No other book has been surrounded in such mystery and controvercy as the Bible. It has been banned, burned, vilified, declared unconstitutional and expelled from certain institutions. Despite this a love/hate relationship exists between people and the bible. This is evidenced by the fact that it continues the be the best selling book of all times; almost 175,000 Bibles are distributed each day in the United States alone; and it has been translated into more than 1,100 languages. Clearly, the Bible is more than a book that is conspicuously displayed in homes and that is passed on as a family heirloom containing the only recorded family history.
A unique book by any standards, the Bible alone can boast of being a compilation of 66 individual books, written by 40 different writers (some wrote more than one book), spanning over a period of 1600 years. Clearly, no man, woman or group of people could have supervised the writing and the compilation of this extraordinary work. Additionally, each book has its own flavor, style, language and literary genre. Still, they are all consistent in the theme, which is, God reconciling man and woman to Himself.
The writers of the Bible, who were divinely inspired of God, were kings, poets, princes, philosophers and prophets. By profession they were sheepherder, fishermen, statesmen, tax collector and a physician, just to name a few. Some were noted and celebrated scholars while others were among the unlearned. They lived in 10 different countries and the writings were in three different languages (Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek). In fact, the writers of the books that compile the Bible had nothing in common except, that they were all inspired by God, the Author/Biographer Himself.
As a published work, the Bible, which actually means “little books” has to be the most impressive collection of literary works ever assembled between two covers. It is a literary anthology rich in a variety of literary genres, which includes history, legal codes, comedy, drama, poetry, satire, narrative, parables, proverbs, epistles, allegory, and prophecy. It is “…a living book, filled with the diversity of genuine human experience, thought, emotion and expression.” From Genesis to Revelation, the first and the last books, the Bible reveals the greatest story ever told. The story of God’s plan for men and women to be reconciled unto Himself through the atoning work of Jesus Christ, the one who said, “I am the way, the truth and the life.” and “I am come that they may have life and have it more abundantly.”
The Bible is the written Word of God revealing the mind of God toward His people and His creation. It is a love letter. It is an instruction manual. It is the antidote. It is the answer. Someone said that the Bible is “…the message to this mess age.” Apart from its uniqueness, the most incredible attribute about the Bible is its claim to be the living Word of the living God containing the direct and incontrovertible revelation from God to man concerning his past, his present, his salvation, his life, and his future.
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