Chris Hodges - Why the Bible Can Be Trusted
So delighted that all of you are here to study God's Word together. I want to take a moment and look into the cameras. As I always do, just say hello to all of our churches, our locations all across Alabama and in Georgia, to the men and women at the Alabama Department of Corrections. In fact, I met someone who just was released recently. And he came up to me a couple of days ago during one of our morning prayer times, just tears streaming down his face, and he said, "The day that I decided this was my home church and really the day I decided to go all in with God was the day you looked into that camera and said, 'You're not a project to us; you are our church family.'"
And we believe that about every single one of you men and women in those facilities. God bless you today. And then, of course, those are those watching online somewhere around the world. We're so glad you're along for the ride, as well. We're in week number three of a four-part series called, "The Holy Bible". And I kind of got this in my heart several months out, probably midyear last year, just decided that I thought it was a good way to start the year for all of us to understand the Bible, but respect the Bible, and live by the Bible. I started off week number one with I want you to love it, I want you to learn it, I want you to live it. I want this to be a place of your life that becomes solid ground for you. And I think there's so much attack on the Bible.
There's so many commentaries about what the Bible is all about, and most of them are completely wrong. And so, I just wanted to help you understand it better and get you in your Bible again. In fact, I'm a pastor, so I'm always trying to lead you to places that help your life thrive. And I, honestly, I would put this one at the top of the list of the things that if this was in your life at the degree that was healthy for you and strong for you, it would have the most impact into every area of your life. And so, we've been doing the best we can to teach you the Word of God. And so, we're going to get into that in just a second, but I do want to remind you that we put this in the middle of a season that you know we call it "21 Days of Prayer," and this has been the best 21 days of prayer ever.
We've had more participation. It seems like more fervency in prayer, as well. And I think that's what happen sometimes when you go through the years that we've been through in 2020 and 2021, and I just love seeing the passion of our church. Yesterday, I was at a student conference. And we have an annual one-day student conference. We did it at our Fultondale campus this past weekend, yesterday, where it's a fasting retreat, too. So, these are students that say, "I want to come, and seek God, and pray, and fast for an entire day". And the room was filled, over 700 high school and college students seeking God. And I wish you could've seen what I saw. These kids are on fire for God.
And for every one of you who are wondering, "Well, I think we're losing a whole generation," that might be true in some cases. But I'm gonna tell you there's a remnant of students that love God with all their hearts. Come on, give God praise for that. It's awesome. Tammy and I left there so encouraged, and just so fired up, and I had the privilege of preaching to them yesterday, and I had the absolute just time of my life. But we're passionate about this season for all of us to really go all in with God. And I'm encouraging you in that, and our team, of course, has produced some new resources for you, not only has our worship team produced a brand-new instrumental worship track that you can get. I love instrumental music. If it has too many words, sometimes I get distracted during my prayer time.
So, I love instrumental music, and you can get that. It's called "Reflections". And, of course, we've developed and are continuing to add to our "Pray First" prayer app. All of our prayer resources are now in app form, and we would love for you to be a part of that. So, we'll have day 15, 16 tomorrow morning. I'll be here. I'm leaving tomorrow morning at 6 a.m. You can join us in person at every campus. You can join us, of course, online, and then we'll stream it for 24 hours. And then at the end, we'll put all 21 days back up on the website for you to have on demand. And then Saturday will be the grand finale at 9 a.m., and I'm personally inviting every single one of you to join us. Come on, let's go after God, seek God, and pray God's blessing over 2022. And everybody said a good...
All right, now I want you to get some notes out, some blank pages, your phone. Because if you've ever wanted to take notes, this would be the day. I want to talk to you a little bit, and this installment of "The Holy Bible," I want to talk to you about why the Bible can be trusted. I want to talk to you how accurate and how real and true, how right the Bible is. In week number one, we gave you a message about having the passion behind the Bible. Last week, I tired to help you understand what the Bible is all about. And we call this series, "The Holy Bible," and because the word "Bible" simply means book, but it's not just a book. It's the Holy Bible. It's set apart. That's what the word "holy" means. It's special.
