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Big Debate – The New Testament Canon Divine or Man Made
Channel: Adnan Rashid
File Size: 133.81MB
vs. Pastor Rudolph Boshoff
Episode Transcript ©
Transcripts are auto-generated and thus will be be inaccurate and at times crude. We are considering building a system to allow volunteers to edit transcripts in a controlled system. No part of this transcript may be copied or referenced or transmitted in any way whatsoever.
It is because while there are differences, they also Stark similarities. It is in the spirit of this similarity that I have the greatest pleasure and distinction here this afternoon
to welcome most warmly and most passionately.
We start at nanosheet, a visitor from the UK, as well as pastor Rudolph Bosch off of the South African Theological Seminary. To engage us this afternoon on the origin of the New Testament canon.
Our moderator this afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, is Mr. Chabot, Dean Romani, who will give us a more detailed introduction to both the speakers as well as the topic of engagement this afternoon. I once again, thank you for coming welcome you and ask you to sit back and enjoy what promises to be a most absorbing enlightening and illuminating debate. With these few words I handed over to our moderator Mr. chaperonin Romani. Thank you. Thank you. Salaam wa Aiko, live regard to and good afternoon to everyone.
The nature of debates of this type can get quite fury at times, people. So
observe very basic rules
for the event, the just basic house rules, for example, please put your phones on silent that can be very, very irritating when the phone rings when whilst the speakers are speaking. So
phones on silent please. And then also,
we're going to have
q&a towards the end. Can I ask that you observe what we call the three is rules, short, sharp, and succinct questions if you've got kind of preconceived ideas of the types of questions based on the topic that we're going to be discussing today, and please, if you have questions, make sure that the questions are relevant. Both speakers are kind of multifarious peoples, they, they can talk on topics very, very, very vast. So let's stick to the topic for today. If you do have questions, so short, sharp, and when I say short, I'm not talking about my eyes, people.
Short, sharp, and succinct, make it clear so that we can give each and everyone the opportunity to say what they want to say. So now right, you have a brother or start a
Nanda Sheikh who hails from the UK, and he is a prolific speaker. And in my engagements with him thus far, he is a virtual encyclopedia. When it comes to historical facts and those of us who've
maybe been on YouTube, you would have, perhaps, understood the the the kind of content that sits in the mind of a nanosheet. I'm not as fortunate, though, with with Rudolf Boshoff to have known and met him in the past, for me to to comment about his knowledge, and I'm sure it's very deep, particularly within the field that we're going to be discussing today. So the topic today is very simple. It's on our big screen. Yeah. It's it's, it's a topic that has been, I think, over time, discussed quite often, but when we might be able to give you a different perspective on on the content of the topic. So in terms of procedure,
pasta, Rudolph will start off with a 20 minute opening statement. And then we will have brother will start another sheet for 20 minutes. You will have a rebuttal for 15 minutes from Pastor Rudolph, and then equally 15 minutes on this slide for Adnan Rashid. Then we come to q&a. And then we're going to have five minutes of closing statements. And then obviously, if you want to, you can engage them if there is time, immediately after that. Is that fair? All right. So we'd start immediately with
Pastor riddle. Mike is yours.
I've got a clock, I will make I was started.
And it starts right now.
Testing, can you guys hear me?
Well, just before we start, before you start my time, two days ago, I lost the we lost a very dear friend
of America who died in a horrifying accident. And we used to debate in the past. And I just felt before we started this discussion.
Just before we started this discussion, to be reminded, just mindful of him and his family, and also for the debatable in South Africa. I think overall, we definitely going to miss him. And as a friend, I appreciate him. He appreciated our discussions in the past. And I just wanted to before we start
for the sake of his family, and also his memory, just say, really thinking about him, and we will really miss him. Just wanted to do that before we start. Thanks, you can start my time, I'll start my thanks.
Well, the topic of discussion today is something that is quite dear to Muslims and Christians. And the reason for this very simply that we all believe in one form or another that God has spoken. And this is very important. And a lot of times I hear the conversation going between our two communities, and I find that we sometimes miss each other because we speak about peripheral issues that does not really address the heart of where we are unified. And what I wanted to do today is to speak a little bit about how we can find a commonality and look at what our respective communities basically say about Revelation, what they believe about what God has said what God has spoken about.
And then what I want to do is I just want to look at the canon, its historicity, the New Testament, its formulation, what it means when we look at Canon, from a Christian perspective, the way in the history of the church, we we find the Canon coming to its full written form. All of these issues are some things that that we need to look at, and we need to discuss. So my friend, Dr. James White says the following and I want to repeat these words, he says the canon is not just a fact of history, but an artifact of Revelation. Now, what does that mean? Well, it means exactly what I've just said. It means that we all believe in our different respective communities that God has spoken. It doesn't
matter if you're a Muslim, if you're a Jew, or if you're a Christian, you believe that God at one stage of this world history, spoken different dispensations and in different times. Now, again, when we come to Christianity, we've got a very different understanding of what it means when we look at the authorship of the New Testament or the scriptures. So when we look at the scriptures, we deeply believe that the author of Hebrews speaks and he says God has spoken in various means in a variety of ways. And so when we look at the New Testament when we look at the compilation of the 27 books
There are placed in a New Testament we recognize that these books have certain qualities within them, which allow for us to discern that God has authoritative ly spoken. So it's important also just to say that God spoke through human agency. And there are various authors that speak from various backgrounds. But the point is simply this. It is important to note that we are not saying that the New Testament merely contains the word of God, but Christians believe that it has become the Word of God. Liberal contentions will tell us otherwise liberal contentions will tell communities like ours, that believe that God has spoken, that we should not hold the two assumptions
to get it and God can speak and men can speak together. And what is found in its fulfillment and efficacy is known as Revelation. But it is and that is the claim that Christians make the New Testament scripture, as therefore, in the Christian estimation, both a human and divine quality. We believe it's totally human, but we also believe it, it's totally divine and expression from God. So throughout the New Testament, you'll hear words like from men from God, and sometimes it will speak quite succinctly and clearly and repeat the words that God has spoken through this human agency. Peter in second, Peter 121, says the following, though he says men spoke from God, as they were
carried along by the Holy Spirit or the inspiration of God. So we can see quite clearly that God has spoken through unique personalities and different backgrounds, different understandings and different purposes, for the sake of what he wanted to communicate. And so when we look at the two contentions of human agency and divine agency, when it comes to the overall understanding of what it means, when we speak about Christian Revelation, we basically say that our theology allows for the assumption that God can speak authoritatively, and he can relate to us fully through human agency, and he can still grant us the understanding, to know what he has said. In other words, we are saying
that we need to realize that God communicated perfectly as to what you wanted to say, to human agents throughout history. Now, the question we need to ask that we sometimes do not reflect on especially when we look at the New Testament is what happened to that which was spoken from God. Now, there's a lot that I need to get into, but I'm going to just give you a brief summary of where we got the New Testament. Dr. Tasker, Professor of New Testament exegesis at the University of London remarks, and he gives us a glimpse, he tells us the following. He says there were at least 35 years of Christian teaching and Christian missionary activity before the believers were in a
position where they had written records of Christ's life and teaching, and also what we know as what we assumed to be the four gospel. He adds the following though, he says, our faith today is bound to the condition and condition by the four Gospels, but we need to understand that the faith of the earliest Christian communities were independent of these written records. What is he saying? Well, if if Bruce states the following, he says Jesus wrote no book, he thought, by word of mouth, and personal example, but some of his followers thought in writings as as well as orally, and indeed, their writings was a second base substitute for the spoken word. And this is very important Michael
J. Kruger, or cease when he considers the literacy in the orality of the earliest Christian communities. He says, For the average believer in the first century, the content of the Christian writing, particularly about books, or the Old Testament, and the New Testament, was only heard. In other words, they were not opposed to text, but majority of times, the way in which the Word of God and the words of Jesus were transmitted, were through verbal or oral teaching. He then goes on to say the following, he says, the Christian message are you on daily on was by word of mouth. Now, am I saying this? Well, grain Stanton writes about the oral proclamation that spilled over into a
literary form. And he says one of the most surprising developments of the Christian use of the word gospel for instance, is that we can see a trajectory of the word you on daily on which we used to be a Christian compilation or proclamation. And therefore, the oral proclamation in later centuries, especially you reckons from about 160 by with Justin Martyr, refers to the young Galleon or the gospel as something which now you have become something that is in written form. So there is no disparity between the oral gospel and that which was written and sustained by the Christian community. Now, for the sequence of how the Old Testament themes was solidified in the New Testament
scriptures. I will not go through that for the sake of time, but I will say that Stanley Portier, and a few others Richard B. Hayes and Jane scrotal and Alan Kirk and Tom Thatcher, and Richard balcom, I've given sufficient evidence to tell us and to make us believe that the auto for my community that the first Christian community
they found themselves in, were actually very strong. And in the oral proclamation, they actually rendered the words of Christ quite accurately. Okay, so the new test, the New Testament authors had this as a background before the actual written text was given. But what happened to the New Testament understanding, and the earliest Christian community's understanding of the New Testament? Well, we can turn to the Scriptures itself. And we can see that Christ, for instance, especially confirmed all of the Old Testament, he starts off, and we can see quite clearly in Luke chapter 24, verse 44, he says, in the Law of Moses, and the prophets, and the Psalms, all of these points
towards me. He also speaks quite clearly about the preservation of the Old Testament in Matthew chapter 518. And he tells us that one jot unwanted or shall not pass from this law until it's all is accomplished. And so to the Jews. He also plainly says in John 1035, that whatever is written in the scriptures cannot be broken. So Christ affirms the veracity of the Old Testament texts. But what about the words he gave to the apostles in the New Testament? Well, in Mark's gospel account, he affirms the very fact that his words is preserved, we can see in Mark chapter 13, verse 31, he says, Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words will remain. And then there's another promise in John
14, verse 26, where he speaks quite clearly, he says, The Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name will teach you all things, and remind you speaking to his actual disciples, everything I've said to you, please note that Jesus claims unambiguously that he is the central message of the sweep of the Old Testament, and that the Old Testament would be sufficient for the existing of the new testing community and the understanding of his mission, and his person. Now, this is very important. Because when we look at the earliest Christian fathers and the earliest Christian community, and the way in which they assumed this canonicity, of the 27th, book, New Testament, we can see that they
assumed immediately by recognizing internally, that there is something special about these books, Lee Martin MacDonald writes about the inspiration in the emergence of the Christian scriptures. And he says, The first and most important authority in the early church was Christ Himself. Whatever Jesus said, and did, in a real sense, that was the canon, the final authority, and that also for his followers. He goes even as far as to say that, when we look at the dependency that we have today, on the Christian scriptures, we need to understand that this was quite foreign in the first community, we can see that there is rather a emergence of an oral formulaic tradition, which then gives life to
the written text. Well, so what happens to the very words that Jesus spoke? Well, we can just see that the promises made, Jesus speaks quite clearly. And he allows for us to understand and to know that he she will hear His voice and that is proclaimed in John chapter 1027. So what does it mean? Well, Michel Krookodile says he says, Well, when we look at the authority of the New Testament, it is not only an assumption, right by later Creed's, or councils or by the church, it's rather a self authenticating canon. And this Canon gives itself the authority because it is speaking authoritative Lee from God, the reformer Herman bavinck, in actual fact, speaks in a very similar manner. And he
says, in the Church Fathers and his scholastics scripture is that in itself, it was trustworthy in itself as the primary norm for the church and theology.
