Presentation on theme: "Why 27 Books in the New Testament?. The canonization of the New Testament books The term canon means “rod”, a straight stick for use in measurement. The."— Presentation transcript:
Why 27 Books in the New Testament?
The canonization of the New Testament books The term canon means “rod”, a straight stick for use in measurement. The biblical canons are the authoritative books given by God,the teachings of which define correct belief and practice. Only books inspired by God should be considered canonical.
There are 27 books in the Protestant New Testament Are these the right books?
Origin and reliability of New Testament writings are based on questions about their origin Were they written by eyewitnesses and men closely linked to them? Were the authors inspired by God as they wrote?
Evidence of the reliability of the New Testament Jesus personally groomed twelve disciples. The Holy Spirit helped the disciples understand and remember. The New Testament writings stress the importance of eyewitnesses and hard facts.
After the resurrection these men kept teachings alive They preached incessantly and groomed avid disciples such as Luke and Mark. Paul was accepted as a bona fide disciple after the miraculous conversion. Act 9
The Apostles and approved associates started to write authoritatively in the mid-40s These were spirit inspired letters which they circulated among the churches. Paul’s letters came first, followed by the Gospels.
These were received as scripture by the earliest churches, and became the standards by which doctrine and practice were judged.
Factors in the formation of the New Testament Canon The gradual creation and dissemination of the NT books Apostolic authority The relative independence of each local church The rise of heresy
The gradual creation of New Testament books They were written over a 50 year period. Before winning universal acceptance, the books had to be circulated, copied, examined, and discussed among the churches. This was a slow process. Books were carefully vetted before they were considered biblical.
The independence of each local church Apostolic authority was honored by all churches, but each church was independent from any centralized ecclesiastical authority. There was no central office declaring which books were recognized, therefore it took centuries for churches sprawled across the map to eventually come up with a consensus on the New Testament Canon.
The rise of heresy Ideas, contrary to what was taught by the apostles, started coming into the churches. The second century gave the rise to Gnosticism. This was a dualistic Greek philosophy which believed that the material world was created by an evil god. They stressed meditation to gain the secrets of an invisible realm. The New Testament books begin to be adopted as a canon to to combat the books being written by these alternative Christians, such as The Gospel of Thomas and The Gospel Of Judas.
It took several centuries for the canon to emerge as a definite collection of books recognized by the church. It was in the fourth century that the New Testament Canon emerged as a widely accepted set of holy books.
All the books in the New Testament Canon fit the following criteria They were written by an apostle or by a sanctioned associate of the apostles. They had a long standing usage in the churches founded by the apostles. They fit the overall theology of other biblical books in the Old and New Testament.
The New Testament Canon is a well proven document, with a carefully protected heritage, in which Christians can place their full confidence.
Apostolic authority All the early churches were established by the apostles and their associates. At first, the teachings were oral, but over time they started writing letters and Gospels for the churches, thus providing early Christians with authoritative books to guide them in beliefs and practices. These early churches then guided newer churches into the correct identification of the New Testament Canon.