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Pastor Brett's Introduction to Reading the Bible


Reading the Bible is an important part of daily spiritual growth. Learn more about this gift from God in this slide presentation by Brett Opalinski, senior pastor at Christ Church, Fort Lauderdale …

Reading the Bible is an important part of daily spiritual growth. Learn more about this gift from God in this slide presentation by Brett Opalinski, senior pastor at Christ Church, Fort Lauderdale and Pompano Beach.

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  • 1. + The Bible: An Introduction Brett Opalinski Christ Church UM
  • 2. + Religion of the Book  Judaism and Christianity are religions of a book.  Judaism was the first of Western Civilization.  Other religions, put more emphasis on ritual ceremonies and sacrifices.
  • 3. + Bible Basics  Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) and the New Testament.  Library/Collection of Books (66 not counting the Apocrypha)  Different authors, settings, places.
  • 4. + Hebrew Bible/Old Testament  Many books across a wide range of time.  Written in Hebrew.
  • 5. + Basic Parts of the Hebrew Bible  Torah: Books of the Law  Prophets  Poems  Wisdom  History
  • 6. + New Testament: Basic Information  27 Books.  Written in Greek.  Between the Years 50-120 CE (Earliest I Thessalonians)
  • 7. + Types of Writings in the New Testament  Letters  Gospels  History  Sermons  Apocalyptic Literature
  • 8. + Basic Dates for Early Christianity  6-4 BCE – Birth of Jesus  10 CE – Birth of Paul  29 CE – Death and Resurrection of Jesus  31-33 CE – Paul’s Transformation  50-60 CE – Letter’s of Paul  64 CE – Death of Paul and Peter  65-70 – Gospel of Mark written
  • 9. + What Scriptures did Early Christians Use  Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament)  Jesus’ words and teachings.  Paul’s Letters  Gospels  Later Writings
  • 10. + There Were Many Early Christian Writings  Gospels  Acts/Histories  Revelations  Which ones should be used?
  • 11. + Athanasius: Bishop of Alexandria  367 CE – Letter to his Churches in Egypt.  Instructed them to use the 27 books that made up the New Testament.
  • 12. + Council of Carthage – 394 CE  Finalized the List of Books that we use today in Western Christianity.  Eastern Christians still used: I Clement, Barnabas, Shepherd of Hermas. Omitted Revelation.
  • 13. + Criteria for Which Books Were Selected  Rule of Faith: Consistent with basic teaching of the Apostles.  Apostolic Authorship.  Accepted and Used by Many Churches.  No agreement over which was the most important.
  • 14. + What About the Apocrypha  Books that are from the Hebrew tradition, but not part of the Old Testament. Valued and used by Early Christians.  Baruch, Tobit, Psalm 151, 1-4 Maccabees, Wisdom of Solomon, Letter of Jeremiah.  Some Bibles include these today!
  • 15. + Manuscripts  We do not have the original copies of the books.  There are over 5,500 manuscripts, fragments or papyri.  Copying was done by hand, not by printing presses.
  • 16. + How Do We Get Our Bibles Today  Scholars work with Manuscripts and Fragments to determine what the originals may have looked like.  Put together into a common Greek version. (Hebrew for OT).  Different translations from that.
  • 17. + Final Thoughts  Translations: Common English Bible or New Revised Standard Version (NRSV).  Don’t just read the Bible, study it!  If you would like to know more, email me at: