What is the Bible?
The word “BIBLE” comes from the Greek “BIBLIA” meaning The Books.
It is a collection of ancient writings about God (Yahweh)
The Protestant Bible includes 66 writings of the Palestinian Canon.
The Catholic Bible includes 76 books of the Alexandrian Canon.
BIBLE : - Ist Part : OLD TESTAMENT and IInd Part : NEW TESTAMENT
“TESTAMENT” means “AGREEMENT”
“SCRIPTURE” means “SACRED WRITINGS”
THE OLD TESTAMENT: tells the history of God’s interventions in the lives of the Jews—
“THE CHOSEN PEOPLE”.
THE NEW TESTAMENT: is about the birth, life, teaching, death and resurrection of
Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as well as the life and growth of the early church He
founded.
39
Old Testament Books were written in HEBREW.
27
New Testament Books were written in Greek.
7
Old Testament Books were written in GREEK AND ARAMAIC.
WHO WROTE THE BIBLE?
It was written by many different authors, mostly HEBREWS, some unknown.
WHEN WAS THE BIBLE WRITTEN?
·
At Different Times: Over about 1000 years – from about 900 B.C. to
150 A.D.
·
At Different Places: Palestine, Babylon, Egypt, Rome and Corinth.
·
For Different Purposes: to teach religion and patriotism, to describe the
Messiah.
WHO CHOSE THESE WRITINGS?
·
The writings were not chosen but acknowledged to be inspired.
The council of Hippo (293 A.D.) and subsequent councils drew up a list or canon of
inspired books.
IN WHAT LANGUAGE WAS THE BIBLE WRITTEN?
·
IN HEBREW, ARAMAIC AND GREEK.
HEBREW –
is a Semitic language like Arabic and is written from right to left. It
was the language of Jews after their return from exile at the end of the 6th Century B.C.
ARAMAIC –
was a Semitic language of Armenia and Persia used by the Jews
after their return from exile. It is the language that Jesus spoke.
GREEK – is an Aryan or Indo-European language like Sanskrit and Latin. It became the
international language of Western Asia after Alexander’s conquest.
WHO ARE?
(a) THE JEWS?
JEWS – originally meant ‘man or men of Judah’ (the 4th son of Jacob), a name applied to the
Hebrews particularly after the return from Babylon. It was commonly used in the Old Testament by
the Non-Jews to refer to the Hebrew descendents of Abraham in general. In the New Testament
the plural ‘Jews’ had become a familiar term for all the Israelites. b)
THE PHARISEES?
PHARISEES – are a group of Jews (of Palestine) who separated themselves from the ordinary
Jews in order to excel others in the observances of religion, especially in the exact observances of
the Laws. Pharisee means “the separated ones” – separated from the rest of the Jews because
they allowed themselves to be influenced by Hellenism (Greco-Roman Culture).
(c)
THE SADUCEES?
SADUCEES – are a group of upper class, rich and noble Jews who tried to be modern and up-todate by encouraging the customs of the Greeks. They claim to be descended from the priestly
family of Zadok.
(d)
THE SCRIBES?
SCRIBES – are the scholars and intellectual men of Judaism who are experts in the Law (the
Torah).
(e)
THE SAMARITANS?
SAMARITANS – are the inhabitants of the district of Samaria. They were considered lower than
the pagans.
OLD TESTAMENT (46 BOOKS IN CATHOLIC BIBLE,
39 BOOKS IN PROTESTANT BIBLE).
GROUP – A
The first 5 cover “TORAH” “THE LAW” : These are sometimes called the
“PENTATEUCH” or “THE 5 BOOKS OF MOSES”.
GENESES:
how the world began
beliefs about origins of the human race
origin of Hebrews and their place as the “Chosen People”
50 CHAPTERS:
1-11: Story of the origins of humankind
12-50: Story of Patriarchs, the fathers of Jewish race: ABRAHAM, ISSAC, JACOB,
JOSEPH.
EXODUS:
how Israelites fled from Egypt
the Laws they swore to observe when they made their covenant with Yahweh at
Mount Sinai.
40 CHAPTERS:
1-18: Historical
19-22: LAWS, including the 10 COMMANDMENTS.
LEVITICUS:
more laws
regulations for sacrifices
how to observe HOLY Days
27 CHAPTERS:
1-7:
Law of Sacrifice
8-10:
Consecration of the Priesthood
11-17:
Law of “Clean” and “Unclean”
18-27:
The Holiness Code NUMBERS:
census of people
story of Israelites wandering in the wilderness.
