The Bible, God’s Word

If you’re not into reading others comments (which I suggest you do, because that’s one of the perks of blogging), then you won’t realize today’s post is in response to an insightful comment and inquiry I received from dedicated mom and new blogger, Deborah.  I’ve included our comments in this post with her permission.   I’m a little slow replying, but here’s our dialogue:

D:  “Hi again. You are very passionate about your beliefs, and that is so admirable. As food for thought, how do you know that the Bible is the word of God? D.”

[WOW!  I’ve not been questioned so sincerely and directly about my beliefs in a long time.. Thanks, Deb]

Me:  “Thank you for asking such a terrific question which deserves a well thought-out response. Of course, there’s always the short answer and the long one!  Short answer:  To me, the Bible is the wisest, most intense, real, truthful, historic, meaningful, timeless, life-changing, pertinent and passionate book (actually 66 books) I’ve ever read–and I’ve read it a lot. It offers guidance, comfort, correction, insight, and shares of God’s love through Jesus Christ, and offers Hope for every day…”

D:  “Thank you for your response…..I love books, but have never felt this way about one. It seems that the Bible is a friend, of sorts, for you. One that gives “comfort” as you mentioned. I wish I could say that about a book…I look forward to reading your long answer…”  

How do I know that the Bible is the Word of God??

The short answer is how I know!   But there’s a lot of “long answers” out, which may be more convincing than my personal thoughts, so I’ve tried to put a few together.  Fyi, the word count for my original draft was over 5000 words!  TMI!  I only mention this because so much has been written on this subject, that I’ve tried to keep my “long answer” fairly brief. 🙂  [Internet and book resources, and suggested reading follows.]

Here are just a few things that set the Bible apart from any and every other book:

  1. The Bible is archaeologically/historically accurate.
  2. The Bible is unique and full of wisdom, (revealing knowledge and scientific insight beyond anything known at the time of its writing).  It was written over 1600 years on three continents.
  3. The Bible is unified.  It’s composed of 66 books, written by 40 authors, from every walk of life (kings, poets, statesmen, peasants, philosophers, patriarchs, etc)
  4. The Bible, for millenniums, has answered people’s deepest searches and questions regarding life, death, and eternity.
  5. The Bible predicts events accurately fulfilled later in history–impacting people groups, nation formation, history.
  6. The Bible has withstood every attempt to destroy it.

1.  Archaeologically and historically proven.  Josh McDowell has written numerous books, with even more resources than I could provide here, regarding every test required to certify a book as historically sound.  To summarize briefly, the conclusion is that the Bible is THE most historically sound document on earth.  Through both archaeological evidences and other written documents, historical accounts of the Bible have been proven throughout millenniums to be accurate and true.  It’s considered the best documented book from the ancient world. 

More than 5330 Greek New Testament parchment fragments are still in existence, some dating to within a century of the apostles.  Over 8000 Latin parchments exist, and there are hundred more in dozens of other ancient languages.  Quite impressive considering that Roman Emperor Diocletian ordered all Scriptures burned between 302-305AD.  Most Christians of the day chose to die rather than surrender their Scriptures for destruction.

There’s a wealth of original Scripture documents, so scholars are certain of the exact wording of all but 400 words in the New Testament. Nearly all of these are tense issues, minor word changes and a few words that were added by transcribers to assist in clarity for that particular language.

There are more than 4500 hand-written copies of the Bible in the original languages. Some of these are complete, others are partial or fragments.  Some are dated to within a few centuries of the time of the New Testament writers, others dated to within decades of the time of writing. There are many ancient translations of the Bible into other languages, and there are thousands of Scripture quotations found in ancient “non-inspired” or non-Scriptures documents.  In fact, all but a few verses of the New Testament can be reproduced just from these uninspired quotations!

The Old Testament manuscripts were copied by men called “Scribes” of Jesus’ day, who were crazy precise in their work.  They checked their work by counting numbers of letters and words per line, paragraph, page.  No errors were tolerated.  If an error was made, the whole page was destroyed, and they started over again.

2. The Bible is Unique.  It was written over a period of 1600 years by more than 40 authors, in three languages, on three different continents.  The Bible claims to be Gods’ Word, and claim made by very few other writings, and substantiated by none but the Bible.  

Great Christian minds, such as Pascal and Schaeffer have noted that only the Bible offers an explanation for both man’s greatness and man’s wretchedness.  Atheists, evolutionist, New Agers, all arrive at explanations for one of the sides–but only the Bible explains that man is great, because he is created in God’s image, and he “wretched’ because he is in a fallen state, separated from God and His original design.

More evidence of the Bible’s supernatural wisdom is noted in the realm of science.  Since I’m not a physicist, I’m not writing about ones I don’t understand:  

  • At a time when men thought the earth was flat, the Bible taught it was a sphere (Isaiah 40:22, 700 BC).
  • At a time when men thought the earth rested on the back of a giant turtle, the Bible taught it was suspended in space (Job 26:7, 2000 BC)
  • When Ptolemy taught in 150 AD that there were 1056 stars, the Bible already recorded that the number of stars were beyond count (Genesis 15:5)

3.   The Bible is Unified.  It never contradicts itself.  If 10 people observe a crime, there will be 10 different accounts of what happened.  However, the Bible was written by 40 authors who, most, were not contemporaries of each other, not friends, and without collaboration.   They wrote from different cultural backgrounds, with one message, Salvation through God’s Son.  The writers provide a constant message, shared in terms of their own personalities and historical circumstances.

The Bible presents a unity of theme and purpose, pointing to One Creator, One Author, and One way to God—Salvation through Jesus Christ, who is the central theme of the whole Bible.  Jesus Himself said:

You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me  . . .” (John 5:39). 

After Jesus rose from the dead, He walked with two of his disciples, and gave them a brief history of His life, death and resurrection:

 “And beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.” (Luke 24:27).     [I wish I could have been there!] 

4.  Throughout mankind’s long history, people have searched the Bible for answers to any and all of their questions.  And the Bible doesn’t disappoint…many believed in Jesus Christ, determined to trust their Bibles and read them frequently and carefully, and saw their lives changed in ways they could never have imagined possible otherwise. 

People also died for their faith (often painful, excruciating deaths).  The writers of the New Testament and others, went from hiding in fear (John 20:19), to proclaiming openly and ultimately dying, for the message revealed to them through the Bible and Jesus Christ.  Their lives and deaths speak of the transforming and dynamic power of God’s word.  [I realize that belief in other documents have effected lives, but those books don’t stand up to the other tests I mention in this article.]  The Bible has a unique authority unlike any other book. 

 5.  The Bible contains hundreds of prophesies that have come true, prophesies relating to the future nations such as Israel, to cities, mankind, and the coming of Jesus, the Messiah.  Unlike prophesies found online, in other books, or those by Nostradamus, Biblical prophecies are extremely detailed and never failed to come true.  There are over 300 prophecies concerning Jesus Christ in the Old Testament alone.  The OT foretold where Jesus would be born, what His lineage would be, how he would die, and that he’d rise again after 3 days. 

Here’s a few Old Testament prophecies concerning cities and nations: 

  • Around 590-570BC, the prophet Ezekiel predicted that the city of Tyre would be destroyed and never rebuilt, and that it would become a place where fishermen would mend their nets. (Ezekiel 26:4, 5,14).  Though Tyre was destroyed and rebuilt many times, it was ultimately devastated in 1291 AD by Muslim invaders.  Today, all that’s left is a small fishing community using barren ground to dry their nets! 
  • Ezekiel also predicted that the city of Sidon would suffer much violence, however it would remain in existence (Ezekiel 28:23).  The city still exists today.
  • The prophet Obadiah lived sometime between 840-586 BC, and he prophesied the extinction of the Edomites, descendants of Esau, enemies of the Jews (Obadiah 18).  When the Romans devastated Jerusalem in 70AD, they defeated the remnants of Edom, and all traces of the Edomites disappeared.
  • In 1410BC, Moses predicted that Israel would be scattered among the nations of the world.  This was also predicted by Hosea in 710 BC (Hosea 9:17).  History records that after the Romans destroyed Jerusalem, the Jews were scattered throughout the world.
  • Both Isaiah and Ezekiel prophesied that Israel would be regathered in her land in the last days (Isaiah 11:11-12, Ezekial 37:21).  This happened in 1948AD when the nation of Israel was reestablished.  No other person, no other book has made such accurate predictions as the Bible.  Period.

6.  The Bible is indestructible.  It’s suffered more vicious attacks and attempts to destroy it than any other book in history.  In spite of Roman Emperors, the Dark Ages, communist dictators, and modern day societies, the Bible withstood  and outlasted all of its attackers–and is still the most widely published book in the world.

