Thursday, October 3, 2013

Review - Audio Lecture - The Great Courses - The New Testament

I’m a pretty big fan of The Teaching Company’s Great Courses audio lectures. I’m purchased a few and I’ve loaned a few from the library. I especially enjoyed The Catholic Church – A History, Reason and Faith, and St. Augustine – Philosopher and Saint, to mention a few.

But I must express a warning about the lecture series called the New Testament by
Professor Bart D. Ehrman. Mr. Ehrman is your preverbal secularist academic who finds nothing of positive value in the NT. He goes out of his way to constantly find inconsistencies and tried to use logic or reasoning to pooh-pooh whatever book he is addressing. We are all aware that there are inconsistencies. They were written by humans relying on either their own eyewitness of events, oral stories being passed on, and early extant and non-extant written documents. He doubts the four evangelists wrote the gospels citing they did not contain the name of the author. Yes, the common practice at the time was not to name the work or identify the author, though at times the name of the work and or author would be written on the rolled scroll. So again he argues Mark, Matthew, Luke and John did not write the gospels.

He indicates there were no living eyewitnesses when the books were written. This is not true, some of the early church fathers regularly conversed with some eyewitnesses. John the youngest apostle could have been alive we into the 90s A.D.

There is a diatribe as he argues Paul taught a completely different religion than did Jesus. Well, Paul was not an eyewitness to Jesus. What Paul learned was learned from other Christians. There was tremendous growth and development in these early years and he ignores that the church was being led by the Holy Spirit. But he tries to use this to debunk both Jesus and Paul.

Do not waste your money and time on this. His unspoken agenda is clear. This is the kind of education our children are being taught in our institutes of “higher” education. A shame. No matter why our youth are turning away from faith. And I’m sure this secularization is pervasive in academia including “catholic universities.”

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