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    August 17, 1896

    “How to Know that the Bible Is the Word of God” The Bible Echo 11, 32, p. 250.

    ATJ

    THE Bible comes to men as the word of God. In every part it speaks to men as from God and upon the authority of God. But how shall men who do not know God know that it is the word of God? This is the question that thousands of people ask. They ask, “What proof is there of this? Where is the evidence, that it is the word of God?”BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.1

    There is evidence—evidence that every man can have—evidence that is convincing and satisfactory. Where is it, then? Let us see.BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.2

    WHOM SHALL WE ASK

    Being the word of God, where could evidence be found that it is such? Where should we expect to find such evidence? Is there any one of greater knowledge than God, or of greater authority than He, of whom we may inquire?—Certainly not. For whoever God may be, there can be no higher authority, there can be none of greater knowledge.BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.3

    Suppose, then, we were to ask God whether this is His word, and suppose He should tell us, in so many words, “The Bible is My word,” we should then have only His word for it. But we have already, over and over; so that even then we have no more evidence than we now have in abundance: and the evidence would be in nowise different; for it would be the evidence of His word, and that we already have.BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.4

    The word of God bears in itself the evidence that it is the word of God. It is impossible that it could be otherwise. If God had never yet spoken a word to the human family, and should this day send a message to all people at once, and in their own native tongues, that word, being the word of God, would have to bear in itself the evidence of its being the word of God; for the people could not possibly inquire of any other, because there is no person whose knowledge or authority is equal to this. Bearing in itself the evidence of its being the word of God, all the people could obtain this evidence by accepting it as the word of God. Each one who did this would know that it was the word of God; for he would have the evidence in the word, and by accepting it, also in himself.BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.5

    HOW TO GET THE EVIDENCE

    This is precisely the position that the Bible occupies toward the people of this world. It comes as the word of God. As such, it must bear the evidence in itself; for there can be no higher, no better, evidence. Whoever receives it as the word of God receives in it and in himself the evidence that it is the word of God. And so it is written, “When ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13; Acts 17:12. And again: “A new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you.” 1 John 2:8. And again: “My doctrine is not Mine, but His that sent Me. If any man will [is willing to] do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of Myself.” John 7:16, 17. Thus he who accepts the word as the word of God has the evidence that it is the word of God. He who will not accept the word can not have the evidence. In rejecting the word, he rejects the evidences, because the evidence is in the word.BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.6

    To make this yet plainer, if possible, especially to those who do not know that the Bible is the word of God, we may, for the sake of the case, suppose that the Bible were not the word of God, and that the God of the Bible were not the true God. Suppose, then, that we should find the true God, and ask him whether the Bible is the word of God; and suppose he should say, “It is not the word of God.” We should then have only His word; and the only way that we could know whether or not this answer were true would be by believing it, by accepting it as the word of God.BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.7

    So, then, the only possible way in which any person could surely know that the Bible is not the word of God would be by the word of God. And even though he had the word of God to this effect, the only way that he could be sure of it—the only evidence he could have—would be by believing that word. But there is no word of God that the Scriptures are not the word of God, while there is the word of God that the Scriptures are the word of God. That word of God bears in itself the evidence that it is the word of God; and every soul who will receive it as it is, will have the evidence. The evidence will be plain to him who believes the word.BEST August 17, 1896, page 250.8

    A. T. JONES.

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