Page images
PDF
EPUB

Give to Cæsar that which is Cæsar's......

Phylacteries..

The Widow's Mite...

The Foolish Virgins.
The Talents.....

Judas Betraying Jesus..
The Last Supper..
Lord, is it I? .............

Washing the Disciples' Feet.

In the Garden of Gethsemane.

The Arrest.

Jesus Before Caiaphas..

Peter Denying Jesus..
Peter Repents.....
The Condemnation..
Jesus and Barabbas.

The Whipping-Post.....

Jesus Crowned with Thorns..

"Behold the Man"..

Jesus Carrying his Cross.

The Crucifixion....
Roman Centurion.....
The Descent from the Cross.
Laying Jesus in the Tomb..

The Resurrection..

The Women at the Tomb.
He is Risen.....

The Incredulity of Thomas.

The Wonderful Draught of Fishes..

The Ascent into Heaven.....

The Coming of the Holy Ghost..
Peter Cures the Cripple....
Death of Sapphira............
Martyrdom of Stephen.............
The Conversion of the Eunuch....
Houses on the Walls of Damascus.
The Conversion of Paul.......

Peter on the House-Top at Joppa.........
The Angel Delivering Peter from Prison...

Paul Commanding the Cripple to Stand Up..

Paul and Barnabas at Lystra....

PAGE

423

425

427

429

431

435

437

439

440

444

445

446

447

448

449

451

452

453

455

.456, 457, 458

459

461

463

464

465

466

467

471

473

475

477

479

483

487

489

491

493

497

501

503

504

507

509

511

515

516

Paul Preaching at Athens..

Paul Leaving Ephesus..

Paul Leaving Tyre..

[ocr errors]

Timothy, When a Child, Reading the Scriptures...
Magistrates Entreating Paul and Silas to Leave Prison..

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

The Soldiers About to Bind Paul for the Torture...

Paul's Shipwreck......

Paul Arrives at Rome.

Martyrdom of St. Peter..

Saint John......

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

PAGE

519

525

527

529

530

531

532

533

[graphic]
[graphic]

THE BIBLE: AND ITS STORY.

CHAPTER I.

HOW THE BIBLE CAME TO US.

THE volume which Christians consider the most sacred of all books, and which they are taught from their earliest years to love and reverence as the Bible, differs from all other volumes which ever have been or ever will be written, in that it was composed neither by one man, nor at one time, nor in one language.

For though the Bible came from God, it was not given all at once in the complete form in which we now have it, but different men at different times were each divinely inspired to write a portion of it. The first of these was Moses, who lived nearly fifteen hundred years before the birth of Jesus. The last was St. John, who died a hundred years after the opening of the Christian era. During the sixteen hundred years which thus elapsed between its commencement and completion, thirty-six men or more were moved by the will of God at various periods of time to contribute a portion of the great work, and these writers employed the language most familiar to them or to the people about them, some using Chaldee, some Hebrew, some Greek, and some perhaps other tongues of which the Bible to-day shows no trace. It is on account of this diverse authorship that the name of Scriptures is so generally applied to the Bible, scriptures being the Latin term for writings. And as each part of the Scriptures is called a book, the whole of them taken together were called by the Greek name for books, which is Bible. The words Holy and Sacred are often placed before Bible and Scriptures to show the divine origin of the volume.

The greater part of the Bible (more than three-fourths of the whole) was written before the birth of Christ and is known as the Old Testament. There were twenty-eight (perhaps more) authors of this part, some of them writing in Chaldee, but most of them in Hebrew. The Chaldee portion of it, however, was translated into Hebrew (the language of the Jews) at least four hundred years before the advent of the Saviour, and all of the Old Testament was translated into Greek about a hundred years later (300 B.C.). This Greek version is said to have been made by seventy learned Jews of Alexandria, and so received the name of the Septuagint, which is derived from a Latin word meaning seventy. Greek was selected for this purpose as it was at that period the most commonly spoken language in the world, and the Septuagint soon became the version most in use among the Jews.

The word testament means will. The Old Testament is thus the revelation of God's former (or older) will to his people. With the birth of Christ God made a new revelation of his will, and this is contained in the New Testament. There were eight authors of the New Testament, and they all wrote in Greek, so that that tongue became the language of the entire Bible. But as Rome extended her conquests, Greek gave way to Latin as the common language of the world, and within a few centuries after the foundation of Christianity several Latin translations of the Bible were made, one of which was adopted by the Roman Catholic Church and is still used by that Church in all of its services. It is called the Vulgate because it was made for the use of the people, and vulgus is one of the Latin words for people.

For about a thousand years the Greek and the Latin versions were the only ones at all generally used throughout Christendom. At various times during this period attempts were made to translate parts of the sacred text or the whole of it into more modern languages, but none of them met with any great or lasting success. When, however, the Reformation took place, the churches which separated from the Roman Catholic communion decided to give up the Vulgate and use in its stead versions in the languages of their own countries. The great Reformer, Martin Luther, made a translation into German

« PreviousContinue »