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Author Topic:   Textual Discrepancies & How They Could Impact Christianity
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1748 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 1 of 93 (586990)
10-16-2010 2:39 AM


Whenever textual criticisms of the New Testament are brought up in a discussion, the classic response is that the discrepancies don’t impact the basic tenets of Christianity. The purpose of this thread is to take an objective look at some of the verses that scholars consider to be later additions to some of the New Testament manuscripts and see whether they actually impact any or all of the basic tenets of Christianity.

Realistically, the early Christian writings reflect the development of the basic Christian beliefs. So odds are the writings were chosen for the canon because they supported or could be used to support the tenets of the religion that became orthodox. IOW, the writings came after the beliefs. For that reason I would also like to look at how these discrepancies could also impact general Christian layperson beliefs, practices, and traditions that may or may not be the same across the sects of Christianity.

Here are 12 Basic Tenets of Christianity that I found on the internet.

1. Jesus Christ is the Only Way to Eternal Salvation With God the Father
2. We Are Saved by Grace Through Faith – Not by Works
3. Jesus Christ is the Son of God
4. The Incarnation of Jesus Christ
5. The Bodily Resurrection of Jesus Christ From the Grave
6. The Ascension of Jesus Christ
7. The Doctrine of the Trinity
8. The Holy Bible is the Inspired and Infallible Word of God
9. We Are Baptized With the Holy Spirit at the Moment of Salvation
10. Regeneration by the Holy Spirit
11. The Doctrine of Hell
12. The 2nd Coming of Jesus Back to our Earth

From the research of Bart D. Ehrman, these are from the top ten most familiar verses that weren't “originally” in the New Testament. (Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why, Bart D. Ehrman, 2005, Pgs 265-266)

I feel these verses could have an impact on certain tenets, beliefs and practices of Christianity.

1 John 5:7 - There are three that bear witness in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit, and these three are one.

IMO, this impacts the Doctrine of the Trinity

There is one big, whopper mammoth verse that you can literally base the entire doctrine of the Trinity on. Here it is:
“For there are three who bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one.” (1 John 5:7)

Unfortunately, that verse isn’t in the earliest Greek manuscripts. With the “sure thing” gone, apologists have to pull together a lot more verses from various writings to seemingly support this tenet. 1 John was supposedly written about 90-120 CE.

Verses in the KJV which do not appear in the NIV & other contemporary translations. This site allows a nice side by side comparision.

So instead of:

7For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.
8And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.

The early Greeks manuscript actually had:

7For there are three that testify: 8the[a] Spirit, the water and the blood; and the three are in agreement.

Luke 22:20 - and in the same way after supper Jesus took the cup and said, "This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood."

Luke is the only gospel that said “new” covenant. This can impact the belief that Jesus ushered in the new covenant spoken of in Jeremiah.

Mark 16:17 - These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons and they will speak with new tongues
18 - And they will take up snakes in their hands, and if they drink any poison it will not harm them, and they will lay their hands on the sick and they will become well.

I feel this is the primary verse that Christian Scientists use to support faith healing.

This is also part of the larger missing section of Mark 16:9-20:1. This section adds a resurrection narrative to the story in Mark and gives the directive to ” He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.

It’s the basis for door to door Christian proselytizing and missionary work abroad.

I do feel that these added portions have impacted Christianity and the fact that they aren’t in the earlier manuscripts can impact basic tenets, practices, and beliefs. I have not said that they disprove the validity of Christianity altogether or impact all tenets, practices, and beliefs.

This discussion is about verses or sections of the New Testament that aren’t in the earlier Greek manuscripts and how they could impact basic Christian tenets, beliefs, traditions, and practices.

I've brought up a few, if anyone knows of any other verses that aren't in the earlier manuscripts, please share them and how you feel they could impact Christian tenets, beliefs, traditions, or practices.

This discussion is not about whether the Christian tenets are right or wrong, morality issues, or whether God exists or is good or bad.

