The below was posted @ PaleoJudaica.com and for any interested and following the Debate @
Parchment & Pen Blog
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 06, 2012
A first-century copy of the Gospel of Mark?
DANIEL B. WALLACE, of Dallas Theological Seminary, has announced (in a debate with Bart Ehrman, reported on Professor Wallace's blog, Parchment & Pen) that numerous very early manuscripts of the
He [Professor Ehrman] answered the second question by saying that we really don’t have any early manuscripts. But this again is a huge overstatement. We have as many as eighteen second-century manuscripts (six of which were recently discovered and not yet catalogued) and a first-century manuscript of Mark’s Gospel! Altogether, more than 43% of the 8000 or so verses in the NT are found in these papyri. Bart had explicitly said that our earliest copy of Mark was from c. 200 CE, but this is now incorrect. It’s from the firstcentury. I mentioned these new manuscript finds and told the audience that a book will be published by E. J. Brill in about a year that gives all the data. (In the Q & A, Bart questioned the validity of the first-century Mark fragment. I noted that a world-class paleographer, a man who had no religious affiliation and thus was not biased toward an early date, was my source. Bart said that even so, we don’t have thousands of manuscripts from the first century! That kind of skepticism is incomprehensible to me.)