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Whose Bible Is It? : A Short History of the…
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Whose Bible Is It? : A Short History of the Scriptures (udgave 2006)

af Jaroslav Pelikan (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
9631016,160 (3.83)16
A grand history of the Bible written by a major historian of theology. Pelikan takes the reader through the Bible's evolution from its earliest incarnation as oral tales to its modern existence in various configurations and translations. From the earliest Hebrew texts and the Bible's appearance in Greek, then Latin, Pelikan explores the canonization of different Bibles and why certain books were adopted or rejected by certain religions and sects, as well as the development of the printing press, translation into modern languages, and the varying schools of critical scholarship.… (mere)
Medlem:FBCregina1
Titel:Whose Bible Is It? : A Short History of the Scriptures
Forfattere:Jaroslav Pelikan (Forfatter)
Info:Penguin Books (2006), Edition: Reprint, 288 pages
Samlinger:Biblical Studies/Church History, Non-fiction, Dit bibliotek
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Nøgleord:Ingen

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Whose Bible Is It? A History of the Scriptures Through the Ages af Jaroslav Pelikan

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About the author: quoting from the book's dust jacket, "Jaroslav Pelikan is Sterling Professor Emeritus of History at Yale University, recent winner of the John W. Kluge Prize for Lifetime Achievement in the Human Sciences, and past president of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. [He has written many books in the area of religious studies and has received many, many honorary degrees.]
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  uufnn | Feb 15, 2017 |
This is a succinct look at how the Bible has changed over a few thousand years. It starts with the Hebrew Tanakh (Old Testament to Christians) and how it is presented. It makes good points that the Tanakh is about God speaking rather than writing things down, showing that scriptures were meant to be heard. It also discusses how the Bible was translated in Greek (the Septuagint) and then to Latin (the Vulgate). These two versions were meant to be authoritative and were the means by which millions of people were introduced to the Bible over generations. Nevertheless, they had significant problems in translations from the original Hebrew, which has made for significant misunderstandings.

As the book moves into the Christian era, it shows how Christians tried to appropriate the Hebrew texts as their own, ofter ignoring or rejecting Jewish interpretations of the Tanakh. It shows how Christians started calling it the Old Testament as means to show how it was building up to Jesus's life.

As it gets to the Protestant Reformation, it discusses the emphasis on the infallibility of the Bible, which was not an issue prior to that. The Bible was used in tandem with Christian traditions of the Catholic Church. This was in keeping with the practice of early Christians who did not even have a codified Bible to work with, but rather used oral transmission and custom to organize the church. Protestants went back to the earliest known versions of the Bible, retranslated it into vernacular languages and then pushed their followers to read it for themselves as the only source of authentic christian doctrine. This practice had the unintended consequence of a more critical appraisal of the Bible, which led to "higher criticism", meaning questions about its authorship. Higher criticism coupled with Darwinism to undermine the legitimacy of the Bible as divinely inspired and unique among many but also drove others to double down on it as the infallible, despite the obvious problems of translation and the multiple versions of the texts.

Up to this point, Pelikan's work is interesting and informative, but it finishes in a disappointing manner. The last chapter appears more of a cheerleading exercise for why the Bible still matters and why it affects people so strongly. It ignores the fact that most people who are introduced to the Bible but aren't from a Christian tradition are not inspired or particularly affected. This last part detracts a little from what was otherwise an interesting journey of exploration by moving away from way is supportable and going to what the author wishes to be true.

Despite the lackluster finish, this is a book worth reading if you are interested in how the Bible developed over the course of millennia and how its interactions with societies changed. ( )
1 stem Scapegoats | Jan 18, 2017 |
This was a great book. I really like Pelikan and this book didn't disappoint. I'm very interested in Judeo-Christian relations and a considerable portion of this book deals with that subject. It was clear, however, that Pelikan has a chip on his shoulder with regard to Protestants. ( )
  ladonna37 | Jun 3, 2014 |
Not quite what I was expecting, but I wasn't disappointed. I thought it would be a history of the writing and assembly of the canon of Scripture, but it's actually a history of how Scripture has been treated, viewed, and used throughout history. And, in this, it does an excellent job. ( )
  davidpwithun | Sep 16, 2011 |
It’s been maybe a year since I read this book, but I recently dug it out again for a bit of research. I was looking into the Comma Johanneum, that controversial little verse in the first epistle of John that got a facelift in the Middle Ages: http://www.dubiousdisciple.com/2011/03/1-john-57-8-comma-johanneum.html .

In this book, Pelikan discusses how the Bible came to be, how it was interpreted through the ages, and how Christianity built its own message atop the Tanakh (the Torah, the prophets, and the Writings). But the Bible didn’t stop growing 2,000 years ago; it continues to be interpreted, modified, translated through the ages.

Did Christianity steal the Bible from the Jews? Pelikan has a way of uniting Christian and Jew even while recognizing an impenetrable rift. His writing is wonderfully readable and occasionally funny, as he points out how contradictory religions can read the same words and be inspired in different ways. He sees diversity as something to be appreciated, not condemned.

One cannot help but appreciate the Bible more as a living, growing, entity after reading this. The Word is alive! And ultimately, in the search for who owns the Bible, we must conclude as Pelikan does: To speak of possessing the Bible or even to ask “Whose Bible is it?” is … not only presumptuous but blasphemous. ( )
3 stem DubiousDisciple | May 15, 2011 |
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To all my honorary Christian Alma Maters
--Protestant, Roman Catholic, and Orthodox--

and to the Jewish Theological Seminary of America,
which on 16 May 1991 / 3 Sivan 5751
made me an honorary Doctor of Laws
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A grand history of the Bible written by a major historian of theology. Pelikan takes the reader through the Bible's evolution from its earliest incarnation as oral tales to its modern existence in various configurations and translations. From the earliest Hebrew texts and the Bible's appearance in Greek, then Latin, Pelikan explores the canonization of different Bibles and why certain books were adopted or rejected by certain religions and sects, as well as the development of the printing press, translation into modern languages, and the varying schools of critical scholarship.

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