The Old Testament and the New Testament: history of the formation, content, similarities and differences

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Christianity at the moment - the most widespread religion in the world.According to international statistics, the number of its adherents more than two billion people, or about a third of the world's population.No wonder that this religion has produced the most publicized and famous book - the Bible.Scriptures of Christians in the number of copies, and heads of sales TOP bestsellers here already one and a half thousand years.

Composition Bible

Not everyone knows that the word "Bible" - this is just the plural form of the Greek word "vivlos", which means "book."Thus, it is not about a single product, but a collection of texts by various authors, and written in a different era.The last time the thresholds are evaluated in this way: from the XIV century.BC.e.for the II.n.e.

Bible consists of two main parts, which in Christian terminology is called the Old Testament and the New Testament.Among the supporters of the church prevail in importance last.

Old Testament

The first and largest part of Christian Scripture was formed long before the birth of Jesus Christ.Books of the Old Testament also known as the Hebrew Bible, as they have the sacred character of Judaism.Of course, for them the adjective "old" in relation to his writings is absolutely unacceptable.Tanakh (as it is called in their environment) is eternal, unchanging and universal.

this collection consists of four (according to Christian classification) parts, which are the following names:

  1. Zakonopolozhitelnye book.
  2. historical books.
  3. didactic books.
  4. prophetic books.

Each of these sections contains a certain number of texts, and in different branches of Christianity there can be a different number.Some books of the Old Testament may also be combined or split among themselves and within themselves.The main option considered editors, consisting of 39 items of various texts.The most important part of the Tanakh - the so-called Torah, which consists of the first five books.Religious tradition says that its author - the prophet Moses.The Old Testament was finally formed around the middle of the first millennium BC.e., and in our time accepted as a sacred document in all branches of Christianity, but the most Gnostic Marcion schools and churches.

New Testament

As for the New Testament, it is a collection of works that were born in the depths of the nascent Christianity.It consists of 27 books, the most important of which - the first four text called Gospel.The latter are the life of Jesus Christ.The rest of the book - the letters of the Apostles, the book of Acts tells about the first years of the life of the church and the prophetic book of Revelation.

Formed Christian canon in this form to the fourth century.Prior to that, among different groups of Christians were common, and even revered as sacred, and many other texts.But a number of church councils and episcopal definitions only legitimized these books, all other proven false and offensive to God.After that, the "wrong" texts became massively destroyed.

process of unification of the canon was initiated by a group of theologians who resisted the teachings of Marcion presbyter.Last for the first time in the history of the Church proclaimed the canon of sacred texts, throwing nearly all the books of the Old and the New Testament (in its present version) with a few exceptions.To neutralize preaching his opponent, authoritative face of the Church formally legalized and sakramentirovali more traditional set of scriptures.

Nevertheless, in different parts of the world the Old Testament and the New Testament are different variants of codification text.There are also some books that are made in the same tradition, but rejected the other.

doctrine of the divine inspiration of the Bible

very essence of the sacred texts of Christianity is revealed in the doctrine of inspiration.Bible - Old and New Testaments - is important for believers, because they believe that the hand of sacred works of writers led by God, and the words of the scriptures in a literal sense - the divine revelation, which he sends the world, the Church and every human person.This belief that the Bible - the letter of the Lord, addressed directly to each person, encourages Christians to constantly study it and look for hidden meanings.


During the development and formation of the canon of the Bible, many books that originally it consisted of, later appeared "behind" church orthodoxy.This fate befell such works, such as "Shepherd of Hermas" and the "Didache".Many different Gospels and Epistles were declared false and heretical only for the fact that did not fit into the new theological tendencies of the orthodox church.All these texts are united by the common term "Apocrypha," which means, on the one hand, "false", and the other - the "mystery" of Scripture.But finally erase the traces of unwanted text failed - in the canonical writings there are allusions and quotations from them hiding.For example, it is likely that the lost, and in the XX century, newly discovered Gospel of Thomas is one of the primary sources for the sayings of Christ in the canonical Gospels.A common message of the apostle Judas (not Iscariot) directly contains quotations with reference to the apocryphal book of the prophet Enoch, arguing that its prophetic dignity and authenticity.

the Old Testament and the New Testament - the unity and differences between the two canons

So, we found out that the Bible make two collections of books by different authors and times.Although Christian theology considers the Old Testament and the New Testament as a whole, interpreting them through each other and setting the hidden allusions, prediction types and typological connection, not all in the Christian community are prone to a similar evaluation of two canons.Marcion not scratch rejected the Old Testament.Among his lost works were in use so-called "Antithesis", which he contrasted the teachings of the Tanakh the teachings of Christ.The fruit of this distinction has become the doctrine of two gods - Jewish malicious and capricious demiurge and all-merciful God the Father, Christ is preached.

Indeed, the image of God in these two covenants vary considerably.In the Old Testament, he is presented as a vengeful, rigorous, hard lord not without racial prejudice, as they would have today.In the New Testament, on the contrary, God is more tolerance, charity and generally prefers to forgive rather than to punish.However, it is somewhat simplified schematic and, if desired, can be found inverse arguments against both texts.Historically, however, it turned out that the Church does not recognize the authority of the Old Testament, ceased to exist, and today the Christian world represented in this respect only one tradition, except for different groups neognostikov reconstructed and neomarkionitov.