Reply to Chris Pinto on Tares Amongst the Wheat

By Cris Putnam
TaresIn reply to Chris Pinto: http://www.noiseofthunder.com/articles/2013/9/12/the-cris-putnam-review.html

I would like to thank Chris Pinto for his civility in engaging my questions and concerns. My difficulty with the alleged conspiracy is the lack of a discernible pay off for the conspirator. Pinto clarified that the purpose of the conspiracy was simply to undermine Sola Scriptura, the reformation doctrine that “scripture alone” as the standard for Christian faith and practice by way of calling biblical inerrancy into question and, as a result, to promote the ecumenical movement toward a one world religion. First he clarified that the film is centered on German scholar, Constantine von Tischendorf and his discovery of Codex Sinaiticus and then he connects this to Rome’s agenda to undermine inerrancy. Pinto writes:

Second, the purpose of Rome (as we understand it) was not to promote Catholic theology, but rather to destabilize the foundation of the Biblical record by shattering the concept of Biblical inerrancy.  Her reason for doing this was to open the door to ecumenical compromise and the promotion of a one world religious movement.  This is why the film ends showing the Parliament of World Religions in 1893.  This was the beginning of the modern day ecumenical movement, the promotion of the idea that there are many paths to finding God, and that Christianity should be seen as just one religion among many.

I do not understand how a manuscript copy can possibly shatter the concept of biblical inerrancy. Accordingly, I am concerned that Pinto’s definition of inerrancy is too fragile. Protestant theologians widely agree that inerrancy applies exclusively to the original autographs by the first century writers like Paul and John. The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy was formulated in October 1978 by more than two hundred evangelical leaders at a conference sponsored by the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy (ICBI), held in Chicago. Article X states:

     We affirm that inspiration, strictly speaking, applies only to the autographic text of Scripture, which in the providence of God can be ascertained from available manuscripts with great accuracy. We further affirm that copies and translations of Scripture are the Word of God to the extent that they faithfully represent the original.
We deny that any essential element of the Christian faith is affected by the absence of the autographs. We further deny that this absence renders the assertion of Biblical inerrancy invalid or irrelevant.[1]

Thus, a later copy like Codex Sinaiticus could not really affect the doctrine of inerrancy as it reflects mistakes by later copyists rather than the original inspired authors. In the nineteenth century when Tares claims this conspiracy was being perpetrated there is evidence to the contrary.

In his encyclical Providentissimus Deus (On the Study of Holy Scripture), Pope Leo XIII emphasized that the Bible in all its parts was inspired:

Because the Holy Ghost employed men as His instruments, we cannot therefore say that it was these inspired instruments who, perchance, have fallen into error, and not the primary author. For, by supernatural power, He so moved and impelled them to write-He was so present to them-that the things which He ordered, and those only, they, first, rightly understood, then willed faithfully to write down, and finally expressed in apt words and with infallible truth. [2]

Why would the Pope write this if there was a long term plan to undermine the Bible?  This encyclical, dated November 18, 1893, was written to specifically refute what Pinto claims Rome was promoting.  Seeing the threat of Darwinism, Pope Leo XIII wrote that true science cannot contradict scripture when it is properly explained and that what seems to be proved by science can turn out to be wrong. The idea that Rome had an organized agenda to discredit the Bible and promote Darwinism at this point in history is not supported by the evidence albeit that developed later in twentieth century as documented in Exo-Vaticana.  Of course Rome has now fully embraced the Darwinian ideas that Leo XIII was standing against, an inconsistency that counts against the notion of an infallible papacy and teaching magisterium.

On the Text-type Argument

It seems inconsistent for him to quote scholars like Bruce Metzger to dispute the text type argument because textual scholars agree that Codex Sinaiticus is authentic. The only experts in Tares are KJVonlyists. So if he is willing to use the authority of Metzger to dispute the existence of text types, why not accept it for Sinaiticus? Metzger wrote that Sinaitics is an ancient, handwritten unical copy of the Greek Bible.[2a] Furthermore, Metzger expressed technical arguments over text types, which he thought to be an oversimplification, it doesn’t dismiss my previous point. Sinaiticus matches so many known ancient sources it renders the forgery claim implausible. Even so, it is widely accepted in general terms that there are three basic manuscript families. I am concerned that neither of us is qualified to accurately discuss the issues involved in textual criticism. Here is in excerpt from Dr. David Allen Black and Thomas D. Lea’s seminary level textbook The New Testament: it’s background and Message:

The Practice of Textual Criticism

Textual scholars have developed rules for carrying out their studies to arrive at the best reading. Of course, these principles cannot be applied unthinkingly, nor do all apply in each instance of textual variation. These principles are based either upon the external evidence or the internal evidence.

