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Youth Bible Study Resources
by Rob Lamont
Rob Lamont started paid youth Ministry in 1978 and is evangelical, reformed, (That means Bible believing) and has written these resources from a Biblically conservative position.

Rob has worked for such groups as Bible Society and Scripture Union and is a Westminster Presbyterian Minister.

Rob currently is the Scripture teacher and chaplain at Kellyville High School ( A state High School in Sydney , Au)
where he teaches Christian Education, runs 3 Bible studies and 6 prayer groups) He also coordinates Scripture teaching for Rouse Hill High School. He has preached for over 20 different denominations
and lectured at numerous Bible Colleges.


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Bible Bits
 This page has info on the Bible, its history, background, how it was put together, facts on the Old and the New Testament. 

BIG WORDS EXPLAINED
 1.  What does the word "Bible" mean?
 2.  What does the word "Testament" mean?
 3.  What does the word "Pentateuch" mean?
 4.  What does  the word "Gospel" mean?



BIBLE LANGUAGES
 5.  What languages was the Old Testament written in?
 6.  What language was the New Testament written in?
 7.  How many languages has the Bible been translated into?


WHAT IS IN AND WHAT IS OUT
 8.  Who picked, which books, should be included in the Old Testament?
 9.  When did they choose the Old Testament?
10.  How did they choose the books in the Bible?
11.  Do the Jews use the same Old Testament as we do?
12.  Does the Catholic Bible have more books than Protestant Bibles?
13.  What is the Apocrypha?
14.  When did the Apocrypha get added to the Old Testament by the Catholic Church?
15. Why did God not inspire any books between Malachi and Jesus?
16.  Which Old Testament version did the early Christians use?
17.  What is the Septuagint?
18.  When was the New Testament written?
19.  Who chose, which books, should be included in the New Testament?
20.  How did they choose, which books to include in the New Testament?
21.  When did they choose the books for the New Testament?
22.  Could we still add more books to the Bible?

WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT ITSELF?
23.  Did the writers of the Bible think they were writing God's Word or just religious thoughts?
24.  How did God communicate his message to the prophets of the Bible?
25.  Did the other Apostles think Paul was inspired?
26.  Did Paul think that the other books were inspired in the New Testament?
27.  Does the Bible say it is God's Word?
28.  Did Jesus think he was speaking God's Word?
29.  How did the writers know what to write?
30.  Did Jesus use the Old Testament?
31.  Does the New Testament have many quotes from the Old Testament?


MANUSCRIPTS
32.  What is the earliest copy of the Bible?
33. When was the first English Bible produced?
34.  When was the first translation of the Bible from the original languages made into English?
35.  Why are the Dead Sea Scrolls so important?
36. When were Bibles first produced on printing presses?


WHO'S WHO'S OF BIBLE WRITERS
37.  Who wrote Genesis?
38.  How did the Old Testament get passed on before Jesus?
39.  Were all the New Testament writers Jews?
40.  Did Jesus write any of the New Testament?
41.  Who was Matthew?
42.  Who was Mark?
43.  Who was Luke?
44.  Who was John?
45.  Who wrote Acts?
46.  Was the New Testament written by eye witnesses?
47.  Did people treat the gospels as God's word or see them just as novels?
48.  Are there mistakes in the Bible?


BIBLE VERSION HISTORY
49.  Why was the Bible translated into Latin?
50.  What is the "Latin Vulgate?"
51.  Why so many translations?
52.  What is a Study Bible?


TRIVIA
53. How did the Bible get chapters?
54. How did the Bible get verses?
55.  How many books are in the Bible
56.  How many chapters are in the Bible?
57. How many verses are in the Bible?
58.  How many words are in the Bible?
59.  How many letters are in the Bible?
60. How many different words are used in the Bible?
61. How many Scriptures are produced a year?
62.  What is the shortest verse in the Bible?
63.  What is the longest verse in the Bible?
64. What is the oldest book in the Bible?
65.  How could Jesus be born in 4 BC not the year 0?

1.  What does the word "Bible" mean?
The word 'Bible', in English, has a long history that leads back to the Nile River in Egypt. In ancient Egypt, the papyrus used to produce a cheap writing material was called biblos. Biblion was a roll of papyrus. Over time, this word was modified and used in Greek, then was used in Latin, then French, till it entered the English language as the word Bible.

2.  What does the word "Testament" mean?
Testament is an ancient word for covenant, contact or an agreement between two groups or people. In the Bible it can be linked with two key words. Berith is the Hebrew word for Covenant; Diatheke is the Greek word for Testament.



3.  What does the word "Pentateuch" mean?
The Pentateuch is the name given to the first five books in the Old Testament. These were written by Moses and are also called the Law or Torah (meaning 'to teach'). This was also the only part of Scripture that the Jewish religious group called the Sadducees recognised in the time of Jesus.

The first use of the word Pentateuch for the first five books of the Old Testament was by Origen, an early well-known Christian writer. The word is based on the Greek words for five and scroll. It points to the fact the first five books are really one book with five volumes.


4.  What does the word "Gospel" mean?
'Gospel' comes from a Greek word that means 'good news'. The word was used in the New Testament to describe the message of Jesus. In the 2nd Century AD the first four books of the New Testament were known as gospels. The first reference to the four gospels was by Justin Martyr.


5. What languages was the Old Testament written in?
Hebrews and a few parts in Aramaic.
The Aramaic parts are found in Ezra 4:8 to 6:18 and 7:12 to 26; Daniel 2:4 to 7:28; Jeremiah 10:11 and two words in Genesis 31:47.


6. What language was the New Testament written in?
The New Testament was written in Common Greek (Sometimes called Koine Greek). Greek was the common language of the Middle East and the countries that were around the Mediterranean Sea at the time of Jesus.



7. How many languages has the Bible been translated into?
Parts of the Bible have been translated into over 2,100 languages. We have approximately 350 languages with the whole Bible; over 800 that have the New Testament; over 1,000 with at least one book of the Bible and over 2,150 with parts of the Scriptures translated. Wycliffe Bible Translators believe that there are around 6,000 spoken languages in the world.

