The Bible's Internal Proofs
of its Authentic History
Probably no historical record has been more scoffed at than the Bible. However, the facts show that if it weren't considered a book of religion and it had only recently been discovered by archaeologists, it would be proclaimed the most significant find in all history. For its details as to family lines, lands of occupation, life spans, and events should provide positive proof to even the most skeptical observers that its accounts are genuine and accurate, because no one would go into such minute detail if they were simply creating a forged document. Oh, they could if they wished, but that would require a high level of sophistication and some very dark motives.
Take for example the genealogies found at Genesis 4:17-5:31, 10:1-31, 11:10-32, 14:1-8, 21:32, 22:20-24, 25:1-4 & 12-19, 26:34, 28:6-19, 36:1-4 & 9-43, 38:1-5, 46:8-27, 48:7, Numbers 1:1-42, 2:5-32, 26:12-60, and 27:1, just to start with. The details in these accounts prove the Bible to be a compilation of amazingly accurate historical details.
Also, read the genealogies that start in First Chronicles, and you'll find many names of ancient people who went on to found cities and countries that we're still familiar with today. Look at the long lists of names of people, then see who their fathers were and who they descended from, the things they did, etc. – things that nobody would be interested in today – and ask why anyone would make all of this up. How could anyone fake so much detail? Also realize that each of the names actually meant something in Hebrew, so they weren't just a jumble of sounds.
Consider the fact that few would question the authenticity of the Tomb of King David (although the current location is questionable), since it is so well documented by known accurate historians, such as Josephus. Notice that the Gospel writer Luke wrote in the book of Acts (in Chapter 2, verse 29): 'It's good to speak to you openly about the patriarch David; for he died, was buried, and his tomb is still with us to this day.' Yet, many modern critics claim that David never existed! Why would anyone say such a thing when there is no proof at all that he is fictional?
And look at the meticulous records of the people who served in the court of King David, as can be found from 1 Chronicles 23 to the end of that book. Who they were, where they were from, to whom they were related, and what their positions were, is all listed in great detail.
Consider the well-documented historical accounts of what happened when the king of Assyria attacked Judah during the time of King Hezekiah, then compare that to the Bible's historical details as found in account at Second Chronicles 32.
Also, notice how well 2 Kings 23:29 narrates the history of when the Egyptian Pharaoh Necho II fought against both the Assyrian army and the Judean King JosiAh (and won), and you'll realize that this is accurately-recorded history!
As for Moses and the Exodus; consider the detailed record of the travels of Israel from their place of departure from Egypt until they entered the Promised Land, as found at Numbers Chapter 33. Here you'll see that it describes every little town that they traveled past, the directions they went, how long they stayed in each place, and even the geography of the land!
Then look at the writings of Luke (Gospel of Luke and the book of Acts) in this Bible, and click on the dozens of links that show modern documentation of the names, the cities, the titles, and even a specific home (including a picture)… such detailed and proven documentation is virtually unparalleled in any other ancient writing!
For a fact, the Bible is a vast wealth and storehouse of the history of ancient peoples, which through ignorance and prejudice goes unexplored by many. Consider for example, the records of the peoples and the trade goods they supplied to the Mediterranean trade port of Tyre in the Seventh Century BCE, as found in the Twenty-seventh Chapter of the Bible book of Ezekiel. Where else can such valuable records be found?
Yet, with no evidence to back their claims, Bible critics say that the 'Old Testament' was all written in the 6th Century BCE, and that the 'New Testament' and its accounts about Jesus were written almost three-hundred years after he walked the earth. And though archeologists have proven such claims (which originated in the mid-1800s) false, college professors continue to teach such things to their philosophy classes, and gullible students continue to believe the historically-wrong information. Notice for example, that the oldest Bible text archeologists have discovered (of the Pentateuch) appears to date to the Seventh Century BCE… which is before the destruction of Jerusalem by Babylon, and which dates to the time of the Solomon's Temple. But despite the evidence provided by archeological finds, Bible critics have taught and are still teaching that there was no such temple in Jerusalem. WHY?
Also, many have claimed that there was no King David, and that Jerusalem was just a backwater town during the time attributed to his reign. However, recent archeological discoveries at Tel Dan (northern Palestine) have uncovered a stele from the Ninth Century BCE that mentions the family line of David… and they are currently excavating a major structure that they think may actually prove to be David's palace.
Some have even gone so far as to claim that there was no ancient nation of Israel; yet a granite stele commemorating the victories of Pharaoh Merneptah, who is said to have reigned from 1212 to 1202-BCE (currently on display at the Cairo Museum) brags of a conquest of the nation of Israel along with the nearby Philistine cities of AshKelon, Gezer, and YanoAm. Yet, although claims that there was no nation of IsraEl have again been proven false by the findings of archeology, you still don't read about such amazing finds in modern college textbooks!
It is a fact that the Philistines whom we read about in the Bible really existed, for this has been documented by modern archeological discoveries of such major cities as AshKelon. And note that the land is still called Palestine today, which is just a Greek corruption of the name Philistine.
Consider the fact that archeologists have located what appear to be the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, which are mentioned in the earliest parts of the Bible book of Genesis (Chapter Nineteen). These have been confirmed through radiocarbon dating as having been destroyed during the lifetime of the ancient Patriarch, Abraham (c. 2220 to 2370-BCE). See the BBC page, 'The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.' Why, even the details of the destruction of these cities by God have been documented! For photos of what has been found, see the link, 'Sodom and Gomorrah Rediscovered.'
Then to carry the proof even farther; note that the very cave to which Abraham's nephew Lot and his daughters fled to after the destruction of those cities has apparently also been located (see the link, 'The Cave of Lot's Seduction'). And the nations that came though Lot's daughters (the Moabites and the Ammonites) have also been documented by archeologists through Egyptian and Assyrian inscriptions. If you're unfamiliar with the story, the Bible tells us that Lot fathered sons by each of his two daughters after the destruction of Sodom and GomorRah. The son by the eldest daughter was named 'Moab,' or, 'Of My Father' (see Genesis 19:37), and the son of the younger was named 'AmMon,' or, 'Son off My Family' (see Genesis 19:38). So even the names of these people testify to the Bible's description of their coming from an incestuous relationship.
