Bible

Is The Bible Trustworthy?

greek text

How do we know that the Bible is reliable and that the words contained in today’s Bibles convey the same message as the original documents?

Original Documents

The books of the Bible were written on animal skins and on an ancient kind of paper called papyrus. These writings are referred to as manuscripts. A manuscript is a document written by hand. When referring to Bible manuscripts, the term is restricted to documents written in their original languages (i.e. not a translation). The Old Testament books of the Bible were written in Hebrew and Aramaic while the New Testament was written in Greek.

Since these manuscripts were written thousands of years ago, none of the originals have survived to the present day. Due to the effects of age and use, the originals are all lost. However, thanks to ancient scribes, we have literally thousands of copies of the originals. If the originals are no longer in existence, how can we be sure existing manuscripts were accurately copied?

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Basics

How to Define Stuff in the Bible

Dictionary

There are over 750,000 words in the Bible and everyone of them has a meaning! To find out the meaning of a word, a person normally picks up a Webster’s Dictionary and looks up the definition. While that works just fine for looking up words we encounter day to day, it won’t work out so well when trying to define words in the Bible.

We can’t trust a normal dictionary to define Bible words because word meanings change over time. For example, the word “baptize” means to dip, immerse or submerge. If you look up the word in a modern English dictionary it will tell you that baptism is immersion, sprinkling or pouring. This word, like many other words in the English language, has taken on different or additional meanings over the centuries. The Greek word, as it was used in the day when the Bible was written, meant only to immerse. 

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Basics

How to Find Stuff in the Bible

Finding Stuff

There are over 750,000 words in the Bible!  We’ve all heard a friend or teacher mention some phrase from the Bible that we’d like to find and read for ourselves. In a volume as large as the Bible, how does one go about finding the phrase? It’s a lot easier now than it used to be thanks to all sorts of Bible study aids available on the Internet, computers and smart phones. Since you may not always be in a position to use a software tool to do your search, let’s learn how to do it the old fashioned way using a concordance. 

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Basics

Book, Chapter & Verse?

Confused

The Bible is a collection of many shorter books, written at different times, and later compiled into one volume.  In the middle ages, the individual books were assigned chapters and verses to make it easier and faster for Bible students to refer to a specific passage of Scripture.  Since the chapter and verse divisions are not part of the original text, they often fail to coincide with the beginning or end of a new thought and may subconsciously be disruptive to the “flow” of the text. In spite of this, they are extremely beneficial to the Bible student and overall are very helpful.

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Basics

The Bible’s Time Periods

Time

Just as there are two major sections of the Bible, there are also three time periods in the Bible. Recognizing this fact is very important in order to understand what is, and is not, directly applicable for us today because the Bible reveals that God’s methods of interacting with mankind have not always been the same. These three time periods are:

  1. The Patriarchal Age
  2. The Mosaic Age
  3. The Christian Age
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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Basics