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By J. Gresham Machen

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8. J. Weiss, “Des Problem der Entstehung des Christentums,” in Archiv fur Religionswissenschaft? xvi. 1913, p. 466. See the Origin of Paul’s Religion, 1921, p. 156. 9. For what follows compare A Rapid Survey of the History and Literature of New Testament Times, published by the Presbyterian Board of Publication and Sabbath School Work, Teacher’s Manual, pp. 44f. 36 Chapter 3 “God & Man” It has been observed in the last chapter that Christianity is based on an account of something that happened in the first century of our era.

But what is substituted for the Christian view of the Bible? 2 The impression is sometimes produced that the modern liberal substitutes for the authority of the Bible the authority of Christ. He cannot accept, he says, what he regards as the perverse moral teaching of the Old Testament or the sophistical arguments of Paul. But he regards himself as being the true Christian because, rejecting the rest of the Bible, he depends upon Jesus alone. This impression, however, is utterly false. The modern liberal does not really hold to the authority of Jesus.

But again we can make trial of it, and making trial of it we discover that Jesus is truly a living Savior today. But at this point a fatal error lies in wait. It is one of the root errors of modern liberalism. Christian experience, we have just said, is useful as confirming the gospel message. But because it is necessary, many men have jumped to the conclusion that it is all that is necessary. Having a present experience of Christ in the heart, may we not, it is said, hold that experience no matter what history may tell us as to the events of the first Easter morning?

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