We have not read every article or book that alludes or talks about the scribes of the New Testament. But we feel we have read one of the best explanations for their being labelled as the Essenes.
The few articles, etc. we have seen rarely make this connection. Here is one from a God website but the authors’ of that web page do not make the connection:
In ancient times the Scribes were Jewish officers who performed duties which included various kinds of writing, but when the Jews returned from the Babylonian captivity, the soferim, or Scribes, were organized by Ezra into a distinct body. These Scribes became the interpreters and copyists of God’s law. Among these duties, they copied the Pentateuch, the Phylacteries, and the Mezuzoth. (Deut. 6:9).
Once the Canon of Old Testament Scripture was complete, and inspiration of the prophetic period in Old Testament times had been accomplished, we need to trace the degeneration of these men known as “Scribes” and the position of power by which they assumed.
History reveals that foreign influences pervaded the land of Judea throughout the Inter-Testamental period, and onward to the Christian era. Greek culture and Hellenization threatened the very existence of Judaism and the chosen people, the Jewish religious leaders determined that the law needed to be preserved with the most jealous care.(https://www.bible-history.com/Scribes/THE_SCRIBESBackground.htm)
Here is another short blurb who call the scribes lawyers
In the 1st century, scribes and Pharisees were two largely distinct groups, though presumably some scribes were Pharisees. Scribes had knowledge of the law and could draft legal documents (contracts for marriage, divorce, loans, inheritance, mortgages, the sale of land, and the like). Every village had at least one scribe. Pharisees were members of a party that believed in resurrection and in following legal traditions that were ascribed not to the Bible but to “the traditions of the fathers.” Like the scribes, they were also well-known legal experts: hence the partial overlap of membership of the two groups. It appears from subsequent rabbinic traditions, however, that most Pharisees were small landowners and traders, not professional scribes. (https://www.britannica.com/biography/Jesus/Scribes-and-Pharisees)
then a final example
However, these uses for scribe are mostly found in the Old Testament. The New Testament scribes are a special group among the Jewish religious leaders. Their primary duties were to study the law of Moses, teach it to the people, and even to help settle disputes involving the questions of the law. The New Testament scribes traced their origin back to Ezra who is variously called “a ready scribe in the law of Moses” (Ezra 7:6) ( http://www.learnthebible.org/what-is-a-scribe.html)
While there certainly were these types of scribes in Israel they may have also been part of the Essenes. That group’s reputation and religious practices would certainly qualify them in the group called scribes.
We can’t post the whole article here as it is 13 pages long. But it is one of the best explanations for the identity of the scribes Jesus was talking about and to. it was published in 1958 and remains a definitive work on the topic. A brief quote
The first question that must be answered is whether the Scribes were a party or a profession. In the Old Testament the Soferim were writers, keepers of the records, and in some cases evidently official recorders. The LXX translated this as Scribe grammateus. By the time the New Testament was written, writing must have been a more general skill, and the word ‘scribe’ had taken on other meanings. That some had become teachers and lawyers and doctors of the law is not to be denied. But, that the word did not have a single meaning is indicated by such terms as “Scribes of the Pharisees” (Mk. 2:13-17, Lk. 5:27-32) and “Scribes of the people” (Matt. 2:4). The inter-testament period may have worked a change in the use of the word.
You can find the rest of the article at this link: https://biblicalstudies.org.uk/pdf/bets/vol01/scrolls_dampier.pdf it is worth the time to read and contemplate the author’s argument.
With the news continuously updating the world on the progression of the Coronavirus-19 are you becoming angry at God? Is the reason because the virus exists or that a loved one has contracted the diseases and is suffering right now or has died from its destructive work?
Do you wish God removed suffering from this world and cannot understand why people still suffer? You are in some lofty company if you do as Dr. Bart Ehrman has based a lot of his lack of faith on the suffering of people.
Then there may be those people who claim that the Coronavirus is a judgment of God on a sinful people. There is no evidence to support that type of thinking. Disease and death have been a part of this world since the time humans first sinned against God in the Garden of Eden.
Also, God usually sends a messenger who is known beyond a shadow of a doubt to be a messenger of his to proclaim his upcoming judgment. That message is accompanied by a time limit. The people whom God is going to render judgment have a certain amount of time to repent before the judgment is unleashed.
For Nineveh God had Jonah tell the people of that city that they had 40 days to repent. For the pre-flood world, he gave the people 120 years and had Noah preach repentance for that length of time.
