Leiman, SZ., Response to Rabbi Brewer, in Carmy, S. (ed), God as Communion By Patricia A. For examples of such mistakes, Cherry notes that, in the Cain and Abel story, where 'sin' is mentioned, "sin (chatat) is feminine, but the predicate is masculine." , Modern scholars find inconsistencies in the Old Testament and Torah and ascribe many of them to the process by which they were created. The Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts, under the umbrella of The Center for the Research of Early Christian Documents (CRECD), exists for the following purposes: To make digital photographs of extant Greek New Testament manuscripts so that such images can be preserved, duplicated without deterioration, and accessed by scholars doing textual research. The record is then checked for consistency of information, and the claims are analyzed as if it were a legal case, looking for credible testimony with cross-examination. There are at least 24,000 manuscripts for the New Testament in all, including at least 8,000 in the Latin Vulgate and 1,000 in Syrian, Coptic, Armenian, Gothic, and Ethiopic, with 99.5% internal consistency. While in some cases God creates simply by speaking ("And God said..."), in others we are told that he performed certain actions: he made, separated, named, blessed, placed. The total number of ancient manuscripts supporting the New Testament amounts to 24,970+. One example of an alleged contradiction and its resolution is the creation account recorded in Genesis 1 and 2. , Ibn al-Layth, Ibn Rabban, and Ibn Qutayba, found that there had been no corruption of the text but denounced as tahrif what they considered misleading interpretations of the text. In spite of the number of authors and the volume of writing, the Bible, when it comes to internal agreement, exceeds what one could expect from any other ancient document. New Testament manuscripts in Greek can be categorized into five categories, according to their assessment in The Text of the New Testament. Since the location of God's holy site is probably the central original difference between Judaism and Samaritanism, it makes sense that this passage is in one version and not the other. Not so the so-called “other gospels,” which were pseudepigraphical Gnostic works written 100-300 years later. To date we have over 5800 Greek manuscripts of the New Testament, with an astounding 2.6 million pages of biblical… However, the New Testament has faced criticism like no other time over the 50-70-years. Gospels.  He also points out that Jesus is 42 generations away from King David in Luke, but only 28 generations away in Matthew. The problem of there being possible contradictions in the Gospels is of importance to Christians. On the subject of the Jewish text, B. Barry Levy writes about the Torah that "the textual integrity of every biblical book should be extremely important to those interested in either the Hebrew Bible or classical Jewish thought". The entire New Testament portion, plus part of the Old and the non-Biblical books, are in London, British Museum Add. Apparent Contradictions in the Bible: Why? The New Testament … Carson, Commentary on Matthew, Expositor's Bible Commentary CDROM.  They assert that the perspective of Paul is different from, and complementary to, that of James - "When Paul claims that one is justified by faith alone, apart from works, he is referring to works that precede salvation. Most biblical scholars admit the issue of the Law can be confusing and the topic of Paul and the Law is still frequently debated among New Testament scholars (for example, see New Perspective on Paul, Pauline Christianity); hence the various views. In addition there are over 19,000 copies in the Syriac, Latin, Coptic, and Aramaic languages. Copies of the New Testament can be found in more manuscripts than any other work of ancient literature. 43725. J. Philip Hyatt, a professor of the Old Testament at Vanderbilt University from 1944-1972, identified some of the challenges to maintaining the accuracy of the biblical text across the millennia: “It should be obvious from this history of the text that a period of a thousand years or more elapsed between the completion of the latest book of the [Old Testament] and most of the [manuscripts] on which modern study is based. Internal consistency within the synoptic gospels has been analysed by many scholars. Albert Barnes writes "the text now stands, it is an evident error. . In addition there are over 19,000 copies in the Syriac, Latin, Coptic, and Aramaic languages. Verse 8, in the Hebrew text, even says that the "entire Torah" is to be taught today. There are 643 known ancient copies of the Iliad, and the oldest dates from 400 B.C. , In the "Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties", Archer examines two verses in Acts describing the Conversion of Paul which are sometimes perceived as a contradiction:, Archer claims that the original Greek shows "there is no real contradiction between these two statements" because "Greek makes a distinction between hearing a sound as a noise (in which case the object to the verb "to hear" takes the genitive case) and hearing a voice as a thought-conveying message (in which case it takes the accusative)" and "in neither account is it stated that his companions ever heard that Voice in the accusative case". The Pentateuch, or Torah, is the first five books of the bible - Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. The Bible is the true Word of God! Even within the Old Testament, Marcion found contradictions. 36:9 vs. 2 Kings 24:8), the details of Apostle Paul's itinerary (Acts 9, 11, 15,18:22, 21 vs. Galatians 1:18, 2:1). The statement in Mark 8:31, that ‘the Son of man must suffer many things…and be killed and after three days rise again’, seems to involve a chronological difficulty, and some copyists changed the phrase to the more familiar expression, ‘on the third day’. For example, God commanded that no work should be done on the Sabbath, yet he told the Israelites to carry the ark around Jericho seven times on the Sabbath.  The 14th-century commentator Ibn Khaldun argued in the Muqaddimah (Introduction) that no distortion had taken place: "the statement concerning the alteration is unacceptable to thorough scholars and cannot be understood in its plain meaning". The deist minister Joseph Barker, speaking in 1854 at the Hartford Bible Convention, described the Bible as "the most inconsistent, the most monstrous and blasphemous representations of God that can possibly be conceived by the human mind" and argued that "The book that contradicts science and contradicts itself is a book of no authority whatsoever". Rabbis have suggested that this is because sin starts out weak like a woman, but ends as strong as a man. In evidence for this lack of detailed prescience, he points out that there are many stones left upon other stones in the remains of Herod's temple, for instance in the Wailing Wall. At John 1:28, Origen altered Bethany to Bethabara in order to remove what he regarded as a geographical difficulty, and this reading is extant today in MSS. But not a single copy is 100 percent in agreement with the others. ", In Matthew 27:3–8, Judas returns the bribe Christians believe he had immorally accepted for handing over Jesus, throwing the money into the temple before hanging himself. , According to Ehrman, a more important difference among the Gospels is with the book of John. Before delving into the sources of the New Testament, we must again make mention of Kurt and Barbara Aland.  Pastor Erwin Lutzer argues that the Bible is consistent in asserting that it is the word of God, and that this is a reason for accepting that it is of divine origin: "The sixty-six books speak with a consistent voice that these are the words of God".  More critical scholars see the nativity stories either as completely fictional accounts, or at least constructed from traditions that predate the Gospels. , Ehrman points out another problem (which he calls "particularly clear") concerning on which day Jesus was crucified. " In the 18th century, Thomas Paine in The Age of Reason compiled many of the Bible's self-contradictions. , Over the centuries, different communities have accepted shifting collections of books. , Justin Martyr, a 2nd-century Christian writer, declared the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible generally preferred in the early Church, to be "completely free of errors". Barton and Muddiman cite inconsistencies between the gospel writers about what happened at Christ's tomb. The grouping was first introduced by Caspar René Gregory, who assigned papyri texts the Blackletter character followed by a superscript number. Location: London, British Library The monastery agreed to present the manuscript to the tsar of Russia as protector of the Greek Church. When we try to conceptualize how to reconstruct an original after 2000 years of copying, translating, and copying some more, the task appears impossible.  Protestants, with their belief in salvation by faith alone, have had difficulty reconciling these contradictory views. The size of these biblical canons varies enormously, from the Samaritans, who consider the five books of the Torah alone to be authoritative, to the Ethiopian Bible, which contains all the books of all other churches plus such titles as the Book of Josephus and the Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians.
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