The Power of the Scriptures
From the Testimony magazine 1942
Those who have read the Bible must best know how it does good to those who trust it. In this respect it has had a unique effect on the minds of men. Although many have loved the works of Shakespeare and have been interested and instructed by the writings of scientists and astronomers, there is no evidence that their lives have been affected by what they have read. Yet whole lives have been changed by the power of single verses of the Bible.
Who shall measure the amount of good which has been done in the world by such a saying as that recorded in John 3:16?—"God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life".
The moral and regenerative power of the Scriptures is unparalleled and the words of J. C. Whittier are a just tribute : — "We search the world for truth : we cull The good, the pure, the beautiful From graven stone and written scroll From all old flower-fields of the soul : And, weary seekers of the best, We come back laden from our quest, To find that all the sages said Is in the Book our mothers read."
In a Bible of average size, all that we know of the sayings and doings of Jesus of Nazareth is contained in from 100 to 150 pages. In these pages there are stories which are told twice, three times and sometimes four times, so that the amount of new matter could be contained in much less than 100 pages.
Yet within this small compass is the greatest record in the world.
The character portrayed is beautiful beyond compare.
"Age cannot wither, nor custom stale its infinite variety." It is "a thing of loveliness", "a joy for ever."
Yet there is not beauty alone there. Its truth shines equal, so that when Jesus says : "Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest"; and "I am come that they might have life and have it more abundantly" ; and "He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved", the words are not merely pious hopes, but words of spirit and life which he can and will make good.
To whom do we owe, under the grace of God, these words which make our hearts burn within us?
To a tax-gatherer, an evangelist, a doctor, and a fisherman. Truly a strange company, but one which by the greatness and reality of their subject and by the help of their God, achieved perfection.
Divine revelation reaches its peak in the manifestation of the Christ. These, then, are some of the grounds of our faith that Holy Writ will not fail us. Like a bastion it stands; safe and impregnable, amid the collapse of false values everywhere.
With deep thankfulness, praise and joy, we affirm "The Word of our God shall stand for ever".