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Answers from the Christians

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George View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote George Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 April 2006 at 7:27am

zulqarnain,

This is in response to your latest post to me.

The single homogenous belief system that you mentioned was in existence from the very first days after the resurrection of Jesus from the cross.  The gospel was preached orally for years.  Matthew, Mark, Luke and John as well as other books in the New Testament represent it.

 

In considering the New Testament we have tens of thousands of manuscripts of the New Testament in part or in whole, dating from the second century A.D. to the late fifteenth century, when the printing press was invented. These manuscripts have been found in Egypt, Palestine, Syria, Turkey, Greece, and Italy, making collusion unlikely. The oldest manuscript, the John Rylands manuscript, has been dated to 125 A.D. and was found in Egypt, some distance from where the New Testament was originally composed in Asia Minor). Many early Christian papyri, discovered in 1935, have been dated to 150 A.D., and include the four gospels. The Papyrus Bodmer II, discovered in 1956, has been dated to 200 A.D., and contains 14 chapters and portions of the last seven chapters of the gospel of John. The Chester Beatty biblical papyri, discovered in 1931, has been dated to 200-250 A.D. and contains the Gospels, Acts, Paul's Epistles, and Revelation.

Thousands of early Christian writings and lexionaries (first and second century) cite verses from the New Testament. In fact, it is nearly possible to put together the entire New Testament just from early Christian writings. For example, the Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians (dated 95 A.D.) cites verses from the Gospels, Acts, Romans, 1 Corinthians, Ephesians, Titus, Hebrews, and 1 Peter. The letters of Ignatius (dated 115 A.D.) were written to several churches in Asia Minor and cites verses from Matthew, John, Romans, 1 & 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, 1 & 2 Timothy and Titus. These letters indicate that the entire New Testament was written in the first century A.D.

Source: http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/bibleorg.html

We can determine some of the very Christian beliefs by the Creeds.

Most of my information about the early Christian creeds comes from the book, "The Historical Jesus" by Gary R. Habermas. There is also a mention of the creed in 1 Corinthians 15 in Lee Strobel's book, "The Case For Christ." Strobel's book is all interviews with noted historians and scholars and Craig L. Blomberg remarks on this creed. Habermas mentioned the works of Oscar Cullman, "The Earliest Christian Confessions" as "one of the classic works on this subject." I don't have that book but plan to try and get it. It was published in 1949.

The early creeds are important because they describe the nature of Christian thought before the writing of the New Testament. These creeds were communicated verbally years before they were written and preserve some of the earliest reports concerning Jesus from about 30-50AD. They are our earliest sources for the life of Jesus.

One of the earliest creeds in this one:

1 Corinthians 15:3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. 6 After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. 7 After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. 8 Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.

This creed is considered pre-Pauline and is recognized as such by virtually all critical scholars across a very wide theological spectrum. How do they know that it is old and pre-Pauline?

1. Paul's words "delivered" and "received" are technical terms for passing on tradition. So, Paul is saying that this material was not his own, but received from another source.

2. A number of the words are non-Pauline which indicates another source. They are: "for our sins," "according to the scriptures," "he has been raised," the "third day," "he was seen," and "the twelve."

3. The creed is organized in a stylized, parallel form, thereby indicating an oral and confessional nature.

4. There are indications that there may be a Semitic source, such as the use of the Aramaic "Cephas" for Peter, which would point to an earlier source before Paul's Greek translation.

5. Other indications of ancient Hebrew narration include the triple usage of "and that" along with the two references to the Scripture being fulfilled.

Some date this creed from 3 to 8 years after Jesus' crucifixion. This is Blomberg's logic for dating the creed:

Now think, if the crucifixion was as early as 30 AD, Paul's conversation was bout 32 AD. Immediately Paul was ushered into Damascus, where he met with a Christian named Ananias and some other disciples. His first meeting with the apostles in Jerusalem would have been about 35 AD. At some point along there, Paul was given this creed, which had already been formulated and was being used in the early church.

