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by yxl1 12 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • yxl1

    I read somewhere that in 324, Constantine decided that Literal Christianity was to be the offical religion of the Roman empire. Could anyone point me to an author or book that describes how and why this happened. Also, does anyone have any information on how the current 66 bible books were chosen over the many books that were discarded.


  • Yerusalyim

    Constantine personally adopted Christianity, and legalized it, but it was a later emperor that made it the OFFICIAL religion of the empire...I think.

    There was no official canon of the bible for over a millinium. However, Catholics have used 73 books (7 in the old testament that the protestants took out) for centuries before the reformation. In around AD 100 the rabbis got together and set the Canon for the Hebrew Scriptures...they eliminated any books that didn't have an extant original copy in Hebrew, and a few that did, such as Macabees, because these two books refered to the Roman Republic in good terms.

    By this time Christians were seperated from the Jews and using many of the books the Rabbis did away with. When the Protestant reformation came along, the prots adopted the Hebrew Canon of the OT, rejecting the books the Catholics had been using.

    The Canon of the NT was set around AD275...Irenaus of Lyons named the "authentic" books.

  • zen nudist
    zen nudist

    I am now quite puzzled over these extra books called the apocrypha which everyone says the catholics use but the protestants dropped.... I have an american made AUTHORIZED VERSION which is identicle to the KJV except that it has the apocrypha in it and was made between 1790 and 1820...

    it says in the front that the authorized version has stood the test of time 180 years from its origins in 1610 [? odd?] making the date of this section 1790 but in the back there is a section added with has tables and charts and a concordance and a dating system which ends saying to the present year of our lord 1820.... there is no copywrite date anywhere in it.

    so it seems that american protestants anyway had the other books in their bible as late as 1820s.

  • jgnat
  • stillajwexelder

    When Jesus Became God -- by an american author whose name I have forgotten

  • jgnat

    Here is one article on how certain books were selected over others:

  • jgnat

    exjwexelder, that looks like a great book. Here is a link to Amazon.

  • Narkissos
  • Yerusalyim


    For the first 40 or so years of it's existence the KJV had the "apocraphya in it as well.

  • JCanon

    As far as the Canon is concerned, that's an open topic, but I prefer to use what I call the "Biblical canon".

    That is, since the NT Bible writers managed to quote from every single book of the OT except for 3, I consider that intentional and significant and thus the Bible, in that sense creates it's OWN canon. I mean, who is going to argue with the NT Bible writers. Of course, some might object to the NT canon. Even so the three books outside the canon that I dismiss as "non-inspired" are:

    ESTHER (historically false, so definitely not inspired)

    SONG OF SOLOMON (an obvious pagan book of the "Mysteries")

    ECCLESIATES (maybe a Biblically compatible book generally, but still excluded, thus not inspired; doesn't mean it's necessary pagan, just "apocryphal").

    These books need to be EXCLUDED from the current canon. All the other books are quoted from, so, I'm assuming they belong in the canon. Inclusions beyond the "Internal Biblical Canon" is up to each individual I suppose. I exclude two of the above books on content though (Esther and SOS) so they are definitely out. The final one, Ecclesiastes, is dismissed because it's not included, though some find context problems with it. But that's no issue, at that point context issues are brought up about all the books, especially the NT writings of Paul, so....

    Enjoy the arguments.

    Finally, if this is a personal concern, I'd read all the commentaries on Esther, SOS and Ecclesiastes, pro and con, before including them in the canon. If you can include them beyond being excluded by the NT Bible writers or critical issues then I suppose that's your choice. JWs and Christendom in general seems to include them with no problem so that would be understandable. My standards are a little more stringent though.


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