Names of the Bible

(from Lesson 2 of God's Plan for Man)

1. BIBLE. This word designates the collection of the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments that are recognized and used by the Christian churches who follow the religion of Jesus Christ.
The word Bible is not found in the English versions of Scripture. It is the equivalent of the Greek word biblia, meaning books. The phrase ta biblia, meaning "the books," occurs in Dan. 9:2 of the Septuagint for the prophetic writings. This usage for the Old Testament passed into the Christian Church, and in time it was extended to the whole of the Old and New Testaments. About the thirteenth century, by common usage, the term was changed from the plural to the singular, The Book.

2. Other names of the Bible are: the Scripture (Mark 15:28; John 7:38; 2 Tim. 3:16-17), the Scriptures (Luke 24:27,32; John 5:39; Acts 17:11); the Holy Scriptures (Rom. 1:2; 2 Tim. 3:15); the Promises (Rom. 9:4-5; 15:8); the Oracles of God (Rom. 3:2; Heb. 5 :12; I Pet. 4:11); the Lively (living) Oracles (Acts 7:38); the Law of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms (Luke 24:25,44); the Law of the Lord (Ps. 1:2), the Law and the Prophets (Matt. 5:17; 11:13; Acts 13:15); the Book of the Lord (Isa. 34:16); the Word of God (Mark 7:13; Rom. 10:17; Heb. 4:12); the Sword of the Spirit (Eph. 6:17); the Old and New Testament (Luke 22:20; 2 Cor. 3:6-15; Heb. 9:15); the Word of Christ (Col. 3:16); the Word of Life (Phil 2:16); the Scripture of Truth (Dan.10:21); the Word of Truth (2 Tim. 2:15); and the Gospel of Christ (Rom.1:16).

The word testament means a document disclosing the will of a person, a contract, an agreement, or a covenant between two contracting parties. All these meanings will become clearer, the more one studies the Bible. By the end of the second century, the Old and New Testaments became permanent names for the Jewish and Christian Scriptures.

The Old Testament is largely a record of God's dealings with the Hebrew people and the revelations of His will to them and through them to the whole race, whereby He binds Himself to take into new and special relationship all who obey His will. The New Testament is largely the fulfillment and enlargement of the Old Testament and gives the record of the promises, agreements, or compacts between God and man, showing the privileges, blessings, and requirements of the gospel through Jesus Christ, the Redeemer of the world.