Acts to Revelation | Episode 18 | TBN

Acts to Revelation | Episode 18

Watch Acts to Revelation | Episode 18
August 8, 2018
27:34

Drive Thru History: Acts to Revelation

Closed captions
  • Da
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  • Dave
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  • Dave S
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  • Dave Sto
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  • Dave Stott
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  • Dave Stotts:
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  • Dave Stotts: I
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  • Dave Stotts: In
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  • Dave Stotts: In ou
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  • Dave Stotts: In our
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  • Dave Stotts: In our la
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last ep
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last epis
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episod
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode,
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, w
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, we
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, we ca
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, we came
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, we came b
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, we came bac
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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, we came back
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  • from the island of Patmos to the exotic country of Turkey,
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  • or ancient Asia Minor, and took a head-spinning
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  • tour through the seven churches the Apostle John wrote
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  • letters to in the New Testament book of Revelation.
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  • We visited the remains of the ancient cities of Ephesus,
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  • Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia,
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  • and we ended at the ancient city of Laodicea,
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  • a city with a newly discovered treasure trove of ruins that
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  • we'll look at more extensively in this final episode
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  • of "Drive Thru History Acts to Revelation."
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  • Then we'll explore how the New Testament took shape
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  • and consider the lessons our journey
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  • through the New Testament can teach us even today.
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  • Dave: Laodicea is located about a mile south
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  • of the Lycus River in the Lycus Valley region
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  • of present-day Turkey.
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  • We're about 10 miles northwest of Colossae, and about 5 miles
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  • south of Hierapolis, the other two cities
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  • in this famous triangle of ancient wealth.
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  • Dave: Laodicea was annexed by Rome in 133 BC,
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  • and because of its location on the main trade route
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  • of Asia Minor, it became one of the richest cities in the area.
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  • Because of its banking, agriculture, its marble trade,
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  • its black wool industry, and its innovative medical school,
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  • Laodicea became one of the most important and prominent cities
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  • in the area at the time that John wrote Revelation.
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  • Laodicea is 3 square miles of magnificent buildings
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  • and shining marble, but it's the unique features of the city,
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  • the water system, the textile houses,
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  • and the medical school that get alluded to in John's letter.
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  • Now, the water system here was a marvel of engineering,
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  • piping in water from springs nearly 5 miles away,
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  • but the biblical insight comes when you contrast
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  • the water here at Laodicea with the hot springs
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  • of nearby Hierapolis and the cold mountain
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  • water of nearby Colossae.
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  • By the time the water reached here in Laodicea with its
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  • aqueduct system, the water was lukewarm and filled
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  • with mineral deposits which probably made it
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  • unpleasant to drink.
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  • Dave: To the church here, John delivered the following
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  • warning from Jesus: '"I know your deeds,
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  • that you are neither cold nor hot.
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  • I wish that you were either one or the other!
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  • So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold,
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  • I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
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  • You say, "I am rich: I have acquired wealth
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  • and do not need a thing."
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  • But you do not realize that you are wretched,
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  • pitiful, poor, blind and naked.
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  • I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire,
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  • so you can become rich: and white clothes to wear,
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  • so you can cover your shameful nakedness: and salve
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  • to put on your eyes, so you can see,'"
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  • Revelation 3:17 and 18.
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  • Dave: The medical school at Laodicea was famous throughout
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  • the Roman world and was known for ophthalmology, including
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  • an eye salve or ointment that has been mentioned
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  • by multiple ancient sources.
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  • John even used the original Greek word
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  • for this eye medicine.
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  • Now, the people of Laodicea were called, "Lukewarm," and later,
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  • "Wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked."
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  • They were advised to buy gold to become rich,
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  • white garments to clothe themselves, and eye salve
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  • to anoint their eyes.
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  • As such, the letter to the Laodiceans pointed to things
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  • that Laodicea was famous for in the ancient world in order
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  • to deliver a deeper, spiritual message.
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  • Dave: When it comes to visualizing ancient history,
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  • Laodicea has become one of the most exciting excavations
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  • in the Mediterranean region, but this wasn't always the case.
