Why Trust The Bible
… Show All
The Bible stands at the heart of the Christian faith. But this leads to an inescapable question: why should we trust the Bible? Written to help non-Christians, longtime Christians, and everyone in between better understand why Gods word is reliable, this short book explores the historical and theological arguments that have helped lead millions of believers through the centuries to trust the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. Written by pastor Greg Gilbert, author of the popular books What Is the Gospel? and Who Is Jesus?, this volume will help Christians articulate why they trust the Bible when it comes to who God is, who we are, and how were supposed to live.
Learn more about the complementary study guide.
Part of the 9Marks series.
Greg Gilbert is senior pastor at Third Avenue Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He is the author of What Is the Gospel? James: A 12-Week Study and Who Is Jesus? and is the coauthor of What Is the Mission of the Church? Greg and his wife, Moriah, have three children.
|5.0 in x 7.0 in|
A Final Word: The Next QuestionAppendix: Resources for Further Exploration
Why Should You Trust The Bible 5 Questions With Pastor Greg Gilbert
Greg Gilbert, pastor of Third Avenue Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky , wants you to get Christianity. Thats why, for example, he has a Masters in theology from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Bachelors degree from a little New England school called Yale. Its also why Greg has written, to date, three short, easy-to-read volumes on the basics of Christian belief: What Is the Gospel, Who Is Jesus, and now, Why Trust the Bible.
Gregs latest work Why Trust the Bible? is a brief primer on why and how the Bible stands up to even the most strident criticism and examination. I asked Greg if hed be willing to answer 5 questions about Why Trust the Bible, and he graciously did so.
How did doing an undergraduate at an Ivy League school help you prepare for articulating the kind of arguments youre making in Why Trust the Bible?
But over time, I think I finally got frustrated with that approach and decided to go on offense. I didnt want to end the conversation just having shown that it was okay for me to be a Christian. I wanted to show people that the pressure really was on them, not me. They needed to defend themselves for not believing that Jesus rose from the dead.
That was an intellectual revolution for meto realize that the evidence for Christianity is actually so good that a Christian can go on offense with a non-believer and challenge them to defend their unbelief.
Are Our Bible Translations Accurate
Although translation from ancient languages is neither easy nor simple, scholars have been working at it for centuries. It really is possible for genuine, accurate, correct communication to occur through translation.
In the New Testament, there is only a small percentage of content that has proven difficult in translation. The best Bible translations acknowledge these places with a footnote.
Moreover, we can confidently say that not one major doctrine of orthodox Christianity rests on any disputed or uncertain passage. We know what the Bible says and what it means.
Recommended Reading: Define Love According To The Bible
Establishing Reliability With The Resurrection
The cornerstone of Gilberts case for why you can trust the Bible is its account of Jesus, especially his resurrection:
Heres what you cant get around: If the resurrection happened, then the rest of the fundamental superstructure of Christianity comes together like clockworkincluding the authority of the Bible, both New Testament and Old. If it didnt happen, then never mind any of it.
So the question is: can the biblical authors be trusted when they claim to have seen Jesus alive after his resurrection? In the final three chapters, Gilbert masterfully unpacks the familiar but solid arguments for why the Gospel writers were not aiming to write fiction , nor intentionally deceiving their readers , nor participants in a mass delusion . Instead, they wrote what they had seen, believed what they had written, and died for what they believed.
So we begin with the Bibles historical reliability, but we dont end there. Because if Christ has been raised, then his messianic claims have been confirmed, and his endorsement of the Scriptures must raise our trust way past historical confidence .
In the end, therefore, the answer a Christian will give to the question, Why do you believe the Bible? is Because King Jesus the Resurrected endorsed the Old Testament and the New. Thats not a presupposition. Its not an unthinking, close-your-eyes-and-jump leap of faith. Its a considered conclusion built from a careful argument.
Review: Why Trust The Bible By Greg Gilbert
Over the past several years, Greg Gilbert, in partnership with Crossway Books and 9Marks, has released a series of short, helpful books on topics related to the church and the Christian life. These books are small introductions to big topics, sure to be helpful for everyone who reads them.
Why Trust the Bible is Gilberts third installment in this series, well complementing his previous two, What is the Gospel? and Who is Jesus? Why Trust the Bible?, like his previous two books in this series, is imminently readable. Gilbert managed to pen a brief, attention-holding book, which engages scholarly concerns while managing to avoid twenty-dollar words.
