When Sir Walter Scott (1771- 1832), author of Ivanhoe (1819) lay dying, he said to a man standing by his bed, "Bring me the book." Thinking of the more than 20,000 volumes in Scott’s personal library, the man asked, "What book?" Sir Walter replied, "Need you ask? There is but one book, the Bible."
Most religions have an “authoritative” source of information about the teachings and practices of those religions. For Christians, that authoritative source of information is called the "Bible," or literally, the “book.”
It is only reasonable that our Creator would communicate with us. This is exactly how the Bible portrays God's actions. When man was created, the Lord spoke with him, giving him instructions about the work he was to do, and how he was to live. In Biblical times, God communicated has with human beings in many ways, including visions and dreams, through events in nature and through inspired prophets. “Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets (Hebrews 1:1a). His message has always been centered on the coming of his son, Jesus Christ. “...but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son.... (Hebrews 1:1b).
The evidence is clear. Men and women today can confidently believe in the Bible as the Word of God.
Although it has been written by men, those who wrote it were inspired by God, and everything about it indicates that the Holy Spirit is its primary author. There are some things we do not understand about how and when some of it was written. But clearly there is nothing that supports the claim that it contains errors that destroy its claims to be from God.
Since the Bible is inspired, given to its writers and speakers directly from the Holy Spirit (See Jesus’ promise in John 16:13), it conveys God's message to us, and is authoritative in the things it says. This places several obligations on those who want to follow the Lord. Think about just three of them.
First, we must "trust and obey" every word of God. Then we can enjoy his blessings.
"When we walk with the Lord, in the light of His Word,
What a glory He sheds on our Way!
While we do His good will, He abides with us still,
And with all who will trust and obey." --John H. Sammis (1887)
Abraham's obedience in offering Isaac was valid testimony of his absolute trust in God's will (Genesis 22; Hebrews 11:17-19). As Jesus pulled Peter out of the stormy waters of the Sea of Galilee, he asked, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?" (Matthew 14:31).
Second, Christians must be committed and loyal to the Word of God — without exception. We are to live by every word from the mouth of God (Deuteronomy 8:3; Matthew 4:4). Jesus warned that we can't serve two masters (Matthew 6:24).
Third, God's Word is given to govern every area of life. The business man pictured by James, the brother of the Lord in his little letter, planned for the future without considering what God wanted. James cautions that we should lean on the will of God in that planning, just as Jesus did in his garden prayer (Matthew 26:39).
May each of us not only make Bible reading and study a daily habit, but also have the courage to apply its words to every aspect of our lives.