The Canon of Scripture Essays

The Canon of Scripture Essays

Length: 1185 words (3.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Good Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Most Christians do not think about the canon of scripture or know what it is or means in theology. Most take for granted the Bible they have and never question how it came into being. Today, we have 39 books of the Old Testament and 27 books of the New Testament. There was a time, however, that we did not have a canon. Bruce defines canon as books of the Bible that were recognized to be considered scripture (p. 17). The importance of the canon and how it was developed was intriguing to professor and author F.F. Bruce. He dedicated his book The Canon of Scripture to explore and explain the formulation of the canon we have today. Bruce taught in universities, including the University of Manchester, where he began to lecture students on the entire canon of scripture. Bruce wrote many books and commentaries and was general editor to The New International Commentary on the New Testament. He spent a vast amount of his time researching the formation of the canon with emphasis on the New Testament. The contents of this review will highlight how F.F. Bruce offers his interpretative definition, review, and criticisms of the full canon of Scripture.
The Canon of Scripture is divided into four sections: the introduction, followed by the Old and New Testaments, and ending with the conclusion and appendix. The introduction defines the word canon. The second section provides Bruce’s explanation of the canon of the Old Testament, starting with the Hebrew Bible. The author writes about the discoveries of the Dead Sea Scrolls, which have given us a greater understanding of the Hebrew Bible. Bruce then explains the translation of the Hebrew scriptures into Greek named the Septuagint. He closes with how the canon was viewed by the early Church Fath...


... middle of paper ...


...not fit in with the overall objective of the book which is defining the canon of scripture. These lectures do not agree with the flow of the book as they involve other areas including textual criticism that pull the reader away from how the canon was formed.
The Canon of Scripture is a scholarly writing that explains how the formation of the canon was completed. Bruce starts with how the Old Testament was formed and then moves to the New Testament and gives an historical account of how it was pieced together. He explores the Gnostic writers and how they prompted the church to start forming the New Testament canon because the Gnostic teachings opposed that of the church. This book provides adequate and historical research to prove what the author wants to accomplish, which is to provide answers to any question that would be asked as to how the canon was formed.


Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Bible: The Holy Canon of Scripture Review Essay

- INTRODUCTION The Bible: The Holy Canon of Scripture is an essay by J. Hampton Keathley, III that aims to justify the canonicity of the Bible. Keathley first defines canonicity as a word used to describe books that are recognized as inspired by God and then gives a brief history of the term. In essence, the word can be derived from Greek, Hebrew, and Akkadian words denoting a standard of straightness and was used first to describe accepted doctrines of the Church before it became widely used as a description for the list of sacred books that fit the modern definition....   [tags: J. Hampton Keathley, Summary, Personal Thoughts]

Good Essays
794 words (2.3 pages)

Essay on Paul And James Should Be Removed From The Canon Of Scripture

- For centuries it has been debated whether Paul and James contradict each other’s theology. At times, they do seem to make opposing statements. The Book of Galatians affirms over and over that we are justified by faith in Christ alone, not by works of our own. Most evangelical Christians agree to that concept of sola fide. We are faced with an interesting dilemma when James famously says, “faith without works is dead.” Martin Luther, himself, felt that the Book of James should be removed from the canon of scripture because of such statements....   [tags: New Testament, Paul of Tarsus, Justification]

Good Essays
956 words (2.7 pages)

What Should Constitute The Canon of Sacred Scripture? Essay examples

- INTRODUCTION A debate lasting close to 2 millennia has fallen almost entirely out of favor in the popular realm of Christian Theology. Looking through countless theology books will result in almost nothing helpful, except for the occasional quotes from more obscure texts. Examining the discussion of councils related to this issue will result in frustration as the topic is left out entirely. In desperation, a curious inquirer may turn to Catholic texts, where Priests and experts will set out to discuss the issue in depth....   [tags: Protestants vs Catholics]

Good Essays
2727 words (7.8 pages)

