The most important religious collection of texts in Judaism as well as in Christianity is called the Bible ( ancient Greek βιβλία biblia 'books') or (The) Holy Scriptures . It is considered divinely inspired, but at least as an orienting standard and is therefore repeatedly appropriated in religious and cultural life. The Jewish and Christian Bibles influenced each other in the course of their development; they were created parallel to one another, sometimes in contrast to one another.
The Bible of Judaism is the three-part Tanakh , which consists of the Torah (instruction), the Nevi'im (prophets) and Ketuvim (writings). While the Torah was given by God to Moses on Sinai after its self-testimony and some of its texts were written down by Moses himself, this is different from a historical perspective. A written culture developed in Israel from a previous culture of oral tradition, and it was not until the Hellenistic and Roman times that larger parts of the population had the opportunity to read and thus acquire biblical texts privately. Some of the early Jewish literature was included in the Jewish Bible canon, but other scriptures were not.
While this process was still going on, Christianity emerged and referred to the scriptures of Israel from the beginning. Jesus of Nazareth interpreted his ministry in the light of these texts, and the first Christian community saw these scriptures as fulfilled through the resurrection of Jesus Christ . Christianity thus appropriated the holy writings of Israel and other early Jewish literature (as the Old Testament ), but also created its own texts, some of which became binding and were finally added to the Old Testament as the New Testament .
The Christian Bible is the most widely printed, published, and translated into most languages written work in the world.
The neuter βιβλίον biblíon "book" is a diminutive of βίβλος bíblos "book", named after the Phoenician port city of Byblos . In ancient times, this port city was a major trading point for bast , from which papyrus rolls were made. The plural of βιβλίον biblíon is βιβλία biblía "scrolls, books". In the Septuagint , βιβλία biblía was above all a reverent name for the Torah ; John Chrysostom was the first to use this plural to designate the entirety of Christian holy scriptures (Old and New Testament).
In church Latin , the term biblia was initially interpreted as the neuter plural biblia, -orum , but since around 1000 AD as the feminine singular biblia, -ae . The national languages adopted the singular word; in German it became a Bible . "The name suggests: What is in our hands today as a single volume and what we naturally understand as a unity: the Bible is actually a multiplicity." ( Christoph Levin ) On the one hand, the designation as a "book of books" brings the religious meaning of the Bible expresses, on the other hand the inner plurality.
Even after the codex replaced the scroll as a book form, all biblical scriptures were rarely combined in one book; the rule was that the Bible existed as a collection of multi-part books in a bookcase, for example in the scriptorium of a monastery, as the illustration of the Codex Amiatinus (early 8th century, Northumbria ) shows. It was only with the invention of the printing press that it became common for a single book to contain roughly the entire Jewish or Christian Bible.
The New Testament often refers to the holy writings of Judaism with the expression αἱ γραφαί hai graphaí “the [holy] scriptures” and thus follows Jewish-Hellenistic usage. Once Paul of Tarsus also uses the form γραφαί ἅγιαι graphaí hágiai "holy scriptures" ( Rom 1,2 EU ). The singular γραφή graphḗ "the Scriptures" in the New Testament often denotes a single sentence (modern speaking: a passage from the Bible), but also the Jewish holy scriptures as a unit - this also has parallels in Judaism, e.g. B. in Philon of Alexandria and in the chronicle books . This usage continues in the early church; The entirety of the books of the Old and New Testaments is then referred to as “holy scriptures”.
Old and New Testament
The fact that the two parts of the Christian Bible are called the Old and New Testament goes back to Paul of Tarsus, who contrasted an old and a new “ covenant ” with polemical sharpness . The old covenant is represented by the Torah of Moses ( 2 Cor 3 : 5–15 EU ). Paul saw himself as a servant of the new covenant, mediated through Christ and made present at the Lord's Supper ( 1 Cor 11:25 EU ). In the Letter to the Hebrews , an anonymous Christian author explains how the new covenant replaces the old one. The term “covenant” ( ancient Greek διαθήκη diathḗkē , Latin: testamentum ) always means an order and not a book or a collection of writings.
Melito von Sardis coined the term "books of the old covenant" for the first part of the Christian Bible around 180 AD and at the same time presented a list of the scriptures meant. He reported about it in a letter to his brother Onesimos, which was preserved in the excerpt of Eusebius of Caesarea :
“Since I traveled to the Orient and came to the scene of the sermons and deeds and made detailed inquiries about the books of the old covenant, I am sharing the books with you below. The names of these are: the five books of Moses, namely Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Leviticus and Deuteronomy, (further) Jesus, son of Nave , the judges, Ruth, four books of the kingdoms , two Paralipomena , the Psalms of David, Proverbs of Solomon or Wisdom, Ekklesiastes , the Song of Songs , Job , the prophets Isaiah and Jeremiah, the Book of the Twelve Prophets , Daniel, Ezekiel, Esdras . "
It is noticeable that Melito does not name the Book of Esther, nor the deuterocanonical writings , i.e. Jewish writings that can be found in the Septuagint but not in the Tanakh: Book of Judith , Book of Tobit , 1st Maccabees , 2nd Maccabees , Baruch , Wisdom of Solomon and Jesus Sirach . The recognition of these books as holy scriptures was quite hesitant in Christianity: in the Latin West around 400, in the East only in the 7th century. That was controversial - Jerome pleaded against it - and the motives are not entirely clear. It could have played a role that Tobit, Jesus Sirach and the Book of Wisdom were popular as religious edification literature and could also have been used for teaching new Christians.
"Melito's formulation ... is ... to be understood in such a way that the 'old covenant' of God with Israel is represented by the scriptures mentioned, but not that these scriptures themselves are called 'covenant' or 'testament'." Such a language was only used around 200 AD common and can then be found with Clement of Alexandria and Origen .
At the end of the 20th century, Christian theologians suggested abandoning the term “Old Testament” because it sounded derogatory, and instead using the “First Testament” ( Erich Zenger , JA Sanders). This term was not generally accepted, especially since the ancient world generally valued the old more than the new. But the terms Hebrew and Jewish Bible have become common.
How to quote
The Bible is not quoted by page number, but by book, chapter and verse. This has the advantage that different Bible translations can be compared. This method also allows the reader to compare his or her translation with the Hebrew or Greek Bible text.
- The Book of Psalms has the same division but a different story. It is a compilation of individual seals. The 150 chapters of this book are called psalms : Ps 23, 2 is therefore "Psalm 23, verse 2" and not "Psalms, chapter 23, verse 2."
- The shortest books in the Bible ( Book of Obadiah , Philemon , 2nd John , 3rd John , Jude ) have no chapter division and are only quoted with an indication of the verse.
- The Roman Catholic standard translation of the Book of Esther has a mixed Greek-Hebrew text, while Protestant Bibles only contain the Hebrew text of the Book of Esther. The excesses of the Greek text are not counted as separate verses in the standard translation, but are designated with small Latin letters. In the Luther Bible (2017) these surpluses are listed as parts of the Book of Esther in the Apocrypha (appendix to the Old Testament); the individual text sections are designated there from A to F and further subdivided according to verse numbers. These designation systems are therefore not compatible with one another.
- The apocryphal book Jesus Sirach had a different number in the Luther Bible compared to other Bible editions; however, since the 2017 revision, the Luther Bible has taken over the chapter and verse counting from the standard translation.
The copyists of the Hebrew Bible developed a system of paragraphs and verses for the purpose of securing the text: Each paragraph began with a new line. If further subdivision was necessary, leave a space within the line. This subdivision has also been marked in the text by the Hebrew letters פ and ס since the late Middle Ages. At the same time, the text was divided into verses (marked by Sof pasuq ). The counting itself comes from the Vulgate tradition. After Stephan Langton in the 13th century carried out the usual division into chapters , the Parisian printer Robert Estienne numbered chapters and verses in his Bible editions in the 16th century.
The Jewish Bible: Tanakh
Origin of the Masoretic Text
The Tanach or Tenach ( Hebrew תנ״ך), an acronym made up of the three first letters of its parts, was mainly written in Hebrew , with short passages also in Aramaic . This so-called Masoretic Text (better: Masoretic Text Group) has gone through a long process of normalization. Century AD was completed.
- The Tanach is a selection from the religious literature of ancient Israel. Large parts of this text corpus originated in Jerusalem and were edited there. This means that they have the perspective of the (male) Jerusalem upper class and that the religious traditions of the rural Jewish population are only rarely represented in it ( Book of Micah ), women and dependents are almost never represented.
- The old controversy as to whether there was one original text on which all manuscripts depend (according to Paul de Lagarde ) or several original texts (according to Paul Kahle ) is seen today by Emanuel Tov and others as follows: Even after the individual books of the Hebrew canon had reached their final form and were used in religious services and teaching in Jewish communities, there were still revised new editions with normative claims. But they did not prevail everywhere; in the Jewish diaspora or with isolated groups ( Qumran ), older versions of the text remained in use and in Alexandria were even used as a template for a translation into Greek ( Septuagint ). This model can explain why there are older and sometimes significantly different versions of the Book of Joshua , the Books of Samuel , the Book of Jeremiah, and the Book of Ezekiel in the Septuagint and among the Dead Sea Scrolls . A special case is the Samaritan Pentateuch , probably around 100 BC. Edition of the Torah for use in this religious community. On the one hand, this has peculiarities that are related to the meaning of Shechem and Garizim for Samaritans ; on the other hand, it is related to the text version of some Qumran manuscripts. The most important example is provided by 4QpaläoEx m , a scroll written in the ancient Hebrew script . It shows a deviating order of the cultic devices in the Mishkan from the Masoretic text .
- In the year 70, Roman troops destroyed Jerusalem and the temple and with it the center of the Jewish religion. A mainstream of surviving Judaism thereafter recognized a Hebrew consonant text as normative, represented by a group of related manuscripts. These were the revised editions of biblical books mentioned above. These manuscripts were copied more carefully and frequently than others, and the scribes strove to standardize the text. For this pure consonant text, which dates back to the time of the Second Temple, occurs in the Middle Ages Masora : vocal and accent marks and paratextliche elements to facilitate the comprehension and exclude misunderstandings. The first complete Hebrew Bible manuscripts of the Middle Ages are based on this standardization of the text . The Codex Leningradensis from 1009 forms the basis of the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia . The Hebrew University Bible Project , on the other hand, uses the Aleppo Codex (925), the oldest textual witnesses for the entire Hebrew Bible.
Meaning of the Dead Sea Scrolls
The text finds from the Dead Sea enable "with their first and second hand corrections, their layout, but also their intertextuality, fascinating direct insights into the text and literary history of ancient texts" and thus enrich knowledge of ancient Judaism. If one takes the Masoretic Text, the Samaritan Pentateuch, and the Septuagint as the three standard medieval texts, it turns out that Hebrew forerunners for each of these text types were deposited in the caves near Qumran. But most of the text finds are not related to any of these three types of text (“independent texts”). The text finds from Naḥal Ḥever and Wadi Murabbaʿat , which date from the 2nd century AD and are largely identical to the Masoretic text, are quite different . Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra explains that the analysis of the Qumran text finds means that the Masoretic Text is seen as one of several ancient text forms. “One has to discuss the Qumran manuscripts and the preforms of LXX [= Septuagint] and SP [= Samaritan Pentateuch] equally with the MT [= Masoretic Text]. In many places the MT is clearly secondary. A search for the original text is methodologically impossible. ”How several streams of water sometimes run side by side in a wide river bed, sometimes their water mix and then part way again - this is the textual history of the Hebrew Bible after Qumran ( Heinz-Josef Fabry ).
The Greek term “canon” means “guideline” or “standard”. Within Christian theology, from the 4th century AD, a development in meaning from religious rules to delimited religious book collections took place. For Judaism before the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple, such a concept is anachronistic, because at that time the sacrificial cult was at the center of religious life. In the diaspora, synagogue services offered a certain substitute for temple visits that were rarely possible; these services consisted of prayers and reading from the Torah and the books of the prophets. Flavius Josephus explained that there are 22 books of sacred scriptures in Judaism corresponding to the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet :
“We do not have thousands of books that do not agree and contradict one another, but rather no more than twenty-two books which contain the record of the entire period and which have rightly found confidence. And of these, five are from Moses, which embrace the laws and tradition from the origin of mankind to his own end; this period is only a little less than three thousand years. From the death of Moses to the reign of Artaxerxes, king of the Persians according to Xerxes, the prophets who followed Moses recorded the events of their time in thirteen books; the other four contain hymns to God and life instructions for the people. "
The 4th book of Ezra has 24 books, twice the number of the twelve tribes of Israel or the months. These were sacred scriptures that were considered divinely inspired and particularly authoritative. But it makes sense to distinguish between the status of a book as Holy Scripture and its actual meaning for the life of a religious community, that is, between a core of very significant writings and a gray area around them. The Dead Sea Scrolls provide a glimpse into a (possibly unrepresentative) segment of ancient Judaism:
- The Torah was of paramount importance, especially Deuteronomy.
- Among the prophetic scriptures are Isaiah and the Book of the Twelve Prophets first, then Jeremiah, the Psalms (considered prophetic), and the book of Daniel.
- Non-biblical scriptures such as the Book of Jubilees and the Books of Enoch were also highly valued.