As you can see; the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is one of the best archeologically-documented Bible accounts. Yet it dates back to the time of Abraham, which predates the Exodus by around 500 years, and even the name Israel! So, the nephew of the ancient patriarch Abraham seems to be well document by various types of evidences.
Was there a man named Joseph who ruled Egypt under one of its Pharaoh's during the lifetime of his father Jacob and his eleven brothers? There is a famous waterway (which still exists today) that was created in Egypt around the period that the Bible shows he lived (the 12th Egyptian Dynasty, 1991-BCE to 1802-BCE) called Bahr Yussef, or Canal of Joseph. This is particularly interesting, because Joseph (Yussef) is a Hebrew name that likely hadn't even come into existence prior to the birth of Jacob's 11th son. Why do we say that? Because, Jacob's most-loved wife RachEl gave her son that name, which means in Hebrew, 'Jehovah (the Hebrew God) will Expand,' because she hoped that God would give her more sons. So you have to ask: Why would Egyptians have chosen a Hebrew name (which included the Name of the Hebrew God) for this waterway, other than because it was the name of its creator, a Hebrew man named Joseph (Yussef)?
Yes, Yussef (or Yusef) is in fact a common Egyptian name today, because the modern religion of Islam recognizes Joseph as having been a great prophet. However, it couldn't have been a name in the ancient Egyptian language, since the Egyptians worshiped other gods. And according to tradition, Bahr Yussef was for a fact built by 'the Prophet Yusef' to link 'the main branch of the River Nile to provide water permanently to the Lake Qarun, to avert famines.'
Note that according to our calculations, Joseph died around the year 1847-BCE (at 147 years old); so he lived during the reigns of Pharaohs AmenemHat 1, SenusRet I, AmenemHat II, and SenusRet II. Although some modern scholars say that Joseph lived at a much later date (during the reign of Thutmosis III, 1479-1425 BCE); look at what was said about SenusRet II in the link, 'Famous Pharaohs' (apparently, a poor English translation): 'King Senusret II (1897 BC-1878BC) or Senwosret II or Sesostris II was the fourth Pharaoh of the Dynasty 12. He was the first Pharaoh who [br]ought in drainage canal in Faiyum between bahr Yusuf and Lake Moeris. The purpose of Senusret II's project was to increase the amount of cultivable land here.'
So as you can see, the Canal of Joseph was already in existence well before 1878-BCE, which proves that our calculations for the dates of the life of Joseph (which many would like to argue, since this changes the dates they give for the Downpour of Noah's day and the creation on Adam) are at least very close to being correct.
You can find a photo of a statuary that has been found, which depicts an ancient Egyptian official who by his dress can be identified as of Semitic descent and who is thought to be Joseph, at the site, http://individual.utoronto.ca/mfkolarcik/jesuit/Josephjpg.jpg. Unfortunately, however, its location and finding is not properly identified or described there.
So yes; Abraham's great grandson is also quite well documented in history.
Is there any archeological evidence of the events that led up to the Exodus and/or IsraEl's escape through a parted Red Sea? Yes, however it is simply ignored by secular historians. For example, notice how a plague-like destruction is described as coming upon Egypt on a fragmented stela that is located on the third pylon of the Karnak temple (see 'The Tempest Stele of Ahmose I'). It is interesting that this stela has been dated to around the death of Ahmose I, who may well be the pharaoh of the Exodus). If you read it, you can clearly see that this appears to be a description of one of the plagues that God sent upon Egypt before Israel's departure, as it was explained from the viewpoint of the hard-hearted ruler of that country.
What is the opinion of secular 'scholars?' Note the added comment after the translation of the stele, as is found on the site, The Tempest Stele of Ahmose I:
'This text, like so many others, is grist for the busy mills of Bible apologists, in this case of those attempting to find proof for the Biblical plagues and the Exodus. The incongruities of their arguments do not seem to bother them, but it might be better for them to accept that (to this date at least) no archaeological proof has been found yet for anything written about in the Bible pertaining to the Bronze Age, save possibly the mere existence of the people of Israel.'
So note: According to this explanation, the evidence can't be accepted due to a lack of evidence… and the fact that there is an IsraEl and that they have written records, doesn't count. Can this statement be considered truly objective? Although history and archeology are virtually FILLED with proofs of the Exodus, secular critics continue to claim that they don't exist! Consider for example, the fact that Egypt's historical records tell of a people called the Hyksos, who are obviously the IsraElites, since they lived in Egypt during the same period, and they were identified as such by no less than the noted ancient Jewish historian Flavius Josephus in his famous work, Antiquities of the Jews. And in fact, modern Egyptian records show that the Pharaohs of the Sixteenth Egyptian Dynasty were all Hyksos (Hebrews)! No proof? How about ignored proof?
There is an article by Jonathan Gray, titled In Search Of Pharaoh's Lost Army, which offers interesting (supposed) archeological evidence and conclusions concerning the Exodus. We suggest that you examine this document cautiously, since we are aware of the fact that Bible archeology (like secular archeology) is often inaccurate and untrustworthy.
Hebrew historians and most religious commentators usually agree that Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible (known as the Pentateuch). However, that isn't totally accurate; for the words of Genesis (such as, 'This was the scroll of…' and 'This was the generation of…') show that almost all of the first five Chapters were compiled from previously written records or transcribed from ancient songs.
Where could such records (if Moses in fact had them in written form) have come from? We simply don't know, because the Bible doesn't tell us. However, Moses could have collected them from Egyptian libraries during his life as 'the son of the daughter of Pharaoh.' And there is pretty good evidence that this is what happened, because the dates indicated by Egyptian history are almost the same as what our calculations show to be the Bible history and dates (see the subheading, 'How the Corrected Dates Align With Egypt's Historical Records' in our linked document, 'Why the Greek Septuagint?'). However, it appears as though some of the information may also have been passed along as songs through the Hebrew family line. Why do we say that?
Understand that ancient history and news was once transmitted in song because that was the only means of mass communication at the time. If you will closely examine the first Five Chapters of Genesis, you will notice that there is definitely a cadence and symmetry. For example, look at the starting words in each of the paragraphs or verses at Genesis 1:6, 11, 14, 20, 24, and 26.
