[forthright] By Many Infallible Proofs (Part Two)

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From: Forthright Magazine <forthright@...>
Date: Tue, 18 Apr 2006 12:11:34 -0500
Forthright Magazine
Straight to the Cross

COLUMN: Square One

By Many Infallible Proofs (Part Two)
by Richard Mansel

Scripture clearly expects the reader to understand
it is inspired and presents absolute truth (2
Timothy 3:16,17). Moreover, "much of the New
Testament is evidentiary in nature" in order to
verify its claims./1

Luke writes, "it seemed good to me also, having
had perfect understanding of all things from the
very first, to write to you an orderly account,
most excellent Theophilus, that you may know the
certainty of the things in which you were
instructed" (Luke 1:3,4, NKJV).

Luke's account is inspired of God (2 Timothy
3:16,17) and based on what has been taught by
"ministers of the word," "eyewitnesses" and "what
has been delivered to him" (Luke 1:2). These
proofs are sufficient in the mind of Luke to
guarantee the "certainty" or "undoubted truth" of
what he is presenting./2

Luke writes in the introduction to Acts that he is
continuing the story of "all that Jesus began both
to do and teach" (Acts 1:1). Jesus taught the
Apostles "through the Holy Spirit" (John 14:26).
"Luke makes it plain that it is by the power of
the same Spirit that all the apostolic acts which
he goes on to narrate were performed."/3

Luke then notes that Jesus "presented himself
alive to the apostles by many infallible proofs,
being seen by them forty days and speaking of the
things pertaining to the kingdom of God" (Acts
1:3). These "infallible proofs" mean "a fixed or
sure sign or token" of the heavenly authority of
what Jesus taught./4 "In Greek authors it denotes
an infallible sign or argument by which anything
can be certainly known. Here it means the same,
evidence that he was alive which could not
deceive, or in which they could not be

As we summarize Luke's argument, we see the
apologetic nature of his writings. His narrative
in Luke was ordered, certain, and based on
authoritative teaching and eyewitness accounts.
Acts was also based on the inspired teachings of
Christ and his apostles as led by the Holy Spirit.

These "infallible proofs" were the foundation for
the preaching of the disciples and writers of the
remaining New Testament books. Clearly, Scripture
expects the benefit of the doubt to be given to
its words.

The inspiration of Scripture is presented to the
reader as undeniable. The prophet Samuel said,
"The Spirit of the Lord spoke by me, And His word
was on my tongue" (2 Samuel 23:2). Repeatedly, the
prophets say, "the word of the Lord came to me."
This is sufficient, in their minds, to authorize
the words that they would speak. "The
characteristic 'thus says the Lord' and similar
expressions are found here (in the prophets) and
in other parts of the New Testament hundreds of

Scripture commends those who accept the validity
of the word of God (Acts 17:11; Luke 8:21). On the
other hand, those who twist the Scriptures and
misuse them are condemned (Galatians 1:8; 2 Peter
3:16). Clearly, Scripture expects to be trusted
and obeyed. Those who fail to do so, will miss the
truth contained within the pages of God's Word.

Faith and an acceptance of the inspired nature of
Scripture should lead us to accept its teachings
at face value. Yet, we are a suspicious people in
this scientific age. "We have become so suspicious
of the power of words ... the first assumption we
make is that we're faced with spin of some kind,
with an agenda being forced on us."/7 And it is
sad how this is affecting people's appreciation
of, and obedience to, God's Word.

1/ http://tinyurl.com/obnbn
2/ Joseph Thayer, Greek English Lexicon of the New Testament (Broadman: 
Nashville, 1977), 82.
3/ F. F. Bruce, The Book of the Acts (Eerdmans: Grand Rapids, 1988), 31.
4/ Vincent’s Word Studies in the New Testament (Peabody: Hendricksen, 
n.d.), 1:442.
5/ http://tinyurl.com/zk4ek
6/ Josh McDowell, The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict (Nashville: 
Thomas Nelson,1999), 335.
7/ http://tinyurl.com/qgbv8

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