8. Who picked, which books, should be included in the Old Testament?
God is the one who inspired the writers and thus gave His endorsement for them. Believers use the following clues to point to a book being authoritative and from God.

"You are like a building with the apostles and prophets as the foundation and with Christ as the most important stone." Ephesians 2:20.

Some points that people looked at to recognise Scripture include
* Do not have false prophecies    (Deuteronomy 18:21-22)
*. Do not contact departed spirits   (Deuteronomy 18:11)
* Do not use divination     (Deuteronomy 18:11)
* Do not use mediums or witches   (Deuteronomy 18:11)
* Do not follow false gods or idols   (Exodus 20:3-4; Deuteronomy 13:1-3)

New Testament additions for a prophet
* Do they confess the humanity of Jesus    (1 John 4:1-2)
* Do they accept that Jesus was God    (Colossians 2:9)
* Do their writings centre on Jesus     (Revelations 19:10)
* Do they advocate abstaining from foods    (1 Timothy 4:3-4)
* Do they devalue marriage      (1 Timothy 4:3)
* Do they promote immorality      (Jude 7)
* Do they encourage legalistic behaviour or self-denial  (Colossians 2:16-23)


9. When did they choose the Old Testament?
These books were accepted as from God when they were written. The formal recognition of the Canon is linked to the Council or Synod of Jamnia. The Council was not trying to discover for the first time what was inspired; but confirming it to the Jews, who could no longer look to the Temple and Jerusalem, for help after its destruction.

The Academy of Jamnia was established by Rabbi Johanan ben Zakkai shortly before the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70. It was a College and a Legislative Body, and the occasion in question was a session of the elders there. Dating the Council falls between 75 AD and 117 AD.

The only Old Testament books under debate at the Council were Song of Songs and Ecclesiastes.

The Law
Throughout the Old Testament the Law was always recognised as God's Word, from the moment that Moses wrote it down.

The Prophets
* The Prophets were seen as mouth pieces of God's Word.



10. How did they choose the books in the Bible?
The key features looked for in a book being inspired include:

* Was the book written by a Prophet of God?
The writer was authoritative, that is, they were Prophets or Apostles or linked to an Apostle e.g. Mark is linked to Peter; Luke to Paul.

"The Lord God has spoken; who can but prophesy" Amos 3:8

* Was the author confirmed by acts of God?
Authority can also be endorsed through miracles.
"Now, listen to what I have to say about Jesus from Nazareth. God proved that he sent Jesus to you by having him work miracles, wonders, and signs. All of you know this. "Acts 2:22

"When I was with you, I was patient and worked all the powerful miracles and signs and wonders of a true apostle." 2 Corinthians 2:12

"So if we refuse this great way of being saved, how can we hope to escape? The Lord himself was the first to tell about it, and people who heard the message proved to us that it was true. God himself showed that his message was true by working all kinds of powerful miracles and wonders. He also gave his Holy Spirit to anyone he chose to." Hebrews 2:3-4

Did the message tell the truth about God?

The Book did not give contradictory knowledge about God.
"Do you think I couldn't make up my mind about what to do? Or do I seem like someone who says 'Yes' or 'No' simply to please others? God can be trusted, and so can I, when I say that our answer to you has always been 'Yes' and never 'No.'"   2 Corinthians 1:17-18

"God cannot tell lies! And so his promises and vows are two things that can never be changed.
We have run to God for safety. Now his promises should greatly encourage us to take hold of the hope that is right in front of us." Hebrews 6:18

The book does not encourage the worship of other gods.
Deuteronomy 13:1-3 and 18:20-22

The book does not contain historical inaccuracies.

The book does not contain prophecies that did not occur.

Does it come with the power of God?
"What God has said is not only alive and active! It is sharper than any double-edged sword. His word can cut through our spirits and souls and through our joints and marrow, until it discovers the desires and thoughts of our hearts." Hebrews 4:12

"The Scriptures train God's servants to do all kinds of good deeds." 2 Timothy 3:17

"Do this because God has given you new birth by his message that lives on for ever."
1 Peter 1:23

"So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it." Isaiah 55:11 NIV

Was it accepted by the people of God?
Although some of the prophets and apostles faced conflict with people, the key is, did true believers see the book as Scripture? Many of the books were instantly accepted. Moses when he wrote would put his writings into the ark of the covenant (Deuteronomy 31:26) as did Joshua (Joshua 24:26) Samuel (1 Samuel 10:25)

Daniel had copies of Moses, Jeremiah and other Prophets (Daniel 9:2, 10-11)
Paul quotes Luke as Scripture (1 Timothy 5:18)
Peter says that Paul is Scripture (2 Peter 3:16)
"We always thank God that you believed the message we preached. It came from him, and it is not something made up by humans. You accepted it as God's message, and now he is working in you." 1 Thessalonians 2:13

Subsequent Councils etc. only endorsed what God inspired, it did not make the Bible inspired.



11. Do the Jews use the same Old Testament as we do?
Yes. 39 Books.

12. Does the Catholic Bible have more books than Protestant Bibles?
Yes. This extra section is called the Apocrypha. See the answers to the next two questions.

