Whoever. Bill O’Reiley. Keith Olbermann. Your favorite teacher.
There are a lot of wonderful people out there, and there are a lot of intelligent people out there, but only the Bible gives the clear, unshakeable, unchanging truth to those of us who love Jesus. Why believe that?
1) Jesus did.
He didn’t quote the pop philosophers, itinerant evangelists, or Dr. Phil-types of His day when confronted by Satan in Luke 4. He quoted the book of Deuteronomy. On the cross, He spoke Psalm 22. He said that He came to fulfill the Old Testament, and that not one part of it would be changed until Heaven and Earth passed away (that’s a fairly long time). He interpreted it (the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7 is a good example) and He chided people for not living it (“Have you not read…?”).
We should have the view of Scripture our Savior does.
2) It says to.
Seriously? Believe the Bible because it says to? That’s circular logic, baby. Come on…
Well, the sad truth is that everyone is using circular logic by that definition (thank you Doug Wilson for that one). You either believe your brain because your brain tells you it’s reliable to believe your brain, or you believe something else because the something else tells you that it’s reliable. The Bible trumps my brain, because the Bible doesn’t change from lack of coffee or carbohydrates.
3) It is logically inconsistent to claim to believe in Jesus but doubt the only substantial piece of testimony about Him.
This would be like if I rushed into your house and told you you just had to come outside because there was an unforeseen lunar eclipse going on and it was beautiful, and you said, “I don’t think you really know what a lunar eclipse is and I’m pretty sure you’re a liar, anyway, but yeah let’s go outside. I fully expect there is an eclipse out there.” If you don’t believe the testimony, how can you believe in what it testifies?
4) It’s historically reliable.
They’ll laugh at you if you say this in a college classroom, but they laughed at Paul and called him a seedpicker. Laughing at someone is just an old form of “ad hominem;” attack the arguer, not the argument.
The pools at Bethesda in the book of John, the accuracy of the transmission of the Old Testament (see: Dead Sea Scrolls), the Galilean fishing boat discovery, the places mentioned in Acts… You don’t need to become an expert in Biblical archaeology and you don’t need to hang your hat on this reason, but just know this: Paul makes clear in 1 Corinthians 15 that we worship a real Jesus who was historically seen after being raised from the dead, and our God’s actions as recorded in His book really happened in the places and times He says they did.
5) It’s spiritually reliable.
The Bible proves itself and its Author to all who trust Him. The Bible is difficult at times, but in a way that’s similar to how chemotherapy is difficult: it painfully brings about ridiculous good.
The Bible makes husbands better husbands, wives better wives, citizens better citizens, and Christians more like their Christ. Try Him. Test Him, humbly, in that way. The book of Isaiah says His Word will accomplish its purpose. 30 centuries of God’s people confirm: His Word, His Book, does what He says it will. It brings us into fellowship with the great God who graciously gave it to us.