The Bible of the Church

The Bible is the most widely distributed book in history, with over 5 billion in circulation, and over 100 million sold every year.  There are no figures about how often it is read or quoted from in churches, but certainly it must be the most quoted book in history.  As overwhelming as these numbers are, very little has changed concerning the information known about what the Bible actually says, despite the centuries it has been in the public domain. (In 1536, William Tyndale was burned at the stake for translating and printing the holy book in English.) This can be attributed to many factors, but two reasons stand out prominently.  One very obvious reason is the rather unique language in the King James Bible prevents English speaking readers form having a clear understanding of the context of this rather extensive book.  Another more complicated reason is the doctrinal interpretation of the Catholic Church and its spin-off religions generally known as Protestant churches.  
      Through the centuries the strict conditioning of members of the “Christian” church, by its leaders, has been constant and almost all doctrine and practice of this church is seldom ever questioned.  Any such questioning is strictly forbidden and almost always results in castigation, censure, or expulsion from the church.  Close examination reveals that there is good reason for this as the very existence of the church is threatened by any objective research into the book it claims as the foundation for its authority.  
      This book lists the names of hundreds of writings known as the “lost books” of the Bible; those books associated with the Bible, but not included in it.  One must make a personal judgment about the authenticity of those books, but to condemn all books not included in the King James Bible as uninspired is to accept the Emperor Constantine and the leaders of the early church he founded as direct representatives of God.  This book only uses one ancient writing, the Book of Enoch, which is not included in the Bible, for its clarification on certain realities about the flood and demons. 

The Book Used in This Work
      The Authorized King James Bible, the King James Bible without the Apocrypha, is the book used for all references in this book other than the one just mentioned.  Many do not know that the Apocrypha books were actually included in the King James translation until the Synod of Dordrecht held in Holland removed them in 1618.  There was also a “Translators Preface” and a “Dedicatory Letter from the Translators to King James” also missing from the original translation.  Neither the Translators Preface nor the Dedicatory Letter are included here, but can be found on the internet or in most libraries.  These two missing sections provide little insight, but the Apocrypha books do contain some 400 years of history missing from the Authorized Version.  
      The King James Bible is used in this work for two obvious reasons.  First it is widely circulated and does not greatly conflict with Catholic Douay Bible, which can also be used in researching this work.  The Authorized King James Bible is also the book used for the Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance. Strong’s is the reference used for translation in this work. Strong’s allows for the cross reference of every word in the King James and simple translation from all the original words in that translation.  As a work involving over 100 experts and 35 years of dedication, it is unmatched for its accuracy and research value.  The modern translations are generally only translations of the King James, thus keeping the mistakes and mistranslations of that book.  Any modern translations using any original works are impossible to check for accuracy.  

King James
      Many claim that the Authorized King James Bible is the inspired work of God, and that all changes and mistranslations are the direct work of God and any research that questions it is wrong.  This is not supported by the historical reality.  King James did not encourage a translation of the Bible in order to enlighten the common people; his intent was to deny them the marginal notes of the Geneva Bible, the favored Bible of the time. The marginal notes of the Geneva version made it popular with the common people and contained over 300,000 words that questioned many concepts of orthodox religion.  
      King James I of England was a devout believer in the “divine right of kings”, a philosophy claiming a king’s power came from God, thus the king then had to answer to no one but God. The reasoning was that if a king was evil, that was a punishment sent from God. The citizens should then suffer in silence. If a king was good, that was a blessing sent from God. If one considers King James himself as inspired by God, the public record must be considered carefully in that judgment.  
      That record shows King James was a known homosexual, practiced bestiality, proved himself to be a great coward, and was a sadist who personally supervised the torture of those caught up in the witchcraft trials of Scotland. 

      One very important consideration must be weighed.  If there were no translations or commentaries in this work certainly some enlightenment would be missing.  But, the verses contained in the original form, as presented directly from the Authorized King James Bible, are sufficient to back the concepts in this work.  It also must be understood that as the following doctrines and practices of the church are examined, one glaring reality will become clear.  The church ignores the scriptures about those doctrines, properly translated and explained, or not. 

“It ain’t the parts of the Bible that I can’t understand that bother me, 
it is the parts that I do understand.”

Mark Twain

The Basics
      There are 66 books in the Authorized King James Bible containing 1,189 chapters, 41,173 verses, and 774,746 words that were authored by approximately 40 men and women, and written over a period of 1,600 years. The word “Bible” comes from the Greek word “biblia” which means “little books”. There are about 6,800 distinct languages in the world; the Bible has been translated (at least in part) into around 3000 of those languages.

