This GCSE RE quiz challenges you on the Holy Bible. The Scriptural bedrock of Christianity is, of course, the Holy Bible: a collection of rather over 50 separate ‘books’ or documents, written by a variety of people over a total span of several hundred years.
Most of these authors would have felt personally impelled by God to commit their experiences, reflections and/or wisdom into written form in an age where quantities of writing materials could be hard to obtain; and while some of them refer to one another (to prior books, such as the Old Testament histories; and, in the case of the prophets, to events yet-to-come historically ~ including the earthly ministry of Jesus), many of the writings were done ‘for the sake of it’ rather than in any awareness that the material might then become ‘canonical’, i.e. formally included for the spiritual edification of generations yet long unborn.
Some of the material is by way of a public record (e.g. the historical books of the Old Testament, plus the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles); much is more personal, such as the prophecies and the letters of Paul to various church groups.
Precisely which books are to be found in your Bible may depend on who you are: the Protestant churches don’t usually include the Apocrypha, for instance. But Christians’ Old Testament is to all intents the Hebrew Bible (‘The Law and the Prophets’), followed as such by the New Testament (meaning ‘fresh covenant’, or as C20th US history puts such things, a ‘New Deal’) ~ in which Jesus, as God made man, comes to remodel the bond between God and humankind. Some passages seem very clear, others need unpacking in the light of their original cultural context or because they are symbolic (such as the Psalmist wailing ‘I am a worm, and no man’); others again need recognising for what they mean (e.g. when a circular ceremonial vessel in the First Temple is described as ‘3 units round, and 1 across’, this isn’t to be taken as the Bible giving us a precise value of Pi as 3.0; while such phenomena as Noah’s rainbow or the Plagues of Egypt make clearer sense now we know more about optics and biomes).
This quiz will help remind you of the Bible’s structure and how mainstream Christianity, at least, has regarded and handled it for around 2,000 years.
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