The Bible - Who, What, Why, When, Where

BIBLE
Meaning:
from Greek: τὰ βιβλία  (ta biblia), to Latin: biblia to English: the books, or better, little books

Related terms:
Holy Bible, Sacred Scriptures, The Word of God, the Word, Holy Writ, Good Book

Main division:
Old Testament= 39 books, New Testament=27 books, for a grand total of 66 books


 

WHO

Jesus Christ is the Center and heart of the Bible

The Old Testament is an account of a Nation.
The New Testament is an account of a MAN
The Nation was founded and nurtured of God to bring the MAN into the world.

God Himself became a MAN, to give mankind a concrete, definite, tangible idea of what kind of Person to think of when we think of God.
God is like Jesus. Jesus was God incarnate in human form.

His appearance on the earth is the Central Event of all history. The Old Testament sets the stage for it. The New Testament describes it.

As a MAN, He lived the most strangely beautiful life ever known. He was the Kindest, Tenderest, Gentlest, more Patient, most Sympathetic Man that ever lived. He loved people. He hated to see people in trouble. He loved to forgive. He loved to help. He wrought marvellous miracles to feed hungry people. For relieving the suffering, He forgot to take food for Himself. Multitudes, weary, pain ridden and heartsick  came to Him, and found healing and relief. It is said of Him, and of no other, that if all the deeds of kindness that He did were written, the world would not contain the books. This is the kind of Man Jesus was. That is the kind of Person God is.

Then: He died, on the Cross, to take away the sin of the world, to become the Redeemer and Saviour of men.

Then: He rose from the dead, is alive now: not merely an historical character, but a living Person: the most important fact of history, and the most vital force in the world today.

The whole Bible is built around this  beautiful story of Christ and His promise.of life Eternal to those who accept Him. The Bible was written only that men might believe and understand and know and love and follow CHRIST.

Christ, the Center and Heart of the Bible, the Center and Heart of history, is the Center and Heart of our lives. Our eternal destiny is in His hand. Our acceptance or rejection of Him, determines for each of us Eternal Glory or Eternal Ruin, Heaven or Hell: one or the other.

The most important decision any one is ever called on to make is to settle in his heart, once for all, the matter of his attitude towards Christ. On that depends everything.

It is a glorious thing to be a Christian, the most exalted privilege of mankind. To accept Christ as Saviour, Lord and Master and to strive sincerely and devotedly to follow in the way of life which He thaught is certainly, and by far, the most reasonable and most satisfactory way to live. It means peace, peace of mind, contentment of heart, forgiveness, happiness, hope, life, life here and now, life abundant, LIFE THAT SHALL NEVER END.

How can anyone be so blind, or so dumb, as to go through life and face death, without the Christian Hope? Apart from Christ, what is there, what can there be, either for this world or the next, to make life worthwhile? We all have to die. Why try to laugh it off? It seems like every human being would welcome Christ with open arms and consider it the proudest privilege of his life to wear the Christian name.

In the last analysis, the dearest, sweetest thing in life is the consciousness in the inner depths of our motives, that we live for Christ and though our efforts be ever so feeble, we toil at our daily tasks in hope of, in the final roundup, having done something to lay, in humble gratitude and adoration, as an offering at His feet.

Henry H. Halley - from Halley's Bible Handbook


WHAT


The Bible is God’s Word

Apart from any theory of inspiration, or any theory  of how the Bible books came to their present form, or how much the text may have suffered in transmission at the hands of editors and copyist, apart from the question of how much is to be interpreted literally and how much figuratively, or what is historical and what may be poetical, if we will assume that the Bible  is just what it appears to be, and study its books to know their contents, we will find there a Unity of Thought indicating that One Mind inspired the writing and compilation of the whole series of books, that it bears  on its face the stamp of its Author, that it is in a unique and distinctive sense THE WORD OF GOD.

There is a present day view, held rather widely in certain intellectual circles that the Bible is a sort of age-long story of man’s effort to find God: a record of man’s experiences reaching after God, gradually improving his idea  of God by building  on the experiences of preceding generations. In those passages, so abundant in the Bible, in which it is said that God spoke, God, according to this view, did not really speak, but men put forth their ideas in language professing to be the language of God, while in reality it was only what men imagined about God. The Bible is thus reduced to the level of other books, and is made to appear, not a Divine book, but a human book, pretending to be Divine.

We reject this view utterly, and with abhorrence. We believe  the Bible to be not men’s account of its effort to find God, but rather, an account of God’s effort to reveal Himself to man. God’s own record of His dealings with men, in His unfolding revelation of Himself to the human race: the revealed Will of the Creator of Man, given to Man by the Creator Himself, the Instructions and Guidance in the Ways of Life.

The books of the Bible were composed by human authors, and it is not even known who some of these authors were. Nor is it known just how God directed these authors to write. But it is asserted that God did direct them, and these books must be exactly what God wanted them to be.

There is a difference between the Bible and all other books. Authors may pray for God’s help and guidance, and God does help and guide; and there are many good books in the world unmistakably God has helped the authors to write. But even so, even the most saintly of authors would hardly presume  to claim for his books that God wrote them. But that is claimed for the Bible. God Himself superintended  and directed and dictated the writing of the Bible books, with the human authors so completely under His control that the writing was the writing of God. The Bible is God’s Word in a sense that no other book in the world is God’s Word.

It may be that some Bible utterances are “ancient thought forms” for ideas that we would now express in a different way; for they were expressed in language of ancient times. But even so, the Bible contains precisely the things that God wants mankind to know, in exactly the form in which He wants us to know them. And to the end of time the Dear Old Book will remain the one and only answer to humanity’s quest for God.

The Bible, composed by many authors, over a period of many centuries, yet ONE BOOK, is in itself, the outstanding Miracle of the Ages, bearing aloft its own evidence of its Superhuman Origin.

Everybody ought to love the Bible. Everybody ought to be a regular reader of the Bible. Everybody ought to strive to Live by the Bible’s teachings. The Bible ought to have central place  in the life and working of every church and in every pulpit. The pulpit one business is the simple expository teaching of God’s Word.

Henry H. Halley - from Halley's Bible Handbook