13. What is the Apocrypha?
The Apocrypha is the extra section in Catholic Bibles. The word Apocrypha comes from the Greek adjective that means 'hidden'. There are 14 books that make up the Apocrypha (15 If you split the book of Baruch into 2). Of these the Catholic Church accepts 11 of the 14 (12 of the 15)
 
 
             Book 
 Other names used for the book
       When written 
The Wisdom of Solomon 
Book of Solomon 
 30 BC 
Ecclesiasticus
Sirach
132 BC
Tobit
 
200 BC
Judith
 
150 BC
1Esdras
3 Edras
150-100 BC
1 Maccabees 
 
110 BC
2 Maccabees 
 
110-70 BC
Baruch
 Baruch Chapters 1-5 1
50 BC
Letters of Jeremiah
 Baruch Chapter 6
300-100 BC
2 Esdras
 4 Esdras* (written in Aramaic) 
100 AD 
Additions to Ester 
Ester 10:4-16:24 
140-130 BC 
Prayer of Azariah 
Song of the 3 young men; Daniel 3:24- 
200-30 BC
Susanna
 Daniel 13 
200-30 BC 
Bel the Dragon 
Daniel 14 
100 BC 
Prayer of Manasseh* 
 
200-30 BC 
          * Not recognised by the Council of Trent

The books were written between the end of the Old Testament (Malachi 400 BC) and the New Testament. (4 BC)

Some reasons that the Protestant Churches have rejected the Apocrypha include.
a. They are never quoted in the New Testament by Jesus or by any of the New
Testament writers.

b. The Jewish faith has never accepted the Apocrypha as Scripture.

c.  The community where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found never treated the
Apocrypha as Scripture.

d. The Jewish Council of Jamnia rejected the Apocrypha as Scripture. (AD 90)

e. None of the books claim to come from God. The book of Maccabees in 1
Maccabees 9:27  teaches "So there was a great affliction in Israel, unlike anything
since the time a prophet had ceased to be seen among them".

f. Parts of the books have errors in doctrine, history or contradict other parts of the
Old Testament.

Although the Apocrypha is not part of Holy Scripture, it can be helpful to read to
understand the historical background, to the time before Jesus and the expectations
of the Jewish community.


14. When did the Apocrypha get added to the Old Testament by the Catholic Church?
The books were officially included in the Bible at the Catholic Council of Trent (1545- 63). The official
acceptance being in April 1546. The Church before this time had
been divided on whether to include the books.

People for including the Apocrypha
* In 405 AD Pope Innocent 1 endorsed the books.
* Many early church Fathers: Tertullian, Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria.
* The Syrian Church in the 4th Century.
* The Eastern Orthodox Churches today.
* Augustine when he was at the Council of Hippo (393) and Carthage (397)

People who rejected the Apocrypha
*    Many early church Fathers like Origen, Athanasius, Cyril of Jerusalem.
*    Jerome the translator of the official Catholic Bible called the Latin Vulgate.
*    The Catholic Pope in 600 AD.
*    The Syrian Bible called the Pesshitta did not contain the Apocrypha in the
Second    century AD.
*    The Greek Orthodox church accepted the Apocrypha in the Councils of
Constantinople (1638), Jaffa (1642) and Jerusalem (1672) but in the Larger
* Catechism of 1839 the Apocrypha is left out since it was not in the
Hebrew Bible.


15.  Why did God not inspire any books between Malachi and Jesus?
* The Old Testament implies that God would be silent till just before the coming of the Messiah (Jesus Christ)
"See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes." Malachi 4:5
* The book of Maccabees was waiting for a prophet because God had been silent since Malachi    (see 1 Mac.4: 45; 9:27; 14:41)



16. Which Old Testament version did the early Christians use?
The main Old Testament translation used by the early church was in Greek. This version was called the Septuagint or LXX. (LXX is the roman numeral for the number 70)

17. What is the Septuagint?
The Septuagint is a Greek translation of the Old Testament. It originated many years before Jesus. The name comes from the number seventy. This is based on a story that 72 translators took 72 days to translate the Hebrew Old Testament into Greek.


18. When was the New Testament written?
Although there is much debate to when the New Testament books were written. Most people believe they were written between 45 AD and 95 AD.


19. Who chose which books should be included in the New Testament?
God chose what was inspired and from Him. The role of the early church was to understand what he had revealed. The early church did not worry too much about what was New Testament Canon, until the threat of heresy and false books meant a recognised list of what the church had taken to be from God was needed.

The official recognition of these books came first from Athanasius in 367 AD and a Council in 397 AD at Carthage recognised not just which books but the current order.

The need for an official list of true books or canon came about because

* The churches needed to know which books should be read in church.
* As heresy increased false books needed to be warned against.
* The missionary zeal meant that new churches needed an accurate list of inspired
books    to give to new believers.
* With the increase of persecution, Christians wanted to know which books were
worth hiding and dying for.
* The Edict of Toleration in 311 and the Emperor Constantine being positive to the
Church meant he commissioned Eusebius to produce 50 copies of the Scriptures.
So the inspired one needed to be confirmed.


20.  How did they choose, which books, to include in the New Testament?
J.I. Packer "The church no more gave us the New Testament canon than Sir Isaac
Newton gave us the force of gravity. God gave us gravity, by His work of creation,
and similarly He gave the New Testament canon, by inspiring the individual books
that make it up."

* Books known to be written by an Apostle or a person tied to an Apostle.
* Accepted by the Church
* Written as from God, when you read it.
* Did not contradict other Bible books.
* Gave you information about God, not just an encouraging comment.
* Had no historical or other mistakes in the text.


  
21. When did they choose, the books for the New Testament?
Official recognition did not happen for a few Centuries due to: -
* Slow transportation. This meant it took time for some Churches to get copies of the
books, especially the shorter books like 2 John, 3 John and Jude.

* Before 313 AD the church faced incredible persecution that did not allow for
universal official acceptance. After 325 AD when the Christian faith was no longer
outlawed, the Christians held a Council to determine the canonical books. (Council of
Hippo 393 and Carthage 397)

* The church did not need an official list till cults started to push false writings.

* The first official writing with the current list of New Testament books was in 367 AD
in the Easter letter of Athanasius.


