Unless: Authority

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When Christian Herter was governor of Massachusetts, he was running hard for a second term in office. One day, after a busy morning chasing votes (and no lunch) he arrived at a church barbecue. It was late afternoon and Herter was famished. As Herter moved down the serving line, he held out his plate to the woman serving chicken. She put a piece on his plate and turned to the next person in line.
"Excuse me," Governor Herter said, "do you mind if I have another piece of chicken?" "Sorry," the woman told him. "I'm supposed to give one piece of chicken to each person." "But I'm starved," the governor said. "Sorry," the woman said again. "Only one to a customer." Governor Herter was a modest and unassuming man, but he decided that this time he would throw a little weight around. "Do you know who I am?" he said. "I am the governor of this state." "Do you know who I am?" the woman said. "I'm the lady in charge of the chicken. Move along, mister."
Last time we talked about the important understanding of the existence of God and how it is undeniable because of the impossibility of the contrary. Without God you cannot make sense of anything. But the next issue that comes up all the time in evangelism. If we understand that there are no such things as atheists because what can be known about God He has shown us so much so and in such a way that we are all without excuse, then we do not provide proof for or demonstrate His existence. So our offensive is to do what the scriptures tell us to do… we destroy arguments that raise itself up against the knowledge of Christ. In other words we breakdown secular worldviews. Show the weakness of atheism, agnosticism, evidentialism, science and rationalism. Showing that without God you cannot make sense of anything. Then the tables will turn.
They will attack the Bible. Are we able to withstand an attack on the Bible? What is more can we withstand our own doubts about the Bible? Many times we cannot give an answer for the hope that lies within us with gentleness and with respect when it comes to the bible because we don’t know what we think about the Bible. How are we supposed to demonstrate the amazing special revelation of God we call the Bible, when we are not sure we even believe this? Lets be honest today. Do we really believe the Bible is the word of God? Now many of us will say… yes Shane I do, but my question is, can you tell the difference between really believing it or wanting to believe it? Is our hope in money? Is our hope in technology? Is our hope in government? Is our hope in success? Or is our hope in the scriptures?
Psalm 119:43 NIV
Never take your word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws.
Then there is no problem for us today. Our hope is in the promise of God. Our hope is in the law of God. Our hope is in the Word of God. He promises grace, mercy, love, compassion, help, and a firm foundation. But what are we really saying to ourselves … when we doubt? Do we really believe that God’s word is worth more than a millions in gold and silver?
Psalm 119:72 NLT
Your instructions are more valuable to me than millions in gold and silver.
What so many of us will do for a million dollars. But we struggle to read what God says is worth more than a million in gold and silver. So how are we gonna defend something and rest in something that we don’t really believe is worth more than a million dollars? Then what are we doing?
I would recommend you either believe God up to the hilt, or else not to believe at all. Believe this book of God, every letter of it, or else reject it. There is no logical standing place between the two. Be satisfied with nothing less than a faith that swims in the deeps of divine revelation; a faith that paddles about the edge of the water is poor faith at best. It is little better than a dry-land faith, and is not good for much.
I pray that we will all believe the Word of God every letter of it. It will not help you to be half in and half out. In the end we will only be told by Christ at the end depart from me I never knew you. There is no have your cake and eat it to in Christianity. It is all or nothing. We are either for him or we are against him. We cannot serve two masters. And by they way… the disciples saw it. I hope we see it as well… where else are you gonna go? Lets take a look.
2 Timothy 3:16 NLT
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.
The grass withers the flower fades but the word of our Go stands forever.
Its God’s Word
Its True
Love the Light
The first thing we will look at today is the self-authenticating character of the Bible being the very Word of God. The second thing we will uncover is the the truthfulness of the Scriptures in that its infallible and inerrant. Finally, we will see that difficulties with scripture tends to come from the fact that we love the darkness more than the light, but through Christ we can be in the light as he is in the light.
Thesis: Though sin and the pattern of this world causes us to doubt the very word of God and its truthfulness, it is the word of God and the power of the Holy Spirit that will cause us to know the truth and by knowing the truth it will set us free.
I. Its God’s Word
- To disbelieve or disobey any word of Scripture is to disbelieve or disobey God.
A. The authority of Scripture means that all the words in Scripture are God’s words in such a way that to disbelieve or disobey any word of Scripture is to disbelieve or disobey God. Scripture makes this claim for itself. So we are not trying to make it God’s Word the Bible says that its Gods Word. (Explain point)
B. What does it say… here are some.
2 Timothy 3:16 NLT
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.
C. But we know this already… right? Because when we hear the Word of God it also bears witness to our spirits and we just know it.
