All this is true no matter what position one starts or ends with. Below are two project ideas which will provide necessary structure without predetermining students’ conclusions.
The most and least significant differences between the TR and the CT
Have each student take at least five of the following passages (chosen at random by a computer):
Instructions for Students
For each chapter assigned to you, list the five most significant differences between the TR and the CT and the five least significant differences.
Read the explanation in Metzger’s Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament or Philip W. Comfort’s New Testament Text and Translation Commentary for each difference (if it is covered in the text). Suggest brief explanations for those differences that do not appear in Metzger. (Note: There is no textual commentary like Metzger’s from a TR perspective, or it would be a perfect complement to Metzger/Comfort in this assignment.)
Be prepared to discuss and defend your choices in class.
Note to Teachers
“Significant” is purposefully vague; perceptive students will recognize that there are several kinds of significance: variants that bear theological significance, differences in meaning that are not theological, and the mere numerical level of significance. When you evaluate their answers, help them see the definition(s) of “significant” that they assumed.
Guide students in class to discuss the results of their study. Several students will have chosen the same chapters; ask them to defend their choice of the most and least significant variants—if they differ.
Which Text Is the TR?
For a helpful individual project, see the Which Text Is the TR? quiz!