Bible Study or A&I please. Thanks


Replies to this message:
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Adminnemooseus
Director
Posts: 3896
Joined: 09-26-2002


Message 2 of 93 (587014)
10-16-2010 10:25 AM


Thread Copied from Proposed New Topics Forum
Thread copied here from the Textual Discrepancies & How They Could Impact Christianity thread in the Proposed New Topics forum.

    
jaywill
Member (Idle past 232 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 3 of 93 (587074)
10-16-2010 7:47 PM


Some groundwork on Dr. Bart Erhman:

Erhmam verses Luke and Mark:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDrdQuk1Jwk


Replies to this message:
 Message 4 by jar, posted 10-16-2010 7:51 PM jaywill has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 4 of 93 (587075)
10-16-2010 7:51 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by jaywill
10-16-2010 7:47 PM


Was there anything in your link that had any significance?


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 3 by jaywill, posted 10-16-2010 7:47 PM jaywill has responded

Replies to this message:
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jaywill
Member (Idle past 232 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 5 of 93 (587081)
10-16-2010 8:29 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by jar
10-16-2010 7:51 PM


Bart Erhman's methods further critiqued
Ground work on Bart Erhman is in order.

Bart Erhman on NPR critiqued:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyQPNrQxqmo&feature=related

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.


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 Message 4 by jar, posted 10-16-2010 7:51 PM jar has responded

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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 6 of 93 (587082)
10-16-2010 8:30 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by jaywill
10-16-2010 8:29 PM


Re: Bart Erhman's methods further critiqued
Was there anything in your link that had any significance?


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

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AdminModulous
Administrator (Idle past 395 days)
Posts: 897
Joined: 03-02-2006


Message 7 of 93 (587112)
10-16-2010 10:35 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by jaywill
10-16-2010 8:29 PM


quote:
Bare links with no supporting discussion should be avoided. Make the argument in your own words and use links as supporting references.

Forum Guidelines


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kbertsche
Member (Idle past 422 days)
Posts: 1427
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007


Message 8 of 93 (587119)
10-17-2010 12:21 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by purpledawn
10-16-2010 2:39 AM


quote:
Here are 12 Basic Tenets of Christianity that I found on the internet.

1. Jesus Christ is the Only Way to Eternal Salvation With God the Father
2. We Are Saved by Grace Through Faith – Not by Works
3. Jesus Christ is the Son of God
4. The Incarnation of Jesus Christ
5. The Bodily Resurrection of Jesus Christ From the Grave
6. The Ascension of Jesus Christ
7. The Doctrine of the Trinity
8. The Holy Bible is the Inspired and Infallible Word of God
9. We Are Baptized With the Holy Spirit at the Moment of Salvation
10. Regeneration by the Holy Spirit
11. The Doctrine of Hell
12. The 2nd Coming of Jesus Back to our Earth



I wouldn't put all of these on an equal level, but let's go with your list for now.

quote:
From the research of Bart D. Ehrman, these are from the top ten most familiar verses that weren't “originally” in the New Testament. (Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why, Bart D. Ehrman, 2005, Pgs 265-266)

I don't understand why anyone would want to rely on Bart Ehrman; he puts forth a minority view which flies in the face of mainstream historical and biblical scholarship.

quote:
I feel these verses could have an impact on certain tenets, beliefs and practices of Christianity.

1 John 5:7 - There are three that bear witness in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit, and these three are one.
IMO, this impacts the Doctrine of the Trinity



This verse is a late addition to the text. It is not original. It is not included in most modern translations. But its absence does NOT impact the doctrine of the Trinity. There are plenty of other verses that attribute deity to Jesus and to the Holy Spirit.

quote:
Luke 22:20 - and in the same way after supper Jesus took the cup and said, "This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood."
Luke is the only gospel that said “new” covenant. This can impact the belief that Jesus ushered in the new covenant spoken of in Jeremiah.

How does this relate to the 12 "basic tenets of Christianity" that you quoted above? I don't see this as any of them.

quote:
Mark 16:17 - These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons and they will speak with new tongues
18 - And they will take up snakes in their hands, and if they drink any poison it will not harm them, and they will lay their hands on the sick and they will become well.
I feel this is the primary verse that Christian Scientists use to support faith healing.

