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The New Testament Presents a Paradox

Discussion in 'Interfaith Discussion' started by SLPCCC, May 26, 2020.

  1. SLPCCC

    SLPCCC Active Member

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    The New Testament presents a paradox. It is made up of 27 books but looked upon as one book. The 27 books were written about 20 years after Jesus’ death by 16 Christians with diverse views. None of those 1st century Christian or any other not even the churches of that time had all those 27 books together in one place. They were all in various places.

    The individual writings also differ from one another. If you read the New Testament carefully and thoughtfully, you’ll come across some significant ways in which the individual writings differ from one another. For example, how does a person receive salvation? In his letters to the Galatians and the Romans, Paul stresses that a person is made righteous and thus worthy of salvation through faith in Christ alone, apart from the works of the Law. The Letter of James, on the other hand, insists that faith apart from works is barren; one must have faith and perform works. The number of differences among the manuscripts is so great that there are biblical scholars who devote their entire careers to what’s called textual criticism.

    There also were other books that the churches had of Jesus’ words and deeds that did not make it into the bible. Some of the churches did not teach the trinity others did. Throughout the 2nd and 3rd centuries, Christian leaders debated which books were to be accepted as canonical. In the year 367, the Christian bishop of Alexandria in Egypt, Athanasius, wrote a letter to his churches in which he discussed that Christian teachers were using books in their instruction that should not be considered part of the Bible. Therefore, he decided to list precisely which books belonged to what he called the canon—that is, the closed list of biblical books.

    Athanasius was the chief defender of Trinitarianism against Arianism. The Arian concept of Christ is based on the belief that the Son of God did not always exist but was begotten within time by God the Father. Jehovah's Witnesses are often referred to as "modern-day Arians". The original Arians generally prayed directly to Jesus, whereas the Witnesses pray to Jehovah God, through Jesus as a mediator.

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. Hawkins

    Hawkins Well-Known Member

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    If you know the nature of what histories are, you know that you can't possibly prove the above. None of today's documents are original enough for us to get to a firm conclusion on any views in particular. Different school of thoughts may have different speculations.

    In a nutshell, humans lack the ability to keep original documents before the invention of paper. Humans lack the ability to reach a past precisely, especially individual activities occurred long ago. We have the limited ability to evidence the trail of some mass activities though.
     
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  3. Musing Bassist

    Musing Bassist Mihi Quaestio Factus Sum

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    James is saying that an authentic faith necessarily leads to moral works; to moral virtue. Belief without works or corresponding virtue is mere assent which is not meritorious. Even demons believe.

    Paul on the other hand rejects not the necessity of moral works, but the necessity of the continued observance of the Mosaic Law. The ceremonial and judicial laws that govern Old Testament religion. That observance is to be replaced by faith in Christ, which alone is salvific and open to all.
     
    #3 Musing Bassist, May 28, 2020
    Last edited: May 28, 2020
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  4. syo

    syo Well-Known Member

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    Harry Potter has 7 books, many fanfictions, a theatrical, one main author, and many self proclaimed authors. :rolleyes:
     
  5. SLPCCC

    SLPCCC Active Member

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    Today we have both letters in one book, the bible, with many Christain faiths and presenting a paradox. Because of those two letters, some believe that faith alone is needed for salvation because it will eventually produce the works. and others believe that faith alone is not enough with just the belief that it will eventually produce works. For example, the Jehovah's Witnesses must go door to door and preach in order to be saved (works). The Catholics must go to church and confession in order to be saved (works). The Born Agains Christians and some other Christian religions teach that you need only to repent, accept Jesus, have faith and you will be saved (not works). Those two letters and others created many denominations. Yet all the denominations believe that both letters belong in the bible and are teaching the same thing when they are saying two different things because they originated in separate places during the first century when some Christians were going by Abraham (faith alone) while others were going by the book of Moses (the law).
     
  6. SLPCCC

    SLPCCC Active Member

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    Unfortunately, we don't have the original copies. Neither do we have the manuscript of the Letter to the Romans that Paul’s secretary wrote as Paul dictated to him. About 6,000 manuscript fragments do survive. We have copies of copies of copies. Repeated copying means errors and other differences. The number of differences must be in the hundreds of thousands. Nearly all these differences are minor things that do not affect the meaning of the work, such as spelling errors or accidental omissions of words. There is evidence that there have been some additions.

    For example, the copies of the Gospel of Mark give three different endings. It is believed that the shortest of these three endings is the original one. And the eighth chapter of the Gospel of John, where you’ll find the story of Jesus defending a woman accused of adultery is not in the oldest manuscripts of the gospel; they do not have this story in them, and most scholars agree that it was not part of John as it was originally written.
     
  7. SA Huguenot

    SA Huguenot Well-Known Member

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    Writing a post with such generalisation of everything from the documentary hypothesis to the Trinity, Historical Evidence, different Christian denominations is a huge error. How do you expect any person to answer you with a single post on everything?

    All you did was to post your statement with thousands of possible threads, and if anyone answer on one, you pop out a new question with hundreds more possible questions connected to your question.

    If you are unable to take one question at a time to discuss it in its fullest detail, you are not interested in finding the answer at all, but to merely rattle the chain proverbially.
     
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