Questions about the history, composition and canon of the Bible. Don't use this tag for beliefs and practices in the Bible.

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What does it mean to interpret the Bible literally?

Here are some common definitions from a dictionary for ‘literal’: Being in accordance with, conforming to, or upholding the exact or primary meaning of a word or words. Word for word; verbatim: a ...
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1answer
290 views

How do I track the history of changes to a given verse's actual text? How do I discover it's “lineage”?

Has there been a project that traces the genealogy of each verse of the scripture? I.e., for each verse, it traces back through all the documents it was translated from, the default translations at ...
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2answers
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Does the Bible support slavery and (White) Superiority in the context of American Slavery?

Slavery existed as a fact of life in the Ancient World, and the Bible mentions slavery in many places. The question is this: When the Bible speaks of slavery, is it supporting it, or merely ...
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4answers
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What evidence is there to support the position that the Bible is truly the Word of God to mankind?

Christianity generally accepts the Bible to be the Word of God, and the Bible itself makes this claim (i.e. 2 Peter 1:16-21). 16 For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to ...
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3answers
853 views

What are the biblical arguments that the Bible canon is closed?

Some religions claim to have a newer revelation of God: the Book of Mormon and the Qur'an are presented to be the latest revelation of God. The Old Testament closes with a climax of expectation of ...
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2answers
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What major discrepancies exist between “versions” of the Bible?

Based on a comment from @AndrewThompson, 'the' Bible (any one you care to name) is no more evidence of anything than the BOM is. You might take the numerous discrepancies between versions of ...
11
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3answers
845 views

Why are the books of the Protestant Bible in the order that they are in?

I am curious why the books of the Protestant Bible are in the order that they are in? Someone told me they thought the books were in some sort of chronological order - is that true? (I know the ...
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1answer
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How many 'Books' never made it to the Bible (Old and New Testament)?

Alternatively: How many books were included in early Bible compilations and then later removed? A book in the bible, to my understanding, is one of the many named divisions in the Old and New ...
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4answers
830 views

Why four Gospels?

We find that in the New Testament, teachings of Jesus Christ are recorded in four Gospels by four different apostles. Why did God give us four Gospels instead of just one?
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7answers
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What are the different names of God in the Bible and what do they mean? [closed]

I see that our current-day Bibles only refer to God as LORD. Can you explain to me what the different names of God are and what they mean?
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5answers
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What does the Bible say about people with mental illness?

Some people with mental illness might do lots of things that are unpredictable and considered sin, up to killing themselves, or possibly forget anything about Jesus and salvation. So, what does the ...
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8answers
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What major translations of the Bible are in the Public Domain and therefore not subject to Copyright?

Quoting Biblical text is technically a dicey proposition. While the original manuscripts are obviously public domain, not every translation is. Indeed, the NIV even posts the following copyright ...
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2answers
326 views

By what mechanism could the Bible be inerrant?

For those who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible (or those who understand the positions of those who do), how can the Bible have this status given all the opportunities for any message delivered by ...
24
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7answers
799 views

How can the Son not know what the Father knows?

Matthew 24:36 (NLT) Mark 13:32 (NLT)  36 “However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father ...
11
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5answers
647 views

Why is the Bible so short? [closed]

The Old Testament checks in at about 580,000 - 590,000 words (depending on the translation), and the New Testament has about 180,000. That means the 66 distinct books combined have a total of about ...
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5answers
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Was there a reason Jesus came at the time he did?

Concerning what the Bible says and what might be said in commentary from prominent church leaders is there a particular reason Jesus came 2000 years ago and not some other time. One would think ...
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10answers
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Ruling on eating pork in Christianity as per Bible? [closed]

I am very new to Christanity and so kindly bear with me if my question appears novice. I want to know what is the ruling on eating pork in Christianity as per Bible?
8
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3answers
664 views

Are the gospel authors who we believe them to be?

What I'm wondering is whether the actual authors of the book of John, Luke, Matthew, and Mark are who we believe them to be. I go to a Catholic high school, and in our version of the Bible it says, in ...
8
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3answers
579 views

The effect of poison on Christians

Can someone explain me these passages about the effect of poison? Who is immune to poison? Why do they have this trait? Why isn't anyone today immune to poison? Mark 16:17-18 17And these ...
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4answers
352 views

Christian Position on the meaning of Faith

We are told, 'The just (upright) shall live by faith.' So I have a question for the Christians here. How do you understand faith? This does not have to be strictly biblical (since the scripture does ...
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4answers
678 views

Was the flood of Noah global or local? [closed]

Genesis 7 and 8 describes the flood of Noah, and says in part: The waters rose and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. They rose greatly on the earth, ...
56
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12answers
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Does wine really mean wine in the Bible?

In discussions I have had in the past over the acceptability of a Christian drinking alcohol I have heard that some 'dry' believers say that the wine in the Bible is not wine as we know it commonly ...
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7answers
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Where did Noah find polar bears and penguins in Palestine?

The biblical account of Noah's Ark and the flood seems implausible to me due to this detail... How could animals accustom to thriving in extreme temperatures be found in a common place for ...
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6answers
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Is it historically inaccurate that Jesus is usually portrayed as European looking?

Is it historically inaccurate that Jesus is usually portrayed as European looking, having certain facial and bodily features (muscular)? Would most people follow Him if he did not look white or was ...
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6answers
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If the Bible has been changed over the years, can we still trust it?

