‘The Holy Scriptures:

The first place we give to the Holy Scriptures: the Bible, Old and New Testaments. The Bible is understood by Orthodox Christians to be the principal written record of the experience by God’s people of God’s revealing Himself to them. It is understood that the Church, therefore, wrote the Bible. The Bible is the word of God, but the word of God was not written directly and personally by God. The Holy Scriptures did not fall from heaven in a fully complete written form. By whom were the Scriptures written? They were written by human beings who were inspired by God. What they write is the truth about God. They write what they write as members of God’s people.

For example, in the early years of the Christian Church, those most important books of Holy Scripture that we call the Gospels did not exist. Several decades passed after Pentecost before the first Gospel was written. It was the end of the first century by the time all four Gospels were written. Three hundred more years passed before a decision was made in the Church that there would be only four Gospels.

The books that are in the Holy Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, are there because God’s people, through those who were set aside as having the authority to make the decision, decided that these books would be part of the Bible, and other books would not. The Church, as God’s people inspired by God, wrote the Bible. The Church produced the Bible. The Bible did not produce the Church.

The Holy Scriptures are the principal and most honored written record of God’s revelation to His people. But it is the understanding of the Orthodox that the Holy Scriptures cannot be completely, truthfully understood unless they are understood within the context of the Church that produced them, that declared them to be what they are. So the Bible is the Book of the Church, the first source of the Christian Tradition.’

*This article is taken from the catechism series, What We Believe by Fr. David Anderson (1997, Conciliar Press).

Source:
The Orthodox Study Bible, New Testament and Psalms (St. Athanasius Academy, 1997). 

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10 thoughts on “The Bible and Orthodox Tradition.

  1. God didn’t write it. Men wrote it. Men were the authority of the church and decided which books… its kinda weird they do t claim God wrote it though them. It’s more like a CEO hiring a manager and the manager just makes decisions. Even though the CEO. Is the big man.

    I’d be more likely to believe it I thought it was God actually doing all this stuff

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    1. Your first sentence doesn’t fit this article considering that is exactly what the Eastern Orthodox faith believes…Men wrote it after being inspired by God, God isn’t seen as a manager, nor as the writer, men are…that is the Eastern Orthodox faith.

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      1. It just sounds weird I guess. To say it outright. Sounds weird to think that only certain people were chosen by God. Sounds kinda like a oligarchy. Lol. And also that the Bible didn’t make the church, men made it. Just kinda offends my sensibility. I would think it more like God moved Everything such that the church came about. Idk. Just sounds weird .

        And I miss read what u wrote.

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  2. …but come to thinking about it, it makes more sense out of the bs the church implemented in history: it’s like that Harvard famous study from The 1970s I think with the volunteers acting in a prison setting.

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