Was Moses a Myth?

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Was Moses a Myth?

Archeologists have gradually concluded that much of the early history of the Bible is purely mythical. The Patriarchs are mythical, the Exodus is mythical, and the Conquest is mythical. The main debate nowadays is over how historical the Biblical accounts of Kings David and Solomon are. But the debate over mythicism is not likely to proceed much past them, since the Dual Monarchy period is reasonably well-supported from outside sources, even though the Biblical account of that period is rather editorialized.

The Exodus and the Conquest not having happened as described in the Bible has a certain consequence that archeologists have not talked much about.

That Moses was largely or entirely mythical.

That is because much of his biography, if not most of it, is tied to events that never happened, meaning that a historical Moses could not have confronted the Pharaoh and led the Israelites to freedom. So if there was a historical Moses, was he some now-obscure local leader who got embellished by generations of mythmakers?

That would also explain why Moses's burial site has never been found; even Deuteronomy's writer(s) did not claim to know where it was ("He buried him in Moab, in the valley opposite Beth Peor, but to this day no one knows where his grave is.", Deut. 34:6).


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lpetrich

lpetrich wrote:

Archeologists have gradually concluded that much of the early history of the Bible is purely mythical. The Patriarchs are mythical, the Exodus is mythical, and the Conquest is mythical. The main debate nowadays is over how historical the Biblical accounts of Kings David and Solomon are. But the debate over mythicism is not likely to proceed much past them, since the Dual Monarchy period is reasonably well-supported from outside sources, even though the Biblical account of that period is rather editorialized.

The Exodus and the Conquest not having happened as described in the Bible has a certain consequence that archeologists have not talked much about.

That Moses was largely or entirely mythical.

That is because much of his biography, if not most of it, is tied to events that never happened, meaning that a historical Moses could not have confronted the Pharaoh and led the Israelites to freedom. So if there was a historical Moses, was he some now-obscure local leader who got embellished by generations of mythmakers?

That would also explain why Moses's burial site has never been found; even Deuteronomy's writer(s) did not claim to know where it was ("He buried him in Moab, in the valley opposite Beth Peor, but to this day no one knows where his grave is.", Deut. 34:6).

Those are all lies, man. And I will now prove it.

The dean of modern Archaeology, William F. Albright, who is considered to be the greatest archaologist of modern times, has this to say about the archaeology and historicity of the Bible:

"There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of the Old Testament tradition"(ARI, 176).

Even usually liberal sources are now admitting the overall historical reliability of the Old Testament. Excerpting from his book Is the Bible True? Jeffrey Sheler notes for U.S. News & World Report:

"In extraordinary ways, modern archaeology has affirmed the historical core of the Old Testament -- corroberating key portions of Israel's patriarchs, the Exodus, the Davidic monarchy, and the life and times of Jesus" (Oct. 25, 1999, 52).

Now I will address each of your claims:

You said "the patriarchs are mythical."

First, it is important for me to point out that you cited no evidence supporting your claims.  Were the patriarchs mythical? Absolutely not!

1. William Fr. Albright, the worlds greatest Bible archceologist stated:

"Thanks to modern research we now recognize its [the Bible's] substantial historicity. The narratives of the PATRIARCHS, of Moses and the exodus, of the conquest of Caanon, of the judges, the monarchy, exile and restoration, have ALL been confirmed and illustrated to an extent that I should have thought impossible forty years ago" (CC, 1329).

2. Law codes have been found from the time of Abraham that show why the Patriarch would have been hesitant to throw Hagar out of his camp, for he was legally bound to support her. Only when a higher law came from God was Abraham willing to expel her.

3. The discovery of the MARI LETTERS (thousands of tablets discovered in Syria -- 1834 -- that depict life from about the time of the patriarchs in Genesis) reveals such names as ABAM-RAM (ABRAHAM), JACOB-EL, and Benjamites. Though these do not refer to the biblical people, they atleast show that the names were in use.

4. These records also support Gen.14, where five kings fought against four kings.

5. As to patriarchal history, Albright said:

"Aside from a few die-hards among older scholars, there is scarcely a single biblical historian who has not been impressed by the rapid accumulation of data supporting the substantial history of PATRIARCHAL tradition" (Albright, BP,1).

6. Scholar Walter Kaiser adds:

"The amount of epigraphic material for this period of history is staggering. Much of this material awaits further study and publication. Meanwhile, an increasing high degree of probability and corroberating evidence continues to mount up from the external evidence to such a point that the case for genuineness of the PATRIARCHAL stories is strong indeed" (OTDATR, 96).

You said: "The exodus is mythical."

Wrong again.

1. See the quotes I gave above.

2. There are archaeological findings supporting the exodus event. I can't get into this now. But I recommend you read "Archaeology and the Old Testament, by Anders. He deals specifically with the exodus data.

You said: "The conquest is mythical."

Wrong agan. Read Rocks, Relics, and Biblical Reliability, by Clifford; Ancient Records and the Structure of Genesis, by Wiseman.

MOSES

You also argue that Moses was mythical.

1. Albright:

"The contents of our Pentateuch are, in general, very much older than the date at which they were finally edited; new discoveries continue to confirm the historical accuracy or the literary antiquity of detail after detail.......sheer hypercriticism to deny the substantially MOSAIC character of the Pentateuchal tradition" (AP, 225).

MOSAIC AUTHORSHIP OF DEUTERONOMY

The late date many critics assign to Deuteronomy -- 7th century B.C. -- has been thoroghly discredited by the excellent scholarship of Meredith Kline in his landmark work on The Treaty of the Great King (see also Gleason Archer, SOTI, 253-62), in which he demonstrated that Deuteronomy follows the typical suzerainty treaty of the Hittities in the 2nd millenium century B.C. --the very time in which tradition informs us Moses wrote Deuteronomy.

SUMMARY ANC CONCLUSION

This was a very brief treatement/refutation on my part due to time constraints.

Most of the claims from the author of this thread are based on arguments from silence and ignorance.

Note, no evidence has ever been produced to disprove the accounts in the Old Testament.

William F. Albright started his lifes work as a skeptic. He actually set out to debunk the Bible. But after researching tremendous amounts of evidence in favor of the historicity of the Old Testament, he came to believe that the Old Testament is historically accurate.

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Ignore Apotheon's

Ignore Apotheon's ramblings, please.  Aside from the outdated scholarship he quote-mined from, modern scholarship is unanomous that the Old Testament is midrash.  Concult the following sources which not only refute the old hounds like Albright (who has been dead for some decades now) and Noth, Alt and Wellhausen. 

Thomas L. Thompson, The Messiah Myth ; The Early History of the Israelite People; The Mythic Past; The Historicity of the Patriarchal Narratives; Niels Lemche, The Israelites in History and Tradition; Miller-Hayes, A History of Ancient Israel and Judah; Phillip Davies, In Search of "Ancient Israel"; Matthews-Benjamin, Old Testament Paralles: Laws and Stories from the Ancient Near East; James Pritchard, Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old Testament with Supplement; Giovanni Garbini, History and Ideology in Ancient Israel; Myth and History in the Bible; John Van Seters, In Search of History: Historiography in the Ancient World and the Origins of Biblical History; Gosta Ahlstrom, The History of Ancient Palestine; Alexander Heidel, The Babylonian Genesis (To name a few)

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Rook, with all do respect,

Rook, with all do respect, your bibliography is PRE-ARCHAEOLOGICAL. Meaning, your authors were not familiar with the modern discoveries of archaeology, and none of them can hold a candle to the scholarly erudition of William Fr. Albright. And your authors were liberals with an agenda and axe to grind in the first place.

MODERN ARCHAEOLOGY CONFIRMS THE HISTORICITY OF THE OLD TESTAMENT

Archer, "Encyclopedia of Biblical Difficulties"

Livingston, "Redating the Exodus" in "Biblical Archaeological Review"

Blaiklock, "The New International Dictionary of Biblical Archaeology"

Custance, "The Flood: Local or Global"

Gluek, "Rivers in the Desert"

Kaiser, "The Old Testament Documents: Are they Reliable?"

Kitchen, "Ancient Orient and the Old Testament"

Kline, "The Treaty of the Great King"

Lubenow, "Bones of Contention"

Pritchard, "Ancient Near East Texts"

Reinwinkle, "The Flood"

Sheler, "Is the Bible True?"

Whitcomb, "Darius the Mede"

Whitcomb, "The Genesis Flood"

Wilson, "Rocks, Relics, and Biblical Reliability"

Wiseman, "Ancient Records and the Structures of Genesis"

Yamauchi, "The Stones and the Scriptures"

Young, "The Biblical Flood"

Anders, "Old Testament Archaeology"

Anders, "New Testament Archaeology"

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 Wait a minute! After

 Wait a minute! After looking closer at your bibliography, I don't think those books are disputing Old Testament history. If you want to make an argument, make an argument. Just appealing to some obscure writers doesn;t prove anything. I made several arguments in my first post, and they remain unrefuted.

 

Telling people to just ignore me, is equal to telling them to keep their minds closed. Do you want people to think for themselves, or do you want to program them how to think?

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Did you even read my

Did you even read my Bibliography? (Obviously not, because you had to stop and correct yourself after your initial post - you've been caught in the act of ignoring posts!  So you don't read, and pretend you do, and then lie about it!) 

Every one of those authors published within the last ten years with the exception of Alhstrom. Davies, Thompson, Van Seeters et al are all not only scholars who have published collectively thousands of articles in recent journals, but all are familiar with archeaological finds. You have no concept or grasp of scholarship Apotheon, you simply go to peoples websites and copy-paste things into a text box and post. This is apparent in that you used two of my list (which you previously called 'pre-achaeology' - a term which does not exist..you just made it up) and put them in your list. Pritchard does not agree with you, by the way.