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  • About 15 years ago, I visited ancient Laodicea,
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  • whose ruins, at that time,
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  • were only a fraction of what we see today.
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  • Since I was here last, something incredible happened.
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  • A local professor of archaeology got together
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  • with a local politician and they rallied local support
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  • to excavate and reconstruct ancient Laodicea.
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  • They did walkathons to raise money, wrote newspaper articles
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  • to spread awareness, and ultimately, they talked the
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  • Turkish government into making this a homegrown project
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  • for the nearby town of Denizli.
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  • It's a great story.
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  • Dave: And now look at this place.
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  • Laodicea, the final church addressed in Revelation,
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  • has become one of the largest and most active
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  • archaeological sites related to the New Testament
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  • in Turkey, really, the world.
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  • And to think, most of this happened
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  • in the last decade and a half.
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  • It is truly astonishing.
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  • Dave: In 2013, this ancient church was opened to the public.
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  • Twenty-thirteen was the seventeen hundredth anniversary
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  • of the Edict of Milan, by which Roman Emperor Constantine
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  • legalized Christianity in the Roman Empire.
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  • Many scholars believe this church was built between 313
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  • and 320 AD, making it one of the earliest Christian churches
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  • ever discovered in the world.
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  • Its layout is unique in the history of Christian
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  • architecture, and this cross-shaped baptistry
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  • is one of the best preserved from antiquity.
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  • And look at these frescoes, only recently available
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  • for public viewing.
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  • Dave: You know, it's amazing to me to think that for hundreds
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  • of years, these historic structures and artifacts here at
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  • Laodicea were sitting just a few feet or so below the surface.
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  • Throughout the Mediterranean region, ancient sites are being
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  • discovered, rediscovered, and ultimately excavated
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  • that point to the accuracy of the Bible.
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  • New discoveries are made every day.
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  • That's why I do what I do.
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  • I get to drive through biblical history at locations like this
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  • that are still being unearthed,
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  • and there's so much left to discover.
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  • So, let's get back in the car and drive 10 miles or so
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  • down the road, and I'll show you what I mean.
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  • 00:07:38.110 --> 00:07:48.100
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  • Dave: This is Colossae.
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  • Well, actually, it's up that hill right there,
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  • or in the hill, or under my feet.
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  • It's all around here.
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  • You see, Colossae has never been excavated.
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  • So, it makes it a little hard to visualize.
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  • Ancient Colossae was rediscovered here
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  • in 1836 but was never excavated.
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  • Surveys and some random discoveries here have yielded
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  • around 30 inscriptions, over 150 coins,
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  • and the identification of a few structures.
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  • But the money, the politics, and, well, the archaeologists
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  • have yet to come together for an actual dig.
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  • Dave: This entire expansive area of dirt is Colossae,
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  • where Paul sent his New Testament letter known
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  • as Colossians sometime between 58 and 62 AD.
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  • The church here was struggling with its understanding
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  • about Jesus Christ, and Paul delivered an incredible teaching
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  • on his identity.
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  • In one verse, Paul said: "He is the image of the invisible God,
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  • the firstborn over all creation.
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  • For by him all things were created: things in heaven
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  • and on earth, visible and invisible,
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  • whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities:
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  • all things were created by him and for him,"
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  • Colossians 1:15 and 16.
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  • Dave: Paul then went on with an ethics lesson of sorts,
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  • and a warning against mixing pieces of other religions,
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  • other world-views with Christianity.
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  • This is one of my favorite verses: "See to it that no one
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  • take you captive through hollow and deceitful philosophy,
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  • which depends on human tradition and the basic principles
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  • of this world rather than on Christ," Colossians 2:8.
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  • Although Colossae was the smallest of the three ancient
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  • cities in the Lycus Valley, Paul probably sent his letter
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  • to the church here because of his personal relationships
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  • with Epaphras and Philemon.
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  • Scripture tells us that Epaphras was the first Christian
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  • to preach the gospel in Colossae,
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  • and Philemon hosted a house church here.
