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Authenticity & Canonicity BEYOND Doubt

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A. Authenticity
B. Beyond Doubt
C. Canonicity
D. Definite
E. Exactitude

Learning our ABCDE’s…huh?:) Important in order (or out of order) to learn/use words aka put meaningful sentences together…aka act with proficiency/wisdom…(my purple highlighted past readings excerpted) a necessary:

Professor Julio Trebolle Barrera, a member of the team of experts charged with studying and publishing the ancient manuscripts known as the Dead Sea Scrolls, says: “The transmission of the text of the Hebrew Bible is of extraordinary exactitude, without parallel in Greek and Latin classical literature.” Respected Bible scholar F. F. Bruce says: “The evidence for our New Testament writings is ever so much greater than the evidence for many writings of classical authors, the authenticity of which no one dreams of questioning.” He continues: “If the New Testament were a collection of secular writings, their authenticity would generally be regarded as beyond all doubt.”

The survival of the Bible is extraordinary, considering what happened to the writings of nations contemporary with the Israelites. The Phoenicians, for instance, were neighbors of the Israelites during the first millennium B.C.E. These sea traders spread their alphabetic writing system throughout the Mediterranean area. They also profited from an extensive papyrus trade with Egypt and the Greek world. Even so, the National Geographic magazine observes regarding the Phoenicians: “Their writings, mostly on fragile papyrus, disintegrated​—so that we now know the Phoenicians mainly by the biased reports of their enemies. Although the Phoenicians themselves reportedly had a rich literature, it was totally lost in antiquity.

What about the writings of the ancient Egyptians? The hieroglyphics they carved or painted on temple walls and elsewhere are well-known. The Egyptians are also famous for developing papyrus as a writing material. However, regarding Egyptian records written on papyrus, Egyptologist K. A. Kitchen says: “It has been estimated that some 99 percent of all papyri written from circa 3000 down to the advent of Greco-Roman times have perished completely.

What about Roman records that were written on papyrus? Consider this example. According to the book Roman Military Records on Papyrus, Roman soldiers were apparently paid three times a year, and a record of the pay was made on papyrus pay vouchers. It is estimated that during the 300 years from Augustus (27 B.C.E.–14 C.E.) to Diocletian (284-305 C.E), there were 225,000,000 individual pay records. How many have survived? Only two have been found that are legible.

Why have so few ancient documents written on papyrus survived? Perishable materials, such as papyrus and another common writing material, leather, decay quickly in damp climates. The Anchor Bible Dictionary says: “Because of the climate, papyrus documents from this period [the first millennium B.C.E.] are likely to be preserved only if they are in a dry desert and in a cave or shelter.

The original Bible books were evidently written on material as fragile as that used by the Phoenicians, Egyptians, and Romans. Why, then, did the material contained in the Bible survive to become the world’s most published book? Professor James L. Kugel provides one reason. He says that the original writings were copied “many, many times even within the biblical period itself.” [excerpted: The Bible a Remarkable Story of Survival w 09]

IF we feed/educate/indoctrinate/nourish/supply/train our (individual) minds/consciences only/solely with works of fiction/mind-food-fabrications, do works of fiction manifest/fabricate in our lives aka our words, our works of say senselessness/nonsense or fiction or as meaninglessness/ultimately useless pursuits?? Reminds of expression… “only as good as our word.” How “reliable” are my words?! In Other Words:)..aka “observable” actions…do my deeds truthfully back up my words??

Seriously speaking, IF i desire/want, my personal life-story to continue/play out long and my life not cut short/decay quickly…wouldn’t i do well to learn reliable survival-skills from a trust-worthy place/source of truth?

Reliability of the Bible Text. Appreciation of the reliability of the Bible is greatly enhanced when it is realized that, by comparison, there are only very few extant manuscripts of the works of classical secular writers and none of these are original, autograph manuscripts. Though they are only copies made centuries after the death of the authors, present-day scholars accept such late copies as sufficient evidence of the authenticity of the text.

Extant Hebrew manuscripts of the Scriptures were prepared with great care. Respecting the text of the Hebrew Scriptures, scholar W. H. Green observed: “It may be safely said that no other work of antiquity has been so accurately transmitted.” (Archaeology and Bible History, by J. P. Free, 1964, p. 5) The late Bible text scholar Sir Frederic Kenyon made this reassuring statement in the introduction to his seven volumes entitled The Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri: “The first and most important conclusion derived from the examination of them [the Papyri] is the satisfactory one that they confirm the essential soundness of the existing texts. No striking or fundamental variation is shown either in the Old or the New Testament. There are no important omissions or additions of passages, and no variations which affect vital facts or doctrines. The variations of text affect minor matters, such as the order of words or the precise words used. . . . But their essential importance is their confirmation, by evidence of an earlier date than was hitherto available, of the integrity of our existing texts. In this respect they are an acquisition of epoch-making value.”​—London, 1933, Fasciculus I, p. 15.

