What does Bible mean in the Bible?

Dictionary

Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: the Spirit More Than the Letter
It is easy enough to be learned in the letter of the Word, and yet to miss the spirit. If no other instance were before us, the Jewish people would furnish us with a most convincing one, for they have wholly missed the meaning of the Scriptures, and yet, Lightfoot tells us, 'They have summed up all the letters in the Bible to show that one hair of that sacred head is not perished. Eight hundred and forty-eight marginal notes are observed and preserved, for the more facility of the text: the middle verse of every book noted; the number of the verses in every book reckoned: and not a vowel that misseth ordinary grammar which is not marked.'
Webster's Dictionary - Bible
(1):
(n.) A book containing the sacred writings belonging to any religion; as, the Koran is often called the Mohammedan Bible.
(2):
(n.) A book.
(3):
(n.) A book with an authoritative exposition of some topic, respected by many who are experts in the field.
(4):
(n.) The Book by way of eminence, - that is, the book which is made up of the writings accepted by Christians as of divine origin and authority, whether such writings be in the original language, or translated; the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments; - sometimes in a restricted sense, the Old Testament; as, King James's Bible; Douay Bible; Luther's Bible. Also, the book which is made up of writings similarly accepted by the Jews; as, a rabbinical Bible.
People's Dictionary of the Bible - Obsolete or Obscure Words in the English av Bible
Abjects, Psalms 35:15—low, despised persons.
Abomination, Deuteronomy 7:26—idol; polluted thing.
Addicted, 1 Corinthians 16:15—devoted; given to.
Affect, Galatians 4:17—seek to win.
Aha, Psalms 35:21—"hurrah."
Albeit, Ezekiel 13:7—although it be.
Allow, Luke 11:48—to praise; to approve.
All to brake, Judges 9:53—brake to pieces.
Amerce, Deuteronomy 22:19—punish by fire.
Ancients, Isaiah 47:6—aged persons.
Anon, Matthew 13:20—quickly at once.
Apothecary, Exodus 30:25—not a druggist, but "a maker of perfumes."
Artillery, 1 Samuel 20:40—bows; arrows; sling.
Astonied, Job 17:8—astonished.
At one, Acts 7:26—in concord, or agreement.
Attent, 2 Chronicles 6:40—attentive.
Avoid, 1 Samuel 18:11—to withdraw.
Away with, Isaiah 1:13—bear or endure.
Barbarian, 1 Corinthians 14:11—foreigner; not a Greek.
Beeves, Leviticus 22:21—(plural of beef) oxen; cows.
Bestead, Isaiah 8:21—placed.
Bewray, Matthew 26:73—expose; betray.
Blains, Exodus 9:9—blisters; pimples.
Boiled, Exodus 9:31—gone to seed.
Bosses, Job 15:26—stud; knob: buckle.
Botch, Deuteronomy 28:27—swelling; boil.
Bravery, Isaiah 3:18—fine dress; showy.
Bray, Proverbs 27:22—to beat; pound.
Brigandine, Jeremiah 46:4—coat of armor.
Bruit, Jeremiah 10:22—report; fame.
By, 1 Corinthians 4:4—against.
By and by, Matthew 13:21—at once; immediately.
Calker, Ezekiel 27:9—one who stops leaks of a ship.
Camphire, Song of Solomon 1:14—refers to cypress, or to "henna-flowers."
Careful, Philippians 4:6—anxious.
Carriage, 1 Samuel 17:22.—baggage; what is carried.
Caul, Isaiah 3:18—network for the head.
Champaign, Deuteronomy 11:30—level place.
Chapiter, Exodus 36:38—capital of a pillar.
Chapmen, 2 Chronicles 9:14—traders; merchants.
Chapt, Jeremiah 14:4—cracked open.
Charger, Matthew 14:8—large dish.
Charges, to be at, Acts 21:24—to pay expenses.
Charity, 1 Corinthians 13:1-13—love to God and man.
Clouted, Joshua 9:5—patched.
Cockle, Job 31:40—refers to weed in grain.
Collops, Job 15:27—slices of fat.
College, 2 Kings 22:14—refers to "second ward," or port.
Comfort, 1 Thessalonians 4:18—to strengthen.
Compass, Acts 28:13—to make a circuit; surround.
Concision, Philippians 3:2—cutting off.
Confection, Exodus 30:35—compound of various things.
Conscience, Hebrews 10:2—to have sense of.
Convenient, Acts 24:25—seasonable; becoming.
Conversation—(never means "speech" in Scripture) but, (1) Philippians 1:27—behavior; (2) Philippians 3:20—citizenship; (3) Hebrews 13:5—disposition.
Countervail, Esther 7:4—to compensate.
Cracknels, 1 Kings 14:3—brittle cakes.
Crisping pins, Isaiah 3:22—irons for curling the hair.
Cumber, Luke 10:40—to burden uselessly.
Curious arts, Acts 19:19—magic.
Damnation, 1 Corinthians 11:29—condemnation.
Daysman, Job 9:33—umpire; arbiter.
Deal, Exodus 29:40—portion, or part.
Delicates, Jeremiah 51:34—choice dainties.
Deputy, 1 Kings 22:47—deputed to rule.
Disposition, Acts 7:53—ordering.
Dote, Jeremiah 50:36—become foolish.
Do you to wit, 2 Corinthians 8:1—make you to know.
Draught, Matthew 15:17—drain.
Draught house, 2 Kings 10:27—cesspool.
Ear, to, Isaiah 30:24—to plow.
Earing, Genesis 45:6—plowing.
Earnest, 2 Corinthians 1:22—a pledge or token of what is to come.
Emerods, 1 Samuel 5:6—hemorrhoids; piles.
Enlarge, 2 Samuel 22:37—make free.
Ensample, 1 Corinthians 10:11—example.
Ensue, 1 Peter 3:11—to follow and overtake.
Eschew, 1 Peter 3:11—shun; flee from.
Exchangers, Matthew 25:27—bankers; brokers.
Exorcists, Acts 19:13—one who pretends to cast out evil spirits by magic.
Eyeservice, Ephesians 6:6—work done when watched.
Fain, Luke 15:16—glad; gladly.
Fats, Joel 2:24—vats.
Fenced, Numbers 32:17—walled (cities).
Flood, Joshua 24:3—Euphrates river.
Fray, Deuteronomy 28:26—scare; frighten.
Fritting, Leviticus 13:51—corroding; eating as a moth.
Gainsay, Luke 21:15—disprove; contradict.
Garner, Matthew 3:12—storehouse for grain.
Gin, Amos 3:5—trap or snare.
Glistering, Luke 9:29—sparkling; glittering.
Greaves, 1 Samuel 17:6—armor-plates for legs.
Grudge, James 5:9—grumble.
Habergeon, Job 41:26—coat-of-mail.
Haft, Judges 3:22—handle of knife; dagger.
Hale, Luke 12:58—forcibly drag.
Halt, Luke 14:21—lame; crippled.
Harness, 1 Kings 22:34—body-armor of a soldier.
Hoised, Acts 27:40—hoisted.
Hold, Judges 9:46—stronghold; prison.
Honest, Romans 12:17—honorable.
Hosen, Daniel 3:21—trowsers and stockings in one piece.
Hough, Joshua 11:6—to hamstring.
Instant, Romans 12:12—pressing; urgent.
Instantly, Acts 26:7—earnestly; at once.
Jeopard, Judges 5:18—hazard, or risk of life.
Kerchief, Ezekiel 13:21—covering for the head.
Kine, 1 Samuel 6:7—cows; milch-kine = milking-cows.
Knop, Exodus 25:33—knob; a bud-shaped carving.
Leasing, Psalms 4:2—lying; falsehood.
Let, 2 Thessalonians 2:7—hinder; prevent.
Lewdness, Acts 18:14—wickedness; crime.
Libertine, Acts 6:9—child of a freed slave.
Listeth. John 3:8—desireth; wills; chooseth; like.
Lust, Exodus 15:9—desire of any kind.
Lusty, Judges 3:29—healthy; vigorous; strong.
Magnifical, 1 Chronicles 22:5—grand; magnificent.
Marishes, Ezekiel 47:11—marshes; swampy ground.
Maw, Deuteronomy 18:3—stomach.
Meat, Genesis 1:29—any kind of food.
Meet, Matthew 3:8—suitable; fitting.
Mete, Matthew 7:2—measure.
Meteyard, Leviticus 19:35—measuring-rod; yard measure.
Mincing, Isaiah 3:16—walking with short steps.
Minish, Exodus 5:19—diminish; lessen.
Minister, Luke 4:20—attendant; helper.
Munition, Nahum 2:1—fortifications; ramparts.
Murrain, Exodus 9:3—cattle-plague.
Naught, Proverbs 20:14—bad; worthless.
Neesings, Job 41:18—old form of "sneezing."
Nephew, 1 Timothy 6:4—grandchild.
Nether, Deuteronomy 24:6—lower.
Noisome, Psalms 91:3—noxious; hurtful.
Occupy, Luke 19:13—trade with.
Offence, Romans 9:33—that against which one stumbles.
Offend, Matthew 18:9—stumble against; cause to stumble.
Or ever, Daniel 6:24—before.
Ouches, Exodus 28:11—sockets (of gold or silver).
Outlandish, Nehemiah 13:26—foreign; strange.
Painful, Psalms 73:16—hard to do.
Painfulness, 2 Corinthians 11:27—painstaking.
Peeled, Isaiah 18:2; Isaiah 18:7—robbed; plundered.
Pilled, Genesis 30:37-38—peel; strip off bark.
Poll, to, 2 Samuel 14:26—lop; cut off, esp. hair.
Pommel, 2 Chronicles 4:12—globes; apple-shaped.
Potsherd, Psalms 22:16—fragment of broken pottery.
Pressfat, Haggai 2:16—vat to receive grape-juice from the winepress.
Prevent, 1 Thessalonians 4:15—come before; precede.
Proper, Hebrews 11:23—fair; handsome.
Provoke, 2 Corinthians 9:2—stimulate; challenge to action.
Publican, Luke 5:27—collector of public revenue.
Quick, Psalms 124:3—living; lively.
Quicken, Psalms 71:20—make alive.
Quit, 1 Corinthians 16:13—acquit; act.
Ravening, Luke 11:39—greediness; rapacity.
Ravin, raven, Genesis 49:27—plunder; capture; spoil.
Reins, Psalms 7:9—kidneys, hence emotions; affections.
Rereward, Isaiah 52:12; Isaiah 58:8—rear-guard.
Ringstraked, Genesis 30:35—marked with circular bands or rings.
Savour, Matthew 16:23—taste; relish; relish in mind.
Scrabbled, 1 Samuel 21:13—scrawled; made unmeaning marks.
Scrip, Luke 22:36—small bag or wallet.
Seethe, Exodus 16:23—boil; perf. "sod," part. "sodden."
Servitor, 2 Kings 4:43—servant or attendant.
Sherd, Isaiah 30:14—fragment; shred, as of pottery.
Shroud, Ezekiel 31:3—shelter; covering, as of a tree.
Silverling, Isaiah 7:23—small silver coin.
Sith, Ezekiel 35:6—since; forasmuch as.
Sod, sodden, Exodus 12:9—boiled; from the verb "seethe."
Sojourn, Genesis 12:10—to dwell temporarily.
Sometimes, Ephesians 2:13—once; formerly.
Speed, Genesis 24:12—subst. success.
Steads, 1 Chronicles 5:22—(Sax. stede) places.
Straightway, Luke 5:39—immediately; at once.
Strain at, Matthew 23:24—as in swallowing, (probably a misprint for "strain out.")
Straitly, Mark 1:4—strictly; closely.
Straitness, Jeremiah 19:9—scarcity of food; famine.
Strake, Genesis 30:37—a streak.
Strake, Acts 27:17—past tense of the vent to "strike."
Strawed, Matthew 21:8—strewed or scattered, Sundry, Hebrews 1:1—several; various.
Tabering, Nahum 2:7—beating, as on a taber-drum.
Taches, Exodus 26:6—catches or clasps; any fastening.
Tale, Exodus 5:8; Exodus 5:18—reckoning; appointed number.
Target, 1 Samuel 17:6—light shield; buckler.
Temperance, Galatians 5:23—moderation; sedateness; self-control.
Tempt, Genesis 22:1—test; try.
Thought, Matthew 6:25—worry; anxious care.
Tired, 2 Kings 9:30; Isaiah 3:18—adorned, as the head.
Trow, Luke 17:9—think; imagine; suppose.
Turtle, Sol. Song of Solomon 2:12—a dove; the turtle-dove.
Twain, Isaiah 6:2—two.
Undergird, Acts 27:17—pass ropes round hull of a ship.
Undersetter, 1 Kings 7:30; 1 Kings 7:34—prop; support.
Vile, James 2:2—plain; poor.
Ware, Acts 14:6—aware; to know.
Wax, Luke 1:80—grow or become.
Wench, 2 Samuel 17:17—maid-servant.
Whit, 2 Corinthians 11:5—(Sax. wihi) a bit; atom.
Wimple, Isaiah 3:22—veil; covering of head and neck.
Winefat—wine vat.
Wist, Mark 14:40—(Sax. wiste) knew.
Wit, to, 2 Corinthians 8:1—(Sax. witan) to know.
Withs, Judges 16:7—young twigs of a willow; osier.
Withal, Acts 25:27—with the same; therewith.
Wittingly, Genesis 48:14—Intentionally; knowingly.
Woe worth, Ezekiel 30:2—woe be or become.
Wont, Matthew 27:15—accustomed.
Wot, Genesis 39:8; Exodus 32:1—know.
Wreathen. Exodus 28:14—twisted; turned; "wreathen work."
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Douay Bible
In the 16th century the need for a reliable English translation of the Bible was made urgent by the circulation in England of faulty translations, produced in a spirit of opposition to many doctrines of the Catholic Church. This work was begun at the English College, Douai, Flanders. The college was subsequently moved to Rheims, where the translation of the New Testament was completed and published; hence it is called the "Rheims Testament." The translation of the Old Testament was published several years later, after the college had returned to Douai. The greater part was translated by Gregory Martin; his text was revised by Thomas Worthington, Richard Bristowe, John Reynolds, and Cardinal Allen. The translation was made directly from the Latin Vulgate, carefully compared with the Hebrew and Greek texts. It aimed at accuracy rather than beauty of style, and was, therefore, somewhat stilted and abounded in Latinisms. In the 18th century it was revised by Bishop Challoner, who introduced extensive changes. His revision of the Douay Version is the Bible now commonly used by Catholics in English-speaking countries.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Laity, Bible Reading by
In the history of the Church there never has been a general prohipition against the reading of the Bible by the laity. While the Church does not consider Bible reading necessary for salvation, she has always approved such reading under proper conditions. In consequence, we find that any restrictions which the Church has placed on the reading of the Bible were aimed at the use of heretical or corrupt versions, or versions without proper notes or authorization, and not against the reading of the Bible itself. The Albigenses and Waldenees who appealed to unauthorized and, at times, corrupt versions in their disputes with Catholics, gave occasion for the first restrictive decrees. These decrees, edited by the Synods of Toulouse (1229), Tarragona (1234), and Oxford (1408), aimed to restrict the reading of the Bible in the vernacular. The adoption of printing in the 15th century created conditions which made further restrictions imperative. The Protestant reformers, who were keenly alive to the advantagee of the printing-prees, used it to multiply their heretical versions, while Catholics produced numerous translations in the vernacular. This multiplication of versions by men who lacked qualifications essential for the work, and who acknowledged no proper supervision, made for the corruption of the Sacred Text, so that the Council of Trent (1546-1563) was compelled to take action. The Council strictly prohibited the reading of all heretical Latin versions, unless grave reasons necessitated their use. The Council itself did not forbid the reading of the new Catholic translations, although even these later fell under the ban of the Index Commission which Trent set up for the supervision of future legislation regarding the Bible. In 1559 the Commission forbade the use of certain Latin editions, as well as German, French, Spanish, Italian, and English vernacular vereions. Two centuries later, however, it modified the severity of this legislation by granting permission for the use of all versions translated by learned Catholic men, provided they contained annotations derived from the Fathers, and had the approval of the Holy See. Our present discipline grows out of the decree, "Officiorum ac Munerum," of Leo XIII. This decree states that all vernacular versions, even those prepared by Catholic authors, are prohibited if they are not, on the one hand, approved by the Apostolic See, or, on the other hand, supplied with proper annotations and accompanied by episcopal approbation. However, it contains a provision whereby, for grave reasons, biblical and theological students may use non-Catholic editions as long as these do not attack Catholic dogma.
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Taverner's Bible
TAVERNER’S BIBLE . See English Versions, § 21 .
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Names of the Bible
The Bible contains the revelation of God to man, and is therefore named from the Greek, biblion, "The Book," book of all books. Our Lord used the name Scriptures (Latin: scribere, to write), in Matthew 22, because it is the written record of that revelation, the Written Word, or Holy Writ. The Evangelists also use this name. It is also known as the Old and New Testaments, Testament meaning the covenant, the understanding between God and man, the word Old designating revelation prior to the coming of Christ, and New, His own revelation as recorded by the Apostles. Other names still are Holy or Sacred Book, Revelation, and Word of God.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Books of the
(Greek: biblion, book)
These number 73, according to the Catholic Canon of books which really contain the revelation of God to man. According to the Council of Trent, there are three groups in the Old Testament, embracing 46 books:
21 historical books:
Genesis
Exodus
Leviticus
Numbers
Deuteronomy
Josue
Judges
Ruth
1,2Kings (1,2Samuel)
3,4Kings (1,2Kings)
1,2Paralipomenon (1,2Chronicles)
Esdras
Nehemiah
Tobias
Judith
Esther
1,2Machabees
7 didactical books:
Job
Psalms
Proverbs
Ecclesiastes
Canticle of Canticles (Song of Solomon)
Wisdom and
Ecclesiasticus (Sirach)
18 prophetical books:
Isaias
Jeremias (with Lamentations)
the major prophets
Baruch
Ezechiel
Daniel
the minor prophets
Osee
Joel
Amos
Abdias or Obadiah
Jonas
Micah
Nahum
Habacuc
Sophonias or Zephaniah
Aggeus or Haggai
Zacharias
Malachias
The difference between the Jewish and Catholic counting is due to the fact that the Catholics accept also the so-called deuterocanonical books.
There are 27 books of the New Testament:
the 4Gospels
Matthew
Mark
Luke
John
the Acts of the Apostles
14Epistles of Saint Paul
Romans
1,2Corinthians
Galatians
Ephesians
Philippians
Colossians
1,2Thessalonians
1,2Timothy
Titus
Philemon
Hebrews
7 Catholic Epistles
James
1,2Peter
1,2, and 3John
Jude and
the Apocalypse, the only prophetical book of the New Testament.
Each book of the Bible is treated in this document under its own title.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible in Public Schools
A ground of contention wherever superintendents of schools have sought to impose the reading of the Bible to the pupils as a daily or frequent exercise. It is considered inconsistent with the non-sectarian policy of the schools. It is opposed by non-Christian parents as proselytism for the Christian religion; by Jews, as only Christian versions are used; and by Catholics because the version used is in nearly every instance the Protestant version and the principle involved is that the Bible is the sole rule of faith. Very commonly also since the passages selected are sectarian, the intrusion of this practise is considered out of place. In several states either the courts or the school superintendents or commissioners have forbidden this reading as tending to sectarianism. The latest decision is that of the court at Lead, South Dakota.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible of the Poor
Bible of the Poor Books popular especially in the 15th century, consisting of about 40 pages of pictures illustrating the New Testament, with appropriate prophetic scenes from the Old on either side of each page and explanatory texts in the corners. Their invention is ascribed to Saint Anschar, Bishop of Bremen. With the introduction of the xylographic or block-book process they were published much more cheaply than the earlier picture bibles, and were thus more accessible to the poor. They were used by the mendicant orders, in instructing the people. When the printing of the whole Bible with illustrations became practicable they were gradually given up. Five copies are preserved in the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris.
Easton's Bible Dictionary - Bible
Bible, the English form of the Greek name Biblia , meaning "books," the name which in the fifth century began to be given to the entire collection of sacred books, the "Library of Divine Revelation." The name Bible was adopted by Wickliffe, and came gradually into use in our English language. The Bible consists of sixty-six different books, composed by many different writers, in three different languages, under different circumstances; writers of almost every social rank, statesmen and peasants, kings, herdsmen, fishermen, priests, tax-gatherers, tentmakers; educated and uneducated, Jews and Gentiles; most of them unknown to each other, and writing at various periods during the space of about 1600 years: and yet, after all, it is only one book dealing with only one subject in its numberless aspects and relations, the subject of man's redemption. It is divided into the Old Testament, containing thirty-nine books, and the New Testament, containing twenty-seven books. The names given to the Old in the writings of the New are "the scriptures" ( Matthew 21:42 ), "scripture" (2 Peter 1:20 ), "the holy scriptures" (Romans 1:2 ), "the law" (John 12:34 ), "the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms" (Luke 24:44 ), "the law and the prophets" (Matthew 5:17 ), "the old covenant" (2 Corinthians 3:14 , RSV). There is a break of 400 years between the Old Testament and the New. (See APOCRYPHA .)
The Old Testament is divided into three parts:, 1. The Law (Torah), consisting of the Pentateuch, or five books of Moses. 2. The Prophets, consisting of (1) the former, namely, Joshua, Judges, the Books of Samuel, and the Books of Kings; (2) the latter, namely, the greater prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, and the twelve minor prophets. 3. The Hagiographa, or holy writings, including the rest of the books. These were ranked in three divisions:, (1) The Psalms, Proverbs, and Job, distinguished by the Hebrew name, a word formed of the initial letters of these books, Emeth , meaning truth. (2) Canticles, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, and Esther, called the five rolls, as being written for the synagogue use on five separate rolls. (3) Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, and 1 and 2Chronicles. Between the Old and the New Testament no addition was made to the revelation God had already given. The period of New Testament revelation, extending over a century, began with the appearance of John the Baptist.
The New Testament consists of (1) the historical books, viz., the Gospels, and the Acts of the Apostles; (2) the Epistles; and (3) the book of prophecy, the Revelation.
The division of the Bible into chapters and verses is altogether of human invention, designed to facilitate reference to it. The ancient Jews divided the Old Testament into certain sections for use in the synagogue service, and then at a later period, in the ninth century A.D., into verses. Our modern system of chapters for all the books of the Bible was introduced by Cardinal Hugo about the middle of the thirteenth century (he died 1263). The system of verses for the New Testament was introduced by Stephens in 1551, and generally adopted, although neither Tyndale's nor Coverdale's English translation of the Bible has verses. The division is not always wisely made, yet it is very useful. (See VERSION .)
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Study of the
Chief occupation of the authorities of the Catholic Church, of its early Fathers and Doctors, of scriptural specialists, and theologians. Due to their devout as well as scientific labors we have what is called an Introduction to the Bible, treating the inspiration of the Sacred Books, their Canon, their meaning (exegesis) and the rules which guide students in determining this (hermeneutics), as well as the late studies necessitated by the criticism, higher as it is called, of the Sacred Books. See
Canon of Holy Scriptures
Biblcical criticism
exegesis
hermeneutics
Biblical introduction
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Hebrew
Except Wisdom and 2Machabees, which were composed in Greek, all of the Old Testament books were written originally in Hebrew, in the old Phenician characters (later exchanged for the "square" script), but without vowels, separation of words, or division into chapters and verses. These elements were introduced later. The present Hebrew Bible contains only the protocanonical books; the Deuterocanonical books, except a part of Ecclesiasticus, are no longer extant in Hebrew.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible Commentaries
Explanatory notes or treatises on the Scriptures. Of many and varying sources, they may be classed under Jewish, patristic, medieval, and modern commentaries. Among the Jewish are Philo, the Targums, Mishna and Talmuds, Midrashim, and Karaites. The Patristic were grouped in schools, the Alexandrian, Antiochene, and Intermediate. Among the medieval are the Greek and Latin catenists (catena, a chain), so called because they selected passages and linked them together. Among the modern are the great Jesuit commentaries, principally that of Cornelius a Lapide, rivalled by equally capable Dominicans, Franciscans, Oratorians, Carmelites, and Benedictines. Protestants have also labored in this field, many of them very reverently, but others in a rationalistic spirit.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible Societies
First formed for the dissemination of the Sacred Scriptures, but in time extended their scope so as to embrace the twofold work of translating and editing. The first real Bible Society was the Von Canstein Bible Institute of Saxony, founded in 1710, and still thriving in Halle, Germany. As Protestantism developed, these societies were multiplied. England, Wales, Ireland, the Scandinavian countries, and France had each their own foundations, though many of these were supported by the British and Foreign Bible Society, an organization established in 1804. In the United States the years 1808,1809 saw the institution of these societies in New York, Boston, Hartford, Princeton, and Philadelphia. In 1816 Elias Boudinot, president of the New Jersey Bible Society, succeeded in uniting some 128 local societies into the American Bible Society, which still functions at Astor Place, New York City. The Catholic Church has steadfastly refused to endorse these societies or their activities, because as the Divinely authorized custodian and interpreter of the Sacred Scriptures, she has deemed inadvisable the dissemination of the bare text, which needs emendation and explanation in so many places; and because these societies have repeatedly shown hostility to the Church by their many attempts to impose unauthorized and mutilated Protestant versions of the Bible on Catholic peoples; and also because of their lack of good faith, for they have never offered to spread among Catholics a Catholic version with imprimatur and approved notes.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Egypt in the
In Semitic languages Egypt was known under the names of Musr, Misr, Misri, the Hebrew form being Misraim, of which the termination is regarded by some as the regular dual ending used to designate at the same time both parts, Upper and Lower, of the country. Genesis 10 is commonly understood to enumerate the various peoples which made up the population of Egypt: Ludim, Anamim, Laabim, Nepthuim, Phetrusim, Chasluim, and Capthorim. Some of these names have not yet been satisfactorily identified. The Anamim (Anu of the Egyptian texts) appear to be the remnant of early settlers who, driven back by newcomers, roamed in the desert above the second cataract; the Phetrusim (southerners) inhabited the neighborhood of Thebes; the Capthorim and Chasluim are late invaders established on the Mediterranean shore. Egypt first appears in the Bible as a land of plenty, whither Abraham resorts at a time of famine (Genesis 12), and whither Jacob, in similar circumstances, sends his sons for buying wheat (Genesis 37-50). The whole family soon moved there at the bidding of Joseph. Historians usually date this migration at the time of the Hyksos rule. There, in the "land of Gessen," located by some near the mouth of the Pelusiac branch of the Nile, by others half-way up that same channel, by others still south of Memphis, in the Fayum district, they increased and multiplied; and from there, after a long period of persecution which is supposed to have taken place following the overthrow of the Hyksos by native princes, they left at God's bidding, under the leadership of Moses, for the Promised Land. The disaster which overcame Pharao's army at the Red Sea apparently affected only a relatively small corps of Egyptian troops; texts need not be pressed to mean the whole military force of Egypt.
For many centuries decadent Egypt claimed possession of Palestine. This overlordship, however, was merely nominal, so that the Hebrews were fortunate in having only local Chanaanite chieftains with whom to contend. A long and hard struggle at last won for them independence under the strong hand of David. The city of Gazer, however, remained in the hands of the Pherezites (Jos., 16); its capture, in the beginning of the reign of Solomon, by Psibkhannu II, whose daughter became Solomon's wife, brings back the Egyptians into direct contact with Israel. Gazer was given to Solomon as his wife's dowry. Obviously the prince of Tanis considered Palestine as part of his kingdom, and the Hebrew king as a vassal. With the latter he maintained friendly commercial relations (3Kings 10); yet the Egyptian ruler had given shelter and a bride of the blood royal to the young Edomite prince, Adad, and did not discountenance the latter's attempt to wrest his kingdom from Solomon's hand (3Kings 11). To Psibkhannu's successor, Sheshenk I (Sesac of the Bible), the first Egyptian king whose proper name is given in Scripture (Pharao, Egypt., per o,a, the great house, is a generic title), Jeroboam fled from the wrath of. Solomon (3Kings 11), and, according to the Greek text, was later on married to the queen's own sister. Five years after Roboam's accession, Sesac, who probably wished to profit by the political division of Israel, in order to assert his suzerainty, invaded Palestine and ransacked Jerusalem (3Kings 14; Inscription of Karnak). Whether "Zara the Ethiopian," whose attempt against Palestine is recorded only in 2Par., 14, was an Egyptian king (Osorkon I or Osorkon II) is still a moot question.
Save for an obscure allusion to an alliance between Joram, king of Israel (851-842), and the reigning Pharao, Egypt does not appear again on the scene of Biblical history until the last years of the Northern Kingdom, when Osee, the last king of Israel, in order to prevent being engulfed in the ever-growing torrent of Assyrian invasion, called on the help of Sua, probably the future Shabaka, founder of the XXVth Dynasty, then a high officer in the Egyptian Empire (4Kings 17). But leaning on Egypt was leaning on a broken reed; and after the fall of Samaria, despite the oft-repeated warnings of the prophets, there existed in Jerusalem for more than a century a strong party favoring an Egyptian alliance. King Josias, who opposed this policy, was mortally wounded on the battlefield of Mageddo, whilst endeavoring to block, it appears, the advance of Nechao II against the young Babylonian Empire, just risen (609 B.C.) on the ruins of the vanquished Assyrian Kingdom (4Kings 23). Neither did this calamity, nor the conqueror's meddling with the internal affairs of Jerusalem and the heavy tribute levied by him on Jerusalem (4Kings 23), not even Nechao's subsequent defeat by Nabuchodonosor (Jer., 46), prevent the stubborn pro-Egyptian politicians of Jerusalem from reckoning on the help of Egypt when the Babylonians laid siege to the Holy City. True, Hophra (589-570) made a military demonstration in the direction of Gaza (Jer., 47); but his troops were defeated, and Jerusalem, left to its plight, succumbed in 586. Many Judeans then and thereafter sought a new country in Egypt (4Kings 25) and even compelled Jeremias to follow them (Jer., 43). After the collapse of the Chaldean Empire Egypt, now but a shadow of its former greatness, fell into the hands of the Persian king Cambyses (525) and, two centuries later (332), of Alexander the Great. Palestine was a dependency of the kingdom of the Ptolemies, first from 320 to 222; it suffered much in the hostilities between Antiochus III the Great and Ptolemy IV Philopator who plundered the Temple; but in consequence of the defeat of the king of Syria, the country, after a few years of Syrian rule, reverted to Egypt until it was definitely conquered by Antiochus (198). The Book of Daniel and those of the Machabees contain many references to the struggle of the Lagidre and the Seleucidre for its possession. During the last three centuries before the Christian era Egypt, and especially Alexandria, became a great center of Jewish population; to this fact the world is indebted for the Greek translation of the old Hebrew Scriptures. Relations between Palestine and Egypt, particularly after the Roman occupation, were easy and frequent; and thus it is not surprising to see the Holy Family seek refuge in Egypt from the mad fury of Herod (Matthew 2).
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Douay
In the 16th century the need for a reliable English translation of the Bible was made urgent by the circulation in England of faulty translations, produced in a spirit of opposition to many doctrines of the Catholic Church. This work was begun at the English College, Douai, Flanders. The college was subsequently moved to Rheims, where the translation of the New Testament was completed and published; hence it is called the "Rheims Testament." The translation of the Old Testament was published several years later, after the college had returned to Douai. The greater part was translated by Gregory Martin; his text was revised by Thomas Worthington, Richard Bristowe, John Reynolds, and Cardinal Allen. The translation was made directly from the Latin Vulgate, carefully compared with the Hebrew and Greek texts. It aimed at accuracy rather than beauty of style, and was, therefore, somewhat stilted and abounded in Latinisms. In the 18th century it was revised by Bishop Challoner, who introduced extensive changes. His revision of the Douay Version is the Bible now commonly used by Catholics in English-speaking countries.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Use of the
In the Catholic Church it is threefold, doctrinal, liturgical, and pietistic. Its doctrinal use grows out of the official teaching of the Church as incorporated in the decrees of the Council of Trent and the Vatican Council, which states that the Sacred Scriptures, together with Apostolic tradition, constitute the twofold fount of Divine revelation. Thus it is that Catholic theologians and preachers have ever considered the inspired Bible a treasure house from which to draw for proof and sanction of the Church's teaching in doctrinal and moral matters. Indeed, it is no exaggeration to say that the roots of dogmatic, moral, and ascetical theology are deeply grounded in the Sacred Scriptures. In liturgy the Catholic Church, like the Jewish Church before it (Deuteronomy 31; 2Paralipomenon 29; Luke 4), has given Sacred Scripture, in both its Old and New Testament portions a most prominent place. The earliest accounts of the Eucharist Mass describe the reading of selections from both Testaments; and the official public prayers of the Catholic Church today, found in the Roman Missal and Breviary, are composed largely of biblical passages. Its use pietistically is a complement to its doctrinal and liturgic usages. From time immemorJal the Catholic Church has always directed her preachers, in their devotional sermons and the direction of souls, to draw heavily on the Sacred Scriptures, and the prayers which the Church has approved for the piety and sanctification of the faithful, are composed largely of scriptural passages. Also, the Church supplements these uses of the Bible by recommending that it be read in private as a means of personal sanctification. It was with this in mind that Pope Leo XIII, on December 13, 1898, granted an indulgence of 300 days to those reading the Gospel for 15 minutes a day and a plenary indulgence to those reading it every day for a month, with the usual conditions of confession, communion, and prayer for the pope.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible Reading by Laity
In the history of the Church there never has been a general prohipition against the reading of the Bible by the laity. While the Church does not consider Bible reading necessary for salvation, she has always approved such reading under proper conditions. In consequence, we find that any restrictions which the Church has placed on the reading of the Bible were aimed at the use of heretical or corrupt versions, or versions without proper notes or authorization, and not against the reading of the Bible itself. The Albigenses and Waldenees who appealed to unauthorized and, at times, corrupt versions in their disputes with Catholics, gave occasion for the first restrictive decrees. These decrees, edited by the Synods of Toulouse (1229), Tarragona (1234), and Oxford (1408), aimed to restrict the reading of the Bible in the vernacular. The adoption of printing in the 15th century created conditions which made further restrictions imperative. The Protestant reformers, who were keenly alive to the advantagee of the printing-prees, used it to multiply their heretical versions, while Catholics produced numerous translations in the vernacular. This multiplication of versions by men who lacked qualifications essential for the work, and who acknowledged no proper supervision, made for the corruption of the Sacred Text, so that the Council of Trent (1546-1563) was compelled to take action. The Council strictly prohibited the reading of all heretical Latin versions, unless grave reasons necessitated their use. The Council itself did not forbid the reading of the new Catholic translations, although even these later fell under the ban of the Index Commission which Trent set up for the supervision of future legislation regarding the Bible. In 1559 the Commission forbade the use of certain Latin editions, as well as German, French, Spanish, Italian, and English vernacular vereions. Two centuries later, however, it modified the severity of this legislation by granting permission for the use of all versions translated by learned Catholic men, provided they contained annotations derived from the Fathers, and had the approval of the Holy See. Our present discipline grows out of the decree, "Officiorum ac Munerum," of Leo XIII. This decree states that all vernacular versions, even those prepared by Catholic authors, are prohibited if they are not, on the one hand, approved by the Apostolic See, or, on the other hand, supplied with proper annotations and accompanied by episcopal approbation. However, it contains a provision whereby, for grave reasons, biblical and theological students may use non-Catholic editions as long as these do not attack Catholic dogma.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Concordances of the
It is often useful or even necessary for scholars, preachers, and others to locate a given text in the Scripture, that is, to know in which book of the Bible it occurs, and in what chapter and verse it will be found. Or there may be question of ascertaining the instances in which a given word or phrase occurs. These purposes are served by a concordance, which is an alphabetic list of the words in the Bible, an indication (by book, chapter, and verse) as to where each word occurs, and a short passage including the given word. Thus, by recalling one word of a passage, it is possible to locate the passage quickly. There are complete and abridged concordances of the Hebrew Old Testament, the Greek New Testament, as also of many versions. For the Authorized Version there are four well-known Concordances composed respectively by Cruden, Strong, Walker, and Young. There is a complete concordance to the American Revised Version (called the American Standard Bible) by Hazard. For the Catholic Bible (Douay Version), we have a "Concordance of the Proper Names in the Holy Scriptures," by Williams, Saint Louis, 1923, and a "Verbal Concordance to the New Testament" by Thompson, London, 1928. The word "concordance" is sometimes, but incorrectly, used for a collection of Scripture texts arranged according to subject matter. Such are Vaughan's "Divine Armory" and Williams's "Textual Concordance" (New Testament).
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Luther's
Luther translated the Bible into German (1522-1534) from the original Hebrew and Greek, also making use of the Latin version of Lyra, a Hebrew-Latin text, and an older German translation. His translation has literary merit but contains numerous errors, especially dogmatic, e.g., in Romans 3, it inserts "alone" after "faith." Revised editions of Luther's Bible appeared at Halle, 1883,1892, but they retain many of Luther's errors.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Editions of the
Since the Bible was written (the Old Testament in Hebrew, the New Testament in Greek) many centuries before the invention of printing, the only way to multiply copies was by hand. The autograph originals and the earliest copies have all been lost, the oldest extant manuscripts of the whole Bible having been written in the 4th century. Handwritten copies, even if made by painstaking scribes, inevitably contain variations from the original, and the number of such variants were greatly increased by the hands of careless or ignorant copyists. Therefore, by the middle of the 15th century, when printing was invented, there existed a vast number of manuscript copies of the original Bible text, differing from one another in thousands of passages. It has been the task of Scripture scholars, by the comparison and appraisal of these manuscripts, to reconstruct the original as exactly as possible. The Latin Vulgate is the basis for all modern texts; the most notable English translation being the Douay Version. Any printed reproduction of the Bible i.e.,of the original text, in whole or in part, is an edition. Various editions of the Hebrew Old Testament have been published by eminent scholars, both Jewish and Christian. Among the best-known editions of the Greek New Testament are those by Tischendorf, Tregelles, Westcott and Hort, and Nestle.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible, Names of the
The Bible contains the revelation of God to man, and is therefore named from the Greek, biblion, "The Book," book of all books. Our Lord used the name Scriptures (Latin: scribere, to write), in Matthew 22, because it is the written record of that revelation, the Written Word, or Holy Writ. The Evangelists also use this name. It is also known as the Old and New Testaments, Testament meaning the covenant, the understanding between God and man, the word Old designating revelation prior to the coming of Christ, and New, His own revelation as recorded by the Apostles. Other names still are Holy or Sacred Book, Revelation, and Word of God.
Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Bible, Authority of the
The central question that runs through the Bible is that of the authority of God. His authority is majestically displayed in Genesis 1 , where the words "and God said" puncture the darkness of chaos and speak the cosmos into being. It is supremely challenged by a creature of his own making in Genesis 3 : "Yea, hath God said ?" asks the serpent of the woman (3:1 KJV), and the question reverberates down through the centuries that follow, all the way to the Book of Revelation, where the Almighty God "hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, king of kings and lord of lords, " and "death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death, " as the Lord God Omnipotent's reign is eschatologically established and every challenge to his authority destroyed (19:16; 20:14 KJV). This is the theological context for the question of the authority of the Bible, because as God's written ("inscripturated") revelation its authority is the authority of God; for what Scripture says, God says.
The serpent's question in Genesis 3 is not simply the most striking example of a challenge to the authority of God; it is the fruit of the challenge of Lucifer who as the devil stands behind, or within, the serpent. And it is the challenge that leads Eve, and then Adam, into their definitive act of rebellion. It should be noted that the serpent's challenge "Hath God said?" is, in particular, a challenge to the authority of the word of God, a claim to know better than the word that God has spoken. This focus in the original act of sin on challenge to the authority of God in his word underlines from the outset the closeness of the connection between the person and the word of a God who is characterized as God who speaks. "When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, and he ate it Then the Lord God said to the woman, What is this you have done?'" (3:6,13). The consequences are extraordinary.
So it is vital to understand that this doctrine, far from playing a minor role on the fringes of Christian belief, brings us face to face with the authority of God himself. What is at stake in the authority of Holy Scripture is the authority of its divine author. And, in light of the fact that every doctrine believed by the church is in turn authorized by appeal to Holy Scripture (theological proposals are grounded "according to the Scriptures, " in the words of the creed), it is no exaggeration to say that the entire structure of Christian theology stands or falls by the authority of Scripture, the major premise for every theological statement that would claim the allegiance of the canonical community that is the church of Jesus Christ. This is still widely admitted in contemporary theological discussion, both implicitly (for every theologian, orthodox or not, quotes Scripture to bolster theological argument), and sometimes in so many words.
That immensely significant fact offers the context for the realization that the doctrine of the authority of the Bible is, uniquely, reflective in character. That is, though its subject is the Bible, it is a biblical doctrine like other biblical doctrines. Yet unlike other matters of Christian belief and practice on which the Bible speaks—Christology, eschatology, the nature of God, the Christian lifewe are here concerned with what the Bible says about itself. It is sometimes suggested that this invalidates the Bible's testimony to its own authority, through it is a matter of logic that the highest authority must be its own authority. If the Bible is the "supreme rule of faith and life, " none can be higher. Moreover, the Bible's self-testimony is pluriform and, in turn, sustained by the testimony of others; especially, the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit. Let us briefly review each of these factors, because they have special relevance to the significance of the reflexive character of the doctrine.
First, the pluriform character of the Bible's self-testimony. As we shall shortly be reminded, what we find in Holy Scripture is not some bald claim to raw authority but a collation of many testimonies on behalf of Holy Scripture as a book. The canonical claim takes the form of interlocking claims and evidences that include the phenomena of the divine speech, the particular testimony of Jesus Christ to the character of what we call the Old Testament, and the authoritative use of canonical books by the writers of others. Second, the Bible's testimony is sustained by the use of the Bible in the church, as its authority has been recognized and found to be effective for the definition of doctrine and ethics, the public preaching of the gospel, and private devotion. Third, the chief ground of the believer's and the church's confidence in the authority of Holy Scripture lies in the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit in the heart of the Christian. That is to say, though the Scripture seems to be self-attesting, it is the divine author of Scripture, the Holy Spirit of God, who inspired the writing of that same Scripture, who is its final witness. He assures the believer that this canonical Scripture is verily the word of God written. That is, God offers his own witness to his word.
Yet the authority of Scripture is also a biblical doctrine like any other. It is the plainest of all biblical teachings, assumed as the starting point of the Bible in its role as a teaching book just as it has been assumed as the major premise of every use of the Bible since, lying behind the very possibility of biblical theology. Among the theological disciplines, "Bibliology" is both prolegomenon, part of the prelude to theology proper, and one among the articles that follow.
The Biblical Testimony . Perhaps the most striking, if often least noticed, testimony is the sustained interweaving of the direct speech of God in the text of the canonical Scriptures of the Old and New Testament. While serving as chief illustration and paradigm of revelation, the direct speech of the Creator-Redeemer resonates throughout the Scriptures and imparts its own stamp of authority to those books in which it is found. It is thus that the Book of Genesis begins with a chapter-long listing of the creative words of God, "And God said" Chapters 2,3 narrate the interlocution of the Lord God and Adam and Eve in the garden. In chapter 4 the Lord engages Cain in interrogation, and curse, and finally grace. And the pattern continues through the flood and the covenant with Noah, and into the call of Abra(ha)m and the long account of the patriarchal discipleship (and the later historical books). In Exodus this narrative leads to the giving of the law on Sinai, and alongside the Ten Commandments, written by the finger of God, we read the mass of first-person instruction that became the basis of the civil and ceremonial practice of the Hebrews. The prophetic books, of course, consist in large measure of discourse from the mouth of God. As we later read, "In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways" (Hebrews 1:1 ).
In the New Testament there is some similarity, especially in the Book of Revelation, which repeatedly records the words of God. But there is also a fundamental difference: On page after page of the four Gospels, the incarnate Son of God speaks in human flesh the words of God. "In these last days he has spoken to us by his Son" (Hebrews 1:2 ). As is so apparent in a red-letter testament, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John record the very words of Jesus in an extensive fashion.
Of course, it is possible to conclude that such claims to divine authority in particular portions of Holy Scripture need not extend to the whole. A general regard for the trustworthiness of Scripture is all that is needed to sustain the divine authority of sayings placed in the mouth of God. Indeed, is not the implication of "Thus says the Lord" that those other sayings recorded by the prophet fall short of divine authority? Should not the quoted speech of Jesus of Nazareth be taken to have an authority to which the letters of Saul of Tarsus could never aspire?
As it happens, the Scriptures themselves tell another story. For the teaching of Jesus Christ extends to the question of bibliology. This is evident in all four Gospels, and the evidence is overwhelming. In John 10:34 we read that Jesus said "The Scripture cannot be broken." In Mark 12:36 , of Psalm 110 , he states that David is speaking by the Holy Spirit. One of the most significant of all the many New Testament uses of the Old is found in Matthew 19 . We read: "Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?' Haven't you read, ' he replied, that at the beginning the Creator "made them male and female, " and said, "for this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh"?'" (4-5). The importance of this reference lies in the fact that in Genesis 2:24 , where we find this statement about leaving parents to become one flesh with a wife, the comment is simply attributed to the narrator. It is Jesus who puts it into the mouth of the one who "made them male and female." And the implication is strong: that what Scripture says, God says, whether Scripture places it in the divine speech or as narration and commentary.
The second thread of internal testimony within Scripture may be traced through apostolic use of other canonical books. There is of course extensive New Testament use of the Old in a manner consonant with that which we find in the teaching of Jesus. In 2 Peter 3:15-16 we find this principle carried through into the New Testament Scriptures themselves, as the writings of the apostle Paul are placed on a level with Holy Scripture: "Bear in mind that our Lord's patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction."
The Use of Scripture in the Church The central place of Holy Scripture in the life and history of the church in every age offers telling evidence of its authority. We do not believe its authority stems from the teaching of the church. But we note the authority which Scripture has, from the start, exercised in all the churches, as believers in the first century and the twentieth have done homage to the written Word of God as rule for their minds, their hearts, and their lives. Here we unite the devotional and doctrinal use of Scripture, its place in preaching, private reading, the great doctrinal controversies, and the anguish of the believer persecuted or bereft who turns to the Word of God for comfort from God himself. It is through Scripture that God has ruled the mind and heart of the church and the Christian.
The Testimony of the Holy Spirit Central to Christian confidence in the authority of Scripture lies the conviction that behind every argument and experience that lead the believer to trust the Bible there is another witness to be discerned; that of God the Holy Spirit, himself inspirer and interpreter of Scripture, as he testifies to that Word of God. We have noted that it is not possible for a supreme authority to find final testimony in anything lesser. So it is in God only that Scripture can be attested. As Calvin puts it, "For as God alone is a fit witness of himself in his Word, so also the Word will not find acceptance in men's hearts before it is scaled by the inward testimony of the Spirit. That same Spirit, therefore, who has spoken through the mouths of the prophets must penetrate into our hearts to persuade us that they faithfully proclaimed what had been divinely commanded" ( Inst . 1.7.4).
The near-universal acceptance of biblical authority in the church, liberal and conservative alike, is not coincidental. It draws our attention to the character of the church of Jesus Christ as a canonical communitythe people of the book. Yet one implication of this wide assumption that theology should be done "according to the Scriptures" is that the tail comes to wag the dog; because it is necessary to justify theological proposals with reference to Scripture, persons of all theological persuasions seek to find some way to connect their conclusions, on whatever ground they may have been reached, with Scripture. This has led to growing uncertainty about what it means to say that the Bible has authority. To what does that authority extend? Several points of focus have emerged in this discussion. The task of contextualizing the teaching of Holy Scripture in the cultures of every century has demanded the best scholars and exegetes at the disposal of the church. It also raises the question of the extent of biblical authority. Does it indeed extend to the Pauline condemnation of homosexuality? Growing disagreement among evangelicals has focused on issues of hermeneutics, and the nature of authoritative inspirationwhether it implies inerrancy . The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy is widely accepted as a consensus statement of the biblical position, and begins with an affirmation that "recognition of the total truth and trustworthiness of Holy Scripture is essential to a full grasp and adequate confession of its authority." That is to say, acknowledgment of the authority of Holy Scripture is no mere pRom forma indication of respect, but involves confidence in its inerrancy. "The following Statement affirms this inerrancy of Scripture afresh, making clear our understanding of it and warning against its denial. We are persuaded that to deny it is to set aside the witness of Jesus Christ and of the Holy Spirit and to refuse that submission to the claims of God's own Word which marks true Christian faith." The heart of the confession that follows is found in this paragraph: "Holy Scripture, being God's own Word, written by men prepared and superintended by His Spirit, is of infallible divine authority in all matters upon which it touches: it is to be believed, as God's instruction, in all that it affirms; obeyed, as God's command, in all that it requires; embraced, as God's pledge, in all that it promises."
Nigel M. de S. Cameron
See also Bible, Canon of the ; Bible, Inspiration of the
Bibliography . C. F. H. Henry, God, Revelation, and Authority ; J. I. Packer, Fundamentalism and the Word of God ; B. B. Warfield, The Inspiration and Authority of the Bible ; J. D. Woodbridge, Biblical Authority: A Critique of the Rogers/McKim Proposal .
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Bible And the Popes, the
The popes, both in their own persons, and through the various particular and ecumenical councils, have always manifested a profound interest in, and exercised a close and prudent guardianship over the Bible. The first popes whose connection with the Bible is noteworthy are those of the 4th, 5th, and 6th centuries. Of these the first is Pope Saint Damasus, who lived in the latter half of the 4th century. In the year 382 he convoked a synod in Rome to settle the question of the canonicity of the so-called Deutero-Canonical Books. This synod formulated and published the Damasan catalog of the Sacred Scriptures, a complete and perfect canon, whieh has ever since been received in the Church. In the following year, 383, he commissioned Saint Jerome to revise the text of the Old Latin version, then much in need of emendation, and it was, no doubt, this commission which later inspired Saint Jerome to give to the world his famous Latin Vulgate. During the two centuries following several Roman pontiffs, as witnessed by the letter of Innocent I to Saint Exsuperius (405), the Canons of Gelasius (496), and Hormisdas (523), republished the Canon of Damasus, lest the faithful be erroneously led into repudiating any of the Sacred Books. Nor did the popes of this period confine their interests in the Bible to the canonization of its various books, and to keeping pure its text, for several of them, notably Saint Leo the Great (461) and Saint Gregory the Great (604), have left numerous homilies which proved them profound students and splendid exegetes of Holy Writ. The invention of printing in the 15th century brought about not only a multiplicity of versions but also a great number of uncritical editions of Saint Jerome's Vulgate and the Greek Septuagint. But, through the tireless efforts of several popes of this time, namely, Popes Julius III (1555), Pius IV (1565), Gregory XIII (1585), Sixtus V (1590), and Clement VIII (1641), the celebrated revisions of the Vulgate and the Septuagint, which are still in common use, were begun and successfully completed.
Recent popes have vied with their distinguished predecessors as defenders and teachers of the Bible. Popes Leo XIII, Pius X, Benedict XV, and Pius XI have all issued scholarly and weighty pronouncements on the Bible and biblical studies. Of these the decrees and encyclical letters of Leo XIII and Pius X are especially worthy of mention. The encyclical letter, "Providentissimus Deus," of Leo XIII, dated November 18, 1893, has been justly styled the "Magna Carta" of Bible students. Therein the sovereign pontiff not only vindicates the inspired character and authority of the Bible against the nationalists and modernists of his day, but also lays down judicious norms to guide the interpreter of the Scriptures, and prescribes further that which in the mind of the Church constitutes the preparation and qualifications of the competent Catholic exegete. Not content with the effects of the "Providentissimus Deus" the same pontiff published another memorable letter, the "Vigilantire," in which he sounds a warning note against the insidious attacks of nationalistic and modernistic scholars. As a final safeguard against any future attacks or abuses, he created the Pontifical Biblical Commission to which he confided the supervision and direction of the work of Catholic scholars in connection with their study of the Bible. Pius X continued the work of his distinguished predecessor through the issuance of several letters, chief of which are the Apostolic letter of November 18, 1907, in which he gives instructions regarding the methods to be employed in the teaching of Sacred Scriptures in the seminaries; a letter written December 3, 1907, addressed to Abbot Gasquet, authorizing him to begin the revision of the Vulgate with a view to reproducing as far as was possible the original text of Saint Jerome; and the Apostolic letter, "Vinea Electa," May 7, 1909, through which medium he officially established the Pontifical Biblical Institute at Rome.
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: Judged by Its Fruits
A Roman Catholic priest in Belgium rebuked a young woman and her brother for reading that 'bad book' pointing to the Bible. 'Mr. Priest,' she replied, 'a little while ago my brother was an idler, a gambler, a drunkard, and made such a noise in the house that no one could stay in it. Since he began to read the Bible, he works with industry, goes no longer to the tavern, no longer touches cards, brings home money to his poor old mother, and our life at home is quiet and delightful. How comes it, Mr. Priest, that a bad book produces such good fruits?'
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: How to Deal With Its Difficulties
An old man once said, 'For a long period I puzzled myself about the difficulties of Scripture, until at last I came to the resolution that reading the Bible was like eating fish. When I find a difficulty I lay it aside, and call it a bone. Why should I choke on the bone when there is so much nutritious meat for me? Some day, perhaps, I may find that even the bone may afford me nourishment.'
Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Complutensian Bible
See BIBLE, No. 29.
Fausset's Bible Dictionary - Bible
THE Book by preeminence. "Next to God the Word," says Fuller (Pisgah Sight), "I love the word of God. I profess myself a pure leveler, desiring that all human conceits, though built on specious bottoms, may be laid flat, if opposing the written word." The term "Bible," though dating only from the 5th century in its sacred and exclusive use, is virtually expressed in the designations occurring in itself: "The Scripture" (John 10:35; John 20:9; Romans 4:3; 2 Peter 1:20); "the Book" (Psalms 40:7, cepher ); "the Scripture (kithab ) of truth" (Daniel 10:21). The books composing it are not isolated, but form together an organic unity, one whole made up of mutually related parts, progressively advancing to the one grand end, the restoration of the fallen creature through the love and righteousness of our God.
The Lord comprehends and stamps with divine sanction the whole Old Testament, under the threefold division recognized by the Jews, "the law, the prophets, and the psalms" (including all the holy writings not included in the other two, namely, the Hagiographa) (Luke 24:44). The Torah, or law, is mentioned as a book (including the five books of the Pentateuch) (Joshua 1:8; Joshua 8:31-35; Joshua 24:26). The Hebrew names of the five books of the Pentateuch are taken from the initial words of the several books. The names we use are from the Greek Septuagint: "Genesis" (creation) answering to bereeshit ("in the beginning".) And so the rest: Exodus (Israel's departure from Egypt) answering to weeleh shemot ("and these are the names"), etc.
"The prophets" comprise the former (Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings), and the latter, comprising the greater (Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel) and the less (the twelve minor prophets). The including of histories among the prophets arose from the fact that they were the inspired productions of such prophetic men as Samuel, Gad the seer of David (1 Chronicles 29:29), Nathan, Ahijah, and Iddo (2 Chronicles 9:29). The schools of the prophets trained such men as Isaiah for the office of historian (2 Chronicles 26:22; 2 Chronicles 32:32). Daniel is not included among the prophets, because he did not hold the prophet's office among the chosen people.
The Hagio-grapha, or "sacred writings" (kethubim , from kathab , to write), include (1) Psalms, Proverbs, Job; (2) The Song of Solomon of Solomon, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther; (3) Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, 1 and 2 Chronicles. The first three, from their initial letters, were called meth , "truth." The second five were called "the five rolls" (chamesh megillot ), written for use in the synagogue on special feasts. Ecclesiastes (qoheleth ) means "The Preacher." Chronicles bear the Hebrew name "words of days," i.e. records, the Greek paraleipomena , "things omitted" in Kings and here supplied as a supplement. The apocryphal books are never found in the Hebrew canon, and exist only in the Greek Septuagint.
The Second Epistle of Peter (2 Peter 3:16) shows that the epistles of Paul were recognized as part of "Scripture" at the time when Peter wrote: "in all his epistles are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned ... wrest, as they do also the other Scriptures;" compare 2 Peter 3:2; "be mindful of the words ... spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Savior." Justin Martyr (Apology 1:66) states that "the memoirs of the apostles" were read side by side with the scriptures of the prophets. Clement of Alexandria speaks of the New Testament making up with the Old Testament "one knowledge." Tertullian terms them together "the whole instrument of both Testaments," "the complete-together Scripture." The Syrian version (Peshitto) at the close of the 2nd century contains the New Testament with the Old Testament.
The eastern churches set the catholic epistles before the Pauline. The quotations, Luke 20:37, "at the bush," i.e. the section concerning the flaming bush; Romans 11:2 margin, "in Elias," i.e. in the passage concerning Elias; Acts 8:32, "the place of the Scripture"; show that some divisions of the Old Testament existed, with titles from their subjects. A cycle of lessons is implied in Luke 4:17; Acts 13:15; Acts 15:21; 2 Corinthians 3:14. The law was divided into 54 Parshioth or sections; a section for each sabbath in the year. Shorter Parshioth also existed, subdivided into open sections (Petuchoth) like our paragraphs, marking a change of subjects; and shut ones (Satumoth) or less divisions. The divisions of the prophets were called Haphtaroth, from patar , to "dismiss"; as Missa or "Mass" comes from the dismissal of the congregation on its completion.
Verses (Pecuqiym) were marked by the Masoretic editors of the text in the 9th century A.D. Stephens adopted them in his Vulgate, 1555; the English translation in the Geneva Bible of 1560. Our arrangement has adopted Cardinal Hugo's chapters and the Masoretic verses. Tartan, in the 2nd century, formed the first harmony of the four Gospels, called the Diatessaron. The elder Stephens, in a riding journey from Paris to Lyons, subdivided the New Testament chapters into verses, and the first edition with this division appeared in 1551. In reading the Bible we should remember these divisions have no authority; and where they break the sense, or mar the flow of thought, they are to be disregarded. The Four Gospels stand first in the New Testament, setting forth the Lord Jesus' ministry in the flesh; the Acts, His ministry in the Spirit, His church's (the temple of the Holy Spirit) foundation and extension, internally and externally.
To the histories succeed the epistles of Paul the apostle of faith, Peter of hope, and John of love, unfolding the gospel facts and truths more in detail; just as in the Old Testament the histories come first, then the inspired teachings based on and intimately connected with them, in Psalms, Proverbs, the Song of Solomon of Solomon, and the Prophets. Finally comes Revelation, answering to Daniel, the prophetic Apocalypse of the Old Testament The first three Gospels are called "the synoptical Gospels," giving a synopsis of Christ's ministry in Galilee; John's gives His ministry in Judea. They dwell more on Christ's Spirit-filled humanity; He on His Divinity, from everlasting one with God.
The New Testament 27 books, emanating from nine different persons, and the Old Testament 39 books, separated from each other by distances of time, space, and character, yet form a marvelously intertwined unity, tending all to the one end. Internal and external evidence disprove the possibility of their being written by several authors combining to palm an imposture on the world. How are we to account for the mutual connection and profound unity? The only answer that meets the exigencies of the case is, the word of God "came not in old time by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit" (2 Peter 1:21).
Rationalists try to disintegrate the parts of the sacred volume, but the more they do so the greater is the need for believing in one divine superintending Mind to account for a unity which palpably exists, though the writers themselves did not design it (see 1 Peter 1:10-12). If the parts of a watch be disconnected, it needs only for the maker to put them together again, to show their unity of design. However widely apart the makers of the several parts may live, the master mind used the makers as his workmen, and contrived and combined the parts into one. Infinite intelligence alone could combine into one the works of men of so various minds and of ages so. wide apart as the sacred writers, beginning with Moses the legislator and ending with John the divine. Moreover, anyone book cannot be taken from the canon without breaking a link in the complete chain. Inspiration was needed alike in producing each sacred book, and in guiding the church (while it was still possessing the extraordinary gifts of the Spirit) which to omit of even inspired books. Whatever was not necessary for all ages, though needed for the church's good for a time, were omitted (see Colossians 4:16).
The credibility of the Old Testament is established by establishing that of the New Testament, for the Lord quotes the Old Testament in its threefold parts, "the law, the prophets, and the psalms," as the word of God. The sacred Canon of the Old Testament was completed under Ezra. (See CANON.) We find Daniel shortly before having in his hands the book of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 9:2). Paul says that one grand preeminence of the Jews was that unto them were committed the oracles of God (Romans 3:2), and they are never accused of unfaithfulness in their trust. The monotheism of the Old Testament is the very opposite to the tendencies of Gentile and Israelite alike to idolatry. Again the Bible inverts the relative importance of events as men commonly regard them. Its sole aim is the honor of God, contrary to man's inclination.
The great events of ordinary history are untouched, except in so far as flier bear upon the kingdom of God. Yet God is throughout represented as ruling in the kingdoms of men, Gentiles as well as Jews (Daniel 4:17). Pharaoh, Sennacherib, Nebuchadnezzar, Cyrus while doing their own will, appear in the Bible as God's instruments, overruled to carry out His purposes. It is no Jewish vanity which causes the Bible to be silent about most of the great political events of the world and to dwell so much on Israel; for what the Bible records redounds to Israel's shame as an apostate people, and its allusions to surrounding nations are often to record their being made God's instruments to chastise themselves.
Yet it is to the Bible alone we have owed for ages almost all that is most certain of the history of Moab (since confirmed by the Moabite stone), of the Amorites, and even of Nineveh and Babylon. The two latter were entombed for thousands of years until lately, and the discovery of their monuments has remarkably confirmed holy writ. The analogies of nature and of history to Bible truths powerfully confirm its emanation from the same God. The gradual development of the divine plan of redemption answers to the gradual development of God's design in the formation and in the moral government of the world.
The historic development of the Bible scheme corresponds to God's working out His plans in the world by moral agents. And His revealing His will "in many portions" (polumeros ; Hebrews 1:1, one prophet or inspired person or writer receiving one portion of revelation, another another: to Noah the quarter of the world where Messiah should appear, to Abraham the nation, to Jacob the tribe, to David and Isaiah the family, to Micah the town, to Daniel the time), and "in divers manners," corresponds to tits sending from time to time a Bacon, Newton, Shakespeare, etc., into the social world for the advancement of mankind in science and civilization. As to natural science, the Bible is so framed in language as to adapt itself (on being closely examined) to advancing intelligence, according as the ruder theories are superseded by the more accurate.
The language being for all classes, not merely the so-called scientific, is phenomenal; it speaks by appearances, which even philosophers must often do, as in the phrase "sunrise," "sunset." The tongue through which the Old Testament revelation of God speaks is the Hebrew, that of the chosen nation, except parts of Ezra and Daniel and Jeremiah. The tongue of the New Testament is the Greek, best adapted of all languages for expressing most accurately the nicest and most delicate shades of thought and doctrine. A very remarkable proof of the Divinity of the New Testament is the marked difference between it and the writings of even the apostolic fathers that immediately succeeded: Clement of Rome, Ignatius, and Polycarp. Daille remarked, "God has allowed a fosse to be drawn by human weakness round the sacred canon, to keep it from invasion."
How remarkably too God kept the Jews, our librarians of the Old Testament, from altering, to meet their prejudices, the sacred books that record their sins and national disgrace. Though they hated and killed the prophets, they never mutilated their prophecies. King Jehoiakim alone cut a roll of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 36:23-24), and burnt it in the fire. But the act is recorded as one of exceptional profanity; and immediately the same words were written again with added woes, to show man's impotence against the word of God. Also for 14 centuries the church, though in various sections of it falling into various unscriptural heresies, has never added to, nor taken from, the New Testament canon. How natural it, would have been for the church of Rome to have added something favorable to her pretensions. She has burnt saints, with their writings hung round their neck. She has shown her will to add to Scripture itself adding the Apocrypha to the Old Testament just where her addition cannot prejudice the cause of truth fatally, for the Jews witness against her in this.
But in the New Testament, where she might have done mischief, she has been divinely constrained to maintain, without addition or subtraction, the canon which testifies against herself. The exact adaptation of the Bible to man's complex being, body, soul, and spirit - reason, emotion, conscience - and to outward nature in its varied aspects, confirms its divine authorship. It stands in marked contrast to all Gentile cosmogonies, in its majestic simplicity and evidently unmythical character. Of all other nations the oldest writings are poems, and they abound in poetic inventions. In the Bible, on the contrary, poetry is least found in the earliest books. Not until the broad midday light of David's reign does the first collection of poems, namely, his psalms, appear. The pagan ancient sacred stories, as those of the Hindus, Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, present scenes of the unseen world merely gratifying idle curiosity and a prurient imagination. The same is true of the Koran.
The Bible, with its old law of the Ten Commandments, gives the most perfect manifestation of the divine character and requirements from man, and this at a time when the human legislator, Moses, had just come from a nation sunk in the most debasing pollution and superstition. Another striking fact is, Israel has left scarcely any remains of art, and certainly nothing comparable to the masterpieces of the pagan; but it has handed down the Book which infinitely excels all that the genius of the whole world beside has produced. Pantheism, and the worship of nature as an abstract entity, lay at the root of all pagan idolatries. The Bible alone reveals the holy, just, loving, omnipotent, omniscient, personal, one and only God. Whenever their gods became personal, they ceased to be ONE; they were mere personifications of various powers of nature; fate, not the will of God, ruled all.
