A Trustworthy Testament
Read Matthew 4:1-4 (ESV)
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
Do you believe the Bible to be trustworthy? Why or why not?
Sometimes when I say, “Well, the Bible says…” someone interrupts me and says, “Yeah, but how do we know that we can trust the Bible?” You may be wondering the same thing. Here at Back to the Bible, we believe that the Bible is absolutely trustworthy and true. What gives us this confidence?
First, we trust Scripture because Jesus trusted in Scripture. In today’s verses, we read of Jesus being tempted by Satan. Remember, Jesus was fully God and fully human. In His humanity, after 40 days of fasting, He was weak and hungry. He could have used His divine powers to do just as Satan suggested. He could have made the stones turn to bread. But He didn’t. Instead, Jesus trusted in God’s promise to sustain Him. He put His trust in God’s Word. He knew that turning the stones to bread may satisfy temporarily but feeding on God’s Word sustains us eternally. When Jesus was weak and desperate, He relied on Scripture.
Over the course of His ministry, Jesus repeatedly says, “It is written” and refers to books of the Old Testament Law and Prophets. In fact, he quotes Scripture from 14 different Old Testament books. From the references He made, it is clear that Jesus believed the people and events of the Old Testament Scriptures were real. For example, Jesus confirmed that Abraham was a real man in John 8:56 when He said, “Your father Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day. He saw it and was glad.”
As we read the Gospels, it is obvious that Jesus placed His complete trust in Old Testament Scripture and considered it to be the Word of God. But what about the New Testament? Well, we have to consider it the same way we consider any other historical document. When scholars study ancient texts, they look for eyewitness accounts. An ancient text carries more evidential weight if it was written by an actual eyewitness. The early church fathers did not debate the authorship of the four Gospels. They were in agreement that those Gospels were either written by eyewitnesses themselves (the disciples Matthew and John) or they were written based on eyewitness testimony (Mark and Luke).
In addition, the four Gospels often corroborate each other. The authors wrote from different perspectives and included varying degrees of detail but they often described the same event without discrediting each other. Each eyewitness brought a different piece to the puzzle that fits together to create a complete picture of what exactly happened.
Lord, I praise You because Your Word is good and true! Thank You for revealing the truth to us so that we can stand on a firm foundation and know the truth about You. Amen.