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FAITH

Why I Believe

By Nathan Sanders

Where man has worked successfully to bring evidence for the truth of the Bible, God has worked exponentially to confirm His Word through knowledge, through the testimony of the people of the Church, and through miracles, signs, and wonders…

WHY I BELIEVE...

1. That the Bible is trustworthy and accurate:

Trustworthy

I believe that the faith tradition of the Bible is living and real. The majority of the world's other supernatural stories/myths from history center on disconnected beings and events that in no way relate to everyday living.  In short, they are forms of escapism.  The Bible, however, in its entire supernatural splendor and history, deals almost entirely with real people, real kings, and real nations that are historically proven to have existed.

For every mysterious revelation, vision, or enthusiastic prophecy of the Bible, there is an equal portion of practical advice, wisdom, and teaching for every day living and all that it entails with social structures, work, recreation, community, and family.

The spiritual messages of the Bible calls for immediate application to an individual's real-time, day-to-day lifestyle. The powerful visions, dreams and other drama of the Bible bring people hope instead of escapism. The Bible is a reality check, facing life's hardest issues straight on, tracking the working of the unimaginable Creator of everything as He made Himself known to the people of the world.

Accurate

The modern Bible, consisting of both the Old and New Testament, is based upon thousands and thousands of ancient manuscripts, documents, and fragments of Scripture that when compiled give massive testimony to the total accuracy of today's version with that of the earliest versions, including those that were in use before the compiling of the New Testament.

The method used to compile the accepted Old and New Testament so completely assured the textual integrity of our modern Bible that scholars are able to discern even the slightest variation in usually unimportant words such as "the" or "an" when determining what the earliest manuscripts actually said. Whenever a question remains unanswered, scholars are careful to document these and include them in the margins of most Bibles, such as the popular NIV. The questions that remain have no bearing on the central messages of the Scriptures.      


WHY I BELIEVE...

2. That the Bible is superior to all other religious books and by its supreme literary quality shows startling evidence of Divine inspirational authorship beyond that of the human hands that first wrote it:

No other book has withstood the test of time and criticism like the Bible has. Even the most skeptical, unbelieving scholars agree that it is the greatest piece of literature the world has ever known and has overwhelmingly survived the most violent attempts to erase its existence from the earth.  

Today's Bible is textually sound when compared with the thousands of early Greek and Hebrew Bible documents available to scholars and translators.  No other historical book has come under such scrutiny and still been able to maintain its integrity.  When the high standards of proofing the Bible are applied to other historical religious documents, none of them can even compare to the lasting strength of the book that Christians call the Holy Bible.  All the others become obsolete.    

No other book has brought comfort, peace, and restoration to hurting people, communities, and nations like the Bible has. Even in times when it's contents have been abused by corrupted leaders, it still remained the world's #1 source of spiritual help and moral guidance. This worldwide trend has increased in immeasurable ways over the last 100 years.

No other book contains such a literary richness in style and content. The Bible contains every major form of literature and communicates thought and emotion in unsurpassed totality.

-No other book contains all of the drama of human life like the Bible does. From a person's first moments in the womb and after birth, through the storminess of youth, past the passions, failures, and hopes of adulthood, and into the final hours before death, every imaginable experience of life happens to someone among the thousands of characters who's lives are remembered in the pages of the Old and New Testaments. No conceivable facet of life experience is missed.

No other book so completely condemns practices, habits, and rituals that are detrimental to human life like the Bible does. Fornication, adultery, homosexuality, murder (and consequently abortion, an unthinkable act to the people of Bible times), stealing, lying, slandering, laziness, drunkenness, abuse of children, corruption of governmental leaders, lusts of all kinds, envy, bribery, and many, many more. The list can seem almost confusingly endless yet it is precisely comprehensive when examined. Anyone of these is called sin, which makes it an act of disobedience towards God first, and then man.

No other book contains the positive and time-tested principles and practices for enriching the quality of human life like the Bible does.  All matters of personal, family, community, government, and social life in general are affected by the teachings of the Bible.  Both history and the present prove that the order for life presented in the Bible brings about the best possible effects upon individuals, families, and entire nations.  