But the word reflects the moral character of the perfectly holy God, and requires His worshippers to be what He is, holy. That such a book should originate among a small and rather perverse people, surrounded by idolatrous nations, and that it should receive additions in successive ages of the same people, harmonizing marvelously with the earliest books, in spite of frequent apostasy in the nation, can only be accounted for by believing its authorship to be divine. The Koran's moral precepts are at variance with its picture of the sensual heaven which awaits its votaries. The pagan mythologies in their indecent histories of gods counteracted their moral precepts. The morality of the Bible rests on the infinitely pure attributes of the God of the Bible.
The Bible faithfully portrays man's universal corruption, its origin, and at the same time the sure hope of redemption, thus meeting fully man's profoundest wants. It gives peace to the conscience, without lowering the holy strictness of God's justice, but, on the contrary, in Christ "magnifying the law and making it honorable." There is an entire correspondence between the gospel way of salvation and the soul's deep conviction of the need of atonement for guilt.
The lovely character of Christ in the Bible, the perfect manhood and Godhead combined, above whatever uninspired man conceived not to say attained, the adaptation of the Bible to man's varied distresses (which occupy the larger part of it), and to his circumstances in all times and places, the completeness wherewith the end corresponds to the beginning, the close presenting before us man enjoying God's presence and marriage-like union with Him, no curse, no sin, no pain, no death, and the tree of life and waters of life which the beginning represented him as possessing before the fall, all assure us that "the words of the Lord are pure, as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times" (Psalms 12:6).
There is a break in revelation now, just as there was for 400 years between the Old Testament and the New Testament, after the outburst of them in connection with the rearing of the second temple. John the Baptist, at the close of the 400 years, ushered in the brightest light yet manifested. This period of New Testament revelations lasted for one century. Then have followed the 18 centuries which walk in the light of that last manifestation. The silence has been longer than before, but it will be succeeded by a more glorious revelation than all the past. The former 400 years' break directed the world's undivided attention to Messiah, so that His identity could not be mistaken.
The Jews scattered providentially over the world by the captivity, and everywhere bearing the Old Testament, matured the universal expectancy during the silent centuries. Their present longer dispersion, and the diffusion of the whole Bible in all lands, are preparing for Messiah's manifestation in glory. Finally, the miracles wrought in connection with the Bible, and attested on infallible proofs, and the prophecies of the Old Testament (proved to have been given when they profess to be, by the fact that the Jews who oppose Christianity attest their age, and fulfilled minutely in the New Testament) establish the inspired truth of the Bible. Bad men could never have written so holy a book, and good men would never have written it if it were an imposture. Its sobriety and freedom from fanaticism and mysticism preclude the idea of its being the production of self deceiving fanatics.
The national prejudices of all the New Testament writers, as Jews, were in behalf of an immediate temporal kingdom and an outwardly reigning Messiah, the very reverse of what His actual manifestation was. Nothing but superhuman inspiration could have turned them to write so spiritually and so at variance with all their early prejudices. Reader, if you want to know the divinity of the Bible, experimentally taste and feed upon it. The best defense of the Bible is the Bible itself. The best commentary on the Bible is the Bible itself. "Diamonds alone cut diamonds" (Fuller). "Have thou the palate of faith, that thou mayest taste the honey of God" (Augustine).
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible
The historical matters of Scripture, both narrative and prophecy, constitute as it were the bones of its system; whereas the spiritual matters are as its muscles, bloodvessels and nerves. As the bones are necessary to the human system, so Scripture must have its historical matters. The expositor who nullifies the historical groundwork of Scripture for the sake of finding only spiritual truths everywhere, brings death on all correct interpretation.: J. A. Bengel.
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: Cause of Interest in it
The lifeboat may have a. tasteful bend and beautiful decoration, but these are not the qualities for which I prize it; it was my salvation from the howling sea! So the interest which a regenerate soul takes in the Bible, is founded on a personal application to the heart of the saving truth which it contains. If there is no taste for this truth, there can be no relish for the Scriptures.: J. W. Alexander, D.D.
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: Power of Its Authority
The mother of a family was married to an infidel who made jest of religion in the presence of his own children; yet she succeeded in bringing them all up in the fear of the Lord. I asked her one day how she preserved them from the influence of a father whose sentiments were so opposed to her own. This was her answer: 'Because to the authority of a father I do not oppose the authority of a mother but that of God. From their earliest years my children have always seen the Bible upon my table. This holy book has constituted the whole of their religious instruction. 1 was silent that I might allow it to speak. Did they propose a question, did they commit a fault, did they perform a good action, I opened the Bible, and the Bible answered, reproved, or encouraged them. The constant reading of the Scriptures has wrought the prodigy which surprises you.–Adolphe Monod.
Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Bible
The name applied by Christians by way of eminence, to the collection of sacred writings, or the holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments.
I. Bible, ancient Divisions and Order of.
After the return of the Jews from the Babylonish captivity. Ezra collected as many copies as he could of the sacred writings, and out of them all prepared a correct edition, arranging the several books in their proper order. These books he divided into three parts. I. The law. II. The prophets. III. The Hagiographia, 1:e. the holy writings.
I. The law, contains
1, Genesis;-
2, Exodus;-
3, Leviticus;-
4, Numbers;-
5, Deuteronomy.
II. The writings of the prophets are-
1, Joshua;-
2, Judges, with Ruth;-
3, Samuel;-
4, Kings;-
5, Isaiah;-
6, Jeremiah, with his Lamentations;-
7, Ezekiel;-
8, Daniel;-
9,
The twelve minor prophets;-
10, Job;-
11, Ezra;-
12, Nehemiah;-
13, Esther. III.
The Hagiographia consists of –
1, The Psalms;-
2, The Proverbs;-
3, Ecclesiastes;-
4, The song of Solomon.
This division was made for the sake of reducing the number of the sacred books to the number of the letters in their alphabet, which amount to twenty-two. Afterwards the Jews reckoned twenty-four books in their canon of scripture; in disposing of which the law stood as in the former division, and the prophets were distributed into former and latter: the former prophets are Joshua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings; the latter prophets are Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the twelve minor prophets. And the Hagiographia consists of the Psalms, the Proverbs, Job, the Song of Solomon, Ruth, the Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Daniel, Ezra, the Chronicles. Under the name of Ezra they comprehend Nehemiah: this order hath not always been observed, but the variations from it are of no moment.
The five books of the law are divided into forty-five sections. This division many of the Jews hold to have been appointed by Moses himself; but others, with more probability, ascribe it to Ezra. The design of this division was that one of these sections might be read in their synagogues every Sabbath day: the number was fifty-four, because, in their intercalated years, a month being then added, there were fifty-four sabbaths: in other years they reduced them to fifty-two, by twice joining together two short sections.
Till the persecution of Antiochus Epiphanes, they read only the law; but, the reading of it being then prohibited, they substituted in the room of it fifty-four sections out of the prophets; and when the reading of the law was restored by the Maccabees, the section which was read every Sabbath out of the law served for their first lesson, and the section out of the prophets for their second.
These sections were divided into verses; of which division, if Ezra was not the author, it was introduced not long after him, and seems to have been designed for the use of the Targumists, or Chaldee interpreters; for after the return of the Jews from the Babylonish captivity, when the Hebrew language ceased to be their mother tongue, and the Chaldee grew into use instead of it, the custom was, that the law should be first read in the original Hebrew, and then interpreted to the people in the Chaldee language; for which purpose these shorter sections were very convenient.
II. Bible, History of.
It is thought that Ezra published the Scriptures in the Chaldee character, for, that language being generally used among the Jews, he thought proper to change the old Hebrew character for it, which hath since that time been retained only by the Samaritans, among whom it is preserved to this day.
Prideaux is of opinion that Ezra made additions in several parts of the Bible, where any thing appeared necessary for illustrating, connecting, or completing the work; in which he appears to have been assisted by the same Spirit in which they were first written. Among such additions are to be reckoned the last chapter of Deuteronomy, wherein Moses seems to give an account of his own death and burial, and the succession of Joshua after him. To the same cause our learned author thinks are to be attributed many other interpolations in the Bible, which created difficulties and objections to the authenticity of the sacred text, no ways to be solved without allowing them. Ezra changed the names of several places which were grown obsolete, and, instead of them, put their new names by which they were then called in the text. Thus it is that Abraham is said to have pursued the kings who carried Lot away captive as far as Dan; whereas that place in Moses' time was called Laish, the name Dan being unknown till the Danites, long after the death of Moses, possessed themselves of it.
The Jewish canon of Scripture was then settled by Ezra, yet not so but that several variations have been made in it. Malaachi, for instance, could not be put in the Bible by him, since that prophet is allowed to have lived after Ezra; nor could Nehemiah be there, since that book mentions (chap. 12: 5: 22) Jaddua as high priest, and Darius Codomanus as king of Persia, who were at least a hundred years later than Ezra. It may be added, that, in the first book of Chronicles, the genealogy of the sons of Zerubbabel is carried down for so many generations as must necessarily bring it to the time of Alexander; and consequently this book, or at least this part of it, could not be in the canon in Ezra's days.
It is probable the two books of Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Ester, and Malachi, were adopted into the Bible in the time of Simon the Just, the last of the men of the great synagogue. The Jews, at first, were very reserved in communicating their Scriptures to strangers; despising and shunning the Gentiles, they would not disclose to them any of the treasures concealed in the Bible. We may add, that the people bordering on the Jews, as the Egyptians, Phoenicians, Arabs, &c. were not very curious to know the laws or history of a people, whom in their turn they hated and despised. Their first acquaintance with these books was not till after the several captivities of the Jews, when the singularity of the Hebrew laws and ceremonies induced several to desire a more particular knowledge of them. Josephus seems surprised to find such slight footsteps of the Scripture history interspersed in the Egyptian, Chaldean, Phoenician, and Grecian history, and accounts for it hence; that the sacred books were not as yet translated into Greek, or other languages, and consequently not known to the writers of those nations.
The first version of the Bible was that of the Septuagint into Greek, by order of that patron of literature, Ptolemy Philadelphus; though some maintain that the whole was not then translated, but only the Pentateuch; between which and the other books in the Septuagint version, the critics find a great diversity in point of style and expression, as well as of accuracy.
III. Bible, modern Divisions of.
The division of the Scriptures into chapters, as we at present have them, is of modern date. Some attribute it to Stephen Langton, archbishop of Canterbury, in the reigns of John and Henry III. But the true author of the invention was Hugo de Sancto Caro, commonly called Hugo Cardinalis, because he was the first Dominican that ever was raised to the degree of cardinal. This Hugo flourished about A.D. 1240: he wrote a comment on the Scriptures, and projected the first concordance, which is that of the vulgar Latin Bible. The aim of this work being for the more easy finding out any word or passage in the Scriptures, he found it necessary to divide the book into sections, and the sections into subdivisions; for till that time the vulgar Latin Bibles were without any division at all.
These sections are the chapters into which the Bible hath ever since been divided; but the subdivision of the chapters was not then into verses, as it is now. Hugo's method of subdividing them was by the letters A, B, C, D, E, F, G, placed in the margin, at an equal distance from each other, according to the length of the chapters. The subdivision of the chapters into verses, as they now stand in our Bibles, had its original from a famous Jewish Rabbi, named Mordecai Nathan, about 1445. This rabbi, in imitation of Hugo Cardinalis, drew up a concordance to the Hebrew Bible, for the use of the Jews. But though he followed Hugo in his division of the books into chapters, he refined upon his inventions as to the subdivision, and contrived that by verses: this being found to be a much more convenient method, it has been every since followed. And thus, as the Jews borrowed the division of the books of the Holy Scriptures into chapters from the Christians, in like manner the Christians borrowed that of the chapters into verses from the Jews. The present order of the several books is almost the same (the Apocrypha excepted) as that made by the council of Trent.
IV. Bible, rejected Books of.
The apocryphal books of the Old Testament, according to the Romanists, are the book of Enoch (see Judges 1:14 , ) the third and fourth books of Esdras, the third and fourth books of Maccabees, the prayer of Manasseh, the Testament of the twelve Patriarchs, the Psalter of Solomon, and some other pieces of this nature. The apocryphal books of the New Testament are the epistle of St. Barnabas, the pretended epistle of St.Paul to the Laodiceans, several spurious Gospels, Acts of the Apostles, and Revelations; the book of Hermas, entitled the Shepherd; Jesus Christ's letter to Abgarus; the epistles of St.Paul to Senecca, and several other pieces of the like nature; as may be seen in the collection of the apocryphal writings of the New Testament made by Fabricius. Protestants, while they agree with the Roman Catholics in rejecting all those as uncanonical, have also justly rejected the books of Tobit, Judith, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch 1:1-21 st and 2 nd Maccabees.
V. Bible, Translations of.
We have already mentioned the first translation of the Old Testament by the LXX (# 2.) Both Old and New Testaments were afterwards translated into Latin by the primitive Christians; and while the Roman empire subsisted in Europe, the reading of the Scriptures in the Latin tongue, which was the universal language of that empire, prevailed every where; but since the face of affairs in Europe has been changed and so many different monarchies erected upon the ruins of the Roman empire, the Latin tongue has be degrees grown into disuse; whence has arisen a necessity of translating the Bible into the respective languages of each people; and this has produced as many different versions of the Scriptures in the modern languages as there are different nations professing the Christian religion.
Of the principal of these, as well as of some other ancient translation, and the earliest and most elegant printed editions, we shall now take notice in their order.
1.Bible, Armenian. There is a very ancient Armenian version of the whole Bible, done from the Greek of the LXX. by some of their doctors, about the time of Chrysostom. This was first printed entire, 1664, by one of their bishops at Amsterdam, in quarto, with the New Testament in octavo.
2.Bible, Bohemian. The Bohemians have a Bible translated by eight of their doctors, whom they had sent to the schools of Wirtemberg, and Basil on purpose to study the original languages: it was printed in Moravia in 1539.
3.Bible, Croatian. A translation of the New Testament into the Croatian language was published by Faber Creim, and others, in 1562 and 1563.
4.Bible Gaelic. A few years ago, a version of the Bible in the Gaelic or Ersc language was published at Edinburgh, where the Gospel is preached regularly in that language in two chapels, for the benefit of the natives of the Highlands.
5.Bible, Georgian. The inhabitants of Georgia, in Asia, have long had a translation of the Bible in their ancient language; but that language having now become almost obsolete, and the Georgians in general being very ignorant, few of them can either read or understand it.
6.Bible, Gothic. It is generally said that Ulphilas, a Gothic bishop, who lived in the fourth century, made a version of the whole Bible, except the book of Kings, for the use of his countrymen; that book he omitted, because of the frequent mention of the wars therein, as fearing to inspire too much of the military genius into that people. We have nothing remaining of this version but the four Evangelists, printed in quarto, at Dort, in 1665, from a very ancient manuscript.
7.Bible, Grison. A translation of the Bible into the language of the Grisons, in Italy, was completed by Coir, and published in 1720.
8.Bible Icelandic. The inhabitants of Iceland have a version of the Bible in their language, which was translated by Thoriak, and published in 1584.
9.Bible, Indian. A Translation of the Bible into the North America Indian language, by Elliot, was published in quarto, at Cambridge, in 1685.
10.Bible, Irish. About the middle of the sixteenth century, Bedell, bishop of Kilmore, set on foot a translation of the Old Testament into the Irish language, the New Testament and the Liturgy having been before translated into that language: the bishop appointed one King to execute this work, who, not understanding the oriental languages, was obliged to translate it from the English. This work was received by Bedell, who, after having compared the Irish with the English translation, compared the latter with the Hebrew, the LXX. and the Italian version of Diodati. When it was finished, the bishop would have been himself at the charge of the impression; but his design was stopped, upon advice given to the lord lieutenant and archbishop of Canterbury, that it would seem a shameful thing for a nation to publish a Bible translated by such a despicable hand as King: however, the manuscript was not lose, for it went to press in 1685, and was afterwards published.
11.Bible, King James.
12.See No. 24.
13.Bible, Malabrian. In 1711, Messers. Ziegenbald and Grindler, two Danish missionaries, published a translation of the New Testament in the Malabrian language, after which they proceeded to translate the Old Testament.
14.Bible, Malayan. About 1670, Sir Robert Boyle procured a translation of the New Testament into the Malayan language, which he printed, and sent the whole impression to the East Indies.
15.Bible, Rhemish.
16.See No. 23.
17.Bible, Samaritan. At the head of the oriental versions of the Bible must be placed the Samaritan, as being the most ancient of all (though neither its age nor author have been yet ascertained, ) and admitting no more for the Holy Scripture but the five books of Moses. This translation is made from the Samaritan Hebrew text, which is a little different from the Hebrew text of the Jews: this version has never been printed alone, nor any where but in the Polyglots of London and Paris.
18.Bible, Swedish. In 1534, Olaus and Laurence published a Swedish Bible from the German version of Martin Luther: it was revised in 1617 by order of king Gustavus Adolphus, and was afterwards almost universally received.
19.Bible, Anglo-Saxon. If we enquire into the versions of the Bible of our own country, we shall find that Adelm, bishop of Sherburn, who lived in 709, made an English Saxon version of the Psalms; and that Edfrid, or Ecbert, bishop of Lindisferne, who lived about 730, translated several of the books of Scripture into the same language. It is said, likewise, the venerable Bede, who died in 785, translated the whole Bible into Saxon.But Cuthbert, Bede's disciple, in the enumeration of his master's works, speaks only of his translation of the Gospel, and says nothing of the rest of the Bible. Some say that king Alfred, who lived about 890, translated a great part of the Scriptures. We find an old version in the Anglo Saxon of several books of the Bible, made by Elfric, abbot of Maimesbury: it was published at Oxford in 1699. There is an old Anglo Saxon version of the four Gospels, published by Matthew Parker, archbishop of Canterbury, in 1571, the author whereof is unknown. Mr. Mill observes, that this version was made from a Latin copy of the old Vulgate. The whole Scripture is said by some to have been translated into the Anglo-Saxon by Bede, about 701, though others contend he only translated the Gospels. We have certain books or parts of the Bible by several other translators; as, first, the Psalms, by Adeim, bishop of Sherburn, cotemporary with Bede, though by others this version is attributed to king Alfred, who lived two hundred years later. Another version of the Psalms, in Anglo-Saxon, was published by Spelman in 1640.2. The evangelists, still extant, done from the ancient Vulgate, before it was revised by St. Jerome, by an author unknown, and published by Matthew Parker in 1571. An old Saxon version of several books of the Bible made by Elfric, abbot of Malmesbury, several fragments of which were published by Will. Lilly, 1638; the genuine copy by Edm. Thwaites, in 1699, at Oxford.
20.Bibles, Arabic. In 1516, Aug. Justinian, bishop of Nebio, printed at Genoa an Arabic version of the Psalter, with the Hebrew text and Chaldee paraphrase, adding Latin interpretations: there are also Arabic versions of the whole Scripture in the Polyglots of London and Paris; and we have an edition of the Old Testament entire, printed at Rome, in 1671, by order of the congregation de propaganda fide; but it is of little esteem, as having been altered agreeably to the Vulgate edition. The Arabic Bibles among us are not the same with those used with the Christians in the East. Some learned men take the Arabic version of the Old Testament printed in the Polyglots to be that of Saadias's, who lived about A.D. 900: their reason is, that dias, quotes some passages of his version, which are the same with those in the Arabic version of the Polyglots; yet others are of opinion that Saadias's version is not extant. In 1622, Erpenius printed an Arabic Pentateuch called also the Pentateuch of Mauritania, as being made by the Jews of Barbary, and for their use. This version is very literal, and esteemed very exact. The four evangelists have also been published in Arabic, with a Latin version, at Rome, in 1591, folio. These have been since reprinted in the Polyglots of London and Paris, with some little alteration of Gabriel Sionita. Expenius published an Arabic New Testament entire, as he found it in his manuscript copy, at Leyden, 1616. There are some other Arabic versions of later date mentioned by Walton in his Prolegomena, particularly a version of the Psalms, preserved at Zion College, Loudon, and another of the prophets at Oxford; neither of which have been published. Proposals were issued for printing a new edition of the Arabic Bible, by Mr. Carlyle, chancellor of the diocese of Carlisle, and professor of Arabic in the university of Cambridge; but I am sorry to add that he has been called away by death, without finishing it.
21.Bibles, Chaldee, are only the losses or expositions made by the Jews at the time when they spoke the Chaldee tongue: these they call by the name of targumim, or paraphrases, as not being any strict version of the Scripture. They have been inserted entire in the large Hebrew Bibles of Venice and Basil; but are read more commodiously in the Polyglots, being there attended with a Latin translation.
22.Bibles, Coptic. There are several manuscript copies of the Coptic Bible in some of the great libraries, especially in that of the late French king. Dr. Wilkins published the Coptic New Testament, in quarto, in 1716; and the Pentateuch also in quarto, in 1731, with Latin translations. He reckons these versions to have been made in the end of the second or the beginning of the third century.
23.Bibles, Danish. The first Danish Bible was published by Peter Palladus, Olaus Chrysostom, John Synningius, and John Maccabxus, in 1550, in which they followed Luther's first German version. There are two other versions, the one by John Paul Resenius, bishop of Zealand, in 1605; the other of the New Testament only, by John Michel, in 1524.
24.Bibles, Dutch.
25.See No. 26.
26.Bibles, East Indian.
27.See No. 12, 13, 44.
28.Bibles, English. The first English Bible we read of was that translated by J. Wickliffe, about the year 1360, but never printed, though there are manuscript copies of it in several of the public libraries. A translation, however, of the New Testament by Wickliffe was printed by Mr. Lewis, about 1731. J. de Trevisa, who died about 1398, is also said to have translated the whole Bible; but whether any copies of it are remaining does not appear. The first printed Bible in our language was that translated by W. Tindal, assisted by Miles Coverdale, printed abroad in 1526; but most of the copies were bought up and burnt by bishop Tunstal and Sir Thomas More. It only contained the New Testament, and was revised and republished by the same person in 1530. The prologues and prefaces added to it, reflect on the bishops and clergy; but this edition was also suppressed, and the copies burnt. In 1532, Tindal and his associates finished the whole Bible, except the Apocrypha, and printed it abroad: but, while he was afterwards preparing a second edition, he was taken up and burnt for heresy in Flanders. On Tindal's death, his work was carried on by Coverdale, and John Rogers, superintendant of an English church in Germany, and the first Martyr, in the reign of queen Mary, who translated the Apocrypha, and revised Tindal's translation, comparing it with the Hebrew, Greek, Latin, and German, and adding prefaces and notes from Luther's Bible. He dedicated the whole to Henry VIII, in 1537, under the borrowed name of Thomas Matthews; whence this has been usually called Matthew's Bible. It was printed at Hamburgh, and license obtained for publishing it in England, by the favour of archbishop Cranmer, and the bishops Latimer and Shaxton. The first Bible printed by authority in England, and publicly set up in churches, was the same Tindal's version, revised and compared with the Hebrew, and in many places amended by Miles Coverdale, afterwards bishop of Exeter; and examined after him by archbishop Cranmer, who added a preface to it; whence this was called Cranmer's Bible. It was printed by Grafton, of the largest volume, and published in 1540; and, by a royal proclamation, every parish was obliged to set one of the copies in their church, under the penalty of forty shillings a month; yet, two years after, the popish bishops obtained its suppression by the king. It was restored under Edward VI., suppressed again under queen Mary's reign, and restored again in the first year of queen Elizabeth, and a new edition of it given in 1562. Some English exiles at Geneva, in queen Mary's reign, viz. Coverdale, Goodman, Gilbie, Sampson, Cole, Wittingham, and Knox, made a new translation, printed there in 1560, the New Testament having been printed in 1557; hence called the Geneva Bible, containing the variations of readings, marginal annotations, &c. on account of which it was much valued by the purital party in that and the following reigns. Abp. Parker resolved on a new translation for the public use of the church; and engaged the bishops, and other learned men, to take each a share or portion: these, being afterwards joined together and printed, with short annotations, in 1568, in large folio, made what was afterwards called the Great English Bible, and commonly the Bishops' Bible. In 1589, it was also published in octavo, in a small but fine black letter; and here the chapters were divided into verses, but without any breaks for them, in which the method of the Geneva Bible was followed, which was the first English Bible where any distinction of verses was made. It was afterwards printed in large folio, with corrections, and several prolegomena in 1572: this is called Matthew Parker's Bible. The initial letters of each translator's name were put at the end of his part; e. gr. at the end of the Pentateuch, W.E. for William Exon; that is, William, bishop of Exeter, whose allotment ended there: at the end of Samuel, R. M. for Richard Menevensis; or bishop of St. David's, to whom the second allotment fell: and the like of the rest. The archbishop oversaw, directed, examined, and finished the whole. This translation was used in the churches for forty years, though the Geneva Bible was more read in private houses, being printed above twenty times in as many years.King James bore it an inveterate hatred, on account of the notes, which, at the Hampton Court conference, he charged as partial, untrue, seditious, &c. The Bishops' Bible, too, had its faults. The king frankly owned that he had seen no good translation of the Bible in English; but he thought that of Geneva the worst of all. After the translation of the Bible by the bishops, two of the New Testament; the first by Laurence Thompson, from Beza's Latin edition, with the notes of Beza, published in 1582, in quarto, and afterwards in 1589, varying very little from the Geneva Bible; the second by the Papists at Rheims, in 1584, called the Rhemish Bible, or Rhemish translation. These, finding it impossible to keep the people from having the Scriptures in their vulgar tongue, resolved to give a version of their own, as favourable to their cause as might be. It was printed on a large paper, with a fair letter and margin: one complaint against it was, its retaining a multitude of Hebrew and Greek words untranslated, for want, as the editors express it, of proper and adequate terms in the English to render them by; as the words azymes, tunike, holocaust, prepuce, pasche, &c..: however, many of the copies were seized by the queen's searchers, and confiscated; and Thomas Cartwright was solicited by secretary Walsingham to refute it; but, after a good progress made therein, archbishop Whitgift prohibited his further proceeding, as judging it improper that the doctrine of the church of England should be committed to the defense of a puritan; and appointed Dr. Fulke in his place, who refuted the Rhemists with great spirit and learning. Cartwright's refutation was also afterwards published in 1618, under archbishop Abbot. About thirty years after their New Testament, the Roman Catholics published a translation of the Old at Douay, 1609, and 1610, from the Vulgate, with annotations, so that the English Roman Catholics have now the whole Bible in their mother tongue; though, it is to be observed, they are forbidden to read it without a license from their superiors. the last English Bible was that which proceeded from the Hampton Court conference, in 1603; where, many exceptions being made to the Bishops' Bible, king James gave order for a new one; not, as the preface expresses it, for a translation altogether new, nor yet to make a good one better; or, of many good ones, one best. Fifty-four learned men were appointed to this office by the king, as appears by his letter to the archbishop, dated 1604; which being three years before the translation was entered upon, it is probable seven of them were either dead, or had declined the task; since Fuller's list of the translators makes but forty-seven, who, being ranged under six divisions, entered on their province in 1607. It was published in 1613, with a dedication to James, and a learned preface; and is commonly called king James' Bible. After this all the other versions dropped, and fell into disuse, except the epistles and Gospels in the Common Prayer Book, which were still continued according to the Bishops' translation till the alteration of the liturgy, in 1661, and the psalms and hymns, which are to this day continued as in the old version.
29.The judicious Selden, in his Tabletalk, speaking of the Bible, says, "The best translation in the world, and renders the sense of the original best; taking in for the English translation the Bishops' Bible, as well as king James's. The translators in king James's time took an excellent way. That part of the Bible was given to him who was most excellent in such a tongue (as the Apocrypha to Andrew Downs:) and then they met together, and one read the translation, the rest holding in their hands some Bible, either of the learned tongues, or French, or Spanish, or Italian, &c. If they found any fault, they spoke; if not, he read on." (King James's Bible is that now read by authority in all the churches in Britain.) Notwithstanding, however, the excellency of this translation, it must be acknowledged that our increasing acquaintance with oriental customs and manners, and the changes our language has undergone since king James's time, are very powerful arguments for a new translation, or at least a correction of the old one. There have been various English Bibles with marginal references by Canne, Hayes, Barker, Scattergood, Field, Tennison, Lloyd, Blayney, Wilson, &c.; but the best we have, perhaps, of this kind, are Brown's and Scott's.
30.Bibles, Ethiopic. The Ethiopians have also translated the Bible into their language. There have been printed separately the Psalms, Canticles, some chapters of Genesis, Ruth, Joel, Jonah, Zephaniah, Malachi, and the New Testament, all which have been since reprinted in the Polyglot of London. As to the Ethiopic New Testament, which was first printed at Rome in 1548, it is a very inaccurate work, and is reprinted in the English Polyglot with all its faults.
31.Bibles, Flemish. The Flemish Bibles of the Romanists are very numerous, and for the most part have no author's name prefixed to them, till that of Nicholas Vinck, printed at Louvain in 1548. The Flemish versions made use of by the Calvinists till 1637, were copied principally
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: Why Priests Withhold it
The true reason why the Papists forbid the Scriptures to be read is not to keep men from errors and heresies, but to keep them from discovering those which they themselves impose upon them. Such trash as they trade in would never go off their hands if they did not keep their shops thus dark; which made one of their shavelings so bitterly complain of Luther for spoiling their market, saying that but for him they might have persuaded the people of Germany to eat hay. Anything, indeed, will go down a blind man's throat.: Gurnal.
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: How to Hear
To some the Bible is uninteresting and unprofitable, because they read too fast. Amongst the insects which subsist on the sweet sap of flowers, there are two very different classes. One is remarkable for its imposing plumage, which shows in the sunbeams like the dust of gems; and as you watch its jaunty gyrations over the fields, and its minuet dance from flower to flower, you cannot help admiring its graceful activity, for it is plainly getting over a great deal of ground. But, in the same field there is another worker, whose brown vest and business-like forward flight may not have arrested your eye. His fluttering neighbor darts down here and there, and sips elegantly wherever he can find drop of ready nectar; but this dingy plodder makes a point of alighting everywhere, and wherever he alights he either finds honey or makes it. If the flower-cup be deep, he goes down to the bottom; if its dragon-mouth be shut, he thrusts its lips asunder; and if the nectar be peculiar or recondite, he explores all about till he discovers it, and then having ascertained the knack of it, joyful as one who has found great spoil, he sings his way down into its luscious recesses. His rival, of the painted velvet wing, has no patience for such dull and long-winded details. But what is the end? Why, the one died last October along with the flowers; the other is warm in his hive to-night, amidst the fragrant stores which he gathered beneath the bright beams of summer.
Reader, to which do you belong?–the butterflies or bees? Do you search the Scriptures, or do you only skim them? Do you dwell on a passage till you bring out some meaning, or till you can carry away some memorable truth or immediate lesson? or do you flit along on heedless wing, only on the look-out for novelty, and too frivolous to explore or ponder the Scriptures? Does the Word of God dwell in you so richly, that in the vigils of a restless night, or in the bookless solitude of a sick room, or in the winter of old age or exclusion from ordinances, its treasured truths would perpetuate summer round you, and give you meat to eat which the world knows not of?–James Hamilton, D.D.
Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection - Bible: to be Read With Delight
When Mr. Hone, who wrote the 'Every-day Book,' and was of sceptical views, was travelling through Wales, he stopped at a cottage to ask for a drink of water, and a little girl answered him, 'Oh, yes! sir, I have no doubt mother will give you some milk. Come in.' He went in and sat down. The little girl was reading her Bible. Mr. Hone said, 'Well, my little girl, you are getting your task?' 'No, sir, I am not,' she replied,' I am reading the Bible.' 'Yes,' said he, 'you are getting your task out of the Bible?' 'Oh, no,' she replied, 'it is no task to read the Bible; I love the Bible.' 'And why do you love the Bible?' said he. Her simple, child-like answer was, 'I thought everybody loved the Bible.' Her own love to the precious volume had made her innocently believe that everybody else was equally delighted to read God's Word. Mr. .Hone was so touched with the sincerity of that expression, that he read the Bible himself, and instead of being an opponent to the things of God, came to be a friend of divine truth.
Holman Bible Dictionary - Plants in the Bible
By plants we include all plant life such as wild and cultivated trees, shrubs, and herbs.
Lily and Rose Red lips of Song of Song of Solomon 5:13 indicate a red-flowered “lily,” such as scarlet tulip or anemone. Other references, such as Song of Song of Solomon 2:1-2 , may refer to the actual white madonna lily (Lilium candidum ), now very rare in the area, or wild hyacinth (Hyacinthus orientalis ) wild crocus (Croccus species ), the rose of Isaiah 35:1-2 (see NAS). It is impossible to be sure to which “lilies” Jesus referred ( Matthew 6:28 ; Matthew 13:31-32 ): it may have been the anemone or any of the conspicuous wild flowers such as crown daisy (Chrysanthemum coronarium ).
The biblical “rose” is similarly difficult to identify. The “rose of Sharon” (Song of Song of Solomon 2:1 ) has been equated with anemone, rockrose, narcissus, tulip, and crocus.
Reeds Certain water plants may be distinguished from the several Hebrew words used. The following species are likely to be the ones referred to
Common reed (Phragmites communis ) forms great stands in shallow water or wet salty sand. The plumed flower head may have been given to Jesus in mockery (Matthew 27:29 ). Pens (3 John 1:13 ) were made from the bamboolike stems.cr
Papyrus sedge (Cyperus papyrus ) also grows in shallow water in hot places such as in Lake Huleh and along the Nile, but it is now extinct in Egypt except in cultivation. Its tall, triangular, spongy stems were used for rafts (Isaiah 18:1-2 ) and for making baskets (Exodus 2:3 ) and papyrus paper, on which much of the Bible may have been written.
Cattail or reed mace (Typha domingensis ) is often associated with the above-mentioned reeds, and it seems to have been the one among which Moses was hidden (Exodus 2:3 ). This is often referred to as bulrush, but the tree bulrush (Scirpus lacustris ) is a sedge with slender stems, which also occurs in lakes and pools.
Thorns Jesus' crown of thorns has led to two shrubs known as christthorn (Ziziphus spina-christ , Paliurus spina-christi ). The former grows near the Dead Sea not far from Jerusalem (Matthew 27:29 ; Mark 15:17 ; John 19:5 ), while the latter does not grow nearer than Syria. However, it may have occurred on the Judean hills in biblical times. Some authors consider the common spiny burnet (Poterium or Sarcopoterium spinosum ) to be the species concerned.
Even today nobody can walk far in the Holy Land without seeing prickly weeds. The ground is cursed with them (Genesis 3:18 ; Numbers 33:55 ). Many different Hebrew words have been used to distinguish them, and some are identifiable. Thorns are usually woody plants, such as Acacia , Lycium , Ononis , Prosopis , Rubus , Sarcopoterium , while thistles are herbaceous, such as Centaurea , Notobasis , Silybum . The latter could have been the “thorns' that suffocated the grain in Jesus' parable (Matthew 13:7 ).
Fragrant Plants In biblical times strong smelling plants included the following kinds:
1. Cassia and cinnamon are traditionally identified with the Far Eastern trees Cinnamomum cassia and C. zeylanicum . The ground bark was used in the holy anointing oil for priests (Exodus 30:24 ), and cinnamon was used for perfumery (Proverbs 7:17 ; Revelation 18:13 ).
2. Calamus or sweet cane ( Acorus calamus ) was the dry rhizome of this water plant imported from temperate Asia used for perfume (Isaiah 43:24 NRSV).
3. Galbanum , a very strong-smelling resin burnt as incense (Exodus 30:34 ), was obtained from the stem of Ferula galbaniflua , a relative of parsley growing on dry hills in Iran.
4. Henna ( Lawsonia inermis ) leaves were crushed and used both as a perfume (Song of Song of Solomon 1:14 NIV) and as a yellow dye for skin, nails, and hair. It is a subtropical shrub with white flowers.
5. Hyssop used for ritual cleansing ( Luke 12:27 ,Leviticus 14:4,14:49 ) and sprinkling of blood in the tabernacle (Exodus 12:22 ) was the white marjoram (Origanum syriacum or Majorana syriacu ) which grows commonly in rocky places and is related to the mint.
6. Myrtle ( Myrtus communis ) is a shrub with fragrant leaves and white flowers frequent in bushy places. It was especially favored for temporary shelters in the fields at the Feast of Tabernacles (Leviticus 23:40 ; Nehemiah 8:15 ).
7. Rue ( Ruta chalepensis ) grows on the hills of the Holy Land as a low straggling shrub with pungent smelling leaves. Jesus referred to it being tithed (Luke 11:42 ).
8. Spikenard or nard , an expensive perfumed oil (Song of Song of Solomon 4:13-14 ; John 12:3 ), obtained either from the leaves of a desert grass (Cymbopogon schoenanthus ) or, traditionally, the valerian relative Nardostachys jatamansi from the Himalayas.
9. Stacte , one of the spices referred to in Exodus 30:34 to be used in the incense, may be the resin of the balm-of-Gilead ( Commiphora gileadensis ) from southern Arabia.
Culinary Herbs Bitter herbs for Passover are certain wild plants with sharp-tasting leaves. The desert plant wormwood (Artemisia ) was also bitter and depicted sorrow and suffering (Proverbs 5:4 Lamentations 3:15 ,Lamentations 3:15,3:19 ).
Coriander ( Coriandrum sativum ) provides both salad leaves and spicy seeds (Exodus 16:31 ) which were likened by the Israelites to the manna in the desert.
Cummin ( Cuminum cyminum ) and dill (Anethum graveolens ), like coriander, are members of the parsley family with spicy seeds (Isaiah 28:25-27 ; Matthew 23:23 ).
Fitches or black cummin ( Nigella sativa ) is an annual plant with black oily seeds easily damaged in harvesting (Isaiah 28:25-27 ).
Mint ( Mentha longifolia ), a popular seasoning herb, was tithed by Jewish leaders (Luke 11:42 ).
Mustard ( Brassica nigra ) well known for its hot-flavored seeds is referred to by Jesus for having small seeds which grow into a tree (Leviticus 14:4 ).
Saffron ( Crocus sativus ), a yellow powder prepared from the stigmas, is used as a subtle flavor (Song of Song of Solomon 4:14 ) and also as a food coloring and a medicine.
Frankincense and Myrrh are resins produced by certain trees that grow in dry country in southern Arabia and northern Africa.
Frankincense is a white or colorless resin yielded by several species of Boswellia , chiefly B. sacra , which is a shrub or small tree growing on both sides of the Red Sea. The resin is obtained by cutting the branches and collecting the exuding “tears' which are burnt as incense in religious rites or as a personal fumigant. In the Bible, frankincense was prescribed for holy incense mixture (Exodus 30:31 ,Exodus 30:31,30:34 ; Luke 1:9 ). It was also brought by the wise men to the infant Jesus, together with gold and myrrh (Matthew 2:11 ).
Myrrh is a reddish-colored resin obtained from a spiny shrub, Commiphora myrrha in a similar manner to frankincense. This resin was not usually burnt but dissolved in oil and either eaten or used as a medicine and cosmetically ( Psalm 45:8 ; Matthew 2:11 ).
Medicinal Plants Many medicinal herbs were gathered from the hills and valleys where the wild plants grew. Local people were well-versed in plant lore, but these common weeds are not specially mentioned in the Bible. Some special imported medicines are referred to. See Frankincense and Myrrh above.
Aloes of the New Testament ( Aloe vera ) were succulent plants with long swordlike leaves with serrations and erect flower heads up to three feet high imported from Yemen. The bitter pith was used as a medicine and for embalming (John 19:39 ). In the Old Testament, aloes refers to an expensive fragrant timber obtained from a tropical Indian eaglewood tree (Aquilaria agallocha ).
Balm ( Genesis 37:25 ) is a general term for medicinal ointment prepared from resin-bearing plants such as the rockrose Cistus laurifolius , which produces ladanum. The balm of Gilead or opohybalsam is yielded by Commiphora gileadensis , a non-spiny shrub of dry country in Southern Arabia and said to have been cultivated by Solomon at En-Gedi near the Dead Sea (Song of Song of Solomon 5:1 , “spice”). Gum was imported with balm by the Ishmaelites (Genesis 37:25 ). It is extruded from cut roots of a spiny undershrub (Astragalus tragacanth ) grown on dry Iranian hillsides.
Some plants, such as the gourd Citrullus colocynthis, could be medicinal purges in very small quantities but bitter poisons otherwise (2 Kings 4:39-40 ).
Cereal Grains for Bread Well-to-do citizens made bread primarily from wheat, but the poor man had to make do with coarse barley (2 Kings 4:42 ; John 6:9 ). No other cereals were grown, these being the Old Testament “corn.” About New Testament times, however, sorghum was introduced. Rice came later still, and maize, not until America was opened up.
Wheat (emmer wheat Triticum dicoccum ; bread wheat T. aestivum ) is an annual crop which grows about three feet, though the primitive varieties were taller in rich soil, and with bearded ears.
Grains of wheat are hard and dry and easily kept in storehouses as Joseph did in Egypt before the time of famine (Genesis 41:49 ; KJV “corn”). It was important to retain seed for sowing (Genesis 47:24 ), but ancient tomb grain will not germinate. See Bread .
Barley ( Hordeum vulgare ) tolerates poorer soil than wheat, is shorter, has bearded ears, and ripens sooner (Exodus 9:31-32 ). It was also used for brewing beer and as horse and cattle fodder (1 Kings 4:28 ). Sometimes barley was eaten roasted as parched grain (Ruth 2:14 ).
Wheat and barley straw remaining after threshing was used for fuel (Isaiah 47:14 ), and the fine chaff for instant heat in the oven.
Fruits Olive trees ( Olea europaea ) are small rounded orchard trees with narrow gray-green leaves and small cream-colored flowers in May. The stone fruits ripen toward the end of summer and are pickled in brine either unripe as green olives or ripe as black olives. However, the bulk of the crop was gathered for the sake of the olive oil. See Oil .
Grape vines (Vitis vinifera ), grown either in vineyards or singly as shady bowers around houses and courtyards, have long flexible stems with tendrils and lobed leaves. Short flower heads grow among the new leaves in early summer, and the numerous tiny flowers develop into a cluster of round sweet grapes which ripen either as green or black fruits. The fruits are eaten fresh as grapes, or dried and stored as raisins (1 Samuel 30:12 ). Wine was prepared from the fermented juice. See Wine .
The common fig tree ( Ficus carica ) has a short stout trunk and thick branches and twigs bearing coarsely lobed rough leaves (Genesis 3:7 ). Rounded fruits ripen during the summer. These sweet fig fruits have numerous small seeds in their interior cavity. Fresh figs were favored as first fruits (Isaiah 28:4 ; Jeremiah 24:2 ). Figs dry very well and were stored as cakes for future use (1 Samuel 25:18 ; 1 Samuel 30:12 ). Jesus referred to figs and fig trees several times (Matthew 7:16 ; Luke 21:29-31 ).
Another kind of fig tree, the sycomore ( Ficus sycomorus ) grew in Egypt and in the warmer areas of the Holy Land. This large tree usually has low-growing branches such as would have enabled the short Zacchaeus to climb one to see Jesus passing along the streets of Jericho (Luke 19:4 ).
The juicy fruit of the pomegranate ( Punica granatum ), about the size of a tennis ball, is full of seeds and sweet pulp. It develops from beautiful scarlet flowers that cover the twiggy bush in spring. Pomegranate bushes were often grown in gardens and beside houses (Deuteronomy 8:8 ; Song of Song of Solomon 6:11 ). Moses was instructed to embroider pomegranate fruits on the hem of the priests' robes (Exodus 28:33 ), and their form ornamented the columns of Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem (1 Kings 7:18 ; 2 Chronicles 3:16 ).
Only one palm , the date-palm (Phoenix dactylifera ), yielded fruit in biblical times. This very tall tree with a rough unbranched trunk bearing a terminal tuft of huge feather leaves, fruits best in hot conditions of the Dead Sea oases. Hence, Jericho was known as the city of palm trees (Judges 1:16 ). The wandering Israelites reached Elim where there were seventy palm trees (Exodus 15:27 ). Te psalmist considered it to be such a fine tree that he compared the righteous flourishing to one (Psalm 92:12 ). Revelation 7:9 refers to the symbolic use of palm leaves (as “branches”) denoting victory, as when Jesus entered Jerusalem and the people strewed the way with leaves ( John 12:13 ).
It is doubtful whether the black mulberry ( Morus niger ) was present in the Holy Land until New Testament times as it originated in the Caspian Sea region. The only probable reference to it is (as “sycamine”) when Jesus spoke of believers having enough faith to destroy one (Luke 17:6 )—perhaps because old trees are stout, gnarled, and long-lived.
Another questionable fruit is that referred to as “apple ” (Song of Song of Solomon 2:3 ,Song of Song of Solomon 2:5 ; Song of Song of Solomon 7:8 ), although some versions translate the word as “apricot.” Either could be possible, but it is unlikely that fine varieties of apples were available so early.
Nuts Nuts are popularly considered to be hard dry fruits and seeds, as distinct from the more succulent fruits described above.
The most important biblical nut was the almond ( Prunus dulcis ), which is a small tree with delightful whitish flowers in early spring before the leaves have sprouted. The nuts are well-known today either fresh or as marzipan; the kernel is contained in a very hard thick casing. Almond nuts were carried to Egypt by Joseph's brothers (Genesis 43:11 ). Aaron's walking stick budded and produced almonds overnight and proved that Aaron was God's man to assist Moses (Numbers 17:8 ). The holy lampstand had cups like almond flowers (Exodus 25:33 ; Exodus 37:19 ).
The walnut tree ( Juglans regia ) originated in the Caspian region and may not have been commonly planted in the Eastern Mediterranean region until after the biblical period. However, it is possible that Solomon grew it in his garden (Song of Song of Solomon 6:11 ). The tree grows to a considerable size. The leaves are compound, and the oily edible nuts look like a miniature brain—hence the ancient name Jovis glans and the scientific adaptation Juglans .
True pistacio nuts ( Pistacia vera ) also arrived late. The pistache nuts referred to in the Bible (Genesis 43:11 NIV) would be from the native terebinth trees ( Pistachia terebinthus, P. atlantica ) of the hillsides. One is a small shrubby tree, while the other is as large as an oak. Both yield small round edible fruits.
Vegetables The wandering Israelites longed for vegetables in the desert after they had left Egypt (Numbers 11:5 ). Onions, leeks, and garlic are mentioned, as well as cucumbers and melons. Elsewhere, we read of lentils and other pulses (2 Samuel 17:28 ; Daniel 1:12 ).
Onions ( Allium cepa ) are the bulbs familiar to us nowadays. They are white or purple and grow quickly from seeds in one season. Leeks (Allium porrum ) do not form such a distinct bulb. They are cooked, or the leaves were chopped up. Garlic (Allium sativum ) is a strongly flavored onion that produces a bulb composed of separate scales.
The cucumbers of biblical Egypt were most likely the sn
Holman Bible Dictionary - Pottery in Bible Times
Everyday household utensils whose remains form the basis for modern dating of ancient archaeological remains. Relatively few Bible texts refer to the methods and products of the potter even though the industry formed a vital part of the economic structure of the ancient world. The few statements about the preparation of the clay, “the potter treads clay” (Isaiah 41:25 ), and the potter's failure and success on the wheel (Jeremiah 18:3-4 ) hardly hint at the importance and abundance in antiquity of “earthen vessels” (Leviticus 6:21 ; Numbers 5:17 ; Jeremiah 32:14 ), the common collective term for pottery in the Bible. However, the work of the potter in shaping the worthless clay provided the imagery the biblical writers and prophets used in describing God's creative relationship to human beings (Job 10:8-9 ; Isaiah 45:9 ).
The pottery sherds (Job 2:8 ), those indestructible remnants of the potters' skill, are recovered in abundance at every archaeological site. They have not only clarified the pottery industries but have also shed light on the migration of peoples, their trade and commerce. They have become the key to establishing a firmer chronological framework for other cultural data, especially in those periods for which few or no written remains are available. This begins in the Neolithic period, before 5000 B.C. when pottery first appeared. See Archaeology; Vessels.
The Bible specifically identifies only two vessels as pottery: earthen pitchers (Lamentations 4:2 ) and earthen bottles (Jeremiah 19:1 ), but an additional series of vessels probably came from the potter's workshop: “jar” for water (Genesis 24:14 NRSV); “pot” ( Exodus 16:3 ); “bowl” (Numbers 7:85 ); “bowl” (Judges 6:38 ); “vial” (1 Samuel 10:1 ); “cruse” for oil and “jar” for flour (1 Kings 17:14 NRSV); another type of “jar” ( 2 Kings 4:2 NRSV); “bowl” and “cup” (Song of Song of Solomon 7:2 ; Isaiah 22:24 ); “cup” (Isaiah 51:17 ,Isaiah 51:17,51:22 ); and “cup” and “pitcher” (Jeremiah 35:5 NRSV). Similar English words represent different Hebrew terms.
Pottery Production Two factors appear to have contributed to the late appearance of fired pottery: (1) early nomads found pottery too cumbersome to transport and (2) a lengthy trial-and-error process in discovering and understanding the firing process.
Clay for the production of pottery may be divided into two types: pure aluminum silicate (“clean” clay) not found in Israel, and aluminum silicate mixed with iron oxides, carbon compounds, and other ingredients (sometimes referred to as “rich” clay). The potter prepared the dry clay by sifting and removing foreign matter, and letting it stand in water to achieve uniform granules. Having achieved the desired texture, the potter mixed it by treading on it or hand-kneading it. Then the potter was ready to shape the vessel.
The earliest pottery from the Neolithic period was handmade. Clay was coiled into the desired shape on a base or stand. These earliest efforts of the potter's trade were coarse and badly fired. Other vessels were hand-shaped from a clay ball. Innovations soon led to refinement of method and technique. During the Chalcolithic and Early Bronze periods (5000-2000 B.C.), turning boards or stones (“tournettes”) formed the prototypes of the potter's wheel. A refinement of the wheel came with the production of two horizontal stone disks with corresponding cone and fitting socket lubricated with water or oil. While the lower stone with the socket served as a stationary base, the upper stone allowed for easy, smooth rotation to enhance the quality and productivity of the potter. Extensive use of the wheel came during the Middle Bronze age (about 1900-1550 B.C.), though a few examples have been identified belonging to the Early Bronze age.
The potter rotated the wheel and used both hands to “draw” the moist clay from base to rim into the shape of desired curvature, diameter, and height. The vessel was set aside to dry to a leatherhard consistency. At this point the vessel received its distinctive modifications such as base, handles, projecting decorations, and spout adjustment. Coloration and ornamentation followed with a variety of options such as slips and paint, burnishing, incisions, impressions, and reliefs. A second drying period further reduced water content to about three percent. Then the vessel was fired in an open or closed kiln at temperatures between 450-950 degrees Celsius.
The best wares obviously were achieved at the highest and most consistent temperatures, a result determined by the nature of the kiln. Firing may have begun by accident when people noticed the quality of clay vessels left near or in a fireplace or recovered after a building or town burned. First combustible materials were burned over the pottery in open pits. Later, the pottery appears to have been stacked above the firebox. Ultimately, the need to equalize the distribution of heat led to the closed kiln. The introduction of bellows and forced air firing provided the desirable higher temperatures.
Importance of Pottery Analysis for Historical Studies Each culture produced its own distinctive, durable pottery. That distinctiveness has enabled archaeologists to trace each culture's “fingerprints” through time. The archaeologist can describe the movement of a race from one place to another, the influence of new people in a particular region or area, and the commercial activity of the people. Archaeologists have used changes in pottery forms, shapes, decorations, and materials from one period to the next to establish a relative chronological framework for dating purposes. The type pottery in an excavated layer or strata provides the key for dating, at least in a relative way, all other cultural artifacts and architectural remains within the strata.
Developments in Pottery Production in Palestine The significance of pottery analysis may be highlighted in a general way by recognizing the major developments of pottery production in Palestine throughout biblical history period by period.
1. Neolithic Period (7000-5000 B.C.) Neolithic pottery, the earliest attempts at this important industry, were poorly handmade and badly fired, although some types including bowls and storage jars were decorated elaborately with red slip, burnished, painted (triangular and zigzag lines, herringbone design), and incised (herringbone). Jericho, Shagr19/|! ar ha-Golan and other sites in the Jordan Valley have provided the best examples of these early cultural developments.
2. Chalcolithic Period (5000-3000 B.C.) The Ghassulian (in the Jordan Valley) and Beersheba (in the Negev) cultures have provided the best assemblages for this period of pottery advancement. Rope ornamentation on this handmade pottery clearly suggests the practical strengthening of the clay vessels with various rope netting or binding. A wide variety of shapes and sizes suggests the proliferation of household and commercial uses for storage and transport of both dry and liquid products and merchandise.
3. Early Bronze Age (3000-2000 B.C.) This period has been divided into three and possibly four distinct cultural periods on the basis of the distinctive pottery. The first period (EB I) is characterized by grey burnished ware, band-slip ware, and burnished red-slip ware. The second period (EB II) is identified with “Abydos” ware (pitchers and storage jars with burnished red-slips on the lower half and brown-and-black-painted triangles and dots on the upper half), first found in Egyptian royal tombs of the First Dynasty at Abydos in Upper Egypt and most important in the chronological correlation of Egyptian and Palestinian history. The third period (EB III) includes kraters (large storage or mixing bowls), bowls, pitchers, and stands, first identified at khirbet Kerak (Beth Yerak) at the southern end of the Sea of Galilee, which has a distinctive combination of highly burnished red and black slip. This culture appears to have originated in eastern Anatolia. The fourth period (EB IV) with innovations may be a cultural continuation of the previous period.
4. Middle Bronze Age (about 2000-1500 B.C.) A transitional phase (first identified MB I, and now mostly EB-MB) resulted from nomadic or seminomadic tribes who destroyed the final phase of EB culture. They produced a distinctive pottery with gobular and cylindrical shapes. These combined hand-shaped bodies and wheel-made necks and out-flared rims. The period introduced the pinching of the rim of a small bowl to produce a four-wicked lamp. The patriarchal period usually is identified with the next period (MB Iia). The pottery reflects the arrival of a highly developed culture that results in a prosperous, urbanized, sedentary population with rich cultural ties to the upper Euphrates region from which Abraham migrated, according to the biblical text. The pottery exhibits excellent workmanship, and in many instances suggests metal prototypes. Possibly the earliest Semitic wheel-made vessels were the beautiful carinated bowls and vessels of this period. Skilled potters, with the advent of the new fast wheel were able to produce elegant new shapes with wide bodies, narrow bases, and flaring rims, all with refined details. During the MB IIb, an unusual group of juglets indicate pottery exchange with Egypt which during this period was politically joined to Syria-Palestine.
5. Late Bronze Age (about 1550-1200 B.C.) This period generally coincides with the vibrant New Kingdom period in Egypt when Palestine primarily was under Egyptian control, a rule that became more concentrated and demanding toward the end of the period. Canaan also maintained extensive trade connections with Aegean and northeastern Mediterranean powers. Cypriot pitchers called “bilbils” and shaped as poppyseed heads (upside-down), were among the most popular Palestinian imports. They may have been used to transport opium in wine or water from Cyprus to other Mediterranean sites.
Clear pottery distinctives again suggest a three period division. The Late Bronze I (about 1550-1400) reflects a continuation of the vitality of the earlier Middle Bronze culture. The pottery of the Late Bronze IIa (about 1400-1300) shows a deterioration of forms and quality during a period of political instability associated with the el-Amarna Period. That deterioration becomes more evident during the Late Bronze IIb (about 1300-1200) as Egypt's Nineteenth Dynasty established a firmer control over the affairs of the economy and urban centers of Canaan. An abundance of Mycenaean and Cypriot pottery throughout the country would seem to suggest a growing commercial interest in the Levant for export and trade.
6. Iron Age (about 1200-587/6 B.C.) The Iron Age basically runs from the conquest of Canaan to the demise of the Judean Kingdom and usually is divided into two distinct periods. The distinguishing elements in pottery and other cultural elements for making the archaeological divisions of this period are not overly clear. Iron Age I (1200-925) pottery from the settlement to the division of the kingdom begins with a continuation of Late Bronze traditions, as Israel borrowed industrial techniques from the local Canaanite population.
The arrival of the Philistines after 1200 B.C. brought a distinctively decorated pottery with Mycenaean shapes and motifs. The deterioration of the quality and design of this pottery tends to reflect the eclectic nature of these “Sea Peoples.” By 1000 B.C. the distinctive nature of the pottery in the Philistine plain had basically disappeared.
During the Iron II period (925-587/6), from the division of the United Monarchy to the fall of the Judean Kingdom to the Babylonians, the political separation produced clear distinctions in the regional pottery types, generally known as “Samaria” and “Judean” ware. During most of this period the northern pottery exhibits the higher standard of workmanship. Most prominent in imported ware up to 700 B.C. is the Cypro-Phoenician ware. From 700 to 500 B.C. imports of Assyrian origin resulted in local potters copying Assyrian prototypes.
7. Persian Period (586-330 B.C.) The deterioration of the pottery with inferior clay, firing, and general workmanship appears to reflect the general economy disruption throughout the region, a situation that seems to prevail throughout the Near East. In Palestine a growing number of Greek imports appeared, especially toward the end of the period.
8. Hellenistic Period (330-63 B.C.) While the local pottery was basically crude and uninspired, imported wares include a wide range of luxury items from molded Megarian bowls to impressed and roulette decorated black-glazed and red-glazed ware. The maritime trade connections further are evident, for example, in widespread appearance of Rhodian amorphae.
9. Roman Period (63 B.C.-A.D. 325) Only Herodian pottery is of particular interest for an understanding of the biblical period. Local pottery basically followed earlier traditions with the dominant innovation a ribbing of many vessel surfaces. The most common imported ware is both eastern and western red-glazed terra sigillata, noted for its outstanding finish and general workmanship. The Nabataeans who controlled the trade routes of the Negev/Sinai and the Transjordan produced the finest local varieties, emulating the skills and export products of the Roman potters of the period.
George L. Kelm
Holman Bible Dictionary - Rivers And Waterways in the Bible
From the earliest efforts at permanent settlement in the Ancient Near East, people were attracted to the rivers and streams that ultimately would dictate population distribution between the mountains, deserts, and the seas. The flood plains of many of these rivers originally were inhospitable with thick, tangled jungles, wild beasts, and unpredictable flooding and disease. However, within the areas of plain and lowland that provided a more constant food supply and ease of movement, the need for a permanent water source attracted settlers to the river banks. Thus the early river civilizations of the Nile, the Tigris, and Euphrates starting about 3000 B.C., and the Indus civilization slightly later, resulted in response to the challenges and benefits these important waterways presented. Flood control, social and economic organization, and invention of writing as a means of communication developed. Trade was facilitated by means of navigable waterways. Since roads followed the lines of least resistance, the pattern of early trade routes conformed closely, especially in more rugged terrain, to channels and courses of the rivers and streams, and along the shoreline where the earliest fishing villages developed.
Rivers and Streams Each of the biblical rivers was developed to meet distinct human needs. A study of rivers helps understand the culture near the river.
1. Nile River The name Nile is not explicitly mentioned in KJV, but modern translations most often translated the Hebrew yeor as the Nile. The Nile plays a prominent role in the early events in the life of Moses in Exodus (Moses, Exodus 2:3 ; the ten plagues, Exodus 7:15 ,Exodus 7:15,7:20 ). The Nile is alluded to in many other passages as “the river” (Genesis 41:1 ), the “river of Egypt” (Genesis 15:18 ), the “flood of Egypt” (Amos 8:8 ), Shihor (Joshua 13:3 ), river of Cush among other names. The “brook of Egypt” mostly is a reference to Wadi el-Arish, the drainage system of the central Sinai. The prophets Amos (Amos 8:8 ; Amos 9:5 ) and Jeremiah (Jeremiah 46:8 ) used the Nile as the symbol of Egypt, a concept that is readily understood in terms of the river's historical importance to the survival and well-being of the country.
For the Egyptians the predictable annual flooding of the Nile with the depositing of the fertile black alluvial soil meant the enrichment of the flood plain and the difference between food and famine. From the central highlands of East Africa, the Nile with a watershed of over one million square miles is formed by the union of the White and Blue Niles and flows a distance of nearly 3,500 miles. From its low ebb at the end of May, the flow of the river gradually rises to its maximum flood stage at the beginning of September. Historically, approximately 95 percent of Egypt's population depended upon the productivity of the 5 percent of the country's land area within the flood plain of the Nile. In the Delta at least three major branches facilitated irrigation in the extensive fan north of Memphis, the ancient capital of lower Egypt. See Egypt ; Nile.
2. Euphrates First mentioned in Genesis 2:14 as one of the four branches of the river that watered the Garden of Eden, the Euphrates flows 1,700 miles to become the longest river in Western Asia. From the mountainous region of northeastern Turkey (Armenia), it flows southward into northern Syria and turns southeasterly to join the Tigris and flows into the Persian Gulf. On the Middle Euphrates, Carchemish, originally the center of a small city-state, became the important provincial capital of the Mitanni kingdom, later of the Hittite and Assyrian Empires. At Carchemish in 605 B.C. Nebuchadnezzar II defeated Pharaoh Necho as he began his successful drive to claim the former Assyrian Empire for Babylon ( 2 Kings 24:7 ; Jeremiah 46:1 ). Two important tributaries, the Belikh and Khabur, flow into the Euphrates from the north before it continues on to the ancient trade center at Mari. The Lower Euphrates generally formed the western limits of the city-states that made up the early Sumerian civilization. From the river plain to the delta, both the Tigris and Euphrates rivers regularly have formed new branches and changed their courses. About 90 percent of their flow mysteriously is lost to irrigation, evaporation, pools and lakes, and the swamps and never reaches the Persian Gulf. Lost as well in this region are the vast amounts of sediment that the Tigris and Euphrates bring from the mountainous regions. Sediment deposits along the lower courses of these rivers average 16 to 23 feet with 36-foot deposits in some regions. It has been calculated that the Tigris alone removes as much as 3 million tons of eroded highland materials in a single day. In the extreme south the two rivers join in a combined stream that today is known as the Shatt el-Arab.
The flooding of the Mesopotamian rivers in March and April differs from the Nile schedule which during that season is at its low ebb. The melting snows and rains at their sources create sudden, disastrous torrents that, along the Tigris especially, must be controlled by dams during such periods before they can supply a beneficial irrigation system. See Euphrates and Tigris Rivers .
The course of the Upper Euphrates was described as the northern border of the Promised Land (Genesis 15:18 ; Deuteronomy 1:7 ; Deuteronomy 11:24 ; Joshua 1:4 ). David, in fact, extended his military influence to its banks during the height of his power (2 Samuel 8:3 ; 2 Samuel 10:16-18 ; 1 Kings 4:24 ). The terms “the river,” “the flood,” “the great river,” and “beyond the river” (Joshua 24:2-3 ; Ezra 4:10-13 ; Nehemiah 2:7-9 ) refer to the Euphrates, historically a significant political and geographical boundary.
3. Tigris From its source in a small lake (Hazar Golu), about 100 miles west of Lake Van, in Armenia, the Tigris flows in a southeasterly direction for about 1,150 miles before joining the Euphrates and emptying into the Persian Gulf. It achieves flood stage during March and April from the melting mountain snows and subsides after mid-May. While its upper flow is swift within narrow gorges, from Mosul and Nineveh southward its course was navigable and was extensively used in antiquity for transport. A series of tributaries from the slopes of the Zagros emptied into the Tigris from the east, including the Greater and Lesser Zab and the Diyala. The Diyala flows into the Tigris near Bahgdad. In antiquity its banks were inhabited by a dense population maintained and made prosperous by an excellent irrigation system. The Euphrates, flowing at a level nine meters higher than the Tigris, permitted the construction of a sequence of irrigation canals between the two rivers that resulted in unusual productivity. South of Baghdad where their courses again separated, a more complicated system of canals and diversions were necessary.
The banks of the Tigris were dotted by some of the most important cities of antiquity: Nineveh, the capital of Assyria during the Assyrian Empire; Asshur, the original capital of Assyria; Opis (in the vicinity of Baghdad), the important commercial center of Neo-Babylonian and later times; Ctesihyphon, the capital of the Parthians and Sassanians; and Seleucia, capital of the Seleucid rulers of Mesopotamia.
Rivers of Anatolia Several rivers water this part of modern Turkey. See Asia Minor.
1. Halys River From its sources in the Armenian mountains, the Halys begins its 714-mile flow to the southwest only to be diverted by a secondary ridge into a broad loop until its direction is completely reversed into a northeasterly direction through the mountainous regions bordering the southern shore of the Black Sea. As the longest river in Anatolia, the Halys, like the other principal rivers in Turkey, is the result of heavy rainfall in the Pontic zone. Because of their winding courses within the coastal mountain chains, none of these rivers is navigable. Within this loop of the Halys in the northern Anatolian plateau the Hittites established their capital Boghazkoy. The course of the Halys generally formed the borders of the district of Pontus.