- In contrast, the chronicle books and Ezra / Nehemiah are hardly attested and the book of Esther is completely missing.
The division of the Hebrew Bible in three signature groups T ora, N eviim and K etuvim ( acronym : T a N a Ch ) corresponds to the order of their Kanonwerdung and also implies a weighting. But initially some things remained in flux, such as the sequence Torah, Ketuvim, Neviim (acronym: T a K e N ), and the psalms could occasionally be counted as the last of the books of the prophets. The three main parts each have a programmatic closing text ( colophon ):
- Deut. 34: 10–12 EU : The Torah of Moses is unsurpassable revelation, and the exodus from Egypt as a divine act of salvation is also of fundamental importance for Israel.
- Mal 3, 22–24 EU : The books of the prophets are a reminder of the Mosetora; Elijah as the prototype of the prophet is a disciple of Moses, he may return in the future to make all of Israel a Torah learning community.
- 2 Chr 36,22–23 EU : God has already given a new beginning after the catastrophe. God's covenant with Israel is eternal, and the closing words in Hebrew וְיָעַל ṿeyāʿal " let him go up" evokes the memory of the exodus from Egypt.
The Torah (“instruction” or “teaching”) forms the first part of the Tanach. The Hebrew Torah scroll, without Teamim or Nikud , is read in sections in the synagogue . The lecture cycle begins and ends in autumn with the Torah Festival . The 54 weekly periods are called Paraschot or Paraschijot פרשיות ( Hebrew “division”) or Sidrot סדרות ( Aramaic “order”).
In the Hebrew language, the five books of the Torah are named from their first significant words :
- Bereschit (בְּרֵאשִׁית, literally "In the beginning")
- Shemot (שִׁמוֹת, literally "name")
- Wajikra (ויקרא, literally "He called")
- Bəmidbar (במדבר, literally "In the desert")
- Devarim (דברים, literally "words")
This classification was based on certain content-related aspects: Each report in the books has a clear beginning and a clear turning point at the end, but is nonetheless linked to the others. The five books are also called Chumasch or Pentateuch (Greek "five scrolls") in book form .
The Torah encompasses the history of creation and the Israelites since the patriarchs (from Gen.12), Israel's exodus from Egypt (Ex 1-15), the receipt of the commandments by Moses (Ex 19 ff.) And the procession into the promised land (Lev -Num). The term “Torah” refers not only to the mitzvot (commandments of God), ethical monotheism and Jewish culture , but to the entire order of creation . It refers to the oldest narrative material and traditions, which presumably emerged in the course of migration movements of Semitic peoples in general and the Hebrews in particular from Mesopotamia via Canaan to and from Egypt . The Hebrews were born no later than 1200 BC. Settled in the cultivated land of Canaan. These materials and traditions were first passed on orally for centuries. Their writing and compilation is for at the earliest around 1000 BC. After the Twelve Tribes of Israel chose a state with Saul as the first king of Israel . After returning from exile in Babylon (539 BC), the Torah was written by 400 BC at the latest. Canonized.
The Neviim ("Prophets") include:
- Book of Joshua
- Samuel (a book divided into two roles)
- Book of kings (a book)
- Book of the Twelve Prophets
These books tell the story of Israel in chronological and religious order from the death of Moses, the distribution of land to the twelve tribes of Israel to the destruction of the first Temple in Jerusalem (586 BC). The Neviim begin with the submission of Joshua , the son of Nun, to the authority of Moses ( Jos 1,5 EU ) and conclude with Malachi as the last prophet with the connection back to the Torah.
The three prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel are each assigned to a book analogous to the three patriarchs; the other prophets form the Book of the Twelve Prophets as an analogy to the twelve sons of Jacob . The books of the prophets were published in the 4th century BC at the earliest. Canonized. On Shabbat and on public holidays, after the Torah reading in the synagogue, a section from the Neviim is read in the Haftara .
The Ketuvim ("Scriptures") include:
- Book of Psalms
- Book of Proverbs
- Book of Ruth
- Song of Songs
- Lamentations of Jeremiah
- Book of Esther
- Book of Daniel (not a prophet)
- Book of Ezra and Nehemiah
- First and Second Book of Chronicles
In these works there is literal talk of people rather than God. They are presumably all created after the exile and later than the previous prophets, most of them assumed from 200 BC. Some could have originated before or parallel to the twelve minor prophets. Nevertheless, their importance is subordinate to these. The second book of chronicles ends with the prospect of the new building of the 3rd Jerusalem Temple and the recognition of YHWH as Lord of all earth. Their canonization probably happened late. For the Book of Daniel, some exegetes do not assume canonization until 135 AD, together with the conclusion of the Tanakh.
Five of these books are read out as "fixed roles" ( megillot ) in the synagogue service and are assigned to certain holidays:
- Ruth: Festival of weeks
- Song of Songs: Passover
- Kohelet: Feast of Tabernacles
- Lamentations: Memorial Day of the Temple Destruction
- Esther: Purim festival
Judaism has translated the Hebrew Bible into various languages. The best known in German is that of Martin Buber and Franz Rosenzweig in four volumes: Die Schrift (from 1925). Around a hundred years earlier, Leopold Zunz's team set out to translate the Tanach into German (the so-called Rabbinical Bible ). In the 20th century, other German editions were made, e.g. B. those of Naftali Heart Tur-Sinai .
The Christian Bible: Old and New Testaments
Since the 3rd century BC Diaspora Jews in Alexandria worked out a translation of the Torah into the Greek lingua franca , the Koine . This was necessary because, as epigraphic sources show, the Jews in the Ptolemaic Empire spoke Greek themselves. In addition, one could represent one's own religion in the intellectual centers, the academy and the library of Alexandria, in a completely different way. The translation of other books of the Tanakh followed later, in the 2nd and 1st centuries BC. The last edited books Hoheslied, Kohelet and Esra / Nehemiah continued until the 2nd century AD. This translation, called the Septuagint , was for the most part already available to early Christianity . While the extent of the Greek canon is unknown, it is believed that the trisection of the Jewish canon was deliberately abandoned by Christians. These evidently created a structure for their Septuagint codices in four main parts: Pentateuch - history books - hagiographs - prophets. By bringing the prophets to the end, they established a substantive connection with the scriptures of the New Testament. For this purpose, the third Jewish part of the canon (Ketuvim) was dissolved. Five books from this group formed a separate block as hagiographs, the rest were redistributed:
|Tanakh: Ketuvim||Septuagint: History Books||Septuagint: Hagiograph||Septuagint: Books of the Prophets|
|Book of Job||Book of Job|
|Book of Ruth||Appendix to the Book of Judges.|
|Song of Songs||Song of Songs|
|Lamentations||Appendix to the Book of Jeremiah.|
|Book of Esther||At the end of the history books.|
|Book Daniel||At the end of the books of the prophets, after Ezekiel.|
|Ezra / Nehemiah||Chronicle books and Ezra / Nehemiah according to the books of kings|
The different structures of the Tanach and the Old Testament of the Septuagint could be characterized as the “Torah perspective” and the “prophet perspective”. The macrostructure of the Septuagint can be found, with all the differences in detail, also in the Vulgate , the Luther Bible and most modern Christian translations of the Bible (exception: Bible in righteous language ). A historical-theological scheme of past - present - future becomes recognizable in this: "In the Christian Bible, prophecy opens up to the subsequent New Testament." Erich Zenger and Christian Frevel suggest a four-part structure based on the old and the in the New Testament repeat:
|Old testament||New Testament|
|Books of history||past||Acts of the Apostles|
|Books of wisdom||present||Apostles' letters|
|Books of prophecy||future||Revelating of the Johannes|
Paul as a reader of the Septuagint
Paul of Tarsus developed his self-understanding, his understanding of Israel and his message of Christ by studying the book of Isaiah in the Greek version of the Septuagint. Apparently he was free to vary the wording of the text to make his understanding of the text clear. A key passage is Rom 10 : 19-21 EU . The sequence is interesting here: First Paul quotes "Moses" ( Deut. 32.21 EU according to the Septuagint) and then "Isaiah" ( Isa 51.20-21 EU ), both of which are presented as speaking persons. Isaiah unfolds the content of the Moses words.
The New Testament presupposes the entire Tanakh as the basis of Jewish worship, for example at Jesus' inaugural sermon in Nazareth , which according to Lk 4,14-21 EU began with a reading of the "Scriptures". The “law” is often used in connection with Jesus' interpretations of the Torah, for example at the beginning of the Sermon on the Mount . Mt 5.18 EU confirms the canonical validity of the Torah up to the Parousia :
"Truly I say to you: Until heaven and earth pass away, the smallest letter and the icing on the cake will not pass away from the law until everything happens."
Often “law and prophets” are shorthand for the entirety of the biblical tradition of God's covenant will. A tripartite form of the Tanach is also made binding for Christians in the mouth of the risen One ( Lk 24.44 EU ):
"Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the law of Moses, in the prophets and in the psalms ."
The so-called deuterocanonical writings were incorporated into the Vulgate , the Latin translation of the Septuagint. Hence the Roman Catholic OT contains 46 books. The Orthodox Bible canon also includes the prayer of Manasseh , a so-called 1st Book of Ezra , so that the Hebrew Book of Ezra is considered the 2nd Book of Ezra, 3rd Maccabees , Psalm 151 , 4th Maccabees and, in the Slavic churches, an Ezra apocalypse (also known as 4th Ezra).
The Protestant churches, on the other hand, only recognize the Tanakh as canonical following the Luther Bible , but divide it into 39 books (with the NT thus 66) and arrange them differently. In this form, the Jewish canon remained valid in Protestantism . Martin Luther placed other writings of the Septuagint that he had translated as " Apocrypha " at the end of the OT and assessed them as "not identical to the Holy Scriptures and yet useful and easy to read". In non-denominational or ecumenical translations of the Bible, these books are optically separated at the end of the OT.
As far as can be seen, Christianity seems to have preferred the Codex to the Scroll from the start. The reasons for this are not known; possibly the relatively small-format codices with a height of 15 to 25 cm were suitable for practical reasons or were cheaper. Remnants of papyrus codes with Greek Old and New Testament texts date from the 2nd and 3rd centuries: The oldest known fragment of the NT is papyrus 52 from a code with a text from the Gospel of John , created around 125. The oldest known codices which contain the entire OT and NT are the Codex Sinaiticus and the Codex Vaticanus from the fourth and the Codex Alexandrinus from the fifth century. Such large and elaborately designed codices are typical of the time and were also created for the texts of Homer and Virgil.
At the time of its final limitation (around 400), the NT comprised 27 individual Greek scriptures. All together, they only reach a strong quarter of the size of the AT. Most of these 27 books were written between 70 and 100 AD in early Christianity . Almost all of them are written in the colloquial language of the time , the Greek Koine . They also contain some Aramaic terms and quotations. Aramaic was the colloquial language of the time in Palestine and the mother tongue of Jesus .
The NT consists of five narrative scriptures, namely the four Gospels
as well as the
and from letters to Christian communities and individuals:
The Gospels proclaim Jesus of Nazareth retelling as the Messiah promised in the OT and therefore, like all other NT scriptures, designate him as Jesus Christ (Christos means "the anointed"). The Acts of the Apostles tells of the spread of Christianity from the foundation of the Jerusalem early church to Rome. In doing so, she constantly refers to biblical tradition. The letters provide answers to questions of faith and practical advice for many life situations, such as conflicts within the various communities.
During the canonization of the NT , the Old Church also confirmed the books of the Tanakh as "Word of God". Almost all Christian denominations recognize the 27 NT scriptures as canonical. The Syrian Orthodox churches do not recognize some of them. The Revelation of John is not read publicly in the other Orthodox churches either.
Relationship of the NT to the AT
Christianity called the much older Jewish collection of scriptures the "Old" Testament in relation to its "New" Testament. The Latin term testamentum translates the Greek term diatheke , which in turn translates the Hebrew berith ( covenant , disposition). It does not stand for a bilateral contractual relationship, as in the ancient world, but for a unilateral unconditional declaration of intent. In the OT this relates to God's deeds and manifestations in human history, especially to his covenant with the whole people of Israel on Mount Sinai after the revelation of the commandments ( Ex 24 EU ). It is preceded by God's creation covenant with Noah ( Gen 9 EU ), the calling of Abraham to be the “father of many peoples” ( Gen 12 EU ) and the covenant with Moses to free the people of Israel from slavery ( Ex 3 EU ). In addition, a “new covenant” is promised in prophecy ( Jer 31 EU ), which will include all peoples ( Joel 4 EU ).
For the early Christians, this promise was fulfilled in Jesus Christ as the word of God made mortal . In his death and resurrection, God's “last will” was revealed to them. However, this did not replace God's covenant with the Jewish people, but fulfilled and finally confirmed it. Jesus Christ fulfilled the Torah in his gift of life, so that his interpretation became authoritative. That is why the early Christians affirmed on the one hand the validity of all commandments ( Mt 5,17-20 EU ), on the other hand their limitation to the Ten Commandments in Jesus' interpretation, i.e. the concentration on love of God and neighbor . Therefore they canceled or relativized many other Torah commandments.
