What The Bible Itself Means
Many ancient biblical scrolls dating back thousands of years are still in existence today. From the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls and other ancient fragments of the Bible, we have confidence that the Bible we hold in our hands today is the same Bible that has existed for centuries. The words we read are the same as the words that were given to the original writers. That in itself is astounding. We now have access to the Bible everywhere: in print, on our phones, on our computers, the Word of God continues to be meaningful and so very relevant.
The fact that the Bible itself continues to be such a strong influence in todays world is a testament to its timeless meaning and applications. The King James translators called it that inestimable treasure that excelleth all the riches of the earth. All these years later, this seems to be the most fitting description of what the Bible means.
The Memoirs Of The Apostles Were Considered As Important To The Teaching Of The Church As The Writings Of The Prophets
After Jesus Ascended to heaven, the church would gather to read Scripture together and pray. As the gospels, Pauls letters, and other NT books were written, the church would read those in gatherings as well. Justin Martyr, a Christian apologist, wrote about these gatherings in 150 A.D. By this early date, the memoirs of the apostles were considered as important to the teaching of the church as the writings of the prophets, according to a BibleStudyTools.com article, Who Decided What Went into the Bible?
But over time, some churches didnt like reading Hebrews, and another church didnt like reading Revelation. There were even influencers who completely rejected the OT or tried to add new prophecies. Controversies like these pushed church leaders to question and settle which books were truly inspired by God. They used a set of guidelines to recognize which books belonged in the NT canon. Lifeways article, Establishing the New Testament Canon, talks about three guidelines:
The Story Of Salvation
The central message or theme of the Bible is God’s plan of salvation–his way of providing deliverance from sin and spiritual death through repentance and faith. In the Old Testament, the concept of salvation is rooted in Israel’s deliverance from Egypt in the book of Exodus.
The New Testament reveals the source of salvation: Jesus Christ. By faith in Jesus, the promised Messiah, believers are saved from God’s judgment of sin and its consequence, which is eternal death.
In the Bible, God reveals himself to us. We discover his nature and character, his love, his justice, his forgiveness, and his truth. Many have called the Bible a guidebook for living the Christian faith. Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.”
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The Old Testament Was Finished In 435 Bc
If we date Haggai to 520 B.C., Zechariah to 520518 B.C. , and Malachi around 435 B.C., we have an idea of the approximate dates of the last Old Testament prophets.
Roughly coinciding with this period are the last books of Old Testament historyEzra, Nehemiah, and Esther. Ezra went to Jerusalem in 458 B.C., and Nehemiah was in Jerusalem from 445433 B.C. Esther was written sometime after the death of Xerxes-I in 465 B.C., probably during the reign of Artaxerxes I .
After approximately 435 B.C. there were no additions to the Old Testament canon. The subsequent history of the Jewish people was recorded in other writings, such as the books of the Maccabees, but these writings were not thought worthy to be included with the collections of Gods words from earlier years.
Where Does Purgatory Come From In The Bible
who believe in purgatory interpret passages such as 2 Maccabees 12:4146, 2 Timothy 1:18, Matthew 12:32, Luke 16:1916:26, Luke 23:43, 1 Corinthians 3:113:15 and Hebrews 12:29 as support for prayer for purgatorial souls who are believed to be within an active interim state for the dead undergoing purifying flames ( …
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Who Wrote The Bible: The New Testament
Wikimedia CommonsA depiction of Jesus delivering the Sermon on the Mount.
Finally, the question of who wrote the Bible turns to the texts dealing with Jesus and beyond.
In the second century B.C. with the Greeks still in power, Jerusalem was run by fully Hellenized kings who considered it their mission to erase Jewish identity with full assimilation.
To that end, King Antiochus Epiphanes had a Greek gymnasium built across the street from the Second Temple and made it a legal requirement for Jerusalems men to visit it at least once. The thought of stripping nude in a public place blew the minds of Jerusalems faithful Jews, and they rose in bloody revolt to stop it.
In time, Hellenistic rule fell apart in the area and was replaced by the Romans. It was during this time, early in the first century A.D., that one of the Jews from Nazareth inspired a new religion, one that saw itself as a continuation of Jewish tradition, but with scriptures of its own:
Wikimedia CommonsPaul the Apostle
While the writings attributed to John actually do show some congruity between who wrote the Bible according to tradition and who wrote the Bible according to historical evidence, the question of Biblical authorship remains thorny, complex, and contested.
Where Does The Bible Come From
In response to one of my posts here, I received a comment which says:
Im interested to know where exactly you think the Bible comes from? How do we know these books are in it, and others are not? Who and what is responsible for determining that? Why and how can there be disagreements about this?
