THE BIBLE INSPIRED
1 -- There
are many today that loudly decry the thought that the Bible is the
inspired word of God. They like to call it the opiate of the people.
Their whole purpose in living is to accumulate as much unto themselves
as possible regardless of others. They loudly proclaim that the
human race is enslaved to the Capitalist who uses the church to
keep his hold upon the common people. But while these people so
readily relegate the Holy Scriptures to the land of fanciful dreams,
the fact remains that one must acknowledge that there is a supreme
power that guides the universe and all that is in it. Reason alone
tells us three things; we exist, we did not bring ourselves into
existence, and when that power which brings us into existence ceases
to uphold us, we die. One may call that power whatever he wishes,
but the Christian calls it God. And furthermore, the only written
record of such a power complete with all the answers, is the Bible.
people say that if they could be sure that this is true, that they
would gladly accept its teachings. Many others who sincerely believe
that there is a God, would like to have faith in it, but it seems
too far removed from the One they call Jesus. If they only could
have witnessed the wonderful works that the Bible has recorded.
If they could only have lived in the times of Jesus and been eye
witnesses to those mighty miracles, but alas that day is past and
now the doubting eye sees no sign.
yet there is a sign, more mighty, more wonderful, and more certain
than anything else. It is time that all men everywhere learned that
"there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby
we must be saved ... neither is there salvation in any other."
Acts 4:12. Again we read in Philippians 2:9 that
"God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is
above every name." How can we know that only Christ is our Saviour?
The answer is in the sure word of prophecy and it is to this that
God calls our attention in these perilous days. Notice Second
Peter 1:l9 "We have also a more sure word of prophecy;
whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth
in a dark place, until the day star arise in your hearts." Peter
tells us that if we would turn to the prophecies of the Bible, that
we would have all the answers that our hearts would need, FOR NOTHING
CAN BE MORE SURE THAN THE PROPHECIES OF THE BIBLE, not even signs
or miracles, or the privilege that some had of seeing and hearing
Jesus Himself. Bible Prophecy is God's answer to all men in all
ages. What wonderful counsel is given in Isaiah 46:9-10:
"Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none
else; I am God and there is none like me, Declaring the end from
the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet
done, saying, My counsel shall stand; and I will do all my pleasure:"
God says that, there is none like Him. He can tell the end from
the beginning. It is the sign that He is God. And this is exactly
what He has done in the prophecies of the Bible. If we will search
the Bible, its prophecies will guide us safely to the daystar, Jesus,
who alone can save His people.
1:45 tells us of the wonderful experience of Philip: "We
have found him of whom Moses ... and the prophets did write, JESUS
OF NAZARETH." How did he know that he had found Jesus? The same
way that you may find Jesus. THE MESSIANIC PROPHECIES OF THE BIBLE.
It was from this source that all the disciples made sure, and if
men would take time today to seek this same source, there would
be no honest infidels in all the world.
you say, Jesus was just a Jewish boy, born in a humble home and
in very strange circumstances. Until He was about thirty years of
age, He worked as a tradesman, a carpenter. He didn't even have
the religious training of His day that was provided by the schools
of the land. Then from the carpenter shop, He stepped forth to proclaim
that He was the Son of God. Was He the Son of God? If we accept
Him, can we be sure of our hope? Again I say that the Bible must
be our foundation.
p 2 -- If
we are to uphold our belief in Jesus, we must be able to show from
the Bible that beyond doubt He is the Messiah. In Acts 18:8,
I read that this was the method that the Apostles used in their
teachings; "Showing by the scripture that Jesus was the Christ."
WHAT SCRIPTURES? Here we come to a very vital point. THE ONLY SCRIPTURES
that the Apostles had to use at that time was the OLD TESTAMENT.
Old Testament proved that Jesus was the true and living Christ,
the only Saviour of men. Another reality that we must not omit is
that the supreme proof that Jesus was the true and only Saviour
is found in the fact that the life of Jesus IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
is just as it was prophesied in the Old Testament. JESUS SAID, "I
AM THE ONE, I AM HE."
In the Old
Testament, God recorded the life story of Jesus that when He came,
men might recognize the Messiah. Centuries before He was born on
this earth, the events of His life were foretold and in the record
of the New Testament we find these predictions fulfilled to the
letter. Let us start with the very beginning and trace this record
the birth of Jesus, Micah prophesied 710 years before Jesus was
born in Bethlehem with these words found in Micah 5:2: "But
thou Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands
of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to
be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from
everlasting." Through Micah was pointed out the very place
that the Messiah would be born. God put His finger on the little
village of Bethlehem, and said, This is the place.
Was Jesus born
in Bethlehem? Everyone who has ever heard anything about Jesus is
aware that this is true. BUT THERE IS SOMETHING THAT YOU ARE NOT
AWARE OF. Mary and Joseph lived in Nazareth. Nazareth was about
70 miles from Bethlehem. And 70 miles in those days meant from 3
to more days journey. If you had lived back there, you would have
probably concluded that Jesus would be born in Nazareth. BUT 710
YEARS BEFORE, GOD HAD SAID THAT IT WOULD BE BETHLEHEM. And we must
never forget that the hand of
God is on the lever of circumstances. He moves in Mysterious ways
His wonders to per form. What happens to change the circumstances
of Jesus' Birth? At just the right time, the decree goes forth from
Augustus Caesar at Rome, a decree that all the world must be taxed.
