Exploring Genesis: The Bibles Ancient Traditions in Context

Answer Biblical archaeology’s earliest questions.

Exploring Genesis: The Bible’s Ancient Traditions in Context

In this FREE eBook, discover the cultural contexts for many of Israel’s earliest traditions. Explore Mesopotamian creation myths, Joseph’s relationship with Egyptian temple practices and three different takes on the location of Ur of the Chaldees, the birthplace of Abraham.

 
The esoteric stories and lost landscapes in the Book of Genesis present a great challenge for historians. Biblical scholars and archaeologists have nonetheless been able to provide cultural contexts for many of Israel’s earliest traditions. Learn about early Biblical figures, cities and environments in this FREE eBook.

The Creation story from Genesis explains how the world was formed and how humankind was created. Was this story heavily influenced by an ancient Babylonian Creation myth called Enuma Eliš? In “The Genesis of Genesis,” Victor Hurowitz explores this question. A text which describes the divine activities of the gods and the creation of man, Enuma Eliš includes many of the motifs found in the Biblical Creation story. To what extent is there a relationship between these two texts? In this comparative study, Hurowitz examines the similarities and differences between the Babylonian myth and the Biblical story and sets them in the historical context of the ancient Near East.

The story of Joseph in Genesis is well known. Sold into slavery by his brothers, Joseph ended up in a prison in Egypt and there became known for his ability to interpret dreams. Summoned from the dungeon to interpret Pharaoh’s dreams, Joseph shaved before approaching the ruler of Egypt. Most people in ancient Mesopotamia did not shave. Why, and what, did Joseph shave? In “Why Did Joseph Shave?” Lisbeth S. Fried examines Egyptian ideas of cleanliness and purity. These ideas may explain why Joseph had to appear hairless—and circumcised—before entering Pharaoh’s palace.

In the story of Abraham, we learn how one man was called by God to become the founding father of the Israelites in the land of Canaan. In Genesis, Abraham was said to have been born in Ur of the Chaldees. However, there were many places named Ur in antiquity. Where was Abraham’s Ur? Sir Leonard Woolley claimed to have found it at Tell el-Muqayyar, now called Ur, in southern Iraq. There, the British archaeologist unearthed evidence of royal burials, a ziggurat, several temples and hundreds of golden baubles, weapons and vessels. Did Woolley actually locate the patriarch’s native land, or was the famed excavator too eager to match the Biblical account with his archaeological site? In “Abraham’s Ur: Did Woolley Excavate the Wrong Place?” Molly Dewsnap Meinhardt describes Woolley’s excavations at Ur and the intrigue incited by his identification of Abraham’s birthplace.

Since Sir Leonard Woolley’s excavation of Ur in Iraq in the 1920s and 30s, his identification of the site as the birthplace of Abraham became one of the most popular theories for where the patriarch’s native land is located. The identification of Abraham’s birthplace received such widespread acceptance that Pope John Paul II planned to visit Iraq as part of his tour of Biblical sites to celebrate the new millennium. However, a careful reading of Biblical and ancient texts indicates that this Ur might not be the patriarch’s hometown after all. In “Abraham’s Ur: Is the Pope Going to the Wrong Place?” Hershel Shanks explores another popular theory for where Abraham was born: in Turkey.

Hershel Shanks’s review of the case for a northern Mesopotamian site as the home of the Biblical patriarch reopened the debate in the pages of Biblical Archaeology Review. In “Where Was Abraham’s Ur? The Case for the Babylonian City,” Alan R. Millard lists the many strengths of the traditional southern Babylonian location.

The articles in this eBook are a preview of the many Biblical stories and histories covered in Biblical Archaeology Review, Bible Review and Archaeology Odyssey.

Download Exploring Genesis: The Bibles Ancient Traditions in Context and start receiving Bible History Daily — both absolutely free!

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62 Responses

  1. Raymond Kenneth Petry says:

    This [downloadable article] is going to include (as previous page says so) a common fallacy about the “Enuma Elish”—
    I learned about this—fallacy—in our Astronomy Institute Western Cosmology course a year ago, and I ‘advised’ the professor:
    The ENUMA ELISH (“When On High” aka ‘from-the-top’ aka the Enumeration [list of libel] (by) Elisha [brother of Methuselah]),
    describes the act of Rebellion In The East [Egyptian phrase] which wrecked the family of the first-lineage ‘gods’ {Apsu et al,,,},
    wherein Ilu’s first-son Ea [Yah] Enki murdered local-most-senior Apsu for purportedly laughing and plotting to destroy them all,
    and recounts much-younger third-generation-son Marduk [Mered-uk M’Irad-uk] murder-mutilated Apsu’s mother-consort-wife…
    And modern-professorial-types carry-on with this story as if it were a “Creation Event” but preceding that genetic insemination.