2. Rivers of the Aegean Coast The broken Aegean coastline boasted a series of sheltered havens and inlets that prompted Greek colonization and the establishment the great harbor cities of the later Greek and Roman periods. The mouths of the Aegean rivers deemed ideal for maritime centers during colonization ultimately proved disastrous. The lower courses of these rivers, relatively short and following a meandering course over their respective plains, are very shallow and sluggish during the summer months. Their upper courses however, of recent formation, carry enormous quantities of alluvium from the highlands that tended to fill the estuaries and gulfs. Constant dredging was required to maintain the harbor's access to the sea and to avoid the formation of malaria-infested swamps. Thus the Hermus (155 miles) was diverted to prevent the destruction of the harbor of Smyrna (Izmir). To the south at Ephesus, the original town site on the disease-ridden marshlands was abandoned about A.D. 400 for the construction of a new harbor on the Cayster River. During the days of Ephesus' prosperity, the constant dredging was adequately maintained. However, with the decline of the Roman Empire after A.D. 200, the silting of the harbor brought the rapid decline of the city. Miletus, on the alluvial plain of the Maeander River (236 miles), was originally established on a deep gulf well sheltered from the prevailing winds. The great Ionian city had possessed four harbors, but the silting of the harbors by the alluvial deposits of the Maeander ultimately brought about the decline and abandonment of the city. Though these Aegean rivers were not navigable, the alluvial plains that bordered them provided convenient and vital access and communications to the interior.
Rivers of Syro-Palestine In Syria and Palestine rivers often separated peoples rather than providing economic power.
1. Orontes and Litani High within the Beqa valley that forms the rift between the Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon mountain ranges, a watershed (about 3,770 feet above sea level) forms the headwaters of the Orontes and Litani Rivers. The rains and snow on the mountain summits at heights of over 11,000 feet course down into the 6–10 mile-wide Beqa which is a part of the great Rift (“Valley of Lebanon,” Joshua 11:17 ). From the watershed, the Orontes flows northward and bends westward to empty into the Mediterranean near Antioch. The Litani flows southward and ultimately escapes to the sea north of Tyre. Unfortunately, its lower course has formed such a deep, narrow gorge that it is useless for communication. See Palestine .
2. Jordan River A series of springs and tributaries, resulting from the rains and snows on the heights of Mount Hermon (up to 9,100 feet above sea level) at the southern end of the Anti-Lebanon mountains east of the Rift Valley, converge in Lake Huleh to form the headwaters of the Jordan River. Along the eastern edge of the Huleh Valley, it flows southward into Lake Kinnereth (the Sea of Galilee). Only about eight miles wide and fourteen miles long, the fresh waters of the Galilee and its fishing industry sustained a dense population during most historical periods. At the Galilee's southern end, the Jordan exits and flows 65 miles on to the Dead Sea (about 1,300 feet below sea level). The Jordan flows 127 miles with a drainage area of about 6,380 square miles. The Yarmuk River joins the Jordan five miles south of the Sea of Galilee. The Jabbok River reaches the Jordan from the east twenty-five miles north of the Dead Sea.
At the Jordan's end, the Dead Sea extends another 45 miles between high, rugged cliffs of Nubian sandstone and limestone between the arid wilderness bordering the Judean watershed on the west and the Transjordanian plateau on the east. The sea and the inhospitable terrain along its shoreline discouraged regular travel and transport within the area.
The Jordan appears never to have served as a waterway for travel or transport, but rather as a natural barrier and a political boundary, that because of its steep banks and the densely wooded fringe that lined its devious route (“thickets of the Jordan,” Jeremiah 49:19 , NIV; compare 2 Kings 6:4 ) could be crossed without difficulty only at its fords (Joshua 3:1 ). Control of the fords during military confrontations in biblical times constituted a critical advantage (Judges 3:28 ; Judges 12:5-6 ). The Jordan's role as a political boundary appears to have been established already shortly after 2000 B.C. when the eastern frontier of the Egyptian province of Canaan followed the Jordan. Even though Israelite tribes were given special permission to settle in the Transjordan, it was always clear that, beyond the Jordan, they actually were residing outside the Promised Land (Joshua 22:1 ). Even in postbiblical times, the eastern boundary of the Persian and Hellenistic province of Judea followed the Jordan. Apart from the fertile oases that dotted the Jordan Valley, agricultural prosperity was assured during the Hellenistic and Roman times when irrigation was developed along the gradual slopes on either side of the Jordan within the Rift Valley. See Jordan.
3. Kishon River The Kishon River forms the drainage system of the Jezreel Plain and the southern portion of the Accho Plain. While a number of its small tributaries have their sources in springs at the base of Mount Tabor, in the southern Galilee, and in the extension of the Carmel in the vicinity of Taanach and Megiddo, the Kishon is rarely more than a brook within relatively shallow and narrow banks except during the heavy rains of the winter months. During those times its course becomes a marshy bog and impassable. From the Jezreel, it passes along the base of Mount Carmel through the narrow pass formed by a spur of the Galilean hills and into the Accho Plain, where some additional tributaries join before it empties into the Mediterranean. Its total length from the springs to the sea is only twenty-three miles. In biblical history it is best known for its role in the Barak-Deborah victory over the Canaanite forces of Sisera (Judges 4-5 ) and Elijah's contest with the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel (1 Kings 18:40 ).
4. Yarkon River The Yarkon is formed by the seasonal runoff from the western slopes of the Samaritan and Judean hills that flows into the Brook Kanah, its major tributary, and the rich springs at the base of Aphek about eight miles inland from the Mediterranean shoreline. Though anchorages and small harbors, such as tel Qasile, a Philistine town, were established along its course and the cedar timbers from Lebanon were floated inland to Aphek for transport to Jerusalem for the construction of Solomon's palace and Temple, the Yarkon historically formed a major barrier to north-south traffic because of the extensive swamps that formed along its course. The profuse vegetation that bordered its banks probably suggested its name that was derived from the Hebrew yarok, meaning “green.” The Yarkon, in biblical times, formed the border between the tribes of Dan and Ephraim to the north. Farther inland, the Brook Kanah formed the boundary between Ephraim and Manasseh (Joshua 16:8 ; Joshua 17:9 ).
Major Bodies of Water Two major seas heavily influenced Israel's political, economic, and cultural history.
1. Mediterranean Sea The Mediterranean Sea had a width of 100–600 miles and stretched over 2,000 miles from the Straits of Gibraltar to the Palestinian coast.
Formed by the movement of the European and North African continental plates, the greater Mediterranean consists of a series of basins and extended shoreline that historically contributed to the vitality of maritime commerce and trade. The unusually straight coast along the south portion of its eastern shoreline and the lack of natural coves and harbor facilities limited Israelite opportunities for direct involvement in Mediterranean maritime commerce. While limited port facilities existed at coastal towns such as Joppa, Dor, and Accho, they were hardly adequate to facilitate more than a local fishing fleet and an occasional refuge during a storm for the larger merchant ships that frequented the great harbors established farther to the north along the Phoenician coast. As a result, the treaties established between the Israelite kings and the Phoenicians provided for an exchange of agricultural and horticultural produce in exchange for lumber and imports (2 Chronicles 2:16 ), and a mutually beneficial cooperation in maintaining a monopoly on both land and sea routes of commerce and trade (1 Kings 9:26-27 ). The Mediterranean became the “Roman” sea when the peaceful conditions of Roman control of land masses along most of the Mediterranean shoreline fostered a dramatic movement of products, merchandise and people to satisfy the diverse needs of the provinces and Roman policy in them. See Mediterranean.
2. Red Sea The Red Sea (Heb. yam suf , lit. “Sea of Reeds”) is a long narrow body of water separating the Arabian Peninsula from the northeastern coast of Africa (Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia). At its southern end its narrow straits (twenty-one miles wide) open to the Indian Ocean. With a length of about 1,240 miles and a width that varies from 124 to 223 miles, the total surface area is just over 176,000 square miles. While its average depth is about 1,640 feet, as a part of the great rift or fault that runs northward from Lake Victoria to the base of the Caucasus Mountains in southern Russia, the Red Sea plunges to 7,741 feet near Port Sudan. It is the warmest and most saline of all the open seas. Though the shores of the Red Sea historically have been sparsely settled and its ports have been few, its waterway provided access to the distant ports of the Indian Ocean and the eastern shoreline of Africa where the Phoenician merchant fleets under lease to Solomon bartered for the luxury goods that graced the royal courts of the Levant (1 Kings 9:26 ).
In the north the Gulf of Suez and the Gulf of Elath (Aqaba) form the western and eastern arms making up the shorelines of the Sinai Peninsula. The Egyptian pharaohs used the Gulf of Suez as the shortest route to the Mediterranean. It was linked with the Bitter Lakes and the Nile by a canal that existed before 600 B.C. and was maintained by the Persians, the Ptolemies, and the Romans.
With the expansion of David's empire, the Gulf of Elath (Aqaba) provided the vital maritime trade outlet that the kings of Israel and Judah and the Phoenician allies exploited to fill the coffers of Jerusalem. After the demise of the Judean kingdom, the Nabataeans established a similar monopoly over the same marine commerce and the overland caravan routes through Petra to Damascus and Gaza for transshipment on the Mediterranean. Again in Hellenistic times, the Indian trade routes were reestablished and maintained throughout Roman times. See Red Sea.
Apart from the significant roles played by the Nile in Egypt and the Tigris and Euphrates in Mesopotamia, the rivers of the biblical world were small and mostly unnavigable. As a result, apart from the alluvial plains that bordered their banks, these rivers played a more meaningful role as barriers and boundaries than as waterways for travel and transport. In terms of early biblical history, the Mediterranean and the Red Seas played the more dominant roles in intercultural and commercial exchange. As the Greek and Roman Empires developed, the western seas—the Aegean, Ionian, Adriatic, and Tyrrhenian—grew in importance. In the north and east, the Black Sea, the Caspian Sea, and the Persian Gulf with the mountain ranges that linked them basically formed the limits of the biblical world.
George L. Kelm
Holman Bible Dictionary - Persecution in the Bible
Harassment and suffering which people and institutions inflict upon others for being different in their faith, world view, culture, or race. Persecution seeks to intimidate, silence, punish, or even to kill people.
Old Testament Israel was the agent of persecution of nations (Judges 2:11-23 ; Leviticus 26:7-8 ). The Bible gives special attention to Israel's fate in Egypt (Exodus 1-3 ) and in the Exile (Psalm 137:1 ). On an individual level, Saul persecuted David (1 Samuel 19:9-12 ), and Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were persecuted because they refused to worship the image of the king (Daniel 3:1 ). Jezebel persecuted the prophets of the Lord, and the prophet Elijah persecuted and killed the prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18:1 ). Job felt persecuted by God himself (1 Kings 7:11-21 ). The prophets—Amos (1 Kings 7:10-12 ), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 1:19 ; Jeremiah 15:15 ; Jeremiah 37-38 ), and Urijah (Jeremiah 26:20-23 )—suffered persecution because they fleshed out the will of God in adverse circumstances. The Psalms speak of the righteous sufferer who felt persecuted as a result of faith in God, and who prayed to God for deliverance (7; 35; 37; 79; Psalm 119:84-87 ).
Intertestamental period This era is important because it witnessed the concerted attempt to make the Jewish people renounce their faith in God. In this conflict, persecution took place on both sides (1,2Maccabees). See Intertestamental History.
New Testament Jesus was persecuted and finally killed by the religious and political establishments of His day (Mark 3:6 ; Luke 4:29 ; John 5:16 ; Acts 3:13-15 ; Acts 7:52 ; passion stories). He fleshed out the liberating passion of God (Luke 4:16-29 ) and came into conflict with the religious institutions of the cult by healing on the sabbath (Mark 3:1-6 ), criticizing the Temple activities (Mark 11:15-18 ), and the law (Matthew 5:21-48 ).
Jesus pronounced God's salvation upon those who are persecuted for righteousness sake (Matthew 5:10-12 ). In an evil world, disciples are to expect persecution (Matthew 10:16-23 ; Mark 4:17 ; Mark 13:9 ; John 15:20 ; Matthew 5:10-125 ), just as was the case with the prophets in the Old Testament (Matthew 5:12 ; Matthew 23:31 ; Luke 11:47-51 ; Acts 7:52 ; Hebrews 11:32-38 ). Paul (1 Corinthians 4:11-13 ; 2 Corinthians 4:8-12 ; 2 Corinthians 6:4-10 ; 2 Corinthians 11:24-27 ; Galatians 5:11 ; 1 Thessalonians 2:2 ; 1 Thessalonians 3:4 ; Acts 17:5-10 ; Acts 18:12-17 ; Acts 21:30-36 ; Acts 23:12-35 ), as well as Stephen (Acts 6:8-7:60 ), James (Acts 12:2 ), and Peter (Acts 12:3-5 ), together with many anonymous martyrs experienced the truth of the Johannine saying: “If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you” (John 15:20 ; see Acts 4:3 ; Acts 5:17-42 ; Acts 8:1 ; Acts 12:1 ; Revelation 2:26 ,Revelation 2:26,2:9-10 ,Revelation 2:9-10,2:13 ,Revelation 2:13,2:19 ; Revelation 3:8-10 ; Revelation 6:9 ; Revelation 16:6 ; Revelation 17:6 ; Revelation 18:24 ; Revelation 20:4 ).
Whole epistles and books like 1Peter, Hebrews, and Revelation were written to encourage Christians in a situation of persecution (1 Peter 3:13-18 ; 1 Peter 4:12-19 ; 1 Peter 5:6-14 ; Hebrews 10:32-39 ; Hebrews 12:3 ; Revelation 2-3 ). Something like a theology of persecution emerged, which emphasized patience, endurance, and steadfastness (Romans 12:12 ; 1 Thessalonians 2:14-16 ; James 5:7-11 ); prayer (Matthew 5:44 ; Romans 12:14 ; 1 Corinthians 4:12 ); thanksgiving (2 Thessalonians 1:4 ); testing (Mark 4:17 ) and the strengthening of faith (1 Thessalonians 3:2-3 ); experiencing the grace of God (Romans 8:35 ; 2 Corinthians 4:9 , 2 Corinthians 12:10 ), and being blessed through suffering (1618106616_14 ; 1 Peter 3:14 ; 1 Peter 4:12-14 ). For Paul, persecuting Christians could be a living and visible testimony to the crucified and risen Christ (2 Corinthians 4:7-12 ).
There seems to be an element in religious fanaticism (Paul before his conversion: 1 Corinthians 15:9 ; Galatians 1:13 ,Galatians 1:13,1:23 ; Philippians 3:6 ; Acts 8:3 ; Acts 9:1-2 ; Acts 22:4 ) which breeds intolerance and can lead to persecution. Christians should repent of this element in their own history and must be radically committed to the abolition of all persecution. See Apostles ; Maccabees; Martyr ; Prophets; Prophecy; Suffering ; War.
Thorwald Lorenzen
Holman Bible Dictionary - Preaching in the Bible
Human presentation through the Holy Spirit's power of God's acts of salvation through Jesus Christ. This proclamation of God's revelation functions as God's chosen instrument for bringing us to salvation by grace, although its message of a crucified Messiah seems to be foolishness to people of worldly wisdom and a scandalous offense to Jews (1 Corinthians 1:21-23 ). True Christian preaching interprets the meaning of God's acts into contemporary contexts. A sermon becomes God's word to us only as God's servant reconstitutes the past realities of the biblical revelation into vital present experience.
Old Testament Traditions The great prophets of the OT heralded God's direct messages against the sins of the people, told of coming judgments, and held out future hope of the great Day of the Lord. God's revelation to families, regularly shared as private instruction (Deuteronomy 11:19 ), became the foundation of the public reading of the law every seven years to all the people (Deuteronomy 31:9-13 ). During periods of special revival, natural leaders traveled about sharing the revelation in great assemblies (2 Chronicles 15:1-2 ; 2 Chronicles 17:7-9 ; 2 Chronicles 35:3 ). Nehemiah 8:7-9 records that Ezra and his associates interpreted the “sense” of what was read in such gatherings. The continuing need for such public interpretation and instruction led in the faith gave rise to an expository tradition of OT revelation. This continued after the Exile in the regular services of the local synagogues which arose in dispersed Judaism as substitutes for temple worship.
New Testament Practice Jesus began His ministry in the synagogue by announcing He was the Herald who fulfilled Isaiah's prophecy concerning the preaching of the kingdom and its blessings (Luke 4:16-21 ). By the time Peter and the other apostles preached, their emphasis focused on the person and work of Christ as the central point of history certifying the presence of God's kingdom on earth today. In the NT, this message concerned a summation of the basic facts about the life, character, death, burial, resurrection, and coming again of Christ. It continues today as the main word of revelation to the world through the church. Although the NT uses some thirty different terms to describe the preaching of John the Baptist, Jesus, and the apostles, those most commonly used can be grouped under either proclamation (to herald, to evangelize) or doctrine (to teach). Many scholars define these emphases as either gospel preaching (proclaiming salvation in Christ) or pastoral teaching (instructing, admonishing, and exhorting believers in doctrine and life-style). In practice each function melds into the other. Thus, 1 Corinthians 15:1-7 not only represents the “irreducible core” of the gospel message, but it also includes clear doctrinal teaching on the substitutionary atonement and the fulfillment of messianic prophecies. The same passage forms a foundation for the exposition of the extensive doctrine of general resurrection and its Christian dimensions taught in the following verses. Stephen's address in Acts 7:1-53 represents the best of the OT tradition, weaving narrative and historical portions of Scripture together with contemporary interpretation and application to the present situation. Peter's sermon in Acts 2:1 affirms the atoning nature of Jesus' death and the reality of His resurrection together with a clear call to faith and repentance forming a balanced argument framed around the central proposition that “Jesus Christ is Lord.”
Special Perspectives Paul firmly believed that proclaiming the full glory of Christ not only warns men and women of the need for salvation, but that through this preaching believers can grow towards spiritual maturity (Colossians 1:28 ). He wrote that the ministry of God-called leaders equips believers in each local assembly for service through mutual ministries to each other and leads to the healthy upbuilding of Christ's body (Ephesians 4:11-16 ). He defined his content as including “the whole counsel of God” and his practice as being “to Jews and Greeks,” and “from house to house,” as well as “publicly,” and “in all seasons” (Acts 20:17-21 ).
Homiletics Paul underlined the need for careful attention to principles of communication in preaching. While he refused to adopt some of the cunning word craftiness of the secular rhetoricians of his day (2 Corinthians 4:2 ; 1Thessalonians 2:3,1 Thessalonians 2:5 ), nevertheless, he adapted his preaching well to a variety of audiences and needs. In the synagogue Paul spoke to Jews about the special dealings God has with His people (Acts 13:16-41 ); but to the Greek philosophers he presented a living God as a challenge to their love for fresh ideas, quoting from their own writers as he did so (Acts 17:22-31 ). To Agrippa and Festus, Paul molded the gospel message in lofty and legal terms (Acts 26:2-23 ). When meeting a charge of apostasy from the Jewish faith, he addressed the people in their own tongue concerning his origins and his experiences in Christ (Acts 21:40-22:21 ). Paul also counseled young pastor Timothy to work on himself as well as on his doctrine (1 Timothy 4:16 ). Paul advised the need for diligent practice to improve Timothy's skills in the public reading of the Scriptures and in motivational teaching (1 Timothy 4:13-15 ). Paul noted that such responsibilities involved “hard labor” (1 Timothy 5:17 ).
Craig Skinner
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Luther's Bible
Luther translated the Bible into German (1522-1534) from the original Hebrew and Greek, also making use of the Latin version of Lyra, a Hebrew-Latin text, and an older German translation. His translation has literary merit but contains numerous errors, especially dogmatic, e.g., in Romans 3, it inserts "alone" after "faith." Revised editions of Luther's Bible appeared at Halle, 1883,1892, but they retain many of Luther's errors.
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Matthew's Bible
MATTHEW’S BIBLE. See English Versions, § 20.
Holman Bible Dictionary - Education in Bible Times
While the word “school” occurs in the Bible only once (Acts 19:9 ), there are numerous references to teachers and teaching in both Testaments. There are many references in the Old Testament to the importance of religious training but there is no Mosaic legislation requiring the establishment of schools for formal religious instruction.
Education in Old Testament Times The primary purpose of education among the Jews was the learning of and obedience to the law of God, the Torah. Whereas the word torah can be used to refer to all Jewish beliefs, it generally refers to the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.
The secondary purpose in education was to teach about the practical aspects of everyday life: a trade for the boy and the care of the house, application of dietary laws and how to be a good wife for the girl.
The home was considered the first and most effective agency in the education process, and parents were considered the first and most effective teachers of their children. This responsibility is expressed in Genesis 18:19 where God states his expectation that Abraham will train his children and his household to walk in the ways of the Lord. Proverbs 22:6 is another familiar exhortation for parents to teach their children according to the way of the Lord.
Deuteronomy 6:7 gives an interesting insight into how parents were to teach their children about God: “And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” The parent was to use the various ordinary activities of life as avenues to teach about God. All of life was permeated by religious meaning and teaching about God should flow naturally from its activities.
Primary ways of imparting religious knowledge to children were example, imitation, conversation and stories. Parents could utilize the interest aroused in their children by actual life observances such as Sabbath or Passover to teach about God.
Training in the Torah began very early. The father had an obligation to teach his children the Law by words and example. A child could observe his father binding the phylacteries on his arm and head. The natural question, “What are you doing?”, could be used to teach the child that it was everyone's duty to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might” (Deuteronomy 6:5 ).
When the son reached the age of twelve, the Jews believed his education in the Torah was complete enough to help him know the Law and keep it. He was then known as a “son of the Law.” As a symbol of this attainment, the father would fasten the phylacteries upon the arm and forehead of his son. The box placed on the forehead indicated that the laws must be memorized. The other box was placed on the left arm so that it would press against the heart when the arms were folded or the hands were clasped in prayer. The box pressed against the heart would symbolize that the laws were to be loved and obeyed.
Girls received their education at home. A girl's mother taught her what she needed to know to be a good wife and mother.
She learned about such things as dietary laws which had to do with the family's devotion to God. Girls learned the practical side of the laws the boys studied.
A girl learned how to make the home ready for special holidays and Sabbath. In such preparation she learned the manning of the customs and history behind the events. This heritage she would be able to pass on to her own children in their very early years.
The girl would learn a variety of skills such as weaving, spinning, and treating illnesses. She might also learn to sing and dance and play a musical instrument such as a flute or harp.
The Jewish people had opportunity to receive religious education from priests and Levites (Leviticus 10:10-11 ). The priests and Levites were to be supported by the offerings of the people and were to be the religious teachers of the nation. Apparently the educational function of their work was not well maintained. During the revival under King Jehoshaphat, the teaching function of Priests and Levites was resumed and the people were taught the ordinances of the Law. (2 Chronicles 17:7-9 ).
The ineffective work of the priests was supplemented by the teaching of the prophets. The first of these prophets, Samuel, attempted to make his reform permanent by instituting a school of the prophets in Ramah (1 Samuel 19:19-20 ). Later other schools of the prophets were begun at other places. The main study at these centers was the Law and its interpretation. Not all of the students of these schools had predictive gifts nor were all the prophets students in such schools. Amos is a notable example of a prophet who was not educated in one of these schools (Amos 7:14-15 ).
Education in New Testament Times. The synagogue apparently came into existence during the Babylonian captivity when the Jews were deprived of the services of the Temple. During captivity they began meeting in small groups for prayer and Scripture reading. When they returned to Israel the synagogue spread rapidly and developed into an important educational institution. Synagogue services made an important educational contribution to the religious life of the community. The elementary school system among the Jews developed in connection with the synagogue. Even before the days of Jesus, schools for the young were located in practically every important Jewish community.
The teacher was generally the synagogue “attendant.” An assistant was provided if there were more than twenty-five students. The primary aim of education at the synagogue school was religious. The Old Testament was the subject matter for this instruction. Reading, writing and arithmetic were also taught. Memorization, drill and review were used as approaches to teaching.
Boys usually began formal schooling at the “house of the book” at age five. He would spend at least a half day, six days a week for about five years, studying at the synagogue. Parents brought their son at daybreak and came for him at midday. While not at school the boy was usually learning a trade, such as farming or carpentry.
If a boy wanted training beyond that given in a synagogue, he would go to a scholarly scribe. Saul of Tarsus received such advanced theological training “at the feet of Gamaliel” in Jerusalem (Acts 22:3 ).
No formal educational approach is described in the New Testament. However, Jesus is pictured as teaching large crowds (Mark 4:1-2 ). While Jesus was much more than a teacher, he was recognized as a teacher by his contemporaries. He was a God-sent teacher who taught with an authority and challenge which held his audiences captive.
Jesus was also a trainer of teachers. He selected the twelve and taught them how to teach others.
As risen Lord, Jesus commissioned his followers to carry their evangelism and teaching ministry into all the world (Matthew 28:19-20 ). As seen in Acts 2:42 , Acts 4:1-2 ; Acts 5:21 ,Acts 5:21,5:28 , teaching became an important work in the early church in Jerusalem.
The New Testament places importance on the teaching function of the church. Teaching is regarded as a primary function of the pastor (1 Timothy 3:2 ). Volunteer teachers are also important to the work of the church (James 3:1 ).
In New Testament times churches met in the homes of members and Christian teaching was done there (Romans 16:3-5 ).
While the synagogue school still existed, the home was still considered a primary place of education for children. Timothy is a notable example of a child who had been educated in the Scriptures in the home (2 Timothy 1:5 ).
Cos Davis
Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Education in Bible Times
Education is essential to the survival of any social group, since a community secures its continued existence and development only through the transmission of its accumulated knowledge, derived power, and ideological aims to the next generation. Education may be simply (and narrowly) defined as the process of teaching and learning, the imparting and acquisition of knowledge and skill(s).
The need for education was no less true for the Israelites than for any of the peoples of the ancient world. In fact, the Old Testament record indicates repeatedly that the success of the Hebrew community and the continuity of its culture were conditioned by the knowledge of and obedience to God's revealed law (Joshua 1:6-8 ). Thus, to ensure their prosperity, growth, and longevity as the people of Yahweh, Israel's mandate was one of education—diligently teaching their children to love God, and to know and obey his statues and ordinances (Deuteronomy 6:1-9 ). Likewise, the New Testament record links the success of the church of Jesus Christ, as a worshiping community of "salt and light" reaching out to a dark world, to the teaching of sound doctrine (John 13:34-35 ; Ephesians 4:14 ; 1 Timothy 1:10 ; Titus 2:1 ).
Education in the Ancient Near East . Since education is basic to the existence of any community or society it is only natural that certain foundational ideals, methods, and principles of education are shared properties among diverse people groups. The case is no different when we study the educational practices of the Israelites within the context of education in world of the ancient Near East.
Education in the ancient world was rooted in religious tradition and theological ideals. The goal of education was the transmission of that religious tradition, along with community mores and values, and vocational and technical skills. The by-product of this kind of education was a model citizen, loyal to family, gods, and king, upright in character, and productive in community life. More than liberally educated "free-thinkers, " the important outcome of the educational system for the ancients was utilitarianequipping people to be functional members of family and society.
For the most part the teaching method was based upon rote learning. This memorization of the curricular materials was accomplished by both oral and written recitation. Disciplined learning characterized educational instruction, with lessons taught at fixed times during the day and often for a set number of days in a month. In addition to being teachers and drill masters, parents (in the home) and tutors (in the formal schools) also functioned as mentors and role-models, teaching by example and lifestyle.
The primary agency of education in both ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia was the home. Parents and elders of the clan or extended family were responsible for the education of children. The invention of writing systems and the increasing shift toward urbanization gave rise to specialized schools associated with the major institutions of the ancient worldthe temple and the palace. Whereas education in the home focused on vocational training and moral development, the temple and palace schools were designed to produce literate, informed, and capable religious and sociopolitical leaders and administrators.
However, more striking than these similarities are the difference between the educational ideals and practices of the Hebrews and those of their ancient counterparts. It is important to note that these educational distinctives of the Israelites are directly related to singular aspects of Hebrew religion. Five specific characteristics were not common to the religions of the ancient Near East.
First, the emphasis upon individual personality in Hebrew faith meant that education must respect the individual and seek to develop the whole person.
Second, the emphasis on the fatherhood of God in Israelite religion brought a sense of intimacy to the Creator-creature relationship and a sense of purpose and urgency to human history. Thus Hebrew education stressed the importance of recognizing and remembering Acts and events of divine providence in history.
Third, the idea of indeterminism or personal freedom in Hebrew religion gave man and woman dignity as free moral agents in creation; likewise Hebrew education stressed the responsibility individuals have toward God and others, accountability of human behavior, and the need for disciplined training in making "right" choices.
Fourth, the notion of the Israelites as a divinely chosen people encouraged fierce nationalistic overtones in Hebrew religion and education; religiously the Israelites were obligated to the demands of God's holiness in order to remain his special possession, while educationally they were obligated to instruct all nations in divine holiness and redemption as Yahweh's instrument of light to the nations.
Fifth, the doctrine of human sin and sinfulness stamps both Hebrew religion and education; this introduced the concept of mediation in Israelite religiona requirement for bridging the gap between a righteous God and his fallen creation; educationally this meant human knowledge and wisdom were flawed and limited and that divine illumination was necessary for grasping certain truths and divine enablement was necessary for doing right.
Education in Old Testament Times . Hebrew education was both objective (external and content oriented) and subjective (internal and personally oriented), cognitive (emphasis on the intellect) and affective (emphasis on the will and emotions), and both active (investigative and participatory) and passive (rote and reflective). Specifically the teaching-learning process involved disciplined repetition in observation, experiential learning (doing), listening, reciting, and imitating. On occasion special guidance (directed study) as well as correction and warning were a part of the educational experience. And finally, critical thinking skills were an important educational outcome because learning had application to daily living.
Aims . The aim or purpose of Old Testament education is encapsulated within the revelation given to Abraham concerning the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Here God bids Abraham to direct his children in "the way of the Lord." This divine directive embodies the very essence of Hebrew education in the Old Testament, affirming the primacy of parental instruction. In addition, the verse identifies the desired goal or outcome of education: a lifestyle of doing justice and righteousness. There was also an attendant benefit attached to this "behavior modification in Yahwistic moral values"the possession of the land of covenant promise for those Israelites who followed through on the charge to educate their children in the way of the Lord.
Content . Genesis 18:19 cryptically describes the content of Hebrew education as "the way of the Lord." What is meant by this phrase and how does it relate to the religious content of education in the Old Testament?
Generally speaking, "the way of the Lord" refers to knowledge of and obedience to the will of God as revealed through act and word in Old Testament history. The way or will of God for humanity reflects his personal character and attributes. As human beings love their neighbors as themselves (Leviticus 19:18 ), practice righteousness and justice (Genesis 18:19 ), and pursue holiness (Exodus 12:24-273 ) they walk in the way of the Lord in that they mirror God's character.
More specifically, "the way of the Lord" denotes the particular content of the series of covenant agreements or treaties Yahweh made with his people Israel. These covenants formed the basis of Israel's relationship to Yahweh and were characterized by a stylized literary pattern that included legislation or stipulations necessary for maintaining that relationship. Often the covenant or treaty concluded with the promise of blessings or curses conditioned by Israel's obedience (or lack thereof) to the specific covenant stipulations.
Thus, Hebrew education was essentially instruction in covenant obedience or "keeping the way of the Lord" (Genesis 18:19 ). Moses summarized the basic components of this covenant obedience in his farewell address to the Israelites as loving God, walking in his ways, and keeping his commandments, statutes, and ordinances (Deuteronomy 30:16 ). Later, the psalmist condensed this covenant content of Old Testament education into the phrase "the law of the Lord" (Psalm 119:1 ).
Naturally, the content of Hebrew education expanded as God continued to reveal himself and his redemptive plan to the Israelites through the centuries of Old Testament history. For example, the details of Yahweh's covenant with Abraham fills but three chapters in Genesis (12,15, 17). By contrast, the details of the Mosaic covenant dominate the greater portions of the biblical literature found in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
Since the Israelites recognized Yahweh as the God of history, providentially active in the course of human events, history too became part of the content or curriculum of Hebrew education. The recitation and festal remembrance of divine Acts in human history were instructive as to the nature of God and his purposes in creation. Of course, the primary example of this historical trajectory in Hebrew education is the Passover feast and exodus from Egypt (1618106616_99 ; 13:11-16 ).
In time, the Hebrew poetic and wisdom traditions and the prophetic tradition were included in the covenant content of Old Testament education. The wisdom tradition served as a practical commentary on the law or covenant legislation, while the prophetic tradition functioned as a theological commentary on Old Testament law. Like the legal tradition associated with the covenants, both wisdom and prophecy were rooted in the behavioral outcomes of loving God and doing righteousness and justice (Proverbs 1:3,2:9 ; Hosea 6:6 ; Micah 6:8 ).
The Practice of Education . Until a child was about five years old informal education in the home was largely the responsibility of the mother, a nurse, or a male guardian. A youth between the ages of five and twenty usually worked with his father as an apprentice learning a vocation. No doubt parental instruction in the ways of the Lord continued through these years, reinforced by association with the extended family and involvement in the ritual of community worship. In later Judaism, male children between the ages of five and twenty usually attended synagogue schools and were trained in the Torah, the Mishnah, and the Talmud. At age twenty a young man was ready for marriage and independent full-time employment, and at age thirty he might assume an official position of responsibility.
Young women were educated in the way of the Lord and culturally acceptable domestic skills by their mothers or other women of some standing. Several professions were open to women, including those of nurse and midwife, cook, weaver, perfumer, singer, mourner, and servant. In certain cases women assumed prominent positions of leadership, like the prophet-judge Deborah (Judges 4:4-5 ) and the prophetess-sage Huldah (2 Kings 22:14-15 ). It seems likely that women of royal standing in Jerusalem received some kind of formal schooling similar to that of their male counterparts since they were part of the official political system and queen rule was a possibility in the ancient Near Eastern world. Of course, common and cultic prostitution remained a source of employment for women in ancient society.
Outcomes . Theologically, the practice of education as outlined in Old Testament revelation resulted in God's covenant blessing for the Hebrew people. These divine blessings included political autonomy and security, and agricultural and economic prosperity (Leviticus 26:1-8 ). Sociologically, the practice of education facilitated assimilation into the community of faith and ensured the stabilization of that community because the principle of "doing justice" permeated society (Leviticus 19:15,18 ). Religiously, the practice of education sustained covenant relationship with God through obedience and proper ritual, which prompted God's favor and presence with Israel (Leviticus 26:9-12 ).
The Agencies of Education . There were basically three agencies or institutions responsible for the education of youth in Old Testament times: the home or family, the community, and formal centers of learning. Here it is important to remember that the process of education described in Scripture was predominantly informal (home and community), not the formal education of learned institutions.
The home was the primary agency for instruction in Hebrew society. While the Old Testament emphasizes the role of the father as teacher, both parents are given charge to train their children (Proverbs 1:8,6:20 ; 31:26 ). Since ancient Israel was largely a clan society, extended family members like grandparents, aunts and uncles, and even cousins might also participate in the educational process within the home. The "home school" curriculum was both religious and vocational, as parents and other family members tutored children in "the fear of the Lord" (Proverbs 2:5 ) and a trade or professional skillmost often that of the father.
Since all Israelites were bonded together in covenant relationship as the people of God before Yahweh, the religious community also played an important role in the education of the Hebrew youth. Again, community instruction was essentially religious in nature and purpose and took the form of didactic and historical meditation, moral training, sign and symbol, memorization and catechism, festival and sacrificial liturgy, ritual enactment, and priestly role modeling. Specific examples of community education include: the three great pilgrimage festivals (Unleavened Bread, Weeks, and Tabernacles Deuteronomy 16:16 ; cf. Exodus 12:14-28 ), the public reading of the Mosaic law every seventh year (Deuteronomy 31:12-13 ), the covenant renewal enactments (Deuteronomy 29-30 ; Joshua 23-24 ), the annual national festivals/fasts, sabbath worship, historical teaching memorials, tabernacle/temple architecture and furnishings, the sacrificial system, and priestly dress and liturgical function.
Although the Old Testament lacks specific documentation, it is assumed by analogy to known practices in the rest of the ancient Near East that formal learning centers or schools existed in ancient Israel. Hints of these organized schools for particular training are scattered throughout the Old Testament, especially in the company of the prophets associated with Elisha (2 Kings 2:3,5 ; 6:1-2 ; cf. 1 Samuel 19:20 ), the wisdom tradition of the Book of Proverbs, the Jerusalem temple conservatory of music (cf. 1 Chronicles 25:8 ), and the office of sage or counselor associated with Israelite kingship (cf. 1 Kings 4:5-6 ; 12:6,10 ; Jeremiah 18:18 ).
In addition to formal learning centers, the Old Testament indicates specialized training took place in organized labor guilds of various sorts. This instruction for vocational, technical, and professional service to society (and especially palace and temple) included military training, arts and crafts (smiths, artisans, weavers, potters), music, royal officials (scribes, historians, overseers), temple personnel (priests, levites, gatekeepers, treasurers, judges), and domestic servants (midwives, cooks, bakers, perfumers).
Education in Later Judaism . Important developments in education during this period included the rise of the synagogue as both a religious and educational institution; the emergence of scribal schools for copying, studying, and interpreting the Hebrew Scriptures; and the establishment of "schools" or academies for the study of the Torah under the tutelage of well-known rabbis or teachers. However, three items deserve mention in the development of the educational process in Judaism because of their theological significance for the New Testament and Christianity.
First, the formative period of Judaism (roughly from the reforms of Ezra to the time of Maccabees) witnessed the expansion of the religious content or curriculum of Jewish education. This new material, known as the Mishnah, was accumulated oral tradition supplementing the Mosaic law. The Mishnah, along with analysis and commentary, was eventually codified in the Talmud, the final written form of this earlier oral tradition. The Talmud was accorded equal standing with the Old Testament Scriptures in the Jewish rabbinic schools. In part, this led to the rift between Jesus and his religious Jewish counterparts because he rejected the authority of the oral tradition, decrying a religion that neglected the law of God to cling to the traditions of men (Mark 7:1-9 ).
Second, the emphasis on law keeping or obedience to God's commands eventually led to a pharisaical legalism that tithed spice seeds with ruthless calculation (Matthew 23:23 ). Regrettably, devotion to the law of God displaced devotion to God himself so that certain circles of Judaism now ignored the very essence of Torahfaith, justice, and mercy. Ironically, this was the intended educational outcome of that original mandate for instruction in the way of the Lord given to Abraham (Genesis 18:19 ).
Third, the idea of biblical study (and study in general) as worship emerges during this time period. The precedent for understanding study as an act of worship stems from the Old Testament, where the psalmist remarked that all those who delight in the works of God study (or "worshipfully investigate") them (Psalm 111:2 ).
Education in New Testament Times . Much of the New Testament understanding of education is simply assumed from the practice of the Old Testament and Judaism. For example, the family remains the primary context for education, with prominence also given to the church as the extended family or community of faith. Likewise, the goal of educating the whole person, mind and character, carries over from Hebrew practice in the Old Testament. Even the methodology of both instilling information and drawing out or developing the innate talents and abilities of the student finds its antecedent in the Old Testament.
The New Testament focuses its attention on educating the whole person (intellect, emotions, and will), educating through personal relationship (i.e., the mentoring relationship of teacher and disciple), the process of both instilling knowledge and encouraging learning through discovery, and educating through experiential learning. Especially important theologically are the truths of educating the whole person (so that intellectual knowledge is applied to personal behavior James 1:25 ; 1 John 2:2-6 ); and the work of God's Spirit in illuminating the learner as he or she is instructed in the faith (John 16:5-15 ; 1 John 2:26-27 ).
The Teacher Come from God . According to the Gospel records, much of Jesus' public ministry was spent teaching his disciples, as well as the crowds. Jesus was recognized and acknowledged as a teacher (or rabbi) by his disciples, the general public, and contemporary Jewish religious leaders, including Nicodemus who identified Jesus as "a teacher who has come from God" (John 3:2 ). Indeed, Jesus even referred to himself as teacher on several occasions (Mark 14:14 ; John 13:13 ).
The Gospels consistently report that people were astonished or amazed at the teaching of Jesus (Mark 1:22 ; 11:18 ; Luke 4:32 ). What made Jesus a "master teacher"? Granted he was God incarnatea unique human being as the Son of Man. And yet, the approach, method, and content utilized by Jesus in his teaching continue to be paradigmatic for Christian education.
By way of approach, for instance, Jesus sometimes initiated the teaching moment (e.g., the Samaritan woman in John 4 ), but many times the learner(s) actually engaged Jesus in a teaching moment (Nicodemus in John 3 ). Jesus also had the ability to teach effectively informal educational settings (Mark 12:35 ), or more spontaneously as the need arose or circumstance dictated (Mark 9:33-37 ). Jesus was not afraid to hide the truth from some (those who were not seeking the truth or those who in their pride thought they already possessed it) so others find the truth (Matthew 13:10-17 ).
Perhaps the best word for describing the method of Jesus' teaching is "varied." Whether by object lesson or alternative speech forms (parable, rhetorical question, personal conversation, or public discourse), Jesus arrested and held the attention of the learner. His knowledge of human personality and behavior and his sensitivity to human need enabled him to meet the learner on his or her terms and turf.
Finally, Jesus amazed his audiences because he taught with authority. Not only was he forceful, persuasive, and dynamic in his presentation, but the content of his teaching was rooted in the message of the Old Testament Scripturesthe word of God. More important, he knew well the curriculum he taught and owned it personallyhis life mirrored his teachingmuch to the chagrin of the hypocrites who challenged him.
The Apostles' Teaching . Religious education or instruction in the Christian faith served another important purpose in the New Testament: exposing false teachers and their subversive doctrines. The teaching of sound biblical doctrine prevented the individual Christian and the Christian church(es) from being duped by "strange teachings" (Ephesians 4:14 ; 2 Thessalonians 2:15 ; Hebrews 13:9 ). Also, the teaching of apostolic doctrine both fostered Christian discernment of false teachers and their lies (1 Timothy 1:3-7 ) and authenticated the veracity of the Christian message (1 Timothy 6:1-5 ; 1 Peter 5:12 ). So much so that Paul reminded Titus that sound teaching shames the critics of Christianity because the doctrine of God is adorned by the lifestyle of "model citizens"believers in Christ trained in godliness (2:6-10).
Catechism . Teaching, along with prophecy and revelation, are identified as those activities that will prove most beneficial for the building up of the church (1 Corinthians 14:6,12 ). Teaching was integral to the apostolic mission as Jesus charged his disciples to take the gospel of the kingdom of God to the nations (Matthew 28:20 ). Early on this teaching consisted of systematic instruction in the apostles' doctrine (informally? cf. Acts 2:42 ), and the public reading and teaching of Scripture in corporate worship (1 Timothy 4:13 ). Later, catechism or oral instruction in Christian doctrine became a necessary prelude to baptism in early church practice. Only through sound teaching could people come to know the truth and escape the snare of the evil one (2 Timothy 2:24-26 ).
Since teaching was vital to Christian faith, life, and growth, Christ endowed his church with spiritual gifts including the office of pastor-teacher (Ephesians 4:11 ) and the gift of teaching (Romans 12:7 ; 1Col 14:6,26). Teachers were distinguished as leaders in the church, along with apostles and prophets, from the earliest days of church history (cf. Acts 13:1 ). In addition, one of the requirements for the office of bishop or elder in the church was the ability to teach (1 Timothy 3:2 ; 2 Timothy 2:24 ; Titus 2:9 ). The basic purpose of Christian teaching according to Paul was godlinessinstruction leading to maturity in Christ (Colossians 1:28 ).
The New Testament teaches us several important pedagogical and theological lessons appropriate for application in contemporary Christian education. First, education attends to the whole personmind and body, emotions and will. Second, the New Testament understands education as a process of both instilling (imparting information to the pupil) and extracting (drawing out learning from the pupil or self-discovery). Third, effective education is rooted in a mentoring relationship (note Jesus with his disciples or the apostles training others to follow their lead). Fourth, the content of Jesus' and the apostles' teaching was essentially ethical; being or character and doing or practice are vitally connected with knowing.
Ultimately, biblical education is instruction in a lifestyle. For this reason, the apostle Paul reminded his pupil Timothy, "you know all about my teaching, my way of life continue in what you learned" (2 Timothy 3:10,14 ). Not only is biblical education a lifestyleit is a lifetime!
Andrew E. Hill
Bibliography . J. Adelson, ed., Handbook of Adolescent Psychology ; W. Barclay, Educational Ideals in the Ancient World ; S. Benko and J. J. O'Rourke, eds., The Catacombs and the Colosseum ; S. F. Bonner, Education in Ancient Rome from the Elder Cato to the Younger Pliny ; W. Brueggemann, The Creative Word: Canon as Model for Biblical Education ; R. P. Chadwick, Teaching and Learning ; M. L. Clarke, Higher Education in the Ancient World ; N. Drazin, History of Jewish Education from 515 B.C.E. to 220 C.E. ; J. Elias, ed., Psychology and Religious Education ; T. H. Groome, Christian Religious Education ; M. Haran, VTSup 40 (1988): 81-95; ISBE, 2:21-27; S. N. Kramer, The Sumerians ; H. I. Marrou, A History of Education in Antiquity ; F. Mayer, A History of Educational Thought ; G. F. Moore, Judaism ; I. A. Muirhead, Education in the New Testament ; R. N. Whybray, The Intellectual Tradition in the Old Testament ; M. Wilson, Our Father Abraham ; R. Zuck, Teaching as Jesus Taught .
Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Bible, Inspiration of the
The cornerstone of evangelical theology lies in its confession of the inspiration and authority of the Bible, as the revealed "Word of God Written." Since the term "inspired" is used of the Bible in different ways, it is important to clarify the particular sense in which it should be employed, not because evangelicals have coined a new meaning for inspiration, but rather to make clear their adherence to the sense in which the Church has historically confessed her faith in Holy Scripture. We should also note that by calling inspiration the cornerstone of evangelical theology we deny the strange charge, often leveled against conservative Christians, that they are "bibliolators, " worshiping the Scriptures in the place of God. The seriousness with which evangelicals take the inspiration of Holy Scriptures derives exclusively from their conviction that when they read it they read the very words of God. It is only by attending to those inspired words that believers may properly hear what he has said. Evangelical bibliology (the doctrine of Scripture that centers on its inspiration), far from leading to biblio latry (the worship of Scripture), lies at the heart of true worship of God. For the doctrine, though itself a biblical doctrine, points beyond itself and does nothing other than direct our attention most carefully to everything Scripture says. It assures us that what Scripture says, God says. We may therefore say that this doctrine serves as the point of connection between the canon of Holy Scripture and the God who is its author; it is the ground of Scripture's authority that itself entails its revelatory character.
In 2 Peter 1:19-21 , we read that "no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit." The scope of prophecy here is uncertain: It may refer simply to the corpus of the writing prophets, or more broadly to the historical books of the Old Testament also, or indeed (as Warfield argues) to the whole Old Testament. Certainly it speaks precisely of the divine origin of that portion of Scripture to which it refers, and of the role of the Holy Spirit in "carrying along" the human writers, such that the "word of the prophets" may be "made more certain" (1:19).
The Bible's View of Itself . Every Christian doctrine is founded in Holy Scripture—the creeds and confessions of the church, as surely as the pastor's message, find their justification in one place alone: the teaching of Holy Scripture. It is in the course of conveying teaching on every other subject that Scripture also teaches about itself. It is important to note that texts like 2Timothy 3:16,2 Peter 1:19-21 are not isolated statements but articulate a doctrine taught throughout Holy Scripture. What is recorded in Scripture comes from God; the very recording has taken place under a divine superintendence.
Substantial portions of the Pentateuch are directly attributed to God. The plainest passage is Exodus 20 , in which the Ten Commandments are recorded; we later learn (31:18; 32:15-16) that they were written on two tablets of stone, "inscribed on both sides, front and back. The tablets were the work of God; the writing was the writing of God, engraved on the tablets." But the context of these laws written by the finger of God is the mass of legislation in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, in which the constant reiteration of "The Lord said to Moses" culminates in Deuteronomy 31:9 : "So Moses wrote down this law and gave it to the priests and to all the elders of Israel."
The prophetic books of the Old Testament are largely composed of extended passages placed by the writer in the mouth of God. "The word of the Lord came to me, saying " is the constant refrain of the writing prophets, offering the most explicit endorsement of the apostle Peter's model of prophetic inspiration, as Isaiah and Jeremiah and Ezekiel were "carried along by the Holy Spirit."
Simply to focus on those occasions when the biblical writers explicitly attribute elements in their literary product to God's special work might be taken to imply the contrary of the position we are developing; that parts of Scripture have this special status while other parts do not. The evidence of the New Testament (and, indeed, of the development of Jewish attitudes to the books of the Old Testament before that time) suggests something very different: that these books had been accorded the status of inspired Scripture. And the argument is not merely historical, showing what the first Christians believed. Second Timothy 3:16,2 Peter 1:21 indicate a settled view of Scripture on the part of the church, which the Gospels demonstrate was in harmony with the teaching of Jesus himself. The Gospel pages are peppered with his question "Have you not read ?" and Jesus' confident assertion, "It is written " (that is, "The Bible says "). That the incarnate Son of God should treat the Old Testament in this fashion offers the strongest possible endorsement of the divine inspiration of Holy Scripture, neatly illustrated in Matthew 19:4-5 were Jesus quotes Genesis 2:24 ("For this reason a man will leave his father and mother "). In Genesis this is a comment by the narrator. Jesus puts it directly into the mouth of God: "The Creator made them male and female, ' and said, For this reason '" Since this example fits so well into Jesus' other use of Scripture, its significance is beyond doubt: He regarded all of Scripture as that which God has spoken.
When Jesus promised the Holy Spirit to the disciples he told them that they would be led by the Spirit "into all truth" (John 16:13 ). By analogy with the Old Testament, we might anticipate that the Spirit would ensure a further canonical record of the work of God in Christ. And we are not mistaken. As early as the later New Testament documents themselves, there is a recognition of this process. In 2 Peter 3:16 we read that Paul's "letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures." Already, within the pages of the New Testament, Paul's letters are accorded the status of Scripture, setting the pattern for the recognition of all the books of the second Testament as inspired and therefore canonical for the church of Jesus Christ.
Nigel M. de S. Cameron
See also Bible, Authority of the ; Bible, Canon of the
Bibliography . G. C. Berkouwer, Holy Scripture ; D. A. Carson and J. W. Woodbridge, eds., Scripture and Truth ; idem, Hermeneutics, Authority, and Canon ; C. F. H. Henry, God, Revelation, and the Bible ; R. Pache, The Inspiration and Authority of Scripture ; I. Packer, Fundamentalism and the Word of God ; B. B. Warfield, The Inspiration and Authority of the Bible .
Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Bible, Canon of the
The word "canon" derives from the Hebrew term qaneh and the Greek term kanon , both of which refer to a measuring rod. It designates the exclusive collection of documents in the Judeo-Christian tradition that have come to be regarded as Scripture. The Jewish canon was written in both Hebrew and Aramaic, while the Christian canon was written in Greek.
Theology and Criteria of Canonicity The historic Christian belief is that the Holy Spirit who inspired the writing of the books also controlled their selection and that this is something to be discerned by spiritual insight rather than by historical research. It is felt that statements in the writings themselves (such as 1 Corinthians 2:13 ; 14:37 ; Galatians 1:8-9 ; 1 Thessalonians 2:13 ) would cause local churches to preserve them and eventually collect them in a general canon.
A number of criteria were involved in the church's choice of the books it acknowledged as genuine and used in worship services. Irenaeus and other authors of the first three centuries, who wrote against heretical movements and their literature, reveal some of the criteria that the early church used in evaluating its literature.
The basic criterion of acceptance was apostolicity : Was a document written by an apostle? Books known to have been written by apostles were eagerly embraced and churches that knew the legacy of books written by men who were not apostles, such as Mark and Luke, accepted them as well. But other churches, which were not familiar with this legacy, were hesitant to receive such books, especially those that did not contain the name of an author, such as the Gospels, Acts, and Hebrews.
A second and related question, then, was asked. If a book was not written by an apostle, is its content apostolic ? This was an early problem with Revelation, because its theological content was difficult to discern. Tertullian valued Hebrews highly, but thought it was written by Barnabas.
A third criterion was the claim to inspiration. Does the author claim inspiration ? Some did not.
A fourth question was: Is it accepted by loyal churches ? This was a very important consideration. What was the attitude of the church in the city to which it was originally written?
People of every generation have inherently asked about each book of the Bible: Does it have the "ring of genuineness "? The testimony of the Spirit was important. In the Old Testament canon there were questions about Esther for a period of time because it does not contain the name of God. Many questioned Revelation in those early years because it did not have this "ring of genuineness."
The Old Testament Canon Although Christians include both Old and New Testaments in their canon, Jews do not accept a "New" Testament and repudiate the identification of their canon as the "Old" Testament. The proper designation for the Jewish Bible is Tanak, an acronym constituted from the initial letters of the three divisions of that canon—Law (Torah), Prophets (Naviim), and Writings (Kethubim).
The terms "obsolete" and "aging" are used in Hebrews 8:13 with reference to the Jewish covenant. However, early church writers before the latter part of the second century do not use the terms "old" and "new" to designate two different covenants. They considered the second covenant to be a continuation of the first. It was new in the sense of fresh, not in the sense of different. Even in the third century, authors such as Clement of Alexandria and Origen used the expression "new covenant" to refer to the covenant rather than to the documents containing it.
There are also important differences in the content and order of the early canons. Extant Greek Old Testament manuscripts, whose text is quoted often in the New Testament, contain apocryphal books. But the Hebrew Old Testament canon recognized by Palestinian Jews (Tanak) did not include the fourteen books of the Apocrypha. Since the Hebrew Bible was preferred by the Reformers during the Protestant Reformation in their struggle against the Catholic Church, whose Bible contained the Apocrypha, translators of Protestant Bibles excluded the Apocrypha. Thus Protestant and evangelical Bibles duplicate the content of the Hebrew Bible (the current thirty-nine books).
However, the arrangement of books is that of the Latin Vulgate, from which the earliest English translations were made, including the first English translation by John Wycliffe. Even though the New Testament was written in Greek, Protestant and evangelical Bibles do not embrace either the content or the arrangement of the Greek Old Testament. Greek Old Testament manuscripts typically preserve the Alexandrian order, which arranged books according to their subject matter (narrative, history, poetry, and prophecy). Apocryphal books were appropriately interspersed into these categories. The arrangement of the books in the Hebrew Bible is different from both the Greek and the Latin.
According to the testimony of Talmudic and rabbinic sources, the thirty-nine books of the Hebrew Bible were originally divided into only twenty-four. This included three categories embracing five books of Law (Torah), eight Prophets, and eleven Writings. The Law contained the first five books, the Penteteuch. The eight Prophets included Joshua, Judges, Samuel (1,2), Kings (1,2), Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the Minor Prophets (12). The eleven books of the Writings contained the subdivisions of poetry (Psalms, Proverbs, Job), the five Megilloth or Rolls (Song of Songs, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther), and the three books of history (Daniel, Ezra-Nehemiah, and Chronicles 1-2).
The Hebrew canon was a thousand years in formation and nothing is known about this process. The Torah of Moses, the oldest portion, was probably written in the fifteenth century b.c., and Malachi, the latest portion, was produced in the fifth century b.c. Some date Daniel in the second century. The Torah or Pentateuch was immediately acknowledged as authoritative and never questioned thereafter. The Prophets and Writings were produced over a period of centuries and gradually won their place in the hearts of the people. Therefore, the Jewish people of Bible times never had the complete Old Testament as we know it.
The Old Testament refers to about fifteen books not contained in it, such as the Book of Jashar (Joshua 10:13 ) and the Book of the Annals of Solomon (1 Kings 11:41 ). Although some books of the Old Testament were discussed in Judea at the Pharisaic Council of Jamnia in a.d. 90, the canon itself was not a topic of consideration and this group had no decision-making power. Historically, Jewish scholars have considered the canon closed since the time of Malachi, and have not included the Apocrypha, which was written in subsequent times.
The New Testament Canon The formation of the New Testament canon, like the Old, was a process rather than an event. Analysis of the process is more historical than biblical, since the church of the New Testament, like the Israel of the Old Testament, never had the complete canon during the time spanned by its canonical literature. However, an occasional indication of the attitude of first-century Christians about their literature is found in the New Testament. Second Peter 3:16 refers to Paul's letters as being misapplied, presumably using the word "scripture" in its usual biblical sense as the Scripture.
Paul refers to a previous letter he wrote to Corinth (1 Corinthians 5:9 ) and to a letter to the Laodiceans (Colossians 4:16 ), neither of which the early church preserved in its canon. The followers of inspired men of God would have regarded everything written by them as authoritative, but not all of their writings were equally useful to the church throughout the ancient world, and so not all of them found universal acceptance. This is what is meant by the term "canon"that which was finally accepted on an empirewide basis.
Throughout the Roman Empire there existed local canons that often represented no wider usage than that of a particular city and its immediate surroundings. Two of our earliest and best manuscripts of the Greek Testament contain books not accepted by the church as a whole. Codex Sinaiticus (ca. a.d. 350) contained the books Hermas and Barnabas, and Codex Alexandrinus (ca. a.d. 450) contained 1,2Clement. These probably represented only the environs of Alexandria. The Muratorian Canon, probably representative of the church in Rome in the second century, includes books not in our canon, and differentiates those that can be read in public to the whole church from those which are to be read only in private devotion.
Evidence of a collection of Paul's letters is found as early as 2 Peter 3:16 , and Paul instructed the churches in Colossae and Laodicea to exchange his letters to them for public reading. This indicates that some letters were intended to be circulated among the churches from the day they were received. The seven churches of Asia were clearly all expected to receive a copy of the Revelation of John for reading in their assemblies.
Thus, the process of collecting and preserving documents would have been underway from the very beginning. Every church receiving such literature would have asked questions concerning authenticity. Such is the process of canonization. Local canons, which often contained some books not utilized by other local churches, were eventually replaced by those lists that represented the general usage of churches throughout the empire.
Of necessity, the process was gradual. It was initially motivated by the desire of various churches to have as many authentic documents of apostolic men as possible, and later motivated by the interaction of church leaders struggling with the question of which books could be appealed to in their debates about the nature of Christ and the church. These discussions began as early as the second century and escalated in the christological controversies of the fourth century, when we have our first full lists of canonical New Testament books.
There are no extant lists from the third century, and only the Muratorian Canon remains from the second, although its form is only a discussion of various books and not a canon in the proper sense of the term. The earliest known collection of Paul's letters is in the Chester Beatty Papyri, which gives us clear evidence of a collection of Paul's letters at the end of the second century.
The earliest extant use of the term "canon" is from the fourth century in the Ecclesiastical History of Eusebius of Caesarea (6.25; cf. related words in 3.3.1; 3.25.1-6; 3.31.6). Correspondingly, the first record of discussions about the canon and the differentiation of various categories within it is from this century.
Eusebius distinguishes four groups of books: (1) accepted (most of our twenty-seven), (2) disputed (James, Jude, 2Peter, 2,3John), (3) rejected (various apocryphal New Testament books), and (4) heretical (primarily pseudepigraphical books). He has Revelation in both the accepted and rejected categories, saying opinion on it at the time was divided.
The first exclusive list of our twenty-seven books is in the festal letter #96 of Athanasius (a.d. 367). However, the order is different with the General Epistles following Acts and Hebrews following 2Thessalonians. The first exclusive list of our twenty-seven books in their current familiar order is in the writings of Amphilocius of Iconium in a.d. 380.
There is no "proper" order of New Testament books; several different arrangements exist in early manuscripts. More than 284 different sequences of biblical books (Old and New Testament) have been found in Latin manuscripts alone, and more than twenty different arrangements of Paul's letters have been found in ancient authors and manuscripts.
Division of individual books of the canon into smaller sections is first indicated in the fourth century, in Codex Vaticanus, which uses paragraph divisions, somewhat comparable to the Hebrew Bible. Our familiar chapter and verse divisions were introduced into the Bible quite late in the history of the canon. Stephen Langton introduced the chapters into the Latin Bible prior to his death in 1228, and Stephanus added the verses in the New Testament in 1551 and his publication of a Greek and Latin edition of the New Testament. Verses are attested in the Hebrew Bible as far back as the Mishnah (Megillah 4:4). The first English Bible to include verse divisions was the Geneva Bible of 1560. Thus, our English translations reflect the divisions as well as the order of the Latin Vulgate.
John McRay
See also Apocrypha ; Bible, Authority of the ; Bible, Inspiration of the
Bibliography . F. F. Bruce, The Canon of Scripture ; idem, The Books and the Parchments ; H. von Campenhausen, The Formation of the Christian Bible ; B. S. Childs, The New Testament as Canon ; E. J. Goodspeed, The Formation of the New Testament ; R. M. Grant, The Formation of the New Testament ; B. Metzger, The Canon of the New Testament ; H. E. Ryle, The Canon of the Old Testament ; J. Sanders, Torah and Canon ; B. F. Westcott, The Canon of the New Testament .
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Horn in the Bible
A symbol of strength because of its use as a weapon by horned beasts (Deuteronomy 33; Psalms 74; 131). It is frequently mentioned to signify power and glory: "in my name shall his horn be exalted" (Psalms 88); "his horn shall be exalted in glory" (Psalms 111); "my horn is exalted in my God" (1 Kings 2), "the horn of Moab is cut off, and his arm is broken, saith the Lord" (Jeremiah 48). The horn was used as a vase among the Hebrews and other nations, and held the oil used for anointing: "The Lord said to Samuel...fill thy horn with oil, and come, that I may send thee to Isai. Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him" (1 Kings 16). The projecting points on the altar of the holocaust were called horns (Exodus 30), and were smeared with the blood of the sacrificial victim (Exodus 27; Leviticus 4). Criminals were free from danger as long as they took hold of these horns (3Kings 1; 2.)
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Bible
BIBLE
1. The Name . The word ‘Bible’ strictly employed is the title of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures, though occasionally by a loose usage of the term it is applied to the sacred writings of pagan religions. It is derived from a Greek word Biblia originating in biblos , the inner bark of papyrus (paper) literally meaning ‘Little Books’; but since the diminutive had come into common use in late popular Greek apart from its specific signification, the term really means simply ‘books.’ It is the Gr. tr. [1] of the Heb. word for ‘books,’ which is the oldest designation for the Jewish Scriptures as a collection (see Daniel 9:2 ). The title ‘Holy Books’ equivalent to our ‘Holy Scripture’ came later among the Jews ( 1Ma 12:9 , Romans 1:2 , 2 Timothy 3:15 ). The Greek word Biblia is first met with in this connexion in the Introduction to Sirach, written by the grandson of Sirach, the phrase ‘the rest of the books’ implying that the Law and the Prophets previously named, as well as those books subsequently known specially as ‘the Writings,’ are included. It is used in the Hebrew sense, for the OT, by the unknown author of the Christian homily in the 2nd cent. designated The Second Epistle of Clement (xiv. 2). It does not appear as a title of the whole Christian Scriptures before the 5th cent., when it was thus employed by Greek Church writers in lists of the canonical books. Thence it passed over into the West, and then the Greek word Biblia , really a neuter plural, came to be treated as a Latin singular noun, a significant grammatical change that pointed to the growing sense of the unity of Scripture. The word cannot be traced in Anglo-Saxon literature, and we first have the English form of it in the 14th century. It occurs in Piers Plowman and Chaucer. Its adoption by Wyclif secured it as the permanent English name for the Scriptures, as Luther’s use of the corresponding German word fixed that for Continental Protestants.
2. Contents and Divisions . The Jewish Bible is the OT; the Protestant Christian Bible consists of the OT and the NT, but with the Apocrypha included in some editions; the Roman Catholic Bible contains the OT and NT, and also the Apocrypha, the latter authoritatively treated as Scripture since the Council of Trent. The main division is between the Jewish Scriptures and those which are exclusively Christian. These are known respectively as the OT and the NT. The title ‘Testament’ is unfortunate, since it really means a will. It appears to be derived from the Latin word testamentum , ‘a will,’ which is the tr. [1] of the Gr. word diathçkç , itself in the classics also meaning ‘a will.’ But the LXX [3] employs this Gr. word as the tr. [1] of the Heb. berith , a word meaning ‘covenant.’ Therefore ‘testament’ in the Biblical sense really means ‘covenant,’ and the two parts of our Bible are the ‘Old Covenant’ and the ‘New Covenant.’ When we ask why the Gr. translators used the word meaning ‘will’ while they had ready to hand another word meaning ‘covenant’ (viz. synthçkç ), the answer has been proposed that they perceived the essential difference between God’s covenants with men and men’s covenants one with another. The latter are arranged on equal terms. But God’s covenants are made and offered by God and accepted by men only on God’s terms. A Divine covenant is like a will in which a man disposes of his property on whatever terms he thinks fit. On the other hand, however, it may be observed that the word diathçkç is also used for a covenant between man and man ( e.g . Deuteronomy 7:2 ). The origin of this term as applied by Christians to the two main divisions of Scripture is Jeremiah’s promise of a New Covenant ( Jeremiah 31:31 ), endorsed by Christ ( Mark 14:24 , 1 Corinthians 11:25 ), and enlarged upon in NT teaching ( e.g. Galatians 4:24 , Hebrews 8:6 ). Here, however, the reference is to the Divine arrangements and pledges, not to the books of Scripture, and it is by a secondary usage that the books containing the two covenants have come to be themselves designated Testaments, or Covenants.
