Facts about the Bible

Facts about the Bible

The Bible is still counted amongst the best sellers of published books. Given here are some more interesting facts about this holy book.
One of the most famous books in the world, the Bible is a collection of writings, comprising the Old and New Testaments, which are considered sacred by the Christian religion. The books that are regarded to be a part of the collection of holy scriptures vary according to the historic tradition that defines or uses it. Given below are a few interesting facts:

The word 'Bible' has been derived from the Latin word 'biblia', which means 'books'.

The Christian Bible includes the scriptures of the Hebrews, known as the Old Testament, along with later writings, referred to as the New Testament. Some Christian groups also include the biblical apocrypha or the deuterocanonical books as part of either the Old or the New Testament.

The Christians regard the collection of religious writings before the life of Jesus Christ as the Old Testament, which is also referred to as the Jewish, or the Hebrew Bible. The Hebrew Bible in Hebrew is known as 'Tanakh'.

The terms 'Old' and 'New' Testaments are only recognized by the Christians, and only the Hebrew Bible, or the so-called Old Testament, is recognized by the followers of Judaism.

Thus, the terms 'Old' and 'New' have two meanings: 1) A chronological one, since the Old Testament predates the New Testament; and 2) A theological one, which implies that the Old Testament is supposed to be replaced by the New Testament.

In fact, the terms 'Old Testament' and 'New Testament' appear to have been incorporated after 200 A.D.

Comprising 39 books, without counting the Apocrypha, the Old Testaments were written in Hebrew originally.

The books that make up the Old Testament are: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 & 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Kings, 1 & 2 Chronicles, Ezra; Nehemiah, Esther, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.

Amongst these, the first five are referred to as the Torah, or the Pentateuch, or the Five Books of Moses. Traditionally, they are thought to have been authored by Moses, although modern scholars think that they may have been written by multiple authors. The only book amongst these, where the word 'God' is not mentioned, is the book of Esther.

Apart from the Hebrew Scripture, the Bible that most Christians use, comprises the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, along with the Apostle Paul's letters. It also includes the writings of other disciples, as well as the early church, along with the Book of Revelation.

Written originally in Greek, although some people argue that it was written in Aramaic first, the New Testament comprises 27 books, which are: Matthew; Mark; Luke; John; Acts; Romans; 1 & 2 Corinthians; Galatians; Ephesians; Philippians; Colossians; 1 & 2 Thessalonians; 1 & 2 Timothy; Titus; Philemon; Hebrews; James; 1 & 2 Peter; 1, 2 & 3 John; Jude; and Revelation.

It is said that about 40 people wrote the Bible, starting from about 1450 B.C. to about 100 A.D.

The Bible is made up of several genres of literature such as myth, poetry, prophecy, narrative, letters, and sermonic literature. It was first translated into English by John Wycliffe, in 1382 A.D.

The first book that was printed was the Bible, in 1454 A.D. This was accomplished by Johannes Gutenberg, the inventor of the 'type mold' used in the printing press.

The Bible, since then, has been translated into more than 2000 languages, and continues to be the largest seller amongst published books.
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