Thursday, September 13, 2012

Today’s Show Notes: Thursday 13th September, 2012

Evidence Bible

“The unattended garden will soon be overrun with weeds; the heart that fails to cultivate truth and root out error will shortly be a theological wilderness.” A.W. Tozer

“How do we know that the Bible is the Word of God, and not the Qur’an or the Book of Mormon?” 

· Starting point: Anyone could claim they are writing the words of God, but if God is saying it He would make a way to authenticate it. He would make it so we were sure it was from Him.

· Some basics you’d need to see of any “holy book”

1) Historically accurate. It would have all really happened. Archeology has given us plenty of evidence that the events of the Bible took place.

2) Teachings are in perfect harmony. The Bible was written by 40 different people over a span of about 1,500 years, and there are no contradictions in its teachings. It all agrees with itself.

3) Same today as the day it was written. The Bible has been preserved. Comparing our modern Bible text with ancient Bible text, such as the Dead Sea Scrolls, easily proves the Bible hasn’t been tampered with or changed.

4) Supernatural prophecies. It would have to have the thumbprint of God… any good book can be historically accurate, not contradict itself, and have been preserved, but the supernatural is God’s domain. The Bible contains scientific and medical foreknowledge, precise event predictions, and messianic prophecies (that are entirely missing from other “holy” books—God made it obvious the Bible was His only word to mankind).

A few prophecy examples… (the following was adapted from an article found here:

· In Ezekiel 26 we can see in astonishing detail how the city of Tyre was to be destroyed, how it would be torn down, and how its debris would be thrown into the sea. When Alexander the Great marched on that area, he encountered a group of people holed up in a tower on an island off the coast near there. He could not cross the sea, so he could not fight those in the tower. Rather than wait them out, the proud conqueror had his army throw stones into the sea to build a land bridge to the tower. It worked. His army crossed the sea and overthrew the occupants of the stronghold. But where did he get so much stone? The rocks that were used for the land bridge were the leftover rubble from the city of Tyre . . . its stones cast into the sea!

· There are so many prophecies concerning Christ (over 270!). Further, Jesus would have had no control over many of them such as His birthplace or time of birth. Second, the odds of one man accidentally fulfilling even 16 of these are 1 in 10 to the 45th power. How many is that? For comparison, there are less than 10 to the 82nd power of atoms in the entire universe! And Jesus, who affirmed the Bible as the Word of God, proved His reliability and deity by His resurrection (an historical fact not easily ignored).

· In Genesis 12:7, God promises that the land of Israel was to be for Abraham and his descendants. In 1948 Israel was returned back to the Jewish people for the second time in history. This may not seem so astonishing until you realize that no nation in the history of the world has been scattered from its homeland and returned! Israel has done it twice.

· The book of Daniel predicts with accuracy the coming of the four great kingdoms from Babylon, to Medo-Persia, to Greece, to Rome centuries before some of those kingdoms came on the scene (a time span of over 1,000 years!) with details concerning how they would rule and be broken. This includes the reigns of Alexander the Great and Antiochus Epiphanies.

Let’s examine the other “holy” books…

· The Quran - its author, Muhammad, performed no miracles to back up his message (even when he was asked to by his followers - Sura 17:91-95; 29:47-51). Only in much later tradition (the Hadith) do any alleged miracles even show up and these are all quite fanciful (like Muhammad cutting the moon in half) and have zero reliable testimony to back them up. Further, the Quran makes clear historical errors.

· Joseph Smith, the author of the Book of Mormon, tried to do some miracles such as prophecy (a test for a true prophet in Deuteronomy 18:21-22) but failed several times. He foretold of Christ's second coming in History of the Church (HC) 2:382. Joseph Smith preached that the coming of the Lord would be in 56 years (about 1891). The second coming did not occur in 1891, and the Mormon Church does not claim that it did. Nor has it occurred since. He also prophesied that several cities would be destroyed in Doctrine and Covenants (D&C) 84:114-115. New York, Albany and Boston were to be destroyed if they rejected the gospel according to Smith. Joseph Smith himself went to New York, Albany, and Boston and preached there. These cities did not accept his gospel, yet they have not been destroyed. Another famous false prophecy of Joseph Smith was his "END OF ALL NATIONS" in D&C 87 concerning the rebellion of South Carolina in the war between the states. The South was supposed to call on Great Britain for aid, and as a result war would be poured out upon all nations; slaves would revolt; the inhabitants of the earth would mourn; famine, plague, earthquake, thunder, lightning, and a full end of all nations would result. The South finally did revolt in 1861, but the slaves did not rise up, war was not poured out upon all nations, there was no worldwide famine, plague, earthquake, etc., and there was no resulting "end of all nations."

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