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Thread: Examining The Bible

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    Arrow Examining The Bible

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    Examining The Bible-aoa01bbxr9-gif

    This discussion deals with the evaluation of the claims of the Christian missionaries about the textual integrity, logical consistency and inerrancy of the Bible.

    Insh'allah, we will examine and discuss the points in light of various sources / write up / e-source and other sources available.

    The readers are welcome to share their views on the articles produces in the forum and can be examined.


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    you will be sharing the articles
    میں نےجو کیا وہ برا کیا،میں نے خود کو خود ہی تباہ کیا

    جو تجھے پسند ہو میرے رب،مجھے اس ادا کی تلاش ہے

    http://www.123muslim.com/discussion-...d-arround.html

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    Default Textual Integrity Of The Bible

    Is the Bible that we have in our hands today unchanged? Or has it undergone extensive revisions and alterations? Truth is the first victim in the Christian apologetical literature. This is because if they tell the truth about the Church history and its role in formulating the Bible (or Bibles) as well as the manuscript tradition of the New Testament, belief in the Bible as the "Word" of God would take the beating and the Churches would go absolutely empty. Hence it is not be surprising to find an average Christian's knowledge about his own scriptures is pretty close to zero.

    This writeup is to educate the Muslims about the Bible of the Christians, concerning mainly with its compilation and textual reliability. It is often seen that Christian missionaries dupe less-knowledgeable Muslims about the Bible by saying that the Qur'an confirms the Bible and hence Muslims should believe in the Bible. Muslims should remember that the Qur'an attests Torah, Zabur and Injil as revelations from God given to the Prophet. It does not attest whatever writers of the Old Testament or St. Paul in the New Testament wrote or said.

    But what is the textual reliability of the so-called Torah, Zabur and Injil present in the modern Bibles? The aim of this writeup is to venture into this issue. If one can't establish the 'revealed' books' textual reliability, is there any point calling it as the Word of God?

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    As Salam Allikum,


    Dear Admin, In my submissions I am clubbing the study articles, referrels of various open sources etc. available on the subject matters.

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    Default Church Tradition & The Textual Integrity Of The Bible

    Examining The Bible-aoa01bbxr9-gif

    The basis of evaluation of any hadîth (narrative or statement) in Islam of any manuscript concerned particularly with religion is based on the study of matn (i.e., manuscript) and its isnad (i.e., sequence of recitation).


    The Christian 'hadîth' is composed of matn (manuscript) but no isnad (sequence of recitation). Without isnad, anyone can claim anything saying that it is coming from the authority. The authorities in the case of Christian 'hadîth' are the Apostles and later day Church Fathers. But how can one be sure that the Christian 'hadîth' is not mixed with falsehood without the proper isnad and its verification?



    A hadîth is composed of two parts: the matn (text) and the isnad (chain of reporters). A text may seem to be logical and reasonable but it needs an authentic isnad with reliable reporters to be acceptable; cAbdullah b. al-Mubârak (d. 181 AH), one of the illustrious teachers of Imâm al-Bukhârî, said, "The isnad is part of the religion: had it not been for the isnad, whoever wished to would have said whatever he liked." .... {Suhaib Hasan, An Introduction To The Science Of Hadîth, 1995, Darussalam Publishers, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, p. 11.}

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    The Orientalists like Bernard Lewis who wrote on Islamic tradition and compares it with the Christian scholarship say that:

    From an early date Muslim scholars recognized the danger of false testimony and hence false doctrine, and developed an elaborate science for criticizing tradition. "Traditional science", as it was called, differed in many respects from modern historical source criticism, and modern scholarship has always disagreed with evaluations of traditional scientists about the authenticity and accuracy of ancient narratives. But their careful scrutiny of the chains of transmission and their meticulous collection and preservation of variants in the transmitted narratives give to medieval Arabic historiography a professionalism and sophistication without precedent in antiquity and without parallel in the contemporary medieval West. By comparison, the historiography of Latin Christendom seems poor and meagre, and even the more advanced and complex historiography of Greek Christendom still falls short of the historical literature of Islam in volume, variety and analytical depth.

    Saadia Gaon, the famous Jewish linguist, says:
    Saadia expresses himself unreservedly about his indebtness to Arabic authors, who served him as models in the composition of his work. "It is reported," he says, "that one of the worthies among the Ishmaelites, realizing to his sorrow that the people do not use the Arabic language correctly, wrote a short treatise for them. From which they might learn proper usages. Similarly, I have noticed that many of the Israelites even the common rules for the correct usage of our (Hebrew) language, much less the more difficult rules, so that when they speak in prose most of it is faulty, and when they write poetry only a few of the ancient rules are observed, and majority of them are neglected. This has induced me to compose a work in two parts containing most of the (Hebrew) words.
    The Five Pillars of Islam (arkān-al-Islām أركان الإسلام; also arkān ad-dīn أركان الدين "pillars of the religion") are five basic acts in Islam.

    The Qur'an presents them as a framework for worship and a sign of commitment to the faith. They are (1) the shahada (creed), (2) daily prayers (salat), (3) fasting during Ramadan (sawm), (4) almsgiving (zakāt), and (5) the pilgrimage to Mecca (hajj) at least once in a lifetime.


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    Guillaume informs us in his preface of the book The Legacy Of Islam:
    Since the beginning of the nineteenth century there has been a constant recourse to Arabic for the explanation of rare words and forms in Hebrew; for Arabic though more than a thousand years junior as a literary language, is the senior philosophically by countless centuries. Perplexing phenomenon in Hebrew can often be explained as solitary and archaic survivals of the form which are frequent and common in the cognate Arabic. Words and idioms whose precise sense had been lost in Jewish tradition, receive a ready and convincing explanation from the same source. Indeed no serious student of the Old Testament can afford to dispense with a first-hand knowledge in Arabic. The pages of any critical commentary on the Old Testament will illustrate the debt of the Biblical exegesis owes to Arabic.
    The Five Pillars of Islam (arkān-al-Islām أركان الإسلام; also arkān ad-dīn أركان الدين "pillars of the religion") are five basic acts in Islam.

    The Qur'an presents them as a framework for worship and a sign of commitment to the faith. They are (1) the shahada (creed), (2) daily prayers (salat), (3) fasting during Ramadan (sawm), (4) almsgiving (zakāt), and (5) the pilgrimage to Mecca (hajj) at least once in a lifetime.


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    Arrow Church Tradition & The Bible

    1. Church Tradition & The Bible

    It must be made clear that there is nothing like one Bible with a set of books. The number of books in the Bible actually depend upon the Church one follows. Therefore if we follow the Church tradition we end with following Bibles. They differ in number of books in both the Old Testament and the New Testament:

    Protestant Church
    Historically, Protestant churches have recognized the Hebrew canon as their Old Testament, although differently ordered, and with some books divided so that the total number of books is thirty-nine. These books, as arranged in the traditional English Bible, fall into three types of literature: seventeen historical books (Genesis to Esther), five poetical books ( Job to Song of Solomon), and seventeen prophetical books. With the addition of another twenty-seven books (the four Gospels, Acts, twenty-one letters, and the book of Revelation), called the New Testament, the Christian scriptures are complete.[6] Bruce M Metzger & Michael D Coogan (Ed.), Oxford Companion To The Bible, 1993, Oxford University Press, Oxford & New York, pp. 79 (Under 'Bible').
    Roman Catholic Church
    The Protestant canon took shape by rejecting a number of books and parts of books that had for centuries been part of the Old Testament in the Greek Septuagint and in the Latin Vulgate, and had gained wide acceptance within the Roman Catholic church. In response to the Protestant Reformation, at the Council of Trent (1546) the Catholic church accepted, as deuterocanonical, Tobit, Judith, the Greek additions to Esther, the Wisdom of Solomon, Sirach, Baruch, the Letter of Jeremiah, three Greek additions to Daniel (the Prayer of Azariah and the Song of the Three Jews, Susanna, and Bel and the Dragon), and I and 2 Maccabees. These books, together with those in the Jewish canon and the New Testament, constitute the total of seventy three books accepted by the Roman Catholic church.[7]Ibid.
    Anglican Church
    The Anglican church falls between the Catholic church and many Protestant denominations by accepting only the Jewish canon and the New Testament as authoritative, but also by accepting segments of the apocryphal writings in the lectionary and liturgy. At one time all copies of the Authorized or King James Version of 1611 included the Apocrypha between the Old and New Testaments.[8]Ibid.
    Greek Orthodox Church
    The Bible of the Greek Orthodox church comprises all of the books accepted by the Roman Catholic church, plus I Esdras, the Prayer of Manasseh, Psalm 151, and 3 Maccabees. The Slavonic canon adds 2 Esdras, but designates I and 2 Esdras as 2 and 3 Esdras. Other Eastern churches have 4 Maccabees as well.[9]Ibid. (See below)
    Coptic Church
    Athanasius issued his Thirty-Ninth Festal Epistle not only in the Greek but also in Coptic, in a slightly different form - though the list of the twenty seven books of the New Testament is the same in both languages. How far, however the list remained authoritative for the Copts is problematical. The Coptic (Bohairic) translation of the collection knowns as the Eighty-Five Apostlic Canons concludes with a different sequence of the books of the New Testament and is enlarged by the addition of two others: the four Gospels; the Acts of the Apostles; the fourteen Epistles of Paul (not mentioned individually); two Epistles of Peter, three of John, one of James, one of Jude; the Apocalypse of John; the two Epistles of Clement.[10]Bruce M Metzger, The Canon Of The New Testament: Its Origin, Significance & Development, 1997, Clarendon Press, Oxford, p. 225.
    Ethiopic (Abyssinian) Church

