It's Lent, time to pick up the good book! Here are five things "everyone should know about the Bible."
Five Things Everyone Should Know About The Bible, Believe It or Not
By Kristin Swenson in The Huffington Post
The Bible is a peculiar book, and it's hard to get straight information about it. If you're one of those people with a nagging feeling that you should know more about the Bible than you do -- or even if you can recite chapter and verse (but don't know that those chapters and verses come from a 13th century archbishop of Canterbury and a 16th century Parisian, respectively) -- then these five basic things will catapult you to a new level of biblical literacy. Though I might be handing you clunky corrective eyewear instead of sexy kitten glasses, I promise that they will change the way you look at the Good Book, clarifying and focusing your understanding.
1. Every Bible is actually a collection of books. The word itself means something like "little library." Many of the Bible's books developed over a long period of time and include the input of a lot of people (ancient Israelites, Babylonian Jews and Greek pastors, to name a few), reflecting particular places (urban Jerusalem, the northern Galilee, rural Judah and ancient Persia, for example) and times (spanning as much as 1,000 years for the Old Testament and a couple of centuries for the New Testament). Plus, the collection as a whole developed over centuries. This helps to explain the tremendous variety of theological perspectives, literary style, and sometimes perplexing preoccupations (which animal parts go to which parties in which categories of sacrifices, e.g.), as well as why some texts disagree with others.
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