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How the Bible Was Built [Paperback]

By Charles Merrill Smith (Author) & James Bennett (Author)
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Item description for How the Bible Was Built by Charles Merrill Smith & James Bennett...

Penned by Charles Merrill Smith in response to his teenage granddaughter's questions, this manuscript was discovered after Smith's death and has now been reworked for a wider audience by writer James Bennett. Free of theological or sectarian slant, it gives a factual overview of the Bible's construction.

Publishers Description

The Bible continues to be the world?'s runaway best-seller. But very few people could say just how its seemingly disparate jumble of writings -- stories, letters, poems, collections of laws, religious visions -- got there. Filling this knowledge gap, "How the Bible Was Built" clearly tells the story of how the Bible came to be.

Penned by Charles Merrill Smith in response to his teenage granddaughter?'s questions, the manuscript was discovered after Smith?'s death and has been reworked by his friend James Bennett for a wider audience. Free of theological or sectarian slant, this little volume provides a concise, factual overview of the Bible?'s construction throughout history, outlining how its various books were written and collected and later canonized and translated.

Written in an easy conversational style and enhanced by two helpful appendixes (of biblical terms and dates), "How the Bible Was Built" will give a more informed understanding of the Bible to people of virtually any reading level and any religious persuasion.

Did you know? The word Bible comes from "biblion," a Greek word meaning papyrus scroll. It took several thousand years to construct the Bible. The book we call Deuteronomy was discovered hidden away in a dark corner during the reconstruction of the temple under King Josiah. The Apocrypha contains some of the earliest detective stories on record. Church councils had many disagreements about which books ought to be authoritative (a book called the Shepherd of Hermas almost made the cut; the book of Revelation almost didn t). A heretic helped form the canon. Debate over the canon didn t really end until the Protestant Reformation and the use of the printing press.

Citations And Professional Reviews
How the Bible Was Built by Charles Merrill Smith & James Bennett has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -

  • Booklist - 10/01/2005 page 30
  • Booklist Editors Choice/Adult - 01/01/2006 page 6

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Pages   97
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.3" Width: 5.28" Height: 0.32"
Weight:   0.29 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Nov 1, 2005
ISBN  0802829430  
ISBN13  9780802829436  

Availability  9 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 25, 2016 02:50.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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More About Charles Merrill Smith & James Bennett

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Charles Merrill Smith (19191985) was a United Methodist minister and the well-known author of such books as How to Become a Bishop without Being Religious, When the Saints Go Marching Out, and the Reverend Randollph mystery series.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Church History > General
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Bible Study > General

Christian Product Categories
Books > Bible Study > Study Resources > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about How the Bible Was Built?

Nice Intro for Young People  Aug 18, 2006
It's interesting that this book is entitled "How the bible was built" because this book itself was stitched together from a series of versions of a book that Charles Merrill Smith was working on before he died. His friend James Bennett then tried to put them all together. In some senses, this book is built just as the bible they describe is also built.

The analogy to building the bible starts off fine, but soon disappears into a more general discussion, aimed at the young adult audience. It's well written, but hardly scholarly. There are few gross errors, but then it doesn't pretend to go very deeply into some of the major controversies about scriptural origins.

At the end of the book there is a brief chronology that highlights some of the seminal dates in the history of the bible up to 1611 (e.g., Jerome's Latin Vulgate, John Wycliff's english translation, Gutenberg, Martin Luther, Tyndale's first english printing, etc.) It's a good list, but it does leave out some important dates (e.g., 1551 - 4th edition of Greek New Testament divides text into verses for first time; 393 - Church council at Hippo affirms 27 canonical books).

This book would certainly be appropriate for any young adult who was interested in the topic, but it's hardly food for the hungry scholar.
A superb introduction to just how the Bible did come to be as we know it today  Apr 7, 2006
Knowledgeably co-written by the late United Methodist Minister Charles Merrill Smith (1919-1985) and is long time friend and award winning author of several young adult novels, James W. Bennett How The Bible Was Built is a superb introduction to just how the Bible did come to be as we know it today. As an in-depth exploration of what influences, ideas, concepts, people, and visions were inspiration for the gathering and writing of the Bible, How The Bible Was Built offers readers a greater understanding and premise to work from when viewing the unfathomable records of such a holy and influential scripture. How The Bible Was Built is very strongly recommended to all students of the Holy Bible (be they clergy, laymen, or theology students) for its casual and easy-to-read formatting, filled with educated and invaluable understandings from first page to last.
A Good Introduction to the History of the Bible  Feb 6, 2006
Smith has done a great service in writing this brief, easy to understand overview of the history of our modern Bible. It will satisfy most of the questions people have about translations, versions, and who decided what books to include. I wish he had incuded a list of books for those who want to delve further into this topic, or for those who wonder where he got his information.

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