Discovering and authenticating how the Bible came to be
The Bible is the foundation of our faith. We believe it to be the mind of God expressed to humanity. Its purpose is to tell us things we cannot deduce from nature - like where we come from, how we got to the present time and where we are going. The Bible shows us the heights of the plans and purposes of God and the depths of the experiences of sin and death. It shows us right and wrong, light and darkness, and answers questions about eternity. This book is a compilation of writings by many authors over a span of over 1,600 years. In spite of all of its wisdom, history, insight and prophecy, many questions swirl around the Bible's authenticity. How were its individual books chosen? Why are there so many translations? Why is there so much disagreement about its message? How do we KNOW it is the inspired word of God? Join us now as we embark on a search to discover the origins and development of our Bible.
What's the canon?
Let’s start by considering how the books in the Bible got there. To do this, we need to consider what’s called the "canon of Scripture.” The basic definition of “canon” is a standard, as in a standard of measure. What we find is there were three basic principles for a book to be considered part of the Bible. First, the book had to have been authored by a prophet, apostle or someone associated with them. Second, the book had to clearly be in line with the other books of the Bible. Third, it had to be widely-accepted by early church leaders as being inspired by God.
Jesus regularly quoted from the Old Testament
It is interesting to note that Jesus clearly recognized the Old Testament and its books as his guide. He quoted several of them and oftentimes referred to them as “the Scriptures.” This gives great credibility to the Old Testament. In fact, the Old and New Testaments are the two best attested works in all of ancient history.
Now that we have an inkling of how the books in the Bible got there, we need to ask about the books that didn’t make the cut. Why would the Gospel of Peter and the Gospel of Thomas be left out? And what about other books like the Book of Enoch? While we’re at it, where does the Apocrypha (a series of Old Testament books that is in some but not most Bibles) stand? Are these books flawed or somehow out of favor? If so, why?
Check out our November 09, 2020 podcast, “Has the Bible Been Mistranslated and Misunderstood? (Part I) for more. We delve deeply into these questions and search for answers that are not only logical but historically authentic as well. Reviewing historical facts and evidence and figuring out how the Bible came to be can be a complex endeavor. The great news is that along with that complexity, you will find a profound journey that can deepen your faith. Don’t miss this opportunity to be inspired while learning about the foundations of your beliefs! This important series continues with Part II...
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