In other words, what he is saying is that scriptures authority with respect to itself depends on Scripture. So why is this important? Well, it's important because anything and everything that it reveals about what we attune ourselves to, when we read it 27
Book New Testament is it tells us that there is a divine quality in it. There is a providential exposure to the first Christian community, the attributes of canonicity arises into divine qualities, the end, the corporate reception of those qualities, has its hands and has its origins in the apostolic origins. So we've got that and then we also have the promise of Christ. We're about the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit. But I want to ask you the following. What about Islam? What is the Quranic perspective under New Testament? Now this might shock you, but it shouldn't. It's a Muslim community, you should know this. But in surah, chapter three that says an Al Imran, it
says the following Allah will teach them that is Jesus, the Book of Wisdom, the Torah, and the gospel. So this is a sink of what we read in John 716. When Jesus says, And Jesus told them my message is not my own. It comes from God who sent me, son Surah Majda chapter 540s is 4046 It says an in the prophets footsteps we sent Jesus the son of Mary confirming the Torah, as we see that Jesus speaking about the
Old Testament st before him and the gospel there in his guidance and light. Now, I know that a lot of people like to pick these verses and say no, it's rather, maybe the recorded instruction or anything else. But the more we delve and read into Quran, the more we see that the Quran estimation of the New Testament is very positive, very, very positive. And we can see this as well. When we look in actual fact a little bit earlier, we can see quite clearly, that is the internal Majda chapter 547, we can see that Christians are even gold, lead the people of the Book, the archetype judged by what Allah has revealed, bear in so if the people of the gospel have to judge by what God
has revealed in the Gospel, then how can the gospel they have to be judged by not be the gospel, God told them to judge by now it is. And Allah has made it clear that that book is secure.
Also, not 48? Let me just add and say that it says to the people of the book, we send the scripture in truth, confirming the scripture that came before it, and guarding it and safety. We can go on and on and on and show that that's what Jesus said, in John 832 and John 17, verse 17, he says, The truth shall set you free. And in the same vein, he says, the words that I've spoken to you is spirit and it is truth. So what can we say? Well, we can authoritatively say that we will look at the Quran the Quran never says anywhere that the Bible was corrupted in the way some people assume. The Quranic commentator Fazlur. Rahman says that the Quran says some people have to book some hypocrites
according to Surah Al Motta, 561, and 63 have perverted what they heard. But it's never a textual corruption, or an affirmation of manuscripts being changed. These are the words of the Muslim scholar. So where does it leave us? Where does it leave us with approximation when we look specifically at the New Testament? Well, when we look at the Quran, when we look at the New Testament, we can see quite clearly unambiguously that the Quran as well as Jesus, as well as the Old Testament veracity, shows us quite clearly that we can esteem the New Testament as we have it. So what's God's perspective on his word? Well, just to give you a glimpse in Psalm 19, in the
writings of David, in verse seven to 11, he tells us that the law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. The statutes of the Lord is trustworthy, it's right. It's radiant, it's pure. It's firm. It's, it's in actual fact, also a Warner of those that adhere and listen to it. So what does it mean? Well, the prophet Zion is I have 40 Verse eight, once more tells us that the word of God endures forever. King David in Psalm 119 89 says, Your word, oh Lord is eternal. It stands firm in heaven forever.
And fascinatingly, when we look at the Quran, there are two students that testify that the reality of Allah's words are sure. And Sudha Olam, chapter 614, and 115, we can see quite clearly that the word of the Lord, do the find it's performed in truth and injustice, thank you. None can after Lord stuff, find its performance and truth and injustice, none can change his word. For years, the one who year with a nerf all in Surah Al Kahf. That's chapter 1827, says something very similar. It says in recite and teach what have been revealed to do the book from the book of the Lord, none can change his word, and none will find it other than as a reference than him. So we can see quite
clearly that in the Quran, in the New Testament and the Old Testament, the assumption is made the words of Jesus Christ, the words of the Quran, that we can look at the New Testament, and number one, we can find it to be authentically given. When Jesus speaks in Matthew chapter 521. And John 939, he says, you heard it said, But I say to you, it also repeats the words and Jesus said, which tells us that there is a form of authenticity in what is given as the teaching of Christ. But secondly, it's not just the authenticity, it's also biblically, like I said before, when we look at the promise of the New Testament, it's none different than what Muslims receive when they hear and
read the Quran, telling them that they scriptures are preserved. Very same promise in the New Testament remind you of the words of Jesus and Mark 1331 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words will never pass away, it will remain. Yes, something else also really to consider. Just as a short argument, when you look at the New Testament self vividly, meaning there is certain demands that God placed upon us to make sure that we understand the gospel so we can be saved by listen to this. In John chapter six, verse 63. Jesus speaks, he says, the words that I've spoken to you, that is spirit and life
Now why is this important? Well, it is important because it is incumbent upon God, if he gives you a law or if he gives you a decree to make sure that what you need to obey is in good stead, because that's what he demands for you to follow. So in other words, if we look at the argument, we can say, if you believe in corruption, the actual change of God's words, you actually proclaiming that God is not sufficient to keep it? Well all through the New Testament. All throughout the New Testament scriptures, we can see quite clearly that Jesus makes it clear chapter after chapter, we can see that every single New Testament book speaks, decrying and speaking of its own authenticity, then
also, we can see quite clearly in John 14, verse 24, to 26, the the assumption is given that that which is handed over to us, and that which is spoken to us, is given, and it is true, it is essential, it is preserved, and it is the word of God.
Now, I don't know about you, but it needs to be emphatically stated, as a community that believe that God has spoken, I'm speaking to all three communities, Jews, Christians, and also to Muslims. If we believe that God has spoken, Christians need to believe even that God has spoken in the New Testament. And we must believe that what he said is assured and preserved and inspired by him. And therefore, we can believe in his Sure.
So I leave you with this. If we look at the overall picture of what has been delivered to us, we can see quite succinctly and quite clearly, that the gospel that we've received the New Testament books outside of the gospels that we've received, the reason we hold on to them as being authoritative is because they all speak in unison. It is not something that is formulated by later counsel. It's not something that is brought together by later counsel, it is something that is rather recognized that the church have a history where they looked at certain books and said, Hey, what about this book? What about that book? Yes, that was history. They needed to recognize they needed to put themselves
in a place where they recognize what God has said. But there was never doubt in the Christian communities minds, that that which God has said, We're sure. And I leave you with this thought, if we truly believe that God has spoken, all three are communities do this, we need to agree upon the very fact that because we believe God has spoken, we also believe, believe in unison, that he can preserve and uphold these words. And I'll leave you there. Thank you.
Thank you, thank you very much. pasado.
Your timing is absolutely perfect. 19 minutes and 35 seconds. So we owe you a few seconds. Thank you very much. Thanks for your cooperation this for for the to the audience. Next up, who obviously is a brother, Nan Rashid, who I introduced early on as a visitor from
the UK. I did say at the function last night, that
I think he's now become a son of Cape Town, because he just loves the place and
he may settle Yes, at some point. All right. So to be fair,
Your time starts now.
Okay, before you start my time, very quickly, a few words to say.
Rudolph has been a friend and we are not only friends in person. We have met each other before we had a debate a few years ago, just before COVID And we are Facebook friends as well.
I like to share gifts. Rudolph is a friend of Dr. James White, who is a common friend of ours of ours. And we have exchanged gifts before and today I have something interesting for Rudolph. To introduce the Muslim civilization is achievements to him. I'm pretty sure he's well well read and he has written books before, but this one has some interesting
aspects of the Muslim civilization addressed. The book is making sense of Islamic art and architecture.
So not only the book contains content on Islamic art
Then architecture but I have an actual
piece of Islamic civilization or historic piece of Islamic civilization is a coin from the Mughal era. It is minted by Shah Jahan.
The architect all the instigator of the famous Taj Mahal, right. So this is a coin minted by him Shah Jahan in India. And this coin goes to Rudolph as a token of my gratitude and friendship towards him with the book thank you so much
okay, my time starts now. Bismillah AR Honda Rahim Al hamdu lillah wa salatu salam ala Rasulillah Ahmad. Ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, I am very glad to be here today I am honored to be in Cape Town I am indeed a son of Cape Town. And I do love this city very much. No doubt. Today's topic is the New Testament canon, manmade or divine. Although the New Testament has been addressed many times in debates between Christians and Muslims.
And this topic has been discussed for centuries, hundreds of years. But this particular angle,
the Canon hasn't been addressed to my knowledge between Muslims and Christians. I mean, I can be corrected later on if there is such a debate. I would love to watch it. But the veracity of the New Testament its authenticity is is historicity has been addressed has been debated by many scholars in the past. So in that sense, this is a unique topic, the canon of the New Testament what is a Canon, Canon is a Greek word, which means a yardstick
or standard to measure. This is the meaning of the word canon. And this word was used specifically to describe a collection of authoritative books.
In the fourth century, for the first time, even by Christians, the word canon, as far as the scripture is concerned, was used for the first time in the fourth century. And that was used by the church historian Eusebius, who was writing around 325 CE, and you use the word Canon to describe an authoritative list of New Testament books. And then later on this word was was used by later Church Fathers such as Athanasius. And we will come to talk about him in due course. So, before I get to the cannon, I want to talk about briefly the concept of Scripture. What is scripture? Rudolph talked about God speaking, God talking to humanity. The question is, how do we know when God spoke, how he
spoke through whom he spoke? These questions are very important. How do we know what we think God said is actually God's words? How do we know that what we think may have come from God is actually from God? This is a very important discussion. And we apply the same criteria straight same standard to the Quran. The reason why we having this debate today, today is that this question of canon applies to the New Testament moreso than it applies to the Quran. Because there is hardly any debate there. Scholars, Western scholars who have addressed the canonicity of the Quran and the standardization of its text they have declared repeatedly. In fact, most recently, a scholar named
Nikolai Sinai, he stated that the Quran was canonized very early on, during the lifetime of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. In fact, Earthman been a fan, when he
put the Quran through a standardized standardization process. Since then, the Quran, its text, its order of chapters has been static. There are no changes made since the very time of the companions, the disciples of Muhammad, peace be upon him. And these are the people who took the Quran directly from the Prophet. These are the authorities who give us the Quran. So there is no debate there. The reason we are having this debate on the canon of the New Testament is because the debate is still going on.
It is still very much alive. What constitutes the Word of God?
Which book is to be included in to a collection of Scripture? Who decides that a book is from God? These are very, very important pressing questions. Rudolph has given you an excellent introduction.
unto the formation of the New Testament, what later on came to be known as the New Testament, the collection of books called the New Testament. It did not exist. For the first 300 years, I'm talking about the collection called the New Testament.
The books existed, they were written, I have no problem in accepting that the four gospels were already already written before the first century was over. I have no problem with that notion. I have no problem with the fact that Paul had written his letters, most of them at least within the first century.
But the question is, these books, when did they gain the status of Scripture? Were they actually written as scripture? Was Paul writing his epistles as scripture? Was Luke writing his gospel as scripture, as the word of God? Was John writing
his book, as scripture? was Matthew, writing his book as scripture? These are very important pressing questions.
This is why when we go to the early history of Christianity, looking at some of the early church fathers, even they did not call these books Scripture. They did not consider these books of the New Testament, strictly speaking, the word of God. As far as they were concerned, the Old Testament was scripture. Some of the early church fathers in the first century, and in the second century, did not see the books of the New Testament, as we know them today as scripture. How did these books gain the status of Scripture is a very pressing question. So, if we look at some examples, for example, Clement of Rome, did not refer to the books of the New Testament as scripture. Ignatius of Antioch,
did not refer to these books, as scripture. Barnabas, Polycarp, of Smyrna, Hermus of Rome, none of these church fathers who are very important in Christian history, consider the books of the New Testament as scripture. So what did they call these books is the question, what was the status of these works written about Jesus Christ, people expressing their ideas, their views, their perception, their conception of Jesus Christ in their own ways, in their own words, in their own styles in different works. So not only we find these four gospels written, we have many other gospels that are written at the time. And we even find manuscripts of them, some of them coming from
the first century, there is a gospel called the unknown gospel, and there is a manuscript of it. And there is a miracle attributed to Jesus Christ and this particular gospel, which we cannot find in any of the canonical works.
And that manuscript is very early. It comes the earliest date
given to this particular manuscript is the early second century, the same date given to the earliest manuscript of one of the books of the New Testament, the Gospel of John, which is early second century. So these gospels, like the Gospel of Peter, for example, was very popular in the second century among Christians, just as the gospel of Mark was very popular
Gospel of John was disputed heavily. The Gospel of John was considered to be a Gnostic document. Now, what is Gnosticism? I don't I simply do not have time to indulge in that particular question. But let me tell you this much that Gnosticism was a heretical idea. Most Christians rejected Gnosticism as something heretical, it was unorthodox. So Gnostics were a bunch of mystics, who believed in certain set of ideas, and these ideas are rejected by the main body of Christians.