This is also part of the larger missing section of Mark 16:9-20:1. This section adds a resurrection narrative to the story in Mark and gives the directive to ” He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.

It’s the basis for door to door Christian proselytizing and missionary work abroad.



1) Again, I don't see how this relates to any of the "basic tenets of Christianity" that you quoted above.
2) Essentially all of the information in the last part of Mark (which I agree is non-original) can be found at the end of Matthew, the end of Luke, or the beginning of Acts, all of which ARE original.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by purpledawn, posted 10-16-2010 2:39 AM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 9 by purpledawn, posted 10-17-2010 6:25 AM kbertsche has responded

    
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1748 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 9 of 93 (587132)
10-17-2010 6:25 AM
Reply to: Message 8 by kbertsche
10-17-2010 12:21 AM


Trinity and Great Commission
Ehrman's book is simply the source for the top ten most familiar verses that weren't "originally" in the New Testament. Whether one agrees with Ehrman's conclusions or not, either these verses were in the oldest manuscripts or they weren't. This discussion is about verses that aren't in the oldest manuscripts and how they impact Christianity. Address my arguments, not Ehrman's.

quote:
This verse is a late addition to the text. It is not original. It is not included in most modern translations. But its absence does NOT impact the doctrine of the Trinity. There are plenty of other verses that attribute deity to Jesus and to the Holy Spirit.
Didn't really read my argument did you or the links I provided? The Doctrine of the Trinity is:

Simply put, the doctrine of the Trinity states that there is:

One God in three Persons

As this link showed, yes there are many verses used to show that Jesus is a god, but that isn't the issue here. Since the Bible states that there is only one God, the orthodox group of Christianity had to find a way to counter the claims that they were polytheistic. The idea of one god in three persons is really only supported by 1 John 5:7. There are two other verses in the Gospel of John that could be construed to support the Trinity, but they are weak. (John 14:10 & John 10:30)

quote:
How does this relate to the 12 "basic tenets of Christianity" that you quoted above? I don't see this as any of them.
Again, didn't read my arguments. From Message 1: For that reason I would also like to look at how these discrepancies could also impact general Christian layperson beliefs, practices, and traditions that may or may not be the same across the sects of Christianity.

quote:
1) Again, I don't see how this relates to any of the "basic tenets of Christianity" that you quoted above.
2) Essentially all of the information in the last part of Mark (which I agree is non-original) can be found at the end of Matthew, the end of Luke, or the beginning of Acts, all of which ARE original.
Mark and Matthew are different. Luke and Acts don't really address the same thing. I'd appreciate it if you would provide the verse numbers when referring to other verses. Then I know we are looking at the same verses.

The Matthew version of the Great Commission is the most familiar, but it isn't the same as Mark.

The task in Mark is to proclaim the "good news", not teach. The door to door Christians aren't trying to teach anyone to obey what Jesus had commanded, they are spreading the "good news" and telling people they are condemned if they don't believe and become a Christian.

The addition to Mark also brings up the idea that these signs accompany those who believe: driving out demons, speaking in tongues, handling snakes, drinking poison, and healing people.

I still feel that the commission in Mark impacts the layperson differently than the commission in Matthew. The churches that handle snakes and drink poison probably wouldn't be doing those rituals if the text wasn't added or preachers stopped using it.

There's a difference between teaching (mathéteuó) and preaching (kérussó). So in Matthew, they were to gain students and teach them the commands that Jesus had taught his own students, not preach the "good news".

Edited by purpledawn, : Forgot Subtitle


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Flyer75
Member (Idle past 713 days)
Posts: 242
From: Dayton, OH
Joined: 02-15-2010


Message 10 of 93 (587144)
10-17-2010 9:27 AM


This is something I'll have to research a bit more but from a few books I've read on the subject a couple things need to be pointed out:

One, we don't have the complete texts of hardly anything in the Bible. We have bits and pieces (some older then others). I don't think whether or not these "verses were added" has any bearing on whether they were there in the first place.