Holy would be like your fine China. It has special place in our hearts, and so we should treat it as holy, as well. And I'm asking you to make room in your heart to give it a set apart place inside of all of us. And throughout this series, we've been memorizing a verse. And I don't know if you still memorized it, but I'll just put it on the screen, and we're gonna read these aloud together. And notice I didn't say a-soft, everybody. Come on, full voice. Here we go, Psalm 119 says, every voice, "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light... to my path".
And in week number one I talked about how the Bible is practical. It can help you with your marriage, your kids, your money, your thinking, or your decision making, your job, your attitude. It speaks to every part of your life, and it lights up my path, so it's helping me know how to live my life. In week number two, we memorized this verse out of Colossians. Read it aloud with me. Notice I didn't say a-soft, everybody. Here we go. "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly".
And so in week number two, I showed you how that can happen. So, I gave you the practical side of Bible study, picking a Bible translation, and just making it a part of everyday life. Our verse for today, I want you to read it aloud. Notice I didn't say a-soft, everybody. Here we go. Matthew chapter 24, here we go. "Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away". "My words will never pass away". Jesus said this. So, even though man can deconstruct it, try to destroy it, it can criticize it, pull it down, and hate it. "My words will live forever. My words will never pass away. My words will never pass away".
And what I want to do today is I want to give you seven convincing proofs, and these are notes that I've pulled together from sermons I've heard from people like Pastor Rick Warren, from different apologists that I love to follow and study. I read a lot of the apologetics. Apologetics is the study of proving things, and so I would encourage you, if you love that kind of thing, you like to study apologetics, I think it's a fun study. And so, I didn't build all this. I just pulled it all together for us, but I'm going to give you seven convincing proofs that the Bible can be relied upon, it can be trusted.
And here's number one, and that is that the Holy Bible is historically accurate. So, a lot of people know that the Bible has good principles, but there are some, I've even heard some pastors say, "Look, the principles are right, but some of the stories are made up". And the reason why they say that is actually they have an issue with their own faith, if you ask me, because they're saying there are some things that are not humanly possible, like it's not humanly possible for man to live in the belly of a whale for three days. That's not humanly possible. And my response to them would be I agree with you. It's not humanly possible. Neither is a virgin birth and neither is a resurrection. There's a lot of things that are not humanly possible that I have put my faith in. Can I get a good amen, everybody?
I don't know if y'all heard the story about the little girl who wrote a research paper for a teacher, and she turned the paper in, and it was on Jonah in the whale. And the teacher wasn't a Christian. In fact, she was a staunch atheist, and teacher kind of was mad that she wrote on this topic. And the little girl, she said to the little girl, "Man, why did you write this"? And she said, "Because I believe it's true". And she goes, "How do you know it's true"? Said, "Well, I'll tell you this. When I get to heaven, I'll ask Jonah myself how it happened". And the teacher said, "But what if he didn't go to heaven? What if he went to hell"? And the little girl said, "Well, then you can ask him".
And so anyway, don't use that. That's a bad pastor joke. All right, so, That is funny. But listen to me, the Word of the Lord is not only true, it's also right, it's right. So, it's not made up, it's not made up. So, the question is how can you prove if something is actually historically accurate? Well, there is a historical accuracy standard. Now, this is not Christian. This is just historians use three standards to prove something is historically accurate. The number one standard is, is that there would have been eyewitness accounts.
So, the story had people who were actually there, and most of the Bible was written by people who were actually there. The gospels were written by four people who spent time with Jesus. They were with Jesus. And by the way, they didn't collaborate when they wrote the gospels. They weren't over there like, "Mark, what are you gonna put in chapter 12"? No, they ended up writing out their stories, and they completely, their stories match. The second standard for historical accuracy is that it's recorded and then copied with extreme care, which is my belief why God chose the Jewish people to have that, he tasked the Jewish nation, literally chose the Jewish nation and tasked them with the responsibility of giving us the Word of God. And they are known historically as the most meticulous scribes in the world.
