Secularism; The Handmaid of the Jesuits Part 2; German Rationalism; Liberal Christianity and the Jesuits Tuesday, Jul 17 2012 

GERMAN RATIONALISM, IN ITS RISE, PROGRESS, AND DECLINE By DR. K. R. HAGENBACH

“In Germany also the Jesuits had exercised a wide influence: public instruction was almost completely in their hands, and German courts, like that of Yienna at the time of Maria Theresa, those of Bavaria, and of the Palatinate in special, were wholly in their control. But about the same time that the Jesuits were driven from South America, the day began to dawn in Germany, first in matters of science and then in ecclesiastical matters, more especially as to the relation of the German Catholic Church and its clergy to Rome. The voices which at the time of the great Reformation were raised in favour of an independence of Rome, now came from the clergy itself. A prelate of high rank, the Archbishop of Treves, had, as early as when Clement XIII. sat in the papal chair (1765), published a work under the assumed name of Justinus Febronius, in which he asserted the ancient rights of the bishop in contrast to those of the pope, and pleaded for a return of the independent German Catholic Church, as it existed before the Council of Trent; a work which the friends of the hierarchy and the Jesuits most of all, were specially bitter against, and whose author was at last compelled to retract, when the influence which it had exerted upon the whole Catholic world could not be recalled. And in the other departments of theological science there were constantly manifested the proofs of the influence of the sceptical literature of Protestant countries, great as was the demand for that literature, even among the Catholic clergy.” Pg. 385

So we see that as German Rationalism is rising it is the Jesuits who are mounted atop. They are controlling it and as Hagenbach pointed out earlier,

“It is singular that the Jesuits, who were the first to take up Kepler when he was proscribed by the Protestants, were the first to side with Wolf [Christian Wolf– Leader of Rationalistic Philosophy at the time and accused of atheism-DS]; and they not only allowed his writings to pass uncondemned, but it was a Jesuit who first proposed that he be made a baron.” Pg. 36

 

Can We Trust The Text of the New Testament? Wednesday, Feb 22 2012 

I just finished watching this debate and I thought I would share some of the core arguments made from Wallace and Ehrman.

If you hold  a Majority Text, TR, or KJV only position, Ehrman is going to mop the floor with you. As Conservative, Critical Eclectic Scholars have been admitting to for many years now, Ehrman’s key verses that show intentional additions to the text of the New Testament in the Western Tradition (1 John 5:7-8, Luke 22:19-20, John 7:53-8:11, Mark 16:9-20, Luk 23:34) are not original.   On top of the many mistakes in the transmission of the text of the New Testament (Which Wallace admits to in large)  Ehrman throws down the gauntlet with these two questions:

1. How do we know the manuscripts we have today were not copied from erroneous previous copies?

2. How many variants were created before our manuscripts  and what were their significance?

Wallace responds by admitting: We don’t know. We have no hard evidence to answer these questions. However, four points surface at this point: 1. If all manuscripts were destroyed the writings of the fathers which contain about a million  quotations from the scripture could re-construct  the New Testament. 2. Ehrman  admits in the appendix to Misquoting Jesus, “Essential Christian beliefs are not affected by textual variants  in the manuscript tradition of the New Testament.” 3. If we take Ehrman’s criticisms of the New Testament and extend them equally to all ancient literature we run into a problem. At 1:21:37 Ehrman admits that his arguments against the New Testament leave the classical authors in even worse shape. Regarding the Classical works such as Plato, Aristotle, Herodotus, Xenophon and Cicero  he says, “we may not know.” Ehrman is taking us back to the dark ages and leaves mankind with no literature. If Ehrman is right why do atheists even attend college? The entire enterprise of human education is a racket.  4. In order to criticize the authorship of New Testament books (1&2 Timothy & Titus),  supposedly written by Paul, Ehrman in his recent book Forged must assume the text is the original in order to argue that the books were not written by Paul but someone else.

