Buy truth, and do not sell it;
buy wisdom, instruction, and understanding. Proverbs 23:23
Dear friends, we must buy truth even if the price is ever so dear. Every parcel of truth is precious, as the filings of gold. We must either live with it, or die for it. As Ruth said to Naomi, may gracious spirits say, ‘Where truth goes, I will go, and where truth lodges, I will lodge, and nothing but death shall part me and truth.’ A man may lawfully sell his house, land, and jewels, but truth exceeds all prices, and must not be sold. It is our heritage and joy (Psa. 119:111). Our forefathers have brought truth with their blood. We should be willing to lay down anything that we may purchase this precious pearl. It is worth more than the heavens and the earth, and it will make men live happily, die comfortably, and reign eternally. In seeking truth, remember it is not hasty reading, but serious meditating upon holy and heavenly truths that make them sweet and profitable to the soul. It is not the bee’s brief touching of the flower, but her abiding upon the flower that draws out the sweet. It is not he that reads most, but he that meditates most, that will prove the sweetest, wisest, and strongest Christian. Also, it is not the knowing, talking, and reading man, but the doing man that will at last be found the happiest man. If you know these things, happy are you if you do them. Judas called Christ Lord, and yet betrayed him. How many Judases kiss Christ, and yet betray him; in their words profess him, but in their works deny him; they bow their knees to him, and yet in their hearts despise him; they call him Jesus, and obey him not as Lord. Read and labour to know, but that you may do, or else you are undone forever. You will have two heavens – a heaven of joy, peace, and comfort on earth, and a heaven of glory and happiness after death.
The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable?
Can we trust the New Testament? Hasn’t it all been disproved? Doesn’t modern scholarship show that it was all made up much later, so that the supposedly historical foundations of Christianity are in fact a figment of the imagination?
This sort of thing is said so often in the media, in some churches, and in public life in general that many people take it for granted that nothing can be said on the other side. But, as so often, this is where careful, accurate historical scholarship of the type in which F.F. Bruce excelled has a quiet, thorough, and complete answer. Yes we can trust the New Testament. For a start, the documents themselves—the manuscripts from which our knowledge of the New Testament comes— are in far, far better shape than the manuscripts of any other work from the ancient world, by a very long way. Examine the New Testament, and you’ll find that our knowledge of it rests on a very large number of manuscripts, several hundred in fact, which go back as far, in some cases, as the early second century, less than a hundred years after the books were first written. There is better evidence for the New Testament than for any other ancient book.
This Modern Classic in the Field of New Testament Studies offers a compelling defense of biblical truth. F. F. Bruce, one of evangelicalism’s most respected scholars, makes a clear case for the historical trustworthiness of the Christian Scriptures, drawing on evidence from the New Testament documents themselves as well as extra-biblical sources. Concise chapters explore the canon and dating of the New Testament, the nature of the Gospels (including a look at miracles), the life and writings of Paul, and archaeological and literary evidence. Including here a completely updated bibliography. Bruce’s long-standing affirmation of the New Testament is still as authoritative and engaging as ever.
“Fred Bruce was a tower of strength in the worlds of scholarship and faith, and in particularto those who, like him, were and are determined not to separate the two. There are many recent books which explore the New Testament from a wide variety of angles. But this book is far from being out of date. Indeed, it remains one of the best popular introductions [to the topic of New Testament critical study] available. Enjoy it; think about it; use it as the basis for further exploration.” —N.T. Wright
Paperback; 149 pages