By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)
Upon Completion, Please Return Answered Questions To:
Mark Tabata (Facebook).
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(Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are from the New King James Version of the Bible)
Thus far in our studies, we have learned that the process of the formation of the Bible can be summed up through six words.
We have further observed that the inspired Prophets and Apostles, in writing their accounts, often quoted from non-biblical sources in order to further confirm and authenticate their claims and teachings.
These inspired Writers obviously never considered these books to be inspired (for then they would quickly have put them into the canon of Scripture-Deuteronomy 31:24-26; 2 Kings 22:8; Joshua 24:26; I Samuel 10:25).
The last Old Testament Book was Malachi, which was written in 408 B.C.
From the time of the close of the Old Testament Canon till the time of John the Baptist, there were no inspired Prophets.
As such, the books of the Apocrypha (written between the close of the Old Testament and the preaching of John the Baptist) were not accepted by the Hebrews as inspired.
We will now move into a study of the New Testament Scriptures.
The Background Of The New Testament Scriptures
The 39 Books of the Old Testament formed the Law of God for the physical descendants of Abraham (known by such names as Hebrews, Jews, Israelites, etc.).
From the beginning of the Old Testament, God made it known that this covenant was never designed to be eternal. Indeed, God promised that one day He would establish a New Law (or New Covenant) through His special Prophet.
For example, God declared:
Deuteronomy 18:18-22-18 I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their brethren, and will put My words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him. 19 And it shall be that whoever will not hear My words, which He speaks in My name, I will require it of him. 20 But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in My name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.’ 21 And if you say in your heart, ‘How shall we know the word which the LORD has not spoken?’— 22 when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.
By the time of the death of Moses and the leadership of Joshua, that Prophet had not yet arisen in Israel:
Deuteronomy 34:10-11-10 But since then there has not arisen in Israel a prophet like Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face, 11 in all the signs and wonders which the LORD sent him to do in the land of Egypt, before Pharaoh, before all his servants, and in all his land,
“The meaning, it seems, is fairly straightforward: Just as God raised up Moses to hear God’s words and declare them to the people of Israel, so also in the future (or in every generation), God would raise up a prophet like Moses who would also hear God’s words and declare them to the people. The problem is that according to Deuteronomy 34:10−11, “…no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face, who did all those miraculous signs and wonders the LORD sent him to do in Egypt—to Pharaoh and to all his officials and to his whole land.” The identical phrase is used in both passages (namely, raising up a prophet like Moses), but we are told explicitly that no such prophet arose again in Israel’s history.15 So, Deuteronomy 18 tells us that the Lord would raise up such a prophet for his people, but Deuteronomy 34 tells us that, in the fullest sense, no such prophet arose. It is quite natural, then, that Jewish people reflecting on these Torah passages would begin to ask, “Where, then, is that prophet like Moses? Where is that leader to whom the Lord will speak face-to-face, who will work signs and wonders and deliver us from bondage?” And this passage helps to explain why there is clear evidence that the Jewish people in the first century of this era expected that there would be a great prophet associated with the Messiah or identical to the Messiah. This hope is grounded in the Torah of Moses itself.” (Michael Brown, Answering Jewish Objections To Jesus: Volume Three-Messianic Prophecy Objections, 10-11 (Kindle Edition); Grand Rapids, Michigan; Baker Books)
It was prophesied that this Prophet of God would establish this New Covenant.
The Hebrews clearly understood that this Prophet was yet to arise. The Prophet was none other than Jesus Christ.
We read of how it was prophesied that the Messiah would establish the New Covenant of God with His people:
Jeremiah 31:31-34-31 “Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah— 32 not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the LORD. 33 But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 34 No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”
Again, we are told:
Ezekiel 37:26-26 Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them, and it shall be an everlasting covenant with them; I will establish them and multiply them, and I will set My sanctuary in their midst forevermore.
When we speak of the New Testament, we are speaking of the New Lew that was established by Christ at His Death.
It is important to realize that while He was in the world, Christ lived under the Law of Moses (Galatians 4:4; Romans 8:1-5). However, He began teaching the New Law for His people while He was alive (Luke 16:16). It was not until Jesus’ death, however, that His New Law went into effect (Hebrews 9:16-17; 10:9-10).
