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The Historical Reliability of Acts

What happens if we compare the book of Acts with other historical works from the same period? What can we learn about the events recorded by Luke from the world of archaeology? On the last program we invited Lydia McGrew to discuss the issue of internal evidence for the authenticity of Acts. On today’s program we’ve invited her back, this time to talk about the issue of “external evidence” that corroborates the historical claims we find throughout Luke’s narrative. Dr. McGrew is the author of Hidden in Plain View as well as The Mirror or the Mask.


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Acts is a wonderful bridge book in two ways. It’s a bridge between the Gospels and the Epistles in the New Testament and it’s a bridge geographically between the world of Palestine, in which the action of the Gospels took place and the larger Mediterranean world of the Roman Empire. In both of those ways, Acts brings us into a wider world, both theologically and geographically. It is written by the same author as the Gospel of Luke, so we can view this author, Luke, as someone who has one hand on Jesus and the other hand on the Apostle Paul. He puts all of this together for us. Therefore, the question becomes rather urgent: “What kind of person was Luke? What kind of author was he?”

Lydia McGrew

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