Christian confusion about which Bible is the true Word of God leads to significant doctrinal differences

It is important to understand that the Bible is a library of books written over a period of a 1000 years or more by mostly unknown authors. Today, Christians still disagree about which books should be in the Bible. This is not a trivial fact as it leads to doctrinal differences based on the different books. For example, according to Catholics the reality of Purgatory features in II Maccabees 12:39-46, a book (and a doctrine) not found in the Protestant Bible. So which books make up the Bible?

  • Roman Catholics think it should contain 73 books,
  • Protestants say 66 books,
  • Most Orthodox Christians claim 78 books.
  • However, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church believe the Bible contains 81 books – the highest figure of all!

(The Ethiopian broader New Testament canon has eight additional books: the four books of Sinodos, the two divisions of the Book of the Covenant, Ethiopic Clement, and the Ethiopic Didascalia.)

To quote from an undisputed part of the Bible: God is not the author of confusion.

Categories: Bible

8 replies

  1. So out of curiosity what do Ken or Shamoun think about those text that add things such as Purgatory?

    • Also are there any Eastern Orthodox, Catholics ir Ethiopian Orthodox here as I would like to hear everyone’s opinion?

    • I don’t have time to debate details, but there are lots of web-sites, books, and debates that provide the weight of evidence on the Protestant side of this debate. (Purgatory is wrong and unBiblical and the Aprocrypha books are not “God-breathed”. Even Athanasius and Jerome agreed that those books are not canonical; they are not “God-breathed”; they are not inspired. The earliest fathers that had a more full knowledge of the Hebrews and Hebrew language, etc. understood that they were good for reading and understanding of the historical details of those days and have some good devotional material, but they are not “God-breathed”. ( 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Peter 1:19-21)

      Dr. White decimated Roman Catholics Gary Michuta and Gerry Matatics on the issue of the Apocrypha or so called “Deutero-canonicals”.

      Here is the debate between Dr. White and Gary Michuta from 2004. You can google and find the other one with Gerry Matatics – I think it is only available in audio format.

  2. In his commentary on Wisdom of Solomon and Ecclesiasticus, Jerome (347-420 AD) states:

    “As, then, the Church reads Judith, Tobit, and the books of Maccabees, but does not admit them among the canonical Scriptures, so let it also read these two Volumes (Wisdom of Solomon and Ecclesiasticus) for the edification of the people, not to give authority to doctrines of the Church.”

    Maccabees is the one that has the verses used by Roman Catholics to try and build a doctrine of Purgatory and prayers for the dead, but they were never canonical books.

  3. 4 part series by William Webster on the Canon of the OT and the Jews and Jerome and church history after Jerome.

  4. the Bible is a library of books written over a period of a 1000 years…. I understood the duration of revelation to be 1600 yrs.

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