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Living Water Community Church: 

Living Water Community Church Being Lights in a Dark World III

Giving an Answer: 

Giving an Answer Answering the attacks against the Bible 1Pe 3:13 Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good? 1Pe 3:14 But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. AND DO NOT FEAR THEIR INTIMIDATION, AND DO NOT BE TROUBLED, 1Pe 3:15 but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence;

Who do you rely on – God or Man?: 

Who do you rely on – God or Man? Psa 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path. (Psa 143:10) Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground. (Luk 12:12) for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say." (Joh 14:26) "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.

Why do we need the Bible?: 

Why do we need the Bible? The Sufficiency of Scripture The Necessity of Scripture The Authority of Scripture The Clarity of Scripture A Spirit-Inspired Revelation from God Our Finiteness – The finite cannot comprehend the infinite For Faith – God’s Word is proven to be that source of Truth For Life - If you live in obedience to God’s Word, you will have abundant life Applied to Us by the Spirit – It is our sole source of faith and practice! Our Sinfulness – Pride, self will, attachment to our own truth We need a source of absolute Truth outside of our own thinking

Misunderstanding Scripture: 

Misunderstanding Scripture If the Bible is given to be understood, why is there so much confusion as to it’s meaning? Why are there so many Denominations and beliefs?


Mat 18:3 and said, "Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Mat 18:4 "Whoever then humbles himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Children love unconditionally. Children are teachable. They tend to see the simple truth and tell the truth – without regard to pride or appearances. Children have complete faith in parents, so we should trust God. And trust His Word!


(1Ti 2:4) God desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. (2Ti 2:25) with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, (2Ti 3:7) Holding to a Form of Godliness, denying the power…always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. (Tit 1:1) Paul, a bond-servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the faith of those chosen of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness, (Heb 10:26) For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,

Is the Biblical Record Accurate?: 

Is the Biblical Record Accurate? Now we are going to examine some of the proofs for the Bible. Archaeology has always proven the Biblical record…always. The Bible is God’s Word!


Over the years there have been many criticisms leveled against the Bible concerning its historical reliability. These criticisms are usually based on a lack of evidence from outside sources to confirm the Biblical record. Since the Bible is a religious book, many scholars take the position that it is biased and cannot be trusted unless we have corroborating evidence from extra-Biblical sources. In other words, the Bible is guilty until proven innocent, and a lack of outside evidence places the Biblical account in doubt.


This standard is far different from that applied to other ancient documents, even though many, if not most, have a religious element. They are considered to be accurate, unless there is evidence to show that they are not. Although it is not possible to verify every incident in the Bible, the discoveries of archaeology since the mid 1800s have demonstrated the reliability and plausibility of the Bible narrative.


The history of written language began almost 6,000 years ago in the small villages of Mesopotamia. This first written language was called Cuneiform. Most of history at this time was handed down orally.

Archeological proof for the Bible: 

Archeological proof for the Bible We will now take a look at the evidence that helps establish the reliability of the Bible and it’s record. It is reliable – historically and Doctrinally!

Classical Authors and Date of Copies : 

Classical Authors and Date of Copies

Greek Manuscripts of the New Testament: 

Greek Manuscripts of the New Testament 1998 Figures from Bruce Metzger via Case For Christ. p. 60 - 63

A Reporters Conclusion: 

A Reporters Conclusion Archaeology (N.T.) “In extraordinary ways, modern archeology has affirmed the historical core of the Old and New Testaments--corroborating key portions of the stories of Israel’s patriarchs, the Exodus, the Davidic monarchy, the life and times of Jesus.” Jeffrey Shelter, Is the Bible True? US News and World Report, Oct. 25, 1999, P. 52


“Is the Bible True?” U.S. News & World Report, October 25, 1999 Mary & Joseph travel to hometown for census? Recently discovered: Roman Empire-wide census was held every 14 years Pool of Bethesda with 5 pillars? (John Chapter 5) Archaeologists recently discovered this pool Crucifixion? No skeletal remains found… But in 1968, found a tomb with remains of a 24-28 year old man nailed to the cross, with leg broken

A Skeptics Conclusion: 

A Skeptics Conclusion “I began with a mind unfavorable to it (Acts), for the ingenuity and apparent completeness of the … theory. It did not lie then in my line of life to investigate the subject minutely; but more recently I found myself often brought in contact with the book of Acts as an authority for the topography, antiquities, and society of Asia Minor. It was gradually borne in upon me that in various details the narrative showed marvelous truth.” Sir Wm. Ramsay, St. Paul the Traveler and the Roman Citizen, P. 8 Is the New Testament corroborated by Archaeology?

