I had the worst job in the world! You see, when I was 23 I was enrolled in the Pace program at Oklahoma Christian University. I was also working as a part time youth minister, a substitute teacher, and working a few hours each week at a Marriott hotel. It was never my preference to juggle all of these tasks at once but it was done out of necessity. You see, I was making $24,000 a year between ministry and working at the hotel which was barely enough funds to pay all my bills except my groceries. Therefore, I substituted at Hubbard Elementary roughly 4 days per week during the school year to keep my head above water. However; one summer I has several unexpected expenses occur and I was in dire financial straits. There was no substituting available and I didn’t know what to do. A good friend of mine at the time told me about an “easy job” that “paid well” which would work around my other responsibilities. His solution…telemarketing! I wasn’t excited about the job going in but thought, “It is a job and will help put food on my table.” Therefore, I signed up. After 3 days of training I was finally put on the floor to begin selling a credit card with an interest rate of 23%. One Saturday, I began making my calls at 9am. I began bugging; I mean calling people, one after the other trying to get them to agree to obtain one of these cards. Let me tell you. I made it 3.5 hours before I called the manager over to my booth and told him this wasn’t for me. He asked me a question that has stuck with me. He inquired, “Why do you want to quit?” The idea of quitting or being viewed as a quitter stills leaves a sour taste in my mouth. However; my answer to him was simple…I didn’t believe in what I was promoting.
Spiritually speaking, can the same be true in regards to the gospel? We are not “selling” the gospel however; we are called to share it with “all the world” (Matt 28:18-20). Yet every statistic I read reveals Christians as a whole are doing a very poor job of evangelizing the lost. Why is that? Why are we not willing to reveal to those who are lost their greatest need (forgiveness of sin) and share with them the only remedy (obedience through the gospel of Jesus Christ)? I believe part of the reason is due to the fact that fewer people are not only READING their Bibles but STUDYING or even MEDITATING upon God’s Word. The Bible has lost it place of prominence within their home and life. Once again, why is that?
I am of the opinion, until we personally learn to abide with Jesus (John 15) we will never tell others about Him. When we come to know someone and fall in love with them, we cannot but help tell others about it. If we never tell others about Jesus, sadly all humanity will be lost (2 Thess. 1:5-10; Romans 3:23; 6:23). We must believe in the gospel we are called to promote!
So where do we begin? I encourage everyone to start with the basics. Romans 10:17 – “Faith comes by hearing and hearing through the Word of God.” We must become people of THE BOOK once again.
Sadly, there are many in mainstream media that are doing their best to destroy the once wide-held view that the Bible IS the inspired Word of God (2 Tim 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21). Allow me to ask, “Do YOU really believe the Bible is the INSPIRED WORD OF GOD? If so why or why not?
There have been numerous sources which has aided me in my study of this vital subject. The following information are taken from Stafford North’s book, “How to Explain”, Josh McDowell’s book, “Evidence That Demands a Verdict” and Tony Hall’s manual, “The Gospel for the World”.
I Know The Bible is the Word of God because:
Archaeology shows the Bible to be True
In Isaiah 20:1, the Bible mentions a king of Assyria named Sargon. For hundreds of years the Bible was the only book that had any record of King Sargon. In 1843, Emile Botta found, near the ruins of the ancient city of Nineveh, the remains of a palace surrounded by many other buildings. Hundreds of ancient documents and records were found and they showed it to be the city of Khorsbad, King Sargon’s imperial city. From 600 B.C. to 1843 (over 2400 years) we had nothing that documented King Sargon, except for the Bible, which told his story accurately. (Stafford North, How to Explain)
The Bible mentions another Assyrian King in 2 Kings 18 and 19. The Bible says that King Sennacherib of Assyria conquered many cities in Judah and that he even surrounded the city of Jerusalem, but that he did not conquer it because God sent a plague upon his army. In 1849, an archaeologist found a clay prism, which Sennacherib left as a record of his own deeds. On it he claims to have conquered 48 cities of Judah and says he surrounded Jerusalem, but makes no claim to have captured it. The Bible recorded this event accurately thousands of years before any other historical proof was discovered. (Stafford North, How to Explain)
In Ezra 1:1-2, we find that Cyrus allowed Jews in captivity in Babylon to return to their own land and rebuild their temple. In 1880, an archaeologist found an ancient clay cylinder on which Cyrus has recorded the important acts of his reign. The cylinder states that Cyrus also had the captive peoples return to their own lands to rebuild temples to their gods. (Stafford North, How to Explain)
During the six-year excavations of Jericho (1930-1936), an archaeologist named Garstang made an amazing find. It was so amazing that he had a statement of what was found prepared and signed by himself and two other members of the team. In reference to these findings Garstang says: “As to the main fact, then, there remains no doubt: the walls fell outward so completely that the attackers would be able to clamber up and over their ruins into the city.” Why so unusual? Because the walls of cities do not fall outwards when they are attacked. They fall inwards. However, in Joshua 6:20 we read “…The wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city every man straight ahead, and they took the city.” The walls were made to fall outward. (Josh McDowell, Evidence that Demands a Verdict. San Bernardino CA; Here’s Life Publishers, 1979).
