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Trusting the New Testament Paperback – May 14, 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Xulon Press (May 14, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607917335
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607917335
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 0.6 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,696,298 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

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Having recently finished reading through this book by JP Holding (author of "Shattering the Christ Myth" see my earlier review), I must say I enjoyed reading it and found it helpful both in understanding the author's evangelical point of view and understanding that one can make reasonable arguments in favor of Traditional authorship of the Christian writings that make up the "New Testament" in the Bible.

I give this product 4 stars as I feel it is not quite the slam dunk that "Shattering the Christ Myth" was, and he ventures a little more into pure Christian apologetic. This is not to say it is worthless, but it will have a more limited appeal. This time, instead of engaging most amateur conspiracy theorists, his targets including so-called liberal and "radical" scholars, especially biblical "Higher Critics." There is a nice section addressing the popular "telephone game" argument against the reliability of ancient texts which is helpful. Essentially the book helps the reader understand the process of remembering the life of Jesus, writing it down, and the process that went into collecting the New Testament into a canon, as well as the process of preservation of ancient texts, and how historians attempt to determine what most likely happened in the past. Through the lens of a discussion of whether we can "Trust" the New Testament, Holding provides a concise primer on historical criticism, as well as asking how we know what we think we know.

In many cases, Holding admittedly strays out from mainstream scholarship in his assertions about certain texts. Off hand, I could only recall two times however when I thought he had made a genuine mistake. The breadth of the book's positions were reasonable, even if some were held by only a minority of scholars.
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Holding provides the reader with a comprehensive yet not exhaustive theological/apologetic piece of literature. He covers the oral and textual transmission of the New Testament. Additionally, and most importantly, he covers the authorship and canon of the NT. This material is a breath of fresh air as it provides "much needed counter arguments to secular academia's skeptical conclusions regarding the integrity of the Bible." Other than the rather long section on the oral history of the NT, the other sections are short and to the point with notes after each section's conclusion. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is weary of atheists/secular/academia dominating the conversation. This material will educate you on the facts about the overall history of the NT.
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Think there's a gap between reason and faith? No, there isn't. Faith in God is reasoned and reasonable. This book gives you the evidence in a simple format. It's good for the average Christian who needs to know more about the Bible.
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J. P. Holding I must say is the best apologist out there being that there isn't a thing any critic could raise against him that he can't answer. He does a wonderful job of presenting the reliability of oral tradition and why the New Testament is at least one ancient collection of writings that we can trust has been preserved well. My only beef is that he tries to defend that Matthew wrote the gospel attributed to him and some of the letters of Paul. I still think it very unlikely that Matthew could have written his gospel, especially since he relies on Mark for his own call as a disciple. And I'm still pretty convinced Titus, 1 Timothy, and Colossians were not written by Paul. I have no problem with 2 Thessalonians or Ephesians and I am certain 2 Timothy was written by Paul, but not the other disputed letters. Other than that, I think many will find this book to be a helpful resource.
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JPH lays it out very well, JPH tackles many issues.

If you believe anything historical from 1700+ years ago-- then it is very hard to justify not acknowledging the fact that the textual evidence of the New Testament is superior to other events in history that you already believe....

I have even contacted JPH with a few questions and to my suprise he actually takes the time to write back everytime. How many authors will do that?
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