The Jewish division of the OT is into three parts known as (1) the Law, (2) the Prophets, and (3) the Writings, or the Sacred Writings ( Hagiographa ). The ‘Law’ consisted of the first 5 books of our Bible (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy), ascribed to Moses; and it was treated as peculiarly sacred, the most holy and authoritative portion of Scripture. It was the only part of the Hebrew Scriptures accepted by the Samaritans, who worshipped the very document containing it almost as a fetish. But the name ‘Law’ (Heb. Torah , Gr. Nomos ) is sometimes given to the whole Jewish Bible ( e.g. John 10:34 ). The ‘Prophets’ included not only the utterances ascribed to inspired teachers of Israel, but also the chief historical books later than the Pentateuch. There were reckoned to be 8 books of the Prophets (Joshua, Judges, Samuel, Kings, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the Minor Prophets) and 11 of the Hagiographa (Psalms, Proverbs, Job, Song of Solomon, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Daniel, Ezra, and Chronicles). Thus there were reckoned to be in all 24 books. Josephus reckoned 22 probably joining Judges to Ruth and Lamentations to Jeremiah. The list was reduced to this number by taking Samuel, Kings, Ezra and Nehemiah, and Chronicles as one book each, and by making one book of the Minor Prophets. Ezra is not divided from Nehemiah in the Talmud or the Massora.
The books now known as the Apocrypha were not in the Hebrew Bible, and were not used in the Palestinian synagogues. They were found in the LXX [3] , which represents the enlarged Greek Canon of Alexandria. From this they passed into the Latin versions, and so into Jerome’s revisioo, the Vulgate, which in time became the authorized Bible of the Roman Catholic Church. They were not accepted by the Protestants as Divinely inspired, but were printed in some Protestant Bibles between the OT and the NT, not in their old places in the Septuagint and Vulgate versions, where they were interspersed with the OT books as though forming part of the OT itself. The Apocrypha consists of 14 books (1 and 2 Esdras, Tobit, Judith, The Rest of Esther, The Wisdom of Solomon, Sirach, Baruch with the Epistle of Jeremy, The Song of the Three Holy Children, The History of Susanna, Bel and the Dragon, The Prayer of Manasses, 1 and 2 Maccabees).
The NT was slowly formed. Probably the first collection of any of its books was the bringing together of the Synoptic Gospels into one volume (called by Justin Martyr ‘The Memoirs of the Apostles’). Subsequently the Fourth Gospel was included in this volume; Tatian’s Diatessaron is a witness to this fact. Meanwhile collections of St. Paul’s Epistles were being made, and thus there came to be two volumes known as ‘The Gospel’ and ‘The Apostle.’ The Apocalypse was early honoured as a prophetical book standing by itself. Gradually the other NT books were gathered in probably forming a third volume. Thus the NT like the OT consisted of three parts the Four Gospels, the Pauline Writings, and the remaining books. The similarity may be traced a step further. In both cases the first of the three divisions held a primacy of honour the Law among the Jews, the Gospels among the Christians. The complete NT consists of 27 books, viz. Four Gospels, Acts 13:1-52 Epistles of St. Paul, Hebrews, James 2:1-26 Epistles of St. Peter, 3 of St. John, Jude, Revelation.
Within the books of the Bible there were originally no divisions, except in the case of the Psalms, which were always indicated as separate poems, and elsewhere in the case of definite statements of differences of contents, such as the Song of Miriam, the Song of Deborah, ‘the words of Agur,’ and ‘the words of King Lemuel’ (in Prov.). For convenience of reading in the synagogues, the Law was divided into sections (called Parâshahs ). Selections from the Prophets (called Haphtârahs ) were made to go with the appointed sections of the Law. The first indications of divisions in the NT are ascribed to Tatian. They did not break into the text, but were inserted in the margins. The earliest divisions of the Gospels were known as ‘titles’ ( Titloi ); somewhat similar divisions were indicated in the Epistles by ‘headings’ or ‘chapters’ ( Kephalaia ), a form of which with more numerous divisions than the ‘titles’ was also introduced into the Gospels. Eusebius based his harmony on the references of the sections said to have been arranged by Ammonius of Alexandria in the early part of the 3rd cent., and therefore known as the ‘Ammonian Sections.’ These are much shorter than our chapters. Thus in Matthew there were 68 ‘titles’ and 355 ‘Ammonian Sections’; in Mark the numbers were 48 and 236, in Luke 83 and 342, and in John 18 and 232 respectively. The chapters in the Acts and the Epistles are ascribed to Euthalius, a deacon of Alexandria (subsequently bishop of Sulci, in Sardinia) in the 5th century. These chapters nearly corresponded in length to the Gospel ‘titles.’ Thus there were 40 in Acts 19:1-41 in Romans, etc. A still smaller division of the books of Scripture was that of the stichoi , or lines, a word used for a line of poetry, and then for a similar length of prose, marked off for the payment of copyists. Subsequently “it was employed for the piece of writing which a reader was supposed to render without taking breath, and the marks of the stichoi would be helps for the reader, indicating where he might pause. In Matthew there were 2560 stichoi ; the same Gospel has 1071 modern verses. Scrivener calculates 19,241 stichoi for the 7959 modern verses of the whole NT giving an average of nearly 2 1 / 2 stichoi per verse. Cardinal Hugo de Sancto Caro is credited with having made our present chapter divisions about a.d. 1248 when preparing a Bible index. But it may be that he borrowed these divisions from an earlier scholar, possibly Lanfranc, or Stephen Langton. The Hebrew Bible was divided into verses by Rabbi Nathan in the 15th century. Henry Stephens states that his father Robert Stephens made verse divisions in the NT during the intervals of a journey on horseback from Paris to Lyons. Whether he actually invented these arrangements or copied them from some predecessor, they were first published in Stephens’ Greek Testament of 1551.
3. Historical Origin . The Bible is not only a library, the books of which come from various writers in different periods of time; many of these books may be said to be composed of successive literary strata, so that the authors of the most ancient parts of them belong to much earlier times than their final redactors. All the OT writers, and also all those of the NT with one exception (St. Luke), were Jews. The OT was nearly all written in the Holy Land; the only exceptions being in the case of books composed in the valley of the Euphrates during the Exile (Ezekiel, possibly Lamentations, Deutero-Isaiah, or part of it, perhaps some of the Psalms, a revision of the Law). The NT books were written in many places; most of the Epistles of St. Paul can be located; the Gospel and Epistles of St. John probably come from Ephesus or its neighbourhood; but the sites of the origin of all the other books are doubtful.
Probably the oldest book of the Bible is Amos, written about b.c. 750. A little later in the great 8th cent. we come to Hosea, Isaiah, and Micah. The 7th cent. gives us Nahum, Zephaniah, Jeremiah, and Habakkuk among the prophets, also Deuteronomy, and at the beginning of this century we have the earliest complete historical books, Samuel and Judges. The end of this century or beginning of the 6th cent. gives us Kings. In the 6th cent. also we have Obadiah (?), Ezekiel, part, if not all, of the Deutero-Isaiah (40 50), Haggai, Zechariah (1 8), Lamentations, Ruth. The 5th cent. gives us the completed Pentateuch or rather the Hexateuch, Joshua going with the 5 books of the Law, perhaps the latter part of the Deutero-Isaiah (51 60), Malachi, Books 1 and 2 of the Psalter. The 4th cent. has Proverbs, Job, Book 3 of the Psalter, and the Prophets Joel and Jonah. From the 3rd cent. we have Chronicles, Ezra and Nehemiah, Zechariah (9 14), Ecclesiastes, Esther. Lastly, the 2nd cent. is credited with Daniel and Books 4 and 5 of the Psalter. Several of these later dates are more or less conjectural. Moreover, they refer to the completion of works some of which are composite and contain elements which originated in much earlier times. Thus Proverbs and the 5 Books of the Psalms are all collections which, though probably made at the dates assigned to them, consist of materials many of which are considerably older. When we look to the analysis of the books, and inquire as to the dates of their constituent parts, we are carried back to pre-historic ages. The Hexateuch contains four principal parts, known as J [6] (the Jahwistic prophetic narrative), E [6]7 (the Elohistic prophetic narrative), D [8] (Deuteronomy and Deuteronomic notes in other books), P [9] (the Priestly Code, represented especially by Leviticus, the author of which revised the earlier parts of the Law-books and inserted additions into them). But J [6] and E [6]7 are closely intertwined an indication that they have both been revised and the result of this revision gives us the composite narrative known as JE [12] . Thus we have now three main strata, viz. (1) JE [12] , the prophetic element, written in the spirit of the prophets, dated about b.c. 700; (2) D [8] , the moral and legal element, seen especially in Deuteronomy, dated about b.c. 620; (3) P [9] , the priestly element, dated about b.c. 444. The author of P [9] appears to have revised the whole work and given it out as the complete Law. This may have been done by the Euphrates during the Exile, so that the Law-book brought up to Jerusalem would be the Pentateuch (or the Hexateuch), or it may have been after the Return, in which case the Law-book would be only P [9] . But in any case the whole work after its completion underwent some further slight revision before it assumed its present form. See Hexateuch.
If now we ask not what was the first complete book of the OT, but what was the first portion of the OT actually written, it is not easy to give a reply. The literature of most peoples begins with ballads. Possibly the Song of Deborah is a ballad which should have assigned to it the first place in the chronological order of Hebrew writings. Such a hallad would be handed down in tradition before it was put into writing. Then some of the laws in Exodus, those of the ‘Book of the Covenant,’ may have come down in tradition or even in writing, from a remote antiquity. The code of Hammurabi, king of Babylon, b.c. 2285 2242, was a written law nearly 1000 years earlier than the time of Moses. The striking resemblance between some of the laws of Israel and some of these Babylonian laws points to a certain measure of dependence. This might go back to patriarchal days; but, of course, it would have been possible for the jews in the Exile to have access to this venerable code at the very time P [9] was being constructed.
There is much less range of question for the dates of the NT books. The earliest date possible for any of them is a.d. 44 for James; although, as Prof. Harnack holds, perhaps this is almost the latest written book of the NT. Laying aside the much disputed question of the date of James, we have 1 Thess. as apart from this the earliest written NT book. Following the usually accepted chronology, the date of this Epistle is a.d. 53 (Harnack, a.d. 49; Turner, a.d. 51). The latest written NT book is 2Peter, which must be assigned to a late decade of the 2nd century. Apart from this Epistle, which stands quite by itself as a pseudonymous work, and James, which may be either the earliest or one of the latest NT books, the last written works are the Johannine writings, which cannot be earlier than near the end of the 1st century. Thus we have a period of about 50 years for the composition of the bulk of the NT writings, viz. the second half of the 1st cent. a.d.
4. Original Languages . The bulk of the OT was written in Hebrew, and without vowel points. Hebrew is the Israelite dialect of the Canaanite language, which belongs to the Semitic family, and is closely allied to Aramaic. Some portions of the OT (viz. documents in Ezra 4:7 to Ezra 6:18 and Ezra 7:12-26 , Daniel 2:4 to Daniel 7:28 and a few scattered words and phrases elsewhere) are in Aramaic, the language of Syria, which was widely known, being found in Babylonia, Egypt, and Arabia. After the Exile, since Aramaic then became the everyday language of the Jews, Hebrew was relegated to a position of honourable neglect as the language of literature and the Law, and Aramaic came into general use. Probably the earliest writings which are embodied in the NT were in this language. When Papias says that Matthew wrote ‘the oracles of the Lord in the Hebrew dialect,’ he would seem to mean Aramaic. Since Jesus taught in Aramaic, it is not likely that His discourses were translated into the more archaic language; it is more probable that they were written down in the very language in which they were spoken. Similarly, it is probable that the Gospel according to the Hebrews was in Aramaic. But, however far we may go with Dr. Marshall and Dr. Abbott in allowing that Aramaic writings are to be detected beneath and behind our Gospels, it cannot be held that any of these Gospels, or any other NT books, are translations from that language. Matthew, the most Jewish of the Gospels, contains quotations from the LXX [3] as well as direct translations from the Hebrew OT, which shows that while its author or at all events the author of one of its sources knew Hebrew, the Gospel itself was a Greek composition. All the NT was originally written in Greek. It was long held that this Greek was a peculiar dialect, and as such it was named Hellenistic Greek. But the discovery of contemporary inscriptions and papyri (especially the Oxyrhynchus papyri) shows that the colloquial Greek, used in commerce and popular intercourse all round the Mediterranean during the 1st cent., has the same peculiar forms that we meet with in the NT, many of which had been attributed to Semitic influences. These discoveries necessitate the re-writing of grammars on the Greek of the NT, as Prof. Deissmann and Dr. J. H. Moulton have shown by their recent studies in the new field of research. It must still be admitted that a certain amount of Hebrew influence is felt in the NT style. This is most apparent in the Gospels, especially Matthew and above all the earlier chapters of Luke (except the Preface), and also in the Apocalypse. The Preface of Luke is the nearest approach to classical Greek that we have in the NT. After this come Hebrews, the middle and latter part of the Gospel of Luke, and Acts. St. Paul’s writings and the General Epistles take an intermediate position between the most Hebraistic and the least Hebraistic writings. The Fourth Gospel is written in good Greek; but the structure of the sentences indicates a mind accustomed to think in Hebrew or Aramaic. Nevertheless, in spite of these differences, it remains true that the grammar and style of the NT are in the main the grammar and style of contemporary Greek throughout the Roman Empire.
5. Translations . The OT was first translated into Greek, for the benefit of Jews residing in Egypt, in the version known as the Septuagint (LXX [3] ), which was begun under Ptolemy II. (b.c. 285 247), and almost, if not quite, completed before the commencement of the Christian era. Another Greek version is ascribed to Aquila, who is said to have been a disciple of the famous Rabbi Aki0ba, and is by some even identified with Onkelos, the author of the Targum. This version, which is commonly dated about a.d. 150, is remarkable for its pedantic literalness, the Hebrew being rendered word for word into Greek, regardless of the essential differences between the two languages in grammar and construction. On the other hand, about the end of the 2nd cent. a.d., Symmachus, who, according to Epiphanius, was a Samaritan turned Jew, although Eusebius calls him an Ebionite, produced a version the aim of which was to render the original text into idiomatic Greek of good style, with the result, however, that in some places it became a paraphrase rather than a translation. Lastly may be mentioned the version of Theodotion, a Marcionite who went over to Judaism. This is really a revision of the LXX [3] ; it is assigned to about the year a.d. 185. Other versions of all or parts of the OT are known as the Quinta and the Sexta ; there are doubtful references to a Septima .
Oral paraphrases, the Targums, or ‘interpretations,’ were made in Aramaic for the benefit of Palestinian Jews; but the earliest written paraphrase is that known as the Targum of Onkelos the official Targum of the Pentateuch the compilation of which in whole or part is assigned to the 2nd or 3rd cent. a.d. Later. with indications at least as late as the 7th cent. a.d., in its present form is the Jerusalem Targum, known as the Targum of pseudo-Jonathan. This is more free and interpolated with ‘Haggadistic’ elements. The official Targum of the Prophets also bears the name of Jonathan. Originating in Palestine in the 3rd cent. a.d., it received its final shaping in Babylon in the 5th century. The Targums of the Hagiographa are much later in date.
The oldest versions of the NT are the Syriac and the Latin, both of which may be traced back in some form to the 2nd cent. a.d., but there is much difference of opinion as to the original text of the former. First, we have the Peshitta, literally, the ‘simple’ version, which has become the standard accepted text in the Syrian Church. There is no doubt that in its present form this text represents successive revisions down to a late Patristic age. Two other versions, or two forms of another version of the Gospels, were discovered in the 19th cent., viz. the Curetonian, edited by Cureton, and the Sinaitic, found in a MS at the monastery of St. Catherine on Mount Sinai. Lastly, there is the version represented by Tatian’s Diatessaron , which may be distinct from either of these. While it is admitted that a primitive text underlying the Peshitta may be as ancient as any of these versions, scholars are fairly agreed that the Peshitta, as we know it, is considerably more recent than Tatian and the Sinaitic Gospels, both of which may be assigned to the 2nd cent. a.d. The earliest Latin Version appeared before the end of the 2nd cent. and probably in North Africa, where Latin was the language commonly used, while Greek was then the language of Christian literature at Rome. Tertullian knew the North African Latin Version. Somewhat later several attempts were made in Italy to translate the NT into Latin. The confusion of text induced Damasus, bishop of Rome, to commit to Jerome (a.d. 382) the task of preparing a reliable Latin version of the Bible. This came to be known as the Vulgate, which for 1000 years was the Bible of the Western Church, and which, since the Council of Trent, has been honoured by Roman Catholics as an infallibly correct rendering of the true text of Scripture. Augustine refers to a version which he calls ‘ltala,’ but it has been shown that this was probably Jerome’s version. The NT was early translated into Coptic, and it appeared in three dialects of that language. The Sahidic Version, in Upper Egypt, can be traced back to the 4th century. The Bohairic, formerly used at Alexandria, has been assigned to as early a date as the 2nd cent.; but Prof. Burkitt shows reasons for bringing it down to the 6th. It is the version now used ecclesiastically by the Copts. Lastly, there is the Fayumic Version, represented by MSS from the Fayum. The original Gothic Version was the work of Ulfilas in the 4th century. He had to invent an alphabet for it. This work may be considered the first literary product in a Teutonic language. The Ethiopic and Armenian Versions may be assigned to the 5th century. Subsequent ages saw the Georgian Version (6th), the Anglo-Saxon (8th to 11th), the Slavonic (9th). The Reformation period from Wyclif onwards saw new translations into the vernacular; but the great age of Bible translation is the 19th century. The British and Foreign Bible Society now produces the Scriptures in over 400 languages and versions.
W. F. Adeney.
Holman Bible Dictionary - Bible, Theology of
Biblical theology is one of four primary types of theology and needs to be carefully distinguished from the other three. 1. In common usage, the single word “theology” usually denotes the study of doctrine in a systematic or orderly, organized form. It draws insight both from the Bible and from history and numerous other fields of study to give the widest possible application of the biblical principles. Systematic theology may be done in a denominational context. For instance, Baptist theology or Methodist theology is the Christian doctrines presented as Baptists or Methodists understand them. Such a doctrinal statement of belief may be strongly influenced by biblical teaching, but insight is also drawn from the history of Baptists (or Methodists, etc.). No denomination's theology is a presentation of “pure” biblical thought; its theology draws insight from its own history, and seeks to apply biblical principles to its current life setting. Systematic theology seeks to give a comprehensive statement of belief, describing all of the major points of belief in their contemporary significance.
2. Historical theology is a study of the doctrinal teachings in various ages, usually tracing the development from ancient times to the present, bringing out the distinctive and changing emphases from age to age. This discipline is closely related to church history, but it is historical study narrowly focused on theology or doctrine.
3. Philosophical theology is a statement of Christian belief which seeks to take the basic elements of the teachings of the Bible and translate them into philosophical concepts. It may also seek to use the creative powers of human reason to create a system of belief. Such a statement may be fairly closely related to biblical thought. On the other hand, such a system of belief may be entirely speculative, going far afield from biblical teachings.
4. Biblical theology is a narrowly focused field of study, as compared to these other types of theology. Usually, biblical theology does not even seek to give the doctrinal or theological teachings of the Bible as a whole. It seeks to isolate and express the theological teachings of a specific portion of Scripture, such as the theology of the Pentateuch (first five books of the Old Testament), or the theology of the prophets, or the theology of the Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke), or the theology of John, or the theology of the Pauline writings, etc. Such study seeks to show the development of thought from early times to the close of the New Testament. As some people do biblical theology, such a study only emphasizes the diversity found in the Bible. Others find an overall unity of theological thought, but trace considerable diversity within that unity. Some will interpret the theology of the Bible in such a way that there is only unity, allowing for no development of thought, or diversity, from Genesis to Revelation. Some who seek to develop biblical theology will finally synthesize the teachings of the Bible as a whole as the end product of their study of the theology of the Bible. They choose not to leave biblical theology as a series of statements of differing beliefs found in various periods of the Bible. Such a statement should not be taken to mean that the Bible teaches exactly that point of view at every point in the Scriptures. Rather, this is a statement of the biblical teaching in its completed form, allowing for development of the various themes from the beginning to the end of the Bible.
Origen. Biblical theology, or study of the doctrinal theology of the Bible, is a relatively recent development. One might assume that biblical theology has been a basic element in Christian studies from the beginning of Christian history. Such is not the case. In ancient times, most theological thought was heavily influenced by philosophical studies. An enormous amount of attention was given to historical theology, especially the history of the teaching of the church fathers, the teaching of the church leaders in the first five centuries after Christ. Much attention has also been given to the development of doctrinal studies with regard to individual denominations or special points of view, drawing upon much more than the Bible itself for these formulations.
Biblical theology as we know it today actually began after the Reformation (1517). Prior to the Reformation, most biblical study was done primarily to bolster the teachings of the church which were developed out of several sources. Luther and Calvin placed renewed emphasis upon the Bible in the life of the church. However, while the Reformers and their followers made new and fresh use of the insights of the Bible, they did not in any sense seek to develop a theology of the Bible. They too were using the Bible selectively to undergird the doctrinal points of view that they were trying to emphasize. In the years of the Post-Reformation period (1600-1800), biblical study was tightly held in a straightjacket of doctrinal conformity to rigid statements of belief. These rigid standards of belief were originally adopted in an attempt to guarantee the preservation of the basic doctrinal teachings of the Reformers. This extreme emphasis on conformity of belief actually had a deadening effect on the life of the churches and resulted in a breakdown of the doctrinal positions they were designed to preserve.
The Enlightenment, which began after 1700, was a period in which many fields of modern learning either took shape or were greatly expanded. This period gave birth to the field of biblical theology as such. Various people began to emphasize studying the Bible apart from preconceived doctrinal standards. They wanted to study the Bible alone, with complete objectivity, letting it speak for itself. Most of these persons wanted to approach the Bible just as any other ancient document is approached, without any preconceived ideas, subjecting it to rigorous historical, literary analysis.
Many credit J. P. Gabler, German biblical scholar, with beginning the field of biblical theology. In his inaugural address in a professorship in 1787, Gabler called for a sharp distinction between dogmatic (systematic or doctrinal) theology and biblical theology. For Gabler, biblical theology must be strictly a historical study of what was believed in the various periods of biblical history, independent of any modern denominational, doctrinal, philosophical, or cultural considerations.
In general, the principles that Gabler called for were right, and he influenced the development of biblical theology for many years to come. However, it should be noted, that there is no such thing as “a study of the Bible alone with complete objectivity.” Every interpreter brings certain presuppositions to the task. These have considerable influence upon the process of interpreting the Scriptures. As a result, the field of biblical theology is a checkered field with every imaginable variation in what is held to be the theology taught by the Bible.
Biblical theology is utterly dependent upon the hermeneutics of the theologian (See Bible, Hermeneutics ; Bible, History of Interpretation ). The methods employed in interpreting Scriptures are crucially important to doing biblical theology. One's biblical theology can be no better than his methods used to interpret Scriptures.
Content. What, then, is the theology of the Bible as a traditional conservative theologian views it? Biblical theology today needs to give due consideration to the real history recorded in the Bible and seek to interpret the Scriptures in the light of historical considerations, with due regard for their literary form and construction. Such theology recognizes an overall unity of the Bible. The Bible is much more than a book of miscellaneous, disconnected religious ideas that emerged over a period of nearly two thousand years. These theologians recognize a development of teaching, a progressive revelation, as God has worked with His people leading them from a point of beginning to the climax of New Testament Christianity. Many New Testament teachings are not found, or even hinted at, in the Old Testament. These New Testament advances are the completion or fulfillment of what was started in the Old Testament, not a contradiction. Later revelation does not contradict earlier revelation; the later expands, fulfills, or interprets the earlier. With the development, historical diversity, and progression, God has led to a unity of teaching. A distinct difference separates the Old Testament and the New Testament, but a fundamental unity joins the two Testaments. The Old Testament is the preparation for the New. The New Testament is the fulfillment of the Old. Theological themes begun in the Old Testament are often carried to completion in the New Testament. For instance, the practice of sacrifice which began as early as Genesis 4:4 (apparently without any divine command) and became an officially commanded practice of the Old Testament under the law given through Moses, was carried through to the climactic once-for-all sacrifice of Jesus Christ as the Lamb of God slain from the foundation of the world.
Central Theme. One central theme runs through the Bible from first to last. God is the central character in the Bible. His work to bring redemption to humans is the central theme. The Bible is a religious book, focused narrowly upon redemption and its implications for our lives.
The Bible begins with the religious teaching that God created humans and the world in which they live. Human responsibility to God is grounded in the religious truth that humans come from God's creative hand. The first man and woman sinned in deliberate rebellion against God, breaking their fellowship with God. Their sin spread from them to all of their descendants, making sinful alienation from God the number one problem of all of us as human beings. The spread of this sin is not an automatic process but one which involves the personal, willful act of each of us so that we are all accountable for our sins. The Bible then proceeds to develop the theme of God's redemptive grace, tracing various stages of God's revelation of Himself: the call of Abraham; the establishment of the covenant with the Israelite community as His chosen people; the institution of the sacrificial system, teaching the people the proper way to approach God for forgiveness; the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus as the provision of forgiveness and regeneration for those dead in sin; the church as the new covenant community, the redeemed people of God on mission for Him in the world; finally, the life to come, in heaven for the redeemed, and in hell for the unregenerate.
The theme of the two covenants is crucially important to the unity of the Bible. God's plan of redemption, bringing people into a right relationship to Himself, begins with the call of Abraham and the establishment of a covenant with him. Subsequently, this covenant was reaffirmed with his son Isaac; with Isaac's son Jacob, whose name was changed to Israel; and finally the covenant was reaffirmed with the whole nation of Israel. It was an unconditional covenant on God's part but a conditional covenant from the human side: God's people must live up to the covenant responsibilities. The major portion of the Old Testament is the story of repeated failure to live up to the covenant responsibilities. The prophet Jeremiah looked forward to a new day when God would write His covenant on the hearts of the people so that it could not be broken (Jeremiah 31:31-34 ), a prophecy of the new birth referred to by Jesus in John 3:1-8 . Jesus termed His death on the cross as the sacrifice instituting the new covenant referred to by Jeremiah (Luke 22:20 ). This shows the remarkable unity of the Old and New Testaments as anticipation and fulfillment.
God. The doctrine of God begins in the Old Testament with the work of God in creation. The Old Testament has four major emphases concerning God. 1. First, and most basic, is the unity of God : one and only one God exists and rules this world. The theme was hard to establish in the minds of the people who repeatedly fell into worship of idols and pagan deities. 2. The holiness of God teaches the wholly otherness of God. God's holiness is the qualitative difference between God and all else. It is supremely important for humans to learn that God is holy and must be treated with reverence. 3. God's sovereignty is often expressed as His lordship. Since God is sovereign, He must be obeyed at all costs; all persons must give account to Him. 4. God's faithfulness . God is not fickle and changeable like the gods of the pagans. He is faithful and unchanging. The New Testament completes the doctrine of God by sharpening the focus on God as Father and the primacy of God's love.
A person is a creature of God but a very special creature. A person is made in the image of God. This means that God has created a spiritual being, made primarily to live in fellowship with God and act responsibly in maintaining God's creation. In an act of selfish rebellion the first people sinned against God. Sin corrupted human nature, leaving all people highly susceptible to sin. Except for Jesus Christ, each person who has lived since Adam and Eve has followed in their footsteps, sinning against God.
A person's need for redemption has at least five aspects: 1. guilt must be forgiven and removed; 2. people must learn responsible obedience; 3. they must learn reverence and respect for God; 4. they must learn to live by faith; 5. they must learn to live for God's purposes, not selfish whims. The whole Bible is the unfolding story of how God has met each of these needs through the salvation that unfolded finally in its completed form through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God who took on human life, living as one Person who was both God and human in a single human life on this earth. His coming was prophesied in the Old Testament as the coming of a Messiah, a Suffering Servant who would redeem His people. In the New Testament, His life unfolded as a revelation from God of what God Himself is like. He spoke the ultimate message from God, in clearer, more forceful ways than God had ever spoken by prophet or priest in other times. He died on the cross and was raised the third day as the ultimate fulfillment of the ancient sacrificial system. New Testament writers saw His death variously, not only as the ultimate sacrifice, but also the ultimate expression of God's forgiving love. They saw Jesus' death and resurrection as the way in which God conquered sin and death, and opened regeneration to mankind as God shares the power of Jesus' resurrection with those who come to Him by faith.
Following Jesus' personal ministry on the earth, He ascended to the Father in heaven to resume His rightful place at the right hand of God. In His place, the Holy Spirit of God came as the very presence of Jesus with the disciples of Jesus, dwelling in each believer. The Holy Spirit is the agent of regeneration and supplies both nurture and guidance to the Christian, equipping each believer for an effective life of service to God in the church and in the world.
Salvation . Salvation comes to the individual person upon a response of faith in receiving the free gift of God's grace. Salvation includes both the forgiveness of sin and the regeneration of the sinful human nature. Salvation issues in a new style of living under the leadership of God, with the Christian living for the purposes of God in this world. Salvation, properly understood, should include a life of spiritual growth, ever moving towards the goal of Christlike living.
The church is seen as the new covenant community, the fulfillment of the old covenant community in the Old Testament. It is not a radical break with the old covenant community but is the logical outgrowth of the people of God in the Old Testament era. It is described as the body of Christ, with Christ as the head of the body, His life flowing out into all parts of the body, as He gives direction to it and works through it in the world just as once He worked through His own physical body in the world.
The Bible points to a time of ultimate fulfillment when God shall complete what He has been doing in this world from the beginning of creation. Jesus will return to this earth, the kingdom of God will be consummated, the dead will be resurrected, and all persons will have continued existence, with the unregenerate spending eternity in hell and believers in Christ spending eternity with God in heaven.
This is the broad outline of the theology of the Bible, expressed in a very condensed, summary form. Many other doctrinal themes could be developed as the theology of the Bible. Much greater detail could be given concerning the doctrines only briefly referred to here. Notice that this sketch of biblical theology centers on the theme of God's redemption and interprets everything in the light of that theme.
J. Terry Young
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Bishop's Bible
BISHOP’S BIBLE . See English Versions.
Holman Bible Dictionary - Bible, Methods of Study
Conscious, organized approaches that help one arrive at the meaning of God's Word without pre-determined conclusions.
Certainly we cannot and must not try to limit or master God's sovereign self-revelation by human methods. The living activity of the Holy Spirit is above and beyond all systems of communication. Methodology is appropriate and necessary, however, insofar as the Bible was written and is read by human beings. Methods serve to clarify and prepare the understanding of the Bible; their character is auxiliary. They help to remove obstacles hindering or falsifying the process of listening to the message. Adequate methodology reflects the manifold dimensions of life. The Biblical message originated in life and aims at being experienced anew in life. This process comprises various cultures, ages, circumstances, societies, people, languages, traditions, emotions. Methods follow certain presuppositions, concerning what people can know and communicate. Methodology, therefore, touches our understanding of reality, experience, and reason. Methods must be open to general testing, not self-contradictory, and evident. Not everyone has the same experiences which others have; and we must be aware of so far unknown aspects of reality. This requires from methodology that it does not narrow down experiences to be communicated, but rather leaves room for all the dimensions of life.
Historical Observations As we have the Biblical message in the form of texts written in ancient languages by people 2000 to 3000 years ago, the traditional methods concentrated on questions of literature, language, and history. The “historical and literal sense” became predominant, not only since the time of the Protestant Reformation, but even before, despite the many attempts in the Middle Ages to detect “deeper” meanings in the text (about doctrine, ethics, and eschatology). The Reformation criticized the abuse of the so-called “fourfold sense of Scripture,” emphasizing that we must not find anything in the text which was not intended by the authors. Scripture is clear, not obscure. Protestantism, in connection with modern thinking, has sometimes tended, however, to become preoccupied with literary, linguistic, and historical observations only. Modern research added a number of aspects along these lines; comparative religion, archeology, source and form criticism, sociology and psychology of religion, philosophies of historism and existentialism, etc. Again and again, therefore, the importance of actually understanding the word and, even more, of a theological interpretation had to be emphasized, in order not to get lost in many outward details. In recent times the role of the interpreter, bringing personal traditions and expectations to the text, and the process of communication (the relation between sender and receiver, codification, etc.) widened the horizon of a comprehensive approach to the Bible.
Basic Approaches The most common method takes a historical approach. It starts with the text and possible variant readings (textual criticism) and the context, analyses the vocabulary and grammar (philology), investigates possible written and oral sources (literary and tradition-criticism), considers the shape and style of the text (form-criticism) and the life setting of the tradition (so-called “Sitz im Leben”). It goes back to the historical origin of what is reported and sketches the situation in which the text was written (historical criticism). The author's contribution and intention (redactional criticism) usually conclude the course of the method.
Compared to the traditional approach with its historical view-point, the theory of communication emphasizes the functional and present (synhychronic) aspects. What was a text written for, what did it effect, what is its “pragmatic intention”? The question of history ranges second. The approach is closely related to rhetoric (the art of speech), to semantics (the meaning of expressions) to semiotics (the meaning of signs), i.e. to all sorts of communicational aspects. In practice the method deals with three dimensions of a text. The surface dimension is made up of the words as verbal, literary signs, composed according to the rules of a language (grammar, syntax). Their exact relation among one another has to be clarified. The second dimension of the text deals with the meaning of the words and sentences. What was the author saying by using and combining certain expressions? In which tradition was the writer at home? The third and basic dimension has to do with the function of a text, in particular with the relation between author and recipient. Texts usually want to achieve something—to change or confirm an opinion, comfort or persuade a person. Values, emotions, actions, attitudes are involved both on the side of the author and of the addressee. The question needs consideration whether author and recipient communicate on different levels, one communicating on the level of information about facts, the other, however, on that of personal relationships.
The methods need not be mutually exclusive but should assist each other. In addition, every method must be aware of the wide range of reality. Every event and document can and must be considered from the various perspectives of human knowledge, such as social and political sciences, humanities, economy, psychology of religion, value systems, etc.
Practical Suggestions No set of methods can claim to be the most perfect one. We should avoid any schematism, too. There are, however, certain steps in the interpretation of Biblical texts, following a rather natural sequence, gained from experience.
1. After the first reading of the text the interpreter's own relation to it needs some clarification. Is the text new or familiar—perhaps too familiar? Does it remind you of previous events (sermons, situations)? What are your feelings about the text: do you like it, or is it alien or rather abstract? The interpreter thus reflects on a personal attitude to the text. Furthermore, you try to formulate a preliminary description of what the text speaks about.
2. The interpreter continues considering the text as a whole to define its character more clearly. Is the passage a more or less independent unit? Where does it begin and end? What are its relations to the context? After that, the structure of the text may be analysed. Are there indications of subsections with logical or other links? Does it lead to a climax? What is of central importance? In the same way the key persons and/or terms should be located. Does the text contain essential points of activity, qualification, description, judgment, etc.? In the course of these observations the nature of the text receives further clarification. Is it a narrative, a hymn, a psalm, an admonition, an argumentation, etc.? What can be normally expected in such portions? What is surprising?
3. It is advisable to ask at this point the so-called journalist's questions: Who wrote, when, where, to whom, why, what for? These questions cannot be answered with the same accuracy for all parts of the Bible, since we lack information sometimes. The available information is collected in handbooks, introductions, and commentaries to the Bible. It helps to reconstruct the original situation of the text, to understand the needs and expectations of the people involved, to see the manifold aspects of reality touched, and to avoid wrong applications if important aspects have changed today. The interpreter should ask the question, what is really helpful to understand the message, in order not to do too little or too much.
4. The background of the text is further analysed along the lines of “this reminds of” or “this seems to be taken from”. Every author uses traditions, often in smaller, sometimes even in larger units. Are there any quotations or allusions? Bible concordances and dictionaries are the best help at this point, not to forget a sound Bible knowledge. It is important to locate the specific message of a text in the longer course of God's history with His people.
5. A detailed analysis of the passage can now be made. It is helpful to compare different translations; occasionally they may even reflect variant readings of the original. Helpful, too, is the method of translators to cut a text into its smallest components of meaning, i.e. into short and simple sentences. (Even a single adjective e.g. might be transformed into a small sentence). The translation and analysis thus becomes a paraphrase, i.e. a reformulation in our own words, usually somewhat longer than the original.
6. What is the contribution of the text, first in the original situation, then also in the history of the early church, the entire history of salvation? Contribution comprises both effect and message, activity and doctrine. What could have happened if these words had not been given to Jeremiah's or James' generation? What would be lacking if that message had not been preserved by Luke? Which details would cause us to suffer clarity or completeness in our knowledge about Jesus Christ, the church, or ethics? In so asking the interpreter will get a better glance of the specific value of the text.
7. As an interpreter, you must not think you are the first and only recipient of the text. Others in the history of the church have read it before; their experiences and reactions are worth a comparison (so-called “history of reception,” found in good commentaries). This may also help avoiding a one-sided interpretation by pointing to a more balanced picture of the Biblical revelation. Equally, the Biblical message was and is not given just to individuals but rather to the people of God. The essential life-setting, therefore, is the church and its service. The final test to an adequate interpretation of the Bible is whether it leads to gratitude and praise, to service and mission.
Wiard Popkes
Holman Bible Dictionary - Bible, History of Interpretation
The modern reader of the Bible might easily assume that people have always read the Bible in the same way that we do today. That is not at all the case. It seems natural to us to assume that the Bible, while a divinely inspired book, is also like any other piece of literature, with one message to convey from the mind of the writer to the mind of the reader. The fact is that in some periods of Christian history people actually found as many as seven entirely different meanings in a given passage of Scripture. Read this way, the Bible can be made to say anything that you want to imagine!
The interpretation of the Bible (or any piece of literature, for that matter), is called hermeneutics. See Bible; Hermeneutics .
Biblical interpretation, or hermeneutics, has had a long and checkered history. The way in which almost all Christians today read and interpret the Bible only gradually developed. It was not until the era of the Renaissance and Reformation that the science of biblical interpretation was clarified. Today we follow what is generally known as the literary historical method of interpretation.
Origen (who died in 254 A.D.) was the first major biblical interpreter and Christian theologian. In addition to the obvious, simple, literal meaning of a passage, which Origen believed was only for the simple believer, Origen found a hidden or deeper meaning embedded in the words of Scripture. This hidden meaning was the pure word of God to the mature Christian, and much to be preferred over the simple, literal meaning. Origen made extensive use of allegorical interpretation to derive this deeper, preferred meaning of Scripture. This allowed Origen to import his underlying philosophical position into the Scriptures, as though this was the message of God to us.
The School of Antioch was the bright spot in the ancient world, so far as biblical interpretation was concerned. The biblical interpreters associated with this school insisted that the Bible be interpreted in the light of the literary form and historical situation of a particular passage. They carefully avoided reading philosophical and speculative preconceptions into the text in the fashion of Origen and his followers. Today, this would seem to be the obvious way that Scripture should be interpreted, but that was not the general opinion in the ancient world. Not until the time of the Reformation (1517) did this kind of biblical interpretation become the dominant approach to the Scripture.
In the Middle Ages (500-1500), Origen's allegorical approach to the interpretation of Scripture was the accepted pattern. Indeed, Middle Ages interpreters expanded on Origen's two meanings and found anywhere from four to seven different levels or types of meanings. A fourfold meaning was usually sought in Scripture: the literal-historical, for the simple believer; the allegorical, which supplies a deeper meaning for faith; the moral, which guides conduct; and the anagogical, a mystical interpretation which points towards the ultimate goal of the Christian in his pilgrimage. Various terms were used to denote these four different levels of meaning.
With biblical interpretation so complicated, it is no wonder that the Roman Catholic Church took the Bible out of the hands of the lay people and left biblical interpretation to the clergy. The ordinary person could not possibly know how to derive from four to seven different levels of meaning out of a given passage.
Biblical interpretation as we know it today began in the period of the Renaissance and Reformation. In the age of the Renaissance, people began to realize the true literary character of the Bible. Luther learned anew the important place of the Bible and made a determined effort to put the Bible back in the hands of the people. One of Luther's cardinal principles was “sola scriptura,” only by Scripture, or Scripture alone. Luther and other Reformers insisted on the perspicuity of Scripture—Scripture is clear enough that the ordinary believer can read and understand it by observing the grammatical and historical elements of the text. Calvin insisted (in the preface to his commentary on Romans) “It is the first business of an interpreter say what he [1] does, instead of attributing to him what we think he ought to say.”
Following the time of the Reformation, great emphasis was placed on letting the Bible speak for itself. The science of textual criticism was developed. This was the analysis of all of the available biblical manuscripts, comparing the variant readings, and making an informed judgment as to what the original text of the Scriptures really was. J. A. Bengel was of major importance in the movement to determine an accurate text.
Bengel was also influential in insisting on accurate, literary-historical interpretation, letting the Bible speak its own message, rather than reading a preconceived interpretation into it. The practice of scientific exegesis, or accurate biblical interpretation, had its beginnings in the years following the Reformation.
In the development of the modern practice of hermeneutics, great emphasis was placed on grammatical and historical elements. Much effort was expended on determining who the original writer of a portion of Scripture was and learning what the historical-cultural conditions of his setting were. Great effort was made to analyze the grammatical constructions employed by the writer, as well as the choice of words. Careful attention was given to the literary style employed by the author: narrative, poetry, apocalyptic, literal, figurative, etc.
In the earnest search for accurate, faithful interpretation of the Bible, the historical-critical method of interpretation was developed. The word “critical” comes from a Greek word which means to judge or to make a decision in the light of evidence. With this type of interpretation, more attention is given to historical considerations than merely clarifying the historical context in which a passage of Scripture is set. Some developers of this method saw history as a closed system. They thought everything must be explained on the basis of forces and causes that are resident within the normal historical experience of humans. Thus, by definition, miracles could not be explained on the basis of an act of God who reaches into history; some natural explanation had to be found for what appears in the Scripture record as a miracle.
What is at fault here is not the method of interpretation as such, but the presupposition that miracles are impossible. This hermeneutical approach is often confused with the literary-historical interpretation practiced by more conservative interpreters. The two are very similar, differing primarily in the presupposition of the interpreter rather than in method as such.
Many varieties of so-called “scientific exegesis” have been developed as refinements of the historical-critical method. They employ very sophisticated and technical methods to analyze the factors that lie behind the text as we have it: who the author was, what the motive was in writing, identification of various sources of material used by the writer, the writer's position among God's people, the relationship to other biblical writers, how and why each idea was developed, the meaning the writer was trying to convey.
Another approach to biblical interpretation is in the form of the history of religions hermeneutic. In this type of biblical interpretation, parallels are sought between what is found in Scripture and what is found in the development of other systems of religion. This shows what biblical writers shared with their culture, what they adopted and adapted from the culture, and what they had in unique distinction from their culture. An extreme position here can expect biblical teaching to be little different from what is found in other religions. A more conservative position recognizes that God used the culture to teach His people but also that He pointed the way to be a holy people distinct from the culture.
As a reaction to the radical insistence on history being closed to outside influences, another approach to biblical interpretation has developed. It is called the new hermeneutic and is often based upon the philosophy of existentialism. According to this approach, the message of the Bible is not to tell me what happened hundreds or thousands of years ago. It is to create in me new spiritual experiences, or encounters with God; or, at least, it is to show me the possibilities that are open to me when I place my faith in Christ.
The dominant type of biblical interpretation used by conservative Christians today is the literary-historical method. See Bible, Hermeneutics .
J. Terry Young
Holman Bible Dictionary - Occupations And Professions in the Bible
The occupations and professions of ancient civilizations were, as in modern times, related to the natural resources, commerce, and institutions of the nations. Israel was no exception. Although readers of the Bible may be tempted to think of the Hebrews in general, and the Bible personalities in particular, as living lives totally absorbed by their religion, the ancients did have to make a living. In fact, few Hebrews followed a profession linked to the unique structure of their religion.
In the course of time, occupations developed from the simple task to the more complex and from unskilled to skilled labor. This evolution was spurred by Israel's shift from a nomadic existence to a settled life and from a clan-type government to that of the monarchy. The development of secular occupations paralleled the settlement of the people into towns and villages, and the evolution of their government from a loose-knit tribal group to a nation involved in international politics. In earliest biblical times, the Hebrews followed their herds from pasture land to pasture land and water hole to water hole, though at times they lived for long periods near major cities (Genesis 13:18 ; Genesis 20:1 ; Genesis 26:6 ; Genesis 33:19 ). Their occupations were centered in the family enterprise.
When Israel entered into Canaan, the Hebrews moved toward a settled existence. As a settled people, agricultural pursuits became extremely important for survival. As the monarchy developed, many new occupations appear within the biblical text, mostly to maintain the royal house. Finally, as villages grew larger, and commerce between cities and nations expanded, various trades and crafts expanded with them. See Commerce .
A sampling of the most common occupations and professions of the Bible are briefly described and grouped around the places where they were usually practiced: the home, the palace, the market place, and the religious occupations related to the church of Christianity and Temple of Judaism.
Occupations Around the Home The earliest occupations and professions mentioned in the Bible, as might be expected, are tasks and chores done at home. One of the principal duties around the home centered on food preparation. 1. Baker ( Genesis 40:5 ) is mentioned early in Scripture as a member of the Egyptian pharaoh's court. Baking bread was a frequent task performed in the Hebrew home long before it evolved into a specialized trade.
2. Butler of the pharaoh's palace was also known as a cupbearer ( Nehemiah 1:11 ; compare Genesis 40:21 ), one who was responsible for providing the king with drink. He, presumably, tasted each cup of wine before it was presented to Pharaoh as a precaution against poisoning.
3. Cooks did the majority of the ancient people's food preparation ( 1 Samuel 9:23-24 ). Within the home, female family members did the cooking. As cooking became an occupation outside of the home, men entered the trade. 4. A related, and daily, chore of grinding grain fell to the grinder ( Matthew 24:41 ) or miller , another trade which later entered the market place. See Mill .
The majority of persons in biblical times were involved in some form of food gathering or production. 5. Fishermen ( Isaiah 19:8 ; Matthew 4:18 ) were one such group of food gatherers. The ancient fishermen's tools were not unlike his modern counterparts: fishing by hook and line, spears, and nets. The fisherman, and fishing, is mentioned often in Scripture, most notably as a metaphor, as in Mark 1:17 when Jesus challenged Simon and Andrew to become “fishers of men.” See Fish.
6. Hunters ( Jeremiah 16:16 ) form the second major group of food gatherers. The ancient hunter's success depended upon proficiency in the use of a bow and arrow, spear, traps and snares, and his knowledge of his prey. Nimrod (Genesis 10:9 ) is the first person to be designated a hunter in the Bible. See Hunter.
7. Shepherds ( Luke 2:8 ) were also engaged in food production. Those persons who have rule over others are often described in terms of the shepherd's duties. They were to care for and feed the people for whom they were responsible. Psalm 23:1 identifies the Lord as a Shepherd and vividly describes the duties of the keeper of the sheep. Given the rugged terrain of Palestine, the constant threat from wild animals, and the ceaseless search for water and pasture land, the responsibilities and dangers of the shepherd were great. Abel is the first to be described as a “keeper of sheep” ( Genesis 4:2 ). 8 . Closely akin to the shepherd was the herdsman ( Genesis 4:20 ). Jabal is described as one “having cattle.” The only distinction that might be made between a shepherd and herdsman is in their charges: the shepherd, sheep; the herdsman, cattle.
9. Abel's brother, Cain, is identified as the first farmer ( Genesis 4:2 ). The Bible calls the worker of land a “tiller” or “plower” (Psalm 129:3 ). He is closely associated with God in Scripture, since it is God who instructs and works closely with him in producing the crops. See Ruth 2:3 ), harvestman ( Isaiah 17:5 ), and reaper ( Ruth 2:3 ). The harvestman and reaper are, apparently, two names for the same task. It is likely, also, that the farmer served as his own harvester. The gleaner is different. See Gleaning . By gleaning what farmers left in the field, the poor and landless obtained food.
Nomadic existence does not require any complicated structure of government. Rule was in the hands of the leader of each tribe. Some form of government became necessary, however, when towns and villages began to form. 10. Before the coming of the monarchy, with its more centralized system of government: judges (Judges 2:16 ), God chose to lead His people, especially in times of crisis. Since the crises were generally wars, the judges were primarily military leaders, who rescued the Israelite tribes from destruction by their warring neighbors. These and later judges also settled disputes. (Compare Luke 18:2 ) See Judge.
Occupations Around the Palace People who worked around the home could be found doing multiple tasks on any given day. Outside the home, skills became more specialized. In Israel, with the development of the monarchy, some of the Hebrews found employment within the palace.
11. The king ( 1 Samuel 8:5 ) held first place. Many kings, among Israel's neighbors, were held to be gods; not so in Israel. The Israelite king was the political ruler and spiritual example and leader to his people. The king determined, by his obedience or disobedience to Israel's God, the fortunes of the nation, but he was never god. (Note, however, the poetic designation in Psalm 45:6 ). See King.
12. Joseph was a governor ( Genesis 42:6 ) of Egypt. His position was second only to Pharaoh. He was, in fact, ruler (Genesis 41:43 ) over all the land of Egypt. 13. Daniel was another Hebrew who enjoyed rule in a foreign nation. He was one of three presidents ( Daniel 6:2 ) given rule over the Median Empire. No information is given regarding his duties.
14. In New Testament times, the Roman government used a deputy ( Acts 13:7 ), also called a proconsul , to oversee the administrative responsibilities of its provinces. The Romans had extended their empire beyond the limits of the emperor's ability to rule personally. Deputies were used where the Roman army was unnecessary. 15. Where a military presence was necessary, a governor ( Matthew 27:2 ), or procurator , was used. The New Testament names only three men employed as governors in Palestine, although there were more: Pontius Pilate, Felix, and Festus. See Rome; Governor .
Beyond the task of governing, the palace provided ample opportunity for military occupations to develop. 16. The armorbearer ( Judges 9:54 ) was one of the servants provided for a warrior as he went into battle. See Arms; Armor.
The army was made up of men of various ranks and responsibilities. Many of the terms designating those in places of leadership are ambiguous and may refer to one and the same rank. 17. The commander ( Isaiah 55:4 ) apparently referred to any leader among the people. It is possible that such ranks as captain , lieutenant , and prince , which could be included under the umbrella of “commander,” were, in the first place, military ranks alone.
18. Soldiers ( 1 Chronicles 7:4 ) are mentioned frequently in connection with the many wars recorded in the Bible. The geographical location of Israel put it in constant danger of invading armies. Every adult male (over the age of twenty) within the tribes of Israel, was expected to serve in the military. The Mosaic law, especially in the Book of Numbers, set forth the regulations for establishing an army.
The government included a corps of service and judicial personnel, as well. 19. The jailer ( Acts 16:23 ) is prominent in several New Testament passages. He had charge of all prisoners—political or religious. Under Roman rule, the jailer was strictly responsible for the safekeeping of the inmates. If one were to escape, or otherwise be unable to complete his sentence, the jailer was liable to fulfill the sentence of the prisoner.
In addition to providing government and a military presence, nations found it necessary to collect taxes from their citizens. 20. The despised publican ( Matthew 9:10 ) is well known from the New Testament. The principal duty was extorting as much taxes as possible. It is believed, by some, that the publican was able to keep for himself any amount of monies collected beyond that levied by the government.
21. The scribe ( Matthew 5:20 ), in addition to service in a religious fashion, served in an administrative capacity in the government as well. Scribes involved in the copying and interpretation of the law of Moses are known from the time of Ezra, who is identified as a “scribe in the law of Moses” (Ezra 7:6 ). Within ancient governments, scribes served the royal court, keeping records of the king's reign. Each king organized his government with advisors and people responsible for different areas. The Bible lists the organization of David (2 Samuel 8:16-18 ; 2 Samuel 20:23-26 ) and Solomon (1 Kings 4:1-19 ). The exact responsibility of each official is difficult to determine as a look at different translations will show.
Work Around the Marketplace The marketplace offered numerous opportunities for employment outside the home. These opportunities may be grouped around the sale of goods, many of which could be classified as arts and crafts, and dispensing of services.
22. Among early craftsmen, the carpenter ( 2 Samuel 5:11 ) had special meaning as the occupation of Jesus. Most of the biblical references to carpenters, however, are to foreign workers. Most notable are the workers of Hiram, King of Tyre, who labored on Solomon's Temple. Associated with these craftsmen of wood are the feller ( Isaiah 14:8 ) and hewers ( Joshua 9:21 ), both cutters of wood.
23. In metalwork, the Bible identifies the coppersmith ( 2 Timothy 4:14 ), the goldsmith ( Nehemiah 3:8 ), and the silversmith ( Acts 19:24 ) as workers in their respective metals. In more general terms, metal workers are identified as founders ( Judges 17:4 ) and smiths ( 1 Samuel 13:19 ).
Oddly enough, miners are not directly mentioned in the biblical text, although craftsmen in various metals were numerous. The metals used by the craftsmen were often imported, though Israel may have controlled some mines near the Red Sea when they controlled those regions. See Mines and Mining .
24. In the sphere of salesmanship, the merchant ( Genesis 23:16 ) or seller (Isaiah 24:2 ) held a prominent position in commerce from the earliest biblical times. Their trade developed into one of international proportions. See Commerce .
25. The potter ( Jeremiah 18:2 ; Romans 9:21 ) may have been one of the busiest men in the marketplace. The demands for his product would be great. Pottery was less expensive and more durable than other containers available to the Israelites, which accounts for its common use. 26. The mason sold his talent of cutting stone for building purposes ( 2 Kings 12:12 ), while 27. the tanner ( Acts 9:43 ) busied himself with preparing skins for use in clothing and as containers.
28. Tentmaking ( Acts 18:3 ) must have been a craft learned from Israel's earliest days of semi-nomadic existence in the time of the patriarchs. This trade carried over into the New Testament period. Paul, Aquila, and Priscilla are said to have made their living by making tents (Acts 18:3 ).
Many services were offered in biblical times. 29. The apothecary ( Nehemiah 3:8 ) has been characterized as the equivalent of a modern druggist. His main task involved the compounding of drugs and ointments for medical purposes. Jewish religious practices suggest that making perfume was also a part of the apothecary's craft (Exodus 30:35 ).
30. The banker , called a lender ( Proverbs 22:7 ), suffered a poor reputation among the Jews. Their religious law forbade the lending of money for interest. In the New Testament, these bankers were the infamous “money changers” of the Temple. See Banking .
31. The fuller ( Malachi 3:2 ) may be best described as an ancient laundryman. He worked with soiled clothing and with the material from the loom ready for weaving. His service entailed the cleaning of any fabric.
32. A host ( Luke 10:35 ), often thought of as an “innkeeper,” provided minimal accommodations for travelers, in some cases, little more than provision of space for erecting a tent or a place to lie down to sleep.
33. Among the most respected persons of Scripture was the master ( James 3:1 ), more appropriately called an instructor or teacher ( Romans 2:20 ). Biblical references to this profession apply mainly to religious teaching, but the term suited anyone who offered instruction. See Education.
34. Prominent, throughout the Bible, are various occupations related to musical talents. Descriptive names include: Singers and players ( Psalm 68:25 ) in the Old Testament, and musicians , harpers , pipers , and trumpeters ( Revelation 18:22 ) in the New Testament. In both Testaments, music played a significant part in the religious life and worship of the nation.
Occupations Around the Church and Temple While occupation is not a technically accurate term when referring to the early church, there were “offices” filled by Christians, normally on a voluntary basis. See Offices in the New Testament .
The officers of the Temple were much more authoritarian. 35. The priest (Exodus 31:10 ) acted as an intermediary between God and the people who came to worship at the Temple. In many cases, priests sacrificed the offerings for the people and the nation, taking for themselves a share in the offering. Priests also served as advisers to the king (2 Samuel 20:25 ).
36. Until recently, the prophet ( Genesis 20:7 ) was looked upon as the antithesis of priesthood. Many of the prophets were hostile toward the abuses of the priests and the excesses of the priesthood, but they did not condemn the priesthood, itself. In fact, some prophets were members of the Temple personnel. The prophets functioned mainly as “messengers” of their God. Where the priest was a “ritual” intermediary, the prophet was a “speaking” one. Their message, at times, had a predictive element in it; generally, however, they addressed the historical situation facing their hearers. See Prophets; Priests ; High Priest ; Levite; Temple.
Conclusion Occupations during the entire span of biblical times were many and varied, as they are today. However, they were occupations suited to a nontechnological society. The nation of Israel remained an agriculturally oriented economy throughout its existence as recorded in the biblical text.
Phillip J. Swanson
Holman Bible Dictionary - Languages of the Bible
The Old Testament was first written in Hebrew, with the exceptions of much of Ezra 4-7 and Daniel 2:4-7:28 , which appear in Aramaic. The New Testament was written in Greek, though Jesus and the early believers may have spoken Aramaic.
Characteristics of Hebrew Hebrew is a Semitic language related to Phoenician and the dialects of ancient Canaan. Semitic languages have the ability to convey abundant meaning through few words. Importance rests on the verb, which generally comes first in the sentence because action is the most significant element. Similarly, modifiers (such as adjectives) follow nouns, lending greater weight to the nouns. Typical word order for a sentence is: verb—subject—subject modifiers—object—object modifiers. Deviation from this order gives emphasis to the word which comes first.
Characteristics of Aramaic Aramaic is akin to Hebrew, and shares a considerable vocabulary with it. It began as the language of Syria and was gradually adopted as the language of international communication. After about 600 B.C., it replaced Hebrew as the spoken language of Palestine. Hebrew then continued as the religious language of the Jews, but the Aramaic alphabet was borrowed for writing it.
Characteristics of Greek Greek belongs to the Indo-European language group. It spread throughout the Mediterranean world after about 335 B.C. with Alexander's conquests. The New Testament is written in a dialect called koine (meaning “common) which was the dialect of the common person. New Testament Greek is heavily infused with Semitic thought modes, and many Aramaic words are found rendered with Greek letters (for example, talitha cumi , Mark 5:41 ; ephphatha , Mark 7:34 ; Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani , Mark 15:34 ; marana-tha , 1 Corinthians 16:22 ). So also are such Latin words as “kenturion” (centurion) and “denarion” (denarius). Greek's accurateness of expression and widespread usage made it the ideal tongue for the early communication of the gospel. Paul no doubt knew all three biblical languages, and Latin as well. See Alphabet; Aramaic ; Daniel, Book of ; Ezra, Book of ; Greek; Hebrew .
Larry McKinney
Holman Bible Dictionary - Bible, Translations
The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and Aramaic and the New Testament in Greek, the languages both of the writers and of those who were expected to read the books in the first instance. The complete Bible has been translated into 293 languages and dialects, the New Testament into 618 additional ones, and individual books into 918 more languages. The process of translation is ongoing in the effort to make God's Word available to all in languages which everyone can understand.
Early Translations The Samaritan Pentateuch used by the Samaritan community is a form of Hebrew written in a different script (Samaritan characters) from that which the Jewish community later came to use. The Aramaic translations called Targums have their beginning in the pre-Christian period and are represented in the Qumran finds; but the major Targums came later.
The Old Testament was translated into Greek about 250 B.C. for the royal library of Alexandria. Named from the seventy translators who are said to have made it, the Septuagint, though made by Jews, has come down to us through Christian channels. Later Greek translations were made in the early period by Aquila, Symmachus, and Theodotion.
The evangelistic thrust of the early church gave impetus for many translations to impart the gospel to peoples in diverse language areas of the Roman empire. Before the 400 A.D., the Bible had been made available in Latin, Syriac, Coptic, Ethiopic, Armenian, and Georgian. The succeeding centuries brought still other translations.
In the West, the church primarily used Latin after the end of the second century, and unofficial translations were made. In the fourth century Pope Damascus invited Jerome to revise current Latin translations based on Hebrew and Greek manuscripts. Jerome completed the new translation after eighteen years of work at Bethlehem. Jerome's translation came to be the accepted Bible, and by 1200 A.D. was called the Vulgate, the official version for the Roman Catholic Church.
Reformation Translations The invention of printing in 1443 and the onset of the Protestant Reformation in 1517 stimulated great interest in Bible translation. Most of the modern languages of Europe had printed translations made at that time: German, 1466; Italian, 1471; Spanish, 1478; and French, 1487. Each of these areas has a long history of manuscript translation prior to printing.
English Translations Efforts to render Scripture into English began with Caedmon's paraphrases into Anglo-Saxon (A.D. 670). Bede (A.D. 735) is said to have translated the Gospel of John, completing it on the last day of his life. It was, however, John Wyclif and his associates (A.D. 1382) who are given credit for having first given the English the complete Bible in their own language.
Erasmus printed the Greek New Testament for the first time in 1516. Luther made his German translation in 1522-1524; and William Tyndale in 1525 brought out his English New Testament—the first printed one to circulate in England. Making use of Tyndale's material where available, Miles Coverdale brought out his complete Bible in 1535.
From this point the history of the English Reformation and the history of the English Bible go hand in glove with each other. Coverdale's Bible was followed by Matthew's Bible in 1537. Then in 1539, Coverdale with the king's approval brought out the Great Bible, named for its large size.
With the coming of Mary Tudor to the throne in 1553, the printing of Bibles was temporarily interrupted; but the exiles in Geneva, led by William Whittingham, produced the Geneva Bible in 1560. This proved to be particularly popular, especially with the later Puritans. Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury, then had the Bishops' Bible prepared, primarily by bishops of the Church of England, which went through twenty editions. Roman Catholics brought out their Rheims New Testament in 1582 and then the Old Testament in 1610. The period of Elizabeth was the time of England's greatest literary figures.
With Elizabeth's death and the coming of King James I to the throne at the Hampton Court Conference in January 1604, the king accepted the proposal that a new translation be made. The outcome was the King James Version of 1611. It is number nine in the sequence of printed English Bibles and is a revision of the Bishops' Bible. The KJV was heavily criticized in its early days; but in time, with official pressure, it won the field and became “the Bible” for English-reading people—a position it has held for almost four hundred years. The KJV has undergone numerous modifications so that the currently circulating book differs from that of 1611 in many ways, though the basic text is essentially the same.
By 1850, large numbers of people felt the time had come for a revision. A motion made by Bishop Wilberforce in the Convocation of Canterbury carried, setting in operation the making of the Revised Version whose New Testament appeared in 1881 and its complete Bible in 1885. The best British scholars of the day participated in the revision, and American scholars were also invited for a limited role. Though launched with great publicity, the revision eventually provoked harsh criticism. In time it became obvious that people still preferred the KJV. The revised edition was more accurate; however, the style was awkward.
The Americans waited out the fifteen years which they had promised before they would bring out a rival revision. The American Standard Revised Version was issued in 1901 with the American preferences in the text and the British in an appendix. It was more accurate than the KJV; but the revisers made the mistake of using an English style not native to English at any time. Wishing a literal translation, they produced one which is really English in Greek and Hebrew grammar and word order.
English Bible Translations in the Twentieth Century At the turn of the century Adolf Deissmann, using study of the papyri from Egypt, persuaded scholars that the New Testament was in the common language (the Koine) of the first century, giving impetus to an effort to present the Bible in the language of the twentieth century. Accompanying this development was the rise of archaeological discovery which gave new manuscripts of both the Old and New Testaments. The Cairo Genizah collection of Hebrew manuscripts was found at the end of the last century, and the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947. Perhaps twenty-five Greek manuscripts of the New Testament could have been used in 1611. Now 5357 are known. The papyri which now total ninety-three items and are older than the great codices were found. Wider knowledge of the nature of the biblical and related languages has been gained, making for more accurate definitions. New scholarly grammars, dictionaries, and anthologies of texts grew out of these developments. Besides these matters is the simple fact that the English language continually changes so that what is understandable at one period becomes less so at a later one.
The first half of the twentieth century saw a spate of translations which abandoned the effort to revise the KJV and attempted to reflect new trends, each from its own viewpoint. They had a limited vogue in some circles while being criticized in others. Some were works of groups; others were prepared by one person; none seriously threatened the dominance of the KJV.
The Revised Standard Version, with its New Testament ready in 1946 and the complete Bible in 1952 bore the brunt of criticism of modern translations because it was the first serious challenge after 1901 to the long dominance of the KJV. It retained the Old English forms in liturgical and poetic passages, as well as using Old English pronouns when deity is addressed. Eventually an edition was issued with modifications to make it acceptable for use by Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholics which is called the “Common Bible.” After forty years the RSV is rapidly becoming archaic. The New Revised Standard Version appeared in 1990.
The British have prepared the New English Bible (1970) which represents certain trends in British biblical scholarship. The American reader will see differences between British English and American English.
Roman Catholics issued the Jerusalem Bible, which with its notes is used both in and out of Catholic circles. Of more widespread influence is the New American Bible (1970) which was used in preparing the English version of the liturgy of the Roman church. While making some concessions, its notes support Catholic doctrine.
The Jewish community has produced the New Jewish Publication Society translation (1962-1982).
The paraphrase found a champion in Kenneth Taylor with his Living Bible Paraphrased (1971), which has more recently been issued under the name The Book. Taylor attempts to restate the biblical message in different words from those used by the writers, hoping to make it more understandable. Taylor, not a Hebrew or Greek scholar, paraphrased the American Standard Version. The accuracy of his work has been heavily criticized by Greek and Hebrew scholars. A revision was being prepared as this article was written.
