New Testament

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Books of the Bible

The New Testament is that portion of the Christian Bible composed and compiled during the first few centuries CE.

Contents

Authorship and style

It is likely the actual authors of the gospels were Christians in the early church. The gospels were written in Koine Greek by educated writers but probably not by the authors traditionally attributed to them.

"The mainstream scholarly view is that the Gospels are anonymous works, written in a different language than that of Jesus, in distant lands, after a substantial gap of time, by unknown persons, compiling, redacting, and inventing various traditions, in order to provide a narrative of Christianity’s central figure — Jesus Christ — to confirm the faith of their communities.[1]"
"These texts instead read like ancient prose novels. In all but Luke, we do not hear anything about the written sources that the authors consulted (and even the author of Luke does not name them, explain their contents, or discuss how they are relevant as sources), the authors of the Gospels do not discuss how they learned their stories or what their personal relations are to these events, and even when John claims to have an eyewitness disciple “whom Jesus loved,” the gospel does not even bother to name or identify this mysterious figure (most likely an invention of the author). Instead, the Gospels provide story-like narratives, where the authors omnisciently narrate everything that occurs rather than engage in any form of critical analysis. [2]"

The authors presented the gospels as the word of god, rather than just a biography or history. [3]

Some historians claim the gospel authors invented the idea of the resurrection and divinity of Jesus to suit their agenda of gaining converts. This manipulation of the New Testament occurred progressively and begin in the 1st century [4]. The idea that the early diversity of the church was replaced by Pauline orthodox is known as the Bauer thesis.

Books of the New Testament

The first four books of the New Testament—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—are the four canonical gospels, which tell the story of the life and crucifixion (and resurrection) of Jesus.

The book of Acts tells of what happened to Jesus' apostles after he died.

The next 13 books, Romans through Philemon, are letters (epistles) supposedly written by the apostle Paul to various churches. Note that a large part of Christian teachings are from Paul rather than Jesus.

Of the 13 epistles only 7 are considered authentic by most biblical and secular scholars. The list of Pauline epistles below:

The rest are pseudepigraphical, which is odd since it calls the author's integrity into question:

The next 8 books, Hebrews through Jude, are letters written by other members of the early church.

The Book of Revelation purports to be a revelation from God to the evangelist John describing the coming end of the world.

Apocryphal gospels

There are a number of apocryphal gospels — that is, gospels that were excluded from the canon for various reasons. Decisions over which books to include and which to exclude were sometimes based more on political than theological reasons. The Book of Revelation was frequently not considered authentic in ancient times. Below is a list of some of the apocryphal books.

Gospels

See also

References and external links

  1. [1]
  2. [2]
  3. [3]
  4. Peter Cresswell, The Invention of Jesus: How the Church Rewrote the New Testament, 2013


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