FOF-02 - The Bible
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FUNDAMENTALS OF FAITH
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable,” 2 Timothy 3:16.
Welcome to our study of fundamentals of the faith. Of all the lessons we can
think about that are extremely important and play a fundamental role in the Christian’s
faith, the Bible's inspiration is at the top of that list. My understanding that this book is
from God, is so critical to having the type of faith that pleases God and that brings honor
to Him every day.
As we think about Bible inspiration, the Bible does claim it is from God. The
apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 14:37, “If any man thinks himself to be a prophet or
spiritual,” Paul said, “Let him acknowledge the things which I write to you, they are the
commandments of God.” Paul's writing, John's writing, Mark’s writing, James’ writing,
the Bible as a whole, whose book is it? The Bible teaches it is from God.
Throughout history great men of renown have shown the importance of the Bible
with their words and their actions and even some of their statements. I just want to
mention a few of these, to show you that throughout history, the Bible has been so
important to the world. For example, Napoleon, great conqueror, said this, ‘The Bible is
no mere book but a living creature with a power that conquers all that oppose it.’ What a
great statement about the all-encompassing power of God's word from a conqueror
himself. Then we think about W. H. Stewart, who made this statement, he said, ‘The
whole hope of human progress is suspended on the ever-growing influence of the
Bible.’ When we think about progress today and so many focuses on science and
technology and that being the progress and medically, that’s going to lead us in the right
direction. Mr. Stewart was right; our progress depends on our ever-growing knowledge
and influence of the word of God. And I think of the statement of Sir Isaac Newton who
said this, ‘There are more sure marks of authenticity in the Bible then in any profane
history.’ Is the Bible authentic? Is it from God? Can I put my hope and trust in the word
of God and really live as God wants me to live every day? Can I be sure this is the right
way? This is what George Washington said, “It’s impossible to rightly govern the world
without God and the Bible.” The only way our nation can think succeed is if we truly are
one nation under God and based on the Bible. Daniel Webster, a noted dictionary
writer, said, ‘I've read it through many times, and I pity the man who cannot find in it a
rich supply of thoughts, rule, and conduct.’ It was that general in the Civil War, who
made one the great statements, Robert E Lee said this, ‘In all my perplexities and the
stresses, the Bible has never failed to give me light and strength.’ I understand as well
as you, those are human statements, those are not from God. It shows throughout
history, even American history, world history, the important role God's word has played.
Let’s now direct our attention, in this study on fundamentals of the faith, let's think
about: is this book, does it claim, to be the word of God? Many people just think of the
Bible as a good book of moral or religious suggestions. Are there good moral stories
here, a lot of religious suggestions? Yes. But, is it really the word of God? Many people
stop short at that. Evolution and humanism, which are being taught so much today in
our schools, through our media, on TV programs that you hear, they cause people to
wonder: is the Bible really from God? The Bible doesn't teach that, here's what science
says. So, it pits God against man's scientific ideas. Which is true? Is the Bible really
inspired? There is so much religious skepticism that creates confusion today. Some
believe this, some believe that. There are a whole host of ideas, and there's a lot of
confusion in the religious world. Is the Bible really true, with all this confusion? I'll assure
you, God's not the author of confusion, 1 Corinthians 14: 37-40. Then, if the Bible is not
inspired realize this everything that I doing you do as a Christian is in vain. This is how
critical it is, if this book is not from God, I may as well close it, put it in the back shelf,
and go live and do as I want to do. If it's not from God, everything we’re doing is pretty
much in vain. So, this is an extremely important subject, as we think about our faith and
the fundamental of what we really believe about God and about Christianity.
Let's now direct our attention to several passages in Scripture that do teach this
book is from God. I want to direct your attention to 2 Timothy chapter 3. I want you
notice what the Bible says in verses 16 and 17 about the inspiration of the Bible that we
hold in our hands and that we draw near to our heart. Paul writes to the young
evangelist Timothy, as he encourages him to do the work of God in Ephesus, he says,
“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 complete
thoroughly equipped for every good work.” What does 2 Timothy 3:16-17 teach us about
inspiration? It teaches us the completeness of inspiration.
