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Q: According to Protestant New Testament Scholars, can one argue for the inspiration & unity of scripture without using a “theological” claim or method?

Suppose I were to argue for the unity & divine mind behind the creation of scripture… can I argue from prophecy, archeology, geology, topography, language, internal consistency, and all types of connections that the apostles had with each other to show how the Scriptures are the Word of God, without invoking 2 Timothy 3:16?

How do I get beyond a theological claim to show that on an academic level, the Bible is The Word of God?

I ran into this issue recently on a separate Forum, and it makes me wonder.

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    Wouldn't an answer to this question also answer the question "How can one prove the existence of God to non-religious scientists?". Jun 22 at 16:15
  • @RayButterworth Not necessarily, cause I got chided by people who were religious, different forum.
    – Cork88
    Jun 22 at 17:28
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    In case it's of any help to you, a recent issue of Beyond Today Magazine: January–February 2022 has several articles about archæology and prophecy (this issue centering on the destruction of Sodom). The almost-non-religious Let the Stones Speak magazine has many biblical archæology articles every issue. Jun 22 at 18:15

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One way is to find out how an academic non-believer in the Bible came to conclude that it really was the inspired word of God. And if that academic became a Protestant who was not reduced to basing every claim on 2 Timothy 3:16, your criteria would be met.

Pick up the book, "Evidence That Demands a Verdict" by Josh McDowell (revised edition). It does not read like a book because it is a compilation of the author's notes prepared for his lecture series on "Christianity: Hoax or History?" He has laid the material out in note form, so that teachers can write their own term papers, give speeches and inject it into classrooms as material to encourage dialogue and debate.

One student wrote to McDowell, "I used the notes in preparing a speech for an oratory contest. I won, and will be giving the same speech at graduation."

However, McDowell then added, "The proper motivation behind the use of these lecture notes is to glorify and magnify Jesus Christ - not to win an argument." (Preface, page v)

But he does, indeed, deal with the inspiration and unity of scripture in an academic way. He has also written, More Evidence that Demands a Verdict, More Than a Carpenter, and Daniel in the Critics' Den. He has spoken to millions of students and faculty at over 550 universities in 53 countries.

Sources: Revised Edition, Here's Life Publishers, San Bernardino, California, 1979.

More Evidence That Demands A Verdict, Revised edition, Here's Life Publishers, San Bernardino, California, 1981.

New Evidence That Demands A Verdict, Word, Nashville, 1999.

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    Doing the audiobook of “Evidence demands a verdict” today. Good so far, thx for the resource recommendation.
    – Cork88
    Jun 25 at 5:45

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