Part 1: Examining the Differences Between Christianity and Cults Lesson 1: What Makes a Cult a Cult?



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What’s the Difference?

Appendix C: How Do We Know the Bible is the Word of God?




In trying to answer this question, many have pointed to such factors as the longevity of the Bible (in spite of repeated attempts to eradicate It75), Its internal consistency (in spite of Its 40+ human authors), Its fulfilled prophecies76, Its transforming power, etc. as proof of Its divine origin. The best such proofs can do, however, is establish a high degree of probability, but never absolute certainty, that the Bible is the Word of God.77


Ultimately, we know that the Bible is God’s Word because God says so in His Word. Immediately, one might object that this is a classic case of circular reasoning, or arguing in a circle, a charge to which I would plead guilty. The simple fact of the matter is that everyone argues in a circle when it comes to ultimate authority.78 The question becomes: In which circle is one reasoning? Does one start with the presupposition that the Bible is not the Word of God, interpret the Bible’s claims to be the Word of God through this grid, and, thus, come to the conclusion that the Bible is not the Word of God or does one start with the presupposition that the Bible is the Word of God, interpret the Bible’s claims to be the Word of God through this grid, and, thus, come to the conclusion that the Bible is the Word of God? Regeneration (the impartation of spiritual life to the spiritually dead at the moment of conversion) transfers one from the former circle to the latter circle.
This is all part of what is called the illuminating work of the Holy Spirit, the work of the Holy Spirit whereby He convinces a man of the truth and significance of Scripture. This idea is also known as the internal witness of the Spirit or the internal testimony of the Spirit.79

The Scriptures are self-attesting and self-authenticating. There is no authority outside of Itself to which the Bible appeals, nor even can appeal, to verify Its claim to be the Word of God. If there was, it, rather than the Scriptures, would become the final authority.80 See Hebrews 6:13 in this regard.


To sum: One knows that the Bible is the Word of God because the Bible says so, and God has convinced the believer that when the Bible says so, It is God saying so (see 1 Thess 2:13).81

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