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  • Dave: There's a really short book in
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  • the New Testament called Philemon.
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  • It's actually a letter from Paul and Timothy to their friend
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  • Philemon, who lived here at Colossae.
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  • Now, for me, it's one of those really short books in the Bible
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  • with weird names that sometimes it's easy to sort of skip over,
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  • but when I come to the actual places and walk where the actual
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  • people in the Bible walked, it gives me an entirely new
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  • appreciation for these little-known books in the Bible.
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  • And now that you know a little bit more about the historical
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  • and geographical context for Philemon,
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  • you should read that letter for yourself.
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  • It's only about 500 words.
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  • Dave: Look at these ancient columns and other artifacts
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  • just popping out of the ground.
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  • All of this is just waiting to be discovered and explored.
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  • As I visit places like this, my hope is that some of you
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  • will be inspired to come yourself and have some
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  • adventures of your own.
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  • Who knows what lurks right beneath us?
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  • Colossae is just one example of many locations throughout
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  • the Mediterranean region that have yet to be explored.
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  • Dave: A few episodes ago, I said I wanted
  • 00:11:32.020 --> 00:11:34.080
  • to come back to Malta.
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  • It's a small island where Christianity made a big impact
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  • over the centuries since Paul was shipwrecked here.
  • 00:11:39.250 --> 00:11:43.270
  • Malta is home to a number of ancient churches,
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  • many of which have incredible stories to tell.
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  • What a great place to end our series on the New Testament
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  • and the early Christian church.
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  • Dave: This dramatic basilica is known as the Rotunda
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  • of Mosta, or the Mosta Dome.
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  • It was completed in 1860,
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  • built over an original church from 1614.
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  • Many consider this to be the most impressive church on Malta
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  • because of that massive dome you see above me.
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  • It's the third-largest unsupported church dome
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  • in the entire world, surpassed only by the Hagia Sophia
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  • in Istanbul and St. Peter's Basilica.
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  • Dave: During World War II, the town of Mosta
  • 00:12:31.100 --> 00:12:33.210
  • was located right next to the royal air force base.
  • 00:12:33.220 --> 00:12:36.280
  • As a result, the area was prone to aerial bombardments.
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  • On April 9, 1942, the Nazi Luftwaffe dropped 3 bombs on the
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  • Mosta Dome while more than 300 people were attending church.
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  • Two of the bombs deflected off the dome without exploding,
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  • but one bomb, weighing 1.000 pounds, pierced the dome
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  • and fell right into the middle of the church service.
  • 00:12:59.280 --> 00:13:02.270
  • Incredibly, that bomb didn't explode either, and the citizens
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  • of Mosta declared the entire event a miracle.
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  • Dave: That must have been quite a sight to see that
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  • massive bomb sitting right here in the middle of church.
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  • And if you look closely, you can see up at the top
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  • where the hole in the dome has been repaired.
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  • Dave: This replica of the bomb is now on display
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  • here at the back of the basilica.
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  • Dave: And speaking of Nazis and bombs, it's time for me
  • 00:13:40.200 --> 00:13:44.080
  • to get into my Volkswagen Beetle,
  • 00:13:44.090 --> 00:13:46.260
  • a car that was conceived of by none other than Adolf Hitler.
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  • Dave: "Volkswagen" means "people's car,"
  • 00:13:53.210 --> 00:13:56.050
  • and Hitler wanted every German family to be able to own one.
  • 00:13:56.060 --> 00:13:59.240
  • The design was so good that after the war, Volkswagen's
  • 00:13:59.250 --> 00:14:02.250
  • bomb-damaged factory was reopened by the Allies, and they
  • 00:14:02.260 --> 00:14:06.160
  • began producing what became the best-selling car of all time.
  • 00:14:06.170 --> 00:14:10.250
  • And somehow, in a weird twist of history, a car associated
  • 00:14:10.260 --> 00:14:14.250
  • with an evil madman in the 1940s became known as,
  • 00:14:14.260 --> 00:14:19.040
  • "The love bug," by the 1960s.
