Why we can believe the Bible we have today with full confidence. Or, Why good Muslims should believe the Bible
This article was segment three in a four-part presentation at the first-ever "Confidence" seminar on July 21. My task was to explore the credibility of the Old Testament, or Tanakh, especially as it provides the foundation for the New Testament. In segment four my co-presenter Steve Schlichter covered the impeccable manuscript history of the New Testament.
We can have great confidence in the Bible as divine revelation because it is self-authenticating. As a veritable library of scripture, it is self-authenticated by the coherence and continuity between its parts and divisions—especially in view of its substantial diversity. As a body of literature, the Bible displays a remarkable historio-theological continuity between its books, its segments and its two testaments that points demonstrably to long-range divine planning and engineering. Such continuity within diversity is best explained as the product of a prolonged, overarching, progressive and divine plan consisting of complex historio-theological components that develop and reach their culmination. When we grasp the magnitude of such a plan we should be moved with awe to appreciate its divine genius and acknowledge its internal authentication. The Bible’s continuity and coherence can be seen in terms of its various themes and motifs which I list further down in the article. I will focus on one only—the Messiah Motif.