The sailors were frightened. There had been a terrible storm and some of their friends had drowned. They were lost and many unanswered questions troubled them. Where were they going? How long would this trip last? Would they ever find their way home?
It was 1492 and the captain of these men, Christopher Columbus, could not answer their questions. He had taken them on an uncharted course across the Atlantic Ocean, looking for India. Instead, he found an island in the Americas. There he and his sailors found fresh water and their lives were saved.
A similar story would not likely be repeated today. With accurate charts and maps to direct their course, ship captains need not lose their way.
Though still on land, many people feel as if they are lost on a storm-tossed ocean. They are asking themselves questions. Where am I going? Am I lost? Will I ever find the right way? God has heard our questions and He has already given us a Book to guide our lives.
Before searching for the answers, let’s look together at the great Book. We will see how it was written and how it was given to us.
The Purpose of the Bible
Perhaps you noticed what may seem to be a contradiction in the first part of this lesson. It says that God gave us the Bible, but it also says that men wrote it. How can this be?
The forty men who wrote the Bible were divinely inspired. This means that the Holy Spirit put in the authors’ minds the thoughts that God wanted them to write. Second Timothy 3:16 says, “All Scripture is inspired by God.” This verse also tells why the Bible was given for teaching,
rebuking, correcting, and giving instruction.
God has given us instructions for right living because He desires our highest good. He knows that when we do not live according to His principles we hurt ourselves. Our minds, our bodies, and especially our spirits suffer. The best way to avoid hurting ourselves is to follow His Word closely. Through it we get to know Him personally: we understand that His ways are best for us.
Like a chart or a guide book, His Word was written for us to turn to for help and strength. How wonderful that we can have His personal instructions to us always at our side!