Sacred Writings Revision

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  • Created by: Lina
  • Created on: 06-04-14 10:14

Terms 1

Apocrypha

  • Hidden
  • Books that are not accepted by Christians as being genuine parrts of the scriptures

Bible

  • Greek- Biblia
  • Books/ library
  • The Holy book of Christianity
  • A collection of storied sent from God

Canon

  • The books of the Bible recognised by any Christian church as genuine and inspired by God
  • Includes the Scriptures

Denomination

  • A group of a religion, which has branched out and developed its own beliefe+ practices, whilst continuting to share the centeal beliefs of the religion

Divine

Coming from God/ having some God-like equality

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Terms 2

Epistle

  • Greek-letter
  • 21 epistles, from Christians leaders to Christian Churches/ individuals included in the NT
  • A lot were written by St. Paul, e.g. 1 Corinthians and 2 Corinthians

Gospels

The books that contain accounts of teachings+ activities of Jesus

Hebrew

The original lang of the OT

NT

  • The collection of 27 books forming the 2nd section of the Christian scriptures
  • Contains the stories of Jesus+ the early church

Prophecy

Explaining what will be the result of human behaviour

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Terms 3

OT

  • The part of the Christian Scriptures that the Church shares with Judaism
  • Made up of 39 books covering the Hebrew canon covering the Hebrew canon
  • A history of the Jewish people+ their religious development

Oral tradition

  • Stories+ teachings that have been remembered+ passed on by word of mouth for some time before being written down

Protestant

  • Believe that the Bible, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, is the ultimate source of authority for Christian teaching.
  • The Church was formed when certain groups began to reject the beliefs+ practices of the RC Church, e.g. that the Pope is God's divine representative on Earth

The Scriptures

  • Any books or body of writings regarded as sacred by a particular religious group
  • In Christianity, the OT and the NT
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Why is the Bible important to Christians? (6 marks

1)  Christians believe the Bible is the word of God and a way in which He communicates with people. Some Christians, who take the Bible literally, believe the Bible is the direct word of God and is therefore infallible. Others, who take a symbolic view, believe that the Bible is inspired by God and is revealed. Thus, it is the best source of information about God and his plans and desires for the human race. E.g. the OT ( Exodus 20) contains the 10 commandments, which are the foundations of J's teachings and of many laws today.

2) The Bible also contains the teachings of Jesus and records of his life, which are the basis of Christian faith and practice. Christians believe that they are the best source of guidance in their lives. The teachings of Jesus are timeless and as relevant in today's world as they were at the time of Jesus. These teachings can be applied to modern world situations.

3) The Bible is the most important source of moral and spiritual guidance, as Christians believe it has authority and should be seen as a source of important beliefs and doctrines. It deserves respect as it is the Holy Book of Christianity and contains information about how the faith developed- in the OT+ other historic content.

4) Records God's developing relationship with humankind- recorded in the OT. E.g. covenant with Abraham, his first rules and commandments. Genesis- how God created the world.

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The variety of Literature in the OT

1) Laws and instructions, e.g. Exodus 20

2) Prophecy and Apocalyptic Writings, e.g. Isaiah

3) Poetry and Songs, e.g. Song of Songs, Psalms

4) Wisdom, e.g. Proverbs, Ecclesiastes

5) History, e.g. 1&2 Kings

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The variety of literature in the NT

1) Gospels

2) Prophecy and Apocalyptic Writings, e.g. Book of Revelation

3) History, e.g. Acts

4) Letters (epistles), e.g. 1 Corinthians

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Why is the OT important to Christians? (6 marks)

1) Contains the creation stories which tell Christians about the first beliefs about the way God created the Universe. (Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth")

2) God's developing relationship with humankind is recorded in the OT. His covenant with Abraham, His first rules and commandments, etc. The first 5 books are said to be written by Moses+ are therefore especially important (Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Leviticus, Deuteronomy). Genesis- creation story; Exodus 20- the 10 commandments

3) The Christian faith has grown out of the Jewish one, gradually developing its own identity+ organisation. The very first Christians still used the Jewish scriptures. However, of the 613 rules God gave the Hebrews in the OT, only the 10 commandments are still used by Christians today.

4) For many Christians, these scriptures gained added importance, as they seemed to show that a figure like Jesus was actually predicted by some of the most important Jewish prophets, e.g. Isaiah. The Gospel of Matthew tries to prove that Jesus is the Messiah predicted by the prophets.

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Should all books be included in the Bible? (12 mar

Yes:

  • Everything that is relevant to Jewish+ Christian history should go in, no matter if there are concerns about its inaccuracy+ authenticity- should be up to the reader to work out what's of value to them
  • No one has the right to decide what should go in+ shouldn't- too much power-> can't be sure that the reasons for inclusion/ non-inclusion of certain books are fair+ reasonable. Mayne the books in the canon are the ones that are wrong. How can we know which account of Jesus is the right one?
  • If they were included, they would change current negative attitutes, e.g. towards women- OT Apocryphal books Judith- a story of a strong woman, who works alone to bring a war to an end+ she chooses to spend her life single. The NT Apocryphal book, the gospel of Mary, would also raise the status of women- shows that Mary was really close to Jesus+ in his circle of trust.
  • More than 100 NT Apocrypha- we would know more about J's life+ his teachings if we included them+ studied them

No:

  • The story of Judith is in the RC Bibles-> doesn't seem to have changed the status of women much
  • The apocryphal books about J's life are either unclear or contradict each other-> wouldn't be helpful. Some of them contradict the canon+ are confusing. For Christianity to be able to function properly there has to be a clear sacred text to follow that makes sense to the reader.
  • Books that have been shown to be inaccurate or inauthentic should not be included. The Bible should be a book of true history, not just interesting stories.
  • If the NT Apocrypha had gone in, then Christianity would be completely different. Some of the NT Apocrypha, e.g. Shepherd of Hermas, state that Jesus wasn't actually God in human form, but was adopted as the Son of God, which is the opposite view to the Holy Trinity and to the central teaching of the Christian faith. The story taught, through a vision of a shepherd, that Jesus was a virtuous man filled with the Holy Spirit+ adopted at either baptism, resurrection or ascencion.
  • Jesus didn't refer to the Apocrypha in his teachings-> doesn't have relevance to Christians
  • Most of the NT Apocrypha were written a long time after J died-> a good chance they've been made up+ contain inaccuracies.
  • The books of the Apocrypha were found in the Septuagint (the Greek version of the Bible), but not the Hebrew scriptures-> weren't felt to have equal value to the accepted OT canon
  • Good to read, but not to build doctrines on
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Why are the OT Apocrypha only found in some Bibles

1) In the times of the early Church (pre- 5th century) people coudn't agree if they should be included in the OT-> were collected separately

2) Some early Christian scholars felt the books of the Apocrypha didn't have the same authority as the other biblical books

3) Some early Christians didn't believe the apocryphal books were inspired by God

4) Jesus didn't refer to any Apocryphal books in any of his teachings

5) The books of the Apocrypha were found in the Septuagint, but not the Hebrew scriptures-> weren't felt to have equal value to the accepted OT canon

6) Some Christians believe the Apocrypha is good to read but not to build doctrines on

7) There have been arguments about the authenticity of some apocryphal books- the books are thought to be pseudepigraphical, as they may not have been written by the people they're attributed to

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