Why should I believe the Bible?

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1We can ask this question about just about anything. Take an online article about something happening on the other side of the world, for example. Why do we believe it? I guess we could say we trust the website we found it on. And if other newspapers and sites were reporting the same event, then that would also help convince us the story was true. On the other hand, if the article was actually fake news, we’d be able to find out pretty quickly because we could check with our mates or even other people online.

There may not have been the internet when the Bible was written, but the idea is the same. Many of the books in the Bible were written by people who went through the stories and situations themselves. They were there at the time! Take the books about Jesus: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. These accounts of Jesus’ life were written by eye-witnesses, close friends of his and one was put together by a historian who lived around the same time.

That means the stories would have been checked out and discussed just like the news articles of today. Anything that was ‘fake news’ would have been quickly deleted by the people who lived in Israel and had met Jesus for themselves. Only the truth would have stood the test of time. These accounts were widely read and believed by the people who had ‘been there’! Like news articles, the interest in these books increased because they weren’t ‘make believe’, they were accurate records of what Jesus said and did.

Should we believe the Bible? Yes it tells us God’s story from the people who actually lived through different parts of it for themselves!

— Chris, an Our Daily Bread reader

2The Bible says it is the very words of God; that God Himself inspired people to write what they did (see 2 Timothy chapter 3, verse 16 and 2 Peter chapter 1, verse 21). We can’t prove or disprove something like that… but we can look at the evidence.

The Bible is a collection of 66 different books written over nearly 1,500 years by about 40 different people in different languages, in different parts of the world. It includes historical books, wise sayings, God’s promises, laws, a songbook, eyewitness stories of Jesus’ life, letters and the records of the early church. In its pages, it talks about almost every subject you can think of!

We probably wouldn’t expect such a wide range of writing to have much in common. Yet all the books and writings end up telling one whole story—one that reaches its whole purpose in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Each one of the Bible’s books tells the story of God’s rescue mission for us. This ‘one story’ is a powerful evidence that the Bible has actually come from one place (God) rather than 40 places (the writers’ own minds).

The prophecies (or promises of God) in the Bible are also good evidence that it is God’s words. There are hundreds of prophecies, for example, about the birth, life and death of the promised rescuer, Jesus Christ. Isaiah 53 is an excellent example of things written about Jesus hundreds of years before they happened, with exact accuracy.

As well as this, the Bible is very honest about humans. This honesty is convincing evidence that it was not simply written by people. Many things are left unexplained and unexplainable, which is frustrating for people—but makes perfect sense if it has come from God, who is well above our understanding. There are also no heroes in the Bible; there are only stories of messed up people getting some things right and some things wrong. The writers even talk about their own mess and mistakes. And there are promises of trouble and pain for anyone who chooses to follow Jesus. In short, nobody who was starting a religion would write a book like the Bible!

The historical stuff in the Bible can, and should, be examined. Anyone wanting to know if the Bible is accurate should investigate the things it says as much as they can. There’s lots of research out there about how the Bible perfectly fits with the real, historical world. In the end, however, the Bible is a book which claims to be from, and all about, the living God. Perhaps the best way to check whether or not it is what it says, is to simply read it—and ask the Author to show us if it is true.

— Debbi, an Our Daily Bread reader

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