Concerning the Christian Greek Scriptures, Sir Frederic Kenyon stated: “The interval then between the dates of original composition and the earliest extant evidence becomes so small as to be in fact negligible, and the last foundation for any doubt that the Scriptures have come down to us substantially as they were written has now been removed. Both the authenticity and the general integrity of the books of the New Testament may be regarded as finally established.”​—The Bible and Archæology, 1940, pp. 288, 289. [excerpted readings: Manuscripts of the Bible, Insight, Vol. 2]

Reasons to Check it Out aka Worthy of Scholarly Attention aka Study the Bible aka Make it Daily PRIORITY Reading…IF some of us feel we have benefitted in some way (trivial or otherwise) by “fictional” works…how MUCH MORE so would/could we benefit (Monumentally) by Bible reading?! Of course, us humans aren’t so willing to do anything without any self-interest or self-benefit, eh?!;) Many of us have the attitude (about any seemingly disciplined, time-consuming endeavor) what’s in it for me?!;)…a little or A LOT, “limited” results or limitless/immeasurable ones? 🙂

The Bible is not an unrelated assortment or collection of heterogeneous fragments from Jewish and Christian literature. Rather, it is an organizational book, highly unified and interconnected in its various segments, which indeed reflect the systematic orderliness of the Creator-Author himself. God’s dealings with Israel in giving them a comprehensive law code as well as regulations governing matters even down to small details of camp life​—things that were later mirrored in the Davidic kingdom as well as in the congregational arrangement among first-century Christians—​reflect and magnify this organizational aspect of the Bible.

Contents. In contents this Book of Books reveals the past, explains the present, and foretells the future. These are matters that only He who knows the end from the beginning could author. (Isa 46:10) Starting at the beginning by telling of the creation of heaven and earth, the Bible next gives a sweeping account of the events that prepared the earth for man’s habitation. Then the truly scientific explanation of the origin of man is revealed​—how life comes only from a Life-Giver—​facts that only the Creator now in the role of Author could explain. (Ge 1:26-28; 2:7) With the account of why men die, the overriding theme that permeates the whole Bible was introduced. This theme, the vindication of Jehovah’s sovereignty and the ultimate fulfillment of his purpose for the earth, by means of his Kingdom under Christ, the promised Seed, was wrapped up in the first prophecy concerning ‘the seed of the woman.’ (Ge 3:15) More than 2,000 years passed before this promise of a “seed” was again mentioned, God telling Abraham: “By means of your seed all nations of the earth will certainly bless themselves.” (Ge 22:18) Over 800 years later, renewed assurance was given to Abraham’s descendant King David, and with the passing of more time Jehovah’s prophets kept this flame of hope burning brightly. (2Sa 7:12, 16; Isa 9:6, 7) More than 1,000 years after David and 4,000 years after the original prophecy in Eden, the Promised Seed himself appeared, Jesus Christ, the legal heir to “the throne of David his father.” (Lu 1:31-33; Ga 3:16) Bruised in death by the earthly seed of the “serpent,” this “Son of the Most High” provided the ransom purchase price for the life rights lost to Adam’s offspring, thus providing the only means whereby mankind can get everlasting life. He was then raised on high, there to await the appointed time to hurl “the original serpent, the one called Devil and Satan,” down to the earth, finally to be destroyed forever. Thus the magnificent theme announced in Genesis and developed and enlarged upon throughout the balance of the Bible is, in the closing chapters of Revelation, brought to a glorious climax as Jehovah’s grand purpose by means of his Kingdom is made apparent.​—Re 11:15; 12:1-12, 17; 19:11-16; 20:1-3, 7-10; 21:1-5; 22:3-5.[excerpted readings: Bible

Worthwhile reading is a positive-coping, self-helping/thriving-timely-tool…:) Plus, i personally have no (warranted) trust issues whatsoever with the Bible Books…all 66: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel, 1 Kings, 2 Kings, 1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Solomon (Canticles), Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, Romans, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians, 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon, Hebrews, James, 1 Peter, 2 Peter, 1 John, 2 John, 3 John, Jude, Revelation…(unlike some other books; too many to enumerate).

READING worthwhile material is a beneficial pursuit. French political philosopher Montesquieu (Charles-Louis de Secondat) wrote: “For me, study has always been the sovereign remedy for the weariness of life. No distress has ever come upon me that an hour’s reading has not dispelled.” To a supreme degree, this is true of Bible reading. Said the inspired psalmist: “The law of Jehovah is perfect, bringing back the soul. The reminder of Jehovah is trustworthy, making the inexperienced one wise. The orders from Jehovah are upright, causing the heart to rejoice.”​—Psalm 19:7, 8. [excerpted Bible Reading Profitable & Pleasurable–w 00]


3/12/18 @ 8:51 p.m.

p.s. a brief acknowledgement that this 1 post does not adequately develop “in detail” the canonicity of “each” individual Bible book per se…foder for another post perhaps; when i get/make time. As always, i encourage You to do Your own research on the reliability of any of Your particular readings secular or other.

