How reliable is the New Testament and what manuscripts do we have that prove it’s correct? It will surprise most people to know that there are thousands more manuscripts than any other historical figure we know, like Plato.
The Old Testament has been well preserved by the Jews and there are translations in Greek and Aramaic. To complete the Christian Bible we need to New Testament on the Good News from Jesus Christ.
God has kept manuscripts for us hidden in the form of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Even though we are now further in time from the event, we have more evidence available to us in this critical time.
Because the Bible is scrutinised so much, here is evidence of the historical manuscripts that are available, from the date it was written – the earliest copy that we have – the time from which it was written, to the number of copies we have.
Compare the manuscripts that we have available to go from and the number of years from the event taking place. This evidence goes to prove the worth of the Bible and the message that it carries.
Table of Manuscripts: New Testament Bible Evidence
|Author/Book||Date Written||Earliest Copy||From Time of Event – Years||Number of Copies|
|Pliny||61-113 AD||850 AD||750||7|
|Plato||427-347 BC||900 AD||1200||7|
|Demosthenes||400 BC||1100 AD||1500||8|
|Herodotus||480-425 BC||900 AD||1300||8|
|Thucydides||460-400 BC||900 AD||1300||8|
|Caesar||100-44 BC||900 AD||1000||10|
|Livy||59 BC-17 AD||1500 AD||1500||20|
|Tacitus||100 AD||1100 AD||1000||20|
|Aristotle||384-322 BC||1100 AD||1400||49|
|Sophocies||496-406 BC||100 AD||1400||193|
|Homer – Iliad||900 BC||400 BC||500||643|
|New Testament||50-100 AD||120 AD||<100||5800|
And the winner is… The New Testament! Any of the other sources will be cited by scholars as evidence without question, but when it comes to the Bible, people will try all sorts of dancing and sliding to deny what is true. Nobody would ever imagine questioning someone about Plato’s work and its history.
Imagine someone quotes Plato and you say, are you sure that was him that said it, is it accurate? They’d say what does it matter. We are talking about more of a fundamental question than philosophy, the matter of religion is life or death.
For non-believers, it is good to know that the information you are reading has been treasured for millenniums – and with good reason.
It is good information to have as a believer to refute claims from other religions that there is no historical evidence, when in fact there are more than any other source. Be sure to remember the last line along with some others scriptures so that you stand on strong ground when you need to defend your faith.
“”Everyone therefore who hears these words of mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man, who built his house on a rock.””