In fact, when the Jewish scribes would've recorded the Torah, the first five books of the Old Testament, they didn't do it word for word. They sat there, letter by letter. They translated letter for letter. And then when they go to the finish of the Torah, the five books of the Old Testament, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, they knew what the middle letter was in the entire text, and they would go to that middle letter and count both directions, and if the numbers didn't match, they threw the whole thing away. They had the most meticulous standards for the original text.
And there's this myth that every time someone translates it, it's getting a little bit weaker and weaker with every translation. It's not true. They're going back to the original manuscripts which, by the way, they have now found, if you know anything about the Dead Sea Scrolls discovered in 1948 and beyond, they kept discovering, they found now which are the oldest manuscripts of Scripture, and they completely agree. Every single accuracy of what we have had before we found the Dead Sea Scrolls is still true. So, it's been recorded with extreme, copied with extreme care. The third is, is that there's archeological confirmation, so that the empires, and the nations, and the people groups that the Bible talks about, they've actually found archaeological digs to discover that they were actually there, that actually happened.
Now, there's one exception. There was one empire that archaeologists for 1900 years could not find, and they just thought, "Well, maybe the Bible did miss it on this one," and it was the Hittite empire. They could find no historical record of it until the early 1900s. There was a archaeological dig, and everything in it was all the artifacts of guess what empire. The Hittite empire. And they said, "Well, I guess..." And that covered every single one of them in Scripture because the Bible is not only good and true; it is right, everybody. Here's the second one, all right, and that is that the Holy Bible is scientifically accurate, scientifically accurate.
Now, people say, "Man, we've gotta trust the science". How many times have we heard that over the last few years, right? Trust the science. But science evolves, science changes, and we're learning that, too. Isn't that right, everybody? We're learning that science evolves. They know what they know then, but they don't know everything. What's interesting is that science has evolved a lot. It's evolved in your lifetime. None of us are studying the science of our third, well, at least if you're my age, you're not going back to your third-grade science book and calling that science anymore. My computer science class that I took at LSU, go Tigers, my LSU is archaic. I mean, it's archaic. They're not in anything like that. Why? Because it evolves.
The science, the computer science evolves, but truth stays the same, everybody. Psalm 148, God, of course, God knows all truth, so there are no historic or scientific inaccuracies because he "created everything to give praise to the LORD, for he issued a command, and they came into being. And he set them in place forever and ever. And his decree never is revoked". So, for a book that was written over 1600 years, you would think that there would be one scientific thing that had now to be corrected, and there's not.
In fact, if you go to the Louvre in Paris, I've been there several times, if you go to the Louvre, in their vault they have 3 1/2 miles of science books that are now obsolete. One of them, written in 1861 by the French Academy of Science, and here's the book title. "51 Incontrovertible Scientific Facts that Prove the Bible is Wrong". And since 1861, all 51 are now controverted, everybody. They've all been proven, actually, that they were wrong, and the Bible was right. But not only that, it's not only what the Bible does say about science, but also what it didn't say. So, there was science wisdom of the day, and you would think that one of them would've crept in to Scripture, like the earth is flat.
That was believed for 2000 years, that if you sailed to the edge of it you dropped off the edge, right? We all know that, of course, Copernicus, Galileo, Columbus, others theorized that the earth wasn't flat. It was actually round. But all they had to do was go 2600 years before that in Isaiah, and the Bible said, "God sits enthroned above the circle..." That's the Hebrew word for sphere, where we get the word globe, everybody. All they had to do was read the Bible. Another myth that was believed for almost 4000 years was that the earth had to be held up. The Greeks, of course, believed that it sat on Atlas's shoulders. The Hindus believed that the earth was on the back of an elephant, who sat on the back of a sea turtle, that sat on the back of a serpent and swerved all through the sea.
