Can we trust the New Testament?: thoughts on the reliability by George Albert Wells

By George Albert Wells

Do we belief the hot testomony? questions the old accuracy of generally held perspectives of early Christianity. during this publication radical Bible pupil G. A. Wells examines Biblical money owed of the lives of the apostles Peter and Paul and provides proof that the occasions defined within the New testomony have been written through the years to help the agendas of the Christian church. He embarks on an in depth research of the booklet of Acts, wondering its authorship and casting doubt at the occasions it and the gospels describe.

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It suits his polemical purpose to suggest that the Jews tho ught they could earn salvation by obeying their law, while the Christian's relation to God does not depend on pe rformance and merit , since God justifies man "freel y," "of gmce (Ro m. 3:24 and 4:4). Wrede notes incidentally ( p. 160) that, in his polemic against the law, Paul never suggests that the historical Jesus did anything to infringe or abrogate it. On the contrJry, as we saw, he believed that Jesus accepted it as pan of his eanhly abasement.

Eption of Christ did not originate from an impression made o n him by the personality o f the historical Jesus (p. 147). Jewish background. ~J ew ish apoca lyptic books are cogn izant o f a Messiah who , l>efore his appeamnce, lives in heaven and is more exa lted than the angels" (p . 152). ::tl o r other human behav+ iou r, but the abnegation of his di vine existence. He can call Christ obedient not because his life on Earth was characteri;;-_ed by this moral qualicy, but because he did not op(X>SC the divine decision to send him fo r the sa lvation of the world , even tho ugh ~it cost him his di vine natu re and brought him ro the cross" ( p 149).

We have seen already that , fo r Paul , Christ is the Son o f God, older than created thi ngs, and even took part in their creatio n; that in o rder to redeem us he left heaven and ~e mptied himselr o f his divinity so as to live o n Earth as a man, accepting even the restrictions of the Jewis h i:lw :ts part of this abasement , befo re returning to heaven into his fo rmer glory. Human fo rm was, says Wrede (1 907a, p . " Hence the statement that God sent him to Earth in the ~ likeness~ o f "sinful fl es h ~ ( Ro m.

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