Thursday, May 11, 2006
Acts, History and Mythos
An excellent article by my friend and colleague at the Torrey Honors Institute, Dr. Fred Sanders:
“We had already suffered and been shamefully treated at Philippi,” Paul wrote to the Thessalonians, “but God gave us boldness to declare the gospel to you.” And they had suffered there: as Acts 16 narrates, Paul and Silas were chained and put into prison in Philippi. What kept them from giving in to discouragement? Paul doesn’t report to the Thessalonians the remarkable events in Philippi: How the power of God took them out of their chains and shook open every door in the prison. Even the prison-keeper became a Christian because of what he saw, and the message Paul and Silas brought.
But did any of it really happen?
It’s a question likely to offend anybody who’s accustomed to take the Bible as a truth-telling document. But it’s a live issue for Bible scholars working in the historical-critical mode. In fact, it’s one of the main things to inquire about, and the answer, if you follow an influential stream of scholarship, is no: the earthquake didn’t happen, it was fabricated by Luke to drive home a spiritual point.
Read the Rrest of the article here:http://www.scriptoriumdaily.com/middlebrow/archives/earthquake-of-mythic-proportions-acts-16/#more-95