How much Scripture is inspired of God? All Scripture is given by inspiration of
God, from Genesis 1:1 to Revelation 22:21, every verse is inspired by Almighty God
and is the product of his breath. What do we mean when we say inspiration then? I
understand all of it is. But what is inspiration? Are we saying that the Bible is inspired
like Shakespeare was inspired to write a play? No, that’s not the idea. When we say
inspired, the literal Greek word means God breathed out. Theopneustos, God exhaled
and on his breath that came out of his mouth, was the word of God. And so, we’re
talking about the literal breath of God, God's breath, the Holy Spirit being the part that
brought that to men and women today being the force that gave us the Bible. David said
in 2 Samuel 23:2, “His word was on my tongue.” That’s what we’re talking about. All
Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable and it makes one complete
thoroughly equipped for every good work. We see the scope of inspiration being all the
Bible. We see the force behind it being God. The Bible being inspired is complete. It’s
everything I need to get to heaven. You know what is great about the Bible? This book
has everything you and I need, everything we need, to please God and get to heaven.
Do you believe that? 2 Peter 1:3, “All Scripture not only is given by inspiration of God,”
but Peter said, “that it within the pages of the Bible we have everything God is given to
us everything for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us.” I’ve
got everything I need to please God and get to heaven.
Then I want to mention to you another passage that teaches the Bible is indeed
inspired. I want you look in 1 Corinthians chapter 2. I want you notice verse number 13,
this is a wonderful passage where Paul is illustrating the power and the beauty of God
and giving man His Revelation. 1 Corinthians 2:13, here's what Paul says to the church
at Corinth, “These things we also speak,” notice now, “not in words which man's wisdom
teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches comparing spiritual things with spiritual.” What
do we learn about Bible inspiration here? God revealed the Bible not in pictures, God
didn’t send us a picture book or movie show, not in ideas where man could take that
idea and put in his own word, God spoke in words. God gave us His writing, His word; in
the very words He wanted us to have it. These are words which the Holy Spirit teaches.
God used the Holy Spirit, third person, the Godhead that we often think of, as the force
to get his word to men and women today. When John Mark or when Luke sat down with
pen to write the epistles they wrote, whose word was that? The Holy Spirit teaches
second Peter 1:19, “Holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” So
when we think about the Bible being inspired, it's the product of Almighty God in the
words that God himself wanted us to have.
Another passage I want to mention is found in 1 Thessalonians chapter 2. Direct
your attention to verse number 13. As we think about Bible inspiration, this is one of
those great passages that teach us the fullness of God's word and its truth. The Bible
says, “For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received
the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but
as it is in truth, the word of God which also effectively works in you who believe.” When
you heard this word, you welcomed it rightly, not as our word, Paul said, but as it is in
truth. What is in truth? The word of God which also effectively works in you. When I
read the pages of the Bible, what am I reading? I’m not reading men's ideas. I’m not
reading first century opinions. I’m not reading what somebody sent out a poll and
produced of populous on that, that’s not what I’m reading. I'm reading the word of God.
Remember again 1 Corinthians 14:37, the Scripture proclaims that Paul speaking, “If
any man thinks himself be a prophet or spiritual let him acknowledge things which I
write to you these are commands of God.” Not Paul's ideas, not Paul's opinions, not
John, or Mark, or James, or Luke, whoever’s, these are the words of God. That's what
the Bible claims as far as inspiration.
Now if we were to define inspiration, get maybe a little better handle on the idea
of inspiration in Scripture, how could we describe that to help us understand it? Well the
word inspiration, as we mean, is a compound word in the Greek Bible. It is the word
theopneustos, but in our English language, we divide up into two words the Greek word
‘theos’, is the word for God, and the word ‘pneuma’ literally means to breathe out. When
we talk about the Bible as being inspired, literally that compound word means, God
exhaled. God breathed out and the product on his breath was the Bible. When we talk
about defining inspiration, we're talking about the Bible being infallible. The Bible is not
made up of errors. The Bible is not a book of things that are hit and miss, right and
wrong, here and there, you can pick and choose. The Bible is infallible, and that's what
the Scripture proclaims. John 17:17 Jesus prayed to the Father, “Sanctify them by your
truth, your word is truth.” Friend if truth is true, and it is, it's also infallible. James 1:25,
James said to Christians, “We have the perfect law of liberty.” Again, the idea of
complete, perfect, not lacking anything, is what the Scripture proclaims. Psalm 119:160
says this, “The entirety of your word is true, your law is truth and every one of your
righteous judgments endures forever.” How much of the Bible is true? The entirety.
What's that mean? Genesis 1:1, Revelation 22:21 and everything in between is true.
Psalm 19:7, “How I love your law O Lord, the law of the Lord is perfect in every way,”
the psalmist will say.
