What is the big deal with the Bible? Bethany robinson

Focus question one:

In what way does the bible reveal gods answers to the questions of the human heart and what were the major steps and stages in the writing of the bible?

Around 4000 years ago god began to reveal the answers to the human heart questions, these were revealed in a special way through Abraham the father of the jews. Everything that was revealed was guided by the Holy Spirit. Each part of the Bible was written in 4 steps which include

1 the people's experiences of god

2 the development of an understanding of what these experiences mean

3 the inspiration of writers who recorded these Understandings

4 the selection of inspired texts and the discarding of incaccurute and non essential texts.

There where also seven stages which includes

- the Patriarchs of the people of Israel

– the Exodus and entry into the Promised Land

– the Monarchy

– the Exile

– the Post Exile

– the Greek conquest

– the Roman conquest.

This information tells us the bible is a big deal because no other book has been around for thousands of years with multiple stages but still holds relevance in many peoples lives today and is still being published. The books also hold the answers for the human heart questions that where influenced by the holy spirit. The effort that was put into writing this was huge by many different authors using four steps.

Focus question two:

Briefly, outline the key historical stages and events in the development of the bible. (Include the old and New Testament)

Within the Bible it is made up of 73 books which is split up into two different sections known as the old and New Testament. The Old Testament is all about the story of creation and god forming the people of Israel to be his own people and the New Testament is about gods son jesus and his teachings. The bible was written over seven main historical stages which include,

The patriarchs of the people of Israel - The patriarchs are the fathers of Israel, the firs patriarch was Abraham and the second was the so of Abraham iscaac. The third was named jacob but god changed his name to Israel. The Israelites also celebrate rituals and feasts to honor the god of abraham isaac and jacob.

the Exodus and entry into the Promised Land- Around 1300bc israelites were forced into slavery by egyptians. God appointed moses to help give them freedom. This event is remembered as the Passover, god made a sacred relationship treaty with the people called a covenant. Under this treaty where laws that were grouped under ten sayings called the ten words. Before moses could take the Israelites into the promise land he died leaving his successor joshua to lead.

The Monarchy- 1040 BC the Israelites needed to unite against the neighbouring Philistines and to become a nation. Their enemies had a king and they demanded a king . God called a young man named Saul to be the first king he won many battles but disobeyed god leading god to call a young shepherd David to become king. Saul tried to assainate David but David and his supporters fled. In the end David sought protection in the philistines who fought sauls army and killing Saul in the process

The Exile - The king and his people of the southern kingdom of Judah turned away from god. God called a new prophet Jeremiah to urge them to converge back. Jerimiah was ignored and later on the king of the southern region made a bad political decision that upset the babylonians causing a war that destroyed Jerusalem. A Huge devastating point in the war was the destroyal of solomons temple. This experience led them to believe they where nothing without god arising questions like Were they not God’s people? How could God’s people be destroyed?

the Post Exile - Babylon was conquered by a persian king named cyrus. Cyrus allowed the jews to return and also let them rebuild their temple. The jews where small in number so the building of the temple took 90 years. Judah became recognized as a province within the Persian empire. Nehemiah began reforming the jewish religion but he realized that the fortunes of the jewish people depended on them turning back to god. He provided a strict ruler to rebuild judah as a new community with jerusalem as the capital. A scribe returned to jerusalem and re imposed the ten commandments

the Greek conquest - 333bc the persian empire was conquered by alexander the great. Whitin a few years he had conquered Egypt. After his death his empire was divided into two parts ruled by Alexandra's generals, one was the kingdom of egypt ruled by ptolemy and the other the kingdom of asia ruled by Seleucus. Both sides where left relatively free and could continue religious traditions buy gradually culture and influences grew leading to a division. Antiochus came along and destroyed the jews temple and had an altar built, but Jews remained faithful to god under the torture. Gradually things calmed and The jews who stayed faithful where divided into three groups, pharisees the sadducees and the essenes

the Roman conquest- The new testament was completed in Severn stages called the roman period, in 63bc pompey entered Jerusalem gradually power grew and the romans installed the first if the herods as a king. The romans where surrounded with jesus and his lifetime because jesus grew up in Nazareth while the king caesar was emperor. Jesus began his teachings about 27AD and only three years later was he executed under the orders of pontus pilate 30AD, when he rose from the dead the next morning his followers relieaased he was both fully human and fully divine.