Those who prefer literal translation found their representatives in the New American Standard Bible (NAS) prepared by the Lockman Foundation (1963). An attempt to give the ASV new life, this effort removes many archaisms from the ASV; it reflects different judgments on textual questions from the ASV, and its generous use of items which have been supplied by the translators in italics invites reinterpretation of passages.
An effort to preserve as much of the old as possible is the New King James Bible (1982). This is a “halfway house” for those who know that something needs to replace the KJV but who are not willing to have a translation which represents the current state of knowledge and which uses current language.
An effort to meet the needs of those who have English as a second language or those who have a limited knowledge of English is Today's English Version (TEV), also known as the Good News Bible (1976). Recasting of language, consolidation of statements, and paraphrasing have all been employed in the effort to make the message simple enough to be grasped by the reader.
The New International Version was issued in 1978 by the International Bible Society from a cooperative project in which more than 110 scholars representing thirty-four religious groups participated. Abandoning any effort to revise the KJV line of Bibles, the NIV is a new translation aiming at accuracy, clarity, and dignity. It attempts to steer a middle course between literalness and paraphrase while attaining a contemporary style for the English reader.
The translation effort in all its forms is a sincere effort on the part of many people of many different religious persuasions to make the Bible accessible and understandable to people to whom it might otherwise be a closed book. A diligent study of any of the efforts will increase one's understanding of the Bible. The ultimate translation is one that influences the behaviors in readers' lives and brings them hope. The task of translation is not finished. New discoveries and new students of God's Word will bring still more translations of the Bible to serve the church and its mission in generations to come.
Jack P. Lewis
Holman Bible Dictionary - Bible, Texts And Versions
The preservation and transmission of the Bible from the time that it was written until the present involves two areas of study. The study of the process by which the documents (66 in all) were written, used, collected into groups, and elevated to the authoritative place that they occupy today is called the study of the canon. The other is the process of preserving in writing and translations the text of the documents. This is the study of text and versions.
There are two periods in the history of the text of the Bible. The first is from the time the documents were written until the time of printing (A.D. 1453). The second is from that date until the present. The invention of printing was very important for the transmission of the text of the Bible. Before that date, the only way that a person could have a copy of any written work was to make a copy (or have it made) by hand, letter by letter. This was slow and often expensive. Some have calculated that the cost of one complete Bible made by a professional scribe in the fourth century would equal the salary of a member of the Roman legion for forty years. Certainly not every church, let alone every Christian, could afford to have a copy of the Scriptures.
The Period of the Handwritten Text The story of the Bible is really the story of two Testaments, the Old and the New. The story came together for Christians in the second century A.D., when the Christian writings began to be equated with the Hebrew Scriptures and thus published side by side as the Christian Scriptures. Even then, however, the history of the text used by Christians differed some from the text used and preserved by Jews.
1. Old Testament Text and Versions. The difficulty of tracing the history of the Old Testament text is the scarcity of manuscripts that go back beyond the ninth and tenth century. One reason for this scarcity is the practice by Jewish scribes of burying old manuscripts in a storehouse called a genizah and then destroying these manuscripts. The text from that period is called the Masoretic Text because it derives from the work of a group of Hebrew scribes known as Masoretes, whose work spans the time from A.D. 500 to 1000. The manuscripts used most frequently in editing the Old Testament today are of this variety.
Textual scholars use several tools to trace the text behind the Masoretic Text. One is the Samaritan Pentateuch . This refers to the text of the first five books of the Old Testament as it was preserved among the Samaritans after their separation from Judah about 400 B.C. until the present. This text is preserved in Israel today by a few hundred Samaritans who still live at Nablus (near Mt. Gerazim where their ancient temple stood, John 4:20 ) and just south of Tel Aviv. The importance of this text is that it was preserved independently of the Masoretic text even though the oldest copies in existence were not made until the eleventh century. Only in a few instances do scholars think that the Samaritan Pentateuch preserves readings superior to the Masoretic text.
Another tool to trace the history behind the Masoretic text is the Aramaic paraphrases of the Old Testament known as the Targums . They originated because the Jews in the synagogues in the Middle East could not understand the Hebrew Scripture. Someone stood alongside the reader of the text (read in Hebrew) and recited Aramaic paraphrases, which in time became stereotyped. The earliest of these to be written down came before the time of Christ (a fragment of a Targum on Job was discovered among the Dead Sea Scrolls in the eleventh cave from Qumran). Most of the manuscripts of the Targums originated 500 to 1000 A.D. Because they are paraphrases and not strict translations, the Targums are more of interest for determining Jewish doctrine in the time of their origin than for determining the early stages of the text of the Old Testament.
A much more important source for textual history is the Septuagint . This is a Greek translation of the Old Testament made from about 250 to 100 B.C. or shortly thereafter. It was made in Alexandria, Egypt, to meet the needs of Jews and others who wanted to read the Old Testament but lacked the facility to read Hebrew. The Septuagint represents an official translation which likely replaced a variety of earlier unofficial translations. Basic problems in using a translation to seek to study the earlier wording of the Hebrew text are: the difficulty of determining the exact readings of the Hebrew text(s) used by the original translators because of the innate differences in all languages, the difficulties in establishing the original readings of the Greek translation by studying the many manuscripts of it, and uncertainty concerning the quality of the translation itself. Nevertheless, the Septuagint does preserve some readings (especially in Exodus, Samuel, and Jeremiah) that appear to be superior to the Masoretic text. Some of them are supported by copies of the Hebrew texts found at Qumran. There are other Greek translations of the Old Testament made by Jews to replace the Septuagint. The two most famous were made in the second century A.D. by Aquila and Theodotion.
The most important source for textual information beyond the Masoretic Text is the Dead Sea Scrolls . Most of these were discovered in the caves by the wadi Qumran on the shores of the Dead Sea beginning in 1947. Others were found further south in the wilderness of Judea and at Masada. The oldest copies of Old Testament Scriptures found in these discoveries are manuscripts written in the second century before Christ. They are over a thousand years older than the basic manuscripts of the Masoretic texts. They represent the remains of a library of a group of separatist Jews who lived in the caves in the area and worked in a type of monastery. Along with Old Testament manuscripts, the caves preserved documents written by the participants in the community and their founders. Biblical manuscripts have been found containing fragments or complete copies from every book of the Old Testament except Esther. The scrolls from Qumran do differ from the Masoretic text in some places (1375 places in Isaiah), but most are insignificant.
Other versions of the Old Testament such as the Syriac, Old Latin, the Latin Vulgate, etc. can be used, but none of these yield many significant variants from the Masoretic texts. The copies of the Hebrew Bible available today are the work of very careful Hebrew scribes. Though there are variations, the text of the Hebrew Bible is essentially as it existed in the time before Christ. The early Christians had access to either the Hebrew text or to the Septuagint. When the Septuagint was no longer used by the Jews (about A.D. 90), it was preserved by the Christians and used by them. About half of the Old Testament quotes in Paul are from the Septuagint as are almost all of the quotes in 1Peter, James, and Hebrews. The famous Latin Vulgate of Jerome contained the books in the Septuagint not found in the Hebrew Bible plus 2Esdras. These are called the Apocrypha. They were relegated to an appendix by Martin Luther and most Protestants today.
2. New Testament Text and Versions. From near the middle of the second century on most Christians equated many Christian writings with the Scriptures of the Jews. The term “Old Testament,” implying a “New Testament,” was first used by Christians in A.D. 187. These writings were preserved at first mostly on papyrus, a form of paper made from the papyrus plant which grew in the Nile Delta. It was perishable, and very few copies survived. In 1976, only 88 separate fragments of papyrus New Testament manuscripts were known. Few of them contain in their present state more than a part of a single page of text. The original papyrus manuscripts contained only portions of the New Testament, such as the Gospels and Acts or Paul's letters or the Revelation or some or all of the General Epistles. The earliest of these date from the second and third centuries. During that period the New Testament did not circulate as a single volume. Apparently all New Testament manuscripts so far discovered were made in the leaf form of books, not on rolls.
The New Testament circulated as a single volume in the time of the great parchment manuscripts. Parchment was made from the skins of animals. The earliest of these to contain the New Testament also contain the Old Testament (in the form of the Septuagint with the outside books) and other Christian writings such as 1,2Clement or The Shepherd of Hermas and the Letter of Barnabas. The earliest of these were written in the middle of the fourth century.
Not only manuscripts written in Greek, the language of the New Testament, but also Christian writings which quote from the Greek New Testament furnish evidence for the text of the New Testament. However, some of the Christian “fathers” were very loose in their quotes or quoted from faulty memories. Another factor is that not all the writings were preserved carefully.
Another major source of information about the text of the New Testament is the versions. From the very beginning of the Christian story, translation has been an essential part of the process. We have less than a dozen words of Jesus preserved in Aramaic, the language which He spoke. Hence, almost all that he said was translated into Greek before it was written down. The accusation written over the cross was written in the three languages used in Palestine: Latin, Hebrew (probably Aramaic), and Greek. When the Christians, fleeing from the persecution in which Stephen died, arrived in Antioch, they needed to use Syriac to evangelize the surrounding areas. By the middle of the second century, extensive efforts had been made to translate all the Scriptures into the Old Latin and Syriac. From the third century on followed translations into the various dialects of the Egyptian languages, the languages of Armenia, Georgia, Ethiopia, Arabia, Nubia, and the areas of Europe.
In the West, Latin became the major language of the church. The Latin Vulgate, produced about 400 A.D. by Jerome, became the Bible of the Latin Church. Among the Eastern Orthodox, Greek remained the official language of the Scriptures. Thus during the long period from 400 to 1500, most New Testament Greek manuscripts used the official text of the Orthodox Church. Hence, today most Greek New Testament manuscripts are of the type designated as Byzantine, Ecclesiastical, Koine , Standard, or Eastern. The earlier and (for most scholars) the most reliable ones are of the Alexandrian (also called Neutral, Egyptian, and African) type. When the printers in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries looked for manuscripts from which to edit the earliest printed Greek New Testaments, all that they could find were those of the Byzantine type. Since then, the process of discovery and editing of manuscripts has brought to light over 5,300 handwritten copies of all or part of the New Testament. The process of editing and utilizing all of this material in producing the earliest possible text for readers today is the task of textual criticism. It is a painstaking job done mostly by scholars in the universities, colleges, seminaries, and Bible societies. As always, a major impetus for this work is missionary. Without textual criticism no modern Bibles in any language would be possible.
The Printed Bible The significance of the printing of the Gutenberg Bible for Bible distribution is impossible to overestimate. From that time on, producing large numbers of copies of written documents that were identical in every detail was possible. From that time on, a steady stream of Bibles has poured from presses around the world. Simply to list and give a very brief description of all of the English editions of the Bible since that time requires a book of over 500 pages.
Over twenty major editions of the English New Testament appeared before the Hampton Court Conference in which King James approved the project that produced the KJV. Most of these and also the KJV were little more than revisions of the work of William Tyndale. Estimates of the per cent of Tyndale's New Testament in the KJV New Testament run as high as nine-tenths of the actual wording. Even so, the KJV was a magnificent achievement and did much not only for Bible reading in the English world but for the stability and beauty of the English language. Much of the wording of the KJV has been preserved also in the revisions of it in the Revised Version (1881), American Standard Version (1901 and later), the Revised Standard Version (1947 and later), and the New Revised Standard Version.
There are three reasons why no translation in any language will ever be completely satisfactory for the people of succeeding generations. 1) All languages are in a constant state of change. The study of editions of English dictionaries only twenty years old will demonstrate such change. The word “prevent” in 1 Thessalonians 4:15 of the KJV did not mean to “hinder” in 1611 as it does today. It meant simply “to precede.” 2) The text of the Greek New Testament during the time of the KJV rested on less than a dozen manuscripts, the oldest of which was twelfth century. There are known today more than 5,300, the earliest of which dates from the second century—a thousand years older. 3) In a world where communication between all cultures has become not only possible but an absolute necessity, the art of translation has been greatly improved. The discovery of tens of thousands of documents from the Hellenistic Greek period has provided enormous resources for the translators. These furnish vastly improved understanding of the meanings of not only words but all sorts of expressions.
The need to speak the message of the Bible in clear and understandable modern language has never been greater. The missionary demand of Jesus requires that the process of translation go forward in all languages in which those for whom Christ died daily seek to communicate. Modern versions such as the New English Bible, the Good News Bible, and the New International Version are essential to the present missionary task. The work of trained translators, such as those who work with missionaries, is also essential. The number of languages that have received Scripture is now over 1900, but the goal must be to include eventually every dialect of the human race.
Carlton L. Winberry
Holman Bible Dictionary - Bible, Hermeneutics
The science of interpreting the Bible (or any piece of literature) is called hermeneutics. The word comes from a Greek word, hermeneuo , which means to interpret or to explain. Interpreting the Bible is not a simple process of reading what has been written. The art of biblical interpretation developed slowly. See Bible, History of Interpretation . While there have always been some people who interpreted the Bible in ways similar to what we do today, the science of biblical interpretation began to develop in the days of the Renaissance and Reformation and was given new importance by the work of Luther and Calvin.
Questions to Ask The meaning of a piece of writing is seldom clearly self-evident to anyone who happens to read it. Especially is this true if the writing is a very old document, written for someone who lived in a very different cultural-historical setting. If we want to interpret a piece of literature, we must ask at least five questions: 1) Who was the writer and to whom was he writing? 2) What was the cultural-historical setting of the writer? 3) What was the meaning of the words in the writer's day? 4) What was the intended meaning of the author and why was he saying it? 5) What should this mean to me in my situation today? These basic questions lead into other questions that must be explored in a serious attempt to understand the message of the Bible. The reader today must somehow try to enter the world of the biblical writer and seek to understand what the writer was saying. Then he must bring that ancient message into today's world where the reader lives.
There are some basic principles that should be observed by the interpreter of the Scriptures. 1) The Bible is a divinely inspired book (2 Timothy 3:16 ) and should be reverently approached. Perhaps the reader should hear what was said to Moses as he stood before the burning bush: “Put off your shoes from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground” (Exodus 3:5 ). We must be careful to reverence the divine character of Scripture. 2) The Bible has a genuinely human element, also, since God used ordinary people to write the Scriptures. Recognition should be given to the human elements utilized by the Holy Spirit in giving us God's Word. To miss the human element is as much a mistake as to miss the divine element. 3) The primary aim of the interpreter is to discover the original meaning of the author who wrote the passage under consideration. 4) Preference should be given to the interpretation which is clearest and simplest, the most obvious. 5) Only one meaning should be given to any passage of Scripture, unless a later passage of Scripture assigns it a second meaning. Only an inspired writer of Scripture can be allowed to give a passage more than one meaning. 6) Careful attention must be given to the literary form of a passage in determining its meaning. 7) Careful attention must be given to the historical situation of a portion of Scripture.
Historical Task Interpretation begins with a historical task. The interpreter needs to know as much as possible about the writer and his cultural-historical setting. If we know nothing concerning who wrote a passage, when it was written, or under what conditions it was written, we are almost left to guess what its meaning might be. Knowing what an author has experienced and what the thought forms of his day were aids us in understanding his writing. It is important to know the approximate date when a passage was written. For instance, words about God's Spirit written before the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost might be given one meaning while they would be given a different meaning after Pentecost. The reader also needs to know who the intended recipients of a passage were. Words addressed to unbelievers would be interpreted very differently from words addressed to believers. The meaning of a passage might depend upon knowing whether the original audience was Jewish or Gentile. The interpreter also needs to know what occasioned the writing, or why the writer wrote his message and what his purpose was.
Literary Task A literary task follows the historical task of the interpreter. The literary task begins with the task of translation of the Scripture from the ancient Hebrew and Greek into the language best understood by the interpreter. Translation is itself a stage of interpretation. For translation is more than simply substituting English words for the Greek and Hebrew words. If you cannot do a good job of translating Greek and Hebrew into English (or whatever your language is), then you must rely upon good translations of the Bible. You really should utilize several good translations to help you understand what the ancient writer was trying to say to you.
Lexical study is the next phase of your literary study of the Bible. You must consult a lexicon or dictionary to find the meaning key words had when the original writer used them. His words may have a different meaning today, and you must know what they meant when originally used.
The next stage of the literary task of the interpreter is the grammatical or syntactical phase. Here, you must examine the form of the writer's grammar: what is signified by the grammatical constructions, the verb forms used, what is given emphasis in a sentence, the relationships of the words to each other, etc. The tense, voice, mode, case, etc. of the words used is very important in understanding what the writer was trying to say to you, the reader. These matters are acutely important in the work of translation, but they also must not be overlooked in the process of interpretation. You should consult good critical commentaries that analyze these grammatical matters for you, even if you do your own translation.
Rhetorical analysis is another important phase of the literary task of interpretation. Here, the interpreter seeks to determine what kind of rhetoric, or language, the ancient writer was using. It is extremely important to recognize the various literary forms that are used by the different writers of the Bible. Major portions of the Bible are written in ordinary prose, plain descriptive narrative. Other portions are pure poetry. Sometimes vivid figures of speech are incorporated in narrative portions. Such figures of speech must be interpreted in their symbolic sense rather than as literal, descriptive language. Portions of the Bible are written in apocalyptic language, a well-known literary style often used in the ancient world, but hardly known to us today. Apocalyptic literature employs vivid symbols and fanciful images to convey some message or mystery or prophecy in a veiled, highly imaginative way. The Book of Revelation and certain portions of Daniel and Ezekiel are examples of apocalyptic literature in the Bible.
Consideration must be given to the context of a passage of Scripture. No portion of Scripture ought to be interpreted without regard to its content. The context is the setting in which the particular passage is located. Generally, the paragraph in which a statement appears is the minimum context. However, the context of a passage may be the whole chapter in which a verse occurs; it could even be the entirety of a book, in the case of the shorter books of the Bible. Meaning that is given to a verse, without regard to its context, is very likely to be the wrong meaning. The Bible is made to say many things the original writers did not intend by interpreting particular statements without regard to their contexts.
The literary task of the interpreter must include comparing the meaning given to a passage to what is taught elsewhere in the Scriptures. This does not mean that we should arbitrarily force one viewpoint upon all of the Scriptures. But it does mean that we should be careful not to interpret Scriptures in such a way that we introduce contradictions into our interpretation of the Bible. There is an overall unity to the Bible; it teaches one theme, one message. But within that unity, there is also diversity. There is diversity due to the vast amount of time spanned in the writing of the Bible. There is diversity due to the many different authors employed by the Holy Spirit. There is diversity due to the progressive nature of revelation. God gradually revealed more and more of Himself and of His will for humans as the message of the Bible proceeded from Genesis to Revelation. While there is progression, there is not contradiction in the Scriptures. The careful interpreter will always want to compare an interpretation of a passage with what the Bible teaches elsewhere to see if the interpretation “fits” with what the Bible says in other places.
Spiritual Task There is a personal, spiritual task of the interpreter. One who would be a good interpreter must be devoted to diligent, careful study of the Scriptures (2 Timothy 2:15 ), prayerfully seeking the leadership of the Holy Spirit continually while interpreting the Scriptures (John 16:12-15 ; 2 Peter 1:19-21 ). Only illumination or divine guidance can lead to correct interpretation. On the one hand, the Bible is a piece of literature that is to be interpreted just like any other piece of literature. On the other hand, the Bible is unique in that it is inspired by God through the Holy Spirit; one who reads the Bible should therefore seek the guidance of God in understanding what is written there.
One additional task remains for the interpreter. Seek to apply the teaching of the Bible to your present situation. It is important to know what the Bible said to its original readers, the people to whom it was originally addressed. But it is equally important to apply the ancient message to us today in our life situation which may be very different from that of the ancient world of Moses or Jesus or Paul. If the Bible is a living revelation of God to us, as we say it is, then we must do more than decipher its ancient history. We must apply the principles discerned in that ancient history to our life situation today.
J. Terry Young
Holman Bible Dictionary - Matthew's Bible
The Thomas Matthew Bible was a revision of Tyndale's and Coverdale's versions likely prepared by John Rogers in 1537 in Antwerp. See Bible, Translations .
Holman Bible Dictionary - Bible, Formation And Canon of
The word “Bible” was formed from a Greek term meaning books in the plural. Our Bible is, in fact, the collection of books written by various authors that possesses final authority in Christian communities. It has no rival in its pervasive influence upon Western culture, and increasingly over world culture. It is a perennial best-seller and has been translated into more than two thousand languages and dialects.
Why does the Bible exist? The answer has to do with the transmission of the gospel down through the generations. Once God had revealed Himself and His plan of salvation to Israel and to the believers surrounding Jesus, the question arose how this truth would be passed along to posterity without its suffering distortion from later interpreters. The only obvious answer to this question was written documentation. It would be necessary to secure the revelation in a fixed, written, and authentic form so that the truth would not be lost in the transmission. Both from a human and a divine standpoint, then, a Bible was required to be the vehicle of transmission of the gospel, conveying the revelation intact to succeeding generations.
Does the Bible itself give this answer? You can see that it does when you consider, first, the fact that leading figures in the Bible, such as Moses, Jeremiah, Luke, and Paul, are described as writing things down precisely for people who are unable to talk with them directly. Second, you find that Jesus and the apostles in the New Testament had a very high view of the divine authority of the Hebrew Scriptures which they believed God gave by inspiration (2 Timothy 3:16 ). The idea of the Bible was not a late afterthought in the history of salvation but was in the process of being formed almost from the first. It seems reasonable to conclude that God's plan of salvation included the Bible as a book which would convey the truth of the gospel down through the years.
How did the Bible take shape? A general acquaintance with the book goes a long way toward answering this question. In the case of the Old Testament, people must have told and retold the stories of God's interaction with Israel before they were collected into the books we now possess. They carefully preserved the law of God given through Moses and accepted it as binding on them. The inspired prophecies could not be allowed to be forgotten even when they were painful. Of course, the wisdom of the sages and the hymns of the people had to be preserved. The process of formation can thus be viewed both from the point of view of God's purpose and with an eye on the natural historical dynamics. In the case of the New Testament, it is clear that four writers undertook the task of presenting the life of Jesus, each of them with some special emphases and with a particular audience in view. The apostle Paul, as well as some others, had the practice of writing letters to groups of people to communicate with them when visiting was difficult. Writing was a way of instructing them in the things of God from a distance. One can see how the Bible must have been formed just by looking at it. Each of its parts was created and preserved because it met a need in the covenant community and qualified to be treasured for transmission to posterity.
How was the canon of Scripture decided on? The word canon comes from a Sumerian term meaning “reed,” and it came to designate the list of books which were normative and sacred. The simplest answer to this question is a practical one: the books which ended up on the canonical lists in the end were those which proved themselves in a variety of ways to be God's Word to His people as they used them over the years. The historical answer is a little less clear. We just do not know as much about the process of canonization as we would like. The best clues are in the Bible itself. The law of Moses was written down and became the core of the later Old Testament. This is the assumption of all the later documents. There is much less said about the composition and preservation of the other writings. Certainly the divine authority claimed by the great prophets of Israel attached to the books which preserved their preaching. It is possible that the Old Testament canon as we know it took shape under the influence of the scribe Ezra who rounded off the task long in process. This would explain the tenacity of the Jews ever since to preserve their Hebrew canon. As for the New Testament, the books involved are many fewer and were composed over a mere half century. The respect for the words and deeds of Jesus is obvious and would explain both the preparation and the respect accorded the four Gospels. Paul's apostolic authority guaranteed respect for his epistles from the beginning. Respect grew later when the original witnesses began to die off and the epistles circulated among the churches. The authority of a prophecy like the Revelation of John, if deemed authentic, would be automatic. An extraneous factor which speeded the process toward developing a canon was the work of second century reformer Marcion, who proposed dropping the Old Testament and much of the New Testament as well, forcing orthodox Christians to make up their minds on the question of the canonical list. The die was already cast in the Muratorian Canon of 170 A.D. where one finds the essential New Testaent as we know it today.
Is there an interplay then of subjective and objective factors in the determination of the canon of Scripture? Yes, we need to view it in terms of God's providence guiding and directing His people in this matter. God sent His messengers and the Scriptures in their wake. God's Word to the people had to make its own impact upon human minds. There is the historical solidity of God's revelation in history, but there is also the need for God's sheep to hear the voice of their Shepherd. God has given us His written Word and allowed it quietly and unhurriedly to make its impact upon us. It did not require a big council when the decision would come down from the leaders of the churches. All that was needed was that God's people be satisfied in the matter of the historical authenticity and then of the practical efficacy of the books in question. The fact that substantially the whole church came to recognize the same books as canonical is remarkable when we remember the agreement was not at all contrived.
The body of our canon is solid and well-supported, and proves itself over again in our use of the Bible. Therefore, we can live happily with a little uncertainty around the edges.
With the writer of Psalm 119:1 , we should give thanks to God for His gift of the Scriptures, in which we can hear His voice and meet with Him. We know the Bible is God's Word, not because we are scholars, but because we are people of faith and experience its authority and truth. The formation of the Bible was in part a human process, directed, we believe, by God. We have reason to feel full confidence when we accept the sixty-six books as God's inspired Word to us. We treasure the Bible because it gives us firm anchorage in history and is the source from which we can continually draw inspiration for renewing our faith and finding the path to follow in serving the Lord.
Clark Pinnock
Webster's Dictionary - Douay Bible
A translation of the Scriptures into the English language for the use of English-speaking Roman Catholics; - done from the Latin Vulgate by English scholars resident in France. The New Testament portion was published at Rheims, A. D. 1582, the Old Testament at Douai, A. D. 1609-10. Various revised editions have since been published.
Morrish Bible Dictionary - Hebrew Bible
As is well known the O.T. was written in Hebrew, except the portions mentioned under ARAMAIC. Until the labours of Kennicott and De' Rossi it was thought that there were no errors in the Hebrew manuscripts, but many differences were found. The variations however are for the most part trivial mistakes of the copyists, which do not materially affect the text. The examination of MSS goes to prove that the penmen must have exercised great care, some of the Hebrew letters being very similar.
It is now well established that the Hebrew language was originally written without vowel points. It is judged that the translation of the LXX must have been made from MSS without these points, and without any spaces between the words. There were no points to the Hebrew as late as the time of Jerome. Neither were they there when the Talmud was written (see TALMUD). For instance, it is questioned whether in Isaiah 54:13 it should be read 'thy children' or 'thy builders' — a question which the vowel points would have decided.
It is supposed they were introduced about the seventh century, though there may have been a few marks to doubtful words before that date. While the Hebrew was a living language the vowel points were not needed. It is judged that the purity of its pronunciation began to fail during the Babylonian captivity. In the tenth century the vowel points were well known, and had been apparently in use some time. Comparatively lately some MSS of the Karaite Jews in the East have shown that there was another system of vocalisation and accentuation very different from that found in the common Hebrew Bible. The synagogue rolls of the sacred books are still written without vowels and accents. There can be no doubt in studying Hebrew as a dead language the vowel points give great help and precision.
God has watched over His own book, and doubtless He helped the Jewish copyists: to the Jews "were committed the oracles of God." Romans 3:2 . The various Readings in the O.T. are mostly comprised in the KERI AND CHETHIB, q.v. For the order of the books see BIBLE.
Morrish Bible Dictionary - Bible,
Biblia. This name is from the Greek through the Latin, and signifies 'The Books.' The whole is also called 'The Scriptures,' and once 'The Holy Scriptures,' that is, 'the Sacred Writings,' distinguishing them from all others. The advent of the Lord Jesus, who was the great subject of the scriptures, John 5:39 , and in whom as 'Son' God spoke, after a silence of 400 years, naturally led to a division of the sacred writings into two parts, called the Old and New Testaments. The 'Old Testament' is mentioned as being read in 2 Corinthians 3:14 ; but the term 'New Testament,' as applied to the collection of books that commonly bear that title, does not occur in scripture. There was also a change in the language in which the various books of the two Testaments were written. The Old was written in Hebrew, except Ezra 4:8 to Ezra 6:18 ; Ezra 7:12-26 ; Jeremiah 10:11 ; Daniel 2:4 to Daniel 7:28 : these portions being written in Chaldee or Aramaic. The books of the New Testament were written in Greek (without now taking into consideration whether the Gospel by Matthew was originally written in Aramaic). The glad tidings of salvation was for the whole world, and the language most extensively known at that time was chosen for its promulgation.
The Old Testament may be considered as dividing itself into:
1. The Pentateuch, or five books of Moses.
2. The Historical Books, including Joshua to the end of Esther.
3. The Poetical Books, Job to theend of Song of Solomon.
4. The Prophetical Books, from Isaiah to Malachi.
The Jews divided the Old Testament into three parts:
1. The Law (Torah), the five books of Moses.
2. The Prophets (Nebiim), including Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2Samuel, 1 and
2Kings, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the twelve Minor Prophets.
3. The Writings (Kethubim, or Hagiographa, 'holy writings'), including
a, the Psalms, Proverbs, Job;
b, Song of Solomon, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther;
c, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, 1 and 2Chronicles.
The books are in this order in the Hebrew Bible. The above triple division is doubtless alluded to by the Lord, in Luke 24:44 , "All things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms, concerning me;" cf. Luke 24:27 . 'The Psalms' being the first book in the third part, may have been used as a title to express the whole of the division.
The Talmud and later Jewish writers reckon twenty-four books in the O.T. To make out this number they count the two books of Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles as one book each; Ezra and Nehemiah as one; and the twelve Minor Prophets as one. The earlier Jews reckoned the books as 22, according to the letters in the alphabet: they united Ruth with Judges, and Lamentations with Jeremiah. But all such arrangements are arbitrary and fanciful.
The 'oracles of God' were committed to Israel, Romans 3:2 , and they have been zealous defenders of the letter of the O.T. For a long time it was thought that their great care and exactitude in copying had preserved the manuscripts from error; but it has been abundantly proved that those copyists erred, as all others have erred in this respect, and numerous errors have been discovered in the MSS, though many of them are seen at once to be mistakes of the pen, some doubtless caused through the similarity of the Hebrew letters, and are easily corrected. Other differences can be set right by the preponderance of evidence in the MSS themselves now that many of these have been collated.
Besides such variations there are other deviations from the common Hebrew text that profess to have some amount of authority. They are commonly called Keri and Chethib, q.v.
As to the text of the NEW TESTAMENTthere is no particular copy that claims any authority, though the Received Text (Elzevir, 1624) was for a long time treated 'as if an angel had compiled it,' as one expressed it. But the undue respect for that text has passed away, and every translator has to examine the evidence for and against every variation, in order to know what he shall translate.
He has before him
1. Many GREEK MANUSCRIPTS:some 40 being called Uncials because of being written all in capital letters (though some of this number are only portions or mere fragments), and are represented by capital letters, A, B, C, etc. They date from the fourth to the tenth century. There are also hundreds of Cursives (those written in a more running hand), for the most part of later date than the uncials, a few of which are of special value. They date from the tenth century to the fourteenth, and are represented by numerals.
2. ANCIENT VERSIONS, which show what was apparently in the Greek copies used for the versions: the Old Latin, often called Italic; the Vulgate; Syriac; Egyptian, called the Memphitic and the Thebaic; the Gothic; Armenian; and AEthiopic. These Versions date from the second to the sixth century.
3. THE FATHERS, which are useful as showing what was in the Greek copies from which they quoted: they date from the second century.
The variations in the Greek Manuscripts are very numerous, yet the Editors (men who have attempted to discover what God originally caused to be written) — though each formed his own plan as to which of the above witnesses he would examine — have come to the same judgement in the great majority of the variations. In such cases we are doubtless safe in leaving the commonly received text. In other places their conclusions differ, and in a few cases nearly all the Editors have been obliged to declare the reading as doubtful. Though this is to be deplored, for we should desire to ascertain in every instance the actual words which God caused to be written, yet it is a matter of deep thankfulness that the variations do not in the least affect any one of the fundamental doctrines of Christianity. These all stand forth in sublime and lucid grandeur as parts of the will of God Himself, notwithstanding all that men have done to obscure or nullify them.
The above must suffice as to the text of the Old and New Testaments. Under the name of each book will be found what are considered the leading thoughts therein, but a few words are now added as to the whole Bible.
It is 'the word of God,' an unfolding of unseen things — a revelation of the nature of God morally, and the history, divinely penned, of man His creature, first as innocent, and then as fallen, with its consequences. It shows man's responsibility and how man has been tested in various ways, each test resulting, alas, in his failure. It manifests that if man is to be saved and eternally blessed, it must be by a work done for him by another. This was graciously accomplished by the Son of God becoming a man and dying a sacrificial death on the cross, which glorified God and met the question of man's responsibility.
The word reveals that there was a counsel respecting the second Man in eternity, it also reveals that when the mediatorial kingdom of the Lord Jesus as Son of Man has been finished, God will again in eternity become all in all. In the mean time, according to the eternal purpose of God, many are being brought to Himself through faith in the atoning death of the Lord Jesus, being quickened by the Spirit, and made new creatures in Christ Jesus. The Lord Jesus is awaiting the time when He will come to fetch His saints, to carry out all God's purposes, and to punish those that know not God, and who obey not the gospel.
The Bible also reveals the character of Satan since his fall, as being a liar and murderer; he is the great enemy of the Lord Jesus and of man, and he deceived our mother Eve. It also details the future eternal punishment of that wicked one with those who are obedient to him.
The choice of Israel and the wonders wrought for their deliverance from Egypt, together with their history in the land of promise, their expulsion and captivity, and their future tribulation and blessing in the same land, occupy a large part of the Bible.
Christ in type, antitype, and prophecy, is the centre of the whole Book: "All things were made by him and for him." He is pointedly referred to in the 3rd chapter of Genesis, and gives His parting word to His saints in the last chapter of the Revelation.
The N.T. brings out not only the history of redemption by the death of Christ, but gives the doctrine of the Church in its various aspects, showing that Christianity is an entirely new order of things — indeed a new creation. Those who form the church are instructed as to their true position in Christ, and their true position in the world, with details to guide them in every station of life. The Revelation gives the various phases of the church at that time (though prophetic of its condition to the end) with warnings of the evils that had already crept in. This is followed by the many and varied judgements that will fall upon Christendom and the world, reaching to the eternal state of the new heavens and the new earth.
This is but a brief and incomplete sketch of the contents of the Bible, for who can in few or indeed in many words describe that wonderful God-made Book? It is an inexhaustible mine: the more it is explored, the more is the finger of God manifest everywhere, and new treasures are revealed to the devout, calling forth their praise and adoration. See INSPIRATION.
People's Dictionary of the Bible - Interesting Facts About the Bible
 
OLD TESTAMENT.
NEW TESTAMENT.
IN WHOLE BIBLE.
Number of books in
Number of chapters in
929
260
1,189
Number of verses in
23,214
7,959
31,173
Number of words in
592,439
181,253
773,692
Number of letters in
2,728,100
838,380
3,566,480
Middle book in
Proverbs.
2 Thess.
Micah and Nahum
Middle chapter of
Job 29:1-25.
Romans 13:1-14; Romans 14:1-23.
Psalms 117:1-2.
Middle verse of
2 Chronicles 20:17.
Acts 17:17.
Psalms 118:8.
Shortest book in
Obadiah.
3 John.
3 John.
Shortest verse in
1 Chronicles 1:1.
John 11:35.
John 11:35.
Ezra 7:21 has all the letters of the alphabet except j.
Isaiah 37:1-38 and 2 Kings 19:1-37 are alike; so are the last verses of 2 Chron. and the opening verses of Ezra.
The word Jehovah occurs 6853 times in the Bible; the word and 35,543 times in the Old Testament, and 6853 times in the New Testament The shortest chapter in the Bible is Psalms 117:1-2.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Antwerp Bible
A great polyglot Bible in six volumes, the "Biblia Regia," published at Antwerp, 1569-1573, by the Plantin press at the expense of Christopher Plantin.
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Geneva Bible
GENEVA BIBLE . See English Versions, § 26 .
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Great Bible
GREAT BIBLE . See English Versions, § 22 .
CARM Theological Dictionary - Bible
A book or collection of sacred writings. The term "bible" is best known in reference to the Christian Scriptures consisting of the both the Old and New Testaments. The word comes from the Greek, biblios, meaning "book."
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Editions of the Bible
Since the Bible was written (the Old Testament in Hebrew, the New Testament in Greek) many centuries before the invention of printing, the only way to multiply copies was by hand. The autograph originals and the earliest copies have all been lost, the oldest extant manuscripts of the whole Bible having been written in the 4th century. Handwritten copies, even if made by painstaking scribes, inevitably contain variations from the original, and the number of such variants were greatly increased by the hands of careless or ignorant copyists. Therefore, by the middle of the 15th century, when printing was invented, there existed a vast number of manuscript copies of the original Bible text, differing from one another in thousands of passages. It has been the task of Scripture scholars, by the comparison and appraisal of these manuscripts, to reconstruct the original as exactly as possible. The Latin Vulgate is the basis for all modern texts; the most notable English translation being the Douay Version. Any printed reproduction of the Bible i.e.,of the original text, in whole or in part, is an edition. Various editions of the Hebrew Old Testament have been published by eminent scholars, both Jewish and Christian. Among the best-known editions of the Greek New Testament are those by Tischendorf, Tregelles, Westcott and Hort, and Nestle.
The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Bible
This name is given to the Word of God; and no one is at a loss to know what is meant by it when we say, the Bible. But it is not, perhaps, so generally known wherefore the Sacred Scriptures are called the Bible. This is the reason.—The word Bible is taken from the Greek. Biblos, or book; and it is called so by way of eminency and distinction, as if there were no other book (and which is, indeed, strictly and properly speaking, the ease) in the world. So then, by Bible is meant the Book, the Book of God, the only Book of God, including the holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, and no other; for these and these alone, are "able to make wise unto salvation, through the faith which is in Christ Jesus." The Hebrews call their Scriptures Mikra, which means, lesson, instruction, or Scripture.
When I said the Bible includes the holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, and no other, I consider what is called Apocrypha as not included. The very name Apocrypha, (so called by those who first placed those writings in our Bibles) which means hidden, or doubtful, implies as much, for them is nothing which, can be called doubtful in the word of God.
Some pious minds, indeed, have gone farther, and have ceased to call those writings apocryphal, or doubtful, but have decidedly determined against them, and from their own testimony shewn that they are unscriptural and contrary to God's word. And, indeed, if what they have brought forward in proof be compared with the unalterable standard of God's own declarations in Scripture, without doubt, they ought not to have place in our Bibles.
It would by far exceed the limits I have laid down for myself in this work, to enter deeply into the subject by way of determining the matter. One or two observations is all I shall offer; leaving the reader to frame his own judgment.
The Book of Ecclesiastics, take it altogether, is by far the best of the whole apocryphal writings. In the prologue, or preface, the writer, or translator, begs pardon for any errors that he may have fallen into in this service; which at once implies his opinion that he had no idea the author wrote it under divine inspiration. In 3:20 he speaks of giving alms as an "atonement for sins;" and 35:3 he declares the forsaking unrighteousness to be a propitiation. Thus much may suffice without enlarging.
I cannot, however, take leave of the subject without first quoting the words of Tertullian, who lived in the second century. He speaks decidedly concerning the Apocrypha, and felt indignant that it should ever have had a place in our Bibles. "The prophet Malachi, (saith Tertullian) is the bound or skirt of Judaism and Christianity. A stake that tells us, that there promising ends, and performing begins; that prophecying concludes, and fulfilling takes place. There is not a span between those two plots of holy ground, the Old and New Testament, for they touch each other. To put the Apocrypha, therefore, between them, is to separate Malachi and Matthew; Law and Gospel. It is to remove the land-mark of the Scriptures, and to be guilty of that breach in divorcing the marriage of the testaments, and what God hath joined together for man to put asunder."
Perhaps it may not be unacceptable to the reader to subjoin, under this article of the Bible, an account of the different copies of the sacred volume which have been handed down in the church through the several successive ages, for it will serve to manifest the Lord's watchful care over his own precious Word.
The first copy, called the Septuagint, in Greek, so called from the seventy pious men devoted to this service, was produced about two hundred and forty years before the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, including all the sacred books, as we now have them, from Genesis to Malachi.
The second copy consisted of the Old Testament, from Hebrew into Greek by a Jew named Aquila, being converted to the Christian faith, in the time of the Emperor Adrian.
The third translation was about fifty-three years after the former. And to this succeeded a fourth, under the Emperor Severus. Eight years after this, another translation appeared by an unknown hand; and this was called the fifth translation. Afterwards Hieronymus translated it out of the Hebrew into the Latin tongue; this is what is called the sixth copy. And this is what is used in the Latin language to this day. Our first English translation was that of Myles Coverdale, Bishop of Exeter, bearing date 1535, and dedicated to King Henry the Eighth.
People's Dictionary of the Bible - Concise Chronological Table of Bible History
Note.—Most of the dates in Bible History, before the dedication of Solomon's temple, are very uncertain. There are two chief systems of chronology: one based upon the Hebrew text of the Old Testament, and the other upon the Septuagint, or Greek text, and called the "short" and the "long" chronology. The dates in the margin of our English Bibles were computed by Archbishop Ussher (born 1580, died 1656), and based on the Hebrew or short chronology. Hales made a similar computation, based on the Greek text. The Septuagint text appears to make the patriarchal period 1466 years longer than the computations based on the Hebrew text, The following table shows the different dates according to Ussher and to Hales:
Ussher, or Hebrew Dates.
Hales, or Greek Dates (nearly).
Events.
b.c.
b.c.
4004
5411
Adam.
3874
6181
Birth of Seth.
3382
4289
" " Enoch.
3317
4124
" " Methuselah.
2948
3755
" " Noah.
2348
3155
The Flood,
2233
2554
Confusion of tongues.
2165
2362
Birth of Nahor.
2126
2283
" " Terah.
1996
2153
" " Abram.
1896
2053
" " Isaac.
1836
1993
" " Jacob.
1706
1883
Jacob moves to Egypt
1671
1728
Birth of Moses.
1491
1648
The Exodus.
1151
1608
Canaan entered.
b.c.
Events.
1280
Settlement in Canaan under Joshua.
1258-1095
The Judges—to Samuel and
Saul.
1095
Saul.
1055
David.
1007
Solomon's Temple. (For table of kings of Judah and Israel, and of prophets, see next page.) Fall of Samaria.
722-721
606
Assyrian captivity began.
588-7
Jerusalem destroyed.
b.c.
Events.
536
First return of Jews—Zerubbabel.
516-5
Second temple completed.
478
Esther made queen by Xerxes I.
457
Return of Jews (second company) with Ezra.
444
Nehemiah appointed governor. Malachi, prophet.
432
Nehemiah again governor at Jerusalem.
425
Death of Artaxerxes, Xerxes II. (2 months).
Sogdianus, his half brother (7 months).
424
Darius II. (Nothus, king).
End of Old Testament history.
CHRONOLOGY BETWEEN THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS
405
Artaxerxes II. (Mnemon).
359
Artaxerxes III. (Ochus)
351-331
Jaddua high priest at J.
339
Arses (king).
336
Darius III. (Codomannus).
332
Alexander the Great.
323
Alexander's death.
320
Palestine under Ptolemy Soter.
314
" " Antigonus.
311
(Era of the Seleucidæ.)
301
Palestine under Ptolemies.
280
Hebrew O. T. translated into Greek about this time.
205
Palestine under Antiochus.
170
Temple plundered by Antiochus Epiphanes.
167
Mattathias, the Jewish patriot; father of the Maccabæans.
165
Judas Maecabæus recovers Jerusalem.
141
Simon Maccabæus frees the Jews.
Pompey conquers Judæa.
Temple plundered by Crassus.
Antipater made governor of Judæa by Cæsar.
Parthians capture Jerusalem.
Herod retakes Jerusalem.
Herod begins to rebuild the temple.
Birth of Christ. (The common Christian era was fixed four years too late.)
People's Dictionary of the Bible - Tables of Measures Weights And Money in the Bible
These tables are based upon the latest and highest authorities, as Schrader, Brandis and F. W. Madden (Jewish Coinage and Money), Whitehouse and Bissell. Updates to the monetary values were added by Josh Bond on 3/28/2012.
I. MEASURE OF LENGTH
ft.
in.
Digit, or finger. Jeremiah 52:21,.
79/100
4 digits =1 palm. Exodus 26:25,
3 17/100
3 palms = 1 span. Exodus 28:16,
9 52/100
2 spans = 1 cubit. Genesis 6:15,
4 cubits=1 fathom. Acts 27:28,
6 cubits = 1 Teed. Ezekiel 40:3; Ezekiel 40:5,
1 Roman foot,
11 64/100
5 Roman feet = 1 Roman pace,
10 ¼
6¼ Roman ft. = 6 Greek ft. = Greek fathom,
81/100
625 Roman ft. = 1 furlong (Greek stadium), .
606
1 Roman mile = about 9/10 of an English mile,
4854
15 furlongs = Sabbath day's journey. Compare John 11:18 with Acts 1:12.
2. MEASURE OF CAPACITY (Dry)
pks.
pts.
1 4/5 kab (cab) = 1 omer,
5
6 " 3⅓ omers = 1 seah,
18 " 3 seah = 1 ephah,
180 " 10 ephahs = 1 homer or kor
3. MEASURE OF CAPACITY (Liquid)
gals.
qts.
pts.
1 log, Leviticus 14:10,.. about
4/5
4 logs = 1 cab (kab),.. "
3⅓
3 kabs == 1 hin. Exodus 30:24, "
2 hins = 1 seah,... "
3 seahs = 1 bath or ephah, 1 Kings 7:26,... "
10 ephahs=1 kor or homer. Ezekiel 45:14,...."
 75
4. WEIGHT (Troy)
lbs.
oz.
grs.
1 gerah.
Exodus 30:13,
12 65/100
10 gerahs
= 1 bekah.
Exodus 38:26,
126 ½
lbs.
oz.
grs.
2 bekahs = 1 shekel. Genesis 23:15.
½
60 shekels = 1 maneh. Ezekiel 45:12
9,
300
60 manehs = Kikkar (Heb. Kikkar. Exodus 25:29); or king's talent,
158
240
5. SILVER MONEY
(According to Bissell's Bib. Antiq.)
[1]
cents.
1 gerah =
.03 65/100
10 gerahs = 1 bekah,
.36 ½
2 bekahs = 1 shekel,
.73
60 shekels = 1 maneh,
$43.80
50 manehs = 1 talent,
$2190.00
(According to Madden and Whitehouse.—Old Testament period.)
1 shekel (holy shekel),
.64
50 shekels = 1 maneh or mina,
$32.00
60 manehs or minas = 1 talent,
1920.00
6. GOLD MONEY (Troy oz. = $19.47 6/10) [2]
According to Bissell.
1 shekel (gold),
$5.35
100 shekels = 1 maneh,
535.00
100 manehs = 1 talent,
53,500.00
(According to Madden and Whitehouse.—Old Testament period?)
1 shekel,
$9.60
50 shekels = 1 maneh or mina,
480.60
60 manehs or minas = 1 talent,
28,800.00
7. ROMAN COPPER MONEY
(New Testament period, coins were:)
1 lepton = 1 mite,
about 1/8 ct.
2 leptons or mites = 1 quadrans, (the farthing of Matthew 5:26),
4 quadrans = 1 as, (the farthing of Matthew 10:29),
" 1 ct.
(The "as" of N. T. times was much reduced from the earlier coin of that denomination.)
8. SILVER GREEK AND ROMAN MONEY
(According to Madden and Whitehouse.—New Testament Period.)[1]
1 denarius = 1 "penny" (Matthew 22:16;) drachma or 16 ases,
cents. about .16
2 denarii or drachmas = didrachma,
" .32
4 drachmas = stater or shekel,
.64
30 shekels (Attic) = 1 mina or
$19.10
60 minas or shekels = 1 talent (Attic),
1,146.00
1 denarius "penny " = 1 drachma
= .18 3/10
2 denarii = didrachma (½ shekel)
Bible
the book, by way of eminence so called, as containing the sacred Scriptures, that is, the inspired writings of the Old and New Testament; or the whole collection of those which are received among Christians as of divine authority. The word Bible comes from the Greek Βιβλος , or Βιβλιον , and is used to denote any book; but is emphatically applied to the book of inspired Scripture, which is "the book" as being superior in excellence to all other books.
Βιβλιον again comes from Βιβλος , the Egyptian reed, from which the ancient paper was procured. The word Bible seems to be used in the particular sense just given by Chrysostom: "I
therefore exhort all of you to procure to yourselves Bibles, Βιβλια . If you have nothing else, take care to have the New Testament, particularly the Acts of the Apostles and the Gospels, for your constant instructers." And Jerome says, "that the Scriptures being all written by one Spirit, are one book." Augustine also informs up, "that some called all the canonical Scriptures one book, on account of their wonderful harmony and unity of design throughout." It is not improbable that this mode of speaking gradually introduced the general use of the word Bible for the whole collection of the Scriptures, or the books of the Old and New Testament. By the Jews the Bible, that is, the Old Testament, is called Mikra, that is, "lecture, or reading." By Christians the Bible, comprehending the Old and New Testament, is usually denominated "Scripture;" sometimes also the "Sacred Canon," which signifies the rule of faith and practice. These, and similar appellations, are derived from the divine original and authority of the Bible. As it contains an authentic and connected history of the divine dispensations with regard to mankind; as it was given by divine inspiration; as its chief subject is religion; and as the doctrines it teaches, and the duties it inculcates, pertain to the conduct of men, as rational, moral, and accountable beings, and conduce by a divine constitution and promise, to their present and future happiness; the Bible deserves to be held in the highest estimation, and amply justifies the sentiments of veneration with which it has been regarded, and the peculiar and honourable appellations by which it has been denominated.
2. The list of the books contained in the Bible constitutes what is called the canon of Scripture. Those books that are contained in the catalogue to which the name of canon has been appropriated, are called canonical, by way of contradistinction from others called deutero-canonical, apocryphal, pseudo-apocryphal, &c, which either are not acknowledged as divine books, or are rejected as heretical and spurious ( See APOCRYPHA. ) The first canon or catalogue of the sacred books was made by the Jews; but the original author of it is not satisfactorily ascertained. It is certain, however, that the five books of Moses, called the Pentateuch, were collected into one body within a short time after his death; since Deuteronomy, which is, as it were, the abridgment and recapitulation of the other four, was laid in the tabernacle near the ark, according to the order which he gave to the Levites, Deuteronomy 31:24 . Hence the first canon of the sacred writings consisted of the five books of Moses; for a farther account of which see Pentateuch. It does not appear that any other books were added to these, till the division of the ten tribes, as the Samaritans acknowledged no others. However, after the time of Moses, several prophets, and other writers divinely inspired, composed either the history of their own times, or prophetical books and divine writings, or psalms appropriated to the praise of God. But these books do not seem to have been collected into one body, or comprised under one and the same canon, before the Babylonish captivity. This was not done till after their return from the captivity, about which time the Jews had a certain number of books digested into a canon, which comprehended none of those books that were written since the time of Nehemiah. The book of Ecclesiasticus affords sufficient evidence that the canon of the sacred books was completed when that tract was composed; for that author, in chapter 49, having mentioned among the famous men and sacred writers, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, adds the twelve minor prophets who follow those three in the Jewish canon; and from this circumstance we may infer that the prophecies of these twelve men were already collected and digested into one body. It is farther evident, that in the time of our Saviour the canon of the Holy Scriptures was drawn up, since he cites the law of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms, which are the three kinds of books of which that canon is composed, and which he often styles, "the Scriptures," or, "the Holy Scripture," Matthew 21:42 ; Matthew 22:29 ; Matthew 26:54 ; John 5:39 ; and by him therefore the Jewish canon, as it existed in his day, was fully authenticated, by whomsoever or at what time it had been formed.
3. The person who compiled this canon is generally allowed to be Ezra. According to the invariable tradition of Jews and Christians, the honour is ascribed to him of having collected together and perfected a complete edition of the Holy Scriptures. The original of the Pentateuch had been carefully preserved in the side of the ark, and had been probably introduced with the ark into the temple at Jerusalem. After having been concealed in the dangerous days of the idolatrous kings of Judah, and particularly in the impious reigns of Manasseh and Amon, it was found in the days of Josiah, the succeeding prince, by Hilkiah the priest, in the temple. Prideaux thinks, that during the preceding reigns the book of the law was so destroyed and lost, that, beside this copy of it, there was then no other to be obtained. To this purpose he adds, that the surprise manifested by Hilkiah, on the discovery of it, and the grief expressed by Josiah when he heard it read, plainly show that neither of them had seen it before. On the other hand, Dr. Kennicott, with better reason, supposes, that long before this time there were several copies of the law in Israel, during the separation of the ten tribes, and that there were some copies of it also among the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, particularly in the hands of the prophets, priests, and Levites; and that by the instruction and authority of these MSS, the various services in the temple were regulated, during the reigns of the good kings of Judah. He adds, that the surprise expressed by Josiah and the people, at his reading the copy found by Hilkiah, may be accounted for by adverting to the history of the preceding reigns, and by recollecting how idolatrous a king Manasseh had been for fifty-five years, and that he wanted neither power nor inclination to destroy the copies of the law, if they had not been secreted by the servants of God. The law, after being so long concealed, would be unknown almost to all the Jews; and thus the solemn reading of it by Josiah would awaken his own and the people's earnest attention; more especially, as the copy produced was probably the original written by Moses. From this time copies of the law were extensively multiplied among the people; and though, within a few years, the autograph, or original copy of the law, was burnt with the city and temple by the Babylonians, yet many copies of the law and the prophets, and of all the other sacred writings, were circulated in the hands of private persons, who carried them with them into their captivity. It is certain that Daniel had a copy of the Holy Scriptures with him at Babylon; for he quotes the law, and mentions the prophecies of Jeremiah, Daniel 9:2 ; Daniel 9:11 ; Daniel 9:13 . It appears also, from the sixth chap. of Ezra, and from the ninth chap. of Nehemiah, that copies of the law were dispersed among the people. The whole which Ezra did may be comprised in the following particulars: He collected as many copies of the sacred writings as he could find, and compared them together, and, out of them all, formed one complete copy, adjusted the various readings, and corrected the errors of transcribers. He likewise made additions in several parts of the different books, which appeared to be necessary for the illustration, correction, and completion of them. To this class of additions we may refer the last chapter of Deuteronomy, which, as it gives an account of the death and burial of Moses, and of the succession of Joshua after him, could not have been written by Moses himself. Under the same head have also been included some other interpolations in the Bible, which create difficulties that can only be solved by allowing them; as in Genesis 12:6 ; Genesis 22:14 ; Genesis 36:3 ; Exodus 16:35 ; Deuteronomy 2:12 ; Deuteronomy 3:11 ; Deuteronomy 3:14 ; Proverbs 25:1 . The interpolations in these passages are ascribed by Prideaux to Ezra; and others which were afterward added, he attributes to Simon the Just. Ezra also changed the old names of several places that were become obsolete, putting instead of them the new names by which they were at that time called; instances of which occur in Genesis 14:4 , where Dan is substituted for Laish, and in several places in Genesis, and also in Numbers, where Hebron is put for Kirjath Arba, &c. He likewise wrote out the whole in the Chaldee character changing for it the old Hebrew character, which has since that time been retained only by the Samaritans, and among whom it is preserved even to this day. The canon of the whole Hebrew Bible seems, says Kennicott, to have been closed by Malachi, the latest of the Jewish prophets, about fifty years after Ezra had collected together all the sacred books which had been composed before and during his time. Prideaux supposes the canon was completed by Simon the Just, about one hundred and fifty years after Malachi: but, as his opinion is rounded merely on a few proper names at the end of the two genealogies, 1 Chronicles 3:19 ; Nehemiah 12:22 , which few names might very easily be added by a transcriber afterward, it is more probable, as Kennicott thinks, that the canon was finished by the last of the prophets, about four hundred years before Christ.
4. It is an inquiry of considerable importance, in its relation to the subject of this article, what books were contained in the canon of the Jews. The Old Testament, according to our Bibles, comprises thirty-nine books, wiz. the Pentateuch or five books of Moses, called Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, the books of Joshua, Judges, Ruth , 1 & 2 Samuel , 1 & 2 Kings , 1 & 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, the Song of Solomon, the prophecies of Isaiah, Jeremiah with his Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. But, among the ancient Jews, they formed only twenty-two books, according to the letters of their alphabet, which were twenty-two in number; reckoning Judges and Ruth, Ezra and Nehemiah, Jeremiah and his Lamentations, and the twelve minor prophets, (so called from the comparative brevity of their compositions,) respectively as one book. Josephus says, "We have not thousands of books, discordant, and contradicting each other: but we have only twenty-two, which comprehend the history of all former ages, and are justly regarded as divine. Five of them proceed from Moses; they include as well the laws, as an account of the creation of man, extending to the time of his (Moses) death. This period comprehends nearly three thousand years. From the death of Moses to that of Artaxerxes, who was king of Persia after Xerxes, the prophets, who succeeded Moses, committed to writing, in thirteen books, what was done in their days. The remaining four books contain hymns to God, (the Psalms,) and instructions of life for man." The threefold division of the Old Testament into the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalms, mentioned by Josephus, was expressly recognised before his time by Jesus Christ, as well as by the subsequent writers of the New Testament. We have therefore sufficient evidence that the Old Testament existed at that time; and if it be only allowed that Jesus Christ was a teacher of a fearless and irreproachable character, it must be acknowledged that we draw a fair conclusion, when we assert that the Scriptures were not corrupted in his time: for when he accused the Pharisees of making the law of no effect by their traditions, and when he enjoined his hearers to search the Scriptures, he could not have failed to mention the corruptions or forgeries of Scripture, if any had existed in that age. About fifty years before the time of Christ were written the Targums of Onkelos on the Pentateuch, and of Jonathan Ben-Uzziel on the Prophets; (according to the Jewish classification of the books of the Old Testament;) which are evidence of the genuineness of those books at that time. We have, however, unquestionable testimony of the genuineness of the Old Testament, in the fact that its canon was fixed some centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ. Jesus the son of Sirach, author of the book of Ecclesiasticus. makes evident references to the prophecies of Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, and mentions these prophets by name: he speaks also of the twelve minor prophets. It likewise appears from the prologue to that book, that the law and the prophets, and other ancient books, were extant at the same period. The book of Ecclesiasticus, according to the best chronologers, was written in the Syro-Chaldaic dialect A.M. 3772, that is, two hundred and thirty-two years before the Christian aera, and was translated by the grandson of Jesus into Greek, for the use of the Alexandrian Jews. The prologue was added by the translator; but this circumstance does not diminish the evidence for the antiquity of the Old Testament: for he informs us, that the law and the prophets, and the other books of their fathers, were studied by his grandfather; a sufficient proof that they were extant in his time. Fifty years, indeed, before the age of the author of Ecclesiasticus, or two hundred and eighty-two years before the Christian aera, the Greek version of the Old Testament, usually called the Septuagint, was executed at Alexandria, the books of which are the same as in our Bibles; whence it is evident that we still have those identical books, which the most ancient Jews attested to be genuine. The Christian fathers too, Origen, Athanasius, Hilary, Gregory, Nazianzen, Epiphanius, and Jerom, speaking of the books that are allowed by the Jews as sacred and canonical, agree in saying that they are the same in number with the letters in the Hebrew alphabet, that is, twenty-two, and reckon particularly those books which we have already mentioned. Nothing can be more satisfactory and conclusive than all the parts of the evidence for the authenticity and integrity of the canon of the Old Testament scriptures. The Jews, to whom they were first committed, never varied respecting them; while they were fully recognised by our Lord and his Apostles; and, consequently, their authenticity is established by express revelation. And that we now possess them as thus delivered and authenticated, we have the concurrent testimony of the whole succession of the most distinguished early Christian writers, as well as of the Jews to this day, who, in every age, and in all countries, the most remote from one another, have constantly been in the habit of reading them in their synagogues.
5. The five books of the law are divided into fifty-four sections, which division is attributed to Ezra, and was intended for the use of their synagogues, and for the better instruction of the people in the law of God. For, one of these sections was read every Sabbath in their synagogues. They ended the last section with the last words of Deuteronomy on the Sabbath of the feast of the tabernacles, and then began anew with the first section from the beginning of Genesis the next Sabbath after, and so went round in this circle every year. The number of these sections was fifty-four, because in their intercalated years (a month being then added) there were fifty-four Sabbaths. On other years they reduced them to the number of the Sabbaths which were in those years, by joining two short ones several times into one. For they held themselves obliged to have the whole law thus read over in their synagogues every year. Till the time of the persecution of Antiochus Epiphanes, they read only the law; but being then prohibited from reading it any more, they substituted in the room of the fifty-four sections of the law, fifty-four sections out of the prophets, the reading of which they ever after continued. Thus, when the reading of the law was restored by the Maccabees, the section which was read every Sabbath out of the law served for their first lesson, and the section out of the prophets for their second lesson; and this practice was continued to the times of the Apostles, Acts 13:15 ; Acts 13:27 . These sections were divided into verses, called by the Jews pesukim, and they are marked out in the Hebrew Bible by two great points at the end of them, called from hence, sophpasuk, that is, the end of the verse. This division, if not made by Ezra, is very ancient; for when the Chaldee came into use in the room of the Hebrew language, after the return of the Jews from their captivity in Babylon, the law was read to the people first in the Hebrew language, and then rendered by an interpreter into the Chaldee language; and this was done period by period. The division of the Holy Scriptures into chapters is of a much later date. The Psalms, indeed, appear to have been always divided as they are at present, Acts 13:33 ; but as to the rest of the Bible, the present division into chapters was unknown to the ancients.
6. From the time when the Old Testament was completed by Malachi, the last of the prophets, till the publication of the New Testament, about four hundred and sixty years elapsed. During the life of Jesus Christ, and for some time after his ascension, nothing on the subject of his mission was committed to writing. The period of his remaining upon earth may be regarded as an intermediate state between the old and new dispensations. His personal ministry was confined to the land of Judea; and, by means of his miracles and discourses, together with those of his disciples, the attention of men, in that country, was sufficiently directed to his doctrine. They were also in possession of the Old Testament scriptures; which, at that season, it was of the greatest importance they should consult, in order to compare the ancient predictions with what was then taking place. Immediately after the resurrection of Jesus Christ, his disciples, in the most public manner, and in the place where he had been crucified, proclaimed that event, and the whole of the doctrine which he had commanded them to preach. In this service they continued personally to labour for a considerable time, first among their countrymen the Jews, and then among the other nations. During the period between the resurrection and the publication of the New Testament, the churches possessed miraculous gifts, and the prophets were enabled to explain the predictions of the Old Testament, and to show their fulfilment. After their doctrine had every where attracted attention, and, in spite of the most violent opposition, had forced its way through the civilized world; and when churches or societies of Christians were collected, not only in Judea, but in the most celebrated cities of Italy, Greece, and Asia Minor, the scriptures of the New Testament were written by the Apostles, and other inspired men, and intrusted to the keeping of these churches.
The whole of the New Testament was not written at once, but in different parts, and on various occasions. Six of the Apostles, and two inspired disciples who accompanied them in their journeys, were employed in this work. The histories which it contains of the life of Christ, known by the name of the Gospels, were composed by four of his contemporaries, two of whom had been constant attendants on his public ministry. The first of these was published within a few years after his death, in that very country where he had lived, and among the people who had seen him and observed his conduct. The history called the Acts of the Apostles, which contains an account of their proceedings, and of the progress of the Gospel, from Jerusalem, among the Gentile nations, was published about the year 64, being thirty years after our Lord's crucifixion, by one who, though not an Apostle, declares that he had "perfect understanding of all things, from the very first," and who had written one of the Gospels. This book, commencing with a detail of proceedings, from the resurrection of Jesus Christ, carries down the evangelical history till the arrival of Paul as a prisoner at Rome. The Epistles, addressed to churches in particular places, to believers scattered up and down in different countries, or to individuals, in all twenty-one in number, were separately written, by five of the Apostles, from seventeen, to twenty, thirty, and thirty-five years after the death of Christ. Four of these writers had accompanied the Lord Jesus during his life, and had been "eye witnesses of his majesty." The fifth was the Apostle Paul, who, as he expresses it, was "one born out of due time," but who had likewise seen Jesus Christ, and had been empowered by him to work miracles, which were "the signs of an Apostle." One of these five also wrote the book of Revelation, about the year A.D. 96, addressed to seven churches in Asia, containing Epistles to these churches from Jesus Christ himself, with various instructions for the immediate use of all Christians, together with a prophetical view of the kingdom of God till the end of time. These several pieces, which compose the scriptures of the New Testament, were received by the churches with the highest veneration; and, as the instructions they contain, though partially addressed, were equally intended for all, they were immediately copied, and handed about from one church to another, till each was in possession of the whole. The volume of the New Testament was thus completed before the death of the last of the Apostles, most of whom had sealed their testimony with their blood. From the manner in which these scriptures were at first circulated, some of their parts were necessarily longer in reaching certain places than others. These, of course, could not be so soon received into the canon as the rest. Owing to this circumstance, and to that of a few of the books being addressed to individual believers, or to their not having the names of their writers affixed, or the designation of Apostle added, a doubt for a time existed among some respecting the genuineness of the Epistle to the Hebrews, the Epistle of James, the second Epistle of Peter, the second and third Epistles of John, the Epistle of Jude, and the book of Revelation. These, however, though not universally, were generally acknowledged; while all the other books of the New Testament were without dispute received from the beginning. This discrimination proves the scrupulous care of the first churches on this highly important subject.
