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23

There was no mandate that the gospels should appear in the order they were written once they were gathered into a collection. This is true of the rest of the New Testament as well. The order is the gospel accounts, the history of the early church, the letters of Paul to churches, to people, letters by other apostles, and prophecy. So, there ...


18

It's because the early church fathers thought that Matthew was written first. This is known as the Augustinian Hypothesis, and its namesake, Augustine, writes: Now, those four evangelists whose names have gained the most remarkable circulation over the whole world [...] are believed to have written in the order which follows: first Matthew, then Mark, ...


18

Wikipedia does a good job of summarizing the heresy, but I want to pull out some source material. Some of the sayings do attest to the synpotic Gospels, but there is a lot of heresy in there too: From the top, selected parts of The Gospel of Thomas: These are the secret sayings that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas recorded. 1. And he ...


14

Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772) listed the books that he considers to be the Word of God ("divinely inspired Biblical canon," in the words of the question) in three places: Arcana Coelestia ("Secrets of Heaven") #10325, The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine #266, and The White Horse #16. Here is the listing from Arcana Coelestia #10325: The books of ...


14

Most of the books of the Bible were written by different people. An estimated 40 authors wrote the 70 or so books that various Christians accept as "the Bible". Most of these authors wrote independently from each other; if they were contemporaries, they typically did not confer with each other. If they were separated by time, the latter typically did not ...


13

The Bible itself seems to indicate that Jesus performed no miracles until His ministry began. Non-biblical sources may disagree, but they are non-biblical. John 2 records to miracle at the wedding in Cana, where Jesus turns water into wine. John completes the account with the following statement: This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in ...


12

The Book of Jashar is mentioned in two places in the Bible: 2 Samuel 1:18 (NASB) and he told them to teach the sons of Judah the song of the bow; behold, it is written in the book of Jashar. Joshua 10:12-13 (NASB) Then Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of ...


11

There is no record of Jesus performing miracles when he was a child that is accepted according to the Bible. There are also these biblical reasons to believe that he did not perform any such miracles: The Bible records no such miracles, and the most remarkable event that the Bible does record is the Finding in the Temple. See Luke 2:46-47: 46 After three ...


10

Some historical background regarding the Canon of Scripture The books that non-Catholics (generally Protestants) call the Apocrypha are called by Catholics the Deuterocanonical books (from the Greek δεύτερος, second; and κανῶν, literally a straight rod or bar, hence a unit of measure, or, by extension, a list). They are called the “second” canon because, ...


10

It is impossible to know for sure without asking the person that said it, but I believe it is most likely, given her description of the individual in question, the historical time frame and the context of the discussion, that she was speaking of a man named Marcion. Who was Marcion? For the first hundred years or so of the Christian faith, documents like ...


10

The answer is most certainly no. The oldest complete Bible that we have is the Codex Vaticanus, dating to between 300 and 325. It contains 68 books: 45 Old Testament books plus 23 New Testament books. The Old Testament includes 2 Esdras (sometimes called "Ezra-Nehemiah"), Tobit, Judith, Wisdom, Sirach and the Psalms of Solomon. The New Testament lacks 1 ...


9

Yes and no. He preferred the gospel of John over the synoptic gospels, under his somewhat unusual view of revelational clarity within the canonical books. i.e. some books are more clear and powerful then others. For example, many would agree that Romans is more useful than proverbs in terms of communicating the message of salvation, but Luther was much more ...


9

The standard resides in the original languages of Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. While there are, admittedly, small variances in the Greek manuscripts (New Testament) in particular, these variances are completely insignificant, consisting mostly of spelling variances for proper names, word order, and very slight verb tense differences, which happen to translate ...


9

The Old Testament and the New Testament are different sections of the library. To think of this division as "insert a title page" is too far off the mark. Imagine, if you will, a library of 66 books, written over the course of 1500 years, by 40 different men (possibly one woman). As each of these works was created, it doesn't make sense to ask "When did ...


9

Below is my answer to the original question: "What are the arguments for Matthew's canonicity that don't appeal to Matthean authorship or the authority of the church?" I have leaving it as is, because it is still valid answer to that part of the question (and good information), although not all of it makes sense as a reply to the edited question. ...