36 CHAPTERS:
1-4 and 26: Census
other chapters – Historical
DEUTERONOMY:
story of Moses’ last discourses
repeats laws
34 CHAPTERS:
1-11: Moses’ address
12-26 and 29: Revised Laws
Deuteronomy: Greek for “Second Law”.
GROUP – B
21 BOOKS OF THE PROPHETS—6 “FORMER PROPHETS”
JOSHUA – story of Joshua, Successor of Moses as leader of Israelites.
Conquest of Canaan
24 CHAPTERS:
1-12: Conquest of Canaan —about 12th-7th Cent. B.C.
JUDGES:
troubles in promised land
fortunes of Israel depended on obedience of God’s Law
21 CHAPTERS:
3-16: the 12 Judges —about 12th-7th Cent. B.C.
1 SAMUEL:
continues story to death of Saul, Israel’s first king.
31 CHAPTERS:
1-7: Samuel as judge of Israel
8-15: Samuel and Saul
31: Death of Saul
about 11th Cent. B.C.
2 SAMUEL:
continues story to last year of king David.
24 CHAPTERS:
1-5: David’s rise to power
6-7: Transfer of ark
about 10th Cent. B.C.
1 KINGS:
death of David
reign of his son-Solomon
history up to Ahaziah, son of Ahab
22 CHAPTERS:
1-11: History of Solomon
12-22: The divided kingdom
about 9th to 6th Cent. B.C.
2 KINGS:
continued story
division into two kingdoms
events leading to captivity of bath
25 CHAPTERS:
1-17: The divided kingdom
18-24: History of Judah
25: Fall of Jerusalem
about 7th to 6th Cent. B.C.
3 “MAJOR PROPHETS”
ISAIAH:
-
proto Isaiah (1-39)
speeches of the prophet Isaiah on many subjects and occasions
deutero Isaiah (40-66)
promises and hope and warnings, Messianic oracles
66 CHAPTERS: about 8th Cent. B.C.
JEREMIAH:
prophecies to a nation in crises during 40 turbulent years
oracle of the new covenant
52 CHAPTERS:
1-25: oracles against Judah
26-45: Martyrdom of Jeremiah
52: Fall of Jerusalem
about 7th to 6th Cent. B.C.
EZEKIEL:
reproaches for Israel’s sins
promise of salvation in a new covenant
conditions of new covenant
48 CHAPTERS:
1-24 : oracles of doom on Jerusalem
25-48 : the book of restoration
about 6th Cent. B.C.
12 “MINOR PROPHETS”
HOSEA:
first of 12 minor prophets preached that Yahweh was a God of love and would
forgive those who repented
14 CHAPTERS:
1-3 : Hosea’s marriage
4-13 : Message against Israel
14 : Repentance and Salvation
about 8th Cent. B.C.
JOEL:
-
call to repentance through fasting and prayer
promise of the outpouring of the Spirit
3 CHAPTERS:
1-2 : the plague of locusts
about 5th Cent. B.C.
AMOS:
earliest recorded sermons of a prophet
preached to the Northern Kingdom that Yahweh would destroy Israel for its sins.
9 CHAPTERS:
1-2
: judgment against the nation
3-6 : discourse
7-9 : vision
about 8th Cent. B.C.
OBADIAH:
sermons denouncing Edom for joining Judah’s enemies.
1 CHAPTER: about 6th and 5th Cent. B.C.
JONAH:
a parable of mercy
shows God loves all, not just Jews.
4 CHAPTERS:
1-2: Jonah’s call, disobedience and repentance
4: God’s mercy
about 8th and 4th Cent. B.C.
MICAH:
judgement of Judah for infidelity
predictions of the birth of Christ in Bethlehem
7 CHAPTERS:
1-3: judgement on Israel
4-5: Glory of new Israel
6-7: warning
about 8th Cent. B.C.
NAHUM:
sermons against Nineveh (Assyria)
soon after Nineveh had terrorized Judah, late 7th Cent. B.C.
3 CHAPTERS:
2-3: The fall of Nineveh—about 620 B.C.
HABAKKUK:
prophet in Judah shortly after Nahum
God’s use of Babylon as a rod of chastisement for Judah.
3 CHAPTERS:
1-2: Habakkuk’s complaints and the Lord’s reply
about 620 B.C.
