Many of my critics will accuse me of having delusions of grandeur for believing I am “God-breathed”, but how will they criticize my arrogance for being essentially a one-man Council of Nicaea?
Biblical scholars have asserted that the New Testament found in modern Bibles had been determined within decades of Jesus crucifixion and Resurrection. Dan Brown postulated, in his The Da Vinci Code, that the canon was not finally decided on until the First Council of Nicaea in 325 AD. This is a common misconception. The truth is somewhere in the middle.
Many of the early Church Fathers quote and cite many of the books we consider the New Testament, but certainly not all. While there were no disputes among the four Gospels, there was fiery debate over the canonicity of Hebrews (whether or not Paul actually wrote it), James, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, and most controversial book then and now, the Book of Revelation.
Would it come as a shock to lay-Christians to discover that it was not one of the early Church Fathers who was the first to determine the canon of the New Testament, but the heretical and openly denounced Marcion of Sinope. However, the canon Marcion was the first to propose and delineate throughout the still nascent Christian Church was not then and is not now the canon we recognize as the New Testament. The early Church Fathers had their hands forced by this heretic. Only they had the religious and spiritual authority to recognize which books were “God-breathed”: and therefore profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works (2 Tim. 3:16-17).
The canon was not divinely inspired, but was instead the work of men. The decisions made were not spiritual, but political. With so many scriptures, some authoritative, others regrettably Gnostic, the Church could not have each Christian household or church reading and studying a wide and often contradictory variety of sacred scripture. There should and could only be one New Testament.
Since the canon is the work of men, then is it the height of arrogance to take the letters written by actual Crusaders and translated in academic volumes by scholars such as Dana C. Munro, August C. Krey, and James Brundage, and raise these works to the heights of Heaven? I am not claiming that the authors of these letters, nor their more modern translators, believed they were themselves “God-breathed”. It is my own arrogance to promote them, unilaterally, to the reverence of being “God-breathed” and canonical.
The Holy Bible Trilogy began as my schizophrenic voices instructing me to write my own Next Testament so that after nearly twenty centuries the Word of God would and could continue. And It would continue beyond the Next Testament, not in a work written by my pen (or typed on my computer), but by anthologizing letters that barely survived the Crusades and the centuries since, only to be discovered and translated into scholastic works, which themselves survived their own obscurity to be openly and freely disseminated on that 21st Century peculiarity that is the worldwide-web. And ultimately they would be included in the “heretical” and “blasphemous” Holy Bible Trilogy’s The Crusadic Testament.