In French It's a most basic set of questions to ask: Who wrote the Gospels? And generally, is there any reason to suspect that they are full of fabrications?The usual Skeptical/critical view asserts in answer: Authorship and date are important; but equally important, if not more so, is whether what is in the Gospels is true.
(Hengel [Heng.4G, 6] notes that we have only one biography of Muhammed, written 212 years after his death, which used a source from about 100 years after his death, and yet "the historical scepticism of critical European scholarship is substantially less" where Muhammed is concerned.) Critical arguments about authorship and date of the Gospels revolve around the same data, and have revolved around it, for a long time.With very, VERY few exceptions, critics and Skeptics have used the same arguments against the traditional data over and over and over.In my survey of the literature, I have found that the standard critical arguments have been overused by Skeptics and sufficiently answered by traditionalists; yet the critics have not deigned to answer the counter-arguments, except rarely and then only with bald dismissals.Since its first use in the 1940s radiocarbon dating has been the most accurate method of dating ancient objects and artifacts.Radiocarbon, present in living organisms, decays at a constant rate in dead tissue.
By measuring residual amounts of radiocarbon scientists can accurately date ancient specimens.
Accelerated Mass Spectrometry (AMS) is a specialized radiocarbon dating technique that allows scientists to date even very tiny pieces of material.
The National Geographic Society submitted five tiny samples of the Gospel of Judas for AMS testing at the University of Arizona's radiocarbon dating lab in Tucsonthe same lab that dated the Dead Sea Scrolls.
The Judas fragments included four minute pieces of papyrus and a small bit of the book's leather binding with a piece of attached papyrus page.
No part of the ancient script was altered or damaged during this process. "The calibrated ages of the papyrus and leather samples are tightly clustered and place the age of the Codices within the third or fourth centuries A.
The results allowed lab experts to confidently date the papyruses to between A. D.," reported Tim Jull, director of Arizona's AMS facility, and research scientist Greg Hodgins.