Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Tuesday, 28 September 2021

The Historicity of the Gospels

I came across a recent video about the historical accuracy in terms of both date and compilation of the four Gospels from The Counsel of Trent. It is a response by Trent Horn to a post from Fr Casey Cole OFM on his Breaking in the Habit site. 

As an historian who would describe himself as a traditionalist Catholic, and even though it is not my specialism, with some knowledge of the history of the first century and the early Church, and also some knowledge of theology and biblical studies I found this an interesting and informative video. It answered the queries that arose in response to what Fr Casey had argued about the dates and authenticity of the Gospels. Breaking in the Habit has had some very good posts about pastoral approaches and Fr Casey has a style that clearly is usually both informed and appealing. However in this recording, as in a few others on occasion, he does appear to have gone a bit off course. The Counsel of Trent provides not only a fraternal correction but a valuable resource for discussions that might arise in one’s life with genuine enquirers or sceptics of one sort or another.

Even if in slightly different ways both presenters would agree about eschewing the concept promulgated by the sixteenth century reformers of Sola Scriptura. Rejecting that type of Biblical fundamentalism does not mean rejecting the authority of Scripture as an authentic record according to the culture of the time in favour of it being a warm folk-memory of a ‘faith community’ ….

The video from Trent Horn can be viewed at Responding to Fr. Casey on the Gospel’s historicity

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