Manuscript Evidence Time Gaps Time between the actual events and the earliest known manuscripts regarding the event Herodotus – 1300 years Pliny – 800 years Homer – 500 years Dead Sea Scrolls dated from 150 B.C. to 70 A.D. Dead Sea Scrolls ~250 to 470 years between scrolls and Malachi. New Testament – 40-80 years between events of Jesus life and writing of all New Testament books.
Dead Sea Scrolls Discovered in 1947-1948 in 11 caves on northwest shore of Dead Sea Written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek Written by Essens a group of scholarly Jews Over 1000 documents, including non-religious texts Entire Hebrew Bible except book of Esther Some complete, some fragments Entire book of Isaiah was in complete textual agreement with the previously oldest text (Massoretic) from around 900 A.D.
The evidence for our New Testament writings is ever so much greater than the evidence for many writings of classical authors, the authenticity of which no one dreams of questioning…. If the New Testament had been a collection of secular writings, their authenticity would generally be regarded as beyond all doubt. F.F. Bruce, English scholar
Archeology Discoveries of archeology can be helpful in removing doubts about the historical trustworthiness of the Bible. It can be used to demonstrate the people, places and events of the Bible are true.
Archeology Burial Sites Jesus – Emperor Constantine locates the tomb under a 2 nd century Roman Temple and builds The Church of the Holy Sepulchre on the site.
Archeology Burial Sites Caiaphas – high priest of Israel during earthly ministry of Christ. Ossuary discovered in 1990 by Jewish road workers. Contained bones of a 60 year old man. Elaborately decorated and inscribed with his name. First time archeology discovered physical remains of someone named in the Bible.
Archeology Burial Sites Patriarchs – Abraham, Isaac, Jacob buried in the Cave of Machpelah in modern Hebron. Writings from 200 B.C. confirm this site. Excavated in 1100s by individuals claiming to have found their bones. Now underneath a Muslim Mosque.
Archeology Structures excavated Moab palace (Ehud assassinates Eglon) – Jud. 3:15-30. Baal Temple in Shechem – Judges 9:4, 46-49 Royal palace of Samaria (Northern Kingdom) –I & II Kings Pool of Assyria (Ahabs chariot) – I Kings 22:29-38 Hezekiahs water tunnel – II kings 20:20 Babylonian royal palace – Daniel 5 Royal palace in Susa – Esther Synagogue in Capernaum – Mark 1:21-28 Peters home – Matthew 8:14-16
Archeology Structures excavated Jacobs well – John 4 Pool of Bethesda (Jerusalem) – John 5:1-14 Pool of Siloam – John 9:1-4 Corinthian Tribunal – Acts 18:12-17 Ephesian Theater – Acts 19:29 Herods palace – Acts 23:33-35
Archeology Old Testament locations and events confirmed Jericho Nineveh Ur (Abrahams birthplace) Babylon Meggido (Solomons horse stables) Tyre Papyrus confirming Sanballat/Tobiah as rulers during Nehemiah rebuilding Jersusalems walls.
Fulfilled Prophecy Approximately 2500 prophecies in the Bible Around 2000 already fulfilled –To the letter! 500 or so related to future events. Chance of any one prophecy coming true is ~ 1 in 10. Chance of 2000 unrelated prophecies coming true is 1 in 10 2000 ! Deuteronomy 18:21-22 And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
Fulfilled Prophesy Jesus More than 300 were fulfilled with His first coming. > 20 specific Old Testament prophecies were fulfilled during the 24-hour period of his crucifixion. Specific and verifiable. Recorded hundreds of years before His birth. Peter Stoner – mathematician Looked at 48 specific prophecies concerning Jesus. Odds of all 48 coming true is 1 in 10 157 ! Changed his life and converted to Christianity.
Historical Accuracy Bible is more accurate than written histories of Egypt, Assyria and other nations. No archeological discovery has ever controverted a biblical reference. Scores of archeological findings have been mad which confirm in clear outline or in exact detail historical statements in the Bible. Dr. Nelson Glueck, archeologist
Scientific Accuracy The Bible is not a science textbook, however many principles of modern science were recorded as facts of nature in its pages long before scientists and explorers confirmed them experimentally. Roundness of the earth – Isaiah 40:22 Almost infinite extent of the universe – Isaiah 55:9 Law of conservation of mass/energy – II Peter 3:7 Hydrologic cycle – Ecclesiastes 1:7 Vast number of stars – Jeremiah 33:22 Law of increasing entropy – Psalms 102:25-27 Importance of blood in life processes – Leviticus 17:11 Atmospheric circulation – Ecclesiastes 1:6 Gravitational field – Job 26:7
Indestructibility Emperor Diocletian A.D. 303 Ordered all Bibles destroyed. 20 years later, Constantine offered a reward for any remaining Bibles. In 24 hours, 50 were brought to him. Pope Innocent III – 1199 A.D. Orders all Bibles burned. Communist dictators – Joseph Stalin Yet there are more copies than any other book in history!
Unique Structure 66 books written over a 2,000 year period by men of all different walks of life(kings, princes, statesmen, men of science, priests, fisherman, herdsmen, shepherds, etc). Each one lived in their own place in history and did not know what the others had written. None knew there writings would be compiled into one book. Consistent message conveyed throughout the entire Bible – The story of Gods creative and redemptive work on the behalf of mankind.
Universal Influence Foundational document of Western Civilization Magna Carta and Declaration of Independence mention of God or Creator. 117 of the worlds most famous paintings are of Biblical characters. Numerous composers of classical music drew on Biblical truth to stir their creative genius.
Life-Changing Effect Millions of changed lives. People willing to endure torture and imprisonment.