Even the Christians in the second and the third century believed in different things. They did not have a uniform belief in Jesus Christ, and His mission. They had different conceptions of Jesus Christ. And they had different ideas about his ministry. His preaching is his message for that matter. They did not have one view of Jesus Christ. And this was due to the diversity of documents, they were reading as authoritative biographies of Jesus Christ, if not scripture. So as far as these early church fathers and early Christians are concerned, in the second and the third century, they are reading the memoirs of the apostles, the names they gave to these documents, the gospel of Mark,
the gospel of Luke, the Gospel of John, the Gospel of Matthew, the gospel of Peter, the gospel of Thomas, and the list goes on. These church fathers gave the name
To these documents, they call these documents Memoirs of the apostles,
at least in the second century, it was in the third century when these documents, some of these documents, if not all, started to gain the status of Scripture. They were put on par with the Old Testament in the third century, not in the first or the second century. It happened in the third century. Now my question is, how do we know that these documents actually came from God as an inspiration? Who makes that choice?
And those who are making these choices?
Do we know the criterias? Do we understand what standards they were using to decide what may be scripture and what may not be scripture what may be from God and what is not from God? Because effectively, if a book is not part of the canon, what we call a chosen list of books, and authoritative collection of books, this is what canon means, right? So canon must constitute scripture and Scripture must be canonized. It has to be canonical, anything outside of that list of chosen books cannot be the word of God. The word or the title, the description given to those books, is apocrypha. These are apocryphal works. The closest parallel I can give Islamically speaking is
sahih Hadith, and dive Hadith, the authentic narration of the Prophet sallallahu Sallam and and in authentic narration of the Prophet sallallahu Sallam so and in authentic narration of the progress of Salam is dubious, it cannot be attributed to the Prophet with certainty with confidence because it has problems. The report has problems with it. Right? So this is a similar standard applied by Christians
in those centuries in the second and third century.
So that's why many church fathers had different books in the list. So when you go to the third and the second and third century of Christianity, you see a lot of the Church Fathers, they have different lists of canonical books, if they considered them the word of God, scripture, they had different books in the lists, for example, Irenaeus he omits from his list, second, and third John, the book of James, the book of Jude, Second Peter, and the book of Acts. On top of that, his list contained an apocryphal book, which he considered to be authoritative, which was the book of Hermas.
Then, Clement of Alexandria, a very important figure in
the history of the church.
He omits 123 John, then one and two, Peter, in your midst revelation, and the book of James on top of that
he contains or his list contains Barnabas and apocalypse of Peter as canonical as an authoritative book, origin, a very important figure in the third century who died in 250 force, ie, a very, very important figure. In fact, origin was
the teacher of a man called Pam, Phyllis and Pam, Phyllis was the teacher of the church historian Eusebius, who is extremely important in the history of fourth century Christianity, origin had omitted James, Jude and x from his list of authoritative books.
So you see me as
a very important figure already mentioned, omits James Jude, Second Peter, and two and third, second, and third John from his list. So why am I telling you this? Why am I telling this, that even the church fathers in the first three centuries, in particular, the second, third and fourth century, they lists were not uniform? They will not unanimous on the Word of God? What is the word of God? What may be regarded as the word of God? We're not discussing the text of the New Testament here. We're not even discussing the authorship of these books, because even that is a huge problem. Who wrote the Gospels? Who wrote the Gospels?
No one knows to this day. You may be thinking,
What about Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are about these names. No Christian scholar on the planet conservative or liberal will claim with absolute certainty, with evidence that these documents were definitely written by these individuals whoever they may be.
attribution to these documents with these names was made in the early second century by a man called Papyrus of hierarchy.
least that's the first time when names are given to these documents, according to recorded history, and even Papyrus has been quoted by a fourth century authority called Eusebius. Already mentioned, almost 250 years apart.
This is an absolute, this is absolutely absolutely crazy that there is a break of 250 years between the first witness
to the names given to these gospels and the person who documents them for the rest of Christianity.
So even these four documents were seen as anonymous documents. To this day Christian scholars are not unanimous as to who wrote the Gospel of John, who wrote the Gospel of John, there are three candidates. According to the New Jerome's biblical commentary. Thank you. There are three candidates.
is John of Ephesus. Number two, John, the son of Zebedee, or number three, John The presbyter.
To this day, no one knows who wrote the Gospel of John. So this is another question. We're not addressing that question. today. We're dealing with the canonicity of these gospels. How did they come to be seen as the word of God or a scripture who chose what was the criteria? We have a scholar called Bruce Metzger, who was a Christian believing Christian, he tells us what criteria was used by the church if there was something called the church, okay, even that concept of the church in the first three centuries problematic. Which Church, which group which scholar? Because there was no unanimity on beliefs, on ideas. On the extent of devotion, of Christians towards Jesus Christ, there
was no unanimity. There was no uniformity. Christians were all divided on beliefs as I stated earlier, due to the amount of different documents they were reading as authoritative views on Jesus Christ, many different Christians. were reading many different books. And this is why there is an author called Bart Ehrman, who has already debated people like James White and other Christian scholars, he authored a book titled, lost, Christianity's lost Christianity's because there were many Christianity's there were many different churches. So when Christian apologists today claim that the church chose the canon, the church brought the Canon forth. They don't know what they're
talking about, because which church is the question? Who, how, where which person, which church father, what criteria, none of these issues have been satisfactorily addressed by Christian scholars to date. But what we do have is
a worked out standard that may have been used by early church fathers to reach this idea of the canon. So Bruce Metzger states.
In his book, The canon of the New Testament, published in 1987, on page 251, he states a basic prerequisite for canonicity, was conformity to what was called the Rule of faith. That is the continuity of a given document with the basic Christian tradition, recognized as normative by the church, as I said earlier, that even the concept of church is highly problematic in the first three centuries. Just as under the Old Testament, the message of a prophet was to be tested not merely by the success of the predictions, but by the agreement of substance of the prophecy, which the fundamentals of Israel's religion. So also under the New Covenant, it is clear that the writings,
the clear that writings which came with any claim to be authoritative, or judge, by the nature of the content, so if the content fits the belief, then a book is accepted as authoritative. If the content does not fit the belief, then it is thrown out of the cannon, it cannot be scripture. So let me explain that in simple terms, Christians came to believe in certain things, for whatever reason, in different places at different times throughout the Christian world, in the first 300 years of Christianity, they came to believe in different things, in different ways in different places. Now, they're starting to use those pre conceived or presumed beliefs, to judge the Word of God, not the
other way around. So the beliefs were not according to the Word of God. The Word of God has to be according to the beliefs, this is what Bruce Metzger is telling you. So this is how the church the church got the canon, the collection of authoritative books we know today. So this is very clearly
stated by Christian scholars. So to summarize very quickly,
there are many problems with this question. We cannot possibly address all of them
fully, comprehensively in one sitting, each and every single point I mentioned, needs a separate debate. And Christian scholars are debating this to this day. There is one book I strongly recommend on this very point. It is titled The Canon debate, the Canon debate. And one of the editors is a scholar mentioned by Rudolph Lee Martin MacDonald, check that book out, and you will be blown away. Thank you so much for listening.
We'll start at none. You have two seconds in your bank.
Thank you for your cooperation, that's for people. All right. I think we've covered two sessions, one each for each speaker, that 20 minutes. That's going quite well. We now have rebuttals and obviously we are going to ask pasta boss of 215 minutes, one, five, thank you.
Well, thank you so much Adnan. It is always wonderful to have an opportunity to speak about some of these textual issues, I hope I can do justice to everything that you've asked, you know, just as I do, we can probably go on for weeks, just on this topic. So I'm going to try to once more established and try to explain exactly why I started with the common conception of the first Christian community and their understanding of canon. Without the question being asked no written scripture, except the Old Testament, what gawin didn't what got it the first Christian community, while scholars like Michael Kruger, and even if you look at Lee MacDonald, agree upon the fact that
when we look at the first Christian community that already had a canon in check, which they use to deduce the prophetic fulfillment, and coming and message of from Jesus by and that was the Old Testament, they use the Old Testament canon in that fashion. And we can see quite clearly that when we look at the scriptural position of the New Testament, it is written to show us emphatically how the Old Testament was fulfilled. Now, this was the first Christian communities teaching. The question when the teaching became book that is a question of discussion. But both McDonald's and both Kruger agrees upon the fact even Metzger, that the New Testament as we have it, in actual fact,
came into existence quite rapidly. After the first Christian movement and the First Apostolic move of the first apostles. Interestingly enough, we can see quite clearly that the memoirs of the apostles were mentioned. Yes, Justin Mata refers to the fact that in the first century community, the memoirs of the of the apostles were already integrated into the Christian service. And you can read that in his first apology, that this is 155, under Domine. And when we look at, for instance, Ignatius of Antioch, he quotes some New Testament books quite early. He quotes that in 110, Polycarp, of Smyrna seven to 150 500, Domine. If you look just at Polycarp, of Smyrna, he quotes 17
of the New Testament books. Well, why were all of these books not together? Well, because some of them were written.
They only now in a process where they are starting to acknowledge and starting to see this book, solidify and solidify in the very Christian community, that the question of canon get answered today, when we look just merely at what is assumed to be lost? No, because I've repeated very early on that when we look at the first Christian community, it's an oral form a community, it's a community that knows exactly what the first teaching of the community was. And they knew exactly what the central teaching of Jesus was like. So how do we know what God says in His words? And how do we know that that which was given is accepted as Scotland as the canon is, especially when we
look at Matthew, Mark, Luke and John? Well, Lee Martin MacDonald says that he says, and remember, I said this to you in the opening whatever else may be said about the early Christian writings, or the gospel, they were first of all calls to faith in Christ Jesus, who was the final authority for the church from the beginning. Jesus had no rivals in the church, and he was the center of the presupposition of early Christian literature. There is no doubt that the first Christian community visited their understanding of what Jesus said in Jesus. And then also the given promise that I've mentioned in my opening that the Holy Spirit will preserve that which what Jesus have said
So the question of the Gospels who gave the gospel their names? Well, yes, that is another question. But in what I shared in my opening argument, I did not really contain for the authors to be known in actual fact, it does not have to be that we need to know the author's because of the pre existing teaching, which is already in the community. And therefore, we can just affirm what was written in these books. But interestingly enough, when we look very early on, we can see none as mentioned, it was papayas. In 120, and a Domine. He mentions Matthew and Mark by name Marcion, the heretic, also in 145. Ad mentioned slew Justin mentions Mark and Luke in 150. I Rene is that I've not mentioned
mentioned all four gospels, in 170. And we can go on and on and on. But the interesting thing is that is very important is, every time we hear anything about the four Gospels, it is never making mention of Matthew, Mark, Luke and Johnny, or belly. It always speaks emphatically of the four as being Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Nowhere in antiquity, is there any dispute as to what is written in the books, but we do not make anything about the authorship and a liberal scholar by name of Armand de Baum, tell us why. He says that one of the reasons why the canonical gospels might have been named so we do not have the original so we do not know. He says, unlike the Greco Roman
historian who amongst the other things, wanted to earn praise and glory for his literary achievement from both the contemporaries, and its posterity, not so with the New Testament gospel authors, the anonymity of the Gospels can be rooted in a deep conviction and concern for the ultimate priority of the subject matter. Also, remember, they were written quite early, and they were under persecution. So we do not know if they may be lifted out because they didn't want to be persecuted. Who was instrumental in choosing the New Testament canon? Well, I mentioned in my opening argument that the authority of the Holy Scripture, as the believing community that believes that God has spoken
depends not upon the testimony of any man, but upon the testimony of God needed the testimony of the church, the church merely recognize that which was perceived to be the word of God. Gi Williamson espouses this principle. He says, If scripture is the word of God in obviously, it must be the it must possess the divine authority within itself. And if it possesses divine authority, then it cannot and need not depend on anything else, or any other than God. authority can depend only on that which is higher than itself. And God is the highest authority. We really believe like Muslims do it with date text, we believe that God has spoken, and what God has said is authoritative. So in
the first three centuries, where it says that efficacious mentioned, solicit, and when we look at the texts quite clearly, we can see quite clearly that there was not really something that held the belief and the central edifice of what the community held dear together. That is simply not so the first Christian community in and of themselves, Wayne Grudem, says the following. He says, Where did this idea of canon begin, it started with the people of Israel. Remember the guys that are writing the Gospels, they are from a Jewish community. And he says this Jewish community always get to written records about the will of God. He says, Scripture itself be a witness to the sterility and
the development of this Canon. The earliest collection of written words of God was the 10 commands for the Jewish people. He says, but again, and again, when we look at the New Testament people, the collection of the New Testament books were absolutely authoritative words from God, that grew because the people came from this history of writing down the collection of books.