External evidence seeks to determine which reading is supported by the most reliable witnesses (i.e., the Greek manuscripts, versions, and Church Fathers). These witnesses have been divided into three basic families or “texttypes”: the Alexandrian, the Western, and the Byzantine. Most modern scholars believe the Alexandrian text most closely approximates the original text of the New Testament. Other scholars prefer the Byzantine text.

The basic principles of external evidence include the following: (1) prefer the reading attested by the oldest manuscripts; (2) prefer the reading that is the most widespread geographically; and (3) prefer the reading supported by the most number of texttypes.

The basic principle of internal evidence is that the reading from which the other readings could most easily have arisen is probably original. This principle has several corollaries: (1) prefer the shorter reading; (2) prefer the more difficult reading; (3) prefer the reading that best fits the author’s style and diction; and (4) prefer the reading that best fits the context.

As we have said, the application of these principles is not a merely mechanical process. Skill and judgment are demanded in assessing the evidence and in determining the most probable reading.

We can be grateful that the materials for the practice of New Testament textual criticism are quite numerous. By contrast, the materials for determining the text of the writings of Plato or the Roman poet Virgil are few in number and are separated from the originals by as much as fourteen hundred years. New Testament textual criticism has assisted us by providing access to substantially the same text which the first-century writers produced.[3]

The goal of text criticism is to get back to the original autographs and because archeologists have discovered thousands more ancient sources since the reformation period, today’s scholars are in a much better position to make these determinations than a Roman Catholic monk like Erasmus working with only six late copies and the Latin Vulgate. I want to put the best defense forward in arguing for the veracity of scripture and modern conservative scholarship is our strongest ally. Pinto’s movie calls it all into question.

Playing Into the Hands of Bible Skeptics

As someone with training in apologetics, I have familiarized myself with the basics in order to address the claims popularized by Dr. Bart Ehrman, author of books like: Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don’t Know About Them); Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why; Forged: Writing in the Name of God–Why the Bible’s Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are. As one can readily see from the titles, Ehrman has made a career out of attacking the veracity of scripture.  Scholars like David Allen Black and Daniel Wallace are evangelical champions of Biblical inerrancy and are uniquely qualified to address the likes of Ehrman.  I highly recommend the following video:



Unfortunately, it seems that often skeptics have a better grasp on text-critical issues than the average believer. Often Ehrman’s arguments are used to destroy the uninformed believer’s faith.  I am concerned that Pinto’s film Tares Amongst the Wheat plays right into the hands of these skeptics by promoting widely discredited scholarship from Textus Receptus advocates. Without going into specifics here, a modicum of open-minded research should dispel the notion that Textus Receptus is superior.[4] Textus Receptus was compiled by Erasmus, a Roman Catholic scholar, using only six very late manuscripts and even back translation from the Latin Vulgate when he was missing a Greek source.[5] Doesn’t it seem inconsistent that Protestant scholars like Daniel Wallace and James White are disputed in order to exalt the work of the Catholic monk Erasmus?

Putnam asked: Where’s the payoff for Rome?

The answer to his question is the ecumenical movement.  The answer could be seen in the ecumenical activities of Billy Graham in the 20th century, joining with Catholic priests and nuns in his crusades, or in the 1994 document Evangelicals and Catholics Together.  With this, it could also be seen in Assisi, Italy in 1986 when Pope John Paul II met with religious leaders from all over the world, with Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, American Indian Shamans, etc.  As he joined hands with them in prayer he told them, “We are all praying to the same God.”  An inerrant Bible that is taken too literally would be destructive of unity between the various “Christian” groups, and the differing religions of the world.  Destroying the concept of Biblical inerrancy opens the door to compromise and apostasy through ecumenism

