Hi there everyone,
I am writing a response to an article that seeks to prove the Bible to be the Word of God from several arguments. It’s by the Jehovah’s Witnesses (once again…), and so they cannot say that the Bible is inspired because the Catholic Church says so. Neither do they say “Because we say so”.
Their arguments are five:
*]The Bible is harmonious in itself. That is evidence of God’s inspiration, because so many different writers of such a long time couldn’t paint an harmonious picture of Him.
Imagine that 40 people were asked to write sections of a book. …] Some were well educated, while others were humble farmers or shepherds. Further, not all of them knew one another. In fact, most of them lived at different times in history and in different places. What do you think would be the chances that their writings would all harmonize, even in the smallest details? ‘Impossible!’ you say? Well, these are the very circumstances surrounding the writing of the Bible.
*]It is scientifically accurate.
Now let us consider one or two of the Bible’s comments on scientific matters. Why are these significant? For several reasons: (1)*They harmonize with scientific facts; (2)*they reflect knowledge that was beyond the available human knowledge at the time they were written; and (3)*they are completely free from the mistaken views held at the time.
*]The writers admit their own personal faults and thus make their message about God trustworthy.
Something else that identifies the Bible as coming from God is the candor of its writers. Why? For one thing, it is contrary to fallen human nature to admit one’s mistakes, especially in writing. In this, the Bible is distinguished from other ancient books. But, more than that, the candor of its writers assures us of their overall honesty. After all, they would not likely reveal their weaknesses and then make false claims about other things, would they? If they were going to falsify anything, would it not be unfavorable information about themselves? So, then, the candor of the Bible writers adds weight to their claim that God guided them in what they wrote down.
*]The Bible was preserved through trials and many centuries, accurately.
No other book in human history has survived with accuracy despite repeated recopying by imperfect humans and centuries of bitter attacks by enemies. Is this not convincing proof that the Bible contains “the saying of Jehovah,” which “endures forever”?
The Bible contains scores of other long-range prophecies that were fulfilled. More than that, a study of the Bible reveals that it contains prophecies that you are seeing fulfilled today. …] Can there be any doubt that the Bible writers spoke from God?
I have come up with some responses to the individual arguments, but I would greatly appreciate further input on whether I’m correct and on whether the Watchtower’s arguments lead to the conclusion that the Bible is inspired, especially if they are taken together as probabilities. Perhaps you can put this in relation to the argument Catholics use that we can only know its inspiration because the Church says so? I’m not quite sure I actually understand/agree with that argument. :shrug:
It is harmonious only because the books in the Bible were chosen so that they would be harmonious. It’s an anachronism.
Not all books make scientific statements, plus that the writers could theoretically have been lucky and guessed correctly.
Not all books, and probably only a few, would include such statements, most of the New Testament (i.e. James, Philemon) wouldn’t.
That argument might also prove that the Greek philosophers were inspired as well. Secondly, the books don’t suddenly become the Word of God after they have been preserved, either they are from the beginning, or not. Thirdly, it is a circular argument to say “The Bible is the Word of God because it was preserved, and it was preserved by God because it was His Word.”
Sure, prophecy is a remarkable thing, but not all books (particularly the New Testament) include it. And even then: It is still theoretically possible the people had a lucky guess.
Thanks for helping me out.