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Can We Trust Can We Trust The New Testament? www.SeanMcDowell.org www.SeanMcDowell.org.

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Presentation on theme: "Can We Trust Can We Trust The New Testament? www.SeanMcDowell.org www.SeanMcDowell.org."— Presentation transcript:

1 Can We Trust Can We Trust The New Testament?

2 Scripture reveals the God who is passionate about His relationship with you ~ Exodus 34:14

3 Can We Trust the New Testament? Three Key Tests: 1. Honesty Test 2. Telephone Test 3. Corroboration Test

4 Does the document claim to be reporting truth? 1. The Honesty Test

5 The benefit of the doubt is to be given to the document itself, and not arrogated by the critic to himself ~ Aristotle 1. The Honesty Test

6 Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us… ~ Luke 1:1-4

7 …just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word..

8 …Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account…

9 …so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught. ~ Luke 1:1-4

10 We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. ~ 2 Peter 1:16

11 What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands... ~ 1 John 1:1

12 Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was tetrach of Galilee, and his brother Philip was tetrarch of the reign of Ituraea… ~ Luke 3:1

13 Does the document contain embarrassing material? 1.Peter denies Jesus (Mark 14:70) 2.Jesus calls Peter Satan! (Matt. 16:23) 3.James and John want to reign with Jesus (Mk. 10:32-43) 4.Disciples dont understand Jesus teaching (Mk. 4:1-12) 5.Women discover the empty tomb (John 20) 1. The Honesty Test

14 2. The Telephone Test The Telephone Test examines if the documents have reached us accurately.

15 Question 1: What is the time gap between the original copies and the copies we have today?

16 Time: 2. The Telephone Test Original

17 Time: 2. The Telephone Test OriginalDisintegrated

18 Time: 2. The Telephone Test Generation #1

19 Time: 2. The Telephone Test Generation #1 Generation #2

20 Time: 2. The Telephone Test Generation #1 Generation #2 Generation #3

21 Pliny the Younger: 750 years Caesar: 1000 years Plato: 1200 years 2. The Telephone Test

22

23 Pliny the Younger 750 yrs. Caesar 1000 yrs. Plato 1200 yrs. Aristotle 1400 yrs. Sophocles 1400 yrs. Euripides 1500 yrs. Catallus 1600 yrs.

24 Pliny the Younger 750 yrs. Caesar 1000 yrs. Plato 1200 yrs. Aristotle 1400 yrs. Sophocles 1400 yrs. Euripides 1500 yrs. Catallus 1600 yrs. N.T. 50 yrs.

25 John Ryland Papyrus 130 AD Portions of the Gospel of John 2. The Telephone Test

26 Chester Beatty Papyri 200 A.D. Portions of Acts and the four Gospels

27 Complete New Testament Codex Vaticanus 325 A.D.

28 "We have more and earlier manuscript evidence about the person of Jesus Christ than we do anyone else in the ancient world-including Julius Caesar and Alexander the Great." Daniel B. Wallace, Reinventing Jesus

29 The Telephone Test Test #2: How many manuscripts do we have?

30 2. The Telephone Test Caesar: 10 manuscripts Plato (Tetralogies): 7 manuscripts Tacitus (Annals): 20 manuscripts

31 The New Testament: manuscripts 24,633

32 2. The Telephone Test What is the #2 manuscript authority after the New Testament?

33 2. The Telephone Test The Iliad by Homer 643 manuscripts

34 Iliad: 643 New Testament – 24,633

35 20,000 15,000 10,000 5,000 0 New TestamentIliadSophoclesAristotleLivyCaesarPlato 24, The Number of New Testament Manuscripts Compared to Other Ancient Works

36 "The short answer to the question of what theological truths are at stake is none." Daniel B. Wallace, Reinventing Jesus

37 2 nd & 3 rd century early Church Fathers Justin Martyr Ireneaus Clement of Alexandria

38 2 nd & 3 rd century early Church fathers quote the New Testament 36,289 times

39 eleven verses Because these early church fathers quoted the New Testament so much, all but eleven verses of the New Testament can be reconstructed just from their quotations.

40 3. Corroboration Test Do other historical materials confirm or deny the testimony provided by the document themselves? Do other historical materials confirm or deny the testimony provided by the document themselves?

41 Early Non-Christian Writers Nine non-Christian sources mention Jesus within 150 years of his death42 total Tiberius Caesar, Roman emperor at the time of Jesus ministry and execution, has ten sources mention him within 150 years.

42 Archaeological Evidence An inscription of Pilate

43 Archaeological Evidence The pool of Bethesda, as recorded in John 5:2

44 Dr. Hewitt, Harvard Theological Review: There is astonishingly little evidence that the feet of a crucified person were ever pierced by nails. Yohanan found in 1968 crucified with 7 nailsYohanan found in 1968 crucified with 7 nails His legs were broken, confirming John 19:32His legs were broken, confirming John 19:32 A Dead Man Speaks

45 It may be stated categorically that no archaeological discovery has ever contraverted a biblical reference. Scores of archaeological findings have been made which confirm in clear outline or exact detail historical statements in the Bible. ~ Nelson Glueck


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