Summary – The Bible is of unparalleled value to the Christian, absolutely true and unrivaled in historic importance.
Favorite quote: “The harder tyrants try to eliminate it and skeptics dismiss it, the better read it becomes. Voltaire, for example, who passionately sought to erase the Christian influence during the French Revolution, predicted that within a hundred years no one would read the Bible. When his home was later auctioned off after his death, it was purchased by the French Bible Society. As one pastor said, the Bible outlives its pallbearers.” (p 56)
A couple links:
– If you’re interested in archaeology, check out the Archaeology Study Bible, which Colson mentions in this chapter.
– Also, you can check out Dr. Todd Bolen’s blog. He’s an evangelical archaeology professor who keeps up to the minute on archaeology finds.
– If you’re interested in reading more on the Gnostic philosophy Colson talks about here, try Dr. Darell Bock’s blog. He’s a prof. at Dallas Seminary.
Title: Chapter 3 – He Has Spoken.
Pg. 45 Recurring Battle – “…….. Christians defending the Word of God, enemies doing their best to destroy it……”
Top pg. 46 – “In America and elsewhere in the West, the Bible continues to be attacked.”
Bottom pg. 46 – “The reason is what the Bible claims for itself……… it purports to be the Word of God itself.”
Pg. 47 “….. the Bible calls followers to an allegiance higher than the state….”
Pg. 56 – “Simply put, the Bible is the rock on which the Church stands or falls. It is the ultimate authority for all Christians-…..”
It seems to me that this is where the challenge lies – with most people who attack or disbelieve – “Word of God”, “allegiance higher than”, “ultimate authority”, and NOT that that’s incorrect or that those claims should not be made so OPENLY. Yes there will always be the notable (not all) scientists, philosophers, politicians, lawyers and elite atheists etc. who take pleasure, even see it as their mission (remember, people who do not believe in God, believe in something) to endlessly debate and challenge that authority; or tyrants who want that “ultimate authority” for themselves. But throughout history, these have been the minority in numbers (not necessarily power), and the problem is NOT that there has been a lack of truth or not enough proof, and yes, these people can do great damage.
For the most part, it seems to me that it’s in the cultures or human nature throughout time, to question and challenge things that set themselves apart and claim a higher standard – even against the tyrants themselves, though it may result in death. It doesn’t even have to be Christianity or religion. Look at the police, teachers, people in authority, a company that is doing well – even the law! The minute you establish a higher standard or law, there’s someone who wants to break it or find away around it, or take it down – jealousy, situation ethics. Look at the damage the legal profession has done many times (not all) to truth and justice. Someone commits a crime, admits it, is caught on tape, or spills hot coffee on themselves while driving, etc. and there’s an attorney who comes up with some lame excuse, and many times the criminal gets off, or damages have to be paid – forget the TRUTH, the PROOF, JUSTICE! Can enough DOUBT be created???? People are prone to doubt. In general they resist absolutes and ultimate authority – they want flexibility and leeway to make up their own rules if need be – FREEDOM! (except freedom is not free). They don’t want someone to succeed – especially Christians, because of “the Truth” and the change it can make in peoples lies (that’s why it’s the Truth).
But then God gave us freedom to choose, and choose we do, even if it means failure or sin.
There will always be people who are “deeply offended” at the sight of a Christmas tree in front of a library. How long will it be before “In God We Trust” is stricken?
Arguments can be put forth in debates, archaeology can come up with new findings, more proof can be offered and the stronger Christianity becomes, the more it will be attacked. If it were weak and untrue, who would care?
We must put forth the Word in what we say AND do, but there will always be evil and people for whom there is not enough proof to convince them or who want you to fail. Chuck Swindoll puts forth the notion in his book about Job, are you “a little Godder” or “a big Godder”? Little gods can’t be trusted. When your God is great, your problems pale into insignificance, and you stand in awe as you worship the King. Job was “a big Godder”.