“Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” (2 Peter 1:20-21)
The Bible itself claims to be the divinely inspired Word of God. That is, God spoke and men recorded as the Bible. The Bible claims to be inerrant and absolutely truthful.
Jesus said,“Your [God’s]word is truth” (John 17:17).
“All your [God’s] words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal” (Psalm 119:160).
The Apostle Peter, who was a disciple of Jesus and an eyewitness of his many miracles, his transfiguration (where Jesus revealed the glory of his divinity (Matthew 17:1-9)) and his resurrection, says the following:
“We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty [at the transfiguration]. For he received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, ‘This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.’ We ourselves heard this voice that came from heaven when we were with him on the sacred mountain.
And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:16-21)
In this passage, Peter is making a few points. First, the Bible is not cleverly invented stories. Why not? Because it is confirmed by eyewitnesses, such as himself, who bear testimony to the truth of God. Peter was an eyewitness of Jesus not only for three constant years as his disciple, but he was also an eyewitness when Jesus revealed his divinity. Peter went through an excruciating martyrdom (being crucified upside down) as he maintained this testimony. He was tortured and killed for what he knew to be the truth.
In addition, Peter says that the word of the prophets are made more certain. In other words, the prophecies within the Bible testify that the Messiah (Jesus) would be divine and that he would do miracles and healings, etc., and Peter’s eyewitnesses accounts of these fulfilled prophecies demonstrate that Bible prophecy is not just vague, wishful thinking, but rather, fulfilled, true prophecy.
Lastly, Peter says that “above all”, we must understand that the Word of God (the Bible) did not originate in man or man’s interpretation. Peter testifies that God’s Holy Spirit spoke to these men as they recorded God’s Word.
To say that the Bible is divinely inspired, inerrant and absolutely truthful is a huge statement for most people to accept. But what is the proof that the Bible is divinely inspired? How do we know that those who penned the Bible did not just record their own ideas or make mistakes?
Just as Peter mentioned, one of the most blatant ways that God himself has chosen to demonstrate to us that the Bible is of divine origin is through Bible prophecy.
In Isaiah 41:21-23 God makes a challenge to all other alleged gods (and those who worship them). He says:
“‘Present your case,’ says the LORD. ‘Set forth your arguments,’ says Jacob’s King. ‘Tell us, you idols, what is going to happen. Tell us what the former things were, so that we may consider them and know their final outcome. Or declare to us the things to come, tell us what the future holds, so we may know that you are gods. Do something, whether good or bad, so that we will be dismayed and filled with fear. But you are less than nothing and your works are utterly worthless; whoever chooses you is detestable.” (Isaiah 41:21-24)
Only God can know the future and declare it to us beforehand. Therefore, in order to demonstrate to us that the Bible is indeed divinely inspired, God filled it with hundreds of prophecies. Then, with 100% accuracy, God fulfilled the events that he declared to us beforehand. Perhaps the most stunning example of this is through the 300+ Messianic prophecies of the Bible, which were all fulfilled by Jesus Christ.
To investigate this subject more, please see:
For more questions and answers about God, please see “Is God Real?”
For more information on the divine inspiration of the Scriptures, please see:
A brief article on the divine inspiration of the Scriptures: