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Essay on The Bible: The Word of God

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The Bible, sacred book of Christianity, it includes collections of ancient writings, which are split into two sections referred to as the old (Hebrew Bible ) and the new testament. It is said to be the most influential book in western history, as we owe our culture and moral compass to it. Historically the Bible has been seen as authoritative, as it is believed to be the infallible ‘word of God’, as writers were divinely inspired. However divisions about interpretations can be seen historically, typically in regards to translation. It can be seen today, in the amount of differing denominations. This may be explained by post-modern individualism, where citizens have a sense of choice of what to believe, rather than being influenced by the state. However, it can be argue that the Bible has lost its power, as there is not a monopoly of truth. In this essay I am going to argue, that ‘Christians’ have been united on the authority of the Bible, due to it being supposedly infallibility. Today, there are divisions in read it, however, historically this doesn’t seem to be the case, as the monopoly of interpretation/translation was in the control of the state or church.

Harnack defined Christianity as “something simple and sublime”, this being a bond with God, which can be achieved by using Jesus as a guide, effectively leading to eternal life. Thus the Bible is a way to understand God’s will through Jesus actions and parables. Therefore suggests, that there shouldn’t be divisions in how to read it, as there is no need for interpretation. Thus authoritative, as God’s wishes have been clearly put in place through the teachings of Jesus.



However the Bible, as we know it today, has been though a long process, starting out from oral t...


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... Thus ordinary ‘Christians’ wouldn’t of been divided on how to read the Bible. Also many wouldn’t been able to understand, either because they were illiterate or because Bible wasn’t available in their language, thus ultimately influenced by ‘The church’. However, today divisions can be seen through the amount of denominations, such as Baptist, Pentecostal etc., there are today. This may be because society seems to have moved into the post-modern era of choice. This has ultimately effected the Bible’s authority in the public sphere. However linking modern idea with Harnack definition of Christianity, it could be said to be authoritative for indivuaals. In the sense that Christians today have individual relationships with God, thus individual interpretations, rather than being told what to do by a church. This may be a partial explanation for low church attendance.



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