22. Could we still add more books to the Bible?

Scripture warns about man choosing to add to the Word of God
"Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the
commands of the LORD your God that I gave you" Deuteronomy 4:2

"Every word of God is flawless; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. Do
not add to His words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar" Proverbs 30:5-6

"Here is my warning for everyone who hears the prophecies in this book: If you add
anything to them, God will make you suffer all the terrible troubles written in this
book. If you take anything away from these prophecies, God will not let you have part
in the life-giving tree and in the holy city described in this book." Revelation 22:18-19

"Now, brothers, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so
that you may learn from us the meaning of the saying 'Do not go beyond what is
written.' Then you will not take pride in one man over another" 1 Corinthians 4:6 NIV

Scripture has everything necessary for salvation
"Jesus worked many other miracles for his disciples, and not all of them are written in
this book. 31But these are written so that you will put your faith in Jesus as the
Messiah and the Son of God. If you have faith in him, you will have true life." John 20:30-31

"We have everything we need to live a life that pleases God. It was all given to us by
God's own power, when we learnt that he had invited us to share in his wonderful
goodness." 2 Peter 1:3

God could choose to give more Scriptures but it would be his choice, not ours.
"The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us
and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law" Deuteronomy 29:29


23. Did the writers of the Bible think they were writing God's Word or just religious thoughts?
The Old Testament writers viewed their writings as the Word of God.
In the Old Testament we find many sections introduced by 'the Lord says'
Moses wrote in Deuteronomy 18:18 "I will raise up for them, a prophet like you from
among their brothers; I will put my words in his mouth, and he will tell them
everything I command him".

"The Spirit of the Lord spoke through me; His word was on my tongue. The God of
Israel spoke, the rock of Israel said to me." 2 Samuel 23:2-3

"Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, "Now I
have put my words in your mouth." Jeremiah 1:9

Psalm 119 mentions the word of God in 171 of the 176 verses. The Psalm can be
summarised by verse 160.

"All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal" Psalm 119:160

"Every word of God is flawless; He is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do
not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar" Proverbs 30:5-6

Jesus treated the Old Testament as Scripture
Jesus used Scripture to answer the temptations of Satan (Matthew 4:1-10), to
introduce his ministry (Luke 4:16-21) explains how to get eternal life (Matthew 19:16-
22), When people tried to catch Jesus out he used the Old Testament (Matthew 19:3-
6) to instruct his hearers (John 6:25-34) and pointed to the Old Testament after his
resurrection to explain his life, death and resurrection.

Jesus saw his teaching as equal to the Old Testament (see Matthew 5:21, 27, 31, 33, 38 and 43)

Jesus did not see himself opposing the Old Testament but to fulfill it.
"Don't suppose that I came to do away with the Law and the Prophets. I did not come
to do away with them, but to give them their full meaning. 18Heaven and earth may
disappear. But I promise you that not even a period or comma will ever disappear
from the Law. Everything written in it must happen. 19If you reject even the least
important command in the Law and teach others to do the same, you will be the least
important person in the kingdom of heaven. But if you obey and teach others its
commands, you will have an important place in the kingdom. 20You must obey God's
commands better than the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law obey them. If you
don't, I promise you that you will never get into the kingdom of heaven." Matthew 5:17-20

The New Testament writers viewed the Old Testament as Scripture
Many of the quotes in the New Testament write 'This is what God says' when the
human author was known. The New Testament treats God as equal to Old Testament Scripture.

"And by the Holy Spirit you spoke to our ancestor David. He was your servant, and
you told him to say:" Acts 4:25

"Since they could not agree among themselves, they started leaving. But Paul said,
"The Holy Spirit said the right thing when he sent Isaiah the prophet" Acts 28:25

"Everything in the Scriptures is God's Word. All of it is useful for teaching and helping
people and for correcting them and showing them how to live." 2 Timothy 3:16

"Long ago in many ways and at many times God's prophets spoke his message to
our ancestors. But now at last God sent his Son to bring his message to us. God
created the universe by his Son, and everything will some day belong to the Son.
God's Son has all the brightness of God's own glory and is like him in every way. By
his own mighty word he holds the universe together. After the Son had washed away
our sins, he sat down at the right side of the glorious God in heaven." Hebrews 1:1-3

"But you need to realise that no one alone can understand any of the prophecies in
the Scriptures. The prophets did not think these things up on their own, but they were
guided by the Spirit of God." 2 Peter 1:20-21

"What God has said is not only alive and active! It is sharper than any double-edged
sword. His word can cut through our spirits and souls and through our joints and
marrow, until it discovers the desires and thoughts of our hearts. Nothing is hidden
from God! He sees through everything, and we will have to tell him the truth."
Hebrews 4:12-13

"This is what God showed to Jesus Christ, so that he could tell his servants what
must happen soon. Christ then sent his angel with the message to his servant John.
And John told everything that he had seen about God's message and about what
Jesus Christ had said and done." Revelations 1:1-2

We find that the New Testament writers call God the author of the Old Testament 56 times.

The writers of the New Testament expected their writings to be treated as Scripture.
"Every word we speak was taught to us by God's Spirit, not by human wisdom. And
this same Spirit helps us teach spiritual things to spiritual people." 1 Corinthians 2:13

"This is what God showed to Jesus Christ, so that he could tell his servants what
must happen soon. Christ then sent his angel with the message to his servant John.
And John told everything that he had seen about God's message, and about what
Jesus Christ had said and done." Revelations 1:1-2

The letters were to be kept. The Churches were encouraged to read them and give them to other Churches.
"After this letter has been read to your people, be sure to have it read in the church at
Laodicea. And you should read the letter that I have sent to them." Colossians 4:16

"In the name of the Lord, I beg you to read this letter to all his followers." 1 Thessalonians 5:27

"God will bless everyone who reads this prophecy to others, and he will bless
everyone who hears and obeys it. The time is almost here." Revelations 1:3



24.  How did God communicate his message to the prophets of the Bible?

God spoke to the Prophets
1.   Through angels               Genesis 18-19
2.   Dreams                           Daniel 7:1; Numbers 12:6
3.   Visions                              Isaiah 1:1; Ezekiel 1:1, 8:3, 11:24, 43:3
4.   Miracles                             Moses (Exodus 3:2); Gideon (Judges 6:37) Jonah
5.   Nature                               Psalm 19:1
6.   Audible voice                     1 Samuel 3:4
7.   Inner voice                       The most common method
8.   Urim and Thummin              Like dice used by the priests. Exodus 28:30
9.   Casting lots                      Proverbs 16:33
10.  Researching other divine writings  Daniel 9:1-2

1 Corinthians 2:13 "Every word we speak was taught to us by God's Spirit, not by
human wisdom. And this same Spirit helps us teach spiritual things to spiritual
people."

