Letters to a Christian
1) WHERE IN THE BIBLE DOES IT SAY THAT THE BIBLE
IS ALL WE NEED OR THAT JESUS IS THE LAST PROPHET (MESSAGE/WORD/ETC) THAT
GOD IS SENDING? IN OTHER WORDS, HOW DO WE KNOW THE MUSLIMS OR MORMONS AREN'T
2) DID ALL THE AUTHORS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT KNOW
JESUS PERSONALLY OR DID THEY GET THEIR INFORMATION FROM SOMEONE ELSE?
Thanks for asking.
Concerning your first set of questions, we know that Muslims and Mormons
are not right because their beliefs contradict what the Bible says. The
Muslim holy book, the Koran, states that Jesus is not the Son of God, whereas
the Bible, indeed Jesus himself, states that he is. And so also the Bible
says, "No one who denies the Son has the Father;
whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also." 1John
2:23 For more on a comparison of Islam and the Bible see: http://www.bcbsr.com/topics/islam.html
As for Mormons I have a list of their beliefs at http://www.bcbsr.com/topics/mormon.html
Though basically polytheists, they don't really even believe in the deity
of God the Father, of whom they say, "Father has a body of flesh and bones
as tangible as man's." Their concept of the nature of these gods is similar
to that of the gods of Greek mythology. Their doctrine of salvation is
one of works stating, that salvation is "by obedience to the laws and ordinances
of the gospel." They have neither a Biblical perspective on the nature
of God, of Jesus Christ, nor of the plan of salvation.
Now concerning the completeness of God's revelation and Jesus being
the final messenger, we note it says, "In the
past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and
in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son,
whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe."
Hebrews 1:1,2 Notice the change from prophets to God's Son,
and that it speaks of the "last days". Thus God's revelation is completed
in Jesus Christ. Granted that he also spoke through his chosen apostles,
but there will have been only 12 of them in the last days which he chose,
whom are all accounted for in the Bible - Paul replacing Judas. For the
last book in the Bible says speaking of the New Jerusalsem, "The
wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of
the twelve apostles of the Lamb." Revelation 21:14
Another interesting note concerning Islam on this point. The Muslims
will try to apply a verse in the Bible to their prophet Mohammed to say
he is the prophet foretold, whereas the Bible applies the verse to Jesus
Christ. Deuteronomy 18:15 says, "The
LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own
brothers. You must listen to him." The
Bible applies this to Jesus Christ in Acts 3:22 And thus again Islam
contradicts the Bible.
Secondly is the fact that we need nothing else to be revealed to be
saved. "His divine power has given us everything
we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called
us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very
great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in
the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil
desires." 2Peter 1:3,4 Granted that we must try to derived
applications. But these are derived from what has already been written.
Now in your second categorical question you ask, "DID ALL THE AUTHORS
OF THE NEW TESTAMENT KNOW JESUS PERSONALLY OR DID THEY GET THEIR INFORMATION
FROM SOMEONE ELSE?"
They either knew him personally, such as the twelve apostles, or testimony
was taken from eyewitness accounts. Luke for example probably hadn't met
Jesus personally, but notice his introductions to Luke:
Luke 1:1-4 "Many have undertaken to draw
up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as
they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses
and servants of the word. Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated
everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly
account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty
of the things you have been taught."
Peter was an eyewitness, being one of Jesus' apostles. He writes, "we
did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power
and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty."
Paul also writes, "I want you to know,
brothers, that the gospel I preached is not something that man made up.
I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received
it by revelation from Jesus Christ." Galatians 1:11
The Berean Christian Bible Study