Some Claim: "You Can Prove Anything by the Bible"

Introduction

I.                   THERE ARE THOSE WHO CLAIM:  “YOU CAN PROVE ANYTHING YOU WANT TO BY THE BIBLE.”

A.     But, that is a false statement! 

1.      Such an accusation questions the authenticity of the Bible.  And in so doing discredits God Almighty.

2.      The Apostle Paul stated:  “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints” (1 Cor. 14:33).

3.      It is upon this premise that this matter will now be approached.  

B.     The only thing that can be proven with reference to the Will of the Heavenly Father is truth.

1.      Jesus Christ (in speaking to the Heavenly Father) said, pertaining to those who would become His disciples:  “Sanctify them through thy truth:  thy word is truth” (John 17:17).

2.      The Bible is the inspired Word of God.  We learn from the Apostle Paul that all scripture is inspired of God.  That is, it was God breathed.   

2 Tim. 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:  That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” 

3.      Those miraculously inspired were supernaturally endowed with God’s Word.   

Matt. 10:16-20, “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves:  be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.  But beware of men:  for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles.  But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak:  for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.  For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.” 

4.      It is true that there are some false statements in the Bible.  But before you are ready to declare that I just proved that the Bible contradicts itself, let me explain.  Those false statements were made by false teachers, not by the Lord or His disciples.  Now they are recorded in the Bible as stated.  Nevertheless, they are false and proven as such in the Bible itself.  The most vivid one is when the devil lied to Eve. 

Gen. 3:1-6, “Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made.  And he said unto the woman.  Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?  And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:  But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.  And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:  For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” 

5.      The devil in a form of a serpent contradicted what God actually stated.  Here is what the Lord actually said: 

Gen. 2:16-17, “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:  But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it:  for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” 

6.      1 Tim. 2:14 plainly states that Eve was deceived in the transgression. 

II.                DOES THE BIBLE ACTUALLY MAKE CONTRADICTORY STATEMENTS?

A.     Some claim there are contradictory statements in the Bible.

1.      If that were so then it would add weight to the claim that a person can prove anything by the Bible.

2.      But the truth of the matter is that no alleged contradictions have been proven. 

B.     We will not have time to discuss all of the alleged contradictions in the Bible.  But let us examine two passages in reference to whether or not God tempts man.  Without examining these passages in depth they would appear to be contradictory. 

James 1:13, “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God:  for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:” 

Gen. 22:1, “And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham:  and he said, Behold, here I am.  And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” 

1.      Actually the word tempt is used in two different ways both in the scripture and the English language.  It is used to solicit to do evil.  And it means to test.

2.      It is obvious that James in the context of James, chapter 1 is stating that because of God’s moral nature, He cannot sin nor entice man who was created in His image to sin.  Whereas, the context of Genesis, chapter 22 reveals that God tested Abraham as to whether or not he would offer his son if commanded to do so.  Of course when Abraham was about to take his son’s life an angel interceded.  The angel said:  “Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him:  for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me” (Gen. 22:12).  There was a ram provided to be sacrificed instead of Isaac.

3.      Thus, there was no contradiction of those two passages of scripture.               

C.     Let us now look at some pertinent doctrinal matters and determine as to whether or not, “You can prove anything you want by the Bible.”  We must keep in mind that there can be a difference between what the Bible actually teaches and what someone may claim that it teaches on a given subject.       

Discussion

I.                   WHAT DOES THE NEW TESTAMENT TEACH ABOUT WORSHIP?

A.     We must worship God according to truth as well as from the heart. 

John 4:24, “God is a Spirit:  and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” 

John 17:17, “Sanctify them through thy truth:  thy word is truth.” 

B.     We cannot prove by the Bible that innovations not authorized therein are acceptable unto the Heavenly Father.

1.      It cannot be proved that God authorized the use of mechanical instruments of music as a means of worshipping Him under the new covenant.

2.      Nor can it be proved that other innovations such as:  burning of incense, lighting of candles, sprinkling so-called “holy water” are authorized under the new covenant.

3.      It cannot be proved that each and every person can worship God acceptable in any way that he or she chooses.     

C.      However, we can prove by the Bible the following:

1.      God authorized singing in worship. 

Eph. 5:19, “Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;” 

Col. 3:16, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” 

2.      Teaching God’s inspired Word in the assembly of the saints as well as when we have opportunity to do so. 

Acts 20:7, “And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.” 

2 Tim. 4:1-5, “I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom:  Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.  But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.” 

3.      The partaking of the Lord’s Supper upon the first day of the week. 

Acts 20:7, “And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.” 

4.      Praying both publicly and privately. 

Acts 2:42, “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.” 

1 Thess. 5:17, “Pray without ceasing.” 

5.      Contributing of our means upon the first day of the week in the assembly of the saints. 

1 Cor. 16:2, “Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.” 

2 Cor. 9:7, “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity:  for God loveth a cheerful giver.” 

II.                WHAT DOES THE NEW TESTAMENT TEACH ABOUT THE CHURCH?

A.     With reference the church we cannot prove the following:

1.      That one does not have to be in the church to be saved.

2.      That there are many churches or faiths with God’s approval.

3.      That one church is just as good as another. 

B.     But we can prove by the Bible that:

1.      That there is only one church with God’s approval. 

Eph. 1:22-23, “And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all.” 

Eph. 2:16, “And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:” 

2.      That obedient believers are added by the Lord to His church. 

Acts 2:47, “Praising God, and having favor with all the people.  And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” 

3.      There is only one body, which is the church, just as there is one Heavenly Father, one Christ, one Holy Spirit, one faith, one baptism, and one hope. 

Eph. 4:3-6, “Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” 

III.             WHAT DOES THE NEW TESTAMENT TEACH ABOUT SALVATION?

A.     Concerning salvation we cannot prove by the Bible the following:

1.      That being a good moral person is adequate to save anyone. 

Acts 10:1-2, “There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band, A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always.” 

Acts 11:13-14, “And he showed us how he had seen an angel in his house, which stood and said unto him, Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon, whose surname is Peter; Who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved.” 

2.      That sincerity is sufficient for salvation. 

Prov. 14:12, “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” 

Prov. 28:26, “He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool:  but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered.” 

3.      That one can be saved by “faith only.” 

James 2:24, “Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.”

4.      That one can be saved without being baptized for the remission of sins. 

Acts 22:16, “And now why tarriest thou?  Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.” 

1 Pet. 3:21, “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:” 

B.   On the other hand, we can prove by the Bible the following:

                           1.   That a person must be an obedient believer to be saved. 

Heb. 5:8-9, “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;” 

Rom. 6:17-18, “But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.  Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.”                           

2.       That those who do not obey the gospel of Christ will be eternally lost. 

2 Thess. 1:7-9, “And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;” 

IV.              WHAT DOES THE NEW TESTAMENT TEACH ABOUT LIVING THE CHRISTIAN LIFE?

A.     In respect to living the Christian life we cannot prove by the Bible the following:

1.      That a child of God cannot fall from grace and be eternally lost.                               

1 Cor. 10:12-13 

2.      That purity of life has nothing to do with being saved.

1 Thess. 5:22, “Abstain from all appearance of evil.” 

B.     We can prove by the Bible what it actually teaches about living the Christian life.

1.      As a child of God, we must live faithfully in harmony with the inspired Word of God in order to go to heaven. 

Gal. 6:7-9, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked:  for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.  For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.  And let us not be weary in well doing:  for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” 

1 Cor. 15:58; 2 Pet. 1:5-11

Conclusion

Summary:  We have noted: 

  1. Some things which cannot be proved by the Bible.
  2. While other things can be proved by the Bible.

Appeal

  1. Let us recognize that only the truth can be proved by the Bible.
  2. Let us learn that truth and abide by it.
  3. If you have never been baptized into Christ, we urge you to do so now!
  4. If you, as a child of God, needs to make right your life before the Lord and His church then we encourage you to come forward.

--Dub Mowery

 

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