Bruce's article is also available HERE
This short article will focus upon the nativity and infancy stories of Jesus, using exclusively, the Bible. All quotes are taken from the New International Version for clarity of modern readers. The problem with the Bible is that it claims to be internally validated and modern inerrantists insist that it the absolute, error-free, inspired words of the living God. Even non literalist Christians must presuppose that certain aspects in the Bible are factual, or the basis of Christianity has no basis.
The following are what are considered fundamental events that this applies to:
- The physical birth of Jesus
- The physical existence of Jesus as a teacher/prophet
- The physical death of Jesus upon the cross
- The physical resurrection of Jesus
As this article is short, I am only addressing the nativity/infancy narratives. The only evidence attesting to the actual life and work of Jesus is contained entirely in the Gospels of the New Testament. No information that was contemporary of Jesus exists in any form, biblical or secular. What we do have are the four gospels, which were written years afterwards. The issue then is can a reasonable person accept with reasonable certainty of the historical existence of Jesus, based upon the accounts of the gospel?
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Filed Under: Opinion