Do you think Paul wrote the Pastoral epistles?

Discussion in 'Sacred Scripture' started by ChristusResurrexit, Mar 2, 2015.

  1. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    considered by who? Certainly not the early church, which was in the best position to know. How reasonable is the virgin birth? How reasonable is the resurrection? And yet we believe them. I do at least.
     
  2. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    Actually, they're both pretty reasonable. Evidence shows that the virgin birth, and the resurrection happened. The early Church attesting to it does say alot. However, it's not like these were traditions handed down from the apostles themselves. Certainly, most of the traditions were. But, these were not. And we have so much evidence for the view that Paul did not write them. I don't think we can simply dismiss it.
     
  3. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    just how do you know they weren't? And you keep talking about all this evidence yet you haven't offered any. What treasure trove of evidence do you keep referring to?
     
  4. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    I believe it is very reasonable based on the evidence we have for it. I'll admit, maybe I am being alittle too much like "doubting Thomas" here. But, it's just in my nature to be that kind of person. It's hard for me to help. But, just based off the evidence for my views, I will not stop advocating them unless I see a really good reason against them. Many of my own Catholic brethren hold to them. Many of your own Anglicans hold to them.

    These views in no way challenge Christianity. They may create a different perspective. But remember, it's scripture we're reading. In the end, it's the word of God. :)
     
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  5. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    I have offered it, I can give you links and quotes if you really want them?
     
  6. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    Read Bart D. Erhamns "Forged". I don't agree with all of his views, based on some other evidence, however, he makes great points! Though, some of it I do see as bias attacks on Christianity. Some of his views are within the views of mainline scholars. Not all. Like, his view that Paul only thought Jesus was a super Archangel, rather than God incarnate, is usually not held by scholars. He presents some great evidence and points. Even the ones I don't totally agree with. The book is not perfect, but it's helpful. I can give you a few quotes and maybe some links from other sources as well, if you want them. Unless you want me to directly give it to you, like verses, and stuff...
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2015
  7. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    mmm not familiar a St. Bart Erhamns but i do know saints Clement of Rome, Ignatius, and Polycarp, all of which accepted St. Paul as the author of the letters to Timothy and Titus. That's enough for me.
     
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  8. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Bart Ehrman is a heretic and militant atheist. His stuff is not worth reading. By quoting him you've just lost credibility.
     
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  9. Anne

    Anne Active Member Anglican

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    CR, you seem to have fantastically missed the point -- that a virgin can become impregnated without a man, that God became man, that he was murdered and resurrected and ascended into Heaven.....to an unbeliever this makes NO rational sense. I'm not talking about belief among Christians or how many Anglicans do not believe in God or anything else -- I am stating with Chesterton that God's logic is not man's logic. And, so, indeed. This is the Word of God.
     
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  10. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    He is agnostic. He is not an atheist. I also don't see him as militant. Certainly some of his views are false, but he makes great points and atleast provides considerable evidence.
     
  11. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    They could have been wrong, seeing this was not a tradition handed on from the apostles themselves, but there opinions that happen to be widly held in the Church.
     
  12. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    You do have a point, however, when there is evidence against something, we can't blindly dismiss it. We need to loo into it, and determine our best logical conclusion. That is what I'm trying to do with the pastoral epistles. That is what I'm trying to d0 with the entire New Testament. I strive to understand it better, not to dismiss it as the word of God.
     
  13. Anne

    Anne Active Member Anglican

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    No one is dismissing it by saying it's the God's word -- we are saying that because it is God's word it dismisses any arguments or opinions that contradict it.
     
  14. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    My opinions do not contradict it in anyway.
     
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  15. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I can't believe you're defending Bart Ehrman. Bart Ehrman. Did you watch any of his online videos or debates? Actually read his books? He despises our faith with every ounce of his being. Your entire approach to Scripture is wrong at the most basic level, I'm sorry. Scripture is the word of God, not a historical artifact and there are no doubts about its nature, origins or intentions.
     
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  16. ChristusResurrexit

    ChristusResurrexit Member

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    I have. This is why I'm telling you I don't agree with him on many things, and yet other things I do. Even the stuff I don't agree with, at all in no way, you need to admit, at least he does provide reasonable evidence. Your approach seems to be entirely theological, which is not bad. Just, not nessacarriley what the correct study of scripture is about... If anything, you're at the basic level. Scripture is both the word of God, and a historical artifact. It must be treated as both, and reconciled as both.
     