It is interesting that archaeologists, while digging in MesoPotamia, have actually found a song or a poem that was recorded on ancient clay tablets that discuss some of the same events that are covered in Genesis Chapters six through eleven, which is now known as the Epic of Gilgamesh. And because there are similarities between both accounts, Bible critics were quick to proclaim that this is where Moses got his information about Noah and the flood. However, if you examine the words that are found in that text, you'll see that the Epic of Gilgamesh reads more like a fairy tale and is nothing like the factual type of account that is found in Genesis. So all this discovery really does is confirm that other people recorded the same things as happening.
Yes, Moses did write parts of the first five books of the Bible, because the accounts say so (see Numbers 33:1, 2), and Hebrew historians have always claimed that he did. Yet the fact that in most cases where his name is mentioned it is shown in the third person may also indicate that this isn't totally true. For if Moses wrote the words found at Numbers 12:3, 'Now, Moses was the humblest man on the earth;' then what he said was an oxymoron (a saying that disproves itself). So we have concluded that although Moses was likely responsible for the words that were said (and possibly for the compilation of the words of Genesis), the things that he said and did may have initially been written by a secretary or scribe… possibly Moses' close assistant Joshua. For notice what was written at Joshua 24:26: 'Then he (Joshua) wrote those words in The Scroll of the Laws of God.'
However, notice that even Joshua's name is occasionally written in the third person in those accounts. And although speaking of one's self in the third person isn't an unusual style for Bible writers (we find Matthew, Mark, and John doing that in their accounts), their names aren't usually mentioned in the third person, as were the names Moses and JoShua. Nor is it unusual for Bible writers to use secretaries, because that's what Paul obviously did because of his poor vision. So the fact that Moses' and JoShua's names were used so frequently and in so many places (sometimes up to three times per sentence in the ancient text) indicates that someone else likely did the compiling and writing.
The book of Deuteronomy is a good example of what we're talking about here. A close examination of the texts shows that the book was actually a compilation of written speeches that were delivered on the day that the IsraElites were to enter the Promised Land (see Deuteronomy 1:1). So Moses likely did write most of the speeches, which clarified how the Law would apply once they had entered the Promised Land, but these speeches were later collected and compiled into the book of Deuteronomy by someone else after his death. This has to be true, because Moses' death is also mentioned in Deuteronomy. Therefore, though Moses wrote the Laws and the speeches, he likely wasn't the one who recorded the details.
Thereafter, you might then notice that the Bible book of Joshua picks up its narrative immediately after things described in the book of Deuteronomy, as does the book of Judges after Joshua, and as does the book of Ruth after Judges (just read the ending of each book and the start of the next book, and you'll see why we're saying this). So it clearly looks like all the Bible books from Genesis to Ruth were originally compiled and written together by the same person, who must have lived sometime during or after the time of King David (because he is mentioned at the end of Ruth), and the likely source could have been SamuEl or even the much later scribe Ezra. Yet, all of the above works had to have been originally written during or shortly after the events being described, and then they were compiled into a single narrative at a later date. Then it was possibly as late as the Third Century BCE (when the Septuagint was created) that this single writing was separated into books, which were each given the names we are so familiar with today.
When Bible history and descriptions clash with secular history and descriptions, most assume that the Bible is wrong… once again. But is that really the case? Take for example, the Bible's description of Darius, the king of the Medes. He was mentioned at Ezra 4:5 as being a contemporary of the Persian King Cyrus. However, secular historians tell us that there was no such king of the Medes. They say that Darius was in fact a Persian king whose reign (522-BCE to 486-BCE) followed that of Cyrus. Which is view is correct?
Notice that the same account in Ezra (see Ezra 4:24) agrees that there was also a Persian king named Darius, who reigned after Cyrus. However, it says that his reign came after that of Xerxes and his son ArtaXerxes. So, modern historians and archeologists, in their desire to discredit the Bible, have simply confused Darius of Media with his much later Persian relative. We trust the account in Ezra, because no one questions the existence of Ezra or the period in which he lived (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ezra where they show a picture of his tomb), since he is the one that is credited with compiling most of the Sacred Scriptures of Israel (OT) that we have today.
As for Dairus, the king of the Medes; not only does the Jewish historian Josephus claim that there truly was a Darius, king of Media, but is tells us that that Darius was an uncle of King Cyrus on his mother's side. And the fact that Darius was a Mede and that he also ruled the land of the Chaldeans is once again confirmed by two other Bible writers, Daniel (see Daniel 9:1) and Zechariah (see Zechariah 1:1). That this is not Darius the king of Persia who historians say succeeded Cyrus is confirmed at Zechariah 7:1-6, where it shows that God's Temple had not yet been rebuilt. Also, the Persian king was said to have lived sixty-three years, while the Bible shows that the Median king lived at least sixty-six years.
So we have three contemporaries of Darius the king of Media who tell us that there was such a man.
Since the Hebrew portion of the Bible was written over a period of almost sixteen-hundred years, we would expect to see natural changes in its language over such an expended period. Is this what we find? Yes! Although the first portions of Genesis are written in the Hebrew language of Moses' time (they were probably translated by Moses or Joshua); the portion that tells of the life of Abraham is written in an ancient dialect called Ugarit, which reflects Hebrew as it was spoken before the Israelite's 400-years of living in the land of Egypt.
After that, the language continues to change until the time of Daniel, who wrote in a language that is similar to Hebrew, Aramaic (in the mid-500s BCE), because of the influence of the Jew's captivity in Babylon and their subjection to the Persians.
The next major Bible language change came during the time of Jesus. Although Matthew, Paul, John, Peter, James, and Jude may have originally penned their books in Aramaic or Hebrew, Mark and Luke likely wrote in the common language of their day, Koine (pronounced ko-ee-nay) Greek. And sometime after their writing (possibly as late as the 2nd Century in the case of Matthew's Gospel), the other NT books were also translated into that language.
So as you can see, charges that the Bible was written much later than its writers indicated are ludicrous. The changes in the languages prove that this isn't true.
One of the most notable stamps of authenticity in the Christian Era Scriptures is Matthew's mention of Jesus preaching in a town called 'Caesarea Philippi' (at Matthew 16:13). While some critics have claimed the Bible's Gospel accounts weren't written for more than a century after Jesus' death, internal proofs such as Matthew's use of that city name shows that this book had to be written prior to the middle of the First Century. For the name Caesarea Philippi was only used during the brief reign of the Herods. Both before and thereafter, it was known as 'Panas,' after the Roman God Pan, whose idol was located there. Since this fact would have been lost to history within just a few years, it proves that the Book of Matthew had to be written shortly after Jesus' execution.
