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Meaning of the Bible


Bible, Translation of

The story is told of four ministers discussing the pros and cons of various bible translations and paraphrases. Eventually each stated which version, in his opinion, is the best. The first minister said he used the King James because the Old English style is beautiful and produces the most reverent picture of the Holy Scriptures. The second said he preferred the New American Standard Bible because he felt it comes nearer to the original Greek and Hebrew texts. The third minister said his favorite was the paraphrased Living Bible because his congregation was young, and it related to them in a practical way.

           All three men waited while the fourth minister sat silently. Finally he said, “I guess when it comes to translations and paraphrased editions of the Bible, I like my Dad’s translation best. He put the Word of God into practice every day. It was the most convincing translation I’ve ever seen.” ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Bible, Hatred ofIt is told that many years ago, while on a visit to England, a wealthy businessman was fascinated by a powerful microscope. Looking through its lens to study crystals and the petals of flowers, he was amazed at their beauty and detail. He decided to purchase a microscope and take it back home. He thoroughly enjoyed using it until one day he examined some food he was planning to eat for dinner. Much to his dismay, he discovered that tiny living creatures were crawling in it. Since he was especially fond of this particular food, he wondered what to do. Finally, he concluded that there was only one way out of his dilemma—he would destroy the instrument that caused him to discover the distasteful fact. So he smashed the microscope to pieces!

           “How foolish!” you say. But many people do the same thing with the Word of God. They hate it and would like to get rid of it because it reveals their evil nature. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Bible, Knowledge ofThere is a story about a New England teacher who quizzed a group of college-bound high-school juniors and seniors on the Bible. The quiz preceded a “Bible as Literature” class he planned to teach at Newton High School in Massachusetts, generally considered one of the better public schools in the nation. Among the most unusual answers from his students were: “Sodom and Gomorrah were lovers” and “Jezebel was Ahab’s donkey.”

           Other students thought that the four horsemen appeared “on the Acropolis,” that the New Testament Gospels were written by Matthew, Mark, “Luther,” and John, that Eve was created “from an apple,” and that Jesus was “Baptized by Moses.” The answer that took the misinformation prize was given by a fellow who was academically in the top 5 percent of the graduating class. The question: “What was Golgotha?” The answer: “Golgotha was the name of the giant who slew the apostle David.” ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Bible, “Problem” Passages inMark Twain once said: “Most people are bothered by those passages of Scripture which they cannot understand; but as for me, I have always noticed that the passages in Scripture which trouble me most are those which I do understand.” ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Bible, Context inThere is a story of two lawyers on opposing sides of a case. During the trial, one thought he would make a great impression on the jury by quoting from the Bible. So he said, concerning his opponent’s client, “We have it on the highest authority that ‘All that a man has will he give for his skin.’”

           The other lawyer knew the Bible better. He said, “I am very much impressed by the fact that my distinguished colleague here regards as the highest authority the one who said, ‘All that a man has will he give for his skin.’ You will find that this saying comes from the Book of Job and the one who utters it is the devil. And that is who he regards as the highest authority!” ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Bible, Context inOn a Christmas card the following verse was cited: “They exchanged gifts and made merry…(Rev. 11:10).” The context of the verse, which describes anything but what it appeared to mean on the Christmas greeting, is rejoicing over the death of God’s two witnesses at the hand of the beast. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Bible, Authority ofTrying to destroy or defend the Word of God is like having two men push with toothpicks on opposite sides of the Rock of Gibraltar. While one is trying push it over with his toothpick, the other is trying to hold it up with his. The rock is going to stay firm regardless of what either man does! ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Bible, Authority ofThe authority of Scripture is so rooted in and closely linked to the authority of Jesus Christ that the two are indivisible. To attempt to distinguish them is like asking which blade of a pair of scissors is more important, or which leg of a pair of pants is more necessary. We know Christ through the Bible, and we understand the Bible through the knowledge of Christ and the Spirit he sent. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


The BibleIn 1989, Americans purchased Harlequin romance novels at the rate of 7191 per hour.  If only God's people would show a similar interest in his word! ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


The BibleAs an illustration of "learned" scholars tampering with the Scriptures, I quote from a newspaper article:  "An electronic computer figures that St. Paul is the author of only four of the 14 epistles attributed to him in the New Testament.  Two researchers fed the computer a quarter of a million words of Greek prose to

reach this conclusion.  They said the method could be used to determine the authorship of any part of the Bible."

   Truly amazing - a mindless machine questioning the Word of God! If its findings were correct, they would make Paul a liar, for he claims the authorship of at least 13 of the epistles.  Just think, a lifeless mechanism "proving" that the Bible is not true!  The computer is now a disputer.  Strangely enough, it was proven by the same computer analysis that the man who wrote the book about these conclusions couldn't have been its author. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


The BibleHenry Ford is credited with saying, "Cut your own wood and you

warm yourself twice."  What he meant was that the man who chops his own firewood not only enjoys the heat from the logs burning in his fireplace, but he also gets physically warmed from the exercise involved in his labor.

   If you really want to enjoy your Bible, you should "cut your own wood" by studying things for yourself.  Check the cross references, look up the meaning of key words, and ask God to show you how the passage on which you are meditating applies to your life.  The truth you discover for yourself in the Word will have a fresh, new flavor.

   Have you tried to "cut your own wood?" ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


The BibleThe heads of a thousand major American companies and twelve hundred universities were asked which book had the most influence on their lives and far and away the number one book was the Bible. -- Associated Press 6-6-90


The BibleA 91-year-old woman wrote, "I spend about one hour each day with my Lord, reading my Bible and Christian literature.  When people ask what good all my reading does if I can't remember what I've read, my answer is always the same.  I'm in pretty good health, have a roof over my head, and have plenty of food to eat... I also have two sons and one grandson who love me dearly.  My cup runneth over.  I am not concerned about my memory.  I just do my reading and God does the remembering."

   Does the way look dark?  Keep reading God's Word.  if you can no longer read, listen to it on tapes.  Thank the Lord daily for meeting your physical needs.  Draw on the support of other Christians.

   Even if you forget God's promises, you'll discover that He never forgets them.  He'll strengthen you and stand with you. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching


Did You Know The BibleDid you know -

* That the longest verse in the Bible is Esther 8:9 (91 words)?

* That the shortest verse in the Bible is John 11:35 (2 words)?

* That the NIV has two "shortest" verses:  John 11:35 and 1 Thessalonians 5:17 (2 words each)?

* That there are 1189 chapters in the Bible?

* That there are 31,102 verses in the Bible?  7957 of these are in the New Testament, and 23,145 are in the Old Testament.

* That the RSV has one more verse than the KJV?  The extra verse is 3 John 1:15.

* That the longest word in the Bible is Jonathelemrechokim?  It occurs in the title of Psalm 56.

* That there are 790,704 words in the Bible, but only 12,775 different words?

* That there are 180,392 words in the New Testament and 610,312 words in the Old Testament?

* That in the RSV, Exodus 22:4 is printed between Exodus 22:1 and Exodus 22:2?

 (Unless otherwise noted, all facts relate to the King James Version)

── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching