Memory Verse: Matthew 4:4 Lesson Verse: Hebrews 4:12
What separates Bible-Christianity from all other types of Christianity is its claim to an absolute, written authority from God. Most “Christians” only use the Bible, but do not believe it completely. Having the word of God is essential to a Christian's growth because the basis by which a Christian is to govern his or her life is only found in the pages of the Holy Bible!
The purpose of this lesson is to help the Christian to know what it is that they hold in their hands, and how they can trust it as the very words of God (1 Thessalonians 2:13)!
II. Bible Facts
The human authors wrote each portion of the Bible by the “_________________ of God” (2 Tim 3:16). This means God “breathed” (spoke) His very words into the pages of the Bible - they were not invented by human imagination. They came directly from God (Mt 4:4)!
The Bible therefore came not by the ________ of man (2 Peter 1:21), and yet God chose to use over 40 human authors to pen the books of the Bible. So, no one just sat down and decided to write a book for the Bible. It was always directed, and controlled by God. Let’s look at some of the “sub-authors” that God used to pen this Book of books:
1. Deut 31:24-26 ___________
2. Luke 20:42______________
3. Proverbs 1:1 _____________
4. Isaiah 1:1 ________________
5. Romans 1:1,7 _____________
6. 1 Peter 1:1 ________________
According to Jesus Christ, _________________ and _________________ will pass away, but not God's word (Matthew 24:35).
The Bible is superior to all philosophy because it was not given by ___________________________________________________ but by the ______________________________________ (1 Corinthians 2:13).
The Bible is ONE Book made up of 66 separate books.
The Bible is now completed. It was finished in about 95 AD, when the apostle John completed the book of Revelation. No one can add anything to it through personal revelations, visions, or prophecies, and no one can take away from it (Rev 22:18,19) - anyone with any additional prophecies than contained in the Bible is of the devil!
Overall, the Bible is divided into two main sections. The second section is called the ________________________ (2 Cor 3:6). The first section is called the ______________________ (2 Cor 3:14). A “testament” is a written testimony about God’s will in the form of a covenant (agreement).
The Bible is holy, and perfect, having no error because it is both inspired, and ______________ by God (Ps 12:6,7). God wrote the Scriptures through men (that is inspiration, 2 Tim 3:16), and then bound Himself to keep His word from error (that is preservation, Matt 24:35)! That means that God’s word is still here on earth today - it has not “been lost” or corrupted, or else Jesus was a liar!
Outline of History - According to God in His Bible
III. What The Bible Is
A. God's revelation of the origin and destiny of all things (Isa 46:9,10).
B. God's will or testament to people of all ages, revealing the plan of God for mankind here and now, and in the next life.
C. A record of how God dealt with man in the past, present and future.
D. Contains the message of eternal salvation for all who believe in Christ, and eternal ________________ for all who reject that Gospel (John 3:36).
E. The most remarkable Book ever! Of its divine library of 66 books, there is history, biography, poetry, proverbial sayings (true sayings), hymns (songs), laws, parables (stories that teach truth), riddles, allegories (symbolic language), prophecies, records of birth, and death, mysteries, adventure, recipes, blessings, cursings, and all other forms of human expression!
F. Psalm 119 deals particularly with the subject of the Scriptures in great detail. Of the 176 verses, all but three specifically mention the Scriptures and their importance in the life of the believer.
1. The Bible is referred to in Psalm 119 using eight different words:
a. The _____ - God’s definition of right and wrong (vs 1)
b. The ___________- a record of what God thinks (vs 2)
c. God’s ______- a record of how God works (vs 3)
d. ________- Truths that apply to life - principles (vs 4)
e. _______- fixed truths of God (5)
f. ____________- clear commands and instructions (6)
g. __________- God’s conclusions about various subjects (vs 7)
h. The ________ - the very words of God (vs 9)
2. Psalm 119 teaches that the Bible is eight things to every believer:
a. It provides spiritual cleansing (Psalm 119:9; Ephesians 5:25,26). The word of God cleanses the life of the believer as we obey it!
b. It is like having wealth and riches to the one who has it (119:14)!
c. A companion and friend to the one who lives in it (119:24)!
d. A song to sing (119:54) - it fills the heart with such joy!
e. ___________ (119:103) as ______________.
f. A __________ (119:105,130)
g. A heritage - something passed on like an heirloom (119:111).
h. Great spoil and treasure (119:162)
You will find this all to be true as you explore God's word!