    Until 1959, the Ethiopic Church was under the jurisdiction of the head of Coptic Church. Hence it is not surprising that its canon of Scripture should parallel in some respects that of the Coptic Church.
    The Ethiopic church has the largest Bible of all, and distinguishes different canons, the "narrower" and the "broader," according to the extent of the New Testament. The Ethiopic Old Testament comprises the books of the Hebrew Bible as well as all of the deuterocanonical books listed above, along with Jubilees, I Enoch, and Joseph ben Gorion's (Josippon's) medieval history of the Jews and other nations. The New Testament in what is referred to as the "broader" canon is made up of thirty-five books, joining to the usual twenty-seven books eight additional texts, namely four sections of church order from a compilation called Sinodos, two sections from the Ethiopic Book of the Covenant, Ethiopic Clement, and Ethiopic Didascalia. When the "narrower" New Testament canon is followed, it is made up of only the familiar twenty-seven books, but then the Old Testament books are divided differently so that they make up 54 books instead of 46. In both the narrower and broader canon, the total number of books comes to 81.[11]Metzger, Oxford Companion To The Bible, Op.Cit, p. 79.
    Bruce Metzger in his book The Canon Of The New Testament: Its Origin, Significance & Development elaborates more on the books accepted by Ethiopic Church. The'broader' Canon of Ethiopic New Testament consists of the following thirty five books:
    The four Gospels
    Acts
    The (seven) Catholic Epistles
    The (fourteen) Epistles of Paul
    The Book of Revelation
    Sinodos (four sections)
    Clement
    The Book of the Covenant (two sections)
    Didascalia
    The contents of the last four titles in the list are as follows. The Sinodos is a book of church order, comprising an extensive collection of canons, prayers, and instructions attributed to Clement of Rome.
    Clement (Qalementos) is a book in seven parts, communicated by Peter to Clement. It is not the Roman or Corinthian correspondence, nor one of the three parts of the Sinodos that are sometimes called 1, 2, and 3 Clement, nor part of the Syriac Octateuch of Clement.
    The Book of Covenant (Mashafa kidan) is counted as two parts. The first part of sixty sections comprises chiefly material on church order; section 61 is a discourse of the Lord to his disciples after his resurrection, similar to the Testamentum Domini.
    The Ethiopic Didascalia (Didesqelya) is a book of Church order in forty-three chapters, distinct from the Didascalia Apostolorum, but similar to books I-VII of so-called Apostlic Constitutions.[12]Metzger, The Canon Of The New Testament: Its Origin, Significance & Development, Op.Cit, pp. 227-228.
    Syriac Church
    Let us also not forget the Syriac Churches which used to deal with Diatesseron, the four-in-one Gospel, introduced by Tatian which was read in the Syriac Churches for quite some time before it was replaced by Peshitta. Peshitta has again a different number of Books in the New Testament.
    This represents for the New Testament an accomodation of the canon of the Syrians with that of the Greeks. Third Corinthians was rejected, and, in addition to the fourteen Pauline Epistles (including Hebrews, following Philemon), three longer Catholic Epistles (James, 1 Peter, and 1 John) were included. The four shorter Catholic Epistles (2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, and Jude) and the Apocalypse are absent from the Peshitta Syriac version, and thus the Syriac canon of the New Testament contained but twenty-two writings. For a large part of the Syrian Church this constituted the closing of the canon, for after the Council of Ephesus (AD 431) the East Syrians separated themselves as Nestorians from the Great Church.[13]Ibid., p. 219.
    Peshitta is still followed by the Christians in the sourthern state of Kerala in India.
    Still today the official lectionary followed by the Syrian Orthodox Church, with headquarters at Kottayam (Kerala), and the Chaldean Syriac Church, also known as the the Church of the East (Nestorian), with headquarters at Trichur (Kerala), presents lessons from only the twenty-two books of Peshitta, the version to which appeal is made for the settlement of doctrinal questions.[14]Ibid., p. 220.
    To make the issue clearer, we are here dealing with different number of books of New Testament followed by different churches all over the world. These are not the different translations of the Bible, the argument which Christian missionaries use to brush the problem under the carpet. Calling another church heretical is not going to work the problem out because there was no single book right from the beginning of Christianity which constituted the New Testament as we would see later, inshallah. The New Testament as we see today, depends upon the Church again(!), is a product of centuries worth of metamorphosis. Under "Canon of the New Testament" the Catholic Encyclopedia says:
    The idea of a complete and clear-cut canon of the New Testament existing from the beginning, that is from Apostolic times, has no foundation in history. The Canon of the New Testament, like that of the Old, is the result of a development, of a process at once stimulated by disputes with doubters, both within and without the Church, and retarded by certain obscurities and natural hesitations, and which did not reach its final term until the dogmatic definition of the Tridentine Council.[15]The Catholic EncyclopediaOnline Edition.
    So, the great Church tradition has not made up her mind on the Bible.
    Now this would be big enough problem for the Christian missionaries to ruminate, inshallah. Let us now go into the issue of what the Apostolic Fathers refer to during their time.
    The Five Pillars of Islam (arkān-al-Islām أركان الإسلام; also arkān ad-dīn أركان الدين "pillars of the religion") are five basic acts in Islam.