Pinto argues that modern biblical scholarship undermined inerrancy and this led to the ecumenical movement. However, he failed to show any evidence for this connection. It seems to me that the rise of Darwinian evolution did the damage rather than biblical scholarship. It also seems like the Roman Catholic Church is in decline. If they are really going to lead a global religion then a non-linear event of transcendent proportion will need to occur (this is the reasoning behind Exo-Vaticana). Although I do not agree with Evangelicals and Catholics Together (along with John MacArthur and R.C. Sproul who I quoted in Petrus Romanus ), correlation does not equate to causation. Even so, most of those who did sign it like Billy Graham and Charles Colson also affirm biblical inerrancy. So the argument is a non sequitur—it just doesn’t follow. My original criticism stands, Tares Amongst the Wheat is a conspiracy theory without an actual conspiracy and, unfortunately, I am more concerned that it undermines conservative evangelical biblical scholarship which is our best line of defense in an increasingly anti-Christian culture.

 


[1] The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy: http://www.spurgeon.org/~phil/creeds/chicago.htm (accessed September 18, 2013).

[2]  Pope Leo XIII “On the Study of Holy Scripture”,  http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/leo_xiii/encyclicals/documents/hf_l-xiii_enc_18111893_providentissimus-deus_en.html (accessed September 18, 2013).

[2a]  Bruce Metzger & Bart D. Ehrman  The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism, (New York – Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005)  62.

[3]Thomas D. Lea and David Alan Black, The New Testament: Its Background and Message, 2nd ed. (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2003), 77–78.

[4] Douglas S. Chinn and  Robert C. Newman, “Demystifying the Controversy Over the Textus Receptus and The King James Version of the Bible” KJVOnly.org, http://www.kjvonly.org/other/demystify.htm (accessed September 18, 2013).

[5] Metzger, The Text of the New Testament, pp. 99–100; Kurt Aland – Barbara Aland, The Text of the New Testament. An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism,Translated by Erroll F. Rhodes. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1989, 4.

About Cris Putnam
Logos Apologia is the ministry of Cris D. Putnam. The mission of Logos Apologia is to show that logic, science, history and faith are complementary, not contradictory and to bring that life-changing truth to everybody who wants to know.

Comments

  1. Darlene says:

    Mr. Putnam….might I suggest that you take the time to watch Tares Among the Wheat instead of debates about textual criticism. Then you will actually be able to speak to the content of the film.

    Hope that helps.
    Darlene

    PS…I hope this comment doesn’t get lost like my last one did! 🙂

    • Cris Putnam says:

      Darlene, Of course I saw the film. In fact, I had preordered it before it was even finished. I even have friends who acted in it and I have met Chris personally. All of that said, I think it is in error and harms the Christian faith by undermining the hard work done by sincere biblical scholars who love the Lord and have earned the real academic credentials to make informed judgments on these matters. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-aU08OzEGQ

      • k.m says:

        Chris, dont let your pride get in the way, attacking the KJV bible, and saying ESV is better even though its based of codex with 23000 corrections. I believe we have the inspired word of god, the translators for all these new dont believe there are any truly inspired. You also put far too much on people with apparent “real” credentials, all i have to say to that is.

        Romans 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools 23 and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.

        codex sinaticus is corrupting the true word of god

        • Cris Putnam says:

          K.M. — you are a text-book example of the problem. You have no idea what you are talking about. How many variants are in the text used for textus receptus? Are you even aware that they exist? How about over 20 readings in TR that are not in any Greek manuscript (directly from the Latin Vulgate!). Hello?

          Romans 1 is addressing people who deny God exists. It is not exalting ignorance as you seem to think. Ignorance is not a virtue, it does not honor God to make fallacious arguments and misrepresent the facts. In fact, it is a violation of the ninth commandment to bear false witness as you have done.

  2. All TR advocates decry textual criticism because the TR does not hold up to scrutiny. Frankly, Chris Pinto is not a bible scholar, for if he was, he would know that Constantine Simonides’ declaration was loudly and profusely reported as a hoax by bible scholars and pastors back in the 1860s. To rely on a hoaxer to promulgate your weak arguments is shoddy work at best. The KJVOnlyists have used the same tired arguments and now, thanks to the internet, have spread lies concerning the Codex Sinaiticus and have place doubts in good people’s minds.