Essay on The Pali Canon and The Theravada Buddhism

- The Pali Canon is a collection of texts central to the teachings of Theravada Buddhism. The Pali Canon addresses the rules of conduct and regulations within the monastic order of Buddhism, the discourses spoken by the Buddha and his disciples, and scholastic interpretation of the teachings of the Buddha (Fronsdal 2005). We will first focus on the discourses spoken by the Buddha to further our understanding of the Buddhist religion. [Buddha:] “What do you think monks: Is form permanent or impermanent?” “Impermanent sir.” “And is the impermanent suffering or happiness?” “Suffering sir.” “And with respect to what is impermanent, suffering, naturally unstable, is it proper to perceive...   [tags: religion, buddha, scripture]

Good Essays
1094 words (3.1 pages)

The New Testament Canon Is Not One Universal Bible Essay

- ... However, he had discounted some of the writings that were already being taught in the second century church. Perhaps in reaction to Marcion, Sawyer explains, “the Muratorian Canon was published in the latter half of the second century. This canon includes the four gospels, Acts, Paul’s thirteen letters, Jude, Revelation, 1 John and at least 2 John or 3 John or both.” A variety of events and movements were instrumental in recognizing the canonical books. It is important for Christians to understand by following the Bible they are following divine authority and not the whims of a fourth century bishop. Perhaps the urgency of developing the canon has a political more than spiritual motiva...   [tags: New Testament, Bible, Christianity, Biblical canon]

Good Essays
1495 words (4.3 pages)

Biblical Inerrancy And Authority Of Scripture Essay

- ... He then begins to explain the theology of inspiration or biblical inspiration, which by definition means, the divine action stimulating the human authors of the biblical books to produce their work, and the divine charism bestowed upon the biblical authors, enabling them to produce those literary works which make up part of the Bible…is to be conceived as a divine grace guiding all individuals involved in the process and bringing about as its final product the canonical text of the book in question” (Farkasfalvy, 2010, p....   [tags: Bible, Christianity, Religious text, Torah]

Good Essays
1013 words (2.9 pages)

Essay on The Canon of Biblical Writings

- The Canon of Biblical Writings For centuries now Christians have claimed to possess the special revelation of an omnipotent, loving Deity who is sovereign over all of His creation. This special revelation is in written form and is what has come to be known as The Bible which consists of two books. The first book is the Hebrew Scriptures, written by prophets in a time that was before Christ, and the second book is the New Testament, which was written by Apostles and disciples of the risen Lord after His ascension....   [tags: Papers]

Good Essays
2279 words (6.5 pages)

Canon Essay

- Can we rest assured that the writings of the New Testament are accurate, and do we know for certain that the canon of the New Testament is complete. The question is profoundly significant, and it bears eternal consequences, because in order to trust and obey God, it’s imperative that we are one-hundred percent certain that we have God’s words. The Biblical canon can be defined as follows: “The canon is the list of all the books that belong in the Bible” (Grudem, 54). Moreover, the New Testament canon begins with the apostolic writings, because the apostles were given special help by the Holy Spirit to recall and interpret the sayings and teachings of Jesus (John 14:26; 16:13-14)....   [tags: Philosophy, Religion, God, The Bible]

Free Essays
912 words (2.6 pages)

Comparing The Canon And Creeds Essay

- ... ). At the end of the day, words are the avenue that God chose to reveal himself to his people throughout the generations. Therefore, throughout the life of the church, people have used words to summarize, pass on, and preserve the faith that has been handed down. The creeds are the churches attempts to summarize the basics of the faith in words. This leads to several questions. How did these words come about. How were the creeds determined to be the words of faith, and how were the scriptures determined to be inspired....   [tags: New Testament, Christianity, Jesus, Old Testament]

Good Essays
1901 words (5.4 pages)

The Relationship Of Sacred Scripture And Sacred Tradition Essay

- ... The word “tradition” is derived from the Latin verb (tradere) which means to “to pass or hand something on” . What they are passing on is the truth revealed to the Apostles and entrusted to their successors. The capitalised form of the word “Tradition” is used by theologians and in church documents to mean the entire body of authoritative teachings and apostolic tradition that were recorded in the Bible and beyond , and as warned in Pauls letter to the Thessalonians, “therefore the apostles, handing on what they themselves had received, warn the faithful to hold fast to the traditions which they have learned either by word of mouth or by letter” ....   [tags: Christianity, Bible, Second Vatican Council]

Good Essays
1615 words (4.6 pages)