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The Real Jesus: Introduction (2 of 10)

Here is the latest video podcast. The following is from the Real Jesus script.

Read the whole script at: http//www.forerunner.com/realjesus/part1.html

A Response to Peter Jennings’ The Search for Jesus

On June 26, 2000, ABC television aired The Search for Jesus, a two hour-long special hosted by Peter Jennings. The program took viewers to Israel and interviewed locals, Christian pastors, clergymen and laymen, but Jennings focused mainly on seven experts in the field of researching the historical Jesus.

Four out of seven experts interviewed by Jennings hailed from the Jesus Seminar, a group of scholars who make it their life cause to disprove the divinity of Jesus. The other three “experts” interviewed in the program were also skeptics.

Jesus Seminar

There were a few voices of genuine faith in the Jesus of the Bible. But most of the so-called experts were liberal theologians, that is, those who do not believe the Bible to be the inspired and inerrant Word of God. Absent from the program were the great number of well-known and credible historians who have a deep, committed faith in the inerrancy of scripture and the deity of Jesus Christ.

Liberal Theology: The Higher Critical Method

The Search for Jesus relied almost solely on a school of thought called liberal theology or the Historical Critical Method. At the end of the 19th century, a school of liberal theologians arose in Germany. They were called the higher critics. Their proclaimed goal was to isolate the “historical Jesus” from the “God-man” who has been worshipped and adored by the Church for two millennia.

The divinity of Jesus Christ was presumed to be a myth. His many miraculous works were deemed to be legend. The circumstances of His life, His teachings and works were brought into doubt. The effect of these apostates has grown to the current day as they have stripped layer upon layer from the Jesus of the Bible, until they now have a common man.

The claims of the higher critics are nothing new. In the first and second centuries, early Christians had to deal with ridicule and abuse from Jewish rabbis and intellectual skepticism from Greek scholars and philosophers.

Throughout the early centuries, bold apologists for the Christian faith, such as Irenaeus, Tertullian and Justin Martyr, wrote volumes of practical wisdom defending the Gospel from the attacks of pagan critics. Succeeding centuries gave the Church many other brilliant experts in apologetics. But once Christianity had taken hold of the western world, a new breed of skeptics arose out of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment.

“Voltaire, the noted French infidel who died in 1778, said that in one hundred years from his time, Christianity would be swept from existence and passed into history. But what has happened? Voltaire has passed into history, while the circulation of the Bible continues to increase in almost all parts of the world, carrying blessing wherever it goes” (Sidney Collett, All About the Bible).

“Only 50 years after Voltaire’s death, the Geneva Bible Society used his press and house to produce stacks of Bibles” (Geisler and Nix, A General Introduction to the Bible) a great irony of history!

The early American patriot, Thomas Paine, published Age of Reason, a popular book ridiculing Christianity. Although Paine was a Deist and not an atheist, he popularized the theory that the books of the Bible, especially the Gospels, were full of contradictions. This view continues to be popular among scholars even to this day.

In the 1800s, rationalists such as Hermann Samuel Reimarus and David Strauss published sensational works denying the supernatural miracles of the Bible. The philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche, who coined the phrase, “God is dead,” is said to have lost his faith around the time he was reading Strauss’s Life of Jesus Critically Examined.

The Jesus Seminar: Liberal Theology Repackaged

Most recently there was the Jesus Seminar, a council of liberal theologians who meet twice a year in an attempt to debunk the accuracy of the Gospels. Many of their “discoveries” are simply repeats of what the liberal theologians of the 19th century said. Strangely, these opinions are rigidly held even though 20th century archaeology and textual criticism has refuted many of their claims.

The Jesus Seminar’s attempt to debunk the Gospels as invented history is not based on a thorough examination of the Bible’s manuscripts. Unbiased examinations reveal ample evidence that the Gospel accounts are, in fact, historically accurate. But these “experts” are undaunted by facts. Even today, the skeptics continue to spread the error of a “historical Jesus.”

Archaeological Evidence for the Validity of the Bible

Liberal scholars up until the time of the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls in 1947 assigned a later date to many books of the Old Testament. They rejected the early date of books that accurately predicted the coming of the Messiah, because so many of the prophecies were fulfilled to the letter. Since liberals rejected the supernatural in scripture, they presumed there must have been a later date to the writings that accurately described the life of Jesus. For instance, the second half of Isaiah was deemed to contain forgeries by second century Christians because it contains so many prophecies accurately fulfilled by Jesus’ life and mission.

Then one of the main pillars of liberal theology fell in 1947 with the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls including a complete Isaiah scroll. In his prime time special, Peter Jennings does note that Qumran exists. With the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls, we now have an Old Testament in complete form that existed at least 150 years before Christ. All of the books of the Hebrew Bible except Esther are represented in the Dead Sea Scroll collection. Jennings fails to mention this in his documentary.

Jennings fails to mention that the Dead Sea scrolls give us evidence that the Hebrew Bible has been virtually unchanged over thousands of years, including the famous Isaiah scroll that contains many remarkable prophecies about Jesus the Messiah.

