3 Reasons Prove Bible Historicity

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Three Logical and Simple Reasons

Reason #1. Written by various witnesses

It was written by disparate characters. For example, Moses was a shepherd, Isaiah a prophet, Ezra, a priest, Matthew a tax collector, John a fisherman, Paul a tentmaker, and Luke, a physician. The Apostles and those entrusted with the gospel held on as witnesses to God’s redemptive plan, even to the point of painful death.

It’s impossible to collaborate a story and knit them to create consistent and reliable written work. The Bible has handed down through hundreds of years, yet when the modern Bible compared to the earliest copies found in the Dead Sea Scroll, they differ in the minor details, mostly typographical errors.

  • Old Testament was written between 1500 BC (Moses) to 450 BC (Malachi) or about 1,000 years span. Maintaining the accuracy of a written work for more than a thousand-year is impossible.
  • New Testament, written from 1 A.D. (Matthew) to 95 A.D. (John).
  • Apostle Paul contributed about half of the N.T.

→ Historical timeline of Bible translation

How was it passed?

There were 40 authors of the Bible for 1,500 years. Bible manuscripts have been passed on through oral tradition and centuries of copying and rewriting available copies. The original manuscripts or autographs lost.

Original source

One of the ancient sources of the Bible is the Septuagint (Latin for 70), which was written by the legendary seventy Jewish scholars who solely translated the Five Books of Moses (OT) into Koine Greek in 3rd BCE (language before Christianity spread outside Rome, Romans spoke Latin). The earliest complete copy of the New Testament is the Codex Sinaiticus, written in Greek in the 4th century.

codex sinaiticus image
Codex Sinaiticus is an ancient, handwritten copy of the Greek Bible written in the 4th Century (c. 330–360). It contains the earliest complete text of the New Testament, discovered in Sinai in 1844.

What we have today are copies

Although the autographs were lost (or one day may be found), one measure we can use is to compare the modern 21st Bible with one of the earliest copies available – which is the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls.’

Their difference is insignificant and mostly typographical errors, considering it was written about 2,000 years ago. And the original text (autograph) preserved in another way, namely through the multiplicity of manuscripts. (Michael J. Kruger, NT professor)

The original text has been preserved in another way, namely through the multiplicity of manuscripts.

The Bible’s exceptional time-span

The period of the NT from when it was first written to the earliest manuscript copy found is exceptional. The manuscripts written on papyrus came from the second and third centuries A.D. At the same time, the John Rylands Fragment (P52) of the Gospel of John dated 117-38 AD, which is only a few decades after the original manuscript written.

The Bodmer Papyri dated from 175-225 AD, and the Chester Beatty Papyri 250 AD accounts for less than 200 years (other manuscripts found were within a 100-years gap) from the date of authorship.

Case & Point: Plato and Aristotle’s massive gap from their original work

Plato’s works on Socrates written between 427-347 B.C. The earliest copy of Plato’s work is 900 AD, which is a staggering 1,200-years time span of lost previous versions. Only seven copies of this ancient manuscript remain.

The earliest copy of Aristophanes’ work is from 900 AD, with a period of 1,200 years from the original document. Only ten copies have survived. The earliest copy of one of Aristotle’s manuscripts is from 1100 AD with 1,400 years, with 49 copies existing.

Logic will tell you that with at least a thousand years gap, these manuscripts are likely full of errors, yet when compared to the Bible, which only has a 200-years old difference, is frowned upon and dismissed as nothing more than a fairy tale.

Non-Biblical witness of Jesus

Extra-Biblical documents prove the existence of Jesus. Manuscripts immortalize Socrates by Plato, Xenophon, and Aristophanes. At the same time, Jesus is immortalized by the thousands (compared to less than a hundred) of existing manuscripts by his disciples.

Logic again will tell you that the historical documents on Jesus are authentic and accurately reflect what was originally written about him. Thus we can say that Jesus is indeed a historical figure, with factual evidence.

Historical witnesses of the Bible

Several Roman Emperors and non-religious historians like Flavius Josephus corroborates Biblical Jewish accounts. The first-century Jewish historian Josephus made specific references to John the Baptist, Jesus Christ, and James.

He gives us many background details about the Herods, the Sadducees and Pharisees, the high priests like Annas and Caiaphas, and the Roman emperors mentioned in the gospels and book of Acts of the Bible.

The Bible also predicted the rise and fall of empires centuries in advance. It can be used as a history book in a classroom setup, but to use it as such is to accept that is is also God’s words, which does not sit well with the academe who are mostly intellectual atheists.

The words “thus saith the Lord” is written about 3,000 times in the Bible. These do not include the words of Jesus, who the Bible refers to as the savior of humankind.

Archaeology & Philosophical witness

Historical places corroborate with Bible historicity. There are many, but the following list provides the most significant archeological discoveries:

● The Code of Hammurabi.
● The Nuzi Tablets.
● The Existence of Hittites.
● The Merneptah Stele.
● The Moabite Stone.
● Biblical Cities Jericho, Haran, Megiddo, Beersheba, Lachish,
● Obelisk of Shalmaneser III.
● Burial Plaque of King Uzziah.
● Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription.
● The Sennacherib Prism.
● The Cylinder of Cyrus the Great.
● Hieroglyphic carvings, Temple of Amon in Thebes.
● Mesopotamians, Egyptians, and Greeks record a great flood.

Case & Point: The Bible confirms the earth is round

Pre-Socratic philosophers believed that the world was flat: Thales (550 BC); Leucippus (440 BC); Democritus (460 – 370 BC); and Aristotle (384 – 322 BC). The book of Genesis tells us that the earth is round, with the earliest copies written hundreds of years earlier than when these Philosophers claimed it was flat.