  • 00:14:19.050 --> 00:14:21.290
  • Dave: Someday, I'd like to tell you the whole story,
  • 00:14:22.000 --> 00:14:24.150
  • but for now, I think we can all agree that sometimes history
  • 00:14:24.160 --> 00:14:28.000
  • can be a little strange.
  • 00:14:28.010 --> 00:14:30.240
  • Okay, back to the Bible.
  • 00:14:30.250 --> 00:14:33.020
  • The last book of the New Testament
  • 00:14:33.030 --> 00:14:34.280
  • before Revelation is called Jude.
  • 00:14:34.290 --> 00:14:37.270
  • Now, Jude is identified as a brother of James
  • 00:14:37.280 --> 00:14:41.060
  • and half-brother of Jesus.
  • 00:14:41.070 --> 00:14:43.200
  • Now, the book of Jude was intended to equip Christians
  • 00:14:43.210 --> 00:14:46.060
  • for the untold challenges of living in what the author
  • 00:14:46.070 --> 00:14:49.110
  • refers to as, "The last times."
  • 00:14:49.120 --> 00:14:52.190
  • Jude encourages Christians to contend for the faith,
  • 00:14:52.200 --> 00:14:56.080
  • and to watch out for fakes in the church.
  • 00:14:56.090 --> 00:14:59.070
  • Jude said this: "But dear friends, remember
  • 00:14:59.080 --> 00:15:03.230
  • what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold.
  • 00:15:03.240 --> 00:15:07.120
  • They said to you, 'In the last times there will be scoffers
  • 00:15:07.130 --> 00:15:11.120
  • who will follow their own ungodly desires.'
  • 00:15:11.130 --> 00:15:14.270
  • These are the people who divide you, who follow mere
  • 00:15:14.280 --> 00:15:18.040
  • natural instincts and do not have the Spirit,"
  • 00:15:18.050 --> 00:15:22.010
  • Jude 1:17 through 19.
  • 00:15:22.020 --> 00:15:26.130
  • Jude stressed that Christians need to be on guard for false
  • 00:15:26.140 --> 00:15:30.000
  • doctrines, which can easily deceive those who don't know
  • 00:15:30.010 --> 00:15:33.150
  • their Scriptures and who don't persevere.
  • 00:15:33.160 --> 00:15:36.160
  • Christians need to protect and defend the truth of the gospel,
  • 00:15:36.170 --> 00:15:40.150
  • and no matter how tough things get, Christians need
  • 00:15:40.160 --> 00:15:43.040
  • to continue following Jesus Christ at all costs
  • 00:15:43.050 --> 00:15:46.140
  • and to reflect Christlike behavior to others.
  • 00:15:46.150 --> 00:15:50.200
  • The book of Jude has been a strong reminder
  • 00:15:50.210 --> 00:15:53.100
  • for Christians over the centuries.
  • 00:15:53.110 --> 00:15:55.160
  • Jude's words are as important today as ever.
  • 00:15:55.170 --> 00:16:00.080
  • 00:16:00.090 --> 00:16:07.010
  • 00:16:10.150 --> 00:16:13.230
  • Dave: So, with Jude, our journey through
  • 00:16:13.240 --> 00:16:15.170
  • the New Testament is now complete.
  • 00:16:15.180 --> 00:16:18.000
  • Using Luke's account in Acts as our guide, we were able
  • 00:16:18.010 --> 00:16:21.200
  • to visit many of the biblical sites related
  • 00:16:21.210 --> 00:16:24.130
  • to first century Christianity.
  • 00:16:24.140 --> 00:16:26.170
  • What an incredible experience.
  • 00:16:26.180 --> 00:16:28.270
  • Here's a recap of the 27 historical accounts
  • 00:16:28.280 --> 00:16:33.050
  • that became the New Testament of the Bible:
  • 00:16:33.060 --> 00:16:36.240
  • Dave: The four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
  • 00:16:38.160 --> 00:16:43.140
  • The Acts of the Apostles.