The Jewish Christians and Gentile Christians of the Pauline congregations interpreted the Torah and its role in their own faith differently. The “old church” preserved the whole Tanakh as God's final, written revelation, so that it remained “God's word” in Christianity. The juxtaposition of the “old” and “new” covenants is particularly related to the exodus of Israel and the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. They are collectively understood as those acts of God in which he shows his full being. His “last will” does not contradict his “first will”, but rather confirms and renews it for the whole world.
In church history , however, "old" was mostly interpreted as "out of date", "outdated" and thus as a degradation and devaluation of Judaism until 1945. This was seen as a deluded religion destined to fall. The Sinai revelation said that Jesus Christ's self-sacrifice on the cross was said to have "replaced" the chosen people of Israel; God “disinherited” Israel and handed over the promises to the Christians, so that salvation now only lies in baptism (see substitution theology ). Only after the Holocaust did a fundamental rethink begin. Since the 1960s, many theologians have translated “Old” as the “First” Testament or replaced the term with “Hebrew” or “Jewish Bible” in order to emphasize the primacy and continued validity of God's covenant with Israel / Judaism and the devaluation of his religion and To overcome Bible interpretation.
Today almost all Christian denominations agree that both parts make up the Christian Bible on an equal footing and that their interpretations are mutually dependent on one another. Christian exegesis first interprets OT texts from their own context in order to avoid a premature interpretation from the NT. The Old Testament scholar Walther Zimmerli spoke of a “surplus of promise” of the OT that was not satisfied even by the NT, which Jesus Christ himself had confirmed through his initial fulfillment.
Normative claim as "Word of God"
Most schools of Christianity teach that God directed and inspired biblical tradition, that is, that its writers were moved by the Holy Spirit and saved from serious errors. However, they do not understand the text of their Bible entirely as a direct result of divine inspiration or divine dictation, but as a human testimony that contains, reflects and passes on God's revelations.
In Catholicism and Lutheran Orthodoxy , the theory of verbal inspiration was long held . Some evangelicals equate the biblical text directly with God's revelation and therefore ascribe a "freedom from error" (inerrancy) to its wording . This view is often referred to as biblicism or biblical fundamentalism . He reacts to the historical, historical-critical method that has been perceived as an attack on faith since the Enlightenment .
For all Christians, Jesus Christ, his person and his work, is the authoritative center of the Bible that illuminates all external words. His crucifixion and resurrection are seen as the turning point in salvation history .
An analysis of the relationship between “Bible” and “Word of God” is based on the statements of the Bible and shows that the term “Word of God” occurs in the Bible in three ways: for prophetic sayings, for the central message of salvation (ie the “ Gospel ”) and sometimes for Jesus Christ.
For Roman Catholics, the Bible only gained its authority as the word of God through the teaching office of the Pope , who also finally established the Bible canon. For them, the overcoming of original sin through Jesus' vicarious atonement, followed by the interaction of human effort and God's offer of grace ( synergism ) is the central content of the Bible and the standard of its interpretation.
For Protestants, following Martin Luther, it is the gift of grace from Jesus Christ without doing anything of their own. For liberal theology , it is the human example of the historical Jesus that confirms the boundless love of God . The evangelical denominations regard the whole Bible as the sole standard of their faith, as norma normans ; see also sola scriptura . The theologian Dietrich Kuessner formulates:
"The creed is subordinate to the Bible, a norm already shaped by Scripture (norma normata)."
Accordingly, all expressions of faith, confessions and dogmas have to be measured against the Bible and should therefore not contradict it. In the Catholic Church, the papal magisterium is the definitive and final authority for the interpretation of Scripture; moreover, the church tradition is often seen as equal to the Bible. The Protestant Church rejects this superordinate office and the strong position of tradition, as neither is biblically founded. In fact, there is no uniform teaching here, since the interpretation of Scripture according to the Lutheran and Reformed confessional scriptures ultimately remains a matter of the Holy Spirit . This reveals the truth of the word of God to the individual conscience of the believer.
The Orthodox churches have been using Bibles in the local language since about 200. For the Catholic Church since 400 the Latin Vulgate remained authoritative. Jerome had created it when Latin was still a common language. In the later Romanic, Germanic and Celtic areas of Western Europe, the Bible continued to be distributed almost exclusively in Latin. Stephen Langton , Archbishop of Canterbury , introduced the text into the Vulgate in 1205, which is common and largely uniform in all Christian editions of the Bible . The Parisian printer Robert Estienne first carried out the division of the NT into verses in 1551 on a Greek and Latin Bible edition. Without the seven deutero-canonical books, the Bible contains 66 books with 1189 chapters and more than 31,150 verses.
In the 4th century the Gothic bishop Wulfila , a follower of Arianism , translated the Bible into the Gothic language , the Wulfilabibel named after him . In the late Middle Ages, other Bible translations were made, including those by Petrus Valdes , John Wycliff , Jan Hus and William Tyndale . The reformers in particular saw direct access to the Bible in the national language as essential for the Christian faith. The translations of Martin Luther and Ulrich Zwingli (1522 to 1534) were first made available to a larger readership in the German-speaking area. The invention of the printing press made a significant contribution to this . The widespread Luther Bible pioneered the development of the written German language and the biblical criticism of the Enlightenment . It was printed in the Schwabacher script . As a reaction to the vernacular translations of the Bible by the Reformed, Catholic correction Bibles were created .
The German-language Bible translations that are qualitatively recognized today include the Luther Bible, which was last revised in 2017 , the Elberfeld Bible , the Zurich Bible and the standardized translation . The more common, freer translations include the Schlachter Bible , the " Good News Bible ", " Hope for All ", " New Life Bible " and the " Basic Bible ". In March 2018, there were complete translations in 674 languages and partial translations in 3324 languages. This meant that 163 total translations had been added in the previous four years.
Distribution and collections
The Christian Bible is the most printed, most translated, and most widely distributed book in the world. In 2014 alone, nearly 34 million complete Bibles were distributed worldwide. For that sit Bible societies like the German Bible Society , the Catholic Biblical Association and the evangelical organization Wycliff one. Picture Bibles, poor Bibles and children's Bibles as well as, for a long time, pictorial representations of biblical stories also contribute to the spread of biblical narratives . In addition to handy Bibles for personal use, there are lavishly edited study Bibles with extensive commentaries and directories and altar Bibles or parts of the Bible ( lectionary ) that are decorated for liturgical use . Both the Old and the New Testament are available as audio book editions in mp3 format.
A large number of online Bibles are now also available free of charge.
