What Is the Bible?
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You have probably have gone on a road trip before. How did you know where to go? Most likely you used a map in order to determine which way to go in order to reach your destination. The Bible is a map for life and death. It gives guidance on everyday living and on death. Concerning death, the Bible says,
"Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away (James 4:14)."
Our life is temporary. So how are we to make use of our life? How are we to prepare for death? These are questions the Bible answers. But first, let's take a look at what the Bible is.
- 1 Peter 1:24-25; Matthew 24:35; 5:17-18 What does this teach about the word of God?
- 2 Peter 1:3 What has God given to us?
- John 12:47-50 What will be the standard by which we will be judged in the end?
- 2 Peter 1:21; 2 Timothy 3:16-17 What is the origin of scripture?
- Reflection questions:
- Is it possible for the word of God to be destroyed or is it enduring and therefore reliable?
- If God has given everything we need for life and godliness, is it necessary to have additional information other than the Bible?
- How is God's word different from other ancient documents and literature?
- What is the guide and authority if you wish to follow God?
- 1 Corinthians 4:6 What must we not exceed?
- Jude 3 Are we still receiving new revelations about the faith, or has it already been delivered to us?
- Deuteronomy 12:32; Proverbs 30:5-6; Matthew 15:9; Revelation 22:18-19 Is it okay to subtract, substitute, amend, or add to the word of God?
- Galatians 1:6-9
- Will there be any other Gospels other than what has already been given?
- What is the biblical assessment of those who claim to bring new revelations from God?
- 2 Peter 3:15-18
- What is the result of distorting the scriptures?
- Why should we be on guard?
- Genesis 3:3-4 How did the serpent's addition of the word "not" to God's word affect things?
- Reflection questions:
- Do we have everything we need in the Bible to serve God?
- Do we need to turn to other books, testaments, and revelations outside of the Bible?
- What warnings are there against other books and revelations that claim to be from God?
- Matthew 7:13-14
- What road are the majority on?
- Are the majority a reliable guide to God?
- Matthew 15:9 What causes worship to God to be in vain?
- Proverbs 16:25 What warning is there for us in this passage?
- Acts 17:10-11
- How were these people more noble or excellent?
- How did they evaluate things?
- Reflection questions:
- Why is the Bible important for worship to God?
- How would we determine whether something is right or wrong? Is it by reason, feelings, or something else?
- If the majority believe something is right, does that make it right? How do we determine if it is right?
- Ephesians 6:10-18 - What does the metaphor of the word as the "sword of the Spirit" convey in this passage?
- Hebrews 4:12
- How is God's word different from other written documents?
- What does the image of the word as “sharper” than a sword convey?
- 1 Peter 2:2 - What does the image of the word as "milk" say about the word?
- James 1:22-25 - How is God’s word like a mirror?
- How does the imagery of the Word of God being a sword, sharper than a sword, milk, and mirror instruct you on how God’s word is to function in your life?
- Final Reflection Questions:
- Why should we read the word of God?
- What are the dangers of not reading the word of God?
- What will be the standard that will evaluate our life?
- Why should we go to God's word for guidance rather than some other source?
- Are you ready to learn what it teaches you about God, our world, and your expectations?
Jesus passed on God's word to the Apostles who then wrote scripture:
Fulfilled Prophecy also confirms the word. (sampling of prophecies):
- Hebrews 1:1-3 - The final word from God is Jesus.
- John 1:1-18 - Jesus is God in the flesh and has "explained" God.
- Hebrews 2:3-4 - The word was confirmed by signs, wonders, and miracles.
- John 5:36; 14:10-11 - Jesus performed signs, wonders, and miracles that bore witness to his message.
- John 16:13 - By granting his apostles the Spirit, Jesus ensured the word of God was correctly communicated.
- John 17:20 - Jesus intended for the world to believe through the teaching of his apostles.
- John 20:21 - Jesus sent his apostles out to take the message to the world
Interesting Bible Facts:
- Deuteronomy 18:17-22 - Test of a prophet.
- Isaiah 13:19-22 - Babylon destroyed, never to be rebuilt.
- Ezekiel 26:7-21 - Tyre destroyed.
- Nahum 1-3 - Ninevah destroyed.
- Isaiah 44:28;-45:2, 13 - Cyrus would release the Jews (prophecy came 150 years before he was born).
- Daniel 2:25-45 - The world Kingdoms were prophesied.
- Isaiah 9:6-7 - Birth of Jesus.
- Micah 5:1-2 - The King would be born in Bethlehem.
- Zechariah 9:9 - The King would come on a donkey.
- Written over a time span of 1500 years (1400 B.C. to 100 A.D.).
- Written by over 40 men during that time-span who were moved by the Spirit of God.
- The Bible contains many literary genres, including narrative, epistle, biography, poetry, prophecy, apocalyptic, parables, direct commands, moral instructions, etc.
- The Bible was originally written in Hebrew (Old Testament), Aramaic (portions of the Old Testament, and a few phrases in the New), and Greek (The New Testament).
- Bible has been translated into various languages, such as Old Latin, Syriac, Coptic, and Ethiopic, as early as the second century A.D.
- For a book written over such a long time span, it has a remarkable unity in theme and purpose.
- Brutally honest about the character and flaws of its human characters.
- The hero of the Bible is the Lord.
- Over 5,000 ancient copies of scripture are in existence, which surpasses the number of manuscripts for any other ancient work. (In contrast, there are only 653 ancient copies of Homer, 7 copies of Pliny the Younger's History, 8 copies of the works of Suetonius, 1 copy of the minor works of Tacitus, 7 copies of Plato's Tetralogies, etc.).
- The Bible answers the question of where the universe came from.
- The Bible answers the question of what has gone wrong in the world.
- The Bible shows the ultimate solution to what has gone wrong in the world.
Nebraska City Church of Christ,
1102 S 10th St, Nebraska City, NE 68410
(402) 873-7241 - www.ncncocorg - www.epreacher.org
June 7, 2016