Sunday, July 5th, 2009
"The word of God is alive and exerts power." (Hebrews 4:12)
Jesus, the greatest of all human teachers, based his teachings on the Scriptures. (Matthew 21:13; John 6:45; 8:17) He spoke, not in his own name, but in the name of the One who sent him. (John 7:16-18) That is the example we follow. So, what we say either in the door-to-door ministry or at home Bible studies should center on the authority of God's Word. (2 Timothy 3:16, 17) No amount of clever reasoning on our part can possibly equal the effectiveness and power of the inspired Scriptures. The Bible has authority. Whatever point we are striving to help a student grasp, the best method we can use is to have him or her read what the Scriptures say about it. That is not to say, of course, that a Christian teacher need not prepare for a Bible study. On the contrary, careful forethought should be given to deciding which of the cited scriptures the teacher or the student will read from the Bible during the study.
(Watchtower issue: 01/15/08, 2:5, 6)
(language translation growth from 1800 - 1995 / pg 12 of "A Book For All People" brochure)
*Just a quick look at a timeline of history will tell you that the Bible is no "ordinary" book. Compare the growth its made just within the past 200 years vs. the past 2000 years. The industrial age and modern technology has enabled language translation that would never have been possible otherwise until this point in history... yet, it survived for centuries intact, despite burnings, censorship and bans imposed by the most powerful church leaders, rulers, and militant governments, again and again -without success. William Tyndale's statement to one of his educated contemporaries of the church, "If God spare my life, ere many years I will cause that a boy that driveth the plough shall know more of the Scriptures than thou dost" has been accomplished far beyond what he could have ever conceived. For centuries, only a handful of powerful 'men of the cloth' had access to the Scriptures, and every attempt imaginable was made to keep it out of the hands of the common people. Copyists and translators were excommunicated from the church, beaten, tortured, burned at the stake, buried alive, banished, imprisoned, and subjected to all other manner of brutality, but NOTHING could stop the "Word" from advancing. There is power behind a book that can't be stamped out by anything or anyone ... but keeps growing and spreading like wildfire to every corner of the earth, in every nation and language, just like Jesus said it would. AND still continues to be the #1 best seller every year, with the highest circulation of any book in history.
*extra reference articles:
Ancient Scribes and the Word of God
index of articles from the WA site about The Bible
and an article from Wikipedia about Jehovah's name and early translation efforts.