Friday, December 14, 2012

How Do We Know the Bible is True? Vol. 2 by Ham and Hodge 2012

       The book has 31 chapters and 352 pgs. Many chapters support the truth of the Bible, but some deal with other topics, like Atlantis. It is easy to read and understand. Chapter Summaries are below and I add a little from the web.
Introduction Ham raised the question What is the world’s most dangerous book? He first noted Darwin’s Origin of the Species.  It fueled racist ideas, and Hitler used evolution in his philosophy and policies. Australian Aborigines were also killed and put in museums as specimens to observe. Evolution led to naturalism and atheistic philosophy, where morals are relative.  Marxism was also promoted by these views. A second dangerous book is the Koran.  Some of its verses promote killing of Pagans(9:5; 8:12), and terrorist activities like 9/11. He concluded in noting the Bible is the most dangerous book, because of the life changing message.
Chap.1 Ham noted why young people are leaving our churches. They are given little teaching on apologetics and the Bible being true in churches. When they go to public schools they are swayed away for the truth of the Bible, due to the naturalistic teachings. This change of views occurs in middle school, high school, and in college. The book Already Gone documents this from detailed survey results. Some 90% of children in the US attend public schools. He recommends that apologetics be taught in churches and the parents should also learn about it. Most youth classes do not cover it. Thus many youth believe the Bible is not historically true and favor relative morals of the culture.
Chap. 2 Hodge noted that most colleges started as Christian are now secular. Harvard, Yale and Princeton are examples. This shift appended in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s as evolution became the favored philosophy. A book documenting this is The Sacred and the Secular University by Roberts and Turner. The book Already Compromised by Ham and Hall also noted how even Christian colleges are more secular and often have a weak view of the inerrancy of the Bible.
Chap. 3  Hall noted this shift to the secular in Christian colleges. They have a weak vie of inerrancy of the Bible which leads to other views like the following: 1. Genesis is allegorical and not literally true. 2.The earth  is millions of yrs old; there was no world wide flood. 3. The History of Adam and Eve is also allegorical, as we evolved from apes, and the fall is allegorical.4. Alternate views of the early history are used like The Gap Theory, the Day Age Theory, Theistic Evolution, Progressive Creation, and the Framework hypothesis. The book Already Compromised documents this from survey results of Christian colleges. Many parents are not aware of this trend and need to see their children have a grounding of teaching in apologetics.
Chap. 4 Who Created God? Hodge.  God is eternal and needs no creator; time is infinite and God created time. Elohim is used for God and this hints of plurality but a single unity. God is the ultimate authority on his existence (Heb 6:13).
Chap. 5. Why is the Bible Unique? Broggi  1. The Bible declares if is God’s word. (3800 times God said or Thus says the Lord)  2 Tim 3:16-17 All scripture is given by the inspiration of God. 2. The Bible is historically accurate: Luke was a good historian says Wm Ramsey pg 50. In 1806 the French Institute of Science listed 80 historical inaccuracies in the Bible. Now all of then have been proven wrong and the bible correct. 3. The Bible has Supernatural unity and Construction.  It has about 40 authors, but  is a unified book that is well preserved. 4. Its Prophesies cam true. There are no verifiable fulfilled prophecies in the Koran, the Book of Mormon or in the Upanishads. 5. The Bible is very well preserved when compared to other books.
Chap. 6 What is Apologetics?  Ham and Hodge. 1 Pet. 3:15 in Greek Apologia means a reasoned defense. There are different types of apologetics: 1. Classical 2. Evidential 3 Presuppositional 4.  Clarkian- The best worldview is the most logical 5. Shaferian- the worldview that gives the best answers.6. Carnelliam- the most coherent. It is good to tailor you arguments to what the unbeliever thinks and do this with gentleness and respect. Some atheist world view challenge areas: Why wear clothes, animals don’t; how do you define right and wrong? Arbitrary, inconsistent, violations of preconditions for knowledge.
Chap. 7 Findings of the Jesus Seminar Chaffey noted that the seminar meet for the first time in 1985 The group included Atheists, liberal protestants, Catholics, Jews. ½ had went to liberal divinity schools. The results were published in the Five Gospels, The Acts of Jesus and The Gospel of Jesus. The group rejected the inerrancy of scripture and miracles. They voted with colored beads on the truth of Jesus sayings in the Gospels. By taking all of Jesus miracles out and many of his gospel sayings, a very strange gospel appeared. They attributed the early gospels to coming from a Q source, but no Q source or document has ever been found. They rated the Gospel of Thomas higher in reliability than the other gospels.
Chap. 8. Theistic Evolution – Patterson There are a number of different views of creation among Christians. The Theistic Evolution views are promoted by Biologos and Francis Collins, Peter Enns, Joel Hunter, Bruce Waltke, and Tim Keller. The definition and details of this view varies somewhat: There was evolution and God started it and sometimes guided it. They hold to the big bang, and an old earth, and biological evolution. They differ on whether Adam and eve were real people, but man evolved from ape. Intelligent Design founders also hold to a big ban and old earth. Progressive creation is a view held by Hugh Ross, founder of Reasons to Believe. They favor the big bang and a form of the day age theory, along with a local flood. They believe all human came from Adam and Eve, although there were earlier hominids. These view compromise scriptures to some degree and favor alternate interpretations of Gen. 1-3. Wm Craig’s view in Reasonable Faith notes some room for various interpretations including the 24hr day view.  His audios 5-6 of the Doctrine of Creation also as 170-171, talk about creation and Genesis and the possible day-age theory.
Craig makes the point that although Genesis is an Historical narrative, early Genesis 1 has some flowery and majestic language and repeated phrases, not typical of a narrative: “Then God said, let there be- and it was so, Evening came and then morning the 1st day.” This could imply some majesty and hidden meaning beyond a straight history.
Chap. 9 Trusting the History of the Gospels. Patterson says this comes down to an issue of authority: this Bible is true, or man’s findings of science. It is also an issue of consistency: Most Christians would say the Bible is true on the resurrection and miracles and on the fall of Adam and Eve, but not on the age of the earth. A recent poll of protestant pastors showed that only 30 % believed in a young earth of about 6000 yrs, while 34% believed in an old earth of 4.5 million yrs. That poll found that 74% believed that Adam and Eve were real people, and 64 % disagreed that God used evolution to create people. This is inconsistent in that the history is told is early Genesis. At what point in Genesis do we find a truly historical event?  Is all of Genesis in error? A survey of evangelical colleges noted 91 % believed the flood happened, with 58% believing it was worldwide.
Chap. 10 Christian Unity- Steve Ham. Unity in Christ is an important principle, but it does not teach it comes thru consensus of opinion(especially opinion of the world). John 17:11-19 is a verse on unity in Christ; the end of it has the verse “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.” In Romans 14 Paul noted that holy days and foods are not the major items of faith, and we should still love or brother although we disagree with him. However many verses emphasize the importance of the authority of the scriptures and their being true. Scripture affecting Christian doctrine are especially important. How do we know man is a sinner and the penalty of sin is death?  Why do we need a savior? How do we know the world is not what it originally was? Unity for the believer is available in Christ, rather that by consensus of opinion. Col 2:8 says “Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.” In today’s world there is a reliance on authorities even in theological areas; thus many Christians check their brains at the door, relying on these authorities. The doctrine of perspicuity(clarity) of scripture is relevant here.  Martin Luther taught this as a major issue in fight for the reformation.
The doctrine of the clarity of Scripture (often called the "perspicuity of Scripture") teaches that "the meanings of the text can be clear to the ordinary reader, that God uses the text of the Bible to communicate His person and will."  "The witness of the Church throughout the ages is that ordinary people, who approach it in faith and humility, will be able to understand what the Bible is getting at, even if they meet with particular points of difficulty here and there." This doctrine is in contrast to other positions like that of the Roman Catholic Church, which asserts that Scripture is imperspicuous (unclear) apart from the interpretative framework of the Catholic church and tradition. of_scripture Calvin taught that we need the aid of the Holy Spirit to interpret scripture.
This does not mean that all scriptures are easy to understand; some are more difficult than others. Genesis is classified as an historical narrative book
Chap. 11 Radiocarbon Dating- Snelling noted it is assumed that C14 has formed in the atmosphere at a relatively constant rate from cosmic rays hitting N atoms. This combines with oxygen to form CO2 with C14 in it. This is then taken up by plants and by animals. When they die not more CO2 is taken in so the C14 in them decreases; this is the basis of the dating. The ½ life of C14 is 5730 yrs, and is nearly all gone in 10 half lives of 57300 yrs. C14 is measured in an AMS instrument that needs calibration. It has been found that all supposedly ancient carbon like in coal, fossils, oil, limestone and diamonds, contains some C14-dating them at 20,700 to 55,000 yrs. Creations geologists believe, when the instruments are properly calibrated the ages would be less than 10,000 yrs. Three assumptions are used in C14 dating: 1. The rate of C14 production has always been constant. 2. The atmosphere has had the same C14 level in the past as now. 3. The biosphere has always had the same C14 levels. Snelling sates that none of these are completely true. The earth had a stronger magnetic field initially and it is declining; this meant a much lower rate of C14 formation early on due to shielding of cosmic rays. Also during the flood vast amounts of C14 were buried. These factors lead to shorter C14 ages for the bio-deposits of about 4350 yrs. dating the flood. Also many of the bio-deposits date about the same.
Chap. 12  Radioactive Dating of Rocks- Snelling Geologists use 5 radioisotopes for dating rocks:  U235, U238, K 40, Rubidium 87 and Samarium 147. They change into daughter elements of- lead 206, lead 207, argon 40, Strontium 87 and neodymium 143.  Geologists often look for samples of cooled molten rock like granites, or basalts.  Three assumptions are often used in the process of dating: 1. The conditions at time zero when the rock was formed can be known-assumed. 2. The rocks sampled have been isolated from outside interferences-weathering, ground water etc. 3. The decay rates have maintained constant throughout history. Snelling stated that all 3 assumptions may be in error. When fresh lave is radio dated it often gives false high ages of up to a million yrs. This is due to wrong assumption of the amount of daughter element at time zero. When the same rocks are dated by 4 different radioisotopes, widely varying dates result, showing the inaccuracy of the method. The main value of the method is to show relative but not absolute dates- which rock is older or younger.
Chap 13 The Shroud of Turin.- Hodge. The cloth 1st appeared in France in 1357 and has a negative image on it. It was carbon dated at 1500 yrs ago- the Middle Ages. Luke 23 does mention a linen shroud used to wrap Jesus’ body. However it would have gotten bloody and was probably removed before strips of lines were placed over him, along with a separate head cloth. This is the Jewish custom for burial. Thus was done with the initial cloth is uncertain. Forging of relics was common in Europe.
Chap. 14 Chronology Wars –Pierce noted that it was common to exaggerate lists of kings among cultures to appear the oldest. Greece’s history went back 1800 yrs, Egypt’s 11000 yrs and Babylon’s 730,000 yrs. Isaac Newton had an interest in this and studied it. “Newton explains -After Cambyses carried away the records of Egypt, the priests were daily feigning new kings, to make their gods and nation look more ancient.” This deals with the Persian invasion of Egypt in 525-32 BC, where they took the records and destroyed them. He also found the Greek history in error. Manetho constructed an Egyptian history in the 3rd Century BC. Later a Greek historian, Diodorus Siculus examined this and wrote a new reduced version of the Egyptian Kings. Newton also rejected Mantheo’s list and favored a list more in line with Diodorus. Secular historians give little weight to the Bible or its history.
Chap. 15 Has Noah’s Ark Been Found?  Hodge The bible says it landed in the mountains of Ararat, which is a range of mountains. Mt. Ararat is a large extinct volcano that is 16,854 ft; there is a little Mt Ararat at 12,782 ft. There are a number of eyewitnesses who claim to have seen the ark on the glacier slopes of Mt Ararat as noted in B J Corbin’s book.  If the volcano was formed under water and rose up during the flood, pillow lavas would be present, maybe covering the ark. There are some pillow lavas at 14,000ft; perhaps they formed after the flood. Fossils are found in the mountains of Ararat but are rare on Mt Ararat. Thus some geologists think Mt Ararat is not a good candidate. Another proposed site is Mt. Cudi at 6,880 ft in the Ararat region. Mt Cudi  is cited in Jewish references, like the Book of Jubilees and by others. It is not volcanic and has legends associated with and a landing site. It is reported the wood was taken for salvage long ago. Hodge stated Mt Cudi is a better candidate than Mt. Ararat..
Chap.16 Theophanies in the Old Testament – Chaffey Some say Christianity is a new religion(2000 yrs ago) and there are older ones that could be true. The newness of a belief does not determine its truthfulness. A theophany is an appearance of God and there are many in the Old Testament: Abraham, Jacob, Moses. At times the Angle of the Lord in the OT may have been Christ.
Chap. 17 Annihilationism and Hell- Hodge They take a position that God is to loving to punish someone in hell for eternity. So in lace of hell they chose brief hell, non existence- annihilation. They say hell is reserved for fallen angels.  The Bible supports hell as eternal punishment.
Chap. 18 Hell for Evangelism Comfort  His method of sharing the gospel uses hell.
Chap. 19 The Reformation Broggi Early leaders were  luther, Calvin Know, Bullingger, Malanchthon, Crammer and Lattimer. Luther posted his 95 Theses o the door of the Church at Wittemburg, affirming scripture and opposing some corruption the Catholic Chruch. There were 5 truths affirmed: 1.Solo scripture- scripture is primary and thebeilver can read it.; 2.Solo Gratia- grace alone for salvation not works; 3. Solo Fide Fiath aone for salvation; 4. Solus Christus- Christ alone for salvation; 5. Soli Deo Gloria- To God alone be the Glory. With the printing press this widely spread to other countries.
Chap. 20 Adam and Eve Real People Purdom Some liberal Christians and Biologos believes human originated thru evolution from a population of about 1000 in Africa. They also believe that the creation of man and the fall is allegorical. Scripture teaches the existence of a literal Adam and Eve. Other figures like Job 31:33 and Paul 1Corin. 11:8-9 and 1 Tim. 2:13-14, and Jesus Mark 10:6-8 refer to a literal Adam. Research has noted that the Mitochondrial Eve is the grand mother of us all about 200,000 yrs ago. Also the Y chromosome Adam if the great father about 1423,000 yrs ago. Assumptions are used in the age calculation, and some use assumptions that give lower ages.. Certain assumptions also go into the 10,000 initial population estimate. Different assumptions by scientists are consistent with 2 people forming the human race.
Chap. 21 The Missing Old Testament Books. Edwards The 22 books of the OT were divided into 39 in more recent versions. Ezra at about 400 BC. accepted these books as sacred.  Some books noted in the OT but not considered scripture are as follows: Book of Jasher, Book of Wars of the Lord, Chronicles of the Kings of Judah, Book of Acts of Solomon, Chronicles of King David, Records of  Nathan the Prophet, Records of Gad the seer, Prophecy of Ahijah, visions of Iddo the seer. The Apocrypha are a group of books after Malachi and before the NT.: Prayer of Jeremiah, 1st  and 2nd Esdras, Tobit, Judith, book of Ester extended. Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiasticus(Sirach), Baruch, The song of the three Holy Children, the History of Susanna, Bel and the Dragon, Prayer of Manasses, and Maccabees. In early bibles some of the Apocrypha were included in early bibles and in the Catholic bible as lesser books. Praying forhte dead was noted in Maccabees and in Baruch. Some other books are the Book of Enoch and ehe Sibylline Oracles. The Septuagint is the Greek translation of the Hebrew OT done I the 3rd century BC. It has no Apocrypha. See Wikipedia below.

Intertestamental books

The intertestamental books, largely written during the intertestamental period, are called the Biblical apocrypha ("hidden things") by Protestants, the deuterocanon ("second canon") by Catholics, and the deuterocanon or anagignoskomena ("worthy of reading") by Orthodox. These are works recognized by the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox Churches as being part of scripture (and thus deuterocanonical rather than apocryphal), but Protestants do not recognize them as divinely inspired. Many other Christians recognize them as good, but not on the level of the other books of the Bible. Anglicanism considers the apocrypha to be "read for example of life" but not used "to establish any doctrine".[6] Luther made a parallel statement in calling them: "not considered equal to the Holy Scriptures, but are useful and good to read."[7]
The difference in canons derives from the difference in the Masoretic Text and the Septuagint. Books found in both the Hebrew and the Greek are accepted by all denominations, and by Jews, these are the protocanonical books. Catholics and Orthodox also accept those books present in manuscripts of the Septuagint, an ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament with great currency among the Jews of the ancient world, with the coda that Catholics consider 3 Esdras and 3 Maccabees apocryphal.
Most quotations of the Old Testament in the New Testament, differing by varying degrees from the Masoretic Text, are taken from the Septuagint. When the Jews closed the Old Testament canon, two criteria were used, that the book be written in Hebrew or Aramaic, and that it be no younger than the time of Ezra. This process led to the 24/39 books of the Tanakh and Old Testament (even though Daniel was written several hundred years after the time of Ezra, and since that time several books of the Septuagint have been found in the original Hebrew, in the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Cairo Geniza, and at Masada, including a Hebrew text of Sirach (Qumran, Masada) and an Aramaic text of Tobit (Qumran); the additions to Esther and Daniel are also in their respective Semitic languages. The unanimous consensus of modern (and ancient) scholars consider several other books, including 1 Maccabees and Judith, to have been composed in Hebrew or Aramaic. Opinion is divided on the book of Baruch, while it is acknowledged that the Epistle of Jeremiah, the Wisdom of Solomon, and 2 Maccabees are originally Greek compositions.
Additional books accepted by the Eastern Orthodox:
Additional books accepted by the Syrian Orthodox (due to inclusion in the Peshitta):
  • 2 Baruch with the Letter of Baruch (only the letter has achieved canonical status)
  • Psalms 152-155 (not canonical)
The Ethiopian Tewahedo church accepts all of the deuterocanonical books of Catholicism and anagignoskomena of Eastern Orthodoxy except for the four Books of Maccabees.[10] It accepts the 24/39 books of the Masoretic Text along with the following books, called the "narrow canon".[11] The enumeration of books in the Ethiopic Bible varies greatly between different authorities and printings.[12]
Chap. 22 the Missing New Testament Books Edwards The Gnostics had widespread heresies: Marcion, Vlentinus, Basilides, Carpocrates and Marcus. Books: The Gospel of Truth, the Gospel of Thomas, The Gospel of Philip,
Some False Gospels: The Gospel of Judas, The Infancy Gospel of Thomas, the Arabic Gospel fo the Infancy, The Gospel of the Pseudo Matthew, The Gospel of Peter, the Secret Gospel of Mark. The Nag Hammadi Libray was formed from old writings found in this city in 1945. The Gnostic ones are note above and in addition there is of note- The Gospel of Mary, The Gospel of the Egyptians, the Apocryphon of James, and others. The History of Joseph the Carpenter supports the Catholic doctrine of the perpetual virginity of Mary. Mohammed was more familiar with some of these false gospels than the 4 true gospels. Some good books include The Didache, The Esistle of Barnabus and the Shepherd of Hermas. All of these lack the ring of truth of the accepted NT books.

Chap. 23 Has the Bible text been changed over the yrs? Rhodes Is. 40:8 The word of God stands forever. 1 Pet. !:25, Mark.13:31 there are 5686 partial and compete manuscript copies of the NT. The copying errors in them are very minor. Compared to other historical writings is has many more copies and is well preserved. There are four families of manuscripts: Alexandrian, Western, Caesarean and Byzantine.  The Dead Sea Scrolls found in 1947 were are great confirmation, some dating to 1-3rd century BC.
Chap.28 Giants in the Old Testament Chaffey  The OT makes reference to many of these. There is not good skeleton evidence of these. There is evidence of many animal species that have giants; 23 are listed. There have been non-biblical reports of giants. We do know of some recent tall men: Robert Wadlow was 8ft 11 in.
Chap. 29 the 10 Plagues of Egypt -Fazekas  This is note noted in Egyptian history because they removed embarrassing episodes. One example is the battle of Kadesh with the Hittites who defeated Egypt; this was put in their history as a victory. The 10 plagues were blood, frogs, lice, flies, murrain cattle disease. Boils, hail, locusts, darkness and death.  There are 3 ways people view this: 1. total denial, 2 affirm with natural explanation, and 3. credit God for the supernatural miracle. The miracles have 5 characteristics: 1. intensification, 2 Advance prediction, 3. Discrimination-only in selected areas with Jews favored, orderliness, 5 moral purpose. Ref. Sparks, B “ Red Algae Theories of the Ten Plagues: Contradicted by Science” Bible and Spade 16 # 3 2003 ; 17 #1 2004.

1 comment:

  1. JT-I liked your post on the creation forums and I wanted to respond to you as well as a posted on the creation forum, but I wanted to address one issue that I think Ken Ham is off on by miles....Young people are not leaving the chuch because of poor teaching about creationism, they are leaving because the church is becoming less and less relevant, easy believeism and a lack of discipleship are some of many issues. I don't believe you can give a one fell swoop answer from Ken Ham and have that right? While I respect Ken's stuff, some of his inferences with respect to building a formal creationists view of the bible, in some areas I think I can only say I flat out disagree with his views, and it seems that for me the bible does not exposit some of these views he insists on clearly at all. None the less as a young earth creationist I think he misses the mark with respect to the young culture and while that may play some for some, since Christians abdicated to the liberals in the early 1900's we now live in a post-Christian society, and the influence of the church in the World seems to have lessened...we are where we are because we don't disciple our people, they get their "fire insurance" and accept all forms of teaching and inconsistent doctrines as being relative and on the same level as Christian thinking. Our Kids are raised in school 12 hours a day on this stuff. So respectfully I believe Ken totally misses the mark, and that is my two cents worth. In the Scheme of being salt and light and reaching the world for Christ, unity of the faith, and standing for the Word of GOd, our "views" of Creatinism need to comply fully with one voice and one faith, which God has called us to not only love one another but to be of the same mind. IF we can't agree as to what the Word does say about creation even amongst creationists how can we hold a standard for our young ones?????? Please see my response to you on the creation forum, and feel free to contact me there or through your blog. May God richly bless your efforts in all that you say and do!!!!