With the Coronavirus neither of these two elements have been present before it hit the world stage. Like other contagious diseases this one has no divine motive behind it and it is like all those previous contagious diseases that have existed on earth.
It came into existence because of the sin committed by Adam in the Garden of Eden. God didn’t create the virus so do not blame him for any suffering you or your loved ones are enduring. Nor can the observers of this tragedy blame God as they watch others suffer while they are lockdown in their homes and unable to work.
Why doesn’t God stop suffering? As Dr. Craig Blomberg so elegantly put it in his book From Pentecost to Patmos, God could end all suffering, even from this virus but he would have to end the world to do it.
Adam’s sin and all human’s sins thereafter have so corrupted this world that God cannot end suffering without destroying the world and everyone in it. If God were to do that it would mean that you would lose your opportunity to repent of your sins and be saved from eternal suffering.
That is something that God does not want to do. He is enduring your suffering because he wants everyone to be saved and delays the end of the world to give everyone the opportunity to receive Christ as their Savior.
Do not get mad at God for what is ultimately your decision to make. You have the power to choose wisely. There is a way to escape eternal suffering and all you have to do is follow the example of Nineveh in the time of Jonah
4 Then Jonah began to go through the city one day’s walk; and he cried out and said, “Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown.”
5 Then the people of Nineveh believed in God; and they called a fast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them. 6 When the word reached the king of Nineveh, he arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, covered himself with sackcloth and sat on the [b]ashes. 7 He issued a proclamation and it said, “In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let man, beast, herd, or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water. 8 But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth; and let [c]men call on God earnestly that each may turn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in [d]his hands. 9 Who knows, God may turn and relent and withdraw His burning anger so that we will not perish.”
To stop the Cornavirus all you have to do is honestly follow
and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
In my research on the CV-19 virus I have found that even though the infection and death rate of other contagious diseases are higher than this one, the reason for the panic is that this is a new strain of a virus.
Being new, it means that no one has any immunity to the disease and every one is vulnerable. BUT this is not a new situation, the world, especially the new world, has experienced this situation before.
When the Spaniards first arrived on the new shores, the native populations had no immunity to the European diseases the Spanish brought with them. Millions of native western Indians were killed because they were vulnerable.
It took awhile for the native population to become immune to those diseases but only after tragedy struck. We may have to face the same tragedy if the right amount of immunity is going to protect the world from this virus.
People are going to die. We cannot escape that fact and we might as well toughen up to the reality. God made it very clear in the Bible that man is appointed to die once, this is an event that we may not like but for those who believe, death is nothing to be afraid of
In today’s world people are afraid of dying. Many of them do not have that love for God that drives out all fear and their decision making is propelled by fear. It is up to the believer to convey God’s love in the correct way to those who are afraid and in need of hope.
We can do that by bringing wise counsel to the politicians who make these sweeping decisions that affect both the healthy and the infected. We cannot be followers in this issue but be the leaders as we have God helping us see the right path to go
Believers are to stand with God and call to the unbeliever to follow and if they still do not come we do not stop following God. Even in this issue. Noah preached for 120 years and no one answered his call.
Yet Noah did not let that failure to bring more people onto the ark stop him from following God and his instructions. He and his family were saved. This is not to say that the CV-19 is a plague from God.
It is saying that even in this situation, the Christian is to find his or her instructions in God and follow them so that more people can be saved. While we lose a few people in the process as everyone will not be healed, we still stand with God understanding that God’s rules are not suspended just because a loved one of ours falls sick.
We trust God even though many others may pass away because of the virus. Social distance is not going to eradicate the virus although it may slow down its spread. This and other diseases will always be a part of this world as they came with the corruption that entered the world at Adam’s sin.
What we need is wise leadership and not the blind leading the blind. We need smart decisions made, not blanket commands that really do little to stop the disease from doing its dirty work and only make healthy people more vulnerable to the infected ones.
Understanding that diseases like CV-19 will never disappear and that we cannot exclude death from this world is one way to calm our minds and listen to God’s voice. We are in this world and the Christian has to show everyone else how to overcome what is in it.
The key is to have faith that God will provide the right answers and that people will honestly listen to them. Those answers will come through true believers not deceived humans whether the latter are a doctor, a politician or some other powerful figure.
keep in mind that God allows suffering to continue because he would have to destroy the whole world to end it. So if you lose a loved one, do not get angry at God. God has placed a time limit on our lives and he rarely changes that restriction.
