clicking here - First Presbyterian Church

Report
How
the
Bible
Came
To Be
Development of the
Canon
Canon
Hebrew word meaning “reed.” Reeds were cut and
used as measuring sticks. Canon means a rule or
standard by which other books, beliefs and practices
are compared and evaluated.
The 10 Commandments were
the first canon of Hebrew
Scriptures
Their placement in the Ark of the Covenant
showed their sacred status
After the birth of the Church, the primary
authority was Jesus’ teachings
The apostles shared Jesus’
words with the new Christians.
The first written documents of the
early church were probably collections
of Jesus’ teachings.
These collections would later become
the sources that were used in writing
the four Gospels.
The Secondary Authorities
Because the apostles (original disciples) had
been with Jesus and witnessed his ministry,
their words became authoritative, too.
As the apostles
died, their living
witness was
replaced by written
documents.
Although not one
of the twelve
original disciples,
Paul gained the
title of “Apostle”
after his
conversion and
call to bring the
Gospel to the
Gentiles.
Paul’s letters became authoritative because of
his status as an apostle:
Romans
1 & 2 Corinthians
Galatians
Ephesians
Philippians
Colossians
1 & 2 Thessalonians
1 & 2 Timothy
Titus
Philemon
In AD 150, an antisemitic heretic named
Marcion published a list of books he
considered to be authoritative and
instructive.
Muratorian Canon
Marcion’s list prompted the other Church Fathers to
publish a more generally accepted list. The Muratorian
Canon was published between 170-200. It contained:
• The four Gospels
• Acts
• Paul’s thirteen letters
• Jude
• Revelation
• 1 John
• 2 John or 3 John, or both
By the end of the Second Century, the NT was nearly
complete.
The original versions
of the twenty-seven
books of the New
Testament probably
disappeared within a
few decades of their
composition.
We only have handwritten copies
(called manuscripts, or MSS) of
these books.
Because they are handwritten
copies, no two manuscripts are
exactly alike.
How many manuscripts?
Papyri
124
Majuscules
Minuscules
318
2895
Lectionaries Total
2436
5773
The oldest manuscripts date
to about AD 200 and include
large portions of the gospels
and Paul’s letters.
How to Get to the Original?
We cannot be absolutely certain
of the exact wording of the
original documents, but with
such a wealth of manuscripts,
experts use two criteria:
We cannot be absolutely certain
of the exact wording of the
original documents, but with
such a wealth of manuscripts,
experts use two criteria:
External Evidence
We cannot be absolutely certain
of the exact wording of the
original documents, but with
such a wealth of manuscripts,
experts use two criteria:
External Evidence
Internal Evidence
External Evidence
Compares the variety of
witnesses – all of the
manuscripts, versions and
references in early church
writings.
Internal Evidence
Looks at the variations in
wording among the
manuscripts, including
differences in writing style,
vocabulary and grammar.
Example: Mark 16:9-20
1. Grammar, vocabulary and
writing style are different
from the rest of the book
2. Earliest manuscripts do not
include these verses
Conclusion: these verses were
added later; were not part of the
original book.
Finally, one combination of all of
those manuscripts is developed
with the wording experts believe
to be closest to the original.
It is from that final, authoritative
document that modern English
translations are made.
Why all those translations?!
Two approaches to translation:
1. Formal (word-for-word)
2. Functional (thought-forthought).
Translators try to balance being as
true to the word-for-word
translation while still getting the
meaning of the original.
Translators try to balance being as
true to the word-for-word
translation while still getting the
meaning of the original.
However, nearly all translations
tend toward one or the other.
Where does your translation fall on the continuum?
Two very popular versions of the Bible, The
Living Bible and The Message are not
considered to be “translations,” but rather
“paraphrases,” where the author puts the
text into his/her own words. Little if any
word-for-word faithfulness.
The Living Bible is a paraphrase of the
King James Version; The Message is a
paraphrase based on the original Hebrew
and Greek languages.
W
H
A
T
K
I
N
G
A
B
O
U
T
J
A
M
E
S
?
In 1604, King James I authorized a
new translation of the whole
Bible for use in the churches of
England. The leading university
scholars in England produced the
Authorized Version of 1611,
commonly known as the King
James Version.
It has been revised numerous
times since. The revision of 1769
is the one most prominent today.
New translations have been
produced in the last 60 years for
two reasons:
1. The translators of the KJV used
only about a half dozen very late
Greek manuscripts to translate
the NT. Since that time many
older MSS have been discovered
which more likely reflect the
original text.
2. The KJV’s use of archaic English
words and phrases like
“aforetime,” “must needs,”
“howbeit,” “peradventure,” make
the text harder to understand,
defeating the original purpose of
providing a Bible that was easy for
common people to understand.
Many of today’s versions are
more accurate in their
translations, and easier to
understand.
Many of today’s versions are
more accurate in their
translations, and easier to
understand.
One thing we can all be sure of…
Jesus did not speak the King’s
English, nor did the original
authors write it!
The End.

similar documents