Hebrews 9:16-17-16 For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. 17 For a testament is in force after men are dead, since it has no power at all while the testator lives.
At the time of His death, Jesus abolished (removed; took away) the Old Testament by fulfilling it completely:
Colossians 2:14-having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
Ephesians 2:15-having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,
The Old Testament Scriptures are important for us to learn from, and the moral principles of the Old Testament reflect the moral Nature of God.
Romans 15:4-For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.
I Corinthians 10:6-Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted.
I Corinthians 10:11-Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.
Malachi 3:6-“For I am the LORD, I do not change; Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.”
Hebrews 13:8-Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever
Christians do not live under the Old Testament Law; instead, we live under the New Testament of Christ.
The Apostles And The New Testament Scriptures
While He was in the world, Jesus chose twelve special men to be His representatives.
Matthew records their names for us:
Matthew 10:2-4-2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Cananite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed Him.
Judas betrayed Jesus and another Apostle (named Matthias) was chosen by God to replace him (Acts 1:15-26).
In addition, God chose Saul of Tarsus (also known as the Apostle Paul) to be an Apostle:
Galatians 1:1-Paul, an apostle (not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father who raised Him from the dead),
The Apostles made it clear that in order to be an Apostle, one had to be an eyewitness of Jesus Christ after He arose from the dead:
Acts 1:21-22-21 “Therefore, of these men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,
22 beginning from the baptism of John to that day when He was taken up from us, one of these must become a witness with us of His resurrection.”
Since the Apostle Paul was the last one to see the resurrected Jesus Christ until the end of time (I Corinthians 15:8), it follows that there have been no Apostles since the Apostle Paul.
It is important that we understand the important role which the Apostles had. The general meaning of the word “Apostle” is one who is sent.
However, the technical term had reference to one who was sent forth with the authority of the King to establish His Law.
“…(apostolos), literally, ‘one sent forth,’ an envoy, missionary…For the meaning of this name as it meets us in the New Testament, reference is sometimes made to classical and Jewish parallels. In earlier Classical Greek there was a distinction between an aggelos or messenger and an apostolos, who was not a mere messenger, but a delegate or representative of the person who sent him.” (J.C. Lambert, ‘Apostles,’ in James Orr, The International Standard Encyclopedia, 11559 (Kindle Edition); OSNOVA)
“apostle, the English transliteration of a Greek word meaning ‘one who is sent out.’ An apostle is a personal messenger or envoy, commissioned to transmit the message or otherwise carry out the instructions of the commissioning agent. In the NT Gospels, the term is commonly associated with the inner circle of Jesus’s twelve disciples, chosen and commissioned by him to accompany him during his ministry, to receive his teachings and observe his actions, and to follow his instructions. Thus, they are uniquely qualified to both authenticate his message and carry on his work through the ministry of the church.” (Phillip L. Shuler, ‘Apostles,’ in Mark Allen Powell (General Editor), HarperCollins Bible Dictionary, 2830 (Kindle Edition; emphasis added); HarperCollins E-Books)
“Apostello and Pempo. In secular Greek the verbs apostello and pempo are used of the sending of persons and things. There is, however, a discernible difference in the usage of the two terms. Pempo is used where mere sending is involved, whereas apostello is used to denote sending of persons with a commission and in some cases to denote a divine sending and authorization…Those who trace the idea of the Christian apostolate back to Jesus recognize, of course, that Jesus Himself probably did not use the Greek term apostolos. He would have used, most likely, either the Aramaic (Seliha), or the Hebrew (Saliah) equivalent…The institution of the Saliah is well documented in rabbinic writings…where it refers to someone who has been authorized to carry out certain functions on behalf of another. The adage ‘a man’s envoy is as himself’ occurs frequently in the rabbinic literature, and it underlines both the representative character of the Sailah and that he carries the full authority of his principal.” (C.G. Kruse, ‘Apostles,’ in Joel B. Green and Scot McKnight (Editors, Dictionary Of Jesus And The Gospels: A Compendium Of Contemporary Biblical Scholarship, 2088-2104 (Kindle Edition; emphasis added); Downers Grove, Illinois; Intervarsity Press)
The authority of the Apostles was such that their specific authority could not be conferred by themselves to another: only the King Himself could commission someone to this special office.
