Is the Bible the word of God? There once was a time in my life when my default answer would be yes, it is the word of God. Back then, I remember how I used to have this uneasy feeling when someone asked me questions like “why then are there so many translations of the Bible?”. As I matured more in my faith, I came to the realization the answer would be yes it is the word of God, and no not everything in it is the word of God as in things God said.
The Bible is a brutally honest book that does not try to hide anything from us. King David is hailed as a hero of the faith in the Bible, but at the same time, it describes him as a sinful human being who lusts after another man’s wife and then kills her husband. Is it the murder of Uriah and the raping of Bathseba Gods’ word? No, it is not God’s word, but it is in the Bible because God uses it as a warning to us not to do what David did.
Is everything that happened in the Old Testament Gods’ word or God’s will? Was it God’s will and word when Joseph was thrown into the well and sold as a slave to the Egyptians? No, it is not God’s word or will, but it is in the Bible because God wants to use it as a warning to us not to do what Joseph’s brother did.
There are many more examples in the Bible of things that are not the word of God, but God wants it included in the Bible to warn us, so we will not repeat their sins.
Does the Bible you hold in your hand contain the word of God and God’s warnings? Before I matured in my faith, my default answer would be yes. The more I grew in my faith; I came to realize it is fairer to say yes and no. The Bible you hold in your hand is a translation of the word of God and God’s warnings to us, and as with any translations, errors might have occurred.
If you walk into any Christian bookstore selling bibles, you would soon see there are a ton of different translations. Some translations are accurate; others are so bad they should not be sold as a Bible.
We have to accept the fact that even though the Bible is divinely inspired, the translators who translated it from Hebrew and Greek to English was not divinely inspired. They were mortal, sinful, human beings who sometimes could allow their emotions, personality, likes, and dislikes to get in the way of doing an excellent job as a translator. We also have to take into consideration how certain Hebrew and Greek words cant be translated into English, or the translators might have chosen a wrong English word out of ignorance.
So which translation is the best?
We know when Yeshua (Jesus/Yehoshua) lived when His disciples and Paul lived, they did not have a New Testament. The only Bible they had was the Old Testament, so everything they said, did teach, and lived was found in the Old Testament. In the 300 years that followed, Jewish and Gentile Christians worshiped together and lived with only the Old Testament as their Bible. It would not be until 300 years after the life of Christ when Emperor Constantine made it illegal for Gentiles born believers to participate in Jewish worship, we saw a split between Jewish believers and Gentile believers.
Yehovah never wanted this to happen, in His word the Bible, He clearly says He wants Jewish AND Gentile believers in Messiah to worship together with the Old Testament AND the New Testament as the foundation for their faith. You can only rightly understand the New Testament if you believe the Old Testament is still applicable today.
From the time of Constantine and until today, more and more Christians have decided to obey Constantine, so today, we have the Christian church who believes the law of Moses does not apply to them. They think they are saved because of their passive faith in Jesus, something the Bible says is an impossibility.
Among these believers, we find Bible translators who have allowed their faith in Constantine to affect how they do their job.
So which translation is the best? The one who acknowledges the fact that Yehoshua (Yeshua/Jesus), His disciples, and Paul were all Jews and never stopped being Jews. The one which takes into consideration the Bible was written in Hebrew and Greek, and sometimes, some words cant be adequately translated into English.
This brings us to another important question, why do bad things happen to good people? And another equally important question, if there is a God, why does He allow all this evil to happen?
How you answer these two questions all depend upon who you obey, do you obey Constantine or Yehovah?
If you obey Yehovah you will know that He has only promised to help Israel if you are not Israel, He is under no obligation to do anything for you. The Bible even says Yehovah is the enemy of anyone who is not Israel.
This brings us to another important question, who is Israel? Are we talking about the Jews? Someone living in Israel and a citizen of the state of Israel?
The Bible says in Isaiah 56:3 everyone on this planet earth who wants to become Israel can do so. This means that the one who is not born in Israel or from a Jewish mother has a standing invitation from Yehovah to become Israel. So how do you “become Israel”?
The Bible says in Isaiah 56:3, 1. John 2:6, John 3:16-36, James 2:10-26, 1. Cor 11, we become Israel by repenting back to the law of Moses reconciled to Yehovah by faith in the cross. If you do this you will become Israel, Yehovah will become your God (you will be saved), and He will help you.
The Bible does not say He has obligated Himself to remove every obstacle from you. Instead, it means He has obligated to help you through them (Psalm 23, 91) and, by doing so, show everyone how much He loves Israel.
So why do bad things happen to good people? Because not all people are Israel, and Yehovah has never promised to help anyone who is not Israel.