Why should Christians have knowledge of basic textual criticism? Let the definition speak for itself: Textual criticism (or lower criticism) is a branch of literary criticism that is concerned with the identification and removal of transcription errors in the texts of manuscripts. Errors in manuscript copies? Yes and most are in the Greek New Testament in the catagory of textual omissions. This is the taking away of any apostolic authority which inhabits the original autographs of the scriptural writers, of which there are none in exsistance because only copies of them are extant. It has been well said that a bible translatiion isn't perfect but the word of God within it is. That is, if it's plenary or complete and it's not common enough knowledge yet amoung Christians that much Scripture has been omitted in most modern translations of the New Testament. An example in the Old Testament is in 2 Sam 21:19 which reads, "In another battle with the Philistines at Gob, Elhanan son of Jaare-Oregim the Bethlehemite killed Goliath the Gittite . . . ." Elhanan killed Goliath? Wrong, David killed Goliath! The problem here is that the Hebrew scribes mistakenly omitted the phrase, "the brother of". The translators are suppose to include it because they have it correct in the re-account of 1 Chron 20:5. This is conclusive evidence of a direct contradiction in its reading. If that flag isn't red enough, you will find a multitude of them in the omissiion catagory in the Greek, which is the New Testament, because the copiers didn't count every letter to ensure its entirety, as they did in the Hebrew of the Old Tesament. To avoid of being accused of adding to the text, some translators utilized italics to indicate that the words weren't in enough of the manuscript copies to authorize its validity and that's why the phrase, "the brother of" is italicised in some translations. The most frquent problem in the Greek text of the N.T. is omissions, which are scriptural texts that should be included in a translation. To avoid being too lengthy, as it may already be, I leave with two significant N.T. examples. Eph 3:9 should read that God created all things by Jesus Christ but the phrase, "by Jesus Christ" is omitted. 1 Pet 1:22 shows that obeying the truth is done only "through the Spirit" but this phrase is omitted. Anyone who desires to know more concerning how scriptural errors devloped can just let me know. Example: All translations are produced from two primary manuscript sources: Majority Text (contains most of all extant copies) and the Minority Text (material which disagrees which the Majority of existing copies).