    A little dinner wine, a little foolishness, and your professional education is a wreck for the rest of your academic lifetime….

  2. David Kofh says:

    Paleontology lists extinct human species, exactly 22, which is the same number of names found in the Genealogy of “begots” listed in Genesis 4 and Genesis 5.

    The Genesis genealogy proposes extraordinarily long durations of life yimes for those 22 “kinds” of men, some living for as long as 950 years.

    I see this list as the proper mention of the evolutionary process. It is no coincidence that these identical listing match because the Torah is true and so is the factual discoveries which match that list.

  3. Anna says:

    As far as I know Genesis it is a Greek name, Beresheet is is the proper name… meaning in the beginning. So has nothing to do with anything pagan,the Jewish Scribes and Rabbis would never allow that.

  4. John says:

    BAR says: ” These ideas may explain why Joseph had to appear hairless—and circumcised—before entering Pharaoh’s palace.”
    Of course Joseph was circumcised, the Abrahamic covenant of circumcision was over 150 years before Joseph, and Joseph being an Israelite, would have been circumcised when he was eight days old.

  5. J says:

    Why does the name GENESIS have the name of the great mother goddess within it.
    GEN ESIS (ISIS)?

    1. John says:

      Genesis is split up like so: gen·e·sis, (look an any reputable dictionary), do not try to make something out of nothing……it is always best to check on word construction/pronunciation before commenting on a word…….this stops one from making incorrect assumptions, similar to the one that you have just made.

  6. John says:

    If I may be so bold as to ask, could you please tell me why my previous comment is awaiting your moderation; all I have done is say, how I personally see several of your comments and their relationship to God’s Word. As a Christian I believe that ‘God’s Word is truth,’……..like the Pharisee Gamaliel’s comments at Acts 5:34-40.

    1. John says:

      I see that you actually deleted the particular comment mentioned in my previous, would it be fair to say that you object to criticism…….especially when related to God’s written word?
      You are by your title, show that you at least should be interested in what God’s word has to say on any matter broached, therein………not just wipe it because you do not agree with it.

      1. John says:

        Not quite sure what is going on. Sometimes, the comment is not there, and other times it is there with the comment: “Your comment is awaiting moderation”
        Just asking!

  7. mervyn.kersh says:

    Could the “six days” simply mean “six eras”, a term unknown in those days?
    What matters more is who taught Adam to work the land when he was expelled from Eden? Who taught him a language to speak when he was first created? How did he know about the existence of God? Why did Adam and Eve see any necessity for clothes when no animals wore clothes? Why did their sons Cain and Abel offer sacrifices to God – a brand new way of ingratiating themselves to a great personage?
    Did God need such food and oblations? Or even such obeisance?
    And so it goes on… No one has yet solved those straight-forward problems.

    1. craig r. evans says:

      Mervyn asks some good questions. The first concerns “six eras” instead of “six days.”

      “With regard to humans arriving on the scene, the Talmud (Chagiga 13b) states clearly that there were 974 generations prior to Adam. The famous Tifferes Yisrael commentary to the Mishnah wrote in 1842 (prior to publication of Darwin’s Origin of Species): “In my opinion, the prehistoric men whose remains have been discovered in our time and who lived long before Adam are identical with the 974 pre-Adamite generations referred to in the Talmud, and lived in the epoch immediately before our own.” (from aish.com)

      Relative to the comment above, Adam would be the first fully sentient man, as in “in the image of God He created him.” Essentially, each person has the same thought-power as does God, with direct knowing, creative impulse and the assumption of knowledge.

      “…who taught Adam to work the land” is implied in the scripture Gn. 2.5, “For the Lord God had not caused it rain on the earth, and there was no man to till the ground.” The clear implication is that man was destined to till the earth, and that if there is no other way that the understanding to till the earth would be given, it would be given by God. That is, the understanding would be imparted, whether directly or cognitively, or by a step by step observance of plant life (dropping seeds), with instruction given.

