Bible Error: Peter Denies Knowing Jesus

by JosephAlward 35 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • JosephAlward

    Ray writes,

    theses usually-trivial textual inconsistencies must be attributed to the scribe, not to the "speaker
    Why cannot inconsistencies be attributed to both--the speaker, and the scribe? There are no autographs (original manuscripts in the pen of the author), so there is no way of knowing whether the inconsistencies originated with the author, or were inadvertently created during transcription.

    Some Christians who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible believe the autographs would be found to be utterly without error or inconsistency if ever they were to be discovered. This belief seems to held purely on the basis of faith. Is that the case with you, Ray, or is there some objective means by which you "know" that the autographs are the Word of God, if that's what you believe?

    Joseph F. Alward
    "Skeptical Views of Christianity and the Bible"

  • revdrjohnson
    Some Christians who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible believe the autographs would be found to be utterly without error or inconsistency if ever they were to be discovered. This belief seems to held purely on the basis of faith. Is that the case with you, Ray, or is there some objective means by which you "know" that the autographs are the Word of God, if that's what you believe?

    No, Joe, I'm just another one of those people who believe in inerrant autographs: and subjective faith of the Hebrews 11:6 variety.

    I do read, which I suppose is the best ANY of us can do.

    After all, whatever ancient document we happen to be referencing, we can only "assume" that we are reading an accurate representation of the autograph.

    I don' remember offhand if it was Geisler or Strobel (or both) but somebody made the point that in the absence of autographs we are COMPELLED to rely on the data we receive from other witnesses to the text. They add that amongst those ancient texts that are important components of our "liberal arts" education -- the so-called "Classics" -- only the New Testament can boast of as many surviving exemplars (@8,000 Greek and @5,000 in Latin and other languages -- same figure can be found in the foreword to the NKJV)

    So, how do we resolve the dilemma? Someone I once met used the term "Intelligent Faith." For me, that is faith of the Hebrews 11:6 (onward) variety.

    As to your first question:

    Why cannot inconsistencies be attributed to both--the speaker, and the scribe?
    I suppose there's no hard fast rule that says they cannot. But there are numerous publications dealing with "Bible Difficulties" which have explained the vast majority of them away as errors of transmission. (Notwithstanding the whole "Jesus Project" debate, of late)

    Keep the Faith

  • revdrjohnson

    1Cor 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

  • radar


    Regarding Autographs and things like that.
    At the end of the day, it is whether you believe what MAN has penned. The Bible is written only by men.
    Yet the Bible is diffrent from other historical texts that you mention, because it makes the claim of itself, that it's a revelation from God and demands of its reader to adhere to its belief system, condeming those that do not to everlasting punishment.

    As Thomas Paine says in his essay "Age of Reason"

    "It is a contradiction in terms and ideas to call anything a revelation that comes to us at second hand, either verbally or in writing. Revelation is necessarily limited to the first communication. After this, it is only an account of something which that person says was a revelation made to him; and though he may find himself obliged to believe it, it cannot be incumbent on me to believe it in the same manner, for it was not a revelation made to me, and I have only his word for it that it was made to him."

  • revdrjohnson

    Both you AND Paine make valid points. Except the Bible -- which I choose to accept as "Revelation," -- doesn't DEMAND anything from anyone. It simply states that there are two choices open to man -- each with its own set of consequences. It's ujp to YOU to decide whether to accept or reject what is said.

    Keep the Faith

  • radar


    (Revelation," -- doesn't DEMAND anything )

    Me think you play with words
    If someone jumps out of an aeroplane 3 miles up, wisdom DEMANDS you wear a parachute.
    There is in reality no choice.

    John 3:36 He that disobeys the son the wrath of God remains upon him.
    The choice given here is no choice!
    Again no real choice for the reader1

  • Bang

    It seems to me Joseph as if your reading and hearing with the flesh and not the spirit. It's intended as a spiritual reading, simple as that. The whole thing is.

    Consider - the other disciple spoke to "the maid at the door", Peter's soul, not yet spouse of the Spirit. His soul was "at the door", unsure to be in (as the other disciple) or out, like the elder brother (of the prodigal son) who wouldn't "enter the house". Peter first denied Him before "the maid at the door".

    Can you see anything in regard to the sevants/officers warming 'themselves' - or is it to be another historical critique of a spiritual story?


  • revdrjohnson


    1 Cor 2:14 [LITV]But a natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he is not able to know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
    It seems to me that many of the arguments raised by so-called skeptics, agnostics, and other counter-apologists stem largely from the fact that they evaluate biblical data from a very "Western" viewpoint.

    We must first consider that if there were New testament autographs – and I emphatically believe there were – they were probably written with a fairly-conservative Jewish audience in mind. In the Gospels and Luke there are clear distinctions between the conservative, Hebrew-speaking Jews, whom Edersheim calls the "Palestinian Jews;" and the Greek-speaking "Alexandrian Jews" of the Diaspora. (The New Testament consistently calls the latter, "Greeks" and "Gentiles" – so, where I use the term "Jew," here, I am referring to the "Palestinian Jews")

    03064 [email protected] {yeh-hoo-dee'} patronymically from 03063; AV - Jew 74, Jew + 0376 1, Judah 1; 76. 1) Jew
    03063 [email protected] {yeh-hoo-daw'} AV - Judah 808, Bethlehemjudah

    2448 Iouda {ee-oo-dah'} of Hebrew origin 03063 or perhaps 03194

    AV - Juda 3; 3

    Judah = "he shall be praised" 1) the fourth son of the patriarch Jacob; 2) the tribe that were the offspring of Judah; 3) the region occupied by the tribe; 4) a city of the tribe of Judah, conjectured to be Hebron, which was a city assigned to the priests and located in the hill country, and the native place of John the Baptist according to Jewish tradition

    2453 Ioudaios {ee-oo-dah'-yos} from 2448 (in the sense of 2455 as a country); adj

    AV - Jew 193, of Judea 1, Jewess 2; 196

    1) Jewish, belonging to the Jewish nation; 2) Jewish as respects to birth, origin, religion

    1672 Hellen {hel'-lane}

    from 1671;

    AV - Greek 20, Gentile 7; 27

    1) a Greek either by nationality, whether a native of the main land or of the Greek islands or colonies; 2) in a wider sense the name embraces all nations not Jews that made the language, customs, and learning of the Greeks their own; the primary reference is to a difference of religion and worship

    "Gentile" in John 7:35; Rom 2:9-10, 3:10; 1 Cor 10:32, and 12:13

    1675 Hellenistes {hel-lay-nis-tace'} from a derivative of 1672;

    AV - Grecians 3; 3

    1) a Hellenist; 1a) one who imitates the manners and customs or the worship of the
    Greeks, and use the Greek tongue; 1b) used in the NT of Jews born in foreign lands and speaking Greek. Acts 6:1, 9:29, 11:20

    So the people who wrote the New Testament scriptures undoubtedly wrote to a conservative Rabbinical Jewish audience; therefore it is probably safe to believe, also, that much of Jesus' and His disciples' understanding of the Old Testament scriptures was probably consistent with the prevalent halakah (and to a lesser extent haggadah) of the day.

    The Gospels in several places suggest that the Jewish Rabbis in Jesus time accepted him as one of their own – even inviting Him to teach in the local synagogues, wherever He went. Jesus' discourses with the "doctors" (Gr. 'didaskalon" – Teachers), in Luke 2:46-52 is reminiscent of the common practices of the ancient rabbis, sitting around the Temple and/or the synagogues discussing the halakah (and to a lesser extent haggadah) of the (Old Testament) scriptures.

    It does not seem unreasonable, then, that Jesus and His disciples approached the interpretation of Scripture with the common rabbinical halakah in view.

    About twelve years ago I started working on a book. In my research I encountered Alfred Edersheim's The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah. This is where I first heard the terms halakah and haggadah[/I]. It is also where I first encountered the "LIST OF OLD TESTAMENT PASSAGES MESSIANICALLY APPLIED IN ANCIENT RABBINIC WRITINGS" This " ¼ list contains the passages in the Old Testament applied to the Messiah or to Messianic times in the most ancient Jewish writings. They amount in all to 456, thus distributed: 75 from the Pentateuch, 243 from the Prophets, and 138 from the Hagiographa, and supported by more than 558 separate quotations from Rabbinic writings."

