Why do we have a Bible? Who wrote the Bible? How do we know the Bible is true? Over the years, these are just a few questions that well-meaning teenagers have asked. These teenagers were not being critical, but were just inquisitive and hungry for answers. I believe this shows that there are more questions that are being asked internally. Many teens do not know who to turn to in order to get the answers to the questions they have. It is imperative that every teen understands that the Bible is the Word of God because it truly is the foundation to all the doctrines we teach. If someone does not believe the Word of God, he cannot go to Heaven, for it truly is the source of understanding salvation. The Bible teaches clearly that “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” Romans 10:17. I cannot stress enough the importance of placing our confidence in the Word of God.
The Bible contains sixty-six books divided into two section: The Old Testament and the New Testament. The Old Testament contains thirty-nine books, while the New Testament has the remaining twenty-seven books. The Holy Spirit used forty different men with varied abilities and occupations to write the Word of God. From start to finish, it took 1,500 years to write the entire Word of God. There are many subjects covered in the Word of God, yet they flow in perfect harmony — this is a direct result of the act that God truly is the Author of the Word of God. I understand that this is humanly impossible, but that is exactly what makes it the Word of God.
Let me say first of all, believing the Bible is God’s Holy Word is a matter of faith. The Bible itself says in Hebrews 11:6 “That without faith it is impossible to please God.” As a Baptist, we belive the Bible to be the inspired, inerrant Word of God. We hear the word inspired lot in today’s society. The song writer may say he was inspired to write a particular song. I do not doubt that song writer at all; however, the use of the word inspired for the song writer is vastly different that inspired dealing with the Word of God. The Song writer’s inspiration refers to idea or motivation. 2 Timothy 3:16 states, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”
This use of the word inspiration literally means “God-breathed.” That means that God literally shared His Word with the writers of the Bible and allowed them the honor of writing God’s Word. The book of Matthew is God’s inspired Word, penned by the man named Matthew and influenced by his life. By faith we believe God used forty holy men of God to write God’s words as He inspired them. 2 Peter 1:21 states, “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.”
The word inerrant means without error. This is God’s perfect Word for us. Some would say that the Bible is full of errors and contradictions. That is a lie of Satan. After all, it was Satan that asked Eve in the Garden of Eden in Genesis 3:1, “Hath God said?” Satan’s ultimate goal is to destroy God’s Word and to convince mankind that it is not God’s Word, but merely a historical book. Satan will attack in any way he can to discredit and destroy the Bible.
However, God’s Word has stood the test of time and has had the power to change the lives of so many. God’s Word has the power to save a soul, and to help a Christian lead a godly life for Him. Hebrews 4:12 confirms the power of the Word of God in our lives;
“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” We must believe by faith that the Bible is God’s Word.
In our society today, there is so much confusion concerning the Word of God. Those are so many types of “Bibles” to choose between. How do we know what Bible to use? I believe the answer is clear and simple. The debate really is between a simple choice-which original text is best? Without giving you an excuse to put this book down because it is too deep, here are some basic facts: Our modern day Bibles are translated from two basic sources. First, the King James Version is translated from the Textus Receptus, or Received Text, from the New Testament and from the Westcott\Hort Text. Here is the difference: the source of the Bible must be correct. We believe that the Westcott\Hort text would be an inferior text because of the many omissions of words and verses throughout the Bible as well as a host of changes to the Scriptures. Please do not fall into the lie of the Devil that says, “They are so similar, does it really matter?” God says not to chane even “one jot or one tittle” of His Word according to Matthew 5:18. These other translations change what the Bible says. I challenge you to do a simple computer search that shows the changes and differences there are from one version of the Bible to another. As Independent Baptists, we believe the King James Bible is inspired, preserved, perfect Word of God. We believe that God has preserved His Word for us today. That simply means that God has used mankind throughout the ages to keep the Word of God pure and pass it down through the ages. We believe in the doctrine of inspiration. 1 Peter 1:25 says, “But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.” Matthew 24:35 says, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.”
God definitely puts a high priority on His Word and is in the business of protecting it for us. I challenge you to memorize these other passages of Scripture as well to increase your faith in the Word of God:
Deuteronomy 6:7-9 “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.”
Psalm 12:6-7 “The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.”
Psalm 119:89 “For ever, O Lord, thy word is settled in Heaven.”
Psalm 119:152 “Concerning thy testimonies, I have known of old that thou hast founded them for ever.”
Psalm 119:160 “Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of the righteous judgments endureth for ever.”
Isaiah 30:8 “ Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever:”
Isaiah 40:8 “The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.”
Teenager, you can know and understand the Word of God. God’s desire is that all of us get into His Word learn it, memorize it, and practice it. It is God’s love letter to you! God desires you to have a relationship with Him, and the only way to get to know God is through His Word. Read it daily, study it, learn it, and practice it.
I am reminded of the love letters I received from my wife before we were married. Wow! Did I treasure them! I would read them over and over again. I not only loved what she said in those love letters and notes, but I also loved how they smelled. Christy would put just a dab of her perfume on those notes, and I really loved to hold those notes and letters up to my nose and breathe in the “love” as well. I remember at college getting notes and letters from her. We were engaged to be married, and I loved to hear anything from her. After I read, re-read, and re-read again those letters, I would put them under my pillow of my dormitory bed – I never could get enough of Christy! I looked forward to spending that time with her through those love letters. I still get many love letters from my wife, and I save every one of them. They are so special to me. Unfortunately, I was guilty of desiring to read those love letters more than the one God had written to me. God’s desire is to grow and develop a personal relationship with you, and His main avenue of developing that relationship with you is through His Holy Word.
God’s Word is His love letter to you – do you treasure it? Let me ask you today, teenager, is your relationship with God growing or stagnant? Let me ask it a little more pointed: are you spending time with God daily in the Word of God? We say we believe the Bible is God’s Holy Word, but I am confident that we really do not believe that to be true, simply because we do not practice what we say we believe. Think about it(don’t hurt yourself though), you have the only letter that God has ever sent to man, and it is from the Creator of the world, yet we hardly spend much time. if any. reading that special letter! One of my favorite songs as a bus kid growing up in central Illinois was the song “Read Your Bible, Pray Every Day.” I liked the message of the song, but as a kid, I really liked the motions and actions. I remember singing the first verse, ” Neglect your Bible, forget to pray, forget to pray, forget to pray; neglect your Bible forget to pray and you’ll shrink, shrink, shrink.” I remember getting as low to the ground as possible, even lying flat on the ground. Then we would sing the second verse, “Read your Bible, pray every day, pray every day, pray every day; read your Bible, pray every day and you’ll grow, grow, grow.” I remember climbing up on my chair in Sunday School and getting as tall as I could just to show that I was “growing.” I wonder if you are lying flat on your belly on the ground today because of your lack of reading God’s Word, or are you as tall as possible due to your daily relationship with God’s Word? Let’s strive to believe that the Bible is the Word of God, and put your noses in it, and spend some time with God today. Books and other teaching tools are great, but nothing compares to the Word of God.
2 Timothy 2:15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be a shame, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
Joshua 1:8 “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”
Psalm 1:2-3 “But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.”
God has promised to bless us when we put ourselves in His Word. I am afraid many of us miss the blessings of God simply because we do not stay in the Word. Commit today to be a student of the Bible!
Franklin Road Baptist Church | Murfreesboro, TN