      “Who taught him a language to speak when he was first created?” Language begins with thought, conception— words follow. Meaning followed by words may be imparted, nuanced, indicated specifically. We assume the world was always as we know it today, but I would assume the world as quite different for Adam. Thought may have been easily and directly transferred, and thus sound expressed. Today we intellectualize, we convince, we argue a point. It is foreign to us that direct knowing-forming-language could have at any time existed.

      “…existence of God” would be imparted, sometimes referred to as “direct knowing in the spirit.” Adam would have been in an enlightened condition relative to our own. God may have been, and I suggest probably was, as known and accepted as we accept the air.

      “…Cain and Abel offering sacrifices” has nothing to do with “ingratiating” themselves to God. The sacrifice is a showing of gratitude, or thanks to whom all bounty derives. In a simple example, it would be like the son who washes the car for his father, and without being asked. The term “great personage” is misapplied. “Personage” would already be of the earth, and God would have to be considered above all personages, as such.

      As to God needing such food (food given in sacrifice), He does not. The oblation aspect comes out of the attribute of gratitude, such as we may witness from the above mentioned son who washes dad’s car. “Obeisance” deals with a certain more formal respect given to those in a station above your own. It may be seen as deference expressing allegiance.

      All of Mervyn’s questions might better require a short or longer article to properly answer. Because these answers are shorter they may spur even more questions. If you think “enlightened understanding,” as Adam seems to have had, as opposed to intellectual analysis only, then the greener pastures God created begin to flower.

      Craig R. Evans
      The Way Missions.Org.

    2. John says:

      “Could the “six days” simply mean “six eras………..”

      It certainly does, each creative day is thousands of years in length……it is reasonable to assume that all creative days are of the same length. This being the case, we read what Paul said at Hebrews 4:1-11, which is over 4 000 years after the start of the 7th day……….the promise of entering into his rest, existed then, and still exists today (we are now 6 000 years into that day of rest)…….up until the end of this system that is under Satan’s control, and through Satan’s demise at the end of Jesus’ 1 000 year reign, (Revelation 20:1-6).
      Genesis 2:2 tells us when God started his seventh day of rest………this does not mean that God has remained idle all this time……..He rested from His creative works. (see John 5:17)

  8. mervyn.kersh says:

    Surely, Joseph was shaved before being presented to the Pharaoh simply because he had been a prisoner for years and was filthy with an long unkempt beard and hair.

    I am sure that prisons in those days – and until modern times – were not hotels as today. Of course Joseph was required to wash and clean up before meeting the greatest man in the world. Why make an issue of that simple recorded fact?

    1. Furienna says:

      Because it was uncommon for men to shave in many Bronze Age cultures, where a full beard was the norm. Egypt would have been an exception to this though, so it would be correct that Joseph shaved before he met the Pharaoh.

    2. John says:

      Mervyn says: “…… the greatest man in the world.”
      Rather a sweeping statement,I feel……….If you could have asked him, he probably would have agreed.
      Look at what Pharaoh said to Aaron and Moses at Exodus 5:2 “And Pharaoh said, ‘Who is Jehovah, that I should hearken unto his voice to let Israel go? I know not Jehovah, and moreover I will not let Israel go'”(ASV)………….no one tells me what to do, I am Pharaoh ….well he certainly did find out who Jehovah was…..the ten plagues also showed the ‘strength’ of the Egyptian gods……..or rather, the weakness of those gods. Jude, at Jude 5 also speaks of the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt.

  9. John C. says:

    Reading all the comments here shows me the depth of confusion there is about the writings here. Any text taken out of its proper context is a pretext. By taking the Bible out of its context you can get it to support almost any wild and foolish idea. You need to put the Bible back in context in order to understand its truths. And what is the context. The New Testament emerged in the 2nd to the 4th century of the Roman Empire. You need to understand what was happening here in order to truly understand what the New Testament is about. The Torah and the “old Testament” emerged in the period of from the Babylonian captivity of the Jewish elite to the coming of the Greeks. This is the environment that led to the collection of the books that later were translated into Greek, Latin or English. Fail to understand this and you will not understand what you are reading.

    1. John says:

      John, (I am a different John), says: “The Torah and the “old Testament” emerged in the period of from the Babylonian captivity of the Jewish elite to the coming of the Greeks.”

