“The record is really quite astonishing. The New Testament contains about twenty thousand lines of text, and of those, only about forty lines are in question. That amounts to about four hundred words (roughly one page of your two-hundred-page New Testament). Most of the variations are insignificant to the meaning of the text: it says about the same thing either way. Of the variations that remain, no major doctrine is affected by or built upon those texts. So everything that really matters to Christianity comes out of well-attested ancient texts.”
 Mark Mittelberg; Lee Strobel (2010-10-25). The Questions Christians Hope No One Will Ask (p. 80). Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.. Kindle Edition.
The Character Of The Lame Mane In Acts 3-4 by Michael C. Parsons
By: Prasha Maharjan
Physiognomy is the study of the relationship between physical and moral characteristics. This method basically assumes that as the character of the soul altered, the form of the body changed too, and vice versa. The disabilities and deformities in the lower body were associated with being weak-hearted, effeminate, and cowardly. Physiognomy was prevalent in the ancient days as proven by an extant treatise and the influence it had on the genres of ancient literature. Writers portrayed their characters following this convention. This era, as the author terms it, was the period of “physiognomic consciousness,” that permeated the Greco-Roman world. An example he gives is of Homer’s characters that may have shaped the development of physiognomic canons.
The author Mikeal C. Parsons, explores the passages in the book of Acts to give us the cultural context as to why Luke was so keen in using specific zoological terms and bodily disorders in his stories. Given the above context and Luke’s account for the healing of the lame man, did Luke too conform to the physiognomic convention? Did the joyous expression of healing communicate to Luke’s audience that the lame man had simply become manlier? Yes, but not the way the people then assumed. Thus, Parsons’ purpose in writing the article is to show that vipers, foxes, wolves, eunuchs, lame, etc., are physiognomic words that Luke used to attract his audience with that mindset but eventually only to undermine their “physiognomic consciousness.” Luke, in fact, emphasized the point that physical appearance was not directly connected to moral character and this assumption needed to be rejected in his “story of membership in the eschatological community of the Way.” Though, “Luke has reluctantly used physiognomy as a community ‘entrance test’ he subtly but forcefully opposes the conventions of physiognomy being applied in this way” (Parsons, 5). Continue reading Journal Review: The Character of the Lame Mane in ACTS 3-4
Jesus’ Last Supper with His Disciples and Intimate Discourse in the Upper Room on the day he was arrested.
The Gospel of Matthew is entitled to the Apostle Matthew. He is one of Jesus’ twelve disciples. The early church fathers suggested indisputably Matthew as the author of the book. But in the recent time, there are many questions raised over the authorship of the book. The author has not imprinted his name; neither does the book clearly identify its author. Matthew also has not claimed to be the author. To be meticulous, the Gospel of Matthew is fundamentally anonymous.
Indeed, one of the major Greek manuscripts has the title “According to Matthew,” yet, it is not sure if the original document bears the same title. J. Knox Chamblin wonders that the title did not belong to the original documents, because modern day findings of the first century history reveal that the subscribed title was originated no later than 140 A.D.
The Matthew could not have been written earlier than 40 A.D. and after A.D. 100. Bearing some first century historical events and writings of the early Church Fathers in our mind, we can safely put the gospel of Mathew in around A.D. 70. Since the first of four gospels, “Mark cannot be earlier than A.D. 40, for Caligula’s attempt to profane the temple is reflected in ch. 13; John, the latest of the Gospels, cannot be dated long after the year 100, for a papyrus fragment of it, found in upper Egypt, has been assigned to the second century by competent papyrologist.” When we try to date in between 40 to 100, the most likely result would be around A.D. 65-70. Elwell and Yarbrough affirm that the A.D. 70 is the most certainly correct. Continue reading Institution of the Lord’s Supper and the Upper Room Discourse