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Discovering Secular Humanism: Questions and Answers for the Novice and the Curious (2nd Edition)

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Present an overview of the evidence for determining the date Acts was written. What indicators of historical reliability are found in Acts?

Historically, the book of Acts is believed by three different schools of thoughts to have been written at least A.D. 62-70, 80-95 and last 115-130. Baur and his Tübingen School of thought date the Acts of Luke in as late as the middle of the second century. This view according to Dr. Archibald Thomas Robertson in Word Pictures in the New Testament asserts that this believe and dating of Acts has long since been abandoned because the Tübingen School held the second century to be the date of this late pamphlet as they termed it after the fashion of the Clementine Homilies. Considering Acts as the second volume to the Luke’s Gospel most scholars now date Acts in the 80s or a bit later according to Carson and Moo (p. 298). Some scholars put their estimation at about 80-95 A.D. because they believe the Acts shows signs of having been written some years after the first volume of Luke’s Gospel. However, if one took into comparing this assumption to historical evidence the time frame of 80-95 A.D. falls short of accuracy as one could see in Acts 18 under the leadership of a certain Claudius a Roman leader Christian Jews were expelled out of Rome; and prominent among these Christians were Aquila and his wife Priscilla; a time of about C. 49 which history has well before A.D. 60. Finally most scholars settled for dating Acts before A.D. 70 settling on A.D. 62 with Paul been in Rome for two years. Going away from Biblical historicity of dating Acts it is also fair to state that Luke writing of Acts was absolutely before or at about the time of Emperor Nero’s (A.D. 64) persecution of Christians, as one could see Acts positive and hopeful style in regards to Rome’s attitude toward Christians.

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