Another Skeptics Conclusion: 

Another Skeptics Conclusion Archaeology (N.T.) “As a matter of fact, however, it may be stated categorically that no archaeological discovery has ever controverted a biblical reference. Scores of archaeological findings have been made which confirm in clear outline or exact detail historical statements in the Bible.” Nelson Glueck, Rivers in the Desert, P. 31

3. How do we know that the Bible is not just a myth that developed over time?: 

3. How do we know that the Bible is not just a myth that developed over time?

Liberal Dating: 

Liberal Dating I Corinthians Spring 55 Mark 45-60 AD Matthew 40-60 AD Luke 57-60 AD Jude 61-62 AD Acts 57-62 AD John 40-65 AD John A. T. Robinson Redating the New Testament, P. 352 Couldn’t the stories about Jesus be a myth that was invented over a period of time?

Conclusions of a Respected Archaeologist: 

Conclusions of a Respected Archaeologist Couldn’t the stories about Jesus be a myth that was invented over a period of time? “Rephrasing the question, I would answer that, in my opinion, every book of the New Testament was written by a baptized Jew between the forties and the eighties of the first century A.D. (very probably sometime between about 50 and 75 A.D.” Wm.. F. Albright, Toward a More Conservative View Christianity Today, Jan., 1963, P. 359

An Historian Weighs In: 

An Historian Weighs In Roman Historian, A.N. Sherwin-White calls the mythological view of the New Testament “unbelievable.” Williams Lane Craig says, “The tests show that even two generations is too short to allow legendary tendencies to wipe out the hard core of historical facts.” William Lane Craig, The Son Rises, P. 101


Two hundred years ago, scholars doubted whether Babylon ever existed, and the only record could be found in the Bible. Higher critics used the story of Babylon, and what they called its "non-historic kings", to disseminate Scripture. However in 1898, Babylon was suddenly discovered and excavations started.


We know today that it was one of the first cities in the world, and indeed, founded by Nimrod, great-grandson of Noah. (Genesis 10:10,11). Archaeologists have found his name on many inscriptions and tablets, while a massive head of Nimrod has been excavated near Calah on the Tigris River.


Many of the people mentioned in the Bible are confirmed in sources outside the Bible. In the case of royalty, many times a likeness of the individual has been recovered. Over 50 persons named in the Old Testament are known outside the Bible, and we have likenesses of 12 of them. Some 27 people named in the New Testament are known from other records, with six likenesses surviving (four of them Roman emperors).


Based on current knowledge of Biblical and Egyptian chronology, the best candidate for the pharaoh of the Exodus is Tuthmosis III, who ruled 1504-1450 B.C. We have many records from his reign, as well as this statuary of the pharaoh himself.


The most documented Biblical event is the world-wide flood described in Genesis 6-9. A number of Babylonian documents have been discovered which describe the same flood. We also have flood accounts from other cultures around the world!


The Sumerian King List (pictured here), for example, lists kings who reigned for long periods of time. Then a great flood came. Following the flood, Sumerian kings ruled for much shorter periods of time. This is the same pattern found in the Bible. Men had long life spans before the flood and shorter life spans after the flood.


The 11th tablet of the Gilgamesh Epic speaks of an ark, animals taken on the ark, birds sent out during the course of the flood, the ark landing on a mountain, and a sacrifice offered after the ark landed. The Story of Adapa tells of a test for immortality involving food, similar to the story of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.