This is a fair question, and it is certainly one that I have asked and sought answers to many times in the past both when I was busy being a devout atheist and after I became a believer in Christ. I will make an earnest attempt to answer the above-referenced questions with as much clarity as possible, but keep in mind that I am just a humble pilgrim on my own journey of faith and I am capable of error as much as anyone.
I will endeavor to avoid leading anyone astray, as it is my intention to help you develop and strengthen your own personal relationship with Jesus rather than cause you to stumble on your own path.
The question is actually four questions, and the second and third ones can be answered together in a single response. The question is How do we know these books are in and others are not, and who and what is responsible for determining that?
Different Versions of the Bible
There is no single version of the Bible used universally as the accepted version of Gods word. Many religious denominations use a specific version , while others have their own or some variation of an existing version of the Bible.
Where do I think the Bible comes from?
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The Argument That The Bible Has Changed Has To Go In The Garbage Instantly
When local shepherds discovered the Dead Sea Scrolls in Israel in 1946, archaeologists began investigations and confirmed that these ancient scrolls of paper were Bible manuscripts.
are documents of the OT that had been hidden in jars in the desert, where its dry, where theyre preserved, for two thousand years, Metaxas said. We dont have to guess whether the monks changed it or not, lets just read it. Its letter for letter the same as it is today.
The argument that the Bible has changed has to go in the garbage, instantly. 100 years ago people could make arguments, but now we have archaeological evidence that keeps coming up. They had no evidence that 3,000 years ago there actually was a king in Israel named David now they have archaeological evidence, he said, referring to the discovery of King Davids palace in 2005.
These manuscripts contain material now considered to be part of the Hebrew Bible. Every book is represented among the Dead Sea Scrolls, except the book of Esther. These are the oldest known copies of biblical works, according to The Leon Levy Dead Sea Scrolls Digital Library.
Is The Word ‘bible’ Of Pagan Origin
The word “Bible” is not of pagan origin. “Bible” derives from Byblos, the Greek name of the Phoenician city, Gebal. The Greeks called this city due to its importance in the bublos trade. Because they were made of papyrus, books were called biblia by the Greeks, and from a Christian point of view, the greatest collection of Greek writings is what we call the Bible.
Gebal is a Semitic word that generally means a “line,” as in a line of mountains or a straight coastline. Whatever it described about this city, “Gebal” is not the name of a pagan deity. Anciently, this Phoenician port’s patron deity was named Ba’al Gebal or a Ba’alat Gebal . In either case, “Gebal” is not the pagan god’s/goddess’ proper name but merely denotes his/her place of residence: Gebal. This may be the fact that has led some to leap to the conclusion that “Bible” is a word of pagan origin. However, as above, is a completely different word in a radically different language from Gebal , even though they are both names of the same city.
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The Apocrypha Shouldnt Be Considered Scripture
We must conclude that they are merely human words, not God-breathed words like the words of Scripture:
The Apocryphal books have value for historical and linguistic research, and they contain a number of helpful stories about the courage and faith of many Jews during the period after the Old Testament ends, but they have never been part of the Old Testament canon, and they should not be thought of as part of the Bible. Therefore, they have no binding authority for the thought or life of Christians today.
Many Early Church Fathers Did Not Consider Them Canonical
The earliest Christian list of Old Testament books that exists today is by Melito, bishop of Sardis, writing about A.D. 170:
When I came to the east and reached the place where these things were preached and done, and learnt accurately the books of the Old Testament, I set down the facts and sent them to you. These are their names: five books of Moses, Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, Joshua the son of Nun, Judges, Ruth, four books of Kingdoms, two books of Chronicles, the Psalms of David, the Proverbs of Solomon and his Wisdom, Ecclesiastes, the Song of Songs, Job, the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, the Twelve in a single book, Daniel, Ezekiel, Ezra.
Melito names none of the books of the Apocrypha, but he includes all of our present Old Testament books except Esther. Eusebius also quotes Origen as affirming most of the books of our present Old Testament canon , but no book of the Apocrypha is affirmed as canonical, and the books of Maccabees are explicitly said to be outside of these
Other early church leaders did
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Brief Synopsis & Commentary
The book of Genesis, the first book of the Old Testament, tells the story of the creation of the universe, the world, and humanity, the fall of man in the Garden of Eden, and the great flood which God sent on the world because of the evil of mankind. Following the flood, Noah‘s children repopulate the earth and the narrative then follows the stories of his descendents who are the Hebrew ancestors of the men who wrote the stories. The tale of Joseph and his coat of many colors brings the Hebrews from their land of Canaan to Egypt where, the Book of Exodus explains, they became slaves.
They were led from Egypt to freedom by the great lawgiver Moses who then passed his leadership to his second-in-command Joshua son of Nun whose army lay waste to the region of Canaan so the Hebrews could claim it as the land promised to them by their God . Following the establishment of the people who called themselves Israelites in the land, famous kings such as David and his son Solomon ruled and great prophets such as Jeremiah and Isaiah, Ezekial and Jonah preached the will of their God.
