Sarah Bringhurst's Reviews > Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why
Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why
by Bart D. Ehrman
by Bart D. Ehrman
Provocatively titled and insightful, this book is more than anything the story of a believing intellectual's love affair with the Bible. Ehrman gives a mini history of how we got our modern Bible, and why the words we read today are different from what was originally written. He covers how the "books" and epistles in the Bible were transmitted in ancient times, and how and why they were canonized, when similar writings were left out. Some of the most interesting parts of the book talked about the nitty-gritty business of scribal copying of the sacred texts, and how it inevitably introduced errors, both intentional and accidental. Ehrman also explains some of the scholarly rationale for deciding which passages of the Bible are likely original and unchanged, and how the many different (and often contradictory) existing manuscripts are dated and ranked. For example, he details why scholars believe that the passage where Paul tells women not to speak in Church is probably a later scribal addition. Ehrman begins his journey with ultraconservative views of the Bible's utter infallibility (similar to Muslim views of the Qur'an), and after many years of research concludes that during its passage through many hands and many centuries, our Bible has undergone significant modifications. Although not written by a Mormon, this book made me see a clear rationale for the Mormon view that "we believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly."
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