Finally, all of those books listed with the exception of one, is a monograph. In fact, two are texts books. All of those books refute the originality and historicity of the Old Testament, specificallt Thompson, Van Seters, Davies, Garbini, and Lemche.  I am personal friends with some of the scholars.  Get your facts straight you know-nothing, sorry excuse for a human being.  Try reading a book for once.

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Damn, Rook beat me to it,

Damn, Rook beat me to it, but I'll post anyway.

First off, as to your claim that Rook's bibliography is "PRE-AECHAEOLOGICAL" and his authors were not familiar with the modern discoveries of archaeology, Mr. William F. Albright has been dead for over 36 years.  On the other hand, Mr. Thompson is still kicking, and published his book "The Messiah Myth" in 2005.  That doesn't lend much creedence to your argument that Mr. Thompson is unaware of modern archaeological discoveries.  A History of Ancient Israel and Judah by J. Maxwell Miller and John Haralson Hayes was published in 1986.  Not overly recent, but still about 15 years after Albright's death.  In Search of "Ancient Israel" gives an original publication year of 1992, Old Testament Paralles: Laws and Stories from the Ancient Near East was published in 1991.  I'm being lazy and not checking the other books Rook listed, but it's apparent that while there may have been archaeological discoveries since all of these books were published, they would be more 'modern' than the data and information available to Albright.

Now, to your claims.  I'm nowhere near the logician Hamby is, nor am I a scientist like Deludedgod, nor am I the level of scholar Rook is.  But frankly, I need the practice in debate.  Hamby, or anyone really, please feel free to point out any fallicies I include or criticize/critique any of this.  I can promise that I'll take no offense whatsoever.

"the patriarchs are mythical".

1.  Looks like quote mining to me.  I readily admit that I've never read anything written by Albright, and am unable to locate the source of the quote online, but given that Albright could only have written this before September 1971, there's a good chance that more detailed archaeology exists on the subject today, and an even better chance that such evidence is included in one or more of the books Rook mentioned (none of which I've read either so feel free to blast me on this one).

2.  The discovery of law codes from the correct time period do not prove the existence of any of the Patriarchs, only that there were law codes.

3.  The common usage of names similar to, or exactly like, the names of the Patriarchs do not prove that they, themselves, as represented in the Bible existed, only that those names were common at that time.

4.  While the Mari Letters may (or may not, I'll need more research on this) contain evidence that five kings fought against four kings, this does not prove that Abram rescued Lot, only that there was a multi-kingdom conflict.

5.  Confirming tradition does not confirm the existence of actual people, only the tradition.

6.  Walter Kaiser is not only a scholar and PhD, but is "an influential evangelical Old Testament scholar".  Quoting a non-biased source would be helpful.

"The exodus is mythical".

1.  See above.

2.  I am unable to locate a book called "Archaeology and the Old Testament" by anyone named Anders, but did manage to locate a few of that or similar title by James Pritchard, R. K. Harrison, Alfred Hoerth, and H. J. Dukinfield Astley.  Can you clarify which one I should look up?

"The conquest is mythical".

I'm unfamiliar with both those titles, but will happily spend a day at the library perusing them.

"Moses was mythical".

The Treaty of the Great King was published in 1963, which makes me somewhat doubt that the content is aware of, or based on, modern archaeological discoveries.  However, in good faith I'll add this to my list and see what it has to say.

Summary and Conclusion

There may be no evidence to disprove the Old Testament, but more importantly there doesn't seem to be any evidence to support it.  The burden of proof is on you, my friend, claiming that something exists (or did exist, in this case), not lpetrich.

Albright was undoubtedly a prolific author, and did inspire a generation of archaeologists.  However, I can find no credible source to state that he started life as a skeptic.  In fact, most seem to agree that he started life as an evangelical Methodist and continued to be so throughout his life.  There also seems to be a general consensus that Albright's central theses have been disproven and the field of "biblical archaeology" is generally discredited.  If you can provide a reliable source to indicate that Albright was a skeptic, I'd be happy to have it.  I'm also curious if you can provide sources claiming to prove the historicity of Moses, the Exodus, and the Patriarchs that are from a non-religious source.  And by a non-religious source, I don't mean something published in a non-religious periodical or book by a religious person, I mean something published by a scholar or archaeologist that does not have "evangelical", ministry, or seminary school in their background.


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DarwinsMonkey wrote: Damn,

DarwinsMonkey wrote:

Damn, Rook beat me to it, but I'll post anyway.

First off, as to your claim that Rook's bibliography is "PRE-AECHAEOLOGICAL" and his authors were not familiar with the modern discoveries of archaeology, Mr. William F. Albright has been dead for over 36 years. On the other hand, Mr. Thompson is still kicking, and published his book "The Messiah Myth" in 2005. That doesn't lend much creedence to your argument that Mr. Thompson is unaware of modern archaeological discoveries. 

The guy clearly just makes up whatever helps him sleep at night....I really think these sort of unrepentant, irresponsible liars just need to be banned from the site.... refuting blatant lies is a waste of our time.

 

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 Rook, if the term

 Rook, if the term "pre-archaeology" doesn't  exist, why did you just use it? The two or so individuals in your list that correponded to my list is because you just posted a bunch of books without even knowing the contents or authors. The way your list appears, proves you just copied and pasted it from some obscure (most likely atheist) website. Nothing in your selective list controverts any of the arguments in favor of biblical archaeology. Nothing in your list refutes all the biblical archaeology of modern times.

The term "pre-archaeology" refers to the time before the great archaeological studies. For example, before the disciveries at Qumron in 1947.

Most, if not all the arguments against biblical archaeology, come from people who have not studied the material after these finds. They are "pre-archaeological." and most, if not all, of those people are atheistic liberals with an axe to grind anyway. They are not objective, their methodology is governed by their bias and agenda to lie and deceive gullable and ignorant people.

William Albright was NOT a Christian when he set out to debunk the Bible. His parents were Methodists. But to assume he was a Methodist because daddy was a Mathodist, is to engage in the Post Hoc fallacy.

I will be happy to supply you with a non-religious archaeologist, if you in tern provide me with a non-atheist archaeologist.

If you are going to make the claim that my sources are invalid BECAUSE of scholars behind them, then logically yours are also invalid. My scholars Willam Albright, Sir William Ramsey, ect, actually set out to debunk the Bible.

What we see here, is no refutation of any of the arguments I gave. Instead, we see the typical atheistic red herring/smokescreen and adhominem.

Once a skeptic, himself, Dr. William F. Albright wrote: "The excessive skepticism shown toward the Bible has been progressively discredited. Discovery after discovery has established the accuracy of numerous details." (W.F. Albright, The Archaeology of Palestine and the Bible p. 127).

 As an agnostic, Sir William Ramsay became an Archaeologist to discredit the New Testament. But in his extensive archaeological digs and research he found overwhelming evidence that compelled faith in the New Testament. He became its strongest defender. (Sir William Ramsay, Archaeologist and New Testament Scholar, p. 28.).

 

CONCLUSION

 

The rocks cry out in support of the historicity and authenticity of the Bible. No archaeological find has ever refuted a biblical claim, and thousands of finds have confirmed in general and in detail the biblical picture.

 

Noted Archaeologist Nelson Glueck noted:

 

"As a matter of fact... it may be stated categorically that no archaeological discovery has ever controverted a biblical reference. Sources of archaeological findings have been made which confirm in clear outline or exact detail historical statements in the Bible" (RD, 31).

 

For the Old Testament alone, archaeological confirmations have spanned the Creation record (Gen.1-2), in the Ebla Tablets, including Noah's flood, the Tower of Babel (Gen.110, patriarchael history (Gen.12-50), Sodom and Gommorah, the fall of Jericho (Josh 6), King David, and the Assyrian Captivity (Isa. 20).

 

In the New Testament book of Acts alone there are literally hundreds of archaeological confirmations of innumberable details of the narration.

 

Noted Roman historian A.N. Sherwin-White said of Luke's writings:

 

"For Acts the confirmation of historicity is overwelming... Any attempt to reject its basic historicity even in matters of detail must now appear absurd. Roman historians have long taken it for granted" (RSRL, 189).

 

The testimony of science demonstrates biblical archaeology

 

of the schrolls that transmit it

 

the scribes who wrote it

 

the supernatural that confirms it

 

the structure that manifests it

 

the stones that support it

 

the Savior who verified it

 

the Spirit that witnesses to it

 

and the saved who have been transformed by it (the Bible).

 

These combined testimonies con-firm that the Bible is what it claims to be -- the divinely inspired, infallible, and inerrant Word of God.

 

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Apotheon wrote: If you want

Apotheon wrote:
If you want to make an argument, make an argument. Just appealing to some obscure writers doesn;t prove anything. I made several arguments in my first post, and they remain unrefuted.

"Let us let whoever has committed no sin throw the first stone."

Apotheon, William Albright is not a god; he isn't even close to one, and his successors have good reason to believe that his approach was fundamentally flawed. He tended to find some ruin and ask himself "Does that fit the Bible?" More recent archeologists have concerned themselves with trying to date garbage dumps and the like to find out when places were inhabited, and they find out that the Bible's early history does not fit.

Also, this claim that William Albright was once a skeptic who tried to disprove the Bible is a classic conversion brag, alongside "I was once an atheist; I hated God." Don't the fundies have any originality?


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BIBLE ARCHAEOLOGY Free,

BIBLE ARCHAEOLOGY

  • Free, Joseph P., and Howard F. Vos. Archaeology and Bible History. Rev. and exp. ed. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1992.
  • McRay, John. Archaeology & the New Testament. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1991.
  • Thompson, J.A. The Bible and Archaeology. Rev. 3d ed. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1987.
  • Luke, the Historian. Melbourne: The Australian Institute of Archaeology, 1954.
  • Wilson, Clifford A. Rocks, Relics and Biblical Reliability. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1977.
  • Yamauchi, Edwin. The Stones and the Scriptures. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1972.

