How do you know the Bible is true?

Disclaimer: If you think I’m saying the Bible is false, you’re wrong. That’s not at all what I’m saying. Read on.

I’ve been having an extensive discussion with two chaps on another post on this blog, and they have posited that if the Book of Mormon were true, then there would surely be physical evidence to prove it. That is, there would be archeological evidence, supporting historical documents, etc., just as there are for the Bible. And while perhaps I’m putting words in their mouths, they seem to be making the argument that their entire belief in the Bible is founded on the physical evidence that supports the Bible.

However, in making this argument, they seem to be missing the point that if they applied the same logic to the Bible, they would have to conclude that the Bible is little more trustworthy than the Book of Mormon.

Why? Because while the physical evidence supporting the Bible is certainly there, it only supports parts of the Bible, while not supporting others. For example, what physical evidence is there for the resurrection of Christ? What physical evidence proves that we can be forgiven of our sins through Christ’s sacrifice? What physical proof is there for the divinity of Christ? In short, what physical evidence is there to prove that the Bible is not a work of historical fiction?

Historical fiction takes advantage of real places, people, and historical events, but weaves fictional elements into it. Thus, if the Bible were a work of historical fiction, it could still be supported in many ways by archeology and other historical documents. For example, you could point to many references outside the Bible that refer to Christ, portray him in artwork, etc., and say “See? There’s all sorts of evidence showing that Christ was real.” Yes, but a real person, or really who the Bible claims he is?

And so my question to you is if you believe the Bible to be true, especially its foundational tenets such as the divinity of Christ, the reality of his resurrection, and the forgiveness extended to us by his sacrifice, then how do you know those things are real?

I would put forth that there is no way to know if they are real short of revelation, that is, direct communication with God, and that if you accept revelation from God as a reality, then you must also accept that God can tell you if the Book of Mormon is true, and therefore whether or not there is physical evidence supporting the Book of Mormon is a moot point.

By the way, there is not exactly a total lack of evidence supporting the Book of Mormon as some claim.

Comments

  1. When it comes to things of a physical nature being mentioned in a book that someone wants us to belief as a fact then there should be physical evidence to support it. The Bible and the Book of Mormon both speak of things physically and spiritually. Trying to prove something spiritually factual or fictional may be difficult. However, proving something physically factual or fictional is possible.

    In one of the posts in reference to Joseph Smith and the BoM one main argument against the BoM as fact is that there is no physical evidence to support the physical things being mentioned. Remember, physical accuracy and spiritual accuracy are two different items. However, when a book is noted to have strong physical evidence that can be proven as fact then it may lead a person to believe the spiritual items are truthful as well. Please note that "it may lead" someone to believe in the spiritual.

    Can the following be proved as fact or fictional? Is it physical or spiritual?

    There was a Roman named Quirinius who was governor of Syria. He was governor when Caesar Augustus reigned over the Roman Empire and a man named Herod was king of Judea. During this time Caesar Augustus called for a census and everyone in the Roman Empire. This census was the first census when Quirinius was governor.

    Notice there was no date given. If the above can be proven physically then you can physically pinpoint a timeline when the census took place. Can anything be proven spiritually from the above statement? If so, let us know.

    Some people look at the Bible and the BoM as books of history. They could care less about the spiritual nature of the books. Some people who do a study of these books want to know if the book is historical fact or historical fiction. They reach their conclusions based on the physical written in the book. Things such as people, place, things, animals, plants, who, what, when, where, why, and how.

  2. Interestingly enough, thanks to the power of the internet, and many archaeological finds, both recent and in the past, there is a great deal of evidence that both the Bible and the Book of Mormon may be true.

    However, even with mountains of evidence, it still takes faith to realize that these men were truly inspired of our Heavenly Father to write the things that they did.

  3. The bible isn't true. It's the failed musings of primitive desert tribals.

  4. I cannot believe in the literal truth of the first eleven chapters of the Bible. This gets us from the Garden of Eden to the Tower of Babel. Life did not start six thousand years ago. There was never a flood that covered the world. There is not that much water. Language differences are older than five thousand years.

    I am able to believe that beginning with the story of Abraham the Bible is a record that is essentially historical, as the Book of Mormon most assuredly is not. The Egyptians left a lot of writing that has been translated. They make no mention of Moses and the Exodus. Nevertheless, they did not like to write about slaves and military defeats. If a large group of Hebrew slaves escaped into the Sinai Peninsula, and if an army sent to bring them back had been drowned in a body of water, the Egyptians would have probably covered it up.

    The first Egyptian mention of Israel is the Merneptah Stele. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merneptah_Stele

    Merneptah was the the son of Ramses II, who may have been the pharaoh who interacted with Moses.

    The Bible mentions empires, nations, individuals, and events that we know happened form other sources. This cannot be said of the Book of Mormon.

    This does not mean that the Bible is "true" in the sense that it does not prove Judaism or Christianity. It does indicate that from at lest the Book of Judges the Bible is a book that is essentially historical. It also indicates that those who wrote the Bible, and those they wrote about were not religious charlatans, as Joseph Smith certainly was.

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