Well it was February of 1969 on a rainy Sunday when I showed up at Grace Church in my late twenties with no idea of what the future held. As I said, there were a couple of things in my mind. One was to teach the Scripture verse-by-verse and the other was to train men. God has brought to a fruition of some kind, anyway, both of those desires in ways that are way beyond anything I ever imagined.
I was prepared to teach the Bible seriously, but joyfully. I was prepared to teach it verse- by- verse, word-by-word, phrase-by-phrase and letter-by-letter, if necessary, because I was compelled on one great foundation, by one great motivation. I believe…I believed it then, I believe it now…that when I held a Bible in my hands, I actually held THE living Word of God. I believe that. I have always believed that. And my faith in the accuracy and integrity of Scripture is stronger every passage of my life.
I suppose I could have started out at Grace Church by doing a rather long defense of the Scripture. I didn’t do that. I didn’t do that because I didn’t need to do that. The Scripture will defend itself. It is its own defense. It’s like a lion, you just open the cage and let it out.
I don’t need to tell you this is the living Word of God, you know it is. There is no other explanation for it when you really dig down. It is so obviously divine. I’m really building on the work of others. I’m kind of the last guy in the process. My task has been to tell you what the Bible means. That’s really the end of the process. Before I can do that, I have to have the Bible. And before I can say this is the Word of God, and you can see that it is the Word of God, it has to be the Word of God....