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GOD’S WONDERFUL BOOK 

Scripture: 2 Timothy 3:16–17; 2 Peter 1:19—21

Memory verse: 2 Peter 1:21
"Prophets spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit."

Lead—In

Draw a road map. Discuss the importance of using a map or compass when taking a trip. Mention that most people would never consider taking a trip across the country without a map. Reaching their destination would be difficult, if not impossible.

Illustrate the futility of trying to arrive at a specific destination without knowing the way by drawing a dot on the chalkboard. Explain that the chalkboard represents your country and the dot represents your church. Give a student a piece of chalk and ask him to show how to get from your church to another town in the country. Name a small, obscure town, but do not say where the town is located in the country.

When the student protests, ask him to explain why he cannot give directions to the town without a map. Ask the class to suggest problems people would have if they tried to go to that town without knowing the way. They would take many wrong routes and probably become lost. The journey would be a long, expensive one and could lead into dangerous situations. It is unlikely that anyone would ever reach the town. Explain that Christians are travellers also. We need a map to guide us in our journey to heaven.

Hearing God’s Word

When learning about God’s Word, the most important thing to know and believe is that the Bible is God’s Word and not just another book. This is an important point. If the Bible is not inspired by God, it is not really His Word and there is no point in believing anything it says about God, how to know Him, or the way to heaven. Knowing that God’s Word is more than just an ordinary book is the basis for everything Christians believe. How can we know the Bible is truly God’s Word?

Inspiration of God’s Word

Before we list specific proofs that the Bible is God’s Word, let us focus on a word we often hear mentioned. (Write inspiration on the chalkboard.) To inspire, in the biblical sense, means to “breathe into.” So when we say God inspired the Bible, it is like saying He “breathed” His message into the writers by the Holy Spirit. Through this process the writers understood what they were to write.

Our memory verse for this study reinforces this action of God and the Holy Spirit. “Prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21).

Proofs of the Bible’s Inspiration

  1. Unity: One proof that God’s Word is inspired is that all the writings from Genesis to Revelation carry one main theme—God and His offer of salvation through Jesus Christ. Unity of thought is found throughout the Bible. This unity is remarkable when we consider how the Bible was written. Most books today are written by one person. If more than one author is involved, they usually work closely together to assure unity. But God used many persons to write the Bible.

It would be impossible for about 40 ordinary men to write 66 books in 2 different languages over a period of 1,600 years, and still have the same basic theme running from beginning to end while telling a number of different stories.

Many of the Bible’s writers lived hundreds of years apart. They could not work close together to get the same theme, yet they were in tune with the same message. Only God the Holy Spirit could have caused that to happen!

  1. Fulfilled prophecy: A second important proof that the Bible is not an ordinary book is that many of the prophecies mentioned in the Bible have already come true. The word prophecy means, “the foretelling of circumstances or events that will take place in the future.” Prophecies concerning the punishment of wicked cities and details about Jesus’ birth and death happened just as the Bible said they would. (Ask students to read Isaiah 9:6, 7 and Luke 1:32, 33; 2:11; Joel 2:28, 29 and Acts 2:1–4, 14–18.) These are examples of fulfilled prophecy concerning Jesus’ birth and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. In both cases the writers could not have compared notes because they lived hundreds of years apart. More and more Bible prophecies are being fulfilled in our day. Matthew 24:6, 7 mention wars, famine, and earthquakes for the future. This is the future.

Ask: “Are those things occurring now?  (Allow responses.)

  1. Influence: No other book in the history of mankind has had the power and influence that God’s Word has. Lives have been changed by the Bible’s power.

(Ask a student to read Hebrews 4:12.) God’s Word is like a powerful, sharp sword. It can cut through the most evil sins. Many people have been drawn to Jesus simply by hearing or reading God’s Word. God’s power can be felt through His Word because it speaks to our spirits.

God’s Word can influence our lives too as we read it. That is why we should spend time each day reading the Bible. As we read, we should ask the Holy Spirit to help us understand it and to become more like Jesus.