3. The Psalm declares that the Bible charges the believer with eight responsibilities concerning the Scriptures:
a. To love them (119:97,159) - How much do YOU love them?
b. Prize them (119:72,127) as you would treasure!
c. Memorize them (119:11) - learn God's words as He wrote them.
d. ____________ on them (119:15,23,48,78) - understand each word!
them (119:7,12,18,26,27) - See
2 Tim 2:15!
f. Trust them (119:42) Faith comes by hearing this Bible (Rom 10:17)
g. Obey them (119:8) - See James 1:22! Live this Bible every day!
h. Declare them (119:13) - tell others of God's word on life!
G. There are four things God wants us to learn from the Bible (2 Tim 3:16,17):
1. Doctrine - learn what is right and true, and actual
2. Reproof - learn what is not right in our life, and in the world
3. ________________ - learn how to get right - most important
4. Instruction in righteousness - learn how to stay right
four foundations prepare you so that "...the
man of God (the mature Christian) may
be ___________, throughly furnished unto all good works."
IV. What The Bible Is Not - Make no mistake about it!
A. It is NOT a charm or good luck piece.
B. It is NOT a book of "heavenly utterances" in a supernatural language. It is God's revelation in the most simple human language possible.
C. It is NOT a book of mysteries. It is self interpreting, explaining all the mysteries of life, so that no mysteries remain.
D. It is NOT a book that says one thing and means another.
It is NOT a book that should be constantly criticized and attacked simply because you don’t like what it says, or how it says it! It is God’s words!
V. How We Got Our Bible - A Brief History Lesson
The Bible is the written record of the very words that proceeded from the __________ of God (Matthew 4:4). They are referred to as the Scriptures, the Law, God’s Word, and the Book. We get our word “Bible” from the Greek word ‘Biblios’, which simply means “the Book.”
The Old Testament was written mainly in the HEBREW language, from 2000 years before the Birth of Christ (BC) to about 350 years BC. The Hebrew for the first part of Genesis 1:1 looks like, .
The New Testament was written in GREEK from 35 AD to 95 AD (A.D. is a Latin abbreviation for, Year of the Lord starting from Christ’s birth). The Greek for John 3:16 looks like, (which says, “For God so loved…”). Aren’t you glad we can read it in English?!
Through 3,000 years now, God has preserved over 5,000 Greek and Hebrew copies and portions of His word! These copies are what our Bible is translated from.
From those copies, God combined His words into ONE Book at around 100 AD, and scattered it into all the major languages, with more and more people even today getting copies of the word of God in their language! The Bible is THE most published and read book in the world, of all time!
Our English Bible is the result of some 1,300 years of life-threatening work, starting back in 700 AD.
1. In 1382, a man named John Wycliff (1330-1384) translated the first complete Bible into English. For this, he was excommunicated, and after death, his bones were burned by order of the pope!
2. The next was made by William Tyndale (1494-1536), who was only able to finish the New Testament and the first five books of the Old Testament by 1530. By order of the priesthood, Tyndale was burned at the stake for translating the Scriptures on Oct. 6, 1536!
3. In 1535, Myles Coverdale (1485-1568) completed the first printed Bible (all others were hand copied, or printed without moveable type).
4. In 1539 the Great Bible was published. It was called Great because of its large size. This Bible was placed into every church, and a chain placed on it so that it could not be removed, but freely read from.
5. In 1560, the Geneva Bible was produced by scholars in Geneva, Switzerland because in England, Catholic Queen Mary had ascended the throne and forbid access to the Bible, and its publication.
6. The Bishop's Bible was printed in 1563, and revised in 1568.
7. The Roman Catholic church came out with it's Rheims New Testament in 1582, and Douay Old Testament in 1609. They were translated for the express purpose of backing up the dogma and teaching of the church instead of presenting the truths of Christ.
8. In 1604, King James the First, authorized 47 men to produce a complete translation of the Bible without Catholic influence in it. It was completed in 1611, and is referred to as the King James Version (KJV), or Authorized Version (AV) of 1611, and still today is God's preserved word for the English speaking people.
