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Old 07-24-2017, 04:22 PM
 
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The focus of this thread is quite narrow and I am stating it up front. The purpose of this thread is to refute the claim made by many modern day scholars, and by lay people who don't know what they are talking about, that the early church knowingly accepted forgeries into the New Testament canon. The key word is knowingly. Whether or not a writing may have gone undetected as a forgery and unwittingly admitted into the canon is not the topic of this thread. Having made the scope of this thread's focus known up front I do not expect this thread to veer off into the subject of whether any of the New Testament documents might be forgeries that failed to be discovered as such. The only point being made on this thread is that no forgeries, that is, writings which claimed to have been written by one of the apostles, but were actually written by someone else claiming to be one of the apostles were ever knowingly allowed into the New Testament canon. I can't make it any clearer than that. In order to keep this thread from getting overly long, I will ask the moderators to delete any posts and to issue a warning to anyone who attempts to steer the thread in the direction of whether any of Paul's or Peter's writings are forgeries.

A claim made even by some scholars is that it was common practice for the church to knowingly accept pseudepigraphical works, otherwise known as forgeries into the New Testament canon. This is demonstrably not true.

Evidence Number One: The Muratorian Canon is dated to c. A.D. 75. It is an early catalog of the New Testament books and contains 21 of the 27 New Testament books. In the bolded part of the excerpt below it is stated that there were in circulation writings which were forged under the name of Paul, as well as several other writings which could not be received into the church because it was not suitable for gall (forgeries) to be mingled with honey.
3. As to the epistles34 of Paul, again, to those who will understand the matter, they indicate of themselves what they are, and from what place or with what object they were directed. He wrote first of all, and at considerable length, to the Corinthians, to check the schism of heresy; and then to the Galatians, to forbid circumcision; and then to the Romans on the rule of the Oid Testament Scriptures, and also to show them that Christ is the first object35 in these;-which it is needful for us to discuss severally,36 as the blessed Apostle Paul, following the rule of his predecessor John, writes to no more than seven churches by name, in this order: the first to the Corinthians, the second to the Ephesians, the third to the Philippians, the fourth to the Colossians, the fifth to the Galatians, the sixth to the Thessalonians, the seventh to the Romans. Moreover, though he writes twice to the Corinthians and Thessalonians for their correction, it is yet shown-i.e., by this sevenfold writing-that there is one Church spread abroad through the whole world. And John too, indeed, in the Apocalypse, although he writes only to seven churches, yet addresses all. He wrote, besides these, one to Philemon, and one to Titus, and two to Timothy, in simple personal affection and love indeed; but yet these are hallowed in the esteem of the Catholic Church, and in the regulation of ecclesiastical discipline. There are also in circulation one to the Laodiceans, and another to the Alexandrians, forged under the name of Paul, and addressed against the heresy of Marcion; and there are also several others which cannot be received into the Catholic Church, for it is not suitable for gall to be mingled with honey. [Bolded mine]

Muratorian Canon (Roberts-Donaldson Translation)
Evidence Number Two: Around the year A.D. 200, when Serapion, bishop of Antioch learned that the Gospel of Peter was not really written by the apostle Peter he wrote the following as quoted by Eusebius in his Church History book 6, chapter 12.
1. It is probable that others have preserved other memorials of Serapion's literary industry, but there have reached us only those addressed to a certain Domninus, who, in the time of persecution, fell away from faith in Christ to the Jewish will-worship; and those addressed to Pontius and Caricus, ecclesiastical men, and other letters to different persons, and still another work composed by him on the so-called Gospel of Peter.

2. He wrote this last to refute the falsehoods which that Gospel contained, on account of some in the parish of Rhossus who had been led astray by it into heterodox notions. It may be well to give some brief extracts from his work, showing his opinion of the book. He writes as follows:

3. For we, brethren, receive both Peter and the other apostles as Christ; but we reject intelligently the writings falsely ascribed to them, knowing that such were not handed down to us. [Bolded mine]

CHURCH FATHERS: Church History, Book VI (Eusebius)
Evidence Number three: Some of the New Testament documents were disputed for a period of time before being admitted as part of the Canon. For instance, 2 Peter was not accepted without a struggle. Issues such as a lack of citations and stylistic differences between 1 and 2 Peter raised concerns concerning its authenticity. Based on the evidences one and two above, Since 2 Peter claimed to be written by Peter, it would not have been recognized as authentic and knowingly admitted into the canon if it was found to be a forgery.

