Skeptics aren’t the only ones who raise questions about the Bible. Even Christians might ask: How can believers claim that the Bible is true compared with any other book used as a foundation for religion? What makes the Bible stand out from other pieces of writing that claim they also came from God?
So how do we authenticate the Bible? Consider its historical authenticity. The Bible has been substantiated both historically and archeologically as more accurate than any other book handed down through time. Research and analysis by historians, linguists, sociologists and archeologists have demonstrated the soundness of the Scriptures through forensic science, the discovery and study of ancient literature, and much more.
The Bible is set apart from all other books in one other way: its prophetic accuracy. A large portion of its prophecy has already been fulfilled with unblemished precision. A classic example is the foretelling of Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem. In Micah 5:2, the prophet Micah told of our Savior’s birth over 700 years before it happened. Matthew has recorded the fulfillment of this prophecy for us in Matthew 2:1-6. What makes this prophecy stand out is the obscurity of Bethlehem. Had Micah mentioned a major metropolis in Israel, the argument could have been put forth that Micah had merely guessed well. Yet Micah recorded the mind of God by pinpointing this remote region as the site of Christ’s birth.
Prophetic Scripture is accurate in all its details because God Himself moved the writers to record it.
Of course, Micah’s prophecy is just one of several hundred that have already been fulfilled in Scripture. God is not bound by time, space or matter. He knows the beginning from the end, and prophecy involves the recording of His thoughts before an event historically happens. In 2 Peter 1:20-21, the apostle wrote, “no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.”
If you were to mathematically figure the probability that 100 prophecies would occur accurately; that is, without any errors, it would require 200 billion earths populated with 4 billion people each to come up with one person who could give 100 accurate prophecies. In other words, it would be impossible. But the Bible contains hundreds of prophecies written by a number of inspired writers over a period of centuries that already have come true. That’s because these prophecies are not based on chance, but on the eternal knowledge of God.
Isaiah 53 alone contains a number of prophecies, including Jesus’ piercing, His scourging and even His silence in the face of oppression and accusation. The passage speaks of His grave and His purity. The passage also mentions that our own iniquities would be placed on Jesus as our sinless Savior: “he himself bore our sicknesses, and he carried our pains” (53:4, CSB). Grief and sorrow tell a tale much more painful than scourging itself. Jesus came not only to bear our sins, but also our burdens.
In your pain, know this one truth: you are not alone. Jesus sees. He knows. He cares. He’s been there. And because He has suffered, He offers a comfort not merely rooted in intellectual assent but in compassionate understanding.