Some Amazing Facts about the Bible: Over 100 million copies of the Bible are sold each year. In fact, the Bible is the best-selling book in history, with total sales exceeding 5 billion copies. The full Bible has been translated into 532 languages and partially translated into 2,883 languages. The Bible informs the tradition of three major world religions: Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. John Wycliffe produced the first translation of the entire Bible from Latin Vulgate into English. However, after he died the Catholic Church exhumed and burned his corpse as punishment for his translation work. William Tyndale produced the first printed edition of the New Testament in English and was later burned at the stake for his efforts.
The first authorized Bible printed in English is the Great Bible of 1539. King Henry VIII of England declared that it should be read aloud during the church services in the Church of England. The King James Bible contains 788,258 words, 31,102 verses, 1,189 chapters, and 66 books. The King James Bible (1611) is said to be unrivaled in its accuracy and literary beauty. In addition to 54 scholars, Shakespeare is believed to have helped with the translation.
According to one study, one in five of all American adults have read the Bible from start to finish, and quite a few try to repeat that process every year. One good reason to do this is to get to know the Author better.
That is the message we received this past week from Elder Jim Porter. He quoted Deuteronomy 6:5 which states “And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” Elder Porter then asked us “How can you love someone you have never seen?” The obvious answer is to read all of the first hand accounts you can find that tell you about God and His love for us.
Elder Porter went on to share with us a remembrance from his past. His mother had died when he was very young, and although he had been too young to remember, his sister later spoke to him about it. She said: “do you remember after Mom died that Dad would read to us from the Bible?” She told him how it had been a source of comfort to her and to their Dad during that sad time. What a remarkable book the Bible is that can have that type of an effect on both young and old.
Elder Porter then navigated with us through many Bible texts that speak of our “duty” to “love”. In Exodus 21:5, it speaks of a servant loving his master. In Luke 15, you can find the story of the prodigal son – the story of a Father’s love for his wayward children. The commandments tell us to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. Luke 10 tells the story of “the Good Samaritan” – a story about our duty to care for those who are not like us.
Then Elder Porter spoke to us about sacrifice. He reminded us of the sacrifices that were paid by almost every signer of the Declaration of Independence as a result of their commitment to the idea that became the United States of America. Every name carried with it the story of paying the ultimate price for what you believe. Elder Porter then reminded us of God’s ultimate love gift to our world – the life of His Son, Jesus Christ and how He paid the ultimate price so that we might be saved.
Shouldn’t we, like the rich young ruler, be asking Jesus that question? “What must I do to be saved?” And wouldn’t we, like that young man did, hear Jesus answer us “This do, and thou shalt live.”
We invite you to visit the Community Services Center located on the church property – open every Tuesday from 10:00 – 2:00. During the month of September 1,601 items were given away, 129 people served, and 77.5 hours given by our volunteers. We appreciate your donations and support enabling us to serve our community.
If we can be of assistance to you, please call the church at 683-5713, or Elder Eck Ulrich at 683-3343. Check us out at www.avaadventistchurch.org and follow us on Facebook!
May God bless and keep you!