See also Exodus 4:12, Exodus 24:4, Isaiah 30:8, Ezekiel 2:7, Exodus 20:1


24.  Did the other Apostles think Paul was inspired?
 Peter viewed Pauls' writings as Scriptures. (The other Scriptures that Peter refers to,
are the Old Testament.)

"Don't forget that the Lord is patient because he wants people to be saved. This is
also what our dear friend Paul said when he wrote you with the wisdom that God had
given him. 16Paul talks about these same things in all his letters, but part of what he
says is hard to understand. Some ignorant and unsteady people even destroy
themselves by twisting what he said. They do the same thing with other Scriptures
too." 2 Peter 3:15-16


26. Did Paul think that the other books were inspired in the New Testament?

Paul quotes the Gospel of Luke and calls it Scripture.
"It is just as the Scriptures say, "Don't muzzle an ox when you are using it to grind
grain." You also know the saying, "Workers are worth their pay."

This quote is bridging together Deuteronomy 25:4 and Luke 10:7


27. Does the Bible say it is God's Word?
In the Old Testament we have the statement 'The Lord said' nearly 4,000 times. Of
these around 500 occur in the first five books of Moses.

"Keep on being faithful to what you were taught and to what you believed. After all,
you know who taught you these things. 15Since childhood, you have known the Holy
Scriptures that are able to make you wise enough to have faith in Christ Jesus and
be saved. 16Everything in the Scriptures is God's Word. All of it is useful for teaching
and helping people and for correcting them and showing them how to live. 17The
Scriptures train God's servants to do all kinds of good deeds." 2 Timothy 3:14-17
CEV

" All Scripture is God breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and
training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for
every good work" 2 Timothy 3:16-17 NIV


28. Did Jesus think he was speaking God's Word?
"If anyone loves me, they will obey me. Then my Father will love them, and we will
come to them and live in them. But anyone who doesn't love me, won't obey me.
What they have heard me say doesn't really come from me, but from the Father who
sent me." John 14:24

 "'Who are you?' they asked Jesus.
Jesus answered, 'I am exactly who I told you at the beginning. I have a lot more to
say about you, especially about all the evil you have done. The one who sent me is
truthful, and I tell the people of this world only what I have heard from him.'" John
8:25- 26

"Instead, you want to kill me for telling you the truth that God gave me. Abraham
never did anything like that." John 8:40

" From the cloud a voice spoke, 'This is my chosen Son. Listen to what he says!'"
Luke 9:35

"I told my followers what you told me, and they accepted it. They know that I came
from you, and they believe that you are the one who sent me." John 17:8

"Heaven and earth may disappear. But I promise you that not even a period or
comma will ever disappear from the Law. Everything written in it must happen."
Matthew 5:18

"The sky and the earth won't last for ever, but my words will." Matthew 24:35


29. How did the writers know what to write?
"But the Holy Spirit will come and help you, because the Father will send the Spirit to
take my place. The Spirit will teach you everything and will remind you of what I said
while I was with you." John 14:26

"The Spirit shows what is true and will come and guide you into the full truth. The
Spirit does not speak on his own. He will tell you only what he has heard from me,
and he will let you know what is going to happen." John 16:13

"These words are true and can be trusted. The Lord God controls the spirits of his
prophets, and he is the one who sent his angel to show his servants what must
happen right away. Remember, I am coming soon! God will bless everyone who
pays attention to what this book tells about the future." Revelations 22:6

 "God's Spirit has shown you everything. His Spirit finds out everything, even what is
deep in the mind of God." I Corinthians 2:10


30. Did Jesus use the Old Testament?
Jesus frequently used the Old Testament and treated it as the Word of God. He refers to fifteen stories from the Old Testament.
 
 

      Jesus
 Old Testament Story
       Passage
Matthew 19:4-5 
Adam and Eve 
Genesis 1:27; 2:24
Luke 11:51
 Cain and Abel 
Genesis 4:8
Luke 17:26-27 
Noah and the flood 
Genesis 6 to 8
John 8:56-58 
Abraham 
Genesis 15-25
Luke 10:12; 17:28-32 
Sodom and Gomorrah and Lot's wife
Genesis 19
Matthew 8:11
 Isaac and Jacob 
Genesis 25
 Mark 7:9-10 
The Ten Commandments 
Exodus 20
John 6:31-51 
Manna and the Wilderness 
Exodus 16
John 3:14 
The Serpent of brass 
Numbers 21
Mark 2:25-26 
David and consecrated bread 
1 Samuel 21
Mark 12:42 
Solomon and the Queen of Sheba 
1 Kings 10
Luke 4:25-26
 Elijah and the widow 
1 Kings 17
Luke 4:27
 Elisha and Naaman
 2 Kings 5
Luke 11:51 
The murder of Zechariah
2 Chronicles 2
Matthew 12:39-41
 Jonah 
 Jonah 
* When being tempted by Satan in Matthew 4:1-10, Jesus responded by quotes fromthe Old Testament Scriptures.

* Jesus came to fulfill not reject Scripture
"Don't suppose that I came to do away with the Law and the Prophets. I did not come
to do away with them, but to give them their full meaning. 18Heaven and earth may
disappear. But I promise you that not even a period or comma will ever disappear
from the Law. Everything written in it must happen.
19If you reject even the least important command in the Law and teach others to do
the same, you will be the least important person in the kingdom of heaven. But if you
obey and teach others its commands, you will have an important place in the
kingdom." Matthew 5:17-19

* Jesus saw his ministry as fulfilling the Old Testament
"Then Jesus asked the two disciples, 'Why can't you understand? How can you be so slow to believe all that the
prophets said? 26Didn't you know that the Messiah would have to suffer before he
was given his glory?' 27Jesus then explained everything written about himself in the
Scriptures, beginning with the Law of Moses and the Books of the Prophets."   Luke
24:25-27

For examples of some of the prophecies that Jesus fulfilled see Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53 as examples


31.  Does the New Testament have many quotes from the Old Testament?
224 direct quotes from the Old Testament introduced with comments such as 'As it is written' or 'Scripture says'.
7 times a quotation uses two passages from the Old Testament.
19 are paraphrased Old Testament quotes,
45 quotes are made without a reference given,

All up, over 295 references to the Old Testament are made. 30 Old Testament books
are quoted, with only Ruth, Judges, Song of Solomon, Ecclesiastes, Ester, Ezra,
Nehemiah and 1 and 2 Chronicles not being directly mentioned.

