Monthly Archives: February 2009

Week 3 Audio and Outline

Click here to visit our Life Groups Audio Library to listen to or download audio from week three, and click on the link below for the outline. Enjoy!

Objection 1 – The Gospels Weren’t Intended as History (wk 3)


“Textual Criticism” – A Very Brief Introduction

I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I’m just not going to be able to offer in-depth analysis of this week’s extra question: Has the church reliably preserved or hopelessly corrupted Scriptures down through the centuries? So rather than continue to delay something that probably won’t ever come :), I’ll offer this very brief introduction. The technical term for the field of study that deals with this question is “textual criticism.” I’ll divide the post into three sections.

Textual Criticism is . . .

Textual criticism refers to the study of ancient manuscripts and the quest to arrive at the original text of the New Testament (and/or other ancient documents). If you watched the video in the post below, you learned a bit about how the Scriptures have been preserved. During the Middle Ages, much of this happened via the copying efforts of monks and scribes. As we might have predicted, errors big and small crept into certain copies and versions of the biblical text. Continue reading

Video – “History of Text”

I still plan on posting about how Scripture has been passed down through the centuries, but in the mean time check out this video called “History of Text” from Northeast Christian Church. The link will take you to their media player; look for “History of Text” in the sidebar to the right. It tells the story of the Bible from the beginning up to today. It will be a good preview to some of the things I want to say. It’s pretty well done, too!

Audio Recordings and Outlines

Hello friends,

I’ve finally figured out how to get the audio up, as well as copies of the handout. Click below for the handouts and click here to visit the RLC Life Groups Audio Library, where you can listen to or download recordings of our first two weeks.

How the Gospels Became “the Gospels” (week 1 notes)

Building a Case for the Gospels’ Reliability (week 2 notes)

Let me know if you have any troubles with either the notes or the recordings. I’ll try to post tomorrow on whether Scripture has been reliably preserved or hopelessly corrupted down through the centuries.

How we got the Old Testament

I haven’t had much time to dig  into the question of how the Old Testament became the Old Testament. Sorry Shawn! I’ll write a bit and we’ll go from there. The basic story is the same, though much more complex because there are more authors, longer periods of oral transmission of tradition, and a couple more millenia from beginning to end. 🙂

Many of the pre-Moses traditions would have been passed down orally. (Remember that this process is impressively reliable.) Then Moses had a very important role as bringer together of those earlier traditions, and author of much more. He was the central author/editor of the Torah or “Pentateuch” (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy). God instructed Moses to keep the books of Torah in a special location for future generations (Deut 31.24-26), which is later placed somewhere in the Temple (2 Kings 22.8). Continue reading