God did not create the virus but he can use it so that more people will come to a salvation through his son Jesus. if the church handles the crisis correctly
Its a good question
In his article Distinguished Lecture in Archaeology: Communication and the future of American Archaeology Jeremy A. Sabloff posed a similar question but framed it in the words ‘Will American archaeology survive in the twenty-first century?’
His answer to his own question was of course it will. He was not so sure about his second question will it continue to thrive…? (Sabloff, 2013). They are two very important questions Christians and Biblical archaeologists need to ask about biblical archaeology.
I ask the question not because biblical archaeology is being attacked by unbelievers on a constant basis nor for the fact that it is slow to produce the physical results many believers want to see in order to continue in their faith.
Due to the limitations of archaeology, both secular and biblical , as well as the lack of christian archaeologists, Biblical Archaeology can only uncover so much. There must be a lot of patience when one wants to get more facts and information about our past.
The question what is the future of biblical archaeology is a serious one for Bible believers because that field is not over flowing with Christians digging up evidence proving the Bible true.
Instead it is filled with a majority of professionals who do not believe in either God or Jesus. Their work is influenced by their unbelief and that can pose a danger to biblical archaeology and the discoveries it uncovers.
Why should anyone care about ancient Israel
An Archaeology Professor teaching a class in Near Eastern Archaeology was asked the question by one of her first year students the following question:
Why do we care about the origins of this small group of people anyway (Anderson, 2020)
That question works hand in hand with the question what is the future of Biblical Archaeology. It reveals a mindset that biblical archaeologists are going to have to overcome if they want to have their work make an impact in the lives of young church adults, the church itself and the unbelieving world around them.
A lot of people do not care about the history of modern day Israel, they do not care about the lives and practices of the ancient Israelites and the do not care about the Bible.
It is going to be a delicate and complicated task for biblical archaeologists to take on as their audience may be shrinking faster than they would like. Biblical archaeologists are going to have to stop assuming that people are going to be a willing audience if they cannot instill an attitude in their listeners that has them caring about the biblical past.
That student’s question goes hand in hand with a statement made 50 years ago by John Fritz and Fred Plog when they wrote, “We suggest that unless archaeologists find ways to make their research increasing relevant to the modern world, the modern world will find itself increasingly capable of getting along without archaeologists” (Sabloff, 2013).
While that pair of archaeologists may have been talking about archaeology in general, it aptly applies to biblical archaeology as well. Biblical archaeologists need to make sure that their research is relevant to the individuals in the church whereby the latter can see how the information actually applies to their lives.
Failure to do that means that many believers may ignore what the biblical archaeologists are doing and move on to something they feel is more relevant and worthwhile.
Some of the problems in Biblical Archaeology
It is these problems that are helping the biblical archaeologists’ audience in turning off of what the biblical archaeologist has to say. These problems have arisen throughout the years as attitudes in the field of Biblical Archaeology has changed.
In the old days sticking to discovering information about events, civilizations and people of the Bible led early biblical archaeologists to great discoveries. One example of this is the civilization of the Hittites. For over 1800 years historians and biblical scholars thought the biblical authors made up that civilization.
Yet with persistence and a lot of hard work, the Hittite civilization was finally proven to be a reality and in the ancient era the biblical authors had it in. The lack of physical evidence is not a problem that is undermining the work of biblical archaeologists.
It is an on going issue that has been dealt with because God said,’the just shall live by faith’ & ‘faith pleases God’ (loose quote). While we can, are and will dig up physical evidence for different events, people and so on, our belief in Jesus is built on faith not physical evidence.
Plus, God is not going to destroy what pleases him by overwhelming the world with physical evidence for everything recorded in the Bible. It is by faith that we are saved not physical evidence.
One of the first problems that is influencing the field of Biblical Archaeology is the influence of unbelievers. Recently, Hershel Shanks the editor and founder of Biblical Archaeology Review retired and turned the control of his magazine over to an avowed atheist.
The change of tone in that magazine is already seen by some of the recent articles it has published since that change. This does not bode well for believers or those who look to BAR to be more independent in the ongoing archaeological debates and discussions between minimalists, maximalists, believers & unbelievers.
The next problem that is influencing the field of Biblical Archaeology the wrong way is the growing number of people who either do not have any faith in God or have lost their faith because the field has not produced what they had hoped to find.