Two, just because we haven't found the older manuscripts with these verses in them, doesn't mean they weren't there originally, doesn't mean they weren't there. So we found later manuscripts with the verses in them, but this is something that is even more so of an issue with the OT, then the NT, where many of those tenants of the Christian faith are also found.

I'm not sure if I made any sense there but I would only see this as a problem if the verses had been added in say, the 1500's or so....I'm not on the dates of the manuscripts found and what's contained in them or when verses were added (which again, I think is the wrong terminology).


    
Thugpreacha
Member
Posts: 13051
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.2


Message 11 of 93 (587150)
10-17-2010 9:54 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by purpledawn
10-16-2010 2:39 AM


Speaking Only For Myself
This discussion is about verses or sections of the New Testament that aren’t in the earlier Greek manuscripts and how they could impact basic Christian tenets, beliefs, traditions, and practices.

OK, certainly how the book is interpreted is important for some.

A bigger question is why some interpretations are valued and why it matters.


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kbertsche
Member (Idle past 422 days)
Posts: 1427
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007


Message 12 of 93 (587238)
10-17-2010 10:22 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by purpledawn
10-17-2010 6:25 AM


Re: Trinity and Great Commission
purpledawn writes:

Ehrman's book is simply the source for the top ten most familiar verses that weren't "originally" in the New Testament. Whether one agrees with Ehrman's conclusions or not, either these verses were in the oldest manuscripts or they weren't. This discussion is about verses that aren't in the oldest manuscripts and how they impact Christianity. Address my arguments, not Ehrman's.


Ehrman is telling us nothing new here. The Greek "Textus Receptus" added a number of words, phrases, and verses that were not in the originals and are not in the Greek "critical texts." This was known since before the Reformation, at least, when Erasmus published the first critical text.

But the verses which were not in the oldest manuscripts are likewise not included in most modern translations (e.g. NASB, NIV, NET), either. (If they are included at all, it is in footnotes or in parentheses with notes that these were not original.)

So your thesis doesn't make sense to me. If these verses were not there originally, and are not in our modern texts (or are included but clearly stated to be non-original), how much can they have influenced either historic or modern Christianity?

purpledawn writes:

Didn't really read my argument did you or the links I provided? The Doctrine of the Trinity is:
Simply put, the doctrine of the Trinity states that there is:
One God in three Persons


No, I did read your argument and links. But I don't fully agree with your sources, their implications, or your inferences. "www.bible-knowledge.com" appears to be a non-scholarly lay website, which I have never heard of before. It is hardly an accepted authority on Christianity.

The Doctrine of the Trinity was formulated in 325 AD at the council of Nicea. We have no textual evidence of the Trinitarian claim in 1 Jn 5:7 "until the 1500s" (Wallace); it was probably added after the formulation of the Doctrine of the Trinity in 325.

Historically, the doctrine of the Trinity was formulated to resolve the biblical claims that 1) God is one, 2) the Father is God, 3) Jesus is God, 4) the Holy Spirit is God. Each of these claims is based on undisputedly original passages of Scripture. The historical doctrine of the Trinity almost certainly did not derive from 1 John 5:7, since the Trinitarian phrase in this passage almost certainly did not exist at the time.

Modern Evangelical scholarship also does not defend the doctrine of the Trinity from 1 John 5:7, since modern Evangelical scholars do not believe the Trinitarian phrase was original.

purpledawn writes:


kbertsche writes:

How does this relate to the 12 "basic tenets of Christianity" that you quoted above? I don't see this as any of them.


Again, didn't read my arguments. From Message 1: For that reason I would also like to look at how these discrepancies could also impact general Christian layperson beliefs, practices, and traditions that may or may not be the same across the sects of Christianity.

Here I apparently misread your argument. Since you immediately followed this with the "basic tenets of Christianity" I thought you were speaking of the "basic tenets", not non-basic secondary issues over which there is significant difference of opinion.

purpledawn writes:


kbertsche writes:

1) Again, I don't see how this relates to any of the "basic tenets of Christianity" that you quoted above.
2) Essentially all of the information in the last part of Mark (which I agree is non-original) can be found at the end of Matthew, the end of Luke, or the beginning of Acts, all of which ARE original.