    To rely on a BBC documentary, an organization that ARE NOT COMPOSED OF BIBLE SCHOLARS, to substantiate your arguments for the TR is poor scholarship. And to state that “Sinaiticus has a total of 23,000 corrections (an average of 30 corrections per page) more than any other manuscript in Biblical history” is misleading – and obviously, Chris Pinto fails to understand textual criticism. In fact, Sinaiticus was the most widely used text for the bible and closest to the time of Jesus than the TR ever was. In addition, if Chris Pinto had taken the time to study textual criticism, he would have know that these 23,000 “corrections” are spelling variants in 99.5% of the cases, and the other 0.5% are not – and they don’t lead to any change in doctrines either.

    We cannot continue to allow “conspiracy theories” to flourish nor their advocates. Thank you Cris, Dr Daniel Wallace, Dr Norm Geisler and Dr James White, just to mention a few, that are very qualified in their fields to rectify these misconceptions.

  3. glenn christopherson says:

    Cris, I appreciate your tone in this response to Chris Pinto’s response. It does seem to me to be quite clear where the payoff for Rome is, if in fact the Codex S. is a forgery. Undermine the Scriptures and people have to rely on the “authority” of the “Church”. The true Church of Christ survived 100 years without Codex S or Codex V so why are so many so vehemently defending this manuscript which, all agree, is filled with corrections. Pinto has, in my view, presented a very compelling case for his suggestion that Rome is using this manuscript to dilute faith in sola scriptura. You rightly note that the doctrine of Biblical inerrancy applies only to the original autographs, but fail to make the link that in that case we could, if we so desired, do away with Codex S altogether and it would have no impact on our understanding of Scripture. Pinto’s careful use of sources at the time the controversy of the 1850’s was happening, trumps modern perspectives that fail to take those contemporary sources into consideration imo.

    • Cris Putnam says:

      Glenn,

      Undermine the Scriptures and people have to rely on the “authority” of the “Church”.

      But Codex S. does not do anything at all to undermine the Scripture and the Catholic church has steadily lost authority and members since then. The 1000s of variants are mostly minor spelling errors and punctuation marks. The Byzantine MS used by Erasmus have many textual variants too! All hand written MS do because copyists make lots of small errors… it’s common but it does not affect the veracity of the Bible in the slightest. This is exactly what makes Pinto’s film is so misleading. It supports the atheist’s arguments. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-aU08OzEGQ

  4. Cris,

    I took the time to debunk the BBC’s claims re: Sinaiticus using the actual text of Sinaiticus. I think you will find this helpful in your dialogue.

    http://www.letterofmarque.us/2013/09/challenging-the-bbcs-higher-critics-misuse-of-codex-sinaiticus.html

  5. Deirdre says:

    Have you all seen this? http://www.trunews.com/pope-francis-says-catholic-church-must-shake-small-minded-rules-abortion-homosexuality/

    And Rick Wiles guest speakers today will be discussing the issue of the lampstand being removed. Just what I posted on the blog about Isaiah 5:9. FATHER have mercy!!!

  6. Amanda K says:

    Hello Chris,

    I love your scholarship and respect your work greatly. I am certainly no scholar, but a student, studying at Chuck Missler’s Institute. Interestingly, my topic for a current discussion question (graded) happens to be the reliability (or not) of the Alexandrian Codices. I have no bias personally but I am eagerly seeking to find the truth about the texts. I tend to be a skeptic of things man produces (and I hear God warning us to do so in His Word) as I also have the impression you are as well – judging from from your diligent research and the far-beyond-surface (though thoroughly documented) connections you make in Exo-Vaticana, and Petrus Romanus.

    So maybe you can be of some help:

    First, I do agree that Pinto’s video cannot prove motive, only suggest it, and you seek to show a body of evidence showing no motive could exist, but can you prove that a motive does not exist simply by dismissing the theory in question as unprovable? His theory indeeds begs the question, but should we throw the question away simply because we cannot prove it?

    Second, I guess I am perplexed that you defend the Alexandrian Codices so adamantly, seeing as they seek to omit the last nine verses of Mark (per Chuck Missler lecture but I do not have a reference for it specifically yet), which testify of the resurrection, a typical Gnostic heresy (not to hard to believe seeing that the texts originated in Alexandria, the center of Gnosticism.). Why is not that reason for alarm and simple wise avoidance in itself?