And notice the methods for accurately dating events from the history of people that Bible tells us were ruling at the time of Jesus' birth, which are found at Luke 3:1, 2. Look at the links we've provided there, which prove that the writer (Luke) knew exactly who these people were and when they ruled, as documented in history! Ask yourself: How could a writer have known all these accurate details a couple of hundred years later? And if such a person were to do the research just to create a forgery, for whose benefit would he do this?
In addition; copies of the writings of the early 2nd Century Christian Elder Papias have been found, and in these he speaks of the Gospels and writings of Matthew, Luke, and John. So regardless of the unfounded claims of modern critics, there is little question that the Gospels were all written toward the middle and late portions of the 1st Century.
Another irrefutable proof of the Bible's authenticity as a historical record can be found in the names of people and places that have never changed… and the Bible even gives the reasons why those names were chosen. Notice for example, the account found at Genesis 10:8-12, which says, 'Kush fathered Nimrod, who became a giant on the earth. He was a gigantic hunter before Jehovah God. That's why people speak of Nimrod as the gigantic hunter before Jehovah. His kingdom started with Babylon, then Orech, Archad, and ChalanNe, which were all in the land of Shinar. Then outside that land, [he went to] Assyria and built Nineveh, the cities of RehobOth, Chalach, and Dase (between Nineveh and Chalach), which is the great city.'
You can see that the names of well-known cities (not mythical) can be found there. And how did Babylon (a Hebrew word for confusion) get its name? The account at Genesis 11:8, 9 tells us: 'And [Jehovah] scattered from there over the entire face of the earth, so they stopped building the city and its tower. That is why [the city] is named Confusion (Babylon); because, that's where [Jehovah] confused all the languages of the earth and scattered them from there over all the face of the earth.'
Why, the fact that there are so many unrelated languages among mankind today could only be explained by the events of this Bible account, since linguists admit that languages come from different roots. And what's more, the Bible's description found at Genesis 11:3, that the people built the city out of bricks, and at 11:4, where it tells of their building a sky-scraping tower, can still be seen in the ruins of that ancient city in Western Iraq. And even the name of the founder of one of these cities (Nimrod) can still be found in the ancient city in Assyria that was named for him, Nimrud (a spelling variation due to language differences).
Also, Nimrod's father Kush is still recognized as the progenitor of the people of Ethiopia; for his name is commonly used by archeologists and Egyptologists alike when speaking of the people of that land. It's only in places like North America and Europe (where the Bible is under attack) that anyone questions these names that have been written and accepted as history for millennia!
And while those are outstanding examples, the Bible is literally filled with the mention of people and places that have only recently been found and documented by modern archeology. A good example of this is the nation known as the Hittites. During almost the entire Nineteenth Century, archeologists claimed that there was no such race; but now they and their cities have been found in abundance! These people appear to be the ancestors of the modern-day Armenians, who (by the way) have always claimed a grandson of Noah as their progenitor. For more information, see the Wikipedia link Togarmah. And for more information about the connection of modern peoples to ancient descendants of Noah, see the links in Genesis Chapter Ten.
And getting back to the time of Jesus, note that a stone commemorating Jesus' judge, the Roman Governor Pontius Pilate (who was also once considered mythical) has recently been located and deciphered.
So while those who hate the Bible claim that it is just a collection of myths and fairytales, the records and ruins of places and events that we read about therein are constantly being found, proving that the Bible is in fact the most amazing and accurate record of the history of the world!
Something else that has been scorned by Bible critics for centuries is the long lives that it says people lived to prior to the downpour (Adam 930 years, Methuselah 969, etc.). Could these be actual years? Yes they could; for as anyone who has reached the age of 70 or 80 can tell you, our lives are really too short.
But if people once lived that long, why do we live much shorter lives today? We've heard many explanations such as, 'Mankind was getting farther from perfection,' or, 'It's the result of more hard radiation hitting the earth after the flood.' And while either or both of those things might be true, the most obvious reason is that it is the result of prolonged inbreeding. Think about it… the Bible tells us that only eight people survived the downpour, and apparently only three men fathered children after that, all of whom were brothers.
Consider for example, the lines of the Hebrews (which likely reflected what was true of other families throughout the world at the time): Abraham's father was Terah and his wife's father was Terah, so she was his half sister. Their son Isaac's grandfather was thus a direct descendant of Terah on both sides, and the grandfather of the woman he married was also Terah on at least one side. So Isaac's son's (Jacob's) great-grandfather was Terah through at least three lines; then the two women he took as wives (Rachael and Leah) were also great-granddaughters of Terah through multiple lines… and thereafter, the descendants of their sons intermarried. It was only after God gave His Laws to IsraEl that sexual relations and intermarriage among close family members was forbidden. And this proves that a Divine power recognized the genetic damage that would result from further inbreeding. Also remember that these laws were given just to the descendants of Israel, not to any of the other nations of the world; so inbreeding could have continued throughout the world until the results became obvious.
What about animals? The Bible account tells us that most animals (the 'unclean') were brought into the chest (ark) in single pairs; so even more genetic damage was possible for them than it was for humans. Ask yourself: 'Why do such intelligent animals as dogs or such large animals as horses live a little more than twenty years?' This isn't normal – it's illogical!
Then notice how thereafter human lifespans progressively decreased (which disproves the teaching that, 'they counted years differently back then'):
Noah lived 950 years
His son Shem (the first progenitor of that line) lived 600 years
His son Arphaxad lived 500 years
His son Kainan lived 460 years
His son Sala lived 460 years
His son Heber lived 404 years
His son Phaleg lived 339 years
His son Ragau lived 337 years
His son Seruch lived 330 years
His son Nahor lived 304 years
So by the time of the exodus from Egypt, we find the Israelites living just 70 or 80 years; for the Bible tells us that only Joshua and Caleb of all Israel's warriors who left Egypt, survived to enter the promised land.
