried in a rich man’s tomb, not in his own tomb.
So, Steven Stoner takes the odds of that and calculates each specific prophecy. We know that all of those were fulfilled in the person of Jesus Christ. Now, logically, we have to work it out this way: either Jesus is the fulfillment of those prophecies, or He coincidently fulfilled them. Steven Stoner mathematically figures out the odds of one man, by chance, coincidently fulfilling all of those eight prophecies. And he said: 1 chance in 10 to the 17th power. That is one massive number—(1 chance in 100,000,000,000,000,000). That is one chance in One Hundred Quadrillion to One. That is a 1 with 17 zeros behind it.
Now most of you would not bet against those odds. Am I right or wrong? Steven Stoner said to illustrate this: take the entire state of Texas, dig it three feet deep and fill it with silver dollars. Three feet deep. Have you ever been to the state of Texas? It’s big! Fill it three feet deep, mark one of those silver dollars with a red ‘X’ on it and throw it into the state of Texas as far as you can. Then, take a big machine and stir it up.
The odds that one blindfolded man, walking randomly into the state of Texas from any point along the Texas border, reaches down and on his very first try, pulls out that coin with the Red ‘X’ on it.
That is one chance of 10 to the 17th power. God’s fingerprints are on this book.
But now I live in "Babylon," I mean.... Washington State. So, I did the math. Well.... not really, I called a professor in Alaska and asked her to please give me the depth equivalent of silver dollars for the state of Washington.
1 chance in 10 to the 17th power inside the border of Washington State: those silver dollars would need to be 11.3 feet deep. And by the way, Jesus did not just fulfill eight prophecies, he fulfiled over 300. God’s fingerprints are all over this book. It has been the inspiration and transformation of so many lives around the world.
The Bible is the traveler's map, the pilgrim's staff, the pilot's compass, the soldier's sword, and the Christ-follower's charter. It should fill the memory, rule the heart and guide the feet. Read it slowly, frequently and prayerfully.
That’s it from "Living in Babylon" for now. Bill Laughing-Bear . . .
Wonderful facts, thanks dear Bill!