The Big Question 2: Who Put the Bible Together?
Apr 19, 2018 22113
Who put the Bible together?
The question of who put the Bible together is one that comes up over and over again.
The Christian Bible consists of 66 different small books, written over a period of up to 1,500 years, by different authors in different times and cultures. It’s divided into the Old Testament and the New Testament.
The Old Testament consists of the Hebrew Scriptures – the books that were written before the coming of Jesus Christ into the world. The Jews were scrupulous in making sure that they copied the Scriptures accurately, and the discoveries of the Dead Sea Scrolls confirmed that the Old Testament from hundreds of years before Jesus is virtually identical to what we have today.
It’s when we come to the New Testament that things get more interesting. Some people claim, incorrectly, that the Emperor Constantine had a hand in choosing what should be included, around about three centuries after Christ. Others point to the existence of the “gnostic gospels” which they claim are as reliable as what we have in the New Testament. But the gnostic gospels were largely written centuries after the New Testament.
But the books that were accepted as the New Testament were actually written during the first century, by the eyewitnesses of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, and the earliest Christians. There were two or three books that they weren’t too sure about, basically because they couldn’t pin-point who wrote them, but they worked through it and came to a decision.
As Christians, we would say the Bible wasn’t put together by a decision-making process, but that God had his hand over its development, and the way it has survived throughout history. So, when you read a Bible, you can be sure that you are reading the same content that the first believers in Jesus Christ also read.