Also notice this conversation between the Pharaoh of Egypt and the patriarch Jacob, as found at Genesis 47:7-9:
'Thereafter, JoSeph brought his father Jacob in and stood him before Pharaoh, and Jacob blest Pharaoh. Then Pharaoh asked Jacob: How old are you?' And Jacob replied to Pharaoh: The years of my life that I've lived are a hundred and thirty. But these years have been too few and too troubled. I haven't reached the age that my ancestors [achieved], back in the days when they lived.'
So as you can see, the very aged man Jacob verified that his ancestors lived to be much older than him!
Notice that even secular history agrees with the long lifespans of ancient times! Look, for example, at the Egyptian history of their Pre-Dynastic kings (see the link, 'Pharaohs Timeline'), which shows that: 'Up to 13 kings ruled from Hierakonpolis in Upper Egypt during this period who were known as the Horus-people or the Hawk-people.' Then look at the period during which these supposed 'Up to 13 kings' (we count 12 to Adam) ruled… 2,500 years… that is about 200 years of rule for each of them, according to Egyptologists!
And if you would like to see how closely the Bible comes to lining up with the dates given for Egypt's Pharaohs, see the subheading in the document 'Why the Greek Septuagint?', How the Corrected Dates Align With Egypt's Historical Records.
As you can see, there's really no reason for anyone to question the Bible's accuracy, authenticity, or the dates that are provided there. The facts are too detailed and too well substantiated in history… and the ages of men descend in a logical order that's well in line with the understandings of modern medical science.
What do scientists tell us is the likely cause of the human (and possibly animal) aging process? They say it's because the ends of our DNA strands break off as cells divide – an apparent genetic problem.
Recently, the National Geographic Society sponsored a genetic study to prove absolutely whether man has a single common ancestor (Adam), or if, as it has been stated many times before, man descended from 'a large group of evolving primates that numbered in the thousands.' The study surveyed people from all around the world, checking the variations in their Y (male) chromosomes, and the results proved beyond a doubt what earnest Bible students have known all along… that the Bible was right and we all did for a fact descend from a single man, whom they dubbed, 'The Scientific Adam.'
While this shocking and amazing finding should have proven the Bible's authenticity beyond a doubt, it likely doesn't surprise anyone that after proving the Bible right once again, the folks at National Geographic Society concluded that the Bible has all the details wrong. For rather than man originating from a place in the area of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers some seven-thousand five-hundred years ago (as the Bible says), they say he actually originated in Africa some fifty-nine-thousand years ago.
Notice that to reach their findings, the geneticists looked at the variations in the Y-chromosomes of modern people, and then they searched for common variations that would link them all to a single person. And when they looked for a race of people whose Y-chromosomes are the closest to the original (the fewest variations), they found them in Northeast Africa near Ethiopia. So they concluded that 'Adam' was a dark-skinned man from Northern Africa.
Of course, in their skepticism, they neglected the fact that we all have a much closer common relative than Adam, Noah. So what they may have found was him… or at least his grandson Cush (or Kush), whose descendants in Ethiopia still call themselves 'Kushites.' They also overlooked the fact that the original Kushites (black people) settled in MesoPotamia (Nimrod was a Kushite); and later in Bible records, part of that family line lived in the area of Iran southwest of Mount Ararat. So this Scientific Adam apparently didn't really live in northeastern Africa to begin with (although many of his descendants do live there today). For more information on this, see the Note 'Edem.'
And what about the fifty-nine-thousand years of man's existence, as opposed to the Bible's seven thousand, five hundred? Well, their dating was based on the number of genetic mutations, which they extrapolated to come up with a starting date… but that is risky science at best. For they simply assume certain very-long periods between mutations. And as we pointed out earlier, the shortening of life spans between the time of Noah and Moses seems to indicate a period of rapid genetic decline, possibly due to prolonged inbreeding.
As proof of this, consider what the same geneticists say about the Prototypical Eve: 'Early estimates published during the 1990s [for how long ago the Prototypical Adam lived] ranged between roughly 200 and 300 kya (Thousand Years Ago). Such estimates were later substantially corrected downward … which proposed an age of about 59,000. This date suggested that the Y-MRCA (the Prototypical Adam) lived about 84,000 years after his female counterpart mt-MRCA (the Prototypical Eve), who lived 150,000–200,000 years ago.'
So, how is it possible for the first woman to have lived some 150,000–200,000 years before the first man? Well, as the Bible tells us: If the first man (the first common source of Y-DNA) was Noah, then the first source of Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) came through the wives of his sons, whose DNA truly traces back to the first woman ('Eve').
Also, see the interesting proof that these extended dates are likely wrong in the Wikipedia article, 'Population Bottleneck,' which shows that miscalculations could come from a disaster that results in a sudden massive decline in human population… such as a global flood!
Then, why do studies show that man originated in Northeastern Africa, not the Middle East? Those who do these studies, in their quest to prove the Bible wrong, fail to recognize the fact that throughout history, populations have migrated or have been forced to relocate. For example, both the ancient Babylonians and Assyrians relocated entire populations after conquering them. And the people of Northeastern Africa (ethnic Ethiopians) prove this when they clearly claim to be descendants of Noah's grandson Kush. Bible history shows that these people once lived in and around the ancient Assyrian Empire (Middle East), and that they were conquered by the Assyrians in the late 700s BCE. For more information, see the Note 'Edem,' especially toward the end, where it speaks of the genetic proofs of their migration.
Anyhow, as science continues to make advances, we are sure they will eventually get more of their details right.
As we've already shown, DNA evidence proves that we are all descended from a single human couple that looked very much like us; but that doesn't stop anti-Bible 'scientists' from trying to prove something else. Was there really another race of humans that we now call 'Neanderthals?' Yes, but DNA evidence indicates that they were descended from the same 'Scientific Adam and Eve' as we are. For many of us apparently still carry their DNA, which just ties back to that first modern-prototypical-human couple. And as anyone with a knowledge of genetics already knows; if we had different origins and DNA variations were too great, interbreeding would have been impossible! For more information, see the 20 December 2013 article, 'Neanderthals Could Speak Like Humans, Study Suggests.'
'Ah, but that isn't true,' say geneticists. 'DNA proves that chimpanzees are actually more closely related to humans than are Neanderthals.' Oh? We suspect that this is a clear case of where the the numbers have been 'fudged,' or something is wrong with the data; for if a Neanderthal/human relationship can produce hybrids that can in fact produce offspring, then human/chimpanzee mating should be able to provide some interesting new species that can talk like humans… Holy Planet of the Apes!!!