The Bible continues to be mocked and scorned by science, psychology, and political movements, yet their arguments don’t change its truth, its message, its impact, or its Author.  The Bible remains as true and relevant as when it was first written.  It has transformed lives and cultures for millenniums.

The accuracy preserved, its unique authorship, the unified message, the prophesies fulfilled and ones yet to come, lives that have been changed (including mine!), all serve as a testimony to the fact that the Bible is God’s Word.  Jesus supported this when He said,

Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will be no means pass away.”  Mark 13:31

Thank you again, Deb, for asking this, and allowing me to dig in, learn, and reinforce my beliefs that, all too often, I take for granted.  They deserve 2000 words (and more!) to illustrate their importance.

When I review the evidence, I say without doubt or reservation, the Bible is God’s Word.  Yet, my “short answer” still more adequately expresses the heart of why I believe:  “To me, the Bible is the wisest, most intense, real, truthful, historic, meaningful, timeless, life-changing, pertinent and passionate book I’ve ever read–and I’ve read it a lot. It offers guidance, comfort, correction, insight, and shares of God’s love through Jesus Christ, and offers Hope for every day.”

I can say that of no other Book, no other God, no other Faith. 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Resources and/or Recommended Reading: 

Geek-Proof Your Faith, Greg Johnson and Michael Ross, Zondervan Publishing House, 1995.

The Reason for God:  Belief in the Age of Skepticism,  Tom Keller, Penguin Group, 2008. 

Books by Ravi ZachariasThe Real Face of Atheism and The End of Reason: A Response to New Atheists 

Books by Lee StrobelThe Case for Christ, The Case for Faith, and The Case for the Creator

Books by Josh McDowellEvidence that Demands a Verdict, More Evidence that Demands a Verdict, and More than a Carpenter 

Internet Resources:

http://www.jesusonline.com

Reasons to Believe: Is the Bible is Really God’s Word?

Is the Bible Really God’s Word? 

upchurch.wordpress.com article, “New Attitude Message #3, by Michael Stalker

23 thoughts on “The Bible, God’s Word

  1. Many of your claims and comments are not proven, and pretty controversial. There are obviously very different opinions about how “archaeologically/historically accurate” the bible is.

    Here’s just one thought provoking posts regarding the topic claiming otherwise:

    http://de-conversion.com/2007/08/31/486/

    ~smj

  2. Thanks for reading and responding. I respect your opinion, however, the ‘claims’ are not my own–they’ve been highly researched and proven over centuries, not by myself, but by respected scholars, scientists, archaeologists, historians, governments, etc, not seeking strictly to either enforce or deny a belief system. The historic and archaeological soundness of the Bible is widely accepted, even among well-educated minds who don’t embrace a faith or religion. I’ve acknowledged some of these studies in my endnotes, but they are, by no means, all inclusive.
    My comments and conclusions certainly are my own, and controversial as they may be, will remain unchanged.
    Thanks again for taking the time to read and comment, Linda

  3. Hi Grace –

    I would not expect or want to change your, or anyone’s conclusions…. just stating some of my own. I think my first post was a bit short and maybe came across the wrong way.
    I didn’t mean all of the bible was based on “claims” or “opinions”…. and I certainly didn’t mean they were just YOUR claims. Sorry about that.

    There is no doubt that there is some actual history in the bible – which most would not argue with. The question, in my mind (and many others) is does that make ALL of it true?

    The link I posted references this website –

    http://www.theskepticalreview.com/tsrmag/982front.html, which basically says the same thing – giving exact details on things that can not be proven or were proven inaccurate in the bible. If you have information that explains some of those examples – I’d like to hear it.

    For example:

    “A notable example would be the account of Joshua’s conquest and destruction of the Canaanite city of Ai. According to Joshua 8, Israelite forces attacked Ai, burned it, “utterly destroyed all the inhabitants,” and made it a “heap forever” (vs:26-28). Extensive archaeological work at the site of Ai, however, has revealed that the city was destroyed and burned around 2400 B. C., which would have been over a thousand years before the time of Joshua. Joseph Callaway, a conservative Southern Baptist and professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, spent nine years excavating the ruins of ancient Ai and afterwards reported that what he found there contradicted the biblical record.”

    I suppose – a lot of the bible comes down to interpretation of the words themselves… and that is another big issue I have. Not that the words were changed… but, in what way (and the many ways) people interpret them.