Despite claims made by modern days scholars who hold that view, and the claims made by people who are ignorant of the facts, the church did not knowingly accept forgeries into the canon. Some may argue that while the church didn't knowingly accept forgeries into the canon, a writing might have escaped being found to be a forgery and inadvertently been admitted into the canon, but that isn't the topic of this thread as stated up above as clearly as I could make it.

The early church actually went to great effort to determine the authenticity of documents which claimed to be written by the apostles.

The information in this thread was obtained from the book 'Reinventing Jesus' by co-authors J. Ed Komoszewski, M. James Sawyer, and Daniel B. Wallace.
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Old 07-24-2017, 04:34 PM
 
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I don't see the purpose of this thread - if someone doesn't know something, then, they remain uninformed.
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Old 07-24-2017, 04:50 PM
 
Location: On the brink of WWIII
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So you are saying they unknowingly accepted forgeries, known as Pseudepigraphical writings into the New Testament Canon?
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Old 07-24-2017, 04:51 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerwade View Post
I don't see the purpose of this thread - if someone doesn't know something, then, they remain uninformed.
I went to the trouble of spelling out the purpose of this thread so that there would be no doubt as to its purpose. And that purpose is to falsify the claim made by many modern day scholars and by lay people who don't know any better that the early church knowingly allowed forgeries into the New Testament canon. Anyone who tries to claim that the church did knowingly allow forgeries into the New Testament canon had better directly address the evidences I posted which show that the church actually rejected known forgeries.
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Old 07-24-2017, 04:55 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zthatzmanz28 View Post
So you are saying they unknowingly accepted forgeries, known as Pseudepigraphical writings into the New Testament Canon?
No. Don't put words in my mouth. I said, and demonstrated that the church did not knowingly allow forgeries into the New Testament canon. And as I made perfectly clear, the topic of this thread is not whether the church unknowingly let forgeries into the canon.
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Old 07-24-2017, 07:12 PM
 
11,261 posts, read 11,276,606 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike555 View Post
I went to the trouble of spelling out the purpose of this thread so that there would be no doubt as to its purpose. And that purpose is to falsify the claim made by many modern day scholars and by lay people who don't know any better that the early church knowingly allowed forgeries into the New Testament canon. Anyone who tries to claim that the church did knowingly allow forgeries into the New Testament canon had better directly address the evidences I posted which show that the church actually rejected known forgeries.
The Gospel According to Matthew is clearly a forgery.

Quote:
The internal evidence suggests that, for instance, Matthew did not write the Gospel attributed to him:

"...And as Jesus passed forth thence, HE (Jesus) saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and HE (Jesus) saith unto HIM (Matthew), follow ME (Jesus) and HE (Matthew) arose, and followed HIM (Jesus). (Matthew 9:9)"

Did "Matthew" write this about himself? Why then didn't Matthew write for example: "he (Jesus) saw ME, and my name is Matthew. I was sitting at the receipt of custom…" etc.
The church fathers knew the apostle Matthew could not have written such a sentence yet they allowed the gospel into the canon. Clearly they permitted forgeries because it suited their purpose of helping pagans accept Jesus as their dying/rising savior god since pagans demanded a demigod to worship.
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Old 07-24-2017, 07:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by thrillobyte View Post
The Gospel According to Matthew is clearly a forgery.



The church fathers knew the apostle Matthew could not have written such a sentence yet they allowed the gospel into the canon. Clearly they permitted forgeries because it suited their purpose of helping pagans accept Jesus as their dying/rising savior god since pagans demanded a demigod to worship.
The Gospels don't claim to have been written by the men whose names are attached to them. Nothing in the text of the Gospels gives the names of the authors and so the issue of whether they are a forgery is mute. For the issue of forgery to apply to the Gospels they would have to have stated in the body of text that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John wrote them. But they don't make that claim.

I made it quite clear that the topic of this thread is that the church did not knowingly admit forgeries into the canon and I provided the testimony of the church which proves that they didn't.