At length these books, which had not at first been admitted, were, like the rest, universally received, not by the votes of a council, as is sometimes asserted, but after deliberate and free inquiry by many separate churches, under the superintending providence of God, in different parts of the world. It is at the same time a certain fact, that no other books beside those which at present compose the volume of the New Testament, were admitted by the churches. Several apocryphal writings were published under the name of Jesus Christ and his Apostles, which are mentioned by the writers of the first four centuries, most of which have perished, though some are still extant. Few or none of them were composed before the second century, and several of them were forged as late as the third century. But they were not acknowledged as authentic by the first Christians; and were rejected by those who have noticed them, as spurious and heretical. Histories, too, as might have been expected, were written of the life of Christ; and one forgery was attempted, of a letter said to have been written by Jesus himself to Abgarus, king of Edessa; but of the first, none were received as of any authority and the last was universally rejected. "Beside our Gospels, and the Acts of the Apostles," says Paley, "no Christian history claiming to be written by an Apostle, or Apostolical man, is quoted within three hundred years after the birth of Christ, by any writer now extant or known, or, if quoted, is quoted with marks of censure and rejection." This agreement of Christians respecting the Scriptures, when we consider their many differences in other respects, is the more remarkable, since it took place without any public authority being interposed. "We have no knowledge," says the above author, "of any interference of authority in the question before the council of Laodicea, in the year 363. Probably the decree of this council rather declared than regulated the public judgment, or, more properly speaking, the judgment of some neighbouring churches, the council itself consisting of no more than thirty or forty bishops of Lydia and the adjoining countries. Nor does its authority seem to have extended farther." But the fact, that no public authority was interposed, does not require to be supported by the above reasoning. The churches at the beginning, being widely separated from each other, necessarily judged for themselves in this matter, and the decree of the council was founded on the coincidence of their judgment. In delivering this part of his written revelation, God proceeded as he had done in the publication of the Old Testament scriptures. For a considerable time, his will was declared to mankind through the medium of oral tradition. At length he saw meet, in his wisdom, to give it a more permanent form. But this did not take place till a nation, separated from all others, was provided for its reception. In the same manner, when Jesus Christ set up his kingdom in the world, of which the nation of Israel was a type, he first made known his will by means of verbal communication, through his servants whom he commissioned and sent out for that purpose; and when, through their means, he had prepared his subjects and collected them into churches, to be the depositaries of his word, he caused it to be delivered to them in writing. His kingdom was not to consist of any particular nation, like that of Israel, but of all those individuals, in every part of the world, who should believe in his name. It was to be ruled, not by means of human authority, or compulsion of any kind, but solely by his authority. These sacred writings were thus intrusted to a people prepared for their reception,—a nation among the nations, but singularly distinct from all the rest, who guarded and preserved them with the same inviolable attachment as the Old Testament scriptures had experienced from the Jews.
7. Respecting the lateness of the time when the scriptures of the New Testament were written, no objection can be offered, since they were published before that generation passed away which had witnessed the transactions they record. The dates of these writings fall within the period of the lives of many who were in full manhood when the Lord Jesus was upon earth; and the facts detailed in the histories, and referred to in the Epistles, being of the most public nature, were still open to full investigation. It must also be recollected, that the Apostles and disciples, during the whole intermediate period, were publicly proclaiming to the world the same things which were afterward recorded in their writings. Thus were the Scriptures, as we now possess them, delivered to the first churches. By the concurrent testimony of all antiquity, both of friends and foes, they were received by Christians of different sects, and were constantly appealed to on all hands, in the controversies that arose among them. Commentaries upon them were written at a very early period, and translations made into different languages. Formal catalogues of them were published, and they were attacked by the adversaries of Christianity, who not only did not question, but expressly admitted, the facts they contained, and that they were the genuine productions of the persons whose names they bore. In this manner the Scriptures were also secured from the danger of being in any respect altered or vitiated. "The books of Scripture," says Augustine, "could not have been corrupted. If such an attempt had, been made by any one, his design would have been prevented and defeated. His alteration would have been immediately detected by many and more ancient copies." The difficulty of succeeding in such an attempt is apparent hence, that the Scriptures were early translated into divers languages, and copies of them were numerous. The alterations which any one attempted to make would have been soon perceived; just even as now, in fact, lesser faults in some copies are amended by comparing ancient copies or those of the original. "If any one," continues Augustine, "should charge you with having interpolated some texts alleged by you as favourable to your cause, what would you say? Would you not immediately answer that it is impossible for you to do such a thing in books read by all Christians; and that if any such attempt had been made by you, it would have been presently discerned and defeated by comparing the ancient copies? Well, then, for the same reason that the Scriptures cannot be corrupted by you, neither could they be corrupted by any other people." Accordingly, the uniformity of the manuscripts of the Holy Scriptures that are extant, which are incomparably more numerous than those of any ancient author, and which are dispersed through so many countries, and in so great a variety of languages, is truly astonishing. It demonstrates both the veneration in which the Scriptures have been always held, and the singular care that has been taken in transcribing them. The number of various readings, that by the most minute and laborious investigation and collations of manuscripts have been discovered in them, are said to amount to one hundred and fifty thousand; though at first sight they may seem calculated to diminish confidence in the sacred text, yet in no degree whatever do they affect its credit and integrity. They consist almost wholly in palpable errors in transcription, grammatical and verbal differences, such as the insertion or omission of a letter or article, the substitution of a word for its equivalent, or the tran
Webster's Dictionary - ru Bible
(n.) A ribble.
People's Dictionary of the Bible - Chief Parables And Miracles in the Bible
PARABLES IN OLD TESTAMENT
Trees choosing a king. Judges 9:7-15.
Samson's riddle. Judges 14:14.
Nathan and the eve lamb. 2 Samuel 12:1-6.
Woman of Tekoah. 2 Samuel 14:6-11.
Escaped prisoner. 1 Kings 20:35-40.
Thistle and cedar. Mark 7:1-37.
The vine. Psalms 80:8-16.
Vineyard. Isaiah 6:1-7.
Eagle and vine. Ezekiel 17:3-10.
Lion's whelps. Ezekiel 19:2-9.
Boiling pot. Ezekiel 24:3-5.
Cedar in Lebanon. Ezekiel 31:3-18.
MIRACLES IN OLD TESTAMENT
Enoch translated. Genesis 5:24 : Hebrews 11:5.
The flood. Genesis 7:11-24.
Sodom and Gomorrah destroyed. 2 Kings 14:980.
Lot's wife made a salt pillar. Genesis 19:26.
Burning bush. Exodus 3:2-4.
Aaron's rod. Exodus 7:10-12.
Ten plagues of Egypt, Exodus 7:1 to Exodus 12:51 :
Waters turned to blood. Exodus 7:19-25.
Frogs. Exodus 8:6-14.
Lice. Exodus 8:17-18.
Flies. Exodus 8:24.
Murrain, (cattle plague). Exodus 9:3-6.
Boils. Exodus 9:8-11.
Thunder, hail, etc. Exodus 9:22-26.
Locusts. Exodus 10:12-19.
Darkness. Exodus 10:21-29.
Death of the firstborn. Exodus 12:29-30.
Crossing of the Red Sea. Exodus 14:21-31.
Marah's waters sweetened. Exodus 15:23-25.
Giving the manna. Exodus 16:14-35.
Water from the rock at Horeb. Exodus 17:5-7.
Nadab and Abihu. Leviticus 10:1-2.
Fart of Israel burned. Numbers 11:1-3.
Korah and his company. Numbers 16:32.
Aaron's rod budding. Numbers 17:1, etc.
Water from the rock. Meribah. Numbers 20:7-11.
Brazen serpent. Numbers 21:8-9.
Balaam's ass speaks. Numbers 22:21-35.
River Jordan crossed. Joshua 3:14-17.
Walls of Jericho fall. Joshua 6:6-20.
Jeroboam's hand withered. 1 Kings 13:4; 1 Kings 13:6.
Widow's meal and oil increased. 1 Kings 17:14-16.
Widow's son raised. 1 Kings 17:17-24.
Elijah calls fire from heaven. 1 Kings 18:28.
Ahaziah's captains consumed by fire. 2 Kings 1:10-12.
Jordan divided by Elijah and Elisha. 2 Kings 2:7-8; 2 Kings 2:14.
Elijah carried to heaven, 2 Kings 2:11.
Waters of Jericho healed. 2 Kings 2:21-22
The widow's oil multiplied. 2 Kings 4:2-7.
Shunammite's son raised. 2 Kings 4:32-37.
Naaman and Gehazi. 2 Kings 5:10-27.
The iron axe-head swims. 2 Kings 6:5-7.
Syrian army's blindness. 2 Kings 6:18; 2 Kings 6:20.
Dead man raised. 2 Kings 13:21.
Sennacherib's army destroyed. 2 Kings 19:35.
Sun-dial of Ahaz. 2 Kings 20:9-11.
Uzziah struck with leprosy. 2 Chronicles 26:16-21.
Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego in the furnace. Daniel 3:19-27.
Daniel in the den of lions. Daniel 6:16-28.
Jonah and a great fish. Jonah 2:1-10.
PARABLES IN THE GOSPELS
1. Found in Matthew only (and not found in any other Gospel).—2.
The tares. Matthew 13:1-24.
Hid treasure. Mark 4:26-29.
Pearl of great price. Matthew 13:46.
Dragnet. Matthew 13:47-48.
Unmerciful servant. Matthew 18:23-34.
Laborers in the vineyard. Matthew 20:1-16.
The two sons. Matthew 21:28-32.
Marriage of king's son. Matthew 22:1-14.
Ten virgins. Matthew 25:1-13.
Ten talents. Matthew 25:14-30.
Sheep and goats. Matthew 25:31-46.
2. Found in Mark only.—2.
The seed. Matthew 13:44.
Householder. Mark 13:34-36.
3. Found in Luke only.—17.
Two debtors. Luke 7:41-43.
Good Samaritan. Luke 10:25-37.
Friend at midnight. Luke 11:5-8.
Rich fool. Luke 12:16-21.
Servants watching. Luke 12:35-40.
The servant on trial. Luke 12:42-48.
Barren fig tree. Luke 13:6-9.
Great supper. Luke 14:16-24.
Tower and warring king. Luke 14:28-33.
The lost silver. Luke 15:8-10.
Prodigal (lost) son. Luke 15:11-32.
The shrewd steward. Luke 16:1-8.
Rich man and Lazarus. Luke 16:19-31.
Unprofitable servants. Luke 17:7-10.
Unjust Judge. Luke 18:1-8.
Pharisee and publican. Luke 18:9-14.
Ten pounds. Luke 19:12-27.
4. In Matthew and Luke only.—3.
House on rock and sand. Matthew 7:24-27; Luke 6:48-49.
The leaven. Matthew 13:33; Luke 13:20.
Lost sheep. Matthew 18:12; Luke 15:3-7.
5. In Matthew, Mark and Luke only.—7.
Light under a bushel. Matthew 5:15 : Mark 4:21; Luke 8:16.
Cloth and garment. Matthew 9:16; Mark 2:21; Luke 5:36.
Wine and bottles. Matthew 9:17 : Mark 2:22; Luke 5:37.
The sower. Matthew 13:1-58; Mark 4:1-41; Luke 8:1-56.
Mustard seed. Matthew 13:1-58; Mark 4:1-41; Luke 13:1-35.
Wicked husbandmen. Matthew 21:1-46; Mark 12:1-44; Luke 20:1-47.
The fig tree and the trees. Matthew 24:1-51; Mark 13:1-37; Luke 21:1-38.
MIRACLES IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
A. In the Gospels.
1. Found in Matthew only (not in any other Gospel).—3.
Two blind men see. Matthew 9:27-31.
Dumb demoniac. Matthew 9:32-33.
Money (shekel) in the fish. Matthew 17:24-27.
2. Found in Mark only.—2.
Deaf and dumb cured. Mark 7:31-37.
Blind man made to see. Mark 8:22-26.
3. Found in Luke only.—6.
Draught of fishes. Luke 5:1-11.
Raising widow's son. Luke 7:11-15.
Infirm woman healed. Luke 13:11-15.
Dropsy cured. Luke 14:1-6.
Ten lepers cleansed. Luke 17:11-19.
Malchus' ear healed. Luke 22:50-51.
4. Found in John only.—6.
Water made wine at Cana. John 2:1-11.
Nobleman's son healed. John 4:46-54.
Impotent man at Bethesda. John 5:1-9.
Sight to man born blind. John 9:1-7.
Lazarus raised to life. John 11:38-44.
Draught of 153 fishes. John 21:1-14.
5. In Matthew and Mark only.—3.
Syrophœnician's daughter. Matthew 15:1-39; 1618106616_5.
Four thousand fed. Matthew 15:1-39; Mark 8:1-38.
Withered fig tree. Matthew 21:1-46; Mark 11:1-33.
6. In Matthew and Luke only.—2.
Centurion's servant.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Study of the Bible
Chief occupation of the authorities of the Catholic Church, of its early Fathers and Doctors, of scriptural specialists, and theologians. Due to their devout as well as scientific labors we have what is called an Introduction to the Bible, treating the inspiration of the Sacred Books, their Canon, their meaning (exegesis) and the rules which guide students in determining this (hermeneutics), as well as the late studies necessitated by the criticism, higher as it is called, of the Sacred Books. See
Canon of Holy Scriptures
Biblcical criticism
exegesis
hermeneutics
Biblical introduction
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Hebrew Bible
Except Wisdom and 2Machabees, which were composed in Greek, all of the Old Testament books were written originally in Hebrew, in the old Phenician characters (later exchanged for the "square" script), but without vowels, separation of words, or division into chapters and verses. These elements were introduced later. The present Hebrew Bible contains only the protocanonical books; the Deuterocanonical books, except a part of Ecclesiasticus, are no longer extant in Hebrew.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Societies, Bible
First formed for the dissemination of the Sacred Scriptures, but in time extended their scope so as to embrace the twofold work of translating and editing. The first real Bible Society was the Von Canstein Bible Institute of Saxony, founded in 1710, and still thriving in Halle, Germany. As Protestantism developed, these societies were multiplied. England, Wales, Ireland, the Scandinavian countries, and France had each their own foundations, though many of these were supported by the British and Foreign Bible Society, an organization established in 1804. In the United States the years 1808,1809 saw the institution of these societies in New York, Boston, Hartford, Princeton, and Philadelphia. In 1816 Elias Boudinot, president of the New Jersey Bible Society, succeeded in uniting some 128 local societies into the American Bible Society, which still functions at Astor Place, New York City. The Catholic Church has steadfastly refused to endorse these societies or their activities, because as the Divinely authorized custodian and interpreter of the Sacred Scriptures, she has deemed inadvisable the dissemination of the bare text, which needs emendation and explanation in so many places; and because these societies have repeatedly shown hostility to the Church by their many attempts to impose unauthorized and mutilated Protestant versions of the Bible on Catholic peoples; and also because of their lack of good faith, for they have never offered to spread among Catholics a Catholic version with imprimatur and approved notes.
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Egypt in the Bible
In Semitic languages Egypt was known under the names of Musr, Misr, Misri, the Hebrew form being Misraim, of which the termination is regarded by some as the regular dual ending used to designate at the same time both parts, Upper and Lower, of the country. Genesis 10 is commonly understood to enumerate the various peoples which made up the population of Egypt: Ludim, Anamim, Laabim, Nepthuim, Phetrusim, Chasluim, and Capthorim. Some of these names have not yet been satisfactorily identified. The Anamim (Anu of the Egyptian texts) appear to be the remnant of early settlers who, driven back by newcomers, roamed in the desert above the second cataract; the Phetrusim (southerners) inhabited the neighborhood of Thebes; the Capthorim and Chasluim are late invaders established on the Mediterranean shore. Egypt first appears in the Bible as a land of plenty, whither Abraham resorts at a time of famine (Genesis 12), and whither Jacob, in similar circumstances, sends his sons for buying wheat (Genesis 37-50). The whole family soon moved there at the bidding of Joseph. Historians usually date this migration at the time of the Hyksos rule. There, in the "land of Gessen," located by some near the mouth of the Pelusiac branch of the Nile, by others half-way up that same channel, by others still south of Memphis, in the Fayum district, they increased and multiplied; and from there, after a long period of persecution which is supposed to have taken place following the overthrow of the Hyksos by native princes, they left at God's bidding, under the leadership of Moses, for the Promised Land. The disaster which overcame Pharao's army at the Red Sea apparently affected only a relatively small corps of Egyptian troops; texts need not be pressed to mean the whole military force of Egypt.
For many centuries decadent Egypt claimed possession of Palestine. This overlordship, however, was merely nominal, so that the Hebrews were fortunate in having only local Chanaanite chieftains with whom to contend. A long and hard struggle at last won for them independence under the strong hand of David. The city of Gazer, however, remained in the hands of the Pherezites (Jos., 16); its capture, in the beginning of the reign of Solomon, by Psibkhannu II, whose daughter became Solomon's wife, brings back the Egyptians into direct contact with Israel. Gazer was given to Solomon as his wife's dowry. Obviously the prince of Tanis considered Palestine as part of his kingdom, and the Hebrew king as a vassal. With the latter he maintained friendly commercial relations (3Kings 10); yet the Egyptian ruler had given shelter and a bride of the blood royal to the young Edomite prince, Adad, and did not discountenance the latter's attempt to wrest his kingdom from Solomon's hand (3Kings 11). To Psibkhannu's successor, Sheshenk I (Sesac of the Bible), the first Egyptian king whose proper name is given in Scripture (Pharao, Egypt., per o,a, the great house, is a generic title), Jeroboam fled from the wrath of. Solomon (3Kings 11), and, according to the Greek text, was later on married to the queen's own sister. Five years after Roboam's accession, Sesac, who probably wished to profit by the political division of Israel, in order to assert his suzerainty, invaded Palestine and ransacked Jerusalem (3Kings 14; Inscription of Karnak). Whether "Zara the Ethiopian," whose attempt against Palestine is recorded only in 2Par., 14, was an Egyptian king (Osorkon I or Osorkon II) is still a moot question.
Save for an obscure allusion to an alliance between Joram, king of Israel (851-842), and the reigning Pharao, Egypt does not appear again on the scene of Biblical history until the last years of the Northern Kingdom, when Osee, the last king of Israel, in order to prevent being engulfed in the ever-growing torrent of Assyrian invasion, called on the help of Sua, probably the future Shabaka, founder of the XXVth Dynasty, then a high officer in the Egyptian Empire (4Kings 17). But leaning on Egypt was leaning on a broken reed; and after the fall of Samaria, despite the oft-repeated warnings of the prophets, there existed in Jerusalem for more than a century a strong party favoring an Egyptian alliance. King Josias, who opposed this policy, was mortally wounded on the battlefield of Mageddo, whilst endeavoring to block, it appears, the advance of Nechao II against the young Babylonian Empire, just risen (609 B.C.) on the ruins of the vanquished Assyrian Kingdom (4Kings 23). Neither did this calamity, nor the conqueror's meddling with the internal affairs of Jerusalem and the heavy tribute levied by him on Jerusalem (4Kings 23), not even Nechao's subsequent defeat by Nabuchodonosor (Jer., 46), prevent the stubborn pro-Egyptian politicians of Jerusalem from reckoning on the help of Egypt when the Babylonians laid siege to the Holy City. True, Hophra (589-570) made a military demonstration in the direction of Gaza (Jer., 47); but his troops were defeated, and Jerusalem, left to its plight, succumbed in 586. Many Judeans then and thereafter sought a new country in Egypt (4Kings 25) and even compelled Jeremias to follow them (Jer., 43). After the collapse of the Chaldean Empire Egypt, now but a shadow of its former greatness, fell into the hands of the Persian king Cambyses (525) and, two centuries later (332), of Alexander the Great. Palestine was a dependency of the kingdom of the Ptolemies, first from 320 to 222; it suffered much in the hostilities between Antiochus III the Great and Ptolemy IV Philopator who plundered the Temple; but in consequence of the defeat of the king of Syria, the country, after a few years of Syrian rule, reverted to Egypt until it was definitely conquered by Antiochus (198). The Book of Daniel and those of the Machabees contain many references to the struggle of the Lagidre and the Seleucidre for its possession. During the last three centuries before the Christian era Egypt, and especially Alexandria, became a great center of Jewish population; to this fact the world is indebted for the Greek translation of the old Hebrew Scriptures. Relations between Palestine and Egypt, particularly after the Roman occupation, were easy and frequent; and thus it is not surprising to see the Holy Family seek refuge in Egypt from the mad fury of Herod (Matthew 2).
1910 New Catholic Dictionary - Use of the Bible
In the Catholic Church it is threefold, doctrinal, liturgical, and pietistic. Its doctrinal use grows out of the official teaching of the Church as incorporated in the decrees of the Council of Trent and the Vatican Council, which states that the Sacred Scriptures, together with Apostolic tradition, constitute the twofold fount of Divine revelation. Thus it is that Catholic theologians and preachers have ever considered the inspired Bible a treasure house from which to draw for proof and sanction of the Church's teaching in doctrinal and moral matters. Indeed, it is no exaggeration to say that the roots of dogmatic, moral, and ascetical theology are deeply grounded in the Sacred Scriptures. In liturgy the Catholic Church, like the Jewish Church before it (Deuteronomy 31; 2Paralipomenon 29; Luke 4), has given Sacred Scripture, in both its Old and New Testament portions a most prominent place. The earliest accounts of the Eucharist Mass describe the reading of selections from both Testaments; and the official public prayers of the Catholic Church today, found in the Roman Missal and Breviary, are composed largely of biblical passages. Its use pietistically is a complement to its doctrinal and liturgic usages. From time immemorJal the Catholic Church has always directed her preachers, in their devotional sermons and the direction of souls, to draw heavily on the Sacred Scriptures, and the prayers which the Church has approved for the piety and sanctification of the faithful, are composed largely of scriptural passages. Also, the Church supplements these uses of the Bible by recommending that it be read in private as a means of personal sanctification. It was with this in mind that Pope Leo XIII, on December 13, 1898, granted an indulgence of 300 days to those reading the Gospel for 15 minutes a day and a plenary indulgence to those reading it every day for a month, with the usual conditions of confession, communion, and prayer for the pope.
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Bible
This word signifies the Book, by way of distinction, the Book of all books. It is also called Scripture, or the Scriptures, that is, the writings. It comprises the Old and New Testaments, or more properly, Covenants, Exodus 24:7 ; Matthew 26:28 . The former was written mostly in Hebrew, and was the Bible of the ancient Jewish church; a few chapters of Daniel and Ezra only were written in Chaldee. The latter was wholly written in Greek, which was the language most generally understood in Judea and the adjacent countries first visited by the gospel. The entire Bible is the rule of faith to all Christians, and not the New Testament alone; though this is of especial value as unfolding the history and doctrines of our divine Redeemer and of his holy institutions. The fact that God gave the inspired writings to men in the languages most familiar to the mass of the people who received them, proves that he intended they should be read not by the learned alone, but by all the people, and in their own spoken language.
The Old Testament contains thirty-nine books. Josephus and the church fathers mention a division into twenty-two books, corresponding with the twenty-two letter of the Hebrew alphabet. But we have no sufficient evidence that such a division obtained among the Jews themselves. They arranged the books of the Old Testament in three divisions, called, the Law, the Prophets, and the Writings, that is, the Holy Writings. The Law embraces the five books of Moses. These are divided into convenient sections to be read through once a year in their synagogues. The second division, the Prophets, is subdivided into the former prophets, namely, the historical books of Joshua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings; and the later, that is, the prophets proper, with the exception of the book of Daniel. The later prophets are once more distributed into the greater-Isaiah, Jeremiah, (not including Lamentations,) and Ezekiel; and the less-the twelve minor prophets. Selection from both the earlier and the later prophets are read in the synagogues along with the sections of the Law; but these don not embrace the whole of the prophets, and the arrangement of them differs among different divisions of the Jews. The Holy Writings (Hagiographa) embrace all the remaining books of the Old Testament, namely, (according to the Masorectic arrangement,) Psalms, Proverbs, Job, Canticles, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, Chronicles. In the arrangement of the Old Testament books now prevalent, the historical books come first, then the devotional and didactic, and lastly the prophetical. The Jews ascribe to Ezra the honor of arranging and completing the canon of the Old Testament books, being inspired for this work by the Spirit of God, and aided by the learned and pious Jews of his day. The New Testament writings were received each one by itself from the hands of the apostles, and were, as their inspired works, gradually collected into one volume to the exclusion of all others.
The division into chapters and verses was not made until comparatively modern time, though there appears to have been a more ancient separation into short sections or paragraphs. The chapters now used were arranged probably by Cardinal Hugo, above the year 1240. The division into verses was made in the Old Testament in 1450, and recognized in the Hebrew Concordance of Rabbi Nathan. The arrangement of the verses of the New Testament as we now have them was perfected in the Latin Vulgate, an edition of which with verses was published by Robert Stephens, a learned French printer, in 1551. He also modified and completed the division of the Old Testament into verses, in an edition of the whole Bible, the Vulgate, in 1555. This division into verses, and even into chapters, having regard more to convenience of reference than to the meaning must often be disregarded in reading in order to get the true sense.
The genuineness, authenticity, and divine origin of the Scriptures cannot be here discussed. The reader is referred to the treatises of Bogue, Gregory, Keith, McIlvaine, Nelson, Spring, etc., published by the American Tract Society, and numerous other valuable and standard works.
The first well-know English translation of the New Testament was that of Wicliffe, made about 1370, before the invention of printing; though others had been made, one as early as king Alfred, of parts of the Bible into Saxon. In the time of Edward I, 1250, it required the earnings of a day laborer for fifteen years to purchase a manuscript copy of the entire Bible. Now, a printed copy may be had for the earning of a few hours. The first printed English Testament was that of Tyndal, in 1526, which was afterwards followed by his translation of the Pentalteuch. The first complete English Bible is that of Myles Coverdale, in 1535. Matthew's Bible appeared in 1537. Coverdale and some other prelates, who resided at Geneva during the bloody reign of Mary, published there another edition in 1560, hence called the Geneva Bible. At the accession of queen Elizabeth a new revision was made, which appeared in 1568, and is called the Bishop's Bible. This continued in use till our present English version, made by order of James I, was published in 1611. The first copy of this was made by forty-seven of the most learned men in England, divided into six companies. This first copy was then revised by a committee of twelve, or two from each of the six companies; and then again by two others. The work of translation and revision occupied between four and five years; and the faithful, clear, and vigorous standard Bible thus secured, is an enduring monument of the learning, wisdom, and fidelity of the translators.
One of the most remarkable movements of modern time, and that which holds out the greatest promise of good for the coming triumphs of the Redeemer's kingdom, and the temporal as well as spiritual welfare of future generations, is the mighty effort which is making to circulate the holy Scriptures, not only in Christian, but also in heathen lands. In the year 1804, the British and Foreign Bible Society was formed; and the success which has attended this glorious object has by far exceeded the most sanguine expectations of its founders and supporters. "Their voice has gone out through all the earth of the world." During the first fifty years of this society, it printed or assisted in printing the Scriptures in 148 languages, in about sixty of which they had never before been printed, and issued upwards of 29,000,000 copies of the sacred writings. The Scriptures have now been published in about 220 different languages and dialects. Other similar association have followed nobly this glorious example; and of these none had labored with more effect than the American Bible Society, which was formed in 1816, and has now, 1859, issued thirteen millions of Bibles and Testaments.
The American Church Dictionary and Cycopedia - Bible, the English
The English Version of the Bible as we nowhave it, commonly called the "Authorized Version" was set forth A.D. 1611. It was the work of many hands and of several generations.The translation made by William Tyndale, A.D. 1525, is regarded asthe foundation or primary version, as the versions that followedwere substantially reproductions of it. Three successive stagesmay be recognized in the work of translation; (1) The publicationof the Great Bible in 1540; (2) The Bishop's Bible of 1568 and 1572in the reign of Elizabeth, and (3) The publication of the King'sBible in 1611 in the reign of James I. Thus the form in which theEnglish Bible has now been read for more than 300 years was theresult of various revisions made between 1525 and 1611. This oldand familiar version of the Bible was revised A.D. 1881 by a largebody of English and American scholars, but their revision has neverbecome very popular. (See LECTIONARY, also SCRIPTURES IN PRAYERBOOK).
Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Bible
This article is concerned solely with a summary of the Bible’s contents, book by book. Concerning the Bible as the inspired and authoritative Word of God see INSPIRATION; REVELATION; WORD. Concerning the formation of the Bible and the organization of its contents see CANON; MANUSCRIPTS; SCRIBES; SCRIPTURES; SEPTUAGINT; WRITING. Concerning the present-day reader’s understanding of the Bible see INTERPRETATION; QUOTATIONS.
Human sin and divine salvation
The first book of the Bible, Genesis (meaning ‘origin’ or ‘beginning’), opens with a brief account of the creation of the world, chiefly as an introduction to the story of the people who live in the world. From the beginning people failed repeatedly, but God still loved them and initiated a plan for their salvation. He chose Abraham, a man from Mesopotamia, promising to make of him a nation, to give that nation the land of Canaan as a homeland, and to use that nation as his channel of blessing to the world. Genesis traces the growth of Abraham’s descendants over the next two or three centuries, and closes with them settling down as a distinct and unified people in Egypt. These events mark the beginning of the nation Israel.
Over the next four centuries the Israelites so increased their numbers that the Egyptian rulers considered them a threat and made them slaves of the government. The book of Exodus (meaning ‘a going out’) records how Moses became the Israelites’ leader, overthrew the oppressors and led his people out of Egypt (about 1280 BC). His intention was to lead them to a new homeland in Canaan, but first he took them to Mt Sinai, where they formally became God’s people in a covenant ceremony. Then, over the next year, they organized themselves according to the laws God gave them for the new life that lay ahead. Many of these laws are recorded in the latter part of Exodus and in the next book, Leviticus (named after the Israelite tribe Levi, which had special responsibilities in religious affairs).
The book of Numbers takes its name from two census that Moses conducted in preparation for the move into Canaan. The book contains further laws, along with details of arrangements for the journey. But the people rebelled against God, and their entrance into Canaan was delayed forty years as a punishment. During this time most adults of the rebellious generation died and a new generation grew up. When the time drew near to enter Canaan, Moses repeated, and in some ways expanded and up-dated, the law for the new generation. The book that records this renewed instruction in the law is called Deuteronomy, meaning ‘second law’.
All Dictionary (83) 1910 New Catholic Dictionary (28) American Tract Society Bible Dictionary (1) Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology (4) Bridgeway Bible Dictionary (1) CARM Theological Dictionary (1) Charles Buck Theological Dictionary (2) Charles Spurgeon's Illustration Collection (9) Easton's Bible Dictionary (1) Fausset's Bible Dictionary (1) Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible (6) Holman Bible Dictionary (16) Morrish Bible Dictionary (2) People's Dictionary of the Bible (5) The American Church Dictionary and Cycopedia (1) The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary (1) Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary (1) Webster's Dictionary (3)

Sentence search

Scripture - See Bible, Authority of the ; Bible, Canon of the ; Bible, Inspiration of the ...
...
Hermeneutics - See Bible, Hermeneutics , Bible, History of Interpretation
Vulgate - 400 of the Bible. See Bible, Texts and Versions
Bible: to be Read With Delight - The little girl was reading her Bible. Hone said, 'Well, my little girl, you are getting your task?' 'No, sir, I am not,' she replied,' I am reading the Bible. ' 'Yes,' said he, 'you are getting your task out of the Bible?' 'Oh, no,' she replied, 'it is no task to read the Bible; I love the Bible. ' 'And why do you love the Bible?' said he. Her simple, child-like answer was, 'I thought everybody loved the Bible. Hone was so touched with the sincerity of that expression, that he read the Bible himself, and instead of being an opponent to the things of God, came to be a friend of divine truth
Matthew's Bible - The Thomas Matthew Bible was a revision of Tyndale's and Coverdale's versions likely prepared by John Rogers in 1537 in Antwerp. See Bible, Translations
Bible - ) A book containing the sacred writings belonging to any religion; as, the Koran is often called the Mohammedan Bible. ) The Book by way of eminence, - that is, the book which is made up of the writings accepted by Christians as of divine origin and authority, whether such writings be in the original language, or translated; the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments; - sometimes in a restricted sense, the Old Testament; as, King James's Bible; Douay Bible; Luther's Bible. Also, the book which is made up of writings similarly accepted by the Jews; as, a rabbinical Bible
Scriptures - The scriptures are, quite simply, the Bible which consists of 39 books in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament. The entire Bible, though written by many people over thousands of years is harmonious in all its teachings. This is because each book of the Bible is inspired
Vatican Manuscript - It contained originally the whole Greek Bible. 29, article Bible
Samaritan Pentateuch - The canon or “Bible” of the Samaritans, who revere the Torah as God's revelation to Moses on Mount Sinai and do not regard the rest of the Hebrew Bible as canon. See Bible, Texts and Versions ; Samaria
Old Testament - See Bible
Hagiographa - See Bible
Chapter - See Bible
Bible, the English - The English Version of the Bible as we nowhave it, commonly called the "Authorized Version" was set forth A. Three successive stagesmay be recognized in the work of translation; (1) The publicationof the Great Bible in 1540; (2) The Bishop's Bible of 1568 and 1572in the reign of Elizabeth, and (3) The publication of the King'sBible in 1611 in the reign of James I. Thus the form in which theEnglish Bible has now been read for more than 300 years was theresult of various revisions made between 1525 and 1611. This oldand familiar version of the Bible was revised A
Colt - COLT is applied in the Bible not to the young horse, but to the young ass, and once ( Genesis 32:15 ) to the young camel. Outside the Bible it is not applied to the young of any animal but the horse
Testament, Old - See Bible, SCRIPTURE
Preface - ...
First came a series of mini-commentaries that later appeared in English as the eight-volume Bridge Bible Handbooks (now combined into the one-volume Bridgeway Bible Commentary). Only after a commentary was available on the whole Bible did I think about writing a Bible Dictionary. I am convinced this is the best sequence to follow, not just in publishing but in Bible study in general. ...
The original English title of this book used the word Directory rather than Dictionary, partly to appeal to readers who may not want a book that sounds academic, and partly because the book does not, like a ‘proper’ dictionary, deal with all the words and names in the Bible. But over the years I have found that people refer to the book as a dictionary anyway, so this edition has changed the title to Bridgeway Bible Dictionary. The ‘bridge’ element in the title reflects the aim of all Bridgeway books, which is to bridge two gaps at once – the gap between the word of the Bible and the world of today, and the gap between the technical reference works and the ordinary reader. My desire is that this book will help give the kind of help that will encourage people to read and enjoy the Bible. And when that happens, they will soon find that the Bible has its own way of making itself relevant to them
Bibliolatry - of the Bible; - applied by Roman Catholic divines to the exaltation of the authority of the Bible over that of the pope or the church, and by Protestants to an excessive regard to the letter of the Scriptures
Interpretation - See Bible, Interpretation of
Complutensian Bible - See Bible, No
Works of God - See Bible, REVELATION, SCRIPTURES
Biblically - ) According to the Bible
Great Lizard - See Animals in the Bible
Deer - See Animals in the Bible
Hen (Fowl) - See Birds in the Bible
Herbs - See Plants in the Bible
Galbanum - See Plants in the Bible
Grapes - See Plants in the Bible
Henna - See Plants in the Bible
Canon - See Bible, Canon of the ...
...
Inspiration of Scripture - See Bible, Inspiration of the ...
...
Fallow Deer - See Animals in the Bible
Fig, Figtree - See Plants in the Bible
Fox - See Animals in the Bible
Frog - See Animals in the Bible
Boar - See Animals in the Bible
Rat - See Animals in the Bible
Gazelle - See Animals in the Bible
Goat - See Animals in the Bible
Mice - See Animals in the Bible
Hawk - See Birds in the Bible
Raven - See Birds in the Bible
Rooster - See Birds in the Bible
Pine Tree - See Plants in the Bible
Plane Tree - See Plants in the Bible
Garlic - See Plants in the Bible
Reeds - See Plants in the Bible
Melons - See Plants in the Bible
Rose - See Plants in the Bible
Pistachio Nuts - See Plants in the Bible
Bishop's Bible - BISHOP’S Bible
Mole - See Animals in the Bible
Monitor Lizard - See Animals in the Bible
Mouse - See Animals in the Bible
Leopard - See Animals in the Bible
Lion - See Animals in the Bible
Mulberry Tree - See Plants in the Bible
Myrtle - See Plants in the Bible
Lentils - See Plants in the Bible
Nuts - See Plants in the Bible
Oak - See Plants in the Bible
Onion - See Plants in the Bible
Testament, New - See Bible and NEW TESTAMENT
ox, Wild ox - See Animals in the Bible
Ostrich - See Birds in the Bible
Hedgehog - See Animals in the Bible; Bittern
Taverner's Bible - TAVERNER’S Bible
Matthew's Bible - MATTHEW’S Bible
Proclamation - See Kerygma ; Preaching in the Bible
Goldsmith - See Occupations, Professions in the Bible
Elm - See Plants in the Bible ; Terebinth
Tes'Tament, New, - [1] NEW TESTAMENT - 3186
Tes'Tament, Old, - [1] OLD TESTAMENT - 3249
Lizard - See Animals in the Bible; Bittern
Magdalene - See Magdala ; Marys of the Bible
Geneva Bible - GENEVA Bible
Great Bible - GREAT Bible
Hedgehog - See Animals in the Bible; Bittern
Lizard - See Animals in the Bible; Bittern
Owl, Screech Owl - See Animals in the Bible; Bittern
Scripture - ) A passage from the Bible;; a text. ) The books of the Old and the new Testament, or of either of them; the Bible; - used by way of eminence or distinction, and chiefly in the plural
Breakfast - See Food and Meals in the Bible
Harvester - See Occupations and Professions in the Bible
Marjoram - See Hyssop ; Plants in the Bible, Hyssop
Lapis Lazuli - See Minerals and Metals in the Bible
Lead - See Minerals and Metals in the Bible
Pentateuch, Samaritan - See Samaritan Pentateuch ; Bible, Text and Versions
Biblicism - ) Learning or literature relating to the Bible
Farmer - See Occupations and Professions in the Bible ; Agriculture
Jar - See Pottery in Bible Times ; Vessels and Utensils
Drawers of Water - See Occupations, Professions in the Bible
Launderer - See Fuller ; Occupations and Professions in the Bible
Dromedary - See Animals in the Bible
Kine - See Animals of the Bible
Lamb - See Animals in the Bible; Sheep ; Lamb of God
Dictionaries - Of the Bible . 1862); Fairhairn, Imperial Bible Dictionary (1864 66; new ed. of Bible (3 vols. only (1899), also Concise Bible Dict . and Smaller Bible Dict . Hunter, Concise Bible Dict . Easton, Bible Dict . Barnes, People’s Bible Encyc . of the Bible (Philad. , based on Herzog’s PRE Bible Societies - The first real Bible Society was the Von Canstein Bible Institute of Saxony, founded in 1710, and still thriving in Halle, Germany. England, Wales, Ireland, the Scandinavian countries, and France had each their own foundations, though many of these were supported by the British and Foreign Bible Society, an organization established in 1804. In 1816 Elias Boudinot, president of the New Jersey Bible Society, succeeded in uniting some 128 local societies into the American Bible Society, which still functions at Astor Place, New York City. The Catholic Church has steadfastly refused to endorse these societies or their activities, because as the Divinely authorized custodian and interpreter of the Sacred Scriptures, she has deemed inadvisable the dissemination of the bare text, which needs emendation and explanation in so many places; and because these societies have repeatedly shown hostility to the Church by their many attempts to impose unauthorized and mutilated Protestant versions of the Bible on Catholic peoples; and also because of their lack of good faith, for they have never offered to spread among Catholics a Catholic version with imprimatur and approved notes
Societies, Bible - The first real Bible Society was the Von Canstein Bible Institute of Saxony, founded in 1710, and still thriving in Halle, Germany. England, Wales, Ireland, the Scandinavian countries, and France had each their own foundations, though many of these were supported by the British and Foreign Bible Society, an organization established in 1804. In 1816 Elias Boudinot, president of the New Jersey Bible Society, succeeded in uniting some 128 local societies into the American Bible Society, which still functions at Astor Place, New York City. The Catholic Church has steadfastly refused to endorse these societies or their activities, because as the Divinely authorized custodian and interpreter of the Sacred Scriptures, she has deemed inadvisable the dissemination of the bare text, which needs emendation and explanation in so many places; and because these societies have repeatedly shown hostility to the Church by their many attempts to impose unauthorized and mutilated Protestant versions of the Bible on Catholic peoples; and also because of their lack of good faith, for they have never offered to spread among Catholics a Catholic version with imprimatur and approved notes
New Testament - See Bible, Canon of NT
Old Testament - See Bible, Canon of OT, Text of OT
Asp - Word occurring ten times in the Douay Version of the Bible, standing for four Hebrew names: ...
Péthén (Deuteronomy 32), the cobra;
Akhshubh, (Psalms 13; Romans 3), a highly poisonous viper, also mentioned once in the Hebrew Bible;
Shahal, (Psalms 90), a snake;
cphoni (Isaiah 59), called "the hisser
Chicken - Both tame and wild chickens were known in Bible times, but they play an insignificant role in the Bible, appearing only in Jesus' comparison of His care for Jerusalem to the care of a mother hen for her nestlings
Jade - See Jewelry, Jewels; Precious Stones; Minerals and Metals of the Bible
Philathea - ) An international, interdenominational organization of Bible classes of young women
Black People And Biblical Perspectives - Black people in America have a deep affinity for the Bible. This affinity has evolved despite the negative ways in which the Bible was used from 1620 to 1865. Then, the Bible was used to reinforce attitudes of subservience and servility. ...
Black people found positive reasons for turning to the Bible. During the protracted revival meetings called the “Great Awakenings” (1740's and 1798–1820) they heard the Bible used to proclaim the good news of salvation. The new life in Christ surpassed anything they had ever known, and it was proclaimed under the authority of the Bible. For those given permission to preach, the Bible became the textbook from which they learned to read. Often the Bible was the textbook. ...
Black people also developed love for the Bible because of the stories of deliverance and hope that it contains. ...
These stories were told over again by God-called men who were denied formal training; but who, having heard others read from the Bible, committed those verses to memory and could retell Bible stories in ways that made them come to life. Even though the congregations had heard these Bible stories, they were anxious to hear them again. ” Bible stories became the substance of spirituals and jubilee songs: “Didn't My Lord Deliver Daniel, Then Why Not Every Man,” “Go Down Moses,” “Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho,” “Little David, Play On Your Harp,” “O Mary, Don't You Weep. ...
The 1960's and 70's birthed another interest of Black people in relation to the Bible. The quest for Black history and Black pride led to in-depth studies of Bible personalities believed to be Black or with African identification. This has resulted in some deeper affinities for the Bible since Black people now know they are positively represented. ...
The only Bible passages some Black people have difficulty with are the Pauline passages which seem to ignore the problem of slavery as an evil. ...
The Bible continues to be loved and reverenced by Black people. Some non-Christians regard it as sacred even though refusing to commit their lives to the Christ of the Bible. Most people, however, regard the Bible as God's Word. ...
In more recent years the Bible is used less for its story content as for a practical guide in dealing with issues from a Black perspective. Many Black people are definite about the place of the Bible in their pilgrimage
Gem - See Jewelry, Jewels, and Precious Stones; Minerals and Metals of the Bible
Oryx - See Animals in the Bible
Biblical - ) Pertaining to, or derived from, the Bible; as, biblical learning; biblical authority
Jashar, Book of - (jassh' uhr) An ancient written collection of poetry quoted by Bible authors
Paralipomenon - ) A title given in the Douay Bible to the Books of Chronicles
Testament - The Vulgate translates incorrectly by testamentum, whence the names "Old" and "New Testament," by which we now designate the two sections into which the Bible is divided. (See Bible
Rush, Rushes - See Plants in the Bible
Targum onkelos - "translation"); classic Aramaic translation and paraphrase of the Bible by the second-century proselyte, Onkelos...
Shekinah - (ssheh ki' nah) Transliteration of Hebrew word not found in the Bible but used in many of the Jewish writings to speak of God's presence. The term means “that which dwells,” and is implied through out the Bible whenever it refers to God's nearness either in a person, object, or His glory
Bible, Luther's - Luther translated the Bible into German (1522-1534) from the original Hebrew and Greek, also making use of the Latin version of Lyra, a Hebrew-Latin text, and an older German translation. " Revised editions of Luther's Bible appeared at Halle, 1883,1892, but they retain many of Luther's errors
Priscilla - When the Bible mentions the husband and wife team of Aquila and Priscilla (or Prisca), it usually mentions Priscilla first (Acts 18:26; Romans 16:3AQUILA. This is unusual, but the Bible gives no reason for such usage
Luther's Bible - Luther translated the Bible into German (1522-1534) from the original Hebrew and Greek, also making use of the Latin version of Lyra, a Hebrew-Latin text, and an older German translation. " Revised editions of Luther's Bible appeared at Halle, 1883,1892, but they retain many of Luther's errors
Bibliolatrist - ) A worshiper of books; especially, a worshiper of the Bible; a believer in its verbal inspiration
Biblicist - ) One skilled in the knowledge of the Bible; a demonstrator of religious truth by the Scriptures
Fawn - ” See Animals in the Bible
Beden - It is probably the wild goat of the Bible
Lign-Aloes - ) A fragrant tree mentioned in the Bible
Bibliology - ) The literature or doctrine of the Bible
Carbuncle - As used in the Bible the word probably denotes the oriental ruby
Complutensian - ) Of or pertaining to Complutum (now Alcala de Henares) a city near Madrid; as, the Complutensian Bible
Polyglot - For the more commodious comparison of different versions of the Scriptures, they have been sometimes joined together, and called Polyglot Bibles. Greek, Hebrew, Syriac, Latin, Italian, Spanish, French, German, Bohemian, English, Danish, Polish; and the whole Bible in Hebrew, Chaldaic, Greek, Latin, German, and a varied version. But the most esteemed collections are those in which the originals and ancient translations are conjoined; such as the Complutensian Bible, by cardinal Ximencs, a Spaniard; the king of Spain's Bible, directed by Montamis, &c. the Paris Bible of Michael Jay, a French gentleman, in ten huge volumes, folio, copies of which were published in Holland under the name of pope Alexander the Seventh; and that of Brian Walton, afterwards bishop of Chester. It contains the Hebrew and Greek originals, with Montanus's interlineary version; the Chaldee paraphrases, the Septuagint, the Samaritan Pentateuch, the Syrian and Arabic Bibles, the Persian Pentateuch and Gospels, the Ethiopian Psalms, Song of Solomon, and New Testament, with their respective Latin translations; together with the Latin Vulgate, and a large volume of various readings, to which is ordinarily joined Castel's Heptaglot Lexicon. ...
See Bible, No
Biblist - ) One who makes the Bible the sole rule of faith
Scripture - See Bible
Canker-Worm - In our English Bible, put where the Hebrew means a species of locust, Joel 1:4 Nahum 3:15,16
Bibles, Picture - Manuscript books in which copious illustrations with short accompanying texts, or commentaries, made up an almost complete Bible. Among the earliest, the "Bible Moralisee" (in allusion to the moral lessons frequently interspersed), or "Bible Historiee," a work of the 13th century, is preserved in sections in the Bodleian Library (Oxford), the British Museum, and the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. The numerous existing copies of such Bibles show how widely they were distributed in the ages before the invention of printing made reading a common accomplishment
Inspiration - The Bible is both human and divine, like the person of Christ, whom it reflects. There are various theories of inspiration, as to its modes and degrees; but all Christians agree that in the Bible, and in the Bible alone, we have a full and perfectly trustworthy revelation of God, and that it is the infallible rule of our faith and practice
Kid - See Animals in the Bible; Sacrifice and Offering
Tanach - The Bible; acronym for Torah (i
Let - Sometimes used in the Bible in the old English sense, that is, to hinder, Isaiah 43:13 ; Romans 1:13
Hermeneutics - Not every passage of the Bible has a typical sense. Before determining rules of interpretation, it must be kept in mind that the Bible has a twofold aspect: it is a literature written by men, and it is God's Word entrusted to the Church to guard and explain. As a literature the Bible requires the application of grammatical and rhetorical rules if the literal sense is to be determined. The class of literature to which each book or passage of the Bible belongs must be ascertained. Because the Bible is God's Word the interpreter must treat it with reverence. ,autographs, have to be free from mistakes, but textual corruptions frequently occur in the transmission of the Bible text, however not in matters of faith or morals, and not of a kind that would affect the substantial integrity or trustworthiness of the Text. The Catholic interpreter must accept the Church's definitions of the sense of Bible passages. Furthermore the unanimous consent of the Fathers in interpreting any text of the Bible that pertains to faith or morals cannot be set aside, since the consent of the Fathers in such matters is proof that their interpretation has descended, as a matter of Catholic Faith from the Apostles
Testament - The word has come to be used in describing the two main divisions of the Bible: The Old Testament and The New Testament. It should be understood then, that the Bible is generally to be looked at as a covenant between God and man
Hagiographia - ...
See article Bible, see
Taberah - (See Numbers 11:3 in the margin of the Bible
Samson - ) An Israelite of Bible record (see Judges xiii
Pomegranate - See Plants in the Bible
Ier-Eagle - ) A bird referred to in the Bible (Lev
Bible - Bible, ancient Divisions and Order of. Bible, History of. ...
Prideaux is of opinion that Ezra made additions in several parts of the Bible, where any thing appeared necessary for illustrating, connecting, or completing the work; in which he appears to have been assisted by the same Spirit in which they were first written. To the same cause our learned author thinks are to be attributed many other interpolations in the Bible, which created difficulties and objections to the authenticity of the sacred text, no ways to be solved without allowing them. Malaachi, for instance, could not be put in the Bible by him, since that prophet is allowed to have lived after Ezra; nor could Nehemiah be there, since that book mentions (chap. ...
It is probable the two books of Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Ester, and Malachi, were adopted into the Bible in the time of Simon the Just, the last of the men of the great synagogue. The Jews, at first, were very reserved in communicating their Scriptures to strangers; despising and shunning the Gentiles, they would not disclose to them any of the treasures concealed in the Bible. ...
The first version of the Bible was that of the Septuagint into Greek, by order of that patron of literature, Ptolemy Philadelphus; though some maintain that the whole was not then translated, but only the Pentateuch; between which and the other books in the Septuagint version, the critics find a great diversity in point of style and expression, as well as of accuracy. Bible, modern Divisions of. 1240: he wrote a comment on the Scriptures, and projected the first concordance, which is that of the vulgar Latin Bible. The aim of this work being for the more easy finding out any word or passage in the Scriptures, he found it necessary to divide the book into sections, and the sections into subdivisions; for till that time the vulgar Latin Bibles were without any division at all. ...
These sections are the chapters into which the Bible hath ever since been divided; but the subdivision of the chapters was not then into verses, as it is now. The subdivision of the chapters into verses, as they now stand in our Bibles, had its original from a famous Jewish Rabbi, named Mordecai Nathan, about 1445. This rabbi, in imitation of Hugo Cardinalis, drew up a concordance to the Hebrew Bible, for the use of the Jews. Bible, rejected Books of. Bible, Translations of. ) Both Old and New Testaments were afterwards translated into Latin by the primitive Christians; and while the Roman empire subsisted in Europe, the reading of the Scriptures in the Latin tongue, which was the universal language of that empire, prevailed every where; but since the face of affairs in Europe has been changed and so many different monarchies erected upon the ruins of the Roman empire, the Latin tongue has be degrees grown into disuse; whence has arisen a necessity of translating the Bible into the respective languages of each people; and this has produced as many different versions of the Scriptures in the modern languages as there are different nations professing the Christian religion. Bible, Armenian. There is a very ancient Armenian version of the whole Bible, done from the Greek of the LXX. Bible, Bohemian. The Bohemians have a Bible translated by eight of their doctors, whom they had sent to the schools of Wirtemberg, and Basil on purpose to study the original languages: it was printed in Moravia in 1539. Bible, Croatian. Bible Gaelic. A few years ago, a version of the Bible in the Gaelic or Ersc language was published at Edinburgh, where the Gospel is preached regularly in that language in two chapels, for the benefit of the natives of the Highlands. Bible, Georgian. The inhabitants of Georgia, in Asia, have long had a translation of the Bible in their ancient language; but that language having now become almost obsolete, and the Georgians in general being very ignorant, few of them can either read or understand it. Bible, Gothic. It is generally said that Ulphilas, a Gothic bishop, who lived in the fourth century, made a version of the whole Bible, except the book of Kings, for the use of his countrymen; that book he omitted, because of the frequent mention of the wars therein, as fearing to inspire too much of the military genius into that people. Bible, Grison. A translation of the Bible into the language of the Grisons, in Italy, was completed by Coir, and published in 1720. Bible Icelandic. The inhabitants of Iceland have a version of the Bible in their language, which was translated by Thoriak, and published in 1584. Bible, Indian. A Translation of the Bible into the North America Indian language, by Elliot, was published in quarto, at Cambridge, in 1685. Bible, Irish. When it was finished, the bishop would have been himself at the charge of the impression; but his design was stopped, upon advice given to the lord lieutenant and archbishop of Canterbury, that it would seem a shameful thing for a nation to publish a Bible translated by such a despicable hand as King: however, the manuscript was not lose, for it went to press in 1685, and was afterwards published. Bible, King James. Bible, Malabrian. Bible, Malayan. Bible, Rhemish. Bible, Samaritan. At the head of the oriental versions of the Bible must be placed the Samaritan, as being the most ancient of all (though neither its age nor author have been yet ascertained, ) and admitting no more for the Holy Scripture but the five books of Moses. Bible, Swedish. In 1534, Olaus and Laurence published a Swedish Bible from the German version of Martin Luther: it was revised in 1617 by order of king Gustavus Adolphus, and was afterwards almost universally received. Bible, Anglo-Saxon. If we enquire into the versions of the Bible of our own country, we shall find that Adelm, bishop of Sherburn, who lived in 709, made an English Saxon version of the Psalms; and that Edfrid, or Ecbert, bishop of Lindisferne, who lived about 730, translated several of the books of Scripture into the same language. It is said, likewise, the venerable Bede, who died in 785, translated the whole Bible into Saxon. But Cuthbert, Bede's disciple, in the enumeration of his master's works, speaks only of his translation of the Gospel, and says nothing of the rest of the Bible. We find an old version in the Anglo Saxon of several books of the Bible, made by Elfric, abbot of Maimesbury: it was published at Oxford in 1699. We have certain books or parts of the Bible by several other translators; as, first, the Psalms, by Adeim, bishop of Sherburn, cotemporary with Bede, though by others this version is attributed to king Alfred, who lived two hundred years later. An old Saxon version of several books of the Bible made by Elfric, abbot of Malmesbury, several fragments of which were published by Will. Bibles, Arabic. The Arabic Bibles among us are not the same with those used with the Christians in the East. Proposals were issued for printing a new edition of the Arabic Bible, by Mr. Bibles, Chaldee, are only the losses or expositions made by the Jews at the time when they spoke the Chaldee tongue: these they call by the name of targumim, or paraphrases, as not being any strict version of the Scripture. They have been inserted entire in the large Hebrew Bibles of Venice and Basil; but are read more commodiously in the Polyglots, being there attended with a Latin translation. Bibles, Coptic. There are several manuscript copies of the Coptic Bible in some of the great libraries, especially in that of the late French king. Bibles, Danish. The first Danish Bible was published by Peter Palladus, Olaus Chrysostom, John Synningius, and John Maccabxus, in 1550, in which they followed Luther's first German version. Bibles, Dutch. Bibles, East Indian. Bibles, English. The first English Bible we read of was that translated by J. de Trevisa, who died about 1398, is also said to have translated the whole Bible; but whether any copies of it are remaining does not appear. The first printed Bible in our language was that translated by W. In 1532, Tindal and his associates finished the whole Bible, except the Apocrypha, and printed it abroad: but, while he was afterwards preparing a second edition, he was taken up and burnt for heresy in Flanders. On Tindal's death, his work was carried on by Coverdale, and John Rogers, superintendant of an English church in Germany, and the first Martyr, in the reign of queen Mary, who translated the Apocrypha, and revised Tindal's translation, comparing it with the Hebrew, Greek, Latin, and German, and adding prefaces and notes from Luther's Bible. He dedicated the whole to Henry VIII, in 1537, under the borrowed name of Thomas Matthews; whence this has been usually called Matthew's Bible. The first Bible printed by authority in England, and publicly set up in churches, was the same Tindal's version, revised and compared with the Hebrew, and in many places amended by Miles Coverdale, afterwards bishop of Exeter; and examined after him by archbishop Cranmer, who added a preface to it; whence this was called Cranmer's Bible. Coverdale, Goodman, Gilbie, Sampson, Cole, Wittingham, and Knox, made a new translation, printed there in 1560, the New Testament having been printed in 1557; hence called the Geneva Bible, containing the variations of readings, marginal annotations, &c. Parker resolved on a new translation for the public use of the church; and engaged the bishops, and other learned men, to take each a share or portion: these, being afterwards joined together and printed, with short annotations, in 1568, in large folio, made what was afterwards called the Great English Bible, and commonly the Bishops' Bible. In 1589, it was also published in octavo, in a small but fine black letter; and here the chapters were divided into verses, but without any breaks for them, in which the method of the Geneva Bible was followed, which was the first English Bible where any distinction of verses was made. It was afterwards printed in large folio, with corrections, and several prolegomena in 1572: this is called Matthew Parker's Bible. This translation was used in the churches for forty years, though the Geneva Bible was more read in private houses, being printed above twenty times in as many years. The Bishops' Bible, too, had its faults. The king frankly owned that he had seen no good translation of the Bible in English; but he thought that of Geneva the worst of all. After the translation of the Bible by the bishops, two of the New Testament; the first by Laurence Thompson, from Beza's Latin edition, with the notes of Beza, published in 1582, in quarto, and afterwards in 1589, varying very little from the Geneva Bible; the second by the Papists at Rheims, in 1584, called the Rhemish Bible, or Rhemish translation. About thirty years after their New Testament, the Roman Catholics published a translation of the Old at Douay, 1609, and 1610, from the Vulgate, with annotations, so that the English Roman Catholics have now the whole Bible in their mother tongue; though, it is to be observed, they are forbidden to read it without a license from their superiors. the last English Bible was that which proceeded from the Hampton Court conference, in 1603; where, many exceptions being made to the Bishops' Bible, king James gave order for a new one; not, as the preface expresses it, for a translation altogether new, nor yet to make a good one better; or, of many good ones, one best. It was published in 1613, with a dedication to James, and a learned preface; and is commonly called king James' Bible. The judicious Selden, in his Tabletalk, speaking of the Bible, says, "The best translation in the world, and renders the sense of the original best; taking in for the English translation the Bishops' Bible, as well as king James's. That part of the Bible was given to him who was most excellent in such a tongue (as the Apocrypha to Andrew Downs:) and then they met together, and one read the translation, the rest holding in their hands some Bible, either of the learned tongues, or French, or Spanish, or Italian, &c. " (King James's Bible is that now read by authority in all the churches in Britain. There have been various English Bibles with marginal references by Canne, Hayes, Barker, Scattergood, Field, Tennison, Lloyd, Blayney, Wilson, &c. Bibles, Ethiopic. The Ethiopians have also translated the Bible into their language. Bibles, Flemish. The Flemish Bibles of the Romanists are very numerous, and for the most part have no author's name prefixed to them, till that of Nicholas Vinck, printed at Louvain in 1548
Dead Sea - This name nowhere occurs in the Bible, and appears not to have existed until the second century after Christ. [1]
Bubale - ) A large antelope (Alcelaphus bubalis) of Egypt and the Desert of Sahara, supposed by some to be the fallow deer of the Bible
Adam - ) The name given in the Bible to the first man, the progenitor of the human race
Herod - Name of many rulers mentioned in the Bible
Tetrapla - ) A Bible consisting of four different Greek versions arranged in four columns by Origen; hence, any version in four languages or four columns
Gammadim - Is used in the English Bible, Ezekiel 27:11 , as the name of a people; but it rather means simply the brave, the warlike
Lodge, to - This word, with one exception only, has, at least in the narrative portions of the Bible, almost invariably the force of "passing the night
Africa - By far the most frequent mention of Africa in the Bible has to do with Egypt (see EGYPT; GOSHEN; NILE). Other African nations mentioned in the Bible are Libya (2 Chronicles 12:3; 2 Chronicles 16:8; Daniel 11:43), Put (Jeremiah 46:9; Ezekiel 30:5; Ezekiel 38:5; Nahum 3:9), and Lud (Jeremiah 46:9; Ezekiel 30:5)
Lizard - ) Smith's Bible Dictionary makes it the fan-foot lizard, gecko
Theology - True theology is found in the Bible which is the self-revelation of God
Holy Writ - (Anglo-Saxon: hang, holy; Old English: writan, to write) ...
One of the titles of the Bible; the more English equivalent of the expression Sacred Scripture
Antwerp Bible - A great polyglot Bible in six volumes, the "Biblia Regia," published at Antwerp, 1569-1573, by the Plantin press at the expense of Christopher Plantin
Writ, Holy - (Anglo-Saxon: hang, holy; Old English: writan, to write) ...
One of the titles of the Bible; the more English equivalent of the expression Sacred Scripture
se'Rug - His age is given in the Hebrew Bible as 230 years
Aggadah - "lore or narrative"); the portions of the Talmud and Midrash which contain homiletic expositions of the Bible, parables, stories, maxims, etc
Gez'Rites the - The word which the Jewish critics have substituted in the margin of the Bible for the ancient reading, "the Gerizite. " (1 Samuel 27:8 ) [1]
Lord of Hosts - in Isaias 9:9, as in many other passages of the Bible, designates God as supreme over untold armies of spiritual and other agencies, which He can employ to give effect to His purposes. The angels, the stars, as well as armies of men are represented in the Bible as subject to Him
Menochio, Giovanni Stefano - Jesuit exegete and Bible scholar. His exegetical work is deservedly famous; he studied the text in the original and sought to find the literal meaning in the Bible and the Fathers; in this he was aided by his vast knowledge of Jewish antiquities
Hosts, Lord of - in Isaias 9:9, as in many other passages of the Bible, designates God as supreme over untold armies of spiritual and other agencies, which He can employ to give effect to His purposes. The angels, the stars, as well as armies of men are represented in the Bible as subject to Him
Giovanni Menochio - Jesuit exegete and Bible scholar. His exegetical work is deservedly famous; he studied the text in the original and sought to find the literal meaning in the Bible and the Fathers; in this he was aided by his vast knowledge of Jewish antiquities
Bible, Translations - The complete Bible has been translated into 293 languages and dialects, the New Testament into 618 additional ones, and individual books into 918 more languages. , the Bible had been made available in Latin, Syriac, Coptic, Ethiopic, Armenian, and Georgian. Jerome's translation came to be the accepted Bible, and by 1200 A. ...
Reformation Translations The invention of printing in 1443 and the onset of the Protestant Reformation in 1517 stimulated great interest in Bible translation. 1382) who are given credit for having first given the English the complete Bible in their own language. Making use of Tyndale's material where available, Miles Coverdale brought out his complete Bible in 1535. ...
From this point the history of the English Reformation and the history of the English Bible go hand in glove with each other. Coverdale's Bible was followed by Matthew's Bible in 1537. Then in 1539, Coverdale with the king's approval brought out the Great Bible, named for its large size. ...
With the coming of Mary Tudor to the throne in 1553, the printing of Bibles was temporarily interrupted; but the exiles in Geneva, led by William Whittingham, produced the Geneva Bible in 1560. Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury, then had the Bishops' Bible prepared, primarily by bishops of the Church of England, which went through twenty editions. It is number nine in the sequence of printed English Bibles and is a revision of the Bishops' Bible. The KJV was heavily criticized in its early days; but in time, with official pressure, it won the field and became “the Bible” for English-reading people—a position it has held for almost four hundred years. A motion made by Bishop Wilberforce in the Convocation of Canterbury carried, setting in operation the making of the Revised Version whose New Testament appeared in 1881 and its complete Bible in 1885. ...
English Bible Translations in the Twentieth Century At the turn of the century Adolf Deissmann, using study of the papyri from Egypt, persuaded scholars that the New Testament was in the common language (the Koine) of the first century, giving impetus to an effort to present the Bible in the language of the twentieth century. ...
The Revised Standard Version, with its New Testament ready in 1946 and the complete Bible in 1952 bore the brunt of criticism of modern translations because it was the first serious challenge after 1901 to the long dominance of the KJV. Eventually an edition was issued with modifications to make it acceptable for use by Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholics which is called the “Common Bible. ...
The British have prepared the New English Bible (1970) which represents certain trends in British biblical scholarship. ...
Roman Catholics issued the Jerusalem Bible, which with its notes is used both in and out of Catholic circles. Of more widespread influence is the New American Bible (1970) which was used in preparing the English version of the liturgy of the Roman church. ...
The paraphrase found a champion in Kenneth Taylor with his Living Bible Paraphrased (1971), which has more recently been issued under the name The Book. ...
Those who prefer literal translation found their representatives in the New American Standard Bible (NAS) prepared by the Lockman Foundation (1963). ...
