Why You Can Trust the Bible

“Don’t use the Bible to prove the Bible”, listen I get that. I can follow the reasoning and the meaning behind the sentence but let me just re-iterate something for you before we jump into this post. The Bible was meant to be written as history. The Bible isn’t just one book. It is made up of 66 books with 40-something authors. My point is, you’re not necessarily using one book to “prove” another book. The Bible contains 66 separate books that share a spine.

Secondly, this is not much different than picking up a science book to learn about science. You pick up a book on WWII to learn about the war. You pick up the Bible to learn about the history of that time period. Yet, we’ve also been told, “Don’t believe everything you read” so I get why you’re still skeptical.

I’ve said this once but I am not afraid to say this again, the evidence I’ve found to prove Christianity has been overwhelming. This post in no way touches on all of them, not even close. But as always, you know the drill, I am here to guide your research, not do it for you. Now let me spoil the ending for you. If you’re looking for some sort of belief or non-belief system that doesn’t require any sort of leap of faith, I promise you that you’re not going to find it. Anything you believe in is going to require that. Not believing there is a god still requires a leap of faith. But with that being said, let me show you why I know you can trust the Bible. Here are four of the many reasons why the Bible is what it claims to be. 

“16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17

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1) The Preservation of the Bible

Before we dive into specific verses and passages in the Bible and why we can trust it, we must look at the preservation of the Bible because if the Bible doesn’t say what it said when it was first written, we can’t even trust the words in it. Friends, even my Christian friends, don’t overlook the fact that when I’m referring to the Bible, I’m talking about all 66 separate books. When we look at the Old Testament, admittedly, there’s not a compelling amount of manuscripts. This is because Jewish scribes buried imperfect and worn manuscripts so a large portion of them got lost throughout history. Yet, the Dead Sea Scrolls contain the current manuscripts and for those interested, you can dive deeper into that here. As with the New Testament, here is what was said:

“When it comes to the New Testament, written between 50-100 A.D, there are more than 5,000 copies. All are within 50-225 years of their original writing. Further, when it came to Scripture, scribes (monks) were meticulous in their copying of original manuscripts. They checked and rechecked their work, to make sure it perfectly matched. What the New Testament writers originally wrote is preserved better than any other ancient manuscript. We can be more certain of what we read about Jesus’ life and words, than we are certain of the writings of Caesar, Plato, Aristotle and Homer” [1].

That’s compelling! All these other early writtings do not even come close when it comes to the preservation of the Bible. Furthermore, I’ve heard the argument over translations of the Bible being different and the possibility of errors within the Bible over the years. After research and comparison to the original text, the New Testament is 99.5 percent pure [2], the other .5 percent isn’t all that compelling or interesting and I will let you look into it if your heart so desires. Nothing has been better preserved than the New Testament.

new-testament-manuscript-evidence
Comparison of Earliest Texts

2) History and Archaeology Lines Up Perfectly

“Kira, just because it’s well preserved doesn’t mean it’s accurate.” That’s a valid argument, but there have been thousands upon thousands of archaeology discoveries that line up perfectly in the Bible. I said this before, but even an archaeologist of the Judaism faith (someone who doesn’t believe in Jesus) says that archaeology has never contradicted the Bible. Someone who doesn’t believe in Jesus still said that. Think about that. Think about the boldness of his statement as an archaeologist and as someone who thinks Jesus is a lunatic.

Here are only some notable discoveries:

    • Gedaliah Seal / References Gedaliah that is spoken about in 2 Kings 25:22
    • The walls of Jericho tumbled in the exact manner described in the bible
    • Mari Tablets (over 20,000 tablets) explain many of patriarchal traditions from Genesis 
    • Ebla Tablets (over 20,000 tablets) mentions law to the Deuteronomy law code. Mentions cities from Genesis 14 (Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, Zeboiim, and Zoar)
    • “Many of the ancient locations mentioned by Luke, in the Book of Acts in the New Testament, have been identified through archaeology. ‘In all, Luke names thirty-two countries, fifty-four cities and nine islands without an error.'” [1]

The Bible was written as news as it talks about people, places, and events that took place. Historians and archaeologists have confirmed its authenticity over and over again. Even in the past claims have been made that certain places didn’t exist but were described in the Bible, only to eventually realize that the Bible was right. If you want any more evidence, I have a list of evidence outside the Bible that supports the Bible, check it out here.

With other religions and history and archaeology, there is either inaccurate information or they are too vague in their descriptions to find a conclusion. Lee Strobel, the author of The Case for Christ, comments on Mormonism and says this:

“Archaeology has repeatedly failed to substantiate its claims about events that supposedly occurred long ago in the Americas. I remember writing to the Smithsonian Institute to inquire about whether there was any evidence supporting the claims of Mormonism, only to be told in unequivocal terms that its archaeologists see ‘no direct connection between the archaeology of the New World and the subject matter of the book.”’ [1]

Some people say that there are historical errors in the Bible with the book of Luke containing one of them. The Bible is the inspired word of God so it is perfect and accurate, but if you want to explore that “error”, check this out.