THE HISTORICITY OF CHRIST:

  • Bruce, F.F. Jesus & Christian Origins Outside the New Testament. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1974.
  • Habermas, Gary R. The Historical Jesus: Ancient Evidence for the Life of Christ. Joplin, MO: College Press, 1996.
  • McDowell, Josh, and Bill Wilson. He Walked Among Us. San Bernardino, CA: Here's Life Publishers, 1988.

THE HISTORICITY OF THE BIBLE

  • Archer, Gleason. Jr. A Survey of Old Testament Introduction. Rev. ed. Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1974.
  • Barnett, Paul. Is the Testament Reliable? A Look at the Historical Evidence. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1986.
  • Blomberg, Craig. The Historical Reliability of the Gospels. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1987.
  • Bruce, F.F. The New Testament Documents: are They Reliable?. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1978.
  • Geisler, Norman, and William Nix. A General Introduction to the Bible. Rev. and exp. ed. Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1986.
  • Harrison, Roland Kenneth. Introduction to the Old Testament. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1969.
  • McDowell, Josh. Evidence That Demands a Verdict. Arrowhead Springs, CA: Campus Crusade for Christ, 1972.
  • Montgomery, John. History and Christianity. Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 1965.
    • Where is History Going? Minneapolis, MN: Bethany Fellowship, 1972.
  • Sherwin-White, A.N. Roman Society and Roman Law in the New Testament. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1978.

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  I have a few more

 

I have a few more points worthy of note:

 

1. Rook never once quoted from any of his sources anything that directly contradicts my own quotes.

 

2. Rook never quoted anything from any of his sources. His argument would have more merit of he actually quoted from one of his sources something that directly or indirectly goes against one of my several quotes in favor of biblical archeology.

 

3.. No archaeological discovery has ever disproved anything in the Bible. This is very imporant for the skeptics to know.

 

P.S. My last list of books is from apologeticsinfo.org. I forgot to mention this in that post.

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Apotheon wrote:   I have

Apotheon wrote:

 

I have a few more points worthy of note:

 

1. Rook never once quoted from any of his sources anything that directly contradicts my own quotes.

EVERY one of those books are written to refute your claim, and the claims of Albright 36 years ago.  You keep dodging this point or ar just too stupid to get it.   

 

Quote:
2. Rook never quoted anything from any of his sources. His argument would have more merit of he actually quoted from one of his sources something that directly or indirectly goes against one of my several quotes in favor of biblical archeology.

 Why waste my time, you don't read my posts anyway!  And it would be pointless, as I'd have to quote whole chapters of books!  Might as well just go to a library and read them!  Again, this is evidence your intellectual laziness.

 

Quote:
3.. No archaeological discovery has ever disproved anything in the Bible. This is very imporant for the skeptics to know.

That's false.  Again, read those books.  Not only did ALBRIGHT doubt the historicity of the narratives in the Bible, but the only part he thought was historically accurate was the monarchy.  This proves that YOU haven't even read Albright and are just quote mining from websites.  You are such a liar, and it is starting to piss me off. 

Quote:
P.S. My last list of books is from apologeticsinfo.org. I forgot to mention this in that post.

What about your other posts - I demand you start citing sources for every post you make or I will be forced to take some sort of action.   

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Rook, I have to give you

Rook, I have to give you credit for having so much patience as a deconstructionist dealing with religious history.

It still doesnt amount to a hill of beans even if one could prove that a person or city existed when it comes to claims of magic.

Superman can not litterally fly in real life because we go to the movies and see him flying around the real city of New York.

Even if Rook would concede that every character in the bible was a real person, it still doesnt prove by any stretch that snakes or donkeys talk, or that the sun stopped dead in the sky, or that a disimbodied being with no reproductive organs got a 9 to 14 year old girl pregnant.

Rook is doing a fine job of schooling you. But even if you have it in your head that you are right about those events and people being real, you still have only one claim that ultimatly after all this convoluted attempt to justify beliving , all you have is "God did it".

I know what rigor mortis is and I know that dead bodies dont reconstitute themselves magicaly 3 days later. I know that it takes a sperm and and egg to make a human baby. You cant get around those facts, so insted of facing them you have deluded yourself into believing that because someone claimed the bible to be a history book, the magic must be real. 

Now, insted of saying "I am right and god is real" to yourself. Take yourself outside your belief and look at what Rook is saying objectively. Look at it as an experiment. Pretend that you are an alien from another planet who has never heard of Christianity and that you have picked up the book for the first time.

It doesnt read like history. It reads like Marvel Comics. But you have fun trying to take on Rook.

Rook, keep up the great work. 

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Apotheon wrote: 3.. No

Apotheon wrote:
3.. No archaeological discovery has ever disproved anything in the Bible. This is very imporant for the skeptics to know.

That is demonstrably false. Check out the likes of The Bible Unearthed, by Israel Finkelstein and Neil Asher Silberman. That book discusses the history -- and often the lack of history -- behind the Old Testament in VERY gory detail. Here is Wikipedia's summary of it.

So, Apotheon, I challenge you to read that book and tell us where Finkelstein and Silberman go wrong.


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I wouldn't recommend

I wouldn't recommend Finkelstein, although they make some great points, I feel his book is still not as good as anything written by Lemche or Thompson.  Thompson's book, "Early History of the Israelite People: From the Written and Archaeological Sources" is destructive to everything he has to say.  Thompson is the first person to truely write about and deconstruct the theories of Alt and Noth (two who influenced Albright) and further decontructs Albrights position on the monarchy, and the Jews as nomadic prior to the monarchy (what monarchy?).   Thompson's experience in this field makes him among the top 10 experts today worldwide. 

 But it doesn't matter who you recommend, because Apotheon is too lazy to read the books himself, and he is too deceptive.  So far he has not given us one original thought, or one honest answer.  IT is dodge after dodge, and he just steals from websites and pastes info here when in fact he doesn't have the slightest clue what he is posting about.  He probably didn't know Albright was dead until I brought it up.  He certainly doesn't have a clue as to Albrights position was on the matter of historicity, nor does he have a clue that Albright had his doubts.  He is just name dropping - something he got from somebody else who was just as clueless as he is.

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The Exodus

Something i think important, and certainly possible.  The main mitigation against there having been an Exodus has always been the modern belief that "600.000 men besides women, children and animals" etc could have existed in the Sinai. We really are not certain how it was in those far off days, but we have a fair idea.

The point i wish to make is, that it was once pointed out to me, when I was in Israel, no less, that the word in the Torah "Eleph"(or elef) was exactly the same as the word 'Aleph"(or alef)

One meant "a thousand", and the other meant "a head" (of a family), therefore the "six-hundred-thousand" could easily have been "six-hundred- heads" of families. 

 

in today's Hebrew the word "Aluf"  denotes an Army General. 


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lpetrich wrote:Apotheon

lpetrich wrote:

Apotheon wrote:
3.. No archaeological discovery has ever disproved anything in the Bible. This is very imporant for the skeptics to know.

That is demonstrably false.

Of course it is.

 

Apotheon, no skeptic can take your comments seriously... modern scholarship is mainly Christian or at least from societies where Christianity is the dominant religion and yet they agree more with the skeptics than the fundies. The idea that archaeology hasn't disproved anything in the bible would have to mean that nothing in archaeology is at odds with the Genesis account , or Noah's flood!

 

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Rook, this is where I jump

Rook, this is where I jump in and double team.

Lets just give the theist their character, even though we know they are wrong. But, lets just pretend that Moses existed.

What the myth lover doesn't seem to understand is that their "POOF" theory of a man magically waving his hand to part billions of gallons of water, is a steamy pile and a naked assertion, and all the theist has is "POOF" "God did it". They might as well believe that Harry Potter really can fly around on a broomstick.

Rook, I really do admire your patience with them. But in the end they still cant demonstrate HOW these things happen, all they have is a naked assertion of "who", which is no different than any other omni-max claim of any other deity.

My sky daddy preforms magic tricks. That is what they can't defend, even if we were to conceed that a person existed, it doesn't make hocus pocus real.

 

 

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todangst wrote:lpetrich

todangst wrote:

lpetrich wrote:

Apotheon wrote:
3.. No archaeological discovery has ever disproved anything in the Bible. This is very imporant for the skeptics to know.

That is demonstrably false.

Of course it is.

 

Apotheon, no skeptic can take your comments seriously... modern scholarship is mainly Christian or at least from societies where Christianity is the dominant religion and yet they agree more with the skeptics than the fundies. The idea that archaeology hasn't disproved anything in the bible would have to mean that nothing in archaeology is at odds with the Genesis account , or Noah's flood!

 

Get real, your hyperbole is your undoing.

Quote:
Get real, your hyperbole is your undoing.

I prefer "lowperbole"

Just thought I'd add some levity to the thread.

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"The main debate nowadays is

"The main debate nowadays is over how historical the Biblical accounts of Kings David and Solomon are."

That's funny because I remember a time when King David was a myth all to himself.

archeology is not a strong attack on Christianity


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Cadalyst wrote:"The main

Cadalyst wrote:

"The main debate nowadays is over how historical the Biblical accounts of Kings David and Solomon are."

That's funny because I remember a time when King David was a myth all to himself.

archeology is not a strong attack on Christianity

So, by the standard of your really small brain, acheological evidence that:

 - The garden of eden never existed

 - There was no great flood

 - That man is a species of great ape

 - That many of the cities of the Bible never existed

 

...None of the above (which is merely the tip of the iceberg) is a 'strong attack on Christianity'?

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"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

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Cadalyst wrote:"The main

Cadalyst wrote:

"The main debate nowadays is over how historical the Biblical accounts of Kings David and Solomon are."