  • 00:16:43.150 --> 00:16:45.270
  • The 13 letters of the Apostle Paul: Romans, 1 Corinthians,
  • 00:16:45.280 --> 00:16:50.220
  • 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians,
  • 00:16:50.230 --> 00:16:55.050
  • Colossians, 1 Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians, 1 Timothy,
  • 00:16:55.060 --> 00:17:00.230
  • 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon, Hebrews, James.
  • 00:17:00.240 --> 00:17:06.250
  • The two letters of the Apostle Peter: 1 Peter, 2 Peter.
  • 00:17:06.260 --> 00:17:11.270
  • The three letters of the Apostle John: 1 John, 2 John, 3 John.
  • 00:17:11.280 --> 00:17:17.220
  • Jude, and Revelation.
  • 00:17:17.230 --> 00:17:20.280
  • Dave: The process of recognizing the 27 books
  • 00:17:23.120 --> 00:17:26.020
  • of the New Testament happened in the earliest centuries
  • 00:17:26.030 --> 00:17:29.110
  • of the Christian church.
  • 00:17:29.120 --> 00:17:31.030
  • Very early on, many of the New Testament documents
  • 00:17:31.040 --> 00:17:34.130
  • were seen and recognized as inspired of God.
  • 00:17:34.140 --> 00:17:38.070
  • Clement of Rome mentions at least eight New Testament
  • 00:17:38.080 --> 00:17:41.090
  • books by 95 AD.
  • 00:17:41.100 --> 00:17:43.240
  • And Polycarp, a disciple of John,
  • 00:17:43.250 --> 00:17:46.110
  • mentions at least 15 books by 108 AD.
  • 00:17:46.120 --> 00:17:50.030
  • The first canon, coming from the Greek, meaning "rule"
  • 00:17:50.040 --> 00:17:53.220
  • or "measuring stick," was the Muratorian Canon,
  • 00:17:53.230 --> 00:17:56.270
  • which was compiled in 170 AD.
  • 00:17:56.280 --> 00:18:00.080
  • The Muratorian Canon included all of the New Testament books
  • 00:18:00.090 --> 00:18:04.010
  • except Hebrews, James, and the letter of 3 John.
  • 00:18:04.020 --> 00:18:08.060
  • In 363 AD, a church council meeting in Laodicea confirmed
  • 00:18:08.070 --> 00:18:14.010
  • that the New Testament consisted of the 27 books
  • 00:18:14.020 --> 00:18:17.130
  • that we see in our Bibles today.
  • 00:18:17.140 --> 00:18:20.000
  • The councils of Hippo in 393 and Carthage in 397 reaffirmed
  • 00:18:20.010 --> 00:18:26.160
  • the same 27 books as authoritative.
  • 00:18:26.170 --> 00:18:30.220
  • Dave: Well, I made it back to the city of Valletta,
  • 00:18:32.010 --> 00:18:34.120
  • one of the coolest-looking cities in all of Europe.
  • 00:18:34.130 --> 00:18:37.070
  • It's filled with ancient churches that create
  • 00:18:37.080 --> 00:18:39.250
  • an incredible skyline here on the coast.
  • 00:18:39.260 --> 00:18:42.290
  • There we see the St. Paul's Pro-Cathedral with its 200-foot
  • 00:18:43.000 --> 00:18:47.240
  • spire in the foreground, and the Basilica of Our Lady
  • 00:18:47.250 --> 00:18:51.250
  • of Mount Carmel, with its massive dome in the background.
  • 00:18:51.260 --> 00:18:55.150
  • Malta has so much visual history connected to early Christianity.
  • 00:18:55.160 --> 00:19:00.110
  • What a great place to wrap up our series.
  • 00:19:00.120 --> 00:19:03.290
  • Dave: As we have seen over the last 18 episodes
  • 00:19:04.000 --> 00:19:06.170
  • of "Drive Thru History," persecution and death
  • 00:19:06.180 --> 00:19:10.010
  • was a dramatic part of the lives of the first Christians.
  • 00:19:10.020 --> 00:19:14.010
  • It's difficult for us to imagine these awful acts of torture,
  • 00:19:14.020 --> 00:19:17.080
  • imprisonment, and death, but the truth is
  • 00:19:17.090 --> 00:19:20.080
  • these things really happened.
  • 00:19:20.090 --> 00:19:22.100
  • Scripture is an accurate account of real places where real events
  • 00:19:22.110 --> 00:19:26.210
  • happened to real people, just like you and me.
  • 00:19:26.220 --> 00:19:30.220
  • Eleven of the twelve apostles of Jesus
  • 00:19:30.230 --> 00:19:33.090
  • and many of his earliest followers
  • 00:19:33.100 --> 00:19:35.020
  • were willing to die for their belief
  • 00:19:35.030 --> 00:19:37.150
  • that Jesus Christ was raised from the dead.
  • 00:19:37.160 --> 00:19:40.100
  • These were eyewitnesses of the events surrounding Jesus.
  • 00:19:40.110 --> 00:19:44.110
  • What does that prove?
  • 00:19:44.120 --> 00:19:45.280
  • Well, it's human nature, really, but people are simply not
  • 00:19:45.290 --> 00:19:48.170
  • willing to die for a lie.
  • 00:19:48.180 --> 00:19:51.290
  • Look at history.
  • 00:19:52.000 --> 00:19:53.180
  • No conspiracy can be maintained for long when life, liberty,
  • 00:19:53.190 --> 00:19:58.070
  • and livelihood are at stake.
  • 00:19:58.080 --> 00:20:01.140
  • Dying for a belief is one thing, but numerous eyewitnesses
  • 00:20:01.150 --> 00:20:06.130
  • knowingly dying for a lie?
  • 00:20:06.140 --> 00:20:09.130
  • That's another thing entirely.
  • 00:20:09.140 --> 00:20:12.070
  • Dave: Here's an account of early Christian martyrdom as
  • 00:20:13.080 --> 00:20:15.260
  • compiled from numerous sources outside the Bible,
  • 00:20:15.270 --> 00:20:19.100
  • the most famous of which is "Foxe's Christian Martyrs
  • 00:20:19.110 --> 00:20:22.210
  • of the World."
  • 00:20:22.220 --> 00:20:24.190
  • Around 34 AD, 1 year after the Crucifixion of Jesus,
  • 00:20:24.200 --> 00:20:29.000
  • Stephen was thrown out of Jerusalem and stoned to death.
  • 00:20:29.010 --> 00:20:33.290
  • "On that day a great persecution broke out against the church
  • 00:20:34.000 --> 00:20:37.240
  • at Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered
  • 00:20:37.250 --> 00:20:41.060
  • throughout Judea and Samaria," Acts 8:1.
  • 00:20:41.070 --> 00:20:45.250
  • About ten years later, James, the son of Zebedee
  • 00:20:45.260 --> 00:20:49.030
  • and the elder brother of John, was killed when Herod Agrippa
  • 00:20:49.040 --> 00:20:52.250
  • arrived as governor of Judea.
  • 00:20:52.260 --> 00:20:55.180
  • Agrippa detested the Christians, and many early disciples
  • 00:20:55.190 --> 00:20:58.220
  • were martyred under his rule, included Timon and Parmenas.
  • 00:20:58.230 --> 00:21:04.080
  • About 54 AD, Philip, a disciple from Bethsaida in Galilee,
  • 00:21:04.090 --> 00:21:09.070
  • suffered martyrdom at Hierapolis.
  • 00:21:09.080 --> 00:21:11.160
  • He was scourged, thrown into prison, and crucified.
  • 00:21:11.170 --> 00:21:15.100
  • About six years later, Matthew, the tax collector from Nazareth
  • 00:21:15.110 --> 00:21:19.070
  • who wrote one of the Gospels, was preaching in Ethiopia
  • 00:21:19.080 --> 00:21:22.240
  • when he suffered martyrdom by the sword.
  • 00:21:22.250 --> 00:21:25.260
  • James, the half-brother of Jesus,
  • 00:21:25.270 --> 00:21:27.250
  • administered the early church in Jerusalem
  • 00:21:27.260 --> 00:21:30.080
  • and was the author of a biblical text by his name.
