Home Page

Dr Pravin Thevathasan's Reviews page  

Dr Pravin Thevathasan's home page

Review by Dr Pravin Thevathasan



The New Testament Documents
Are they reliable?
by F F Bruce
IVP

F F Bruce was Rylands Professor of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis at the University of Manchester. A great Protestant scholar, he manages to convince the unbiassed reader that the New Testament documents are indeed reliable and he does so in about a hundred pages.

He first demonstrates that it is perfectly reasonable to believe that the events described in the New Testament actually occurred. They were not fabricated by early believers. He then looks at the dating of these documents and convincingly argues in favor of an early date.

One of the chapters is central to our Catholic understanding of scripture is on the canon of the scriptures. The author clearly shows us that it was the Early Church that decided which texts are inspired and which are not.

In his discussion on the contents of the Gospels, Bruce places a great emphasis on the Letters of Paul. In good measure, this is because Paul's Letters are the earliest Christian documents we have. He also argues that Luke is a very reliable historian. It is also noted that when we examine the writings of a non-Christian like Josephus, nothing he says contradicts what is written in the New Testament. There are also more New Testament texts close to the original time of writing in existence today than any other works of the period, the works of Caesar, for example.

The chapter on miracles is brief but good. We need to view the miracles in the light of the person of Christ, says Bruce.

Like many biblical scholars, Bruce writes in favor of the Markan priority and Q. As an aside, I corresponded with the great Benedictine biblical scholar Bernard Orchard in the eighties. He gave good reasons in favor of the traditional teaching: Matthew first.

Bruce has given us good arguments supporting the reliability of the New Testament documents.


            
Copyright ; Dr Pravin Thevathasan 2021

Version: 23rd April 2021



Home Page

Dr Pravin Thevathasan's Reviews page  

Dr Pravin Thevathasan's home page