So, have there in fact been several different human 'species' through the ages? This claim is now being argued among anthropologists who say there is proof that this is not the case. For more information, see the December 2013 BBC article, 'Blow to Multiple Human Species Idea' by their science reporter, Melissa Hogenboom.
At this point, we could go off into long explanations of why each of the popular 'scientific' myths on the origins of man are poorly substantiated. However, we've already shown that known and provable evidence such as DNA verifies the Bible account of our origins. And for those who wish to argue the dates; we will show that the current dating methods are unreliable. So we won't carry this any farther, since those who wish to believe such things will continue to do so, regardless of the evidence.
Of course, the most important and most accepted argument against the Bible's chronology leading back to the creation of the first man and woman (around 7,500 years ago by our calculations) is radiocarbon dating. For the figures that scientists provide carry the first human back at least 59,000 years. How does the radiocarbon 'clock' work?
Radiocarbons are formed when cosmic radiation bombards nitrogen molecules, turning them into carbon 14 (14C), which are thereafter consumed by plants and animals. But when these living things die, they stop taking it in. And because 14C has a known rate of decay, all a scientist has to do is measure the amount of radiation in dead plants and animals to tell us how long ago they lived (with an accuracy of plus or minus 40 to 100 years). So this is a pretty accurate way of determining the age of things that were once alive.
However, nothing is ever quite that simple. For as it turns out, the amount of 14C varies according to how much cosmic radiation is bombarding the earth, and according to scientists, this has changed over time. Notice how this is explained in the Wikipedia article, 'Radiocarbon dating,' under the subheading, 'Calibration': 'Dates may be expressed as either uncalibrated or calibrated years (the latter abbreviated as cal or cal.). A raw BP date cannot be used directly as a calendar date, because the level of atmospheric 14C has not been strictly constant during the span of time that can be radiocarbon dated. The level is affected by variations in the cosmic ray intensity, which is in turn affected by variations in the Earth's magnetosphere. In addition, there are substantial reservoirs of carbon in organic matter, the ocean, ocean sediments (see methane hydrate), and sedimentary rocks. Changes in the Earth's climate can affect the carbon flows between these reservoirs and the atmosphere, leading to changes in the atmosphere's 14C fraction.'
In addition, notice this quotation that is found under the subheading, Measurements: 'This age is derived from that of the calibration blanks used in an analysis, whose 14C content is assumed to be the result of contamination during processing (as a result of this, some facilities will not report an age greater than 60,000 years for any sample).' In fact, other sources limit the accuracy to less than 40,000 years. So any dates provided by 14C testing of 40,000 years or more can't be trusted, because there is simply too much background contamination to be sure of the accuracy.' And recognize that 14C testing is the only means for determining the ages of things that were once living.
Notice that much of the 14C dating of things carries us back 5,000 years, and then we see huge jumps (to 60,000 years or more). Could this be due to the fact that there was much less cosmic radiation hitting the earth prior to the great Downpour (flood) spoken of in Genesis Chapter 6? For if our earth had once been protected from such radiation by huge quantities of stratospheric ice crystals (as many have suggested) which fell to the earth as a flood, then the radiocarbon and luminescence dating clocks are unreliable and are indicating much older dates for materials than may actually be true.
Over the past several years, a new tool has been employed to determine the ages of ancient artifacts has emerged, Luminescence Dating. The premise is this: The age of something is calculated by determining the changes in the atomic structure of certain minerals since they were was last exposed to sunlight or intense heat. According to scientific sources, 'The sunlight bleaches away the luminescence signal and resets the time clock. As time passes, the luminescence signal increases through exposure to the ionizing radiation and cosmic rays. Luminescence dating is based on quantifying both the radiation dose received by a sample since its zeroing event and the dose rate which it has experienced during the accumulation period (see LuminescenceDating).' Thus, when ancient artifacts are uncovered, all that is required is to test the surrounding sand to determine its luminescence in order to set the date when the nearby items were buried.
So notice: Luminescence Dating is based on the same assumptions as is Radiocarbon Dating… that the rate of ionizing radiation and cosmic rays hitting the earth has remained constant (scientists agree that it hasn't). And how do they determine the accuracy of this 'clock?' By comparing its findings against 'known dates' as determined by radiocarbon testing. In other words, one questionable test is used to verify another. And the interesting thing is that those who have developed this dating method say that it often shows up later dates for the ages of artifacts, so they assume that the earlier dates are correct.
When it comes to dating rocks and bones that are found buried or in caves where there may have been no sun light, scientists have come up with another method of dating that depends on the decay of uranium. And while this method sounds very scientific and accurate, there is really no base data available to prove the accuracy of the method, and it is agreed that contamination can easily skew the results. Notice for example, that this was the method used to date a ring of stalactites that were recently found in a circle in a cave in France, which scientists have concluded had to be assembled by Neanderthals some 176,000 years ago (yes, it's just a circle of rocks in a cave). For more information about the flaws in this method, see the article 'Radiometric Dating: Problems with the Assumptions.'
We know that most fundamentalist religions teach that few scientific findings can be trusted because they are simply 'anti-Bible'… and we recognize that this position follows a slippery slope, so we don't plan to go there.
A good example to illustrate the fallacy of taking such an anti-science stand can be seen in the Catholic Church's inquisition of Galileo because he declared that the earth isn't the center of the universe. For the Church made an assumption (which has no Bible support) that has since proven untrue, and Galileo's findings have now been vindicated. Therefore, we don't wish to be numbered among such.
What we do know and have come to trust through our extensive detailed research, is that the line of descent of man from Adam can be verified as accurate through multiple historical sources. And how the rest came to be isn't arguable, since religious conclusions that counter much of modern scientific findings are usually based on assumptions about the meanings of a few words that are contained in just thirty-one short Bible verses. Realize that the First Chapter of Genesis is basically a '500-word essay' written in poetry to explain to people with no telescopes, satellites, or knowledge of advanced algebra how everything in the universe came into existence… yet it is done concisely and in the right order. This was the conclusion of such noted men of science as Sir Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein.