    Third, could you direct me to documentation proving the following assertions:

    “The 1000s of variants are mostly minor spelling errors and punctuation marks. The Byzantine MS used by Erasmus have many textual variants too! All hand written MS do because copyists make lots of small errors… it’s common but it does not affect the veracity of the Bible in the slightest.” ? Where are the exact “errors” in TR and in CS? Also, how do you prove that “none” of the alleged thousands of errors “affect the veracity of the Bible in the slightest?”

    Next, upon the first effort to research, I found that your key argument that Erasmus was a Roman Catholic Scholar himself does not seen to stand as evidence that he was equally flawed – since he spent much of his time and life on earth dismissing the Roman Catholic false doctrines, which as you are well aware, propagate works for salvation and he relied on grace alone :

    from his Treatise on Preparation for Death:

    We are assured of victory over death, victory over the flesh, victory over the world and Satan. Christ promises us remission of sins, fruits in this life a hundredfold and therefore life eternal. And for what reason? For the sake of our merit? No indeed, but through the grace of faith which is in Christ Jesus…Christ is our justification…I believe there are many not absolved by the priest, not having taken the Eucharist, not having been anointed, not having received Christian burial, who rest in peace. While many who have had all the rites of the Church and have been buried next to the altar, have gone to hell…

    Finally, Cambridge historian Owen Chadwick, in his A History of Christianity, called Erasmus an “ex-monk”, buried in a Protestant cemetary by a Protestant pastor. In your studied opinion, why do you think the The Council of Trent condemned Textus Receptus?

    It’s a bit exhausting to look in to the details – but I suppose the text that one trusts enough to study is an important matter!

    Thanks for pouring your heart into the subject matter Mr. Putnam, few do!

    Amanda (simply looking for the truth)

  7. Scarlock says:

    Hello Cris,

    I commented on your previous post about Tares Among Wheat, which relates to this one.

    Disclaimer: I am a layman who likes to take the stance of “I know nothing” in order to keep learning and growing. I like my viewpoints to be challenged, so that I am forced to dig a solid foundation for my beliefs.

    I am troubled with the hostility, or perhaps just fervour, with which you are defending very questionable details that fall into the secular realm, without including what we know about the subject from within the Holy Bible.

    We have an infallible source of information with a built in authentication system that continuously monitors each and every letter within itself, that is build to survive every single hostile attack against it, from its creation until the end of time without a single letter added or deducted from it. (psalm 12:6-7, Luke 21:33, Mark 13:31)

    So we know that the pure word of God is available to us today, the question is simply then, how do we identify it?
    The reliance on secular wisdom is most certainly not a good idea, but then again leaps in logic are equally ill advised.
    What I find somewhat disturbing is the lack of acknowledgement that there IS a massive co-ordinated conspiracy that has been in operation for over 2000 years, with the intent to deliberately obscure the true word of God and muddy the waters in favour of the corrupted texts to sow confusion and doubt amongst humanity, with Satan himself overseeing the efforts. The prize of this conspiracy… ours and others souls!

    Is Textus Receptus perfect.. NO, there are plenty of well documented errors. Are the Alexandrian codices better… most definitely not, here there are even more disturbing omissions and detectable influences of Satan. age =/= accuracy!

    The rediscovery of God’s heptatic authentication system is of monumental importance to the identification of the original texts. It is a quantifiable system that allows comparison of differing texts and will identify the correct rendering in the original Hebrew / Greek.

    Personally I prefer the KJV, as it has fewer, and more well documented errors, but as always if you want to know exactly what is written you have to go back to the original Hebrew / Greek, which is quite difficult for most of us laymen.

    Keep up the great work!… but beware of the snares of the enemy, as subtle as they are
    As always I appreciate the information you provide.

    • Cris Putnam says:

      Is Textus Receptus perfect.. NO, there are plenty of well documented errors. Are the Alexandrian codices better… most definitely not, here there are even more disturbing omissions and detectable influences of Satan. age =/= accuracy!

      They cannot be omissions if they were never there to start with. You are just assuming the TR and then comparing it to the older MS. That is circular reasoning. Hence, a fallacy. If all of the oldest sources do not contain a reading that that is a good reason to think it was added later, especially when church history reveals a rationale for making an addition. The verses you claim are omitted like 1 John 5:7 for example, were not likely in the original autographs. If you care enough about truth to understand the other side then read this carefully: https://bible.org/article/why-i-do-not-think-king-james-bible-best-translation-available-today

      • Scarlock says:

        Thanks, I will have a read through that.

