Monday, July 24, 2017

Is the Bible Enough Evidence?

God established the Bible as true.  It's as if scripture has already gone through the verification process and got its authentication seal of approval.  It's already science, because it is already all true.  What's better about it than "evidence," the stuff that people call evidence, some of which is and much of which isn't evidence, is that it channels straight from God, bypassing lying eyes and a contaminated scene.

God is the originator of life.  He's not created.  He self-exists.  Unlike us, He doesn't have to depend on someone or something else to survive.  Everything stays pure with Him, because He doesn't need to change and He won't change, because He's already the perfection of all His attributes.  God has already given us more than enough reason to receive what He said in His Word as true.

The purity of scripture because of its pure source is why in 1 Peter 2 it is called the sincere milk of the Word, which is the pure mother's milk.  Mother's milk comes straight from mother, so it isn't contaminated by taking it out of that channel of purity.  God's Word comes in the same manner.  This is why in times of test, James says, trust the Word of God.  Don't waiver like the waves of the sea.  Don't trust your own desires, but trust God.  You were begotten by the Word of Truth, so trust scripture in those temptations and tests and trials.  This is how you manifest that you are a believer, that you have true faith.

If you believe the first verse of the Bible, everything else left to believe in the Bible is downhill from there.  That's the toughest thing, so if something else seems tough, you can go back to that and remember that nothing is too tough.  He said He created everything.  He has given evidence that He did, enough of it, but if you can believe that, then you know that He has the wisdom and power and nature to do everything else that He said He did and would do.

I am justified by faith.  Why would I think that, receive that, believe that, know that?  God said I was, that's why.  That is faith.  Some say faith is disconnected to evidence.  Not true.  Scripture is evidence.  I'm sitting at an airport right now.  I have an identification.  It says I've already jumped through enough hoops to prove that I am who I say that I am.  The Bible has already done that.  It has already been authenticated as evidence, and so it skips right to the front of the line.  No more investigation is needed.  Validation is settled.  It is a wicked generation that looks for more than that. Now you just know it, believe it, think it, however you want to say that.

There are gaps in historical proof for some of what the Bible says.  The Bible itself is historical proof and better than historical proof.  If you read Isaiah 40-48, you know that what God says is better than other forms of evidence, because it connects to the present, the past, and the future.  Nothing else does that in the realm of what we know.  The Bible is the gold standard.  Everything else is some hybrid, some mixture.

The true church isn't a state church, such as Roman Catholicism.  The true church is the separated church, the one that never identified with or associated with a state church.  True churches always existed.  Yes.  The truth didn't get passed down through Roman Catholicism.  Why do I think, believe, know this?  Scripture says.  I anticipate what the Bible says.  You say, but you can't prove that.  I can, the Bible teaches it, and that's proof.

Other say, no, we don't have evidence for anything but the Roman Catholic church until the Reformation.  That's it, folks.  They have to rely on evidence to get their positions, so it's Roman Catholicism.  They would rather believe their lying eyes than they would the Bible.  They can't see churches in recorded history, not enough came through the hand-written part of history, so they can't say it exists, even though Jesus said it would.  Is the Bible enough evidence?  Are professing Christians too embarrassed of the Bible to accept it?

The Bible stands or as Jesus said, scripture cannot be broken. Written history doesn't stand.  Some of it does, but not all of it, and the further you go back, the more difficult it is to sort through what's true and what isn't.  If you think the Bible needs further confirmation from history, then you've got a problem.

When Jesus spoke to His disciples in the upper room discourse, a speech that went into the streets of Jerusalem with them at the end of John 14 through the end of 16, He made a lot of promises about the future.  They were as good as true, as good as done, right when He said them.   They hadn't happened yet.  The Holy Spirit had not come.  Was what Jesus said, evidence?  Are men better off saying, "I'll believe it, when I see it?"  What He says always comes true like He says.  It is evidence.  To top that off, He prayed in John 17 to the Father that these things would come true. Everything Jesus prays will come true.  We can anticipate what Jesus said would come true.  What He said and prayed are not up for question.  They are true.

I can't find a true church in every year since Christ ascended.  That doesn't mean there isn't one.  I can't find their doctrinal statements.  In certain cases, I can find unorthodox doctrine attributed to separatist groups. This is where we please Him by faith by just accepting that there were always true churches separate from the state church (which isn't even a church), in every year since Christ ascended.  He said there would be, so we believe there was.  That is the evidence, not history. History can be helpful, but it isn't 100% trustworthy.  You can't completely count on it.  You can't even count on contemporary opinions or writings of men, let alone really old ones, written a long time ago.  The Bible is different.  It is the pure mother's milk.

Our view of the church needs to match up with the Bible.  Our view of authority needs to match up with the Bible.  Our view of preservation of scripture needs to match up with the Bible.  The Bible isn't something that God's people didn't have accessible for four hundred years.  That can't be the Bible.  The Bible itself teaches a settled text.  It teaches perfect preservation.  Whatever fits what the Bible teaches is the true view.  It is what we should accept as happening, as the truth, as knowledge, as a fact. Other types of so-called "validation" or "verification," like so-called "reasoned eclecticism" are not faith.  Scripture doesn't teach that the true text is in the majority of the manuscripts, where ever they might be.  All of these positions are not faith, and we should count on them being wrong. They clash with scripture.

I read someone in the last few weeks, who wrote about "reasoned eclecticism":
The main draw of the eclectic approach, for me, is its honesty about what we know, what don't, and why it makes the choices it does. I don't mean to say the other views are dishonest (well, some of them are), but "honest" in the sense of facing facts squarely and not leaning heavily on wishful thinking.
He is saying that someone can only be honest if he sees something.  If he doesn't see a physical manuscript with that particular word, or at least a vaunted textual critic sees it, then it didn't exist, even if it is found in a printed edition.  Being honest in this case is relying on evidence.  Is the Bible enough evidence?  When it comes to biblical doctrine, do we not rely on the Bible for the doctrine? The Bible provides the trajectory, the template, the understanding of what will happen, connecting past, present, and future, like God does, and that is where true knowledge lies.

Is someone being honest if he says he believes the Bible and then either doesn't believe the Bible or just ignores it, because the latest and best history or extra-documents seem to contradict what the Bible teaches?  Are we supposed to go outside of scripture to understand scripture?  Desire the pure mother's milk like babes do.  Stop desiring the latest hybrid that takes the gutter route.

Some in an attempt to elevate lying eyes will call faith in scripture, fideism.  They treat it as if it is an ethereal faith in faith or faith for faith's sake.  No.  There was a talking snake.  Moses looked totally washed out white coming down Sinai.  The Red Sea split and an entire nation walked through.  I don't have to find chariots.  I don't have to find Joseph's tomb in Egypt to believe Joseph ruled in Egypt. One measly archaeological reference to David doesn't overturn David.

Christians, do we really like the Bible?  Do we really trust it?  God deserves to be honored, to be believed.  Let's do believe Him.


Kent Brandenburg said...

Nothing on this. Interesting. It's very determinative for a lot of people.

D Davis said...

I have followed your blog for awhile and enjoyed it. This one article is at the heart of it all. Thanks

D. Davis

Bill Hardecker said...

God revealed, self-authenticated Words from another world. It's sheer madness to be indifferent and pitiful insignificance to believe otherwise.