The seminary-degreed pastor will find this book a helpful refresher, the Christian businessman will find it an informative introduction, and the honest seeker will find in it truthful, satisfying answers to common questions about the Bible.
Gilbert tackles foundational questions like whether the Bible can be true, and why we can be certain it is so. He also engages practical ones like issues of transmission, textual variants, canonicity, and why there are so many Bible translations.
Gilbert reminds the reader how high the stakes are. If Gods Word is indeed true and worthy of our trust, it is also worthy of our adherence. If not, we have no sure word about Christ, the way of salvation, or how we should live the Christian life. A sure word gives our sermons and our lives authority, credibility, and direction.
Recommended Reading: Emotional Abuse Bible
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item
Greg Gilbert earned his BA from Yale University and his MDiv from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the author of the book “What is the Gospel?” and the co-author of the upcoming book “What is the Mission of the Church?”. Greg is the pastor of Third Avenue Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He is married to Moriah and they have three children: Justin, Jack, and Juliet.
4.8 out of 5 stars
Aiming For Historical Confidence
Despite what the title might suggest, Why Trust the Bible? isnt a hermeneutical defense of biblical inspiration or inerrancy, although Gilbert clearly affirms those doctrines. Nor does he spend equal time on all sections of Scripture for reasons well see later, Gilbert deliberately limits himself to the New Testament, especially the four Gospels .
Instead, Gilberts primary aim is more modest: establish the readers confidence in the Bibles historical reliability, especially its account of Jesus. This isnt the final step, of course. But for many, it may be a necessary first step:
Long before we get even get to questions like who is Jesus? or what is the gospel?, another question vexes many people around us, a question they want to ask but doubt we can answer: Why do you trust the Bible in the first place?
This is an epistemological issue: how do we know the Bible is trustworthy? Do we simply presuppose its reliability because it claims to be Gods Word? Gilbert sees this method of reasoning as circular and inadequate. He recognizes no one operates with a blank-slate mind, and that we all have to presuppose some thingsfor example, that the external world exists, that were not brains in a vat, that our senses are basically reliablein order to know anything else. But this doesnt mean we can simply presuppose anything we want. Nor does it mean we should ask unbelievers to just take a leap of faith .
Don’t Miss: How Many Times Bible Says Fear Not
Why Trust The Bible By Greg Gilbert
Few issues pertaining to Christian theology are as under attack these days than the doctrine of Scripture. Understanding what the Bible is and how the story of Scripture relates to our lives is critical in our day. This is especially true given the rise of biblical illiteracy in our day. Many Christians have no idea how to answer even the simplest of Bible answers. Learning what the Bible is and how to defend it is absolutely essential. I was thrilled, therefore, to read Greg Gilberts new book Why Trust the Bible?because it is a helpful resource that will help Christians to understand what the Bible is and how the story of Scripture relates to our lives as Christian.
The book looks at translation theories, the canon of Scripture, the truthfulness of Scripture, and more. The unique aspect of this book is setting the doctrine of Scripture in a more conversational tone. The author clearly understands the doctrine of Scripture but isnt interested in only setting forth arguments for why Gods people should believe the Bible. Instead, the author is concerned to help people understand what the Bible teaches. To do this, he weaves in personal examples, illustrations, and stories that help the reader understand that the Bible is, the Word of God.
Were The Original Authors Trustworthy
In their narratives, New Testament authors included verifiable details of real, historical facts. Close scrutiny makes clear that these authors werent writing fiction, or perpetrating some hoax, or under any delusion. They obviously believed that what they wrote really happened. Nor were their writings hopelessly confused, contradictory, or filled with errors. Especially in modern centuries, the Bible has been subjected to scorching and detailed assault by skeptics, but every single alleged contradiction, inconsistency, and error has been met with plausible resolutions after patient study.
Recommended Reading: How Many Times Bible Says Fear Not
Book Review: Why Trust The Bible By Greg Gilbert
In college, I met some people who believed some very strange things about the Bible. One such person was my friend James, whom I met my first day of freshman orientation. James and I were in the college marching band and enjoyed playing guitar together on the weekends. We would often discuss religion and other such light topics over the wailing sound of our blues and rock riffs. James grew up with a Christian background, but he did not have a strong grounding in Biblical truth. He was prone to believe conspiracy theories and insisted that the Bible had to be improperly translated. He once talked about learning Latin and Greek so he could go to the Vatican and read them for himself. He never did follow up on that as far as I know.
