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The Bible

Go to Bible verses for: The Bible

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Commentary; Jan 27, 2018
New, Bible-Validating Discoveries

Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting that archeology continues to substantiate the accuracy and historicity of the Bible, examines the discovery of a 2,700 year-old bulla, a clay impression about the size of a dime. On the bulla are the figures of two men facing each other; the inscription reads, "Governor of the City." The discovery substantiates the account of II Chronicles 34:8, which avers that King Josiah appointed Ma-aseiah to serve as Governor of Jerusalem, debunking the claim of Biblical Minimalists' (that is, scholars who aver that Biblical accounts cannot be trusted for accuracy) that Jerusalem was too small to warrant a "governor." Another archeological discovery, the Dead Sea Scrolls, lends support to the understanding of the Church of the Great God that the count to Pentecost should begin from the day of the wave sheaf offering adjacent to the Sabbath following the Passover.

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CGG Weekly; Jan 12, 2018
Appearing Before God (Part One)

David C. Grabbe:  In Psalm 92:4-5, the psalmist proclaims: For You, LORD, have made me glad through Your work; I will triumph in the works of Your hands. O LORD, how great are Your works! ...

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Commentary; Aug 12, 2017
They Could Not Destroy It!

Martin Collins, pointing to the dazzling electronic and print replication of God's Holy Scriptures, moves the hands of the clock back to the Middle Ages, before the advent of printing, a time when it would take an industrious scribe more than ten months to finish transcribing one Bible—at a cost far above what the average worker could bear. During these dark times, the Waldensians translated the Bible into the vernacular from the Latin Vulgate. The Roman Catholic Church persecuted these 'heretics,' destroying their translations. Miraculously, each attempt to destroy the Scriptures resulted in the printers doubling their production for this sought-after document. Christ has always supplied the means to spread the Word. Printings of the Bible have exceeded 6 billion to date, making it the most widely printed and distributed Book on earth. Persecution of Christians, accompanied with attempts to destroy God's Word, has again reared its ugly head throughout the Middle East.

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Sermon; Feb 18, 2017
Is God's Inspiration of the Bible Imperfect?

Martin Collins, reflecting on anti-biblical "scholarship" emanating from pseudo-experts, assures us that, when properly evaluated, there are no discrepancies in scripture; God is not the author of confusion, but of peace and order. God purposely refrained from unfolding His Holy Word as a factual historical report in order that we may learn to place "precept with precept," discovering something new every time we read the Bible. The Atheist may feel a certain degree of smugness in denying the Bible. Those of us called of God learn to progress from milk to solid food, stimulating our curiosity in progressive stages, as God brings us to new levels of understanding. God does not enlighten us until we are mature enough to absorb and use knowledge. God may use paradoxes and apparent contradictions to put balance into our behavior, for example, understanding the contexts in which riches or poverty can be either a blessing or a curse. God's Word forces us to value the Spirit above the Letter, walking as a living epistle, rejecting the counterfeit main-stream Christianity's notion that grace gives license to disobey the Law, as we come to recognize that the doers of the law will be justified. Faith without works is dead, but living faith is demonstrated by godly works. The testimony of the Bible and that of the physical universe are not discordant, but harmonious, demonstrating that God is the designer and sustainer of all life. Those who have given their lives to discredit the Bible must shamefully eat their own words in the fullness of time. Bible difficulties are designed to stimulate our minds and make us curious, to lead us to value Spirit over letter and to sharpen our abilities solve paradox and so-called contradiction. God's inspiration of His Word is perfect.