The first Christian community were not opposed to books, they did not need them.
They in actual fact, started writing books down once the the persecution broke out. And once they realized that this needed to be preserved, but the first Christian community in and of themselves, make it absolutely clear that what emerges out of the church is recognized as that being what is authoritative. Now if you look at the 27 books, the question was asked who chose these books? Well, Lee Martin MacDonald writes, the preaching of the early church focused on Christ first of all these deeds, his presence in the kingdom of God is manifestation of His words and deeds. In other words, in again, Jesus was the locus of authority for the earliest Christian movement. And as the church
grew in its understanding of its mission, and its result scattered by persecution, it soon became necessary to communicate with new churches, and this often took place in form of written letters when personal visits were not possible. It is clear from the beginning of the church not later from the beginning of the church that the saints of Jesus had
scripture like authoritative status into churches where the sayings and deeds were written in oral form or not. In other words, the community made sure that whatever was spoken about Jesus good became sure. The New Testament books in other words, there's a clever word for is autistic. It means that itself okay, authenticates itself, and again and authenticates itself, because it's spoken of God. Now, again, when we look at the accusation that is made against New Testament is that it cannot be written from God. Because the apostles did not maybe even know that they were writing scripture while at write sums it up. Well, he said it, it used to be said that the New Testament writers
didn't think they were writing scripture that is often sustained historically, today. The fact that they were writing in various senses occasionally, is not the point at precisely those points of urgent need. We're in for instance, writing to the Galatians, or to second Corinthians, by someone like Paul is most conscious of the fact that he is the one that is authorized through apostolic succession, by the apostolic Goliat received from Jesus Christ, and in the power of the Spirit to bring life in order to the church by his words. Let me tell you something, the first Christian community understood the apostolic function of these individuals. And like Jesus said, in John 1426,
the very words that they would write, The Holy Spirit will inspire it, bring it back to the remembrance, and they will write the will of God. So when I've gotten thanks, when were the Gospels written, we heard that there was quite a late date. But with the model of canon formation I've presented it is really inconsequential when exactly the Gospels would be banned. Because the established community would have already had a set proximity of what the gospel was. The question of when the verbal the VOCs of Christ would become a book is not the right research question to ask when you deal with an off, especially when you deal with an oral formulaic community. Professor
Phillip comfort though gives us
approximation, especially for the four gospels like we asked When were they written? And he says the following and don't concede that it is almost universally recognized that the four Gospels have been in the first century, and that all others that is the Gnostic texts the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas, which the earliest date they pushed it down to, was about 120 on a domine game only in the second century and day after thus, the authentication and the authenticity of Jesus's statements in a non canonical gospels should be judged by what we see in the canon of the Gospels, not vice versa. Well, we heard but the airband says that there are certain texts that arose that we need to contend with.
Well, let me tell you what Bart Ehrman says. And he cautions us and he says the following. He says, If historians want to know what Jesus said and did, they are more or less contained, to use the New Testament Gospels as the principal resources, more ever, the Gospel accounts outside of the New Testament tend to be late legendary, and cut off no considerable interest in themselves. That is Bart Ehrman. That is the individual that Adnan quoted. So what can we say about the very Word of God and the New Testament and the authority of the text? Well, we heard it said that the Bruce Metzger said quite emphatically and clearly that, that he's in doubt of the New Testament and that the New
Testament was corrupted. I would say when you read both of the books of Metzker, go look for what it means when he speaks about corruption. It does not mean the same as what we use today. Today, we think corruption is people that actually went and took out the books of the New Testament all over the world, which is distributed all over the known world of antiquity. And then they changed it and put it back together. It is not so that's not the corruption. Metzker. Speaking of Metzker is rather speaking, and he's saying that the text in and of itself has certain variant variants in it. And when we collate those variants, when we have four manuscripts that have been hand written, and we
put it together, there will be differences, and that's what we find. But what about these differences? Well, Bharti Earthman says, when we put all of the manuscripts back together, and we correlate them and we look at what they said, they are no noticeable errors within them. That will lead us to believe something different to what the New Testament Gospels have said. No, my friends, the New Testament once and all is sure it is not corrupt. Interesting enough. I just want to remind you of what I said about the Quran estimation of the New Testament and I know I've done already spoke of that but but I want to be
Go and speak to you once more and ask the question, why only in the first century of the Muslim era, we look at some of the conversations. They believe that it's the meaning of the Quran that was changed, not the text. But now later times, we see that the liberal notions are taken up and used as a vestment against Christianity. early Muslims did not believe it. I've got pages off the pages of Muhammad, are you, Muhammad Abdul, the Egyptian scholar, I can go on and on. I can even read you what is mentioned and said, by Bukhari, I can read you and tell you exactly what he said. But even Abbas when he speaks about the Gospel of John, these individuals spoke fondly of the New Testament.
They never said that these books were written out, they were changed to such a degree that we cannot notice. We know what it said, not at all. In actual fact, some of these individuals affirm what the Prophet said, and I've mentioned it to you in my opening presentation, the prophet even speaks to the archetype, the people of the book, and he tells us to search and to look within it. Now I know a lot of Muslims will say you need some light, but not all light. I'm saying to you, God speaks authoritatively. And God speaks clearly. And no man can change his word. The Quran says it. And the New Testament says it and I'm going to stick with that. I'm going to believe God, not liberal
Thank you, pasta.
You have 10 seconds in your bank.
Thank you very much again for your cooperation. Next up again for rebuttal, or down the sheet.
Thank you for that. rebuttal. Pastor Rudolph. I will now respond to some of the points you have raised this Mala Mala Rahim. Firstly, you mentioned that the New Testament
basically the Quran talks about it. The Quran does not talk about the New Testament anywhere. The Quran does not mention anything about the New Testament to Cora, Quran doesn't even mention any of the authors of the New Testament, whatever names you give those authors or whatever names you may attribute to those books. The Quran doesn't even entertain the possibility of the plurality of gospels. When the Quran mentions the message of Jesus Christ, it refers to it in singular terms injeel which is one message, one book, not an Ardila are not, you know, a plurality of messages. What you have is a plural
plurality of gospels, you have four gospels, right? The Quran doesn't even entertain that possibility. So the Quran refers to the original message of Jesus Christ, which was original with him, which he taught his companions. So when Jesus Christ was saying those words the Quran confirms some of them. So when the Quran says, for example, let the people of the gospel judge what God Allah has revealed there in so what does that actually mean? Is the Quran now confirming the veracity and the authenticity of the Gospels? Absolutely not. What the Quran is saying. Let the people um in the Quran is actually challenging the Christians to start believing in what actually originally came
from Jesus Christ. That's the meaning of the verse, follow what came from Jesus Christ, because that was revealed by God, not what others have written in his name. This is the point the Quran is making. And how do you do that? You use the Quran as the criteria. The Quran itself refers to itself as more Haman, which means the standard the criteria, in other words, the Canon, the Quran actually refers to itself as the canon. Okay, if you want to follow a canon, which is pure, which is definitely from God, which came directly from God, uncorrupted, unchanged, static for the last 1400 years since the time of the Prophet, peace be upon him said Allah Islam, and that is the Quran. That
is the Quran that cannot be said about the books of the New Testament. Jesus has nothing to do with them. Jesus never asked for a New Testament. He never
proposed it as a possibility. He never mentioned anything about it. Even Paul had no idea about the New Testament. It wasn't intended. How do we know that this collection of books the Christians claim
aim to be Scripture today is from God. How do we know when Jesus has nothing to do with it?
His companions, his disciples have nothing to do with it. None of the authors of the New Testament are eyewitnesses. According to the Christian scholars themselves, including Paul, Paul never met Jesus Christ. It is claimed that he met his disciples. No doubt it is claimed in the New Testament. Okay. So when Rudolph, when we asked him who chose these books, who said, these books are scripture? Rudolph, he takes us back to the Scriptures. It's like a circular, circular argument. Scripture says, these books are,
are from God. And then then these books say that Scripture is from God. So it's like a circular argument. What we know is what we want is what we want from you is Rudolf, come back and tell us who actually decided that these books are from God? This question, by the way, no scholar on the planet PhD doctors in biblical theology, and the history of the Bible, they haven't been able to answer this question, including those conservative scholars, Rudolf has been referring to such as Michael Kruger, right? He isn't, he's a conservative Christian scholar, he's a believing Christian. He hasn't been he hasn't been able to answer this question. He hasn't answered this question. He has
written books upon books on this topic, in particular, the canon of the New Testament, the answer is not there who chose these books? What names?
Now, let's say the Church Fathers, I'm going to help Rudolph here. Let's say Church Fathers chose these books the first 300 years, right. Now that causes a bigger problem for us. Not only that we have multiple books, traveling through Christian lands, some of them far more popular, far more read, and celebrated than the gospels we have today in the New Testament, am I making this claim without substance? Or am I
using Christian scholars, I am using Christian Christian scholars who are telling me this, that the doc A, which was a text in circulation in the second and third century, was far more popular in certain areas than the Gospels. The Gospel of Peter was on par with the Gospel of Mark. In fact, the manuscript evidence tells us that the Gospel of Peter was far more circulated than the gospel of Mark itself, because we find more manuscripts for the Gospel of Peter than we find for the gospel of Mark. Why was it rejected?
Who threw through here? Who threw it out? Is the question. So
tried to help our Christian brothers, and accept the claim that the Church Fathers chose these books, they are the ones who transmitted these books, and they are the ones who decided that these books are to be included into the canon and they are the Word of God by consequence, that causes a bigger problem to rise. Let me explain very quickly. Now, this is the shock. This is the shock.
This is this may be the defining moment of the debate, write
all of the church fathers in the first 300 years, every single one of them, the ones mentioned by Rudolph and the ones mentioned by me, every single one of them is a heretic according to the current conception of Protestant, Catholic and Orthodox Christianity. Did you understand that? Did you get that? Shall I repeated every single church father It's like the Muslim saying, all the Imams of the first 300 years of Islam, including Imam Mohammed bin humble Imam Shafi Imam, Abu Hanifa Imam Malik Sofian authority. Lays bin Saad is Hakka Rahi all our scholars have fake and Hadith for the first 300 years or a bunch of heretics. And amazingly, they are the ones who transmitted the Quran to us.
They're the ones who gave us the Sunnah of the Prophet sallallahu sallam, they're the ones who preserved it. Now, if they are heretics, or if their characters are in doubt they beliefs are in doubt. Can we now claim with confidence that we have the truth when we ourselves are condemning them? This is exactly what the Christians do today. Protestants, Catholics and Orthodox Christianity Today condemns all of those Church Fathers who lived before the year 300.
Can I make this claim with confidence? Absolutely, because every single one of them did not believe in the doctrine of the Trinity as Christians believe in it today. The doctrine of the Trinity in its current form was formed
lysed and former formally declared of finally declared to be what it is today, in the 381. C, in the Council of Constantinople, even the Council of Nicaea, the creed of Nicaea, which was issued by the Council of Nicaea, and 325 C is a binary terian creed. Strictly speaking, it's not a Trinitarian creed, it was specifically discussing this council was specifically discussing the matter of the nature of Jesus Christ. Who is He? Is he got equal with God? Is he like God? Is he God Himself? Like God the Father? Or is he below? God? In some sense? This is the question that was discussed in the Council of Nicaea. In 325. See, why am I mentioning these things? These points are directly relevant
for these people who chose the Gospels, or the documents of the New Testament are a bunch of heretics. And if they're not Rudolph can come and correct me, I will happily accept that correction. Now, Rudolph mentioned even a bass quoting for the Gospel of John are praising it, I challenge you all to come back. And give me the report where Ibn Abbas specifically mentions the Gospel of John, I'll be happy again to be corrected. Okay. Now, Rudolf said we don't have to know the authors. We don't have to know the authors of the documents. We do have to know the author's, let's say if JK Rowling was living in the second century, okay. And she wrote Harry Potter.