That's what the Hindus believed. The Egyptians, who we still consider to be some of the most brilliant minds of the day, I mean, architecturally, in engineering, they're just, they're absolutely brilliant. We're still marveling at their wisdom. And, of course, Moses would've been trained in the wisdom of the Egyptians. He went to an Egyptian university before he become the Moses story. So, he was trained in it, and not one line of, they believed that the earth was held up on five pillars. Well, all you would've had to do was go to actually the oldest book of the Bible. So, it's not the first one in your Bible, 'cause I told you this last week.
The Bible isn't organized chronologically. It's characterized in types of book, and it's in the poetry section, and it's the book of Job, and it's the oldest book of the Bible. So, if you had to put it chronologically, it would be somewhere in the first ten chapters of Genesis, which is where the book of Job would fit. But Job said, "He spreads, God spreads out the northern skies over empty space, and he suspends the earth over nothing". All they had to do was ask Job. How did he, but how did Job know? How did Job know? Well, maybe Job didn't write the Bible. Maybe God did. Are y'all with me, everybody? Are y'all listening to me?
Here's another, I'm gonna give you another one because you don't look quite convinced. I'll give you just yet another one, all right? And that is it was believed forever that the number of the stars could be actually counted. So, Hipparchus in 150 B.C. actually counted the stars, and there were 1022. Yeah. So, 300 years later in 150 A.D., Ptolemy actually recounted them, and he said, "Dude, you're so wrong. You missed four. There was 1026". Now, we know that's laughable. In fact, I looked it up yesterday on one of the greatest research tools in the world, Google. All right, everybody, so there you go, right? And Google says there are 200 billion trillion. That's how many stars there are. Like, not really. But all they had to do was go to Jeremiah where it says that "the stars of the sky cannot be counted," everybody. We know that. I'll give you another one, that science believed forever that too much blood made you sick.
In fact, there was a scientific study, a practice called humoralism. Hippocrates taught humoralism, and humoralism believed that infections, sicknesses come from four body fluids that you have to get rid of. Yellow bile, black bile, phlegm, and blood, that those were bad for you when you were sick. So, they had a practice called bloodletting, and bloodletting is where when you were sick, they tried to bleed out. They'd cut you, and you'd bleed out the sickness. That's how they killed George Washington. Our first president died from bloodletting. They did it four times. He lost 40% of his blood, and he died 'cause there wasn't anymore blood in him. They were wrong, and that was just 200 years ago, right? But all they had to do was go thousands of years ago to the book of Leviticus, and the Bible says no, no, no, there's life, the life of the body is in the blood.
And that's now today why we don't get it out of you. We actually give you more blood. We give you transfusions because we know there's life in the blood. Are y'all listening to me, everybody, right? Which by the way, let me pause right here, and it's also why we're pro-life. We're pro-life because the life is in the blood, and blood shows up at conception, eight days after conception. And here on this pro-life Sunday, this right to life Sunday, I stand firmly, believe that we should do everything we can to protect the unborn. Come on, everybody, amen. Not budging from it.
You say, "Well, that's political". No, it's moral. It's not even close to political, absolutely. I'll give you another one, where they had it all wrong. In the Middle Ages, there was a plague that hit them, so a pandemic hit Europe in the Middle Ages, and 25% of Europe died from the bubonic plague. And back then, they had no idea of contagions, so they had no idea to wear a mask, or to quarantine yourself, or to separate yourself. They didn't even know you could actually transfer a disease from one person to another. But if they'd have just gone to Leviticus, the priest would take a sick person and quarantine them seven days. It's all in God's Word. Why? Because the words of the Lord are, say it out loud. They are, they're "flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined seven times".
I'll give you number three. I've got seven. Are y'all getting anything out of this so far, everybody? Here's number three, and that is that the Holy Bible is prophetically accurate. Now, this is one of the most interesting ones to me, personally, because this is risky, because you're not just writing a book and asking people to believe it, but now you're gonna make predictions? 'Cause it only takes one of the predictions in it to not be true to be able to throw the whole thing out. Are you ready for this? There are more than 1000 predictions, prophecies in Scripture, 300 about Christ alone, and not just general stuff like he's gonna be nice and kind. No, like, he would ride on a donkey into Jerusalem. He'll be born in Bethlehem. He will grow up in Nazareth. He will escape Egypt. I mean specific prophecies.
