Rather, the ancient Church, believers in the Old Testament era, recognized the impression of the Holy Spirit on the text. Elaine Pagels, The Gnostic Gospels (Random House Publishing Group, 2004). The following table lists out the order of the books as they were written. And Don Stewart with BlueLetterBible.org explains, "The books were probably recognized individually. And, finally, the restoration of the Israelite people to Jerusalem and the reforms of Ezra and Nehemiah. Some of the most moving words that I have ever read are inscribed on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery: “Here rests, in Honored Glory, an American Soldier, known but to God.”. The Geneva Bible (1599, translated for English speaking parishioners in that Reformation city and used by William Shakespeare, John Bunyan, John Milton, and the Pilgrims in America) and the King James Bible (1611) both used Tyndale’s Bible heavily. Let us be among those of whom it will be said, “They cared enough to share God’s Word with me.”, Michael A. Milton, PhD (University of Wales; MPA, UNC Chapel Hill; MDiv, Knox Seminary), Dr. Milton is a retired seminary chancellor and currently serves as the James Ragsdale Chair of Missions at Erskine Theological Seminary. While Wycliffe translated the Bible into English and made copies by hand, it was William Tyndale who actually printed the Bible in English. True, listing what’s in and what’s out would happen in time as Christianity defended herself against spurious pseudographs (e.g., the Gnostic Gospels’ Gospel of Thomas found by a farmer on a cliff in the Upper Egyptian city of Nag Hammadi).2 For instance, the Muratorian Canon and Eusebius’ Classification of the New Testament Books, both important to the concept of canon, merely recognized what the Church was already doing. This was the beginning of the English Reformation and was the precursor to John Hus and, then, Martin Luther. The Old Testament books were collected and compiled is an epic narrative worthy of its own book (indeed, books have been written about this). The Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, projects universal truth that remains applicable to people around the world. If the books in my Bible don't follow a chronological arrangement, what was the order in which they were written? This is God with us. Biblica, The International Bible Society, comments: "...Greek was the language of scholarship during the years of the composition of the New Testament from 50 to 100 AD. Among the authors used by God were those who actually walked with Jesus (Matthew, Peter, and John) and had seen Jesus in His post-resurrection form (St. Paul). So, around 300 BC a translation of the Old Testament from Hebrew into Greek was undertaken, and it was completed around 200 BC. The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and Aramaic, and the New Testament in Greek. The Old Testament was written in ancient Hebrew. Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy = Moses - 1400 B.C. The authors are not sinless. So, contrary to what some might assume, there was no single meeting of the clerical minds to give a final stamp of ecclesiastical imprimatur. to approximately 400 B.C. 70.". The Old Testament was written from approximately 1400 B.C. Misunderstanding, contextualization problems, persecution, and false teachers became the forces that caused the writings and led to clarity, faithfulness, and further revelation about the mission of God in the world through Jesus Christ. Well, that is a hard one. This finalized the Pentateuch or first five books listed in most Bibles. 1445 to 1405Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus,Numbers, DeuteronomyMoses, 1010 to 970Psalms 1 to 71,107 to 119, 135 to 150King David, 1010 to 970Psalms 73 to 88, 90 to 106Davidic priests, 970 to 930Psalm 72, Proverbs 1 to 29 *Ecclesiastes, Song of SolomonKing Solomon, 740 to 6861Samuel, 2Samuel,1Kings, Isaiah,2Kings (first part only)Isaiah, 627 to 585Jeremiah, Psalm 892Kings (last part only)Jeremiah. Therefore, just as in the development of the New Testament, the Old Testament books of the Bible were recognized by the people of God as the Word of God. While some rabbis point to a general assembly of religious leaders that recognized the books of the Bible, this did not happen until well after the people of God were already using the Scriptures in worship. these writings were then put into clearly defined divisions. (The Bible's Old Testament is thought to have been first written down in an ancient form of Hebrew.) The existence of such additional wise Old Testament sayings is entirely reasonable as Solomon was known to have spoke 3,000 of them (1Kings 4:32). Despite the impressive diversity of authors, genre—from history to poetry, from prophecy to personal accounts—and languages, the Bible displays an irrefutable unity of purpose, undivided harmony of thought, an unfolding narrative that is both unified and progressive. Of course, the Guttenberg printing press (1450s) became the iPhone of its day and by means of the Protestant Reformation, made the Bible available to Europeans and the British Isles in their respective languages. From A.D. 33 until approximately A.D. 80, the Holy Spirit breathed out His Word in twenty-seven books and nine authors. The date range for each book can vary from one scholar to another by as little as a few years, to as much as 100 years (or more). History has it that the first human inspired by God to write the Old Testament is God’s Word is not a robotic, mechanical transcription of celestial truth. Gerald Irvin Williamson, The Westminster Confession of Faith: For Study Classes (Presbyterian & Reformed Publishing Company, 1964). Dr. John Wycliffe was the priest at Saint Mary’s at Oxford. written not much more than 300 years after the composition of the books, and in them we find numerous differences, though but few of them are important. The Old Testament: The Old Testament is a collection of texts which were written by Jewish religious leaders and are included in the Christian Bible. See. The Old Testament (often abbreviated OT) is the first part of the Christian biblical canon, which is based primarily upon the twenty-four books of the Hebrew Bible (or Tanakh), a collection of ancient religious Hebrew writings by the Israelites believed by most Christians and religious Jews to be the sacred Word of God. Sometimes their sins are far greater than ours. The Old Testament scriptures were composed and compiled across time. That’s what a 2016 study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests. The parts of the Old Testament not in Hebrew, namely, Ezra 4:8-6:18; 7:12-26; Jeremiah 10:11; Daniel 2:4-7:28, are in Aramaic (the so-called Chaldee), a related Semitic dialect, which, after the Exile, gradually displaced Hebrew as the spoken language of the Jews. Bible scholars believe that Genesis was written by Moses, under inspiration of the Holy Spirit, during the forty years that the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness (1450 - 1410 B.C.). The books of the New Testament were recognized in time as the divine Word of God moving through His Apostles and disciples. In his book named "Redating the New Testament," John A. T. Robinson demonstrates that the books in question were written relatively early. No one has any idea, although I would definitely say we can be farely confident not a single one dates as late as the "1st centuries BC" as Duane speculates. They recount the times and messages from Moses’ successor, Joshua, to the last of the Old Testament prophets, Malachi, who wrote his little tract around 450 BC. The Book of Malachi is the last book of the Old Testament, and it is unknown exactly when it was written. Matthew Mittelberg also explains the criteria used for canonization in his article How Do We Know the Right Books Made It into the New Testament? The Song of Songs, for example, is often referred to as ‘The Song of Solomon’, but may not have been written by King Solomon himself. This collection of ancient writings born out of oral tradition, self-attesting that Almighty God Himself inspired the Sacred Text as He spoke through the prophets, priests, and kings, as well as ordinary men and women, was recorded and compiled across hundreds of years. Moses, prior to his death Moses, wrote the book of Deuteronomy. One way to think about the history of the English Bible is to consider prominent movements and individuals who led to putting the Bible in the hands of the people. Archaeology and the study of written sources have shed light on the history of both halves of the Bible: the Old Testament, the story of the Jews’ highs and lows in the millennium or so before the birth of Jesus; and the New Testament, which documents the life and teachings of Jesus. And the Bible remains as contemporary today as it was when God wrote the Ten Commandments on stone tablets in the fourteenth century BC and gave them to Moses. The very epitome of a pastor-scholar, Wycliffe not only wanted the Bible translated into the vernacular of the people he served but desired to see the Word of God preached in English throughout the Realm. Naturally, the Bible developed with Hebrew Scriptures and the Scriptures after Jesus Christ on through to the death of the Apostle John. But by then, Christians had been reading the New Testament as God's Word already for two centuries. As always, the Word of God attests to its own purpose: “But these things are written that ye might believe, that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God and that in believing ye might have life through his Name.” (John 20:31 The Geneva Bible of 1599-60). This is no fable. Please enter your email address associated with your Salem All-Pass account, then click Continue. It claims divinity but is written by people who are very much like any of us. The New Testament may be simply divided into Gospels and Epistles. to 425 B.C. It also became a wonderful missionary tool for the early