I read that there are passages that exist today that are not in some of the oldest scrolls. Since these passages were added along the way—maybe to help explain something—can we trust that ...
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1answer
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What is the biblical meaning of “sanctification”

I understand that sanctification is used as a post-reformational theological term to refer to the ongoing process of Christian growth. But, biblically speaking, is this always what is meant? I know ...
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6answers
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Was tithing 10% required or encouraged by the early church?

I cannot find in the New Testament an obligation on Christians to tithe 10% of their income. Instead I read that it is up the individual to decide: 2 Corinthians 9:7 (NIV1984) Each man should ...
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4answers
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Are tongues a sign for believers or unbelievers?

1 Corinthians 14:22-25 confuses me. Verse 22 states: Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is not for unbelievers but for believers. So, tongues is ...
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4answers
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What is the significance of the Bible to Christianity?

What exactly is the significance of the Bible to Christianity? Is Christianity defined by the Bible? If so, is belief in the Bible the most important (or foundational) belief in Christianity? Is ...
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4answers
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How are Christians expected to live up to the standards of following Christ?

Just re-read the New Testament and this question has been at the front of my mind. These are just a few of similar quotes that are in question: Matthew 16:24: "Then Jesus said to his disciples: If ...
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1answer
357 views

Are there any references to “four canonical Gospels” prior to 100 AD?

According to the "Institut für neutestamentliche Textforschung" eleven manuscripts of NT are from within the second century alone, which include: P52 (100-150), P90, 104 (2nd century), P66 (c. AD ...
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6answers
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What does it mean “my God my God why have you forsaken me”?

What is the correlation between these two scripture? Why Jesus felt forsaken if he knew what was going on? Why was it mentioned in Old Testament as well as New Testament(in two places)? Psalm ...
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5answers
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Isn't reincarnation affirmed by the Bible?

Malachi 4:5: I will send you the prophet Elijah. He will come before the day of the Lord arrives. It will be a great and terrifying day Jesus says in Matthew 11:14 "and if you are willing ...
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6answers
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What are the biblical arguments against the papacy and papal succession?

The Catholic Church teaches that Peter was the first pope and that papal succession continued down through history to the present day. However, neither the Orthodox nor the Protestant churches ...
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2answers
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In what order were the books in the New Testament written?

I'm just curious as to the actual timeline and known dates of the New Testament books. I know the version fo the Bible I read had the letters from Paul ordered by their size, and not when they were ...
4
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2answers
239 views

Which is the 'correct' bible for Catholics?

There are many versions of the bible, such as the: King James Bible NIV NRSV But which is the 'correct' bible that a catholic should read? I hope I have asked this question in the correct spot... ...
14
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6answers
874 views

What is the Biblical evidence for Old Earth?

According to a comment by another user in this question Why do OEC discount the literal interpretation of the book of Genesis?, apparently there's Biblical evidence for an Old Earth. As a Young ...
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5answers
182 views

Is a moral society more open to the gospel than an immoral one? [closed]

One of the answers to Why do many Christians object to same-sex civil marriage? got me thinking. If we work to make the common morals of our society more in line with Biblical morality does that make ...
12
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2answers
461 views

What does it mean to comment on scripture with scripture?

What does it mean to "comment on a verse with a verse" or "only scripture can explain scripture"? I see these kinds of comments popping up in comment threads that discuss the meaning of a verse. What ...
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3answers
470 views

Jesus' Brothers (Matthew 12:46)

What exactly did Matthew mean when he is talking about Jesus' brothers in Matthew 12:46? From Matthew 12:49, its clear that he didn't mean Jesus' disciples as his brothers. So who are the Jesus' ...
2
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1answer
354 views

Who decides if a verse is literal and what part is metaphorical [closed]

Just to be clear.. im not asking what parts of the bible are literal and what parts aren't. I just want to know who decides which one are supposed to be followed and which ones are like obsolete. ...
2
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1answer
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How did the world get populated according to Bible?

Adam and Eve had only three sons (Cain, Abel, and Seth), but no daughters: how did the world get populated?
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7answers
550 views

Why is the Bible a foundation of theological evidence?

Please excuse my ignorance I'm new to this. I've been looking through the Q&A on the site and I've noticed scripture and especially passages from the Bible are cited as evidence for one argument ...
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1answer
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How can I tell the difference between the Moral law and other laws in the old testament?

Many Christians believe that there are three kinds of law in the Old Testament: The moral law that declares how man should live. The civil law that was the legal structures for the ancient nation of ...
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7answers
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Are some people created to go to Hell?

This answer presents the following statement: God is in control and I believe that His will has always been done. So to say that He's never failed. So, are some people are destined to go to ...
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3answers
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What does the bible say about interracial marriages?

This has been a popular topic of debate, at least where I live. As Armenians, we like to...discourage marriages with spouses of a different ethnicity or nationality, simply in order to carry the ...
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5answers
620 views

Does being a Christian mean being a Bible literalist?

Where are the lines for Bible literalism in the Christian faith? Are all aspects of the Bible treated with the same level of literal belief (as actual history), or are some parts considered to be ...
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2answers
416 views

When do we as Christians draw the line on self-defense?

At what line do Christians stop at self defense? Take a look here: Matthew 5:39 But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. ...
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4answers
399 views

Where does the Bible stand on vegetarianism? [closed]

The subject of vegetarianism (or dietary recommendations in general) appears to me to be a bit ambivalent in the Bible. For example, Genesis 1:29 , Romans 14:21 and Isaiah 65:21-25 appear to endorse ...
12
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2answers
370 views

What is the Biblical and historical basis for Christian pacifism?

My understanding is that early Christians were generally pacifists. Today (at least in the U.S.) Christian pacifists are a bit hard to come by. Many quote Romans 13:1-3 to support Christian ...