And by the way, these weren't like in a generation right before Jesus. The last prophecy in the Bible about Jesus was 400 years before Jesus lived. That'd be like someone on the Mayflower predicting what we're doing today. So, that's, and the one that shocks me the most is King David in the Psalms prophesies, you can read it, a prophecy of the crucifixion before there were crucifixions. Like that means of punishing someone had not even been invented yet, and every single prophecy in the Bible has come absolutely true. There are some yet to be fulfilled. Those are in the book of Revelation. And by the way, you don't want to be on the wrong side of those, since it's done such a good job up to this point.
See, it's not blowing your mind. I'm gonna blow your mind a little bit, these 300 prophecies, because there was a guy named Dr. Peter Stoner, who is, he studies probability. He got 100 other people who study probability, and they did research for years on the probability of these prophecies coming true. And they concluded that for one person fulfilling just eight of them was the likelihood of 1 to 10 to the 17th power. So, this number. So, you know what probability is. Probability is if you had a bucket with 10 tennis balls in it, and 9 of them are yellow, and 1 of them is red, and I blindfold you, you stick your hand in there, and you pull out the red one, you've got a 1 in 10 chance of that happening. And he said if only 8 of the prophecies of Jesus to be fulfilled would be this number right here, so that's just a big number.
So, let me help explain it. If you took this many silver dollars, and you had to store them somewhere, so you've gotta put this many silver dollars somewhere. It would take the entire state of Texas 2 feet deep of silver dollars. So, imagine getting a guy in a helicopter right here in Birmingham. We're gonna fly over to Texas. Right before you get to Texas, you're gonna blindfold the dude, and you're gonna say, "Hey, we just entered over Texas, and you can't see, and you just tell us when to stop, and we're gonna lower you down, and you're gonna stick your arm in that two feet deep full of silver dollars, and the chance of you finding that one..." Do y'all know how big Texas is, everybody? Y'all ever, it's 14 hours from Texarkana to El Paso with not nary a tree. Come on, somebody. Are y'all listening to me?
Okay. It's a long way. That's the point. The one person fulfilling 16 is one, is 10 to the 45th power. One person fulfilling 48, they said, is one in 10 to the 157th power. There's no explanation for that except man didn't write the Bible; God did. Perhaps, can I submit to you prophecy never had its origin in humans, but prophets, though human, spoke from God, as they carried along by the Holy Spirit. Pardon my passion, but the Bible is true, everybody. It's real, yeah. Don't pardon my passion. I'm not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus. It's the power of God unto salvation. Somebody give him a great praise in this place, if you believe it, yeah, sorry. Jesus said this all happened to fulfill the words of the prophets, as recorded in the Scriptures.
And by the way, I would remind you again there are prophecies yet to be fulfilled that you should not ignore. And I'm preparing a message series. I don't know when you're gonna get it, but I'm gonna give you a study in prophecies, and the end times, and what the Bible says, just so we can be on the right side of it. Because if you go to the last page of the Bible, last book, last page, here's what it says. "The angel said to me, 'These words...'" They're not just good words, "'they're trustworthy and they are true. The Lord, the God who inspires the prophets, sent his angels to show his servants the things that must soon take place.'" And they're gonna take place. And I tell you, I, for one, and everybody that allows me to lead them, we're gonna get on the right side of it, in Jesus's name. And everybody said amen, all right?
All right, here's number four. I've got four more to show you. Number four is that the Holy Bible is thematically unified. Now, I talked about this a little bit last week, so I won't spend a lot of time on it, but the Holy Bible was written over a period of 1600 years, in over a dozen countries, on three continents, by 40 people of all walks of life, in three different languages. And how did they all get the exact same story? I mean, you would expect that, the Quran was written by one person, Muhammad. The Analects of Confucius, one person. The writings of Buddha, one person. So, you expect it to be unified. This many people, over this amount of time, without contradiction, and all about Jesus, and that's why Jesus said, in the beginning with Moses and the prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures, and they all concerned himself. They all point to one person, and his name is Jesus. If you want more on that, watch last week's message.
