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Resurrection of Jesus: how strong is Luke's testimony?

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  • Resurrection of Jesus: how strong is Luke's testimony?

    It goes without saying that a historian should only use the best evidence available to make his case. No fool would choose to establish their case by ignoring their own best evidence and using a source that is less certain.

    Luke himself admits his gospel is his compilation of what others said, and hence, hearsay:

    1 Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile an account of the things accomplished among us,
    2 just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word have handed them down to us,
    3 it seemed fitting for me as well, having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write it out for you in consecutive order, most excellent Theophilus;
    4 so that you might know the exact truth about the things you have been taught.
    (Luk 1:1-4 NAS)
    If you have both first-hand and second-hand testimony to make your case, which type of evidence is the 'best'? The one that says your fact is true because the testifying person heard about it from another person?

    Or the one that says your fact is true because they were personally involved with it being true?

    So Luke doesn't qualify as the best evidence, simply because he admits his account is hearsay, and apologists insist that Paul was a first-hand eyewitness, which logically means there is better evidence than Luke in the NT upon which to argue the case of the resurrection.

    However, as must be the case at Tweb, some dork will insist that hearsay and first-hand reporting are of equal historical worth...probably because they are frightened to death of how I'm going to impeach apostle Paul's credibility, so they need to make sure first-hand stuff isn't the only stuff they have going for them.

    So let's look at Luke's credibility.

    Assuming, as fundies do, that Luke also wrote Acts, then in Acts 15, Luke spills much ink recording Peter's comments in the Judaizer debate at the Council of Jerusalem:

    7 And after there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, "Brethren, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.
    8 "And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He also did to us;
    9 and He made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith.
    10 "Now therefore why do you put God to the test by placing upon the neck of the disciples a yoke which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear?
    11 "But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are."
    (Act 15:7-11 NAS)
    However, Luke's only information to the reader on how the Judaizers argued their position, is his recording of a single summary statement, which he reports twice with a slight variation:
    And some men came down from Judea and began teaching the brethren, "Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved." (Act 15:1 NAS)

    5 But certain ones of the sect of the Pharisees who had believed, stood up, saying, "It is necessary to circumcise them, and to direct them to observe the Law of Moses." (Act 15:5 NAS)
    Does that sound like a record of proceedings produced by an objective historian? I think not.

    However, some fundies have attempted, via mirror-reading Galatians, to come up with how the Judaizers must have argued their case:

    F. F. Bruce aptly draws together what can be inferred from a mirror reading of Paul’s defense on this matter, and so speculates that the Judaizers must have argued as follows:
    “The Jerusalem leaders are the only persons with authority to say what the true gospel is, and this authority they received direct from Christ.
    Paul has no comparable authority: any commission he exercises was derived by him from the Jerusalem leaders, and if he differs from them on the content or implications of the gospel, he is acting and teaching quite arbitrarily. In fact,” they may have added, “Paul went up to Jerusalem shortly after his conversion and spent some time with the apostles there. They instructed him in the first principles of the gospel and, seeing that he was a man of uncommon intellect, magnanimously wiped out from their minds his record as a persecutor and authorized him to preach to others the gospel which he had learned from them. But when he left Jerusalem for Syria and Cilicia he began to adapt the gospel to make it palatable to Gentiles. The Jerusalem leaders practised circumcision and observed the law and the customs, but Paul struck out on a line of his own, omitting circumcision and other ancient observances from the message he preached, and thus he betrayed his ancestral heritage. This law-free gospel has no authority but his own; he certainly did not receive it from the apostles, who disapproved of his course of action. Their disapproval was publicly shown on one occasion at Antioch, when there was a direct confrontation between Peter and him on the necessity of maintaining the Jewish food-laws” (Galatians, 26).
    Longenecker, Richard N., Word Biblical Commentary, Volume 41:
    Galatians, (Dallas, Texas: Word Books, Publisher) 1998.
    Longnecker continues making deductions:

    The Judaizers’ argument could very well have run along the following lines: (1) while Paul directed the Galatians to Gen 15:6, they must realize that the developed form of God’s covenant with Abraham appears in Gen 17:4–14, with its requirement of circumcision emphatically stated in vv 10–14; (2) while Paul spoke only of Abraham, the full development of Israel’s religious legislation came with Moses; (3) while Paul spoke of the promises of the gospel, the promises were in actuality made to Abraham and to his “seed,” which means the nation; and (4) while Paul assured his converts that by accepting the gospel they became sons of Abraham, the question must be raised as to which son they represent, for Abraham had two sons—the first being Ishmael, with Isaac born later.
    Longenecker, Richard N., Word Biblical Commentary, Volume 41:
    Galatians, (Dallas, Texas: Word Books, Publisher) 1998.
    If those deductions are an accurate representation of how the Judaizers would have argued in the Council of Jerusalem (and I don't see any reason not to call them accurate), then the Judaizer's position was far harder to refute than simply the bits of history and theology we get from Peter's comments.

    I don't need to mirror read, I can see very easily that Jesus highly approved of those Jews who follow him and keep even the least parts of the law:

    19 "Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and so teaches others, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (Mat 5:19 NAS)
    Which would logically require that Jesus highly approved of the OT teaching that Gentiles do not partake in covenant with the Hebrew god until they get circumcised:
    48 "But if a stranger sojourns with you, and celebrates the Passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near to celebrate it; and he shall be like a native of the land. But no uncircumcised person may eat of it. (Exo 12:48 NAS)
    You will say the apostles didn't see it that way, but on the contrary, they howl and scream with outrage when hearing that Peter ate with Gentiles:
    1 Now the apostles and the brethren who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God.
    2 And when Peter came up to Jerusalem, those who were circumcised took issue with him,
    3 saying, "You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them." (Act 11:1-3 NAS)
    When Peter explains his vision from God, the apostles 'quiet down' (their screaming demeanor totally out of line if we assume the gospels are historically correct with their Gentile-friendly Jesus) and talk like the very concept of Gentile salvation was some new shocking theological update which they had never before anticipated:

    18 And when they heard this, they quieted down, and glorified God, saying, "Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life." (Act 11:18 NAS)

    Isn't that peculiar? If Jesus was as Gentile-friendly as the 4 gospels suggest, does "slowness" or "stupidity" seriously explain how the apostles and elders could be so enraged at Peter for eating with Gentiles? Could Acts 11:1-2 possibly be a glimpse into how exclusively Jewish the real gospel of Jesus was, before the gospel authors transformed it into a more Gentile friendly religion? The reader will have to decide whether the typical excuse "they just didn't get it" explains the apostolic resistance to Gentile salvation, or, if that resistance testifies to a truth now hidden under a maze of gospel changes and spins.

    So it would appear that, because the Judaizer position has a far more weighty prima facie case to make, far beyond the one summary statement of their position Luke gave and repeated once, Luke's choice to leave out ALL of their evidence and simply dismiss them with a single summary statement, repeated once, looks more like deliberate intent to spin the story favorably toward the view of his buddies Peter and Paul, than it looks like the choice to leave out evidence solely for reasons of space or style.

    I conclude that Luke's choice to give his readers much evidence and argument from Peter but only a mere summary statement from the Judaizers repeated once, betrays a bias that, for his first century readers who could not so easily corroborate facts, left them with the false view that the Judaizer position was easier to refute than it really was, and for this reason, it was a bias that goes beyond how much bias we naturally expect from those who take sides in a controversy. He crossed the line into intent to give a false impression of history (i.e., 'Peter really kicked butt on the Judaizers!', etc).

    Since Luke's bias in reporting the Council of Jerusalem proceedings spilled over into giving of a false impression (that many reporters fall victim to when they become adept at "spinning" a story (i.e, giving a false impression of what happened without actually stating a direct falsehood)), Luke's credibility is shot, just like a pastor in a church caught telling a single lie would occasion great consternation among the elders as to whether he is fit to continue leading the church (sin means far more to Christians than it does to anybody else, so their apologists are forced to accept that lying spells near certain doom for credibility, it cannot just be papered over. That doesn't mean everything Luke said was false, it simply means the reader is rationally and reasonably justified to refuse to accept any of Luke's uncorroborated assertions. That would mean dismissing all parts of his resurrection narrative that cannot be corroborated by another more reliable source. That's a pretty healthy dismissal. School's out, babies.
    Last edited by B&H; 03-31-2015, 08:36 PM.

  • #2
    In the one corner, we have B&H, internet atheist, spinning words madly to cast doubt on the veracity of Luke-Acts.

    In the other corner, we have Sir William Ramsay, noted archaeologist who did exhaustive research on the ground in the environs described by Luke-Acts.

    Both started from a position of skepticism in the veracity of the book. One of them actually studied the facts with an open mind. The other blathered forth innuendo.

    My money's on the scholar.
    Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. St. John Chrysostom

    Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
    sigpic
    I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

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    • #3
      Originally posted by B&H View Post
      It goes without saying that a historian should only use the best evidence available to make his case. No fool would choose to establish their case by ignoring their own best evidence and using a source that is less certain.

      Luke himself admits his gospel is his compilation of what others said, and hence, hearsay:
      (Groan) I wish there was a painkiller for this nonsense. ARE you serious?
      Watch your links! http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/fa...corumetiquette

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by One Bad Pig View Post
        In the one corner, we have B&H, internet atheist, spinning words madly to cast doubt on the veracity of Luke-Acts.

        In the other corner, we have Sir William Ramsay, noted archaeologist who did exhaustive research on the ground in the environs described by Luke-Acts.

        Both started from a position of skepticism in the veracity of the book. One of them actually studied the facts with an open mind. The other blathered forth innuendo.

        My money's on the scholar.
        That is an interesting paper, but let us put it in the correct context. Ramsey is quoted as saying he "dutifully accepted the current opinion that [Acts] was written during the second half of the second century by an author who wished to influence the minds of people in his own time by a highly wrought and imaginative description of the early Church." When you say he "started from a position of skepticism in the veracity of the book", then, it is important to note that he was still a Christian at that time, even though he doubted the accuracy of Acts. His great scholarship showed that Luke's accounts of Paul's travels were based on detailed local knowledge, and based on that he showed that Acts was most likely written by a travelling companion of Paul's, supporting the traditional position that the author was actually Luke.

        The two points here are that Ramsey was not skeptical of the resurrection and that what he did was to show that the travels of Paul described in Acts were historically accurate. Given this thread is about the veracity of Luke with regards to the resurrection, I am not sure what Ramsey gives you here.

        You say your money is on the scholar, but I think you are betting on a horse running in a different race.
        My Blog: http://oncreationism.blogspot.co.uk/

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by The Pixie View Post
          That is an interesting paper, but let us put it in the correct context. Ramsey is quoted as saying he "dutifully accepted the current opinion that [Acts] was written during the second half of the second century by an author who wished to influence the minds of people in his own time by a highly wrought and imaginative description of the early Church." When you say he "started from a position of skepticism in the veracity of the book", then, it is important to note that he was still a Christian at that time, even though he doubted the accuracy of Acts. His great scholarship showed that Luke's accounts of Paul's travels were based on detailed local knowledge, and based on that he showed that Acts was most likely written by a travelling companion of Paul's, supporting the traditional position that the author was actually Luke.

          The two points here are that Ramsey was not skeptical of the resurrection and that what he did was to show that the travels of Paul described in Acts were historically accurate.
          I agree.
          Given this thread is about the veracity of Luke with regards to the resurrection, I am not sure what Ramsey gives you here.
          B&H's modus operandi is to call into question Luke's veracity in general. In what we can verify, Luke is accurate (as shown by Ramsay). That lends some support to the notion that Luke can be trusted in general.
          Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. St. John Chrysostom

          Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
          sigpic
          I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by One Bad Pig View Post
            In the one corner, we have B&H, internet atheist, spinning words madly to cast doubt on the veracity of Luke-Acts.
            No, posting an argument against Luke's credibility that no internet or published apologist has ever attempted an answer to, hence, you mischaracterize in the effort to distract the reader from your own inability to deal with my argument directly.

            In the other corner, we have Sir William Ramsay, noted archaeologist who did exhaustive research on the ground in the environs described by Luke-Acts.
            Whose conclusions are irrelevant since he nowhere deals with my specific argument from Luke's unfair unbalanced reporting. Ramsay was impressed with Luke's accuracy, and yet never explains why he thinks it beyond normal abilities for a first-century doctor and traveling companion of Luke to keep accurate notes. If you don't believe in Catholic miracles just because their apologists correctly cite to real places like Fatima and Lourds, then you don't believe in biblical miracles reported by Luke, just because he got the names of people and places correct.

            Both started from a position of skepticism in the veracity of the book. One of them actually studied the facts with an open mind. The other blathered forth innuendo.

            My money's on the scholar.
            Which means nothing more than an atheist saying "John Loftus earned a master's degree in theology, became a Christian apologist, then became an atheist. My money's on the scholar".

            Would it be too much to expect you to provide a direct rebuttal? Apparently, yes, it would be. When a follower of Jim Jones starts seeing the benefit of the cyanide kool-aid, the fact that they are wrong becomes irrelevant to them. This is for the atheists who cannot understand extreme stupidity in the face of reality. Religious commitment not only steals your mind, but provides the perfect conspiracy scenario ("whoever opposes you is just working for the devil") to ward off those moments when critical thinking skills try to fight their way into your conscience.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by DesertBerean View Post
              (Groan) I wish there was a painkiller for this nonsense. ARE you serious?
              Yes. I never said historians do not use hearsay. I never said historians never think hearsay is 'good enough'. I said it is a rule of historiography that a historian use only the best evidence she has available.

              Since you believe the New Testament contains first-hand testimony to the resurrection of Jesus, and since you presumably believe, for the same reason that historians and courts of law do, that first-hand testimony is of presumably higher quality than is hearsay, then you are forced to agree that hearsay in the NT is not the best evidence you have, which means we set aside the hearsay for now and do not deal with it until we first examine your best or first-hand evidence. I am creating posts limited to discussing one book of the NT each. I already grant that apostle Paul's testimony is "first-hand", and I'll deal with it after I get through John and Acts.

              Can you contribute anything more serious in rebuttal to my opening argument, beyond asking me whether I'm serious, and a reference to a painkiller? I seriously doubt it. For this reason, I expect you to come up with further excuses to justify avoiding dealing directly in point by point fashion with my OP arguments.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by B&H View Post
                No, posting an argument against Luke's credibility that no internet or published apologist has ever attempted an answer to, hence, you mischaracterize in the effort to distract the reader from your own inability to deal with my argument directly.
                If I saw an argument that merited a response, I'd respond to it. All you've got is spin.
                Whose conclusions are irrelevant since he nowhere deals with my specific argument from Luke's unfair unbalanced reporting. Ramsay was impressed with Luke's accuracy, and yet never explains why he thinks it beyond normal abilities for a first-century doctor and traveling companion of Luke to keep accurate notes.
                *snort*
                If you don't believe in Catholic miracles just because their apologists correctly cite to real places like Fatima and Lourds, then you don't believe in biblical miracles reported by Luke, just because he got the names of people and places correct.
                I'm not a protestant. Keep flailing - maybe you'll get lucky and hit something.
                Which means nothing more than an atheist saying "John Loftus earned a master's degree in theology, became a Christian apologist, then became an atheist. My money's on the scholar".
                No, Johnny Loftus graduated from seminary, became a pastor, and apostasized because he committed adultery. That's, um, sort of different than spending decades tramping about doing research in the field.
                Would it be too much to expect you to provide a direct rebuttal?
                Would it be too much to expect you to provide an argument worth debating?
                Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. St. John Chrysostom

                Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
                sigpic
                I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by One Bad Pig View Post
                  If you don't believe in Catholic miracles just because their apologists correctly cite to real places like Fatima and Lourds, then you don't believe in biblical miracles reported by Luke, just because he got the names of people and places correct.
                  I'm not a protestant. Keep flailing - maybe you'll get lucky and hit something.
                  And speaking as a protestant, I believe something supernatural happened at Fatima and Lourdes, I just have a different opinion on the source. So his flailing about doesn't even apply really to protestants.
                  "If you can ever make any major religion look absolutely ludicrous, chances are you haven't understood it"
                  -Ravi Zacharias, The New Age: A foreign bird with a local walk

                  Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
                  1 Corinthians 16:13

                  "...he [Doherty] is no historian and he is not even conversant with the historical discussions of the very matters he wants to pontificate on."
                  -Ben Witherington III

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by B&H View Post
                    Yes. I never said historians do not use hearsay. I never said historians never think hearsay is 'good enough'. I said it is a rule of historiography that a historian use only the best evidence she has available.

                    Since you believe the New Testament contains first-hand testimony to the resurrection of Jesus, and since you presumably believe, for the same reason that historians and courts of law do, that first-hand testimony is of presumably higher quality than is hearsay, then you are forced to agree that hearsay in the NT is not the best evidence you have, which means we set aside the hearsay for now and do not deal with it until we first examine your best or first-hand evidence. I am creating posts limited to discussing one book of the NT each. I already grant that apostle Paul's testimony is "first-hand", and I'll deal with it after I get through John and Acts.

                    Can you contribute anything more serious in rebuttal to my opening argument, beyond asking me whether I'm serious, and a reference to a painkiller? I seriously doubt it. For this reason, I expect you to come up with further excuses to justify avoiding dealing directly in point by point fashion with my OP arguments.
                    What makes you think he didn't talk to the eyewitnesses himself?
                    Watch your links! http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/fa...corumetiquette

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                    • #11
                      B&H,

                      Do you have one definitive fact? Just one.

                      The Apostle Paul quotes from Luke as holy scripture.

                      "For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward."-- 1Timothy 5:18.

                      ". . . for the labourer is worthy of his hire." -- Luke 10:7.
                      . . . the Gospel of Christ, for it is [the] power of God to salvation to every [one] believing, . . . -- Romans 1:16.

                      . . . that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: . . . -- 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4.

                      Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: . . . -- 1 John 5:1.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by One Bad Pig View Post
                        B&H's modus operandi is to call into question Luke's veracity in general. In what we can verify, Luke is accurate (as shown by Ramsay). That lends some support to the notion that Luke can be trusted in general.
                        It does not. First, assuming his historical accuracy in naming place and people, this no more rebuts the evidence that he engaged in unfair unbalanced reporting, than your most hated news agency (CNN? Fox?) getting the names of people and places correct rebuts evidence that they engage in unfair unbalanced reporting.

                        I don't see how exactly you justify moving from "Luke had accurate knowledge of people and places" over to "he told nothing but the truth concerning miracles and Paul." Indeed, the lie that is closest to the truth is the one most likely to deceive. Hence, Luke's motive to get the checkable facts right could just as easily have been honorable as dishonorable. Those who plan to deceive usually plan to tell the truth about every other fact implicated in their story, because they know that uncritical hearers/readers will argue that "if they are honest in what we can check, we can trust them in matters we cannot check."

                        Furthermore, you do not think the multitude of modern-day miracle claimants telling the truth about names, places, dates, etc, 'lend some support to the notion that [they] can be trusted in general.

                        Some apologist here will probably try to establish a case for how difficult it was for a seafaring traveler like Luke to have correctly named all the people and places that he visited, but this is absurd. If Luke was a doctor as traditionalists would have it, he would likely have been educated to read and write at least sufficiently to keep a travel diary.

                        That no more argues his miracle claims are true, than the accurate reporting of names and places by Catholics argues Mary really is appearing in Fatima or Lourdes. An accurate travel diary also does no more require an honorable explanation of Luke's unbalanced reporting of the Council of Jerusalem, than a travel diary kept by a modern-day reporter argues that she doesn't wish to spin a story.

                        You are reading too much into "Luke was accurate!", and your conclusion that it lends some credibility to him, is one that usually doesn't follow in other cases.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by One Bad Pig View Post
                          If I saw an argument that merited a response, I'd respond to it. All you've got is spin.
                          No, there is no doubting that Luke wanted his readers to have an account of the Council of Jerusalem that devotes much ink to the allegedly "apostolic" view, but represents the Judaizer view with nothing more than a single summary sentence, repeated once. Reasonable people could easily find that Luke had an agenda for his audience and was spinning a story with the common tactic of unbalanced reporting.

                          I'm not a protestant. Keep flailing - maybe you'll get lucky and hit something.
                          Doesn't really matter, your attempts to rebut me place you in the same camp as them.

                          No, Johnny Loftus graduated from seminary, became a pastor, and apostasized because he committed adultery.
                          Another example of unfair unbalanced reporting, since you know perfectly well Loftus has far more arguments against Christianity than simply "God won't let me commit adultery". I suggest you scrap the Jerry Springer Audience mentality and present the facts fairly and objectively.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Raphael View Post
                            And speaking as a protestant, I believe something supernatural happened at Fatima and Lourdes, I just have a different opinion on the source. So his flailing about doesn't even apply really to protestants.
                            But you don't speak for all protestants, and plenty of them think Fatima and Lourdes are naturalistic fraud.

                            However, we can be sure that because you don't chime in with attempt to deal with my main argument against Luke, you have deluded yourself into thinking you are proving Christianity true by staying in the gutter and trifling about things that have nothing to do with my attack on Luke's honesty.

                            If you believe my attack on Luke's honesty was a failed argument, explain why.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by DesertBerean View Post
                              What makes you think he didn't talk to the eyewitnesses himself?
                              His choice to "spin" the story of the Council of Jerusalem in favor of the "apostolic" view, among other problems, such as Luke's obvious intent that Acts be an apologetic for Paul. Indeed, how exactly would those who live far away from Jerusalem have "checked on" the accuracy of Luke's claims about the original disciples agreeing with Paul against the Judaizers?

                              How plausible it is to suggest that a first-century man supporting a family, living in Corinth or Thessalonica, or some other place far away from Jerusalem, having heard Paul's claims and read this stuff in Acts, would leave his job and take a very costly, time-consuming, dangerous first-century trip to Jerusalem merely to verify that Paul's claims are in harmony with the original disciples of Christ? Would he require his family to go hungry and take a vow of poverty just so he can do this? I don't think so.

                              In the first century, that is quite a lot of time spent merely to verify the accuracy of a report. You may say he could have sent a letter, but again, there is no way for a newbie to tell that any "apostolic" letter really came from the apostles. The lack of ability to communicate in the first century no doubt led to an overabundance of misrepresentation. Even Paul thought it important sometimes to employ the most extreme measure he could to authenticate his letters, which wasn't more than his self-declaration that he certainly wrote it.

                              I conclude that it would have been very easy for Paul and Luke to have created churches far away from Jerusalem and caused them to falsely believe he was more in harmony with the original apostles than he really was. Apparently, it got so bad that James sent out Judaizers to Galatia to rebut Paul, and this rebuttal was sufficiently powerful that Paul complained that he was losing his converts to the Judaizer gospel (Gal. 1:6 ff)
                              Last edited by B&H; 04-02-2015, 02:47 PM.

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