The Formation Of The Bible Began With The 10 Commandments
The earliest collection of written words from God was the Ten Commandments. The Ten Commandments form the beginning of the biblical canon. God himself wrote on two tablets of stone the words which he commanded his people:
And he gave to Moses, when he had made an end of speaking with him upon Mount Sinai, the two tables of the testimony, tables of stone, . Again we read, And the tables were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, graven upon the tables . The tablets were deposited in the ark of the covenant and constituted the terms of the covenant between God and his people.
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Where Does The Word Easter Come From
The word Easter is not in the New Testament. Nor does it feature in most translations of the Bible into vernacular languages.
There is no direct linguistic link between the English word Easter andthe Jewish feast of Passover. This contrasts with the convention in Romance languages. Pâques, in French, covers both Easter and Passover. In Spanish, Semana Santa is the most common phrase used to describe the festival.
Scholars agree that Easter has pre-Christian roots. Beyond that there is little consensus.
- According to the great Anglo-Saxon scholar the Venerable Bede, the Old English word eastre came Eostre, a goddess associated with spring.
- April was called Eosturmonath because in pagan times the month was dedicated to Eostre, an Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring.
- The Canadian Oxford Dictionary suggests a link to the Germanic goddess Eostre. It cites Old High German starn Easter, Old Norse austr to the east, Old Slavonic ustru like summer.
Another theory is that Eostre was simply the Anglo-Saxon word for spring festivals. Linguists trace this word to roots thousands of years old meaning shine and dawn.
Spring is a season of lengthening days and increased light. It would make sense for early peoples to give their spring festivals a name that celebrated the rising sun.
A Study On Nt Words For God
The NT is much less complex in its use of words forï¿½God.ï¿½ï¿½ The NT manuscripts are primarilyin Greek, with the exception of some Aramaic.ï¿½The King James Version and other Bible translators have blundered byusing a generic word, ï¿½godï¿½ to refer to the Almighty.
The problem with associating the Almighty with lesser deitiesis more than mere semantics.ï¿½ When Godinspired both OT and NT writers to pen the inspired text of scripture, He knewthe importance of word meanings.ï¿½
It is NOT BY ACCIDENT that God used the Hebrew wordï¿½elohimï¿½ and the Greek word ï¿½theosï¿½ as the primary word to describehimself.ï¿½ Elohim and theos are virtuallyidentical in meaning, and to translate both words with an Indo-European bastardlanguage is taking away from our understanding of Him as the strong one, or asour source of strength.
The antiquity of the Semitic languages are more pure thanGreek.ï¿½ The Hellenized Roman Empire hadadopted the Greek pantheon of deities.ï¿½Both Greek and Roman culture were polytheistic and they had numerousdeities, but they used one basic root word to describe a deity in general.ï¿½ This word was theos or theotes, albeit theword was commonly applied to rulers .
THE WORD GOD IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
The Greek word Theï¿½s in the NT is translated asï¿½God.ï¿½ï¿½ In the polytheism of the Greeks,Theï¿½s is denoted ï¿½a god or deity,ï¿½ .
ï¿½ï¿½ 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers)
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The Canon And Apocrypha
The word canon means “a rule” or “standard for measurement.” The Canon of Scripture refers to the list of books that officially measured up to the standard, and, therefore, were worthy of inclusion. Only the canonical books are considered the “divinely inspired” authoritative Word of God, and, thus, rightfully belong in the Bible.
Both Jews and early church fathers agreed on 39 divinely inspired books as comprising the Old Testament Canon of Scripture. , however, included the books of the Apocrypha. A large portion of the Apocrypha was officially recognized by the Roman Catholic Church as part of the biblical Canon at the Council of Trent in A.D. 1546. Today, Coptic, Greek, and Russian Orthodox churches also accept these books. The word Apocrypha means “hidden.” The books of the Apocrypha are not considered authoritative in Judaism and Protestant Christian churches.
What Is Passover Where Does The Word Come From
The Seder is the special meal that celebrates Passover
Passover is a key festival in Judaism. It commemorates the exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt. This epic story is told in the Book of Exodus, Chapter 12 of the Torah .
Passover begins on the 14th day of Nisan . Most practising Jews celebrate for seven days, though some orthodox and conservative communities extend the festival to an eighth day.
The centrepiece of Passover celebrations is a special meal known as the seder. This is usually held in family homes. During the seder the story of the exodus from Egypt is read aloud from a Hebrew text called the Haggadah . Rituals are acted out at key moments in the story.
During Passover it is forbidden to eat, drink, or own chametz/chometz. Chametz is food that is made from grain and water and has been allowed to rise.
To ensure observance of this rule, living space should be cleaned thoroughly.
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