What Is The Oldest Known Alphabet
Phoenician alphabetThe Phoenician alphabet is an alphabet known in modern times from the Canaanite and Aramaic inscriptions found across the Mediterranean region.Phoenician alphabet.Phoenician scriptLanguagesPhoenician, PunicRelated scriptsParent systemsEgyptian hieroglyphs Proto-Sinaitic Phoenician script12 more rows
Who Was Jesus Did He Really Exist
Most scholars agree that Jesus, a first-century religious leader and preacher, existed historically. He was born in c4 BC and died reportedly crucified on the orders of the Roman prefect Pontius Pilate in cAD 3033. Then, for around 40 years, news of his teachings was spread by word of mouth until, from around AD 70, four written accounts of his life emerged that changed everything.
The gospels, or good news, of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are critically important to the Christian faith. It is their descriptions of the life of Jesus Christ that have made him arguably the most influential figure in human history.
We cant be sure when the gospels were written, says Barton, and we know little about the authors. But the guess is that Mark came first, in the 70s, followed by Matthew and Luke in the 80s and 90s, and John in the 90s or early in the second century.
In general, Matthew, Mark and Luke tell the same story with variations, and hence are called the synoptic gospels, whereas John has a very different style, as well as telling a markedly different version of the story of Jesus. Matthew and Luke seem to be attempts to improve on Mark, by adding more stories and sayings from sources now lost. John is a different conceptualisation of the story of Jesus, portraying a more obviously divine figure.
New Testament: Who Wrote The Gospels
Just as the Old Testament chronicles the story of the Israelites in the millennium or so leading up to the birth of Jesus Christ, the New Testament records Jesuss life, from his birth and teachings to his death and later resurrection, a narrative that forms the fundamental basis of Christianity. Beginning around 70 A.D., about four decades after Jesuss crucifixion , four anonymously written chronicles of his life emerged that would become central documents in the Christian faith. Named for Jesuss most devoted earthly disciples, or apostlesMatthew, Mark, Luke and Johnthe four canonical Gospels were traditionally thought to be eyewitness accounts of Jesuss life, death and resurrection.
12th-13th century depiction of evangelists Luke and Matthew writing the Gospels.
But for more than a century, scholars have generally agreed that the Gospels, like many of the books of the New Testament, were not actually written by the people to whom they are attributed. In fact, it seems clear that the stories that form the basis of Christianity were first communicated orally, and passed down from generation to generation, before they were collected and written down.
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Archaeological And Historical Research
Biblical archaeology is the archaeology that relates to and sheds light upon the Hebrew Scriptures and the Christian Greek Scriptures . It is used to help determine the lifestyle and practices of people living in biblical times. There are a wide range of interpretations in the field of biblical archaeology. One broad division includes biblical maximalism which generally takes the view that most of the Old Testament or the Hebrew Bible is based on history although it is presented through the religious viewpoint of its time. It is considered to be the opposite of biblical minimalism which considers the Bible to be a purely post-exilic composition. Even among those scholars who adhere to biblical minimalism, the Bible is a historical document containing first-hand information on the Hellenistic and Roman eras, and there is universal scholarly consensus that the events of the 6th century BCE Babylonian captivity have a basis in history.
Who Is A Jew
According to , a Jew is anyone who was either born of a Jewish mother or who in accordance with . and the larger denominations of worldwide accept the child as Jewish if one of the parents is Jewish, if the parents raise the child with a Jewish identity, but not the smaller regional branches. All mainstream forms of Judaism today are open to sincere converts, although conversion has traditionally been discouraged since the time of the Talmud. The conversion process is evaluated by an authority, and the convert is examined on his or her sincerity and knowledge. Converts are called “ben Abraham” or “bat Abraham”, . Conversions have on occasion been overturned. In 2008, Israel’s highest religious court invalidated the conversion of 40,000 Jews, mostly from Russian immigrant families, even though they had been approved by an Orthodox rabbi.
believes that Jewish identity can only be transmitted by patrilineal descent. Although a minority of modern Karaites believe that Jewish identity requires that both parents be Jewish, and not only the father. They argue that only patrilineal descent can transmit Jewish identity on the grounds that all descent in the Torah went according to the male line.
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General Outline And Major Themes
In its general framework, the Hebrew Bible is the account of Gods dealing with the Jews as his chosen people, who collectively called themselves Israel. After an account of the worlds creation by God and the emergence of human civilization, the first six books narrate not only the history but the genealogy of the people of Israel to the conquest and settlement of the Promised Land under the terms of Gods covenant with Abraham, whom God promised to make the progenitor of a great nation. This covenant was subsequently renewed by Abrahams son Isaac and grandson Jacob and centuries later by Moses . The following seven books continue their story in the Promised Land, describing the peoples constant apostasy and breaking of the covenant, the establishment and development of the monarchy in order to counter this, and the warnings by the prophets both of impending divine punishment and exile and of Israels need to repent. The last 11 books contain poetry, theology, and some additional history.