9

Actually, in his magnum opus "Institutes of the Christian Religion" (ICR), he cited Tobit, Baruch, 1 and 2 Maccabees, and Siriach. The Geneva Bible, which Calvin accepted and fostered, also contains the Deuterocanonical books. This doesn't say however that Calvin accepted them as having the same rank as others books. In fact, he wrote precisely ...


9

At the Council of Trent, the Church officially declared as dogma the canon of Holy Scripture. This included "the four Gospels, according to Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John." The council did not explicitly say whether the Longer Ending of the Gospel is canonical. However, it does declare that if any one receive not, as sacred and canonical, the said ...


8

There was a manuscript that began circulating in the 2nd century written by someone who called himself "Thomas the Israelite," claiming that Jesus was able to do miracles as a child. The manuscript was later given the title, "Infancy Gospel of Thomas", and you can see a full English translation here. The first story in this manuscript tells of Jesus' ...


8

According to When Skeptics Ask (Normal L. Geisler and Ronald M. Brooks, 1990 Baker Books): The following books were in question at one point or another: Hebrews because the author is unknown. However, it was accepted as having apostolic authority, if not apostolic authorship. James because of conflict with Pauls teaching about salvation by faith alone. ...


8

In the Catholic tradition, there 3 types of historical writings dealt with here: biblical writings and/or non-biblical writings known as Apocrypha. Canononical works Deuterocanonical works Apocrypha (non-biblical works) The OP states that there are several books "used in addition to the same Old Testament canon used by Protestants", but also calls these ...


8

Although many are of the opinion that the Council of Nicea was called to prep Christianity to become the official state religion, this is not accurate. This hypothesis does not fit with what we know about the mindset of the people of that time or Constantine. It should be remembered that Constantine was not yet a baptized Christian in 325 AD (the year the ...


8

Perhaps there are/were others, but the 'Jesus Christians' are the closest sect I'm aware of that matched your description (they are of relatively recent history - beginning in the early 1980s until officially disbanding in 2010: although their website is still being maintained and updated, so perhaps reports of their demise are premature). While not ...


8

Further Clarification The original person who asked the question asked for additional clarification on these two questions: 1) Are inspired works closed as canon is? 2) Are there potentially other inspired historical works which are not in canon? The answer to the first question depends on the view one has of the gift of prophecy and its possible ...


7

Overview of Hebrew history Although not specifically asked for, it is profitable to start with a brief overview of the history of the Hebrew language. For more details on the subject, see A History of the Hebrew Language by A. Sáenz-Badillo (from which the following information comes). Hebrew is a member of the Semitic language family, a group of about 70 ...


7

Martin Luther disliked James, in particular, for its emphasis on works. He called it his "epistle of straw." That said, there is simply not a mechanism for removing anything from the canon in Christian circles. Likewise, of Revelation, Luther said: About this book of the Revelation of John, I leave everyone free to hold his own opinions. I would not ...


7

tl;dr> Patterson Brown, in particular, has argued the disunity within the Nag Hammadi Corpus. That's about the best you're going to get without defining a positive corpus, as opposed to the inverse of the canon. The problem with answering this question is that you are asking a question akin to "Are the books not on the NY Times Best-seller list as unified ...


7

This is the position of the Mormons and the Ba'hai, but not of Nicene Christianity. The problem is that there is no authority to "open the canon." The traditional marks of christianity (See What are the biblical arguments that the Bible canon is closed? and https://christianity.stackexchange.com/a/11442/1039 ) are apostolic authorship and historical ...


7

This is tricky questions because there are some outliers, but I'll describe the broadly accepted tradition, excluding some smaller Christian groups. As far as the New Testament, the 39th Festal Letter of Athanasius (AD 367) is the first complete list of the books broadly accepted in the New Testament by Christians (there are a few smaller groups who have ...


7

The best reference for answering this question, is not surprisingly, from Bruce Metzger. He is probably the foremost textual critic of the 20th Century - a fact that both Dan Wallace and Bart Ehrmann would agree with. The UBS4 is, in large part, his baby. His work: The Canon of the New Testament: Its Origin, Development, and Significance can be found online ...


7

Yes, Pentecostals believe that the gift of prophecy continues to the present day. However, there is a difference between someone exercising the gift of prophecy and the apostles that were divinely inspired to write Scripture. In the book Foundations of Pentecostal Theology, in the chapter on Bibliology, authors Duffield and Van Cleave discuss the difference ...


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