D. " Sola Scriptura " vs. " Tradition "

E. Perspicuity vs. "Hiddenness" of revelation VI. Skeptical Issues

"A translation of a translation of a translation..."

"The church introduced deliberate errors to further its ends..."

"The miracles stories are later embellishments, made to legendize the leader..."

"The apostles made it up, to enhance their status"

"The bible is literally teeming with errors"

"The biblical stories, concepts, and images are merely plagiarisms from earlier cultures..."

"Jesus' belief in the OT was wrong--he was just believing the way 1st century Jews did..." (Modernist view)

"Revelation is not accurate--it is simply God accommodating his message to our inadequate ways of thinking..."

"The bible is just myth--'true' myth, of course--but nonetheless not historical...the writers were not interested in the historical details and/or facts...the imperatives of the message were all that mattered..."

VII. Implications

Deut. 5:24 And you said, "The LORD our God has shown us his glory and his majesty, and we have heard his voice from the fire. Today we have seen that a man can live even if God speaks with him.

Deut. 29:29 The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.

Matt. 4:4 Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.' "

Final Exam

  1. Why do we have to test 'external revelation'?
  2. Why couldn't the Bible have been more precise or scientific?
  3. Name two 'errors' that were answered over time, through archeology.
  4. How was the canon determined?
  5. How does P52 bear on the question of the reliability of the mss. we have?
  6. Refute: In OT times, scribes were not concerned with accuracy of transmission--the concept of a sacred canon just hadn't developed yet."
  7. Name one kind of revision that HAD TO BE MADE to the OT text over time?
  8. What is the significance of the NT nomina sacra in relation to scribal discipline in NT transmission?
  9. Name two safeguards used to insure the OT text was copied reliably?
  10. What support for OT mss. reliability did the Dead Sea Scrolls give us?
  11. What is the main argument against the Conceptual theory of inspiration?
  12. Does Inspiration refer to the process of the writing or the product ?
  13. What is the difference between 'native' interpretation and 'literal' interpretation?
  14. To 'experience' more of the clarity of scripture, what must we do?

Matching: Match the skeptical objection on the left with a possible answer on the right.

A. The bible we have today, as a translation 1. If God acted in history, religious of a translation of a translation, is probably truth could be expressed in historical so 'watered down' that we don't even HAVE the terms. The writers didn't need myth-- Bible". they had the exodus, captivity, etc.

2. Actually, it is not clear from arch. who borrowed from whom, but the B. The church changed so much of the bible general rule is that the more complex to further its financial and political agenda. (the outside myths) is based on the simpler (the OT versions).

3. People don't die for something C. All the miracles stories about Jesus were they KNOW is a lie--yet the apostles added much later, to make the founder look all died or were exiled for their claims. more powerful. And besides, there were too many witnesses still alive to get away with it.

D. The apostles made up the whole story about 4. But the earliest records we have Jesus the Messiah and his resurrection. (within a few years of the events) all describe the miracles, even with all those eyewitnesses still living. And they never did find the dead body of E. The bible is literally teeming with errors! Jesus Christ to refute the resurrection.

5. The main groups didn't, and what little was done by individuals, we can, F. It is common knowledge that the Bible is based and do, catch through the abundance of on older myths from the surrounding cultures. ancient mss.

6. Actually, we don't need to use translations at all. We have more than G. Sure Jesus believed the OT--just like all the enough ancient mss (24,000 for the NT!) other 1st Century Jews. As God became Man, to avoid the 'creeping errors' of the he had all the knowledge limitations of the men telephone game. in his day. He was just simply wrong about it. 7. Actually, the number of alleged errors in the bible GOES DOWN over time. We have so many cases where H. The bible is just myth--true myth--and not to Biblical 'problems' were solved through be taken as historical fact. That would make archeological discovery, that it makes it more a history book, than a great religious more sense to simply suspend judgment. and spiritual work. 8. But He corrected them on many points in which they were in error. Plus, He was never wrong about anything else, and he showed advanced knowledge often.

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