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Sunday, February 5, 2017

The Whole Bible Guides Us Toward Jesus BY RICK WARREN — FEBRUARY 5 Sunday

“Beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, [Jesus] explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself” (Luke 24:27 NIV).
Only God could have put the Bible together. It contains 66 books written over 1,600 years by 40 authors — and it has one theme.
Having a single unified theme is one of the reasons we know that the Bible is God’s Word. From Genesis to Revelation, the Bible is all about God redeeming humanity. Jesus is its star.
The fact that the Bible has only one theme is nothing short of a miracle. It’d be one thing if one person wrote the Bible. The Koran was written by one person, Mohammed. The Analects of Confucius were written by Confucius. The writings of Buddha were written by Buddha. You’d expect them to be uniform.
The Bible, on the other hand, was written by 40 different people, at every age and in every stage of life, on three continents. And they all wrote the same story: Jesus’ story. Prophets and poets, princes and kings, and sailors and soldiers all had the same story. Some were written in homes, others in prisons, and others on ships. You couldn’t have put together a more diverse group of authors.
Yet the story is the same.
Imagine if I gave 50 people each a piece of paper, and I told them to tear their pieces of paper into different shapes — but I never said how I’m going to use them. What’s the likelihood I’d be able to take those pieces of paper and make a map of the United States out of them? Those odds would be astronomically low. If I did that, most people would think it was a trick.
That’s the miracle of how the Bible was put together.
We tend to think that the New Testament is about Jesus and the Old Testament is about Israel. But that’s not true. The Bible says in Luke 24:27, “Beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, [Jesus] explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself” (NIV). The New Testament wasn’t even written then.
The pictures, the metaphors, the analogies, and the illusions — from beginning to end — are about God’s plan to redeem people and build a family for eternity. It all began with Jesus. You can see him in every book.
That’s a miracle.
Talk It Over
  • How does your appreciation for the Bible reflect an understanding of the miracle of its cohesiveness?
  • If you had to sum up the Bible in one sentence in your own words, what would you say?
  • What are some ways you can make the Bible more personal to you?
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