ZEPHANIAH:
sermons against idolatry and foreign ways
he prophesied during the reign of Josiah.
3 CHAPTERS:
3: Jerusalem’s doom and redemption—about 640 to 630 B.C.
HAGGAI:
preached to Jews returning to Jerusalem after exile in Babylonia
message was to rebuild the temple of Yahweh in Jerusalem
2 CHAPTERS:
1:
commandment to build the temple
2:
message of comfort
about 520 B.C.
ZECHARIAH:
partner of Haggai in effort to rebuild the temple
the messianic vision of the prince of peace
14 CHAPTERS:
1-8:
the prophetic mission
9-14:
future prosperity and peace
about 520-518 B.C.
MALACHI:
means “my messenger”
preaches against abuses and indifference.
4 CHAPTERS:
1:
Israel’s sins
2-4: God’s judgment and mercy
about 500 and 445 B.C.
GROUP – C
(13 Books—The Writings)
PSALMS:
150 songs of prayer and praise
many are traditionally ascribed to David, but most are unknown
150 CHAPTERS:
8, 19, 29, 33
:
Praise
39, 69
:
Lamentations
41, 65
:
Thanksgiving
2, 93, 72 :
Royal Psalms
about 9th to 4th Cent. B.C.
PROVERBS:
a collection of maxims and sayings
religious and worldly
by Solomon and others
31CHAPTERS:
10-29: proverbs of Solomon
31
:
Semuel’s sayings
about 5th Cent. B.C.
JOB:
-
narrative drama
story of troubles that afflict a good man
why evil should happen to the righteous
42 CHAPTERS:
3-31:
Job and his friends
38-42: The Lord answers Job
about 5th Cent. B.C.
DANIEL:
story of a young Jew, taken captive to Babylon, who rose to become Governor.
gives an interpretation of history and hope for a ‘new order’ on earth.
14 CHAPTERS:
7-11: Daniel visions
about 6th to 2nd Cent. B.C.
EZRA:
story of the return of exile from Babylon to Judea in 536 B.C.
starts with the proclamation of Cyrus, King of Persia.
10 CHAPTERS:
3-6
:
The temple is rebuilt and dedicated
about 5th and 4th Cent. B.C.
NEHEMIAH:
story of how a great leader left Persian court to help returned exiles to rebuild Jerusalem
and their lives.
13 CHAPTERS:
8-10:
Promulgation of Ezra’s Torah
about 5th and 4th Cent. B.C.
1 CHRONICLES:
history from Adam to David
29
CHAPTERS:
10:
The death of Saul
11-29: Reign of David
about 4th Cent. B.C.
2 CHRONICLES:
history of Israelites from Solomon through the Babylonian exile
36 CHAPTERS:
1-9:
The reign of Solomon
10:
Revolt
36:
The fall of Jerusalem
about 4th Cent. B.C.
SONG OF SONGS:
a love lyric which many feel is a parable showing God’s love for Israel and
Christ’s love for the Church.
8 CHAPTERS:
about 4th Cent. B.C.
RUTH:
- a pastoral story
- how a Moabite becomes a daughter of Israel and the ancestress of King David and of
Jesus Christ.
4 CHAPTERS:
2-3:
Ruth meets Boaz
4:
Boaz marries Ruth
about 7th or 6th Cent. B.C.
LEMENTATIONS:
a book of dirges on the fall of Jerusalem with its consequent chaos and oppression.
it reflects the spirit and style of Jeremiah
5 CHAPTERS:
1:
The sorrow of Jerusalem
3:
Punishment on ruins
about 586 B.C.
ECCLESIATES:
an account of the divine wisdom reflected in nature, sovereign and independent of man
12 CHAPTERS:
about 3rd Cent. B.C.
ESTHER:
story of a Jewish girl who became queen of Persia and saved her people from
destruction
No mention of God in the Hebrew text of the entire work
16 CHAPTERS:
1: Esther becomes Queen
3-5: Hamn’s plots
9-10: feast of Purim
GROUP – D
(7 Books—The DEUTEROCANONICAL)
The following are included in Catholic and Orthodox Bibles and they call them
DEUTEROCANONICAL BOOKS. The Protestants omit this section and call it
the “APOCRYPHA”.
TOBIT:
- a religious story emphasizing the validity of faith in times of apparent
abandonment by God.
- Israel’s role of Salvation
14 CHAPTERS:
1-3: Tobit’s virtues and trials.
7-10:
Marriage of Tobias and Sarah
about 3rd Cent. B.C.