The  New Testament saw a strong relationship between  'God says' and Scripture says

See Genesis 12:3/ Galatians 3:8; Genesis 2:24/ Matthew 19:4-5; Isaiah 55:3/ Acts 13:34


32.  What is the earliest copy of the Bible?
Of the Old Testament around 100-300 BC.  The New Testament around 150 AD. (If this is an area of interest I am hoping to include later a complete list of the NT manuscripts for the first 300-500 year of the Christian Faith.)


33.  When was the first English Bible produced?
1382 by John Wycliffe produced the first full Bible  (1320-84)


34.  When was the first translation of the Bible from the original languages of Greek, Aramaic and Hebrew made into English?
1525-35 The translation by William Tyndale.


35. Why are the Dead Sea Scrolls so important?
The scribes who copied the Old Testament would, after making an accurate copy of
an old manuscript destroy it; rather than have faded, torn, or poorly maintained
Scriptures read. This was to make sure that errors did not creep in.

This meant we only had post Tenth Century manuscripts of the Old Testament till the
discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Dead Sea Scrolls included most of the Old
Testament and is dated to the time of Jesus. This is a difference of over a thousand
years! The best part of all is that the oldest copies are basically the same as what we
have today.


36.  When were Bibles first produced on printing presses?
The first book to be printed by a press was the Bible in Latin. This was quickly
followed by the Hebrew Old Testament in 1488 and the Greek New Testament in
1516.



37. Who wrote Genesis?
Moses. Moses also wrote Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.
"Moses then wrote down everything the LORD had said." Exodus 24:4 (NIV)

38. How did the Old Testament get passed on before Jesus?
Moses would have used family records to put together Genesis.
'This is the account of...' Genesis 5:1; 6:9; 10:1; 11:10; 25:12; 25:19; 36:1; 37:2

Moses expected his writings to be kept and passed on
"Moses then wrote down everything the LORD had said" Exodus 24:4
"Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it to the people" Exodus 24:7
"When he takes the throne of his kingdom, he is to write for himself on a scroll a copy
of this law, taken from that of the priests, who are Levites" Deuteronomy 17:18-19

Moses expected God to continue to speak to prophets
"I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brothers; I will put my
words in his mouth, and he will tell them everything I command him" Deuteronomy 18:18

The history books passed on the Law
"Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; mediate on it day and night,
so that you may be careful to do everything written in it then you will be prosperous
and  successful" Joshua 1:8
See also Joshua 24:26; 1 Samuel 10:25

The Scriptures were kept in the Ark or the Temple
"After Moses finished writing in the book the words of this law from beginning to end,
he gave this command to the Levites who carried the ark of the covenant of the
LORD: 'Take this Book of the Law and place it beside the ark of the covenant of the
LORD your God. There it will remain as a witness against you'" Deuteronomy 31:24-26

"Hilkiah the high priest said to Shapan the secretary, 'I have found the Book of the
Law in the temple of the Lord.'" 2 Kings 22:8

Books were seen to be authoritative and from God when they were written.
* Daniel accepted Jeremiah as Scripture who was his contemporary (Daniel 9:2)
* Ezekiel treats Daniel as Scripture who is his contemporary (Ezekiel 28:3)



39. Were all the New Testament writers Jews?
No. Luke was Greek. He wrote the gospel of Luke and the story of the early church in
the book of Acts.

40. Did Jesus write any of the New Testament?
No, but the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John give us insights into his
teaching, miracles, death and resurrection. John in concluding his gospel was able to
write "Jesus worked many other miracles for his disciples, and not all of them are
written in this book. 31But these are written so that you will put your faith in Jesus as
the Messiah and the Son of God. If you have faith in him, you will have true life."
John 20:30-31

Jesus also told his disciples that the Holy Spirit would come to them to remind them
of his words.
"But the Holy Spirit will come and help you, because the Father will send the Spirit to
take my place. The Spirit will teach you everything and will remind you of what I said
while I was with you." John 14:26

"I will send you the Spirit who comes from the Father and shows what is true. The
Spirit will help you and will tell you about me." John 15: 26

"The Spirit shows what is true and will come and guide you into the full truth. The
Spirit does not speak on his own. He will tell you only what he has heard from me,
and he will let you know what is going to happen." John 16:13



41. Who was Matthew?

Matthew was one of the 12 Apostles of Jesus.
"As Jesus was leaving, he saw a tax collector named Matthew sitting at the place for
paying taxes. Jesus said to him, "Come with me." Matthew got up and went with him.
10Later, Jesus and his disciples were having dinner at Matthew's house. Many tax
collectors and other sinners were also there. Some Pharisees asked Jesus' disciples,
'Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and other sinners?'
12Jesus heard them and answered, 'Healthy people don't need a doctor, but sick
people do. 13Go and learn what the Scriptures mean when they say, 'Instead of
offering sacrifices to me, I want you to be merciful to others. I didn't come to invite
good people to be my followers. I came to invite sinners.'" Matthew 10:9-13


42. Who was Mark?
Mark the writer of the gospel was also called John Mark. Below are some New
Testament references in which he occurs.

""Then Peter went to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose other name was
Mark. Many of the Lord's followers had come together there and were praying."
Acts 12:12. When Peter escaped from gaol.