That's funny because I remember a time when King David was a myth all to himself.

archeology is not a strong attack on Christianity

Really, because if there was no Exodus, no Moses, no conquest of Canaan, and David was a king of a tribe of 6000 people as was Solomon this does what to support your myths?

Archeology seems to show the Omride kings including Ahab were a notable kingdom along with Syria at the time of Shalmanser III one of the stronger Kings of Assyria. Ahab along with Damascus and others stopped an Assyrian invasion in about 853 BCE. Archaeologists seem to think the Omide kings were the ones with the palaces and temples discovered and wrongly attributed to Solomon. David may have existed but he was not a very nice guy or a very good friend. As to what he really was it's hard to say as the Bible is a mishmash of discrepancy on his actions. There is also no correlation with histories from other ancient civilizations. Archeology shows the area of Judah to be rather undeveloped and rural with a very small population of maybe 5000 compared to Israel in the north at the time David and Solomon were alleged to have reigned.

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I'd like to get some more

I'd like to get some more into the question of who Moses might had been. Although the Exodus as described in the Bible is unhistorical, the Biblical account could well have been inspired by some real history. In particular, the expulsion of the Hyksos, who ruled northern Egypt from about 1648 BCE to about 1540 BCE. They had been Canaanites, and their stay of Egypt and expulsion from Egypt could well have been remembered by later generations in Canaan. They had also lived through the massive Thera eruption, which they could have learned about from Cretan refugees; that could well have inspired some of the Ten Plagues of Egypt.

And the Pharaoh who drove them out? Ahmose, whose name sounds like "Brother of Moses" (Ah Moshe) in Hebrew.

And the Red Sea? That was the Septuagint's translation (hê eruthra thalassa) of what was originally the Reed Sea (Yam Suph).

So I imagine a scenario that starts with

Pharaoh Ahmose (Brother of Moses) drove us out of Egypt, though he lost interest after we went through a huge marsh, a sea of reeds.

The storytellers would then have to explain who Moses was, and they'd come up with something like

Moses, brother of the Pharaoh, led us out of Egypt.

And the second part is not dramatic enough, so it would be turned into

Moses parted the Reed Sea so his people could cross it, and when the Egyptians arrived, he let the water pour back to drown them.

And the Septuagint? Some translator might have wondered "Where in Sheol is the Reed Sea?" and concluded that it was the Red Sea, which was appropriately located.

So some of the Bible's "history" is little more than a game of "telephone", though it must be said that that is common among other early histories.

Cadalyst wrote:

"The main debate nowadays is over how historical the Biblical accounts of Kings David and Solomon are."

That's funny because I remember a time when King David was a myth all to himself.

And when was that? I'd like to see some actual documentation of that, as opposed to the all-too-common fundie testimony of "I was once an atheist, a skeptic, an evil monster who ate babies."

Quote:
archeology is not a strong attack on Christianity

How so?


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lpetrich wrote:I'd like to

lpetrich wrote:

I'd like to get some more into the question of who Moses might had been.

Why?  Why start with a presupposition, that Moses existed historically?  Why start with the presupposition that the genre of Exodus reflects historical memory or historical tradition?

Quote:
Although the Exodus as described in the Bible is unhistorical, the Biblical account could well have been inspired by some real history.

Unlikely, since the Israelite settlements reflect transJordian and Syrian settlers who cross-bred with Canaanites already living in the area - not Egyptian settlers or nomads.  There didn't have to be an Exodus from Egypt...the Egyptians came to Canaan and conquering the region.  The Jews never had to leave Canaan to become slaves - they were slaves in their own country.

Quote:
In particular, the expulsion of the Hyksos, who ruled northern Egypt from about 1648 BCE to about 1540 BCE. They had been Canaanites, and their stay of Egypt and expulsion from Egypt could well have been remembered by later generations in Canaan.

The claim of the Hyksos has long been refuted by modern scholarship on the grounds of archaeological evidence in the Hill Country of Palestine.  Did you not read my article on Ancient Israel?  There is more evidence that the "Hebrews" were the wandering "'apiru" (literally - "wanderers&quotEye-wink.  See your ANET (or the Library's ANET) for information regarding this.  The Hyksos were not the ancient Israelites.

Quote:
They had also lived through the massive Thera eruption, which they could have learned about from Cretan refugees; that could well have inspired some of the Ten Plagues of Egypt.

Be careful.  You're starting to build up a chain of events based entirely on speculation and misinformation.

Quote:
And the Pharaoh who drove them out? Ahmose, whose name sounds like "Brother of Moses" (Ah Moshe) in Hebrew.

More speculation.  Especially since the Pharaoh in the Exodus story is never named.   Are you getting your information from Wikipedia?  I only ask because I've dealt with the article brought up elsewhere, which stretches a lot of the same conclusions that you are.  First, the expulsion of the Hyksos was not accomplished in one generation but many, over many campaigns (battles), where several Pharaoh's sought to get the better of them.  Also, the Hyksos did not rule all of Egypt, but only part of it, from their capitol city Avaris, while the Egyptians still held Thebes (their capitol until the Amarna Period).  The name Ah-mose (written Ahmosis) and your linking of it to Moses) should be reconsidered.  "Mose" (Mosis, not to be confused with Moses simply because it looks similar) was a common name, and usually accompanied a prefix.  Thutmose (Thutmosis) III launched a campaign against Megiddo almost five decades after the expulsion of the Hyksos, launching his famous war on the ancient Near East--including Palestine.  Kamose, prior to Ahmose, ignored a truce between Thebes and Avaris before initiating a campaign against the Hyksos, probably weakening them before Ahmose took power.  Following this event (Ahmosis' removal of the Hyksos from Avaris), Thutmosis I started a campaign into Palestine, although little is known about Ahmose I campaigns in the region (although we're sure there were from his own Stele).  

Another fault in thinking the Hyksos were the Hebrews is the descriptions given at Karnak (see my article on Ancient Israel).  The Hebrews (if so) do not resemble separate people (but rather resemble, and are dressed as, Canaanite peoples). 

Quote:
So some of the Bible's "history" is little more than a game of "telephone", though it must be said that that is common among other early histories.

Why assume it was written as "early history?"

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Rook_Hawkins wrote:lpetrich

Rook_Hawkins wrote:

lpetrich wrote:

I'd like to get some more into the question of who Moses might had been.

Why?  Why start with a presupposition, that Moses existed historically?  Why start with the presupposition that the genre of Exodus reflects historical memory or historical tradition?

Exodus is purported history, and I was hoping to address the question of how much is fact and how much is fiction in it. I'm thinking of something like Greek mythology, which features a lot of real places from Mycenaean times. Or how Ostrogothic king Theodoric the Great got remembered as Dietrich von Bern. Or the Song of Roland, likewise based on some real history.

Moses I don't think was historical -- I think that he was invented to explain why an Egyptian Pharaoh's name, Ahmose, sounded like "Brother of Moses" in Hebrew.

Quote:
Quote:
Although the Exodus as described in the Bible is unhistorical, the Biblical account could well have been inspired by some real history.

Unlikely, since the Israelite settlements reflect transJordian and Syrian settlers who cross-bred with Canaanites already living in the area - not Egyptian settlers or nomads.

However, the Hyksos had been Canaanites, and when they returned, they could have blended in with the local population and they could have told of their adventures in Egypt, including fleeing the "Brother of Moses".

Quote:
There didn't have to be an Exodus from Egypt...the Egyptians came to Canaan and conquering the region.  The Jews never had to leave Canaan to become slaves - they were slaves in their own country.

That's quite correct -- the rule of Canaan by New-Kingdom Egypt could explain the slavery-in-Egypt part quite nicely.

The picture I'm proposing is VERY mixed-up history -- and very likely oral history for some centuries. And in cases like Greek mythology, Theodoric the Great, and the Song of Roland, oral history can get very mixed up.

Consider the case of the Laestrygonians in Homer's Odyssey. Their land resembles a Scandinavian fjord, and their long daytime is what happens during the summer there -- the best time for sea voyaging. However, two of the three named entities in that story have recognizably Greek names: the town Telepylos ( "Far Gate" ) and the leader Antiphates. I can't place Astacia, however.

But why a Scandinavian fjord? Scandinavia was on the way to the Baltic Sea, and the Mycenaeans had lots of Baltic amber. So some Mycenaeans could well have voyaged there and described some of the terrain along the way.

However, southern Norway and Sweden are likely Germanic-homeland areas, along with Denmark, so one might expect some Germanic names there. Towns and villages with names ending in -chaim-, -thorp-, -wik-, -dal-, etc. (-ham, -heim, "home", -thorp, -dorf, -vik, -dal, -tal, "dale", etc.). And some personal names with "wolf" in them.

Furthermore, the poets who composed the Odyssey over the centuries likely took this and other accounts of voyages and turned them into the voyages of one hero, Odysseus.

Quote:
Quote:
In particular, the expulsion of the Hyksos, who ruled northern Egypt from about 1648 BCE to about 1540 BCE. They had been Canaanites, and their stay of Egypt and expulsion from Egypt could well have been remembered by later generations in Canaan.

The claim of the Hyksos has long been refuted by modern scholarship on the grounds of archaeological evidence in the Hill Country of Palestine.  Did you not read my article on Ancient Israel?  There is more evidence that the "Hebrews" were the wandering "'apiru" (literally - "wanderers&quotEye-wink.  See your ANET (or the Library's ANET) for information regarding this.  The Hyksos were not the ancient Israelites.

I agree that they weren't, but since they had been Canaanites, they would have blended in with the local population when they returned.

Quote:
Quote:
So some of the Bible's "history" is little more than a game of "telephone", though it must be said that that is common among other early histories.

Why assume it was written as "early history?"

It is purported history, like the various epics I've mentioned.


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lpetrich wrote:However, the

lpetrich wrote:

However, the Hyksos had been Canaanites, and when they returned, they could have blended in with the local population and they could have told of their adventures in Egypt, including fleeing the "Brother of Moses".