Fulfilled Prophecies of the Bible
Jeremiah 51:32-64, written in 595 B.C., and Isaiah 13:19-21, written in 712 B.C., both predict that the city of Babylon will become desolate and will never be rebuilt. What was once the center of the Babylonian Empire still today lies in ruins and has no human inhabitants.
Ezekiel 29:14-15, written in 589 B.C., predicts that Nebuchadnezzar will conquer Egypt and that it will never again rise to a major world empire. Today Egypt is still considered a “third world country.”
Ezekiel 35:1-19, predicts that the descendants of Esau, the Edomites, will cease to exist as a people and their cities will be desolate. All of this was fulfilled. Today there are no Edomites and their cities lie in ruins.
Deuteronomy 28:26-37 and 63-66 predict that the Israelites will continue as a people, but will be scattered among many nations and will be persecuted. Today we see that the Jewish people are scattered all over the world and that they are one of, if not the most persecuted groups of people.
These and literally hundreds of other prophecies raise the question… “How did these writers know what would happen to entire nations and different people centuries before it actually happened?”
Do you realize that every year there has to be revisions to all of the science textbooks that are printed because of the newest, latest findings in the scientific world? However, the Bible makes numerous statements that have to do with science. Man has always been a creature of learning. The interesting thing is, while man was learning, God was telling. The writers of the Bible were recording things that were completely different from the ideas that those who were considered to be the “leaders of thought” believed. It is amazing to compare what the Bible says to the thoughts of men.
During the time the Bible was being written…
Man thought – The world rested on the shoulder of a Greek god, sat on the back of a giant turtle, or was supported by huge pillars.
The Bible Said – the “earth hangs on nothing” (Job 26:7)
Man thought – The earth was flat.
The Bible Said – It speaks of the “circle of the earth.” (Isaiah 40:22)
Man thought – There were only 3,000 stars
The Bible Said –The stars are numberless. (Genesis 15:5 and 22:17)
The Bible also records facts within the scientific world that man did not discover for a long time! In fact, in some cases it was the Bible that led man to find it.
Oceans have natural paths in them – Discovered in 1854 – Psalm 8:8
Most seaworthy ship design is 30:5:3 ratio – Discovered in 1860 – Genesis 6
Early in existence, water covered everything (Ice Age) – Modern Science – Genesis 1:2
George Washington died because of a practice called “bloodletting.” They believed that if they drained blood, they were draining the infection. However, 3500 years ago, Moses wrote, “…the life of the flesh is in the blood” (Leviticus 17:11).
Harmony of the Bible
There are 66 books in the Bible: 39 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament. 40 different authors wrote these 66 books over a period of 1600 years. Yet none of the writers (some writing hundreds of years apart with no access to one another) contradict one another on any issue!
The writers of the Bible come from varying backgrounds. There were kings (David), prophets (Jeremiah), tent-makers (Paul), doctors (Luke), fishermen (Peter), tax collectors (Matthew) and other common men. Despite all of the different backgrounds of the writers, every written word in the Bible is in complete agreement. There are NO contradictions!!
The writers of the bible used different languages (mainly Hebrew and Greek) and lived in different countries, but they presented one central theme without variation!!!
There are different types of writing in the Bible including prophecy, history, poetry, proverbs, parables and personal letters. These were all written during a time of myths, superstitions and general scientific ignorance. Yet everything written in the Bible has been proven true!!!
When we begin to examine Scripture and come to a level of understanding our whole perspective changes. Instead of viewing Biblical truths as other’s opinions we begin to understand and become convicted of these truths. Therefore molding and shaping our Biblical worldview. At this point, I am convicted that Christians will long to abide with Christ and therefore be more willing to tell others about the lifesaving relationship found only in Christ.