1 Corinthians 2:13–14 NLT
When we tell you these things, we do not use words that come from human wisdom. Instead, we speak words given to us by the Spirit, using the Spirit’s words to explain spiritual truths. But people who aren’t spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can’t understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means.
John 10:4–5 NLT
After he has gathered his own flock, he walks ahead of them, and they follow him because they know his voice. They won’t follow a stranger; they will run from him because they don’t know his voice.”
D. Apart from the work of the Spirit of God, a person will not receive spiritual truths and in particular will not receive or accept the truth that the words of Scripture are in fact the words of God. But for those in whom God’s Spirit is working there is a recognition that the words of the Bible are the words of God.
E. It is rather as people read Scripture that they hear their Creator’s voice speaking to them in the words of Scripture and realize that the book they are reading is unlike any other book, that it is indeed a book of God’s own words speaking to their hearts.
F. the Bible is historically accurate, that it is internally consistent, that it contains prophecies that have been fulfilled hundreds of years later, that it has influenced the course of human history more than any other book, that it has continued changing the lives of millions of individuals throughout its history, that through it people come to find salvation, that it has a majestic beauty and a profound depth of teaching unmatched by any other book, and that it claims hundreds of times over to be God’s very words.
II. Its True
- God cannot lie.
A. If it is God’s Word then it is true… absolutely true. Why? Because our God who knows and ordains everything does not lie.
Titus 1:2 NLT
This truth gives them confidence that they have eternal life, which God—who does not lie—promised them before the world began.
Hebrews 6:18 NLT
So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us.
B. Since the words of the Bible are God’s words, and since God cannot lie or speak falsely, it is correct to conclude that there is no untruthfulness or error in any part of the words of Scripture.
Proverbs 30:5 NLT
Every word of God proves true. He is a shield to all who come to him for protection.
Psalm 12:6 NLT
The Lord’s promises are pure, like silver refined in a furnace, purified seven times over.
Numbers 23:19 NLT
God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through?
C. And did you also know that not is the bible full of truth… it is the standard of truth. The word of God is not just simply true, but it is truth itself. The Bible is the final standard of truth.
John 17:17 ESV
Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.
D. To answer Pontius Pilate’s question… “What is truth?” Truth is what God says, and we have what God says in the Bible.
III. Love the Light
- He is in the light.
A. So why do we struggle with the authority of the Bible today when we got all of that? Why? The most overlooked important verse by the most popular verse.
John 3:19 NLT
And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil.
B. One of the biggest problems I find with Christians today is the real lack of submission to the authority of the Bible. If there is something there you don’t like you depend on the pastor or some other church leader to tell you how it does not apply to you and its all good. We say things like, well you can’t take that too literally, oh that’s in the OT, that was then this is now, get with the times, this is a horribly dated book, its just myths and legends, the bible only contains the word of God, it was written by men. It goes on and on.
C. But the reality is this… this book has under gone the most hated and prejudiced persecution for more than 2000 years and has emerged time and time again undefeated. None of these excuses work. None of the attacks have worked. Nothing at all… it always comes out standing when all has fallen. So what’s the issue?
D. We by nature love the darkness instead of the light because our deeds are evil. We want what we want, we wanna do what we want, and want to experience what we want, and if the Bible gets in the way, we just say that magic words… you gotta read that in context. We always look for the excuse to not have to make a change. We always look for an excuse to keep doing what we doing. We keep looking for an excuse to be able to live the way we want to live and do what we wanna do.
E. The problem is all we are doing is covering our eyes while the bear is coming. What deception is that… do we not think that there will be judgement in the end? God gave us breath, He gave us His image, He gave us creation, He gave us His word and we think all this time of rebellion we are not gonna face judgement? All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. The wages of sin is death. He will separate and will cast some into eternal darkness. Oh but Shane I’m a Christian… some will say Lord Lord, and I will say depart from me I never knew you.
F. This is not a lie or a fabrication or me trying to get money from you. It is the truth of the scriptures from a God who does not lie. All of His promises are yes and Amen and whose Word will remain forever. Don’t believe the lie.
G. Going through the minor prophets shows us what our God is capable of… He will judge and it will be horrible. But today in His word it is true… we can be saved from this. Salvation is here.
H. Jesus died for our sins according to the scriptures and he was buried and he was raised on the third day according to the scriptures. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance that Christ Jesus came into this world to save sinners. He came to seek and to save that which was lost. He became sin who knew no sin that we might become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed.
I. And the promises in His word continue… All who call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead you will be saved. All are written so that you will believe that Jesus is the Christ the son of the living God and that by believing you will have life in His name. Salvation is here.
J. We are more than conquers in Christ. We are co-heirs with Christ kings and queens of the kingdom of heaven. We have life and life more abundantly in Christ. UNLESS you don’t believe the Bible is Gods word.
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