An effort to preserve as much of the old as possible is the New King James Bible (1982). ...
An effort to meet the needs of those who have English as a second language or those who have a limited knowledge of English is Today's English Version (TEV), also known as the Good News Bible (1976). ...
The New International Version was issued in 1978 by the International Bible Society from a cooperative project in which more than 110 scholars representing thirty-four religious groups participated. Abandoning any effort to revise the KJV line of Bibles, the NIV is a new translation aiming at accuracy, clarity, and dignity. ...
The translation effort in all its forms is a sincere effort on the part of many people of many different religious persuasions to make the Bible accessible and understandable to people to whom it might otherwise be a closed book. A diligent study of any of the efforts will increase one's understanding of the Bible. New discoveries and new students of God's Word will bring still more translations of the Bible to serve the church and its mission in generations to come
Teil Tree - See Plants in the Bible ; Terebinth
Measure - Concerning the measures and weights of the Jews, they are all placed together at the end of the Bible in general, to which the reader may refer
Bible: Power of Its Authority - From their earliest years my children have always seen the Bible upon my table. Did they propose a question, did they commit a fault, did they perform a good action, I opened the Bible, and the Bible answered, reproved, or encouraged them
Spiritual Gifts - Some say that the gifts have ceased because we now have the Bible. They argue that the gifts were used for the building of the body of Christ during the beginning of the Christian church when the Bible was not complete. Since the Bible is complete there is no further need for the revelatory gifts like speaking in tongues and the interpretation of tongues
Bible, Editions of the - Since the Bible was written (the Old Testament in Hebrew, the New Testament in Greek) many centuries before the invention of printing, the only way to multiply copies was by hand. The autograph originals and the earliest copies have all been lost, the oldest extant manuscripts of the whole Bible having been written in the 4th century. Therefore, by the middle of the 15th century, when printing was invented, there existed a vast number of manuscript copies of the original Bible text, differing from one another in thousands of passages. Any printed reproduction of the Bible i
Editions of the Bible - Since the Bible was written (the Old Testament in Hebrew, the New Testament in Greek) many centuries before the invention of printing, the only way to multiply copies was by hand. The autograph originals and the earliest copies have all been lost, the oldest extant manuscripts of the whole Bible having been written in the 4th century. Therefore, by the middle of the 15th century, when printing was invented, there existed a vast number of manuscript copies of the original Bible text, differing from one another in thousands of passages. Any printed reproduction of the Bible i
Torah - teaching) (a) The Five Books of Moses (The Bible); (b) the overall body of Jewish religious teachings encompassing the whole body of Jewish law, practice and tradition ...
Introduction, Biblical - It treats of the Divine and human origin and the collection and preservation of the books of the Bible. General introduction discusses questions concerning the Bible in its entirety. Special introduction discusses the Divine and human authorship, the date and place of composition, the purpose, analysis, and division of contents, the integrity and veracity of each book of the Bible. The method of treatment is literary but at the same time critical and historical, because the Bible is literature and contains and teaches history. Since the Bible is a Divinely inspired book committed to the custodianship of the Church whose duty is to safeguard Holy Writ and its exposition against erroneous, capricious, and wilful treatment, biblical introduction must not be considered merely as a chapter of universal literature, but as a theological science which calls literary and historical criticism to its aid, and thus offers scientific proof that all the books of the Bible are what the Church teaches them to be, canonical and inspired, and preserved to us substantially unaltered and free from falsification. Since the close of the 18th century rationalistic Bible study has given incentive and impetus to the publication of Catholic works of biblical introduction
Biblical Introduction - It treats of the Divine and human origin and the collection and preservation of the books of the Bible. General introduction discusses questions concerning the Bible in its entirety. Special introduction discusses the Divine and human authorship, the date and place of composition, the purpose, analysis, and division of contents, the integrity and veracity of each book of the Bible. The method of treatment is literary but at the same time critical and historical, because the Bible is literature and contains and teaches history. Since the Bible is a Divinely inspired book committed to the custodianship of the Church whose duty is to safeguard Holy Writ and its exposition against erroneous, capricious, and wilful treatment, biblical introduction must not be considered merely as a chapter of universal literature, but as a theological science which calls literary and historical criticism to its aid, and thus offers scientific proof that all the books of the Bible are what the Church teaches them to be, canonical and inspired, and preserved to us substantially unaltered and free from falsification. Since the close of the 18th century rationalistic Bible study has given incentive and impetus to the publication of Catholic works of biblical introduction
Bibliomancy - (Greek: biblion, book; manteia, divination) ...
A form of divination, practised by taking at random a passage from the Bible or other book and deriving therefrom portents of the future
Sha'Ronite - (belonging to Sharon ), The Shitrai, who had charge of the royal herds in the plain of Sharon, ( 1 Chronicles 27:29 ) is the only Sharonite mentioned in the Bible
Mile - It is only once noticed in the Bible
Bible, Hermeneutics - The science of interpreting the Bible (or any piece of literature) is called hermeneutics. Interpreting the Bible is not a simple process of reading what has been written. See Bible, History of Interpretation . While there have always been some people who interpreted the Bible in ways similar to what we do today, the science of biblical interpretation began to develop in the days of the Renaissance and Reformation and was given new importance by the work of Luther and Calvin. If we want to interpret a piece of literature, we must ask at least five questions: 1) Who was the writer and to whom was he writing? 2) What was the cultural-historical setting of the writer? 3) What was the meaning of the words in the writer's day? 4) What was the intended meaning of the author and why was he saying it? 5) What should this mean to me in my situation today? These basic questions lead into other questions that must be explored in a serious attempt to understand the message of the Bible. 1) The Bible is a divinely inspired book (2 Timothy 3:16 ) and should be reverently approached. 2) The Bible has a genuinely human element, also, since God used ordinary people to write the Scriptures. If you cannot do a good job of translating Greek and Hebrew into English (or whatever your language is), then you must rely upon good translations of the Bible. ...
Lexical study is the next phase of your literary study of the Bible. It is extremely important to recognize the various literary forms that are used by the different writers of the Bible. Major portions of the Bible are written in ordinary prose, plain descriptive narrative. Portions of the Bible are written in apocalyptic language, a well-known literary style often used in the ancient world, but hardly known to us today. The Book of Revelation and certain portions of Daniel and Ezekiel are examples of apocalyptic literature in the Bible. However, the context of a passage may be the whole chapter in which a verse occurs; it could even be the entirety of a book, in the case of the shorter books of the Bible. The Bible is made to say many things the original writers did not intend by interpreting particular statements without regard to their contexts. But it does mean that we should be careful not to interpret Scriptures in such a way that we introduce contradictions into our interpretation of the Bible. There is an overall unity to the Bible; it teaches one theme, one message. There is diversity due to the vast amount of time spanned in the writing of the Bible. God gradually revealed more and more of Himself and of His will for humans as the message of the Bible proceeded from Genesis to Revelation. The careful interpreter will always want to compare an interpretation of a passage with what the Bible teaches elsewhere to see if the interpretation “fits” with what the Bible says in other places. On the one hand, the Bible is a piece of literature that is to be interpreted just like any other piece of literature. On the other hand, the Bible is unique in that it is inspired by God through the Holy Spirit; one who reads the Bible should therefore seek the guidance of God in understanding what is written there. Seek to apply the teaching of the Bible to your present situation. It is important to know what the Bible said to its original readers, the people to whom it was originally addressed. If the Bible is a living revelation of God to us, as we say it is, then we must do more than decipher its ancient history
Hashmonah - Some Bible students identify it with Azmon (Numbers 34:4 )
Pericope - ), a selection from the Bible, appointed to be read in the churches or used as a text for a sermon
Beulah - We meet with this word but once in the Bible
Hagiographa - Greek term meaning “holy writings” used as a designation for the third and final major division of the Hebrew Bible. These books were the last portion of the Hebrew Bible to be recognized as canonical
Philo Judaeus - A member of a wealthy Jewish family in Alexandria, Egypt, He was well educated in Greek schools and used the Greek Old Testament, the Septuagint, as his Bible. See Bible, Hermeneutics
Scriptures in the Prayer Book - It has been pointed out, on theauthority of a careful and detailed calculation that of the wholePrayer-book, three-fifths of it are taken from the Bible and thattwo-fifths of all the Church's worship are carried on in the actualwords of Holy Scripture. Again, that one-half of this Divine Serviceis Praise; one-fourth, Prayer; and one-fourth, Reading of theBible. From these facts, the Episcopal Church has been rightly calleda "Bible Reading Church
Hare - See Animals in the Bible
Cimmerians - see) in the Bible, the Gimirrç of the cuneiform inscriptions
Spider - An animal in Palestine known in the Bible for spinning a web (Job 8:14 ; Isaiah 59:5 )
Bosora - of Bashan, which is not mentioned in the Bible
Heptateuch - (Greek: hepta, seven; teuchos, case, book) ...
The first seven books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Josue, and Judges
Bible, Concordances of the - It is often useful or even necessary for scholars, preachers, and others to locate a given text in the Scripture, that is, to know in which book of the Bible it occurs, and in what chapter and verse it will be found. These purposes are served by a concordance, which is an alphabetic list of the words in the Bible, an indication (by book, chapter, and verse) as to where each word occurs, and a short passage including the given word. There is a complete concordance to the American Revised Version (called the American Standard Bible) by Hazard. For the Catholic Bible (Douay Version), we have a "Concordance of the Proper Names in the Holy Scriptures," by Williams, Saint Louis, 1923, and a "Verbal Concordance to the New Testament" by Thompson, London, 1928
Baraca - ) An international, interdenominational organization of Bible classes of young men; - so named in allusion to the Hebrew word Berachah (Meaning blessing) occurring in 2 Chron
Beri - Many Bible students think a copyist has changed original text which may have read, bene (sons of)
Laver - Hexateuch - (Greek: hex, six; teuchos, case, book) ...
The first six books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, and Josue, so caIled to mark the fact that they form a literary whole
Abel-Mizraim - The margin of the Bible renders it, "the mourning of the Egyptians
Pir'Athonite, - Two such are named in the Bible:--
Abdon ben-Hillel
Lime, - It is noticed only three times in the Bible, viz
Old Testament - The first part of the Christian Bible, taken over from Israel. For Jews it is the complete Bible, sometimes called Tanak for its three parts (Torah or Law, Nebiim or Prophets, Kethubim or Writings). See Bible, Formation and Canon
Interesting Facts About the Bible - ...
IN WHOLE Bible. ...
The word Jehovah occurs 6853 times in the Bible; the word and 35,543 times in the Old Testament, and 6853 times in the New Testament The shortest chapter in the Bible is Psalms 117:1-2
Altar, Epistle Side of - The right side of the altar as one faces it, so called because, very frequently, parts of the Bible taken from the epistles of the Apostles are read there during Mass as lessons
Epistle Side of Altar - The right side of the altar as one faces it, so called because, very frequently, parts of the Bible taken from the epistles of the Apostles are read there during Mass as lessons
Scripture - See Bible
Pagiel - (See 1 Samuel 1:20 margin of the Bible
Staff - In Hebrews 11:21, ‘Jacob … worshipped [1] upon the top of his staff. ’ The question is, Which is the more likely to be right? The date of the Septuagint is uncertain (see Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible (5 vols) , article ‘Septuagint’), and the rise of the Massoretic system of vocalization is even more obscure (see Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible (5 vols) iv. It suggests ideas which are associated with an early Victorian ‘four-poster,’ and are quite out of place in relation to a bed in the East (see Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible (5 vols) , article ‘Bed’). It is impossible to decide whether ‘staff’ or ‘bed’ is right, but the fact that the Septuagint is the oldest commentary on the Hebrew Bible makes its reading the more probable. on Hebrews, 1883; Encyclopaedia Biblica , article ‘Staff’; Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible (5 vols) , articles ‘Bed,’ ‘Rod,’ ‘Sceptre’; Smith’s Dict. of the Bible , article ‘Staff’; C Geikie, Hours with tits Bible, new ed. [2] 28n
Chaldee Paraphrase - ...
See Bible, sect
Zeru'Iah - " Of Zeruiah's husband there is no mention in the Bible
Hades - The Greek word for the place of departed spirits, translatedin the English Bible and, also, in the Creed by the word "Hell,"not, however, the place of torment
Prayer: Believing - Is it not a sad thing that we should think it wonderful for God to hear prayer? Much better faith was that of a little boy in one of the schools in Edinburgh, who had attended a prayer-meeting, and at last said to his teacher who conducted it, 'Teacher, I wish my sister could be got to read the Bible; she never reads it. ' ...
'Why, Johnny, should your sister read the Bible?' ...
'Because if she should once read it, I am sure it would do her good, and she would be converted and be saved. ' ...
'Do you think so, Johnny?' ...
'Yes, I do, sir, and I wish the next time there's a prayer-meeting, you would ask the people to pray for my sister that she may begin to read the Bible. ' ...
So the teacher gave out that a little boy was very anxious that prayer should be offered that his sister might begin to read the Bible. ' ...
'Oh, sir,' said the boy, 'I did not mean to be rude; but I thought I should just like to go home and see my sister reading her Bible for the first time
Johann Gutenberg - Shortly after 1444 he printed two short works, still extant, with a type used later in the "26-line Bible. " With the financial aid of Johann Fust he made a new type for the famous Mazarin "42-line" Bible, 1455, but became insolvent when Fust required repayment
Bible: Judged by Its Fruits - A Roman Catholic priest in Belgium rebuked a young woman and her brother for reading that 'bad book' pointing to the Bible. Since he began to read the Bible, he works with industry, goes no longer to the tavern, no longer touches cards, brings home money to his poor old mother, and our life at home is quiet and delightful
Gutenberg, Johann - Shortly after 1444 he printed two short works, still extant, with a type used later in the "26-line Bible. " With the financial aid of Johann Fust he made a new type for the famous Mazarin "42-line" Bible, 1455, but became insolvent when Fust required repayment
Anger, Burning - ” This verb appears in the Bible 92 times. ” The 41 occurrences of this word cover every period of the Bible. 32:12: “Turn from thy fierce wrath [1], and repent of this evil against thy people
Henne Gansfleisch Zur Laden - Shortly after 1444 he printed two short works, still extant, with a type used later in the "26-line Bible. " With the financial aid of Johann Fust he made a new type for the famous Mazarin "42-line" Bible, 1455, but became insolvent when Fust required repayment
Conversion - Although the word ‘conversion’ may be rare in the Bible, the idea is common enough. Their changed lives are the outward demonstration of that inward turning which the Bible more commonly calls repentance (Acts 3:19; Acts 26:20; see REPENTANCE)
Thebaic - ) Of or pertaining to Thebes in Egypt; specifically, designating a version of the Bible preserved by the Copts, and esteemed of great value by biblical scholars
Aij'Eleth Sha'Har - (the hind of the morning dawn ), found once only in the Bible, in the title of ( Psalm 22:1 ) It probably describes to the musician the melody to which the psalm was to be played
Prevent - In the Bible means, not to hinder, but to proceed, Psalm 59:10 1 Thessalonians 4:15 ; to anticipate, Psalm 119:147,148 Matthew 17:25 ; or to seize, 2 Samuel 22:6 Job 30:27
Interpretation - The Bible is no ordinary book. God has given the Holy Spirit not to make Bible study unnecessary, but to make it meaningful. ...
Background and purpose...
Because the world of the Bible was different from the world today, readers should learn whatever they can about the geographical and social features of the Bible lands. In particular they must understand the historical setting of the books of the Bible. ...
Kind of literature...
Among the many forms within the Bible are prose narratives, poems, wisdom sayings, laws, visions, letters, genealogies and debates. ...
Unless people are reading the Bible in the original languages (Hebrew in the Old Testament, Greek in the New), whatever they are reading is a translation (see MANUSCRIPTS; SCRIPTURES). Like other languages, the languages of the Bible contain idioms, word pictures and symbolism, and readers will misunderstand the writer if they interpret literally what he meant as a symbol or figure of speech. ...
Progressive revelation...
The writing of the books of the Bible was spread over more than a thousand years, and throughout that time God was progressively revealing his purposes. There is therefore a basic unity to the Bible; it is one book. Although readers may understand each of the individual Bible books in its own context, they must also understand each book in the context of the Bible as a whole (see Bible). ...
It is therefore important to understand where each book of the Bible belongs in the developing purposes of God. ...
Accepting the Bible’s authority...
Even when readers allow for variations because of the progressive nature of biblical revelation, they will still meet cases where different statements or ideas appear hard to reconcile (cf. In reading the Bible Christians need patience. In some cases answers to problems may come later, as their understanding of the Bible increases; in others they may not come at all. ...
Christians must also respect the authority of the Bible. They must allow the Bible to say what it wants to say, regardless of what they would like it to say. They come to the Bible as those who learn, not as those who want to make it do things for them
Ab - The name does not appear in the Bible
Ithamar - We have nothing particularly interesting in the Bible concerning this man
Meron'Othithe, the, - The Meronothites are named in the Bible--
Jehdeiah, (1 Chronicles 27:30 ) ...
Jadon, (Nehemiah 3:7 )
Crucible - The crucible is used in the Bible as a figure for testing of people (Proverbs 17:3 ; Proverbs 27:21 )
Masora - See Bible, Text and Versions ...
...
Sea of Jazer - Body of water connected with town of Jazer (Jeremiah 48:32 ) but unknown to modern Bible students
Shem - (Genesis 6:10) The genealogy of Shem on account of the promised seed, is more particularly recorded than the other sons of Noah in the Bible
Bible - The term "bible" is best known in reference to the Christian Scriptures consisting of the both the Old and New Testaments
a Kempis, Thomas - A Canon Regular, his principal occupation was copying works of piety, particularly the Bible
Inspiration of Scripture - The actions of God leading to the writing, preservation, and collection of His words to His people into the Bible. The Bible summarizes this by saying, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God” (2 Timothy 3:16 ). Concerning this, the Bible says, “For no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God” (2 Peter 1:21 NAS). The Bible is divine in its inception. Also the Bible is human in its mediation. Although the Bible is a collection of books written by at least 40 writers over a period of about 1400 years, it has a unity of subject, structure, and spirit. ...
Likewise, many external evidences point to divine inspiration of the Bible. The fact that the Bible is the most widely translated and circulated Book in the world is a testimony of God's providence. Although the Bible has been in existence for almost nineteen centuries, it is still relevant today. This is evident both in the content of each book and also in the preservation of all the books in the canon of the Bible. This is partly due to the fact that the Bible has no theory of inspiration. It simply affirms that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. For the Bible, like Jesus, must be accepted by faith as the inspired Word of God. It makes the Bible a human, or natural book, rather than a supernatural Book. ...
By contrast, the mechanical dictation theory claims that God literally dictated the words of the Bible to the biblical writers. Also, it implies that all of the Bible should have the same literary style. ...
According to the partial inspiration theory, inspiration is limited to certain parts of the Bible. ...
The infallible theory states that the Bible as a whole is without any errors because it is in its entirety the Word of God. Usually those who hold to this view are careful to distinguish between the original manuscripts and the present form of the Bible. Phrasing a theory is really secondary to the more important fact that the Bible is the authoritative Word of God and to the calling of obeying that Word. The Bible, itself, takes this position because it has no theory of inspiration. See Bible; Revelation, Doctrine of
Lxx - See Septuagint ; Bible, Texts and Versions
Inerrancy - In Christianity, inerrancy states that the Bible, in its original documents, is without error regarding facts, names, dates, and any other revealed information
Jaaziniah - We meet with this name several times in the Bible, (2 Kings 25:23; Jeremiah 35:3; Ezekiel 8:11 and Ezekiel 11:1) The name itself is a compound of Jazen and Jah, the Lord will hear
Apple Tree - They think the common apple tree was only recently introduced to Palestine, and that the wild variety hardly matches the description given to the tree and its fruit in the Bible. The citron, quince, and apricot have been proposed as the tree spoken of in the Bible. Hebrew tappuach “apple” does appear as a place name in the Bible and may indicate apple trees were known as unusual occurrences in some Palestinian sites
Authorized Version - At the beginning of the 17th century the principal English translation of the Scriptures was the one known as the Bishops' Bible. Forty-seven scholars were appointed to the work, and in less than three years they completed their labor, which has since been known as the Authorized Version, or the King James Bible. By its superior literary qualities and the royal favor, it soon became the official Bible of the Church of England and the one most commonly used by Protestants throughout the English-speaking world
Earthquake - Earthquakes were well known events in the world of the Bible story (Exodus 19:18; 1 Samuel 14:15; 1 Kings 19:11; Amos 1:1; Zechariah 14:5; Matthew 27:54; Matthew 28:2; Acts 16:26). The Bible writers often refer to earthquakes as evidence of God’s mighty power (Judges 5:4; Psalms 18:7; Isaiah 29:6; Joel 2:10; Joel 3:16; Nahum 1:5; Habakkuk 3:6; Matthew 24:7; Revelation 6:12; Revelation 8:5; Revelation 11:13; Revelation 16:18). ...
God may have used earthquakes, along with other forces of nature, to bring about his judgments, even in cases where the Bible does not specifically mention an earthquake
Bible of the Poor - Bible of the Poor Books popular especially in the 15th century, consisting of about 40 pages of pictures illustrating the New Testament, with appropriate prophetic scenes from the Old on either side of each page and explanatory texts in the corners. With the introduction of the xylographic or block-book process they were published much more cheaply than the earlier picture Bibles, and were thus more accessible to the poor. When the printing of the whole Bible with illustrations became practicable they were gradually given up
Biblia Pauperum - Bible of the Poor Books popular especially in the 15th century, consisting of about 40 pages of pictures illustrating the New Testament, with appropriate prophetic scenes from the Old on either side of each page and explanatory texts in the corners. With the introduction of the xylographic or block-book process they were published much more cheaply than the earlier picture Bibles, and were thus more accessible to the poor. When the printing of the whole Bible with illustrations became practicable they were gradually given up
Worm - There are many examples in the Bible where insect larvae are called worms. It is also used in the Bible as a figure of lowliness or weakness (Psalm 22:6 ; Job 17:14 ; Isaiah 41:14 )
Colors - The terms relative to color, occurring in the Bible, may be arranged in two classes, the first including those applied to the description of natural objects, the second those artificial mixtures which were employed in dyeing or painting. The natural colors noticed in the Bible are white, black, red, yellow and green
Dives - (Latin: rich) ...
The word has come to be employed as tbe name of the rich man in tho parable of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16) although it is not used in the Bible as a proper noun
Hind - See Animals in the Bible
Sheba - The memorable queen of Sheba renders this name familiar to the lover of the Bible
Unbelieving - ) Believing the thing alleged no to be true; disbelieving; especially, believing that Bible is not a divine revelation, or that Christ was not a divine or a supernatural person
Carriage - In the Bible, usually means the baggage which formed the burden of a man of beast, Acts 21:15
Laity, Bible Reading by - In the history of the Church there never has been a general prohipition against the reading of the Bible by the laity. While the Church does not consider Bible reading necessary for salvation, she has always approved such reading under proper conditions. In consequence, we find that any restrictions which the Church has placed on the reading of the Bible were aimed at the use of heretical or corrupt versions, or versions without proper notes or authorization, and not against the reading of the Bible itself. These decrees, edited by the Synods of Toulouse (1229), Tarragona (1234), and Oxford (1408), aimed to restrict the reading of the Bible in the vernacular. The Council itself did not forbid the reading of the new Catholic translations, although even these later fell under the ban of the Index Commission which Trent set up for the supervision of future legislation regarding the Bible
Bible Reading by Laity - In the history of the Church there never has been a general prohipition against the reading of the Bible by the laity. While the Church does not consider Bible reading necessary for salvation, she has always approved such reading under proper conditions. In consequence, we find that any restrictions which the Church has placed on the reading of the Bible were aimed at the use of heretical or corrupt versions, or versions without proper notes or authorization, and not against the reading of the Bible itself. These decrees, edited by the Synods of Toulouse (1229), Tarragona (1234), and Oxford (1408), aimed to restrict the reading of the Bible in the vernacular. The Council itself did not forbid the reading of the new Catholic translations, although even these later fell under the ban of the Index Commission which Trent set up for the supervision of future legislation regarding the Bible
Shitrai - Amalek - It is not certain that any distinct mention is made in the Bible of his posterity, people called Amalekites being in existence long before, Genesis 14:7 ; Numbers 24:20
So - "So, king of Egypt," is once mentioned in the Bible -- (2 Kings 17:4 ) So has been identified by different writers with the first and second kings of the Ethiopian twenty-fifth dynasty, called by Manetho, Sabakon (Shebek) and Sebichos (Shebetek)
Septuagint - See Apocrypha ; Bible, Texts and Versions
Pharez - Son of Judah, by Tamar, (Genesis 38:29) The word is translated in the margin of the Bible a breach
Strain - Rather (from a misprint) "strain out a gnat," as in Tyndale's, Cranmer's, the Bishops', and the Genevan Bible
Jahve - A modern transliteration of the Hebrew word translated Jehovah in the Bible; - used by some critics to discriminate the tribal god of the ancient Hebrews from the Christian Jehovah
Zerah - There are four persons of this name mentioned in the Bible
Jebus - The name Jebus does not occur outside the Bible
Chrysolite, - (Revelation 21:20 ) It has been already stated [1] that the chrysolite of the ancients is identical with the modern oriental topaz the tarhish of the Hebrew Bible
Gre'Cian - --Bible Dictionary of Tract Society
bi'Ble - The Bible is the name given to the revelation of God to man contained in sixty-six books or pamphlets, bound together and forming one book and only one, for it has in reality one author and one purpose and plan, and is the development of one scheme of the redemption of man. -- (1) The Bible , i. But the application of the word Bible to the collected books of the Old and New Testaments is not to be traced farther back than the fifth century of our era. the things spoken, because the Bible is what God spoke to man, and hence also called (4) The Word. --The Bible consists of two great parts, called the Old and New Testaments, separated by an interval of nearly four hundred years. --And yet the Bible is but one book, because God was its real author, and therefore, though he added new revelations as men could receive them, he never had to change what was once revealed. The Bible is a unit, because (1) It has but one purpose, the salvation of men. Our Hebrew Bibles are a reprint from what is called the Masoretic text. The Vulgate, or translation of the Bible into Latin by Jerome, A. The first English translation of the whole Bible was by John Deuteronomy Wickliffe (1324-1384). [1] A REVISED VERSION of this authorized edition was made by a group of American and English scholars, and in 1881 the Revised New Testament was published simultaneously in the United States and England. Among these were Moulton's Modern Reader's Bible, the Twentieth century New Testament, Weymouth's, Moffatt's, and the American translation. --The present division of the whole Bible into chapters was made by Cardinal Hugo Deuteronomy St. The first English Bible printed with these chapters and verses was the Geneva Bible, in 1560. CIRCULATION OF THE Bible. --The first book ever printed was the Bible; and more Bibles have been printed than any other book. The American Bible Society (founded in 1816) alone has published over 356 million volumes of Scripture
Disabilities And Deformities - Two types of diseases mentioned in the Bible. ...
Blindness (Deuteronomy 28:28 ) caused from eye infections was common during Bible times. This disease was greatly feared by peoples of Bible lands. ...
One difficulty in studying Bible passages about disabilities and deformities arises from the fact that people during Bible times connected virtue and physical wellness
Fan - —The fan (מִוִרָה mizreh, the πτύον of Matthew 3:12 and Luke 3:17) was an implement used in the winnowing of grain (Isaiah 30:24 [1]). It was either a wooden shovel (Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible i. 51a; Smith, DB Bible iv. 84: Mackie, Bible Manners and Customs, p
Scriptures - The Bible is one unbroken story that shows how human beings have rebelled against God, and how God in his grace has provided them with a way of salvation. )...
Sixty-six books make up the Bible. The writers were people of different nationalities, languages, occupations and temperaments, yet there is complete harmony within the Bible. Jesus considered the Bible of his time a unity and referred to it in the singular as ‘the Scripture’ (John 10:35). ...
The Law consisted of the first five books of the Bible, commonly called the books of Moses (Mark 12:26; Acts 15:21; see PENTATEUCH). This arrangement of books is indicated by Jesus’ reference to the first and last martyrs mentioned in the Hebrew Bible (Matthew 23:35; cf. (For a book-by-book summary of the Bible’s contents see Bible. ...
Names given to the books of the Bible are not part of the inspired writings, but have either established themselves by tradition or been given by translators. The names of some Old Testament books in the Christian Bible differ from those in the Hebrew Bible
Prayer - For list of special prayers see "Index to the Bible
Massorah - (Hebrew: masoreth, bond of the covenant) ...
The body of traditional information relating to the text of the Hebrew Bible; the collection of critical notes in which this information is preserved
Fir Tree - See Plants in the Bible
Nehelamite - ’ but there is no place of that name mentioned in the Bible
Bered - Place used by Bible to locate Beer-lahai-roi (Genesis 16:14 ), but a place that cannot be located today
Joel - There are 14 persons of this name mentioned in the Bible
Capital Punishment - In the Bible, capital punishment was the punishment for murder (Numbers 35:16), adultery (Leviticus 20:10), incest (Leviticus 20:11), bestiality (Leviticus 20:15), homosexuality (Numbers 18:22), etc
Apostasy - It can also describe a group or church organization that has "fallen away" from the truths of Christianity as revealed in the Bible
Pentateuch - It refers to the first five books of the Bible known as Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy
Baal-Perazim - At this spot, the Philistines were put to flight by David, (2 Samuel 5:20; 1 Chronicles 14:11) The margin of the Bible hath rendered this name, the plain of breaches
Haven - The first mention in the Bible is in Genesis 49:13 (se RV marg
Money - The Bible recognizes the possession and use of money as a legitimate part of life in human society. (Concerning the kinds of money in use in Bible times see COINS
Cubit - Measurements of length recorded in the Bible were sometimes only approximate. People of Bible times, like people today, commonly estimated lengths and distances by measuring with fingers, arms or paces
Bible, Theology of - It draws insight both from the Bible and from history and numerous other fields of study to give the widest possible application of the biblical principles. Philosophical theology is a statement of Christian belief which seeks to take the basic elements of the teachings of the Bible and translate them into philosophical concepts. Usually, biblical theology does not even seek to give the doctrinal or theological teachings of the Bible as a whole. As some people do biblical theology, such a study only emphasizes the diversity found in the Bible. Some will interpret the theology of the Bible in such a way that there is only unity, allowing for no development of thought, or diversity, from Genesis to Revelation. Some who seek to develop biblical theology will finally synthesize the teachings of the Bible as a whole as the end product of their study of the theology of the Bible. They choose not to leave biblical theology as a series of statements of differing beliefs found in various periods of the Bible. Such a statement should not be taken to mean that the Bible teaches exactly that point of view at every point in the Scriptures. Rather, this is a statement of the biblical teaching in its completed form, allowing for development of the various themes from the beginning to the end of the Bible. Biblical theology, or study of the doctrinal theology of the Bible, is a relatively recent development. Much attention has also been given to the development of doctrinal studies with regard to individual denominations or special points of view, drawing upon much more than the Bible itself for these formulations. Luther and Calvin placed renewed emphasis upon the Bible in the life of the church. However, while the Reformers and their followers made new and fresh use of the insights of the Bible, they did not in any sense seek to develop a theology of the Bible. They too were using the Bible selectively to undergird the doctrinal points of view that they were trying to emphasize. Various people began to emphasize studying the Bible apart from preconceived doctrinal standards. They wanted to study the Bible alone, with complete objectivity, letting it speak for itself. Most of these persons wanted to approach the Bible just as any other ancient document is approached, without any preconceived ideas, subjecting it to rigorous historical, literary analysis. However, it should be noted, that there is no such thing as “a study of the Bible alone with complete objectivity. As a result, the field of biblical theology is a checkered field with every imaginable variation in what is held to be the theology taught by the Bible. ...
Biblical theology is utterly dependent upon the hermeneutics of the theologian (See Bible, Hermeneutics ; Bible, History of Interpretation ). What, then, is the theology of the Bible as a traditional conservative theologian views it? Biblical theology today needs to give due consideration to the real history recorded in the Bible and seek to interpret the Scriptures in the light of historical considerations, with due regard for their literary form and construction. Such theology recognizes an overall unity of the Bible. The Bible is much more than a book of miscellaneous, disconnected religious ideas that emerged over a period of nearly two thousand years. One central theme runs through the Bible from first to last. God is the central character in the Bible. The Bible is a religious book, focused narrowly upon redemption and its implications for our lives. ...
The Bible begins with the religious teaching that God created humans and the world in which they live. The Bible then proceeds to develop the theme of God's redemptive grace, tracing various stages of God's revelation of Himself: the call of Abraham; the establishment of the covenant with the Israelite community as His chosen people; the institution of the sacrificial system, teaching the people the proper way to approach God for forgiveness; the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus as the provision of forgiveness and regeneration for those dead in sin; the church as the new covenant community, the redeemed people of God on mission for Him in the world; finally, the life to come, in heaven for the redeemed, and in hell for the unregenerate. ...
The theme of the two covenants is crucially important to the unity of the Bible. The whole Bible is the unfolding story of how God has met each of these needs through the salvation that unfolded finally in its completed form through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. ...
The Bible points to a time of ultimate fulfillment when God shall complete what He has been doing in this world from the beginning of creation. ...
This is the broad outline of the theology of the Bible, expressed in a very condensed, summary form. Many other doctrinal themes could be developed as the theology of the Bible
Chapter - In the early Latin and Greek versions of the Bible, similar divisions of the several books were made. The Latin Bible published by Cardinal Hugo of St. 1240 is generally regarded as the first Bible that was divided into our present chapters, although it appears that some of the chapters were fixed as early as A
Lot (2) - —Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible , Smith’s DB Wench - This word, once good English, was used by the Bishops’ Bible of 1568, and was transferred to AV Bethcar - The location is not known unless copyists changed an original Beth Horon as some Bible students think
Tabbath - Conjectured (Smith's Bible Dictionary) to be Tubukhat Fahil, or terrace of Fahil, a natural bank 600 ft
Walk - It is used literally in the Bible (Exodus 2:5 ; Matthew 4:18 )
Sponge - The only instances of its use in the Bible center around giving Jesus a drink while upon the cross (Matthew 27:48 ; Mark 15:36 ; John 19:29 )
Gold - A precious metal, first mentioned in the Bible in Genesis 2
Benaiah - There are twelve persons of this name mentioned in the Bible
Juniper - Is found in the English Bible, 1 Kings 19:4,5 ; Job 30:4 ; Psalm 120:4
Siren - An animal resembling a jackal, mentioned in the Bible (Isaiah 13); the passage indicates an animal dwelling in ruins
Mizraim - Mizraim is also the Hebrew word for Egypt in the Bible, and this country is still called Misr in Arabic
Bible, History of Interpretation - The modern reader of the Bible might easily assume that people have always read the Bible in the same way that we do today. It seems natural to us to assume that the Bible, while a divinely inspired book, is also like any other piece of literature, with one message to convey from the mind of the writer to the mind of the reader. Read this way, the Bible can be made to say anything that you want to imagine!...
The interpretation of the Bible (or any piece of literature, for that matter), is called hermeneutics. See Bible; Hermeneutics . The way in which almost all Christians today read and interpret the Bible only gradually developed. The biblical interpreters associated with this school insisted that the Bible be interpreted in the light of the literary form and historical situation of a particular passage. ...
With biblical interpretation so complicated, it is no wonder that the Roman Catholic Church took the Bible out of the hands of the lay people and left biblical interpretation to the clergy. In the age of the Renaissance, people began to realize the true literary character of the Bible. Luther learned anew the important place of the Bible and made a determined effort to put the Bible back in the hands of the people. Calvin insisted (in the preface to his commentary on Romans) “It is the first business of an interpreter say what he [1] does, instead of attributing to him what we think he ought to say. ”...
Following the time of the Reformation, great emphasis was placed on letting the Bible speak for itself. ...
Bengel was also influential in insisting on accurate, literary-historical interpretation, letting the Bible speak its own message, rather than reading a preconceived interpretation into it. ...
In the earnest search for accurate, faithful interpretation of the Bible, the historical-critical method of interpretation was developed. According to this approach, the message of the Bible is not to tell me what happened hundreds or thousands of years ago. See Bible, Hermeneutics
Bible And the Popes, the - The popes, both in their own persons, and through the various particular and ecumenical councils, have always manifested a profound interest in, and exercised a close and prudent guardianship over the Bible. The first popes whose connection with the Bible is noteworthy are those of the 4th, 5th, and 6th centuries. Nor did the popes of this period confine their interests in the Bible to the canonization of its various books, and to keeping pure its text, for several of them, notably Saint Leo the Great (461) and Saint Gregory the Great (604), have left numerous homilies which proved them profound students and splendid exegetes of Holy Writ. ...
Recent popes have vied with their distinguished predecessors as defenders and teachers of the Bible. Popes Leo XIII, Pius X, Benedict XV, and Pius XI have all issued scholarly and weighty pronouncements on the Bible and biblical studies. The encyclical letter, "Providentissimus Deus," of Leo XIII, dated November 18, 1893, has been justly styled the "Magna Carta" of Bible students. Therein the sovereign pontiff not only vindicates the inspired character and authority of the Bible against the nationalists and modernists of his day, but also lays down judicious norms to guide the interpreter of the Scriptures, and prescribes further that which in the mind of the Church constitutes the preparation and qualifications of the competent Catholic exegete. As a final safeguard against any future attacks or abuses, he created the Pontifical Biblical Commission to which he confided the supervision and direction of the work of Catholic scholars in connection with their study of the Bible
Bible, Formation And Canon of - The word “Bible” was formed from a Greek term meaning books in the plural. Our Bible is, in fact, the collection of books written by various authors that possesses final authority in Christian communities. ...
Why does the Bible exist? The answer has to do with the transmission of the gospel down through the generations. Both from a human and a divine standpoint, then, a Bible was required to be the vehicle of transmission of the gospel, conveying the revelation intact to succeeding generations. ...
Does the Bible itself give this answer? You can see that it does when you consider, first, the fact that leading figures in the Bible, such as Moses, Jeremiah, Luke, and Paul, are described as writing things down precisely for people who are unable to talk with them directly. The idea of the Bible was not a late afterthought in the history of salvation but was in the process of being formed almost from the first. It seems reasonable to conclude that God's plan of salvation included the Bible as a book which would convey the truth of the gospel down through the years. ...
How did the Bible take shape? A general acquaintance with the book goes a long way toward answering this question. One can see how the Bible must have been formed just by looking at it. The best clues are in the Bible itself. ...
The body of our canon is solid and well-supported, and proves itself over again in our use of the Bible. We know the Bible is God's Word, not because we are scholars, but because we are people of faith and experience its authority and truth. The formation of the Bible was in part a human process, directed, we believe, by God. We treasure the Bible because it gives us firm anchorage in history and is the source from which we can continually draw inspiration for renewing our faith and finding the path to follow in serving the Lord
Explain - ) To make plain, manifest, or intelligible; to clear of obscurity; to expound; to unfold and illustrate the meaning of; as, to explain a chapter of the Bible
Peshitta - See Bible, Text and Versions
Cainites - A name used for the descendants of Cain, of whom nine in the direct line are mentioned in the Bible: Henoch, Irad, Maviael, Mathusael, Lamech, and Lamech's four children, Jabel and Jubal by his wife Ada, Tubalcain and his sister Noemi by his second wife Sella
Ir - Some Bible students refer to Genesis 46:23 and think a copyist misread the name, writing Ir rather than an original Dan, which looks much like Ir in Hebrew (REB)
Ithlah - Its location is not known, but some students of Bible lands geography follow some Greek manuscripts identifying Ithlah with Shithlah or Shilta, about four miles northwest of Beth-horon
Beth-Barah - Many Bible scholars think copyists have changed the original text, introducing a place name not in the text
Futurist - ) One who believes or maintains that the fulfillment of the prophecies of the Bible is to be in the future
Shoa - Smith's Bible Dictionary takes it as a proper name, upon the sound of which Ezekiel plays
Apharsites - (uh fahr' ssitess) KJV transliteration of Aramaic term in Ezra 4:9 variously translated and interpreted by modern translators and Bible students: men from Persia (NIV); Persians (RSV); secretaries (NAS)
Inspiration of God, Inspired of God - Wycliffe, Tyndale, Coverdale and the Great Bible have the rendering "inspired of God
Eliab - There are in all six persons of this name mentioned in the Bible
Heli - Jewish high-priest and judge at Silo, with whom Samuel's early history in the Bible is connected
Authority - The Greek “exousia” expresses both freedom and legal rights, and is used in the Bible in numerous ways. The early leaders of the church were virtually unanimous in viewing the Bible as the primary source of revelation and authority. By the fourth century church tradition was viewed as of equal authority with the Bible. ...
The Reformation rejected this duality of authority in Bible and church, claiming “sola scriptura” (“only the Bible”). The Reformers argued that all authority, even that of the church, is derived from the Bible itself, and valuable only as it is consistent with Scripture. The Anabaptists and early Baptists made this view of biblical authority the foundation for their theological beliefs, maintaining that all church doctrine and practice must be entirely consistent with the Bible itself. The Bible was seen as normative only insofar as it is consistent with reason and personal experience, and people are to interpret it subjectively. ...
Conclusions It is the uniform witness of the Bible that all authority is located in God. Religious authority derives from the authority of the Father, as that authority is revealed in the Son, manifested by the Holy Spirit, and given in and through the Bible to the church and the world. The church and its ministry possess genuine religious authority only as they serve the mission of Jesus in faithfulness to the Bible and in building up the church (Romans 13:1 )
Word of God - The Bible so called because the writers of its several books were God's organs in communicating his will to men. (See INSPIRATION; Bible
Nimrod - A hunter and builder of the kingdom of Babel who some Bible students have linked to Tukulti-Ninurta, an Assyrian king (about 1246-1206 B. The Bible does not give sufficient information to connect him with any other known figure of history
Eschatology - The study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times, or of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects
Esther, Book of - A book of the Bible, relating the history of a Jewish orphan girl named Edissa, later Esther, written probably not later than the time of Esdras, by an unknown author. The Latin Bible follows the Hebrew, but the missing passages are supplied from the Greek version, as an appendix (10-16); they are necessary to complete the narrative
Interpretation - ...
For the right interpretation of the word of God, the chief requisites are, a renewed heart, supremely desirous to learn and do the will of God; the aid of the Holy Spirit, sought and gained; a firm conviction that the word of God should rule the erring season and heart of man; a diligent comparison of its different parts, for the light they throw upon each other; all reliable information as to the history and geography, the customs, laws, and languages, the public, domestic, and inner life of Bible times. Thus to study the Bible for one's self is the privilege and duty of every one
Rhetoric - The Bible was written to convince people to respond positively to God's offer of life abundant and eternal. Studying the Bible from a rhetorical perspective helps us better to understand what the Bible actually says and to become better equipped to convince others of its validity through our own rhetoric. ...
The Bible is full of rhetorical questions , those which do not need to be answered because the hearer/reader already knows the answer. In the Bible, these answers are usually negative. One of the brilliant syllogisms in the Bible is 1 Corinthians 15:12-28 in which Paul argued that the only logical conclusion to the fact of Christ's resurrection is the resurrection of all the dead. ...
Recognizing these techniques and studying Hebrew poetry will enhance one's ability to study the Bible
Preface - The Editor’s aim has been to provide a complete and independent Dictionary of the Bible in a single volume and abreast of present-day scholarship. The Dictionary gives an account of all the contents of the Bible, the articles being as numerous as in the largest dictionaries, but written to a different scale. The Index of the Dictionary of the Bible in five volumes by the same Editor has been taken as basis, and such additions made to it as the latest research has suggested. The persons, places, and important events in the Bible are described. The books of the Bible are carefully explained in their origin, authorship, and contents; and full account is taken of the results of literary criticism and archæological discovery. This is to bring the contents of the Bible, in accordance with present scholarship, within reach of those who have not the means to buy or the knowledge to use the Dictionary in five volumes. There are many reasons why a Dictionary of the Bible should not take up an extreme position on either side
Christian Iconography - The walls of churches have always been decorated with scenes from the Bible and legends of saints
Hadattah - Some Bible students think Greek had the original reading
Iru - Many Bible students think the original text read Ir, a copyist joining the final u to the name when it should have been the first letter of the following word, meaning, “and
Fitches - See Plants in the Bible
Berodach Baladan - Parallel passage in Isaiah 39:1 reads Merodoch Baladan, so most Bible students think Berodach resulted from a copyist's change in the text
Iconography, Christian - The walls of churches have always been decorated with scenes from the Bible and legends of saints
Snow - Snow is used in the Bible figuratively: whiteness (Isaiah 1:18 ), cleanness (Job 9:30 ), refreshing coolness (Proverbs 25:13 )
Bulrush - See Plants of the Bible
Christology - The study of Christ (Jesus) as revealed in the Bible
Helvetic Confession - Protestantism proclaimed individual interpretation of the Bible as the sole, sufficient rule of faith
Road - This word occurs but once in the Authorized Version of the Bible, viz
Bibles, Chained - ...
The chained Bible was an institution in the medieval Church. From the 12th century on, the Bible could be found in countless monasteries and churches, chained to a desk, or lectern, or stall, near some window, where the student or pious reader would have sufficient light to read it. This demonstrates how strong was the popular demand for an open Bible in the medieval Church, and how earnestly the Church strove to make that open Bible a reality for all its communicants. Bias and ignorance have falsely interpreted this usage of by-gone days as a proof that the Church purposely withheld the Bible from the laity. No such malicious interpretation of the chained Bible was forthcoming so long as Protestants remembered their own chained Bibles. The myth, that Bibles in the Middle Ages were chained in order to prevent people from reading them, arose in Germany in the 18th century, and was given its present currency principally through M
Chained Bibles - ...
The chained Bible was an institution in the medieval Church. From the 12th century on, the Bible could be found in countless monasteries and churches, chained to a desk, or lectern, or stall, near some window, where the student or pious reader would have sufficient light to read it. This demonstrates how strong was the popular demand for an open Bible in the medieval Church, and how earnestly the Church strove to make that open Bible a reality for all its communicants. Bias and ignorance have falsely interpreted this usage of by-gone days as a proof that the Church purposely withheld the Bible from the laity. No such malicious interpretation of the chained Bible was forthcoming so long as Protestants remembered their own chained Bibles. The myth, that Bibles in the Middle Ages were chained in order to prevent people from reading them, arose in Germany in the 18th century, and was given its present currency principally through M
Scripture - The name given in the Bible to portions of the recorded will of God; called also "Holy Scriptures," Romans 1:2; 2 Timothy 3:16, and once "the Scripture of truth. The more common title in the Bible is "Law," and "Law of Moses. The term Bible comes from the Latin Biblia, and Greek Biblos or Biblion, meaning book. Since then the "Holy Bible" has become the common English title for the collection of 66 sacred books, accepted by all Christians as the authoritative word of God. The Bible is divided into the Old and the New Testaments, a name based upon 2 Corinthians 3:14; testament referring there to the old covenant. There are 39 separate books in the Old Testament, and 27 in the New Testament, making 66 books in the Bible. The New Testament was divided into chapters and verses by Stephens in 1551, and likewise first appeared in the Genevan English Bible in 1557-1560. The text of the Hebrew Bible has been carefully preserved by the labors of men who regarded it with great reverence. The entire Hebrew Bible was first printed in 1488. German, by Luther, New Testament, in 1522, and Bible, 1534; revised version, 1892. — Translations of portions of the Bible were made into Anglo-Saxon in the eighth century and into early English in the thirteenth or earlier. Coverdale's Bible, 1535, chiefly from the Latin. This was the first entire Bible printed in English, and probably at Zurich. Matthews' Bible, a fusion of the translations by Tyndale and Coverdale, and made by John Rogers, the martyr, under the name of Matthews. Taverner's Bible was a revision of Matthews' issued in 1589. Cranmer's, or the Great Bible, was simply a new edition of Matthews', issued under the sanction of and with a preface by, Cranmer, also in 1539. The Genevan New Testament, 1557, and Genevan Bible, 1560, were made by English refugees at Geneva, during the persecution under the English queen, Mary, who was a Roman Catholic. It was the first complete English translation from the original Hebrew and Greek texts, and the first English Bible divided into modern chapters and verses. The Bishops' Bible, 1568-1572, a revision of the Great Bible, made by 15 scholars, eight of whom were bishops. The Rheims, New Testament, 1609, and Douai Bible, 1610, made by Roman Catholic scholars at Douai. The Anglo-American revised Bible, New Testament, 1881, Old Testament, 1885. —Concerning the evidences, external and internal, of the truth of Scripture, it may briefly be said that no books have been subjected to such severe critical examination into every statement, and clause, and particular, as the Bible, and never have the arguments for its integrity and authority been as strong as they are today. The results of Christianity, its effects on individuals, families, nations; its wonderful missions, are an unanswerable proof of the verity of this one Book, the Bible. They make a fatal mistake who do not so study the Bible as to find Christ in it from beginning to end, a personal Saviour through whom comes eternal, spiritual life. ...
Circulation of the Bible. —The following statements are from Rice's Our Sixty-six Sacred Books: The Bible and portions of the Scriptures are printed in 367 versions and 287 dialects, according to the American Bible Society reports (founded 1816). The reports of the British and Foreign Bible Society (founded 1804) show that over 60 new versions of the Bible were added to its list in eleven years, and that the Scriptures are now published in 510 versions in upwards of 300 languages. A conservative estimate is that the Bible, or portions, are now issued in 450 languages and dialects by the Bible and mission societies and private publishers of the world. Between 1524 and 1611 not less than 278 editions of English Bibles and Testaments wore printed. In the first 15 years of 18th century private publishers in America issued 131 editions of the Bible and 65 of the New Testament. Bible and mission societies of the world circulate yearly about 6,500,000 copies, and private publishers swell tills number to more than 10,000,000 annually, The copies of the Scriptures circulated in heathen lands, in this century, are believed to exceed in number all that there were in the world from Moses to Martin Luther
Stones, Precious - There are about twenty different names of such stones in the Bible
Bdellium - ) An unidentified substance mentioned in the Bible (Gen
Virtue (2) - ‘Virtue’ in Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible
Manuscript - See Bible, Text and Versions; Paper; Papyrus ; Writing
Mile - Our translators of the Bible have, however, very properly, rendered the measurement by the English standard; so that a mile, in our language, corresponds to two thousand cubits, and a furlong is the eighth part of a mile
Shekel - It was also the name of the chief silver coin of the Hebrews, and is mentioned in the Bible (Genesis 24; Exodus 30 ; 2 Kings 14)
Jonath-Elem-Rechokim - (a dumb love of (in) distant places ), a phrase found once only in the Bible, as a heading to the 56th psalm
Jehudi'Jah - There is really no such name in the Hebrew Bible as that which our Authorized Version exhibits at ( 1 Chronicles 4:18 ) If it is a proper name at all, it is Ha-jehudijah, like Hammelech, Hak-koz, etc
Coriander - It is mentioned twice in the Bible
Bible in Public Schools - A ground of contention wherever superintendents of schools have sought to impose the reading of the Bible to the pupils as a daily or frequent exercise. It is opposed by non-Christian parents as proselytism for the Christian religion; by Jews, as only Christian versions are used; and by Catholics because the version used is in nearly every instance the Protestant version and the principle involved is that the Bible is the sole rule of faith
Ishbibenob - ” Some Bible students interpret this as being an elite group of warriors under a vow to the god Rapha. Other Bible students use Greek manuscript evidence to replace the unusual name Ishbibenob with another—Dodo son of Joash—but this is a drastic solution
Evangelicals - (Greek: euangelikos, pertaining to the Gospel) ...
Designation originally claimed by all Protestants on the ground that their tenets were derived solely from the Bible, later attached to those congregations which teach the total depravity of human nature, the necessity of human conversion, the justification of the sinner by faith alone, the free offer of the Gospel to all, and the inspiration and authority of the Bible
Horned Owl - See Birds in the Bible
Susan'na - (The book which gives an account of her life is also called "The history of Susanna," and is one of the apocryphal books of the Bible
Pharisee - They take the place of being devoted, Bible- loving believers, while in their hearts they are seeking to bribe GOD with their good works
Ithnan - Its location is not known unless some Bible lands geographers are correct in combining Hazor-ithnan into one town, which may have been located at modern el-Jebariyeh on the wadi Umm Ethnan
Canticle - ) A psalm, hymn, or passage from the Bible, arranged for chanting in church service
Goatskin - See Animals in the Bible
Behemoth - Bible students identify this animal as hippopotamus or crocodile
Laughter - Laughter is used in the Bible in three ways
Expect - In the Donai Bible the comment on Sir 11:8 is: ‘Expect the end of another man’s speech before you begin to answer
Apollonia - ” Paul visited Apollonia on his second missionary journey, though the Bible reports no activity there (Acts 17:1 )
Heleph - It is often identified with khirbet Arbathah just northeast of Mount Tabor, but some Bible students think this location is too far south
Griffon - The opinion that the Bible here speaks of the fabulous griffon, the monstrous progeny of a lion and an eagle, is based on a misinterpretation of the Hebrew word peres, from which it is translated
Tree - 1 (5); and, for the various trees of the Bible, the artt
Gishpa - It does not appear in the lists in Chronicles and Ezra, so some Bible students think the name is a copyist's change from Hasupha, which the Jews would pronounce similarly (Ezra 2:43 ; Nehemiah 7:46 )
Sepphoris - Although Sepphoris is not mentioned in the Bible, Jesus probably knew it well and walked its streets
Kite - Found in the Bible at Leviticus 11:14 ; Deuteronomy 14:13 ; Isaiah 34:15
Polyglot - ) Containing, or made up, of, several languages; as, a polyglot lexicon, Bible
Legion, - The term does not occur in the Bible in its primary sense, but appears to have been adopted in order to express any large number, with the accessory ideas of order and subordination
Allegorical Sense - Mystical meaning of parts of the Bible; the interpretation of some actually accomplished thing as being only the figure of some other thing
Church Chronology - General Council, at Constantinople 681...
Venerable Bede died at Yarrow, England 735...
Alfred the Great founded Oxford University 887...
Final Separation of Church in East and West 1054...
Osmund, Bishop of Salisbury, revised English Liturgy 1081...
Crusades began 1095...
Bible divided into chapters 1252...
Wickliffe and his work 1377-1384...
First book printed, a Latin Bible, at Mentz 1450...
Martin Luther and his work 1517-1546...
John Calvin 1530-1564 ...
English Reformation 1534-1559...
First English Prayer Book set forth 1549...
Present authorized version of the Bible 1611...
Present English Prayer Book set forth 1662...
Church introduced into America 1578-1607...
Bishop Seabury consecrated in Scotland first  American Bishop 1784...
Three additional Bishops consecrated in England for  American Church 1787-1790...
Name changed to Protestant Episcopal 1789...
American Prayer Book set forth Oct
Hivites - A name that occurs twenty-five times in the Bible though not in texts outside the Bible
Ira - KJV and a few Bible students see “priest” here as a civil office rather than a religious one. Ira was apparently from Havoth-jair in Gilead (Numbers 32:41 ), though some Bible students think he was from Kiriath-jearim (1 Samuel 7:1 )
Affliction: Endears the Promises - His Bible, still preserved in the library of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, has the passage marked with a pen in the margin. Perhaps, if all were known, every promise in the Bible has borne a special message lo some one saint, and so the whole volume might he scored in the margin with mementoes of Christian experience, every one appropriate to the very letter
Cruelty - The word ‘cruelty’ has nearly disappeared from our Bibles. The RV Astrologer - The Bible does not seek to describe the skills, tactics, or methods of foreign personnel engaged in various practices to determine the opportune time. Rather the Bible mocks such practices and shows that God's word to the prophets and the wise of Israel far surpasses any foreign skills
Bible - The former was written mostly in Hebrew, and was the Bible of the ancient Jewish church; a few chapters of Daniel and Ezra only were written in Chaldee. The entire Bible is the rule of faith to all Christians, and not the New Testament alone; though this is of especial value as unfolding the history and doctrines of our divine Redeemer and of his holy institutions. He also modified and completed the division of the Old Testament into verses, in an edition of the whole Bible, the Vulgate, in 1555. ...
The first well-know English translation of the New Testament was that of Wicliffe, made about 1370, before the invention of printing; though others had been made, one as early as king Alfred, of parts of the Bible into Saxon. In the time of Edward I, 1250, it required the earnings of a day laborer for fifteen years to purchase a manuscript copy of the entire Bible. The first complete English Bible is that of Myles Coverdale, in 1535. Matthew's Bible appeared in 1537. Coverdale and some other prelates, who resided at Geneva during the bloody reign of Mary, published there another edition in 1560, hence called the Geneva Bible. At the accession of queen Elizabeth a new revision was made, which appeared in 1568, and is called the Bishop's Bible. The work of translation and revision occupied between four and five years; and the faithful, clear, and vigorous standard Bible thus secured, is an enduring monument of the learning, wisdom, and fidelity of the translators. In the year 1804, the British and Foreign Bible Society was formed; and the success which has attended this glorious object has by far exceeded the most sanguine expectations of its founders and supporters. Other similar association have followed nobly this glorious example; and of these none had labored with more effect than the American Bible Society, which was formed in 1816, and has now, 1859, issued thirteen millions of Bibles and Testaments
Hades - In the King James Version of the Bible, the Greek word is generally translated “hell
Hazo - Some Bible students think Hazo represents the city of Hazu known from an Assyrian source and located at al-Hasa near the Arabian coast by Bahrein
Craft - See Occupations, Professions in the Bible
Jairus, Daughter of - " This is one of the few cases in whieh the Bible gives the words of Our Lord as He spoke them in His mother tongue
na'Amathite, - (Job 2:11 ; 11:1 ; 20:1 ; 42:9 ) There is no other trace of this name in the Bible, and the town whence it is derived is unknown
Hammelech - We must not then, with Smith's Bible Dictionary, translated "the king," but as a proper name, Hammelech, father of Jerahmeel and Malchiah
Magdala - See Marys of the Bible
Barn - In the Bible, a barn is a storage place for seed (Haggai 2:19 ) or grain (Matthew 13:30 )
Woodworker - See Occupations and Professions in the Bible
Brook of Egypt - See Rivers and Waterways in the Bible
Baruch, Book of - In the Catholic Bible, an inspired writing containing, in five chapters, the prophecy with which Baruch consoled the Jewish exiles on the River Sedi and which they sent, with some rescued silver vessels, back to Jerusalem
Nathan - There were many of this name in the Bible
Chilmad - ” A trading partner of Tyre according to Hebrew text of Ezekiel 27:23 , but many Bible students think copyists inadvertently changed the text from “all of media” or a similar reading
Paddle - In earlier English a small spade used for cleaning the plough-share was called a ‘paddle,’ which explains the choice of this word in the Geneva Bible, whence it reached AV [1] and RV Philosophy - This word occurs in EV Riz'Pah, - ) The tragic story of the love and endurance with which she watched over the bodies of her two sons, who were killed by the Gibeonites, (2 Samuel 21:8-11 ) has made Rizpah one of the most familiar objects in the whole Bible
Jehoiada - The Bible mentions a number of people named Jehoiada
Apocalypse - The name given to the last book of the Bible; a Greekword meaning Revelation
Jerome, Saint - Confessor, Doctor of the Church, author of the Vulgate Edition of the Bible; born Stridon, Dalmatia, c. There he prayed, fasted and labored on the Vulgate edition of the Bible
Clopas - Brethren of the Lord and Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible, vol. But the identification rests on the derivation of both names from a common Greek original, Cleopatros, and is denied by those who regard Clopas as a Semitic name (see Deissmann, Bible Studies, English translation p. Dissipation - The Bible speaks against a disorderly life, whereas the Greeks used the term to mean a wasteful or luxurious life. The Bible teaches believers to avoid both life-styles
Gabriel - Angels, or messengers of God, feature frequently in the Bible record, but only rarely does the Bible give their names
Flowers - Very few flowers are named in the Bible. Because of this the Bible sometimes refers to them as symbols of the brevity and impermanence of life (Job 14:2; Nahum 1:4; James 1:10-11; 1 Peter 1:24)
Covetousness - In the Bible, covetousness is a crime. The Bible puts the covetous man in the same category with the murderer and the thief. The Christian Church needs to study anew the Bible teaching concerning covetousness, as found in Jeremiah 22:17 , Micah 2:2 , Luke 12:15 , Romans 7:7 , Ephesians 5:3 ; Ephesians 5:6 , 1 Timothy 6:10 , Hebrews 13:5 , and other passages
Deluge, the - Catastrophe described in the Bible (Genesis 6; 7; 8). Till about the 17th century it was commonly held that the entire globe was submerged in the deluge, but this opinion is now rarely held for the following reasons: ...
The sources of the water mentioned in the Bible are not sufficient to cover the entire globe. " Universal expressions in the Bible are frequently taken in a relatively universal sense.
Hence, while most modern expositors deny the geographical universality of the flood, many defend at least its ethnographical universality; others hold that the flood did not extend to the entire human race but is limited by the Bible itself (Genesis 4,5) to the descendants of Cain and Seth
Flood, the - Catastrophe described in the Bible (Genesis 6; 7; 8). Till about the 17th century it was commonly held that the entire globe was submerged in the deluge, but this opinion is now rarely held for the following reasons: ...
The sources of the water mentioned in the Bible are not sufficient to cover the entire globe. " Universal expressions in the Bible are frequently taken in a relatively universal sense.
Hence, while most modern expositors deny the geographical universality of the flood, many defend at least its ethnographical universality; others hold that the flood did not extend to the entire human race but is limited by the Bible itself (Genesis 4,5) to the descendants of Cain and Seth
Harar - ” The word appears in slightly difficult forms in its appearances in the Hebrew Bible
Grove - The King James Version of the Bible also uses the word “grove” to translate the term “Asherah
Iye-Abarim - Some Bible geographers locate it at khirbet Aii southwest of Kerak or modern Mahay, but this is far from certain
Beth-Rapha - The name could have distant relationships to the Rephaim ( Deuteronomy 3:11 ), though the Bible nowhere makes such relationships
Carmel, Mount - It is frequently mentioned in the Bible as a place of great beauty and fertility
en-Eglaim - It has not been identified, but is not improbably ‘Ain Feshkah (Robinson, BRP Fitch - ) A word found in the Authorized Version of the Bible, representing different Hebrew originals
Jasper - The dark-green kind is supposed to be the variety of the Bible
Adonikam - Some Bible students think Adonikam is the same person as Adonijah in Nehemiah 10:16
Heterodox - ) Contrary to, or differing from, some acknowledged standard, as the Bible, the creed of a church, the decree of a council, and the like; not orthodox; heretical; - said of opinions, doctrines, books, etc
Revelation - , the Bible
Sennacherib - ), mentioned in the Bible in connection with Ezechias (4Kings 18-19; Isaiah 36-37)
Magic - In the Bible, all the superstitious ceremonies of magicians, sorcerers, enchanters, necromancers, spiritualists, exorcists, astrologers, soothsayers, interpreters of dreams, fortune-tellers, casters of nativities, etc
Engine, - a term applied exclusively to military affairs in the Bible
Caphar, - one of the numerous words employed in the Bible to denote a village or collection of dwellings smaller than a city (Ir )
Asp - In the NT the ‘asp’ is mentioned only once (Romans 3:13 : ‘The poison of asps [1] is under their lips’). Tristram, Natural History of the Bible, p. Tristram, Natural History of the Bible10, London, 1911, p. : SWP Bible (5 vols) , vol. of the Bible , p. Dictionary of the Bible , p
Bible - Bible, the English form of the Greek name Biblia , meaning "books," the name which in the fifth century began to be given to the entire collection of sacred books, the "Library of Divine Revelation. " The name Bible was adopted by Wickliffe, and came gradually into use in our English language. The Bible consists of sixty-six different books, composed by many different writers, in three different languages, under different circumstances; writers of almost every social rank, statesmen and peasants, kings, herdsmen, fishermen, priests, tax-gatherers, tentmakers; educated and uneducated, Jews and Gentiles; most of them unknown to each other, and writing at various periods during the space of about 1600 years: and yet, after all, it is only one book dealing with only one subject in its numberless aspects and relations, the subject of man's redemption. ...
