Summary: Can we have confidence in God's Word?
God: is the Bible really your Word? 2 Tim 3:14-17
*** Teenager Tries to Call the President
Access to the most powerful leader in the world—the President of the United States of America—is granted only to the few who have successfully passed through a series of detailed, cautious checkpoints. A Norway teen created quite a stir in the United States when he challenged the system, boldly dialing a secret phone number for the White House. Sixteen-year-old Vifill Atlason claims he called President George W. Bush out of curiosity. "I just wanted to talk to him—have a chat, invite him to Iceland, and see what he'd say," the teen told ABC News.
In order to get through security, Atlason pretended to be Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, the President of Iceland. He was surprised when his initial call didn't pass through a switchboard, but went directly to a higher office to be screened by various security officials. Atlason was asked a series of personal questions in an attempt to verify his identification as President Grímsson, including Grímsson's date of birth, hometown, and even the names of Grímsson's parents.
"It was like passing through checkpoints," Atlason said. The checkpoints proved one too many—the teen never made it through to the president and was later taken from his home for questioning by local police. No charges were filed. He got hung up in all the questions!
1. You may not be questioning the existence of God, but I bet you have a spiritual inquiry nagging you from time to time. Don't fret. We know God personally but not perfectly, truly but not totally, experientially but not exhaustively. It is normal that finite creatures like us would have questions about an infinite Creator like God.
2. Here is the good news:God is neither surprised nor offended by our questions. In fact, the Bible is full of questions-3,294 to be exact. God wants us to bring our questions to Him and give Him a shot at providing an answer.
3. As a pastor of two churches over almost thirty-five years, I have fielded hundreds of questions from skeptics, seekers, sinners, and saints. Many of those questions pop up again and again. As it turns out, certain questions claw at us all.
4. I wish I could say that I always had answers, but I can't. Too often early in my ministry my answers ranged from the glib co the thought less. As a young minister, I was reluctant to admit ''I'm not sure," or worse, "I don't know." I thought that a pastor should always have an answer even if I didn't.
5. Now I'm ready co admit that no one can answer every inquiry about the God who bluntly tells us, "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isa 55:8-9
6. Yet, for the most frequent questions I have been asked, I have found certain answers that bring peace and satisfaction to questioning minds and breaking hearts. These answers are, like buried treasure, to be discovered and mined from the only One who can give us those answers.
7. In fact, you will see that much of God's Word was written in anticipation of the questions we all find ourselves asking. In the next few weeks we will wrestle together with some of the most frequently asked questions about God, faith, life, and the world around us. You will hear true stories of people I've encountered who sought an answer that will bring spiritual peace and intellectual satisfaction.
8. I make no promises that every answer will cure every doubt in your mind. I may just tell you…”I have no idea!” I am convinced that God knows every heart and every answer that may stump us. I’ll do my best to explore the Bible with you and try to find the answers right from God’s Word.
9. We are looking this morning at 2 Tim. 3:14. Paul is talking to young Timothy and he says, "But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and has been assured of knowing of whom thou hast learned them; and that from a child thou hast known the holy Scriptures which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."
10. Now, Paul here is talking to Timothy about the Bible and he tells him several things about the Bible. First of all, he says that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God in vs. 16. That literally means that all Scripture is the breath of God. As I'm speaking to you what you're hearing is my breath. My diaphragm is forcing my breath up through my throat and over my larynx and the voice box and my tongue and my teeth and my lips are taking the breath and making sounds and noises out of that breath and what you're hearing right now is what I am breathing out. I'm breathing out these words. Now, that's the word that Bible uses to describe itself. All Scripture is God breathed. When the Bible speaks God speaks. That's what inspiration means. When the Bible speaks God speaks.