The Hebrew Bibles profoundly monotheistic interpretation of human life and the universe as creations of God provides the basic structure of ideas that gave rise not only to Judaism and Christianity but also to Islam, which emerged from Jewish and Christian tradition and which views Abraham as a patriarch .
How Old Is The Oldest Alphabet
3,500 yearsLETTER STONE Inscriptions in stone slabs from Egypt, including this specimen dating to almost 3,500 years ago, contain the worlds oldest alphabet, which one researcher now argues was an early form of Hebrew. New translations of these inscriptions contain references to figures from the Bible, including Moses.
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Old Testament: The Single Author Theory
The Old Testament, or Hebrew Bible, narrates the history of the people of Israel over about a millennium, beginning with Gods creation of the world and humankind, and contains the stories, laws and moral lessons that form the basis of religious life for both Jews and Christians. For at least 1,000 years, both Jewish and Christian tradition held that a single author wrote the first five books of the BibleGenesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomywhich together are known as the Torah and the Pentateuch . That single author was believed to be Moses, the Hebrew prophet who led the Israelites out of captivity in Egypt and guided them across the Red Sea toward the Promised Land.
Yet nearly from the beginning, readers of the Bible observed that there were things in the so-called Five Books of Moses that Moses himself could not possibly have witnessed: His own death, for example, occurs near the end of Deuteronomy. A volume of the Talmud, the collection of Jewish laws recorded between the 3rd and 5th centuries A.D., dealt with this inconsistency by explaining that Joshua likely wrote the verses about Moses death.
Rembrandt van Rijn, painting of Moses Breaking the Tablets of the Law, 1659.
That’s one opinion among many, says Joel Baden, a professor at Yale Divinity School and author of The Composition of the Pentateuch: Renewing the Documentary Hypothesis. But they’re already asking the questionwas it possible or not possible for to have written them?
When Was The Hebrew Bible Written
Earlier than previously thought, say Tel Aviv University researchers
Was the Hebrew Bible written earlier than previously thought? Thats what a 2016 study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests. The study was led by Tel Aviv University doctoral students Shira Faigenbaum-Golovina, Arie Shausa and Barak Sober.
The TAU researchers analyzed multi-spectral images of 16 Hebrew inscriptions, which were written in ink on ostraca , using a computer software program they developed. The ostraca, which date to 600 B.C.E., according to the researchers, were excavated from the Judahite fortress at Arad in southern Israel.
When was the Hebrew Bible written? Ostraca with Hebrew inscriptions excavated from the Iron Age fortress at Arad in Israel may provide clues, say researchers from Tel Aviv University.
The researchers say they were able to identify at least six different handwriting styles on the inscriptions, which contained instructions for the movement of troops and lists of food expenses. A TAU press release notes that the tone and nature of the commands precluded the role of professional scribes.
The results indicate that in this remote fort, literacy had spread throughout the military hierarchy, down to the quartermaster and probably even below that rank, state Faigenbaum-Golovina, Shausa and Sober in their paper.
So when was the Hebrew Bible written? What does literacy in the Iron Age have to do with it?
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Summary Descriptions Of Versions Of The Bible
See also:Indexes to Books of the Bible
This page is intended to describe briefly the versions of the Bible included in the tables that complete this document. As well as theoriginal Hebrew and Greek texts, there have been many translations of the Bible. Many languages, such as English, have many versions, aswell as a long history of translations. This page, however, is intended to provide a brief history and description of only the versions coveredin the accompanying tables: the Authorized Version , the Hebrew text, the Septuagint, the Greek NewTestament, the Latin Vulgate and the Douai-Rheims.
- The Greek translation of the Hebrew scriptures made for the Greek-speaking Jews of Alexandria, ca. 3rd centuryB.C. Alexandria had a large Jewish population whose primary language was Greek.
A legend contained in the Letter of Aristeas claimed thatPtolemy Philadelphus commissioned a translation to be made into Greek by six men from each of the twelve tribes of Israel, sent by the highpriest in Jerusalem. These 72 scholars purportedly came up with identical translations. Scholars generally discount the legend, but the name”Septuagint” — from the Latin word for seventy “septuaginta” — became the traditional name for this translation.
TheChristian Church, at first largely speaking Greek, adopted the Septuagint as its “official” version of the Old Testament. Afterwards it wasabandoned by Jews.
Greek Opened The New Testament To Gentiles
When the Bible writers began to pen the gospels and epistles, they abandoned Hebrew and turned to the popular language of their time, koine or common Greek. Greek was a unifying tongue, spread during the conquests of Alexander the Great, whose desire was to Hellenize or spread Greek culture throughout the world. Alexanderâs empire covered the Mediterranean, northern Africa, and parts of India, so the use of Greek became predominant.
