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6 Bible Facts You Probably Didn't Know

By Mormon.org
open bible with glasses on page

The Holy Bible

The Bible is an amazing book with a fascinating history. Here are some interesting facts:

1. Thou Shalt Not Steal

There are several claims that the Bible is the most shoplifted book. Why would a book that preaches “Thou shalt not steal” be lifted from store shelves without payment? Some surmise that perhaps the belief is held that Bibles should be free or that high-quality Bibles are too expensive. However, the eighth commandment is easy to keep if you have this link for a free Bible.

2. How Old Did You Say?

The Old Testament is aptly named. The Bible may have been written over a period of at least 1,000 years, beginning possibly around 1500 B.C. Genesis in the Bible may date back much further, and that might increase the age to the time of Abraham (2000 B.C.), or even Noah (2500 B.C.) or Adam (4000 B.C.).

3. Mummy Mask

This article written in January 2015 tells of a 1st century Gospel of Mark found in a mummy mask, which would make it the world’s oldest Bible scripture. How did they find it? When poor Egyptians lost a loved one, they could not afford masks of gold like the pharaohs for their deceased. Instead, they created papier-mache masks. These Egyptians were thrifty and would never dream of using expensive new paper, so they used paper that had been written on by Christians, which they deemed to be “trash.” Thanks to the thriftiness of these Egyptians, we’re finding priceless pieces of history.

4. The Oldest Printed Bible

Before the printing press, the Bible was handwritten on scrolls and later was written in a codex, which was the first representation of what we now know as books. The first printed Bible appeared in Mainz, or present-day Germany, by a man named Johannes Gutenberg in the 1450s. This printing started the “Gutenberg Revolution” and the age of the printed book in the West. Forty-eight substantial copies of the Gutenberg Bible survive and are considered to be among the most valuable books in the world.

5. A Martyr for the English Bible

Four hundred years ago the Bible was not in wide circulation. Bibles were then written in an ancient language that only the learned could read. Its teachings were provided by priests who restricted its access to the public and ensured it was preached according to their interpretation.

A man named William Tyndale was deeply touched by the teachings in the Bible and became passionate about providing an English translation for the people. He boldly spoke the following to a learned churchman: “If God spare my life, ere many years I will cause a boy that driveth a plow shall know more of the scripture than thou.”

Under great personal threat and in secrecy, Tyndale created his English translation. Before he was martyred for his actions he said this of his works, “I followed the counsel of Christ which exhorted men to do their good deeds secretly.”

6. Truth for All Tongues

As of November 2014 the Bible has been translated into 531 languages, and 2,883 languages have at least a portion of this sacred text.

Once again, no need to steal God’s word. Order your free Bible right here.