Bible in Islam
The Islam considers the Bible as revelation testimony of God that people have partially falsified. The Koran has adopted and varied a number of biblical and apocryphal stories and teachings that were probably passed down to Mohammed orally from contents of the Syrian Church. He calls the Torah ( Taurat ) , the Psalms ( Zabur ) and the Gospel ( Indschīl ) "Holy Scriptures", which come from God, but were later changed by humans, sometimes even falsified:
“We hardened the hearts of the children of Israel so that they distorted the words of Scripture, and they forgot part of what reminded them ...
And of those who said, 'We are Nasara ' [Nazarenes] we have accepted their commitment. But then they forgot part of what they were reminded with. "
Therefore, many Muslims are familiar with important contents of the Bible, albeit in the Koranic version, which often shortens, changes, paraphrases and detaches the biblical wording from its own context. This interpretive reproduction is authoritative for them, in accordance with the claim of the Koran, which sees itself as the final revelation from Allah, which takes up all previous revelations and restores their truth.
The Koran sees in the biblical stories which it retells, Muhammad's coming and his calling to be the “seal of the prophets” of God as an example and prophesies. Huseyn al-Jisri interpreted 114 passages in the Bible - especially the paraklētos (“support”, “advocate”) in Jn 14.26 EU ; 15.26-27 EU ; 16.7–13 EU - as an indication of Muhammad's prophethood.
Parallels to the prehistory of the Hebrew Bible are in the Koran
- the psalm-like praise of the Creator, e.g. B. Sura 87 : 1-3;
- the appointment of Adam and his wife (Eve is never named) as governors on earth and their expulsion from Paradise ( Sura 2 : 30–36);
- their re-acceptance ( sura 20 : 122; the Koran does not mention original sin );
- the fratricide ( Sure 5 : 27-32);
- The Flood and Noah's salvation: This is God's first messenger after Adam, who calls in vain to turn away from false gods ( Sura 40 : 36f).
The Koran names 20 figures in the Bible, not all of them prophets, as forerunners of Muhammad. Especially Abraham , the “friend of God”, is the model of the true believer for the Koran. Like post-biblical Jewish tradition, he recognized that God is more powerful than the stars ( Sura 6 : 78f). Those who followed him without becoming Jews or Christians ( Hanīfe ) are equivalent to the Muslims ( Sura 21 : 51-70). He was also promised a son in the Koran to be sacrificed ( Sura 37 : 99–113). The Muslims do not point this story to Isaac , but to Ishmael , the eldest son of Abraham, born by the maid Hagar , who is considered to be the progenitor of the Arabs . According to Sura 2 : 125, Abraham and Ishmael are said to have founded the Kaaba as the first place of worship in Mecca .
By Joseph zweitjüngstem, Jacob's son, says Sura 12 . Moses is mentioned in 36 suras: He is also in the Koran the prophet who speaks directly to God ( Sura 4 : 164), who liberated his people Israel from Egypt and imparted the Torah to them. The Ten Commandments are based on Sura 17 : 22–39. King David receives and transmits the Psalms as prophet; Solomon's great wisdom praises sura 21 : 78f.
Of the figures of the New Testament, the Koran represents Maryam ( Mary - mother of Jesus ), John the Baptist ( Sura 3 : 38–41; 19 : 2–15; 21 : 89f) and Isa bin Maryam ( “Jesus, the son of Mary “ ) Especially out. The latter has the task of calling the people of Israel back to obedience to the law and conveying the gospel to Christians as a written document of revelation. Like Mohammed, he proclaims God's coming final judgment , but only as a person who, from the perspective of the Koran, was not crucified ( Sura 4 : 157). His resurrection is therefore only hinted at. The virgin birth is attested in the Koran as well as Jesus as the promised Messiah, the word of God and a person free from sin .
As God's messengers, these prophets are moral authorities in the Koran, so that it does not report anything about their dark sides (e.g. David's adultery and murder) described in the Bible.
In Judaism, biblical criticism began late. In Christianity there have been repeated discussions since around 1700 about the extent to which the biblical narratives can be considered historical reports. Different views collide.
The historical-critical exegesis developed in modern times tries to grasp the respective literary form of the texts of the Bible within the framework of literary and form criticism . Accordingly, the Bible does not tell history, but salvation history. The historical content of the biblical narratives is then judged very differently in their various parts; a part of the Bible is ascribed a high historical reliability. In the opinion of the historically critical, the Gospels see themselves as “ good news ”. Their goal is to testify to faith in the "risen Jesus Christ". Historically reliable material can be found in the Gospels, but it is more important to make the Gospels' message of faith understandable and vivid.
On the basis of biblical texts such as the beginning of the Gospel of Luke ( Lk 1,1-4 EU ) or the end of the Gospel of John ( Joh 20,31 EU ) conservative theologians regard Bible texts as historical reports. The attitude towards the Bible is then also recorded in creeds, for example in the basis of the Evangelical Alliance of 1970: According to this, the Bible as inspired Holy Scripture is "completely reliable" "in all questions of faith and lifestyle". A part of the evangelical movement formulates even more sharply and says that the Bible is "in everything it teaches without error or mistake", and also includes "statements in the field of history and science " ( Biblical fundamentalism ) .
Non-theological scholars often understand the Bible as a literary work, sometimes as world literature . In terms of genre history, the texts belong to the literary categories of prologue , love song , hymn , paradox , monologue , dialogue , riddle , ellipse , prayer , parable , parable , poem , letter and historiography . The texts represent a valuable collection of sources for researching their respective times of origin. Some consider the historicity of the stories themselves to be relatively low.
Less widespread is the belief that the Bible is a magical book that can be used to foresee important future events. Some people have spent some time of their lives deciphering the presumed Bible code in order to get to the secret messages. So far, the existence of such a code has not been proven.
Overview and reference works
- Tim Dowley (Ed.): The Great Bible Guide. Brunnen, Giessen 2011, ISBN 978-3-7655-1487-6 .
- Manfred Görg , Bernhard Lang (Ed.): New Biblical Lexicon. 3 volumes. Patmos-Verlag, Düsseldorf 2008, ISBN 978-3-545-23077-4 .
- Hans-Josef Klauck and others (eds.): The Encyclopedia of the Bible and its Reception. Walter de Gruyter, Berlin / New York 2009, ISBN 978-3-11-019904-8 .
- Franz Kogler (Ed.): Herders New Biblical Lexicon. Herder, Freiburg (Breisgau) a. a. 2008, ISBN 978-3-451-32150-4 .
- Klaus Koch and others (ed.): Reclams Bibellexikon. 7th, revised and expanded edition. Leipzig 2004, ISBN 3-15-010555-2 .
- John F. MacArthur : Basic Information on the Bible. Bielefeld 2003, ISBN 3-89397-644-2 ( online )
- Annemarie Ohler: dtv-Atlas Bible. 5th, corrected edition. Deutscher Taschenbuch-Verlag, Munich 2011, ISBN 978-3-423-03326-8 .