And every single thing he wrote was in line with the church beliefs. And she attributed the book to the Jesus Christ due to the life of Jesus Christ. Would you be writing scripture? Because the criteria is we have here in front of us, let's look at them very quickly.
Scholars have come up with 11 criteria as having looked at the writing of the early church fathers, the kind of criterias they might have used to choose what may be canonical or what may be scripture. Thank you. Thank you.
So one of them is apostolicity. Number one, scholars have come up with these criteria. Who, who's got which scholars? Who am I talking about? I'm talking about Christian scholars.
Many of them conservative Christian scholars, they want to actually know how did the New Testament came about? And then they gave us 11 criterias.
And these criteria, were not used consistently applied consistently. Neither were they applied universally. Okay? These standards vary from person to person, from church to church, from town to town, from city to city, from regions to regions, apostolic apostolicity was one of them. So the document has to be apostolic. Number one, it has to be apostolic. But if you don't know who wrote it,
how do you know it's apostolic? How do you know supposed to if you don't know who wrote the document, is a non anonymous document? How do you know it's apostolic? Number two was the age of the document in question. It has to be ancient. Well, there are documents that are ancient, and they cannot be found in the canonical gospels. They're not part of the canon. For example, one of them I mentioned, the unknown gospel. It mentions a miracle of Jesus Christ that he took water from river Jordan and he poured it on on land and a tree came out as a miracle weed the Muslims can believe in it, no problem. We have no problem with that. In fact, the Quran refers to some of these apocryphal
gospels, the Quran confirms the veracity of those particular stories. One of them Jesus made birds and put life in them. This can be found in the Gospel of Thomas, the Infancy Gospel of Thomas is there.
It gives a story that Jesus made birds from clay, and he was rebuked by Joseph. And then he clapped and these birds, they flew away.
Right? So we can read the story, not the entire Gospel. We don't have to believe the entire Gospel of Thomas, but that particular story is confirmed by the Quran. So it is definitely true, we believe is definitely true, right? Something like that happened. Likewise, Jesus spoke from cradle according to the Quran, when his mother was accused of adultery, the Jewish people of our town they said, What is this? We knew you as a good woman, you cannot do this. And she pointed to the child. And the child spoke from cradle. And he said, but he said you can read the Quran Chapter 19 surah. Maria, named after the mother of Jesus.
And there is an entire chapter in the Quran named after the mother of Jesus. There's nothing in the New Testament named after Mary. Right. So
in this particular story, what are we told that Jesus spoke from the cradle we go to the Infancy Gospel of James, we are told that Jesus spoke from
In the cradle. So there are apocryphal documents like that unknown Gospel, Jesus may have done that miracle. The question is, who threw these gospels out? Why were these accounts thrown away? By whose choice? Who had the audacity to choose? Like, I have 20 Books A 20 books there. And I am now choosing at will, this one is from God. Okay, put it on that side, this one is from Satan put it on that side. Okay, this one. And of course, there were standards and criteria. I'm not I'm not being crude. I'm not trying to have a go. And I'm not trying to be I'm not mocking the system. But this is what it boils down to. There were people who were throwing books out at will. And they were taking
books in at will these Church Fathers because the lists are all different. They are very, okay, they have different details. So the problem remains, I'm gonna come back to the list of criteria very quickly. So the documents age. The third criteria is the historical likelihood of the of its constant, if contents, its contents, so they have to be historical, they have to be like, they can't be incredible events, you know, something crazy happening, right? So one of the reasons gospel, the gospel of Peter was rejected is that Jesus is shown to have come out of the cave, and a cross comes up behind him a cross, a standing giant cross comes behind him and the Cross talks, the cross starts
talking. This is one of the reasons why the Gospel of Peter was rejected, according to one of the discussions I was watching from Michael Kruger, right.
But then we have the Gospel of Matthew,
that tells us that there was zombies walking around in the city of Jerusalem, dead, dead people came out of the graves, and they were walking around the city of Jerusalem. Now, if we apply that criteria to the Gospel of Matthew, it all it can also be thrown out on those bases to Lima. Thank you so much. So I have some some more points to go through which I can during the q&a, if I get the chance. Thank you so much for listening, ladies and gentlemen, thank you.
All right, there we go. So we've heard the two kind of opposing views about the canonization of sculpture. I think we understand what the concept means. Now it's time for q&a. So let's kind of have very simple basic rules. I'd like to take three questions at a time if you could, when you do pose a question, if you could, perhaps indicate who you posing the question to. And I think we common knowledge to maybe give us your name. So we know we're talking to keep it short, sharp, and succinct, please. So we give as many people a chance to talk we're going to try and keep it down to about 20 minutes, the q&a. And then if there's more, if there are any more questions to ask. We'll
try and see if we can put them in. Alright, so we start now with q&a.
He has a question.
If you could
identify yourself, please and then pose the question.
Santa Monica barakato. My name is Ty lips, am I? Does it mean that the New Testament cancel out the Old Testament causing the Old Testament Jesus teachings about eating poor, circumcision, fasting, the greeting etc? Are they no more necessary for the Christians to follow?
Can I just when you do have the mic? Can you keep the mic as close to your mouth as possible? Please? Can Can Can you please repeat the question? Rudolph couldn't quite hear the question.
Okay. Does it mean that the New Testament cancel out the Old Testament causing the Old Testament Jesus teachings about eating pork, circumcision, fasting, the greeting, so are they no more necessary for the Christians to follow because the New Testament canceled it
would say in the Old Testament, there's a specific purpose for the dietary law that God has laid out for his covenant people. Obviously, it was done for the peculiarity and it was done for his covenant relationship with them. In the New Testament when the dietary law specifically changes. It is because God now has changed that specific covenant which is catered for the Israeli and Jewish people alone, to all of the world and to all of the people. So that that reconstruction is really pointing to the Exodus.
With the two Jews but in the New Testament, Jesus fulfills that laws and he says now those things are permissive meaning that everybody is included in the covenant which is the point of the dietary laws in the Old Testament.
In other questions Hello, this one
waited me. Okay, there we go.
I'm I'm very Teva.
Real. My question is to Rudolph.
Rudolph said that
God decrees something and it, it must be followed.
Now I'm asking rideaux is Christianity decreed in the New Testament, or the Canon, or whatever? Well as Christianity degree in in the New Testament, like in the Quran, who start will tell you that Islam is decreed in this way we follow. You see, now, the question is does Christianity Christianity believe that the Christmas and New an
Easter is the biggest celebration in Christianity? Can we get to the kind of stick to the topic speakable? Yeah, Can Can you tell me where in the in the New Testament or the Canon is the degree if you follow the
Thank you? And I think just to be courteous, please. It's Pastor Rudolph, I think we want us to respect the the speakers. So to start, and it's posted.
Yeah, we couldn't quite hear the question. Speaker.
Can Can you give me me just rethink the question and then rephrase it in a shorter way. We'll come back to you.
There was a question somewhere, here we go.
So I want to come and share. My name is with man bonds.
My question basically, I'm asking for some clarification. In terms of you mentioning, it's not necessary to have the authority. You mentioned, for example, you were quoting a number of scholars, Lee, Martin, MacDonald, Kruger, Phillips, Metzker, etcetera, etcetera, to support your argument as authority because from academic perspective, you need proof or you need authority of individuals to bring forth your argument. So you have a source that you take as an authority, one of those individuals that you argued in your favor was bought ermine. And you mentioned some of the books in which, in which he speaks about the New Testament. However, the same author who wrote the book, for
example, Misquoting Jesus, the story behind bars, the story behind who changed the Bible, and why, how Jesus became God, etc. So the same author that you using to solidify your argument as someone that's speaking against what you put through. So using everything that I've just said, now, sir, you've used authors and academic individuals to prove your point. But yet, you insist that we do not need authority to solidify and confirm the Word of God. And I quote, sir, you concluded your section, I'm gonna believe God and not liberal scholars. Could you please comment on that, and how we can stop accepting. Thank you.
Thanks so much for the question. It's more of a statement though. But I will say the following, I would say for you to solidify what you believe in ultimately, even when you come to the Quran, you're gonna turn to the what the Quran says about itself. That's the final authority, not saying that there is no authority to judge by what we can do in academia and scholarship to what is necessary to believe about the instance of the Quran or even the instance of the New Testament. That's not what I'm saying. I'm simply saying that the very authority vested in what God has said, Is God himself first. And we should look at that first. And when I look at God, when I look at the
Quran, when I look at what the New Testament is saying, I think I've shown quite clearly in my opening statement that the Quran, the New Testament, the sayings of Jesus, all is very positive about what Jesus has said, and let us know. And there is nothing false in that and I'll stick for that for the sake of the debate.
Thank you. Where's the microphone? Use this gentleman.
A salam Wa alaykum
big thanks for very informative discussion. Your name, please. My name is Abdul Rahman sadeem. My question is to pass the Rudolph. And if it's possible that to say that Nan also maybe responds to it, as he brought it up in the discussion, but
was a very pertinent statement or claim that was made that the Church Fathers, all of the Church Fathers, up until before the year 300 would be classified as heretical. According to the standards today of Christianity, and the council's that was held at Nicaea, and the one that came later in 383 81, I believe. So according to the standards, they all classified as heretical, having beliefs that is heretical, how would you respond to that? If they are the ones that handed down to us the canon of the New Testament? If gustar that none could also respond to that and pasta? Rudolph?
Maybe if you don't mind, I'm going to ask Adnan to restate that, because I'm not sure I got it. Is that okay? And then I'll answer.
Okay, I'll repeat again, I'm saying all the church fathers before the 300 are heretical, or heretics in some degree or the other. According to the Catholic, the Protestant and Orthodox conception of Christianity as we know it today. In particular, referring to the the the doctrine of the Trinity and other things. Yeah. Is that a correct statement? Yeah, I would say obviously, as a Christian, I do think there's value in conciliar Christology, which means or the council's meaning that some of the counselors can stipulate quite clearly what happened in the history of the church in the belief of the church. But that being said, the ultimate authority to F Mathias, these individuals, whoever
they are, in church history, as we saw historically, for instance, with Marcion, who believed that the Old Testament deities is a different deity, then what we see in the New Testament and some other heretics that believe, for instance, Jesus did not have a physical body, then New Testament itself, because that's the vested authority of Christ. Remember the words and the actions of Christ, what he delivered what he said, that is when we base the authority and, and that is the promise that is made by God in the New Testament, that he's very apostles, John 1428, will bring he will bring a verse 26, he will bring back to remembrance, whatever he has said to these individuals. So God is the one
that brings to memory to those individuals, what they needed to know that being said, anybody that is, in the first three centuries of the church is judged. And you can look at the conversations in church history, man, the first three centuries of church history is rife with conversations surrounding the person of God, what type of humanity, etcetera, etcetera, what type of divinity, and we can go on and on and on. But all of those councils, in actual fact, discussed what is found in Scripture. It's not just manmade theology, or manmade philosophy that these individuals are discussing. They're discussing actual Christian doctrine in Scripture, that views from the text
which the health and is deemed, as being authoritative. And they find saying this, the scriptures in itself is the final authority for these three centuries, and also for conciliate Christology afterwards.
Very quickly, I will comment on that Rudolf, just ended the debate there. He just, he just admitted that all of these people in the first three centuries are having conversations and debates on different ideas, different topics, different beliefs. And this is exactly what my point is, if these people in the first 300 years, some of them very, very highly learned people. Okay? If they were not clear on their beliefs, and they're still debating their beliefs, how can they then how can they then use those beliefs? as confused as they may be about them? To choose the Scripture, because Bruce Metzger is saying, the rule of faith was used to choose the scripture to make the canon. And
if that's the case, how can these people in the first 300 years have a view on Scripture when they themselves are debating? The beliefs are not clear yet they're not decisive on those things. So this is the confusion, which needs to be clarified from scholars and it hasn't been done to my knowledge to date.
