Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Bible--Is it a Hoax?

photo by Doug88888

The Bible—Is it Accurate?

A friend sent me this article from the New York Times. “Camels Had No Business in Genesis.” Domesticated camels were not used in Israel until the last third of the 10th Century B.C.  It seems that the writer, John N. Wilford, lets us know that camels are mentioned more than 20 times in the Bible--may of them in Genesis. Wise men, we have always heard, rode into Bethlehem on camels. What does this prove? Nothing.

We cannot use camels as evidence that the Bible is untrue. One scholar in the article said that, “One should be careful not to rush to the conclusion that the new archaeological finds (about camels) deny any historical value from the biblical stories...”

Those of us who do not subscribe to the infallibility of the Bible—saying every word of the Book is true—are not saying the Bible is a hoax. Many of us do not believe axe heads float, the world is flat—evolution is bunk, the heads of children should be dashed against the stones or gay people are an abomination and should be stoned. We could go on and on.

The Bible is a faith book. It is at the heart of the Christian faith—but the Bible is not God and does nor purport to be. This was my response to Mr. Wilford’s article:

“I have read Mr. Wilford’s article with interest. Any reliable Bible scholar knows that there are all sorts of literature in the Bible. Myth, poetry, history, parable—also the Bible was written over centuries...and there were many additions, alterations—mistakes (yes) and exaggerations (yes) in the Book. Much was pre-scientific. This is no: “Ah Hah” moment. Anything written by a multitude of committees over many years and translated and translated is bound to contain inaccuracies. The Bible is not like the newspaper. It is a book of faith. “We have the treasure in earthen vessels,” Paul said. Any field of knowledge has its own supply of camels.”

Anybody out there want to comment?

                                         --roger lovette/ rogerlovette.blogspot.com


  1. Having been a student of the Bible for over 40 years (with three degrees in Bible-related subjects), I heartily agree that it is the message rather than the medium that is infallible. God's dealings with mankind show that God works on a far higher plane, but reveals enough of God to let us know we should be striving to emulate the divine. If the writer of the archaeological article knew that the writer of Genesis lived much later than the events about which he/she wrote, he might not have reached the same conclusions. "Learned" doesn't appear to be his strong suit.

    1. Dear phdanes--you are right on target. The treasure always comes in an earthen vessel...sometimes well-meaninged people forget this. One God--and the Bible is not God. But it does point the way. Thanks.