"The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of our God stands forever." Isaiah 40:8
The term "canon" is often used to describe the validity of the books of the Bible. The term comes from the Greek word meaning "rule or standard." According to Jewish tradition, the thirty-nine Old Testament books were recognized as authentic and authoritative beginning in 520 BC. These books were confirmed or canonized at the Council of Jamnia in AD 90. Church leaders at the Council of Carthage canonized the twenty-seven New Testament books in AD 397.
Each book in the canon had to pass a five-question test:
1. Credible: Did the Christian community universally accept the book as authentic?
2. Apostles: Was the book written by an apostle or someone who had direct contact with an apostle?
3. Non-contradictory: Did the teachings of the book agree with the teachings of Jesus?
4. Overall Acceptance: Was the book accepted as authentic by all the churches?
5. Notable: Was the book authentic and accurate?
Spend some time today thinking about how God has passed down and preserved His Word through the millennium.