      Not sure where you arrived at your information………Moses is credited with the writing of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy and Psalm 90……..and the Israelite Nation lived under that written Code from 1513 BCE until 33 CE………not to mention other Bible writers like Joshua, Nathan David, etc…..all who well dead by the time of the nations exile in Babylon………and the Israelites would have had ALL those scrolls written up to that time, e.g. at Daniel 9:1, 2 we find that Daniel knew from studying the writings of Jeremiah 25:11 that the exile was to be for 70 years.

      John also says: “The New Testament emerged in the 2nd to the 4th century of the Roman Empire.”
      Again you have a small problem Matthews writing was completed in 41 CE and the last book of John, Revelation was completed in 96 CE……..most of Paul’s letters were completed in the 60’s ………and these books were read by the early Christians, until the ‘oppressive wolves’ stepped in………and remember Paul had been a Pharisee, (therefore well educated), before he accepted Christianity and he spoke at least Hebrew and Greek fluently………and by means of holy spirit he was able to speak many other languages (1 Corinthians 14:18)……..and these were used to teach others………and there had to be an interpreter 1 Corinthians 14:27, 28.
      Don’t forget that these letters were sent as encouragement/counsel for the various congregations in his day……….and of course for our benefit today.

  10. Michael Ledo says:

    The Bible from creation to the crowning of Solomon is a great cosmic myth which also combines Akkadian history retold as an Amorite text. It was all based on their myths and history from creation thru Abraham (Ishum) through Moses (Marduk) to David (Davika/Naram Sin.)

    1. John says:

      With all due respect Michael, you do have it wrong way around.
      The myths originate in Babylon and Gilgamesh, and Babylon went into decay in the fourth century CE………it is now just a pile of rubble……..but, it certainly had a ‘colourful’ history, and it would have certainly been something to see in its heyday.
      However, ignoring the account of creation, in favour of the lie, does not change things…………..Babylon and Gilgamesh are fairy tales.
      Genesis 1:1 says: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”, from then on it is all history……as Genesis 2:4 says: “These are the generations, (or history) of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that Jehovah God made the earth and the heaven” (ASV)………..and of course this included the first human pair, Adam and Eve. It is all there in the first two chapters of Genesis.
      Also, Michael, if we could just mention a personage from around that era, let’s say Noah………immediately one generally thinks of a global deluge, that flooded the entire earth.
      Now, if ,as you speculate that Noah and the flood were myths………why did Jesus and his apostles speak of them……….or were they lying???
      I think not. Jesus had a reputation of being a perfect, sinless man. (Hebrews 5:7-10)
      This would not only discount the Bible from creation to Solomon…….but the entire Bible. Therefore Michael I would have to strongly disagree with your thoughts on this matter.

  11. josephs81 says:

    Its the differences, not the commonalities, that made Genesis varied from all other ancient writings. Let not the simple, ancient form of writing confuse – these are apparently made for all generation’s understanding, a feat in itself.

    For the first time, Monotheism became ‘No other Gods’ – negating the head-bashing deities battling for supremacy; or even Mono-Sun Deity. For the first time, an order of creation appeared that introduced a new science that changed the universe. It became the E=MC2 of both humanity and history. The elite Greek minds were first to recognize the Hebrew superiority, with the first translation of the Septuagint Bible which aligned with Aristotle’s ‘First Course’.

    Beyond Darwin. Genesis’ Creation premise squashes the BBT, noting that Darkness [V2] emerging prior to Light [V3]; that life forms emerged in an order of protocol [Species]; and that Life emerged ‘after’ their sustenance provisions [critical light, separation of water & land, vegetation].

    Science. Genesis is also the first document that said the universe was finite [with an ‘In the beginning’], defining Infinite as that without ‘change’ [“I am the Lord I do not change”], and first to allude to the age of the Universe and the Earth, and their sizes: “And He separated the water from the land” – takes Billions of non-hour based years; and “Look now if you can account the stars” – that the universe size is unaccountable.

    Singularity. That a lone singular entity with no internal or external components cannot exist and cannot perform an action. That all emerged as a duality [Heaven & Earth, Darkness and Light; Day & Night; water & Land].

    That “Man & Women He Created Them” – originally a duality, then separated. This is correct:
    If a green marble produces a red marble, it means the green had to contain red. How else?