- Fritz Rienecker and others (eds.): Lexicon for the Bible: people, history, archeology, geography and theology of the Bible. SCM R. Brockhaus, Witten 2013, ISBN 978-3-417-26550-7 .
- Henry Wansbrough : The Bible Guide. Theiss, Stuttgart 2014, ISBN 978-3-8062-2892-2 .
- Wolfgang Zwickel : The world of the Old and New Testaments. A non-fiction and work book. Calwer, Stuttgart 1997, ISBN 3-7668-3412-6 .
- Jürgen Ebach , Richard Faber (ed.): Bible and Literature Wilhelm Fink Verlag, 2nd edition Munich 1998, ISBN 3-7705-2974-X .
- Herbert Hunger : History of the text transmission of ancient and medieval literature. 2 volumes. (1961–1964) 2nd edition, dtv, 1988, ISBN 3-423-04485-3 .
- Bernhard Lang : The Bible. A critical introduction. F. Schöningh, Paderborn 1990, ISBN 3-506-99409-3 .
- Hanna Liss : Tanach. Textbook of the Jewish Bible (= writings of the College for Jewish Studies . Volume 8) Universitätsverlag Winter, 4th, completely revised edition Heidelberg 2019, ISBN 978-3-8253-6850-0 .
- Gerhard Lohfink : I now understand the Bible. A non-fiction book on criticism of form. 13th edition, Katholisches Bibelwerk, Stuttgart 1986, ISBN 3-460-30632-7 .
- Wolfhart Pannenberg , Theodor Schneider : Binding Testimony, Volume 1: Canon, Scripture, Tradition (= Dialogue of the Churches . Volume 7). Herder, Freiburg im Breisgau 1992, ISBN 3-451-22868-8 (399 pages).
- Konrad Schmid , Jens Schröter : The Origin of the Bible. From the first texts to the scriptures. C. H. Beck, Munich 2019, ISBN 978-3-406-73946-0 .
- Jeffrey Geoghegan: The Bible for Dummies. Wiley-VCH, 2006, ISBN 3-527-70253-9 .
- The story of the bible. From the clay tablets to Qumran to the present day. 4th edition, Christian Literature Distribution, Bielefeld 1998, ISBN 3-89397-267-6 ( online )
- Werner Keller : And the Bible is right . Researchers prove the truth of the Old Testament. (1955) Ullstein, Berlin 2009, ISBN 978-3-548-37246-4 .
- Nelson Beecher Keyes: From Paradise to Golgotha. The history of the biblical world in words and pictures with many maps. (American original edition: Story of the Bible Word. CS Hammond & Co., 1959 and 1962) Translated by Werner Buhre. The best, Stuttgart / Zurich / Vienna 1964.
- Johannes Maria Lehner: And the Bible is NOT right. Poetry and truth. The book of books in the light of science, reason and morality. Historia, Ulm-Wiblingen 2005, ISBN 3-9808691-1-3 .
- Volker Neuhaus : Bible. DuMont, Cologne 2005, ISBN 3-8321-7635-7 .
Bible editions and translations
- Hebrew and Greek Bible editions of the German Bible Society
- Bibleserver.com: Bible translations in 21 languages
- German Bible Society
- Karin Schöpflin : Bible. In: Michaela Bauks, Klaus Koenen, Stefan Alkier (eds.): The scientific biblical lexicon on the Internet (WiBiLex), Stuttgart 2006 ff.
- Private homepage of the Catholic systematist Herbert Frohnhofen : Current literature on biblical interpretation
- BiBIL (biblical literature database)
- Spreading the Christian Faith e. V .: Bibelkommentare.de (free church)
- Evangeliums-Zentrum e. V. Vienna: Overview of the Bible (free church)
- Forum for literary interpretation of the Bible The Bible as a masterpiece of literature
- Songs that are shaped by scriptures, sorted by scriptures
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the First Texts on the Holy Scriptures , Munich 2019, p. 12.
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the first texts on the holy scriptures , Munich 2019, p. 14 f.
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the first texts on the holy scriptures , Munich 2019, p. 16 f.
- Friedrich Kluge , Alfred Götze : Etymological dictionary of the German language . 20th edition, ed. by Walther Mitzka , De Gruyter, Berlin / New York 1967; Reprint (“21st unchanged edition”) ibid 1975, ISBN 3-11-005709-3 , p. 73.
- Karin Schoepflin: Bible , 2006, p. 1. Bauer / Aland: Greek-German dictionary on the writings of the New Testament and early Christian literature , 6th completely revised edition Berlin / New York 1988, Sp. 281 f.
- Reinhold Bohlen: Bible (introductory science) I. Term . In: Walter Kasper (Ed.): Lexicon for Theology and Church . 3. Edition. tape 2 . Herder, Freiburg im Breisgau 1994, Sp. 362-363, here col. 363 .
- Christoph Levin: The Old Testament . 4th edition Munich 2010, p. 17.
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the first texts on the scriptures , Munich 2019, p. 21.
- Bauer / Aland: Greek-German dictionary on the writings of the New Testament and early Christian literature , 6th completely revised edition Berlin / New York 1988, Sp. 331 f.
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the First Texts on the Holy Scriptures , Munich 2019, pp. 32–34.
- Eusebius: Church History, Book IV, 26.
- Erich Zenger, Christian Frevel: Holy Scriptures of the Jews and the Christians. In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 11–36, here: p. 29.
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the first texts on the scriptures , Munich 2019, p. 36.
- Heinz-Josef Fabry: The text and its history . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 37-66, here pp. 44 f.
- Angelika Berlejung: Sources and Methods . In: Jan-Christian Gertz (Hrsg.): Basic information Old Testament. An introduction to Old Testament literature, religion, and history . 6th, revised and expanded edition Göttingen 2019, pp. 21–58, here p. 26.
- Angelika Berlejung: Sources and Methods . In: Jan-Christian Gertz (Hrsg.): Basic information Old Testament. An introduction to Old Testament literature, religion, and history . 6th, revised and expanded edition Göttingen 2019, pp. 21–58, here p. 27.
- Heinz-Josef Fabry: The text and its history . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 37-66, here pp. 57 f.
- Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra: Qumran. The Dead Sea texts and ancient Judaism (= Jewish studies . Volume 3). Tübingen 2016, p. 207.
- Heinz-Josef Fabry: The text and its history . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 37–66, here p. 42. Emanuel Tov sees the turning point with the destruction of the temple in 70 as given, while others only start the turning point at the end of the Bar Kochba uprising (136).
- Angelika Berlejung: Sources and Methods . In: Jan-Christian Gertz (Hrsg.): Basic information Old Testament. An introduction to Old Testament literature, religion, and history . 6th, revised and expanded edition Göttingen 2019, pp. 21–58, here p. 27 f.