I’m not going to do all the research for you, but explore other religions. See how specific the Bible gets and how it is accurate with what we know about history. See the incorrect information in other religions. More on the Bible’s Accuracy

Research all this history and archaeology yourself. Become overwhelmed with it as I have. Friend, I can promise you, I didn’t even come close to addressing how much of history and archaeology lines up with the Bible.

3) The Gospels 

Read and compare the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. See how they compare to each other and see how it compares to the evidence that is outside of the Bible. “Okay, Kira, so maybe the Bible was written as a history book. I guess it does line up pretty nicely with history and archaeology, yet, that doesn’t prove that Jesus is God.” You’re right. You can completely trust the Bible as history even if you don’t believe in God…yet.

The important thing about these books are they are written as eye-witness accounts of those who saw and walked with Jesus.

    • Many have undertaken to compile a narrative about the events that have been fulfilled among us, just as the original eyewitnesses and servants of the word handed them down to us. Luke 1:1-2
    • “This is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know that his testimony is true” John 21:24

We see from this that everything Jesus did, was in public. The miracles, the teachings, the embarrassing parts of His life, His death and His resurrection. Just read any of the Gospels. Friend, look at other religions, a lot of the time, we see failed prophecies. We don’t see them doing everything in public like Jesus did. Look into the book of Mormon. Look into Islam. See where they fall short. There is something to be said about claiming to be perfect, healing people, performing miracles, rising from the dead, etc. all in public where everyone could see who this Jesus figure is. I’d encourage you to look at a previous post I made: My Case for Christ

“But though He [Jesus] had performed so many signs before them; yet they were not believing in Him”

John 12:37

Think about that verse for a second. Do you claim that you need to see a sign to know there is a God? Jesus performed miracles and signs in public and yet people still did not believe. Ponder that, skeptical friend.

“What if they made up the story of Jesus?”, “Why are there contradictions between the four books?”, “What if Jesus didn’t really die nor resurrect?” If you have that last question, let me refer you to a previous post: Evidence Outside of the Bible.

To answer the other questions, the four authors convey the same message about Jesus which is the important thing, regardless if they have small contradictions. Even today when witnesses are interviewed, yes, there will be contradictions, but what matters is if it is the same message throughout. There was a first-century Jew named Jesus who taught about the Kingdom of God. He performed many miracles. He had a group of disciples. Jesus died under the crucifixion of Pontius Pilate and rose again three days later [3].

Other reasons why the Gospels sound more like history and testimonies rather than a made-up story:

  • There are recorded embarrassing details about Jesus and the disciples
    • When they should have been praying, the disciples fell asleep (Mark 14:37)
    • Peter denied Jesus three times (Mark 14:66-72)
    • Jesus was accused of being demon-possessed (Mark 3:21-22)
    • Jesus’s family did not believe in Him (John 7:5)
  • There are incidental details (details that are not significant to the story) which are common in eye-witness testimonies
    • 153 large fish (John 21:11)
    • A young man running away naked (Mark 14:51-52) [3]
  • A group of women found Jesus’s tomb
    • This is important because women at the time were not able to be legal witnesses [4] so if someone really wanted to make up a religion and make it sound believable, they would not have had a group of women visit the empty tomb

“Kira, they could have just been really ahead of the game and planned out this whole fake story to make it believable?” I truly don’t think so, friend. These groups of men not only had to be incredibly smart and strategic but had to be willing to die for a lie. People don’t die for lies. Yes, sometimes people die for things that are false, but not things they believe to be false. Read Acts 5, see how these Christians were treated. It is hard for me to truly see why people would allow themselves to be severely tortured if they knew that Christianity was a lie.

The Gospels are not just stories. They are the biographies of these four individuals. If they really wanted to make up some sort of religion, they would have not written them in this way, in my opinion. Read the Gospels. See the similarities and differences between them. See how the teachings are all still applicable today. Read the Gospels and if you still have a problem with the Gospels, read this article: The Historical Reliability of the Gospels.

Prophecies Fulfilled

“I can believe that these men believed that Jesus was the Messiah, but that doesn’t mean they were correct. I can believe that they thought Jesus was God, but I’m not convinced.”