Greek was easier to speak and write than Hebrew because it used a complete alphabet, including vowels. It also had a rich vocabulary, allowing for precise shades of meaning. An example is Greekâs four different words for love used in the Bible.
An added benefit was that Greek opened the New Testament to Gentiles, or non-Jews. This was extremely important in evangelism because Greek allowed Gentiles to read and understand the gospels and epistles for themselves.
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How Did Christianity Spread Around The World
The Epistles, or letters, written by Paul the Apostle to churches dotted across the Mediterranean world which are our best source for the initial spread of Christianity confirm that Christianity started in Jerusalem, but spread rapidly to Syria and then to the rest of the Mediterranean world, and was mostly accepted by non-Jews, says John Barton, former professor of the interpretation of holy scriptures at the University of Oxford.
The epistles are our earliest evidence for Christianity, says Barton. The first date from the AD 50s, just two decades after the death of Jesus.
As Pauls letters to churches such as the one in the Greek city of Thessalonica reveal, the first Christian communities were often persecuted for their beliefs.
And its such persecution, particularly at the hands of the Romans, that may have inspired the last book of the New Testament, Revelations. With its dark descriptions of a seven-headed beast and allusions to an imminent apocalypse, Revelations is now widely believed to be a foretelling of the grisly fate that the author believed awaited the Roman oppressors of Christianity.
Versions of the Bible
Different editions of the Bible have appeared over the centuries, aiming to further popularise the stories and teachings within. Here are three of the most notable versions
King James Bible
The Gutenberg Bible
Dead Sea Scrolls
Assyrian Church Of The East
The , with an unbroken patriarchate established in the 17th century, is an independent denomination which claims continuity from the âin parallel to the Catholic patriarchate established in the 16th century that evolved into the , an church in with the . It is an Eastern Christian that follows the traditional and of the historical Church of the East. Largely and not in with any other church, it belongs to the eastern branch of , and uses the in its .
Its main spoken language is , a dialect of , and the majority of its adherents are ethnic . It is officially headquartered in the city of in northern , and its original area also spreads into south-eastern Turkey and north-western Iran, corresponding to ancient . Its hierarchy is composed of and , while lower clergy consists of and , who serve in dioceses and parishes throughout the Middle East, India, North America, Oceania, and Europe .
The distinguished itself from the in 1964. It is one of the churches that claim continuity with the historical âthe Church of the East, one of the oldest Christian churches in Mesopotamia.
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Judaism And Other Religions
was originally a sect of , but the two religions . The differences between Christianity and Judaism originally centered on whether Jesus was the Jewish Messiah but eventually became irreconcilable. Major differences between the two faiths include the nature of the Messiah, of and , the status of God’s commandments to Israel, and perhaps most significantly of the himself. Due to these differences, Judaism traditionally regards Christianity as or worship of the God of Israel which is not monotheistic. Christianity has traditionally regarded Judaism as obsolete with the invention of Christianity and Jews as a people replaced by the Church, though a Christian belief in emerged as a phenomenon following Christian reflection on how their theology influenced the Nazi .
Since the time of the , the upheld the , which stated
We decree that no Christian shall use violence to force them to be baptized, so long as they are unwilling and refuse.Without the judgment of the political authority of the land, no Christian shall presume to wound them or kill them or rob them of their money or change the good customs that they have thus far enjoyed in the place where they live.”
The Magical Writing Of Priests And Kings
In ancient Palestine, writing was a restricted and expensive technology. Writing was controlled by the government and manipulated by the priests. Writing was seen as a gift from the gods. It was not used to canonize religious practice, but rather to engender religious awe. Writing was magical. It was powerful. It was the guarded knowledge of political and religious elites.
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Who Decided What Books The Hebrew Bible Would Contain
The canonization of the Hebrew Bible into its final 24 books was a process that lasted centuries, and was only completed well after the time of Josephus
The Hebrew Bible is a collection of 24 ancient Hebrew books considered holy by adherents to the Jewish faith. But how did this collection come about? Who decided which books would be included, and which wouldnt be, and when did this happen?
This process, known as canonization, did not take place at once, or at some great council meeting. It was a protracted process that took place in stages. These stages correspond to the three major sections of the Bible, and during them, the holiness of at least some of the texts was fiercely disputed.
The first stage saw the creation of the collection called The Torah , with its five books. Only later was the second section, the Prophets with its eight books, created. And only then was the third section, the Writings, created too, resulting in the Hebrew Bible we know today, with its 24 books.
The Torah: Taking shape over centuries
The Torah consists of five books: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
Genesis describes the creation of the world and the ensuing history until the sons of Jacob go down to Egypt .
and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded to Israel.
Did the Prophets see Alexander coming
The age of Prophets ends
And now a word from Josephus