Christians, for now the Greeks could read God’s Word in their own tongue. The Old Testament, it is well known, is written mostly in Hebrew; the New Testament is written wholly in Greek. We'll send you an email with steps on how to reset your password. So, Wycliffe published dozens of copies of the Bible in English. Proud member Job--Unknown Genesis--1445-1405 B.C. Though some say that the New Testament was written centuries after Christ died, perhaps 100-300 years, the truth is that it was written before the close of the first century by those who either knew Christ personally, had encountered him, or were under the direction of those who were His disciples. It is as though its content was breathed out with a goal of being breathed in. There are minor language differences between the first books of the Old Testament and the last ones, because every language develops over time, and there is some variation in language use by different authors and literal genres. As a collection of works, the Old Testament was composed over many years by numerous authors. If you are ever in London, go to the British Museum and you will see the full New Testament at its earliest publication, with much of the Old Testament. Moses was chosen by God to deliver the children of Israel from Egyptian bondage. Exodus --1445-1405 B.C. He then gave the original scrolls of the Law, also called autographs, to the priests to be placed in special sleeves attached to the side of the Ark of the Covenant. The second part of Christian Bibles is the New Testament, written in the Koine Greek language. It is miraculous. Answer: Since the Bible was written by around 40 different authors over a period of around 1,500 years, the question “How old is the Bible?” cannot be answered with a single number. Zondervan Academic has an excellent summary in their article How Did We Get the Old Testament? Judges, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel = Samuel/Nathan/Gad - 1000 - 900 B.C. Much of the Old Testament speaks of a redemption for mankind which will come in the form of the Messiah. Leviticus --1445-1405 B.C. In Genesis 12:1, God commanded Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto the land that I will show thee.It is because of the call of Abram (Abraham) to the land of Canaan that nearly all the Old Testament (except 268 verses) was written in the Hebrew language. We have traced how the Bible was written in this little article. It is ancient and ever new. For many years some scholars ridiculed the Greek of the New Testament because many of its words were strange to those who read the writings of the great Greek classical authors such as Plato and Aristotle. Another answer from our community: Traditionally, the Old Testament was written from approximately 1400 B.C. Article Images Copyright © 2021 Getty Images unless otherwise indicated. There is little difference in method. It has shaped every facet of the human experience: literature, the arts, law, education, science, politics, and human relations. A melting pot of Celtic and Anglo-Saxon tongues, Tyndale’s English became read in the parish churches throughout England and Wales and parts of Scotland and Ireland and gave the British Isles a single tongue. Parts of the Old Testament were written in an imperial Aramaic (Genesis 31:47; Jeremiah 10:11; Ezra 4:8–6:18; 7:12–26 only). These letters to churches were primarily concerned with clarifying doctrinal truths about Jesus and the way to be saved and ethical goals for the life of believers in the Church. The New Testament was written in the common Greek of the day, Koine Greek. They were written over a period of about 1500 years from approximately 2000 B.C. 2. By the first century, the Church, the New Testament canon (that measurement of what is divinely written and what is not) that you now read in your quiet times, share with others in your witnessing, and teach your children, was settled. It lists the date or date range (B.C.) E.g., F. F. Bruce, History of the Bible in English (Lutterworth Press, 2002). They did not, however, use really high-class or classical Greek, but a very common and everyday type of Greek. During his reign, however, only the first twenty-four chapters were written and compiled by the king specifically for the book (Proverbs 1:1). To “compile” intimates an intentional time and place in which various documents or fragments are united into one. The below list is in chronological order. The Old Covenant text in Hebrew was already being recorded on skins four hundred years before our Lord Jesus’ incarnate birth. This is consistent with the recorded episode of Hilkiah discovering the Book of the Law in the temple during the reign of King Josiah (630 B.C.). We have New-Testament MSS. The Old Testament, as originally inspired, was divided into three major divisions. Called the Septuagint, was completed around 1400 BC Samuel/Nathan/Gad - 1000 - 900 B.C. nation of Israel writings. 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