Greetings to you all,

One thing that I will always do in this column is address each issue, question, and situation from a Biblical perspective. Every opportunity I have, I talk to people about the Lord and the Bible. Inevitably during the conversations questions arise concerning: how can I believe the Bible, its full of contradictions and errors, it is just manís word, it has been changed so many times over the years. Often I will respond in asking: ĎJust how big is God? How powerful is God?í Isnít the God who created the universe and all that is within it able to keep His Word intact no matter how man may attempt to alter or even destroy it? I remember during the Communist reign in Russia and much of Eastern Europe how the rulers of these countries tried to destroy all the Bibles and Christian material. They succeeded in burning many Bibles and books and even killing many people. But in all of their attempts to rid their countries of the Bible they failed. Ten years ago I stood in Red Square, Bible in hand and spoke with many people about Jesus Christ. The next day I stood in a classroom of a public school in Moscow with Bible in hand talking to a room full of students and teachers. The interesting thing was that behind me hanging on the wall above my head was a portrait of Stalin on my left and Lenin on my right. We were there at the invitation of the government because they had come to realize that the many years of communism had left a great void of morality in the lives of the Russian people. The Bible, Godís Word is able to withstand all of manís attempts to alter and even destroy it. God says in His Word that "heaven and earth shall pass away but my words will not pass away" Luke 21:33.

Another common argument for not believing the Bible to be the Word of God is that man wrote it therefore it is just another book. There are many things that set the Bible apart from all other books but the most prominent is prophecy. No other book in the world, religious or non-religious deals with prophecy like the Bible. No not even the infamous Nostradamus. Nostradamus was a phony. If you donít believe it Iíll send you a free book that exposes him as a fake when you write and request the book "The Secrets of Nostradamus Exposed". The Bible is not just a book written by a bunch of men. 2 Peter 1:20-21 says: "Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any one mansís interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man; but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost." Approximately 27% of the Bible contains prophecy. In the Old Testament, which was written over a 1200 year span by a number of different men from various walks of life, contains over 300 prophecies concerning the first coming of Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us with great accuracy the place of His birth: Bethlehem (Micah 5:2), the miraculous way in which He would be born: born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14,) why He would come into the world: to destroy the work of Satan (Genesis 3:15), to save man from his sin (Isaiah 53:4-5), we are told of the method of travel Jesus would take upon His final entry into Jerusalem (Zechariah 9:9), and even how He would suffer and die was predicted in a number of places: Psalm22; Isaiah 52-53. A mathematician has estimated that for one person to have fulfilled just 8 of these prophecies has a likelihood equivalent to one in ten to the twenty- eighth power. Jesus Christ not only fulfilled eight but all three hundred plus prophecies.

The Bible has not only predicted the first coming of Jesus Christ but also His Second Coming. We will cover this in a later article.

Let me close in saying this, the real reason for which many people use the excuses that Iíve mentioned for not believing the Bible to be the Word of God is they donít like what it has to say about sin. Godís Word addresses the issue of sin without mincing words. He is very straightforward concerning sin. And we simply donít like it, it makes us uncomfortable. The Bible reveals the truth about ourselves and we donít like it. We like to think more highly of ourselves than we ought. To excuse our sinful behavior and place the blame on someone or something else other than accepting responsibility for our own actions. The Bible says that we are all sinners and that the wages of sin is death, because of this we are living under the wrath of God. Godís Word also tells us that if we would agree with Godís assessment of us and repent of our sins (turn away, have a change of heart and mind toward sin) and turn to God in faith our sins would be forgiven and He would give us eternal life. If you have never done this, today would be a good time to do it. You can trust everything that the Bible says. It is Godís Word to us. If you do not have a Bible and would like one let me know and we will send you one free of charge. May God bless you.

Pastor Drew Macintyre is pastor of Calvary Chapel of Alpine