- Scientific proofs;
- Other proofs;
- Final advice
Beside of the Atheists and Agnostics there are many people who don’t take the Bible seriously. Although they may rather vaguely believe that there must be a supernatural being, or power, over the natural world; they may also believe that Jesus was a historical person and there are some good teachings in the Bible, like the 10 Commandments, however, forgetting its first half, i.e. those relating to God, parts of the Sermon on the Mount, teachings about love, helping the poor, etc. But they think, the rest of the Bible is just a collection of stories, myths, etc.
In Christian education and in churches we are normally told that the Bible is the infallible Word of God, written under the inspiration and guidance of God. Of course, this is absolutely true.
We are also told this is a matter of faith, you either believe it or not.
However, there is more to it than only pure faith, a great deal more. There are many compelling evidences to convince those of little or no faith. In the following I will explain what I mean by “great deal more”.
During my teen years I was taught about God, His Son Jesus and about the Holy Spirit according to the Bible. Following this I experienced answers to my prayers and my faith began to develop. Later on, following prayers I saw even spectacular miracles.
On one occasion, in the middle of nowhere, on top of a hill, the brakes of my old car broke down and all the brake fluid escaped through a leak. There was no way to get help. After praying to Jesus I again tested the brakes and they worked perfectly well without a drop of fluid, i.e. without any mechanical connection between the pedal and the brakes themselves, defying the laws of physics! They worked not once, but many times, perhaps 15 to 20 times or more, going down the hill on a steep incline, across city traffic until we got home, then another day driving to a handyman friend to repair the fault.
Another example of these miracles was, when more than 40 years ago I lost an important, old type, big, cast iron key with a big metal label attached to it. I prayed, I thoroughly searched all my pockets and found no holes in any of them. I also thoroughly searched the whole of my trousers, but found nothing. However, after two days, involving twice undressing and dressing, the missing key suddenly dropped out of my trouser leg.
I also experienced (have seen or been involved in) medical miracles which could not be explained as mistaken diagnose, nor as a psychosomatic phenomenon. Only the Bible gives a credible explanation:
Mark 16:17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues;
18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well."
John 14: 12 I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.
E.g. a Christian doctor found that the cause of my wife’s recurring thigh muscle inflammation was her right leg being 1 cm shorter than the left. As she was sitting with legs outstretched, the doctor holding her heels, he prayed, then in the name of Jesus commanded the right leg to grow to the same length as the left. It happened instantly!
Another example was the case of a friend of ours. In May 2002 several months after her breast cancer operation she was found to have two secondary cancers in her brain. I saw the x-ray scan, one was 25 mm long, the other 10 mm size, inoperable. The oncologist estimated three months survival. First I prayed for her, then she said a prayer of repentance and commitment. Within a few hours the constant tension in her head disappeared and when later the oncologist examined her again, found nothing wrong. Now, almost 8 years later she is still fit as a fiddle.
During the past 70 years since my teen years I also experienced a vast number of incidents which sceptics would call “simply coincidences”, but I call them “God-incidences”, because the odds against these all happening as random chances are impossibly high. Taking one particular set of these incidents, which all happened exactly according to the level of my faith at the time and the probability of these happening by pure chance and not by divine intervention, was easy to calculate, the probability was 1 in a billion times billion, a number difficult to fathom.
To help you get your head around this vast number, consider the following. Here, to illustrate the point, we can only talk in round figures, not exact numbers. Take the distance of the Sun from the Earth, which is 150 million kilometres, multiply it by 10,000, then express this distance in millimetres, then you have a vague idea of the magnitude of the above mentioned number.
Now consider on top of this another many, many “simply coincidences”, the probability of which I cannot calculate and you will see why I called them “God-incidences”.
Those, who don’t believe that the Bible is the true Word of God, believe instead that it is science that can give all the answers, if not yet, then in due course, to every question that may bother you. Well, the science of mathematics has already given the answer, however, it is not widely known!
Those, who don’t believe that the Bible is the true Word of God, believe instead that it is science that can give all the answers, if not yet, then in due course, to every question that may bother you. Well, the science of mathematics has already given the answer, which is not widely known!
In 1969 Professor Peter W. Stoner of Westmont College with a team of 600 students studied the probability of prophecies concerning Jesus, being fulfilled in any one single person any time during the history of all mankind. They found that if they took only eight prophecies, the odds against it were 1 in 1017 , i.e. 1 in a hundred thousand million million. However, taking 48 prophecies the odds increased to a staggering 1 in 10157, i.e. 1 followed by 157 zeros! We can confidently say the odds against it were 1 in infinity. Again, allowing a very wide margin of error these results in themselves prove the absolute impossibility of writers of the Bible could have made those predictions without divine inspiration. And there are many more than 48 prophecies in the Old Testament part of the Bible written about Jesus, hundreds of years before Christ, all fulfilled in him!
Another mathematical proof is on a different basis. In biblical times neither the Hebrew, nor the Greek language had numerals. They used letters of the alphabet to represent numbers, like the first letter meant 1, the second letter meant 2 and so on until 10. Then the next one meant 20, then 30, etc. After 100 the next one meant 200 and so on.
In nature there are great many interesting numerical patterns involving the number 7 and its integer multiples. This is not the place to list many of them, for illustration here is just two examples. The incubation period of the eggs of different bird species from the small ones to the biggest ones are integer multiples of 7 days. In human pregnancy doctors measure the elapsing time in number of weeks.