    That life forms were fully completed, and were yet not Alive, awaiting a trigger factor. Analogy is of a completed car that won’t move without an external trigger factor. How else?

    That Adam remains the first recorded ‘NAME’ of a speech endowed life form. Regardless if the story is seen as mythical.

    Thanks.
    http://www.amazon.com/BEN-HUR-II-happened-Centuryebook/dp/B00PPTDDFK/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1444455269&sr=8-1

  12. Luke says:

    While I respect the views of people who don’t agree with me, I must serve as a reminder that a historically literal interpretation of Genesis is not a fundamental piece of Christianity. Augustine himself did not hold a very literal interpretation, and even instructed us to allow science to speak before interpreting the stories (see his writing, the Literal Interpretation of Genesis). I believe that he had a lot of respect for the authority of the Word

    1. John says:

      Sorry Luke, I cannot follow your thinking …….you would listen to a man that tried to push for the Apocrypha to be included in the Bible canon………..but, I will admit, he did get some things right…..only some things.
      Don’t think that science is a ‘friend’ of God’s word, while a few scientists have a respect for God’s Word, many do not………a Christian’s faith plays a leading role in how he accepts the Bible………and that is not a blind faith…….it requires intensive study of God’s Word.

  13. archaeopteryx says:

    “Gene R. says
    NO ONE has ever successfully challenged the historical accuracy of the Bible. It refers to real people and real events.”

    Really, Gene?
    William G. Dever, for thirty-five years an archaeologist excavating in the Near East, in his book, “What Did the Bible Writers Know and When Did They Know It,” writes: “After a century of exhaustive investigation, all respectable archaeologists have given up hope of recovering any context that would make Abraham, Isaac, or Jacob credible ‘historical figures.’” He writes of archaeological investigation of Moses and the Exodus as having been “discarded as a fruitless pursuit.

    Perhaps you need to enlarge your knowledge base.

    1. John says:

      You put that much trust in archaeology, sorry Arche, but that is ‘blind’ faith, men think that just because there is little or no evidence, it there did not, or could not have happened.
      Jesus and his disciples mention the name of Abraham more than seventy times, why would that have occurred if Abraham was a figment of someone’s imagination?
      The apostle Paul mentioned Abraham by name several times, James, the half brother of Jesus, although not an apostle, named Abraham, in writing of his book, James.
      Why would this have occurred, if no such a person had ever existed.
      As far as Jacob is concerned…….Jacob’s sons were the progenitors of the twelve tribes of Israel……….also Jacob’s third son Levi, became the father of the priestly tribe of Israel ……………so much for William G. Dever, who obviously thinks that he knows better than what is stated in the Bible……..he obviously doe not know better.

      1. John says:

        Ooops! A typo……2nd line ‘it there did not”……therefore, not ‘there’

  14. archaeopteryx says:

    Şanlıurfa, in southeastern Turkey, is also known as ‘Ur-fa’ – the citizens of Şanlıurfa regularly celebrate it as the birthplace of Abraham. Further, it is only 20 miles from Haran – how much more likely that Abraham and his family made the 20-mile trek from Urfa to Haran, than that he traveled 700 miles – the length of the entire Mesopotamian valley – from the city of Ur (which is the Sumerian word for ‘city’) at the southern end of Mesopotamia?

    1. John says:

      At Acts 7:2-4 Stephen when replying to those in a synagogue said that Abraham was in Ur of the Chaldeans, and in Mesopotamia ……….so was Stephen incorrect……certainly not.

  15. Adamu Dominic says:

    The outcome of what the bible talk about is true and it is the guide to protect our life what we should do and not to do so God is real and need our life.

  16. SHUNIL KUMAR BEECHAM says:

    February 5, 2016.
    Mumbai.

    For the Laymen (People of God) to understand the facts established by Archaeology should be examined by a Committee of top scholars of the world and their opinion should be made public:

    (1) The facts on which they agree and
    (2) The facts on which there is not agreement.

    Thereafter only such facts on which there are disagreement should be researched by all available technology so the the disagreements are narrowed down and hope fully one day with the grace of God the facts as appear in the Bible are confirmed or corrected.

    1. John says:

      The accuracy of God’s Word does not rely on archaeology to prove that it is correct.
      Christians should accept that the Bible is the Word of God, because, as the Bible says at 2 Timothy 3:16, “ALL scripture is inspired of God…….” by studying the Bible it builds faith in a person, that causes them to believe that it truly is God’s word.
      You should not accept it on ‘blind’ faith……that is why study is essential…….we need to be like the Beroeans, who in Acts 17:10-12 explains, they examined the scriptures daily.
      So many times archaeologists have cast doubt on certain events, people, places, etc., in the Bible, saying there is just no evidence………..then some time after they have had to retract the statement, due to recent ‘finds’ that back up the Bible’s account.
      Whilst archaeology, will many times support certain Biblical accounts, it should have nothing to do with a Christian’s faith, in the Bible being God’s Word of truth.

  17. allan nielsen says:

    I am an adult ( born 1950 ) student at Ambrose Seminary, an evangelical university in Calgary, Alberta. I am writing a paper on the Deluge considering both liberal and conservative views. Thank you for your comments and assistance in finding scholarly material.

    1. John says:

      You should not worry about the scholarly view, this is man’s thinking, and man is imperfect, and often known to ‘tamper’ with the truth, to justify their own ends or beliefs.
      Included in that is, of course, liberal and conservative views………if you want the real truth you should go to God’s word and get his viewpoint……..you can then be sure you have the truth. John 17:17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 3:16.
      Interesting too, is a comment made by the noted physicist, Sir Isaac Newton, concerning the Bible: He said of Biblical history: “I find more sure marks of authenticity in the Bible than in any profane history whatsoever.” (Two Apologies, by R. Watson, London, 1820, p. 57)………… even Abe (Abraham Lincoln) called the Bible “the best gift God has ever given to man . . . But for it we could not know right from wrong.”
      Even though we do not need the word of man to propound the the truth contained in God’s Word ,it is of interest to note, what some say on the subject of the Bible.

  18. Gene R. Conradi says:

    NO ONE has ever successfully challenged the historical accuracy of the Bible. It refers to real people and real events.

    People.

    Bible critics questioned the existence of Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea who handed Jesus over to be impaled. (Matthew 27:1-26) Evidence that Pilate was once ruler of Judea is etched on a stone discovered at the Mediterranean seaport city of Caesarea in 1961.

    Before 1993, there was no proof outside the Bible to support the historicity of David, the brave young shepherd who later became king of Israel. That year, however, archaeologists uncovered in northern Israel a basalt stone, dated to the ninth century B.C.E., that experts say bears the words “House of David” and “king of Israel.”

    Events.

    Until recently, many scholars doubted the accuracy of the Bible’s account of the nation of Edom battling with Israel in the time of David. (2 Samuel 8:13, 14) Edom, they argued, was a simple pastoral society at the time and did not become sufficiently organized or have the might to threaten Israel until much later. However, recent excavations indicate that “Edom was a complex society centuries earlier [than previously thought], as reflected in the Bible,” states an article in the journal Biblical Archaeology Review.

    Proper titles.

    There were many rulers on the world stage during the 16 centuries that the Bible was being written. When the Bible refers to a ruler, it always uses the proper title. For example, it correctly refers to Herod Antipas as “district ruler” and Gallio as “proconsul.” (Luke 3:1; Acts 18:12) Ezra 5:6 refers to Tattenai, the governor of the Persian province “beyond the River,” the Euphrates River. A coin produced in the fourth century B.C.E. contains a similar description, identifying the Persian governor Mazaeus as ruler of the province “Beyond the River.”

    Accuracy in seemingly minor details is no small matter. If we can trust the Bible writers in even small details, should that not bolster our confidence in the other things they wrote?

  19. Gene R. Conradi says:

    Sorry for the accidental double quote from source.

  20. Gene R. Conradi says:

    Often, those who question the reliability or usefulness of the Bible have not investigated the matter for themselves. They merely repeat what others say. However, the Bible warns: “Anyone inexperienced puts faith in every word, but the shrewd one considers his steps.”—Proverbs 14:15.

    Instead of blindly accepting what others say, why not follow the example of the first-century Christians who lived in Beroea, in what is now northern Greece? They did not just accept what others told them. Rather, they had a reputation for “carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so.” (Acts 17:11
    Often, those who question the reliability or usefulness of the Bible have not investigated the matter for themselves. They merely repeat what others say. However, the Bible warns: “Anyone inexperienced puts faith in every word, but the shrewd one considers his steps.”—Proverbs 14:15.