    The Qur'an presents them as a framework for worship and a sign of commitment to the faith. They are (1) the shahada (creed), (2) daily prayers (salat), (3) fasting during Ramadan (sawm), (4) almsgiving (zakāt), and (5) the pilgrimage to Mecca (hajj) at least once in a lifetime.


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    Arrow 2. Church Tradition & Apostolic Fathers

    2. Church Tradition & Apostolic Fathers

    It is a frequent claim by the Christian missionaries that the Church Fathers believed that the New Testament was considered as 'inspired' Scripture.

    Bruce M Metzger, a noted authority on the New Testament, analyzing the Apostolic Fathers viz., Clement of Rome, Ignatius, the Didache, fragments of Papias, Barnabas, Hermas of Rome, and the so-called 2 Clement concludes the following:
    Clement Of Rome
    By way of summary, we see that Clement's Bible is the Old Testament, to which he refers repeated as Scripture, quoting it with more or less exactness. Clement also makes occasional reference to certain words of Jesus; though they are authoritative to him, he does not appear to enquire how their authenticity is ensured. In two of the three instances that he speaks of remembering 'the words' of Christ or of the Lord Jesus, it seems that he has a written record in mind, but he does not call it a 'gospel'. He knows several of Paul's epistles, and values them highly for their content; the same can be said of the Epistle of the Hebrews with which he is well acquainted. Although these writings obviously possess for Clement considerable significance, he never refers to them as authoritative 'Scripture'.[16]Metzger, The Canon Of The New Testament: Its Origin, Significance & Development, Op.Cit, p. 43.
    Ignatius Of Antioch
    The upshot of all this is that the primary authority for Ignatius was the apostolic preaching about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, though it made little difference to him whether it was oral or written. He certainly knew a collection of Paul's epistles, including (in the order of frequency of his use of them) 1 Corinthians, Ephesians, Romans, Galatians, Philippians, Colossians, and 1 Thessalonians. It is probable that he knew the Gospels according to Matthew and John, and perhaps also Luke. There is no evidence that he regarded any of these Gospels or Epistles as 'Scripture'.[17]Ibid., p. 49.
    The Didache
    The Didache is a short manual or moral instruction and Church practice. The Church history writer Eusebius and Athanasius even considered to be on the fringe of the New Testament Canon[18]id., p. 49.. Assigning the composition of Didache has ranged from first century to fourth century by the scholars, but most of them prefer to assign it in the first half of the second century[19]Ibid., p. 50. Metzger summarizes the book as:
    By way of summary, we can see from Didache that itinerant apostles and Prophets still find an important place in the life of the Church, but this authority is declining. Their activity is surrounded by all sorts of precautions and rests ultimately on the authority of the traditional teaching deriving from the Lord, whose manner they must exhibit: 'Not everyone who speaks in a spirit is a prophet, except he have the ways of the Lord. By their ways, then, the false prophet and the true prophet shall be distinguished' (xi. 8). The author refers to the gospel, but he cites only words of Jesus. This 'gospel', which is without doubt the Gospel according to Matthew, is not regarded as a necessary source from which the words of the Lord, with indispensable warrants, come to the faithful, but quite simply as a convenient collection of these words.[20]Ibid., p. 51.
    Papias Of Heirapolis
    By way of summary, Papias stands as a kind of bridge between the oral and written stages in the transmission of the gospel tradition. Although he professes to have a marked preference for the oral tradition, one nevertheless sees at work the causes that, more and more, would lead to the rejection of that form of tradition in favour of written gospels. On the whole, therefore, the testimony of Papias concerning the development of the canon of the New Testament is significant chiefly in reflecting the usage of the community in which devotion to oral tradition hindered the development of a clear idea of canonicity.[21]Ibid., pp. 55-56.
    Barnabas
    Epistle of Barnabas is a theological tract. Both Clement of Alexandria and Origen valued the work highly and attributed its composition Barnabas, the companion and co-worker of the apostle Paul.
    Metzger summarizes the position of Barnabas concerning the scripture as the following.