Two of the more well known influences are Dr. William Dever and Dr. Bart Ehrman. Then, of course, their are a host of Jewish archaeologists who do not believe or accept the New testament and their archaeological views are influenced by what they do or do not accept (Calder, 2007)
The growing disbelief alters the theories and explanations the biblical archaeologist hear which in turn has some questioning the validity of the field of research as well as God and his authors.
The final problem that will be discussed here is the one where the Christian archaeologist begin to contradict what the Bible says or promote theories or discoveries that do not coincide with the Biblical text.
In other words, these archaeologists are saying one thing and God is saying another. This takes its toll on the Christian and the non-Christian audience as well. If the Christian archaeologist does not agree with the Bible or stretches their theories and discoveries to make it seem like they agree with do yet do not in reality, then the audience begins to turn away from God and his word (Collins, 2018).
These are only some of the problems that threaten the future of Biblical Archaeology. How long will the field survive and get the support of different nations and people if the very professionals who work in the field say something that God did not say?
These problems have to be overcome if those hard working and honest biblical archaeologists are going to have their voice heard and the field to remain relevant to a modern generation.
What is the future of Biblical Archaeology
For the field of Biblical Archaeology to mean something changes have to be made. We read in the book of Acts that the new believers were of one mind and one heart (Acts 4:32).
Unfortunately, that attitude has not made it successfully to the 21st century. There are many believing archaeologists who do not work well with each other and the reasons for that are many.
God is not the author of confusion thus the biblical archaeologists must get on the same page so the field can avoid embarrassing moments like when the Ark of Noah was supposedly discovered in 2010 (Chaffey, 2016).
This one mind has to be centered around the truth. Sadly, so many Christian archaeologists have adopted the secular scientific rules and frame their work under the influence of the unbeliever instead of God’s word.
Jesus said, ‘ye shall; know the truth’ and that the Spirit of truth is to guide the believer to that truth (John8:32 & 14:32ff). Secular scientific rules and methods avoid the truth in favor of asking questions, making up hypothesis among other attributes.
Secular scientific guidance does not lead anyone to the truth because it does not have the Spirit of Truth guiding it. Instead it has the author of lies and deception as its leader. The believing scientist must avoid the influence of the secular scientific way or they are at risk of losing their faith as other scholars and biblical archaeologists have.
Also, biblical archaeologists have to be careful about what historical documents they accept. Reading into inscriptions and accepting only one sided arguments by a civilization’s enemies is not the way to get to the truth (White, 2020).
It has to be remembered that most of the surviving historical documents were not written by Christians or following God or his Spirit of Truth. Their words must be analyzed in a biblical context keeping in mind God’s instruction not to walk in the counsel of the ungodly (Psalm 1:1)
The words David wrote in that Psalm apply to the field of Archaeology in all of its settings, especially Biblical Archaeology. Verse 6 of that Psalm is just as compelling and does not have an escape clause allowing for believing archaeologists to ignore God’s instructions and walk in line with secular archaeological demands.
Archaeology does not provide the whole historical story and the secular influence hides even more of it. To answer the question the future of biblical archaeology is bleak unless those involved in the field do not start following God and make the right changes.
Is there a future for Biblical Archaeology
Yes, there is. God wants his creation to know the truth and that desire leaves a wide opening for Christian Biblical Archaeologist to operate in. But they must do their archaeological work his way.
Christian archaeologists are often too worried about meeting the approval of the secular archaeologists. They want credibility and want their work published in the secular magazines and professional journals or status in their universities and so on.
Not all but too many and this desire interferes with their work and God using them to make an impact on the world. The secular world is not whom Christians archaeologists are to be pleasing or seeking any approval.
Their work should be seeking God’s approval, containing the truth about the past and leading people to the validity of the Bible. God does not lie and the Christian archaeologist cannot hide the truth from God’s creation.
There are too many people trying to hide the truth because they do not want to face the reality of the coming judgment and that their work was in vain. It is up to the Christian archaeologist to let their light shine in the Biblical Archaeology field.
This light is more than just sharing the gospel with their unbelieving counterparts, volunteers and students. It includes doing Biblical Archaeology God’s way and getting the whole story out.
That way God is not seen as a liar who makes things up to force people to believe in him. His word is also not seen as ‘book of fairy tales written by Bronze Age goat herders.’
