How To Trust The Bible by John Stapleton

How To Trust The Bible

YouTuber John Stapleton shares on How To Trust The Bible (Matthew 19:3-6). Be sure to subscribe to John’s Weekly Bible Blog.

This video is also available as an Apple podcast below. (Note that John’s Q&A are available on the Apple Podcast).

Matthew 19:3–6 (NLT)

3 Some Pharisees came and tried to trap him with this
question: “Should a man be allowed to divorce his wife for
just any reason?”
4 “Haven’t you read the Scriptures?” Jesus replied. “They
record that from the beginning ‘God made them male and
female.’ 5 And he said, ‘This explains why a man leaves his
father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are
united into one.’ 6 Since they are no longer two but one, let
no one split apart what God has joined together.”

This is a passage that is about marriage on the surface, but today we will see how Jesus thought of the Bible. The main
thing I want you to see is that the Bible is God’s Word. Let’s dive in.

1). The Bible Is God’s Word

The Pharisees came up to Jesus and tried to trap him in something he taught. They wanted Jesus to agree with their liberal interpretation of Moses’ teaching on marriage that allowed them to divorce their wife for “any reason” (19:3). Perhaps they wanted Jesus to appear as if he contradicted Moses. Regardless, Jesus wastes no time getting to the scriptures.\

“Haven’t you read?” (19:4) was how Jesus reminded people that his point is going to be made with Scripture and how his listeners need to be biblically serious. He then quotes to them that God made humanity in his image and that God brought them together. This is from Genesis 2:24 where Moses appears to be narrating. This is not a direct quote from God and yet Jesus is saying here that God said “a man shall leave….” (ESV) – in other words, the Bible says what God says and God says what the Bible says. The Bible is God’s Word.

2). You Can Trust God’s Word

So the Bible is God’s Word, good.

But some of you don’t trust God’s Word for a few reasons:

  • Why do we have so many translations?
  • Can we trust that the manuscripts are accurate?
  • Can we trust our interpretation of it?

These are good questions that many people ask.

Here at the Bible Blog, I want to provoke you toward the right answers and so I will be glad to point you to some solid resources.

In general, you need to know that the manuscripts are accurate and are the most attested documents of antiquity. Not only can we trust the manuscripts but we can trust the translations we have. We have a number of translations on a spectrum ranging from versions that seek to reflect the words of the biblical authors, while others seek to reflect the sense of meaning that the biblical authors perhaps had. Both are wonderful options that have significant pros and cons.

3). You Can Trust God’s Word

Practically

We have so far covered that you can trust the academics of the Bible, but what about spiritually? Peter reminds us that
God has given us everything we need to live a godly life.

2 Peter 1:3 NLT
By his divine power, God has given us everything we need
for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming
to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of
his marvelous glory and excellence.

4). Scripture Will Never Fail

But what about all the ways the Bible has been abused? That might be the heaviest question on your mind and heart. I want to point you to something fascinating in the Gospel of John. One day as Jesus was walking through the temple, the people who have heard Jesus teach for a while step to him and demand him to clearly claim that he is God’s chosen one. And Jesus does. This turns to the crowd into a bloodthirsty mob. Jesus mentions that he has miraculously helped them many times and asks why they are trying to kill him. Their response points out the fact that they see Jesus as a mere man who thinks he’s God.

John 10:34–36 (NLT)
34 Jesus replied, “It is written in your own Scriptures that God said to certain leaders of the people, ‘I say, you are gods!’ 35 And you know that the Scriptures cannot be altered. So if those people who received God’s message were called ‘gods,’ 36 why do you call it blasphemy when I say, ‘I am the Son of God’? After all, the Father set me apart and sent me into the world.

Jesus decided to use Psalm 82, an obscure Psalm, to prove his point. God sarcastically called proud kings “gods” because that’s how they considered themselves (much like Pharaoh). Jesus’ point is if God uses the term “gods,” sarcastically applying them to the rulers of the nations, why is everyone so upset that Jesus called himself God? The people’s understanding of the scriptures was wrong, but Scripture is never wrong! To quote Jesus, “Scripture cannot be altered” (10:35).

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