  • 00:21:30.090 --> 00:21:33.130
  • At age 94, he was beaten, stoned, and clubbed to death.
  • 00:21:33.140 --> 00:21:39.100
  • Matthias was the apostle who filled the vacant place
  • 00:21:39.110 --> 00:21:42.170
  • of Judas.
  • 00:21:42.180 --> 00:21:44.120
  • He was stoned at Jerusalem, and then beheaded.
  • 00:21:44.130 --> 00:21:47.230
  • Andrew, the brother of Peter who preached throughout Asia,
  • 00:21:47.240 --> 00:21:51.100
  • he was crucified on a cross, the two ends of which
  • 00:21:51.110 --> 00:21:54.170
  • were fixed transversely in the ground.
  • 00:21:54.180 --> 00:21:58.010
  • This is where we get the term, "Saint Andrew's cross."
  • 00:21:58.020 --> 00:22:02.080
  • Mark wrote one of the four Gospel accounts
  • 00:22:02.090 --> 00:22:04.210
  • with Peter as his source.
  • 00:22:04.220 --> 00:22:06.120
  • Mark was dragged to death by the people of Alexandria
  • 00:22:06.130 --> 00:22:09.230
  • in front of Serapis, their pagan idol.
  • 00:22:09.240 --> 00:22:13.100
  • Peter was condemned to death and crucified at Rome.
  • 00:22:13.110 --> 00:22:17.030
  • Multiple sources maintain that Peter was crucified upside down
  • 00:22:17.040 --> 00:22:21.150
  • at his own request because he felt unworthy to be crucified
  • 00:22:21.160 --> 00:22:25.130
  • in the same manner as Jesus.
  • 00:22:25.140 --> 00:22:28.160
  • Paul suffered during the persecution of Nero
  • 00:22:28.170 --> 00:22:31.230
  • and was ultimately beheaded in Rome.
  • 00:22:31.240 --> 00:22:34.250
  • The list goes on and on: Jude, Bartholomew, Thomas, Barnabas,
  • 00:22:34.260 --> 00:22:40.290
  • even Luke the author of Acts and the Gospel in his name
  • 00:22:41.000 --> 00:22:44.100
  • was ultimately hanged in Greece.
  • 00:22:44.110 --> 00:22:47.170
  • Only the Apostle John was spared a violent death,
  • 00:22:47.180 --> 00:22:51.080
  • although he faced torture and banishment during his life.
  • 00:22:51.090 --> 00:22:56.070
  • Dave: Yet, Christian persecution did not slow
  • 00:22:56.080 --> 00:22:58.110
  • the growth of the Christian church during
  • 00:22:58.120 --> 00:23:00.290
  • the first few centuries after Jesus.
  • 00:23:01.000 --> 00:23:04.050
  • Even as its leaders were killed or imprisoned,
  • 00:23:04.060 --> 00:23:07.190
  • the Christian faith flourished throughout the Roman Empire.
  • 00:23:07.200 --> 00:23:11.100
  • How can this historical record of martyrdom be viewed
  • 00:23:11.110 --> 00:23:15.010
  • as anything other than powerful evidence of the truth
  • 00:23:15.020 --> 00:23:18.110
  • of the Christian faith, a faith grounded on historical events
  • 00:23:18.120 --> 00:23:22.160
  • and eyewitness testimonies?
  • 00:23:22.170 --> 00:23:25.110
  • Dave: So, what can we conclude from
  • 00:23:26.150 --> 00:23:28.160
  • our 36-episode journey through the Gospels, Acts,
  • 00:23:28.170 --> 00:23:32.200
  • and the rest of the New Testament
  • 00:23:32.210 --> 00:23:34.110
  • of the Bible?
  • 00:23:34.120 --> 00:23:35.260
  • I think it's this.
  • 00:23:35.270 --> 00:23:37.070
  • Historical and archaeological evidence overwhelmingly supports
  • 00:23:37.080 --> 00:23:42.100
  • the reality of what is recorded in Scripture.
