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Question:


 Is Christianity Really True?




Hello Donna,


I've been asking myself one major question: Is Christianity really true, or do I just believe it because I was raised that way?


This is a good question to ask yourself. I think every person raised in a Christian home should evaluate "if you are in the faith" (2 Corinthians 13:5). All others should do themselves a favor by seeking truth. It shall set them "free" (John 8:32).


Now that I consider it, I think I've been toying with that question for several years, and mostly just pushing it away. In the last few weeks, I decided to face it head on, I guess; and I realized I don't really have an answer.


You are a brave soul. Very few people seek to be honest with themselves as to where they are spiritually.


So I decided I'd try to study and answer this question. The thing is that I have no idea where to start. My big question seems to split itself into a great deal of very confusing sub-questions.


If I may---let me help you with some of your questions.


How do I know whether or not the Bible is true?


You can know through a number of ways. First, there is the testimony of the Biblical writers. If you believe that they really existed, then perhaps you might be interested in what they had to say:


WHAT THE BIBLICAL WRITERS WROTE:

 

A) 2 Timothy 3:15-17. Paul the apostle told Timothy to continue on with the teachings he had received since childhood---"from childhood you have known the sacred teachings.... He then reminds Timothy that "all Scripture is inspired by God. This literally means "God breathed." In otherwords, the Bible came from God through the men who wrote it (2 Peter 1:21).


The idea of the breath of God was familiar to those acquainted with the O.T. It spoke vividly of the creative activity of God through the Holy Spirit. The psalmist declared, "By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, and by the breath of His mouth all their host" (Psalm 33:6). Mankind became a living soul when God "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life" (Genesis 2:7, also see Job 33:4).


Paul had said "all" Scripture is God-breathed, not just some of it. Also, it is the writings--the Bible that is said to be inspired, not the men whom the Holy Spirit used to write it.



B) 2 Peter 1:20-21. Here, Peter shows how the supernatural writings were produced.


Here we see that the writings, are not the thoughts of men. No. The Holy Spirit used the men to write down supernatural thoughts---the thoughts of God.


C) Biblical writers constantly remind the reader that the words they read are those of God. In the very first chapter of the Bible we can read, at least ten times "And God said...."


Other statements such as "Thus says the Lord" (Amos 1:3); "the Lord spoke to me...saying" (Isaiah 8:11); "the mouth of the Lord of hosts has spoken" (Micah 4:4). There are about 3,808 phrases such as these in the O.T. Isaiah declared that his writings were the "word of the Lord" as least 20 times (ex: Is. 1:10). He also makes it clear that it is the Lord who speaks (Isaiah 1:2). Jeremiah claimed close to 100 times that the Lord came to him (ex: Jeremiah 1:2,4,; 2:1). Ezekiel made the same claim about 60 times (ex: Ezekiel 3:16).


The Old Testament writers said that they were commanded by God to write down God's Words (see Exodus 4:27, and Jeremiah 30:2).


The Holy Spirit spoke through the O.T. writers just as he did the N.T. writers (see Ezekiel 11:5; 2 Samuel 23:2; Nehemiah 9:30; also 9:20).


Behind the actual statements of the writers are the PROISES OF CHRIST to his apostles that they would be taught by the Holy Spirit (John 14:26). They would also be taught after He ascended to heaven (John 16:12-14). These promises are also to all believers to the truth of God's Word.


The apostles later made claim to the fulfillment of these promises. Paul said that he spoke "not words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit (1 Corinthians 2:13). The truth he communicated was not from man but "through a revelation of Jesus Christ (Galatian 1:12; Ephesians 3:3-4, 8). The Thessalonians received Paul's teaching "not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the Word of God (1 Thessalonians 2:13) for he had been entrusted with this message by God Himself (Titus 1:2-3).


There are more instances of claims to revelation that I could cite. But, let's move on to the idea of Scripture as authorized by God.


The New Testament writers recognized the O.T. as divine "that was spoken by the Lord through the prophet" (Matthew 1:21); "David himself said in the Holy Spirit" (Mark 12:36); "the Holy Spirit foretold by the mouth of David (Acts 1:6); "The Holy Spirit rightly spoken through Isaiah" (Acts 28:35).


The N.T. writers believed that God was the Author of the O.T. See Acts 13:34-35; Hebrews 1:7-12; Hebrews 3:7). If you need further explanation here, just let me know.


If you believe Jesus Christ truly existed, then, you would believe that He said.


WHAT JESUS HAD TO SAY:


Jesus said He spoke only the words of His Father who sent Him (John 7:16). The Gospels record that the "multitudes were amazed at His teaching; for He was teaching them as one having authority” (Matthew 7:28-29).


Jesus said, "Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Mark 13:31). The words He spoke will judge men at the last day (John 12:48).


Jesus used Scripture frequently. His mind was so saturated with the words of Scripture that He used them to express His own feelings (Matthew 27:46). Likewise, His faith was expressed in the words of the psalmist (Psalm 31:5; Luke 23:46).


Jesus talks a lot about the people from the Old Testament. The creation of man (Matthew 19:4-6); the death of Abel (Matthew 23:35); the days of Noah (Matthew 24:3-7); the destruction of Sodom (Luke 17:29); Abraham (John 8;56); the appearance of God in the burning bush (Mark 12:26); the life of David (Matthew 12:3); the ministry of Elijah (Luke 4:25), and the martyrdom of the prophet Zechariah (Matthew 23:35). In this last reference, Christ spoke of "all the righteous blood shed on earth, from...Abel to...Zechariah."


According to the arrangement of the Old Testament Scriptures in Jesus' time, Genesis was the first book, and what we know as 2 Chronicles was last. So Jesus encompassed the Old Testament canon of Scripture in refering to those who died from Able to Zechariah. Similar evidence that He used the entire Scripture is seen in His reference to "the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms" (Luke 24:44). At that time, the O.T. was divided into three parts: the Law, the Prophets, and the W