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  17. Cranmer's Crosier

    Cranmer's Crosier Member Anglican

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    I wrote a paper last semester discussing pseudepigraphic writings. This is a section from it.

    The works referenced are:

    Dunn, J.D.G. “Pseudopigraphy.” In Dictionary of the Later New Testament & Its Developments,
    edited by Ralph P. Martin and Peter H. Davids, 977-984. Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 1997.


    Kruger, Michael J. Canon Revisited: Establishing the Origins and Authority of the New
    Testament Books.
    Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2012.


    Dunn addresses NT pseudopigraphy as if it were indisputable fact because of heavy academic consensus concerning the issue. Though he describes this fact as “uncomfortable” and potentially problematic due to “false attribution”, he insists that NT pseudopigraphy possesses an OT pedigree. His essay argues pseudopigraphy does not fundamentally attempt to deceive, but duplicates an OT tradition where disciples of an authoritative master continue writing as new events occur, but from within the teachings and framework of the master. These disciples would thereby create an ongoing or “living tradition”, by attributing these new writings to the master. For example, Dunn argues Deuteronomy, though not written by Moses (or even written during Moses’ lifetime), “was understood as a restatement of the tradition stemming from Moses” and possesses canonical authority because of its Mosaic character. Dunn employs Isaiah and the Solomonic writings as further case studies for his thesis. He even suggests these writings occurred over several generations and even centuries. Each case study appropriates the assumption that these unknown authors were authoritatively describing how the master (whether Moses, Isaiah, or Solomon) would have understood or taught given the circumstances at the time of writing. With OT pseudopigraphy in mind, Dunn argues that NT pseudopigraphy continued a tradition that was both culturally prevalent and religiously palatable during the lifetimes of the writers.

    Contrast Dunn’s thesis with Kruger’s thesis that NT pseudopigraphy must be false because of internal evidence in the text. Why would a person impersonating an Apostle, who merely wanted to pass on apostolic tradition, include so many personal details to convince his readers he was actually an apostle? Kruger also discusses the nature of the pro-pseudopigraphy argument. The criteria that critical scholars use to argue for pseudopigraphy are subjective and therefore not persuasive. Critical scholars argue for pseudopigraphy from “literary style, vocabulary, and the like” to which Kruger levies reasonable responses that include: use of amanuensis, different audiences, and different circumstances can reasonably cause a person to write differently as at different times. Thus, the nature of NT pseudopigraphy must necessarily be deceptive, and cannot be held in tandem with a robust doctrine of inerrancy.

    I find Dunn’s thesis unconvincing. Even if we assumed the entirety of his thesis concerning OT pseudopigraphy to be true, there is still a qualitative difference between OT and NT pseudopigraphy. First, Dunn argues that the crystallization of the living tradition occurred over multiple generations and even centuries. If we view NT pseudopigraphy in the light of OT timelines, then the authors of the NT pseudopigraphical books are writing while the bodies of the apostles are figuratively warm in the grave! This should cause defenders of pseudopigraphy pause. If these books are indeed pseudopigrahical, then they were intended to deceive audiences as to the identity of the author, rather than perpetuate a “living tradition” as Dunn suggests. For example, it is easy to comprehend the difference between me writing a general letter to the Church of England while pretending to be Thomas Cranmer (458 years after his martyrdom), than if his contemporary, John Jewel, wrote a similar letter only a few years after Cranmer’s death. Even if my letter contained explicit personal details of Cranmer’s life, it would be immediately apparent that my letter intended to equate my words with the Cranmerian tradition. Similarly, even if OT pseudopigraphy is true, the intended audiences would have readily realized the author’s intentions, while if NT pseudopigraphy is true, then the likelihood of intentional deception markedly increases. The argument for deception further swells when considering the disputed NT writings are personal letters meant to instruct and direct, rather than larger and more general genres of OT law, prophecy, or wisdom literature.