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Deciphering Heiroglyphics {(Yep! i before e except after c)}

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Aka typing up my handwritten-lol;)/hieroglyphic scribble notes/paraphrasing pieces of recent *talk on topic “Being Conscious of My Spiritual Need”…ties in nicely with posts: Fully Conscious?? Are You Growing? (Am i growing?), You’re NOT an Idiot!!!

How Do You…

know IF You:) are appropriately (or at the very least) adequately caring for/satisfying this essential/basic, yet important need??

being conscious of Your spiritual need means to know–Your need for God…{(Yeah, i said it/shared it…You have a need for “God”! and obviously, say not a need for me or my blog, eh?)} we have a built-in design to reach out to someone beyond self…beast…is NOT content to eat/sleep warm himself…no, we/{mankind-womankind} have a strange urge aka SPIRITUALITY! {(Yeah!! i am very strange-lol:) and probably also because am very vocal about spiritual things/topics.)}

Many experts have acknowledged all civilizations are routed in their “quest for God” …and finding satisfying answers to grappling questions: Why are We Here??  What is the Purpose of Life?? {Why do we die?? Is there Life after Death?? Why so Much Suffering? and will it ever end?? Who is the True God/Creator? Can We Be Friends?} {[BTW: i’ve personally “peered” into the Bible and have found very intellectually/spiritually satisfying answers to these questions and more.]}

“Happy are those conscious of their spiritual need,* since the Kingdom of the heavens belongs to them.

footnote *Or “those who are beggars for the spirit.” (Matthew 5:3)

Being a beggar for the spirit…a begging drive to do all we can to satisfy/fill the need…

Wide-array of beliefs…41,000 different denominations of (so-called) Christianity alone…teachings in conflict, people confused as to what to “really” believe…

a key to satisfying this need in appropriate way…connecting verse 6 of Matthew 5…

“Happy are those hungering and thirsting for righteousness, since they will be filled.* (satisfied).

rigeteousness — desire what is right according to God’s standards

2 Timothy 3:16–“All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight,*(correcting) for disciplining in righteousness,”

“inspired” of God…Greek word “theopneustos” means “God Breathed”

{So for me, personally, i enJOY reading God’s “inspired” word daily/the Bible…but it’s more than just looking…a scan/glance.}
22 However, become doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves with false reasoning. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, this one is like a man looking at his own face* (his natural face) in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself, and he goes away and immediately forgets what sort of person he is. 25 But the one who peers into the perfect law that belongs to freedom and continues in it has become, not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work; and he will be happy in what he does.  (James 1:22-25)
to peer–more than a fleeting glance…a careful search for a hidden object–desires to see, investigates till he finds it…
speaker gave example of lost car keys–how much effort to find, we have to dig, search, peer to satisfy spiritual need.
How do we know IF we are satisfying this need?!
a response, an affect…we would be affected emotionally and/or physically–Psalm 19:7
The law of Jehovah is perfect, restoring strength.* (Or “restoring (bringing back) the soul.” The reminder of Jehovah is trustworthy, making the inexperienced one wise.
Deep Bible Study–being absorbed and making application…restoring strength..makes the inexperienced wise, heart rejoices and makes the eyes shine. We don’t need bad experiences to be wise, we don’t have to touch the fire to know we will be burned. {Experiencing many positive affects in life and making compassionate choices.  Having a personal friendship with God…God called Abraham His Friend. Humans have the opportunity to do the same.}
Challenges and obstacles that could hinder us spiritually…Jesus illustrates:
Matthew 13:3-8…”Then he told them many things by illustrations, saying: “Look! A sower went out to sow. 4 As he was sowing, some seeds fell alongside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. 5 Others fell on rocky ground where there was not much soil, and they immediately sprang up because the soil was not deep. 6 But when the sun rose, they were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. 7 Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them. 8 Still others fell on the fine soil, and they began to yield fruit, this one 100 times more, that one 60, the other 30.”
 Context…seed–Kingdom message…opportunity to satisfy need and different heart conditions…verses 3 & 4 seed didn’t grow? why? so much activity coming and going along roadside…not taking time to absorb spiritual food…rocky road – no root- tribulation/trials/hardship at once stumbled–difficulty and stopped growing spiritually. Thorns…anxiety of this system –deceptive power of riches, chokes it!
need to analyze our circumstances/priorities…anything going on? improper desire for a lot of material things? lack of priority for personal study?
{We can truly be happy by being conscious of our spiritual need…takes time, EFFORT!…can be realized/reached…a healthy place/spiritual paradise. Functioning well–manifesting compassionate ways in various aspects of living and loving.}