Now, here with this creed we have the key facts about Jesus' death for our sins, plus a detailed list of those to whom he appeared in resurrected form—all dating back to within two or five years of the events themselves!! That's not later mythology from 40 or more years down the road. A good case can be made for saying that Christian belief in the Resurrection, though not yet written down, can be dated to within two years of th at very event!

It is also important to realize that this creed represents eyewitness testimony and to keep in mind that it is pre-Pauline.

By mid-second century Gnosticism was in full swing.  Also prevalent were the fanciful books—I call them folklore—Jesus speaking as an infant.  His first words were:  "Mary, I am Jesus the Son of God, that word which thou didst bring forth according to the declaration of the angel Gabriel to thee, and my father hath sent me for the salvation of the world."  Others have Jesus killing his playmates, making clay birds that could fly, blinding his teacher (or killing him, can't remember which), bringing a classmate back to life who fell off a roof; another has Mary doing miracles with Jesus' bath water after she gave him a bath; another has Jesus coming out of the tomb with his head touching the heavens and a talking cross following him.  All folklore.

Bart Ehrman is a sad case.  Essentially he thought that the Bible somehow came down on a string from heaven.  When he found out that it hadn't, he became close to an agnostic.  His conclusions are being misused. 

Ehrman gave his permission to use this quote:

"I do not think that the "corruption" of Scripture means that scribes changed everything in the text, or even most things. The original texts certainly spoke at great length about Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection. The issues involved in the corruption of the text usually entail nuances of interpretation. These are important nuances; but most of the New Testament can be reconstructed by scholars with reasonable certainty -- as much certainty as we can reconstruct *any* book of the ancient world." 

I've talked to Bart 4 or 5 times.  He told me that the corrections in the NT need not affect anyone's faith and he agreed that Bruce Metzger was a perfect example.

You can read an review of his latest book here:  http://www.bible.org/page.asp?page_id=3452

And another here:

http://www.tektonics.org/books/ehrqurvw.html

It seems to me that you would be much better off if you accepted that the text of the Bible and the Koran have both had human hands involved in its history and based your arguments on that fact instead of trying to discredit the Bible.

We are fortunate that we have so many copies of the NT in order to do textual criticism, unlike Islam who during the time of Ultman, all variant copies of the Koran were burned.

Even if a Christian decided not to be a Christian based on their interpretation of it the NT that does not mean that they should embrace Islam and the Koran.  The Koran has to be able to stand on its own.

I would venture a guess that if Bart did a textual analysis of the Koran he would come to the same conclusion that he did of the New Testament.  In other words, he would not become a Muslim.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote George Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 April 2006 at 7:30am

Originally posted by zulqarnain zulqarnain wrote:

There are more than 20 scientific mistakes in the bible which I will discuss. The purpose for this is not to hurt the christians' feeling or to incite hatred. But to tell the christians that these scientific errors cannot be attributed to God. God knows the character of every human being. Only He is to judge who is a good Christian or a Jew or a Muslim in respect with their degree of understanding.

Errors in the Bible:
Error #1: Astronomy-the creation of the Universe
In Genises, chapter 1, it says that God created the heavens and the earth in six days and talks about the evening and the morning, referring to a 24-hour day. Today science tell us that a universe cannot be created in six days, each days having 24 hours. The Quran too speaks about six "Ayaam", which can mean a very long period or a 24 hour day. Scientists can agree that a universe tcan be created in very long periods, six very long periods.
In Genises Chapter 1 Verse 3-5, it says life was created on the first day. In the smame chapter, verse 14-19 the source of light, the sun, moon and stars were created on the fourth day. How can the 'cause of light' come in existence before the light born on the first day?
Genises verse 9-13, it says Earth was created in the third day. How can you have the "night and day" before the creation of the Earth. The night and day depends on the rotation of the Earth.
Genises Chapter 1, verse 14-19 says that the Sun and the moon was created on the fourth day. Today science tells us that Earth is part of the parent body...the sun. Earth cannot become in existence before the Sun.(the earth created in the 3rd day, and the sun and the moon on the 4th.)
Genesis chapter 1, verse 11-13, it says that the vegetation was created on the third day. How can the vegetation come into existence without sunlight, and how can they survive without sunlight.

