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CHAPTER SIX

WRITINGS OF Church Fathers

A further witness to the New Testament text is sourced in the thousands of quotations found throughout the writings of the Church Fathers (the early Christian clergy [100-450 A.D.] who followed the Apostles and gave leadership to the fledgling church, beginning with Clement of Rome (96 A.D.).

 

The following is taken from: http://www.datingthenewtestament.com/Fathers.htm

"Ignatius of Antioch (35-107 A.D.) was a student of the Apostle John. He was martyred, killed by Lions in the arena in Rome. After his arrest and during his transportation to Rome, he wrote seven letters (later, some obviously spurious additional letters were attributed to him – these are ignored here). The letters of Ignatius, written very close to 107 A.D., quote from several New Testament books.  ...... Below are some New Testament quotations of Ignatius. For each letter, the chapter is given, followed by the New Testament reference. This is not at all an exhaustive list, just representative of books Ignatius uses.

Letter of Ignatius to the Ephesians

·  2 – John 8:29

·  3 – John 17:11-12

·  5 – James 4:6

·  6 – names Onesimus, as in Philemon

·  6 – John 1:14

·  7 - 1 Tim 4:10

·  8 – 1 Pet 2:9

·  9 – Matt 5:2, 2 Tim 2:24-25, Luke 23:34

·  11 – Rom 2:4

·  12 – Matt 23:35, Acts 9:15

·  13 – Eph 6:16, 6:12

·  14 – Luke 10:27, Matt 12:33

·  15 – 1 Cor 4:20, Rom 10:10, 2 Cor 8:18

·  16 – 2 Cor 6:14-16

·  18 – 1 Cor 1:20

Letter of Ignatius to the Magnesians

·  3 – 1 Tim 4:12

·  4 – Luke 6:46

·  8 – 2 Cor 5:17, mentions Judaizers

·  9 – 2 Thess 3:10, Phil 3:18-19, 2 Tim 3:4

·  10 – Acts 11:26

Letter of Ignatius to the Trallians

·  9 – Heb 10:12-13

·  11 – warns of "Nicolaitanes"

Letter of Ignatius to the Romans

·  2 – 2 Cor 4:18

·  7 – Gal 2:20

Letter of Ignatius to the Philadelphians

·  2 – 2 Tim 3:6

·  6 – “dragon Nicolaitanes"

Letter of Ignatius to the Smyrnans

·  3 – Maybe Rev 1:7

Among New Testament writings, Ignatius quotes from the Gospels of Matthew, Luke, John, and most of the letters of Paul, including 2 Timothy, which is sometimes considered a late book. He also uses Acts, Hebrews, James and 1 Peter.  .....

Clement of Rome is recognized by the Catholic Church as being Bishop of Rome from 88 to 99 A.D., though some writers believe he may have led the Roman Church during the persecution under Nero shortly after 64 A.D. He may be the Clement mentioned in Philippians 4:3.  ....

1 Clement was written from the Church in Rome to the Church in Corinth.  ..... I would favor a date for 1 Clement between 65-70 A.D.   Below are some New Testament references in 1 Clement, ordered by chapter number:

  2 – Titus 3:1, Acts 20:35

  7 – 1 Pet 3:20, 2 Pet 2:5

  9 – Heb 11:5

  34 – Quotes 1 Cor 2:9 and calls it scripture

  35 – Rom 1:32

  36 – Heb 1:3-4

  37 and 38 – Church as a body metaphor, as in 1 Corinthians

  46 – James 4:1

  46 – Jesus' “millstone” quote (which is present in Matthew, Mark and Luke)

  49 – James 5:20

........ He clearly uses both Romans and Corinthians, which would be appropriate in a letter from Rome to Corinth. He also uses Acts, Titus, Hebrews, James, and 1-2 Peter. The usage of Titus and 2 Peter is significant, since those are often considered late books. "

"Of the four gospels alone there are 19,368 citations by the church fathers from the late first century on.

This includes
268 by Justin Martyr (100-165),
1038 by Ireneaus (active in the late second century),
1017 by Clement of Alexandria (ca. 155-ca. 220),
9231 by Origen (ca. 185-ca. 254),
3822 by Tertullian (ca. 160s-ca. 220),
734 by Hippolytus (d. ca. 236) and
3258 by Eusebius (ca. 265-ca. 339…)

Earlier, Clement of Rome cited Matthew, John, 1 Corinthians in 95 to 97.
Ignatius referred to six Pauline Epistles in about 110, and
between 110 and 150 Polycarp quoted from all four Gospels, Acts and most of Paul's Epistles.
Shepherd of Hermas (115-140) cited Matthew, Mark, Acts, I Corinthians, and other books.
Didache (120-150) referred to Matthew, Luke, I Corinthians, and other books.
Papias, companion of Polycarp, who was a disciple of the apostle John, quoted John.
This argues powerfully that the Gospels were in existence before the end of the first century, while some eyewitnesses (including John) were still alive."
(Norman Geisler, Encyclopedia, pp. 529-530)

In their book "A General Introduction To The Bible" Geisler and Nix estimate that there are over 36,000 references or citations by the Fathers of the New Testament.

"Dean Burgon in his research found in all 86,489 quotes from the early church fathers (McDowell 1990:47-48; 1991:52).

 

In fact, there are 32,000 quotations from the New Testament found in writings from before the council of Nicea in 325 A.D. (Mcdowell Evidence, 1972:52).

 

J. Harold Greenlee points out that the quotations of the scripture in the works of the early church writers are so extensive that the New Testament could virtually be reconstructed from them without the use of New Testament manuscripts.

 

Sir David Dalrymple sought to do this, and from the second and third century writings of the church fathers he found the entire New Testament quoted except for eleven verses(McDowell 1972:50-51; 1990:48)!

 

Thus, we could throw the New Testament manuscripts away and still reconstruct it with the simple help of these letters. (from McDowell's Evidence..., 1972 pg. 51):" http://debate.org.uk/topics/history/bib-qur/bibmanu.htm


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New%20Testament%20Evidences/New%20Testament%20Evidences%20Chapter%201.pdf