Number five, the Holy Bible is also trusted by Jesus. And I would just pause right here, and someone might consider this to be the weakest argument that I'll give today. But if you're one who has given your life to Jesus, and he trusted it, and you've called him your Lord, then whatever he says is right is what is right. That's what it means to be a follower of Jesus. Jesus said, "For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of pen, will by any means disappear from the Scriptures, the Law..." He was talking about the Old Testament that time. "...until everything is accomplished". And that's why I challenge all those that are out there deconstructing the Bible, picking and choosing to fit the kind of life you want to live is a dangerous thing to do. In fact, the way I say it is if you believe what you like in the Bible, but you don't believe what you don't like, you're no longer trusting the Bible or Jesus. You're trusting in yourself. You've created a religion around you, and it's a very dangerous thing.
Number six, and that is that the Holy Bible has survived all attacks, which begs the question, Why was it attacked in the first place? Why is it so aggressively being attacked even to this day? And church is being attacked. The Bible is the most despised, derided, denied, disputed, dissected, debated, outlawed and destroyed book ever, yet it endures. It's still here today, thousands of years later. Come on, somebody, right? And very smart people, I mean people that are still revered as masterminds, people like, y'all ever heard of this guy named Voltaire? There's this French philosopher, Voltaire, lived in the 18th century. He's a smart, he's a smart dude, but he's famous for this quote. "Within 100 years the Bible will be forgotten". And the only thing that has been forgotten is that quote.
In fact, you want to hear something funny? I just love God humor. This is such God humor. When he died, the French Bible Society bought his house, and today his house is the French Bible Society. I just think that's hilarious. Why is that? "Because the grass can wither and the flowers can fall, but the word of the Lord endures," come on, everybody, "forever". I'm just letting you know what side all this I'm gonna be on. So, I've got some questions for you. Will I be one of those who attack, challenge, change God's Word, or am I gonna be one of those, I'm just gonna live by it? And if there's some changing that needs to take place, I'm not changing it to fit me. I'll change me to fit it. And I'm asking you to be those kind of people.
And trust me, you're gonna love what the Bible will deliver in your life. It's right. Will I deconstruct it or defend it? Will I follow the world, or I'm gonna follow the Word? You say, "Chris, what are you gonna do if they make it illegal"? They'll have to lock me up then. I'm not, I'm not. And every Sunday, I give you my word that I will stand in this place and never give you the thoughts of Chris Hodges. That means absolutely nothing. I'm gonna tell you what God's Word said about your life, whether we like it or not. Come on, we're gonna follow God's Word. Amen, everybody? And here's the last one. And what's interesting about this last one, you can actually test this last one yourself.
See, here it's said all the time, and it's probably become a little bit too much cliché now. I always say, "Give us a year of your life. Go all in. Watch what God will do". But I'm saying like really try it. I'm not even asking you that on behalf of Church of the Highlands. I'm asking you that on behalf of God. Some people are making decisions about what God's able to do in a person's life on a halfhearted effort. No, in fact, Jeremiah says, "You seek me and you find me when you seek me with all your heart". So, the opposite of that verse would be, "So, if you seek me and try to find me without all your heart, you're never gonna find me". "So, ah, it just didn't work for me".
Well, of course, it didn't. Of course, it didn't. And that's why I'm asking you to let the Word of God do its work inside of you. My favorite thing to hear is people, seriously, my favorite thing to hear is when people in our church come up and say, "Hey, PC". I see it all over the city. It happens every week. "I did that, oh, took your one-year challenge". And right when they say that, 99% of them, tears start flowing. "My life's changed. My life's changed".