    Anyway – thanks for the friendly debate…. It’s nice (and rare) when people of opposite religious stances can discuss things amicably.

    ~smj

  4. Hi Linda, Thank you for such a kind and well-thought out response to my question. All I can say is, “Wow!” You have put a lot of effort into making a logical argument. I will reread this and think about it before I make any additional commets on the topic.

    I like this open dialogue between us all. It is a good sign when people of different perspectives can discuss an emotionally-charged issue. In the end, with so much information (in history and science) that may or may not be true, it is better to be kind than right (not my quote, but I’ve forgotten who said it!).

    You made an interesting comment that some people were willing to die rather than destroy their Bibles. That is an incredible devotion to the written word. Do you think the same devotion exists today in Christianity? (I realize it does in other faiths….)

    By the way, I really like your new picture. Did you take it?

  5. Terrific answers! You really did the research. It takes faith to believe the Bible and the power of the Holy Spirit to draw one to the truth.

  6. Samantha and Deb,

    Thanks again for your comments. I too prefer friendly debates 🙂 Heated controversy, like I’ve seen on news blogs and such, are annoying because no one really says anything. All the ‘discussion’ is just emotional words hurled into cyberspace. So, I really appreciate the comments from you both!

    My husband is the photographer, and all photos on the sidebar and heading are his. He’s the artist–I’m just the tecno-geek who uploads them 🙂

    Regarding the “willing to die” comment, yes it happens a lot of places in our day..probably moreso now than ever. The numbers of Christians persecuted or killed directly related to their faith is highest in North Korea. But it happens everywhere from Sudan, to Columbia, to Indonesia, Malaysia, China, Pakistan…

    Check out two websites in my “links”: Open Doors, and Voice of the Martyrs, if you’re interested. I’ll do a short (!) post with recommended books on this–I’ve read most, because the Persecuted Church is one of my passions. Thanks so much for asking!!

    Thankful for our freedoms—Linda

  7. Dear Samantha and Deb, there is one ingredient that must be added; to fully appreciate, ‘see’, and gain the most knowledge and use from the Bible…One must have faith. It’s a book like no other:-) It is really quite amazing that the one ingredient needed to fully appreciate and gain wisdom from the Bible, is one that you usually gain AFTER years of seeing it sit there with dust on it…I am speaking here from my own experience. I was brought up in a Christian home, complete with church, home school, and prayer at bedtime, yet, as I grew older I left Jesus, behind. I decided to “put” Him away, so that I could explore this world and all it’s opportunities, I replaced the Bible with glossy magazines, and gathered information from friends and college books instead…I drank too much, cursed at much, and became involved in risky and abusive relationships. There are at least three VERY dark and profoud, life-changing things that happened to me during this time ( my teens and 20’s). The details still fill my heart with sadness, even though I know I am loved by a God who says- that when we confess, and change our ways, he forgives us, and we are ‘ White as Snow” ( Isaiah 1:18). After those awful-sin filled chapters of my life, I found myself seeking out an old book–the Bible, the one I was given 10 years earlier–it was dusty, but otherwise it looked brand new! I remember asking God to open my eyes to the intentions of those around me, and He did. He showed me the ways I had gone wrong, and he showed me how sin had affected me, and blinded me from His truth. Oh how I wish I would’ve followed the path I was set upon at an early age…God never wanted me to ‘stop having fun’ He wanted me to trust him with my life–for good reason, HE has a plan for us all, and I believe he weeps when we fall and when we never live out, or experience his plan for us. The lessons I learned were harder, because I was making the decisions. My faith is strengthened today, by looking back and realizing how God lifted me up “yesterday” in a situation I thought impossible. Priceless is, the wisdom through prayer and his word; to make better decisions in the future, and the comfort to deal with the pain that, in this world, we will encounter. By Grace I was saved form myself. I encourage you ladies to keep asking questions, I asked many too. It isn’t magic, it’s knowledge, and the key to it is faith…The wind blows, but you cannot see it, does that mean it is not there?
    “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit ( John 3:8)

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  9. Willa said: “It takes faith to believe the Bible”

    Joy said: “there is one ingredient that must be added; to fully appreciate, ’see’, and gain the most knowledge and use from the Bible…One must have faith.”

