Paul wrote to Timothy, "For the time is coming when people will not put up with sound doctrine, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own desires" (2 Timothy 4:3, NRSV). Judging from the recent trend to redefine and/or discredit important Bible truths, it would seem that this assessment is especially valid today in the Western world.
One recent example is a National Geographic channel "Science of the Bible" program seeking to explain how the Red Sea opened as recorded in Exodus 14.
The first "expert" claimed that it resulted from a strong wind blowing over an alleged land bridge, which he illustrated with a scale model land bridge and a leaf blower. Another claimed that the Israelites escaped through the trough of a tsunami. Yet another suggested that they walked on an "unstable lava bridge" caused by a volcano.
In all three cases the timing was conveniently precise—just in time for the Israelites to walk to safety before the waters closed in on their Egyptian pursuers. How convenient! Of course the longstanding Sea of Reeds explanation was also offered, alleging that the water was shallow enough to wade across.
A final "authority" smugly implied that, due to lack of archeological evidence, the Exodus itself never happened. Another preposterous hypothesis alleged that moldy grain had caused the death of the Egyptians' firstborn sons.
The approach of the "Science of the Bible" programs is to explain the "miracles" of the Bible as naturalistic scientific events rather than miraculous phenomena of divine intervention. The absurdity of those explanations is tragically humorous.
Perhaps the most ludicrous example of this trend was a recent newspaper article suggesting that Jesus "walked on water" on chunks of ice. So apparently the miracle was that the disciples' boat was not impaired by the ice.
The recent excitement over the Gospel of Judas appears to pose yet another challenge to Bible teachings. Some are apparently ready to scrap the Bible's account of Judas in favor of this Gnostic version. Yet this is one document against some five thousand New Testament manuscripts.
Of course there is also the ongoing controversy of Intelligent Design vs. evolution and the widespread popularity of the highly fictional Da Vinci Code.
What is behind this trend? The Bible says that man is unable of himself to properly process spiritual truth. "The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Corinthians 2:14, NIV).
Also, human nature poses a fundamental roadblock to understanding the truths of God (Romans 8:7). Peter warns that, "…scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts (2 Peter 3:3-6).
Paul writes, "… in the last days … people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God…. They will consider nothing sacred. They will … have no interest in what is good. They will … be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God" (2 Timothy 3:1-3, NLT).
The failure of religion in the latter days has allowed unbiblical and anti-biblical claims to gain acceptance. "They will act as if they are religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly" (2 Timothy 3:5, NLT).
Sadly, even some theologians discount the power of God. I listened with incredulity to a well-known theologian and author state categorically in a PBS interview that the disciples had "some kind of spiritual experience," but Jesus was not literally resurrected.
This conclusion removes the foundation of the gospel and discounts power of God! 1 Corinthians 15:17 (NLT) tells us that, "…if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is useless, and you are still under condemnation for your sins." Psalm 10:4 observes, "The wicked in his proud countenance does not seek God; God is in none of his thoughts."
The thought of an all-powerful, miracle-working God may be absent from the minds of many. And scoffing at the Bible as His inspired word may be the popular trend. But solid evidence is available that soundly refutes both beliefs.
That evidence is yours free for the asking. Just request, read online or download now your copies of our very well researched booklets: Life's Ultimate Question: Does God Exist? and Is the Bible True?