  • 00:23:42.110 --> 00:23:45.230
  • There was a man named Jesus of Nazareth who claimed to be
  • 00:23:45.240 --> 00:23:49.030
  • the only Son of God who lived during the first century
  • 00:23:49.040 --> 00:23:52.070
  • in Galilee and Judea.
  • 00:23:52.080 --> 00:23:54.200
  • The people recognized him as a man who taught
  • 00:23:54.210 --> 00:23:57.140
  • with unequaled wisdom, power, and authority.
  • 00:23:57.150 --> 00:24:02.020
  • Jesus demonstrated his power through miracles,
  • 00:24:02.030 --> 00:24:05.040
  • like controlling the weather, healing the sick,
  • 00:24:05.050 --> 00:24:08.010
  • and even bringing the dead back to life.
  • 00:24:08.020 --> 00:24:10.290
  • Jesus loved people deeply, demonstrating his ultimate love
  • 00:24:11.000 --> 00:24:15.210
  • by willingly sacrificing himself to provide a way
  • 00:24:15.220 --> 00:24:20.090
  • to forgiveness for mankind's sins.
  • 00:24:20.100 --> 00:24:23.200
  • Jesus was buried in a sealed tomb, but three days later,
  • 00:24:23.210 --> 00:24:27.240
  • there were accounts of seeing him alive.
  • 00:24:27.250 --> 00:24:31.010
  • Over the next 40 days, hundreds of eyewitnesses saw
  • 00:24:31.020 --> 00:24:34.290
  • a resurrected Jesus, many who eventually went on to their own
  • 00:24:35.000 --> 00:24:39.100
  • deaths for their insistence on the truth of what they saw.
  • 00:24:39.110 --> 00:24:44.200
  • "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son,
  • 00:24:47.050 --> 00:24:51.160
  • that whoever believes in him should not perish
  • 00:24:51.170 --> 00:24:55.020
  • but have eternal life.
  • 00:24:55.030 --> 00:24:57.110
  • For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn
  • 00:24:57.120 --> 00:25:00.130
  • the world, but in order that the world might be saved
  • 00:25:00.140 --> 00:25:04.250
  • through him," John 3:16 and 17.
  • 00:25:04.260 --> 00:25:09.220
  • Based on the truth of the gospel,
  • 00:25:09.230 --> 00:25:12.040
  • the first century followers of Jesus Christ
  • 00:25:12.050 --> 00:25:15.150
  • bonded together to form the Christian church.
  • 00:25:15.160 --> 00:25:19.170
  • From that time in history until today, Christ's church continues
  • 00:25:19.180 --> 00:25:25.000
  • to spread, thrive, and grow throughout the entire world.
  • 00:25:25.010 --> 00:25:30.200
  • Dave: Have we forgotten the truth of the gospel
  • 00:25:31.210 --> 00:25:34.080
  • that so impacted Christ's earliest followers?
  • 00:25:34.090 --> 00:25:37.080
  • Do we still understand Christ's power in his Crucifixion
  • 00:25:37.090 --> 00:25:41.130
  • and Resurrection and what it still means for us today?
  • 00:25:41.140 --> 00:25:45.180
  • For me, traveling the route of early Christianity and exploring
  • 00:25:45.190 --> 00:25:50.130
  • the New Testament accounts on location in the context
  • 00:25:50.140 --> 00:25:54.000
  • of adventure has been life changing.
  • 00:25:54.010 --> 00:25:57.060
  • I hope that you are now better able to understand
  • 00:25:57.070 --> 00:26:00.120
  • and to believe in the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ
  • 00:26:00.130 --> 00:26:04.160
  • through the books, letters, and writings
  • 00:26:04.170 --> 00:26:06.250
  • of his earliest apostles and disciples.
  • 00:26:06.260 --> 00:26:09.280
  • May God richly bless you in this journey.
  • 00:26:09.290 --> 00:26:13.230
  • I'm Dave Stotts.
  • 00:26:13.240 --> 00:26:17.210
  • 00:26:17.220 --> 00:26:23.220
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