How Did We Get the Bibles We Have Today?

Read the Bible

By R.E. Olsen

We can know that the Bibles we have are what the Apostles wrote. They were eyewitnesses to Jesus’ miracles and teachings.

How did we get the Bibles we have today?

The ancient Old Testament was handed to us by the Jewish People. (Thank you very much.)

The New Testament we have because the first Christians were copy cats.

Whenever a local church got a book or letter from an Apostle, they would make copies. Then copies were made from copies. This went on and on for centuries into different languages and cultures.

We have tens of thousands of early copies and copies of copies. Scholars can examine these copies and look for copy mistakes.

The early churches were passing these around all the time. When a fake thing came along like the so-called Gospel of Thomas people said where did this come from? Great Grandpa never mentioned it and no old sermons quote it. Some guy just made it all up to make a quick buck.

Speaking of old sermons, we have thousands of those too. We can reconstruct the whole of Christian faith and most of the New Testament using just these sermons. Again, the phony Gospel of Thomas and others are never mentioned during the time of the Apostles and right after.

How do you look for a good modern translation?

Find one translated by a very large group of Biblical scholars under the eye of a trusted lead editor.

Avoid the lone wolf that has “secret new revelations unknown to the church for thousands of years.” That’s all foolish nonsense. The Bible has been under the watchful eye of faithful Christians through the centuries. They were moved to give us the Bible that they received. Not brand new never-before-seen information.

The King James KJV is a good translation, and so is the Holman CSB, while another one of my favorites is the Reformation Bible ESV edited by trusted theologian RC Sproul.

Many of these Bibles will have extra stuff in them such as maps, editorial comments, sidebars and the like. This additional material is not presented as part of the Bible text but is there to give you information and ideas to help you understand. It is always clearly delineated as not part of the actual Bible.

The Bible is available to you in your own language. If you choose carefully, you can find a great translation to learn about what the Apostles saw and heard.

Happy reading!

About the Author: A homeschool dad of three young men, R.E. Olsen takes his role of spiritual head of the household seriously. He also seeks to impart God’s truth to anyone who will listen.

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