Dr. Ivan Panin (1855 – 1942), a Russian born mathematician, who ended up at Harvard University in America, discovered that taking the numerical values of the letters in the original languages of the entire Bible interesting numerical patterns are found, resembling the numerical patterns in nature. After that he worked tirelessly for 50 years on this subject without a computer and wrote volumes on his findings. The conclusion of his work was that it was absolutely impossible that men could have written the whole Bible without God’s direct inspiration in such a way that the text all along showed the special numerical patterns. – Interestingly the Apocrypha don’t show such a pattern.
There is a whole list of other interesting, fascinating discoveries in the original language text of the Bible too numerous to quote here in any detail, also quite impossible to have been the work of human minds. Neither any pattern similar to what Panin has found, nor similar to those referred to in this paragraph have ever found in any other writing.
Over the years I came across many other proofs of different kinds. These are findings of learned men who were trained in investigating what is true or what is not.
The first one was C an atheist lawyer, who set out to prove that the Bible was just another book of human imagination with some historical elements. However, after years of thorough, methodical investigation he had to admit that instead of the result he expected to find, he actually found the opposite, i.e. that God was real and He must have inspired all the writers of the Bible. Frank Morrison became a Christian and published his investigations under the title: Who moved the stone? Meaning, who removed the big, heavy stone from the tomb of Jesus?
Josh McDowell published many, many proofs of the veracity of the Bible.
Bill Hybels was a journalist whose job was for many years to report on criminal court cases. By watching how the judges were trying to uncover the truth examining the statements of the witnesses and how the defence lawyers were trying to get their clients off the hook he learned a great deal about how to investigate what is true and what is not. He too was an atheist like Frank Morrison and he too wanted to prove what Frank Morrison tried and failed. He too came to the same conclusion and he published his findings under the title Case for Christianity.
I got to know two police officers, who examined the Bible using similar methods they have learned how to find out what is true in a criminal case. Both found that the Bible is absolutely true. The last name of one of them is Condon, but over many years I forgot his rank and first name. The other is Chief Inspector Gary Raymond, now retired. Over more then 15 years we became good friends with Gary and so I also got to know that after he came to faith in Jesus, like me, he too experienced great many “God incidences”.
On the bases presented above, beginning with my own experiences, I am absolutely certain that God is real and the Bible is His absolutely true Word. This means, regardless whether you like it or not, you are in His power, so try to find out as much as you can about Him, what is He like and what does He want from you. Then you should try to please Him, not anger Him. You can’t wish Him away.
The Last Judgement is also true and will happen in His appointed time. Then everybody will be held responsible for all sins he/she has committed. God is perfectly just and justice requires that all sins must be paid for by the appropriate punishment, i.e. sinners will be condemned to hell. This will be a terrible thing, severe suffering, which will last for eternity.
However, God is also all loving, even loving sinners and at the greatest possible cost to Himself provided them a way of escape. He sent a substitute, a perfectly sinless Person to suffer instead of any sinner their due punishment, suffering agonizing death on the cross, even forsaken by the Father and going down to hell. He did that for those who believe in Him. In this way, while justice is done, sinners can be forgiven, made righteous and saved from damnation. Instead of hell they will be received into the Kingdom of God, into everlasting unspeakable happiness in the glorious presence of God and Jesus.
This substitute is, of course, His son, Jesus, who voluntarily sacrificed himself for sinners to pay for their sins.
Humanists say that people are masters of their own destiny. In the sense they say this, it is, of course, not true. However, it is true in a quite different sense. God has given free will to everybody to believe in Him and in Jesus, or not. It is your responsibility to decide whether you will turn to Him in repentance, asking forgiveness and be received into the Kingdom of God, or to reject His most wonderful gift of salvation (i.e. being saved from hell) and consequently suffer punishment in hell for eternity.
If you have seriously considered the above and have chosen everlasting happy Life, you need to find out about God and Jesus, how should you live as soon as you can. The best way to do this is get a Bible and read it, study it earnestly. After all this is your Maker’s handbook. If you buy a new appliance or a car and you want to make the most of it, - who doesn’t? – You will study its maker’s handbook. Likewise if you want to make the most of your life, - who doesn’t? –Then carefully study your Maker’s handbook.
There are many English translations and many editions available, which makes choosing the one best for you might be a bit difficult for the uninitiated. The one that is word for word of the original languages (the Old Testament is in ancient Hebrew, the New Testament in ancient Greek) is the old King James translation. This is in ancient English, some words are difficult to understand, but there is a Revised King James with out-dated words replaced by current ones. There are many other translations in modern English, which are easier to read, but the translators were trying to give the meaning of the sentences as they have understood, or interpreted them. Then there is the Amplified Bible containing different interpretations of difficult sentences. This makes reading a bit cumbersome, but sometimes it can help better understand a difficult sentence.
It is also useful to have a Bible edition, which contains many cross-references, a Concordance (this is a list of words and where they occur in the Bible) and perhaps some maps of the Bible lands.
For more serious study there are so-called Study Bibles, which also contain chain references, cultural background and archaeological informations about that region at Biblical times, etc.
You can buy a Bible in Christian bookshops, preferably a larger bookshop like Koorong. However, you can find the greatest choice of different editions with expert advice in the Bible Society Bookshop.
Finally, every time before you start reading the Bible, ask Jesus in a short prayer to guide you to passages He wants you to study and to help you better understand and remember what He wants you to learn on that occasion.