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Commentary; Oct 1, 2016
The "Hidden" Scroll

Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting that it is difficult to preserve something for thousands of years, points out that food, even though canned, frozen, or preserved with salt, eventually spoils, just as clothing, after 20 years of continued use, becomes thread-bare and deteriorates, and as iron which has the tendency to oxidize or rust. Absolutely nothing material lasts forever. Paper, the medium upon which we store our information, is subject to fire, water, and fungus. Realizing that the parchment upon which the precious truths of the Bible were recorded was perishable, the Masoretic scribes undertook a meticulous regimen of copying out the texts, counting each jot and tittle backwards and forwards to maintain the integrity of the text. When they finished the copy, the original was burned. Consequently, until the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest surviving document only went back to the Middle Ages. The Dead Sea Scrolls, going back to the first century, confirmed the undisputable accuracy of the Masoretic texts. Another startling discovery was the Ein Gedi scroll, rescued from the charred remains of a synagogue in Ein Gedi in which everything was destroyed—except for the holy ark, which was also fire damaged. Scientists submitted the charred scroll of the first two chapters of Leviticus to an electronic 3D CT scan, making it possible to transform the original script to high definition, bright pixels. The resulting images confirms the accuracy of the Masoretic text. This document, going back to the First Century A.D., assures us that God Almighty has carefully preserved His Word.

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Sermon; Mar 19, 2016
Proofs of Christ's Resurrection

Richard Ritenbaugh, asserting that there is far more corroboration of evidence for the existence of Jesus Christ and his life experiences than that regarding Alexander the Great or Julius Caesar, lampoons the smug, self-important 'scholars' who craft contorted, mind-bending, absurd theories of supposedly more believable explanations for the "impossible" resurrection of Christ. Tacitus and the Talmud, both highly respected non-Biblical sources, corroborate the veracity of the events of the Crucifixion. Nevertheless, crackpot theories abound, attempting to explain away this event, including: (1) the women, confused about direction, went to the wrong tomb, (2) the disciples stole the body and then claimed He was resurrected, (3) the disciples colluded on a bogus deception, (4) someone else died on the cross in His place, and (5) the whole event of the crucifixion, as well as the multiple occasions in which He talked to people, was a powerful mass hallucination, (6) Jesus was not really dead but preserved Himself with a drug-induced coma, allowing Him to later escape from the tomb. Pilate, the Centurion, and Joseph of Arimathea all corroborated the stark reality of Christ's death. The precautions Pilate took to seal the tomb refutes any notion of the disciples stealing the body. The vast number of eye witnesses precludes any notion of a hoax or collusion on the part of fanatic followers. The once timid followers of Christ were emboldened by His resurrection, and were now willing to put their lives on the line. Twenty-seven separate documents—the books of the New Testament—provide evidence of Christ's death, burial, and resurrection, providing far more evidence than the minimum required in a court of law. All of this testimony gives us confidence and hope of a resurrection for us as well.

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CGG Weekly; Jul 17, 2015
Are You Biblically Literate?

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  The Bible may be the world's bestselling book that is never read. "Never" may be a bit hyperbolic, but people who study such things tell us that fewer people are reading it and not as often. ...

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Sermon; Mar 28, 2015
Biblical Principles of Justice (Part Three)

Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the verdict of the macabre case in North Carolina, in which a couple had been collecting welfare benefits for an adopted daughter who had been mysteriously missing for two years, concludes that Judge Thomas Schroeder acted within the principles of biblical law, even though the majority of the citizenry would have liked to see the parents executed. Physical evidence failed to convict these scoundrels of anything more than welfare fraud. Real justice can only be based on the truth, potentially dangerous to the perpetrator or the victim. Though the Old and New Testament are complementary to one another, with the apostles directly quoting from the prophets, establishing Jesus Christ's Messianic identity, the emphasis of justice in the New Testament switches from national to personal in scope, from the nation of Israel to the Israel of God (the Church). The New Testament builds on and amplifies the Old Testament. Jesus magnifies the Law, fusing external motor behavior (or deeds) with internal psychological motivation. All sin begins as thought. Matthew 5: 17-20 encapsulates Christ's change in approach, taking the elementary literalist approach of the Pharisees into the real heart of the matter, focusing on what could and should be done on the Sabbath as opposed to what cannot be done. From the New Testament applications amplifying Old Testament principles, we find legal tenets practiced consistently in Israelitish countries, such as the need for two or three witnesses, protection against mob rule, penalties for frivolous lawsuits and hasty litigation, the principle of recompense and equity, conflict of interest considerations, separation of church and state, penalties against collusion, legitimate use of civil rights, and judicial clearing. While we are still learning the ropes of godly judging, we are commanded to refrain from presumptuously passing or executing judgment until Christ gives us our credentials.

