The books in the Bible are considered to be canonical. The word canon comes from the root word reed, then a rod for measuring, then a standard or a rule of faith. Thus the Bible is "an officially accepted list of books." It is those books that are considered an authoritative and reliable rule of faith.

There were many reasons to have a canon. One reason is that there are other books or writings that some wanted to consider as authoritative. Some of these are the Apocryphal books, 14 each; and other writings. These books are considered spurious and fraudulent; and not to be considered authoritative and reliable as a rule of faith.

The idea that there be a canon is Bible based. The books of the Bible have undergone a test to see if they measure up to at least five principles or questions that would or would not canonize them.

  1. Was it written by a prophet of God? Deut. 18:18; Heb. 1:1; 2 Peter 1:20-21.
  2. Were the words of the man of God confirmed by an act of God? Heb. 2:3-4; Deut. 18:22; Jer. 28:9.
  3. Does it tell the truth about God? Gal. 1:8; Deut. 18:22. Is it in agreement with earlier revelation?
  4. Does it have the transforming power of God? Heb. 4:12; John 6:44-45.
  5. Was it accepted by the people of God? 1 Thess 2:13; 2 Peter 3:16; Col. 4:16; 1 Thess. 5:27.