In this series, we present seven questions that followers of Islam, and other religions, often ask about Jesus…
- Has the Bible been changed from its original?
- Does God say that one religion will replace another: Judaism, then Christianity, then Islam?
- Is it not blasphemy to say God has a Son?
- Did Jesus die on a cross?
- If Jesus died on a cross, was God dead for 3 days?
- Why not view Jesus as a prophet?
- Do Muslims Respect and Revere Jesus?
1. Is the Bible God’s Word? Or has it been changed, or corrupted over time?
Just as introduction, here are a few statements found in the Bible: „Until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen will by any means disappear, from the Law until everything has been accomplished.“1
The Word of God will not disappear. Everything in it will be accomplished in its entirety till the very end. Again it states, „Heaven and earth will pass away but my words will never pass away.“2
Also, „All scripture is God-breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.“3 All scripture is inspired by God.
And, „the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the Word of our God stands forever.“4
We need to ask ourselves, „Is God able to protect his word? Is God able to fulfill these statements, that his word will never disappear, never go unfulfilled?“
Is God capable? Yes, of course. This is God’s word to all people. Are we accusing God himself by saying that He was not able to protect it from being changed?
Nothing has been changed. That is only a rumor.
The Quran does not say the Bible has been changed. Just the opposite. It honors the Torah and the Bible. It mentions the Torah, and the „Zabur“ (the Old Testament and Psalms) and the „Injil“ (the New Testament) many times.
When Islam began in the 6th century, 600 years after Jesus Christ, the Bible was accepted as true.
So, you might ask, has the Bible changed since the 6th century? No. All you have to do is compare today’s Bible with a Bible written long ago.
We can find complete Bibles, all the way back to 300 A.D., hundreds of years before the Quran. You can find one in the London Museum, in the Vatican, and many other places. If you compare today’s Bible with the Bibles of 300 A.D., the Bible we have today is the same as then.
Did you know that there exists today nearly 25,000 hand-written copies of portions of the New Testament? As historians have compared these manuscripts, they have concluded that the New Testament we have today is at least 99.5% accurate to the original. No change.
(The .5% differences refer to spelling, but no change in meaning.)
Also, you might be familiar with the more recent archeological findings of the Dead Sea Scrolls. These were found in caves of Qumran, just off the northwest corner of the Dead Sea.
Researchers have compared the Bible we have today with what they found, and they remained highly similar, nearly 100% identical.
Don’t let anyone tell you that the New Testament or the Bible has been changed from its original writing. That simply is not historically accurate.
The Bible has not been changed.
Ok, but what about having four Gospels? Aren’t those different Scriptures, different from each other?
Yes, there are four gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, in the New Testament. These actually help show that the Bible has never been falsified. These are four witnesses, four accounts of Jesus‘ life, what he said, what he did.
Imagine if one or two, or let’s say four people, witnessed a car accident on a corner of a street. And each one was asked to write up their account, their witness of the accident for the court. Do you think that each one would give the exact same description, exactly the same witness, word-for-word? Obviously not. Each one would write from his or her own perspective of what he or she saw. And that’s what happened when each of these witnesses wrote their account of Jesus, as eyewitnesses of Jesus.
For centuries judicial systems have involved witnesses. And, on very important matters, it cannot be one person’s word against another’s. Often, you need more than one witness. Here’s a statement in the New Testament, quoting from the Old Testament, „Every matter must be established by the witness of two or three people.“5
Not only are there four witnesses about Jesus who wrote the gospels, but there are many more witnesses. James, Paul, Jude, Peter, and others wrote the rest of the books in the New Testament.
John said, „[We write] what our eyes have seen, what our hands have touched.“6 They were eyewitnesses to Jesus. So they wrote what they saw.
What about all the languages that the Bible is written in, all the translations?
The Bible was written in Hebrew and Greek. Any Bible, no matter what year it was printed, is always a translation from the original Hebrew and Greek languages. (Bibles are never translated English to English, for example. They always start with the original text.)
There are some Bibles that are paraphrases, not translations. And they are identified as paraphrases. However, translations, are just that — translating what the original Hebrew and Greek text states.
The Hebrew and Greek writings of the Bible have been translated into thousands of languages. Why? Because God wants every person in the world to know the good news of salvation.
And the Bible is not difficult to translate. There are portions of the Bible that are poetic (the Proverbs, the Song of Solomon, the Psalms). But the heart of the Bible itself is a very simple language that deals with our daily lives. It is not hard to translate. The fact that the Bible is a straightforward, simple account is another reason to trust the Bible.
Here’s a true story.
„My son called me one day. He was in another country, in the middle of a big highway, in a car accident. His car was hit by another car, and was turned 180 degrees, landing in the middle of the highway, in the wrong direction.
He said, ‚Dad, I’m ok. But what do I do now?‘
He’s in trouble. He needed help. Well, do you think this is the time that I will send him a poetic message? A poem that I have memorized? No.
This is the time to simply say, ‚John, here’s what you need to do. You’re in deep trouble and here is how to get out of it.‘ And that really is the heart of the Bible. Humanity is in trouble, heading for hell. For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. And we need a simple message of salvation. The Bible tells us how we can be forgiven, how we can be brought into a close relationship with God that begins now and lasts eternally. It is a message that changes our lives.
(1) Matthew 5:18
(2) Matthew 24:35
(3) 2Timothy 3:16
Reblogged from: EveryStudent.com