Ask Father Paul
Answers to your questions about life, religion and the Bible
Pastors get some of the most interesting questions from people they meet and people in their congregations. Here are a few that I have gotten during my years of ministry and via email for this column.
Dear Father Paul: You base your answers on the Bible. What’s so special about the Bible? Can you prove that the Bible is supernatural … that it is inspired by God? — E. V.
Dear E.V.: Great question. Here are some facts … some things to consider about the Bible. Please consider them yourself, then you decide.
First, the Bible is not a single book. It is a collection of 66 books which the church calls the canon of scriptures. These 66 books contain a wide variety of genres. Some are books of law, some are books of history, some are books of prophecy … some poetry … some letters … some literature.
Second, these 66 books were written by 40 different authors who came from a wide variety of backgrounds … some scholars … some fishermen … some shepherds … some doctors … some kings … some prophets. Most of these authors never knew or even met each other.
Third, these 66 books were written in three different languages, Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic, over a period of 1,500 years on three continents — Asia, Africa and Europe. Again, the 40 authors never knew or collaborated with each other personally.
Fourth, these 66 books all contain a common story line — the creation, fall and redemption of mankind — and a common theme — God’s love for all mankind — and a common message — freedom from death and eternal life to all who love God, heart, soul, mind and strength.
Lastly, these 66 books contain no historical errors or contradictions and in fact, are being verified by archeologists almost monthly in this present age. In short, the Bible is truly an amazing book.
Now think about it. What are the statistical odds of everything I have said being true about just one single book? Would it be one book out of a million books? One out of a billion books? One out of a trillion books? Statisticians would say “the odds are impossible.” Do the math yourself. And if you run the odds statistically and you still do not believe that the Bible is divinely inspired, do a Google search and see if you can find even one other single published book in any library in the entire world that meets every one of the characteristics I note above. You won’t find it because it does not and has never existed! There is indeed absolutely no doubt in my mind or in the minds of over 1.5 billion Christians on planet earth that the Bible is, in fact, the divinely inspired Word of God. It simply can’t be anything else.
Dear Father Paul: I think I could believe in God if he would just show himself to me once in a while. Why doesn’t God present himself to people so we could see him with our eyes and hear him with our ears … our human senses if you will? — Robert
Dear Robert: God has, indeed “shown himself” to people exactly as you request. God came to the world as a baby (the Lord Jesus Christ) 2,000 years ago. He lived among us in the flesh as a man for 33 years. People living at the time did indeed see and experience God (Jesus) through their natural, physical senses. His “showing himself” to people just like you ask is thoroughly recorded in detail in the Bible … in the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
The Apostle Paul tells us in Colossians 2:9 “For in Christ all of the fullness of the Deity (God) lives in bodily form.” (NIV) … and Jesus himself said to Phillip in John 14:9, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.” (NIV).
Open your Bible Robert. You will “see” God in its pages.
Do you have a question? Email it to me at paulmassey@earthlink,net and I will try to answer you in the paper.
[Father Paul Massey is pastor of Church of the Holy Cross Charismatic Episcopal Church in Fayetteville, Ga. …”The Ancient, New Testament Church For Today’s Generation.” More information, service times, directions and downloads of Father Paul’s Sunday messages are available at www.holycrosschurch.wordpress.com Please see our ad on the opposite page.]