Instead the Bible can be seen as what it really is. A very true book that has recorded actual history for all the world to come and know God.
Anderson, R, (2020), Is Archaeology better off without religion”, Aeon Rock of Ages, 2020, https://aeon.co/essays/is-archaeology-better-off-without-religion
Calder, A., (2007), “Losing faith: how secular scholarship affects scholars”, Creation Ministries Intl., https://creation.com/losing-faith-how-secular-scholarship-affects-scholars
Chaffey, T., (2016), “Has the Ark Been Found?”, Answers in Genesis, https://answersingenesis.org/noahs-ark/noahs-ark-found/has-ark-been-found/
Collins, S., (2018), “’Discovering the City of Sodom”, Tell El-Hamman Excavation Project, https://tallelhammam.com/reports-%26-publications
Sabloff, J.A. (2013), “Distinguished lecture in archaeology”, Annual Edtions Archaeology, 10th edition, edited by MP Parker & E. Angeloni, pg. 23
White, A., (2020), “Ancient Child Sacrifice and Abortion” Associates for Biblical Research, https://biblearchaeology.org/research/contemporary-issues/4623-ancient-child-sacrifice-and-abortion
Without a time machine
Science cannot truly see into the past. The relics it relies upon to create a picture of the world’s history are mere artifacts that are vulnerable to modern human speculation (Williams & Hartnett, 2005)
This doesn’t only hold true for astronomy but for the other sciences as well, including archaeology. Most often the archaeologist is left only with a coin, a chair, or maybe a figurine to draw his or her conclusions from. Or all they have left are the eroding building foundations, blank walls and empty rooms to speculate about the past.
Archaeologists are not fortunate enough to have contemporary ancient manuscripts uncover that detail the purpose, use or the reason for it being left where it was of anything they discover.
The archaeologist must make up their own ideas about these things and more often than not, the theories they construct cannot be verified or even proven to be close to being true.
Leaving out the modern world
There are basically two approaches to looking at the ancient world from the modern perspective. There are those archaeologists who use the modern world, its thinking and human behavior to help them understand the past and those who don’t.
For the latter group the reasoning is that the ancient world did not have science helping them and were ignorant of many things. Supposedly, the ancients led a rather savage life and were not capable of thinking in modern terms (Mal, 2019)
This thinking flies in the face of the existence of men like Archimedes who was and is considered to be one of the greatest scientists of all time (F.S., 2020), As it does to the Babylonian and other ancient astronomers who have been known to complicated astronomical calculations, observations and adjustments (P.M, 2019).
The archaeologists who follow the idea that the ancient world is separate from the modern world and the latter and do not use the modern world to help them understand the past also feel that God created two different kinds of people if they accept the fact that God created anything at all.
They leave God out of the picture and ignore the Biblical references which show that the ancient world was filled with the same type of people that power the modern civilizations.
The ancients had their God given talents and intelligence. They also had emotions, desires and did not just eat, work and pray as some archaeologists would have the modern public believe.
They also invented, committed crimes, had laws as well as more modern aspects that govern modern life.
It is safe to say that the modern world does help us define and understand the past. Those that take the opposite position willingly blind themselves to the reasons behind the ancients acted as they did.
One reason to say that is that the modern world has societies all over the earth that still live like savages.
Archaeology makes some wonderful discoveries
This it does very well. Archaeologists are known to uncover large buildings, ancient inscriptions and a host of personal artifacts that only give a peek into the lives of those who populated the ancient civilizations.
One great discovery showed that the ancient Babylonians had a social security system as well as time capsules. The people of that once great empire wanted future civilizations to know who they were, what they believed and what they saw as important (Pellegrino. 1995).
It is only discoveries like these that give us , as Paul said in Corinthians 13:12, an imperfect view of the past. We get little snippets that do not show us exactly how ancient life was conducted.
All the artifacts and ancient structures only show a very tiny view of what the ancient world was like and if we are brave enough we can put those views together and see that the ancient world wasn’t too much different from the modern one.
Part of the reason for that is that sin, evil and God are never changing and always present. Ancient men and women fall to lust, David and Bathsheba, make mistakes, Moses and willing the Egyptian, and so many other non biblical examples give us a very unclear yet clear view that mankind has not changed in thousands of years.
The ancient inscriptions help clear up some of the mystery of the past by telling us how people though in different situations. Whether those inscriptions are accepted, rejected or badly interpreted by modern scholars and archaeologists is not the point.