    By way of summary, one can see that for Barnabas the Scriptures are what we call the Old Testament, including several books outside the Hebrew canon. Most of his contacts with the Synoptic traditions involve simple sentences that might well have been known to a Christian of that time from oral tradition. As against the single instance of his using the formula, 'it is written', in introducing the statement, 'Many are called, but few are chosen', must be placed his virtual neglect of the New Testament. If, on the other hand, he wrote shortly before or after 130, the focus of his subject matter would not make it necessary to do much quoting from New Testament books - if indeed he knew many of them. In either case he provides no evidence for the development of the New Testament canon.[22]Ibid., pp. 58-59.
    Polycarp Of Smyrna
    By way of summary, the short Epistle of Polycarp contains proportionately far more allusions to the writings of the New Testament than are present in any other of the Apostolic Fathers. He certainly had a collection of at least eight Pauline Epistles (including two of the Pastorals), and was acquainted as well with Hebrews, 1 Peter, and 1 John. As for the Gospels, he cites as sayings of the Lord phrases that we find in Matthew and Luke. With one exception, none of Polycarp's many allusions is cited as Scripture - and that exception, as we have seen, is held by some to have been mistakenly attributed to the Old Testament. At the same time Polycarp's mind is not only saturated with ideas and phrases derived from a considerable number of writings that later came to be regarded as New Testament Scriptures, but he also displays latent respect for these apostolic documents as possessing an authority lacking in other writings. Polycarp, as Grant remarks, 'clearly differentiates the apostolic age from his own time and, presumably for this reason, does not use the letters of Ignatius as authoritiesóeven though they "contain faith, endurance, and all the edification which pertains to our Lord" (xiii. 2)'.[23]Ibid., pp. 62-63
    Hermas Of Rome
    By way of summary, it is obvious that Hermas was not given to making quotations from literature; in fact, the only actual book anywhere named and quoted in the Shepherd ( Vis. ii. 3) is an obscure Jewish apocalypse known as the book of Eldad and Modat. Despite reminiscences from Matthew, Ephesians, and James, Hermas makes no comment that would lead us to think that he regarded them as canonical Scripture. From the testimony contained in the Shepherd, it can in any case be observed how uneven during the course of the second century was the development of the idea of the canon.[24]Ibid., p. 67.
    The So-Called Second Epistle Of Clement
    This work is not the genuine work of Clement of Rome. This is regarded as an early Christian sermon. The style of this work is different from that of 1 Clement. Both date and composition of this work are difficult to determine. It was probably written around 150 CE. Metzger summarizes the contents of this work as:
    By way of recapitulation, the unknown author of 2 Clement certainly knew and used Matthew and Luke, 1 Corinthians and Ephesians. There is no trace of the Johannine Gospel or Epistles, or of the Book of Acts. And one can not say more than that he may have known Hebrews, James, and 1 Peter. Of the eleven times he cites words of Jesus, five are not to be found in the canonical Gospels. The presence of these latter, as well as the citation in xi. 2-4 of an apocryphal book of the Old Testament, introduced as 'the prophetic word', shows that our homilist's quotations of divinely authoritative words are not controlled by any strict canonical idea, even in relation to Old Testament writings.[25]Ibid., pp. 71-72
    After studying the writings of all the Apostolic Fathers, Bruce Metzger concludes that:
    For early Jewish Christians the Bible consisted of the Old Testament and some Jewish apocryphal literature. Along with this written authority went traditions, chiefly oral, of sayings attributed to Jesus. On the other hand, authors who belonged to the 'Hellenistic Wing' of the Church refer more frequently to writings that later came to be included in the New Testament. At the same time, however, they very rarely regarded such documents as 'Scripture'.
    Furthermore, there was as yet no conception of the duty of exact quotation from books that were not yet in the full sense canonical. Consequently, it is sometimes exceedingly difficult to ascertain which New Testament books were known to early Christian writers; our evidence does not become clear until the end of second century.[26]Ibid., pp. 72-73
    We have evidence of the spotty development and treatment of the writings later regarded as the New Testament in the second and third centuries CE. Gradually written Gospels, and collections of epistles, different ones in different regions, became to be more highly regarded.