I think we can have a conversation like this all night. I'm not saying that the central beliefs of Christianity was under dispute. I'm not saying that at all. In actual fact, when we look at church history, the correct word, the rule of faith that I'm not speaking of was solidifying the first century. You can read Charles dirt said he showed quite clearly that the earliest preaching and the earliest community already had as we know the gospel, intact, and they were preaching and actually going forth into all the world as Jesus commanded, and they were preaching this gospel, those standards are recognized. We can see it in church history. Nothing of the central beliefs of
Christianity has changed. Have Christians discussed after the first dispensation of Christian Era? What they believe how they believe
Yes, Muslims even today discuss and have certain discussions about belief and how you need to derive your, your your Aqeedah, etc, etc. Christians did the same does not mean that there was anything wrong with the foundation of the faith
I will make it very short Rudolph Rudolph said that the core beliefs of Christianity were well established. I am saying those very core beliefs were being debated.
The Divinity of Jesus Christ was debated. For the first 300 years they were church fathers, heavy heavyweights who were saying Jesus is not God on par with the Father. Jesus is not God. So that's one of the core beliefs of Christianity as we know it today. Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox are unanimous on that point. And so to say that the core beliefs are already established is an overstatement, in my opinion.
All right, thank you.
Last comment, but I have to say if you look at the Council of Nicaea and 320 500 Domine, what is the spirit it is in what way is Jesus related to the father when we speak of him as being God? The whole issue of Jesus being God, it's not disputed. So in other words, the core doctrines of the church itself and I esteem and it is vindicated from the third century up down to the first century, there is no dispute and is no one that is making any disputes surrounding it.
Thank you. Yeah. Gentlemen, if CERN in the next question to start.
Was the New Testament canon finalized over a period of 400 years? And what influence did politicians and the Emperor
understood standardization of the New Testament?
What influence the politicians and the Emperor of the time have on the canonization of the new system? Okay, the first part was it finalized was the canon of the New Testament finalized in the fourth century. I will address that point first. Very quickly, and I will use scholar to answer your question, who made it very, very clear that that wasn't the case. Okay. And that's color is again, Lee Martin McDonald, a favorite scholar of Rudolph. This is what he had to say. Only during the Reformation did the Catholics achieve unity on the New Testament canon, with the decree by the Council of Trent. By that time, Luther had already denied full canonical status of James, Hebrews,
Jude and revelation, not to mention the Deuterocanonical books, the apocrypha. So what Lee Martin McDonald's is saying, one of the authorities on this very topic, that even up to the period of reformation, which is the 16th century 16th century, the Canon, the New Testament is still being debated. And according to some scholars, the question is still not closed, the word of God can still be thrown out, or added in to the canon. Some Christian scholars are still arguing to this day that we should throw out these apocalyptic books from the New Testament such as the book of Revelation to unite the Christians or they'll say no, we shouldn't do that, because it's going to cause more
problems than solutions. So that's the answer to your first question. The second question whether if you're referring to Emperor Constantine in choosing the canon of the New Testament that's that's a misconception. That's not true. That's historically inaccurate. Constantine had nothing to do with the canon of the New Testament
can I continue
the other mic working we've got the other.
Yeah, we haven't now. Okay, so. So that notion that Constantine had something to do with the making of the canon is not correct. He did have something to do with the term homo Osius. That was
actually added to the creed of Nicaea. This is very clearly testified to by Jandy carry in his history of Christian doctrine that Constantine, by his Express wish, the term Homer Osseous, that God the Father and Jesus Christ are of the same essence, that term to describe that particular idea. Uma Osseous, in the Greek language was added at the Express wish of Constantine, but he has nothing to do with the Canon.
All right, thank you, this young lady
will start at none your name, please, as a new Raja Raja will start that, then you mentioned that the Quran doesn't talk about the New Testament, but a bat what came from Jesus? So how are we supposed to know what came from Jesus in the 21st century? If it was not written down? And if it was written down? And he does it and it has disappeared from the face of the earth? Does that mean that God doesn't count preserve his word as it were, as a pastor Rudolf, mentioned over and over again? And if it is, surely if the Quran referred to that
book that contained what came from Jesus, so it was an important book. So if it has disappeared now, if it doesn't exist any longer? Isn't there an Islamic responsibility to have tracked it and to have tried to preserve it for the world? Very good question. Thank you for asking that question. I must mention here that our view on the Bible as a whole is that the Bible contains the truth.
It contains variables it contains, contains dubious information, it contains outright lies and myths. So the Bible is a collection of
correct information, authentic information that may have come from God originally. And it also contains other information that cannot possibly be from God. So this is our view on the Bible. Now, how do we reach that conclusion? This is where I come to the second point you raised. We use the Quran as the criteria we believe the Quran is definitely the Word of God, we have very strong powerful reasons to believe that and that's another discussion and debate and based upon the Quran, whatever the Quran confirms, we accept. Now, do we need the New Testament and the Old Testament to believe in God and worshiping? Absolutely not. We don't need the Old Testament and the New
Testament, okay, because those books, as far as the Quran is concerned, have been changed. They've been changed beyond recognition. You know, we don't know what how much has been changed and how much how much has been left out? We don't know. Okay, this much is confirmed by Jewish and Christian scholars as well that these books are not in in their pure form, as they were written by those alleged authors once upon a time, these books as we find them today are not in that form, that original form has been lost completely. We don't know what Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, those anonymous anonymous authors once upon a time wrote, so Quran how does the Quran know what Jesus
said? Quran knows that because God tells us what Jesus may have said God revealed the Quran. And God tells us this is what Jesus said, For example, in chapter five, we are told Jesus said to the Israelites, hero, Israel, the LORD our God is one God. Okay, now that can be found in the Gospel of Mark, do we believe that's from Jesus? Absolutely. I believe that information definitely originated from Jesus, what Mark or whoever the author was found, via an oral tradition, which was around at the time. Now, that doesn't mean that I go around, start believing in the Gospel of Peter the gospel of as far as we, the Muslims are concerned, the Gospel of John the Gospel of Matthew, Luke, Mark,
Peter, Mary Magdalene, and Thomas and Judas and the list of gospels goes on and on and on. We are, as far as we are concerned, they're all exactly the same to us. We don't believe in this canonical system. The church is used and decided that these books should be kept in and the other books should be thrown out. For example, very quickly, I'm finished and I know I know you're gonna not punch me in a second. Okay? So you're not going to do okay. The Gospel of trauma is one of the reasons I can see why was thrown out the Gospel of Thomas as we know it today.
It contains 114 sayings of Jesus Christ 114 Hadith, you can say of Jesus Christ, one of them states, that God cannot be born of a woman.
God cannot be born of a woman who has the problem. Now, how does that contradict with
current Christianity? Because current Christianity
tells you God was born of a woman.
Okay, God who is Jesus was born of a woman. Therefore the Gospel of Thomas was thrown out, as noble as moral as beautiful as as it may be as authentic, as ancient as it may be, because some scholars dated
on par with cue, tradition, even before the gospel of Mark the earliest gospel, some scholars, such as April Dee Dee mechanic, she puts the Gospel of Thomas before the gospel of Mark on the does her opinion, I don't have to accept it, I have no problem with that. So this is an issue, right?
That gospel was rejected, possibly, because it says God cannot be born of a woman. So this is what the what's happening in the first three centuries, people are forming beliefs. And if the gospel a gospel, a given gospel doesn't fit those beliefs, doesn't agree with those beliefs is thrown out. This is a game that was played,
like you posted to do. Now, just quickly when a comment that Aetna and just gave me the debate,
he just said that we can only establish that which is authoritative by what God have established. That was the argument that I made the whole night. In actual fact, I'm not making the argument that the church in actual fact place the Canon on a special place, and therefore we should leave the canon. The argument that I made tonight, this is that both the Quran, both the Old Testament and its expectation, and the New Testament makes it absolutely sure that the words of God is sure, and God will speak authoritatively, and he will preserve it. If it is incumbent upon God to let you believe certain things about what he demands, it's incumbent upon God to keep what he said in check for you
to actually obey that. Think about that. The accusation that any form of Scripture that is written is falsified like the New Testament like we do not that the New Testament is false falsified by the hand of man tells us that God cannot preserve his text, it's an accusation against God. Further, we see in this a lot of even in his presentation at non mentioned and he admitted openly that there are certain spurious writings within the Quran that is affirmed by the Quran. And it is we can look at this Mitra Sharapova, there is the book of Jubilees there are stories within the Quran and you can grab a look for yourself, wrote all blog article about it, which we know for a fact was written by
men that did not write in under inspiration. But it's in the Quran. Same with the Gospel of Thomas, when we look at the Gospel of Thomas didn't have anything and it says that God shall not be a man. But that's not the reason it's not included. The reason it was not included in canon is because it's light. It's spurious. It's Gnostic. It's not even Christian. These books, according to Lee MacDonald, that utterly squirting as these gospels were all around. These gospels were scattered all around. And we just chose the for no scholar in academia, including ermine, including Metzger, will give any of those books at date beyond the seconds earlier than beyond the second century. Meaning
that these books were already written long past the original gospels. Interesting fact. Every single one of those books lean on the Gospels to give themself credibility. We know that they were written by people we do not know either, but Atlantis fending for them. He says that if you don't know the author, you should not believe in him. Yet he goes for those books to believe them to be believed in an unseen equal scale. I don't see fairness when it comes to the Gospels.
Just a short, short, okay.
Again, Rudolph is saying that God will preserve his word, we agree God will preserve his word.
No, no, there is a but but people writing in the name of God, that word is not God's. So God doesn't have to preserve a gospel written by a individual, an individual somewhere in the middle of nowhere as God's word. So just because you decided to believe in four gospels, doesn't mean that they were actually sent by God. Okay. It's you imposing that view that they are inspired. Who are you to decide today? Or who are these church fathers to decide that this is inspired, and this is not inspired? And scholars, the ones you have been mentioning, had worked on the criteria they used, and we have dismantled some of those criterias in front of everyone today, that those criterias they
don't stand the test of scrutiny. None of them stands. Because when we, I mean, even right now, as we speak of the can canonical gospels, there are parts of the Bible. The Christian scholars today will tell you they will not written by the author's Rockabye adultery, the story of the adulterous in the Gospel of John. It was not written by John. It is unanimously admitted now by all Christians callers who are serious call
because that that part was not written by John who wrote it, it is clearly a corruption into the text, which was made later on into the text. So if someone can come and add into the Word of God in the sixth or seventh or eighth century, now, because it wasn't taken out, you're gonna know insists that Oh, God inspired someone to add it. And it remains in there because God is choosing for it to be to remain in there, even though it wasn't written by the author we attribute to attribute that information to
I think we need to take a Christian.
Thanks so much. I just need to say again, once more, what I hear is that God cannot preserve his word. Again, we do not lean upon any of the authors that I've mentioned tonight to establish the authority of the Bible. That was not my case. I didn't mention that Metzger and therefore ermine, and therefore this column that's called including my friend James White says the Bible is true, therefore the Bible is true. My contention was that the church very early unrecognized, what God has said, because he did speak authoritative ly in that community. And the people could recognize that which was spoken and affirm that which they've seen and heard from Jesus himself. That was the
argument. That is the argument that sustained by the Quran. That's the argument that is foretold in both the Old and New Testament Scriptures. And that's the argument I will stick with.
All right, thank you.
But my question is for Adnan Rashid, thank you for a very spirited debate up to now.
My name is Moncure Jacobs. And my question has to do with sort of 547 to 49. I just got to thinking when you mentioned earlier that the word in God is a singular,
the Arabic word for Torah, and I don't know what it is, I mean, the Torah is a collection of books.
The Arabic word that is being used there is is that a singular or is it a composite word? Because if it is, then then I would then I would like to suggest that the Injeel that is referred to there may well then be also a singular word for a composite set of books very, very good question.