9. Since 1611, there have been over 200 attempts to falsely “modernize” the Bible. These attempts include the New International Version (NIV), the New American Standard Version (NASV), the Good News Bible, and so on. But none are as accurate, or honest in their translation, or have the effect on people’s hearts as does the AV 1611!
VI. Proofs of Inspiration - How We
Know the Bible was Given By God!
Its Unity. Over 40 authors wrote the 66 books of the Bible in different lands (Job in Mesopotamia, Moses in Jordan, Paul in Rome and Greece, John in Turkey, Peter in Babylon), and at different times, covering a period of over 2,100 years (from 2000 B.C. to 95 A.D.), and yet never contradicting each other! Try to duplicate that! No matter what you have been told, none of the writings were “sanctioned” by some church council, or commanded to be written by some church leader. They were all written by the direct inspirational hand of _____ (2 Tim 3:16), and preserved from any human error, in spite of the fact that myriads of religious efforts were made to destroy both the prophets and their message!
Its Influence on the World. No other book has so influenced the course of human events like the Bible - it has never been imposed upon a people. No matter what culture a person lives in, one thing has always been true - Religion has always been forced upon people on a collective basis, while Biblical Christianity has always been chosen on an individual basis. This one piece of “literature” has brought about the greatest nations, and greatest freedoms no sword or any other means could! Notice the effect the word of God had upon the people of first century A.D. (Acts 17:6), the people of the Reformation, the Renaissance, and compare those people’s lives with the effects of the Dark Ages (when the Bible was banned from being read or believed), and the effects of Humanism, Stalinism, Marxism, and all other forms of tyrannical dictatorship (all banned the Bible)! Since the Bible’s truths are individual in nature, no dictator, pope or prince can allow it to turn their subjects away from complete devotion to THEM, so they ban it! Don’t let someone take away your access to God’s written word!
Its Supernatural Preservation. As it has already been said, whole kingdoms and religions have sought in vain to destroy the influence of the Scriptures, and yet it still reigns victorious, and indestructible (Matt 24:35). It has, and always will out-last all religions and kingdoms of this world, simply because, it is God’s pure word (Ps 12:6,7)!
Fulfilled Prophecy. One of the most important areas of proof that God wrote the Bible involves the fact that almost 3,300 verses of prophecy have been fulfilled to the letter. These prophecies were predictions made hundreds and even thousands of years before their fulfillment (i.e., the prediction in Micah 5:2 of the birthplace of ______ was made 750 years before the event - see Mt 2:1-6). Not one detail has failed, and there are some 3,000 more verses yet to be fulfilled!!! See Deuteronomy 18:20-22, where God promises that everything that His prophets speak will be fulfilled, and if not, then the prophets were false prophets, and should die!!! No human authored book would dare to make so many predictions, so far in advance, and therefore subject its authenticity to such chance - yet God did!
Scientific Accuracy. The Bible describes the earth as a ___________ (Isaiah 40:18,22), suspended in space (Job 26:7) hanging upon ___________. And it told us this without the aid of an orbiting satellite. The Bible expressed this as FACT and not conjecture over 2,200 years before Columbus discovered it was right! The Bible also explains the division of the languages into confusion at the Tower of ______ (Genesis 11:1-9). It reveals that there are "paths," or currents in the seas (Psalm 8:8). Again, Columbus “discovered” that this was true when he sailed to the New World on one ocean current, and then back to Spain on another. The Scriptures in Psalm 102:24-27, and Hebrews 1:10-12 declare the Second Law of Thermodynamics (which states that everything wears out)! It also reveals the process by which all of life occurred on this planet (Genesis 1 and 2), and much, much more! You can’t beat the Bible, no matter how much education you obtain - it’s always years ahead of science!
Historical Accuracy. Noah's flood (Genesis 6-9) is attested to by Babylonian tablets written in 650 B.C., as well as in 250 ancient world histories. Most of the places named in the Bible have been identified through archeology, thus validating the historical accuracy of the Bible again and again! The same cannot be said however about other religious books.
Claims of the Bible Itself. Over 3,800 times the writers of the Bible claim God spoke what they wrote (i.e., "thus saith the Lord"), and that what we hold in our hands is the very words of God (2 Tim 3:15,16; 1 Thes 2:13)
It's God's word - Read it; Believe it; Study it; Obey
it; Preach it!