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Why should we believe the Bible? • God IS! • Divine Confirmation • Answers every human need • Harmonious throughout
How Did The Bible Come Down To Us? From God to us: • Inspiration/Revelation • Words of God written • Canonization • Transmission • Translation
The Canon • Canon defined: • Hebrew – qaneh • Greek – kanon • Reed or rod, straight rod used as a measuring rule. Came to mean “standard.” • Referring to scripture, an accepted list of books
The Old Testament Canon • Hebrew canon • 24 books, divided into 3 sections: • The Law • The Prophets • Writings • Protestant (non-Catholic) • 39 books, divided into 5 sections: • Law • History • Poetry • Major prophets • Minor prophets Same Content
The Old Testament Canon • Catholic canon • 39 canonical books + 7 Apocryphal (hidden) or deuterocanonical (second canon) books
The Apocryphal Books 1. The First Book of Esdras (also known as Third Esdras) 2. The Second Book of Esdras (also known as Fourth Esdras) 3. Tobit 4. Judith 5. The Additions to the Book of Esther 6. The Wisdom of Solomon 7. Ecclesiasticus, or the Wisdom of Jesus the Son of Sirach 8. Baruch
The Apocryphal Books 9. The Letter of Jeremiah (This letter is sometimes incorporated as the last chapter of Baruch. When this is done the number of books is fourteen instead of fifteen.) 10. The Prayer of Azariah and the Song of the Three Young Men 11. Susanna 12. Bel and the Dragon 13. The Prayer of Manasseh 14. The First Book of Maccabees 15. The Second Book of Maccabees
The Apocryphal Books Three of these fifteen books (I and II Esdras and the Prayer of Manasseh) are not considered canonical by the Roman Catholic Church. In Catholic Bibles the remaining twelve are interspersed among and attached to the undisputed thirty-nine books of the Old Testament: Tobit, Judith, Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch with the letter of Jeremiah, and I and II Maccabees which are arranged separately; the Additions to Esther are joined to Esther; and appended to the book of Daniel are the Prayer of Azariah and the Song of the Three Young Men (added after Dan. 3:23), and Susanna, and Bel and the Dragon.
The Apocryphal Books (I and II Esdras of the Catholic Bible are not the same as the I and II Esdras in the above list, but are different designations for our books Ezra and Nehemiah.) Since several of the apocryphal writings are combined with canonical books, the Catholic Bible numbers altogether forty-six books in its Old Testament. Non-Catholic editions of the English Bible since 1535, including early editions of the familiar King James Version, separate these apocryphal books from the canonical Old Testament.
The Apocryphal Books 1. They were never included in the Hebrew OT. 2. They were never accepted as canonical by Jesus and His Apostles.(quote from every book but Esther, no Apocryphal quotes) 3. They were not accepted by early Jewish and Christian writers. (Josephus, Philo, council at Jamnia) 4. They do not evidence intrinsic qualities of inspiration.(contradictions, historical inaccuracies) 5. They have been shrouded with continual uncertainty. (council of Trent, 1546)
The Contradictions and Errors of the Apocrypha http://www.justforcatholics.org/a109.htm • “Whoso honoureth his father maketh an atonement for his sins...Water will quench a flaming fire; and alms maketh an atonement for sin” (Sirach 3:3, 30). Cf. Leviticus 17:11 • Tobit 12:9 states that “alms doth deliver from death, and shall purge away all sin.” • Sirach 12:4-7 advises, “Give to the godly man, and help not a sinner. Do well unto him that is lowly, but give not to the ungodly; hold back thy bread, and give it not unto him... give unto the good, and help not the sinner.”
