The gospels

The English term gospel comes from the Old English ‘godspel.’  There was a 1971 musical play with the name “Godspell.”  Like the Greek word εὐαγγέλιον, gospel means good news or good tidings.  This term originally meant the Christian message itself.  However, in the second century, it came to be used for the books in which this message was set out.  Thus, the gospels became known as the written accounts of the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth.  These books are the basis of our knowledge about Jesus Christ.  They present a somewhat coherent picture of the life of Christ with different emphasis from each author.  We also have the phrase, “That’s the gospel truth.”

Papyrus and paper

Papyrus usually refers to a document written on sheets joined together side by side.  Papyrus was like thick paper, so that people could write on it.  The papyrus sheets came from the inner bark of the papyrus plant.  Normally, they would roll these parchments into a scroll.  This was the early form of a book.  The Greek origins come for this word for papyrus, βύβλος was similar to the Greek word for a book.  Thus, the English term ‘paper’ is derived from papyrus.