JUDITH:
- Story which teaches Israel’s role of salvation and destiny in human history.
16 CHAPTERS:
1-7: Peril of the Jews
8-15:
Deliverance
16:
Victory
about 2nd Cent. B.C.
WISDOM OF SOLOMON:
praise of divine wisdom
personifies wisdom a defender of righteous
condemnation of idolatry
19 CHAPTERS:
1-5: Wisdom and human destiny
10-19:
Wisdom of God in the history of Israel
about 100 B.C.
SIRACH:
also called Wisdom of Jesus Son of Sirach
asserts principles of divine moral law, moral responsibility for sin, divine
retribution
51 CHAPTERS:
about 190 B.C.
BARUCH:
a re-telling of the history of the exile to give the Jews, the reason for their
distress and the assurance of restoration.
6 CHAPTERS:
2-3: Prayer of Baruch
4-5: Discourse
about 6th Cent. B.C.
1MACCABEES:
historical account 175-134 B.C. of Jews’ struggle to defend worship of
Israel and fidelity to the Law.
God is at work in History
16 CHAPTERS:
3-9: The campaigns of Judas Maccabaeus
about 174 B.C.
2 MACCABEES:
account of (years 180-161 B.C.) the same revolt, through Jewish victory
and subsequent independence.
Purpose is instruction and edification.
15 CHAPTERS:
8-13:
Success of Judas Maccabaeus
about 110 B.C.
NEW TESTAMENT (27 BOOKS IN BOTH CATHOLIC AND PROTESTANT
BIBLES)
GROUP – A
THE 4 GOSPLES:
“Gospel” means “Good News” – (The first 3 are called “SYNOPTICS” meaning ‘seen
with the same eye.’ They cover the same events)
MATHEW:
includes most of Mark (about half)
written about 85 A.D. after the fall of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.
seems WRITTEN FOR JEWS to prove Jesus fulfilled prophecies of coming of the
Messiah.
28 CHAPTERS:
4-13:
Galilean Ministry
14-20:
Journeys of Jesus
21-27:
Passion narrative
28: Resurrection
MARK:
earliest and shortest story of Jesus life.
written about 70 A.D. and published after the fall of Jerusalem
seems to have WRITTEN FOR GENTILES to present Jesus as Messiah and Son
of God.
16 CHAPTERS:
1-8: Public Ministry in Galilee
8: Peter’s confession
16:Appearances and Ascension of the risen Lord.
LUKE:
- written about 75 A.D.
- about one third based on Mark
- provides a chronological sequence
- seems WRITTEN FOR GREEKS to show Jesus as a Universal Saviour
CHAPTERS:
1-2: infancy narratives
3-4: Baptism and temptation of Jesus
9-19:
Journey narrative
JOHN:
- written between 90 and 100 A.D.
- written for INSTRUCTION of early Christian Church
- presents Jesus as the eternal Word of God who descended from heaven
and became man.
21 CHAPTERS:
2-11:
Ministry of Jesus
12-21:
Passion and resurrection
GROUP – B
THE ACTS: The Acts of the Apostles.
The only early account of the Christian community.
how it spread from Palestine to Rome, the capital of the world.
a sequel to Luke, the 3rd Gospel, and by the same author.
covers first 30 years after Jesus’ death
written about 75 A.D.
28 CHAPTERS:
First 12 – Events in Palestine and Asia Minor
Next 16 – Paul’s missionary tours to Judea, and throughout the Roman World
up to his imprisonment in Rome.
GROUP –C
(13 LETTERS OF PAUL WRITTEN BEFORE THE GOSPELS 20 TO 30 YEARS
AFTER JESUS’ DEATH. SO THEY ARE THE EARLIEST CHRISTIAN
WRITINGS.)
ROMANS:
from Corinth to the Roman Church
to prepare Church for his visit
just before final visit to Jerusalem
principal theme: Relationship between Judaism and Christianity.
16 CHAPTERS:
1-11:
Doctrinal section
12-15:
The demands of the new life.
about 57-58 A.D.
1 CORINTHIANS:
advice to the Corinthian Church on insubordination, chastity and
marriage etc.
the resurrection
16 CHAPTERS:
1-6: condemnation of disorders in the Corinthian Church
7-15:
answers to the questions in the community
about 57 A.D.