There are more errors regarding the creation of the Earth but if you watch Dr Zakir Naik's videos debating with Dr. William Campbell, it will save my precious time from typing. I'll give you the links:

http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3111&t=
http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3112&t=
http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3777&t=
http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3778&t=

these links contain the total debate "Quran and Bible in the light of science" It has 4 clips, so watch them.

zulqarnain,

All of these so-called errors have been addressed on a website that apparently this site does not allow Christians to link.  I suggest that either withdraw your post or talk the Moderators into letting me give you rebuttals from the site that addresses them.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote zulqarnain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 April 2006 at 7:53am
Originally posted by George George wrote:

Originally posted by zulqarnain zulqarnain wrote:

There are more than 20 scientific mistakes in the bible which I will discuss. The purpose for this is not to hurt the christians' feeling or to incite hatred. But to tell the christians that these scientific errors cannot be attributed to God. God knows the character of every human being. Only He is to judge who is a good Christian or a Jew or a Muslim in respect with their degree of understanding. Errors in the Bible: Error #1: Astronomy-the creation of the Universe In Genises, chapter 1, it says that God created the heavens and the earth in six days and talks about the evening and the morning, referring to a 24-hour day. Today science tell us that a universe cannot be created in six days, each days having 24 hours. The Quran too speaks about six "Ayaam", which can mean a very long period or a 24 hour day. Scientists can agree that a universe tcan be created in very long periods, six very long periods. In Genises Chapter 1 Verse 3-5, it says life was created on the first day. In the smame chapter, verse 14-19 the source of light, the sun, moon and stars were created on the fourth day. How can the 'cause of light' come in existence before the light born on the first day? Genises verse 9-13, it says Earth was created in the third day. How can you have the "night and day" before the creation of the Earth. The night and day depends on the rotation of the Earth. Genises Chapter 1, verse 14-19 says that the Sun and the moon was created on the fourth day. Today science tells us that Earth is part of the parent body...the sun. Earth cannot become in existence before the Sun.(the earth created in the 3rd day, and the sun and the moon on the 4th.) Genesis chapter 1, verse 11-13, it says that the vegetation was created on the third day. How can the vegetation come into existence without sunlight, and how can they survive without sunlight. There are more errors regarding the creation of the Earth but if you watch Dr Zakir Naik's videos debating with Dr. William Campbell, it will save my precious time from typing. I'll give you the links: http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3111&t= http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3112&t= http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3777&t= http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3778&t= these links contain the total debate "Quran and Bible in the light of science" It has 4 clips, so watch them.


zulqarnain,


All of these so-called errors have been addressed on a website that apparently this site does not allow Christians to link.  I suggest that either withdraw your post or talk the Moderators into letting me give you rebuttals from the site that addresses them.


I am sorry George if yu misunderstood me. read my next message after this
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote zulqarnain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 April 2006 at 7:59am
George what you have mentioned about the history, lets not discuss that. If it's right or wrong, I'm not bothered. You said there are human hands invloved in the Quran too. Yes of course-BUT not in editing the original text, but copying the Arabic from word to word.
If the Bible had the original Hebrew text existing, i would not have a problem accepting it, as in Islam, you cannot be a Muslim unless you believe in the Book revealed to Jesus.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote zulqarnain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 April 2006 at 8:01am
forums.understanding-islam.org/ community/archive/index.php?t-2437.html
This is the link to the argument in text.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote George Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 April 2006 at 8:14am
Originally posted by zulqarnain zulqarnain wrote:

Originally posted by George George wrote:

Originally posted by zulqarnain zulqarnain wrote:

There are more than 20 scientific mistakes in the bible which I will discuss. The purpose for this is not to hurt the christians' feeling or to incite hatred. But to tell the christians that these scientific errors cannot be attributed to God. God knows the character of every human being. Only He is to judge who is a good Christian or a Jew or a Muslim in respect with their degree of understanding. Errors in the Bible: Error #1: Astronomy-the creation of the Universe In Genises, chapter 1, it says that God created the heavens and the earth in six days and talks about the evening and the morning, referring to a 24-hour day. Today science tell us that a universe cannot be created in six days, each days having 24 hours. The Quran too speaks about six "Ayaam", which can mean a very long period or a 24 hour day. Scientists can agree that a universe tcan be created in very long periods, six very long periods. In Genises Chapter 1 Verse 3-5, it says life was created on the first day. In the smame chapter, verse 14-19 the source of light, the sun, moon and stars were created on the fourth day. How can the 'cause of light' come in existence before the light born on the first day? Genises verse 9-13, it says Earth was created in the third day. How can you have the "night and day" before the creation of the Earth. The night and day depends on the rotation of the Earth. Genises Chapter 1, verse 14-19 says that the Sun and the moon was created on the fourth day. Today science tells us that Earth is part of the parent body...the sun. Earth cannot become in existence before the Sun.(the earth created in the 3rd day, and the sun and the moon on the 4th.) Genesis chapter 1, verse 11-13, it says that the vegetation was created on the third day. How can the vegetation come into existence without sunlight, and how can they survive without sunlight. There are more errors regarding the creation of the Earth but if you watch Dr Zakir Naik's videos debating with Dr. William Campbell, it will save my precious time from typing. I'll give you the links: http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3111&t= http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3112&t= http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3777&t= http://www.islamicity.com/m/mediadisplay.asp?ref=3778&t= these links contain the total debate "Quran and Bible in the light of science" It has 4 clips, so watch them.


zulqarnain,


All of these so-called errors have been addressed on a website that apparently this site does not allow Christians to link.  I suggest that either withdraw your post or talk the Moderators into letting me give you rebuttals from the site that addresses them.


I am sorry George if yu misunderstood me. read my next message after this

I read it and do understand what you are saying.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote zulqarnain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 April 2006 at 12:24am
Tell you what George. Now this is not going to WASTE your time. There are a number of questions asked by Christian Missionaries listed on the irf.net website. On the webpage, if you go all the way down. there's a "Q&A on Islam" click on that. Scroll down, then "qustions asked by christian missionaries".

I'm not saying or forcing you to accept Islam. I'm only trying to erase the misconceptions and misunderstanding. The reason that why I refer to famous scholars/websites is that you should have the best answer available. It's upto you you wether yoo want to accept the Quraan. I did not ask you to do it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote George Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 April 2006 at 6:22am

Originally posted by zulqarnain zulqarnain wrote:

Tell you what George. Now this is not going to WASTE your time. There are a number of questions asked by Christian Missionaries listed on the irf.net website. On the webpage, if you go all the way down. there's a "Q&A on Islam" click on that. Scroll down, then "qustions asked by christian missionaries".

I'm not saying or forcing you to accept Islam. I'm only trying to erase the misconceptions and misunderstanding. The reason that why I refer to famous scholars/websites is that you should have the best answer available. It's upto you you wether yoo want to accept the Quraan. I did not ask you to do it.

One of my posts has been deleted in this thread.  You claim scientific "errors" in the Bible.  My post along with links, said that the same claims have been made against the Koran.

In the final analysis we all have answers to any allegations against our Holy Books.  You can find "Muslims scholars" who refute some of what is presented in the Koran (interpretations); you can find "Christian Scholars" doing the same against the Bible.

You would do well to compare what people like Naik and Deedat say against Christianity with the rebuttals from the Christians and you can readily find them on the Internet.

The difference between the Bible and the Koran is that the Bible was written by human beings who were 'inspired by God' (Theopneustos), thus they would use human speech and human ways of explaining how they figured out how the universe worked.  If a humansays the universe was created in 6 days, that's no big proble, since the Bible's truth does not depend upon it's divine authorship.

The Koran however is supposed to be written by a perfect God.  The problem does not exist for the Bible, since it is and always has been the work of human beings.



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