Lesson 14

People who do not believe the Bible is the accurate word of God may have their own sacred text or traditions. They may not be familiar with the Bible’s history or why many people believe it to be the inspired word of God. Some people don’t realise our modern Bible is not one book, but a collection of books that were written by at least 40 different people on three different continents over a span of more than 1600 years, and assembled together centuries later. The Old Testament comes from the Jewish collection of sacred manuscripts written primarily about God interacting with the Isrealites and their forefathers. The New Testament is a compilation of books and letters written by people with eye witness accounts about Jesus, to help the followers stay true to Jesus. The 39 books of the Old Testament combined with the 27 books in the New Testament form the King James Bible. Some question how the Bible can be authentic or accurate to what was originally written after such a long time. They also contend that given the time lapse from the original writing to what we have today, the intended meanings have substantial changes from the original text. Others distrust the choices made when deciding what books should be included in the Bible. When choosing to use the Bible as your sole rule of faith like a Biblist, you may want to have answers for these questions. Questioning is not bad, not having a good answer for questions is. To prove the Bible is authentic and accurate, we can look at the quantity and quality of the books written and rewritten over a long period of time. The Hebrew scribes used a meticulous process of reproducing a manuscript to ensure only exact copies would survive. Knowing the number of words, lines, spaces, and letters, they would check a new copy at various spots; if anything was out of place the entire manuscript would be destroyed. The success of that system is proven by the Dead Sea Scrolls. Predating any other manuscript by about a 1000 years there are only minor differences in spelling and style. The New Testament scribes had no fixed process for making copies of the original texts but they produced thousands of manuscripts. There are several variants within the copies due to spelling, punctuation (as the original Greek language used no punctuation or capital letters), or from hearing the wrong word when the text was read aloud so many scribes could record it at the same time. There are even variations caused by scribes trying to correct a supposed defect. When comparing the sheer number of texts it is relatively easy to derive the intended meaning of each passage. Scholars consider the New Testament as 99.5 percent pure: the remaining .5 percent can be rendered accurate through scripture selfanalisus. Some copies of  New Testament books are only a few decades older than the originals, any substantial errors would have been challenged. From where do you derive your beliefs? Do you believe the Bible is the only authoritative word of God? Are you a Biblist?

2 Timothy 3:16 GOD’S WORD Translation
16 Every Scripture passage is inspired by God. All of them are useful for teaching, pointing out errors, correcting people, and training them for a life that has God’s approval.