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Sermon; Sep 6, 2014
Our Trusted Source of Truth (Part Two)

Richard Ritenbaugh focuses on the double standards of the proponents of the Documentary Hypothesis, at once insisting that we treat the Bible like every other literary document while insisting the New Testament jump through extra hoops. Looking at the extant number of the ancient texts available to corroborate the authenticity of the Scriptures, more ancient manuscripts of the New Testament have been found than for any other classic text. If every New Testament were destroyed tomorrow, the text could be reconstructed by going to the writings of the church fathers. There are also more corroborating manuscripts of the New Testament in languages other than Greek. The veracity of the Scriptures is something we can take to the bank, in essence our only protection against the torrent of deception we face today, giving us the strength to endure and overcome. God's Word points out profound and necessary truths, prompting us to change our thinking and behavior. As we change, God instills His character in us, allowing us to begin living as He does. As we read God's Word, we must remember that assent is not acceptance. We must accept what God says, obeying and yielding to Him unconditionally, even though human nature stiffens in rebellion at the prospect. We must develop a proper sense of proportion in our relationship to God. We must mortify sin and give ourselves as a living sacrifice. We then must have no doubt that God is capable of giving us whatever we need to finish our course, transforming us into His image.

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CGG Weekly; May 30, 2014
The Bible's Claims About Itself

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  It is almost impossible for a Christian to have a meeting of minds with an atheist on any subject anywhere in the neighborhood of religion. ...

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CGG Weekly; Aug 9, 2013
How Revelation Enters the Church

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  ...Only a little more than a generation had passed since the founding of the church, yet false gospels, perversions of the truth, were making serious trouble for those early Christians ...

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CGG Weekly; Aug 2, 2013
Hold Tightly to Revelation

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  The Bible is not against what we might call scholarship or intellectual pursuit. From all that history can tell us, the apostle Paul may have been one of the most intellectual men who have ever lived. ...

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CGG Weekly; Dec 3, 2010
The Poetry of the Bible

In his book, Figures of Speech in the Bible, E.W. Bullinger describes a staggering 217 different figures of speech in God's Word, each used multiple times. A figure of speech is the stylistic use of language ...

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Sermon/Bible Study; Dec 19, 2009
We Shall Be God

John Ritenbaugh studies into an understanding which strikes some individuals as "going beyond the scripture" or even blasphemous, namely that we will become literal offspring of the Eternal God, sharing His name and nature. Most of Christendom believes in the erroneous doctrine of the immortality of the soul, taught nowhere in scripture, but fueled by anecdotal reports of apparitions of deceased relatives. Sadly, human nature does not believe the scriptures. Although the Bible indeed teaches hope in life beyond the grave, it nowhere teaches of an inherent immortal soul. The wages of sin, something we all have committed is death (not a transition into another form of life); eternal life is a gift of God's grace, given at our calling as we yield our lives to Him, trusting in the resurrection of Jesus Christ and in our future resurrection as taught by the Disciples at Pentecost. The witness of these disciples (who had seen His death and resurrection and willingly gave up their lives in martyrdom) has been preserved through the Holy Scriptures, a document more carefully preserved than any other document on earth. Other resurrections occurred before Christ's resurrection (Lazarus) and following the time of Christ's resurrection, providing a dramatic testimony to thousands of people. The Word of God provides factual evidence of life after death through a resurrection. All die at least once, and all are resurrected at least once. Our creation as physical human beings as well as the creation of the angels was a fiat process. What God is doing in us now, in reproducing Himself as offspring composed of His Holy Spirit, is creating by means of a cooperative time- and experience-consuming process, working between the creator and the created in devotion to a common cause- to become joint heirs with Christ as God's offspring. In this process, we walk in the spirit, subjugating and putting to death our carnal impulses. As we follow the prompts of God's Holy Spirit, we walk toward eternal life, taking on God's nature,

