‘Pauline’ factions. These presented the older more primitive and more authentic Jewish ‘Petrines’ being slowly ousted by the later Greek ‘Paulines’ who made Jesus into a God and invented miracle stories and a Resurrection to prove it. Their followers today dominate all modern Scripture scholarship and firmly resist all evidence and proofs of the earliness, authenticity and historicity of the New Testament scriptures. The firmness of their resistance to the New Testament is based on the firmness of their belief in the impossibility of miracles. Since for them miracles cannot happen, any document recording miracles is necessarily fictional. For them the New Testament thus is necessarily fictional. 12
This quotation is from Tertullian’s Adversus Marcionem, IV, 4 – 6.
A papyrus published in 1973 referred to what is clearly St. Mark as a ‘Gospel for Catechumens.’ St. Mark’s Gospel was long to suffer from St. Augustine’s dim view of it as a clumsy attempt to abbreviate St. Matthew: ‘Mark seems to have followed him (Matthew) as a kind of camp-follower and abridger.’ (Marcus eum (Matthaeum) subsecutus tanquam pedisequus et breviator videtur.) In fact St. Mark was not summarising St. Matthew’s Gospel: in the many passages in common between these two Gospels, St. Mark’s is very often the more detailed version. 15
The ‘Syriac’ churches were the churches of Syria. They all looked to Antioch, the Greek speaking capital of Syria, as their mother church. Their language, Syriac, however, belonged in the Aramaic speaking world which stretched out eastwards from Antioch outside the Roman Empire and beyond the Euphrates and the upper Tigris rivers. 17
Desiderius Erasmus (1466 – 1536) was a famous Dutch scholar of the neopagan ‘Renaissance’. In 1516 he published, from the Alexandrinus, the first Greek edition of the New Testament. It was from this text that, in 1521, Luther translated the New Testament into German. Only in the late 19th century, after scholars had discovered the much greater fidelity of the Vaticanus tradition, was the King James Bible substantially revised and reissued as the Revised Standard Version (RSV). The quotation is from Stephen Neill, The Interpretation of the New Testament, 1861 – 1961 (The Firth lectures, 1962) (London, 1966), pp. 74 and 75. 19
Although frequently alluded to by S. Clement (ad Cor. 10, 17, 23, 31, 38) in the first century, St. James is not in the works listed as being in Church use in Rome’s second century Muratorian Canon. This reflects the fact that his name and memory was at that time being misused by the Ebionites as an authority against St. Paul. 22
People who believe that Jesus will come personally and visibly to reign for a thousand years on our present world are called Millenarians (‘thousand-yearers’). It may be observed however that, between the destruction of classical paganism in the 4th century and the resurgence of neo-paganism in the ‘Renaissance’ from the 14 th century (during the 70 year papal absence in Avignon), a thousand years elapsed. During that millennium our Lord’s Eucharistic Real Presence was worshipped throughout the Christian world.
Published on Nov 29, 2011
Published on Nov 29, 2011
This survey of how the New Testament came to be written is also a chronicle of the first 40 years of the history of the Christian Church. It...