Who wrote the Bible and how can I believe it? It is good that you are asking this question. Searching for answers is an important part of learning and an important part of faith.
The Bible tells us that God specially entrusted the Jews to care for His word, the Bible:.
“What advantage then does the Jew have?… Much in every way! Chiefly because the oracles of God were entrusted to them.
Jews Wrote the Bible
Jews wrote sixty-four of the Bible’s sixty-six books. Only one author was a non-Jew, Luke, who wrote the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts. About forty human authors wrote Bible books, yet the message is consistent.
The Old Testament
The men who wrote God’s word in the Old Testament ranged from great prophets like Moses, and great kings like David and Solomon, to a rural shepherd named Amos. God didn’t always choose great men to author the stories and prophecies in the Bible.
The New Testament
Jesus’ disciples or the Apostle Paul authored most of the New Testament. Paul wrote several letters to Gentile churches. God had these men write His word using their unique styles and personalities. It’s not dictation, and it’s not just inspired human words; it’s a cooperation between godly yet imperfect men and the Holy Spirit. And it was transmitted without error in the original writings.
Who wrote the Bible and how can I believe it?
The Bible is God’s Word
- The Bible claims God inspired (God-breathed) its words:
“All Scripture is inspired by God and “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16).
- It claims to come from the source of truth: “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth (John 17:17).”
Not Always Understood by the Author
Sometimes, the human author had to ask what their prophecy meant. They wrote the words based on the message from God, yet they had to ask God to explain what they wrote:
“But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God (2 Peter 1:20-21).”
These prophets didn’t always know who their prophecy was about or when it would take place:
“Seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow (1 Peter 1:11).”
- The Bible contains detailed prophecies about future events, and all fulfilled prophecies are historically accurate. Some scholars date the Bible books later than when the author lived and after the predictions historically came true. They just can’t believe that predictive prophecy could come true in such detail (Daniel).
- (The fulfillments in Daniel 11 are one example of a detailed predictive prophecy. Daniel 11:1-4 describe the activities of Alexander the Great, the rulers who followed him, and the fulfillments continue chronologically in the following verses).
- They wrote about cities and people that contemporary historians previously insisted never existed. But new archaeological evidence has repeatedly confirmed the Bible’s account (for example, The Rosetta Stone).
- The Bible was written over 1500 years, from Moses’ writings through the Apostle John’s book of Revelation (from @1450 BC-100 AD).
- Like all ancient literature, the Bible is based on manuscript copies. There are more copies, and they’re dated closer to their time of writing than any other ancient literature. Archaeologists discovered The Dead Sea scrolls in caves in the Middle East, and they’re dated from the second to third century BC. Scholars compared these scrolls with the translators’ existing manuscripts; the comparison showed that the Bible translations are accurate copies.
- The Bible contains genealogical records that trace the human line from Jesus back to Adam, whom the Bible teaches was the first human, created directly by God. These genealogies list names (Luke 3:23-38), meaning the record is falsifiable. Researchers have verified many of the people, and none have proven untrue.
- Jesus also named other Old Testament persons as historical, including Jonah, Abraham, Moses, and Elijah.
Subjective Reasons for Believing the Bible
- It has the ring of truth. When it’s read, a person can tell it’s Scripture.
- For believers (and for those who aren’t but respect Jesus as a good man and moral teacher), Jesus taught using the Old Testament Scripture to make an argument based on the literal creation account:
“But from the beginning of creation, God MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE (Mark 10:6).”
Conclusion: Who Wrote the Bible and How Can I Believe It?
The Bible Claims the Highest Standards
- It claims it is God-breathed.
- The human authors wrote God’s Word using their personalities while it remained God’s Word.
- Its fulfilled and detailed prophecies have proven historically accurate.
- Archaeological finds regularly confirm the Bible’s information previously unknown to humanity.
- It’s based on numerous manuscripts proving we have accurate copies of its original text.
- It gives genealogical records–with names–traced from Jesus back to Adam, the first man.
- It also is subjectively true to many, it has changed their lives, and
- Jesus taught based on the Old Testament record.
“Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You (Psalm 119:11).”