    Faith is a problem for me. I simply don’t have it. Oh, I USE to have it. Believe it or not, I was once very very much a believer. It’s not like I haven’t read the bible. I grew up on it. I can quote more of it than most of my “religious” friends. And for many years I had faith in God. But, little by little… as I grew older, searched more, learned more, and tried to make sense of it all… my “faith” escaped me.

    How do you “just believe” something that in your gut, your heart, and your head – simply make no sense? I can’t create something that I just don’t have.

    My Christian friends will tell me “just TRY”… “it’s a CHOICE. Just BELIEVE”… “READ the bible with an open mind”… or “PRAY and God will help you!”.

    As if I never tried those things?

    For several years, I struggled with it… tried to cling to what little I had left… afraid to let it go completely… hoping it would come back to me. Believe me, I prayed. I read the bible. I really wanted to believe… and was afraid not to. Still, my faith eventually completely disappeared.

    I miss it sometimes… the comfort it could bring….
    But, it’s gone and I don’t know how to just “have faith” now.

    What people with strong faith can probably not understand or believe – is that I feel much more comfortable and at peace without it.

    ~smj

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  11. There is another ingredient to faith which I would like to share.Jesus told his disciples that after he left the earth he would send another comforter,a internal teacher,a guide,the spirit of Jesus himself,to them to help them continue to learn about him.When you read say the gospel according to John,view john s testimony from the standpoint of john being a close personal friend of jesus.John wrote about a very personal relationship with Jesus.The spirit of god is standing outside the door of your heart,gently speaking to your spirit the truth concerning god.You must first recognize who he is (see johns words in gospel of john chapters 14-16.Once you see who the comforter is you can then invite him into your life.How do I know,it happened to me in 1972,and he has been with me ever since,even in the dark times.This experience gives you all the assurance you need. I never forgot something my daughter grace said to me once when we were talking about this subject,the holy spirit she said is like receiving the conscience of god.So be aware once you meet him he will never leave you conscience,and jesus said “Lo I am with you always,even to the end of the world,and he is in the person of the spirit of god in you,when you invite him in.

  12. smj~~ (I posted this on your blog as well),
    Thanks for checking out my blog and being so transparent on yours. Though my posts aren’t framed to change anyone, I really hope (pray?) you will find some encouragement in them.

    I understand why many don’t want to “have faith” in God…there’s alot of us imperfect people of faith, who often cause hurt, disappointment or rejection. But people place faith in a lot of other things, for example, when travelling… We, holding our children’s hands, place faith in the airplane, the pilot, the unseen air traffic controllers, etc. I can’t comprehend how so many planes can land in one airport without more mishaps. Without a tiny bit of faith, we couldn’t leave our homes..or stay in them. Some of it’s “blind”, some of it’s reaonable.

    I will always “agree to disagree” because I expect the same from others, but I would never call faith a crutch. I call it a necessity–what makes us different, is what or who we put our faith in. Ourselves, friends, money, a cause?

    Mine is in Jesus, for no one else has loved me as He loves, and still does. I hope I never evolve beyond my trust in Him.

