Apologetics 101, Session 2
By Pastor Glem Melo
The Brown Room, 1st Floor
First Church PCA, Lansing, IL
Sundays, 11:15 am to 12:00 pm
Why do we believe in God?
Because God says that He exists.
How or where does God say that He exists?
He says so in the Bible.
In the beginning God… (Genesis 1:1)
Before the mountains were born or You brought forth the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting You are God. (Psalms 90:2)
“I am the LORD, and there is no other, besides me there is no God…” (Isaiah 45:5)
Why do we believe that the Bible is God’s word?
Because God says in the Bible that the Bible is His word.
All Scripture is breathed out by God… (2 Timothy 3:16)
Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God. (2 Peter 1:20-21)
In his book, Summary of Christian Doctrine, Louis Berkhof summarizes the self-authenticating teachings of the Bible regarding itself as the word of God.
The Old Testament writers are repeatedly instructed to write what the Lord commands them, Ex, 17:14; 34:27; Num. 33:2; Isa. 8:1; 30:8; Jer. 25:13; 30:2; Ezek. 24:1; Dan. 12:4; Hab. 2:2. The prophets were conscious of bringing the word of the Lord, and therefore introduced their messages with some such formula as, “Thus saith the Lord,” or, “The word of the Lord came unto me,” Jer. 36:27, 32; Ezek., chapters 26, 27, 31, 32, 39. Paul speaks of his words as Spirit-taught words, I Cor. 2:13, claims that Christ is speaking in him, II Cor. 13:3, and describes his message to the Thessalonians as the word of God, I Thess. 2:13. The Epistle to the Hebrews often quotes passages of the Old Testament as words of God or of the Holy Spirit, Heb. 1:6; 3:7; 4:3; 5:6; 7:21. The most important passage to prove the inspiration of Scripture is II Tim. 3:16, which reads as follows… “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”
Jesus and the apostles frequently appeal to the Old Testament books as ‘scripture’ or ‘the Scriptures’ to settle a point in controversy. To their minds such an appeal was equivalent to an appeal to God. It should be noted that of the books to which they appeal in this fashion, some are historical. The Epistle to the Hebrews repeatedly cites passages from the Old Testament as words of God or of the Holy Spirit (cf. p. 18). Peter places the letters of Paul on a level with the writings of the Old Testament, II Pet. 3:16, and Paul speaks of all Scripture as inspired, II Tim. 3:16.
We may safely go a step farther and say that the inspiration of the Bible extends to the very words employed. The Bible is verbally inspired… In many cases we are explicitly told that the Lord told Moses and Joshua exactly what to write, Lev. 3 and 4; 6:1, 24; 7:22, 28; Josh. 1:1; 4:1; 6:2, and so on. The prophets speak of Jehovah as putting His words into their mouths, Jer. 1:9, and as directing them to speak His words to the people, Ezek. 3:4, 10, 11. Paul designates his words as Spirit taught words, I Cor. 2:13, and both he and Jesus base an argument on a single word, Matt. 22:43-45; John 10:35; Gal. 3:16.
And so, we believe the Bible on a two-fold ground:
Objective ground: Because God says in the Bible says that it is the word of God. It is the God-authenticated, self-authenticating word of God.
Subjective ground: Because the Holy Spirit bears witness in our hearts that the Bible is God’s word.
Which worldview “lens” is clear and accurate? The one that relies solely on natural human senses and science, i.e. Atheism? Or the one that relies on God’s word (the Bible) and God’s Spirit (witnessing in our hearts of believers), as confirmed by our natural senses and science, i.e. Christianity?
I’m clinging on God and His self-authenticated word, the Bible.