        • Scarlock says:

          Very interesting article that has some good points (the Erasmus info is very interesting!), but there is still a strong emphasis on age = accuracy.

          Age = accuracy, while on the surface makes complete sense, it assumes a neutral stance on the scribes, and when dealing with the word of God, there is no such thing as a neutral stance. I would expect deliberate hostile intent both adding to and removing from the scriptures. It is quite reasonable to assume that Satan started corrupting the texts as soon as they were available, so I would expect to see corrupted texts almost as soon as they started circulating.

          Conclusion – the assumption of age = accuracy is very tenuous at best, and I would not stake my life on it.

  8. Nachiima says:

    that the incident in which Jesus is said to be angry in Codex Sinaiticus inlevvos a blind man. No, it’s a *leper.* Mr. Bolton’s fact-checking did not even extend to picking up the New Testament. Maybe he doesn’t have one. But the real error here is that the whole deal about Mark 1:41 is a complete miscitation, because Codex Sinaiticus does not have the “angry Jesus” variant; the only early Greek manuscript that has “orgisqeis” (angry) in Mark 1:41 is the heavily-influenced-by-the-Diatessaron Codex Bezae.And the inaccuracies just keep raining down as fast as Mr. Bolton can find the words to express them! One fact after another is mauled and misrepresented throughout Mr. Bolton’s reports. The BBC should apologize and Mr. Bolton should be fined for imitating a journalist. Yours in Christ,James Snapp, Jr.

  9. Steven Avery says:

    > Cris Putnam
    > 1. The forgery claim was investigated and dismissed in the 19th century. Pinto presented a very one sided case and did not handle any of the counter-arguments.

    The 2009 Codex Sinaiticus Project has helped to absolutely affirm that Sinaiticus was produced c. 1840 (whether as a forgery or replica editions) and that the 1859 pages were coloured (Simonides and Kallinikos said lemon-juice. was used) While the 1844 Leipzig pages remain today a pristine young and young-looking white parchment.

    Codex Sinaiticus authenticity Research
    http://www.sinaiticus.net/

    Sinaiticus – authentic antiquity or modern?
    http://www.purebibleforum.com/forumdisplay.php?f=65

    Today, anyone can see with their own eyes and consideration that Sinaiticus is obviously not a 4th century ms.

    Steven Avery

    • Cris Putnam says:

      Those are obviously KJVonly propaganda sources, no educated scholar believes them, sorry but I think you are misled.

      • Steven Avery says:

        Hi Cris,

        The appeal to authority here is not really relevant, nor is the ho-hum genetic fallacy dismissal. Personally, I argued in favor of authenticity of Sinaiticus until 2013, when I really began to study the evidences. The abject textual and scribal corruption of Sinaiticus is evident whether it was created in the 4th, 6th or 19th century.

        No “educated scholar” has reviewed the controversy about the creation of Sinaiticus in light of the evidences that became available in 2009 by the Codex Sinaiticus Project, relating to the physical condition of the manuscripts. So that appeal to authority falls flat. Similarly the 1982 book by James Keith Elliott, which basically is the representation of modern scholarship, has glaring omissions and weaknesses, even before the new information.

        One of a number of examples, we actually see the “Before and After” of the colouring of the Sinaiticus manuscript from the 1844 heist (now in Leipzig, the Codex Friderico-Augustanus) to that of 1859 (mostly in England today). We can actually see that today in the colours of the leaves, the pristine white parchment of 1844 as well as in the unusual variances in the 1859 colours and staining.

        Beyond that, the whole manuscript is in a “phenomenally good condition”, as described by Helen Stenton of the British Library, one that is incompatible with its supposed heavy use over 1500+ years until its discovery in the 1840s.

        These are hot potato evidence that nobody touches, they are used to simply working with the Tischendorf facsimile, which hides these evidences.

        Cris, I am going to conclude that your personal dismissal was not based on any actual consideration of the evidences.

        If you do ever consider the evidences, I will be very happy to be involved in helping with the discussion and research.

        Thanks!

        Steven Avery
        Dutchess County, NY

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