But I like him more now! 589 (January–March 1991): 50–5 1. Student: Why has inerrancy and infallibility been such an obstacle to people such as Bart Ehrman for affirming the Gospel? But scholars do not pitch to the book-buying public in the same way they do to their peers… because… well… there wouldn’t be much book-buying going on. Just as Christians elevate the testimonies of former atheists who have come to Christ, so atheists elevate Ehrman. Ehrman summarizes, often accurately, the biblical teaching. This isn’t a problem; this is how thought progresses. Ehrman ignores the richness of the biblical teaching about Heaven and the New Earth. This is a sensible and robust stand on inerrancy. Thank you. He then went off to Moody Bible Institute and then he went to Wheaton College – the same school I went to – and studied under Gerald Hawthorne. The depth of our pain is indescribable. . To help you judge his discussion on Christian ethics, a conservative, but thorough review of Christian ethics can be found in Christian Ethics:Options and Issues, by Norman L. Geisler. We should eat out and order unhealthy desserts, and we should cook steaks on the grill and drink Bordeaux.... We should drive nice cars and have nice homes. But with his change in focus to a popular audience came the change in scholastic discipline… and vindictiveness towards God began to show… but especially where he characterized the New Testament as plausibly having a fraction of a million errors. I repudiate that. As we will see in chapter 28, the biblical teaching of Heaven and the New Earth was not some after-the-fact development by disappointed Christians. Bart Ehrman lost what faith he had because of the sort of unspeakable tragedies that have happened not to him, but to people like Scott and Janet Willis. He can be pleased (2:26; 7:26) and angered (5:2–6). Lewis, by contrast, had come to his atheism as an adult, having seen the horrors of the trenches in World War I, and rejected the trappings of Christianity he’d seen as a child and adolescent. THE TRIUMPH OF CHRISTIANITY How a Forbidden Religion Swept the World By Bart D. Ehrman 335 pp. Rather, he promises that at the judgment he will give us a review. God has not asked us to give him a performance review so that he may do a better job the next time he creates a universe or devises a redemptive plan. It concludes with an emphatic message that cuts through the apparent meaninglessness and uncertainties of life, right to the heart of our existence: “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. chose to go off to a fundamentalist Bible college—Moody Bible Institute in Chicago—where I began training for ministry. But I think we understand that we can never fully separate the product from the producer (or the analysis from the analyst) when using thousands of words to convey conclusions… although I am not trying to build Ehrman a hiding place here. In fact, they are amateurs at that…. It wouldn’t have much impact. In The Triumph of Christianity, Bart Ehrman, a master explainer of Christian history, texts, and traditions, shows how a religion whose first believers were twenty or so illiterate day laborers in a remote part of the empire became the official religion of Rome, converting some thirty million people in just four centuries. He decided it was not God’s inerrant revelation but “a very human book with all the marks of having come from human hands: Discrepancies, contradictions, errors, and different perspectives.” Nonetheless, he writes, I continued to be a Christian—a completely committed Christian—for many years after I left the evangelical fold. ", Misquoting Jesus: The Story behind Who Changed the Bible and Why, Bart D. Ehrman, HarperCollins, 2005. Bart Ehrman on why everything you’ve been told about heaven and hell is wrong Best known for his popular books debunking the central assumptions of Christian Scriptures, the … “I used to believe … While I will criticize Ehrman, I should clarify that sometimes I find him likable. He knows what will be worth it in the end. Christians like me who affirm that the New Testament texts are an important part of our cumulative case for Christ must address the Ehrman phenomenon irrespective of where we stand on the Ehrman conclusions, so here are some of my thoughts. But Bart Ehrman’s book, How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee, offers another theory. At the end of our two-hour conversation, Scott Willis said, “I have a stronger view of God’s sovereignty than ever before.”, Scott and Janet did not say that the accident itself strengthened their view of God’s sovereignty. In doing so, Ehrman makes the important point that it is difficult for historians to say what Constantine converted from. But did you notice the waffling… that bit about computers and counting… and how he never lifts the veil on what a variant might be. On a university campus, how much courage does it take to roll your eyes at and caricature evangelical Christianity? Ecclesiastes says, “Be happy, young man, while you are young, and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth. Ehrman portrays himself as a courageous figure, when in fact he has moved from an academically unpopular viewpoint to a popular one. He simply doesn’t believe them. So, unless these experts are multiply-credentialed to include philosophy, they have no special qualifications to understand what their data analyses and postulations mean metaphysically. I am particularly happy to field this question today; this is an area of special interest to me. So, although the cause was not especially bibliolatry, Craig suspects that Ehrman was putting the wrong kind of pressures in the wrong kind of places when it comes to biblical inerrancy — and I heartily agree. The actual growth rate of Christianity was not as staggering as it may first appear.  