How do I counter-argue Bart Ehrman's criticism on NT reliability?

Any book recommendations that answers the objections of Bart Ehrman?

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Who is Bart Ehrman?


Okay, so who is Bart Ehrman and why do you need to counter argue the matter?


Bart Ehrman is a brilliant scholar who has written many academic and popular works on biblical textual criticism. He causes much anxiety to biblical fundamentalists but I don’t think much to Catholics who have tradition as well as scripture as their authority. I have read all his popular books, am a member of his blog and have also read some of his texts. I have also read others who critique him but usually without much success. I think the most troublesome aspect of his work to a Catholic is his refutation that predictions and prophecies the Old Testament are liked to events recorded in the new. He is also, incidentally, probably the leading opponent of the mythicists in popular culture who claim Jesus was not a historical person.


What, exactly, does Ehrman say about NT reliability, that you want to refute?.


what a great summary

Here is a book that came out a couple of years ago debunking many of the claims of Ehrman:

Misquoting Jesus

Here is a debate from a few years ago between Bart Ehrman vs Daniel Wallace on the reliability of the New Testament on whether the original NT has been lost:

Ehrman vs Wallace: Has the original NT been lost?

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Do a search on John A.T. Robinson’s work called “Redating the New Testament.”. Read the book by Dr. Brant Pitre called “the case for Jesus,” and also check out the website called “Catholic Productions.”. They have a few CDs in this topic, but for each product they have free outlines of generous length which will help you out.


Read more carefully. He said Ehrman was an OPPONENT of mythicists.


From Mr. Ehrman’s own blog, in his own words. . .

…I got to a point where I just didn’t believe it any more. This wasn’t because I was a biblical scholar who knew that the Bible was deeply flawed as a very human book filled with contradictions, discrepancies, and mistakes. All that was irrelevant. It also wasn’t because I was a historian of early Christianity who realized that traditional Christian faith developed as the result of historical and cultural forces, not divine guidance, that there was a huge variety of conflicting Christian views in its early years, decades, and centuries, and that what we know of Christianity is more or less the result of historical accident. That too was irrelevant.

What was relevant was the very heart of the Christian claim that God loves his people, answers their prayers, and intervenes when they are in need. I came to think there was no such God, and decided that I had no choice but to abandon my faith and leave the Christian tradition.

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He is someone who badly needs prayer (2 Peter 2:20). His arguments are self-refuting by examining the reality of the propagation of the faith. He has shed no blood for his beliefs - rather, he gains financially. Woe to him if he does not repent. Paying attention to such as him (outside of prayer) only serves to strengthen his error.


Historians do sometimes shed blood for their scholarly opinions, but not often, I should imagine. Dr Ehrman is a distinguished scholar of early Christianity, and there is no reason to speak ill of him.

Have you???

In my opinion after reading and watching much of Ehrman’s work, i think he is so brilliant and thorough that he recognized the validity of Newman’s quote “To Be Deep in History Is to Cease to Be Protestant” and with his dislike of Catholicism, left him with no where to be.

I agree, we should pray for him often.



Which objections, specifically? I assume you’re not complaining about his objections to Christ mythers (those who claim Jesus never existed). I’m going to guess that you’re referring to the claims of “Misquoting Jesus” as that was his most famous book and will therefore give responses specific to that book.

However, you say “book recommendations”. Are you looking only for books? Well, I’ll be honest, I haven’t read too many books that handle his book’s thesis specifically, but there are some various articles online which do. If you’re insistent on books, then there is “Misrepresenting Jesus” by Edward Andrews (mentioned by RaisedCatholic) and “Misquoting Truth” by Timothy Paul Jones, both of which are direct responses to Ehrman’s book. However, I have not read either of those and cannot state if they are good or not. “Reinventing Jesus” is not an answer specifically to Ehrman’s book, but I believe does discuss some of his claims. I haven’t read that one either but can more readily recommend it because I have some familiarity with one of the authors (Daniel Wallace) and have enough respect for him that I expect it is therefore good. I think “Dethroning Jesus” (also by Daniel Wallace) covers some of this ground.

Speaking of Daniel Wallace, this brings us to the question of responses that aren’t in books. Daniel Wallace wrote a review of Misquoting Jesus. Well, he wrote two, but one is really meant as an abbreviated version of the other, as mentioned at the start of it: (shorter version) (full version)

There are bloodless martyrs, bloodless martyrdom

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To take up one’s daily cross for love of God, and to accept one’s own death on God’s terms.

In Ehrman’s words, quoted above by @stpurl, that might be the point.

What was relevant was the very heart of the Christian claim that God loves his people, answers their prayers, and intervenes when they are in need. I came to think there was no such God,

Amen Praise God


An overrated scholar whose writings many atheists take as gospel truth because his opinions happen to undermine Scripture.
Despite his popularity, other Biblical scholars point out his errors.

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Every definition of martyrdom I could find includes death as a requirement. The Catechism also requires it.

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