IS SCRIPTURE LESS ACCURATE BECAUSE OF IT'S AGE? [Mythology by it's nature is not +quot;acc

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IS SCRIPTURE LESS ACCURATE BECAUSE OF IT'S AGE? [Mythology by it's nature is not "accurate." This does NOT mean that it is not VALID. The archetypes are still present, no matter how old the myths or the archetypal traits.] If one were wanting to investigate the validity of an event in past history, how would he do it? Obviously one would want to look at all forms of evidence. A user here has said that researchers go "study the artifacts, the art, the LITERATURE, the architecture, etc." Why is it, though, that many who come to Christianity reject this type of research? [This also depends a great deal on the time elapsed since the event and the current era, those who complied the data, political structures in place at the time of the event and beyond, social/economical pressures to relate the past event as other that what occurred.] Some say that this "OLD" literature is unreliable because of it's age, but where do researchers get their information from? OLDER literature! They don't just make up history. In fact historians rely on OLD literature to find answers to historical questions. [Researchers rely on "best fit" scenarios when the event is beyond eye-witness reports, and any written account is suspect (Christian Bible, Zohar, Baha Gita, etc.) due to social/political/economic pressures.] Age is not a determining factor in discounting the authenticity of a historical work. In fact, age is one of the historian's tools to validate the authenticity of a work. Authenticity and reliability is what historians are looking for, not the latest manuscript written, but the manuscript that is closest to the actual event. [Age is also not a determining factor in confirming the written account of an event. A simple example might be the Tungusca Event, where it was once thought a meteor flattened the forest-- Much after the fact it is known the blast was atomic [C.Sagan]. Many times the modifiers were not available during the compilation of events, but are available after the fact. Leprosy was caused by demons, and many historical texts record the fact. We know this is no longer the truth. Does that make better information wrong? No.] In this manner, a researcher comes to consider a document to be a reliable source of information, if it is dated as closely to the actual event as possible. [If a researcher did this, she/he can't be a very good one. The only way a text can be considered "reliable" is when it has not been modified at any time after the author puts up her/his pen. We know this is not the case in the KJV of the Bible-- why is it hard to believe it is also not the case in other versions?] Also, correlation between mssg. found to be within the similar time frames, adds to the authenticity and reliability of an historical document. [And if both have been changed to conform to politically expedient ends? (!)] Would you agree, Mr. Reader, that the age of a document is an enhancement in the research of history, rather than a detriment? Answer here with an X: Yes No [As I have proven, the answer to this is a resounding "Of course it isn't."] IS THE BIBLE ONLY ONE SOURCE? [No, it is not. Look up Justina and Theadora, for example. Also read The Catholic Encyclopedia published prior to 1932.] A common fallacy concerning Scripture is that it was written by a few sources in corroboration with each other. This could not be more unfounded, yet many swallow it wholesale. The word "Bible" means 'book of books' or 'collection of books'. The books of the Old and New Testaments were written by over 40 different people over a span of approx. 4000 years. The Hebrew writings antedate the mystery religions by thousands of years. The books were written at different periods in history, and by people ranging from shepherds to Kings. It is not the work of a few men in a single time period. [The Hebrew Testament relates myths long predating Biblical times. No misconceptions here.] So the Bible is not one source, but many, and it is incorrect to say it is only one source, in and of itself. This fact makes the fulfillment of prophecies astounding, as it is impossible that there was collusion, or inscription of these events after the fact. [You make the "fulfillment of prophecies" as a fact already proven, and granted as true. Is this the famous "research" technique you propound?] Would you agree, Mr. Reader, that the scripture was written by many different people over a time span of hundreds of years? Answer here with an X : Yes No [The answer here, based on texts that may or may not be reliable (such as The Catholic Encyclopedia) is "Yes, the Hebrew and Christian Testaments were written by many."] HAVE THE ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPTS BEEN ACCURATELY TRANSMITTED? [This, or course, has been answered many times, by many different people. If we can accept the validity of the texts written by the people who altered the Christian Bible as true, the answer to this question is "No. The Christian Bible has been altered, many times." If we refuse to accept the testament of people who have altered the Bible as true, the answer here would be "Yes, the Christian Bible has not been altered." We know that many documents relate to that Justine, Theadora, and Constantine altering the Christian Bible, but can their accounts be taken as valid? Not 100%-- It goes both ways, after all.] In examining the reliability of the Scripture, a few well established facts will help in our evaluation of it. [As pointed out, how can mythology be "reliable?" It can be VALID.] FACT. We have over 27,000 complete manuscripts of the New Testament dated to within one hundred years, or so, of Christ's death. [If the first three or four of these 27,000 were not reality-based, what does that say for the rest? Use a poor imitation as a model, and all you'll get is another poor imitation.] FACT If embellishments did occur during the TRANSCRIPTION of the texts (either by mistake or intentionally), they would be glaring. [In fact the "embellishments" (let's call them alterations) are very glaring. There are over three dozen different Christian Bibles in English alone, and each are slightly to radically different. When changed to other languages, the opportunity for alterations is that much greater. Case in point, which is well know, is the "Thou shalt not kill" being changed to "Thou Shalt Not Murder." Everyone knows this, of course, but the meaning has been drastically altered. Another is "thou shalt not suffer a witch to live." Most now know that the correct sentence should read "thou shalt not suffer a poisoner to live." Again totally different. Another is "wise man" placed where the word "Magi" was found. We know, of course, that "Magi" means "Astrologer." Again, totally different, and proof of alteration.] FACT These manuscripts, written in Greek, have no contradictions between them either in phraseology or punctuation (punctuation was not used in these Greek writings). Rare misspelling is found, and scholars know where these are, but there is no such occurrence in passages relating to major doctrine. [See above. Already successfully proven invalid.] As one can see, we do have an abundance of copies of the Greek New Testament mss. (27,000) dated to the first century (the last book was written around 90 A.D.). Because we have these, AND because they all are word for word identical to each other (accept in a very few places, which do not relate to doctrine. We know where they are and exactly what the problem is, i.e. misspelling, etc.), we can state, without reservation, that we have today in the Greek mss. what was written by the original authors. [See above. Already successfully proven invalid.] The unbiased researcher can only conclude that we have today, what was written by the original authors. In short, we have in essence, identical facsimiles of the original signatures. [This is a totally biased assumption.] Will you agree, Mr. Reader, that there is enough evidence to substantiate the fact that the Greek mss we have today, reflect word for word the original writings? That's 27,000 word for word copies. Would you concede that? Answer here with an X: Yes No [This is, of course, not true, as demonstrated above. The answer here is "No, this is not a valid assumption."] IS IT IMPOSSIBLE TO KNOW WHICH TRANSLATIONS ARE ACCURATE? [This assumes there IS an accurate translation-- something an UNBIASED researched would never assume.] Another often repeated statement used to debunk the Scripture is : "Since there are so many translations of the Bible, how can one know which one is right?" [See above.] Keep in mind that TRANSLATION and INTERPRETATION are two different things, and should not be confused as even close to being the same thing. [Translation should be "mechanical," as it were. Interpretation is totally "human." Unfortunately, or fortunately as the case may be, translation is subject to human constraints in knowledge, information, political/social/economic pressures, etc.] A TRANSLATION is a word for word rendering from one language to another. [Finally a non-biased sentence! Wow.] An INTERPRETATION is taking the final rendering and explaining, or expounding upon, what it means. [Finally a non-biased sentence! Wow again. Only here the words "what it means" should have read "what it means to ME or YOU". How one interprets myth is in the eye and heart of the beholder, and will differ, as it must, from one to another.] Since we have in essence the original manuscripts (hereafter referred to as simply "mssg."), the real question becomes "Which translation is the most accurate?" [Already answered. See above corrections to these biased assumptions.] The question of accuracy includes two areas: 1) Which books do we include in the New Testament? 2) What is the most accurate translation of each Greek word? We will cover each question individually, and at length. [The question of "accuracy" includes a vast many, assorted areas other than just these! As explained above, one must take into account biased opinions, political preferences, economic forces present at the times of writing, translation, and alterations, social pressures, ignorance (such as lack of information), just to name a very few.] FIRST : Which books do we include in the New Testament? Example One ~~~~~~~~~~~ One user on this system stated that Orange Coast Community College, in Southern California, had taught in their Comparative Religions class that St. Augustine, more or less, put together the Bible. This is totally erroneous. I hope that this isn't indicative of what they have been teaching at OCC. If it is they are incorrect. [Any teacher is subject to the forces listed above. She or he taught what she or he was taught, as well as what was politically expedient at the time. Ignorance breeds ignorance, and thus the teacher cannot be faulted entirely.] From Christianity Through the Centuries, by Earle E. Cairns, Ph. D. : "People often err by thinking of the canon as a list of authoritative books coming directly from heaven or by thinking that the canon was set by church councils. Such was not the case, for the various church councils that pronounced upon the subject of the canon of the NT were merely stating publicly, as we shall see later, what had been widely accepted by the consciousness of the Church for sometime. The development of the canon was a slow process substantially completed by 175 except for a few books whose authorship was disputed. "In persecution men were not willing to risk their lives for a book unless they were sure it was an integral part of the canon of Scripture. "The major test of the right of a book to be in the canon was whether it had the marks of apostolicity. Was it written by an apostle or one who was closely associated with the apostles, such as Mark, the writer of the Gospel of Mark, with the aid of the Apostle Peter? "Later, councils, such as that at Chalcedon in 451, merely approved and gave uniform expression to what was already an accomplished fact generally accepted by the Church for a long period of time." [The question here is "Which myths were divinely inspired?" To assume that only those who knew an apostle are divinely inspired is, of course, absurd. What of those few born later? A few composers, for example, could be considered "divinely inspired" (Mozart for example).] St. Augustine was born in 354. He was a theologian and writer, but he did not serve as compiler of the scripture that we have today. In fact, Athanasius, in his Easter letter of 367 to the churches under his jurisdiction as the Bishop of Alexandria, listed the same twenty- seven books that we now have in the NT as canonical. [He made assumptions based on his personal biases on what was "divinely inspired."] Example Two ~~~~~~~~~~~ Another example of erroneous compilation of inspired scripture can be seen in one of the largest religious groups in existence, the Catholic Church. [More biased assumptions against those "other than us" ones.] The Catholic Bible contains the Apocrypha. They are additional books that were added. These books are of Hebrew origin. [The Bibles which DO NOT include the Apocrypha can be considered by many as non valid, and "taken away from." The opinion goes both ways.] From the Liberty Bible Almanac : "They were written between the time of the Exile and the birth of Christ. Collectively these books are also called the Apocrypha, a Greek term that properly means 'hidden' or 'secret things.' Many spurious sacred books were put forth in early times, often claiming a mystical or secret quality. Many Jewish and Christian writings came over the years to be called 'apocryphal.' The deuterocanon - which Protestants call 'the Apocrypha' - consists of books written at various times from about 300 BC to 30 BC. they include several valuable accounts of intertestamental history, along with didactic and devotional composition. In 1546 AD, the Council of Trent declared these books to be authoritative Scripture. However, Protestant churches have never accepted these books as part of the canon." "The Jews NEVER ADMITTED these books into their cannon, but Alexandrian Jews wrote them in the same rolls with the Septuagint (a Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament), and hence they found a degree of respect with some of the early Christian Fathers." - Liberty Bible Almanac, pg 582, (1980) [The Septuagint also included passages from Goddess. Since She is no longer included in most Christian Bibles, their "accuracy" is therefore unquestionably degraded.] Since the Jews, the very people of God, did not consider them inspired, neither has the protestant church. This is why you will not find them in most translations. Martin Luther did not consider them inspired either, but did include them in a separate section, for historical reference. [". . . the very people of God, . . ." Another biased assumption.] Would you agree, Mr. Reader, that, since the Jews (the very people of God) did not consider these books inspired, they should not be included in the canon (canon is a term indicating 'genuine books'? Answer below with an X: Yes No [". . . the very people of God, . . ." Another biased assumption. As has been pointed out, the answer here is obvious as well.] SECOND : What is the most accurate translation of each Greek word? [Another assumption was made here. There may or many not BE a "most accurate" translation."] Here, there is no little dispute amongst the unlearned which rendering of Greek words is correct. Typically, Greek scholars, such as George Ladd and those of similar caliber, are usually time tested and respected amongst their peers. [There is no little dispute among the LEARNED as well. See above under "Witch/Poisoner," "Magi/Wise Man/Astrologer," Kill/Murderer."] In each case we must look at the credibility of those doing the translation work, as well as correlate their renderings with others in their peer group. [One must also look at the accuracy of the pre-translated text as well, which has been shown here to be questionable.] One would not want to learn French from a person who could hardly read, write or speak it, would he? [Acidic.] Yet, such is the case with the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society's "New World Translation". There is documentation to show that the translators of that version could not read, write or speak Greek. Therefore this translation should be dismissed outright. [This may or may not be true of the Jehova Witnesses. Then again, who's to say they were not "divinely inspired?" Not I, but it's also not for anyone to say they were/are not.] Likewise, the Book of Mormon (which is not a translation of the Bible, more so a plagiarism) has historical inaccuracies galore which render it unacceptable based on other contrary external evidences (the historical blunders here include claims that thousands of years ago, elephants walked the North American continent in abundance. Pure fallacy, as archeology points out). [Wow, another true statement. I was beginning to think I'd seen the last of them here. Then again, who's to say they were not "divinely inspired?" Not I, but it's also not for anyone to say they were/are not.] To avoid duplication of work concerning this subject, for a detailed outline of all the major translations and their relative accuracy, please read the Gfile Section BIBLE STUDIES AND ANALYSIS/Choosing a Bible (from Christian Research Institute, Dr. Walter Martin). [The duplication of effort is desirable and required if a subject is to ever be considered accurate.] For further reference, under the same section, read : Studying the Bible - Parts III & IV. Part III contains reviews of some of the finest reference books available today which are written in layman's terms, yet very detailed and well documented. Part IV contains an expanded examination of the most well known translations, as well as information about other types of helpful resources such as : Bible Handbooks and Surveys Bible Dictionaries and Encyclopedias Commentaries Concordances Manners and Customs Books Expository Dictionary Interlinear Bibles Hebrew and Greek Concordances Lexicons Topical Bibles DO THE ACCOUNTS IN SCRIPTURE MEET THE STANDARDS FOR FIRST HAND EYEWITNESS TESTIMONY AS OUTLINED IN OUR LEGAL SYSTEM? [No and Yes. If the individual were here to question, then Yes we may get a firsthand account of an event. However, they are not so any information gathered but be at least second hand.] Because we have as many mssg as we do that are dated to the first century, we can say that we have EYEWITNESS ACCOUNTS of the life of Jesus Christ. This is very important, since otherwise the accounts of Christ's life would be secondhand, and therefore inadmissable, even in a court of law. [This is not true, as demonstrated already. There are no living individuals available to give eye-witness accounts, so therefore every datum is at least second-hand.] If you read the Gfile Legal Reasoning and Christian Apologetics, you will also find that WRITTEN eyewitness testimonies such as these, are admissable in a court of law as evidence of the occurrence of said events within the text. [Obviously, if the WRITTEN text is considered corrupt, such "testimonies" are not admissible.] In short, our legal system would permit these documents to be examined, and would bear the same weight any other written eyewitness testimony would. [Demonstrated as nonsense above. Altered eye-witness accounts are no longer first hand, but allegory.] This is a very KEY ITEM, since the credibility of the witnesses is the item that really is in question here. This is a fundamental question that is handled by the judicial system every day. It is rudimentary to the judicial process. Does the eyewitness hold credibility? You will see from the Gfile "Legal Reasoning...", that point #4 deals specifically with this area. [As this is a very KEY ITEM, the whole issue has just been decided! It has been demonstrated that such "first hand, eye-witness" accounts that are written down and subject to translations, alterations, and biases can no longer be considered valid.] Would you agree, Mr. Reader, that in establishing admissability as evidence, the Scripture is acceptable as FIRST HAND eyewitness testimony in our legal system? Answer here with an X : Yes No [Already proven as "No, Christian Biblical Scripture cannot be considered "first hand" eye-witness testimony.] ARE THE ACCOUNTS OF THE EYEWITNESSES CREDIBLE? (This part of Gfile is being compiled) [You mean myths like walking through hell, fires, floods, etc.? Read "The Greek Gods" by J. Campbell] IN SUMMARY, WHY DO YOU BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS CORRECT? [Acidic.] The first reason is this; I can find no evidence to discount the record as told by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. [Reason has just been given. Does this mean you will alter your mind set? No-- the biases already entrenched will not listen to rational thought.] These men walked, lived, and breathed with the person Jesus Christ for three solid years. I know that the accounts recorded by these men pretty air tight with history, and logical cross-examination, therefore I have little reason to doubt these men. [Also demonstrated as biased opinion.] The second reason is this, I met Jesus Christ. [Mythology is valid. Therefore one may meet anyone/anything one believes in strongly enough. Atlantis never existed, but psychics still travel there.] Deep down in my heart is the living God, the Holy Spirit. That is why I'm convinced, because the essence of God dwells within me, and He teaches me that these things are true. Therefore I am certain with my mind and my heart. I am related to God the Father, and God the Son, through the Holy Spirit. [This is real sweet, loving, kind, and patriarchal. I concede the opinion that God resides in me, and the "Holy Spirit" by any other name is still the same. It is just biased opinion that one feels when one "knows these things are true." Also, one is related to Goddess the Mother, Goddess the Maid, and Goddess the Crone, and God the Child. Myth has never been otherwise.] HOW IS ONE "BORN AGAIN"? A person isn't born with the Spirit of the Almighty God in them. They have to request that he come indwell them. He does this when one admits that they have sinned against him, and agrees with God, that Jesus, His Son, paid for their sins. [Ignorant, biased opinion, that has no basis in fact or reality. Sin is a construct which offers the few to contrive and control the many. Guilt and Sin were first introduced into mythology with Christian Mythology.] This permits God to forgive them, based on one's confession, and the payment made by his Son (God will not deny His Son's work of redemption, He has to accept it). The Holy Spirit will then enter your being, and you will be related to God spiritually. This is being born of the Spirit, or BORN AGAIN (once physically, then once again as a new spiritual creature). No one can break this bond either, since it is one which God alone performs. [Ignorant, biased opinion, that has no basis in fact or reality. No one may speak for God/dess. It is only the arrogant who do. No one is empowered enough to speak thus without biases and opinions.] Would you like to meet Jesus Christ? Do you want to know Him? Address Jesus personally, and ask Him to come into your life. He will! [I am not interested in Christian Mythology.] [What's left? Not a hellava lot. As demonstrated, each point has been proven to be personal biased opinions, with slight detours to cast hate and spite and ignorance as "other than us" groups. It has been shown that the original text MSSHSTRY.TXT is a complete fabrication built with ignorant opinion.] ============== Mike, Well, that about wraps it up. I thank you for your concern, and I wish to offer condolences to your over compensatory self defence mechanism: I did not enjoy proving you wrong in your assertion that your text was not an "opinion." Perhaps we'll meet again. Merry Christmas.

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