The First New Testament: A Look at the Origins and Reliability of the Earliest Christian Manuscripts

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1 The First New Testament: A Look at the Origins and Reliability of the Earliest Christian

2 Intro: The Importance of Studying New Testament

3 Intro: The Importance of Studying New Testament A. All Ancient History is known through

4 Intro: The Importance of Studying New Testament A. B. It is not just the Content of that Matters

5 Intro: The Importance of Studying New Testament A. B. It is not just the Content of that Matters C. The New Testament are our Earliest Christian Artifacts

6 I. The Quantity of Early Christian

7 I. The Quantity of Early Christian A. Why Does Quantity Matter?

8 I. The Quantity of Early Christian A. Why Does Quantity Matter? 1. can be compared to one another over time and geography

9 I. The Quantity of Early Christian A. Why Does Quantity Matter? 1. can be compared to one another over time and geography 2. The more often texts were copied, the more difficult it would be to change the story

10 I. The Quantity of Early Christian A. Why Does Quantity Matter? 1. can be compared to one another over time and geography 2. The more often texts were copied, the more difficult it would be to change the story 3. It gives us assurance that the original text is preserved somewhere in the manuscript tradition

11 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare?

12 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare? 1. Other Historical Classics:

13 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare? 1. Other Historical Classics: Josephus, Jewish War, 9 copies

14 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare? 1. Other Historical Classics: Josephus, Jewish War, 9 copies Tacitus, Annals of History, 20 copies

15 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare? 1. Other Historical Classics: Josephus Jewish War, 9 copies Tacitus, Annals of History, 20 copies 2. The New Testament

16 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare? 1. Other Historical Classics: Josephus Jewish War, 9 copies Tacitus, Annals of History, 20 copies 2. The New Testament in Greek

17 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare? 1. Other Historical Classics: Josephus Jewish War, 9 copies Tacitus, Annals of History, 20 copies 2. The New Testament in Greek 10,000 + in Latin

18 I. The Quantity of Early Christian B. How does the NT compare? 1. Other Historical Classics: Josephus Jewish War, 9 copies Tacitus, Annals of History, 20 copies 2. The New Testament in Greek 10,000 + in Latin 9,000+ in other languages

19 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt

20 II. The Date of Early Christian

21 II. The Date of Early Christian A. Why Does it Matter?

22 II. The Date of Early Christian A. Why Does it Matter? The closer the date of the manuscript to the time of the original writing increases our confidence that the manuscript has not been changed

23 II. The Date of Early Christian B. How Does the NT Compare?

24 II. The Date of Early Christian B. How Does the NT Compare? 1. Other Historical Classics Josephus, Jewish War, earliest manuscript is 1000 years after the original

25 II. The Date of Early Christian B. How Does the NT Compare? 1. Other Historical Classics Josephus, Jewish War, earliest manuscript is 1000 years after the original Tacitus, Annals of History, earliest manuscript is 1100 years after the original

26 II. The Date of Early Christian B. How Does the NT Compare? 1. Other Historical Classics Josephus, Jewish War, earliest manuscript is 1000 years after the original Tacitus, Annals of History, earliest manuscript is 1100 years after the original 2. The New Testament The earliest NT manuscript is of the gospel of John (P52) and is approximately 35 years from the original

27 P52, The Gospel of John, c.125

28 II. The Date of Early Christian B. How Does the NT Compare? 1. Other Historical Classics Josephus, Jewish War, earliest manuscript is 1000 years after the original Tacitus, Annals of History, earliest manuscript is 1100 years after the original 2. The New Testament The earliest NT manuscript is of the gospel of John (P52) and is approximately 35 years from the original

29 II. The Date of Early Christian B. How Does the NT Compare? 1. Other Historical Classics Josephus, Jewish War, earliest manuscript is 1000 years after the original Tacitus, Annals of History, earliest manuscript is 1100 years after the original 2. The New Testament The earliest NT manuscript is of the gospel of John (P52) and is approximately 35 years from the original We have many other NT manuscripts from the second and third centuries

30 P75, Gospels of Luke and John, c

31 III. The Form of Early Christian

32 III. The Form of Early Christian A. Early Christians Preferred the Codex form for their books

33 III. The Form of Early Christian A. Early Christians Preferred the Codex form for their books 1. What is a codex?

34 P66, Gospel of John, dated c.180

35 III. The Form of Early Christian A. Early Christians Preferred the Codex form for their books 1. What is a codex?

36 III. The Form of Early Christian A. Early Christians Preferred the Codex form for their books 1. What is a codex? 2. Virtually all Christian manuscripts appeared in the codex form, despite the fact that all other literature of the time was on rolls

37 III. The Form of Early Christian B. Why Does the Christian preference for the codex matter?

38 III. The Form of Early Christian B. Why Does the Christian preference for the codex matter? 1. Its shows impressive organization and unity in early Christian scribal activity

39 III. The Form of Early Christian B. Why Does the Christian preference for the codex matter? 1. Its shows impressive organization and unity in early Christian scribal activity 2. It helps us determine what early Christians thought was Scripture and what was not

40 III. The Form of Early Christian B. Why Does the Christian preference for the codex matter? 1. Its shows impressive organization and unity in early Christian scribal activity 2. It helps us determine what early Christians thought was Scripture and what was not 3. It may give indications that the 4 gospels were collected together very early

41 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian

42 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian A. Early Christian Scribes used abbreviations called the Nomina Sacra

43 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian A. Early Christian Scribes used abbreviations called the Nomina Sacra 1. These are special abbreviations of the Greek words for God, Jesus, Christ, and Lord

44 Example of the Nomina Sacra in P46

45 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian A. Early Christian Scribes used abbreviations called the Nomina Sacra 1. These are special abbreviations of the Greek words for God, Jesus, Christ, and Lord

46 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian A. Early Christian Scribes used abbreviations called the Nomina Sacra 1. These are special abbreviations of the Greek words for God, Jesus, Christ, and Lord 2. These abbreviations appear in virtually all Christian manuscripts from the very beginning

47 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian B. Why are the Nomina Sacra important?

48 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian B. Why are the Nomina Sacra important? 1. They show impressive organization and unity in early Christian scribal practice

49 IV. The Abbreviations in Early Christian B. Why are the Nomina Sacra important? 1. They show impressive organization and unity in early Christian scribal practice 2. They show religious devotion to the name of Jesus, and set it alongside God

50 Conclusion: The NT manuscripts themselves, and not just the text they contain, give us much confidence about their reliability and historicity

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