As parents, many of us frequently say, “do this because the Bible says you should.” Then one day, your teenager asks, “why?” How do you respond?
Let’s start with what the Bible teaches about how it was written (see 2 Peter 1:3-4; 16-21 Hebrews 4:12-13 John 16:12-15 2 Timothy 3:14-17 Ephesians 2:20):
- God gave his word through prophets and apostles to mankind through the direction, inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
- The writers of Scripture then expressed these words accurately and authoritatively, in their own voice, under the supervision of the Holy Spirit.
- The Holy Spirit oversaw the collection of these inspired writings so that they became the Bible we have now.
This, in short form, is what the Bible teaches about how it was inspired, written, and compiled. However, this makes no sense if your teenager doesn’t believe the Bible is true and is the word of God. Faith is essential to be able to trust what the Bible says about life, reality, and the way it was written. So, you tell this to your teenager. Your teenager says, “excuse me! You have to believe the Bible is true before you can believe what it says about itself. Come on, you have to better than that.”
Here is one way to respond. Before you dismiss the Bible, you need a trustworthy source to replace it. This means that choosing any resource to explain and give safe direction about life requires an exercise of faith. Why? Because no human resource has yet to prove that it is always reliable and trustworthy. This leaves the Bible and its unique claim that it is the one place that teaches you can’t solve life’s problems by your own efforts and performance. This is a truth that you and your teenager can identify with. Since we can’t trust our own abilities or other resources the Bible remains, by faith, as the one source that can be trusted.
Pray that God would give you a humble spirit to make your words attractive to your children. Only trusting Jesus Christ can help your teenager evaluate himself and his decisions accurately. Only then, can he know if the Bible can be trusted. So the answer to the question of can the Bible be trusted is yes!