Statement of Fundamental Beliefs - THE HOLY BIBLE
The Bible: Fact or Fiction?
Is the Bible really the inspired word of God? Was it accurately preserved for thousands of years as a unique revelation from the Creator of the universe? Or is it just a collection of humanly devised myths and fables? Do we even have the right books in the Bible, or are important sources missing that would change our view of God, Jesus Christ and Christianity? Can we trust Scripture? Is the Bible vital and relevant today?
Discovering the truth about the Bible could prove to be one of the most important and exciting adventures you have ever embarked upon. Although critics attack the Bible, and preachers ignore or gloss over many of its teachings, the Bible contains a dimension of knowledge that is almost totally missing from our modern world. The Bible reveals the true purpose of life. Bible prophecies not only foretold the rise and fall of ancient nations; they also explain the real significance of world events making headlines today and where those events are heading. In spite of what millions have been led to believe, the Bible is much more than a pious devotional book or an incense-shrouded source of comfort for the troubled and bereaved!
Today, many educated people assume that science and modern scholarship have thoroughly discredited the Bible. This assumption thrives because so many know so little about the Bible. Many people today are simply unaware of discoveries that continue to confirm the historical accuracy of Scripture. Instead, people are encouraged to believe that all religions are equally credible—or equally fanciful—without ever comparing the sourcebooks of those religions. As a result, millions are unaware of how the Bible is unique, and what amazing features distinguish it from all other religious books.
Before you accept the idea that the Bible is "just like any other book," you need to examine the evidence for yourself. That evidence is eye-opening and extremely informative, and it could change your life! You need to understand why so many today doubt the Bible's credibility, and what the truth about the Bible can mean to your future.
A Change in Attitude
For thousands of years, Jews and Christians believed, and died for believing, that the Bible was the inspired word of an Almighty God. Down through the ages, antagonists and skeptics have challenged, attacked and ridiculed the Bible. Popes and pagan Roman emperors attempted to destroy Scripture, and even altered its words. Yet, during these same turbulent centuries, the Bible was carefully preserved and its message spread in remarkable ways!
The Bible is surely the most influential book ever written. It has been translated into more languages than any other piece of literature. More than two billion people alive today embrace, at least nominally, its teachings. Even so, many do not realize how profoundly the Bible has influenced the course of all Western civilization. Millions do not understand that biblical laws and teachings provided the basis for social values and legal systems throughout the Western world for centuries. Sir Isaac Newton, one of the most brilliant minds of his century, remarked, "There are more sure marks of authenticity in the Bible than in any profane history." Britain's Queen Victoria said of the Bible, "That book accounts for the supremacy of England." U.S. president Andrew Jackson stated, "That book, sir, is the rock on which our republic stands." U.S. president George Washington commented, "It is impossible to govern the world without God and the Bible." France's Napoleon observed, "The Bible is no mere book, but a Living Creature, with a power that conquers all who oppose it" (Halley's Bible Handbook, pp. 18–19).
Yet much has changed since these statements were made. Today, Bibles can be found in far-flung corners of the globe. But in Western nations founded on biblical principles, there has been a steep decline in respect for the Bible. There is a pervading notion that the Bible is just another book, and that its teachings are archaic, outdated and irrelevant to our modern lives. Many seriously doubt that God inspired Scripture. Millions who live in nations that once learned to read from the Bible, and sent Bible-toting missionaries around the world, cannot even name books in the Bible or explain basic biblical doctrines. Surveys done in recent decades show that even many professing Christians have little real knowledge about the Bible. Coinage in the U.S. proclaims, "In God We Trust." Yet recent legislation and judicial decisions have made it illegal in the U.S. to display the Ten Commandments in public buildings, or for students to pray in school!
What has produced such a profound shift in attitudes toward the Bible in the very nations that once professed strong belief in Scripture? Why do millions now doubt that God inspired the Bible? Why are billions searching everywhere else for answers found clearly in the Bible? Why do people fail to recognize that the Bible contains prophecies clearly revealing the course of world history, and even the future of specific nations? Why have modern generations chosen to ignore a book that reveals essential details about the future and explains the way to peace and the ultimate purpose for human existence? Why has such vital information remained hidden from so many today?
The answers to these important questions read like a novel laced with danger, intrigue and adventure. You will be surprised by information about the Bible that is readily available, yet has largely gone unappreciated or been ignored. You will be shocked to learn how power-seeking religious leaders have twisted Scripture to support misguided and anti-biblical doctrines.
The more you learn about Scripture, the more you will realize that you can believe the Bible, because it has been inspired and preserved by a real God who is alive today! The Bible is firmly based on the facts of history, not on myth and fiction. The evidence presented in this booklet will make this clear.
If you would like to receive more information or have any questions please call our Canadian Regional Office toll free at 1-800-932-4264, or (905)814-1094 within Toronto, and ask to speak with a minister.