by Aaron Warner
by Aaron Warner
There is only one book in human history that makes the claims found in the Bible. Primary among those claims is the revealed will of the Creator of Heaven and Earth, how we got here, why our world is so messed up, and what this Creator God has done to redeem it all.
No other book among antiquity or modernity claiming supernatural insight makes the same claims, and no other book comes close to garnering the same attention as the Bible.
The word holy appears in the Bible some 612 times. Holy in Hebrew means “set apart”, as in unique and extraordinarily apart from the rest of creation. God’s holiness sets Him apart from both creation and any supposed God’s, given, as He states, there are no other God’s like Him. Meaning, no other God’s share HIs attributes of eternal, perfect in every way, all knowing, all powerful, all wise, the embodiment of love, and full of justice, grace and mercy. No other religious or spiritual books make such claims about their God, not even the Q’uran (though it comes the closest). Here the Bible also is said to be Holy, and, by comparison to all other books it is exactly that.
Similar to the previous claims, no other book can boast being the best seller of all-time every year running since the beginning of the printing press. The Bible is so uniquely important among all written texts that the printing press, developed by Johannes Gutenberg, catapulted both invention and inventor into historical stardom for its prolific ability to print Bibles for distribution. Since the 1400s when he first started printing, no book as been as printed, published, read or distributed as has the Bible, and number two is so distant the word Holy accurately describes the Bible compared to all others.
There is also no other book, spiritual or otherwise, that is a collection of 40 authors spanning four continents and some 1,500 years of time all writing about the same subject with unparalleled harmony. The thirty-nine Old Testament books are the foundation for the twenty-seven New Testament books. New Testament Bible scholars are educated in teaching how the two support one another and speak ultimately about the Messiah of the Old Testament made known in the Jesus of the New Testament.
Some make the claim other books should be included in the Bible. Books around the time of Jesus such as Ecclesiasticus and 1st and 2nd Maccabees, though sounding Biblical, do not pass the test of canonicity. What comprises canonicity? Any book included in the Bible must have the following six recognized attributes to be considered canonical:
1. Written by a recognized prophet or apostle
2. Written by those associated with recognized prophet or apostle
4. Faithfulness to previously accepted canonical writings
5. Confirmed by Christ, prophet, apostle
6. Church Usage and Recognition
There are fourteen books supposed to be among biblical “holy” scripture that fall under the category “apocryphal”. This means they lay claim to being among recognized biblical scripture but do not pass one or more of those six criterion. These books were given a fair assessment by literally hundreds of scholars, both early church fathers and contemporary, yet these bible experts are in agreement – they are pretenders at best.
This raises questions about the Bible’s accuracy given its human authorship. One can only assume since to err is human and humans literally wrote the Bible, then it must have some errors. Here again the Bible is set apart for accuracy and faithfulness in translation compared to all other books of antiquity. Though the Bible records the very obvious errors of men and women, including Isaiah, Peter and Paul who confess their erroneous ways in their writings, the unique attributes of their Creator, such as perfect ability to communicate His will, are not superseded by their limitations. If one is to believe God is all-mighty, then it’s not hard to accept He can, as it were, draw straight lines with crooked sticks.
As for documentary proof of the Bible here again it is wholly set apart from all other books of antiquity. Most people accept the historical proof of Homer, Socrates, Plato, Josephus, Charlemagne, and Napoleon, but did you know they have a fraction of the historically preserved texts compared to the Bible? If you accept the historical fragments for the proof of Aristotle or Caesar, which number as few as ten to fifty, you would be foolish not accept those for the New Testament which are more than 5,600. Proof for the Bible is, as one scholar puts it, and “embarrassment of riches”.
Finally, the Bible claims to give the faithful access to power unlike any other. This power is in the word itself, but also in the name of Jesus to answer prayers given to those who genuinely seek Him. As a strength coach and personal trainer I am a results driven person. If it promises results then it’s testable, and if it’s testable I’d better get results. The Bible and Jesus promise results and, much to my satisfaction, delivered. This is why I am a Christian and a firm believer in the Bible. For twenty years I have put my faith in both and not been disappointed, but instead have been made a believer, because Jesus has answered many, MANY of my prayers to my satisfaction. I would not have known this were it not for other Christians encouraging me to read the Bible, trust and obey it. I am so glad I did.
However, the central purpose of the Bible is not to rub it like a genie’s lamp to make wishes come true, but to be confronted with the reality that is more and more evident in the world today. There is bad news – horribly bad news – all around us. The case for sin is not a difficult one to make. Cities on fire, plagues, corruption, murder on the rise, the rich get richer, babies murdered by adults, news agencies dedicated to lies, science is distorted for profits, and basic truths about men and women and 2 + 2 are even hotly debated. The outward acknowledgment of this is easy to make, yet the Bible tells us to look inward. It’s easy to see the rottenness and evil in society, but God wants us to see it in ourselves, and not as a casual ascent to our day to day missteps, but as a deeply rooted and implacable part of our nature. We are, to put it in Biblical terms, dead in our transgressions, and without the power to make ourselves alive.
The Bible begins with the power of God creating life and giving it freedom, only shortly thereafter to see it break away from Him. We became unholy as a race choosing to go our own way, and the results, as we see, are catastrophic. This is the bad news. The good news is God chose not to press the Almighty Great Reset button and extinguish our mess but to redeem it with His own sacrifice on our behalf. This is the story of the Bible – the greatest story ever told and the reason it has been number one and never any lower.
So, if you fancy yourself an intellectual, but you haven’t studied the most prodigious book in all of history, are you really? And if you haven’t then what do you do when it claims to be the book by which God will judge you some day? Now to be fair, if God is a just judge, and your fate will be measured according to His will, then His will should be widely known. If your case is to be fair, then He must provide you with ample opportunity to know His will, in writing. In fact, for a fair trial with eternal consequences He should have His will printed more than any other book of all time. It should be the most bought, sold, read, distributed, studied, debated, argued, persecuted, and published book in all of human history – set apart from all others.
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