No book is more cherished and revered in the hearts of some and more damned and despised in the minds of others than the Holy Bible.
Perhaps you grew up in the church and from an early age learned a lyric that goes like this: “The B-I-B-L-E; yes, that’s the book for me; I stand alone on the word of God; the B-I-B-L-E.” Do you remember that tune? Can you still sing it today?
Maybe you’ve learned to live comfortably by the motto, “If God said it, I believe it, and that’s good enough for me!” You’ve settled the matter in your heart that the Bible is God’s word to modern people. It is God’s word to you!
A popular preacher in Houston, Texas begins each of his sermons by having everyone in the congregation raise their Bible high in the air and repeat, “This is my Bible. I am what it says I am. I have what it says I have. I can do what it says I can do. Today, I will be taught the word of God.” Tens of thousands of people who attend this church make this bold declaration each week.
But for some it’s not so easy. They have questions about the Bible. What about you?
The Bible (from the Greek word biblia, meaning “books” or “scrolls”) is the best-selling book of all time, written over 1500 years by 40 different authors using three different languages. It is really collection of sixty-six books that share an amazing, some say miraculous, continuity. Having roots in cultures found on three different continents, the Bible claims to be the complete revelation of God and His inspired word. It has lasted the test of time and changed millions of lives.
The Bible has been described as “the Magna Charta of the human spirit.” George Washington said, “It is impossible to righteously govern the world without God and the Bible.” Ronald Reagan, the thirty-ninth president of the United States, said, “Within the covers of one single book, the Bible, are all the answers to all the problems that face us today – if only we would read and believe.”
It shouldn’t surprise us that with millions of books in libraries all around the world, American presidents still place their hand on the Bible when they take the oath of office and say, “So help me God.”
The Bible is the book of all books and simply known as “The Book.” But is the Bible the word of God? Is it God’s word to modern people? Can we trust it? Should we believe it? Do we take it literally? Furthermore, does it have the authority to tell us how to live? It’s one thing to have great respect for the Bible; it’s another thing to do what it says even if that means you’re swimming up the cultural stream.
The Bible is the most attacked and maligned book ever. Like a champion heavyweight fighter, it has taken punch after punch, round after vicious round, and yet remains standing at the end of the fight.
For example, in the eighteenth century, a French philosopher and atheist named Voltaire boastfully declared the demise of the Bible. “Another century and there will not be a Bible on earth!” he predicted. How ironic that Voltaire’s house was later used as the headquarters of the International Bible Society, an organization that prints and distributes millions of Bibles around the world.
What do you say about the B-I-B-L-E? I’d like to hear from you.