Did you know that Jesus fulfilled over 270 prophecies? [5] Did you know the claimed prophet, Joesph Smith failed to fulfill prophecies? Did you know that this also happened to Muhammad? Did you know this happens all the time in other religions, failed prophecies? To give you a couple examples:

  • “Muhammad, performed no miracles to back up his message (even when he was asked to by his followers – Sura 17:91-95; 29:47-51). Only in much later tradition (the Hadith) do any alleged miracles even show up and these are all quite fanciful (like Muhammad cutting the moon in half) and have zero reliable testimony to back them up…”
  • “Joseph Smith, the author of the Book of Mormon, tried to do some miracles such as prophecy (a test for a true prophet in Deuteronomy 18:21-22) but failed several times. He foretold of Christ’s second coming in History of the Church (HC) 2:382. Joseph Smith preached that the coming of the Lord would be in 56 years (about 1891). The second coming did not occur in 1891, and the Mormon Church does not claim that it did. Nor has it occurred since…” [5]

Now arguably, you can say that maybe this Jesus guy looked at previous books of the Bible and was able to make it look like He was God by fulfilling prophecies. Let’s ignore all the fallacies in that assumption, and let’s just assume you’re right. But that does not explain how Jesus fulfilled prophecies that He had no control over.

    • Jesus was born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2 / Matthew 2:1)
    • Jesus would be called Immanuel (Isaiah 7:14 / Matthew 1:23)
    • Jesus would be given vinegar to drink (Psalm 69:21 / John 19:28-30)
    • Jesus’s bones would not be broken (Exodus 12:46 & Psalm 34:20 / John 19:33-36)
    • Jesus would come from a line of Abraham (Genesis 12:3 / Matthew 1:1)
    • Jesus would be a descendant of Isaac (Genesis 17:19 & Genesis 21:22 / Luke 3:34)
    • Jesus would be a descendant of Jacob (Number 24:17 / Matthew 1:2) [6]

And the only reason I’m stopping here is because I don’t want to further cross-reference more verses. These are only some of the prophecies that Jesus had no control over yet He fulfilled. If you really want to be overwhelmed, look at all this:

IGB_JesusPropheciesInGospels
Prophecies Fulfilled by Jesus

 

Compare this to what Joesph Smith claimed to do. Compare this with what Muhammad claimed to do. Compare this to any other religion. My Jewish friend, the New Testament so beautifully completes the Old Testament and it is also the inspired Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16).

If Jesus is God, then all of Christianity is proven to be true. Personally, I do not know how Jesus could fulfill over 270 prophecies if He was not all-knowing like God is. I barely scratched the surface as to why you can trust the Bible, just barely. Friend, maybe Jesus is God? Or if you can’t make that leap of faith yet, maybe, just maybe, the Bible is more than a book of fables. Consider it so.

25 And there are also many other things which Jesus did, which if they were recorded one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.”

John 21:25

In Conclusion

Consider Jesus may have been the Messiah. I’ve given you evidence outside of the Bible as to why you can trust the Bible. I’ve shown you in only four of the many ways that the Bible can, in fact, be trusted. At one point, will you at least consider that Christianity may be more than it seems? When have I provided enough evidence to, at the very least, spark your interest and question your beliefs? Do you really need even more evidence or is your heart so set on another belief that you cannot even consider that you could be wrong? That’s a scary spot to be in.

I’ve considered your faith, can you at least re-consider this Jesus guy that I claim to be Lord?

“But these are written so that you believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name”

John 20:31

 

References

EveryStudent.com. (2019). Why You Can Believe the Bible. [online] Available at: https://www.everystudent.com/features/bible.html [Accessed 5 Jan. 2020].

Ken Boa. (2020). How Accurate Is the Bible? | Ken Boa. [online] Available at: https://kenboa.org/apologetics/how-accurate-is-the-bible/ [Accessed 5 Jan. 2020].

BibleBridge. (2020). Eight Reasons to Trust the Four Gospels. [online] Available at: https://www.bible-bridge.com/eight-reasons-trust-four-gospels/ [Accessed 9 Jan. 2020].

Crosswalk.com. (2020). Why it Matters That Women Discovered the Empty Tomb. [online] Available at: https://www.crosswalk.com/blogs/christian-trends/why-it-matters-that-women-discovered-the-empty-tomb.html [Accessed 9 Jan. 2020].

GotQuestions.org. (2020). How do we know that the Bible is the Word of God, and not the Apocrypha, the Qur’an, the Book of Mormon, etc.? | GotQuestions.org. [online] Available at: https://www.gotquestions.org/which-book.html [Accessed 21 Jan. 2020].

Learn Religions. (2020). 44 Prophecies of the Messiah Fulfilled in Jesus Christ. [online] Available at: https://www.learnreligions.com/prophecies-of-jesus-fulfilled-700159 [Accessed 21 Jan. 2020].

5 thoughts on “Why You Can Trust the Bible

  1. Hello There. I found your blog using msn. This is a really well written article. I will be sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful information. Thanks for the post. I will certainly return.

    Like

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