This is a great short read and will be incredibly helpful in both your personal walk with the Lord and in sharing the gospel with unbelievers. Get two copies and read it together with a non-Christian friend or share it with a brother or sister who is struggling to trust the Word. Check out the other books in this series as well.
Special Note: We are giving this book to every attender at our upcoming 4:14 Conference. You can save your spot by clicking here.
Were These Originals Truly The Best Sources
But were these the right documents to be looking at in the first place? Were other Gospels out there telling a different but equally reliable story about Jesus?
Actually, the only Christian books dated confidently to the first century are the very ones that finally made up the New Testamentmost of them already recognized by Christians as authoritative by first centurys end.
Not until about a hundred years later did books start showing up that departed significantly from New Testament teaching. Meanwhile, Christians had good, plausible, historically meaningful reasons for explaining why the books in our New Testament should be there while others shouldnt. The earlier documents were recognized as reliable witnesses to Jesuss life and teachings.
Why Trust The Bible By Greg Gilbert Hardcover Book
$30.62FREE ShippingeBay Money Back Guarantee
Seller:the_nile99%, Location:Sydney, AU, Ships to: WORLDWIDE, Item:152220195237Why Trust the Bible? by Greg Gilbert Hardcover Book. By Greg Gilbert. Author Greg Gilbert. Why Trust the Bible?. Short Title WHY TRUST THE BIBLE. Format Hardcover. Language English. UK Release Date 2015-10-31. AU Release Date 2015-10-31.Condition:Brand new, ISBN-13:9781433543463, Book Title:Why Trust the Bible?, ISBN:9781433543463, EAN:9781433543463, Format:Hardback, Language:English, Greg Gilbert, Publisher:Crossway Books, Topic:Christianity: Bibles & Liturgy See More
- Popularity – 0 views, 0 views per day, 0 watching, 30 days on eBay. 0 sold, 9 available. More
Answering Five Big Questions
The bulk of the book addresses five big questions about the Bibles trustworthiness:
To each question, Gilbert offers reasoned arguments for why the answer is yes.
To be clear, he isnt trying to break new ground. Anyone familiar with the literature knows these questions have been amply handled many times by evangelical scholars. But what Gilbert gives us is a helpful condensing of the textual critical insights of a Daniel Wallace, the canon research of a Michael Kruger, and the historical arguments of a Craig Blombergall rolled into one tiny hardback. And for those wanting to go deeper, he provides an excellent bibliography .
Allow me to single out one chapter for its wealth of insight and illustration: Copies of Copies of Copies of Copies? Perhaps the highest compliment I can pay this chapter is to say it will make you so excited about textual criticism that youll want to teach a Sunday school lesson on it. Seriously.
Recommended Reading: Where In The Bible Does It Say Pray Without Ceasing
Were The Original Authors Mistaken
So the Bible is a reliable historical record of what these authors believe happened. But did those things really happen?
After all, the Bible is filled with miracle stories that invite our natural skepticism. These miracles appear essential to the Bibles message, and their eyewitness accounts come across as far more plausible than miracles found in ancient myths and legends.
Its here that one miracle in particular leaps out: the resurrection of Jesus. If biblical writers were genuinely mistaken about that, its unlikely they were right about much else. If Jesus is still dead, hes assuredly not the Christ the Bible speaks of.
Here again, careful historical analysis reveals that what happened at Jesuss tomb couldnt have been his near death, nor some hoax or deception or mass hallucination involving his followers. Their confident insistence that they found his tomb empty and saw the risen Jesus a belief embraced even at cost of their livesis explained by only one possibility: Jesus was bodily, historically resurrected from the dead.
Adapted from Greg Gilbert’s book Why Trust the Bible?, this tract helps believers and unbelievers alike understand and explain why God’s Word can be trusted.
Were The Original Sources Accurately Copied
As with other ancient books, the physical pieces of paper on which the original authors first wrote the New Testament have been lost to history. But we have thousands of other ancient writings with original-language text copied from each book of the Bibleabout 5,400 distinct pieces when it comes to the New Testament, many going back to the first three centuries. They allow us to reconstruct with a huge degree of confidence what the originals said.
We can confidently say that not one major doctrine of orthodox Christianity rests on any disputed or uncertain passage. We know what the Bible says and what it means.
Common Terms And Phrases