Will this book stand the test of time?

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 11, 2017

Many people down through the centuries have attempted to do away with the Bible or downplay its significance.   

Sidney Collett in his book All About the Bible writes, “Man cannot destroy the Bible.”  Then he refers to this descriptive quote, “We might as well put our shoulder to the burning wheel of the sun, and try to stop it on its flaming course, as to attempt to stop the circulation of the Bible.’”

There have been those who have tried.  I recently read about how Stalin in the 1930’s ordered a purge of all Bibles and believers.  Reportedly, in Stavropol, Russia, his order was carried out with a vengeance.  Thousands of Bibles were confiscated and multitudes of Christians were sent to prison camps called gulags.

Decades later, a group of missionary organizations working in Russia sent a team to Stavropol.  They were finding it difficult to get Bibles shipped from Moscow when someone told them about a warehouse outside of town where the confiscated Bible had been stores.

After much prayer, the mission group asked officials if the Bibles were still there.  They were, so they asked if the Bibles could be distri-buted to the people of Stav-ropol and they were granted permiss-ion.

The next day the mission group returned to the warehouse with a truck.  They hired several Russian people to help load the Bibles. One young men helping move the Bibles was described as a skeptical, agnostic student who had come only to earn the money.

A member of the mission group noticed the young man had disappeared.  Searching the warehouse, they found in a corner.  He had slipped away from the other workers to quietly take a Bible for himself.  Out of all the Bibles in the warehouse, he stole one that had belonged to his grandmother, who had been persecuted for her faith.  He wept when he saw her handwritten signature on the inside page of the Bible. This agnostic student was transformed by the very Bible that belonged to his grandmother.

I recall my father mentioning in a sermon about French philosopher Voltaire, a skeptic who once boasted that within 100 years of his death, the Bible would disappear from the face of the earth. Voltaire died in 1728.  Ironically, some 50 years after his death, the Geneva Bible Society moved into his former house and used his printing presses to print thousands of Bibles.

Isaiah 40:8 says, “The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever.”  The Bible is still the number one book of all time.

Chuck Colson once said, “The Bible – banned, burned, beloved.  More widely read, more frequently attacked than any other book in history.  Generations of intellectuals have attempted to discredit it; dictators of every age have outlawed it and executed those who read it. Yet soldiers carry it into battle believing it is more powerful than their weapons. Fragments of it smuggled into solitary prison cells have transformed ruthless killers into gentle saints.”

God’s Word is Truth and it will stand the test of time.

– Jan White is an award-winning columnist. She can be reached at jwhite@andycable.com.