Seeing Christian History Through The History of the Bible
The evolution of the Bible and its translations is something worth looking into. The Christian Bible is one book that was published in volume before other books were. The Christian Bible is also one book that has been translated into as many languages as possible.
Oral tradition is the reason why we have the privilege of reading the oldest parts of the Bible. The belief that these parts were given to Moses by God on his trip to Mount Sinai is still present in the hearts of many Christians and believers today. Despite it being translated to many languages, the origins of the Bible remain a matter of faith. It wasn’t until a few centuries later that the Jews wrote down the scriptures.
The earliest parts of the Bible are written in three languages. The Hebrew language and the Aramaic language are two of the three languages. Hebrew has remained the main language of the Jewish people for a very long time.
Aramaic is one of the languages spoken near the Middle East. This was before Arabic became more widely used. Aramaic was popular during Jesus’ time so it is believed this was the language he used when he was alive.
At the time of the writing of the New Testament, the common Greek language was used. This specific kind of Greek language is called Koine Greek. The spread of Alexander the Great’s empire gave rise to the usage of this language. It evolved from classical Greek. Because Koine Greek was popular during the time of Jesus, it is also believed that this was Jesus’ second language.
We can attribute the current New Testament to Athanasius, the Bishop of Alexandria for writing it some three hundred years after Jesus’ death. Pope Damasus I is responsible for arranging the New Testament in their current order. The Council of Carthage is responsible for making the Catholic Bible’s books canon. There are 46 books in the Old Testament being used by the Catholic Bible.
Because the Catholic Bible kept all the books in the Old Testament, it has 7 more books in the Old Testament than the Christian Bible.
The Fourth Council of Carthage decided to keep the Canons as they were. In Church history, it is recorded that the Council of Trent is the longest lasting council ever. It reaffirmed the full list of books as accepted by convention.
When the printing press was invented by Johannes Gutenberg, the Bible was the very first he published. The commission made by King James of England to translate the Bible is now known as the King James Version (KJV).
The King James Version used Old English which was difficult to understand as English changed as a language. This called for the creation of a new translation called The New King James Version. Because of the time needed to translate, the Bible was gradually released part by part.
The other translation is the New American Standard Bible. Contemporary English was used by the NASB to correct some improvements. The NASB changed grammar to reflect itself closer to the original Greek and Hebrew texts. After twenty years since its writing, it was updated.
The need for easier Bible reading was addressed by he New International Version (NIV). More than a hundred scholars worked on the NIV. It took a decade to compete this translation. Before this, the translation was planned for about ten years. The NIV is very widely used at present.
There is a version of the Bible that aims to cater to younger audiences called the New Century Version (NCV).