Again, the Bible proclaims that not only did it come out of the breath of God, but it
is infallible. It is without error. When we talk about inspiration, we’re also caring the idea
of it being verbal. That is that again, God didn't send a picture show, God didn't send
the drawing, God didn’t send an art book, God didn’t just throw out some ideas and say
go put them in your words, the very words of the Bible God used the medium of
language in words. And those words make up the content of the word of God. Again 1
Corinthians 2:13, “We speak not in words, which man speaks, but words which the Holy
Spirit teaches.” That's the idea, God spoke in words. 2 Samuel 23: 2, “His word was on
my tongue.” God said to Jeremiah, “My word I've put in your mouth.” He said, “Jeremiah
go and preach that word.”
So as we think about the Bible, God revealed his message in words. Those
words are important. In fact, not only the words are important, but every letter in the
words are important. Let me give you an example, in Galatians 3, where there is a big
discussion between the Jews and Christ and the Christians there in first century about
who's the seed of Abraham. Jesus, or the writer the Holy Spirit, goes back to the old
argument in Genesis 12. He says, “He does not say ‘and to seeds as of many’ but
‘seed and to your seed with Christ.’” What’s this old argument based on? One letter in
one word. Not seeds plural and your seed singular, who is Christ. The very words and
the very letters of those words are important in our understanding.
The Bible is indeed inspired by God. Another idea that we combine with Bible
inspiration is that it is full, complete that it has everything we need for life and godliness.
Again here are some passages that teach that. 2 Peter 1:3, “As his divine power has
given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness through the knowledge of him who
called us by glory and virtue.” Question: can you have more than all? That's a silly
question. All is all. It is complete; it’s full. God has given to us all things. Peter, what do
you mean by all things? ‘For life and godliness,’ I have all things to live the best life. I
have all things to be a Godly person. Where at? Through knowledge, of Him who called
us by glory and virtue. Found within the pages of God's wisdom and knowledge, in the
Bible. John 16:13, Jesus promised his disciples would later become the apostles. He
said, “When He the spirit of truth has come, He'll guide you into,” listen again, “all truth”
Again you can’t have more than all. If the Holy Spirit came, and he did, in Acts chapter
2, He guided those men and women into all truth, and we have that in the pages of the
How can I be sure? Let’s say that someone says, ‘okay, I understand the claim, I
know that the Bible says it, but how can I be sure that the Bible is really of the word of
God? How can we be sure of that?’ Let me give you several ideas, several proofs that
will help us with that. You can do some research on your own on these as well. You can
find that very easily in researching that. Several of the proofs for inspiration are the
uniqueness of Scripture. There are a multiplicity of writers writing over 1500 years, all
coming from different backgrounds, different time periods, speaking different languages,
being of different trades, and backgrounds, not most of them not knowing each other,
and the Bible perfectly harmonizes on every subject. Now think about this. How could,
could men today write one book, on one subject that completely harmonized? Take for
example a medical book. Imagine you were to gather the top medical doctors in the
world and ask them to write a certain medical practice. You know how many opinions
you’re going to get? You’re going to get a lot. Would they harmonize? Not all of them.
Every book, every writer, uniquely harmonizes through God. That in of itself is proof of
Then a second proof would be prophecy. For example, Isaiah 7:14, Isaiah
prophesied 750 years before it happen that a virgin would give birth to a son. “You'll call
his name Immanuel,” which is translated ‘God with us.’ A virgin giving birth to a son?
That's unheard of! How could Isaiah have known these 750 years before? Did it
happen? You open to Matthew 1, exactly like Isaiah 7 said, “Mary, who is a virgin, gives
birth to a son. He is identified as Immanuel, ‘God with us’, Savior of the world.” Those
minute details, which go against the grain of everything that we know biologically,
reproductively, how did Isaiah know that? God told him. Psalm 22, the crucifixion of
Christ. 1000 years before Christ is crucified, Psalm 22 occurs and in detail. In fact it is
quoted from multiple times in Matthew 27 in detail. All the things that were said in Psalm
22 came to fruition 1000 years later. You could look at hundreds of passages where
such is the case.
Another great proof is that of scientific foreknowledge. The Bible is not a study
book; it is not a science textbook. But are there are things in there that the creator the
world included to show us it's scientifically accurate? You bet it is. You can think of
some of these. In Psalm 8, the psalmist mentions paths of the sea. People now know
that the sea does indeed have paths. Vitamin K, the clotting factor mentioned the book
of Leviticus, when circumcision happen on the eighth day, it's at its highest level.
Medically, scientifically, biologically, those things go hand-in-hand. You can determine
that the Bible is from Almighty God and that we absolutely must follow its teaching.
