“Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” With this statement, Jesus began his defense against Satan. Jesus accepted the authority of God’s word. This should also be the foundation of our defense. Satan cannot destroy the word of the Lord: if he could he would have done so many years ago.
The modernists have endeavored to explain or by ridicule destroy our faith that the Old Testament scriptures as being completely true. Jesus respected the Old Testament as being of God and concluded them to be true. The use of the New Testament includes the acceptance of the authenticity of the Old Testament.
Many doubt the creation story, and the events of Noah and Jonah, just to mention a part of their skepticism. But Jesus accepted God as the creator of all things. Mark records his acceptance in these words, “such as was not from the beginning of the creation which God created” (Mark 13:19). Again, speaking of the relationship between man and woman—”from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female” (Mark 10:6). If we accept the Sonship of Jesus, can we deny that which he accepted as true?
Jesus accepted the story of Noah as true and compared it to the uncertainty of the time of his second coming, and the destruction of the unfaithful and unbelieving. “As it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all” (Luke 17:26, 27). Jesus also accepted the Genesis account of the des- destruction of Sodom, and the death of Lot’s wife (see Luke 17:28-32).
The modernist and the skeptic have long scoffed at the story of Jonah and the whale, yet Jesus used this very event to foretell his burial in three days. “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12:40). If we accept Jesus as an authority of God, we must in turn accept that to which he referred and quoted.
Jesus accepted God’s word as authority. We must do the same thing. Unless we have that which is common authority to all, we have nothing in which to trust or defend. Without finding authority in the word of God for our religious belief we have no foundation for service unto him. Jesus truly gave us an example when he said, “It is written.”
Let Us Accept the Old Testament For What It Is.
- An aid or guide to bring the Jew to Christ, and to establish the deity of Christ. “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ” (Galatians 3:24). “All things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and in the Psalms concerning me” (Luke 24:44).
- An example of God’s dealings with the faithful and the unfaithful of previous eras “For whatsoever things were written aforetime, were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope” (Romans 15:4. Read also I Corinthians 10:11).
Let Us Accept the New Testament for What It Is.
- The foundation of faith that Jesus is the Son of God, and the Messiah promised to Israel and the world –”but these are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God: and that believing ye might have life through his name (John 20:31. Read also Luke 24:44).
- A revelation to set forth God’s terms of acceptance of this Messiah, his Son. (Mark 16:15-16; Acts 2:38).
- A series of letters, inspired of God, to give us guidance in our service and worship of God, through his Son, Jesus Christ. (Read II Timothy 3:16, 17; Colossians 3:1-17; I Timothy 3:15; II Timothy 2:2).
- A picture to invoke in us a desire for that heavenly city, an eternal reward (Revelation 22:1- 14).
As Jesus accepted the authority of God’s word and lived according to the law of his day, we, in turn, must as simply and wholeheartedly accept the word of God, the Bible. We must be able to say, “It is written.”