Meeting Times

Sunday Class 10:00 a.m.

Sunday Worship 11:00 a.m.

Sunday Discussion 2:00 p.m.

Sunday Ladies Class 2:00 p.m.

Wednesday Class 7:00 p.m.

3 minutes reading time (600 words)

Has the New Testament Been Tampered With?

 There are some who claim that the New Testament Scriptures were written so long ago and copied so many times that they cannot possibly have retained their original meaning. They would have us believe the New Testament has been tampered with. However, Jesus promised: "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away" (Matt. 24:35). His promise is borne out by the weight of the evidence.

1. The King James Version. In 1604 King James I of England authorized the making of a new translation of the Bible into English. This new version was completed in 1611. The King James Version has been widely used for nearly 400 years. Interestingly, nothing that would substantially change our faith or any command of God has been changed in the many revisions that the King James Version has undergone. Therefore, we can be sure that the New Testament can be, and has been, preserved for the last 400 years.
2. The Latin Vulgate. A translation of the Bible from Greek to Latin was made around A.D. 150 and came to be known as the "Old Latin" version of the Scriptures. In A.D. 382 the scholar Jerome was commissioned to revise the Old Latin version. He undertook the task and completed his work around A.D. 400. His revision is known as the Latin Vulgate, which means, "common Latin". The Latin Vulgate was widely used from the 5th to the 15th century and is still used today. The Latin Vulgate can be used to prove that the New Testament can be, and has been, preserved substantially unchanged for 1600 years.
3. The surviving manuscripts. When the New Testament was first written, early Christians made many hand-written copies in the original Greek language in which it was written. These copies are known as "manuscripts". Of the approximately 5,000 known manuscripts of the New Testament in existence, few contain the entire New Testament and some are only fragments. Among the most complete are the Vatican, Sinaitic, and Alexandrian manuscripts, which were written during the middle of the 4th and 5th centuries. These early copies of the Scriptures had not yet been discovered when the King James Version was made, however, a comparison shows no substantial differences between these manuscripts and the text of the King James Version! This proves beyond all question that the New Testament has been successfully preserved for at least the past 1650 years.

4. The early Christian writers. These men, also known as the "apostolic fathers", lived and wrote near the end of the first century and the beginning of the second century A.D. Their writings are filled with quotations from the New Testament. We will consider the writings of only three of these men, Clement, Ignatius, and Polycarp. The writings of these three men survive from a period beginning between A.D. 96-110. In their writings we find quotations and references from 25 of the 27 books of the New Testament. The Scripture quotations of these and other early Christian writers are so extensive that the entire New Testament could be effectively reconstructed from their writings. These writers take us back to the time when the New Testament was first written, and their writings prove that the New Testament they had is the same as the New Testament we have today. There is no substantial difference.

Conclusion The New Testament has not been tampered with. In light of the available evidence, the message as we have it today is the same as when it was first delivered. - by David Dann
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