White Horse Inn Modern Reformation

Richard Bauckham on the Reliability of John

Scholars frequently claim that John is the latest and most idealized of all the Gospels. Its picture of Jesus, they say, represents the beliefs of late first century Christians, rather than actual historical events. But is this view consistent with the evidence? What if it could be demonstrated that the author of this text was actually a careful and reliable eyewitness? On this program, we’ll discuss these issues and more with Richard Bauckham, author of Jesus and the Eyewitnesses and The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple.


Why do I think John’s based on an eyewitness  statement? I think it claims to be quite clearly, but you’ll turn to, because it’s easy to say that the whole thing is a fraud and he’s pretending to be an eyewitness. But you can’t take that very far. You see John’s theological claim is that the Word became flesh. The Son of God came into real human history as a real human person. So in a sense, his theological claim requires him to be writing history. Otherwise, the theology would be emptied of its meaning.

Richard Bauckham


“Goal of Apologetics”

[As human beings] we have many objections, barriers, biases, acculturations, conditions, misconceptions, presuppositions, distortion of facts, and any number of excuses. It is the goal of Christian apologetics to remove these hindrances that stand between a person and the cross of Christ. As a result, some Christians see apologetics as pre-evangelism; it is not the gospel, but it prepares the soil for the gospel…. Whatever its relation to the gospel, apologetics is an extremely important enterprise that can profoundly impact unbelievers and be used as the tool that clears the way to faith in Jesus Christ.

(Taken from Doug Powell’s, Holman Quicksource Guide to Christian Apologetics, pp. 5-6)

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