How to Become a Christian: Chapter 2 - What is the Bible?

Prophecies in the Bible

One amazing thing the Bible does is to tell us about the future.  A very high percentage of the Bible consists of prophecy.  God does this for a number of reasons.  Firstly, he wants us to understand what lies ahead so that we can be equipped and prepared to face it.  Secondly, He wants to prove the truth of the Bible.  He does this by giving hundreds of different prophecies about what will happen.  Then, as those come to be fulfilled to the letter, it verifies the truth of the Bible generally.  No other book in the history of the world has ever been able to do anything even remotely like this.   Only the Bible can tell you what will happen in the future. 

About 80% of the prophecies in the Bible have already been fulfilled.  A large number of them had to do with the birth, life and death of Jesus Christ Himself.  That is because He is the central figure of the whole Bible.  Almost everything in it, from beginning to end is, in some way, pointing to Him.  However, prophecies are also made about many other things to do with the future of Israel and of the whole world.  Thus if 80% of the prophecies have been fulfilled exactly in every detail, then we ought to be interested in what the other 20% of the prophecies are about. We can expect them to be literally fulfilled as well.  So, if you are wise, one of your purposes in reading the Bible will be to learn what it has to say about the future. Then you can know what history is leading towards.

The Bible is also about the whole history of God’s past dealings with the human race, but especially with His chosen people, Israel.  That is a central theme.  However, it also covers a whole range of other different subjects and types of writing, i.e. history, law, poetry, letters, instruction, doctrine and teaching/explanation. 

There is also “wisdom literature”, such as the books of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes.  These books contain a wealth of instruction on how to live successfully.  They cover business, marriage, money, work, farming, education, commerce, military matters, civil government, village life, neighbourliness, health, and so on.  The advice given will revolutionise your whole life if you follow it.  People are willing to take advice from all sorts of different people, many of whom may not even be qualified to give it.  Yet the advice given in Proverbs and Ecclesiastes comes from God Himself.  If you listen to it and put it into practice, it is life changing.  No other book can offer you that.

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