In my previous post I talked about evangelicals who argue that if I had only had the right understanding of evangelical theology, I would not have left the faith once I realized my (errant) views were problematic. I would say that this is true of the video about me that Kurt Jaros posted a couple of weeks ago, here: https://ehrmanblog.org/did-i-have-an-errant-view-of-inerrancy-guest-video-post-by-kurt-jaros-5/
I have enjoyed Kurt’s video posts on the blog very much and really appreciate him setting the record straight for evangelicals who have misunderstood or misrepresented my views on textual criticism. And I decidedly do NOT think that he has “misrepresented” my views about inspiration (the views of the “young Ehrman”). But I do think he misunderstood them. He inferred from things I said that I must have held views that in fact I did not hold.
The issue has to with the fact that we have so many manuscripts of the New Testament but there are so many *differences* among them. Kurt says that when I was shocked to learn this, it directly led me to reject the inspiration of the Bible. I can see how that is the inference he might draw, but it’s not right.
The way Kurt puts it is this: as a fundamentalist I must have believed not only in the Verbal Plenary Inspiration of Scripture (the view that God inspired the words of the entire Scripture) but the Verbal Plenary Preservation of Scripture (that God had preserved the very words he inspired). And so, once I realized the words were not preserved – since our manuscripts have so many differences in them – I came to think they must not have been inspired in the first place. That, he says, was a serious mistake: the evangelical understanding of Scripture is NOT that God preserved the text, and so realizing that he had NOT done so should have had no bearing on my view that he had inspired it.
The problem is that I NEVER – even
This post is not so important for my experience, but for understanding the real problems with conservative evangelical beliefs, in my opinion. Interested? Join the blog and keep reading! Click here for membership options