More Poems & Stories >>
1. The Bible. Christians believe this book to be the true Word of God. From the creation account of Genesis to the end-time visions of Revelation, from the story of Israel to Jesus’ ministry, it is the source for what Christians believe and how they try to live.
2. The word Bible comes from the Greek word biblia, which means “books” which comes from another word, byb/os, meaning papyrus, a material books were made from in ancient times
3. The ancient Greeks obtained their supplies of paper from the port of Byblos, in what is now Lebanon. Their word for book—biblion (the singular form of biblia)—was derived from the name of this port, and from this we get our English word Bible, meaning the Book of books.
14. Written over the course of a thousand years, primarily in ancient Hebrew, the Jewish Bible is the equivalent of Christianity’s Old Testament. For Jews there is no New Testament.
15. At least half as much time elapsed between the Bible’s first book and its last (with well over a thousand years between the first writing and the time of the last), as has elapsed between its last book and now. This means that writing styles vary not just between modern books and the Bible but among the Bible books themselves.
16. The terms Old Testament and New Testament originated with the prophet Jeremiah. When he spoke about the glorious future for Israel of which the prophets often spoke, he said that God would “make a new covenant with the house of Israel.” Testament means “covenant,” and Jesus of Nazareth, the long-awaited Messiah, made a new covenant with God’s people. The books of the New Testament provide the fulfillment of the promises made throughout the Old Testament books.
17. The translation of the Hebrew Scriptures into the Koine Greek dialect was an outstanding literary accomplishment under the Ptolemies. This translation was called the Septuagint. The translation project is said to have been sponsored by Ptolemy II Philadelphus around the third century B.C. According to tradition, seventy-two Jewish scholars (six from each of the twelve tribes) were summoned for the project. The work was finished in seventy-two days; the Jewish scholars were then sent away with many gifts.
18. The Septuagint provided a bridge between the thoughts and vocabulary of the Old and New Testaments. The language of the New Testament is not the koine of the everyday Greek, but the koine of the Jew living in Greek surroundings. By the New Testament era, it was the most widely used edition of the Old Testament.
19. Most Jews of Jesus’ day spoke Aramaic, a Syrian language similar to Hebrew that was commonly used at the time. Jesus surely studied the formal Hebrew of the Torah, Prophets, and Writings. Whether he could also speak Greek is unknown. Jesus left no personal writings.
20. Both the Jewish Bible and Christian Old Testament contain the same thirty-nine hooks, although they are arranged and numbered in a slightly different order. In Jewish traditions the Bible is called the Tanakh, an acronym of the Hebrew words Torah (for law” or “teaching”), Nevi‘im (“the Prophets”), and Kethuvim (“the Writings”).
21. The Old Testament’s first five books, the Pentateuch, were already considered authoritative Scripture by the time of Ezra in the fifth century B.C. The other books were recognized as part of the Old Testament at later times.
22. Jesus himself knew the “old covenant.” As a Jewish boy, he diligently studied the Torah, Prophets, and Writings. He could recite them by heart when he was twelve. Because there was no Bible as we know it, he would have learned by rote from scrolls kept by local teachers or rabbis.
23. The earliest references to the Old Testament were “the law of Mose5,” “the law of the Lord,” or simply “Moses.” Since the additional writings were considered the work of prophets, the common term became “Moses and the Prophets” or something similar. Note: Wherever the word “law” is seen, the Jewish reference would be “Torah.” By New Testament times, “Scripture’ or “the Scriptures” became common, the simplest generic term for the collection was writings,” often with “sacred” or “holy” added.
24. The uniformity of Bible printing sometimes obscures the scope of variety within the Bible’s writings. If Bible printers laid out the print with all the different styles and languages accounted for, including prose, poetry, and songs, a wheelbarrow would be needed to move a Bible from the den to the bedroom.
25. No Bible writer that we know of ever drew a map to accompany his writing—at least not one that was preserved. Maps are generally drawn from facts discovered through historical and archaeological research.
Taken from 1001 Surprising Things you Should Know About the Bible – Jerry MacGregor and Marie Prys
INSPIRATION OF THE BIBLE
The word “Bible” means “book.” The Bible is the “Book” of all books. It is a letter, a book written by God to us as human beings.
The entire Bible was written by the inspiration of God; God the Holy Spirit was its Author. He used different human writers as means and inspired them to write His Word. God the Holy Spirit prompted these people to write, informed them of what to write, and perfectly guided them in the exact words to write.
COMPLETION OF THE BIBLE
God inspired more than forty different persons to write His Word over a time span of nearly two thousand years. The first author was Moses; and the last, the Apostle John.
The Bible includes two testaments—the Old and the New testaments. The word “testament” means “will,” “covenant,” or agreement.” The Old Testament was God’s promise, and the New Testament His fulfillment of the Covenant of Grace; His testimony and will concerning salvation through Jesus Christ. These two testaments form one complete book, the Book of books the Bible.
The Old Testament was originally written in the Hebrew language with a few verses or portions in Jeremiah, Daniel, and Ezra in Aramaic (a dialect which developed during the Jewish captivity and gradually took the place of Hebrew as the common language of the Jews). The New Testament was originally written in Greek language.
The Old Testament contains thirty-nine books, and the New Testament, twenty-seven books. In total, the Bible includes sixty-six divinely-inspired books. Taken fromBible Doctine Book # 1, by James W. Beeke
More Poems & Stories >>