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Apologetics Samplings

Overview

Three points on Apologetics: Is the Bible true? Did Jesus really live? Did Christianity copy paganism?

 

  • Is the Bible true? 

    • Evidence
      • Internal evidence--unity of ideas, reliable, truthful, and no contradictions.
      • External evidence--Other provable data--history, archaeology, science, literature, names, and places--agree with the Bible.
      • Bibliographic evidence--manuscript quality, number, age, and closeness to events. 
    • Why I know the Bible is true.
      • The Bible says it is God's inerrant word.
      • Jesus and the authors say that it is God's inerrant word.
      • Bible prophecies and their fulfillments indicate the Bible is supernatural and from God.
      • The unique unity of the Bible.
      • The accuracy of the Bible.
      • The survival and influence of the Bible.
      • Jesus' resurrection clearly proved that He is the Son of God. 
    • The canon, or, which books belong in the Bible?
      • Old Testament canon--God spoke through chosen men who wrote; the Hebrews knowingly recognized and preserved the writings in obedience to God and spiritual common sense.
      • New Testament canon--An apostle or one closely associated with an apostle wrote under God's inspiration; the writings had to have doctrinal agreement; they were read and recognized by the church--believers-- as authoritative.
  • Did Jesus really live? 

    • Why the Question? Some reject the supernatural, reject miracles, reject the biblical Jesus. 
    • Why so few first century mentions of Jesus? Very few reports about anything survived.  
    • Non-biblical documents that refer to Jesus Christ.
      • Josephus, lived c. AD 36-100: Pharisee, military commander, then attached to Roman military headquarters in Jerusalem, interpreted for General Titus, settled in Rome, wrote History of the Jewish War, Against Apion, Jewish Antiquities, and Autobiography (Antiq 18.3.3; 20.9.1).
      • Pliny the Younger, lived c. AD 61-112: wrote ten volumes of correspondence, governor of Bithynia (Epistles 10.96-97).
      • Cornelius Tacitus, lived c. AD 56-115: senator, governor of Asia, historian, wrote Annals (Annals, Loeb ed., 15.44).
      • Suetonius, lived c. AD 69-130?: Roman historian and annalist (Life of Claudius, 25.4).
  • Did Christianity copy paganism? 

    • Why do some say, "yes?"
      • They reject the truth that Jesus Christ is the only Savior.
      • They name pagan practices and doctrines with Christian terms.
      • They misunderstand the themes of the Old Testament and New Testament. 
    • Some supposed biblical borrowing from pagan religions
      • Virgin birth
      • Redemption through blood: bloody bull (Taurobolium) and bloody goat (Criobolium).
      • Rebirth or regeneration.
      • Baptism.
      • Resurrection. 
    • Conclusions.
      • The supposed pagan comparisons actually date later than the biblical events and record.
      • The events and beliefs, when examined, are not the same as the biblical events and beliefs.
      • The inaccurate use of terminology by those studying comparative religions causes much confusion.
      • Christianity clearly draws from the Old testament, not pagan religion.
      • Christianity is specific and absolute while the pagan religions are combinations of beliefs and practices found throughout the pagan world.
      • Christianity is about real, documented, historical persons and events.