Biblical In Errancy
by Paul W. Sharkey
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Forget the fact that Jesus probably spoke only Aramaic, that so did his disciples. Forget the fact that none of them could either read or write Greek, or that many decades passed before anything at all was written (in Greek) about Jesus's life or teachings. Forget the fact that the earliest manuscripts on which the New Testament is based date from the fourth century CE.
As it turns out, there are currently said to be approximately 5,400 Greek copies of all or part of the New Testament that have survived from ancient times, no two of which are alike and whose combined differences number between 200,000 and 300,000 -- or, in other words, more differences than there are words in the “whole” New Testament itself.
Talk about Biblical in errancy!
- See The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings, 2nd Ed. Bart D. Erhaman, Oxford University Press, NY, 2000, p. 443.
- Certain (ambiguity intended) “Christians” insist on the Bible’s inerrancy. Is it inerrant or in errant? What a difference a space makes!