    Furthermore, the Church’s reception of canonical books plays the most prominent role in discussions of pseudopigraphy. It must be noted that pseudopigraphy did occur, and the Church universally rejected deceitful letters posing as apostolic. The Church had no interest in entertaining any book as Scripture unless it displayed apostolic origins. Kruger notes that Serapion rejected the Gospel of Peter as unorthodox by using genuine apostolicity as his criterion. Overall, the argument for pseudopigraphy fails the reasonability test considering Kruger’s objections. The epistle’s intense orthodoxy give sufficient reason to believe the Apostles authored them all instead of pseudonymous authors. In the same way, when one hears hoof beats in the American southwest a reasonable person thinks cattle- not zebras.
     
  18. highchurchman

    highchurchman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    [QU keeping to tradionOTE="ChristusResurrexit, post: 20024, member: 1742"]Hey my brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus! I bless you, Nomi Patris, et Filli, et Spiritus Sancti. (Hope you return the blessing.) :)

    So, I have kind of noticed this forum does not have many post. So, I guess I plan on maybe helping to start discussions alittle bit more often here than I originally planned. Maybe it will help with peoples boredom. Lol.

    Anyway, what do you personally think of the pastoral epistles, if you have studied them enough to know what I'm talking about? I'll just say, for those who don't know what I'm speaking of, is 1 & 2 Timothy, as well as Titus. Many scholars believe Paul did not write them. I have to say, I agree with them based on the internal and external evidence we have. I also have one interesting theory that also helps show why Paul may have not written them, if anyone wants to hear it. What do you guys think? Anyone? Anyone have evidence contrary to scholars claims?[/QUOTE]

    Personally, I like his Epistles and they are quite decisive and are at this time sliding in to desuetude sadly! At least in my opinion!
    As far as I can tell the Catholic Church accepts the Pauline claim to the Epistles and as both the Epistles and the claim to authorship is accepted generally by the Church, should we bother?
    After two thousand years of acceptance and at a time when we can truly say the barbarians are at the gate , should we not rather be emphasising the Pauline Doctrines regarding tradition and such things?
     
  19. Tiffy

    Tiffy Member Anglican

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    Actually none of Paul's epistles have a 'signature'. Two of the original manuscripts apparently had a few words actually written in Paul's own hand. 1 Cor.16:21. Gal.6:11. Paul wrote hardly any of his letters, he dictated them to a scribe, who wrote them down for him. This may have been to save time or because Paul's handwriting was too imperfect to be used in correspondence, due to the size of his letters, he being poorly sighted. In any case we have none of St Paul's original manuscripts. All manuscripts are copies of copies of the originals.

    The problem of simply assuming that because a document is introduced by claiming it has been written by St Paul, is that the church in 360 AD, knew of documents it was pretty certain did not come from St. Paul but which claimed to have been dictated by him. The pastorals were included in the canon because it was considered at the time that there was a high possibility that they were genuine. The rejected ones were obviously not considered genuine even by the standards of examination available in 360 AD when the canon was being selected and finalized.

    It is in my opinion too late now to 'undo the cannon of scripture', Scripture is what it now is, but if modern text and other forms of critical analysis were available to the scholars who did the sorting of 'wheat from chaff' around 360 AD, they might well have decided against the pastorals inclusion. There is also the fact that our protestant bible of 66 books is somewhat 'less thick' than it was before the reformation. I would suggest that this fact alone might cause us to be a little wary of treating all 66 books as being 'equally infallibly authoritative', when we have letters from St Paul which are unquestionably his own Apostolic words, which in some respects contradict a literal reading of some of what might appear in the pastorals to be 'set in stone, binding rules for the church in all the ages'.

    I don't accept the argument that "If anything in scripture can be proved to be in error, then the whole of scripture must be rejected as null and void". If that illogical principle were applied to life as a whole, error could never be identified and progress toward truth and understanding would permanently halt, with disastrous results for mankind.

    The Anglican Church is not a 'truth museum', it is a truth seeking, pioneering body of Christ's disciples in every age.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018
  20. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I got an alert so I'm back here, and this is the post I got alerted to respond back to.


    There is so much here, almost all of it wrong and filled with liberal wishy-washy revisionism. Let's get to these points one by one:
    What a way to open a post filled with errors. Not a single ancient document we have today had a signature in your sense. It's an utter and complete red herring. Caesar's Gallic Wars (which we doubt not was written by him) doesn't survive today "with his" signature; and it is even doubtful that the ancient Romans saw them in his own writing. Nor do we have a manuscript of Polybius or Plutarch in their hands, and neither do the Gospels, nor even the Epistles of St. Clement or St. Ignatius exist in a primary format where we know this was their handwriting. To even expect an actual hand-written signature in this context is to be completely ignorant of how ancient epigraphic evidence works. When I say that St. Paul's epistles had a signature, what I mean is that they say, "I am Paul, writing this, ".