The point is these inscriptions help provide a clearer view of what existed in ancient times. Tell Dan Stele is but one of those inscriptions which gives us evidence that the people of Israel and King David existed as the Bible says (BAS Staff, 2019).
We do not get much about ancient Israel or other ancient civilizations because of the way these inscriptions are treated by modern scholars and archaeologists. The Behistun Inscription is another example of how ancient words are not totally accepted by modern scholars (Mark, 2019).
The unwillingness to accept these inscriptions and other writings as they should be accepted help keep the past in the dark about ancient civilizations and people. The fact that many modern archaeologists do not accept the idea that the ancient world was literate helps to keep archaeology from seeing anything true about the past (Dever, 2009).
Its a temple, no its a goddess
This is a common cry by archaeologists. Far too many ancient building remains have been identified as temples even though there are no ancient manuscripts confirming the modern identification. The layout of the remains often lead archaeologists to make that identification even though there is no real reason for doing so.
For example, the Egyptian temple at Karnak was expanding from its original size from about its original size built over 4,000 years ago. It is said that Pharaohs for over 2,000 years added their own sections to the building and modern Egyptologists and archaeologists call it a temple.
Yet, the ancient world did not all believe in the ancient gods or participate din any religious activities. Plus, they needed other buildings to house criminals, their records, codexes, food supplies and so on. Even merchants needed a place to store their wares and sell them to the passing public.
In other words what is declared a temple may not have been a temple and served some other useful purpose. Karnak may be one of the earliest examples of a museum not a temple. The description of the contents fit a description of a museum and not a temple (Jarus, 2012)
The same mentally influences the discovery of many ancient figurines. Far too many of these are interpreted to be depictions of ancient goddesses and it doesn’t matter where in the world they are uncovered. The interpretation is basically the same even though other plausible reasons exist to explain so many figurines existing in the ancient world (Cowie, 2019).
Women have not changed over the centuries and it is highly possible, if not probable, that they had these figurines as knick knacks that decorated their walls, pieces of furniture and so on.
Not all would be goddesses, if any. Or the amount of figurines could easily be the product or pottery class where many people were learning to make people as art. They were just not fortunate to have their best work survive to the modern age.
If there are manuscripts linking these ancient figurines they are few and far between. Even the great Mayan ceramic workshop discovered in 2018 does not come with manuscripts talking about the factory. It may have just been a warehouse and not related to any gods at all (Cowie, 2019).
At best, archaeology does not know what these buildings and figurines were used for. Much of their modern descriptions on these ancient items are heavily influenced by their point of view and how low they view the ancient people.
There are many churches, temples and knick knacks in the modern world yet very few people would say that the modern populations were religious or had artifacts of gods and goddesses in their home.
The loss of information
The modern uninformed public may think that archaeological excavations are digging up vast amounts of information about the past. If one were to go by the overflowing museum storage rooms they may have that view verified.
Yet, the reality is that very little of the ancient past is uncovered. Kenneth Kitchen described this loss of of information in the first chapter of his book, ‘The Bible In Its World’ and the picture he painted was bleak not encouraging.
He said that most sites are eroding at a fast rate and that archaeologists, even after years of excavating at a site,only uncover between 2 and 5% of what was actually there (Kitchen, 2004).
That means that over the years since an archaeological site stopped being a real living village or city 95 to 98% of the past has been lost to the passing of time. Archaeology doe snot get a full picture of the past and much of the void is filled in with speculation, conjecture, assumption and leaps to conclusions.
Unfortunately, no matter how deep the archaeologist digs, that information is lost forever. Archaeology cannot bring it back or reconstruct what actually took place.
Archaeology is not to be relied on
This is more for the believer who may think that this one aspect or scientific research is going to uncover all the physical evidence they need to base their faith upon.
Far too many believing archaeologists have stumbled and lost their faith when archaeological work has failed to provide that physical evidence they wanted to see. When applying archaeology and its finds to their faith and the Bible they see only a partial but very blind picture and make the wrong decision that the Bible is wrong.
These archaeologists and other believers fail to apply the realities of archaeology, that it is a very limited field of study and always end up deciding that science is right and God is wrong.
They do not factor in that the archaeologist may have dug in the wrong spot, left information buried in the dirt or that the physical evidence just didn’t survive time and its destructive forces. They also didn’t factor in what God said about his belief system.