This section answers the question what is the big deal with the bible by explaining different sections of the new testament and Old Testament and expanding on the different stages the bible was written over and explaining a small bit about jesus. I believe not man books have as much background and still hold relevance as the bible.

Focus question three:

How did the Holy Spirit inspire the writing of the New Testament and how is it evident in the book of revelation, the story of Paul and the Acts of the Apostles?

The holy sprit inspired the development of the new New Testament by inspiring the authors in their writing and the community. There where three stages of writing which included

One: The life and teachings of Jesus - As Jesus was the son of God, he completed God’s teachings to the human race and provided his followers with many experiences of God.

Two: The development of an oral tradition about jesus- The oral tradition of the early Church developed as the Apostles repeated stories about Jesus, as well as his sayings, parables and proverbs.

Three: The writing of the New Testament scriptures-God wanted the teachings of jesus to be know by all, to carry out this wish the holy spirit inspired the writing of the new testament which consisted of 27 books,

-Four gospels

-The acts of the apostles

-Twenty one letters (epistles)

-The book of revelation

The new testament holds several letters written by james, john, peter, jude and saint paul. The process of writing the gospels revealed who jesus is by showing jesus followers had many stories to share and write down from what he had said so the gospel writers selected from the life events, stories and sayings of jesus to achieve their purpose of revealing who jesus is.

Focus question four:

How does the bible include the different literary forms and what are the differences of the gospels?

The bible holds many different literary forms written by writers in different time periods for different communities with different purposes in mind. Not only that but different factors may influence the writer and his or her choices for example the writer must ask questions like,"what is the best way of writing this so that people would understand" no matter what the person will not be able to achieve gods purpose through their writing.

A major literary form in the bible is poetry. People would use the storys of cain and abel to help remember god and his teachings. Poetry was also used to express what a story couldn't express, the most famous biblical poems lay in the book of isaiah.

Proverbs where used in most cultures and have a short wise saying. Many inspired writers would use proverbs and sayings from them to help teach lessons that god revealed.

"In the ancient time period literary form gospels are used to announce good news"

1: All Gospels are historical writings just as the Old Testament historical writings, Their writers searched for things like,

• historical events and sayings of Jesus to expand God’s teachings about Jesus

• wrote stories that adapted to the imagination and were easy for people to recall to keep God’s teachings about Jesus interesting.

2: The Gospel writers used stories of historical events in different ways to make clear what they were teaching, For example:

• Matthew records that Jesus sat on a hill as he taught eight beatitudes.

• Luke writes of Jesus teaching four beatitudes and four woes (or warnings)

Here it shows both gospels teaching beatitudes but the showed them teaching it in diffrent ways to preserve special teachings within there own community.

3. Each Gospel was written for a different community:

• Mark was written for Christians

• Matthew was written for a community of Jewish Christians

• Luke was written for a community of mostly non-Jewish and financially well-off Christians

• John was written for a community of Jewish Christians

4. Gospel writers adapted the language they used to the sensitivities of their communities.

Matthew understood that Christians of Jewish background felt the word ‘God’ was too sacred to be spoken so he replaced the term ‘kingdom of God’ with ‘kingdom of Heaven’, in Matthew 4:17.

This shows us the relevance of the bible by giving examples of the differences of the gospels and showing us diffrent uses of the literary form. I believe this is what makes the bible relevant still to this day because it shows us how diffrent communities see the gospels in diffrent views where as a normal book would not have as much opinion on as the Bible does.

Credits:

Created with images by MichaelGaida - "cross church faith"

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