    So for 200 years or so there was nothing like New Testament to begin with. The great Church tradition did not even bother to collect the 'Scriptures' between two covers!

    The Five Pillars of Islam (arkān-al-Islām أركان الإسلام; also arkān ad-dīn أركان الدين "pillars of the religion") are five basic acts in Islam.

    The Qur'an presents them as a framework for worship and a sign of commitment to the faith. They are (1) the shahada (creed), (2) daily prayers (salat), (3) fasting during Ramadan (sawm), (4) almsgiving (zakāt), and (5) the pilgrimage to Mecca (hajj) at least once in a lifetime.


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    Arrow 3. Church Tradition & The Early Lists Of The Books Of The New Testament

    3. Church Tradition & The Early Lists Of The Books Of The New Testament Now when the Church tradition finally started to make up her mind on compiling the New Testament various lists of books in the Canons of the Bible were drawn. Bruce Metzger gives the following list of the Canons of the Bible drawn at different times in the 'western' Church. Please note that we still do not have the great deal of idea about how many lists were drawn in the Eastern Churches such as Coptic and Ethiopic. The following are the canons drawn at various points of time in the Church history.
    To complete the thoughts about how the New Testament evolved, a brief survey of early lists of the books of the New Testament is necessary. The list is taken from Appendix IV of Bruce Metzger's The Canon Of The New Testament: Its Origin, Significance & Development[27].

    The earliest exact reference to the 'complete' New Testament as we now know it was in the year 367 CE, in a letter by Athanasius. This did not settle the matter. Varying lists continued to be drawn up by different church authorities as can be seen from above.

    The Catholic Church proclaims itself to be the authority for the Canon and the interpretation of scripture, therefore the owner of the list of 27 books. Nevertheless, according to the
    Catholic Encyclopedia, entry "Canon of NT" proclaims that 20 books of the New Testament are inherently worth more than the 7 deuterocanonical books (Hebrews, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, James, Jude, Revelation), acknowledging that the authenticity or reliability of them had already been challenged by ancient Christian authorities.
    The Catholic New Testament, as defined by the Council of Trent, does not differ, as regards the books contained, from that of all Christian bodies at present. Like the Old Testament, the New has its deuterocanonical books and portions of books, their canonicity having formerly been a subject of some controversy in the Church. These are for the entire books: the Epistle to the Hebrews, that of James, the Second of St. Peter, the Second and Third of John, Jude, and Apocalypse; giving seven in all as the number of the New Testament contested books. The formerly disputed passages are three: the closing section of St. Mark's Gospel, xvi, 9-20 about the apparitions of Christ after the Resurrection; the verses in Luke about the bloody sweat of Jesus, xxii, 43, 44; the Pericope Adulteræ, or narrative of the woman taken in adultery, St. John, vii, 53 to viii, 11. Since the Council of Trent it is not permitted for a Catholic to question the inspiration of these passages.[28]The Catholic EncyclopediaOnline Edition.
    We will deal more with the individual books (i.e., Hebrews, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, James, Jude, Revelation) later, inshallah.

    The Five Pillars of Islam (arkān-al-Islām أركان الإسلام; also arkān ad-dīn أركان الدين "pillars of the religion") are five basic acts in Islam.

    The Qur'an presents them as a framework for worship and a sign of commitment to the faith. They are (1) the shahada (creed), (2) daily prayers (salat), (3) fasting during Ramadan (sawm), (4) almsgiving (zakāt), and (5) the pilgrimage to Mecca (hajj) at least once in a lifetime.


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