“We saw in Chapter Four that the principle of apostolicity was central to the idea of a canon, and that it stems from the earliest days of the Christian community-indeed from the lifetime of Jesus himself. He appointed the Twelve to be his apostles, his shelichim, a word with very special meaning in Judaism. It meant a representative equipped with the full powers of his principal…“…It is interesting to note that the Jewish shaliach (apostle) could not hand on his commission to anyone else; it was for him alone…There was something unique and unrepeatable about their position. They were the guarantors of the continuity between the incarnate Jesus who walked the streets of Palestine and the glorified Jesus whom the church worshipped.” (Dr. Michael Green, The Books The Church Suppressed: Fiction And Truth In The Da Vinci Code, 84-84; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Monarch Books; emphasis added)
Thus, the Apostles of Christ were given His specific authority to establish His New Covenant:
Matthew 18:18-18 “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
John 17:8-For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me.
John 17:14-14 I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.
God confirmed the claims of the Apostles by miraculous confirmation (i.e., the Apostles were confirmed by God by the ability to work miracles):
Mark 16:20-And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.
2 Corinthians 12:12-Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds.
Hebrews 2:3-4-3 how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him, 4 God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?
The Arrangement Of The New Testament Scriptures
As the Apostles of Christ were His chosen representatives in establishing His New Covenant, their writings (the New Testament Scriptures) bear their authority:
1 Corinthians 14:37-If anyone thinks himself to be a prophet or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things which I write to you are the commandments of the Lord.
1 John 4:6-We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.
The New Testament Scriptures are often divided up into five sections.
The Gospels (Matthew -John):
These Books tell the story of the life of Jesus. They include His birth, fulfillment of prophecy, miracles, teachings, death, burial, and Resurrection.
Church History (Acts):
This Book describes the history of the church that Jesus built. It focuses especially upon the missionary work of the Apostles Peter and Paul. One of the questions specifically addressed is the plan of salvation.
Pauline Epistles (Romans-Hebrews):
These Epistles (Letters) were written by the Apostle Paul to various churches and individuals.
General Epistles (James-Jude):
These Epistles were written by other Apostles and Prophets to various churches and individuals.
This Book deals primarily with the subject of the Second Coming of Christ (Revelation 1:7). Much of Revelation has already been fulfilled; the Second Coming, Judgment, and Eternity are still future (Revelation 20:11-22:21).
The Authority Of The New Testament Scriptures
A study of the New Testament Scriptures quickly establishes that the Apostles understood that their writings were Divinely inspired and would be used as a template for the church.
Paul quoted from the Book of Luke and calls it Scripture (I Timothy 5:18; Luke 10:7) and the Apostle Peter clearly identifies the writings of the Apostle Paul as Scripture (2 Peter 3:15-16).
From the direct statements of the Apostles themselves, we find the following claims being made regarding the New Testament Scriptures:
They Provide What We Need To Have Complete Certainty Of Faith (Luke 1:1-4)
They Provide Everything We Need For Establishing Faith In Christ Jesus (John 20:30-31)
They Provide All Necessary Knowledge Of Jesus’ Teaching And Commands (Acts 1:1-3)
They Provide The Perfect Pattern Of Divine Commandments For Every Congregation (1 Corinthians 4:17; 14:37)
They Provide Everything We Need For Life And Godliness (2 Peter 1:3)
They Provide The Necessary Writings Of The Apostles (2 Peter 1:15)
They Provide The Perfect Pattern For The Church And The Christian Life (1 Timothy 3:14-15)
They Provide What We Need To Have Fullness Of Joy (1 John 1:4)
They Provide What We Need To Have Full Fellowship With The Godhead Through The Apostles’ Teaching (1 John 1:1-3)
They Provide What We Need To Provide Assurance Of Forgiveness Of Sins (1 John 2:12)
They Provide What We Need To Continue To Be In Right Relationship With God (1 John 2:13)
They Provide What We Need To Overcome Satan And Be Victorious In Spiritual War (1 John 2:13-14)
They Provide What We Need For Assurance Of Eternal Life (1 John 5:13)
They Provide What We Need To Be Furnished Unto Every Good Work (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
They Provide What We Need To Be Made Informationally Complete (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
When we consider these statements from the Apostles of Christ, we see that they understood the Divine and binding authority of the New Testament Scriptures.
Statements from the earliest disciples of the Apostles show that they understood this authority of the New Testament Scriptures.
“Renouncing the error of your fathers, you should read the prophecies of the sacred writers…Learn from them what will give you everlasting life.” (Justin Martyr, 160)
“More strength will be given you, and the knowledge of the heart will be increased more and more, as you examine more fully the Scriptures, old and new, and read through the complete volumes of the spiritual books.” (Cyprian, 250)
“”We have learned the plan of our salvation from no one else other than from those through whom the gospel has come down to us. For they did at one time proclaim the gospel in public. And, at a later period, by the will of God, they handed the gospel down to us in the Scriptures-to be ‘the ground and pillar of our faith.'” (Irenaeus, 180).
“”In order that we might acquire an ampler and more authoritative knowledge of Himself, His counsels, and His will, God has added a written revelation for the benefit of everyone whose heart is set on seeking Him.” (Tertullian, 197)
“”It will be your duty, however, to present your proofs out of the Scriptures, as plainly as we do.” (Tertullian, 213)
“”Brethren, there is one God, the knowledge of whom we gain from the Holy Scriptures and from no other source…Even as He has chosen to teach them by the Holy Scriptures, so let us discern them.” (Hippolytus, 205)
“We have the Lord as the source of teaching— both by the Prophets, the Gospel, and the blessed apostles. . . . He, then, who of himself believes the Scripture and the voice of the Lord (which by the Lord acts to the benefit of men) is rightly [regarded] as being faithful. Certainly we use it as a criterion in the discovery of things. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195)
“To those who thus ask questions, in the Scriptures there is given from God . . . the gift of the God- given knowledge. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195)
(All of these quotations are from David Bercot, A Dictionary Of Early Christian Belief: A Reference Guide To More Than 700 Topics Discussed By The Early Church Fathers, 22294-22380 (Kindle Edition); Peabody, Massachusetts; Hendrickson Publishers Marketing)
The Dating Of The New Testament Scriptures
Many believe that the New Testament Scriptures were written decades after the death of Jesus and are therefore not reliable. It is claimed that the memories of the Apostles were not reliable enough to write down Christ’s words after so many years.
However, this overlooks three important factors.
First, the Apostles of Christ wrote via inspiration of the Holy Spirit (and this was confirmed through the aforementioned signs and miraculous proofs).
John 14:26-But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
John 16:13-However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come
Second, the fact that the Jews lived in an oral society refutes this objection; even if the New Testament had been written decades after Christ died, it would not change the fact that the Apostles would still have accurate and reliable details of His teachings and commands.
“Here’s the primary problem that I find in the critics’ claims: they forget what people in oral cultures could remember. You and I live in a written culture. That is to say that if we need to remember a certain truth or task, we write it down…In the first century a.D., that wasn’t the case at all. More than three-fourths of the population probably could not read. Even among people who could read, writing was typically a task reserved for professional scribes .22 So, their culture remained an oral culture—a culture where persons received and passed on truths in oral form. Teachers used rhythm, rhyme, repetition, and alliteration to imprint instructions on their students’ minds, telling and retelling truths until the vital content could be recalled at a moment’s notice. When especially significant events occurred, communities rapidly preserved the essential content in pithy oral histories.23 Whenever discussions of teaching methods emerged among the Jewish rabbis, it is clear how highly they valued the capacity to pass on oral traditions and histories. Here’s how one first-century Jewish author described the process: “Instruction proceeds in a leisurely manner; he lingers over it and spins it out with repetitions, thus permanently imprinting the thoughts in the souls of the hearers.”24 A rabbi named Perida was said to have repeated every teaching four hundred times. If a pupil still failed to comprehend the teaching or to remember the essential content, Rabbi Perida reiterated the teaching another four hundred times.25 As a Jewish teacher with a band of disciples, Jesus would have been expected to train His followers to preserve His teachings…Jesus was a first-century Jewish teacher; as such, His first followers would have learned and preserved His teachings with a high degree of accuracy.” (Timothy Paul Jones, Conspiracies And The Cross, 1884-1899 (Kindle Edition): Lake Mary, Florida; FrontLIne)
Finally, there is strong evidence that much of the New Testament was written within a relatively short time of Jesus’ Resurrection, not decades later.