I don't see how you take an Egyptian Pharaoh who just reconquered lower Egypt and turn him into the brother of Moses. So much speculation. Please read some Egyptian History somewhere besides Wiki.

As to how many Hyskos survived is unknown as well, one of their cities Avaris has much ash likely from the Thera explosion. Considering ideas to discuss is one thing but nothing is known of the Hyskos after their expulsion so I wouldn't venture it is basis for the Hebrew myths.

lpetrich wrote:

 

Quote:
Quote:
In particular, the expulsion of the Hyksos, who ruled northern Egypt from about 1648 BCE to about 1540 BCE. They had been Canaanites, and their stay of Egypt and expulsion from Egypt could well have been remembered by later generations in Canaan.

The claim of the Hyksos has long been refuted by modern scholarship on the grounds of archaeological evidence in the Hill Country of Palestine.  Did you not read my article on Ancient Israel?  There is more evidence that the "Hebrews" were the wandering "'apiru" (literally - "wanderers&quotEye-wink.  See your ANET (or the Library's ANET) for information regarding this.  The Hyksos were not the ancient Israelites.

I agree that they weren't, but since they had been Canaanites, they would have blended in with the local population when they returned.

Read Rook's article as well as other sources archeology shows the Canaanites and the Israelites are settled from nomadic tribes. No one knows what happened to the Hyskos after they were expelled it is but conjecture. I agree myths and legends start from damn near anything but that's all you should say.

 

 

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lpetrich wrote:Rook_Hawkins

lpetrich wrote:

Rook_Hawkins wrote:

lpetrich wrote:

I'd like to get some more into the question of who Moses might had been.

Why?  Why start with a presupposition, that Moses existed historically?  Why start with the presupposition that the genre of Exodus reflects historical memory or historical tradition?

Exodus is purported history,

Purported by whom?  Certainly not the author of Exodus.

Quote:
I'm thinking of something like Greek mythology, which features a lot of real places from Mycenaean times.

But not where they're supposed to be.  Long have Homeric scholars noticed that the areas discussed in Homer's poems do not relate to geography, even for the day and time when they were written (10th-9th century BCE).  Same thing with Jason and the Argonauts, which does not appear to have been written using any ancient Atlases. 

Quote:
Or how Ostrogothic king Theodoric the Great got remembered as Dietrich von Bern. Or the Song of Roland, likewise based on some real history.

You're comparing two time periods here.  Both of which are not very comparable.

Quote:
Moses I don't think was historical -- I think that he was invented to explain why an Egyptian Pharaoh's name, Ahmose, sounded like "Brother of Moses" in Hebrew.

Based on what evidence?  Ahmose and Ahmosh (you're trying to suggest this is where 'Moses' came from) look similar in *english*.  That does not mean they are similar when viewed in their original written form.  In fact, I know they aren't.  Even if you compared docetic or coptic to the semitic equivalent, it would not look similar. 

Another flaw in your perspective is that you ignored the fact that Exodus *tells* us where the name Moses came from.  The author explains it right away as a literary invention (much how Isaac, Jacob, and Joshua are so-named), because the Pharaoh's daughter "drew him out" from the water--the word for 'draw out' in Hebrew is "Mashah" and Moses is "Mosheh".  It's a pun, as much as Isaac (which means "laughter&quotEye-wink is a pun on Sarah's laughter at her gained knowledge of future pregnancy.  It is also an important name to the story - as Moses "draws out" his people from Egypt.  His name reflects the literary significance of his characters role in the narrative. (similar to how the name Jesus Christ in the Gospels reflects the intended purpose behind the character)

Moreso, the story of Moses does not make Pharaoh Moses' brother, but grandfather, as the daughter of the Pharaoh (again, he's anonymous) adopts Moses as her son.  So why would the Hebrews invent a story and character to explain a name (a very silly reason and void of real intent)?  Especially when the intent of the story is not to explain the name (the narrative spends only three chapters on birth, adoption, and attendance to the pharaoh) but to explain the usefulness of God to a people who are seemingly in need of such comfort.  Your perspective here seems to raise more questions then it actually finds answers to, and little of it can be shown to be helpful to the overall narrative. 

Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Although the Exodus as described in the Bible is unhistorical, the Biblical account could well have been inspired by some real history.

Unlikely, since the Israelite settlements reflect transJordian and Syrian settlers who cross-bred with Canaanites already living in the area - not Egyptian settlers or nomads.

However, the Hyksos had been Canaanites, and when they returned, they could have blended in with the local population and they could have told of their adventures in Egypt, including fleeing the "Brother of Moses".

Could have.  But no evidence remains of them after their expulsion of Egypt.  Subsequent campaigns by Ahmose, Ramses, Merneptah and Thutmose could have wiped them out.  It could be that their civilization thrived elsewhere only to be destroyed by an earthquake, forever lost to the sands of time.  Speculating is certainly okay, but it is never okay to base a perspective on a strong of speculations like this.

Quote:
The picture I'm proposing is VERY mixed-up history -- and very likely oral history for some centuries. And in cases like Greek mythology, Theodoric the Great, and the Song of Roland, oral history can get very mixed up.

Why would you assume that these are all related?  Which stories dealing with Greek mythology?

Quote:
Consider the case of the Laestrygonians in Homer's Odyssey. Their land resembles a Scandinavian fjord, and their long daytime is what happens during the summer there -- the best time for sea voyaging. However, two of the three named entities in that story have recognizably Greek names: the town Telepylos ( "Far Gate" ) and the leader Antiphates. I can't place Astacia, however.

Because they're mythical realms.  They do not represent history.  Homer is not writing down history from past events deemed historical (in his day, perhaps during the Hellenistic period).  His whole story is about the inner conflict of the Greek city-states, and their constant civil wars.  It's all allegory.  In fact, the story starts off telling us that (the Iliad) with a "civil war" between Achilles and Agamemnon.  The Odyssey, as well, is a story about what Greece *should* be.  For example, the kindness offered to strangers (Mentor and Telemachus) should reflect Greek city-states, and how they treat others.  This is expressed at the very end of the epic, where, ready to fight, Laertes, Odysseus and Telemachus, against the suitors and those who opposed his rule in Ithica, Athena comes down and demands everyone lay down their arms.  Whatever wrongs were done in the past, mend them, and unify.  This is Homer's (or whoever wrote these epics pseudonymously) advice.

Quote:
But why a Scandinavian fjord? Scandinavia was on the way to the Baltic Sea, and the Mycenaeans had lots of Baltic amber. So some Mycenaeans could well have voyaged there and described some of the terrain along the way.

Why the Scandinavian fjord?  Personally I think there is no discussion of such a place.  This seems like a stretch on your part, another speculative induction, which you then base another speculative induction on, in an attempt to build a case of pure speculation.  The story is not about a trading voyage, or about scavenging.  (If anything, the amber could have been looted from ships by Pirates, which Telemachus and Odysseus are often confused with by others housing them on their voyages) 

Quote:
Furthermore, the poets who composed the Odyssey over the centuries likely took this and other accounts of voyages and turned them into the voyages of one hero, Odysseus.

Hardly.  The voyages are hardly discussed (the shipwrecks are more discussed then the actual voyage part).  Long winded discussions and feasts and marriages, but not voyages.  This does not fit with the story. 

Quote:
Quote:
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In particular, the expulsion of the Hyksos, who ruled northern Egypt from about 1648 BCE to about 1540 BCE. They had been Canaanites, and their stay of Egypt and expulsion from Egypt could well have been remembered by later generations in Canaan.

The claim of the Hyksos has long been refuted by modern scholarship on the grounds of archaeological evidence in the Hill Country of Palestine.  Did you not read my article on Ancient Israel?  There is more evidence that the "Hebrews" were the wandering "'apiru" (literally - "wanderers&quotEye-wink.  See your ANET (or the Library's ANET) for information regarding this.  The Hyksos were not the ancient Israelites.

I agree that they weren't, but since they had been Canaanites, they would have blended in with the local population when they returned.

You're assuming they returned.

Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
So some of the Bible's "history" is little more than a game of "telephone", though it must be said that that is common among other early histories.

Why assume it was written as "early history?"

It is purported history, like the various epics I've mentioned.

Homer wasn't purported to be history. 

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Speaking of Homer - is it

Speaking of Homer - is it possible as written in that book "Where Troy Once Stood" that the events of the Illiad took place around where Cambridge, England is now and that the Oddysey took place from there west and then to the Canary Islands and other places? I've read about this. It was compelling but bullshit can be if you don't know that much about what you're reading about.

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Matt, as I just got done

Matt, as I just got done saying (I'm sure you went tl/dr on me), the Iliad and the Odyssey are fiction.  This means that the events in these books are also fictional.  This implies that the author intentionally created narrative, invented plot, and wrote things that, if recounting things from the vagaries of memory, would never write.  In this context, I would say that none of the events happened.  Period.  This means that "Troy" probably didn't exist where it suggests it does (although almost certainly in Asia Minor, in fact sites have been found that contend for such an honor - although who knows if such a place even really existed historically) and not nearly in the state of glory they claim.  The site currently thought of as Troy is in Asia Minor, but was destroyed by an earthquake--not a war.  And these sites, by the way, are Bronze Age settlements.  They aren't fortified cities with huge walls like they show in movies. 

But there is absolutely no way the story refers to Britain or upper-western Europe.

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Apotheon wrote:THE

Apotheon wrote:

THE HISTORICITY OF CHRIST:


  • Habermas, Gary R. The Historical Jesus: Ancient Evidence for the Life of Christ. Joplin, MO: College Press, 1996.

THE HISTORICITY OF THE BIBLE


  • Montgomery, John. History and Christianity. Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 1965.
    • Where is History Going? Minneapolis, MN: Bethany Fellowship, 1972.

 

I'm unsure about the rest in your list, but these two I know of well.

