That is where a lot of people are at… We have found so far that because of what was—events rooted in history, because of what is—reliability of the words, that all that is left is whether we should trust the Bible for in our own lives.
What Now? In 2 Peter 1:21 he makes a pretty powerful claim about the promises in the Bible-21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
You know people just like I do, they look at the Bible like a speech from a politician, with distrust. They assume that Scripture to come together so perfectly around the historic figure Christ had to be altered after the fact. A change here, a detail there, and BOOM! They figured all those OT prophecies could say whatever was necessary. The only problem was a young shepherd boy lost one of his sheep. In 1946, he not only found his sheep, but he found the Dead Sea Scrolls, caves full of 981 manuscripts in the modern day West Bank—from hundreds of years before Christ lived—with the exact promises from the OT. Promises like from where the Messiah would be born, raised, tribe he would descend from, how he would arrive in Jerusalem, what would happen while he was there, how he would die (before crucifixion was invented), where he would be buried, what would happen on the third day, what would happen to his followers, where their power would come from, etc. Hundreds of promises.Have you ever made promises to someone about the future or maybe even to yourself about what life would like in 20 years, 50 years, dare we imagine in 100 years? It is hard to get a grasp on the changes that can take place over such a short amount of time. Emma Morano, from Italy is 115 years old, soon to be 116 in November, imagine the changes she has seen: Planes, iPhones, email instead of snail mail, GPS instead of gee—where are we? Even Back to the Future tried to predict the future from 1985 to 2015, where Marty was surprised to see the Cubbies sweeping the World Series over Miami. Sorry Cub fans, some predictions seem like they never are going to come true. I know, I know, this is your year!
It is hard to know what the future holds. Steinbeck famously said, “The best laid plans of mice and men oft’ go awry.” Yet, Jesus said in John 5:39, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” By scriptures, Jesus meant the OT, and so Dr. Peter Stoner, a professor of Mathematics crunched the numbers on the chances that one man could fulfill just 8 prophecies: the chances came out to 10 to the 28th power. Can we visualize this with an illustration? Suppose we took an atheistic professor, blindfolded him and covered the state of Texas two feet deep with silver dollars. Then we put a check on one of those silver dollars and mixed them up. The odds of one person fulfilling just these eight prophecies would be the same as this atheistic professor selecting the silver dollar upon which we have placed a check, in his first try. There are over 300 prophecies in the Bible.
The Bible in many ways becomes like an airplane, it brings us from where we are, into a new place—hopefully with God, but like a plane there are times where what we think differs from what is written. Amazingly, this is actually part of learning to fly. Training pilots have to go through a process known as blind flight, flying purely off the instrument panel.
What we learn about Jesus from the Bible, what we learn about him from outside of Scripture, we find that he is unique in all of human history—that his love for humanity—drove him to become man—that as man he did what no other man could do—die for mankind. These are just 3 reasons—closeness to actual events, accuracy of the translations, and the prophecy—from what was, to what is, to what now! There are a ton of reasons to believe—the archeology, the unity, so at the end of the day—what remains is the what now for you—maybe you’ve never accepted Christ, because you weren’t sure he was who the words say he is, not sure you could put your hope in the promises that come from the prophecy, as you dig deeper, sometimes the biggest hurdle isn’t what the Bible says, but what the Bible being true means—the changes it calls for, the new priorities it sets in place, but don’t go beyond something before going through it first! You just might be surprised with the answer you reach.