Every man had to register at his designated place, and so Joseph
and Mary had to go up to Bethlehem. And while they were there Jesus
was born at Bethlehem just as God had said He would be. The birth
of Jesus at Bethlehem was the first sign that He was the Messiah.
of Jesus was designated as a virgin. We read in Isaiah 7:14,
written 700 years before His birth: "Behold a virgin shall
conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel."
Everybody knows that Jesus was born of the virgin Mary. Some people
say that they have great difficulty with this matter of the virgin
birth, that to them it is impossible. But the fact remains that
no one can deny the virgin birth because he cannot explain it, for
there are a great many things that we accept and know yet cannot
explain. For instance, I can not understand a virgin rabbit can
give birth to little ones without the seeming necessary father.
But I know that this is true, because some of the leading Universities
of America have conducted experiments and found this to be so. If
men of science can take a virgin rabbit and cause it to produce
offspring without the male, then I am sure
that God Who made man can take a woman and cause her to produce
offspring without the aid of man. In other words the results of
with rabbit experiments only strengthens the fact of the virgin
birth of Jesus. But aside from all this, WHEN YOU COME TO READ THE
PROPHECIES, THE OUTSTANDING FACT IS THAT GOD IS A TRUE GOD: WHEN
HE SAYS ANYTHING WILL HAPPEN, IT HAPPENS. No word of God fails.
What He promises, He does. When He says anything will happen, it
happens. God said 700 years before that Jesus would be born of a
virgin, and He was.
God even foretold the family from which Jesus would
come. In Isaiah 11:1: it says: "And there shall come
forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out
of his roots." God said that Jesus would come forth from the
family of David.
p 3 -- And what is Christ known as in the
New Testament? He is known as the son of David and He was recognized
as the legal successor to the throne of David.
That there might be no doubt or mistake, God even
foretold the time that the Messiah would appear. Daniel 9:25
tells us that the Messiah would appear 69 weeks, or 483 years prophetic
time after the decree of the "going forth of the commandment
to restore and to build Jerusalem".
We will study this decree in its fulness soon, but
sufficient for now is the date 456 B.C. From this date, the Messiah
was to appear on the scene after 483 years. AND AT THE EXACT TIME
JESUS CAME FORTH. GOD SAID THAT THE MESSIAH WOULD BE THERE AND HE
WAS EXACTLY ON TIME. [Webmaster note: Prophetic
time = 1 Day equals 1 Year. This principle will be covered
more fully as we study prophetic books such as Daniel and Revelation.]
How do we know this is true? John the Baptist was
out there at the river Jordan baptizing people, when suddenly there
appears a striking figure. Pointing to Him, John says, "Behold
the Lamb of God". John recognized Him. Jesus was baptized.
And when Jesus came out of the water after His baptism "he
saw the heavens opened and the Spirit like a dove descending upon
him; and there came a voice from heaven saying, Thou art my beloved
Son, in whom I am well pleased". Mark 1:10-11.
Immediately Jesus went from that baptism to be tempted
in the wilderness and to begin His personal ministry. Thus we read
of this event in Mark 1:15-17; "the time is fulfilled,
and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye and believe the gospel."
In Luke 3:1 we read that this was "in the fifteenth year of
the reign of Tiberius Caesar" which we know to be 27 A.D. when
Jesus came forth and was baptized. THE 69 WEEKS WERE UP. Count from
456 BC to 27 A.D. When Jesus came forth and was baptized. GOD NAMED
THE EXACT NUMBER OF YEARS; AND AT THE EXACT TIME JESUS CAME FORTH.
GOD SAID THE MESSIAH WOULD BE THERE AND HE WAS EXACTLY ON TIME.
HOW WONDERFULLY GOD MARKS EVEN THE DETAILS.
God foretold 1000 years before that Jesus Would
be betrayed by one of His disciples Psalms 141:9 : "Keep
me from the snares which they have laid for me, and the signs -
or the traps - of the workers of iniquity." The price also
that Jesus would be sold for was exactly foretold by Zechariah,
500 years before Jesus was born. In Zechariah 11:12-13 we
read: "And I said unto them, if ye think good, give me my price:
and if not, forbear, So they weighed for my price thirty pieces
of silver. And the Lord said unto me, Cast them unto the potter:
a goodly price that I was praised at of them. And I took the thirty
pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the
Lord." NOT ONLY HOW MUCH THAT JESUS WOULD BE SOLD FOR, BUT
ALSO WHAT THE PRIESTS WOULD USE THE MONEY FOR.
