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The Idea of Canon (Part 2) (The Covenant & the Cross #17)

  • Broadcast in Religion
Daniel Whyte III

Daniel Whyte III


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Today's passage of Scripture is Ezra 7:10 which reads: "For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments."

Today's quote about the Bible is from Johann Goethe. He said: "Let mental culture go on advancing, let the natural sciences progress in ever greater extent and depth, and the human mind widen itself as much as it desires, beyond the elevation and moral culture of Christianity, as it shines forth in the gospels, it will not go."

Our topic for today is titled: "The Idea of Canon (Part 2)" from the book, "The Promise and the Blessing" by Dr. Michael A. Harbin

When the Jews were scattered throughout the world in the Diaspora (after the Babylonian exile), they began translating the Old Testament into their everyday languages. The most important translation of the Old Testament is the Greek, often called the Septuagint. The Septuagint is a product of the Exile. Although Ezra and Nehemiah consolidated the nation after the return, a number of Jews remained scattered throughout the Middle East. After Alexander the Great, Greek displaced Aramaic as the lingua franca. Aramaic was close enough to Hebrew that  literate Aramaic speaker, with some effort and help, could read Hebrew. That was not the case with Greek. Within a few generations, many Greek-speaking Jews were no longer able to understand their Bible. To compensate, the Jews in Alexandria commissioned a translation of Hebrew-Aramaic text into Greek. This translation became the text of choice of many Jews outside of Palestine and served as a background to most of the New Testament citations of the Old Testament.