Should Christians Quit Saying “The Bible is the Word of God”?

Bibe.MS“It isn’t inerrant and not likely even in the “original manuscripts.” But then, I cannot say that with absolute certainty, anymore than anyone else can either, writes Steve McSwain in the Huffington Post regarding the Bible.

McSwain, who is billed as a “Thought Leader, author, speaker and spiritual teacher,” posted this under the title “Six Things Christians should just stop Saying.”   Why does McSwain make this charge?  His answer?

“Because no such “original” manuscripts even exists.”

He further argues, “As we have it, no matter what translation you favor, the Bible is replete with errors. To pretend otherwise is your right. To say otherwise is a lie. You are entitled to your opinions, your assumptions, even your beliefs. What you are not entitled to is a misrepresentation of the facts.”

Well here are the facts.

The Claim of Scripture

The Scripture claims to originate from God.  Paul affirmed, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim 3:16-17) The word “inspired” means “God breathed.”  It denotes divine activity.

Peter penned that “holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.”  (2 Pet. 1:20-21).  And John claimed that his Revelation came from God through the messenger of an angel (Rev. 1:1-3).

Over 4,000 times the Old Testament writers affirm that their message was from Jehovah God. Over 800 times the Pentateuch uses such expressions as “the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”   The prophet Jeremiah confirms over 100 times that his prophesy was “the word of the Lord.” And 25 times in the little book of Malachi the prophet says his writing originated from “the Lord of hosts.”

Indeed as Batsell Barrett Baxter states, “There is ‘an air of infallibility’ about the writings that make up the Bible.”

Manuscript Evidence

Although there are no original autographs of Scripture, the amount of manuscript evidence is overwhelming as to the accuracy and authenticity of the Bible.  If we must reject the Bible because there are no original manuscripts, then we must also reject the writings of Plato, Aristotle, and Homer.

We have 7 copies of Plato’s writings, 49 of Aristotle’s and 643 of Homer’s Illiad.  But compare this with the manuscripts of Bible books. We currently have unearthed 5,668 Greek manuscripts.   In addition there more than 19,000 copies in the Syriac, Latin, Coptic, and Aramaic languages of Scripture.  The supporting manuscript evidence for Scripture exceeds 24,000 documents!

The extent of these manuscripts allow for comparison of accuracy.

Nelson Glueck, a renowned archaeologist and late President of Hebrew College in Cincinnati said, “It is worth emphasizing  that in all this work no archeological discovery has ever controverted a single properly understood Biblical statement.”

One of the most famous was the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947 by a Bedouin shepherd boy who was searching for a lost goat.  His “accidental” discovery has blessed the world.

One of the scrolls was a complete manuscript of Isaiah which was confirmed to be 1,000 years more recent than any other manuscript of that book.  The importance of this discovery was the exactness upon comparing the two manuscripts.  There was essentially no change in 1,000 years of copying and recopying the manuscript as it was handed down from generation to generation.

Indeed, God has kept His Word free from error!

Jesus said, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall never pass away.”  I believe the all-powerful God who created the cosmos, has the power to providentially preserve his Word.

My faith in the accuracy of the Bible is undeterred by the attacks of critics, doubts of unbelievers and the assaults of infidels.  Indeed, “..we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place…”  (2 Pet 1:19).

–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

11 Comments

Filed under Bible, Uncategorized

11 responses to “Should Christians Quit Saying “The Bible is the Word of God”?

  1. You are definitely right. The agnostic is just trying to bolster his unbelief.
    Tommy Thornhill

  2. Bill Hood

    It appears to me that this systematic attack on the Word of God is very similar to the systematic attack on our culture, economy and philosophy as a nation.

    The attackers eat away with bits and pieces of negative challenge. We observe the small challenges, ignore them as non-threatening, really. And we wake up one morning to the news that everything we hold dear is under major seige.

