What Kind of Book Is the Bible?
The Bible is famous for its classic and authority. It has played an important role in the process of human civilization. In history, the Bible has benefited many great men. It also has a profound influence on mankind’s science, education, literature, law, economy, and so on. There are many words of wisdom about human life in the Bible, which tells what the meaningful life is like and shows people the direction of life. The Bible records the work God has done, which covers the Bible with a mysterious veil. Countless Christians are attracted to study the Bible hard, hoping to know the Holy One through this book. As a result, people all regard the Bible as “God.” Many people can’t help but ask, “Can the Bible be equivalent to God? What kind of book is the Bible on earth?”
God says, “The Bible is a historical record of God’s work in Israel, including many of the words of the ancient prophets and some of the words that Jehovah spoke when He performed His work. So everyone sees it as a ‘holy’ book (because God is great and holy). Of course, this arises from man’s reverence for Jehovah and his adoration of God. Man calls the Bible a holy book, simply because he, a created being, is filled with reverence and adoration for the Creator, and some even call it a ‘heavenly book.’ In truth, the Bible is only a record written by man, was not named by Jehovah Himself or produced under His direction; that is to say, the Bible’s author is not ‘God,’ but ‘man.’ It is called the ‘Holy’ Bible, which is only a respectful title man gives to it. Jesus and Jehovah did not confer with each other and then decide to call it that; the idea came just from man. For it was not written by Jehovah, much less by Jesus, but rather by many prophets of old, apostles, and foretellers, whose writings were assembled by later generations into a book that was ancient and was seen as very holy, and as containing many unfathomable and profound mysteries to be unraveled by generations to come. So people came to further regard the Bible as a ‘heavenly book,’ and with the Four Gospels and the Revelation of the New Testament added in, people began to see it, to an even greater degree, as a book different from any other. Thus no one dared dissect this ‘heavenly book’ because it was too ‘holy.’
“Although the Bible is a history book written by human beings, it records the principles by which many of the ancient saints and prophets served God, as well as the apostles’ experiences of serving Him in more recent times, which are real seeing and knowledge that can serve as a reference for people seeking the true way in the present age. So, one can find many ways of life in the Bible that cannot be found in other books. Because they are all the ways of life given to generations of prophets and apostles through their experience of the Holy Spirit’s work, and because much of this language is of great value to people and gives them necessary sustenance, it is a book that everyone is eager to read. And because there are so many secrets hidden in the Bible, people regard it differently than they do any other writing by great spiritual men. By recording the experiences and knowledge of those who served Jehovah and Jesus in the old and new ages, the Bible has given much inspiration, illumination, and many ways of practice to later generations. The reason that the Bible surpasses the writings of other great spiritual men is that their writings all draw their material from the Bible, and their experiences all stem from the Bible and are directed toward interpreting it. So even though people could draw sustenance from the books of any great spiritual man, they still worship the Bible, for they regard it as ever so lofty and profound. Some books of the Bible, like the letters of Peter and Paul, carry the word of life and can be a source of help and sustenance. But nevertheless they are out of date; they are writings of a past age. No matter how good they are, they are applicable only to one period of time, and will not last forever. For God’s work is always moving forward, it is not frozen in time at the age of Paul and Peter, will not remain forever fixed at the Age of Grace in which Jesus was crucified. So, these books are applicable only to the Age of Grace, not to the final Age of Kingdom; they were able to provide sustenance only to believers in the Age of Grace, and cannot do the same for the saints of the Age of Kingdom. No matter how good these books may be, they are obsolete now. It is the same with Jehovah’s creation of the world and His work in Israel; no matter how good the work was, there would come a time when it was no longer applicable, when it became a thing of the past. It is also the same with God’s work; no matter how good it is, it will eventually come to an end, and cannot remain frozen forever at His creation or His crucifixion. No matter how persuasive His crucifixion was, no matter how effective it was at defeating Satan, work is work, and the times are the times; the work must progress past its foundation, and times must change. For just as surely as the world was created, it will come to an end—this is inevitable. So taken in the context of today, the ‘word of life’ contained in the New Testament, the Four Gospels and the Letters of the Apostles, is just a history book, a stack of yellowed pages. How can a stack of yellowed pages lead mankind into a new era? No matter how able they were to give life, no matter how able they were to bring mankind before the cross, are they not still a thing of the past? Are they not worthless today, then? So I say to you, you must no longer put blind faith in yellowed pages—they are too ‘old,’ they cannot lead you into the new work, they will only be an encumbrance to you. Not only will they not bring you into the new work, into the new entering, but they will lead you back into the old religious temple. For you who believe in God, is this not a step backward?”
After reading, I know that the Bible is a history book written by human beings, which records the two stages of work God did. The Old Testament describes Jehovah’s work in the Age of Law, while the New Testament describes Jesus’ work in the Age of Grace. Through the Bible, man can know God’s work, and draw sustenance from God’s deeds, God’s word, and former apostles’ and prophets’ experiences of serving God. This is the reason why the Bible can influence many social fields. However, no matter how holy the Bible is, it can provide sustenance only to people at that time, and cannot provide life for people of present day. So, when God carries out a new work, only if man keeps pace with God’s newest work can they receive the new sustenance of God. Now, the entire religious world is in the situation of committing sins in the day and confessing them in the evening, and the Bible can no longer give people what they need in life. And it is necessary for man to lay aside the Bible and accept the truth expressed by Almighty God in the last days, which is recorded in the book “The Word Appears in the Flesh.” The book is filled with the word of life Almighty God expresses to judge and purify people according to what they need in the last days, and is the only path by which people shall be saved and know God. Just as Almighty God says, “ of the last days brings life, and brings the enduring and everlasting way of truth. This truth is the path through which man shall gain life, and the only path by which man shall know God and be approved by God.” If man can’t treat the Bible properly, stop blindly worshipping the Bible, or accept the word of truth uttered from Almighty God’s mouth, he will miss the opportunity to be perfected by God. Would that not be a great pity?
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