Some of this evidence includes a copy of the Gospel of Matthew that dates back to within ten years of the Resurrection of Christ (which must have come from a still earlier source since it was a copy).
“Our attention is drawn to the work of Dr Carsten Thiede, and his book, The Jesus Papyrus (see Bibliography). Suffice it here to say that a thorough and scientific analysis undertaken by Dr Thiede of the Gospel fragments known to scholars as the Magdalen Papyrus (named after Magdalen College Oxford, where it is kept), dates this particular copy of Matthew’s Gospel to times so close to the Resurrection, that it could easily have been copied or read by an eyewitness of our Lord’s entire ministry. To be brief, the Magdalen Papyrus was copied out between the mid- 40s and AD 50. But we must also bear in mind that this particular papyrus was itself but a copy of an even earlier original, though by how many removes we cannot know.” (Bill Cooper, Old Light On The Roman Church, 603 (Kindle Edition)
There is also some powerful evidence from the Dead Sea Scrolls:
“The caves at Qumran are famous for the hoard of Old Testament and other manuscripts that have been found there. But the thing which receives the least publicity (if any publicity at all) is the fact that the caves have also yielded fragments of New Testament books. This absence of publicity – this blanket denial of their identity is not to be wondered at. The fact of the matter is this, that these manuscripts were deposited in the caves at Qumran by the year AD 68 at the very latest, when Qumran and the surrounding area was overrun by the Roman 10th Legion, and according to the critics, the New Testament – especially the Gospels – had not yet been written by that time. It was really most awkward. In fact, it still is very awkward for them, for it means that the fragments must have been written out – copied from even earlier exemplars – well before AD 68, which undermines everything that the critics have been claiming all these years. Cave 4 at Qumran…Fragments of various New Testament books were themselves found in the caves of Qumran, most notably in Cave 7. One that is of particular interest is called 7Q5, and carries nothing less than a passage from Mark 6:52- 53…..identified nine fragments from Cave 7 as being portions of Mark, 1Timothy, James, Acts, Romans and 2 Peter…The discoveries in Cave 7 at Qumran – and the commendable diligence of O’Callaghan who identified them – proves that what the critics have been teaching all these years is wrong, misinformed and mistaken on all levels. Archaeology has never spoken plainer than it speaks right now. Copies of the New Testament books of Mark, 1 Timothy, James, Acts, Romans and 2 Peter (at least) were all in circulation by AD 68 at the very latest, and clearly years before. But what is more, they were in circulation internationally and not just locally amongst Christian groups or churches…We spoke earlier of the lack of publicity which surrounds the discovery of New Testament books – or rather their fragments – at Qumran, and their omission is pointedly displayed by Emanuel Tov, who has issued a ‘complete’ list of all the Biblical texts discovered in the Qumran caves. 22 It is indeed a prodigious and comprehensive list, except that when it comes to Cave 7 he omits all reference to the New Testament fragments which were discovered there….As we have seen, represented amongst these ‘unclassified’ fragments are the New Testament books of 1 Timothy (7Q4); Mark’s Gospel (7Q5) (7Q6, 1) (7Q7) (7Q15); James (7Q8); Acts (7Q6); Romans (7Q9); and 2 Peter (7Q10). How these can all be omitted from a list which claims to be ‘complete’ is something to be wondered at.” (Bill Cooper, The Authenticity Of The New Testament Part One: The Gospels, 299-472 (Kindle Edition)
The New Testament of Christ superseded the Old Testament; indeed, the Old Testament itself prophesied of the day that the New Testament would be established.
The Apostles of Christ (by virtue of their office) were given His authority to establish His New Covenant; and the New Testament Scriptures are the Divine Law for the New Testament church.
That these Scriptures are accurate and authentic may be ascertained from the fact of inspiration, the oral culture of first century Judaism, and the increasing evidence that they were written relatively quickly after the Resurrection of Christ.