The Authors
·  
The first five books, Genesis through Deuteronomy, were written by Moses. 
·  
Joshua is the author of the book of Joshua. 
·  
Judges was written by the prophet Samuel, as was I Samuel 1-24.  The remainder of I Samuel and all of II Samuel was written by Nathan the prophet and Gad. 
·  
I and II Kings were probably written by Jeremiah who compiled older records made by prophets contemporary
with the events. 
·  
Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi were all prophets who wrote the books bearing their names. 
·  
The Psalms had various authors. David wrote about half; other authors include Asaph or his descendants, the sons of Korah, and Moses. 
·  
Proverbs 1 through 29 belong mostly to Solomon. Chapters 30 and 31 are respectively ascribed to Agur and
Lemuel. 
·  
The author of the book of Job was most likely Job himself. 
·  
The Song of Solomon was written by Solomon. 
·  
The book of Ruth is attributed to Samuel. 
·  
Lamentations was written by Jeremiah. 
·  
Ecclesiastes was written by Solomon. 
·  
Esther was written by Mordecai. 
·  
Daniel, Ezra, and Nehemiah wrote the books which bear their names. 
·  
I and II Chronicles were written by Ezra. 
·  
Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, James, I Peter, II Peter, I John, II John, III John, and Jude were written by the men whose names they bear. 
·  
Acts was written by Luke. 
·  
Romans, I and II Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, I and II Thessalonians, I and II Timothy, Titus, Philemon, and Hebrews were all written by Paul. 
·  
The book of Revelation was written by John.

Canon of Scripture
      One of the terms used in describing the books that belong in Scripture is the word canon. This comes from the Greek word ‘kanon’, meaning reed or measurement. A canonical book is one that measures up to the standard of Holy Scripture. Thus, the canon of Scripture refers to the books that are considered the authoritative Word of God.  It was the leaders of the early church who determined which books were canonical.  

What criteria were used in determining which books belong in the Bible?
·  
Prophetic Authorship – For a book to be considered canonical, it must have been written by a prophet or apostle or by one who had a special relationship to such (Mark to Peter, Luke to Paul).  Only those who had witnessed the events or had recorded eyewitness testimony could have their writings considered as Holy Scripture.
·  
Witness of the Spirit – The appeal to the inner witness of the Holy Spirit.  Clark Pinnock writes: The Spirit did not reveal a list of inspired books, but left their recognition to a historical process in which He was active, God’s people learned to distinguish wheat from chaff, and gold from gravel, as He worked in their hearts (Clark Pinnock, Biblical Revelation)
·  
Acceptance – The final test is the acceptance of the people of God.

      Again it must be realized that it was the leaders of the early church that made all the above determinations about authorship, whether the Holy Spirit approved it, and who the “people of God” were who accepted them.  No input was ever accepted from the “common” people. 

Who decided which books should be placed in the Bible?
      The number of books originally considered for inclusion in the Bible is uncertain.  We do know Constantine ordered 50 copies of the Bible to be produced by Eusebius in 325 AD to end any dispute over this, which basically left this important decision to Eusebius alone. This collection set the standard.  The first ecclesiastical councils to classify the canonical books were both held in North Africa-at Hippo Regius in 393 and at Carthage in 397. 

Jews and Christians use the same Old Testament.
      The King James Old Testament consists of thirty-nine books according to the Protestant reckoning, but only twenty-four according to the Jewish reckoning. The books are the same; the difference is in the way they are divided.  The division of the Protestants’ Bible is as follows: Seventeen historical books: Genesis-Esther, five poetical books Job-Song of Solomon, seventeen prophetical books: Isaiah-Malachi.
      The Hebrew Bible numbers these as twenty-four: The Torah or law contains five books, Genesis-Deuteronomy; The Prophets contain eight books, Joshua, Judges, Samuel, Kings, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the twelve minor prophets are grouped into one book; The Writings or Kethubim contain eleven books, Psalms, Proverbs, Song of Solomon, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Daniel, Ezra-Nehemiah, and Chronicles. The Hebrew Bible combined 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, and 1 and 2 Chronicles. The twelve Minor Prophets were combined into one book. Thus, the books are identical. The only difference is in the way they are divided.

The Bible of the Church Part 2

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