Establishing the canon of Scripture obviously involves two tasks. They're related, but not quite the same. First, we need to know which books to include. We began our study with the 24 books of the Hebrew Scriptures. While in a different order and in different groupings, these books line up perfectly with the 39 books of our Old Testament. Then we saw how Jesus endorsed those very same books, and no more. But we include more books than these in our Bibles. We also include the 27 books of the New Testament. Jews do not. And we took our whole last teaching to demonstrate why these books need to be included in the canon of Scripture.
As I said at the beginning, two tasks. What is to be included and then, of equal importance, what needs to be excluded. How do we limit the possible candidates for recorded Biblical truth? What are the criteria for saying, "No, these may be fine documents in many ways, but they're not Biblical truth."
Let's face it. We live in a world where alleged sacred texts abound. Almost every religion on earth has at least one.Why don't we accept these as valid revelations from the same God? Why don't we just merge them all together and forget about the things that divide us? In short, what boundaries on truth claims should be set, and how should we set them? That's the subject of today's teaching.