The Expository Files

 PJ vs. JC

I would think that everyone knows who the second set of initials in the title belong to. The first set belongs to Peter Jennings. ABC did a documentary entitled "Search for the Historic Jesus" (June 26, 2000) which is evidently not the same Jesus as you read about in your Bible.

There was evidence of all kinds of presuppositions. The main thrust seems to have been to discredit the Bible as a reliable document. This, of course, presupposes that the Scripture is not the inspired word of God after all (2 Timothy 3:16,17 is therefore, untrue, as is much of the rest of the New Testament).

Though there is brief mention of Jesus Christ and His followers in first century literature, where does ABC get its information about the "historical Jesus"? Mainly from guesswork of unbelieving "scholars" who have taken it upon themselves to rid the world of its Savior. The religious leaders of Jesus' day rejected Him then, and today the "scholars" of the "Jesus Seminar" and others are saying similar things about Him. This is nothing new, except the "scholars" of Jesus' day did not have television, ABC and Peter Jennings' help.

Jesus once asked, "Who do you say that I am?" People had come to several different conclusions at that time. They still do. But the right answer was given by Peter in response to Jesus' question back on that first century occasion; "You are the Christ, the Son of the loving God." (Matthew 16:16-18).

The documents that make up our New Testament were written by those either personally involved with Jesus or those who were personally involved with those who had been with Him. We have recorded for us first hand testimony of His life and words. How easy it is today for these scholars to deny, for example, the resurrection of Christ. The enemies of Christ back in the first century did not have it so easy... there were far too many living witnesses and the tomb was obviously empty and something had happened to instill within the once frightened and hiding apostles the courage necessary to begin preaching and teaching Jesus boldly everywhere in spite of the threat of death.

How sad that ABC chose to do such a great disservice to this nation and to the God in whom it supposedly trusts. I know what the phrase "In God We Trust" means, and this ABC program was only about doubt, not trust. It was a disavowal of trust in God, for, as Jesus said, "in order that all may honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him." (John 5:23). Peter Jennings or Jesus. Who will it be for you?

By Jon W. Quinn
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From Expository Files 7.8; August 2000