The Bible is difficult to defend in a brief exchange because it is a complex book whose image in the nonbelieving world has been shaped much more by hearsay than by firsthand inspection. Many believe that it is not inspired by God but originated with man. How motivated would you be to read a book if the typical labels that described it were “outdated,” “error-filled,” and “legend”? These descriptions reflect a strident secularism in our society. Secularism is the belief that there is nothing eternal or sacred, therefore, man’s ideas are governed by the here and now
The popular culture’s skepticism of the Bible is reinforced by a stable of nonbelieving experts cited by the media. But how many experts who claim Christ as their Savior are consulted by the media to explain the Bible? Very few. That is why we need to revive the Bible’s relevance and make it compelling again.
We should acknowledge that the Bible makes amazing claims but that this is to be expected from any book that professes to be the Word of God. The question is, what evidence is consistent with this claim? We should make it clear to the skeptic that we don’t believe just because “the Bible says so,” but because its authenticity is consistent with history and its accurate, extensive, and vivid depiction of the human condition.
Finally, we can encourage the skeptic to not only take our word, but to read the Bible for themselves (we should suggest places to start). Admit that it’s okay to be skeptical of the Bible, but emphasize that one should read it with the same trust and scrutiny as one reads any other book.