The witnesses died of horrible deaths

Most of the Bible’s witnesses tortured to recant before dying a horrible a death. Either these writers were lunatics, or they were willing to die for a worthy cause. However, most of those who died for their faith were intellectuals, kind-hearted, and loving people.

Some of the martyrs of the 21st Century were learned, scholars. It is difficult to perpetuate a lie, yet even after 2,000 years, billions proclaim that the Bible and things of Jesus are real.

Either these writers were lunatics, or they were willing to die for a worthy cause.

Reason #2. The reality of the demonic presence

Are you scared of the dark? Like someone is watching you or some invisible being is telling you depressing things like hate, sadness, or suicide. Clinical psychologists diagnose these as hallucinations and, at times, as a result of being bipolar or schizophrenia. In ancient times, people who suffer from these so-called hallucinations are labeled demon-oppressed or was living a very sinful life.

The Bible tells us that when we sin or dabble in the occult, it opens a foothold for Satan that, when left unconfessed, becomes a stronghold of demons. A person doesn’t have to look possessed with red eyes and turning heads, but having frequent suicide thoughts are clear demonic influences. The Bible warns us that Satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy, but Jesus has come to save you, that is if you believe (John 10:10).

The testimony of John Ramirez

John Ramirez grew up in the Bronx. His family was into witcraft, and at age nine was dedicated to a demon. Growing up, he had actual conversations with demonic spirits, and he was taught how to conjure spells. John wielded supernatural powers and became a sorcerer who can cause terrible things to happen to people he disliked.

john ramirez santeria
http://www.unmaskingthedevil.com/

When John decided to walk away from witchcraft and into God’s family, the devil who he once regarded as his father would not let him go, but their power was no match for the one true God. John got saved and testifies that God is real, and only through his son Jesus can we be able to see the truth.

John says that he wouldn’t trade anything for what he’s found in Christ. “For twenty-five years of my life, I was able to do anything to anybody, anywhere. I count that all to be foolish to gain Christ. He’s my Uno. He’s the breath that I breathe. He walks with me. I can hear the sound of His voice in my ear.”

Today, John shares the gospel with everyone he can. He has written a book about his experiences called Out of the Devil’s Cauldron.

The testimony of Alice Cooper

Alice Cooper, the shock-rock megastar who makes Marilyn Manson look like a choir boy, stopped his hard-partying ways and returned to his Bible Christian roots in the late 1980s and today, still hugely popular and touring, says he isn’t shy about discussing his faith, says his early songs always warned against choosing evil and contends that the world we live in “doesn’t belong to us, it belongs to Satan, we’re living with that, we’re bombarded with that every day.”

Alice represents what most non-practicing Satanists are. You may not be worshiping Lucifer, but could unknowingly be submitting your life to Satan, to get earthly rewards.

alice cooper

Alice Cooper was very popular in the 1970s and 1980s. He was into sex, drugs, and rock-and-roll lifestyle. He was notorious for his demonic makeup and costumes and macabre theatrics on stage, which included simulated suicide and the beheading of baby-dolls, among other dark antics.

He knew well that the devil is real. “I’m telling you, the Devil is brilliant,” said Cooper. “He’s not going to come out with the horns and the tail. He’s going to come in as the slickest car salesman you ever saw – and I’ve seen some pretty slick pastors on T.V.”. Indeed, not everyone who calls themselves Christians is of God. The deception is all too real, as written in the last days before the return of Jesus. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

“I’m telling you, the Devil is very smart,” said Cooper.

The struggle between the “dark side” and that of “the force” is all too real in the Christian realm. Bible prophecy warns us that before the destruction of Satan, he will attempt to control and distort the truth so men will not be saved from the destruction that is to come. The Apostles John calls him “the father of lies” (John 8:44).

Reason #3. Changed lives

According to the Guinness book of records, the Bible is the world’s best-selling and most widely distributed book. Around 2.5 billion copies printed between 1815 and 1975, but more recent estimates put it at more than 5 billion Bibles sold. It is the only book translated into 349 languages; 2,123 languages have at least one book of the Bible in that language. The next best selling book is the red-covered booklet ‘Quotations from the Works of Mao Zedong’.

Although impressive, these do not add value to the reason it was written for. God’s word meant to change lives, and it has been doing so since it was first compiled. The Bible itself is filled with many stories of changed lives. Those who read, accept, and believed in God’s redemptive work testifies that their once sad lives have turned into gladness, joy, and hope.

Just like the changed lives of John Ramirez, Alice Cooper, and many others, it is difficult to understand how a historical narrative can turn someone vile into a gentle, loving person, but it did.

The testimony of Paul

If Christians intended to pursue fanaticism, the authors would have rewritten their testimonies by twisting stories to avoid confusing metaphors and contradictions as some views them. The Bible is filled with honest characters such as sinners and evil tax collectors whose lives later transformed and became witnesses to God’s salvation.

hugh jackman apostle paul
Hugh Jackman as Apostle Paul in a movie.

Paul, considered as the great defender of the Christian faith, is known as a Christian-hating (Acts 9:1), Christ-persecuting (Acts 9:5), a zealot (Philippians 3:6; Galatians 1:14) before he was converted. He calls himself “the chief of sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15; 1 Corinthians 15:9).

As a murderer, his background does not qualify him as an ideal witness to Christ, yet the irony of God’s intent puts it to the test, that God seeks after the sinners to be saved and know the truth.

→ Read Christian testimonies

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