“Happy are those conscious of their spiritual need,* since the Kingdom of the heavens belongs to them.

footnote *Or “those who are beggars for the spirit.” (Matthew 5:3)

{am i too proud to beg?!}
{am i truly happy?!}
{am i satisfying my spiritual need?!}
7/15 17 @ 7:37 p.m.
*p.s. for clarification talk i heard (not personally wrote) my musings are in {}…this post is a deciphering of my notes of said talk/lecture.
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Summer Reading

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Happy Saturday Reader:)

Hoping You are well & happy…i mean content. (Content-ment is a state of flux for me. Don’t get me wrong…my “absolute” contentment is found in my spirituality. Probably, because i am well-aware/fully-conscious of my “spiritual” need and continuously seek to fill this important need daily.)

“Public” school has been out little over a month now; time flys. Our “usual” Summer routine/history has me living-at-the-library-literally…yet, this Summer, i went once thus far to our local, little, library. Made other time/commitment choices and wanted to focus the kids’ attention elsewhere on their spirituality and art and family togetherness/vaca, etc.

Opportunities for growth abound outside and inside the library, eh!  Though, my extra reading time (aka supplemental reading beside my daily spiritual studies) has been very limited/cut short due to stuff foreseen and unforseen. In particular, a couple titles have peaked (yeah! i know it’s “piqued”..chose peaked on purpose; BTW) my curiosity!…topics and available excerpts; long-story short–up until today have not had the means/chance to consume/read or acquire. UGH!

Life can be like this: what we would like to do, we cannot and what we can do is not always what we would like to do! (Thus, the process of learning contentment and making the best/most of what is available to work with on any “given” day.)

all i know or in other words–what i’ve learned…each day is a gift and make the most of it/life by making the most compassionate choices You can…based on accurate knowledge You have up to this point in life.

Mercy is a topic near-dear to my heart…forgiveness, etc. So, i Love this PRO verb: (positive do-ing!)

The one showing favor to the lowly is lending to Jehovah (God of Compassion), and He will repay him for what he does.” (Proverb 19:17)

Also, to continue recent post: discerning-wisdom-position-arrogance-v-humility please check out this excerpted reading: that connects with the above Proverb…(aka taking positive compassionate action(s))…

MANY years ago, three men went to speak to a faithful servant of God named Job. One of the men, Eliphaz the Temanite, asked Job some interesting questions: “Can a man be of use to God? Can anyone with insight be of benefit to him? Does the Almighty care that you are righteous, or does he gain anything because you follow the course of integrity?” (Job 22:1-3) Eliphaz clearly thought that the answer was no. Another one of the men, Bildad the Shuhite, then added that it is impossible for humans to be considered righteous by God.—

Read Job 25:4 

So how can mortal man be righteous before God,

Or how can one born of a woman be innocent (pure)?

Eliphaz and Bildad tried to make Job feel that his efforts to serve Jehovah (God of Compassion) were worthless. Those men wanted Job to believe that we are no more valuable to God than a moth, a maggot, or a worm. (Job 4:19; 25:6) Were they saying that because they were humble? (Job 22:29) It is true that Jehovah is supremely great and that we are very small in comparison to him. If we are on top of a mountain or looking out from an airplane window, we get a sense of how tiny and unimportant we are. But is that how Jehovah feels about our efforts to serve him and to work hard for the Kingdom? No! Jehovah told Eliphaz, Bildad, and the third man, Zophar, that they were telling lies. Then God said that he was happy with Job and called him “my servant.” (Job 42:7, 8) So we can be sure that imperfect humans can “be of use to God.”

 A young man named Elihu was listening to the conversation between Job and the three men. When it was over, Elihu asked Job about Jehovah: “If you are righteous, what do you give him; what does he receive from you?” (Job 35:7) Was Elihu also trying to say that our efforts to serve God are worthless? No. Jehovah did not correct Elihu, as he had the other men. Elihu was making a different point. He was saying that Jehovah does not need us to worship him. Jehovah is complete. There is nothing we could do that would make him richer or stronger. In fact, any good quality or ability we have comes from God, and he notices how we use it.

When we show loyal love to those who worship Jehovah, he views those actions as if they were done to him personally. […] Jehovah actually notices each time we show mercy to others. And although he is the Creator of the universe, Jehovah even chooses to view these actions as a personal loan to him, which he repays with many wonderful gifts. [excerpted article: May Your Volunteer Spirit bring Praise to Jehovah]

Having a willing spirit to volunteer…wherever the need may be…does call for compassion, mercy, and forgiveness…etc.

THANKS for Reading…(and for Your mercy in putting up with my musings, etc.)

Peace & Mercy to YOU:)

7/8/17 @ 11:12 a.m.

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