Sumerian tablets record the confusion of language as we have in the Biblical account of the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11:1-9). There was a golden age when all mankind spoke the same language. Speech was then confused by the god Enki, lord of wisdom. The Babylonians had a similar account in which the gods destroyed a temple tower and "scattered them abroad and made strange their speech."


Campaign into Israel by Pharaoh Shishak (1 Kings 14:25-26), recorded on the walls of the Temple of Amun in Thebes, Egypt.


A number of remarkable clay tablets, discovered at Tell-el-Amarna in Upper Egypt. They confirm the historical statements of the Book of Joshua, and prove the antiquity of civilization in Syria and Palestine. As the clay in different parts of Palestine differs, it has been found possible by the clay alone to decide where the tablets come from when the name of the writer is lost. The inscriptions are cuneiform, and in the Aramaic language, resembling Assyrian. The writers are Phoenicians, Amorites, and Philistines, but in no instance Hittites, though Hittites are mentioned. The tablets consist of official dispatches and letters, dating from B.C. 1480, addressed to the two Pharaohs, Amenophis III. and IV., the last of this dynasty, from the kings and governors of Phoenicia and Palestine. There occur the names of three kings killed by Joshua, Adoni-zedec, king of Jerusalem, Japhia, king of Lachish (Josh. 10:3), and Jabin, king of Hazor (11:1); also the Hebrews (Abiri) are said to have come from the desert.


Revolt of Moab against Israel (2 Kings 1:1; 3:4-27), recorded on the Mesha Inscription.


Hebrew: id, a king of Moab, the son of Chemosh-Gad, a man of great wealth in flocks and herds (2 Kings 3:4). After the death of Ahab at Ramoth-Gilead, Mesha shook off the yoke of Israel; but on the ascension of Jehoram to the throne of Israel, that king sought the help of Jehoshaphat in an attempt to reduce the Moabites again to their former condition. The united armies of the two kings came unexpectedly on the army of the Moabites, and gained over them an easy victory. The whole land was devastated by the conquering armies, and Mesha sought refuge in his last stronghold, Kir-harasheth (q.v.). Reduced to despair, he ascended the wall of the city, and there, in the sight of the allied armies, offered his first-born son a sacrifice to Chemosh, the fire-god of the Moabites. This fearful spectacle filled the beholders with horror, and they retired from before the besieged city, and recrossed the Jordan laden with spoil (2 Kings 3:25-27). The exploits of Mesha are recorded in the Phoenician inscription on a block of black basalt found at Dibon, in Moab, usually called the "Moabite stone" (q.v.).


Fall of Samaria (2 Kings 17:3-6, 24; 18:9-11) to Sargon II, king of Assyria, as recorded on his palace walls.


Campaign of the Assyrian king Sennacherib against Judah (2 Kings 18:13-16), as recorded on the Taylor Prism.


Siege of Lachish by Sennacherib (2 Kings 18:14, 17), as recorded on the Lachish reliefs. It was assaulted and probably taken by Sennacherib (2 Kings 18:14,17; 19:8; Isa. 36:2). An account of this siege is given on some slabs found in the chambers of the palace of Koyunjik, and now in the British Museum. The inscription has been deciphered as follows: "Sennacherib, the mighty king, king of the country of Assyria, sitting on the throne of judgment before the city of Lachish: I gave permission for its slaughter."


Lachish has been identified with Tell-el-Hesy, where a cuneiform tablet has been found, containing a letter supposed to be from Amenophis at Amarna in reply to one of the Amarna tablets sent by Zimrida from Lachish. This letter is from the chief of Atim (=Etam, 1 Chr. 4:32) to the chief of Lachish, in which the writer expresses great alarm at the approach of marauders from the Hebron hills. "They have entered the land," he says, "to lay waste...strong is he who has come down. He lays waste." This letter shows that "the communication by tablets in cuneiform script was not only usual in writing to Egypt, but in the internal correspondence of the country. The letter, though not so important in some ways as the Moabite stone and the Siloam text, is one of the most valuable discoveries ever made in Palestine" (Conder's Tell Amarna Tablets, p. 134). Among other discoveries is that of an iron blast-furnace, with slag and ashes, which is supposed to have existed B.C. 1500. If the theories of experts are correct, the use of the hot-air blast instead of cold air (an improvement in iron manufacture patented by Neilson in 1828) was known fifteen hundred years before Christ.


Assassination of Sennacherib by his own sons (2 Kings 19:37), as recorded in the annals of his son Esarhaddon.

Moabite Stone: 

Moabite Stone It was 3 1/2 feet high and 2 in breadth and in thickness, rounded at the top. It consisted of thirty-four lines, written in Hebrew-Phoenician characters. It was set up by Mesha as a record and memorial of his victories. It records (1) Mesha's wars with Omri, (2) his public buildings, and (3) his wars against Horonaim. This inscription in a remarkable degree supplements and corroborates the history of King Mesha recorded in 2 Kings 3:4-27.


Fall of Nineveh as predicted by the prophets Nahum and Zephaniah (2:13-15), recorded on the Tablet of Nabopolasar.


Fall of Jerusalem to Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon (2 Kings 24:10-14), as recorded in the Babylonian Chronicles.


Captivity of Jehoiachin, king of Judah, in Babylon (2 Kings 24:15-16), as recorded on the Babylonian Ration Records.


Fall of Babylon to the Medes and Persians (Daniel 5:30-31), as recorded on the Cyrus Cylinder.


Freeing of captives in Babylon by Cyrus the Great (Ezra 1:1-4; 6:3-4), as recorded on the Cyrus Cylinder. The edict of Cyrus for the rebuilding of Jerusalem marked a great epoch in the history of the Jewish people (2 Chr. 36:22, 23; Ezra 1:1-4; 4:3; 5:13-17; 6:3-5). This decree was discovered "at Achmetha [R.V. marg., "Ecbatana"], in the palace that is in the province of the Medes" (Ezra 6:2).


The discovery of the Ebla archive in northern Syria in the 1970s has shown the Biblical writings concerning the Patriarchs to be viable. Documents written on clay tablets from around 2300 B.C. demonstrate that personal and place names in the Patriarchal accounts are genuine. The name "Canaan" was in use in Ebla, a name critics once said was not used at that time and was used incorrectly in the early chapters of the Bible.


The word "tehom" ("the deep") in Genesis 1:2 was said to be a late word demonstrating the late writing of the creation story. "Tehom" was part of the vocabulary at Ebla, in use some 800 years before Moses.


The Hittites were once thought to be a Biblical legend, until their capital and records were discovered at Bogazkoy, Turkey. Many thought the Biblical references to Solomon's wealth were greatly exaggerated. Recovered records from the past show that wealth in antiquity was concentrated with the king and Solomon's prosperity was entirely feasible.


It was once claimed there was no Assyrian king named Sargon as recorded in Isaiah 20:1, because this name was not known in any other record. Then, Sargon's palace was discovered in Khorsabad, Iraq. The very event mentioned in Isaiah 20, his capture of Ashdod, was recorded on the palace walls. What is more, fragments of a stela memorializing the victory were found at Ashdod itself.


Another king who was in doubt was Belshazzar, king of Babylon, named in Daniel 5. The last king of Babylon was Nabonidus according to recorded history. Tablets were found showing that Belshazzar was Nabonidus' son who served as coregent in Babylon. Thus, Belshazzar could offer to make Daniel "third highest ruler in the kingdom" (Dan. 5:16) for reading the handwriting on the wall, the highest available position. He was “Co-Regent” – Nabonidus became sick and left the rule to his son.


When Israeli archaeologists cleared the area around the southern portion of the Western Wall (above), they ran into the inscription you see here. Although not a verbatim copy, it comes reasonably close to a vision found in the last chapter of the Book of Isaiah: "When you see this, your bones will become like shoots of green grass."


The existence of Jesus Christ as recorded by Josephus, Suetonius, Thallus, Pliny the Younger, the Talmud, and Lucian.

