Scriptures

Introduction

The Bible is inspired

Jesus trusted scripture: you can too


All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
2 Timothy 3:16

Jesus Christ considered the scriptures to be the Word of God. They were the final authority in any dispute. When Jesus responded to the threefold temptation of Satan, whom he later called “the father of lies”, his answer always began, “It is written . . .”. And on the first of those occasions he declared,

. . . It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God. Luke 4:4

When Christ returned in the power of the Spirit to Nazareth, after his trial of temptation, he went into the synagogue and stood up to read. The Bible records he was handed the book of Isaiah. Jesus opened the book and read

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. Luke 4:18-19

Having read this short passage, Jesus closed the book, handed it back to the minister, and sat down. The Bible records, “the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.” Jesus then said to them, “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.”

The Lord never considered scripture dead, powerless, or irrelevant. He quoted and referred to scripture extensively and with no question as to its authenticity. No-one fulfilled more scripture and prophecy in their life than he did.

“Have ye not read this scripture?” was the beginning of an answer Christ gave to the chief priests, scribes and elders when they asked him, “By what authority doest thou these things?”. And on another occasion his message to the Sadducees was plain, concerning their lack of belief in the resurrection:

Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. Matthew 22:29

Similarly, he rebuked the unbelieving Jews, saying,

Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. . . For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words? John 5:39-47

Christ clearly equated the truth of his words with the truth of Moses’ writing, and based his arguments on the unbreakable authority of scripture:

Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods? If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken . . . John 10:34-35

Even the disciples did not escape Christ’s admonition:

Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. Luke 24:25-27

And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: Luke 24:44-46

And as always they felt the power inherent in those words:

And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures? Luke 24:32

Scripture is not to be taken lightly. It is God’s record, God’s instruction, his promise and his warning. It is life to all who hear and act upon it. The book of Acts commended those who looked to the scriptures as their standard of truth:

These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few. Acts 17:11-12

Paul wrote to Timothy, encouraging him to continue in the instruction of scripture:

But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 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 perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. 2 Timothy 3:14-17

And Peter warned those who sought to distort and dismiss the letters of Paul:

And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction. 2 Peter 3:15-16

It is reasonable to assume that if there is a Creator, and one who takes an interest in his creation, he may have left us with some guidance and instruction, as well as some explanation of our history and insight into our future. It is also reasonable to suggest that he might provide information on the past, present, and future relationship we have had and can expect to have with him, and some explanation of his overall purpose. The Bible is the supreme claimant to be that revelation. As an ancient book that, among much else, starts with the beginning of our world and ends describing its future, it is without any real competition. If the God of the Bible exists, he is beyond any doubt fully capable – and in fact character bound – to keep his instruction intact and accessible throughout the ages.

The Jesus Christ of the Bible never had any doubts about the accuracy, authenticity, or authority of the scriptures. If we believe in the God of the Bible, why should we?

Author

Mark Wattchow

Mark Wattchow is the pastor of the Christchurch Revival Fellowship in New Zealand.

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