Mark and Matthew are different. Luke and Acts don't really address the same thing. I'd appreciate it if you would provide the verse numbers when referring to other verses. Then I know we are looking at the same verses.

Mk 16:1-8 is probably original. Mk 16:9-20 is probably a later addition, based largely on other biblical accounts.

Mk 16:9-11 speaks of Jesus' resurrection and post-resurrection appearance to Mary, and her reporting to the disciples. This seems to be based largely on Lk 24:10-11, and partly on Mt 28:9-10 and Jn 20:14-18.

Mk 16:12-13 speaks of Jesus' appearance to two men on the road to Emmaus. It seems to be a very brief summary of Lk 24:13-35.

Mk 16:14-18 contains the Great Commission and comments about handling serpents and miraculous healing. The Great Commission is similar (but not identical) to Mt 28:16-20 and Acts 1:1-11. The comments about miraculous healing and handling serpents are not at the end of any of the other gospels, but may be based on Acts 28:1-6.

Mk 16:19-20 appears to be a very brief summary of the book of Acts.

purpledawn writes:


The Matthew version of the Great Commission is the most familiar, but it isn't the same as Mark.

The task in Mark is to proclaim the "good news", not teach. The door to door Christians aren't trying to teach anyone to obey what Jesus had commanded, they are spreading the "good news" and telling people they are condemned if they don't believe and become a Christian.


Agreed. Perhaps this addition to Mark also added elements from Jesus' sending out of the his disciples (Mt 10:1-16; Mk 6:7-11; Lk 9:1-5; 10:1-12).

(Note also that the Great Commission as recorded by Matthew contains the Trinitarian phrase "baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit." And this phrase does seem to be part of the original text.)

purpledawn writes:

The addition to Mark also brings up the idea that these signs accompany those who believe: driving out demons, speaking in tongues, handling snakes, drinking poison, and healing people.


Yes, I suspect this was drawn from events in Acts, such as Acts 28:1-6.

purpledawn writes:

I still feel that the commission in Mark impacts the layperson differently than the commission in Matthew. The churches that handle snakes and drink poison probably wouldn't be doing those rituals if the text wasn't added or preachers stopped using it.


Most modern Bible translations state that Acts 16:9ff is not original, and either put it in parentheses or in a footnote. Thus many laypersons do not even read these verses. Most biblical scholars (including Evangelical scholars) believe that these verses were not original. Most Evangelical seminaries caution their students against preaching on such passages as if they were original. Few careful, scholarly Evangelical pastors would do so.

purpledawn writes:

There's a difference between teaching (mathéteuó) and preaching (kérussó). So in Matthew, they were to gain students and teach them the commands that Jesus had taught his own students, not preach the "good news".


Yes. Again, the verb "preaching" could have come from Jesus' sending of His disciples, or from events of Acts.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by purpledawn, posted 10-17-2010 6:25 AM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 13 by purpledawn, posted 10-17-2010 11:48 PM kbertsche has responded

    
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1748 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 13 of 93 (587248)
10-17-2010 11:48 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by kbertsche
10-17-2010 10:22 PM


Re: Trinity and Great Commission
quote:
Historically, the doctrine of the Trinity was formulated to resolve the biblical claims that 1) God is one, 2) the Father is God, 3) Jesus is God, 4) the Holy Spirit is God. Each of these claims is based on undisputedly original passages of Scripture. The historical doctrine of the Trinity almost certainly did not derive from 1 John 5:7, since the Trinitarian phrase in this passage almost certainly did not exist at the time.
I didn't say that it did. Are you just going to rephrase what I say or make a point concerning my responses?

PurpleDawn writes:

Message 9As this link showed, yes there are many verses used to show that Jesus is a god, but that isn't the issue here. Since the Bible states that there is only one God, the orthodox group of Christianity had to find a way to counter the claims that they were polytheistic. The idea of one god in three persons is really only supported by 1 John 5:7. There are two other verses in the Gospel of John that could be construed to support the Trinity, but they are weak. (John 14:10 & John 10:30)

1 John 5:7 was the cleanest path and is used by some to support the Doctrine of the Trinity. The other path takes a lot more work and squinting to make the case.