- Heinz-Josef Fabry: The text and its history . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 37-66, here pp. 40 f.
- Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra: Qumran. The Dead Sea texts and ancient Judaism (= Jewish studies . Volume 3). Tübingen 2016, p. 210.
- Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra: Qumran. The Dead Sea texts and ancient Judaism (= Jewish studies . Volume 3). Tübingen 2016, p. 210 f.
- Heinz-Josef Fabry: The text and its history . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 37–66, here p. 58.
- Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra: Qumran. The Dead Sea texts and ancient Judaism (= Jewish studies . Volume 3). Tübingen 2016, p. 175.
- Quoted here from: Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra: Qumran. The Dead Sea texts and ancient Judaism (= Jewish studies . Volume 3). Tübingen 2016, p. 181 f. Which books Josephus classified among the 13 books of the prophets and the 4 books of hymns and life instructions is unknown.
- Erich Zenger / Christian Frevel: Holy Scriptures of the Jews and the Christians . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, p. 11–36, here: p. 22. One comes to 24 books if 1/2 Sam, 1/2 Kings, 1/2 Chr, Esr / Neh and the Book of the Twelve Prophets are counted as one book each. To reach the number of 22 books, the book of Ricter and the book of Ruth as well as the book of Jeremiah and the Lamentations of Jeremiah can be combined. (ibid.)
- Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra: Qumran. The Dead Sea texts and ancient Judaism (= Jewish studies . Volume 3). Tübingen 2016, p. 187 f.
- Erich Zenger / Christian Frevel: Holy Scriptures of the Jews and the Christians . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 11–36, here: pp. 22–24.
- Erich Zenger / Christian Frevel: Holy Scriptures of the Jews and the Christians . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 11–36, here: pp. 25 f.
- see also Books of Kings
- Martin Buber, Franz Rosenzweig: The writing. - Stuttgart 1992 - ISBN 3-438-01491-2 . The Buber-Rosenzweig German translation is used in many teaching houses and Bible circles.
- Leopold Zunz: The twenty-four books of the Holy Scriptures based on the Masoretic text. 1837. New editions: Victor Goldschmidt: Basel 1995, ISBN 3-85705-002-0 ; Sinai Verlag: Tel-Aviv 1997, ISBN 3-929895-11-0 (Hebrew-German). Used by many Judaists; the Hebrew text is also printed. Zunz himself only translated the two chronicle books; up to the 17th edition it was correctly stated: Under the editorship of Dr. Zunz translated by A. Arnheim, Dr. Julius Fürst, Dr. M. Sachs.
- Naftali Herz Tur-Sinai: The Holy Scriptures, translated into German. 3rd edition, Neuhausen-Stuttgart 1997.
- Heinz-Josef Fabry: The text and its history . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 37–66, here p. 60. Very literal translations (Pentateuch, Psalms) contrast with relatively free translations, for example in the Book of Isaiah.
- Albert de Pury: The canon of the Old Testament . In: Thomas Römer et al. (Ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. The books of the Hebrew Bible and the Old Testament scriptures of the Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox churches . TVZ Theologischer Verlag, Zurich 2013, pp. 3–24, here p. 6.
- Heinz-Josef Fabry: The text and its history . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 37–66, here p. 60.
- Christoph Levin: The Old Testament . 4th edition Munich 2010, p. 19 f.
- Erich Zenger / Christian Frevel: Holy Scriptures of the Jews and the Christians . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 11–36, here: pp. 31–34.
- Erich Zenger / Christian Frevel: Holy Scriptures of the Jews and the Christians . In: Christian Frevel (ed.): Introduction to the Old Testament. 9th, updated edition. Stuttgart 2016, pp. 11–36, here: p. 35.
- Wolfgang Kraus: The Septuagint as a bridge between the Old and New Testament? In: Heinz-Josef Fabry, Ulrich Offerhaus (ed.): In focus: The Septuagint. Studies on the origin and meaning of the Greek Bible , Volume 3. Stuttgart 2007, pp. 266–290, here p. 267.
- Wolfgang Kraus: The Septuagint as a bridge between the Old and New Testament? In: Heinz-Josef Fabry, Ulrich Offerhaus (ed.): In focus: The Septuagint. Studies on the Origin and Significance of the Greek Bible , Volume 3. Stuttgart 2007, pp. 266–290, here pp. 274 f.
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the first texts on the holy scriptures , Munich 2019, p. 24 f.
- Konrad Schmid, Jens Schröter: The emergence of the Bible. From the First Texts on the Holy Scriptures , Munich 2019, p. 25.
- Walther Zimmerli: Outline of the Old Testament Theology , Stuttgart 1972, p. 206 f.
- Franz Graf-Stuhlhofer : Words of God in the Bible. Against an undifferentiated equation of the Bible and the Word of God . In: Zeitschrift für Theologie und Gemeinde 16 (2011), pp. 66–89.
- Dietrich Kuessner: The law is there for the sake of man: A discussion with Markus B. Büning “Confession and Church Constitution” . ( Memento from April 23, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) bs.cyty.com, 2002, accessed on March 10, 2018 (RTF; 21 kB).
- Statistics in a Bible copying project
- Facts and Figures: State of the world's Bible translations . die-bibel.de , March 2018, accessed on March 10, 2018.
- The Bible completely translated into 511 languages. German Bible Society , July 15, 2014, archived from the original on September 1, 2014 ; accessed on March 10, 2018 .
- Bible Distribution 2014: Bible Societies distributed 428 million Bibles and parts of the Bible . Evangelical news agency idea , October 20, 2015.
- The Bible in Pictures. Treasury of painting. (Original English edition: Orbis Publishing, London). Naumann & Göbel, Cologne 1987, ISBN 3-625-10510-1 .
- The Bible - The entire Luther Bible as an audio book , Aretinus Gesellschaft für Musikarchivierung, Berlin 2006/2007, ISBN 978-3-939107-51-4 and ISBN 978-3-939107-52-1 .
- The British Library Catalog of Illuminated Manuscripts
- Bibles. Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel, accessed on June 21, 2013 .
- For example Franz Graf-Stuhlhofer: In Search of the Historical Jesus About the Credibility of the Gospels and the Doubts of the Skeptics . Leun 2013, p. 23 f.
- Printed for example by Fritz Laubach : Aufbruch der Evangelicals. Wuppertal 1972, p. 101.
- Thomas Schirrmacher (ed.): Faithfulness to the Bible on the offensive. The Three Chicago Declarations of Biblical Inerrancy , Hermeneutics , and Application . Bonn 1993, p. 19 (summary declaration), p. 22 (Article XII).