    This list gave me an altogether new viewpoint about biblical exegesis, and brought another very simple truth sharply into focus: that there is far more to biblical exegesis than meets the eye.

    Then about four years ago I joined the Rabinnical Mishnah Study Group, moderated by r. Simcah Roth of the Jerusalem Rabbinical Assembly (kinda the modern Jerusalem Sanhedrin). Over the years, since then, I have really had my eyes open about the halakhic processes that gave rise to the Talumd, Gemara, and Mishnah – processes which would have been in play in the writing of the New Testament scriptures. Time does not permit me to delve into the details of what that means, right now, but suffice it to say that trying to do exegesis with an English-language Bible is like trying to fly a Boeing 767 – when you've only been trained on a crop duster.

    More, Later.

    Keep the Faith

  • revdrjohnson

    I'd meant this to be the FIRST post . . .
    Sorry:To Bang's point:

    1 Cor 2:14 [LITV] But a natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he is not able to know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
    Actually, I need to correct something I said in my very first response. I said that Mark got his information from Matthew. I was writing off the cuff, from my office, and remembered that Mark was somebody's disciple.

    Turns out he was a disciple of Peter himself. This is verified by the testimony of at least five of the so-called "Church Fathers." Papias (c 60-130), bishop of Heiropolis, in Phrygia, says that Mark was the interpreter of the Catholic Epistles of Peter; and that Peter was Mark's " ¼ chief source of information regarding the recollections of Jesus." <font face=Times New Roman Size="2">Thomas C. Oden and Christopher A. Hall (Eds.) <I>Ancient Christian Commentary on Scriptures,</I> New Testament Vol. II. 1998. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press</font> Similarly, Papias makes the following observations

    · "Mark did not record the translation 'in order' "
    · "Peter presentet the Lord's teaching as the situation demanded, but with no intention of giving a connected account of the Lord's discourses"
    · "Nothing critical was distorted or omitted"
    <font face=Times New Roman Size="2">Oden, OpCit. Citing a fragment of Papias in Eusebius' <I>Church History</I> Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers Vol. 2.1 172-73. </font> Oden also cites the same witness from Clement of Alexandria (c 150-215), Irenaeus (c 115-202), and Origen (c 185-254), who says that peter instructed Mark to write the Catholic Epistles and acknowledges him as his own spiritual son:

    1 Peter 5:13 [LITV]The fellow-elected in Babylon greet you; also Mark my son.
    The two Post-Nicene Fathers who commented on Mark 14:30 didn't remark on the "cock-crow" – only on the denial. <font face=Times New Roman Size="2">Augustine, Tractate on John 32.5; Jerome, <I>Homily on Psalms</I> Homily 54. </font> Note this: the term "Cock-Crow" may have had absolutely nothing to do with an actual rooster crowing.

    The Romans used the term "Cock-crow" to refer to the watch between Midnight and 3:00 a.m.

    <font face=Times New Roman Size="2">Hans Kosmala. "The Time of The Cock-Crow." <I>Annual of the Swedish Theological Institute</I> 2 (1963): 118-120; 6 (1967-68): 132-34. </font> <font face=Times New Roman Size="2">John W. Wenbam. "How Many Cock Crowings? The Problem of Harmonistic Text-Variants." <I>New Testament Studies</I> 25 (1978-79): 523-25. </font> Both cited in <font face=Times New Roman Size="2">Walter W. Wessell. <I> The Expositors' Bible Commentary" </I> Frank S. Gaeblein (Ed.) 8 (1984) Grand Rapids: Zondervan. 542. </font> In the final analysis, three of the four synoptics agree on what was said, even if they did present their accounts from different points of view. Matthew 26:34, 69-75; Luke 22:43, 54-62; John 13:38

    Keep the Faith

  • plmkrzy

    MIGAWD who messes up this thread?
    Impossible to read now. Have to scroll all the
    way accross the kitchen to read it.

    If YADIRF were here he would be having a FIT!

    Hopefully someone knows how to fix it.

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