Reliability of the Oral Tradition (part 1)
There was a 30 — 40 year gap between the events of the Gospels and the writing of the Gospels. Can we trust the accounts of Jesus’ life as they were told during this time period. Were the Gospel writers even interested in preserving history? Were they in a position to do so?
I. BELIEF IN AN IMMINENT END
A. Why write history if Jesus is returning soon?
1. Mark 9:1
2. Mark 13:30
3. Matt 10:23
B. Ps 90:4 in Jewish and Christian thought
1. 2 Pet 3:8
2. Jewish interpretation
C. Jesus’ ethical teaching assumes an extended time
D. Essenes (Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls)
II. DOES THEOLOGY BIASES DISTORTS YOUR PRESENTATION OF HISTORY?
A. Holocaust historians were objective (revisionists weren’t Jewish)
B. Already an uphill battle to fight, so why create stories?
1. Virgin birth
III. WOULD CHRISTIAN PROPHECY DISTORT?
A. New Testament revelation
1. Was different (Rev 2:1; Acts 11:28; 21:10–11)
2. 1 Cor 14:29
B. First century issues not read into the Gospels (“Missing Sayings”)
2. Speaking in tongues
IV. POSITIVE ARGUMENTS
A. Jewish tradition was to take notes right away
B. Common to abbreviate discussions
C. Leadership would control
D. “Difficult Sayings”