This book shocks and rocks me.
This book excites and exhilarates me.
This book confronts and comforts me.
What book am I talking about? Come on! You know! I’ll give you a hint. It’s not the Koran. No, it’s not the Book of Mormon either. If you don’t know by now, please stop reading this article and smack yourself in the head as hard as you can so that you can reset your brain cells.
This book is the best selling book, the most copied book, the most translated book of all time. By now you’ve guessed it (or you need another smack!) That’s right! It’s the Bible!
Take a minute to stop and really think about it. The Bible doesn’t just talk about miracles, it is a miracle. Every word of Scripture is divinely inspired. In other words, the Holy Spirit superintended the writers of this book so that every word in it, although still drenched in the personality of the writer, is completely God’s Word to us.
Josh McDowell reminds us that the Bible is comprised of 66 books written by 40 men over the period of 1,500 years from three different continents, often vastly different cultures and backgrounds on hundreds of different subjects and yet is without mistakes on every matter it touches. From geography to science to history to archaeology to prophecy, this book has been shown to be totally accurate again and again and again.
Did you know that there are hundreds of prophecies in the Old Testament directly or indirectly about Jesus? And these aren’t vague prophecies. They are specific and spectacular like that Jesus would be born from a virgin in a tiny village called Bethlehem, that he would be beaten, crucified and resurrected. The chances of just 48 of the 300 prophecies about Christ being literally fulfilled in one person is 1 x 10157. That’s one of ten with one hundred and fifty zeroes behind it. That is the same statistical probability of one person randomly picking one pre-marked atom hidden in one trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, billion universes. The fulfilled prophecies in the Old Testament should help you and me to fully trust every word of this book as completely accurate.
But most of the prophecies in Scripture are not about Jesus. Most of the prophecies in the Bible are about you. They are what I call "If…then" prophecies. If you believe in Him then you have eternal life. If you call on his name then God will answer you. These aren’t really prophecies as much as they are promises. There are around 3,000 of them in the Bible. And most of these promises are tied in with an "if" clause. In other words, to access the promised blessing or to avoid the promised curse there is something you must do.
Maybe that’s what James was reminding us of when he wrote, "Be doers of the Word and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves." In other words, we are fooling ourselves if we just read about these promises from God but never access them by putting them into practice!
So I have a few questions for you today. Are you reading the Bible for all its worth? Are you putting what you learn into practice for all your worth? Are you equipping your teenagers to do the same?
If you want to stop the graduation evacuation (high school seniors fleeing the church) you must teach them to love this book, read this book, know this book and live this book.
A 10 Step Action Plan
- Get an easy to read translation such as the NIV, NLT, or The Message.
- Start reading.
- Read until you learn something new.
- Pray about what you read.
- Put what you read into practice.
- Try to do this everyday.
- Get your teenagers to do the same.
- Talk to your teenagers about what they are learning.
- Keep each other accountable.
- Get ready to be shocked, rocked, excited, exhilarated, confronted and comforted!
Oh yeah – and one more thing…the steps listed above are just the beginning. The Bible is a lot like a diamond mine: to get to the best stuff you need to keep digging and digging! Click here to read an article about how to make this happen.