Unfortunately however, many people assume that when God (who lives beyond our universe and in a place where time is irrelevant) spoke of His 'days' of creation, He was talking about the 24-hour periods as seen from the earth… this is foolish and finds no basis in Scripture. Then, how old is our universe? Who knows? It could in fact be billions of years old, and the fact that light from distant galaxies millions of light-years away can be seen through powerful telescopes, bears this out.
Recognize that the word 'Day' just refers to a measured period in the Bible. For example, God told Adam at Genesis 2:16, 17: 'You are free to eat from all the trees of Paradise, but you must not eat from the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Because, on whatever day you eat from it, your life will end and you will die.' Yet notice how long Adam lived after eating the fruit from the tree (Genesis 5:5): 'So Adam was nine hundred and thirty years old when he died.'
So, recognize that whenever we argue against something that proves to be true, we aren't arguing with men but with God! For He knows how and when He actually did it.
On the other hand; many religions, in an attempt to look more educated and scientific, have gone far beyond the history of mankind that we learn of in the Bible and openly declare that the accounts in the book of Genesis are untrue. So while they teach belief in Jesus and 'the New Testament,' they deny the teachings of Jesus and his Apostles who spoke of a first man named Adam and a man named Noah. So they say that we should believe in Jesus even though he didn't know what he was talking about… and in so doing, they deny the very basis for their faith. This position is Godless, faithless, foolish, and unreasoning.
We do find one of the latest scientific theories interesting, in line with the Bible, and sensible. It's the teaching that retroviruses (which pick up and share DNA with their hosts) cause variations within species. So it could be that God created viruses to help all creatures to change and better adapt to their environments. This would explain the predominance of marsupials in Australia, the prehensile tails of the monkeys in the Americas, and the reasons why different species within the same family types (such as parrots, horses, etc.) can't crossbreed.
Obviously, this is just another theory. However, the chest (ark) of Noah could only have held a limited number of animal types; so there are surely more animal types today than there were then.
Yet, it is argued that DNA similarities are proof positive that mankind wasn't created by God as the Bible says. For (as an example) humans can be proven to be less than 1% away genetically from chimpanzees. So as the logic goes, we clearly have evolved from them. But don't overlook the fact that using this same logic proves that we are also direct descendants from bananas, since we share 50% of our DNA with them! No, you can't have it both ways!
The flaw in this DNA logic is that it makes the assumption that creatures which look similar (and are therefore built using similar plans) are proof that the Bible is wrong. This is about as logical as saying that an airplane evolved from birds, because the two look very much the same. And when asked about how something as complicated as an eye or an ear could have come into being on its own; those who hate the Bible give credit to another God, 'Mother Nature.'
Note that Charles Darwin came up with his theory of evolution after visiting the Galapagos Islands and noticing that the same animals (such as birds, tortoises, and lizards) had different characteristics and habits on each of the islands. So he assumed these differences indicated that they were 'evolving.' Yet there is no indication that one species was changing into another (as in a lizard changing into a penguin, tortoise, or seal). All he found was that species adapt through inbreeding and their environment (which everyone knows).
However, we shouldn't be inflexible when it comes to our understanding of how God did things, because He knows how He actually did it. In the case of Adam's woman Eue (Eve); God brought her into existence through existing DNA (Adam's rib). Likewise, He could have brought other new forms of life into existence by modifying existing DNA. We just don't know, and He didn't tell us.
It is shocking to us that most people get what they believe to be reliable information about the Bible, its history, and its authenticity from television programs. For there you will listen to 'the experts' talk about their 'facts.' Yet, no one asks why these people are considered to be authorities, or why they were specifically chosen by the show's producers.
What makes a person a 'Bible expert?' Are such ones chosen because they've done decades of unbiased Bible research and translating, or because they've passed religious courses taught by skeptics and atheists? This is an area where the foxes have clearly been put in charge of the hen house. Yet people tend to believe all that they see on TV as proven fact, because 'the experts' said so.
Our years of Bible research and translating experience (as well as watching such programs) clearly prove that few of such 'experts' have really done much personal Bible reading (they miss major details), and that most choose to deny and overlook all historically-proven evidence of the Bible's authenticity. So the public in general is being fed on a diet of skepticism and the viewpoints of atheists or agnostics.
Take for example, all the programs that talk about the coming of the 'Antichrist.' Do you know what the Bible actually says about this and who it is identified as being? We suspect that you don't, because most people just believe what they've seen on television or heard from some non-Bible-reading preacher. Why not just read what the Bible says? Go to First John 2:22… you'll be surprised to see what it says there. It's nothing like you've been told before by the 'experts!'
One of the most common arguments against the authenticity of the Bible is its age. For the question is often asked, 'How do we know that what's written in there is really what was originally meant?' And it's a fact that the Bible has been copied and translated hundreds if not thousands of times down to our day, and errors have obviously crept in (we can prove it).
Yes, it is true that there are many errors in common Bibles. How do we know this? Because many very ancient Bible texts have been found that show where changes have been made. Sometimes the errors are copy mistakes, while in other instances there are deliberate attempts at fraud. Yet, modern scholars are aware of most of these errors and the few honest Bible translators are making the changes as they are discovered.
Note that what is called the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible) hasn't seen many changes, for these words of creation and law were copied and spread throughout Israel, and any error would have been quickly pointed out by the zealous. However, the words of the Prophets haven't fared as well, because the things they wrote condemned Israel for the errors of their ways, so they weren't read or copied as much. And the older the writing, the easier it is to see that much has been lost. Yet there is enough redundancy between the writings of the Prophets that any major errors would stand out, and many of the words of the Prophets have been verified, because Jesus and other Bible writers quoted them.
Understand that it is our belief that the Bible was written logically and coherently; so where we find a text that doesn't make any sense, we assume there has been an error in copying or translating, and we are spurred to do more research.
In particular, there is also strong indication that the Gospel of Matthew is badly corrupted in many places… although it is interesting that most religions prefer to quote it and build their doctrines based on that book, while ignoring the more accurate accounts of Mark and Luke. There are in fact too many instances of proven textual corruptions to even list here, but they start with Matthew 1:18 and run through 28:19. Why is this so? Because, as early Christian writers tell us; that book was originally written in Aramaic (the 'Hebrew' of Jesus' day), and it was translated into Greek sometime in the early Second Century, after Christianity had started turning from the true faith as had been taught by Jesus and his Apostles. We know that there have been changes, because Mark and Luke were in most cases quoting from the original book of Matthew (which we can prove was written first). And as you compare the texts, you will see that there are important differences between what Mark and Luke wrote, and what is currently written in Matthew.
