Insights: The Newsletter of the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship



New Testament Studies, canonized scripture, early Christianity


Within a century of the death of Jesus Christ, Christians had produced a body of religious writings that preserved and complemented their presumably rich oral tradition. This small but diverse library included various accounts of Christ's birth, collections of his sayings, reports of his wondrous deeds and the missionary activities of his apostles, Paul's letters, homilies, and more. A few centuries later, some of these writings became canonized as accepted scriptures to the exclusion of others. Who made those crucial decisions? How, when, and under what circumstances was our present New Testament canon determined?