Friday, June 6, 2008

The Authority of Scripture... and Arby's

We went straight from family groups to our second session of NA. After more amazing worship led by Bob and Devon Kauflin we sat down to hear a word through Mark Dever.

“The Authority of Scripture” by Mark Dever

Mark Dever is a man who uses a combination of archeology, history, philosophy, and theology to present the gospel to others. He points out physical evidence with sound research and Biblical references to show why the Bible is what it says it is.

He started by making four points on the Reliability of the Bible:
(1) What about all the translations of the Bible?
-Ultimately, they all say the same thing.

(2) Is this really what was written “back then”?
- We have copies from nearly all centuries. We have a manuscript from 130 A.D. For example and comparison, of Aristotle’s ‘Poetics’ we have one copy dated many years after it’s original writing, but of the Bible we have 2200 manuscripts from the early centuries.

(3) Is it accurate?
- In this day and age we discredit oral accounts because we cannot imagine how the account could have been passed down in whole. Since the Bible wasn’t written down right away, many say it is inaccurate. The memories and oral histories of that time were significant. Why doubt the ability of the writers of the Bible to remember the events several years after, when archaeology confirms the existence on the people in the Book?

(4) Is it true?
- Read the gospels. Read them with an open mind. Do not pick them up thinking “this is ludicrous.” Open your mind to the possibility that there is a God, and that this did happen. The truth will be revealed to you.
This last point was Mark’s own testimony. He was a thorough agnostic who had read the gospels through many times. However, when he decided to read them through with an open mind, not discounting the possibility of a God and Jesus Christ, he was transformed by the truths that he found within the words.

Good quote to remember – Just because I don’t know everything, doesn’t mean I don’t know anything. – Our knowledge doesn’t have to be exhaustive in order to be reliable.

Mark also said that we are made in God’s image so that we may know Him.

He then gave us verses from both the New and Old Testaments which assert the authority of the Bible-
Old Testament…
Exodus 24:4
Deuteronomy 4:1-2
Deuteronomy 17:19
Psalm 19:7, 10
Psalm 119:11, 89,105,140

New Testament…
Matthew 5:17-18
Matthew 19:5
John 5:46-47
John 10:35
Acts 1:16
Acts 4:25
Acts 17:11
II Timothy 3:16
Hebrews 4:12
II Peter 3:15-16

After the sermon Eric Simmons took the stage and asked us “What part of the word am I not putting into practice?” A good question to think about as we read the word and apply it to our lives. Do we discard portions because they make us uncomfortable, or do we respond to conviction and apply the word to our lives?

After Mark Dever’s session we were released to lunch and I headed out to Arby’s with Elya and Crossway. Louisville had not prepared for our arrival because the line was out the door and down the street… we ended up taking it back with us to the hotel and eating it in the lunch/bar area.

While in line at Arby’s our group passed the word along to us that we were “getting it to go”. Elya turned around to me and told me to pass it on to Jon, the last guy in our group, who was standing behind us. We decided to turn this into a fun moment and told Jon “we’re getting it to go, pass it on!” Apparently not realizing that we were the last people, Jon turned around to the girls behind him and said “hey, we’re getting it to go, pass it on.” and turned back to us without even realizing. It was a fun way to introduce ourselves to the girls behind us, though. They were also from na.

- The bar/lunch area of the hotel (between the RIVUE Tower and the SUITE Tower) had glass cages with live birds and tree branches. Oh, and the tables were aquariums! =) -

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