Facts for Skeptics of the New Testament
by Gregory Koukl
“The New Testament has been changed and translated so many times over the past 2,000 years, it’s impossible to have any confidence in its accuracy. Everyone knows that.”
This challenge has stopped countless Christians in their tracks. The complaint is understandable. Whisper a message from person to person in a group, then compare the message’s final form with the original. The radical transformation that occurs in so short a period of time is enough to convince the casual skeptic that the New Testament documents are equally unreliable. Communication is never perfect. People make mistakes and errors are compounded with each generation. How then can we know that the New Testament documents we possess correctly reflect the original documents that were destroyed nearly two thousand years ago?
This challenge is remarkably easy to answer if you know a few simple details. In most cases, the person making the skeptical claim doesn’t have the facts. To prove this, just ask, “Have you studied how the ancient documents were handed down?” Be prepared for a blank stare — they haven’t. Let’s go over some of the facts you can use to respond in case they ask you the same question…
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