 

Fail.

 

Habermas is a Creationist lecturer of Phsycology at Liberty University and a Christian Apologist. He has zero weight in any historical argument and you fail hardcore putting him on your list.

 

Monty is the same, zero points to you, he's an apologist. Also has zero education on history and science.

 

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Neither the early books of

Neither the early books of the Bible nor the Homeric epics are clearly labeled "fact" or "fiction" by their writers, and we don't even know who those writers were, so we have to work out what is fact and what is fiction in them.

The Homeric epics do contain some nontrivial history in them -- the Iliad refers to bronze armor and boar's-tusk helmets, both of which were common in Mycenaean Greece, but which went out of style before Classical times. But if there was ever a historical Achilles or a historical Odysseus or, for that matter, a historical Homer, I think that they've been too fictionalized for us to be able to tell anything about them.

And it's unlikely that Scandinavia was ever inhabited by giant cannibals, even though the geography of the Laestrygonians does match a Scandinavian fjord. Giant cannibals, monsters, sorcery, etc. are very dramatic and spectacular, it must be said, and the storytellers who composed the Odyssey likely put those elements in for that reason.

And about the Laestrygonians, I pointed out a disappointing feature in that story -- the lack of recognizable Germanic names. It is especially disappointing because, for the most part, names are like armor in being much more mundane than giant cannibals or monsters or sorcery. Which is why I think that they could have been preserved better. Why was no Laestrygonian named something like Hylphos or Hylphas? ( "Wolf" ) Or why didn't they have a territory name with -land- in it? As in modern-English "land".

Rook, I will also concede that you have an interesting theory about the Homeric epics -- that they are allegories about how the perpetually squabbling Greek city-states ought to stop fighting each other. But that theory does not exclude the possibility that parts of the Homeric epics, and Greek mythology in general, are dimly-remembered legitimate history.

Another possible bit: Jason and the Argonauts run into the mist-shrouded Clashing Cyanean (Blue) Rocks in the Bosporus on the way to the Golden Fleece. Rocks trying to smash one's ships seems rather dramatic, but *blue* rocks? I think that this is a distant memory of northern voyages, where sailors could see lots of ice floes and icebergs, which can look bluish. But some storyteller decided that it was too interesting a peril for his heroes, and imagined them in a place which never gets sea ice.

BTW, the Golden Fleece itself was likely a reference to an ancient method of gold mining -- putting some fleece in a stream where it collects tiny bits of gold.

-

I mentioned Theodoric/Dietrich and Roland because they are examples of oral transmission of history where we have some independent checks. We can compare the orally-transmitted epics about them with originals that had been written more-or-less on the spot. And while some factual details do survive, there is also a lot of conflation and other mixups -- and just plain fiction.

As to history getting mixed up and mangled and contaminated with fiction, one has to bear in mind that an oral storyteller can't simply refer to some written chronicle or some encyclopedia, let alone visit some place like google.com or wikipedia.org

-

As to where the Hyksos went, they likely returned to Canaan and assimilated into the local population, including the hill people who eventually became the Israelites.

-

As to fiction vs. nonfiction, there is another reason to be careful to avoid either/or. There's a common convention that some parts must be fictional while others are factual. In particular, "foreground" details, like specfically who's who, are fictional, while "background" details need not be. In particular, "mundane" fiction has our familiar world and society as a background, and historical fiction has the background of the appropriate time and place. And historical-fiction writers are often judged by how well they give the background details correct.

This foreground-background distinction may explain why some people find science fiction and fantasy very unnerving, as the late Isaac Asimov once suggested. In SF and fantasy, not only the foreground is fictional, but also much of the background.

-

Finally, I do agree with MattShizzle that that Homer-in-Britain book is absurd. How does the author try to make the details fit? With some absolutely absurd shoehorning?


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I didn't actually read the

I didn't actually read the book (it's well over $100.) But it mentions that the weather and such match N. Europe more than Greece, that crossing into Turkey would be a very short trip from Greece - not a voyage - the number of characters that have red or blonde hair, and other things I forget.

 

*** Edit - also that it would be unlikely for a major war to be waged over a woman. The author proposed it was an alliance (apparently "Achaens" (sp) means "allies" not "Greeks&quotEye-wink to take that part of Britain for access to tin (very important in the Bronze Age.)

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I find "a very short trip

I find "a very short trip from Greece" rather curious. I found the distance from Mycenae to Troy using someone's Google Maps Distance Calculator, and it turns out to be:

Northern Greek coast: 700 mi / 1100 km

East across the Aegean then north: 500 mi / 800 km

From Argos, Greece (near Mycenae) to: Hissarlik, Turkey (near Troy)

It would have taken at least a few days to make the trip using the sort of watercraft that the Mycenaeans had had.

ETA: I decided to assess the Baltic-amber-voyage hypothesis in this way, finding the length of a coast-hugging voyage from Argos to Klaipeda, Lithuania.

Its length is 5400 mi / 8700 km

 


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lpetrich wrote:Neither the

lpetrich wrote:

Neither the early books of the Bible nor the Homeric epics are clearly labeled "fact" or "fiction" by their writers, and we don't even know who those writers were, so we have to work out what is fact and what is fiction in them.

No we don't know who the writers were, but we can judge a book by its contents. 

Quote:
The Homeric epics do contain some nontrivial history in them -- the Iliad refers to bronze armor and boar's-tusk helmets, both of which were common in Mycenaean Greece, but which went out of style before Classical times.

The book also discusses iron, and bronze being traded for iron, which would date the Epic much later.  If anything, it appears that the epics were composed during the late Iron I, although most likely during Iron II.  It appears similar in scope to what the Jews tried to do when writing their mythical history, writing late (possibly around the same time) and adding history, but in a specific way.  Not to write a history, but rather to make their stories more plausible.

Quote:
But if there was ever a historical Achilles or a historical Odysseus or, for that matter, a historical Homer, I think that they've been too fictionalized for us to be able to tell anything about them.

Sure.  But one cannot say without some sort of equivication that Achilles and Hector and Odysseus might be real, but Cyclops, he's a fiction.  Especially when in all instances, the author (or authors) chose to put these characters into the same sort of legendary narrative, choosing their fates as if they were gods.

Quote:
And it's unlikely that Scandinavia was ever inhabited by giant cannibals, even though the geography of the Laestrygonians does match a Scandinavian fjord. Giant cannibals, monsters, sorcery, etc. are very dramatic and spectacular, it must be said, and the storytellers who composed the Odyssey likely put those elements in for that reason.

Maybe.  Or maybe they just invented them.  You are making the common mistake of correlation=causation.  But it doesn't. 

Quote:
And about the Laestrygonians, I pointed out a disappointing feature in that story -- the lack of recognizable Germanic names. It is especially disappointing because, for the most part, names are like armor in being much more mundane than giant cannibals or monsters or sorcery. Which is why I think that they could have been preserved better. Why was no Laestrygonian named something like Hylphos or Hylphas? ( "Wolf" ) Or why didn't they have a territory name with -land- in it? As in modern-English "land".

Depends on what the author's intentions were. 

Quote:
Rook, I will also concede that you have an interesting theory about the Homeric epics -- that they are allegories about how the perpetually squabbling Greek city-states ought to stop fighting each other. But that theory does not exclude the possibility that parts of the Homeric epics, and Greek mythology in general, are dimly-remembered legitimate history.

It doesn't exclude it.  It does make it more improbable. 

Quote:
Another possible bit: Jason and the Argonauts run into the mist-shrouded Clashing Cyanean (Blue) Rocks in the Bosporus on the way to the Golden Fleece. Rocks trying to smash one's ships seems rather dramatic, but *blue* rocks? I think that this is a distant memory of northern voyages, where sailors could see lots of ice floes and icebergs, which can look bluish. But some storyteller decided that it was too interesting a peril for his heroes, and imagined them in a place which never gets sea ice.

I see you speculating again.  "What is A were really B, and what if B were really C..."  By assuming things like this you may miss very important allegories in the story.  Much in the same way a Christian might say, "Well trials were conducted by the Sanhendrin..." as if this somehow meant that Mark was using history to write his narratives.  By assuming the historicity of such an event, you ignore the allusion to Leviticus 16 entirely. 

Quote:
BTW, the Golden Fleece itself was likely a reference to an ancient method of gold mining -- putting some fleece in a stream where it collects tiny bits of gold.

That may be.  But it wouldn't make the story any more real, or any more a narrative which had been entirely created. 

Quote:
As to history getting mixed up and mangled and contaminated with fiction, one has to bear in mind that an oral storyteller can't simply refer to some written chronicle or some encyclopedia, let alone visit some place like google.com or wikipedia.org

And oral storytellers existed before there were written language, and we all know storytellers improvise and invent things (look at Bill O'Reilly).  You are assuming they would only tell stories about historical things.  What about edifying fictions, or moral lessons taught through fiction?  The mind is full of these things, full of imaginary events that would be fun to sing about.  It may even be that years later, when another oral storyteller goes on to sing about a story, he may *think* he is recanting history, unaware that it was just created by a storyteller years prior.  It does not make the story any more historical.

Quote:
As to where the Hyksos went, they likely returned to Canaan and assimilated into the local population, including the hill people who eventually became the Israelites.

You don't know that.  You are ignoring the campaigns lead by the New Kingdom pharaohs into Palestine (which lasted for generations). 

Quote:
Finally, I do agree with MattShizzle that that Homer-in-Britain book is absurd. How does the author try to make the details fit? With some absolutely absurd shoehorning?

Agreed.

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As to the "monsters" isn't

As to the "monsters" isn't that common back in those days to imagine monsters lived in lands that the writer is either completely unfamiliar or only vaguely familiar with?

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That was nice... has anyone

That was nice... has anyone else ever accused Rook of not being familiar with history?

Brings ignorance to a new level.