I talked to a girl yesterday, beautiful young high school girl. You could tell, she told me some of her story about her home and then some of the challenges she's having with her friends, and it's been difficult for her. She goes, "I was so scared". She said, "I was so scared to go all in with God when you said that". She said, "I listened to that. I listened to that offer for years," she said, "before I even took you up on it". And tears are now flowing down her face. And she said, "PC, my life has never been the same. I'm a brand-new person. My life's changed". And she goes, "I just wanted to thank you". I said, "Don't thank me. I just pointed you to the one who did it. I am not the destination. I am the tour guide to let you know Jesus can change your life, and it's my honor to point you to the truth of God's Word and the person, a relationship with Jesus, so your life can be changed".
And that's my seventh proof, and I think it's the most powerful one, and that is that the Holy Bible has life-changing power. So, don't take it from me. Ask somebody who doesn't do this as their job. "This is your job to do that". Then go ask somebody else. 'Cause I'll tell you the truth. If you hold on to the Word of God, Jesus said you've gotta hold on to it now. You can't just have it. It's not a coffee table item. It's not something to do on a Sunday. "If you'll hold on to my teaching, that's my disciples".
And here's what's gonna happen when you start holding. You might not feel anything when you put your arms around it right away, but you're gonna start to know it. But the word in the Greek is the word "gnostikos". It's intimate. It becomes personal. It gets deep down inside of you. And when you know it, now the truth sets you free. You find freedom. You find power. You find answers. You find hope. And in a world where there's so much chaos, you find peace. And I just wish you had my peace. I wish you had my joy. I wish you had the hope that I have.
I don't care what decisions man makes. We get all freaked out when man makes a decision. Let them make it. 'Cause I've got a home in heaven. This, I'm just passing through anyway. I'm an alien in this world. I'm asking you to hold on to it and watch its transforming, look at me, look at my eyes. It has transforming power. It has, I'm telling you, it has transforming power. And so, I wrote out a prayer, and I'm not asking you to pray it with me unless you believe it. So, I'll read the whole thing first. And then if you believe it, we'll pray it. Okay, this is how we'll close.
Dear God, from this day forward, I will accept the Bible as your flawless Word to me, and I will make it the Final Authority for my life, even when I don't understand it, when it's not popular, easy, or even when I don't like it. You are God, and I am not. Thank you for loving me enough to speak to me through your Word. I want to LOVE your Word, LEARN your Word, LIVE your Word.
If you're with me, today, at every campus, wherever you're watching online, let's pray this out loud together. Here we go.
Dear God, (every voice), from this day forward, I will accept the Bible as your flawless Word to me, and I will make it the Final Authority for my life, even when I don't understand it, when it's not popular, easy, or even when I don't like it. You are God, and I am not. Thank you for loving me enough to speak to me through your Word. I want to LOVE your Word, LEARN your Word, and LIVE your Word. In Jesus's name, (everybody said) amen.
Let's bow for prayer. Do you know what this moment is? Do you know what this moment is? You've heard it, and now you get to decide it, act on it. That's what this moment is. And I've done everything I can to appeal to your mind for this to make sense. But you ready for this? That's not even how you get saved. You don't get saved in your mind. The Bible says if you believe in your heart, if you believe in your heart God raised him from the dead, and I've asked God in this moment for every single person listening to me, that God would mess with your heart and say it's time. I'm not just a Christian. I'm not a church goer. I'm a believer. I believe. And if your faith is weak, not where it should be, if your Christian life is mediocre, backslidden, or maybe you don't even know if you are a Christian, I'm gonna invite you right there where you are to pray this prayer. This is your moment, get ready. Say:
Jesus, I believe, not just in my mind, in my heart. Today, I give you my heart. I'm giving you my life. It's been time, long time coming for me to go all in with you. (Say this to him. Whisper it right there where you are.) I'm going all in with you. I believe you are the true and living God. I believe you are the Son of God. I believe you're the Lord of my life. I believe you died and rose again. And today I'm putting my faith in you, my faith, and I give you my life. In your name I pray, amen and amen.