From the earliest times, these books were accepted as the inspired and confirmed Word of the Almighty God, the final revelation from Heaven to mankind until the Second Coming of Christ.
In our next lesson, we will investigate the alleged “lost books” which were excluded from the New Testament canon.
The grace of The Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.
What are some Old Testament passages which indicate that God would create a New Covenant? _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
What New Testament passage teaches that the New Testament Scriptures provide all necessary knowledge of Jesus and His teachings? ______________
What New Testament passages shows us that the New Testament Scriptures provide a perfect pattern for every congregation of believers? ____________________________
“We have learned the plan of our salvation from no one else other than from those through whom the gospel has come down to us. For they did at one time proclaim the gospel in public. And, at a later period, by the will of God, they handed the gospel down to us in the ____________________ -to be ‘the ground and pillar of our faith.'” (Irenaeus, 180).
“We have the Lord as the source of teaching— both by the ________________, the ____________, and the ______________ ________________. . . . He, then, who of himself believes the Scripture and the voice of the Lord (which by the Lord acts to the benefit of men) is rightly [regarded] as being faithful. Certainly we use it as a criterion in the discovery of things.” (Clement of Alexandria (c. 195)
What is the general meaning of the word “apostle?” _______________
“We saw in Chapter Four that the principle of apostolicity was central to the idea of a canon, and that it stems from the earliest days of the Christian community-indeed from the lifetime of Jesus himself. He appointed the Twelve to be his apostles, his shelichim, a word with very special meaning in Judaism. It meant a representative equipped with the ________ ____________ of his principal…“…It is interesting to note that the Jewish shaliach (apostle) could not hand on his commission to ____________ ________; it was for him alone…There was something unique and unrepeatable about their position. They were the guarantors of the continuity between the incarnate Jesus who walked the streets of Palestine and the glorified Jesus whom the church worshipped.” (Dr. Michael Green, The Books The Church Suppressed: Fiction And Truth In The Da Vinci Code, 84-84; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Monarch Books; emphasis added)
In order to be an Apostle of Christ, one had to be an eyewitness of His ________________________ (Acts 1:21-22)
The word “epistle” means “____________.”
Please list the five-fold division of the New Testament: ____________ (Matthew-John); __________________________ (Acts); ______________________________ (Romans-Hebrews); ______________________________ (James-Jude); ________________ (Revelation)
Within how many years of the Resurrection of Christ was the Magdalene Papyrus copied? _______________________
In Cave 7 of the Dead Sea, several New Testament books are found. What books are alluded to? ________________________________________________________
“Here’s the primary problem that I find in the critics’ claims: they forget what people in oral cultures could remember. You and I live in a written culture. That is to say that if we need to remember a certain truth or task, we write it down…In the first century a.D., that wasn’t the case at all. More than three-fourths of the population probably could not read. Even among people who could read, writing was typically a task reserved for professional scribes. So, their culture remained an oral culture—a culture where persons received and passed on truths in oral form. Teachers used __________, __________, ________________, and ________________________ to imprint instructions on their students’ minds, telling and retelling truths until the vital content could be recalled at a moment’s notice. When especially significant events occurred, communities rapidly preserved the essential content in pithy oral histories. Whenever discussions of teaching methods emerged among the Jewish rabbis, it is clear how highly they valued the capacity to pass on oral traditions and histories. Here’s how one first-century Jewish author described the process: “Instruction proceeds in a leisurely manner; he lingers over it and spins it out with repetitions, thus permanently imprinting the thoughts in the souls of the hearers.” A rabbi named Perida was said to have repeated every teaching ________ ______________ times. If a pupil still failed to comprehend the teaching or to remember the essential content, Rabbi Perida reiterated the teaching another ________ ______________ times. As a Jewish teacher with a band of disciples, Jesus would have been expected to train His followers to preserve His teachings…Jesus was a first-century Jewish teacher; as such, His first followers would have learned and preserved His teachings with a high degree of accuracy.” (Timothy Paul Jones, Conspiracies And The Cross, 1884-1899 (Kindle Edition): Lake Mary, Florida; FrontLIne)