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by  |  12-May-2014 18:34

Their critical method—rooted in rationalistic assumptions—soon jumped from the German theological schools to Anglicanism and Catholicism.The modern critical method seemed to bring the hard-edged tools of scholarship and a scientific method to the practice of understanding Scripture. On one hand, we now know far more about the intricacies of the biblical texts, the historical background of the New Testament, and the complexion and intellectual world of the early Church.

A prophecy is not necessarily a supernatural event like some pagan soothsayer trying to read a crystal ball. Paul were killed in Rome during the persecution by the Emperor Nero.  Therefore, Paul’s epistles and the first epistle of Peter were written before 65.

Jesus’ prophecy that Jerusalem would be destroyed may have been a supernatural vision of the future, but it could just as feasibly been a common-sense realization of what would happen, knowing how the Romans treated rebels and knowing how inclined the Jews were to rebellion. We can also piece together evidence to determine that other books of the New Testament also date from before the deaths of Peter and Paul. Luke, Paul’s companion and the author of one of the Gospels, wrote the Acts of the Apostles. If Peter and Paul had died by the time Luke completed Acts of the Apostles, we can be sure he would have mentioned their deaths—especially since both were martyred.

If the stories of the New Testament are fanciful constructions by Christians of a later date, then they can be dismissed as pious frauds.

If the New Testament documents are not to be trusted for their historicity, then the moral and doctrinal teachings found therein are more easily debatable.

One of the details he recorded is this:  It is said that he [Jesus] changed the name of one of the apostles to Peter; and it is written in his [Peter’s] memoirs that he changed the names of others, two brothers, the sons of Zebedee, to Boanerges, which means “sons of thunder.”  What are Peter’s “memoirs”?

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