I was reading this in an article by Bruce Metzger on the formation of the Biblical Canon:
“In short, the status of canonicity is not an objectively demonstrable claim, but is a statement of Christian belief. It is not affected by features that are open to adjudication, such as matters of authorship and genuineness, for a pseudepigraphon [a letter written under a different author’s name, as some claim some of the letters of Paul to be] is not necessarily to be excluded from the canon…To some scholars the seemingly haphazard manner in which the canon was delimited is an offence. It is sometimes asked how the canon can be regarded as a special gift from God to the Church when its development from a ‘soft’ to ‘hard’ canon progressed in what appears to be such a random and, indeed, haphazard manner…[But, as] William Barclay [said]: ‘it is the simple truth to say that New Testament books became canonical because no one could stop them from doing so.’…If this fact is obscured, one comes into serious conflict not with dogma but with history….
The word and the Scripture are united in such a way that they constitute an organic unity; they are related to each other as the soul to the body [and] that relation is unique; its closest parallel is the relation of the divine and human natures in the person of Jesus Christ, who is the Word incarnate.”
I love our messy, sloppy, confusing, and authoritative Bible.
Get ’em, Bruce.