Bart Ehrman's anti-inerrancy debate techniques

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by jonathan.borland, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. jonathan.borland

    jonathan.borland
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    I just listened to Craig Evans debate Bart Ehrman (video/audio), and as one who has read three of Ehrman's popular works (Misquoting Jesus, God's Problem, Jesus Interrupted), I was not surprised when he brought up this discrepancy in passing:

    Matt 9:18 (KJV): While he spake these things unto them, behold, there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him, saying, My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live.

    Mark 5:23 (KJV): And besought him greatly, saying, My little daughter lieth at the point of death: I pray thee, come and lay thy hands on her, that she may be healed; and she shall live.

    Luke 8:41 (KJV): For he had one only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she lay a dying. But as he went the people thronged him.

    Ehrman's favorite debate technique is to "prove" historical errors by pointing to discrepancies between the Gospel accounts and then leave the listener to deduce that both cannot be right. His second favorite technique is to demonstrate that the earliest manuscripts contain the most errors, and that the earliest of the early manuscripts are still far removed from the originals, leaving the reader to deduce that if even the earliest manuscripts from which all others descended are hopelessly corrupt, then certainly the later manuscripts are even more corrupt than the earlier ones, and thus there is no way one may be confident in the Bible's reliability. What do you think?

    Jonathan C. Borland
     
  2. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe
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    I have also listened to Bart debate, and read several of his books. Here's what I think of Bart in a nutshell --

    Bart has heard the Truth. Perhaps, he is under conviction. He is doing great damage to the cause of Christ. But, Bart is a smart guy.

    He claims to have given up his Christianity because he cannot square the variants found in the MSS with the doctrine of Inspiration. As you said above, he consistantly claims humans cannot know with certainty God's words. Deep inside, he actually knows that the Scriptures are in fact very secure (but will not acknowledge the truth because he derives too much fame and fortune from publishing his false position). Intellectually, he may eventually have to give up his current weak objection and retreat to the next: finally admitting that we really can know the words of God (with as much certainty as humans can "know" anything) BUT that we cannot know what those words mean (either because the ancient languages are not completely understood, or that the mind of ancient writers are not clearly grasped, etc.). Bart is merely looking for excuses to not believe.
     
    #2 franklinmonroe, Apr 26, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2010

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