I just checked with the world experts at the Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts (www.csntm.org); there are 5500 copies of the Greek New Testament, and 15,000 copies total of the various languages from before the printing press was invented.
I watch a lot of videos of soldiers coming home early from their tour of duty.
They have mother’s, wives, and children who know them well and have had video phone calls with their loved ones, yet some of them don’t seem to recognize their loved ones when they see them. Why? It is something they don’t expect to see. Our brains tend to be lazy in a way, instead of fully processing everything it sees, it just fills in the blanks for us. That tactic sometimes works, but other times it fails us.
Many of you did not notice an error in this image. Most of us have heard the sentence “I love Paris in the springtime.” So that is what most of us read, but really the word THE is in this sentence too many times. It takes us a moment or two to see it because we don’t expect to. I suspect that something similar to this happened to Mary when she was near Christ tomb. None of us expect to see a dead man walking. Her brain knew that Jesus was dead, so it took a few moments for her to realize that he was alive again.
Earlier this month, a young Coptic woman from Shosha, in the Minya province of Egypt, reappeared in her village after a two-month disappearance. But she returned in a different state: Married to a Muslim man and pregnant with his child. Muslim celebrations over her newfound conversion, marriage, and pregnancy devolved into riots, house burnings, and attacks on her Christian family and community. This was no accident: The woman and her new husband were brought back during the celebration of Eid, when tensions between Muslims and Coptic Christians are high. In reality, this incident was part of an intentional campaign of persecution against the largest Christian community left in the Middle East.
The gospel is never heard in isolation. It always comes with multiple roadblocks in the way. The Jews did not understand the nature of the Trinity and had been expecting a conquering Messiah, not one that would die on a cross.Muslims are told that Jesus did not die on a cross, Atheists usually think that Christianity is stupid, and there are many other roadblocks.While the Gospel is the same for everyone, the path to the Gospel is often of different lengths twist and turns. If they have known several good Christians their entire life it could be a very short path.