Does God exist? Did God create the universe? Did God create the first man and woman? Did the Israelites exit Egypt as freed slaves? Did Moses receive the 10 Commandments on Sinai? Was Elijah taken to heaven without dying? Are the stories and principles of life in the Bible historical and true? Simply stated, is the Christian Bible true? How can we know? Attempts to prove the answer to these questions in the affirmative have taken many forms involving science, logic, and historical evidence collectively known as Christian Apologetics. Unfortunately many of the attempts to prove the biblical answers to these questions end up being too complex to either understand or, if understood, hard to remember. There must be a simpler way to answer all these types of questions. While the more sophisticated approaches are valuable, we need a foundation that is easier to remember and more solid. There is a simpler way to argue the accuracy of the Bible. That way is based on the eyewitness testimony to Jesusí resurrection. Consider the following quote from the New Testament.
1 Corinthians 15:1-8
1Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: 5And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: 6After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. 7After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. 8And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.
What Does This Mean?
Notice there were more than 500 hundred witnesses to Jesusí resurrection after he had died from crucifixion no less. Many of those witnesses to Jesusí resurrection were still alive when the author, Paul, wrote this. Paul was also a witness to the resurrected Jesus. Eyewitness testimony is the simplest, most convincing, and easiest to remember evidence of any historical or truth claims. Certainly more than 500 witnesses to Jesusí resurrection is compelling evidence for its occurrence. How could a crucified Jesus be resurrected unless God, the creator and giver of life, raised Jesus from the dead? God would only raise someone from a crucifixion if the person were sinless (i.e. perfectly righteous) because the Bible says the soul that sins (i.e. breaks the law) will die (Rom. 6:23) and any society condemns people who break the law. This means Jesus never lied because lying is a sin by any measure of ethics. Thus everything Jesus said was the truth. In summary we only have to believe the part of the Bible referring to Jesusí resurrection to believe the rest of the Bible.
What Did Jesus Say?
Jesus quoted the book of Genesis regarding God creating the universe (Mark 13:19). Jesus referred to God having created the first man and woman (Matt. 19:4). Jesus referred to Moses in the context of having written the law from God (Mark 1:44; Mark 7:10). In general, then, Jesus believed the Bible was true. This then means one can believe the Bible is true because Jesus believed it to be true. We believe Jesus because God resurrected a crucified man, dead in the grave for 3 days. So if we simply believe in the eyewitness testimony of Jesus resurrection, we also have compelling evidence for the content of the Bible being true. No complex evidence or argumentation, while useful, is required to believe the book that is the basis of the Christian faith.