The controversy of the Bible

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The controversy of the Bible, the sacred text of one of the world’s great religions, dating back over 6000 years. The Bible is a compilation of 66 books, written by 40 different authors, over more than 2200 years, in 3 different languages, on 3 different continents, with 1 consistent divinely-inspired theme of love and redemption for all mankind. But, the Bible is different than any other holy book because it claims to be divinely inspired by God. It is not a book written about God. It is not a book written about religion. It is not a book written about morality. It is a book written by God.

But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.
(2 Peter 1:20-21)

Modern-day Christians may have created a problem for themselves by being so adaptive, cosmopolitan, and worldly in their behavior, lifestyle, and worship that it is easy to forget that the venerable Christian religion is really thousands of years old. Whenever they act in a way that is popular in current society but against the teaching of the Bible, they are accused of being hypocritical, which might be true. Whenever they act in a way that is in accord with the teaching of the Bible but is not popular in current society, they are accused of being religious zealots, which might be true. It depends on the motive.

The Christian religion is thousands of years old. The Bible has been preserved almost perfectly for that entire time by countless diligent dedicated scribes. Today, we have many different copies of many ancient transcripts from many different sources that give good confidence we have an accurate copy of one of the oldest written religious relics on Earth. This book describes the eternal infinite God and the creation of a finite universe. This book gives a remarkably accurate historical account of people, places and things in ancient times. This book makes incredible prophecies that have come to pass. This book describes the sin and fall of mankind, the plan of redemption, and the process of sanctification. This book describes things that are now in the present and things that are yet to be in the future. This book is worth studying.

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.
(2 Timothy 3:16-17)

Modern-day Christians did not write the Bible and they should not pick and choose what is in the Bible. Some religious groups do not like what is in the Bible, so they have written their own interpretations or translations of the Bible for their adherents to use. Some religious groups do not like what is in the Bible, so they have written additional books that they consider to be of greater than or equal importance to the Bible. Some religious groups do not like what is in the Bible, so they have elevated their own traditions to be of greater or equal importance to the written word of the Bible. This website is dedicated to the premise that the Bible is true, the Bible is sufficient, and the Bible is complete.

The controversy of God
The Bible literally begins and ends with God. The very first words in the Bible are, “In the beginning God.” And, 31,100 verses later, the Bible ends with, “He who testifies to these things says, Yes, I am coming quickly.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.” When the Apostle John saw the revelation, he was told, “‘I am the Alpha and the Omega—the beginning and the end,’ says the Lord God. ‘I am the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come—the Almighty One.’” Thus it is impossible to read, study, or consider the Bible without considering the controversy of God.
The controversy of creation
The very first verse in the Bible claims “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Thousands of years later, the gospel of John declares, “In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He existed in the beginning with God. God created everything through him, and nothing was created except through him. The Word gave life to everything that was created, and his life brought light to everyone. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.” Thus it is impossible to read, study, or consider the bible without considering the controversy of creation.
The controversy of sin
In the third chapter of the Bible, Adam and Eve, living in idyllic paradise, rejected God and sinned in a way that cast the whole human race into a sinful condition of spiritual death. The Bible says, “The LORD looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. All have turned away, all have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.” In fact, the Bible concludes, “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Thus it is impossible to read, study, or consider the Bible without considering the controversy of sin.
The controversy of redemption
In the same third chapter of the Bible that records the sin of Adam and Eve, God promised a redeemer who would fix the controversy of sin. That promise has been reiterated over and over throughout the Bible. Job said, “But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and he will stand upon the earth at last. And after my body has decayed, yet in my body I will see God! I will see him for myself. Yes, I will see him with my own eyes. I am overwhelmed at the thought!” And, Jesus Christ said, “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” The Bible is unique in claiming, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” Thus it is impossible to read, study, or consider the bible without considering the controversy of redemption.
The controversy of sanctification
Sanctification is the idea of belonging to God that causes us to be transformed from a life of sin that only serves ourselves into a life of holiness that seeks to serve the Lord. The Apostle Paul wrote to the Romans, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” In his farewell words to those in Ephesus, the Apostle Paul said, “Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.” Thus it is impossible to read, study, or consider the bible without considering the controversy of sanctification.

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For deeper study:

  • Tanakh versus Old Testament — The Tanakh (also known as the Hebrew Bible) was originally written in Hebrew with a few passages in Aramaic. The Tanakh is divided into three sections – Torah (Five Books of Moshe), Nevi’im (Prophets), and Ketuvim (Writings). The early Christian Church primarily used the Septuagint – the oldest Greek version of the Tanakh – until the mid-fourth century. The early church cited the Septuagint’s antiquity and its use by the Evangelists and Apostles which helped it to essentially attain official status in the early Christian world. The apocryphal books, which are accepted by some churches, are not part of the Jewish Tanakh. The major differences between the Tanakh and the modern-day Old Testament are book ordering and some minor differences in the chapter and verse numbering.
  • The Case for Christ: A Journalist’s Personal Investigation of the Evidence for Jesus by Lee Strobel — Is there credible evidence that Jesus of Nazareth really is the Son of God? Retracing his own spiritual journey from atheism to faith, Lee Strobel, former legal editor of the Chicago Tribune, cross-examines a dozen experts with doctorates from schools like Cambridge, Princeton, and Brandies who are recognized authorities in their fields. Strobel challenges them with questions like How reliable is the New Testament? Does evidence exist for Jesus outside the Bible? Is there any reason to believe the resurrection was an actual event? Strobel’s tough, point-blank questions make this remarkable book read like a captivating, fast-paced novel. But it’s not fiction. It’s a riveting quest for the truth about history’s most compelling figure. What will your verdict be in The Case for Christ?
  • Who Is This Man?: The Unpredictable Impact of the Inescapable Jesus by John Ortberg — Jesus’ impact on our world is highly unlikely, widely inescapable, largely unknown, and decidedly double-edged. It is unlikely in light of the severe limitations of his earthly life; it is inescapable because of the range of impact; it is unknown because history doesn’t connect dots; and it is doubled-edged because his followers have wreaked so much havoc, often in his name. He is history’s most familiar figure, yet he is the man no one knows. His impact on the world is immense and non-accidental. From the Dark Ages to Post-Modernity he is the Man who won’t go away. And yet … you can miss him in historical lists for many reasons, maybe the most obvious being the way he lived his life. He did not loudly and demonstrably defend his movement in the spirit of a rising political or military leader. He did not lay out a case that history would judge his brand of belief superior in all future books. His life and teaching simply drew people to follow him. He made history by starting in a humble place, in a spirit of love and acceptance, and allowing each person space to respond. His vision of life continues to haunt and challenge humanity. His influence has swept over history bringing inspiration to what has happened in art, science, government, medicine, and education; he has taught humans about dignity, compassion, forgiveness, and hope.

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