With their mindset, influences by evil and other factors, they decide to leave God, Jesus and their faith because science did not confirm what they believe. Instead of following God’s words that the just live by faith and faith pleases him among other instructions, they follow the assumptions, etc., of unbelieving archaeologists and scholars and change to an unbeliever.
Archaeology will turn up some physical evidence to support the scriptures verifying accounts, civilizations, people and more but God will not let archaeology uncover so much that it destroys what pleases him.
The Christian must follow God’s words over those of archaeology and the hypothesis as well as the faulty conclusions archaeologists construct. Jesus told us about building on the sand and building upon the rock.
Basing one’s beliefs on what archaeology and archaeologists claim took pl;ace would be building on the sand and that foundation is very weak. Believers need to use archaeology and the limited evidence it uncovers to help them build on the rock.
They need to see that God’s word is true and that building on Jesus and God’s word is building on the rock and that despite what any scientific field throws at them, their foundation and faith is solid because they believe God over man
BAS Staff, (2019), “The Tel Dan Inscription: The First Historical Evidence of King David from the Bible”, Biblical Archaeology Society, https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/biblical-artifacts/the-tel-dan-inscription-the-first-historical-evidence-of-the-king-david-bible-story/
Cowiw, A., (2019), “Largest Ever Maya Figurine Workshop Discovered Accidentally in Unexplored Mound”, Ancient Origins, https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/maya-figurine-workshop-0011782
Dever, WG, (2009), “How Archaeology Illuminates the Bible”, Biblical Archaeology Society, Lectures on 2 CDs
F.S. (2020) “Archimedes”, Famous Scientists: The Art of Genius, https://www.famousscientists.org/archimedes/
Jarus, O. (2012), “Karnak: Temple Complex of Ancient Egypt”, Live Science, https://www.livescience.com/25184-karnak-temple.html
Kitchen, K./, (2004), “The Bible In Its World”. Wipf & Stock,
Mal. S., (2019), “Paragraph on Ancient Age and Modern Age”, Bangla Cyber, https://www.banglacyber.com/paragraph-on-ancient-age-and-modern-age/
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There are numerous terms that archaeologists use and some of them get overused too much. In today’s article we will look at a couple of those terms and then the definition of the term archaeologist
#1. temple- a building used for the worship of a god or gods in some religions (Cambridge dict.)
This is one of those overused terms. it seems that the way archaeologists use this term and one other that the ancient people had no homes, no businesses, no police or law enforcement offices and so on. It is a miracle that almost every archaeologist is able to find a temple in no matter how big or how small the excavation site.
Just recently a small discovery took place and at least halfway through the article only the buildings of the elites and religious temples were mentioned. it is amazing at how astute almost all archaeologists are as they somehow managed to only find these buildings.
But homes of the elite and temples were not the only buildings in the ancient world. We know that prisons existed with the first ones mentioned around 1,000 BC and have been known to exist since around 3,000 BC. Yet rarely do we hear of these discoveries.
In doing a little research on this topic of prisons most articles mentioned only a few with those articles mentioning the same ones. The most famous of course was the Roman Mamertine and a different website said this was the only Roman prison. But that is not true as there was at least one other called The Carcer Tullianum (Tullianum Prison in Latin) and it is said to have pre-dated the establishment of Rome.
How and why these prisons were used is not the point although we may disagree with the conclusions given about them. The point is and as Ecc. 1 tells us, there is nothing new under the sun. Which means that every building described by archaeologists to be a temple may not have been one in its era.
With nothing new under the sun, the ancients would have government civil offices, warehouses, schools, businesses, market buildings and more. There were possibly repair shops, furniture building shops and other service structures including clinics and hospitals. If you do some research you will find that some ancient surgeries were on par if not better than modern day surgeries completed by world class surgeons.
They were not limited to temples and elite housing or palaces. The over identification of these ancient buildings by archaeologists distorts the reality of life in the past
#2. palace- a large house that is the official home of a king, queen, or other person of high social rank (Cambridge)
This is another term that is overused by archaeologists and it competes with the term temple in its discoveries and identifications. The same arguments given for the temple applies here and while there may have been palaces and large estates in the ancient world, not every large building was a palace.
Just last year one real palace may have been discovered in Egypt but in our view this building may only have been a museum, a government office housing many government services and ministries and so on. In reading that article some Egyptologists are calling it a temple not a palace.