Injeel, and Taurat are not Arabic words. They are not Arabic word. Injeel is a Greek word. And Torah is a Hebrew word. So Injeel is the concept. Okay. Injeel is the concept concept that came with Jesus Christ, whatever he received and taught, is Injeel. As far as the Quran is concerned, what Jesus received from God, and delivered is in jail. Right? Those original words not what Matthew, Mark, Luke and John had written later on, okay, because there are clearly corruptions in those gospels, as I mentioned earlier, one of them now Taurat. Again, doesn't mean Panther took the five first books of the Bible, Torah doesn't mean that Torah means the law, the law of Moses, okay, the original one,
not the one we found found in these five books of Moses. Yes. Are they ideas in these five books attributed to Moses? Do we find any divine information in there? Do we have the truth? They absolutely. There are parts of these five books, we confirm as Muslims, that they definitely came from God because they are directly in line with the Quran, the Quran is telling us. So our criteria were very consistent. Our criteria to judge what actually came from God originally is the Quran, because we can ascertain the Quran to be from God, we have a different standard, we have a different system altogether. We know Quran as we know it today, every single word of it came from the Prophets
mouth, and the Prophet was receiving revelation, His scribes wrote it in front of him. And then it was put together by his early companions, such as Abu Bakr and later on with man through a committee. So that's a completely different story, how the Quran came together. So that's the answer to your question.
All right, we could we could have this debate going to midnight tonight. So let's be careful. You want to respond? Just 30 seconds. I just want to say that was my whole point. When I spoke of the cannon, we see a natural progression from the teaching, which is the singular canon of Scripture, the Injeel, we can see quite clearly, and that becomes ultimately the gospel that you Angeli on, and that ultimately gets translated and paid down in four gospels, which the New Testament with this is by, that's actually the quote I gave from grandstands. And that's exactly what he has said. We look at Justin Martin, first century, you can see that there is a change from the word which used about
the teaching of Jesus, but now it's become a word about the books of Jesus, or the gospel of Jesus, which is the message and the only four books that we know is the four books that we have in the New Testament. Thanks.
Alright, I'll take
To move questions after this one Yeah, please. Smilla Rahmanir Rahim salam, peace be upon you. Thanks for the opportunity. My name is Sam and yet
my question to the pastor, you both of you spoke about the criteria. And I think the Quran mentioned the criteria is that a part of the criteria is that there shouldn't be any contradictions or discrepancies. And we find out the question is, how can the New Testament be divine? When it contradicts the Old Testament all over the map on so many principles, and even the concept of God himself? For example, you find the New Testament scholars talking about the Trinity. And you don't find any of the prophets of the Old Testament mention the trinity or speak about it or explain it. Moses never spoke about it. Abraham never spoke about it. David never spoke about it. How come such
an important concept like that wasn't preached in the Old Testament, and you say that or you claim that it is it is preached in the New Testament, then you find Jesus peace be upon him, for example, the second example, speaking about loving your enemies. And then when you come to the Old Testament, you find God in brackets, Jesus, according to your belief, saying that in numbers, kill all the infant children, and everyone wipe away everyone, including the infant children, so should you love your enemy? Or should you kill the enemies of your of your or the infant children of your enemies. So the whole concept of God is modified in between both the New Testament and the Old Testament?
Maybe we can have the next discussion on the concept of God, in both the Judeo Christian scriptures and also in the Quran. That's a topic of my research. It's actually what I'm doing. It's actually what I'm writing my thesis on. That being said, we do believe in, in the revelation of God from the old to the new testament, that is some form of progression. There is some form of fulfillment and adaption. And it does not necessarily mean that there is a change, it simply means that God has actually reestablished and re
placed certain things which was vindicated or given in the office. And let me give you an example of that. In Jeremiah, chapter 31, verse 31, and 32 days foretold that they will be a new book that will come God actually speaks to the Old Testament prophet, and he tells them that they will be a day with a canon of the laws written on the hearts of man, and that he will bring forth a new revelation. Well, we see it fulfilled, obviously, and quite clearly mentioned in the New Testament.
When it comes to the concept of God and the old, the New Testament, that is such a deep and interesting topic of discussion, I would maintain the following Yes, the doctrine of the Trinity is definitely not explicitly stipulated in the Old Testament, neither in the New Testament, but we can see the rudiments of Scripture, we can see, for instance, in the Old Testament, that there is a general interplay with the text that shows a clear prolapse plurality, when it comes to God in the Old Testament, and how he's revealed, obviously, in the New Testament, the matrix of that we can lay out and we can discuss, and that's why we have discussions and debates. And if you want any more
information on that, you're welcome to email me and I can send you some of the detail on that. But let me tell you something, we can see a continuity. Christians don't just turn a blind eye to the Old Testament and says, Oh, you know what, the doctrine of Trinity is not evidence and therefore, you know, we've got a problem. No, we look at scriptures like this, I have 4816, which clearly denounces and clearly shows us Genesis chapter one, Genesis chapter nine, A, we can see that there's a dyadic pattern, we can see that there's a plurality that is evident in the Old Testament. But the New Testament tells us that it's only in the New Testament that the one that was in the bosom of the
Father fully revealed the Father and Jesus says, you can only really know God, if you know him. Now, the question is, if we have Jesus wrong, we will have God wrong. And the point is of contention in the New Testament is very clear. If you get Jesus wrong, you will never know discard. And that's why Jesus said that they might only know Muslims love this verse, John, same thing this three may, you know, the only true God but the consequence of that is Jesus says, immediately after that, and the one whom you have sent, yet we are told that that Jesus is corrupted we cannot know he is unknown, his mod. So Muslims actually saying we cannot know that God, but we only know him in the Koran, how
convenient. The moment say the same thing.
Alright, we I'm going to finish off at Code pass for shops. So whatever the number of questions that we're going to take, that's it, otherwise, we're going to so coming back to the question, our shake off there, right? That Trinity basically is in contradiction with the Old Testament, and actually, Christian scholars agree with that you you attempted there to show that Trinity does somehow implicitly not explicitly implicitly exist in the Old Testament. While one of your biggest callers in the world, William Lane, Craig, categorically stated that the Trinity cannot be found anywhere in the Old Testament in particular. So can we find it in the in the New Testament Christians
Call is even about the New Testament claim that it is implicit. It's not those who claim it is there. They say it's implicit. It's not explicit. Now, one of the verses that was added in to the Gospels, or sorry, the New Testament, one, First John, five, seven, right, one of the corruptions. And my question to Roth is, when was When did God decide that it should remain in the scripture for centuries? And when did God decide that he should be thrown out of the scriptures centuries later? So what games is God playing with all those Christians who were reading it as the word of God for 567 100 years? So why is God playing these games with the Christians? At one point, a verse is added
into the Scripture and those guys who are reading it for five 600 years, they were reading it as the word of God, and God doesn't do anything. God doesn't turn down angels, or sundown, some church father to go and remove it, right. But then later on, we discover that no manuscripts actually testify to it. And it's a corruption then he was thrown out. I'm sure your Do you have a Bible there? Is that was there? One, John five? One, John five, seven? Is there you have it?
No, is it in the process? Or is in the main text?
It's not in the main text? So So yeah, can you please answer? Why did God decide to throw it out and put it in.
And again, Christians put it in their Bibles so that Muslims can see it and not believe that the doctrine of the Trinity exists, we are quite open about it. But let me give you an example of how we deduce doctrine. If you look at the rest of the book, every single person in the triune, God is mentioned in the book, The Holy Spirit is mentioned, Jesus is explicitly mentioned in chapter five as being God, the fathers mentioned yet, you're looking at one verse, Christians knew from the very onslaught in the very beginning that that little phrase that was added in the text that was used from the manuscript tradition, was, in addition, Christians, the allowance, in actual fact, makes
this emphatic in their works, that the Christians were the ones that say that should not be there. You know why? Because we've got a critical edition of the New Testament that tells us what should be there and what should be in the manuscript. That's why we are not embarrassed by it. So nothing is added. We know exactly. We know exactly what should be there. And that's why we put it in the little preface.
All right, we will take a question, who's in million, which
should be loaded off my Rafi. My name is Abdullah of bucks. I say the following with the utmost respect, humility and integrity, especially to our Christian brethren, who are here with us today.
I think, Mr. Moderator, I want to tackle the subject of this debate in another way.
It seems and I say, with respect again to my Christian brethren, it seems the reason why we are having this debate of yet today is because maybe the Christian religion is at a standstill, and they have not yet or yet to recognize the final prophet, and the final revelation. The Bible recognizes previous prophets like Solomon, and David excetera, etc. But they have not yet or they not, I don't know what's the reason but maybe it will start can maybe remind us and advisors as to the reason as to why Christianity has not recognized mom Muhammad as the final prophet, and the Quran as a final revelation. Thank you. Thank you. Can we take one more question? And perhaps
the one at the back those two gentlemen, one, can we have one of the two of you are asked a question, please. And then I'll take the middle one, just just one of the two of you. And then that gentleman at the back with a creamish top.
Keep your questions nice and short, please. I'm here Adams from UW See, I would just like to ask basically, if the changes which was made the reference to nearby will start at nine and the respected pastor, if those changes were God destined, meaning that the Revised Standard versions and all the versions that came about if that was destined by God, and God Almighty inspired the doctors of divinity, and as we'd say, in Cape Town, the heroic baso of Christianity, if they were inspired to make those changes and revisions, and also for the pastor Rudolph, which can and specifically is his favorite or the most authentic according to like you, thank you very much by Tara McCarthy, the
young man with the cream top, the
last question, last question, a Salam Alaikum
good equation to pass your name please. My name is Musa.
Question to pastor a Bible say to
Are Exodia for this for a Bible say, as you all as we know that God is a creator of heaven and earth, and the Bible say that the devil is a God of with this. So I want to know who
who did the god expire to say that way. dyadic Devoy is a God of this universe.
Are those those are the three last questions posted.
I hope I remember everything. Let me start with the last one. When you look at Second Corinthians chapter four, verse four, the translation of the devil being the god of this world, the context renders it quite clearly that certain individuals were called God, little God, mockingly even in the Old Testament, to depict somebody that has authority, people that had authority were known as Elohim. For instance, in the Old Testament, and in the New Testament, the same phraseology is picked up by all showing that these individuals that were walking on the earth, these individuals that placed himself in authority, including aimless tries to be a little guard, but they not there's only
one true God, that do the second question as to what reading of the New Testament is, in actual fact, my favorite, I would say the following there is a clear difference between what is known as the versions of the Bible. And sometimes I get this idea in my mind that Muslim things versions mean that the texts look all different. It doesn't. In actual fact, when you look at the text quite clearly, in all of the translations, when we speak our versions, we basically speak off translations, all of them always come to the same conclusion. None of them read differently. And all of them are pretty adequate to describe to you exactly what happens in a context. I work in a
seminarian context, I work with students, when I tell them to deal with the critical text itself, I will deal with the next level on 29. But even if I don't deal with that, and the students don't know Greek, I would always tell them to consult more than one translation. And they are lexicons. They are textbooks. They are dictionaries. They are Bible dictionaries that can aid you and help you to understand the word in actual fact, these websites, that actually helps you with the actual reading of the text. If you do a study of that, I can guarantee you, there is no confusion as to what is in the New Testament, even though there are different translations. So I will I will read majority of
them. Currently, I'm actually I received the gift. I'm in the ESV used to read the H hcsb. Translation, it's an English translation used to read the NIV used to read the New King James Version. When I study a text, I still go to all of those to see what scholars have said.
And what emerged out of the text. So no, no problem with that. About
sorry, I didn't get a second question you may repeat.
Sorry, I forgot.
That was basically the first part of the question. And that was the changes. Basically, in the Scripture. For example, the mini will start at nine also mentioned some of them, for example, John 316, the famous person identity and so forth, was thrown out and the revisions, was that godly inspire to all the generations of doctors of divinity, and all the Christian scholars with God inspired for them to take that out, or was it just on their own account that they made those changes?