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Sermon; Feb 9, 2008
Forging the Canon

Richard Ritenbaugh, in his in-depth study of the historical Jesus, acknowledges that academic studies on this subject generally discard the authority of the Bible, preferring instead to focus on rubble and debris out of the ground. Can we have assurance that the 66 books comprising the canon of our Bible are authoritative scriptures? Neither the original apostolic church nor the Roman Catholic Church authorized scripture, but accepted only what was already canonized. Almighty God, through His Holy Spirit, inspires scripture for profitability and usefulness in supporting doctrine, having secure internal protocols, rendering the documents tamper proof and not susceptible to private interpretation. Matthew, a well-qualified public servant, probably served as the recording secretary of the disciples, standardizing the authorized documents and screening out spurious documents emanating from heretical sources. The proto-Catholic fathers and the Eastern Syriac Orthodox fathers eventually accepted the 27 books of the New Testament as authentic. The Old Testament (consisting of the Law Prophets and Psalms) were already canonized by Jesus Christ (Luke 24:44). Canonicity (or the internal protocols) of the New Testament is established by (1) broad-based acceptance by the disciples or apostles of the church; (2) the protocol of first century composition (having been sealed during the lifetime of the apostles); (3) the authorship of the book has to be apostolic (or by a scribe under apostolic supervision); and (4) internal unity (conformity to the rule of faith). There is no valid reason to doubt the truth of the canonicity of scripture.

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CGG Weekly; May 12, 2006
'Arguments Over Words'

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  During my daily commute to and from the office, a trip of just under fifteen minutes, I usually have my radio tuned to WBT and its talk shows, but on occasion I have the pleasure of listening to a book on tape (in this case, on CD). ...

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CGG Weekly; May 5, 2006
Society of Skeptics

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  The last few issues of Biblical Archeology Review (BAR) have reminded me why I cancelled my subscription in frustration several years ago. ...

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CGG Weekly; Jan 20, 2006
What 'The Bible and Its Influence' Will Teach

David C. Grabbe:  For decades now, the debate over the place of Christianity—and specifically the Bible—in public life has raged without any sign of abating. ...

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CGG Weekly; Dec 9, 2005
Biblical Canonicity

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  A trip to the local Christian bookstore to buy a new Bible often turns into a dizzying experience once dozens of different translations confront the shopper. ...

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CGG Weekly; Jun 14, 2002
The Jewish Testament?

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  Back in February, this column reacted to a statement made on the radio by a local preacher who said that what we do does not matter. ...

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CGG Weekly; Feb 15, 2002
New and Improved? A PC Bible

Richard T. Ritenbaugh:  Most readers will probably not be aware of the latest raging controversy over the Bible. ...

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Sermon; Apr 14, 2001
The Bible Does Not Have All the Answers!

Although some people have mistakenly used the Bible as a cookbook, a marriage manual, a financial planner, or a childrearing book, it was not designed for those purposes. Herbert W. Armstrong referred to the Bible as a jig-saw puzzle or a coded book, seeming like gibberish to most of the world, but with the aid of God's Holy Spirit, God's elect can put all the pieces together, finding all the essentials for salvation. Richard Ritenbaugh suggests that while it does not contain all knowledge, it does contain foundational principles, enabling people imbued with the mind of Christ to function independently in a godly manner- expanding the law beyond the letter into a more spiritual dimension.

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Article; November 2000
The Berean Example

The ancient Bereans have a wonderful biblical reputation. Just how special were these Macedonian Christians?

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Ready Answer; July 1998
The Oracles of God

Just what are the oracles of God mentioned in Romans 3:2? Charles Whitaker delves into both Testaments to show that they are the revelation of God to mankind. These oracles are the message that gives us instruction for salvation.

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Prophecy Watch; November 1997
God and Gender

Lately, a hot issue has been gender-neutral language in Bible translations. This is merely a spill-over of radical feminism, which also endorses goddess worship and other non-Christian practices.

