Scripture

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Scripture is a term for writings that are definitively characteristic of particular religious traditions, (John Miller and Aaron Kenedi. God's Breath: Sacred Scriptures of the World: The Essential Texts of Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Suf. Marlowe and Company, New York, 2000) called "sacred writings." Dictionary definition of "scripture" from Houghton Mifflin It is more specific than the term religious text, Definiton of "religious text" which scholars can apply even to mythological and ritual texts from ancient religions, where records of their authority (or heresy) have not survived.

For lessons on the related topic of the Bible, follow this link.

Etymology and usage

Scripture is derived from Latin :la:scriptura (writing), and cognate to Old French escriture and modern :fr:écriture. The oldest English usage cited in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) is from Cursor Mund] (c. 1300): "For-þi es godd, als sais scripture." The OED also cites Encyclopædia Britannica (23rd ed., 1888): "The revelation of God in nature is presupposed by that in Scripture."

The word was coined in 1250-1300, during the Middle English period, from the Latin word, scriptura, meaning "writing." Etymology of the word "scripture"

The usage of the term, scripture, arose as an English translation for Judaeo-Christian writings [1] The first definition of a word in a dictionary refers to the manner in which it is most commonly used. The 2006 Random House Unabridged Dictionary states that the first definition of the word "scripture" is in reference to "the sacred writings of the Old and New Testaments or both together."] and was applied, by analogy, to the scriptures of other traditions. It is commonly used in reference to the Bible and Koran.

The word, scripture, has been firmly attached to the Bible in that it is used 32 times in 32 verses in the King James Bible. Bible Search results An example of its usage in the New Testament is in John 10:35, KJV Bible, "...the scripture cannot be broken," and in the Old Testament in Daniel 10:21, KJV Bible, "...I will show thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth."

Comparisons

Investigations by scholars of religion determine the different reasoning that lies behind why various traditions determine some writings to be scripture and others not. (William P. Lazarus and Mark Sullivan. Comparative Religion for Dummies. John Wiley and Sons Ltd, United States, 2008) What is religion?</ref>

This can be illustrated by the documentation of the Egyptian cult of Aten, A history of "The Short-lived Cult of Aten" which lasted less than a generation (ca 1350 - 1335 BC), having been suppressed as heresy. Therefore, texts in praise of Aten, such as Great Hymn to the Aten, are not regarded as scriptures. Because the worship of Aten was suppressed, (E. A. Wallis Budge. The Cult of Aten the God and Disk of the Sun Its Origin Development and Decline. Kessinger Publishing Company, 2005) the writings that support it cannot be considered within the confines of mainstream ancient Egyptian scriptures. (G. A. Gaskell. Egyptian Scriptures Interpreted Through the Language of Symbolism Present in All Inspired Writings. Kessinger Publishing Company, 2004, Donald B. Redford. The Ancient Gods Speak: A Guide to Egyptian Religion. Oxford University Press, 2002)

On the other hand, the Nicene CreedThe Nicene Creed is an early Christian description of their beliefs. However, although this is clearly a religious text and is still highly valued by Christians today, it is not considered scripture Definition of "scripture" because it is not among the sacred writings of either the Old or New Testaments. Scriptures are religious texts, the truth of which is received by believers based on faith or belief, in that faith is belief in the trustworthiness of a written/spoken idea that has not been proven.Definition of faith

References

  1. John Miller and Aaron Kenedi. God's Breath: Sacred Scriptures of the World: The Essential Texts of Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Suf. Marlowe and Company, New York, 2000
  2. Dictionary definition of "scripture" from Houghton Mifflin
  3. Definitoon of "religious text"
  4. Etymology of the word "scripture"
  5. The first definition of a word in a dictionary refers to the manner in which it is most commonly used.

The 2006 Random House Unabridged Dictionary states that the first definition of the word "scripture" is in reference to "the sacred writings of the Old and New Testaments or both together."

  1. Bible Search results
  2. William P. Lazarus and Mark Sullivan. Comparative Religion for Dummies. John Wiley and Sons Ltd, United States, 2008
  3. What is religion?
  4. A history of "The Short-lived Cult of Aten"
  5. E. A. Wallis Budge. The Cult of Aten the God and Disk of the Sun Its Origin Development and Decline. Kessinger Publishing Company, 2005
  6. G. A. Gaskell. Egyptian Scriptures Interpreted Through the Language of Symbolism Present in All Inspired Writings. Kessinger Publishing Company, 2004
  7. Donald B. Redford. The Ancient Gods Speak: A Guide to Egyptian Religion. Oxford University Press, 2002

External links

  • [2] MP3 Sephardic-style Hebrew Bible
  • [3] MP3 Complete Hebrew Bible
  • [4] MP3 תורה נביאים כתובים
  • [5]The Westminster Leningrad Codex (4.9)
  • [6] The Hebrew Bible in XML (BHS/Parallel/KJV)
  • [7] MP3 Greek New Testament
  • [8] Multilingual Bible: Search, Read, Study

The evolution of religious philosophy among the Hellenic and Hebrew peoples affords a contrastive illustration of the function of the church as an institution in the shaping of cultural progress. In Palestine, human thought was so priest-controlled and scripture-directed that philosophy and aesthetics were entirely submerged in religion and morality. In Greece, the almost complete absence of priests and "sacred scriptures" left the human mind free and unfettered, resulting in a startling development in depth of thought. But religion as a personal experience failed to keep pace with the intellectual probings into the nature and reality of the cosmos.[9]