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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...

Who Wrote the Best Seller?

Dec. 12, 2010

What is the Best Seller?
A best-seller today will sell upward of 100,000 copies. Although most best-sellers will run high on sales charts for months, the rate of sales will eventually drop and the book will go out of print. Since around 1450, when printing came into its own, the Bible has sold well over 1 billion copies.

But, how is the Bible selling today?

Millions in a variety of versions are regularly being sold.

Could or would God write a book?
Is it reasonable to assume that the Creator would desire to communicate His mind and will to the creature through words? Is such a revelation actual?

First, it’s obvious that God, who created man, could communicate with him. Second, it is also reasonable to assume that the God who gave to man the ability to communicate his thoughts to others through words would use words to communicate to man. Third, to prove that this revelation is actual, evidence both internal and external would be given so you may decide for yourself if God is truly the Author of the Bible.

Internal evidence — the Bible itself
If the Bible is God’s Word, then it must be the most authoritative revelation in the universe. Its reliability would be unmatched. It could not depend on something outside itself to prove its truthfulness; otherwise, that outside source would be more reliable than God’s own Word.

Its unity
If the Bible were written by one or a team of men over a period of years, then the fact that the individual chapters should unite in forming one complete story would not be surprising. But the 66 books of the Bible were written by 40 men, over a period of 1,600 years in different places from Babylon to Rome.

The original writings are in three languages, with different styles and viewpoints and contain prose and poetry as well as law, history, philosophy, doctrine, prophecy and ethics. Yet, the Scriptures tell one complete story with an undeniable unity throughout. No one writer contradicts another. All the parts go together into one harmonious whole.

Direct claims from the Bible
“All Scripture is inspired by God …” (2 Timothy 3:16, NASB). “No prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God” (2 Peter 1:21). Hundreds of passages state, “Thus saith the Lord,” and the “Word of the Lord.”

The testimony of Jesus
Jesus said that every “jot and tittle” would be fulfilled (Matthew 5:18, KJV). The “jot” refers to one of the letters of the Hebrew alphabet; the “tittle,” to a marking on those letters to distinguish one letter from another. Jesus quoted often from the Old Testament and said the words were inspired by God.

The testimony of the apostles
These men often referred to the fact the Bible records the words that God intended; for instance, Peter in Acts 1:16 referred to Psalm 41:9.

Fulfilled prophecy
One of the amazing facts about the Bible is the predictions it has made that have come true. The 1947 discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls has substantiated that the Old Testament was in existence before Jesus Christ was ever born.

Many prophecies about the Messiah in the Old Testament were fulfilled at the time of Jesus Christ. Here are a few examples:

• Jesus would be a descendant of Abraham (Genesis 22:18); of the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:10); of the house of David (Isaiah 9:7).

• He would be born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14) in the town of Bethlehem in the territory of Judah (Micah 5:2).

• He would be announced by a forerunner (Isaiah 40:3) and anointed by the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 11:2; 61:1).

• His ministry would begin in Galilee (Isaiah 9:1,2).

• The manner of His death, by crucifixion, was clearly outlined: His hands and feet were to be pierced (Psalm 22:16).

• He was to die with transgressors (Isaiah 53:12).

• His enemies were to cast lots for His clothing (Psalm 22:18).

• Vinegar and gall were to be given to Him (Psalm 69:21).

• None of His bones would be broken (Psalm 34:20).

• His body was to be pierced (Zechariah 12:10).

• The exact words He used were foretold: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Psalm 22:1).

• His burial in a rich man’s tomb was foretold (Isaiah 53:9), as well as His resurrection (Psalm 16:10) and ascension (Psalm 68:18).

Some of these prophecies were made 1,600 years before the birth of Christ, and all of them were made more than 400 years before. These are only a portion of the 333 prophecies made about Jesus Christ, and not one of them that concerned His first coming failed to come true.

The odds
According to the law of permutation (each additional detail included in any prediction lessens the probability of its being fulfilled in the exact order in which these details are given), the odds of just 10 prophecies coming true in the order in which they were given by chance or coincidence are 1 in 3,628,800.

Other fulfilled prophecy
Frederick the Great said to one of his marshals, “Give me in one word a proof of the truth of the Bible.”

The marshal replied simply, “The Jews.”

The predictions about the Jews are too numerous to list here. And all of them, except those scheduled to happen in the future, have come true.

The history and events of world empires and nations have been predicted in the Bible and have come true with unbelievable accuracy.

External evidence
Many have worked hard to find some fact that would contradict the Bible, but scientific facts have only confirmed the accounts of the Bible. The late Melvin G. Kyle, an archaeologist, said, “There has never been found anything that discredits statements of facts in the Bible.”

Personal experience
People by the millions throughout history have found the truths of the Bible to be real in their own experience. The lives of people have been radically changed by believing the facts of the Bible.

No book so accurately describes man, world history, life, death, values and the future. Most people who do not have the facts make general statements heard from others like, “The Bible is full of contradictions,” or “The Bible is unscientific,” or “The Bible is full of myths and fairy tales.”

But wait. Before you accept or reject the Bible, do you really know what it says and teaches? Is it fair for you to reject something you do not understand or have little knowledge of? If the Bible is truly the Word of God, then the implications are serious if you reject or neglect to believe its message.

“You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32, NKJV).

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