And by the way, you're posting on the Christianity forum now so leave your claims that Jesus wasn't who He claimed to be off of this thread as per the prohibition stated in the sticky. The clear statements of the church are that it did not knowingly allow forgeries into the New Testament.

Last edited by Mike555; 07-24-2017 at 08:07 PM..
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Old 07-24-2017, 11:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Mike555 View Post
The Gospels don't claim to have been written by the men whose names are attached to them. Nothing in the text of the Gospels gives the names of the authors and so the issue of whether they are a forgery is mute. For the issue of forgery to apply to the Gospels they would have to have stated in the body of text that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John wrote them. But they don't make that claim.

I made it quite clear that the topic of this thread is that the church did not knowingly admit forgeries into the canon and I provided the testimony of the church which proves that they didn't.

And by the way, you're posting on the Christianity forum now so leave your claims that Jesus wasn't who He claimed to be off of this thread as per the prohibition stated in the sticky. The clear statements of the church are that it did not knowingly allow forgeries into the New Testament.
Did I make a definitive statement that Jesus wasn't who he said he was? I think I made the assertion that the "church" (your term) allowed a gospel into the canon that was clearly not written by the author they claimed wrote it, but who you believe wrote it (you're all alone on that one, by the way, Mike) thus making it a bonafide forgery since the church tried to pass it off as written by Matthew for the purposes of luring pagans into Christianity to worship the person they had adopted as their own demigod, that being Jesus. That assertion is my opinion based on extensive reading I've done and well within the boundaries of the criteria you set forth in your topic i.e. "Did the church deliberately allow forgeries into the canon". I'm quite sure I didn't break any rules. And by all means always feel free to comment on my threads over in the other forum. Open invitation, Mike. And who knows, I just might come back to Christianity. I've been giving it serious thought lately. Like the Holy Spirit is tugging at me or something.

Last edited by thrillobyte; 07-24-2017 at 11:30 PM..
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Old 07-25-2017, 06:49 AM
 
21,891 posts, read 16,711,964 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrillobyte View Post
Did I make a definitive statement that Jesus wasn't who he said he was? I think I made the assertion that the "church" (your term) allowed a gospel into the canon that was clearly not written by the author they claimed wrote it, but who you believe wrote it (you're all alone on that one, by the way, Mike) thus making it a bonafide forgery since the church tried to pass it off as written by Matthew for the purposes of luring pagans into Christianity to worship the person they had adopted as their own demigod, that being Jesus. That assertion is my opinion based on extensive reading I've done and well within the boundaries of the criteria you set forth in your topic i.e. "Did the church deliberately allow forgeries into the canon". I'm quite sure I didn't break any rules. And by all means always feel free to comment on my threads over in the other forum. Open invitation, Mike. And who knows, I just might come back to Christianity. I've been giving it serious thought lately. Like the Holy Spirit is tugging at me or something.
You don't get to redefine the meaning of a forgery. In order for a document to be a forgery the author of that document has to claim to be someone who he is not. The author of Matthew does not identify himself. He makes no claims to be someone that he is not and therefore the Gospel of Matthew is not a forgery.

From the Muratorian canon which I posted in the first post of this thread.

''There are also in circulation one to the Laodiceans, and another to the Alexandrians, forged under the name of Paul, and addressed against the heresy of Marcion; and there are also several others which cannot be received into the Catholic Church, for it is not suitable for gall to be mingled with honey.''

Notice the part ''forged under the name of Paul.''

But none of the Gospels claim to have been written by any particular person and therefore there is no intent on the part of the authors of the Gospels to pass the Gospels off as having been written by someone who in fact was not the author.

And so once again, the Gospel of Matthew is not a forgery and therefore it cannot be claimed that the church knowingly allowed a forgery into the canon.
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Old 07-25-2017, 08:22 AM
 
Location: US
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike555 View Post
You don't get to redefine the meaning of a forgery. In order for a document to be a forgery the author of that document has to claim to be someone who he is not. The author of Matthew does not identify himself. He makes no claims to be someone that he is not and therefore the Gospel of Matthew is not a forgery.
So, how do you know it is Matthew?...
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