Is the New Testament reliable?

Is the New and Old Testament reliable?  This is a question that some Christians is challenged with but are not sure how to respond because we don’t have the tools for a defense of the bible and theological apologetics.  To begin, here are some links to debates between Craig Evans (Acadia) and Bart Ehrman (UNC). They are just some of many New Testament scholars who can debate this issue critically.

Criag Evans vs Bart Ehrman  debate (Jan. 19, 2012) (Night 1; Night 2); (and an earlier debate from 2011) (here). (More may be added later).

Bart Ehrman vs Craig Evans at Acadia University

Another great debate is coming up.  Dr. Ehrman, a former evangelical turned agnostic, is going head-to-head again with Dr. Craig Evans. This time at Acadia University and St. Mary’s University, in in Nova Scotia, Canada.

Ehrman and Evans are going to debate each other again for two days. They might be sick of each other at the end, or maybe, one might convert the other?…Not.  This should be interesting because they understand each other’s theology and points of view well.  Theological spars like this are interesting because when both hold strongly to their own convictions.  One might wonder why either do not come to the same conclusions.

Anyway, this will be very interesting. I wish I could be there myself, but unfortunately it’s way over in Atlantic Canada.  If you in Nova Scotia, check it out. [Tickets seem to be all gone now.  Maybe they’ll make the DVD or recording available online].  But there’s an “After the Debate will be held at Rock Church the next day, Saturday, Jan. 21 9:00-3:30PM.

Friday, January 20 at 7PM at Acadia University, and
Thursday, January 19 at 7PM at Mary’s University
Admission is FREE [SOLD OUT]

Acadia University and St. Mary’s University
www.Religionsoup.ca

Sponsored by The Navigators

Debate: Wallace vs Ehrman — “Can we trust the text of the New Testament?”

A great debate is coming up:

Daniel B. Wallace vs Bart D. Ehrman
Both biblical scholars–one conservative evangelical, the other, a former fundamentalist become liberal-atheist.

Topic:Can we trust the text of the New Testament?
Date: Oct. 1, 2011
Time: 7:00PM
Place: Dallas, TX
Sponsored by: Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts (web: CSNTM)

Since it will be all the way in Dallas, TX, the Friends of CSNTM website says a DVD will be available for purchase. It might be worth ordering.

Just bought some new books to read

I already have a bookshelf full of unread books.  I don’t know why, but tonight, I went to browse around the bookstore and was driven to pick up a few more to add to my collection of unread books.  I hope I can justify my purchase.  Here’s what I bought and why I got them:

Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible by Bart Ehrman (HarperOne, 2009)

  • I’ve been listening to some of Ehrman’s debates he’s had with evangelical scholars.  He does make an interesting case for the gospel’s discrepancies. I’ve heard from some that reading this book may cause you to lose your grip on the inerrancy of the bible. My New Testament text in seminary was written by Ehrman so I’m prepared to test the deeper waters of critical scholarship a little further to see if I fall off the deep-end. (Already in my collection of unread books are titles written by Spong, Pagels, and Crossan). I may need to carry a life-preserver before I jump into this one. 😉

The Next Evangelicalism: Freeing the Church from Western Cultural Captivity by Soong-Chan Rah (IVP, 2009)

  • I’ve read a little of The Next Christendom by Philip Jenkins and really liked it.  I suspect this book’s thrust is along similar lines so I anticipate this book to challenge traditional perspectives of western Christianity.

Life After Church: God’s Call to Disillusioned Christians by Brian Sanders (IVP, 2007)

  • This book was completely unknown to me but I want to begin reaching out to the disenfranchised generations of unchurched people and I’m not sure how and where to begin.  Understanding their cultural worldview, and why they’ve been turned off by church and/or Christians is crucial to doing effective ministry in our postmodern age.