The critical eclectic position of preservation is that God has, in the multiplicity of manuscripts, preserved the same doctrines that he originally intended for mankind to know. Yet this preservation is not always available to all peoples in all ages (2 Chron 34).  Ehrman  admits in the appendix to Misquoting Jesus, “The facts that I explain about the New Testament  in Misquoting Jesus are not at all ‘news’  to Biblical scholars. They are what scholars have known and said for many years. ”

From my perusal of Ehrman’s works I find no reason to study him anymore since his arguments are straw men against my position. I spent the first 4 years of my conversion studying textual criticism and all his re-hashed arguments. After walking through Ehrman’s arguments I was in familiar territory. If I could suggest a few books to my readers that would more than qualify you to speak with professionals on the entire enterprise of textual criticism: From the Mind of God to the Mind of Man ed. James B. Williams and God’s Word in Our Hands ed. James B. Williams. You can also listen to a complete lecture series on these issues by Dr. Mark Minnick here: http://www.mountcalvarybaptist.org/pages/WebSeries.aspx?WebSeriesID=1

On the issues of Higher Criticism I suggest you read The Fundamentals, ed. R.A. Torrey. My friend Daryl and I spent many months in my living room reading through the first two volumes of this which deal with these Higher critical issues of Authorship. It is not very interesting so having a buddy read them with you would be advised. Finally, to deal with interpretive difficulties or contradictions in the Bible see Gleason Archer’s Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties,  among many other works you can reference here.

Bart Ehrman Vs. Daniel Wallace Round 3: Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit’s Time! Wednesday, Feb 15 2012 

Via David Waltz:http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/

The 3rd Ehrman-Wallace debate

 

As many probably already know, a third debate between Dr. Bart Ehrman and Dr. Daniel Wallace concerning the text of the New Testament took place on February 1, 2012. Two excellent summations of the debate have been posted (one by Dr. Wallace himself), and both include some pretty high-level dialogue (for the internet) in the respective comboxes.

Link to Dr. Wallace’s summation (with 82 comments)

Link to Dr. Köstenberger’s summation (with 37 comments)”

 

Get the DVD of the second debate here: http://kunaki.com/Sales.asp?PID=PX00ZCAJ99

The Dating of the Book of Daniel; The Conservative Theory Defended; The Liberal Maccabean Theory Refuted in Gleason Archer, ed. Drake Sunday, Dec 25 2011 

Whenever I meet an atheist who wants empirical evidence for God and the divinity of the Biblical canon I offer him a very traditional approach that God himself appeals to in Isa 44:6 “Thus says the LORD, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts: ‘I am the first and I am the last, And there is no God besides Me. 7 ‘Who is like Me? Let him proclaim and declare it; Yes, let him recount it to Me in order,  From the time that I established the ancient nation.  And let them declare to them the things that are coming  And the events that are going to take place. Fulfilled prophecy; especially the Book of Daniel.  The prophetic arguments from the book of Daniel have driven the secular world insane. They affirm that Daniel had to be written after the events it prophesied because an admission that it was written before these events is an inevitable return to the Christian Church as the principle of unity in the world. This they cannot believe, so they resurrected and old theory from the pagan philosopher Porphyry that Daniel is a forgery and a lie. Originally Porphyry was refuted by Eusebius, Bishop of Caesarea, Appollinarius and Methodius.  Jerome catalogues this in the Prologue of his Commentary on Daniel. Sadly, these works were lost to the advantage of the modern Secular Establishment. Scholars have made some arguments that there is hope these will be found.  However, Gleason L. Archer, Jr. in his A Survey of Old Testament Introduction took the task upon himself to answer the arguments of the liberals against the book of Daniel.

The liberal theory is that Daniel was written by an unknown author during the life of  Antiochus IV Epiphanes (215 B.C. to 164 B.C.) known as the Late Date Theory or the Maccabean Date Theory. The following extended quote is from A Survey of Old Testament Introduction by Gleason L. Archer, JR.  (Moody Press: Chicago, 1964, 1974 by The Moody Bible Institute of Chicago Revised Edition)

“there is no good reason for denying to the sixth-century Daniel the composition of the entire work. This represents a collection of his memoirs made at the end of a long and eventful career which included government service from the reign of Nebuchadnezzar in the 590s to the reign of Cyrus the Great in the 530s. The appearance of Persian technical terms indicates a final recension of these memoirs at a time when Persian terminology had already infiltrated into the vocabulary of Aramaic. The most likely date for the final edition of the book, therefore, would be about 530 B.C. (pg. 387)…The Jewish canon places Daniel among the Kethubhim or Hagiographa, rather than among the prophets. This is interpreted [by the liberal-DS] to mean that the book must have been written later than all the canonical prophets…But it should be noted that some of the documents in the Kethubhim…were of great antiquity, such as the book of Job, the Davidic Psalms, and the writings of Solomon. (pg. 388)…It is fair to say that the weakest spot in the whole structure of the Maccabean theory is to be found in the identification of the fourth empire predicted in chapter 2. In order to maintain their position, the late-date theorists have to interpret this fourth empire as referring to the kingdom of the Macedonians or Greeks founded by Alexander the Great around 330 B.C. This means that the third empire must be identified with the Persian realm established by Cyrus the Great, and the second empire has to be short-lived Median power, briefly maintained by the legendary Darius the Mede. According to this interpretation, then, the head of gold in chapter 2 represents the Chaldean empire, the breast of silver the Median empire, the belly and thighs of brass the Persian empire, and the legs of iron the Greek empire…That is to say, the text of Daniel itself gives the strongest indications that the author considered the Medes and Persians as components of the one and same empire, and that despite his designation of King Darius as ‘the Mede,’ he never entertained the notion that there was at any time a separate and distinct Median empire….The third empire is represented as a leopard with four wings and four heads. There is no record that the Persian empire was divided into four parts, but it is well known that the empire of Alexander the Great separated into four parts subsequent to his death…the natural inference, therefore , would be that the leopard represented the Greek empire. The fourth kingdom is presented as a fearsome ten-horned beast, incomparably more powerful than the others and able to devour the whole earth. The ten horns strongly suggest the ten toes of the image described in chapter 2, and it should be noted that these toes are described in chapter 2 as having close connection with the two legs of iron. The two legs can easily be identified with the Roman empire, which in the time of Diocletian divided into the eastern and the Western Roman empires. But there is no way in which they can be reconciled with the history of the Greek empire which followed upon Alexander’s death. In Daniel 8 we have further symbolism to aid us in this identification of empires two and three. There a two-horned ram (one horn of which is higher than the other, just as Persia overshadowed Media in Cyrus’ empire) is finally overthrown by a he-goat, who at first shows but one horn (easily identified with Alexander the Great) but subsequently sprouts four horns (i.e., Macedon, Asia Minor, Syria, and Egypt), our of which there finally develops a little horn, that is, Antiochus Epiphanes. From the standpoint of the symbolism of chapters 2, 7 and 8, therefore, the identification of the four empires with Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome presents a perfect correspondence, whereas the identifications involved in the Maccabean date theory present the most formidable problems and discrepancies (pg. 405-406)…Two other considerations should be adduced to show that the author regarded the Medes and Persians as constituting the one and same empire. In Daniel 6, Darius is said to be bound by ‘the law of the Medes and Persians,’ so that he could not revoke the decree consigning Daniel to the lion’s den. If the author regarded Darius as ruler of an independent Median empire earlier in time than the Persian, it is impossible to explain why he would have been bound by the laws of the Persians. Second, we have the evidence of the handwriting on the wall as interpreted by Daniel in 5:28… ‘Thy kingdom is divided , and given to the Medes and Persians.’…This can only mean that according to the author, the Chaldean empire was removed from Belshazzar as the last representative of the first empire and given to the Medes and Persians who constituted the second empire. This cannot mean that the rule was given to the Medes and only later to be transmitted to the Persians, because the significant word which appeared in the handwriting on the wall was quite specifically the word ‘Persia’…we must concluded that the fourth empire indeed represented Rome. If, then, the fourth empire of chapter 2, as corroborated by the other symbolic representations of chapter 7, clearly pointed forward to the establishment of the Roman empire, it can only follow that we are dealing here with genuine predictive prophecy and not a mere vaticinium ex eventu. According to the Maccabean date theory, Daniel was composed between 168 and 165 B.C., whereas the Roman empire did not commence (for the Jews at least) until 63 B.C., when Pompey the Great took over that part of the Near East which included Palestine…the Romans had not had still not advanced beyond the limits of Europe by 165, except to establish a vassal kingdom in Asia Minor and a protectorate over Egypt. But certainly, as things stood in 165 B.C., no human being could have predicted with any assurance  that the Hellenistic monarchies of the Near East would be engulfed by the new power which had arisen in the West…this one circumstance alone, then, that Daniel predicts the Roman empire, is sufficient to overthrow the entire Maccabean date hypothesis (pg. 406-407)…It should also be pointed out that the Maccabean date theory fails to explain how the book of Daniel ever came to be accepted by the later Jews as Holy Scripture…There can be no doubt that the description given in Daniel 11:40-45 relative to the latter end  of the little horn does not at all correspond to the manner in which Antiochus Epiphanese met his death…Those who espouse the Liberal theory can only allege that the Maccabean author of Daniel was unsuccessful in his effort to predict the manner of Antiochus’ downfall…Yet, if this was actually the case it is impossible to conceive how the Jews could have continued to regard this writing as canonical or authoritative, since it contained false prophecy. (pg. 408)

The conservative theory states that the one mentioned in Daniel 11:40-45 is the future antichrist. Jamieson Fausset Brown points out this embarrassment for the liberal interpretation, commenting on Dan 11:40,

“40. The difficulty of reconciling this with Antiochus’ history is that no historian but PORPHYRY [Who is the originator of the Liberal theory-DS ] mentions an expedition of his into Egypt towards the close of his reign. This Daniel 11:40 , therefore, may be a recapitulation summing up the facts of the first expedition to Egypt (171-170 B.C.), in Daniel 11:22 Daniel 11:25 ; and Daniel 11:41 , the former invasion of Judea, in Daniel 11:28 ; Daniel 11:42 Daniel 11:43 , the second and third invasions of Egypt (169 and 168 B.C). inDaniel 11:23 Daniel 11:24 Daniel 11:29 Daniel 11:30 . AUBERLEN takes rather PORPHYRY’S statement, that Antiochus, in the eleventh year of his reign (166-165 B.C.), invaded Egypt again, and took Palestine on his way. The “tidings” ( Daniel 11:44 ) as to the revolt of tributary nations then led him to the East. PORPHYRY’S statement that Antiochus starting from Egypt took Arad in Judah, and devastated all Phoenicia, agrees with Daniel 11:45 ; then he turned to check Artaxias, king of Armenia. He died in the Persian town Tabes, 164 B.C., as both POLYBIUS and PORPHYRY agree. Doubtless, antitypically, the final Antichrist, and its predecessor Mohammed, are intended, to whom the language may be more fully applicable than to Antiochus the type. The Saracen Arabs “of the south” “pushed at” the Greek emperor Heraclius, and deprived him of Egypt and Syria. But the Turks of “the north” not merely pushed at, but destroyed the Greek empire; therefore more is said of them than of the Saracens. Their “horsemen” are specified, being their chief strength. Their standards still are horse tails. Their “ships,” too, often gained the victory over Venice, the great naval power of Europe in that day. They “overflowed” Western Asia, and then “passed over” into Europe, fixing their seat of empire at Constantinople under Mohammed II [NEWTON]. ”

The Book of Daniel Defended by Gleason L. Archer Sunday, Nov 27 2011 

The prophetic arguments from the book of Daniel have driven the secular world insane. They affirm that Daniel had to be written after the events it prophesied because an admission that it was written before these events is an inevitable return to the Christian Church as the principle of unity in the world. This they cannot believe, so they resurrected and old theory from the pagan philosopher Porphyry that Daniel is a forgery and a lie. Originally Porphyry was refuted by Eusebius, Bishop of Caesarea, Appollinarius and Methodius.  Jerome catalogues this in the Prologue of his Commentary on Daniel. Sadly, these works were lost to the advantage of the modern Secular Establishment. Scholars have made some arguments that there is hope these will be found.  However, Gleason L. Archer, Jr. in his A Survey of Old Testament Introduction has taken the task upon himself to answer the arguments of the liberals against the book of Daniel. I offer this book to my readers.

The liberal theory is that Daniel was written by an unknown author during the life of  Antiochus IV Epiphanes (215 B.C. to 164 B.C.). Here is the primary problem with this theory:  Dan 8 says 21 The shaggy goat represents the kingdom of Greece, and the large horn that is between his eyes is the first king. 22 The broken horn and the four horns that arose in its place represent four kingdoms which will arise from his nation, although not with his power.

Daniel states that Alexander’s kingdom will be divided into four parts. This is uncontested history. The empire of Alexander was divided into four parts. Four of the great generals of Alexander made the division: Cassander, Lysimachus, Seleucus and Ptolemy. The four kingdoms were Syria, Egypt, Macedonia, and Asia Minor-Pergamon. However, later on, the Ptolemaic Kingdom is supplanted under Antiochus IV Epiphanes’ Seleucid Empire in 170 B.C. Now get this, the liberal theory states that the Anonymous author of Daniel wrote the book at this exact time. Why then no mention of the revision in the kingdoms in the account in Daniel 8? Some historians argue that there were actually only two Kingdoms at this time due to some struggles for power at the time.

 

 

 

Textual Criticism and Richard Whately Saturday, Nov 19 2011 

Richard Whately wrote in the 19th century and was a staunch defender of the authenticity of scripture amidst many attacks against the historical reliability of the gospel accounts of Jesus’ life. In response he wrote Historic Doubts relative to Napoleon Bonaparte where he used the exact same arguments the liberals were making against the gospel and applied them to Napolean and concluded using the same logic that he never existed. Clever dude.

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