We can trust the Bible

Since the true and living God must of necessity be unlying, and since this same God, the Creator, has spoken to his creature, man, then the message must necessarily be a true and undeceiving message. In the prologue of his gospel, John calls Jesus Christ "The Word," meaning the One who speaks from God and reveals God to us (John 1:1). The Son, now incarnate, is all that God wants to say to us. His is His supreme communication: God "hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son" (Hebrews 1:2).

In Jesus Christ, we have God's living, personal and abiding Word.This expression, the "Word," of course, is also used of the Scriptures (Deuteronomy 4:2; Isaiah 1:10). The closest possible identification exists between Christ and the Scriptures: the Living and the Written Word of God. We must be careful to maintain the distinction between the two, but it is evident that they both fall or stand together.

Christ witnessed to the veracity of Scripture - "The Scripture cannot be broken". He never cast a doubt upon its reliability; he quoted it incessantly as the highest authority; what Scripture said, God said."The communion we have with God on earth is maintained by means of the written Word" (Rabbi Duncan). This is equally true of our communion with His Beloved Son.

We can trust the Bible because divine inspiration is more than God just guiding men to write the Scriptures. "Holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Ghost" (2 Peter 1:21). That inward prompting of the mind to write God's words resulted in revealed truth, without any falsehood or even mistake. Divinely inspired men produced divinely inerrant writings. Of this we are in no doubt.In divine inspiration God has imparted to Scripture the same qualities that belong to himself. This is why the things that the Bible predicates of God it predicated of the Scriptures also. Like God, they are holy (2 Timothy 3:15), perfect (Psalm 19:7), eternal (1 Peter 1:23), truth (James 1:18), and so on. His glory, immutability, wisdom, grace and beauty belong to His word as well.

Therefore, the Bible can be said to be the product of God, bearing all the properties of its Author.The Bible issued from God: "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God," literally, "God-breathed."

All this considered, it must settle for us the question of the Bible's transmission. The distance between the original manuscripts of the Old and New Testaments and our own day is enormous. Centuries of copies and translations separate these originals and us. How intact, we may ask, is the Bible? Do we still have God's authentic Word now?We could answer this question satisfactorily in terms of textual criticism, and the historical transmission of the text. Abundant evidence exists to support our belief that we have the same Word toady that the church has always had. Under God we are indebted to godly and erudite men for their researches in this area, men like Dean Burgon, Edward Miller, Bishop Thompson, Edward F. Hills, David Otis Fuller, Dr. D Waite and others.However a more straightforward and believing answer is this: God and His Word are one. Therefore, He is not going to overlook this question of the Scripture transmission. It belongs to much to Himself, to His honour and glory for that. "Forever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven. Thy faithfulness is unto all generations" (Psalm 119:89-90). God did not simply give his word to the apostolic generation, for instance, when the New Testament was still freshly written. No, he give it to all generations, for his covenant is unbroken, and his faithfulness is as high as the clouds.

We believe, therefore, that he has providentially preserved his Word in the Massoretic Text of the Old Testament and the Received Test of the New Testament. He has sovereignly ensured that a pure stream of copies have come down to us, and are faithfully translated in our Authorised Version. In holding this version we can truly affirm: Here is the Word of God, inerrant, full, perfect, authoritative, sufficient.

I have bypassed using arguments from archaeology and other sources. These are all very interesting and useful, but I have chosen to built my persuasion on purely theological premises.Without the Bible almost nothing can be known about God, and certainly nothing about our eternal salvation through Jesus Christ. But if the Bible is true, then it must be wholly true. We are persuaded that we love God no more than we love His Word, and how we treat the Bible is how we treat God himself.

Do you want to know whether the Bible is reliable? Then listen to Christ: "If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself" (John 7:17). "Taste and see that the Lord is good."