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The Didache

The Epistle of James as Translated by Brent Walters from the original greek text and read by Dean Bird

The Didache as read by Dean Bird of Trinity Cathedral in San Jose  

The New Testament and Its Text

 

One challenge associated with communicating the meaning of scripture is explaining the importance of authorship, audience, and authenticity. Regarding the latter, every religious tradition separates accepted from rejected, genuine from forged, and legendary from historical documents. The early church was no exception, for the New Testament was gradually assembled as certain texts were acknowledged as representing the authentic message of Jesus and the apostles. This process developed regionally until a few documents were imbued with unique authority while others were considered to possess less historical or theological consistency with the initial first-century movement.

Out of this provincial approach arose a set of texts embodying the quintessential source for doctrine and practice. The term used for such a catalog is “canon,” for these works were regarded as reliable and central to the core instruction of local church leaders. This notion evolved over four centuries until a definitive standard emerged, but it was never the decision of a single individual or council. Since no original form of any biblical book survived, what remains are copies of copies, and as a result “textual criticism” was crucial to assure their veracity. This refers to the scientific method used to evaluate 25,000 manuscripts and fragments in order to isolate scribal errors that were inadvertently introduced into the text.

This podcast discusses whether or not the New Testament is accurate and trustworthy and describes the criteria used to establish it as authentic. It is entitled “The New Testament and Its Text,” and is comprised of four main headings: 1) the canon, 2) transmission of the text, 3) biblical interpretation, and 4) biblical inspiration. If this topic is of interest to you, learn more about three recommended books on the canon of scripture, http://www.didache.com/recommended-books, and obtain a biography for each writer, http://www.didache.com/scholars.

To listen to a three-minute sample of the podcast, visit:

The seventy-seven minute audio podcast is nearly identical to the twenty-three page written transcript, and both are offered as separate downloads.

Click here for instructions: http://www.didache.com/instructions/.

The seventy-seven minute audio podcast is nearly identical to the twenty-three page written transcript, and both are offered as separate downloads.

Click here for instructions: http://www.didache.com/instructions/.

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