Why a Book?
Think about this for a moment, If you were going to record your life events for your descendants, and you wanted those events to last over thousands of years, How would you record those events?
Would you use your computer to write out the information? Or maybe a typewriter, A hand written journal, or maybe you would put it in video format on dvd, or some other kind of storage media. It sounds good, really, but how long would they really last? 10 years, 20? 50? 100?
Recently a tech web site stated:
USB flash drives aren’t a great option for archiving. Drive manufacturer Flashbay has said that data retention could theoretically be in the region of 60 to 80 years, if stored in a perfect environment. In reality, it is far lower.
...All this means that SSDs are a great choice for day-to-day storage over HDDs, so long as performance is bigger priority than capacity, given the relatively higher price of a solid state drive.
An SSD is not a good option for long-term storage, though.
...Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean that a hard drive is a reliable long-term storage device.
While estimations predict a life time of up to 200 years for optical discs, we can never be sure when they are really going to break.
Now with all of this said storage manufacturers always recommend that the users of their products go back on a regular basis and copy the data on their drives to new media, because those items can fail without warning!
As we all know paper is not forever either, But ancient people had a long term method of recording information, Stone. But even stone is not forever, Although it is probably the longest lived form of data storage!
But since stone is not exactly the most convenient form, historically the next long lived, is some form of paper, papyrus, or even animal skins. A lot could be said in all of this about the many and varied ways of storage. But suffice to say that the great works of history, have been passed down in book form for millennia. Periodically being reprinted, and copied to preserve the work in new media. This is the form that God chose to pass on His instructions, plans, teaching, and guidance to mankind. We know it as the Bible.
Isa 30:8 ¶ Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever:
Ex 17:14 And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.
Jer 30:2 Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book.
Jer 51:60 So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written against Babylon.
Re 1:11 Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.
So you might think why doesn't God just show himself, and come speak to us in person? Why use a book?
How often in our society, we have some new thing that comes along, or some new and exciting person, and they are seen in the headlines day after day, for a long time, but then after a while they begin to fade from the public view. One reason for this, is the excitement wears off, people get tired of seeing the same face, hearing the same voice.
If God appeared in your living room every time you turned around, I think you would get a little bit tired of it. Have you had someone that you like show up on your doorstep a little bit too often?
God is not going to force anything on anyone, He has laid out his purpose and plan, put it into a book, and left it up to us to accept it, read it, study it, and live by it. He will, in the mean time, observe, to see who will follow him, who will trust in him, and he will assist those to obey his instructions for our lives.
God demanded from the very beginning that his Words be preserved in the format he had his chosen, then his chosen writer could record them.
De 4:2 Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.
This was not by accident this was by design. God knew that one day men would question the validity of his written Word. And he placed certain criteria for those men that followed from one generation to the next, to preserve its accuracy.
De 12:32 What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.
Pr 30:6 Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.
Re 22:18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.
Great lengths through the generations have been taken to preserve the written words of God, to be sure of their accuracy. Just as it is important today to backup and copy our data, God’s written word had to be copied over and over again, but it was through painstaking attention to detail that is was done.
Today the accuracy can be verified with ancient copies that have been discovered, ( the dead sea scrolls are just one example) which have followed word for word with modern day examples. Through the years men have labored to preserve that accuracy. (This is why I promote the use of the King James version of the Bible,) because so many learned scholars of the day, who took time to read, translate, check, crosscheck, critique, and then check again the translation into English. To be sure it was pure, and a perfect copy. And in those instances where no English version of a Word that was in the earlier Greek or Hebrew versions was found, these translators placed the closest English version of the word, that most closely conveyed the concept or thought presented, and was placed in italics, so that the reader was fully aware that the word was not in the original documents. No other modern translation in this day or age, has taken such measures to clarify for the reader the honesty of the translation.)
No other ancient literary work has been treated in this manner, the works of Plato, or Pliny, Socrates, or any one of the thousands of authors and books that have come down from antiquity, God’s word has been given more detailed attention then any other throughout the years.
So this is just one example of why God would choose a book, But you might be asking yourself…