Dating greek manuscripts
But it also based on the belief that it is an accurate historical record written by men who experienced the lives of Jesus and the apostles firsthand.
But some have challenged this traditional view, arguing that it was written much later, long after Jesus' original followers were dead and Christianity had transformed into a different religion than the one taught by Jesus of Nazareth.
In fact, "there is not a single copy wholly free from mistakes." That said, the variances are theologically inconsequential and the vast majority don't affect translation.
It is the task of textual criticism, therefore, to study and compare the available manuscripts in order to discern which of the variations conforms the closest to the original.
However, a large number of ancient manuscript copies have been discovered, and modern translations of the New Testament are based on these copies.
As one would expect, they contain some scribal errors.
The article that follows provides an overview of the most important New Testament manuscripts that have been discovered and outlines the process used to analyze those manuscripts.
No original manuscripts of the original Greek New Testament have been found.
The textual critic seeks to ascertain from the divergent copies which form of the text should be regarded as most nearly conforming to the original.In some cases the evidence will be found to be so evenly divided that it is extremely difficult to decide between two variant readings.In other instances, however, the critic can arrive at a decision based on more or less compelling reasons for preferring one reading and rejecting another.This makes it a very important little manuscript, because John has been almost unanimously held by scholars to be the latest of the four gospels.So if copies of John were in circulation by 125, the others must have been written considerably earlier.