Some people are KJV only and do use 1 John 5:7 to support the Trinity. Have all groups opted out?

quote:
Mk 16:1-8 is probably original. Mk 16:9-20 is probably a later addition, based largely on other biblical accounts.

Mk 16:9-11 speaks of Jesus' resurrection and post-resurrection appearance to Mary, and her reporting to the disciples. This seems to be based largely on Lk 24:10-11, and partly on Mt 28:9-10 and Jn 20:14-18.

Mk 16:12-13 speaks of Jesus' appearance to two men on the road to Emmaus. It seems to be a very brief summary of Lk 24:13-35.

Mk 16:14-18 contains the Great Commission and comments about handling serpents and miraculous healing. The Great Commission is similar (but not identical) to Mt 28:16-20 and Acts 1:1-11. The comments about miraculous healing and handling serpents are not at the end of any of the other gospels, but may be based on Acts 28:1-6.

Mk 16:19-20 appears to be a very brief summary of the book of Acts.


Again rephrasing. So we agree the commission expressed in Mark is a different task than in Matthew.

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kbertsche
Member (Idle past 422 days)
Posts: 1427
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007


Message 14 of 93 (587252)
10-18-2010 12:40 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by purpledawn
10-17-2010 11:48 PM


Re: Trinity and Great Commission
purpledawn writes:

1 John 5:7 was the cleanest path and is used by some to support the Doctrine of the Trinity. The other path takes a lot more work and squinting to make the case.


I don't see the relevance of this to your case. 1 John 5:7 was NOT the path used in the original historical formulation of the Doctrine of the Trinity. It is NOT the path used by Evangelical scholars today. Its in-authenticity does NOT impact Christianity. So why is it relevant?

purpledawn writes:

Some people are KJV only and do use 1 John 5:7 to support the Trinity. Have all groups opted out?


Yes, some people are "KJV only". And some people believe in geocentrism or in a flat earth. Very few scholars support any of these views.

(Note: There ARE a few scholars who believe that the TR [Textus Receptus] is more accurate than the critical texts. I knew Art Farstad, who was the main translator of the NKJV translation. Art was a true scholar. But he was certainly not a "KJV only" advocate; he read daily from the Greek text.)

purpledawn writes:

Again rephrasing. So we agree the commission expressed in Mark is a different task than in Matthew.


Yes, a different verb is used, and it has a slightly different focus. The in-authentic end of Mark seems to combine themes from other Scriptures which ARE authentic. So again, I don't see how the in-authenticity of the end of Mark impacts Christianity.

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jaywill
Member (Idle past 232 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 15 of 93 (587263)
10-18-2010 8:06 AM
Reply to: Message 9 by purpledawn
10-17-2010 6:25 AM


Re: Trinity and Great Commission
The task in Mark is to proclaim the "good news", not teach. The door to door Christians aren't trying to teach anyone to obey what Jesus had commanded, they are spreading the "good news" and telling people they are condemned if they don't believe and become a Christian.

This concept seems to arrive from one who has never made a disciple of Christ by preaching or teaching. This criticism arises from a mind which assumes a prior that the Gospel is not true.

Such mind has no experience and assumes they can lean on their own understanding as an inexperienced outsider and pronounce authoritative interpretations of the New Testament.

All should be clear that the a prior assumption of this concept is that the Gospel of Christ is not true.

As one who has had experienced leading people to Christ I'll state my problems with it.

The task in Mark is to proclaim the "good news", not teach.

Jesus did many marvelous things. It is stupid to assume you can just come to someone and say "Jesus will save you" and they are not TAUGHT many things about this Jesus.

In Mark 9:9-13 Jesus instructed His three disciples Peter, James and John not to say anything about His transfiguration until He should be raised from the dead.

