Chapter 1 (page 3-10)
Bible – A collection of different writing from different authors over hundreds of years
o In three languages: Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek
o Different kinds of writtings -> narratives, letters psalms
Gospel of John -> His “testimony” rather than “I”
“We” in verse John 21:24
o “We” acknowledges the group of people beyond the disciples. His disciples are
original “whom Jesus loved”
Canon: A collection of writings that carries authority in a given religious community
Kanon : The standard by which a religious community evaluates beliefs,
practices and ethical behavior.
o Why standards?
Without standards -> There is no group
Without things that bind people together, they are not a group.
o A group must have a purpose and agree upon means of working towards that
o Rules are explicit = Always there
o All religious groups must have some guide for their beliefs and practices
o Or else no reason to come together.
Boundaries: must have ways to determine who is in it and who is not.
Second Temple Judaism (515 BCE – 70 CE) needed boundaries to differentiate them off
from polytheistic world and from each other.
o A way to determine what their identity was to be
o It clarifies who you’re not
Groups needs to reject beliefs + practices that violates their core beliefs
o They were not narrow-minded but they needed ways to be clean about who they
If you belong to a group that has openness or inclusiveness as a central, value, you cannot
allow a person who successfully works at excluding as many people as possible to be part
of your group.
It is urgent to draw boundaries when a group faces opposition or persecution because
people want to be clear about about what they are willing to suffer for
Jewish community + Christ believers wrote canon for the bible
Evidence that it has been written by more than one person
In 70 CE -> Romans destroyed other parts of temple complex when they broke Jerusalem
to end a revolt -> Western wall of temple.
The biblical writers interpret the events reveal something about the people’s relationships
In addition to the texts that retell Israel’s nations story, the books attributed to prophets
were often completed only after the prophet’s death
Prophet is often referred in the third person rather than in the first person