The Bible #3 – Its Unity
Since the author and architect of the Bible is God the Holy Spirit, we would expect to find a consistent unified pattern. And we do! The Bible emphasizes this consistency as truth.
The psalm writer affirmed, “Your word, LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens” (Psalm 119:89). Jesus prayed, “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth” (John 17:17).
Throughout the centuries some have tried to discredit the Bible or claim various discrepancies. But the Bible is unified. It’s not just an anthology of stories, poetry, and letters.
The Bible presents a harmonious and continuous message from beginning to end. History, poetry, biography, drama, letters, parables, prophecies, sermons, stories, and wisdom all fit together.
Think of the diversity of its authors – philosophers, kings, prophets, shepherds, a fisherman, a tax collector. They cover the range from educated to uneducated, from rich to poor. The Bible was written in three languages on three continents under all types of conditions and circumstances.
Yet the Bible is one book that reveals one God and underlines the gradual unfolding of God’s plan for humanity. In spite of the diversity of writers, the time span, and its literary variety, the books of the Bible are interwoven into a complete, unified, composite whole.
I’ve written a lot of research papers in my undergraduate and graduate education.
When writing a research paper, how difficult it is to develop a unified structure! Yet both Old and New Testaments have a unified literary structure.
The Old Testament has a threefold division – the Law, the Prophets, and the Writings. The New Testament has a threefold division – the Four Gospels and Acts, the Epistles or Letters, and Revelation.
When writing a research paper, how difficult it is to have Part A agree with Part B! Yet both Old and New Testaments are complementary.
What is foreshadowed in the Old Testament is fulfilled in the New Testament. What is explained in the New Testament is illustrated in the Old Testament.
When writing a research paper, you may find yourself almost disagreeing with something you already wrote even if your paper is only 10 pages long! While the Bible does have some difficult passages, it overwhelming displays consistent agreement.
When you see a majestic building or a massive bridge, you could say, “Behind the scenes was a designer who planned it all and gave directions to each contractor.”
Similarly, behind the Bible was the Designer who planned it all and gave directions to each writer. The Bible is one book, unified in its arrangement and its message.
“Lord, your every word proves true, and you are a shield to those who take refuge in you” (Proverbs 30:5).
~ Pastor Dave