Although that is affirmed by Catholics and Protestants, in Defenders Series 2 we saw that Eastern Orthodox Churches don’t affirm the doctrine of original sin, and yet they are still Christians. At this point, I must beg the indulgence of my editors, my questioner and my broader audience who have sympathy with fundamentalism. While Western atheists turn from belief in God because a tsunami in another part of the world caused great suffering, many brokenhearted survivors of that same tsunami found faith in God. This position understands inerrancy to reside in a certain edition of the English Bible. He took Greek from the same professor that taught me Greek. While reading Ehrman’s book, I interviewed Scott and Janet Willis. The title of your question asks about thoughts on and refutations of the arguments of Bart D Ehrman,but the question in total seems to be broader than this. You are telling me you are an atheist because there are some discrepancies in these Old Testament documents? But just because we don’t have an answer to suffering does not mean that we cannot have a response to it. I am told by an editor at Oxford University Press that he is the best-selling religious author with Oxford University Press. “It will be worth it. Instead, he would have been like the archer’s bow — absorbing the stress — and using it to fire at the heart of truth. The early Christian Church was a chaos of contending beliefs, according to Bart Ehrman, author of Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew. I am honestly confused by this type of people who claim to find "errors" in the Bible. Now, this is not in itself a problem; people should stand firmly for what they believe. Eventually, though, I felt compelled to leave Christianity altogether. These people do not deny their suffering; they affirm it. Because the caste system and fatalism of Hinduism give them no answers. But why did some who lived through the Holocaust come to a radically different conclusion? One favorable reviewer of Ehrman’s book comments, “I much prefer the beneficent gods of my ancestors, who don’t cause suffering, who don’t pluck people out of existence according to some mysterious plan, who don’t send natural disasters to plague us, a world where cause and effect hold sway, where rivers rise because of natural causes, where twisters are the result of meteorological conditions, not because God ordains them.” . “I learned about Him. Some of these doctrines are more central to the web of belief. Ehrman never mentions that while people living in relative comfort reject faith in God due to the problem of evil, those subjected to the worst evil and suffering often turn to God. My question is, people like Bart Ehrman who claim to have been Christians and "strong believers in the Bible" and later eventually became agnostic or atheist or another religion, do these type of people commit "bibliolatry" in the sense of viewing the Bible's perfection based on human fallible reasoning rather than based on the belief of God's di-vine preservation of Scripture? What are some of these central doctrines that are at the core of the Christian web of beliefs? If a person indeed “has” Jesus Christ in any real sense of the term — in salvation, fellowship, the word, etc. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil” (12:13–14). That’s what the author of Ecclesiastes thinks, and I agree. Ehrman refers to his earlier book, Misquoting Jesus, to say his belief in the Bible’s truthfulness diminished the more he studied it. So I would say that the doctrine of inspiration is some place out here [pointing to a diagram on the whiteboard] and the doctrine of inerrancy is even a little more peripheral. The author Bart D. Ehrman, professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina, argues and, in my opinion, demonstrates that early Christianity was anything but a monolithic religion and that the beliefs that eventually came to be called orthodox No single reason gives a sufficient explanation, but different threads of biblical insight, woven together, form a durable fabric. This is one of the great paradoxes of suffering. I think that the doctrine of inspiration lies somewhere out a ways from the center. He sure does — and boy… he sure sells some books! By 380, it had reached majority status. When we limit our perspective to the horizons of this world, life is indeed meaningless. During his graduate studies, however, he became convinced that there are contradictions and discrepancies in the biblical manuscripts that could not be harmonized or reconciled. To see why, let’s look more closely at Ehrman’s quote, because there is a critical issue hidden within it that he did not reveal — one that supports the New Testament’s veracity rather than fights it. I would have pulled my hair out if people were mean to him.
Your are truly inspiring…. We and their grandparents have suffered since. And what are we doing to help youthful genuine Christians go deeper in exploring Scripture, learning sound theology, and developing a truly Christian world-view, not a superficial one? I just now – fifteen minutes ago – came to realize with the most crystal clarity I have ever had why I cannot call myself a Christian. To explain why this is a problem, let me establish a gradient by using the image of a slide-bar. Bart Ehrman’s new book, written before the pandemic, may offer the perfect antidote for settling the question of what comes after. Knowing a few Bible stories proves insufficient when facing an issue of the magnitude of evil and suffering. Ultimately, it was the reason I lost my faith. “Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come.... Then man goes to his eternal home... and the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it” (12:1, 5, 7). He argues that a good God would never withhold relief that was in his power to give, then comes to a revealing conclusion: I think we should work hard to make the world—the one we live in—the most pleasing place it can be for ourselves.... We should make money and spend money. The intention of the present article is to offer an overview of several key… Survivor Stories is a powerful hour of interviews with Jews who survived the concentration camps and came to faith in Christ. After hearing Ehrman’s case, someone says, “You’ve lost your faith because of my suffering? No one else seems to have this reaction, but OK. This is why I am glad that you subscribe to a more reasonable version of inerrancy — one that includes supernatural preservation of the Scripture.  Hrafnkell Haraldsson, “Another Ehrman Slam Dunk,” Amazon.com Customer Review, June 20, 2008. The more the better. We have well over five-thousand of these, as your question noted… but you noted this as a problem. Imagine eavesdropping on a conversation between Ehrman and the very people whose suffering he uses as an argument for disbelieving in God. I find the book’s subtitle ironic: How the Bible Fails to Answer Our Most Important Question—Why We Suffer.  I’ve compiled an annotated bibliography of many of the books I have most appreciated in my research on evil and suffering. Finally top Bible scholar "Professor Bart D. Ehrman" leaves Christianity. If it seems unfair to ask, remember that I am merely applying the standard he expects God to live up to: using all of one’s resources to relieve suffering. Bart D. 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