Let’s make practical application to this. If I say, and if I realize, this book is from
God, that it's God's word, what does that mean practically speaking? First, it means
everything a Christian does must have God’s stamp of approval on it. His stamp of
approval is so important and understanding that. Colossians 3:17 teaches this,
“Whatever you do in word or in deed, do all the name the Lord Jesus giving thanks to
God the father through Him.” If I want to please God, I've got to do it by the authority of
Christ. Where do I find the authority of Christ? In the Bible, where God has spoken to us
in these last days by his son (Hebrews 1:1). Practically speaking, the Scriptures teach
us, if this is the word of God, I have no right to add to nor take away from it.
Deuteronomy 4:2 says it in the Old Testament at the close of the New Testament,
Revelation 22:18 -19 says, “Do not add to nor take away from the words of this book.”
God says, “Lest the prophecies, the woes, the condemnations be added up on you.”
Does God want me to edit his book? Does God need me to help them with it? God
doesn’t want me to add to or take away. Proverbs 30:6, “Do not add to his word, lest he
rebuke you and you be found a liar.” What is it God really wants? If the Bible's inspired,
God simply wants me and you to follow it.
I want to mention to you passage in 1 Corinthians 4. I want you to notice what
Paul says. He uses an illustration to show the need to follow God's word. 1 Corinthians
4:6, Paul says this, “Now these things brethren I have figuratively transferred to myself
and Apollos for your sake, that you may learn in us,” don't miss this, “not to think beyond
what's written that none of you may be puffed up on behalf of one against the other.”
What does the Scripture say about staying true to the Bible? Don't think beyond what's
written. That's pretty plain, that’s simple, and that’s so helpful. God wants me to keep
my thinking spiritually, biblically about God, about salvation, about heaven, about how to
live within the pages of that book. Listen very carefully, now hope you understand the
way we’re saying this, how wonderful it is to have the Bible. 1 John 5:13-16, John says,
“These things I’ve written you, believe in the name the son of God that you may know
that you have eternal life and that you may continue to believe in his name.” The Bible,
being God's word, it's a joy to have this. How? Because if I read this book, if I study, if I
live by it, if I let my life be governed by it, I can know, listen carefully, I can know that I'm
safe and that I'm right with God. You cannot have a greater joy in the entire world than
that. Practically speaking, when we talk about the inspiration of the Bible, we need to
Let's not be hypocritical. Let's live the Bible every day. Let's walk in the footsteps
of Jesus, 1 Peter 2:21. Let's, “Let our light shine for Christ,” Matthew 5:16. And then
practically speaking, let's love. The psalmist said in Psalm 119, “How I love your law, it’s
my meditation all the day.” Do we love the Bible? Does it really have a place of honor in
our lives? Do we really cherish its precepts, its teaching, and the God who gave it to us?
Then practically, let's let others know about it. If I believe this Bible, this book, is
the very word of God, I want to share that. I want to really do what Jesus said. Matthew
28:18, Jesus as he descended back before he was sent to the father, he tells his
disciples that they are to, “Go into all the world, all nations, baptizing them in the Father
and Son, and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things. I command you go all
nations go into all the world that world.” That world begins with my friends, my
neighbors, my family; everybody who we know is not a Christian.
As God's children, let's live by the Bible. Let's let it govern our lives each and every day.
As I live by the Bible, I'm living the way God wants me to live. Let's love it. Let’s study it.
Let’s read it. Let’s really let it be the influence and the emphasis in our life that changes
things. Let’s let others know about God's saving power. God sent His son to the world to
die for mankind. If people hear that message, they're willing to believe in Jesus, change
their lives, and repent, confess the beautiful name of Christ before men, and be
immersed in water, Acts 2:38 says they can be forgiven of sins. We encourage you
today. Let's let God's book, the Bible, be our guide.
Study Questions for: “Fundamentals of the Faith: Bible”
1. According to 2 Timothy 3:16, where does the inspiration of the Bible
2. What should we use scripture for according to 2 Timothy 3:16-17?
3. 2 Peter 1:3 tells us we have what from scripture?
4. According to Psalm 19:17, the law of the Lord is what?
5. According to Colossians 3:17, how should we do all things?
6. According to Proverbs 30:6 should we add to the Bible?
7. How should we feel about God’s law according to Psalm 119?
8. In 1 Peter 1:19, what were the Holy men of God moved by?
9. According to 1 Thessalonians 2:13, what should we thank God for?
10. What did Jesus pray for in John 17:17?