It is uncanny. 500 years before Jesus was born,
the exact price that Jesus was to be sold for was written in the
scrolls. IT WAS AN EXACT PRICE, FOR JUDAS RECEIVED JUST THIRTY PIECES
OF SILVER. When Judas became remorseful, (he was not repentant),
he took the 30 pieces of silver and said, "I have sinned. I
have betrayed innocent blood", and he cast the money at the
feet of the priests. Then he went out and hanged himself. This is
THE SORROW THAT WORKETH DEATH, THE SORROW OF THE WORLD - because
it is not true repentance. Then the priests had a problem on their
hands. "What will we do with this money?" one said. GOD
HAD SAID THAT THEY WOULD BUY A POTTERS FIELD: and, THEY SAID, WE
WILL BUY A POTTER'S FIELD TO BURY STRANGERS IN". All was as
God had said they would do. It is wonderfully accurate even to the
One thousand years before-hand, the Bible foretold
that they would drive the nails in the Son of God, a time when crucifixion
was unknown. That is another marvel of God. The Roman people invented
crucifixion. Psalms 22:16 says, "They pierced my hands
and my feet." THAT IS WHAT THEY DID TO JESUS. Then as Jesus
hung on the cross, He knew that everything was fulfilled up to that
moment; but that they must give Him vinegar to drink. Compare Psalms
69:21 with John 19:28-30: " they gave me also gall
for my meat; and in my thirst, they gave me also vinegar to give"..."After
this, Jesus knowing that all things were accomplished, that the
scriptures might be fulfilled saith, I thirst. Now there was a set
vessel full of vinegar, and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and
put it upon hyssop, and put it into his mouth." "When
Jesus, therefore, had received
p 4 -- the vinegar, He said, It is finished:
and he bowed his head and gave up the ghost." THAT IS THE VERY
SUBSTANCE OF WHAT HAD BEEN SAID A THOUSAND YEARS BEFORE. It is wonderful
to note the accuracy of Divine prediction.
Then there is that interesting circumstance connected
with the clothing of Jesus. There were four soldiers on guard when
Jesus was crucified. Jesus was wearing five articles of clothing.
According to the custom of the day the clothing of the one to be
crucified would be divided among them. Each soldier took one item
of clothing, leaving the long, simple coat. They said, We will tear
the remaining piece into four parts so we will each have the same
amount, but if they had done this, the Bible would have not been
a true book, for in Psalms 22:18 it had said: " They
part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture."
The record tells us that instead of tearing the garment, it was
as God had said, THE SOLDIERS CAST LOTS FOR THE COAT.
As we read the account of the burial of Jesus, we
find that the Scribes and the Pharisees wanted to place all the
reproach possible upon Jesus. They were not only crucifying Him,
but they planned to bury Him with criminals. But God had said in
Isaiah 53:9 that "He would make his grave with the rich
in his death," and we find that Joseph of Arimathea came and
buried Jesus in his own new tomb. He came personally to Pilate and
begged the body of Jesus and thus was God's word fulfilled. We might
do well to remember that God always has a man at the right time
for all occasions.
Most life stories of individuals end with death,
but in this respect the life story of Jesus is entirely different
from any other man. As prophesied in the Old Testament, He was to
be raised from the dead, and it was to occur before His body would
see corruption. Psalms 16:10 says: "For thou wilt not
leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thy Holy One to
see corruption." Christ was placed in the tomb late on Friday
and in fulfillment of this promise, He was raised early on the first
day of the week or Sunday.
Not only was His death and resurrection recorded,
but also His ascension to the Father. A thousand years before His
birth we read in Psalms 24.7-10: " Lift up your heads,
0 ye gates; and be ye lift up ye everlasting doors; and the king
of glory shall come in. Who is the king of glory? The Lord strong
and mighty". And more than this, God even foretold the place
that Christ would occupy when He ascended into heaven. Psalms
110:1: "The Lord said unto my Lord, sit thou at my right
hand, until I make thine enemies thine footstool". God the
Father and God the Son are recorded here, as talking together. When
Christ ascended to heaven, He went to His Father's right hand. The
position He is now holding was foretold in Zechariah 6:13:
"And he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his
throne; and the counsel of peace shall be between them both".
When you sum it all up, it is easy to see that there would be no
honest infidels, if these prophecies were understood. It is this
of evidence that makes a person sure that Jesus is the only true
and personal Saviour of mankind.
Suppose you have a friend who is going to visit
you. You send him implicit directions even to a description of what
your house looks like. He follows your directions and finally drives
up to your front door. He sees your house and the landscape of your
yard, and he knows it is the right place. How does he know? It fulfills
We have never seen Jesus with the natural eyes,
BUT JESUS CAME AND FULFILLED EVERY ONE OF THESE PROPHECIES. That
is positive evidence that He is the one and only Messiah. Jesus
Christ is the only man that ever lived to whom all these prophecies
can be applied. THERE IS NO MISTAKE. We can sing, Yes, there's one,
only one. The blessed, blessed Jesus, he's the one. He is the only
one. "On Christ the solid rock I stand; all other ground is
sinking sand." FRIENDS, THERE CAN BE NO DOUBT.
But have we received this wonderful Saviour as our
personal Saviour. Calvin said: "One of the most wonderful discoveries
that I have ever made is that Christ is my personal Saviour."
May God give us grace to accept Him as such in our own lives. ---