"And as they were coming down the mountain, he charged them to tell no one what they had seen, until the Son of Man should have been raised from the dead." (v. 9)

It is foolish to assume that these things were [not] TAUGHT to the new believers. And there was quite a bit more to TEACH the disciples after they were saved. After His resurrection, and the new believer's acceptance of that resurrection, we can assume the apostles were overflowing with many other things like the transfiguration they wanted to teach and testify to.

Certain things about Jesus, to be more comprehensible, have to be taught AFTER someone has come to believe in Him and been baptized.

Acts says that the new disciples CONTINUED in the TEACHING and fellowship of the apostles.

"And with many other words he solemnly testified and exhorted them saying, Be saved from this crooked generation.

Those then who received his word were baptized, and there were added on that day about three thousand souls.

And they CONTINUED STEADFASTLY IN THE TEACHING AND THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE APOSTLES ..." (See ACTS 2:40-42)

The apostles, after they led people to be saved and baptized had a lot of things to TEACH the new believers. And they did. Not only were they teaching, but they had with them "fellowship" which is more intimate, personal, - expressing practical community needs, need for prayers, perhaps encouragement to support, encouragement and training to do what they themselves were doing.


The door to door Christians aren't trying to teach anyone to obey what Jesus had commanded, they are spreading the "good news" and telling people they are condemned if they don't believe and become a Christian.

Just because Mark highlights salvation from condemnation does not mean that the new believers were not under continued teaching. Acts records the earliest gospel messages. And we are told the new Christians continued in the teaching of the apostles.

And the Gospel of Mark itself shows Jesus teaching that the kingdom of God is not a binary matter that one is simply IN or OUT. Rather in Mark Jesus portrays God's kingdom as requiring growth and development:

"And He said, So is the kingdom of God as if a man cast seed on the earth, And sleeps and rises night and day, and the seed sprouts and lengthens - how he does not know. The earth bears fruit by itself: first a blade, then an ear, then full grain in the ear.

But when the fruit is ripe, immediately he sends forth the sickle, because the harvest has come." (Mark 4:26-29)

Maybe the skeptical unbeliever doesn't CARE about the development of the kingdom of God. But I wager that the apostles DID. And though the growth of this divine life was very mysterious, they paid attention to it.

They must have observed the disciples whom they led to Christ. They must have noticed levels of maturity among them. And accordingly they continued to TEACH them.

Here again the experience of Christian workers who have actually preached the gospel is important to consult. Paul surely preached the Gospel as did Peter his senior apostle as well as Apollos. Paul says that they not only planted the Gospel seed. They also watered, cultivated and tended to this "farm" so that the spiritual life within the listners would GROW.

"I planted, Apollos watered, but God caused the growth.

So then neither is he who platns anything nor he who waters, but God who causes the growth.

Now he how plants and he who waters are one, but each will receive his own reward according to his own labor.

For we are God's fellow workers; upi are God's cultivated land, God's building." (1 Cor. 3:6-9)

The importance of this passage is not a matter of who wrote what first. It is not matter of textural dating. It is a matter of experience.

The apostles, (and Peter was included in verse 22) were like farmers. A farmer does more than just drop the seed. They watered, the cultivated. This means TEACHING after the believers became Christians. This means fellowshipping with them.

They met from house to house and continued to teach and fellowship. You cannot exploit Mark's concise record of the essential Gospel activity as proof of excluding this cultivating work.

Jesus said the earth brought forth of itself and the planter does not know how. And Paul said God is the only one that gives the spiritual growth.

The two portions are really the same. It is a divine development within man who believes in Christ. But it is not a development that has no part for the worker's cooperation. He continues to teach about Jesus. He continues even more so to be a model and example of one to follow. Mysteriously, the growth of divine life occurs in those who have been saved.

I have stop writing here to run an errand. I'll come back.
The main point here is that Gospel preaching requires continiued teaching and fellowship if one is concerned for the development of the Kingdom of God.

I think the first apostles were concerned for that. And I don't think they regarded Christ's example or instructions to only mean they announced to people how to get saved and then left them alone.

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This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by purpledawn, posted 10-17-2010 6:25 AM purpledawn has acknowledged this reply

  
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