For many years, the Higher Critics held that the Bible both the Old Testament and the New Testament had been altered and changed over the years. Therefore, the critics tried to eliminate the myths and discover the historical Jesus.

The Search for Jesus rejects or ignores all of the archaeological evidence that supports the claims of the Bible. Throughout the special, Jennings ignores the Messianic prophecies of the Old Testament that were fulfilled by Jesus. He also neglects to examine the overwhelming evidence that the New Testament has come down to us in virtually unaltered form.

Your comments are welcome!

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The Beast of Revelation IdentifiedThe Beast of Revelation: Identified (DVD)

Who is the dreaded beast of Revelation?

Now at last, a plausible candidate for this personification of evil incarnate has been identified (or re-identified). Ken Gentry’s insightful analysis of scripture and history is likely to revolutionize your understanding of the book of Revelation — and even more importantly — amplify and energize your entire Christian worldview!

Historical footage and other graphics are used to illustrate the lecture Dr. Gentry presented at the 1999 Ligonier Conference in Orlando, Florida. It is followed by a one-hour question and answer session addressing the key concerns and objections typically raised in response to his position. This presentation also features an introduction that touches on not only the confusion and controversy surrounding this issue — but just why it may well be one of the most significant issues facing the Church today.

Ideal for group meetings, personal Bible study — for anyone who wants to understand the historical context of John’s famous letter “… to the seven churches which are in Asia.” (Revelation 1:4)

Running Time: 145 minutes

$17.95 — ORDER NOW!

(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)

Click here for more information


Amazing GraceAmazing Grace: The History and Theology of Calvinism (DVD)

Download the Free Study Guide!

Just what is Calvinism?

Does this teaching make man a deterministic robot and God the author of sin? What about free will? If the church accepts Calvinism, won’t evangelism be stifled, perhaps even extinguished? How can we balance God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility? What are the differences between historic Calvinism and hyper-Calvinism? Why did men like Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Spurgeon, Whitefield, Edwards and a host of renowned Protestant evangelists embrace the teaching of predestination and election and deny free will theology?

This is the first video documentary that answers these and other related questions. Hosted by Eric Holmberg, this fascinating three-part, four-hour presentation is detailed enough so as to not gloss over the controversy. At the same time, it is broken up into ten “Sunday-school-sized” sections to make the rich content manageable and accessible for the average viewer.

Running Time: 257 minutes

$19.95 — ORDER NOW!

(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)

Click here for more information


The Silent Scream (DVD) Eight Languages

“When the lives of the unborn are snuffed out, they often feel pain, pain that is long and agonizing.” – President Ronald Reagan to National Religious Broadcasters Convention, January 1981

Ronald Reagan became convinced of this as a result of watching The Silent Scream – a movie he considered so powerful and convicting that he screened it at the White House.

The modern technology of real-time ultrasound now reveals the actual responses of a 12-week old fetus to being aborted. As the unborn child attempts to escape the abortionist’s suction curette, her motions can be seen to become desperately agitated and her heart rate doubles. Her mouth opens – as if to scream – but no sound can come out. Her scream doesn’t have to remain silent, however … not if you will become her voice. This newly re-mastered version features eight language tracks and two bonus videos.

“…a high technology “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” arousing public opinion just as Harriet Beecher Stowe’s 1852 antislavery novel ignited the abolitionist movement.” – Sen. Gordon Humphrey, Time Magazine

Languages: English, Spanish, French, South Korean, Chinese, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese

Running Time: 28 minutes

$17.95 — ORDER NOW!

(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)

Click here for more information


Go Stand Speak (DVD)

With “preaching to the lost” being such a basic foundation of Christianity, why do many in the church seem to be apathetic on this issue of preaching in highways and byways of towns and cities?

Is it biblical to stand in the public places of the world and proclaim the gospel, regardless if people want to hear it or not?

Does the Bible really call church pastors, leaders and evangelists to proclaim the gospel in the public square as part of obedience to the Great Commission, or is public preaching something that is outdated and not applicable for our day and age?

These any many other questions are answered in this documentary.

$19.95 — ORDER NOW!

(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)

Click here for more information


Dr. Francis Schaeffer - A Christian Manifesto (DVD)

That Swiss Hermit Strikes Again!

Dr. Schaeffer, who was one of the most influential Christian thinkers in the twentieth century, shows that secular humanism has displaced the Judeo-Christian consensus that once defined our nation’s moral boundaries. Law, education, and medicine have all been reshaped for the worse as a consequence. America’s dominant worldview changed, Schaeffer charges, when Christians weren’t looking.

Schaeffer lists two reasons for evangelical indifference: a false concept of spirituality and fear. He calls on believers to stand against the tyranny and moral chaos that come when humanism reigns-and warns that believers may, at some point, be forced to make the hard choice between obeying God or Caesar. A Christian Manifesto is a thought-provoking and bracing Christian analysis of American culture and the obligation Christians have to engage the culture with the claims of Christ.

$19.95 — ORDER NOW!

(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)

Click here for more information

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