2 CORINTHIANS:
Paul’s suffering and consolation
warns he will get after evildoers on his next visit
collection for poor in Jerusalem
13 CHAPTERS:
1-7: Paul’s defense
8-9: collection for the Church in Jerusalem
GALATIANS:
concerns Galatians converts to Christianity who were backsliding to
strict Jewish laws
true nature of justification by faith
6 CHAPTERS:
3-4: Faith, not the law
5-6: Christian freedom
about 54-55 A.D.
CAPTIVITY LETTERS
EPHESIANS:
a letter to a city in Asia Minor
discusses mystery of salvation and the mystery of the Church
6 CHAPTERS:
1-3: Christ and the Church
4-6: The Christian life
about 62 A.D.
PHILIPPIANS:
written when Paul was a prisoner in Rome
warns against false teachings
a plea for unity
4 CHAPTERS:
1-2: instructions
2:6-11:
Christ’s humility
about 62 A.D.
COLOSSIANS:
written to the Church at Collossae in highly developed Christology
4 CHAPTERS:
1-2: nature and work of Christ
2-4: the New Life in Christ
about 62 A.D.
PHILEMON:
to a Christian, whose slave Onesimus had run away, been converted and w
ready to return.
asks Philemon to be merciful and express Christian brotherhood
1 CHAPTER:
about 62 A.D.
1 THESSALONIANS:
written from Corinth on Paul’s first visit.
praises the people
tells of Christ’s second coming
5 CHAPTERS:
4-5: instructions and exhortations
about 51 A.D.
2 THESSALONIANS:
a follow up to his first letter
Paul is concerned about their attitude expecting a second coming of Christ
too soon.
3 CHAPTERS:
2-3: the coming of the Lord
3:
exhortation on Christian conduct
about 52 A.D.
PASTORAL LETTERS
1 TIMOTHY:
after Paul’s release from his first imprisonment in Rome
advice to Timothy about handling wrong ideas of some Ephesians
6 CHAPTERS:
2-3: directions of the community
about 63 A.D.
2 TIMOTHY:
from Rome at the time of Paul’s Second imprisonment
asks Timothy to protect the Community against false teachings
expresses great love for Timothy
4 CHAPTERS:
1-2: Exhortations
2-4: Curse and Warnings
about 63 A.D.
TITUS:
written before Timothy letters
advice to young co-workers to help them in Christianizing the social
world
3 CHAPTERS:
1: Church office
2: duties of various groups in the Church
about 62 A.D.
GROUP – D
(8 Catholic Letters)
HEBREWS:
Author unknown
Treats the dignity of the person of Christ
God’s ultimate word of salvation
13 CHAPTERS:
1-10:
The superiority of Christ’s covenant
10-13:
Fidelity to the new covenant
about 66 A.D.
JAMES:
Probably by a relative of Jesus who became the head of the Church at
Jerusalem
Teaches necessity of good works to accompany faith
5 CHAPTERS:
2:14-16 Faith and works
3: Control of tongue
5: Instructions
about 62 A.D.
1 PETER:
from Rome to Christian Churches in ASIA MINOR
teaches the value of Christ’s death and resurrection
5 CHAPTERS:
1-4: Baptismal exhortation
5: Advice for the persecuted
about 64-67 A.D.
2 PETER:
exhorts readers to be faithful and blameless
helps build hope for a second coming
warns against false teachers
3 CHAPTERS:
1: Christian calling, false teachers
about 100 A.D.
I, II, III JOHN:
all concern various theological matters
5+1+1 CHAPTERS:
1:1-2
Walking in the light
4-5: Love and Faith
II 1:4-6
Primacy of Love
About 100 A.D.
JUDE:
possibly by the brother of James
to Christians who had back-tracked to pagan immoralities
1 CHAPTER:
1:5-6
Wicked intruders
1:17-23 Exhortations
about 90 A.D.
GROUP – E
The Revelation: “The Revelation of John”:
Struggle of Christ and his followers against Satan and his cohorts.
Defeat of Satan and ultimate triumph of the Kingdom of God.
22 CHAPTERS:
Revelation was composed about the year 95 A.D. during the reign of the
emperor Domitian. This was the time of severe persecution of the Church
throughout the empire. Those who resisted were murdered. The author,
whose name is John, probably held a high position of leadership and was
regarded highly by many Christian communities. He had endured much but
had clung to faith. The book is intended to give hope to those who are near
despair.
NUMBER SYMBOLISM:
3 divine Fullness
6 one less than seven, therefore, a symbol of great imperfection
7 fullness, perfection
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