Can you imagine what the world would be like if it were not for the Bible’s influence? Evil would be far more widespread than we can imagine. Thankfully, God’s Word helps keep evil in check and brings people to Jesus.

Did you know your life as a Christian is a “living Bible”? In 2 Corinthians 3:2, 3 Paul told the Corinthian believers, “You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts. It is known and read by everyone. You show that you are a letter from Christ that he sent through us. This letter is not written with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. It is not written on stone tablets. It is written on human hearts” (International Children’s Version). You are, in a sense, a living Bible when your life reflects God’s love and truth. When others watch you, they can see an example of what Jesus is like. Always reflect God’s love because you may be the only Bible some people will ever get to read. The way you live can be a powerful influence on others.

  1. Scientific and historical accuracy: Although some try to claim the Bible is inaccurate in matters of science and history, research and archaeological discoveries have proven the Bible to be right on target. In fact many of man’s “discoveries” have proven what has been in the Bible all along. For example, Isaiah spoke of the “circle of the earth” in Isaiah 40:22. But 1,500 years after Isaiah spoke these words men were still afraid they would fall off the edge of the earth if they sailed too far! They thought the earth was flat.

Some scholars claimed the story of Daniel and the lions’ den was inaccurate since lions are not found in Babylon. In recent years, however, archaeologists have learned Babylonian kings then hunted for sport. Lions were used to execute criminals. We can always rely on God’s Word to be true and correct. His Word will never fail us.

  1. Preservation: Another proof of the Bible’s inspiration is that it has lasted so long. Although some kings and people have tried to destroy the Bible, God has preserved His precious Word. His Word will never be destroyed by Satan or by man.

God’s Word and Me.

If the Bible is the true, life-changing Word of God that has the answers to all man’s problems, then we need to read it daily! Failing to read it to learn about God is like starting a long trip without taking a map. We can never reach our destination of heaven without knowing how to get there. God’s Word is able to guide us to God and to eternal life.

Just reading the Bible is not enough. We must also obey it. If we live as the Bible instructs, we will receive eternal life in heaven, and unsaved people around us will see that being a Christian makes a difference in a person’s life. They will want to know Jesus, too.

Accepting God’s Word

God’s Word is a wonderful treasure. We can discover many things by reading it. Most important of all, we learn that God loves us and wants us to spend eternity with Him instead of being punished for our sins. However, only those who accept God’s Son Jesus as Saviour and Lord will be with God forever. We do that by being sorry for our sin, asking Jesus to forgive us and inviting Him into our lives. If any have not made that decision yet, invite them to accept Jesus today. Pray individually with each who responds. Tell them they will grow spiritually by daily reading God’s Word and talking with Him.

Welcome

Our guide led the Swahili interpreter and me to an Orma village near a trading centre. The Orma people group numbers 75,000. Their homeland stretches from Malindi, north to the Tana River delta and west along the river to Girissa, then south along this border for about 50 kilometres. The Orma are semi-nomadic shepherds and their white, long-horned zebu cattle are among the finest in Africa. 

About 40 men, women and children gathered to welcome us. Introductions were made and I explained the purpose of my visit: to meet the people whom I had read about in various books. I thanked them for their gracious reception and shared briefly about my wife and family.

REMEMBER TO PRAY!
Pray for Orma Families

1. Husbands to give wise leadership,
2. Children to be healthy and receive necessary immunizations,
3. Entire families receive Jesus as their Saviour.

Prayer Promise

"But as for me (Joshua) and my household, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:15).

 

 

 

Remember: GOD’S WONDERFUL BOOK 

Memory verse: 2 Peter 1:21
"Prophets spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit."

1. I believe the Bible is God God's way of speaking to me.
2. The men who wrote the Bible were inspired by the Holy Spirit.
3. I will read of quote verses from the Bible every day.

Pray for Orma Families.

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Study 2 | Preach Christ/Our Bible | africaatts.org/go-teach

 

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