"And after Barnabas and Saul had done the work they were sent to do, they went
back to Jerusalem with John, whose other name was Mark." Acts 12:25

"5They arrived at Salamis and began to preach God's message in the Jewish
meeting places. They also had John as a helper." Acts 13:5

"Paul and the others left Paphos and sailed to Perga in Pamphylia. But John left
them and went back to Jerusalem." Acts 13:13

"Sometime later Paul said to Barnabas, "Let's go back and visit the Lord's followers
in all the cities where we preached his message. Then we will know how they are
doing. 37Barnabas wanted to take along John, whose other name was Mark. 38But
Paul did not want to, because Mark had left them in Pamphylia and had stopped
working with them.
39Paul and Barnabas argued, then each of them went his own way. Barnabas took
Mark and sailed to Cyprus," Acts 15:36-39

"Epaphras is also here in jail for being a follower of Christ Jesus. He sends his
greetings, 24and so do Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, who work together with
me."
Philemon 23-24

"Only Luke has stayed with me. Mark can be very helpful to me, so please find him
and bring him with you." 2 Timothy 4:11

"Greetings from the Lord's followers in Babylon. They are God's chosen ones.
Mark, who is like a son to me, sends his greetings too." 1 Peter 5:13

"Aristarchus is in jail with me. He sends greetings to you, and so does Mark, the
cousin of Barnabas. You have already been told to welcome Mark, if he visits you."
Colossians 4:10

Mark has been associated with Peter the Apostle and many believe that the gospel
of Mark is an outline of the message of Peter.


43. Who was Luke?
Luke was a Greek Christian who wrote the gospel of Luke and the book of Acts. He
carefully researched his writings. He was also the assistant to Paul.

"Many people have tried to tell the story of what God has done among us. 2They
wrote what we had been told by the ones who were there in the beginning and saw
what happened. 3So I made a careful study of everything and then decided to write
and tell you exactly what took place. Honourable Theophilus, I have done this to let
you know if what you have heard is true." Acts 1:1-4

"Our dear doctor Luke sends you his greetings, and so does Demas." Colossians 4:14

"Epaphras is also here in jail for being a follower of Christ Jesus. He sends his
greetings, and so do Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, who work together with
me." Philemon 23-24

"Only Luke has stayed with me. Mark can be very helpful to me, so please find him
and bring him with you." 2 Timothy 4:11



44. Who was John?
John the son of Zebedee was one of the 12 Apostles. Many believe that he was
second in command in the Church after the Apostle Peter. He was a fisherman when
Jesus called him and was the disciple whom Jesus loved. John wrote the gospel of
John, the letters of John and the book of Revelation. He was also beside Jesus at the
Last Supper on the night before Jesus died.

John was an eyewitness to Jesus and played a key role in the early Church.
"The Word that gives life was from the beginning, and this is the one our message is
about. Our ears have heard, our own eyes have seen, and our hands touched this
Word. The one who gives life appeared! We saw it happen, and we are witnesses to
what we have seen. Now we are telling you about this eternal life that was with the
Father and appeared to us. 3We are telling you what we have seen and heard, so
that you may share in this life with us. And we share in it with the Father and with his
Son Jesus Christ. 4We are writing to tell you these things, because this makes us
truly happy." 1 John 1:1-4


45. Who wrote Acts?
Luke. See the answer to question 43 for some more details.


46. Was the New Testament written by eye witnesses?
All were written by eye witnesses or spoke to eye witnesses of the events they recorded.
"The Word that gives life was from the beginning and this is the one our message is
about. Our ears have heard, our own eyes have seen, and our hands touched this
Word. 2The one who gives life appeared! We saw it happen, and we are witnesses to
what we have seen. Now we are telling you about this eternal life that was with the
Father and appeared to us. 3We are telling you what we have seen and heard, so
that you may share in this life with us. And we share in it with the Father and with his
Son Jesus Christ. 4We are writing to tell you these things, because this makes us
truly happy." 1 John 1:1-4

"When we told you about the power and the return of our Lord Jesus Christ, we were
not telling clever stories that someone had made up. But with our own eyes we saw
his true greatness" 2 Peter 1:16

"Jesus went back to Nazareth with his parents and obeyed them. His mother kept on
thinking about all that had happened." Luke 2:51


47. Did people treat the gospels as God's word or see them just asnovels?

"If you think of yourself as a prophet or a spiritual person, you will know that I am
writing only what the Lord has commanded." 1 Corinthians 14:37

"The Spirit of Christ was in them and was telling them how Christ would suffer and
would then be given great honour. So they searched to find out exactly who Christ
would be and when this would happen. 12But they were told that they were serving
you and not themselves. They preached to you by the power of the Holy Spirit, who
was sent from heaven. And their message was only for you, even though angels
would like to know more about it." 1 Peter 1:11-12

"Every word we speak was taught to us by God's Spirit, not by human wisdom. And
this same Spirit helps us teach spiritual things to spiritual people." 1 Corinthians 2:13

"My dear friends, this is the second letter I have written to encourage you to do some
honest thinking. I don't want you to forget what God's prophets said would happen.
You must never forget what the holy prophets taught in the past. And you must
remember what the apostles told you our Lord and Saviour has commanded us to
do." 2 Peter 3:1-2

"Then I was told: These words are true and can be trusted. The Lord God controls
the spirits of his prophets, and he is the one who sent his angel to show his servants
what must happen right away. Remember, I am coming soon! God will bless
everyone who pays attention to what this book tells about the future." Revelations 22:6-7

"You know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus" 1 Thessalonians 4:2 NIV

"And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God,
which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but as it actually is,
the word of God, which is at work in you who believe" 1 Thessalonians 2:13

"I am shocked that you have so quickly turned from God, who chose you because of
his kindness. You have believed another message, 7when there is really only one true
message. But some people are causing you trouble and want to make you turn away
from the good news about Christ. 8I pray that God will punish anyone who preaches
anything different from our message to you! It doesn't matter if that person is one of
us or an angel from heaven." Galatians 1:6-8

"That is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written
briefly" Ephesians 3:3



48. Are there mistakes in the Bible?
No, not in the original. However, we may have some Scribal errors. These may occur in some numbers and genealogical lists.

