Jeremiah began his ministry at about twenty years of age in the thirteenth year of Josiah, that is, 626 B.C. For the greater part of his life he lived in his hometown of Anathoth (for he was of a priestly family) and appeared at Jerusalem at the annual feast days of the Jewish religious year.
As recently as the eighth edition of Driver’s ILOT, the genuineness of Ezekiel had been accepted as completely authentic by the majority of rationalist critics. But in 1924 Gustav Hoelscher advanced the thesis that only a small fraction of the book was by the historical sixth-century Ezekiel (i.e., only 143 verses out of 1273) and the rest came from some later author living in Jerusalem and contemporaneous with Nehemiah (440–430 b.c.).
Barry Hofstetter and Edward D. Andrews also ask, "What then are the strengths and weaknesses of redaction criticism?" However, they come to two different conclusions.
I am not going to enter into any general tirade against criticism, but it is useless to deny that a great deal of what is called criticism is responsible for the uncertainty and unsettlement of feeling existing at the present time about the Holy Scriptures.
The Ketef Hinnom silver amulets contain what may be the oldest surviving texts from the Hebrew Bible. The 2004 team described the scrolls as “one of most significant discoveries ever made” for biblical studies. They are one of many archaeological nails in the coffin of the Documentary Hypothesis. Note that all the bold text with footnotes have extensive notes, not just source citations.
Jesus said only those who obey the will of the Father would receive eternal life. (Matt. 7:21) The disciples will try to argue, ‘I did this,’ or ‘I did that.’ (Matt. 7:22) When Jesus returns, he will say to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ (Matt. 7:23) – So, who or what determines the meaning matters.
For most who are concerned about the wellbeing of the church, they have missed the forest for the trees and the genie is out of the bottle is appropriate sayings. What do I mean?
The Double Standard from Skeptics
When we are looking at secular history, historians come across balanced, fair, reasonable but when it comes to the gospels, there is a tremendous double standard. The Gospels, for example, are presumed to be guilty of being frauds, authors unknowable until they are proven innocent, and the bar is raised when it comes to the level of evidence needed. The normal way of investigating historical events, peoples, and places ostensibly are thrown out the window.
There is much in-depth information in this article: The Synoptic Gospels in the Ancient Church: The Testimony to the Priority of the Gospel of Matthew. We have a brief introduction to papyrus from Tyndale Bible Dictionary. We have a lengthy apologetic article on Papias and the arguments from higher critics by F. David Farnell. This is followed by Papias' writings from two leading scholars on the Apostolic Fathers, Michael W. Holmes, and J. B. Lightfoot.
Higher critics have taught that much of the Bible was composed of legend and myth, that Moses did not write the first five books of the Bible, 8th century Isaiah did not write Isaiah, there were three authors of Isaiah, 6th century Daniel did not write Daniel, it was penned in the 2nd century BCE. Higher critics have taught that Jesus did not say all that he said in his Sermon on the Mount and that Jesus did not condemn the Pharisees in Matthew 23, as this was Matthew because he hated the Jews. These are just highlights for there are