    The only way to effectively combat these encroachments is to act in ready response to every challenge regardless of size or perceived threat. We are going to have to start giving more time to spiritual matters and less to the world. Our only hope is the Lord Jesus, and our only knowledge of Him comes from the inspired Word of God.

    • Pamela Riddick, Lilac Rd. Church of Christ, Leitchfield, KY

      Thank you Ken and thank you Bill Hood. We must arm ourselves with the truth of God and His word!!!

  3. There is obviously no proof or evidence for this man’s claims. He is an agnostic, who has studied himself right into the cultural meanderings of today’s weakness and postmodern acceptance of all things. Christ’s message is an inherently EXCLUSIVE message in the sense that Jesus said he was the only way; it’s inclusive, in that it is for all people, from all walks, with all manifestations of brokenness. Besides the philosophical weaknesses of other approaches, nothing else deals with the atonement for a moral rightness or wrongness. Jesus paid for our sins, with his own blood. That’s the gospel! I appreciate your thoughts, Ken!

  4. Pingback: Should Christians Stop Saying “Jesus is the Only Way to Heaven”? | ThePreachersWord

  5. John P

    While I am still seeking truth as the Bible instructs me to, and I am certainly not as learned in this as others are, I do not think the power and truth that IS in the Bible is weakened at all by the statement that there may errors in it. In fact, to err is human and the Bible is at its core a human book, likely the most impactfull and important human book ever written. God can write directly to our hearts and souls and as you state in your rebuttal, the Bible itself states that God “inspired,” “moved,” or “revealed” to man the contents for the Bible, but it was still written, edited, and copied over many years and many men. Errors of any kind don’t invalidate the message that God says we will find if we seek it.

    Plato, Aristotle and Homer are no more perfect and infallible men than those that wrote the Bible. That doesn’t lessen the importance or value of their works either. Why would you think than any error invalidates or decreases the value of the whole? Do you cling to your “perfect” text because your faith in the source is weak?

    • Thanks for reading my blog and taking the time to comment, I appreciate it. The different between Greek philosophers like Plato and Bible writers like Paul is that Greek writers never claimed divine inspiration, but the writers of the Bible did. (2 Timothy 3:16-17; Ephesians 3:1-6). Obviously this applies to the original autographs, and not specific translations in various languages. Scribes copied the text over hundreds of years. Comparison of the various manuscripts show very minute variations. They involve such things as one MS will read “the Lord Jesus Christ” and another “Jesus Christ the Lord.” We have in excess of 24,000 various kinds of MS. in different languages. Scholars, and I am not one, affirm that the questions about our text today would fill less than ½ page on a Greek MS and would not controvert a single Bible doctrine.   Finally, my faith in the Source is so strong, that I believe in His providence He was able to preserve the text through the years and that I can have total confidence in our English text today. I am happy to recommend the Bible as God’s Word that will “give us all things to pertain to life and godliness”, as it reveals God’s plan for man’s salvation and even offers the prospects of a more fulfilling life on this earth as we journey to the home prepared for us in eternity.

      Ken Weliever 400 NW Highcliffe Dr Lee’s Summit, MO 64081 Home Phone: 816-600-5001 Cell Phone: 813-507-1726 Church Office: 816-761-2659 preacherman@weliever.net web site: http://www.weliever.net/ blog: http://www.thepreachersword.com/ Church web site:  http://hickmanchurch.com/

                  

      ________________________________

  6. Pingback: Should Christians Really Stop Saying These 6 Things? | Jemar Tisby

  7. Ken:

    Thank you for addressing the important topic. It is truly sad when the so-called “friends” of Scripture provide ammunition for the enemies of the Lord to attack the most basic documents of Judaism and Christianity. With such “friends” on our side, who needs enemies?

    No doubt about it, this is one of the most needed topics of our day. Keep up the good work, and continue to pound nails into the coffin of unbelief. The Lord will not forget your work of faith or labor of love.

    Your fellow laborer,

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