Have you ever been asked whether you believe what the bible says about Jonah and the big fish? Was Jonah really swallowed by a big fish and spit out on dry land after three days? Did God really create the world? Did Noah’s flood really happen? Was Adam really the first person? Are these stories true, or are they fables passed from one generation to another?
I was recently viewing a cable “news” program where the host was interviewing a comedian about his disdain for religion. The comedian is well known for being critical of people of faith and frequently labels them as uninformed and ignorant. The comedian pointed to many of the stories listed above and asserted that anyone who could possibly believe such stories must be a fool. Predictably, the host of the show dismissed the Old Testament stories as “allegory” and said he believed the New Testament. He, after all, was a follower of Jesus and the New Testament stuff was OK.
Wow. If you, like this news host, are a person that accepts the New Testament but rejects the Old, consider this.
In Luke 11:32 Jesus says, “The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and now one greater than Jonah is here.” According to the book of Jonah, Jonah went to Nineveh only after he was spit out by the fish. Jesus clearly believes in the story of Jonah. So, either the story is true, or Jesus is a nut.
Jesus was telling his disciples about the end times and in Mark 13:18-19 he says “Pray that this will not take place in winter, because those will be days of distress unequaled from the beginning, when God created the world, until now—and never to be equaled again.” Clearly Jesus believes God created the world. Is Jesus just “ignorant”?
In Luke 17:27 Jesus says, “People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.” Jesus obviously believed the story of Noah to be true. Once again, either the story is true, or Jesus is a nut.
Jesus understood the genealogies recorded in Genesis to be true. In Luke 11:50-52. Jesus said: “Therefore this generation will be held responsible for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the beginning of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary.” According to the book of Genesis, Abel was the son of Adam, the first man.
It is impossible to believe in Jesus and not believe in the Old Testament record. Jesus says “You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me,…” (John 5:39). The Old Testament was written to point to Jesus. You cannot reject it.
I have to hand it to the anti-religion comedian…he at least rejects the whole bible. He rejects Jesus. His logic is consistent. After all, if you can’t believe God miraculously protected a boat with eight people and a bunch of animals on board, how can you believe that Jesus was raised from the dead? And if you can’t believe that God can control the digestive track of a fish, how can you believe that Jesus died for your sins?
Jesus believed in the Old Testament stories. I do too. If that makes me a nut…well then I’m in good company.
Finally, consider this. In 1 Corinthians 1:18-25, the bible says:
For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written:
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”
Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe. Jews demand miraculous signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.
Think about it.
Get Real Love,
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