  13. Hmm, it’s crazy, I can remember like it was yesterday, having this conversation with my family and others, when I thought that I had a personal relationship with Jesus. I remember telling my Dad that me, living with a guy for 6 years, was no different than marriage…”Why marry, it’s just a legal paper?” I spouted what I had heard from everyone else, things I even began to believe myself. I told others I was a Christian, when I was living out the exact opposite. I was literally blind to the grace, forgivness, and unconditional love a relationship with God through his Son, would have to offer. I know now that I was not saved, I was lost.. I believed in God, but I didn’t believe enough to listen to his advice, or let the worldly-sins that had caught my eye, go. I thought ” Being a follower of a perfect God will be boring, and I will surely fail, so…I will not even try.” It says in the Bible that Satan is a deceiver, he is the father of lies, a discourager. After the “3 profoundly dark incidents” I mentioned earlier…I was broken. I was angry at God, as if he were to blame, but deep down I was angry at myself, and for the first time, I ASKED God to remove the blindfold from my eyes, and he really did…it was amazing. I didn’t like what I sawin my life. Truth was exposed, my sick life was being examined with new eyes. I asked for God’s help, BEFORE I really had Faith that he would help me, I asked out of despair, as I was at “my bottom”. My faith began to show and grow when I would put my trust in Him, and follow him, I would say “Okay Jesus, I will try it your way…” And I began to see the blessed results, the life-changing decisions that happened, when I listened to that ” Conscience of God” mentioned above. Once I asked him to move into my heart and clean out the serious cobwebs and baggage, He was there, and no one can take that away from me; Not a bad day, not a scary diagnosses, not a sarcastic comment, not a misguided law…He is there to stay. He is a comfort, a peace in the midst of sometimes daily storms. You wrote “…I feel much more comfortable and at peace without it (faith).” I think, if I am understanding what you mean, I felt like this at one time. What I felt, and I am not sure if you meant this, but, I felt like opening my life up to God and his opinions would leave me with feelings of guilt, and sadness. That if I let him in my life, I would not be able to live up to his ways, I would probably be tested and, as I said before–fail those test. “Who would want to sign up for a club like that..one where I would always be aware of my flaws and my sins?And be held accountable for them!” Being a Christian is hard, but almost anything we aspire to be or do, comes with goals that have challenges…The best part about this ‘challange’ is I am not in it alone, a Strong Savior carries me. He challenges me so I can grow, look back and see His promises that he kept. There are days when I think” wow, it stinks to know what is right, and try to be a good example to others…It really is a responsibility that I thought id rather not have. It is the “road less traveled” and we are the focus of many who are waiting to see something hypocritical about us. It can be stressful, and at times, draining…But it is woth it! A beautiful gift! His truth makes the simple so surreal, it is by God’s grace alone, that I can really love someone who used to hurt me, and feel compassion for someone who still does…I know that I am not super-human, that love can only be from God. I love that you are seeking…

  14. Joy –

    Well – I know what you are saying… but, I WAS a believer.. and I WAS “saved”. I tried to save the world with me. I started off as a child, and accepted God and all that I thought he stood for into my life wholeheartedly. There are many people who were “saved” but, fall away… I know of a pastor and others who did… and when this happens, many Christians commonly say, “they were never really saved or TRUE Christians then”…. or “They didn’t really ASK God to come into their hearts”, etc.
    You can believe that if you like.. I completely disagree.

    When I said “I feel much more comfortable and at peace without it (faith).” – it is not because I don’t want to try to do “the right thing” or “follow rules” or afraid I’ll “fail tests”… or because I thought having faith wouldn’t be “fun”. This was not my reasoning at all. I know doing the right thing is not always the easy thing. And, just because I am not a Christian doesn’t mean I don’t have morals or try to do “the right thing”. I do.

    No, the reason I am feel more at peace without God and faith now, is because, for me – religion, God, and faith came packaged with a lot of confusion and with huge amounts of fear.

    Confusion on so much that didn’t make sense to me no matter how I tried to make it. Fear of going to hell (even when I WAS a believer and trying so hard to do whatever I thought was right – I often wondered if I was “good enough”) – and fear of so many others going to hell – including my father. You don’t know how much I worried about hell – not for myself so much – but for others….

    This old post of mine gets into this a bit, if your interested at: http://savemenot.wordpress.com/2007/08/04/all-is-fair-in-love-and-conversion/

    So, I feel more at peace now… because I don’t believe anymore the things that confused me… they don’t have to make sense…. and, I don’t believe in hell… so, I don’t worry about that either. I don’t have the guilt from not living up to expecations that I never really understood.
    That’s the “relief” I mean.

    But, that is me… and not you.

    Joy, John, and especially Grace –
    Thank you for your hospitality, consideration, time and good will. I have no doubt that you wish me well and that you are good people. I am glad faith and religion is, and has been, such a positive influence for you. Really. I am.

    Joy – it sounds like you have overcome some major things in your life, and a huge part of it was due to your faith and beliefs This is wonderful.

    I’m afraid we are on two seperate wave lengths… and you can not understand where I’m coming from anymore than I can you. Which is not only expected… but, really is fine.

    Take care,
    ~smj

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  17. This a wonderful discussion. Thank you all for your comments; I have enjoyed reading them.

    Faith comes by hearing (the act of) and hearing comes by God’s eternal Word. Romans 10:17 says “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” In order to have faith, it is important to hear God’s Word. Our faith grows when we have a steady diet of the Word of God.

    It’s not always easy to have faith, but it’s always the right thing. Sometimes our confidence in God and mankind gets destroyed, and it’s difficult to build it up again. We have faith our cars will work when we turn the key, and faith our refrigerators will keep things cold. How much more should we have faith in God who never fails?

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