That is the thing with archaeology and archaeologists- one will say potatoe and another will say patawto using the same evidence. It is stipulated that there were palaces and temples in the ancient world but not as many as archaeologists would have everyone think.
Here is a link to another discovery of a supposed palace. Archaeologist, for both palaces and temples, are not deriving their conclusions from ancient contemporary manuscripts describing the purpose and function of each building they uncover.
Instead they come to their conclusions through muted pieces of evidence and their own thinking. They usually come from a modern perspective and how temples, palaces and other buildings are supposed to look like not from the ancient perspective and how the buildings actually looked like.
The building in Iran may have been a resort, apartment complex, or some other structure. With no ancient corroboration it is impossible to tell what the building was used for. Archaeologists are basically guessing.
#3. goddess- a female deity (Oxford dictionary)
We are sure we have mentioned this term before yet it is overused as often as temple is as archaeologists look at ancient figurines and give those old artifacts status they may not be entitled to. We say this because archaeologists will pick up an old figurine no matter how ugly it is and label it a goddess. Again they do this with no ancient manuscript corroborating their identification.
There may have been a temple of Diana, Horus, Osirus and so on but that does not mean the figurines discovered were representatives of those ancient gods and goddesses. For all we know those figurines could have been the failed attempts by pottery students to complete their assignment or joke figurines we see today or just collectibles.
We know of at least one figurine manufacturer and that one can tell us that there must have been plenty more around the ancient world. While the archaeologists involved with this discovery said they were used for economical and political reasons (with no ancient corroboration), there are far too many discoveries that label the pottery pieces as goddesses. That is just one example.
Again while the ancient people may have had religious figurines, not everyone did and not everyone uncovered is a depiction of a goddess from any age they are taken.
#4. archaeologist- a person who studies human history and prehistory through the excavation of sites and the analysis of artifacts and other physical remains (Oxford)
That is a pretty good description of what an archaeologist does. They do try to study the past but they are handicapped by several hindrances. Those hindrances include totally destroyed information, artifacts and buildings, partial discoveries of same, bad dating and even bad identification.
Again what one archaeologist says is a palace another might say it is a temple. In a similar vein, Eilat Mazar went through this when she announced she discovered walls from the time of Solomon. She wrote a book about it. And other archaeologists take an opposing view not only of her discovery but of others that prove that Kings David & Solomon ruled when the Bible states.
That is another argument for another day. What is the point of this section is what the definition for the term archaeologist does not say. Archaeologists are skilled at digging in the dirt and uncovering some great pieces of ancient history but there are several things they are not and have no idea about.
For one thing, they are not building or construction experts. Their opinions about ancient construction are not based on expert knowledge if any real construction knowledge. Their views of royalty and past governments are not based on government expertise held by the archaeologist as the majority of them do not have any idea on how politics and governments work.
The archaeologist is creating theories, conclusions and make declarations about the past with little knowledge of what actually took place and very little inside information that would qualify them as an expert on those individual aspects of ancient life.
Another example would be ancient medical practices. Archaeologists may discover quotes from ancient people whop called on their gods to heal their ailing relatives or loved ones. Seeing those few quotes the archaeologist extrapolates those ideas to the whole of the different ancient societies.
They do this despite the fact we have more than enough medical discoveries for surgery, dental work, prescriptions and more showing the modern archaeologists that the ancients practiced medicine like skilled modern practitioners. Literacy is another example as archaeologists declare the ancient world illiterate in spite of the fact we have more writings than we can count from the ancient world.
It is also impossible to declare people illiterate when archaeologists are working with less than 5% of the ancient world contents. Most people today are literate yet you wouldn’t know it as their writings would never survive the test of time.
While archaeologists do a good job in uncovering buildings, artifacts and manuscripts from the past, they are not experts on the aspects of life they pontificate at length. They do not have any more knowledge about the past than what the different discoveries reveal and they cannot speak for long dead people or read their minds.
Sadly, the pubic is left with what the archaeologist tells them and books, articles and research papers contradicting those theories are often suppressed (and we are not talking about the alien theorists who think aliens influenced the ancient world. Those groups seem to have found their voice and avenues of spreading their message to the public).
One example of this is the information in Chapter 11 of Dr. Charles Hapgood’s book Path to the Poles. We tried searching for the information he recorded and the locations he mentioned they were in, but to this day we have had no luck and cannot verify what he said was discovered.
The past is not as many archaeologists declare it to be.