IS THE BIBLE INSPIRED?

By Vic Scaravilli


That may sound like a foolish question but have you ever seriously considered it? Most Christians (Catholics and non-Catholics alike) seem to just accept that the Bible is inspired without giving it a second thought. Is it because your parents and teachers told you it was? Is it because when you read scripture you feel inspired by it? Is it because scripture itself states that "all scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work" (2 Tim 3:16-17)?

If you really take the time to think about it, none of these reasons is sufficient for us to build our system of beliefs on. Consider the following statements. Parents and teachers have no direct proof or authority to teach us that the Bible is inspired, it comes from their own traditions! The feeling of inspiration one gets from reading scripture does not guarantee that scripture is inspired. Finally, many other religious books claim to be inspired such as the Koran and the Book of Mormon.

 

SO HOW DO WE KNOW THE BIBLE IS TRULY INSPIRED?

The Catholic perspective goes something like this. First we will not presume that the Bible is inspired but we will look at it strictly from a historical perspective. We can easily support the historical accuracy of the New Testament from numerous other writings available to us. Since we know that it is historically accurate, we know that a man named Jesus actually existed and that He worked numerous miracles during His lifetime and that He claimed to be the Son of God. From this we can make two statements about Jesus. Either He was who He said He was, or He was crazy. If He was crazy, then how do you explain the many miracles, the eye witness accounts of His resurrection and the numerous people willing to die for him? You can't! Quite to the contrary, these facts actually point to the conclusion that Jesus was who He said He was; the Son of God.

Now, if He was the Son of God, we know that He would accomplish all that He said He would. One of the things He said He would do is to found His Church; "And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build MY church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven." (Mat 16:18-19).

Well, now we have a Church founded by Jesus himself which was given the authority to bind and loose; so what about the Bible?

In the early years of the Church, there was no New Testament. In fact, it was not until around the year 400 AD that the final version of the books of the Bible was actually compiled. How do we know that those books of the Bible actually represent the word of God? The answer is now quite simple! It doesn't depend on our parents or teachers and their traditions, our feelings or a statement in a scripture claiming inspiration. We know the Bible is inspired because the Church that Christ founded used the teaching authority given by Christ to discern which scriptures were inspired and which were not!



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