Historian : Josephus: 

Historian : Josephus Josephus says, “At this time there was a wise man who was called Jesus. And his conduct was good and (he) was known to be virtuous. And many people from among the Jews and other nations became his disciples. Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die. And those who had become his disciples did not abandon his discipleship. They reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion and that he was alive; accordingly He was perhaps the Messiah concerning whom the prophets have recounted wonders.” As cited in Evidence that Demands a Verdict, Page 85 (Arabic text, 10th Cent.)

The Significance of Josephus: 

The Significance of Josephus Makes reference to Jesus’ claim to be the Christ Speak of His miracles Points out that people perceived Jesus’ teachings as the truth Indicates the historicity of Pilate and the event of the cross. Records the claim by His disciples that Jesus was resurrected. Documents that Jesus had many converts The significance of this passage by Josephus

Jewish Source: The Talmud: 

Jewish Source: The Talmud “On the eve of Passover Yeshua was hanged. For forty days before the execution took place, a herald went forth and cried, ‘he is going to be stoned because he has practiced sorcery and enticed Israel to apostasy. Any one who can say anything in his favor, let him come forward and plead on his behalf.’ But since nothing was brought forward in his favor he was hanged on the eve of the Passover.” The Talmud, Sanhedrin, 43a (cf. John 11:8, 16)

The Significance of the Talmud: 

The Significance of the Talmud It confirms the historicity of Jesus’ life. It confirms His death by the method of crucifixion (The Jewish method of execution would have been stoning) It indicates that Jesus did do miraculous things but attributed his power to the devil (similar to Mark 3:22; Matt. 9:34; 12:24) It indicated that Jesus gathered many converts from the Jewish community The Significance of Jewish writings about Jesus

Accuracy Established: 

Accuracy Established “The interval then between the dates of the original composition and the earliest extant evidence becomes so small as to be in fact negligible, and the last foundation for any doubt that the Scriptures have come down to us substantially as they were written has now now been removed. Both the authenticity and the general integrity of the books of the New Testament may be regarded as finally established.” Sir Frederic Kenyon The Bible and Archaeology, P. 288 Conclusion from bibliographical and external evidence test


Summary                                                              The fall of Jerusalem to Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon (2 Kings 24:10-14) is recorded in the Babylonian Chronicles.                           The captivity of Jehoiachin, king of Judah, in Babylon (2 Kings 24:15-16) is recorded on the Babylonian Ration Records.                                                               The fall of Babylon to the Medes and Persians (Daniel 5:30-31) is recorded on the Cyrus Cylinder.                                                               The freeing of captives in Babylon by Cyrus the Great (Ezra 1:1-4; 6:3-4) is recorded on the Cyrus Cylinder.  


                                                            The campaign of the Assyrian king Sennacherib against Judah (2 Kings 18:13-16) is recorded on the Taylor Prism.                                                               The siege of Lachish by Sennacherib (2 Kings 18:14, 17) is recorded on the Lachish reliefs.                                                               The assassination of Sennacherib by his own sons (2 Kings 19:37) is recorded in the annals of his son Esarhaddon.                                                               The fall of Nineveh as predicted by the prophets Nahum and Zephaniah (2:13-15) is recorded on the Tablet of Nabopolasar.


                                                             The campaign into Israel by Pharaoh Shishak (1 Kings 14:25-26) is recorded on the walls of the Temple of Amun in Thebes, Egypt.                                                               The revolt of Moab against Israel (2 Kings 1:1; 3:4-27) is recorded on the Mesha Inscription.                                                              The fall of Samaria (2 Kings 17:3-6, 24; 18:9-11) to Sargon II, king of Assyria, is recorded on his palace walls.                                                              The defeat of Ashdod by Sargon II (Isaiah 20:1) is recorded on his palace walls.

Is the Bible reliable?: 

Is the Bible reliable? Yes! In addition to all of this, there are many other examples of extra-Biblical confirmation of Biblical events.


For years, critics of the Biblical historical account have doubted its reliability not because there existed archeological evidence that DISPROVED its claims, but simply because there was no discovered archeological evidence found yet to SUBSTANTIATE its claims. Now, in light of recent archeology, many are beginning to believe!

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