    All this is a bunch verbiage to basically concede that the Church of 360 AD accepted the Epistles based on evidence, and not fiat (the charge thrown against the church by Dan Brown, Bart Ehrman, and other secular anti-Christians). There was evidence that guided the selection of the canon, and they chose the contents on the basis of that evidence.

    By the way, 360 AD was not when the canon was formulated. That was just the final moment at which the last brick was set in the edifice of the canon. The canon was known as we know it as early as the 2nd century AD, which you'd be aware of, if you actually knew anything about ancient epigraphy or Biblical manuscript transmission. Have a look at the Muratorian Fragment:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muratorian_fragment

    Classic liberal revisionism. What it does is assault the providence and the efficacy of the Holy Ghost. Any form of attack on the integrity, or the 'incompleteness' of the Scriptures, is inherently an attack on God, who failed to provide his flock with a decent account of His Word for 2000 years, until some atheist scholar 'figured things out'.

    It also claims to limit the 'true meaning' of scriptures to some elite elect group of people, denied to prior generations; which is the heresy of Gnosticism. You see, even an atheist scholar can be a gnostic heretic.

    You are using Roman Catholic propaganda to suit your liberal ends. I bet you the Catholics won't be happy with their arguments being deployed by you, to advance the agenda of weakening the authority of the Scriptures.

    Your implication that the Reformers fiddled with the Canon is flatly false, and basically ignorant of the entire Reformation period and the authentic canon of scripture. Here are some thoughts to expand your perspectives on this:
    1. The 66-book canon is based on the Masoretic Jewish text; in other words, on a more ancient textual tradition than the Greek translations.

    2. The canon formulated at Nicea HAS the 66-book canon. Look it up.

    3. The Latin Vulgate produced by St. Jerome IS the 66-book canon. He actively rejected the Greek apocrypha. He equated the number of OT books with the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet (by which account, the apocrypha don't fit).

    4. The Latin Vulgate produced by St. Jerome is in fact based on the Hebrew textual tradition: look up what he says in the Prologus Galeatus:
      http://www.bible-researcher.com/jerome.html
      This preface, also known as the Prologus Galeatus, "Helmeted Preface," was written by Jerome about the year 391. In it he maintains that, for the Old Testament, only the Hebrew books traditionally regarded as Holy Scripture by the Jews are canonical, and the extra books of the Septuagint "are not in the canon."

    5. And finally, the 66-Book Canon was (on the authority of St. Jerome, and the Councils) accepted in the Middle Ages as the authentic canon of Scripture. Only in places do you see this false accretion of the apocryphal books into the Canon, and you see Medieval theologians protesting to return the canon to its original 66 books. One example of that is Cardinal Cajetan, the most prominent theologian right before the Reformation. He writes:
      "Here we close our commentaries on the historical books of the Old Testament. For the rest (that is, Judith, Tobit, and the books of Maccabees) are counted by St Jerome out of the canonical books, and are placed amongst the Apocrypha, along with Wisdom and Ecclesiasticus, as is plain from the Prologus Galeatus. Nor be thou disturbed, like a raw scholar, if thou shouldest find anywhere, either in the sacred councils or the sacred doctors, these books reckoned as canonical. For the words as well of councils as of doctors are to be reduced to the correction of Jerome. Now, according to his judgment, in the epistle to the bishops Chromatius and Heliodorus, these books (and any other like books in the canon of the bible) are not canonical, that is, not in the nature of a rule for confirming matters of faith. Yet, they may be called canonical, that is, in the nature of a rule for the edification of the faithful, as being received and authorised in the canon of the bible for that purpose. By the help of this distinction thou mayest see thy way clearly through that which Augustine says, and what is written in the provincial council of Carthage."


    So to recap, by using revisionist Roman propaganda, you are trying to build up a liberal quasi-atheistic case to diminish the Authority of the Scriptures, and both you and them are repudiated by history, by the fathers, and by the Holy Ghost.


    I would suggest that you know as much of Anglicanism as you know of the Biblical Tradition.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018

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