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Saturday, December 31, 2011

How to Defend the Christian Faith: Teaching Tools for High School and Above

Below are links to two apologetics teaching tools by William Lane Craig, author of Reasonable Faith, and avid debater of the new atheists (ie., Richard Dawkins)

The New Testament | Oral Tradition and Memorization

 Introductory Questions
  • How do we know the gospel writers got it right?
  • Why was the writing of the gospels delayed for decades?
  • What happened in the meantime?
  • Isn’t it possible that the gospel writers simply forgot most of the details about what Jesus said and did by the time they put pen to papyrus?
  • How do we know that the faith of the gospel writers didn’t get in the way of accurate historical reporting?
  • Since they were writing to specific communities, how do we know that they didn’t radically rework the material to meet the needs of their audiences?
We are going to unpack each of these questions in detail and show that the gospel writers gave us credible, accurate, historical accounts of the ministry of Jesus of Nazareth. 


Friday, December 30, 2011


by: Jill Graham

One of the key points in proving the truth of Christianity is showing that the New Testament writings are historically reliable. Without this foundation, it is impossible to know if the story of the life and teachings of Jesus that has come down to us can be trusted, and thus if the Jesus presented in the New Testament is worthy of reasonable faith. Muslims claim that the New Testament documents have been corrupted and that
Christians do not have access to the true teachings of Jesus through their Scriptures.1

Higher critics and groups such as the Jesus Seminar assert that the New Testament is marred by fictitious inventions and legendary additions, and that the Jesus of history is far different from the Jesus presented in the gospels.2 Post-modernist relativists challenge that truth about history, including the truths about the historical Jesus, cannot be known with any degree of certainty.3 These challenges must be answered, and a
positive case built for the historical reliability of the New Testament if Christianity is to
remain a viable faith in our world today.

As F.F. Bruce cautions in his introduction to his book on the historical reliability of the New Testament documents, the teachings of Confucius or Plato can stand regardless of the traditions about their lives that have come down to us, but the truth of the teachings of Jesus is intimately connected to his real life in history and the reliability of the Christian story.4

F.F. Bruce writes:
The Christian gospel is not primarily a code of ethics or a metaphysical system; it is first and foremost good news . . . [which is] intimately bound up with the historical order . . . This historical ‘once-for-all-ness’ of Christianity, which distinguishes it from those religious and philosophical systems which are not specially related to any particular time, makes the reliability of the writings which purport to record this revelation a question of first-rate importance . . .The character of Jesus can be known only from the New Testament records; the influence of his character is therefore tantamount to the influence of the New
Testament Records.5


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