The Contradictions and Errors of the Apocrypha http://www.justforcatholics.org/a109.htm • “Tobit claims to have been alive when Jeroboam revolted (931 B.C.) and when Assyria conquered Israel (722 B.C.). These two events were separated by over 200 years and yet the total lifespan of Tobit was 158 years (Tobit 1:3-5; 14:11).” • Judith mistakenly identifies Nebuchadnezzar as king of the Assyrians (1:1, 7) when in fact he was the king of Babylon (2 Kings 24:1). • Baruch 6:2 "And when you are come into Babylon, you shall be there many years, and for a long time, even to seven generations: and after that I will bring you away from thence with peace.“ cf. Jeremiah 25:11
The Uncertainty of the Apocrypha Since they were not regarded as authoritative by the Jews, they had to gain their recognition elsewhere. This recognition came from some segments of the Greek-speaking church, with the result that eventually these books became incorporated into the Greek and Latin Bibles. But there is no evidence that the Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Old Testament) ever had a fixed or closed canon of books. No two early Greek manuscripts agree as to which books are to be included in the Septuagint, and not all of those included in the Septuagint are accepted even by the Roman Catholic Church. The Septuagint itself is a witness against one book of the Apocrypha (II Esdras) since it is found in no manuscript of the Septuagint. How We Got The Bible, Neil R. Lightfoot (Grand Rapids, MI; Baker Book House, 1970)
The Old Testament Canon • Jesus quoted from all 3 divisions of Hebrews Scriptures. (Law, Prophets, Writings) • Jesus referred to them as a unit with 3 parts. • Matthew 22:40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” • Luke 24:44 Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.”
The Old Testament Canon • Jesus didn’t dispute books of the Hebrew canon. • Quoted from Hebrews scriptures at least 82 times. • Referred to Adam, Eve, Abel, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Lot’s wife, Moses, David, Solomon, Elijah, Elisha, Jonah, Isaiah, Zechariah, Daniel • Paul acknowledged the Hebrew canon – Romans 15:4, 1 Corinthians 10:11, 2 Timothy 3:16 • No quotes from the Apocrypha (Catholics need the Apocrypha for some of their doctrines.)
The New Testament Canon Geisler and Nix, General Introduction to the Bible, 223-231 Tests for inclusion: • Was the book written by a prophet of God? • Was the writer confirmed by acts of God? • Did the message tell the truth about God? • Does it come with the power of God? • Was it accepted by the people of God?
The New Testament Canon • Apostolicity - Written by an Apostle of the Lord or approved by them • Matthew, John, Paul, Peter – apostles • Mark – companion of Peter • Luke – companion of Paul • James – the Lord’s brother • Jude – the Lord’s brother
The New Testament Canon • When the books of the NT were written, they were immediately circulated and considered authoritative. • Colossians 4:16 Now when this epistle is read among you, see that it is read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and that you likewise read the epistle from Laodicea. • 1 Thessalonians 5:27 I charge you by the Lord that this epistle be read to all the holy brethren. • 2 Thessalonians 3:14 And if anyone does not obey our word in this epistle, note that person and do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed. • 1 Corinthians 14:37, 1 Thessalonians 2:13 • By 100AD, all 27 books of the New Testament were in circulation and all but Hebrews, 2 Peter, James, 2 John, 3 John, Revelation were universally accepted.
The New Testament Canon 1st century witnesses to the spread of the written word of God: • Clement of Rome – 30-100 • Ignatius of Antioch – 30-115 • Polycarp of Smyrna – 69-155 • Papias of Hieropolis – 70-140
The New Testament Canon 2nd century witnesses to the spread of the written word of God: • Marcion of Sinope – 85-160 • Justin Martyr of Caesarea – 100-165 • Muratorian canon - ~170 • Theophilus of Antioch – 115-188 • Irenaeus of Lyons – 140-203 • Tertullian of Carthage – 150-222 • Clement of Alexandria – 115-215 • Origen of Alexandria – 185-254
The New Testament Canon Rejected books used in the 1st two centuries: • The book of Jubilees • Epistle of Barnabas • Shepherd of Hermas • Paul's Epistle to the Laodiceans • 1 Clement • 2 Clement • Preaching of Peter • Apocalypse of Peter • Gospel According to the Egyptians • Gospel According to the Hebrews