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What is the Bible? [Paperback]

By Henri Daniel-Rops (Author)
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Item description for What is the Bible? by Henri Daniel-Rops...

Some people look at the Bible and see a collection of stories that teach us how to live good and happy lives. Others regard it more as a historical record of the Jewish and Christian peoples. Still others prefer to stress that Scripture is nothing less than the voice of God revealed to mankind. In this classic work you'll discover that the Bible is all of these things, and more.

Written especially for average Catholics, who often find the Bible intimidating, What is the Bible? makes sense of the sprawling scope of Sacred Scripture. With patience, clarity, and great learning, beloved popular scholar Henri Daniel-Rops sheds light on the Bible's divine origins, its structure and content, its rich layers of meaning, and its place at the heart of Catholic doctrine and worship.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Sophia Institute Press
Pages   150
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.66" Width: 5.78" Height: 0.45"
Weight:   0.48 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Apr 1, 2007
Publisher   Sophia Institute Press
ISBN  1933184248  
ISBN13  9781933184241  

Availability  8 units.
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More About Henri Daniel-Rops

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Daniel-Rops wrote more than seventy books, including novels, historical studies, poetry, and children's stories. He won worldwide acclaim for his books on the workings of God in history, which included histories of the Jews and of the Church as well as his masterpiece, Jesus and His Times.

Henri Daniel-Rops was born in 1901 and died in 1965.

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > Religious Studies > Christianity
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > General
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > Roman Catholicism
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Commentaries > General

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What is the Bible? It is a Combination of Great Literature, Moral Codes, Wisdom, Etc.  Aug 7, 2008
Henri Daniel-Rops (1901-1965)was a very productive French Catholic historian who edited the Twentieth Century Encyclopedia of Catholicism of which the above title is a part. Henri Daniel-Rops (HDR for the sake of convenience)wrote WHAT IS THE BIBLE from a partisan Catholic view, but this book is honest and accessible to Catholics and non-Catholics.

HDR opening chapters described the Bible as an inspiration for great literature, art, sculpture, philosophy (especially Scholastic Philosophy), architecture, Great Classical Music, etc. The author showed numerous examples of how the Bible exerted such significant influcnce on Western Civilization.

This book is not an oversimplified view of the development of the Bible. HDR clearly explained how the Bible originated from a very ancient oral tradition among the Ancient Hebrews whose writing was sparce. HDL was clear that the first focused attempt to write parts of the Hebrew Bible first occured c. 450 BC and that the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament was not finalized until c. 100 AD. HDL's mention of early Catholic Church Councils which took considerable time in editing and redacting the Christian Bible in the late fourth and early fifth centuries. His mention of the Council of Carthage (397 AD) and Council of Hiippo (397 AD)showed that numerous Church Fathers and scholars held long, patient councils to determine which books were to be included and excluded from the Canon of the Bible. The decision was to accept St. Jerome's (346-420 AD)Vulgate Bible. HDR could have mentioned the later Council of Carthage held in 419 AD.

HDR gave solid summaries of the books of the Old Testament. His descriptions of the intended meaning of the different books are scholarly but so well written as to be easily understood. His attempt to show the unity of the Old Testament is surprisingly well done. HDL explains the poetry such as the Psalms, Proverbs, Job (an epic poem), etc. and attaches these books to historical events and religious lessons. The explanation of the earlier books such as the Toral (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy)was knowledgable and clear. HDR's summaries of the Prophetic Books is as good as this reviewer has read. He gave good explnations of the Prophetic Books from both Jewish and Christian perspectives.

HDR provided a good background of the Apocrypha Books which are Judith, Tobias, Wisdom, Baruch,Ecclesiasticus (not to be confused with Ecclesiastes), and First and Second Maccabees. These books were not only debated by the Rabbis, but they were also seriously debated by the early Church Fathers as to their canonicity. The book gives good reasons why these books were debated and why they were included in the Catholic Bible and were part of the Christian Bible for over a thousand years.

HDR used the same method to diagnose the books of the New Testament. The New Testament also has different literary genres similar to the Old Testament. The Gospels, the Epistles, and the Apocalypse (Revelation)were written for different audiences, and HDR explains the differences of the different books of the New testament.

HDR was a devout Catholic as stated above. Yet, he included Jewish sources in this book including the Midrashim or biblical stories. As a devout Catholic, HDL obviously did not agree with the Rabbis and Judaism. Yet, HDR was enough of a gentleman and scholar to give Rabbis and religious Jews "a fair hearing" in this book. HDL examined both the similarities and differences between Christians and Jews without condemnation or acrimony.

HDR's explanation of the Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke)is simply good scholarship and good writing. He explained the Synoptic Gospels were so named because they presented parallel lives of Christ, but John's Gospel is considerably different, and HDR explains this. HDR placed some of the Synoptic Gospels in parallel columns to illustrate examples of the Synoptic Gospels.

HDR's book WHAT IS THE BIBLE was first published in 1958 less than ten years after the first discoveries of the Dead Sea Scrolls. HDL showed his knowledge of the Dead Sea Scrolls which he readily admitted could modify biblical scholarship and meaning. His comments on the Dead Sea Scrolls were surprisingly current.

Aside for the attempt at showing the unity of the Bible and its different meanings, HDR is honest to inform readers that the Bible may be an incomplete book or record. HDL provided readers with problems of trying to claim the original Bible which honest scholarship and history belie. HDR's explantion of different texts, languages, etc. precludes any notion that somehow the Bible appeared "out of thin air" in its complete form. In other words, there is a long history of biblical writing.

HDR's WHAT IS THE BIBLE was well written and scholarly. As stated above, the book was written from a partisan Catholic position. HDR wrote eloquently in defending his Catholic position without rancor or bitterness. Even those who are not Catholic can appreciate the book and HDL's beautifully written expression. HDR wrote a book that is well worth time and effort.

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