What about other books, such as those of the Apocrypha and other supposed Christian writings? Some wonder why they aren't included in Bibles such as this. But if you read them, you'll see why most learned collectors have rejected them; for most clearly speak of things that contradict the canon of sixty-six approved books, which all show a harmony and single inspiration by God. Please ignore the 'Banned from the Bible' TV shows, because what they present a very misleading picture.
One of the more recent claims is that the story of Jesus originated in the written myths of the pagan Roman religion; for several important features of Jesus' life are found written in Roman lore about their pagan Gods. Yet, the fact that people who point to such similarities fail to mention, is that those Roman epics were written some two-hundred years after Jesus' death. So, who borrowed from whom?
This claim was made in a recent book about the Bible that seems to turn its entire writing into mysticism and intrigue. And it all starts out with the premise that DaVinci's painting, 'The Last Supper,' shows Mary Magdalene (not John) sitting next to Jesus, whom the writer claims is Jesus' secret wife… and thousands gullibly believe this, because they saw it on television!
Yes, the person sitting on Jesus' right in DaVinci's painting does appear to be a woman; for he or she is not depicted the traditional Jewish beard. But did you also notice that the head is at an odd angle, separated from the neck, and is smoother than the other features in the painting? The head also appears to be up and to the left of a previous face. While this may not have a bearing on the veracity of the claim, the female face does look more like a recent addition to the painting… and why does an Apostle have his hand resting on her shoulder if she is Jesus' wife?
Also, if it is a woman that was depicted there, then why would anyone suspect that it was Mary from Magdala, for she is mentioned only briefly in the Bible accounts as part of the large crowd that traveled to Jerusalem with Jesus and as one of the two women who visited his tomb… but never again in any bible record after that. For if DaVinci did include a woman in his painting, wouldn't it be more logical to assume it to be Jesus' mother Mary, in view of where this artwork was painted? Really, there is no Bible text that mentions any close relationship between Jesus and this Mary! So, why do people believe otherwise… because of something someone wrote a hundred years later?
But let's ask: What did Leonardo DaVinci really know about Jesus anyhow, since he lived fourteen centuries after Jesus died? And even if there was in fact a 'DaVinci Code;' from whom did the painter receive it, and why should we trust these words more than what is written in the Bible?
As for the accuracy of DaVinci's knowledge of Jesus and the Bible; look at his painting… remember that early Jews didn't sit around a table on chairs, they reclined, and the table was low. There is no record of anyone sitting at a table in the Christian Era Scriptures, but there are records of their reclining (lying down) to eat. So, how much of this painting should we trust as an accurate account of history? And while we're at it; allow us to point out the name was Jesus, not Christ!
Yet, with very little evidence to support its theories, the DaVinci Code book has started a growing belief among the gullible and easily swayed that the Bible is some sort of secret codebook, and that Jesus got his teachings while traveling in India. This is total nonsense, and it could only be believed by those who are truly unfamiliar with the Bible. It also claims there were other 'Gospel' accounts that were hidden, because they tell a different story of Jesus' life. But it fails to mention that these 'Gospels,' which are obviously fakes, are dated to more than a century after Jesus' death!
One of the things that we are often asked, is whether we have learned anything new in our translating. And the answer is YES!
First; we have been surprised to find out that the Bible truly is accurate and provable, despite all the unresearched and poorly-thought-out negative things that people have written and said about it. And we have also concluded that those who say that they are the ones who preserved the Bible, have really been its greatest detractors.
But isn't proving the Bible true and accurate the conclusion we had expected to reach prior to starting this massive project? No, not necessarily. For those who started this project didn't do so with pre-formed conclusions, since we wanted to find out for ourselves what was true and what wasn't. So, had we found the Bible to be inaccurate and filled with myths and fables, as we've been told, we would have accepted that and gone no farther.
Understand that we never started out with the idea of translating a whole Bible. It was just 'the Matthew Project' in the beginning. We got involved in what was meant to be a small month-long editing job (not a life-long all-consuming occupation). The reason why we started the project was because someone showed us that many important words had been translated inaccurately in most Bibles. And as writers and editors in the magazine-publishing industry, we also wondered whether we could make the Gospel of Matthew easier to read in modern English, while translating the questionable words properly. The point for us was to find out whether translating the words not as religious tradition has taught us, but as they really meant in Ancient Greek, would still make sense. Well, we found that it did; so after finishing Matthew, we moved on to Mark, then to Luke, then to John, etc.
Second; we were shocked to find out how far ALL modern 'Christian' religions have deviated from the teachings of the Bible, and how far the lives of modern 'Christians' have come from the ways of the Patriarchs and the thinking of Jesus and his Apostles… therefore, we have no religion to recommend.
Third; we have found that almost all Bibles have been translated to support existing religious traditions, never for the purpose of helping some religion to better understand what the Bible really says. We have yet to find any other Bible that isn't misleading and inaccurate, because they all contain mistranslated words that reflect the type of dogma that began when Christians started to accept pagan teachings and practices following the deaths of Jesus' Apostles.
Fourth; to our surprise, we have found that the answers aren't always clear, so we have concluded that Christians should be far more open minded and tolerant of each other's beliefs! For we've found that even such basic teachings as the hope of the righteous, to be a bit unclear and ambiguous, once all the scriptures have been examined. For if the NT texts haven't been corrupted (and we suspect that they have been), there are some definite contradictions! But is this a bad thing? We don't think so. For how we react to others who have reached different conclusions tends to show up what we really are on the inside… it shows whether we truly are Jesus' disciples by the love that we have among ourselves, even when we disagree with each other.
Fifth; we have found that the Bible hasn't remained pristine, but that it has in fact been corrupted by copyists and translators who tried to make it read in a way that would support their existing beliefs. These corruptions quickly become apparent to translators, since there is enough redundancy in the Bible to show what has been changed, and because we now have enough access to ancient manuscripts that we can often see what was and wasn't originally there.
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