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Sermon; Jul 8, 1995
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part 17)

John Ritenbaugh answers the question "Is there a scripture that states such and such no longer needs to be done?" The Bible is an unfolding revelation, moving from the physical to the spiritual ramifications—revealing an ever-sharper focus on God's purpose. The Law (including the judgments, ordinances, and statutes), far from being done away, has the purpose of showing us our faults and outlining the way of mercy and love. The animal sacrifices and ceremonies were intended to foreshadow a more permanent spiritual reality—subsumed, but not done away. The Old Testament was written with the New Testament Church in mind, written in the context of an earlier culture. We need to see behind the law a presence of a Holy God with whom we seek to share a relationship.

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Article; January 1994
How Much Is the Bible Worth To You?

In one sense, we take the Bible for granted. In other times possessing God's Word was rare and expensive. Here is why having such ready access to God's Word is one of our richest blessings.

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Sermon; Nov 20, 1993
Four Views of Christ (Part 1)

John Ritenbaugh warns us that the Bible paradoxically is both simple and profound, understandable only to those who have been called, love the truth, and are given to careful scrutiny, enabling the searcher to describe every nuance of what it is they desire. The obsessiveness of both a lover and a sports-trivia enthusiast characterize the level of effort involved. The life sustaining manna of the Bible, while abundant and plentiful, is hidden'layered in types, symbols, and allegories. In the typology of the four Edenic rivers flowing from one source (Genesis 2:10) and the four living creatures (Revelation 4:6-8: lion, calf, man, and eagle) lies the foundation for understanding the gospels as four distinct representations of the same Life.

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Sermon/Bible Study; Jul 16, 1988
The Commandments (Part 2)

John Ritenbaugh warns us that where our eyes are fixed upon (looking to for guidance and direction) determines how we will conduct our lives. Like our forebears in Ezekiel 20, we have also been influenced by our father's idols, placing us (ignorantly perhaps) in opposition to God's laws and judgments. Immorality is the natural cause-effect consequence of rejecting God's counsel, forcing one to embrace evil as good and reject good as evil, totally perverting standards of morality. Rejecting the true God automatically leads to idolatry, worshipping the rulerd of this world, a being bent on our destruction. Idolatry constitutes the fountainhead from which all other sins flow, all of which amplify obsessive self-centeredness and self-indulgence. We need to educate our conscience to worship (cultivate a relationship with) the true God rather than misconceptions manufactured by our misguided imaginations.

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Sermon/Bible Study; Sep 2, 1986
John (Part 3)

John Ritenbaugh reiterates the startling uniqueness of John's message that God could become flesh in the person of Jesus Christ. In order for Christ to be our savior, He had to become subject to the pulls of the flesh in order to empathize with those He would later serve as High Priest and Advocate. Those who would become sons of God (qualifying for roles as kings and priests) must learn to trust or rely on Him, conducting their lives according to His name, conforming to the character that name represents. If we follow the living example of Jesus Christ, using the gifts of God's Holy Spirit, we will find inexhaustible resources for overcoming, serving, and growing in grace and knowledge, conforming to Christ's righteous and genuine character. Those who wrote the Gospels were eyewitnesses to the spectacular events (none of them done in a corner) in the life of Jesus Christ, providing a testimony that we may believe and develop iron-clad faith. Many extra-biblical sources such as Tacitus, Seconius, Justin Martyr, Pliny, and Josephus substantiate, corroborate, and validate the veracity of the biblical accounts of the historicity, identity, and divinity of Jesus.

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Herbert W. Armstrong booklet; 1985
The Bible—Superstition or Authority?

Why is the world's best selling book held in awe by some, in passive discredit by others, and understood by virtually none? Why do the many churches of traditional Christianity disagree about what the Bible says? Have you ever PROVED whether, as the book itself purports, it is the authoritative Word of the Creator God?

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Herbert W. Armstrong booklet; 1958
The Proof of the Bible

The BIBLE—Superstition or AUTHORITY? Did you ever stop to PROVE whether the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God?


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