The Bible views that it was truth not just containing the truth.
"Your word is the truth. So let this truth make them completely yours." John 17:17
"Jesus answered: You are completely wrong! You don't know what the Scriptures
teach. And you don't know anything about the power of God." Matthew 22:29
"God cannot tell lies! And so his promises and vows are two things that can never be
changed. We have run to God for safety. Now his promises should greatly encourage
us to take hold of the hope that is right in front of us." Hebrews 6:18
See also Psalm 19:7; Psalm 119:160; 2 Timothy 3:16; Titus 1:2


49. Why was the Bible translated into Latin?
The Greek language become less common in usage after the New Testament was
finished and was replaced by Latin as the language of the Roman empire.


50. What is the "Latin Vulgate?"
The name Vulgate simply means common. This was the official Bible of the Catholic
Church for over a thousand years. It was translated by Jerome, a brilliant Bible
Scholar who spent many years living in Bethlehem and working with the original
languages of Hebrew and Greek. Jerome was also called Eusebius Hieronymus and
did his translating between 383 and 405 AD.


51. Why so many translations?
Bible translations fall under two main themes. Those that are a literal translation and
those that seek to put the Bible into an understandable contemporary English. Both
methods have strengths and weaknesses. We also have a range of translations due
to seeking to present God's truth in simple through to complex English. Language is
also living, this means that words change their meanings with time Thus the need for
revision and improving to reflect our current use of language.


52. What is a Study Bible?
A Study Bible may have some of the following Bible study supports:
* A concordance of  where words occur in the Bible.
*  Historical time lines of Bible history.
* Maps.
* Introduction notes to the Bible books, topics and sections.
* Topical notes on key Bible issues.
* Study notes to provide more information on a passage, doctrines or words.
* List of parallel passages.
* Give cross references that may throw extra light on a passage or a word.
* Short essays on key topics.


53.  How did the Bible get chapters?
In the Bible we have a simple numbering system found in some parts of the
Scriptures. Normally it would follow the Hebrew alphabet. Examples of this include
Psalm 119 and the book of Lamentations.

The Old Testament being put into sections happened before the Babylonian captivity
(586 BC) with the five books of Moses being put into a 154 section reading
programme to be used in a three-year cycle.

Later the Law was put into 54 sections and 669 sub-divisions for reading. (Before 536 BC)

For the Old Testament, the earliest copies of the book of Isaiah use letters of the
Hebrew alphabet for paragraph divisions. These divisions are different from what we
use today.

Chapters came about after the Bible had been divided into verses. Chapters were
added by Cardinal Hugo de Sancto Caro between 1244 and 1248 AD. He did this
when he was preparing a concordance on the Bible. (A where-to-find words in the
Bible guide)

The New Testament before the Council of Nicea in 325 AD was divided into
paragraphs and were different to our current divisions. We have many different such
divisions ranging from what would be long verses to chapter style divisions.

The modern chapter divisions came about through Stephen Langton, a professor at
the University of Paris and afterwards an Archbishop of Canterbury. He put the
modern divisions into place around 1227 AD. Since the Wycliffe English Bible of
1382 this pattern has been followed.


54.  How did the Bible get verses?
The current system for verses came from Jewish scholars, who hand copied the
Bible before the printing press. These scholars were called Masorites and the verse
divisions they used came about before the use of chapters. They date from around 900 AD.

The first Old Testament to use the modern verse divisions was the Bobberg edition in
1547 with every fifth verse shown, in 1571 Montanus showed every verse.

In the New Testament the verse divisions were first added by Robert Estienne in his
1551 edition of the Greek New testament. In 1557 the first English New Testament
with verse divisions was 1557 in the translation by Whittingham (Whittingham was
married to John Calvin's sister or sister-in-law). These divisions have been used by
nearly all English Bibles since then.

The first Bible in English to use both chapters and verses was in 1560. It was the
Geneva Bible.


55.  How many books are in the Bible?
 39 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament giving 66 books.


56.  How many chapters are in the Bible?
 929 in the Old Testament and 260 in the New Testament giving 1,189 chapters.


57.  How many verses are in the Bible?
23,214 in the Old Testament and 7,959 in the New Testament giving 31,173 verses.


58.  How many words are in the Bible?
593,493 in the Old Testament and  181,253 in the New Testament giving  774,746words.



59.  How many letters are in the Bible?

Around 3.5 Million letters



60. How many different words are used in the Bible?
Over 14,000 are in the original text.

61.  How many Scriptures are produced a year?
The Bible Society is the main provider of Scriptures in the world. It produces around
660 million Scriptures annually; which is 80% of the worlds annual production.


62.  What is the shortest verse in the Bible?

In English many translations have
"Jesus wept" John 11:35
“ He said” Job 3:2
 
The shortest verse in the Hebrew (original language) in the Old Testament is
1 Chronicles 1:25 “Eber, Peleg, Reu
 
The shortest verse in the New Testament in Greek (original language) is
1 Thessalonians 5:16 “Be joyful always”


63.  What is the longest verse in the Bible?
"At once the royal secretaries were summoned--on the twenty-third day of the third
month, the month of Sivan. They wrote out all Mordecai's orders to the Jews, and to
the satraps, governors and nobles of the 127 provinces stretching from India to Cush.
These orders were written in the script of each province and the language of each
people and also to the Jews in their own script and language." Esther 8:9 with 90
words.


64.  What is the oldest book in the Bible?
Job: written about 2000 BC, Genesis was written by Moses around 1400 BC
 


65.  How could Jesus be born in 4 BC not the year 0?
Our modern dating is based on BC and AD; with BC being before Christ. However,
this dating system did not come about till 1533 AD and the monk who worked out the
figures was wrong. However, the dating system has stayed the same.
PS The Romans did not have a number "0" Thus we go from 1BC to 1AD No year "0"


Sola Scriptura ‘Scripture alone' was the catch call of the Reformation.

Martin Luther "I am bound by Scripture... and my conscience has been taken captive by the Word of God."

Jerome "Read the divine Scriptures constantly; never indeed, let the sacred volume out of your hand".

Augustine " One cannot but receive what he reads in the gospels, though written by the disciples, as though it were written by the hand of the Lord Jesus Himself."