No other book celebrates human life in all its glory and wonder like the Bible does. Mankind is presented as the center of God's attention, a recipient of His unconditional love and as a vessel capable of loving Him back. It is the greatest love story every told. The thought of an all-powerful God desiring the love and devotion of a free people and then calling that people His own is a romance unequalled. In true love God gave to man the freedom to fail. His love showed itself again in providing a way to cover our failure and make things right again. No other story of love in action even comes close.

No other book teaches us to uphold the preciousness of others like the Bible does.  We are to look out for the good of another in every area of life, including physical, emotional, spiritual, and financial, just to name a few. The Bible makes it very clear that each individual is precious to God and therefore should be precious to one another. The Bible also teaches a sound philosophy of war, self-defense, and punishment for severe wrongdoing, the only instances where human life can be taken.  In so doing, the value of human life is reinforced in an even greater way.

No other book but the Bible offers clear-cut answers to all of life's most probing questions. Timeless inquiries about life and its meaning are all answered in complete detail. The aching heart that is searching for answers will find them in the Holy Bible, centered in a God who is full of love and offers the very best to anyone who will take it. Other faiths, religions, and philosophies fail to deal with the deepest questions or even worse, steer seekers away from them in order to find a sense of peace.        

The Bible contains many little glimpses into the amazing wisdom and knowledge that it's people possessed in times when these things were unknown to the world. For example, God commanded Abraham to institute circumcision of newborn sons on the 8th day following their birth (Genesis 17:12). Amazingly, we now know that human blood is best able to clot 8 days after a baby takes its first breath of oxygen.  The Israelites had no way of knowing this in their day. Another good example is the knowledge Jacob had of highly skilled selective breeding, causing his herds to grow larger and stronger while the surrounding community of pagans was unaware as to this system (Genesis 30:31-42). There are myriads of other examples of how in ancient times God's people lived in ways that have only recently been recognized by the secular community as the best way to live.

WHY I BELIEVE...

3. That the Bible is capable of supernatural and spiritual influence upon those who hear it:

From my personal and extensive use of the Bible I have experienced countless times where the daily biblical reading portion I chose in an unbiased way dealt directly with issues, struggles, triumphs, and temptations that I was presently going through and in need of help with. The shear number of times that this continues to happen catapults the instances far beyond simple coincidence and instead hints (or shouts!) of unseen power and force behind their existence.

From personally witnessing the experience of others in a similar way as stated above, where deep seated emotional, spiritual, and psychological problems of an individual were unexpectedly answered, resolved, or at least addressed in a positive way through random Bible readings or hearings while attending a Bible study, church service, or other Christian function.

For example, while taking part in an outreach Bible study in the Midwest, the leader of the group simply picked up their reading in the Gospels where they had left off the week before. The passage dealt with issues of marriage and divorce. Unbeknownst to them a first-time visitor in the small group of 6 was silently being tortured by fears of divorce and a general collapse of her marriage. As the leader opened the meeting with the Gospel reading, the woman began to weep and proceeded to verbally express her pain and emotions.  The direction of the meeting was changed, and the woman was ministered to and visibly strengthened by the surrounding prayers of the other 5 attendees.

This is only one example of seemingly inexplicable instances of how the Bible has suddenly pierced through an individual's deepest needs and brought hope and healing.

From the testimony of instances where private Gospel readings have been followed by physical healing in the body of the reader. The instances usually go something like this: The reader who has some sort of ailment reads a portion of the Gospels where Jesus heals a sick or lame person, and following the reading, the individual verbally prays to God in faith, and then is suddenly healed of his/her ailment.

From the widespread testimony and also personal witness of public Gospel readings and sermons that were followed by dramatic occurrences of supernatural healing and other manifestations of spiritual power.  These instances occur in like-fashion of those in the New Testament where sick, lame, crippled, and demon possessed people receive healing.  This kind of ministry is very normal in developing countries and has been so since the time of the New Testament.  In the western world it occurs more in pocket-like outbreaks that stir up the local press and raise a few eyebrows, but then are forgotten by the general public.

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