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ronin-dog wrote:That was

ronin-dog wrote:

That was nice... has anyone else ever accused Rook of not being familiar with history?

Brings ignorance to a new level.

Especially when that person's "historians" include Habermas and McDowell.

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what does it matter

arguing over someone that has been dead for over 3000 years is pretty stupid, wether or not he existed, or if he performed the miracles he did is irrelevant.  People get so caught up in arguing the bible, that they forget the reason why its here.  It is here not as a direct word of god, but as a guide, and a light for people to use.  It is meant to uplift and provide hope to people.  None of us will ever know 100 percent what happened so why argue what we will never know.  A thousand years from now someone might argue if YOU existed or not, so this is quite hilarious.  Just let the story live, and let the people take their beliefs in it whichever way they want.


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Lil C wrote:arguing over

Lil C wrote:

arguing over someone that has been dead for over 3000 years is pretty stupid, wether or not he existed, or if he performed the miracles he did is irrelevant.  People get so caught up in arguing the bible, that they forget the reason why its here.  It is here not as a direct word of god, but as a guide, and a light for people to use.  It is meant to uplift and provide hope to people.  None of us will ever know 100 percent what happened so why argue what we will never know.  A thousand years from now someone might argue if YOU existed or not, so this is quite hilarious.  Just let the story live, and let the people take their beliefs in it whichever way they want.

Unfortunately many do not see the Bible as a guide but the literal word of Yahweh the butcher god of ancient Canaan. Bibles provide  poor light as they only burn for about 3 or 4 minutes. I'm not sure how uplifting murder and mayhem is to you but it doesn't work for me. I now understand why Christianity took hold after considering your statement of arguing over a 3000 year old dead or mythical Moses a newer version was needed 2000 years ago so Jesus was cast in the role.

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You think Jesus died in

You think Jesus died in approximately 991 BC???????

Besides that, someone who never existed can hardly have been dead - and if Jesus never existed Christianity has no basis.

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It is true that there is no

It is true that there is no evidence for Moses, the ten plagues that fell upon Egypt or the exodus ‘at that time’. But there are a number of scholars who claim that a gross error in chronology has been made in calculating the dates of Egyptian history and that they should be reduced by centuries. Such a re-dating could bring the 12th dynasty down to the time of Moses, and there is plenty of circumstantial evidence in that dynasty to support the Biblical records.

One of the last kings of the 12th dynasty was Sesostris III. His statues depict him as a cruel tyrant quite capable of inflicting harsh slavery on his subjects. His son was Amenemhet III, who seems to have been an equally disagreeable character. He probably ruled for 46 years, and Moses would have been born near the beginning of his reign.

Amenemhet III may have had one son, known as Amenemhet IV, who was an enigmatic character who may have followed his father or may have been a co-regent with him. If the latter, Amenemhet IV could well have been Moses. Amenemhet IV mysteriously disappeared off the scene before the death of Amenemhet III.

Amenemhet III had a daughter whose name was Sobekneferu. It is known that she had no children. If she was the daughter of Pharaoh who came down to the river to bathe, it is easy to understand why she was there. It was not because she had no bathroom in her palace. She would have been down there taking a ceremonial ablution and praying to the river god Hapi, who was also the god of fertility. Having no children she would have needed such a god, and when she found the beautiful baby Moses there she would have considered it an answer to her prayers (Exodus 2:5—6).

But when Moses came of age he identified himself with the people of Israel and was obliged to flee from Egypt. This left a vacuum on the throne, and when Amenemhet III died there was no male successor. Sobekneferu ascended the throne and ruled for 8 years as a Pharaoh, but when she died the dynasty died and was succeeded by the 13th dynasty.

There is plenty evidence for Israelite slavery in Egypt–the sudden disappearance of these slaves, the devastation of Egypt by the ten plagues, the destruction of the Egyptian army–if we look for it at the right time, and time is a vital element in the interpretation of ancient history.

According to the Biblical records, the Exodus occurred 480 years before Solomon laid the foundations of his temple at Jerusalem (1 Kings 6:1). This would place the Exodus about 1446 BC. God’s covenant with Abraham was 430 years earlier (Exodus 12:40, Galatians 3:16, 17) about 1850 BC. From the ages of his predecessors back to Noah, given in Genesis 12 and 13, it can be calculated that the great universal flood occurred 427 years earlier, about 2302 BC. But according to most authorities on Egyptian chronology the pyramids were built about 1550 BC, and the first dynasty of Egypt ruled about 3100 BC.23

Thus, there is a conflict between Egyptian chronology as generally interpreted and the Biblical records. Neither the first dynasty of Egypt nor the pyramids could have existed before the flood. If the Bible is historically reliable, as I believe it is, then there must be a mistake in the usual interpretation of Egyptian chronology which needs to be reduced by centuries.

The issue is clear. An acceptance of the present chronological interpretation of Egyptian history, and a rejection of the Biblical chronology, opens the door to skepticism of the rest of the early Biblical records, including the record of the Creation of the world in six days. But if Egyptian chronology can be shown to be flawed, a major obstacle to the acceptance of the Bible records is removed, and the Genesis history stands justified.


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Gabriel wrote:Thus, there is

Gabriel wrote:
Thus, there is a conflict between Egyptian chronology as generally interpreted and the Biblical records. Neither the first dynasty of Egypt nor the pyramids could have existed before the flood. If the Bible is historically reliable, as I believe it is, then there must be a mistake in the usual interpretation of Egyptian chronology which needs to be reduced by centuries.

 


The issue is clear. An acceptance of the present chronological interpretation of Egyptian history, and a rejection of the Biblical chronology, opens the door to skepticism of the rest of the early Biblical records, including the record of the Creation of the world in six days. But if Egyptian chronology can be shown to be flawed, a major obstacle to the acceptance of the Bible records is removed, and the Genesis history stands justified.

Rofl. Perhaps the most backwards thing I read all year.


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By that logic if we find out

By that logic if we find out there's a flaw in what we know about the Civil War it means that it was actually a war between the Earth and Aliens - and Superman came in the nick of time to win it for Earth and change everyones memories and plant all kinds of fake evidence so we see it as history says.

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Gabriel wrote:It is true

Gabriel wrote:
It is true that there is no evidence for Moses, the ten plagues that fell upon Egypt or the exodus ‘at that time’. But there are a number of scholars who claim that a gross error in chronology has been made in calculating the dates of Egyptian history and that they should be reduced by centuries. Such a re-dating could bring the 12th dynasty down to the time of Moses, and there is plenty of circumstantial evidence in that dynasty to support the Biblical records.

Apologists and theologists are not history scholars.  I would argue that neither are scholars at all, but that is a losing battle due to theology actually being taught at universities (even though it is nothing more than advanced apologetics).

All apologists and theologists do is look at the bible than make excuses that would fit, find ways they can twist the facts and reality to fit.  What you see here is a twisting.  If there WAS any actual evidence to support the idea (and yes, it is JUST an idea) that chronology calculation was that far off then there would be a significant number of historians, archaologists, geologists etc all checking their numbers and prior understanding to see whether their particular area of study had these abnormalities. 

Ultimately there is no evidence to back up this claim of incorrect chronology.  All the evidence is opposed to it.  This leaves the theologists and apologists with simply being wrong.  Just because it sounds nice doesn't make it any more correct.  Feel free to investigate further, but do not continue to make such claims until evidence is found which backs up your assertations.  Don't even think of using the bible as said evidence, right now all the evidence proves it to have little to no basis in fact so the weight of its claims are negligable at best.

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If, what if, claims and assumptions

In your opinionated assertion you have about 60 Ifs, may haves, but theres, unsupported claims, and assertions. For convenience I have marked them in bold.

Gabriel wrote:

It is true that there is no evidence for Moses, the ten plagues that fell upon Egypt or the exodus ‘at that time’. But there are a *(#1 claim)* number of scholars who claim that a gross error in chronology has been made in calculating the dates of Egyptian history and that *(# 2 claim)* they should be reduced by centuries. Such a *(# 3 claim)* re-dating could bring the 12th dynasty down to the*(#4 claim)*  time of Moses, and there is plenty of *(# 5 claim)* circumstantial evidence in that dynasty to support the Biblical records.

You start by assuming Moses exists and try to force that idea into the surviving history and interpretations from Ancient Egyptian archeology.

Gabriel wrote:

One of the last kings of the 12th dynasty was Sesostris III. His statues depict him as a *(#6 claim)* cruel tyrant quite capable of inflicting harsh slavery on his subjects. His son was Amenemhet III, *(#7 claim)* who seems to have been an equally disagreeable character. He probably ruled for 46 years, *( #8 and # 9 claims)* and Moses would have been born near the beginning of his reign.

Here you assume Sesostris III enslaved his people and they were some how Israelite. You assert Moses exists and he was born during this time period.

Gabriel wrote:


Amenemhet III  *( #10, 11, 12 and 13 claims)* may have had one son, known as Amenemhet IV, who was an enigmatic character who may have followed his father or may have been a co-regent with him. *(#14 claim)* If the latter, Amenemhet IV could well have been Moses. Amenemhet IV mysteriously disappeared off the scene before the death of Amenemhet III.

You have no way to know if he had only one son or not for sure. How can you assess anyone's character from partial biased records? How can you know how he ruled or with whom from partial records? How can you know he was Moses, he could have been Superman or left for India on a boat that landed in Australia.

Gabriel wrote:


Amenemhet III had a daughter whose name was Sobekneferu. *( #15 claim)* It is known that she had no children.  *( #16,17,and 18 claims)* If she was the daughter of Pharaoh who came down to the river to bathe, it is easy to understand why she was there.  *(#19,20,21,claims)*It was not because she had no bathroom in her palace. She would have been down there taking a ceremonial ablution and praying to the river god Hapi, who was also the god of fertility.  *( #22,23, and 24 claims)* Having no children she would have needed such a god, and when she found the beautiful baby Moses there she would have considered it an answer to her prayers (Exodus 2:5—6).