The division of the Bible into chapters and verses is altogether of human invention, designed to facilitate reference to it. Our modern system of chapters for all the books of the Bible was introduced by Cardinal Hugo about the middle of the thirteenth century (he died 1263). The system of verses for the New Testament was introduced by Stephens in 1551, and generally adopted, although neither Tyndale's nor Coverdale's English translation of the Bible has verses
Dan-Jaan - Many Bible students think the scribes have not preserved the correct Hebrew text at this point and read only “Dan” (NRSV) or “Dan and Ijon” (NEB)
Arcturus - (ehrc tyoo' ruhss) A constellation of stars God created (Job 9:9 ; Job 38:32 ) of which exact identification was not clear to the earliest Bible translators and continues to be debated
Halah - Some Bible students think the original text of Obadiah 1:20 contained a promise for the captives in Halah
First-Born - In the Bible the first-born males belonged to the Lord (Exodus 13)
Cummin - Used in Bible times to season foods
Langton, Stephen - Combining scholarship and statesmanship, he is noted for his division of the Bible into chapters, and as leader of the barons in their struggle against King John for constitutional liberty, Langton wrote the Magna Carta, and with the barons, forced John to sign it (1265)
Douai, University of - Connected with it were the English College, founded by Cardinal Allen, 1568, where the Douay Bible was written, the Irish and Scots' colleges, and Benedictine and Franciscan houses
Silk - The only undoubted notice of silk in the Bible occurs in (Revelation 18:12 ) where it is mentioned among the treasures of the typical Babylon
Jacinth - See Hyacinth ; Minerals and Metals in the Bible
Noah - Many non-Catholics maintain that the Bible narrative is derived from a Babylonian epic, but numerous and important discrepancies render this untenable
Noe - Many non-Catholics maintain that the Bible narrative is derived from a Babylonian epic, but numerous and important discrepancies render this untenable
Breath of Life - In the Bible, God is the source of the breath of life (Genesis 1:30 ; Genesis 2:7 ; Genesis 7:15 ; Isaiah 57:16 )
Manasseh - The word in the margin of the Bible is forgetting, from Nahash, to forget
Agate - Agate translates three words in the Bible: a stone in the breastpiece of judgment (Exodus 28:19 ; Exodus 39:12 ), the material in the pinnacles of Jerusalem (Isaiah 54:12 ; see Ezekiel 27:16 ), and the third jewel in the foundation wall of the new Jerusalem (Revelation 21:19 )
Archangel - Archangel, a chief angel, only twice used in the Bible
Stephen Langton - Combining scholarship and statesmanship, he is noted for his division of the Bible into chapters, and as leader of the barons in their struggle against King John for constitutional liberty, Langton wrote the Magna Carta, and with the barons, forced John to sign it (1265)
Conversation - In the Bible, usually means the whole tenor of one's life, intercourse with his fellow men, Galatians 1:13 Ephesians 4:22 1 Peter 1:15
University of Douai, France - Connected with it were the English College, founded by Cardinal Allen, 1568, where the Douay Bible was written, the Irish and Scots' colleges, and Benedictine and Franciscan houses
Lord - The word LORD , in the English Bible, when printed in small capitals, stands always for JEHOVAH in the Hebrew
Pagans - Those who worship a god or gods other than the living God to whom the Bible witnesses
Simple And Simplicity - Sometimes used in the Bible in a good sense, denoting sincerity, candor, and an artless ignorance of evil, Romans 16:19 2 Corinthians 1:12 11:3 ; sometimes in a bad sense, denoting heedless foolishness both mental and moral, Proverbs 1:22 9:4 14:15 22:3 ; and sometimes in the sense of mere ignorance or inexperience, 2 Samuel 15:11 Proverbs 1:4 21:11
Kir'Iah, - ( Job 29:7 ; Proverbs 8:3 ) As a proper name it appears in the Bible under the forms of Kerioth, Kartah, Kartan, besides those immediately following
Prince, Princess - The word princess is seldom used in the Bible, but the persons to which it alludes-- "daughters of kings" are frequently mentioned
Hour - Like the word ‘day’, the word ‘hour’ is used in the Bible both specifically and generally
Irony - Since irony means the opposite or near opposite of what it seems to say, interpreters of the Bible need to be able to recognize it. Uses of Irony in the Bible Irony may be the reason for individual word choice. The impossible task was accomplished; the irony of situation was complete; and the power of God emphasized! This is the usual purpose of narrative irony in the Bible. ...
Bible students aware of the use of irony will recognize some of the humor in the Bible which exists at the expense of God's enemies
Douay Bible - In the 16th century the need for a reliable English translation of the Bible was made urgent by the circulation in England of faulty translations, produced in a spirit of opposition to many doctrines of the Catholic Church. His revision of the Douay Version is the Bible now commonly used by Catholics in English-speaking countries
Challoner, Richard - " He also prepared a revised edition of the Douay Bible and Rheims New Testament, which is, practically speaking, the version of the Bible used by all English-speaking Catholics today
Bible, Douay - In the 16th century the need for a reliable English translation of the Bible was made urgent by the circulation in England of faulty translations, produced in a spirit of opposition to many doctrines of the Catholic Church. His revision of the Douay Version is the Bible now commonly used by Catholics in English-speaking countries
Basin - (KJV: Bawssuhn)—“Basin” and “bowl” are used interchangeably in the Bible to refer to various sizes of wide hollow bowls, cups, and dishes used for domestic or more formal purposes (John 13:5 ). In Bible times the most common material used to make such instruments was pottery
Cummin - ...
Cummin is mentioned twice in the Bible (Isaiah 28:25-27 בַּסֹן, and Matthew 23:23 κύμινον). of the Bible
English in English Bibles, the - Attention is also called to the many plain English words that were put in the Bible by Rhemes, but which the Authorized never used (e. The majority of these Latinisms were anglicized by Bishop Challoner in the 18th century, making the Bible which English-speaking Catholics now use
Book - See Bible. " (Philippians 4:3; Revelation 20:12) It is our happiness to have all that it behoves us to know, concerning the book of life, in the copy of it of the Bible, which becomes indeed, in the proclamation of grace it contains, "the book of life
Richard Challoner - " He also prepared a revised edition of the Douay Bible and Rheims New Testament, which is, practically speaking, the version of the Bible used by all English-speaking Catholics today
Creation - (The creation of all things is ascribed in the Bible to God, and is the only reasonable account of the origin of the world. The order of creation as given in Genesis is in close harmony with the order as revealed by geology, and the account there given, so long before the records of the rocks were read or the truth discoverable by man, is one of the strongest proofs that the Bible was inspired by God
Scripture, Unity And Diversity of - Study of the nature of the relationship of the sixty-six canonical books of the Bible. The unity of Scripture claims that the Bible presents a noncontradictory and consistent message concerning God and redemptive history. The foundation of the unity of the Bible is the belief that the sixty-six books of the Bible encode God's self-disclosure of himself and his will to his creation. ...
The self-witness of the Bible to its inspiration demands a commitment to its unity. ...
This approach to the unity of Scripture is often attacked on the basis that it is circular reasoning, using the source (the Bible) as a testimony to itself. Modern liberal scholars claim to reject such a procedure, denying unity by highlighting the diversity of the data within the Bible. The Bible has one heart beat. It is as if the Bible reads us rather than us reading the Bible. The use of the Old Testament in the New Testament as direct predictive prophecy is much less frequent than the above categories, but the fact of prophetic fulfillment argues strongly for the unity of the Bible. The Bible opens in Genesis 1-3 with a narrative on creation, fall, and redemption. All Bible students wish Luke would have recorded more than a mere reference of Jesus' exposition of himself from the Old Testament (24:25-27; 24:44). The same principle applies when evaluating diverse material in the Bible. ...
The old liberal presentation of negative diversity in the Bible was based upon certain controlling presuppositions. Meadors...
See also Bible, Authority of the ; Bible, Inspiration of the ; Old Testament in the New Testament, the ...
Bibliography . Baker, Two Testaments, One Bible ; J. Barr, The Bible in the Modern World and Fundamentalism ; J. Fuller, The Unity of the Bible ; F. Gaebelein, "The Unity of the Bible, " inRevelation and the Bible ; N. Rowley, The Unity of the Bible ; F
Hazar-Susah - As most towns of Simeon also appear in Judah's allotment (compare Joshua 19:1 ), many Bible students think this is another name for Sansannah in Joshua 15:31
Iim - Many Bible students think a copyist copied parts of the following Ezem twice
Old Latin Version - A literal translation of the whole Bible made from the Septuagint before A
Herbs, Bitter - See Plants in the Bible
Caesar - References to Caesar in the Bible can be found in Matthew 22:17; Luke 2:1; John 19:12; Acts 25:11-12; etc
Bible, Hebrew - The present Hebrew Bible contains only the protocanonical books; the Deuterocanonical books, except a part of Ecclesiasticus, are no longer extant in Hebrew
Paradise - Originally the word translated ‘paradise’ in English versions of the Bible meant ‘a garden’
J - See Pentateuch ; Bible, History of Interpretation
Tiberias - The Bible does not record that Jesus ever visited the town
Elpaal - Bible students debate whether the references refer to the same clan ancestor or to two individuals
Gizonite - Some Bible students suggest the original reading was Gimzoni from Gimzo
Golden Rule - The designation “Golden Rule” does not appear in the Bible, and its origin in English is difficult to trace
Ezel - " Smith's Bible Dictionary reads, "David arose from close to the stone heap" ('argob for negeb ; so Septuagint)
Tappuah (2) - Smith's Bible Dictionary makes Tappuah colonized by the men of Hebron, the same place as Beth Tappuah
Hippopotamus - It is supposed to be the behemoth of the Bible
Anagogical Sense - , the teachings of the Bible lead to eternal life) ...
That division of the typical sense which includes blessings to be hoped for, and which refers particularly to the future life
Damnation - But in the English Bible they mean no more than is now expressed by ‘condemn’ or ‘condemnation. krisis , RV Fatalism - The Bible teaches us that we can influence God with our prayers (James 5:16)
Zadok - There are seven persons of this name mentioned in the Bible
Sense, Anagogical - , the teachings of the Bible lead to eternal life) ...
That division of the typical sense which includes blessings to be hoped for, and which refers particularly to the future life
Kenizzites - Two men so named are mentioned in Bible history, both subsequent to the Kenizzites, Genesis 36:15,42 ; Joshua 14:6 ; 15:17
Hebrew Bible - The present Hebrew Bible contains only the protocanonical books; the Deuterocanonical books, except a part of Ecclesiasticus, are no longer extant in Hebrew
Damnation - This is now the sense of the word damnation, in our language; but at the time when the Bible was translated, it signified the same as condemnation
Owl - A number of species of the owl are mentioned in the Bible, (Leviticus 11:17 ; 14:16; Isaiah 14:23 ; 34:15 ; Zephaniah 2:14 ) and in several other places the same Hebrew word is used where it is translated ostrich
Fowl - Several distinct Hebrew and Greek words are thus rendered in the English Bible. In the New Testament the word translated "fowls" is most frequently that which comprehends all kinds of birds (including ravens , ( Luke 12:24 ) [1]
Flag - There are two Hebrew words rendered "flag" in our Bible:
A word of Egyptian origin, and denoting "any green and course herbage, such as rushes and reeds, which grows in marshy places
Coal - of Bible, 1889, p. of Bible, 1889, p. Bible, article ‘Coal
Darkness - Apart from its literal meaning, darkness often has a figurative meaning in the Bible. Therefore, the Bible may speak symbolically of a day of judgment as a day of darkness (Amos 5:20; Zephaniah 1:15). In keeping with this symbolism, the Bible depicts the final destiny of unrepentant sinners as a place of terrifying and everlasting darkness (Matthew 8:12; Matthew 22:13; 2 Peter 2:17; Judges 1:13)
Gehenna (2) - Warren in an extended and somewhat convincing article on ‘Hinnom (Valley of)’ in Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible, identifies it with the Kidron on the E. —Robinson, BRP [2] 239, 571; Barclay, City of the Great King, 89, 90; Wilson, Recovery of Jerusalem, 6, 19, 307, Lands of the Bible, i. ; Tristram, Bible Places, 152, 162; Couder, Handbook to the Bible, 329 f. Bible; ‘Hinnom (Valley of)’ in Encyc. Mark, ad 9:45; Riehm, HWB Helech - ” REB interprets Helech with many modern Bible students and reference books to refer to Cilicia
Crown of Thorns - See Plants in the Bible
Archangel - This world is only twice used in the Bible, 1 Thessalonians 4:16 Jude 1:9
Ether - Some Bible students identify this with the town in Judah, since Simeon's territory was within Judah's boundaries
Obadiah - The Bible mentions at least twelve people named Obadiah
Brickkiln - Some Bible students believe that sun-dried bricks were used in Palestine; they would translate the word as “brick-mold” (see Nahum 3:14 NRSV, NAS, TEV)
Beans - The beans mentioned in the Bible (2 Samuel 17:28 ; Ezekiel 4:9 ) were the horse or broad bean
Silence - The Bible uses silence in several ways: as reverence to God (Habakkuk 2:20 ), as a symbol of death (Psalm 94:17 ), as a symbol of Sheol (Psalm 115:17 ), and as an expression of despair (Lamentations 2:10 )
Postil - ) Originally, an explanatory note in the margin of the Bible, so called because written after the text; hence, a marginal note; a comment
Amorrhites - They first appear in the Bible as inhabitants of South Palestine (Genesis 14), where a war with the Israelites (Joshua 10) secured to the latter the tenure of Palestine
Infant Baptism - There are no explicit accounts of infant baptism in the Bible
Nuts - (Song of Song of Solomon 6:11) The word rendered nuts in this passage is never used elsewhere in the Bible
Myrrh - The myrrh of the Bible is supposed to have been partly the gum above named, and partly the exudation of species of Cistus, or rockrose
Ruben - A patriarch in the Bible, the eldest son of Jacob (Genesis 46:49)
Milk - Is often alluded to in the Bible, as a symbol of pure, simple, and wholesome truth, Hebrews 5:12,13 1 Peter 2:2 ; and in connection with honey, to denote fertility and plenty, Genesis 49:12 Numbers 16:13 Joshua 5:6
Testament - See Bible , and COVENANT
Bear - (1 Samuel 17:34 ; 2 Samuel 17:8 ) The Syrian bear, Ursus syriacus, which is without doubt the animal mentioned in the Bible, is still found on the higher mountains of Palestine
Incarnation - The word itself is not found in the Bible, but comes from a Latin word meaning ‘in flesh’
Purse - The open mouth is not drawn close by a string, but is gathered up by one hand, and then by the other the neck of the bag is carefully whipped round’ (Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible , art. Bible , art. …” At this day the farmer sets out on excursions quite as extensive without a para in his purse’ (Thomson, LB [9] 153 ff. [10] 312ff
Colors - ...
References to Colors in the Bible Moving beyond color in the abstract sense, one does find in the Bible frequent references to certain objects which have color designations. ...
A second reason for color designations in the Bible involves a more specialized usage. Though the majority of color references in the Bible are of a descriptive nature, the possibility of a symbolic use of color necessitates a careful study on the part of the Bible student. ...
Color Designations of Frequent Use The color designations which appear in the Bible offer relatively little in the way of variety. ...
The colors mentioned most frequently in the Bible are those which refer to the dyed products manufactured by the peoples of Israel and her neighbors. ...
The neutrals, white and black, are mentioned on occasion in the Bible. Natural objects designated black in the Bible include such items as hair, skin, the sky, and even the sun itself (Leviticus 13:31 ; Job 30:30 ; 1 Kings 18:45 ; Revelation 6:12 ). ...
Other color designations used less frequently but not any less significantly in the Bible are green, yellow, vermillion, and gray
Trees - The two kinds of tree most often mentioned in the Bible are the fruit bearing trees, the fig and the olive (Deuteronomy 8:8; Mark 11:1; Mark 11:3; see FIG; OLIVE). ...
Among the other trees mentioned in the Bible are algum (2 Chronicles 2:8; 2 Chronicles 9:10), cypress (2 Chronicles 2:8), plane (Isaiah 60:13), myrtle (Isaiah 41:19; Nehemiah 8:15), balsam (2 Samuel 5:23), oak (Judges 6:11; 2 Samuel 18:9), willow (Job 40:22; Psalms 137:2), sycamine (Luke 17:6), broom (1 Kings 19:4), lotus (Job 40:22) and palm (Exodus 15:27; Psalms 92:12)
Colors - Four artificial colors are spoken of in the Bible: 1. The natural colors noticed in the Bible are white, black, red, yellow, and green, yet only three colors are sharply defined—white, black, and red
Chemarim - This word occurs only once in our version of the Bible: "I will cut off the remnant of Baal, and the name of the Chemarims (Chemarim) with the priests," Zephaniah 1:4 ; but it frequently occurs in the Hebrew, and is generally translated "priests of the idols," or "priests clothed in black," because chamar signifies blackness. Our translators of the Bible would seem sometimes to understand by this word the idols or objects of worship, rather than their priests
Enoch - ...
The only other person named Enoch in the Bible also belonged to the earliest period of biblical history. He was a son of Cain, but the Bible says little about him (Genesis 4:17-18)
Haggedolim - Bible students have suggested that haggedolim is probably not a Hebrew proper name and have interpreted it as a copyists' change of an unfamiliar name for a more familiar word or title, an honorary title for a leading family, or a title for the high priest
Crocus - The flower mentioned in the Bible (Song of Song of Solomon 2:1 ; Isaiah 35:1 ) has been identified as either the narcissus (N
Heath - See Plants in the Bible
New Testament - Hence is derived the name given to the latter portion of the Bible
Bible: How to Deal With Its Difficulties - An old man once said, 'For a long period I puzzled myself about the difficulties of Scripture, until at last I came to the resolution that reading the Bible was like eating fish
Maccabees - (See CANON; Bible; DANIEL; JERUSALEM
Ur - Though it is mentioned in the Bible only as the place from which Abraham originally came (Genesis 11:27-31; Genesis 15:7; Nehemiah 9:7), it was an important city in the ancient world
Bible: Cause of Interest in it - tasteful bend and beautiful decoration, but these are not the qualities for which I prize it; it was my salvation from the howling sea! So the interest which a regenerate soul takes in the Bible, is founded on a personal application to the heart of the saving truth which it contains
Sea of Galilee - In Bible times it was known also as the Sea of Chinnereth (Numbers 34:11), the Lake of Gennesaret (Luke 5:1) and the Sea of Tiberias (John 6:1; John 6:16-25; John 21:1)
Rabshakeh - ” The position probably began as a mere butler but developed into a highly influential post by the time of its mention in the Bible
Wormwood - The word occurs frequently in the Bible, and generally in a metaphorical sense
Septuagint, the (Lxx) - ) that the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Bible, were translated into Greek
Soul Sleep - The Bible is not specific on the condition of the person between death and resurrection
Importunity - These are its only occurrences in the Bible. It is now practically obsolete, and ‘persistence’ might have been introduced into the RV Baking - See Bread ; Bread of the Presence ; Cooking and Heating ; Food and Meals in the Bible; Kneading, Kneading Bowl
Aramaic - Free paraphrastic translations of the Hebrew Bible into Aramaic were made at first orally in the synagogues and later reduced to writing
Rephaims - In the margin of the Bible, (2 Samuel 21:18; 2Sa 21:20) to the name of giant in each verse Rapha is preserved
Mahanaim - (See Genesis 32:2) The margin of the Bible renders it, two hosts or camps
Inspiration - " Without deciding on any of the various theories of inspiration, the general doctrine of Christians is that the Bible is so inspired by God that it is the infallible guide of men, and is perfectly trustworthy in all its parts, as given by God
Argob - Argob (är'gŏb), stony, a small district of Bashan, east of the Jordan; named only four times in the Bible
Leek - The Hebrew word is usually translated "grass" in the English Bible
Lucifer - The word Lucifer is used once only in the English Bible, and then of the king of Babylon, Isaiah 14:12
Pat'Ara - These notices of its position and maritime importance introduce us to the single mention of the place in the Bible -- ( Acts 21:1,2 )
Bible - " The term "Bible," though dating only from the 5th century in its sacred and exclusive use, is virtually expressed in the designations occurring in itself: "The Scripture" (John 10:35; John 20:9; Romans 4:3; 2 Peter 1:20); "the Book" (Psalms 40:7, cepher ); "the Scripture (kithab ) of truth" (Daniel 10:21). Stephens adopted them in his Vulgate, 1555; the English translation in the Geneva Bible of 1560. In reading the Bible we should remember these divisions have no authority; and where they break the sense, or mar the flow of thought, they are to be disregarded. Again the Bible inverts the relative importance of events as men commonly regard them. Pharaoh, Sennacherib, Nebuchadnezzar, Cyrus while doing their own will, appear in the Bible as God's instruments, overruled to carry out His purposes. It is no Jewish vanity which causes the Bible to be silent about most of the great political events of the world and to dwell so much on Israel; for what the Bible records redounds to Israel's shame as an apostate people, and its allusions to surrounding nations are often to record their being made God's instruments to chastise themselves. ...
Yet it is to the Bible alone we have owed for ages almost all that is most certain of the history of Moab (since confirmed by the Moabite stone), of the Amorites, and even of Nineveh and Babylon. The analogies of nature and of history to Bible truths powerfully confirm its emanation from the same God. ...
The historic development of the Bible scheme corresponds to God's working out His plans in the world by moral agents. As to natural science, the Bible is so framed in language as to adapt itself (on being closely examined) to advancing intelligence, according as the ruder theories are superseded by the more accurate. The exact adaptation of the Bible to man's complex being, body, soul, and spirit - reason, emotion, conscience - and to outward nature in its varied aspects, confirms its divine authorship. In the Bible, on the contrary, poetry is least found in the earliest books. ...
The Bible, with its old law of the Ten Commandments, gives the most perfect manifestation of the divine character and requirements from man, and this at a time when the human legislator, Moses, had just come from a nation sunk in the most debasing pollution and superstition. The Bible alone reveals the holy, just, loving, omnipotent, omniscient, personal, one and only God. The morality of the Bible rests on the infinitely pure attributes of the God of the Bible. ...
The Bible faithfully portrays man's universal corruption, its origin, and at the same time the sure hope of redemption, thus meeting fully man's profoundest wants. ...
The lovely character of Christ in the Bible, the perfect manhood and Godhead combined, above whatever uninspired man conceived not to say attained, the adaptation of the Bible to man's varied distresses (which occupy the larger part of it), and to his circumstances in all times and places, the completeness wherewith the end corresponds to the beginning, the close presenting before us man enjoying God's presence and marriage-like union with Him, no curse, no sin, no pain, no death, and the tree of life and waters of life which the beginning represented him as possessing before the fall, all assure us that "the words of the Lord are pure, as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times" (Psalms 12:6). Their present longer dispersion, and the diffusion of the whole Bible in all lands, are preparing for Messiah's manifestation in glory. Finally, the miracles wrought in connection with the Bible, and attested on infallible proofs, and the prophecies of the Old Testament (proved to have been given when they profess to be, by the fact that the Jews who oppose Christianity attest their age, and fulfilled minutely in the New Testament) establish the inspired truth of the Bible. Reader, if you want to know the divinity of the Bible, experimentally taste and feed upon it. The best defense of the Bible is the Bible itself. The best commentary on the Bible is the Bible itself
Flesh And Spirit - Bible readers often suppose that any mention of the word “flesh” is automatically in contrast with the concept of “spirit” and is, therefore, intrinsically evil. However, the early appearances of the word “flesh” in the Bible contrast with spirit only in the sense that the flesh is material substance, while the spirit is immaterial substance. The Bible simply records that God closed up Adam's flesh. Nevertheless, it remains true that the Bible frequently contrasts flesh with spirit. ...
Sometimes the Bible speaks of carnality
Hushah - Some Bible students think that in the copying process the name was changed from an original Shuah (1 Chronicles 4:11 ) through transposition of Hebrew letters
Answer - Besides the common use of this word in the sense of to reply, it is very often used in the Bible, following the Hebrew and Greek idioms, in the sense of to speak; meaning simply that one begins or resumes his discourse, Zechariah 3:4 ; 6:4 ; Matthew 11:25 ; 12:38 ; Luke 7:40
Jehovah-Shalom - The margin of the Bible renders this title of a covenant God, "The Lord send peace
Raven - It is the first bird mentioned in the Bible, Genesis 8:7
Bodyguard - Members of a king's bodyguard mentioned in the Bible include: David (1 Samuel 22:14 ; 1 Samuel 28:2 ), Benaiah ben Jehoiada (2 Samuel 23:23 ), Potiphar (Genesis 37:36 ), Nebuzaradan (2 Kings 25:8 ; Jeremiah 39:9-13 ; Jeremiah 52:12-16 ), and Arioch (Daniel 2:14 )
Viper - Several species of snakes are called vipers, and the various words used in the Bible for them probably do not designate specific types
Eschew - versions of the Bible ‘eschew’ is common. In AV Ferret, - The Jews' Bible (by Leeser) has 'hedgehog;' others think the 'shrew-mouse;' and others the 'gecko,' a wall-lizard
Abrech - Translated "bow the knee" in English Bible
Chrysolite - The Septuagint gives it as the equivalent of תַּרְשִׁישׁ, which Flinders Petrie (Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible (5 vols) iv
Hexapla - This "six-fold" Bible, comprising about 50 large volumes, is arranged in six parallel columns which contain the Hebrew text in Hebrew (square) and Greek characters, the Septuagint, and three other Greek versions
Annihilationism - This is contradicted by the Bible in Matthew 25:46 which says “And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life
Tubal - hath been thought by some that as Cain is derived from Canah, this junction seems to imply that this man had much earthly possession, or perhaps figuratively so called from being the first instructor, or as the margin of the Bible renders it, the whetter of the metals of the earth
Pitcher - For illustrations of water-jars found in ancient cisterns, see Macalister, Bible Sidelights , etc
Humility - It is often extolled in the Bible, Proverbs 15:33 16:19 ; and the Savior especially exalts it, Matthew 18:4 , and ennobles and endears it by his own example, John 13:4-17 Philippians 2:5-8
Orontes River - This river is never actually mentioned in the Bible but was famous for its association with Antioch, which owed to the river the fertility of its district
Perfumer - The materials used in Bible times were gums, resins, roots, barks, leaves; and these were variously combined according to the skill and fancy of the perfumer. ‘ Perfumers ’ ought in every instance to be substituted for AV Huz'Zab - ) The moderns follow the rendering in the margin of our English Bible --"that which was established
Abimelech - Kings by this name appear in the Bible from the times of Abraham through King David
Lectern - Lecterns as usedin our churches are sometimes constructed of wood or stone,but frequently of polished brass, in the form of an eagle withoutstretched wings, (on which the Bible rests) to symbolize theflight of the Gospel message throughout the world
Christian Church, General Convention - " In 1794 they became known as "Christians," using the Bible as guide and discipline, and accepting Christian character as test of church fellowship. Stone, one of the original leaders of the "Christians," joined them in 1832 on condition that the Bible should be basis of union. They have no creed or doctrine other than the Bible
Unclean Spirits - The most frequent mention of unclean spirits in the Bible is in relation to the ministry of Jesus. Elsewhere in the Bible evil spirits are called demons (see DEMONS). ...
Jesus and his disciples healed many who were possessed by evil spirits, but the Bible usually makes a distinction between such people and those who suffered from normal sicknesses and diseases (Matthew 10:8; Mark 1:34; Mark 6:13; Acts 5:16; Acts 8:7; Acts 16:16-18; see DISEASE)
Canon of Scripture, the, - ), where the word indicates the rule by which the contents of the Bible must be determined, and thus secondarily an index of the constituent books. " The canonical books were also called "books of the testament," and Jerome styled the whole collection by the striking name of "the holy library," which happily expresses the unity and variety of the Bible. Respecting the books of which the Canon is composed, see the article Bible
English Versions - The history of the English Bible begins early in the history of the English people, though not quite at the beginning of it, and only slowly attains to any magnitude. The Bible which was brought into the country by the first missionaries, by Aidan in the north and Augustine in the south, was the Latin Bible; and for some considerable time after the first preaching of Christianity to the English no vernacular version would be required. Nor is there any trace of a vernacular Bible in the Celtic Church, which still existed in Wales and Ireland. On the one hand, there was a call for word-for-word translations of the Latin, which might assist readers to a comprehension of the Latin Bible; and, on the other, for continuous versions or paraphrases, which might be read to, or by, those whose skill in reading Latin was small. John’s Gospel [5]; and it is noteworthy that from the second of these was derived the version which appears in the revised Wyclifite Bible, to be mentioned presently. [7] to contain an independent translation of the NT. With Wyclif (1320 1384), we reach a land mark in the history of the English Bible, in the production of the first complete version of both OT and NT. Such as it was however, it was a complete English Bible, addressed to the whole English people, high and low, rich and poor. Others are plain copies of ordinary size, intended for private persons or monastic libraries; for it is clear that, in spite of official disfavour and eventual prohibition, there were many places in England where Wyclif and his Bible were welcomed. The difference of style between Hereford and his continuator or continuators, the stiff and unpopular character of the work of the former, and the imperfections inevitable in a first attempt on so large a scale, called aloud for revision; and a second Wyclifite Bible, the result of a very complete revision of its predecessor, saw the light not many years after the Reformer’s death. It was assigned by Forshall and Madden, the editors of the Wyclifite Bible, to John Purvey , one of Wyclif’s most intimate followers; but the evidence is purely circumstantial, and rests mainly on verbal resemblances between the translator’s preface and known works of Purvey, together with the fact that a copy of this preface is found attached to a copy of the earlier version which was once Purvey’s property. Versions - Those extant are the Targum of Onkelos (or AQUILA, Smith's Bible Dictionary) on the Pentateuch (so named not because written by Aquila but because in Aramaic it did what Aquila aimed at in his Greek version, namely, to counteract the arbitrary corruptions of the Septuagint and to produce a translation scrupulously literal, for the benefit of those not knowing the original language); the Targum of Jonathan ben Uzziel on the first and last prophets, more probably of Rabbi Joseph the blind, in the middle of the fourth century, full of invectives against Rome (Isaiah 34:9 mentioning Armillus (Antichrist), Isaiah 10:4; Germany, Ezekiel 38:6); also his targum on the Pentateuch; the Targum of Jerusalem on parts of the Pentateuch. Among the pioneers of the KJV were Caedmon who embodied the Bible history in alliterative Anglo Saxon poetry (Bede H. ...
His desire to make the Bible a people's book has acted on succeeding versions, so that our English Bible has ever been popular rather than scholastic. "...
MILES COVERDALE published his Bible in 1535, probably at Zurich, and at Cromwell's request, who saw that "not until the day after doomsday" (Cromwell's words) were the English people likely to get their promised 'Bible from the bishops if he waited for them. ...
THOMAS MATTHEW'S folio Bible, dedicated to the king, appeared in 1537; printed to the end of Isaiah abroad, thenceforward by the London printers Grafton and Whitechurch. He and Tyndale just before the latter's imprisonment had determined to edit the complete Bible and Apocrypha, based on the original not on the Vulgate, etc. , as Coverdale's, which was the only existing whole Bible in English. Cranmer approved of the Bible, saying "he would rather than a thousand pounds it should be licensed. Henry VIII thus, unwittingly perhaps, sanctioned a Bible identical with Tyndale's which his acts of parliament had stigmatized. " Purgatory "is not in the Bible, but the purgation and remission of our sins is made us by the abundant mercy of God. " The introduction of "the table of principal matters" entities Rogers to be accounted "father" of concordance and Bible dictionary writers. Taverner's Bible in 1539 was an expurgated edition of Matthew's. ...
CRANMER in the same year 1539 issued his folio Bible with engraving on the title page by Holbein, the king on his throne represented giving the word of God to the bishops and doctors to distribute to the people who shout, Viva rex! A preface in 1540 bears his initials T. " The Psalms, the Scripture quotations in the homilies, the sentences in the Communion, and occasional phrases in the liturgy (as "worthy fruits of penance"), are drawn from Cranmer's Bible. "...
GENEVA Bible. " The New Testament translated by Whittingham was printed by Conrad Badius in 1557, the whole Bible in 1560; Goodman, Pallain, Sampson, and Coverdale laboured with him. Its cheapness and greater portableness (a small 4to, instead of Cranmer's folio), its division into verses, the Roman type then first introduced into Bibles instead of the black letter, its helpful notes, and the accompanying Bible dictionary of editions after 1578, all recommended it. It is the first Bible that omits the Apocrypha. " This Geneva Bible,as published by Barker, was called "the Breeches Bible" from its translated for "aprons" breeches (Genesis 3:7), but Wycliffe had previously so translated. Parker consulted eight bishops and some deans and professors, and brought out "...
THE BISHOPS' Bible" in folio, 1568-1572. ) At the beginning of the reign of James I the Bishops' Bible was the one authorized, the Geneva Bible was the popular one. ...
The Bishops' Bible was to be as little altered as the original would permit. ...
Other translations to be followed when more agreeing with the original than the Bishops' Bible, namely, Tyndale's, Coverdale's, Matthew's, Cranmer's, and Geneva. This Authorized Version did not at once supersede the Bishops' Bible and Geneva Bible
Walk - The Bible sometimes speaks of people’s conduct or manner of life as their ‘way’ or ‘walk’. ...
Frequently, the Bible uses the word ‘walk’ when contrasting people’s way of life before they were Christians with their new life in Christ (Romans 6:4; Ephesians 2:1-2; Ephesians 5:8; Colossians 3:7-8)
Havilah - Some Bible students think the name is preserved in modern Haulan in southwest Arabia. Saul defeated the Amalekites from “Havilah as you go to Shur, which is east of Egypt” (1 Samuel 15:7 NAS), a description whose meaning Bible students continue to debate
Shittah Tree, Shittim - shittah, the thorny ), is without doubt correctly referred to some species of Acacia , of which three or four kinds occur in the Bible lands. noun shittim , the singular number occurring once only in the Bible
Promises - We have a most extensive sense to the word promise, since every thing in the Bible, yea, the Bible itself, is the word of promise
Abel - -Besides the articles in the Bible Dictionaries, see W. Hastings, Greater Men and Women of the Bible, vol. [1] p. Matheson, The Representative Men of the Bible, i. [2] 45; A. Whyte, Bible Characters, i. [3] 44
Abel - -Besides the articles in the Bible Dictionaries, see W. Hastings, Greater Men and Women of the Bible, vol. [1] p. Matheson, The Representative Men of the Bible, i. [1]7 45; A. Whyte, Bible Characters, i. [3] 44
Demon - ...
 ...
In the New Testament the word is synonymous with the evil spirit, and in English versions of the Bible is rendered "devil" and consequently designates a maleficent being, a meaning not necessarily implied in the original yord "demon
Chilion - ’ Neither of these names occurs elsewhere in the Bible
Arnon - This river (referred to twenty-four times in the Bible) rises in the mountains of Gilead, and after a circuitous course of about 80 miles through a deep ravine it falls into the Dead Sea nearly opposite Engedi
Jaare-Oregim - Many modern Bible scholars follow early Greek translations and 1 Chronicles 20:5 and omit Oregim (REB)
Perizzites - They lived mainly in the hills of central Palestine and are found in Bible narratives concerning Bethel, Shechem and the tribal territory of Ephraim (Genesis 13:2-7; Genesis 34:26-30; Joshua 17:15)
Bohan - Some Bible students see this as evidence that some part of the tribe of Reuben once lived west of the Jordan
Gabriel - He appears four times in the Bible, each time bringing to human beings a message from the Lord
Gittaim - The Bible does not tell the precise time (2 Samuel 4:3 )
Silversmith - See Occupations and Professions in the Bible
Willow - ” See Plants in the Bible
Lily - See Flowers in the Bible
Ashhur - Some Bible students understand Caleb to be Ashhur's father in 1 Chronicles 2:24 (TEV, RSV, but not NRSV)
Rachel - A well-known and interesting name in the Bible, the beloved wife of the patriarch Jacob, and daughter of Laban
Vomit - That which emanates from the pens and the lips of false teachers who present a false faith is "vomit" in the Bible sense of the word
Text - Thus the Bible itself is said to be faithfully translated out of the original tongues, that is, the text: in opposition to what may be called human composition
Basilisk - It is referred to in the Bible, under the names of adder, asp, cobra, flying serpent, and viper (Isaiah 59)
Hexaemeron - No clash between Bible and science is possible
Zebedee - The Bible does not say if Zebedee ever became a believer, but he did not stand in the way of his sons or wife becoming Jesus' disciples
Shilhim - ) The Imperial Bible Dictionary connects Shilhim with Shiloah or Siloam from shaalach "send," waters sent from a fountain (John 9:7; Nehemiah 3:15), and identifies with el Birein, "the wells" four in number, each 25 or 30 ft
Zephaniah - There are four persons of this name mentioned in the Bible
Baltasar - (Greek and Latin name for the Hebrew Aramaic, Belshazzar; Babylonian, Belshazzar, "Bel protect the king") According to the Bible the son of Nabuchodonosor, and the last king of Babylon
Mile, - It is only once noticed in the Bible, (Matthew 5:41 ) the usual method of reckoning both in the New Testament and in Josephus being by the stadium
Inspiration - According to long-standing Christian usage, the word ‘inspiration’ refers to that direct activity of God’s Spirit upon the writers of the Bible that enabled them to write what God wanted them to write. ...
Although the Bible was written under the inspiration of God, there are many things recorded in the Bible of which God disapproves. The Bible sometimes records the words of people who were wrong in what they said (e. ...
The writers may not have been aware that their writing was inspired and would one day be part of the Bible. The Bible is not partly divine and partly human; every part of it is divine, yet every part of it is also human. ...
Though the Spirit guided the Bible writers in the words they used, the writers wrote according to their own styles and vocabularies. With each book of the Bible, God chose the particular person whose nature, training, background and temperament were most suited to his purpose at the time. ...
There were also many literary forms among the writings of the Bible, but God spoke through them all. ...
Choosing the right words...
In spite of all the differences in the thinking and expression of the Bible writers, the actual words they wrote were those that God intended them to write. ...
Believers throughout the history of the church have likewise had an awareness that, as they read the Bible, God speaks to them through it (Hebrews 4:12). The same Spirit who inspired the writers enlightens believers as they read, and they receive the words of the Bible as God’s final authority (1 Corinthians 2:12-15; 1 John 2:26-27; 1 John 5:7; 1 John 5:10; see INTERPRETATION)
Pithom - The only mention of this city in the Bible relates to the plight of the Israelites in Egypt (Exodus 1:11 )
Adder - The word adder is used five times in the Bible, as a translation of four different serpents of the venomous sort
Hail (Meterological) - The Bible speaks of hail to speak of divine presence, action, and punishment
Niccolo Sfondrati - As pope he supported the Holy League in its struggle against Henry of Navarre, ordered the abolition of Indian slavery in the Philippine Islands, and appointed commissions for the revision of the Sixtine Bible and the Pian Breviary
Leviticus - The third Book of the Bible, named from its contents, as it deals exclusively with the service of God and the religious ceremonies of the Old Testament as carried out by the members of the tribe of Levi, both priests and Levites
Bible, Study of the - Due to their devout as well as scientific labors we have what is called an Introduction to the Bible, treating the inspiration of the Sacred Books, their Canon, their meaning (exegesis) and the rules which guide students in determining this (hermeneutics), as well as the late studies necessitated by the criticism, higher as it is called, of the Sacred Books
Spider - " --Wood's Bible Animals
Pamphylia - The Bible does not mention his preaching there when he passed through it the first time (Acts 13:13-14), but on his return he preached in the main town of Perga
Shekel - The shekel was the basic weight in use among Israelites of Bible times
Nephtoah - of wady Haninah; see Imperial Bible Dictionary)
Rabbah - Most references to Rabbah in the Bible are related to conflicts between Ammon and Israel-Judah (e
Diblaim - Some Bible students see Hosea's father-in-law so named; others, his mother-in-law
Heron - word ’anâphâh designates an unclean bird ( Leviticus 11:19 , Deuteronomy 14:18 ), not otherwise mentioned in the Bible, but sufficiently well known to be taken as a type of a class. The occurrence of this name immediately after stork , and followed by the expression ‘after her kind,’ makes it probable that the EV Scriptures: Reading of - ' If those who love the Scriptures were asked why they read the Bible so often, they might honestly reply, 'because we cannot find time to read it oftener
Berothai - The three are usually identified as the same place, but some Bible students dispute this
Lucifer - A later tradition associated the word with evil, although the Bible does not use it as such
Carefulness - Careful and carefulness do not express approbation in the English of the Bible, as they do now
Week - It was shared with the ancient world through the Bible and the religious practice of both Jews and Christians
Jehovah - In the English Bible it is usually translated "Lord" and printed in small capitals
Glosses, Scriptural - " is a liturgical gloss in King James's Bible (Matthew 6)
Gregory Xiv, Pope - As pope he supported the Holy League in its struggle against Henry of Navarre, ordered the abolition of Indian slavery in the Philippine Islands, and appointed commissions for the revision of the Sixtine Bible and the Pian Breviary
Dumah - " Since there is no sound from Heaven, no voice from GOD, no expressions from eternity except what we find in the Bible, the prophet was troubled about it
Fir - But Smith's Bible Dictionary Appendix (from Septuagint arkeuthos) and kedros) ) identifies berowsh with the tall fragrant juniper of Lebanon, and denies that the lurch and Scotch fir exist in Syria or Palestine
Abaddon - Abaddon occurs six times in the Hebrew Bible ( Job 26:6 ; Job 28:22 ; Job 31:12 ; Proverbs 15:11 ; Proverbs 27:20 ; Psalm 88:11 )
Dispensation, Dispensationalism - In the Scofield Reference Bible a dispensation is "a period of time during which man is tested in respect of obedience to some specific revelation of the will of God" Dispensationalism says that God uses different means of administering His will and grace to His people
Excommunication - ...
In the Bible, serious offenders of God’s law, who were supposed to be Christian, were "delivered over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh" (1 Corinthians 15:5; 1 Timothy 1:20)
Shawm - Prayerbook version of Psalms, instead of the Bible version, "cornet
Exorcism - The practise is based on teachings of the Bible
Alcala, University of - In 1817 the University of Alcala published a polyglot Bible called Complutensian from the ancient name of the town
Kedemah - And in confirmation of it, it is remarkable that the account given of the journeying after the flood is expressed by this term, "they journeyed from Kadem," or as the margin of the Bible renders it, "they journeyed eastward
Bochim - And so the margin of the Bible renders it
Hasten, Make Haste - Mâhar occurs approximately 70 times in the Hebrew Bible; it appears twice in the first verse in which it is found: “And Abraham hastened into the tent unto Sarah, and said, Make ready quickly three measures of fine meal …” ( Decapolis - A region noticed three times in the Bible
Eliakim - There are five persons of this name mentioned in the Bible
Leopard - Allusions are made in the Bible to its manner of watching for its prey, Jeremiah 5:6; Hosea 13:7; its fleetness, Habakkuk 1:8; its fierceness and cruelty, Isaiah 11:6, and in Daniel 7:6 it is made the emblem of power
Scriptural Glosses - " is a liturgical gloss in King James's Bible (Matthew 6)
Study of the Bible - Due to their devout as well as scientific labors we have what is called an Introduction to the Bible, treating the inspiration of the Sacred Books, their Canon, their meaning (exegesis) and the rules which guide students in determining this (hermeneutics), as well as the late studies necessitated by the criticism, higher as it is called, of the Sacred Books
Scandinavian Evangelical Bodies - Three bodies have been organized: ...
Swedish Evangelical Mission Covenant
Swedish Evangelical Free Church
Norwegian-Danish Evangelical Free Church Association of North America
In doctrine the Covenant is strictly evangelical, accepting the Bible as the inspired Word of God unto men, the only infallible guide in matters of faith, doctrine, and practise, and His message regarding both this life and the life that is to come
Sfondrati, Niccolo - As pope he supported the Holy League in its struggle against Henry of Navarre, ordered the abolition of Indian slavery in the Philippine Islands, and appointed commissions for the revision of the Sixtine Bible and the Pian Breviary
University of Alcala - In 1817 the University of Alcala published a polyglot Bible called Complutensian from the ancient name of the town
Faithful - In many passages in the Bible, means "believing
Red Sea - In the Bible it is famous as the scene of the miraculous crossing of the Israelites at the time of the Exodus (Exodus 14)
Sea, Red - In the Bible it is famous as the scene of the miraculous crossing of the Israelites at the time of the Exodus (Exodus 14)
Pattern - Numbers 8:4 a different original and Arts and Crafts, § 3 ), others a copy of the original model as Hebrews 8:5 RV Phut, Put - The few mentions of Phut in the Bible clearly indicate a country or people of Africa, and, it must be added, probably not far from Egypt
Pharaoh's Daughter, - Three Egyptian princesses, daughters of Pharaohs, are mentioned in the Bible:--
The preserver of Moses, daughter of the Pharaoh who first oppressed the Israelites. (1 Chronicles 4:18 ) [2] (B
Bible, Canon of the - What was the attitude of the church in the city to which it was originally written?
People of every generation have inherently asked about each book of the Bible: Does it have the "ring of genuineness "? The testimony of the Spirit was important. The proper designation for the Jewish Bible is Tanak, an acronym constituted from the initial letters of the three divisions of that canon—Law (Torah), Prophets (Naviim), and Writings (Kethubim). Since the Hebrew Bible was preferred by the Reformers during the Protestant Reformation in their struggle against the Catholic Church, whose Bible contained the Apocrypha, translators of Protestant Bibles excluded the Apocrypha. Thus Protestant and evangelical Bibles duplicate the content of the Hebrew Bible (the current thirty-nine books). Even though the New Testament was written in Greek, Protestant and evangelical Bibles do not embrace either the content or the arrangement of the Greek Old Testament. The arrangement of the books in the Hebrew Bible is different from both the Greek and the Latin. ...
According to the testimony of Talmudic and rabbinic sources, the thirty-nine books of the Hebrew Bible were originally divided into only twenty-four. Therefore, the Jewish people of Bible times never had the complete Old Testament as we know it. ...
Division of individual books of the canon into smaller sections is first indicated in the fourth century, in Codex Vaticanus, which uses paragraph divisions, somewhat comparable to the Hebrew Bible. Our familiar chapter and verse divisions were introduced into the Bible quite late in the history of the canon. Stephen Langton introduced the chapters into the Latin Bible prior to his death in 1228, and Stephanus added the verses in the New Testament in 1551 and his publication of a Greek and Latin edition of the New Testament. Verses are attested in the Hebrew Bible as far back as the Mishnah (Megillah 4:4). The first English Bible to include verse divisions was the Geneva Bible of 1560. ...
John McRay...
See also Apocrypha ; Bible, Authority of the ; Bible, Inspiration of the ...
Bibliography . von Campenhausen, The Formation of the Christian Bible ; B
Ibleam - Many Bible students think Ibleam was the original reading for the Levite city in Joshua 21:25 , where the Hebrew text now reads “Gath-rimmon,” also read in Joshua 21:24 . Many Bible students also read Ibleam as the place of attack in 2 Kings 15:10 (REB, TEV, RSV, but not NRSV)
Septuagint Chronology - It reckons 1500 years more from the creation to Abraham than the Hebrew Bible. Kennicott, in the dissertation prefixed to his Hebrew Bible, has shown it to be very probable that the chronology of the Hebrew Scriptures, since the period just mentioned, was corrupted by the Jews between the years 175 and 200; and that the chronology of the Septuagint is more agreeable to truth
Kindness - The pattern of all kindness is set before us in the Bible in the behaviour of God to our race. The Bible reveals it
Lamp - ; Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible , artt. van Lennep, Bible Lands and Customs, p
Septuagint Chronology - It reckons one thousand five hundred years more from the creation to Abraham than the Hebrew Bible. Kennicott, in the dissertation prefixed to his Hebrew Bible, has shown it to be very probable, that the chronology of the Hebrew Scriptures, since the period just mentioned, was corrupted by the Jews between A
Biblical Genealogies - The genealogical lists found in the Bible present many complicated problems of textual and historical criticism. Comparison of the different lists concerning the same person or the same group of persons in different parts of the Bible, or of lists covering the same period in different sections of the Bible, reveals the incompleteness of the lists, or more or less irremediable corruptions of some of the names, a thing which could take place easily enough in Hebrew owing to the similarity of several letters in the different forms of the Hebrew alphabet
Praise - The Bible recognizes that men and women may also be the objects of praise, either from other people (Proverbs 27:21 ; Proverbs 31:30 ) or from God Himself (Romans 2:29 ), and that angels and the natural world are likewise capable of praising God (Psalm 148:1 ). Many terms are used to express this in the Bible, including “glory,” “blessing,” “thanksgiving,” and “hallelujah,” the last named being a transliteration of the Hebrew for “Praise the Lord. ...
While the Bible contains frequent injunctions for people to praise God, there are also occasional warnings about the quality of this praise
Genealogies, Biblical - The genealogical lists found in the Bible present many complicated problems of textual and historical criticism. Comparison of the different lists concerning the same person or the same group of persons in different parts of the Bible, or of lists covering the same period in different sections of the Bible, reveals the incompleteness of the lists, or more or less irremediable corruptions of some of the names, a thing which could take place easily enough in Hebrew owing to the similarity of several letters in the different forms of the Hebrew alphabet
Vulgate - The position of the Latin Vulgate, as a version of the original texts of the Bible, has been dealt with in the two articles on the Text of the OT and the NT. Just as the LXX [1] , apart from its importance as evidence for the text of the OT, has a history as an integral part of the Bible of the Eastern Church, so also does the Vulgate deserve consideration as the Bible of the Church in the West. Although the English Bible, to which we have been accustomed for nearly 300 years, is in the main a translation from the original Hebrew and Greek, it must be remembered that for the first thousand years of the English Church the Bible of this country, whether in Latin or in English, was the Vulgate. In Germany the conditions were much the same, with the difference that Luther’s Bible was still more indebted to the Vulgate than was our AV [5] in the rest of the Bible. [23] In the British Museum), and there are some 8 or 10 other MSS (written mostly at Tours), besides several others containing the Gospels only, which in varying degrees belong to the same group. Alcuin’s attempt, however, was not the only one made in France at this period to reform the current Bible text. Theodulf was a Visigoth, probably from Septimania, the large district of southern France which then formed part of the Visigothic kingdom of Spain; and it was to Spain that he looked for materials for his revision of the Latin Bible. Many copies of the Bible were written there, and the influence of St. Gall before 842, the original form of the Glossa Ordinaria , the standard commentary on the Bible in the Middle Ages. Spain and Ireland had by this time ceased to be of primary importance in the circulation of Bible texts. These details, however, relate more to the history of art than to that of the Bible, and with regard to the spread of the knowledge of the Scriptures there is nothing of Importance to note in the 10th and 11th cents. the most noteworthy phenomenon, both in England and on the Continent, is the popularity of annotated copies of the various books of the Bible. The ordinary arrangement is for the Bible text to occupy a single narrow column down the centre of the page, while on either side of it is the commentary; but where the commentary is scanty, the Biblical column expands to fill the space, and vice versa . The various books of the Bible generally form separate MSS, or small groups of them are combined. Simultaneously with these, some very large Bibles were produced, handsomely decorated with illuminated initials. These are of the nature of éditions de luxe , while the copies with commentaries testify to the extent to which the Bible was at this time studied, at any rate in the larger monasteries; and the catalogues of monastic libraries which still exist confirm this impression by showing what a large number of such annotated MSS were preserved in them, no doubt for the study of the monks. The present chapter division of the Bible text is said to have been first made by Stephen Langton (archbishop of Canterbury, 1207 1228), while a doctor at Paris; and the 13th cent. Louis) witnessed a remarkable output of Vulgate MSS of the complete Bible. Hitherto complete Bibles had almost always been very large volumes, suitable only for liturgical use; but by the adoption of very thin vellum and very small writing it was now found possible to compress the whole Bible into volumes of quite moderate size, comparable with the ordinary printed Bibles of to-day. For example, one such volume, containing the whole Bible with ample margins, measures 5 1 / 2×3 1 /2×1¾ inches, and consists of 471 leaves. From the appearance of these Bibles (hundreds of which are still extant) it is evident that they were intended for private use, and they testify to a remarkable growth in the personal study of the Scriptures. These small Bibles were produced almost as plentifully in England as in France, and in an identical style, which continued well into the 14th century. no important modification of the text or status of the Latin Bible took place until the invention of printing two centuries later. The first book to be printed in Europe was the Latin Bible, published in 1456 by Gutenberg and Fust (now popularly known as the Mazarin Bible, from the circumstance that the first copy of it to attract notice in modern times was that in the library of Cardinal Mazarin). In type this Bible resembles the contemporary large German Bible MSS; in text it is the ordinary Vulgate of the 15th century. During the next century Bibles poured from the press, but with little or no attempt at revision of the text. , in his short pontificate of five years (1585 90), not only caused the production of an edition of the Greek OT (1587), but in 1590 issued a Latin Bible which he declared was to be accepted as the authentic edition demanded by the Council of Trent. Hazelelponi - ” Many Bible students think a copyist omitted something in Hebrew
Jordan River - (Hebrew: Yarden, from the root Yarad, to descend) ...
The great river of Palestine, mentioned many times in the Bible
Hazeroth - Some Bible students try to locate all the sites in Deuteronomy 1:1 near Moab
Incense - In the King James Version of the Bible, two Hebrew words are translated “incense”; however, the two words are practically synonymous
Ointment - Among the Orientals of Bible times much use was made of sweet smelling unguents, among which spikenard was the most famous
Mai, Angelo - They include Cicero's De republica, an important Greek manuscript of the Bible, and works by Marcus Aurelius, Plautus, Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and several of the Apostolic Fathers and of the Italian humanists
Fundamentalism - Fundamentalists uphold the Bible as the sole arbiter of truth, religious and scientific, whence their activity in behalf of anti-evolution legislation
Rab-Mag - For various conjectures as to the origin of the title, see Hastings’ DB Succoth-Benoth - ‘Benoth’ (LXX Heath - "Its gloomy, stunted appearance, with its scale-like leaves pressed close to its gnarled stem, and cropped close by the wild goats, as it clings to the rocks about Petra, gives great force to the contrast suggested by the prophet, between him that trusteth in man, naked and destitute, and the man that trusteth in the Lord, flourishing as a tree planted by the waters" (Tristram, Natural History of the Bible)
Ishtob - ” A manuscript from the Dead Sea Scrolls has Ishtob as one word and thus as a proper name; but modern Bible students still generally follow the standard manuscript rather than the older Dead Sea Scroll
Ithiel - Many Bible students put spaces between different letters of the Hebrew text assuming an early copying change
Dial - For the measurement of time, only once mentioned in the Bible, erected by Ahaz (2 Kings 20:11 ; Isaiah 38:8 )
Eagle - To this end the lectern from which the Holy Scriptures are read isgenerally constructed in the form of an eagle with outstretchedwings on which the Bible rests
Bracelet - The bracelets mentioned in the Bible were usually of gold (Genesis 24:22 ,Genesis 24:22,24:30 ,Genesis 24:30,24:47 ; Numbers 31:50 ; Isaiah 3:19 ; Ezekiel 16:11 ; Ezekiel 23:42 )
Willows - The Hebrew word translated willows is generic, and includes several species of the large family of Salices , which is well represented in Palestine and the Bible lands, such as the Salix alba, S
Mandrakes - Modern Bible scholars apply this name to a member of the potato family (Mandragora officinalis)
Bezaleel - Most modern translations of the Bible render the names of these men Bezalel and Oholiab
Scorn, Scornful - Scorn often appears in some Bible translations where scoff appears in others
Evil Speaking - EVIL SPEAKING in the Bible covers sins of untruthfulness as well as of malice
Bellows - The idea of a bellows is alluded to elsewhere in the Bible (See Job 20:26 ; Job 41:21 ; Isaiah 54:16 ; Ezekiel 22:20-21 )
Kitchens - There is no mention in the Bible of separate rooms in homes where meals were prepared
Anthropomorphism - That the numerous anthropomorphic expressions in the Bible are to be understood metaphorically, is evident from the emphatic teaching of the Scriptures that God is an infinitely perfect spiritual being
Angelo Mai - They include Cicero's De republica, an important Greek manuscript of the Bible, and works by Marcus Aurelius, Plautus, Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and several of the Apostolic Fathers and of the Italian humanists
Atheism - ...
The Bible teaches that all men know there is a God (Romans 2:14-15)
Exodus - (Greek: ex, out; odos, way) ...
The second book of the Bible, thus named because it relates the departure of the Jews from Egypt and a part of their wanderings through the wilderness, as far as Mount Sinai
Knife - The margin of the Bible saith, that they were "knives of flints
Allegory - Other biblical allegories are to be explained by the aid of the context, by similar usage elsewhere in the Bible, or by tradition
Geez - The translation of the Bible from Greek into Geez in the 4th or 5th centuries was the work of many scholars, the unity of version being due only to deliberate effort
River, Jordan - (Hebrew: Yarden, from the root Yarad, to descend) ...
The great river of Palestine, mentioned many times in the Bible
Harp - Drawings of the harp appear on early Egyptian, Assyrian, Hebrew, and Celtic monuments; it is mentioned in the Bible, e
Ham - The impiety revealed in his conduct towards his father, drew upon him, or rather, according to the Bible statement, on his son Canaan, a prophetic malediction, Genesis 9:20-27
Time - Besides the ordinary uses of this word, the Bible sometimes employs it to denote a year, as in Daniel 4:16 ; or a prophetic year, consisting of three hundred and sixty natural year, a day being taken for a year
Jehoshaphat, Valley of - Since the third century, however, the name has been appropriated to the deep and narrow glen east of Jerusalem, running north and south between the city and the Mount of Olives, called in the Bible the brook Kidron
Dragon - Answers, in the English Bible, the Hebrew word signifying a sea-monster, huge serpent, etc
e'Hud - ) In the Bible he is not called a judge, but a deliverer (l. [1]
Bull, Bullock, - It is variously rendered "bullock," (Isaiah 65:25 ) "cow," (Ezekiel 4:15 ) "oxen," (Genesis 12:16 ) Kine is used in the Bible as the plural of cow
Responds - In the old system of reading Holy Scripture in DivineService, short selections from different books of the Bible wereread successively, with short Anthems being sung after each, whichwere called "responds
Bible, Texts And Versions - The preservation and transmission of the Bible from the time that it was written until the present involves two areas of study. ...
There are two periods in the history of the text of the Bible. The invention of printing was very important for the transmission of the text of the Bible. Some have calculated that the cost of one complete Bible made by a professional scribe in the fourth century would equal the salary of a member of the Roman legion for forty years. ...
The Period of the Handwritten Text The story of the Bible is really the story of two Testaments, the Old and the New. The copies of the Hebrew Bible available today are the work of very careful Hebrew scribes. Though there are variations, the text of the Hebrew Bible is essentially as it existed in the time before Christ. The famous Latin Vulgate of Jerome contained the books in the Septuagint not found in the Hebrew Bible plus 2Esdras. by Jerome, became the Bible of the Latin Church. It is a painstaking job done mostly by scholars in the universities, colleges, seminaries, and Bible societies. Without textual criticism no modern Bibles in any language would be possible. ...
The Printed Bible The significance of the printing of the Gutenberg Bible for Bible distribution is impossible to overestimate. From that time on, a steady stream of Bibles has poured from presses around the world. Simply to list and give a very brief description of all of the English editions of the Bible since that time requires a book of over 500 pages. Even so, the KJV was a magnificent achievement and did much not only for Bible reading in the English world but for the stability and beauty of the English language. ...
The need to speak the message of the Bible in clear and understandable modern language has never been greater. Modern versions such as the New English Bible, the Good News Bible, and the New International Version are essential to the present missionary task
Door - At least five Hebrew words and one Greek term are translated “door” in the English Bible. ...
“Door” is often used in a figurative sense in the Bible
Sarah - Motherhood after long childlessness is a recurrent theme in Bible narratives: Rebekah, Rachel, the mother of Samson, of Samuel, of John Baptist had each a happiness like Sarah’s. Whyte, Bible Characters: Adam to Achan, 1896; R
Envy - The Bible classes it with these things ( Romans 1:29 ; Rom 13:13 , 1 Corinthians 3:3 , 2 Corinthians 12:20 , Gal 5:21 , 1 Timothy 6:4 , Titus 3:3 , James 3:14 ; James 3:16 ). Examples abound in the Bible, such as are suggested by the relations between Cain and Abel, Jacob and Esau, Rachel and Leah, Joseph and his brothers, Saul and David, Haman and Mordecai, the elder brother and the prodigal son, the Roman evangelists of Philippians 1:15 and the Apostle Paul, and many others
Jupiter - This god is not really referred to in the Bible. The Roman god Iuppiter (‘Father of Light’ or ‘of the sky’) was recognized by the Romans as corresponding in attributes to the Greek god Zeus, and hence in modern times the term ‘Zeus’ in the Bible ( 2Ma 6:2 ) has been loosely translated ‘Jupiter
River - This word answers in our Bible to various Hebrew terms, of which the principal are the following: ...
1. ...
In some passages in our Bible the word "rivers" seems to denote rivulets or canals, to conduct hither and thither small streams of water from a tank or fountain, Ezekiel 31:4
Chronology - The information in the Bible is indeed direct rather than inferential although there is very important evidence of the latter kind, but the present state of the numbers make absolute certainty in many cases impossible. There is a fourth, which although an off shoot in part of the last, can scarcely be termed biblical, in as much as it depends for the most part upon theories, not only independent of but repugnant to the Bible: this last is at present peculiar to Baron Bunsen
Bear - However, the Aramaic verb is well attested outside the Bible. The verb yâlad occurs about 490 times in the Bible. ...
Yâlad describes the relationship between God and Israel at other places in the Bible as well. ...
Yeled, which appears 89 times in the Bible, is rendered by several different Greek words
Aram - The Arameans, or people of Aram, were one of the many groups of Semitic peoples who lived in the region of the Bible story. ...
Arameans...
By the time the Arameans first appear in the Bible story, they were living in the north-western part of Mesopotamia. (Some versions of the Bible call the Arameans Syrians, though the region was not known as Syria till centuries later. The true Arameans do not become prominent in the Bible story till the time of the Israelite monarchy
Creation - Modern science may at times cause people to think they are almost insignificant in relation to the size and complexity of the universe, but the Bible takes a different view. The Bible is not a textbook on science, nor is it concerned with the sort of information that scientists are concerned with. ...
The language of the creation story, like that of the rest of the Bible, is not the technical language of the scientist, but the everyday language of the common people (cf. The Bible, by contrast, speaks of the heavens and the earth from the viewpoint of ordinary observers. The pictorial language of the Bible is different from the technical language of science, but the two are not necessarily in conflict. ...
Science may tell us much about God’s creation, though it does so from a viewpoint that is different from the Bible’s. Science can help us understand how nature works, whereas the Bible is concerned with showing that God is the one who makes nature work. ...
From science we may learn how the stars move, how the weather changes, or how plants grow, but from the Bible we learn that God is the one who makes these things happen (Psalms 65:9-10; Psalms 78:20; Psalms 78:26; Psalms 104:1-30; Psalms 147:8; Matthew 5:45; Matthew 6:30). Although science may investigate how the creation developed, the Bible reveals that the development came about through the creative activity of the sovereign God
Memorial - The concept of "remembering" recurs prominently in the Bible, particularly in the Old Testament. The most prevalent use of remembrance in the Bible is the command to remember the Lord and his mighty deeds. ...
The "memorial" is equivalent to a "sign" in the Bible
Grafting - Acts 26:14, ‘It is hard for thee to kick against the goad [1]),’ and (2) ‘inoculate’ or ‘graft. 319-330; Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible (5 vols) ii. Dictionary of the Bible , p. Geikie, The Holy Land and the Bible, 1903, p
Three - (c) The threes of the Bible represent triads of completeness. ...
In Bible study there are three time elements as found in Revelation 1:19. Others suggest it refers to prophetical, historical and doctrinal aspects of the Bible
Goodness - But whereas philosophers may struggle to define the abstract, the Bible talks about the concrete. The added meaning that the words acquire in the Bible is largely because of their association with God. The goodness that the Bible teaches is the goodness that exists perfectly in God (Psalms 100:5)
Bible - This name is given to the Word of God; and no one is at a loss to know what is meant by it when we say, the Bible. But it is not, perhaps, so generally known wherefore the Sacred Scriptures are called the Bible. —The word Bible is taken from the Greek. So then, by Bible is meant the Book, the Book of God, the only Book of God, including the holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, and no other; for these and these alone, are "able to make wise unto salvation, through the faith which is in Christ Jesus. ...
When I said the Bible includes the holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, and no other, I consider what is called Apocrypha as not included. The very name Apocrypha, (so called by those who first placed those writings in our Bibles) which means hidden, or doubtful, implies as much, for them is nothing which, can be called doubtful in the word of God. And, indeed, if what they have brought forward in proof be compared with the unalterable standard of God's own declarations in Scripture, without doubt, they ought not to have place in our Bibles. He speaks decidedly concerning the Apocrypha, and felt indignant that it should ever have had a place in our Bibles. "...
Perhaps it may not be unacceptable to the reader to subjoin, under this article of the Bible, an account of the different copies of the sacred volume which have been handed down in the church through the several successive ages, for it will serve to manifest the Lord's watchful care over his own precious Word
Cedar - See Plants in the Bible
Glutton - The Bible knows gluttony makes one sleepy and leads to not working and poverty (Proverbs 23:21 )
Names of the Bible - The Bible contains the revelation of God to man, and is therefore named from the Greek, biblion, "The Book," book of all books
Bible, Names of the - The Bible contains the revelation of God to man, and is therefore named from the Greek, biblion, "The Book," book of all books
Flowers - Very few species of flowers are mentioned in the Bible although they abounded in Palestine
Joses - Some Bible students see Joses as a dialectical pronunciation or a Greek substitute for the Hebrew Joseph
Ner - Hervey in Smith's Bible Dictionary)
Talent - The talent was the heaviest weight used in Israel in Bible times
Diblah - With slight manuscript support from the Latin Vulgate, many Bible students read “Riblah” supposing that in the earliest history of the text tradition a copyist made the simple mistake of changing a Hebrew “r” to a Hebrew “d,” the two letters being easily confused
Targum - (tar' guhm) Early translations of the Bible into Aramaic, the native language of Palestine and Babylon in the first century A
Bribery - Bribery, because it perverted justice, is prohibited in the Bible ( Exodus 23:8 ; Deuteronomy 16:19 )
Herald -