Like, for instance, you mentioned between John seven and eight, the pericope adultery, which, in actual fact, in the earlier manuscripts, they found, they found the story in Luke and then it's found in John and it's placed deep, I've got a very peculiar understanding of the pericarp adultery when I read it, in actual fact, I recognize that because it's there, it has to be inspired, because God willed for it to be there. So I will not challenge God as to what God in the end allowed to be in the text. I know a lot of scholars will say they don't see that as inspired, does nothing in the context of the story. That is an actual fact, pertaining to doctrine. So it does not change the
doctrine of the Church, if you believe it should be there or not. But what I will say is this, when you read that story, it gives life to the way in which Jesus lived and what he did and how he esteemed women, which which is, which is pretty, pretty good.
The the last question was the one we Krishna asked with a Muhammad why Christians do not accept Walmart as a prophet.
Well, purely because of the finality of Christ. Jesus Christ comes upon the scene Hebrews chapter 11. Verse One says in times past already tonight, God spoke through various means in various ways. But in the last day, that's a finality he has spoken.
That means it's close. It's to an end, through the person of Jesus Christ. I've actually written a whole blog article on my blog that explains why Christians cannot accept the Prophet Muhammad. And it's not and maybe we can one day have a conversation on the Prophet Muhammad. I think I'll have surprised you guys. I've got a lot of appreciation for certain things, which might surprise you again, because what Yeah,
In the media is sometimes very weird. But here's the thing that Christians are not, in any way of form allowed to accept what is given by Mohammed as a revelation because of that which is written in the New Testament. The problem though is that what I raised in it is, if the Quran calls for Christians to follow the guidance of the New Testament, then the Quran is in trouble. The author of the grant says we must turn to the Bible. But when we turn to the Bible, the Bible in actual fact, tell us the Quran is not synced with its message, and therefore we reject it. But maybe afterwards, I can give you the article and the details of that I go into great detail with that. I don't want to
take any more time.
All right, just a quick response.
Okay, thank you for that question. You asked Christians due to Mohammed Salah lawless along what used to Jesus, same thing, same excuse that you said He's an imposter. He's not a true prophet of Israel. And the law of Moses is final for us. We don't need another prophet to come and bring another idea for us. So the Jews use those conceptions to reject Jesus Christ just like that Christians today, deliberately
reject Prophet Muhammad, even though there are so many reasons to believe in Him. biblically speaking, there are prophecies about him. In fact, when Rudolph says that this is the finality of Jesus, it is the finality of Jesus which causes them to reject Muhammad. But Jesus Himself said, In the Gospel of John, that I have many things to tell you. But there will be another one coming after me he will tell you all what remains to be told, right? This is clearly stated in the Gospel of John is there, if Jesus if his message is final, then why do we need another person to come as tell come and tell us other things? On top of that, the Jewish people, the Jewish people were expecting three
personalities to arrive. Okay, this is all again from the Gospel of John, when they went and questioned
John the Baptist, they asked him three questions. Who are you? Are you Elijah?
Are You the Messiah? Or are you that prophet? Are you that prophet? So John? Was the Elijah, he was Elijah, Messiah? Was Jesus Christ, who is that Prophet? Who is still yet to come, even after the Messiah has arrived? Okay, so they were expecting these three personalities to come. And John does not contradict these three questions. He doesn't say that hold on a second, which Prophet are you talking about? There's no prophet expected? What probably, it was a well established fact among the Jewish people at that time that a prophet foretold in Deuteronomy 1818 is to come. Because the references to Deuteronomy 1818, where the Jews asked that question from John the Baptist, are you
that prophet? And he said, I'm not that prophet. Okay, I'm not the Messiah. So, it is very clear that Rudolph has misunderstood the concept of the message of Jesus Christ. And and we don't have to accept that, you know, notion of his finality. Because, again, he himself is saying that I have things to tell, but I can't I can't say those things. Now. Someone else will come after me. And we'll tell you those things. Christians claim that the Holy Spirit, we claim that's not the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit was already there. The Holy Spirit was already there. Right? It just someone else? Thank you.
Okay, thank you very much. I think we've kind of exhausted all questions for now. I'm sure there would have been many more. Just Just before we go people just closing comments from five minutes on with those that none and five minutes from the past that would have five minutes each.
Mr. hungar, him ladies and gentlemen, thank you so much for attending the debate. And this was a debate conducted in spirit of love, compassion and mercy for each other. We have a lot of respect for each other. So please do not take the debate in the wrong way. Don't think that the debate was designed or intended to hurt someone's feelings. That's not the intention. The intention is to express ideas to share views, so that we can open you know doors of ideas in people's minds. So this was the purpose of this debate. Finally, I would like to thank my dear friend Rudel for taking time to come all the way to Cape Town to indulge in this discussion. I really appreciate his input. I do
not agree with a lot of things he said. But this is the beauty of debate, right? You don't have to agree on everything. Coming back to the topic, I think those who are listening and those who are watching
It is quite clear that main questions I asked remain unanswered. Who were the people who chose these books to be included into the canon?
What ideas were they using to choose these books? Who decided that these ideas are from God? Does God have anything to do with it? Does Jesus have anything to do with it? Do his disciples have anything to do with it? Did they want a New Testament just like we have in Islam? The Prophet told us what the Quran is, the Quran itself introduces itself as the word of God, right? Nowhere in the New Testament, we are told that this book was intended to be from God, or it is a revelation from God. Okay, just like we have in the Quran. clevers is that this book is a revelation from God. Okay, we don't have anything like that in the New Testament. So it's clear that the New Testament was put
together by individuals who thought that these books represent the original message of Jesus, Jesus Christ, as they saw it, right. And Rudolph has been saying that this was a process used by God to choose the Word of God. And then we question that process.
Why was it that books were added in to this Canon and thrown out. And then, even after the Canon was chosen information was interpolated, it was added in, and it remained in there for centuries. So as far as those Christians were concerned, they were reading these stories attributed to the authors, and the authors never wrote them. Examples are the Gospel of John, the story of adulterous.
And then first epistle of John chapter five, verse seven, and the Gospel of Mark, the ending of the gospel Gospel of Mark, most Christian scholars, conservative Mr. Smith, Christian scholars are unanimous that these verses were not actually written by Mark.
Then why were these additions made? Is this God doing? Is this the doing of God, God is playing these games that Okay, put some, put some verses in, put some stuff in and then take pick them out later on in the 20th century. Amazingly, these verses I mentioned, were not questioned. For the first 1900 years of Christianity, Rudolph is nodding, He's agreeing with me. Christians are reading peroxy, adultery, the story of the adulterous and the ending of the gospel of Mark, and one John five, seven as the word of God. Why did God deceive Christians using your standard, that he is the one who guides the process? Why did God guide the process for these additions? And they remained in
your Canon for 1900 years? If you claim that that's what the case is? Because that's not the case? Because these additions were made much later, after the fourth century, in some cases, right? Why did God allow all of this to take place, if God if God himself is God in the process, and certainly Christians woke up looking at the manuscripts that hold on a second, this information never came from the authors, let alone God. So it needs to be taken out. And now, many Bibles put this information in to the footnote that this is not part of the Bible. This is not part of what the authors actually wrote. So there is a lot happening in the first three centuries, centuries, right.
So ladies and gentlemen, the canon of the New Testament, therefore, is not divine. It is man made. Men came together in the first 300 years of Christianity, and the fourth and the fifth and the sixth, up to the 16th century. The debate was still going on to this day. The church is not unanimous on the Canon, Ethiopian canon. Has the four Gospels, the x, the seventh Catholic epistles, the 14th, epistles of Paul, the book of Revelation, Then Sinatra, those four sections, Clement, the book of the Covenant, the darky, sorry, not the docket did this. This Kelly, right, thank you, none, you will find a final point.
And the Syrian Orthodox Church, they cannon is also different. So why are Christians to this day following different canons, different lists of the Word of God or the revelation of God, you see, is still not decided? It's still an open question. The answer is it is manmade. God has nothing to do with choosing the lectures and reading them as the word of God. Thank you so much. Thank you.
Well, thank you so much for you guys sitting there listening, asking questions. It's always such a pleasure to come to Cape Town and I always love the Capetonian Muslim community. I really do. The question tonight was is the new test
cement man made or divine, every single time we heard it, it's not divine, what was used to legitimize the fact that it was not divine is that other people said it was not divine. My argument, in fact showed quite clearly that God says that his words is the void, and God lays out exactly what should be accepted as being authoritative. And, you know, by the way, in the end, we should make ending statements, not new arguments, naughty naughty.
But yes, the thing though, when we look at the text of the New Testament are shown quite emphatically. And clearly, it's been announced. And I did not say anything negative about the fact that the Quran even mentions and speaks quite highly positively of the New Testament text. And we can see quite clearly that in the canon of Scripture itself, the canon of Scripture makes it absolutely clear, the same as the Quran the same as when we look at sort of six, when we look at sort of six and showing that, that Allah promises that you'll preserve his word, the same promise is found in the Old Testament and in the New Testament, why should we only choose the Quran if God
speaks succinctly and clearly, and if God gives a clear credence as to what we should believe that also being said, we can see quite clearly that the New Testament authors, their understanding was that they took the message that Christ gave them. Remember, I mentioned in John 1426, that Jesus speaks to his actual disciples. And he says to them, guess what, when I go away, what will happen, I will send to you the Holy Spirit. And he will put into remembrance to you what I've said to his actual disciples, that that was not Muhammad, be speaking to the actual disciples. And he's telling them that what he said to them will be preserved. In Mark 13, I showed you quite clearly, verse 31,
it says, quite clearly Jesus speaking Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words will remain.
The arguments that we heard tonight, it's quite clear, it's stating that Jesus lied.
Well, in fact, it says that Jesus lived there. And therefore, you know, we're not going to accept that, that he said it because he said that it doesn't fit the Quran.
I don't know about you, but I want to know for sure that when God speaks, God assures us that what he says is true. And it is preserved. And that is what we find in the Quran, the New Testament, and in the Old Testament, we will look at the first Christian fathers, their understanding of this emergence of the New Testament, I repeat it often it's not them that chose the books, they merely recognize the books which God has put in place. So therefore, the product of the New Testament canon, and the 27th book, New Testament canon in itself, is a product of God. God laid it out based on authority and and made the right statement. He said, It sounds very circular. I know it does. But
it also sounds circular. When you say the Quran says that the Quran is the word of God, he uses the same argument. But we all have a worldview that we come from. And the worldview I started with tonight was this. We believe that God has spoken all of us. But we believe that God can preserve his word, and therefore, I'm gonna go with what God said. And when I read what Jesus said about himself, when I read what the Quran says favorably about the New Testament, I'm gonna believe what it says. And it says that it's favorable, it's trustworthy, and it is true.
I want to ask you a question. If you study history, and you look at the difference between tariffs and non tariff on us, and the way in which Muslims believed, historically, the Bible is changed. Why and the first earlier dispensations of the Muslim era, it's unanimous. They believe that that the Jews in actual fact, we look at pseudo Majda chapter five, the commentary they always is that they change something in the text, they hid it away from the prophet by putting their hands on it, and hiding it from the Prophet. It was never what we hear tonight takes us out of the Bible and, and things being abrogated no way in the world. Will a Christian agree with the fact that God's word can
simply be changed, we believe God kept it in check, even Mohammed, when he refers to the end Zealanders abode. And when he refers to the door on Injeel, in his day, we know what it looked like, because we've got manuscripts that dated that day, in the fifth century in the sixth century. So what can we say about the Word of God? Well, first of all, I believe that what God has said is preserved, and it is God's word, because God said, so.
All of these different Bibles that is mentioned, show me a church that's got variant beliefs. All of us believe the same thing. All of the Orthodox Church globally believed in the same doctrines. Do we have different nuances about it? Are they certainly radical groups? Yes, they are. But they're also sects in Islam. There are also various beliefs and the Muslims. Should we dispel Orthodoxy in the Quran because of it? No, that's not an argument. God has spoken, and therefore we can believe what God said. Thank you Pastor. Your five minutes
Thank you very much.
Can I thank each and every one of you for having come out this evening? It was I think, stimulating debate. I must thank besides the audience, the speakers, both pastor Rudolph and all start at none. for spending time with us. I think it was a stimulating Summit is thanking will start for the coin and the book. I think it's a fantastic gesture. I must thank the zeta Parker for for hosting at none.
Over this period, I must thank Dr. Ilyas Parker. He arranged almost everything that we have had here today. Thank you very much next time