Surviving records lead you to believe she had no children but there is no certainty. You assume she went to the river to bathe and she was a daughter of a Pharaoh. You assume easy understanding from partial records. You assume she was doing a ceremony and praying. You assume she wanted children. You assume she found a baby and it was a character named Moses. You assumed she prayed and wanted a child.

Gabriel wrote:



*( #25, 26, 27 and 28 claims)* But when Moses came of age he identified himself with the people of Israel and was obliged to flee from Egypt. This left a vacuum on the throne, and when Amenemhet III died there was no male successor. Sobekneferu ascended the throne and ruled for 8 years as a Pharaoh, but when she died the dynasty died and was succeeded by the 13th dynasty.

You assume Moses was real, he lived to come of age, he sided with Israel, Israelites were in Egypt, and he fled.

Gabriel wrote:


There is *(# 29, 30, 31, 32 and 33 claims)* plenty evidence for Israelite slavery in Egypt–the sudden disappearance of these slaves, the devastation of Egypt by the ten plagues, the destruction of the Egyptian army–if we look for it at the right time, and time is a vital element in the interpretation of ancient history.

You assume Israelites were in Egypt and they were slaves. Only asiatics that seem to have been in Egypt were ruling Egypt until driven out by Pharaoh Ahmrose. What slaves? What plagues besides the fantasy tales in the Buybull? The Egyptian army was destroyed, you have proof beside the Buybull? Where?

Gabriel wrote:


According to the *( #34 claim)*  Biblical records, the *( # 35 claim )*  Exodus occurred 480 years before *( # 36 and #37 claims) * Solomon laid the foundations of his temple at Jerusalem (1 Kings 6:1). This would *( #38 claim)*  place the Exodus about 1446 BC. *( # 39, 40 and 41 claims)*  God’s covenant with Abraham was 430 years earlier (Exodus 12:40, Galatians 3:16, 17) about 1850 BC. From the *( # 42 and 43 claims)*  ages of his predecessors back to Noah, given in Genesis 12 and 13, *( #44 and 45 claims)*  it can be calculated that the great universal flood occurred 427 years earlier, about 2302 BC. But *( #46 claim)*  according to most authorities on Egyptian chronology the pyramids were built about 1550 BC, and the first dynasty of Egypt ruled about 3100 BC.23
 

You assume the Bible is a record and not a writing of fables. You assume the Exodus was real and it occur ed xxx years before an unproven King Solomon allegedly existed who is alleged to have built a great temple. You assume a date for your assumed Exodus. You assume there is a God, a man named Abraham and they made a contract and a date xxx years. You assume there was a flood and it was universal and you date it to a time period where Sumerian history shows otherwise. You assume dates and/or authorities have successfully determined this. When was the Sphinx constructed?

Gabriel wrote:

Thus, there is a conflict between Egyptian chronology as generally interpreted and the *( #47 claim)*  Biblical records. *( #48, 49 and 50 claims)*  Neither the first dynasty of Egypt nor the pyramids could have existed before the flood.  *( #51 claim )* If the Bible is historically reliable, as I believe it is, *( #52 claim)*  then there must be a mistake in the usual interpretation of Egyptian chronology which needs to be reduced by centuries.

You assume the Bible isn't a fantasy. You make unsupported claims on Egyptian dynasties and construction of pyramids etc. Again when was the Sphinx built? You again assume the flood story was real. You assume the direction of dating for Egyptian chronology.

Gabriel wrote:

The issue is clear. *( #53, 54 and 55 claims)*  An acceptance of the present chronological interpretation of Egyptian history, and a rejection of the Biblical chronology, opens the door to skepticism of the rest of the early Biblical records, including *( #56 and 57 claims)*  the record of the Creation of the world in six days. But *( #58 and 59 claims)*  if Egyptian chronology can be shown to be flawed, a major obstacle to the acceptance of the Bible records is removed, and the Genesis history stands justified.

You assume if this then that. You assume the Bible isn't fiction and it has actual accurate chronology that means something. Again you assume the Buybull is a record not a collection of fables. You assume there was a creation and it was done in 6 days. You again assume the Buybull isn't a collection of fables and Genesis has history.

The only thing you have shown here is anything is possible with nearly 60 claims and what ifs.

 

Consider this complete fantasy claim below:

What if an alien craft landed on Earth in 40,000 BCE and altered our DNA. What if they manipulated civilization to their own ends and promoted religion as a way to control man. What if thelr ultimate purpose is to come back sometime in the future and Jesus is the commander of the Alien forces. We are then to be conscripted into the Galactic invasion force to invade rebelling planets and are a sort of clone army. I did this with about 8 what ifs not 60 like you.

 

 

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lpetrich wrote:I'd like to

lpetrich wrote:

I'd like to get some more into the question of who Moses might had been. Although the Exodus as described in the Bible is unhistorical, the Biblical account could well have been inspired by some real history. In particular, the expulsion of the Hyksos, who ruled northern Egypt from about 1648 BCE to about 1540 BCE. They had been Canaanites, and their stay of Egypt and expulsion from Egypt could well have been remembered by later generations in Canaan. They had also lived through the massive Thera eruption, which they could have learned about from Cretan refugees; that could well have inspired some of the Ten Plagues of Egypt.

And the Pharaoh who drove them out? Ahmose, whose name sounds like "Brother of Moses" (Ah Moshe) in Hebrew.

And the Red Sea? That was the Septuagint's translation (hê eruthra thalassa) of what was originally the Reed Sea (Yam Suph).

So I imagine a scenario that starts with

Pharaoh Ahmose (Brother of Moses) drove us out of Egypt, though he lost interest after we went through a huge marsh, a sea of reeds.

The storytellers would then have to explain who Moses was, and they'd come up with something like

Moses, brother of the Pharaoh, led us out of Egypt.

And the second part is not dramatic enough, so it would be turned into

Moses parted the Reed Sea so his people could cross it, and when the Egyptians arrived, he let the water pour back to drown them.

And the Septuagint? Some translator might have wondered "Where in Sheol is the Reed Sea?" and concluded that it was the Red Sea, which was appropriately located.

So some of the Bible's "history" is little more than a game of "telephone", though it must be said that that is common among other early histories.

Cadalyst wrote:

"The main debate nowadays is over how historical the Biblical accounts of Kings David and Solomon are."

That's funny because I remember a time when King David was a myth all to himself.

And when was that? I'd like to see some actual documentation of that, as opposed to the all-too-common fundie testimony of "I was once an atheist, a skeptic, an evil monster who ate babies."

Quote:
archeology is not a strong attack on Christianity

How so?

I will join later today, I actually came across this fine site on a random google search.  I'm a bored history grad student waiting for revisions at the moment.  The person who wrote this is at times basing his theory on the laughable James Cameron Hitler Channel special on how....the ark of the covenant was real and the Minoans are the lost tribes of Israel and the Ark is not only real but the Minoans made pictures of it.  That is where the pharoh name and the reed sea crap comes from.  The "documentary's" whole case is built around fudging numbers.  They claim the bible is telling history but modern archeology has dated it wrong and if dates are changed it all makes sense.  When they ask an actual archeologist he discounts this leap of pure faith but never really deal with the problems and it appears to just be a some token gesture to say they asked people in the know.  The people follow the same fallacy of Henrich Schliemann, which is they start with looking for some piece of the mythical past and not looking at sites, artifacts or texts for what they are. 


lpetrich
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Quote:The person who wrote

Quote:
The person who wrote this is at times basing his theory on the laughable James Cameron Hitler Channel special on how....the ark of the covenant was real and the Minoans are the lost tribes of Israel and the Ark is not only real but the Minoans made pictures of it.  That is where the pharoh name and the reed sea crap comes from.

I've never watched any of the Hitler Channel, and I can agree on rejecting some of the more enthusiastic ideas like those. I certainly agree that the Minoans being the Lost Ten Tribes is absolute horseshit. The Minoans lived too far before the historical parts of the Old Testament, and they were big-time polytheist idolators. Smiling

As to "Reed Sea", it's a more-or-less literal translation of yam suph. "Red Sea" is a Septuagint (mis)translation.

I have another speculation that I want to add. The Hyksos departing Egypt was followed by the Egyptians conquering Palestine during their New Kingdom. But some centuries later, storytellers reversed that order of events because it seemed more reasonable for the Israelites to be enslaved then escape than to escape and be enslaved.

So I'm proposing some major mixups.


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Why did Noah fuck his daughters?

How come we can't see flying people with wings and halos?  That would be bat-shit insane.  A talking animal or two would liven things up too.  Could you imagine if Jon Stewart got a hold of a talking snake? Best TV EVAR.

Carry on.


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The real Mt. Sinai is over

The real Mt. Sinai is over in Saudi Arabia See the blackened, burned peak, the split rock which Moses struck, and the altar which the golden calf was placed.  http://youtube.com/watch?v=K-eSRcr9CWw

Real Mount Sinai Found Discovery in Saudi Arabia.   http://www.squidoo.com/mountsinai

 

http://sharetext.org/ad6


Hesus
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Hang on, I thought it was

Hang on, I thought it was well known that the peoples settling in Jericho were there 300 or more years after the city was in ruins and depopulated, and that the walls were brought down by earthquakes several times in the cities history and well before the Israelites went there...

DId I miss something ? it was said that there was nothing false in the bible and that for me is def a false one. So, the old testament is right on so many historical facts, such as wars and kings and others but lets face it, people did not live to 900 years old unless a year was just over a month

Realistically there is a lot of crap in the bible, much of it down to people suffering from stupidity as said in the X-Files  "I want to believe"

 

Belief is an entitlement, but trying to tell me that "the bible is right and upheld by modern archaeology" is a belief that you cannot state as a fact