    Instead of blindly accepting what others say, why not follow the example of the first-century Christians who lived in Beroea, in what is now northern Greece? They did not just accept what others told them. Rather, they had a reputation for “carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so.” (Acts 17:11
    http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2009321?q=bible+archaeology&p=par#h=5

  21. Gene R. Conradi says:

    The green grass dries up,

    The blossom withers,

    But the word of our God endures forever.” Isaiah 40:8

  22. Felipe says:

    I thought people who follow archaeology websites had gotten over the idea of the bible being a history book. It’s not factual, its not accurate, its not a moral guide. Its only a reflection of the mores and superstitions of the time when it was written. The farther back from the monarchy, the more myth and legend is found. Genesis is mostly myth, perhaps only myth and legend.
    These myths of the God of the Jews and Jesus divinity look like are going to stay here for a long time.

  23. wayne davies says:

    Remember this ,to the gentile he accept foregiveness of his sin and accept Jesus christ’s blood on Calvery,to the Jew that they accept Jesus as their messiah,all the rest is interesting, remember all scripture is holy through the holy ghost,empowering the scripture.archaeology can give insights to boost our faith but everything that glitters is no gold!

  24. Dolores Bradwell says:

    7/24/15

    So many things have changed from the original Bible of St. James and the
    original Bible of the Gideon. In fact, the New Gideon’s Bible published in the
    late 1970’s took our Black history and culture out of the Bible and inserted what
    they wanted. King Solomon in the book of Songs of Solomon says he’s black, they
    took Black out and say he’s tan, and in Jeremiah 8:18 -22, God says he’s black, Thomas Nelson the Publisher of the Bibles and Gideon says they are tan. So these people with all of their money and power think they can just take over a history and
    a culture of a people and insert what they want is really sick and evil to me! How would they like for someone to try to steal the history and culture of their race of people! If people wake up, they cannot steal it because all of those people in that Bible are black from the same family except a few Arabs , Italians,Chinese, Greeks and Indians, and since they are the first people of those other races, they came directly from Abraham who is a black man. The game of lying and fooling the public is over, most people can read now, it is 2015, and they are still trying to hide the truth! There are books with the original race and color of the people! You see, the history of God and the Bible is for all mankind, but the race and color of the people and the culture is the culture of the Black race! They didn’t need to go there, we are the first people, but no race is superior to another, that is the way it was manifested in
    the beginning, because God told us in Genesis, everything was black, he was black, so he made black people. Later he said,”Let their be light!” There was light, and he saw how to make lighter people , and he did, and told us in the book of Roman, we are all Abraham and Sarah’s children. Dol

    1. John says:

      “……..he original Bible of St. James …….”
      When was King James made into a saint
      “………. book of Songs of Solomon says he’s black……..”
      King Solomon was Semetic, in other words his line goes back to Shem, the progeny of Ham is where the darker races of man originate………sorry Dolores; you actually have no idea of the races of mankind that sprung from Noah’s three sons Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Abraham was also of Semetic origin……he has the same lineage as Solomon.
      I think that your brain is ‘scrambled’ in relation to any lineages in God’s Word.

  25. louis says:

    Gracias por la información;es muy interesante ayuda bastante si es q le damos el enfoque desde un punto hebreo

  26. Gene R. Conradi says:

    Regarding the historical accuracy of the Bible, the October 25, 1999, issue of U.S.News & World Report said: “In extraordinary ways, modern archaeology has affirmed the historical core of the Old and New Testaments—corroborating key portions of the stories of Israel’s patriarchs, the Exodus, the Davidic monarchy, and the life and times of Jesus.” While faith in the Bible does not hinge on archaeological discoveries, such historical accuracy is what you would expect of a book inspired by God.

    The practical wisdom contained in the Bible benefits people of all backgrounds. Long before the discovery of microorganisms and their role in spreading disease, the Bible recommended hygienic practices that are still relevant today. (Leviticus 11:32-40; Deuteronomy 23:12, 13) Family members who apply the Bible’s advice about how to treat one another are happier. (Ephesians 5:28–6:4) A person who lives by Bible principles may become a more conscientious employee or a more reasonable employer. (Ephesians 4:28; 6:5-9) Applying Bible principles is beneficial for emotional health as well. (Proverbs 14:30; Ephesians 4:31, 32; Colossians 3:8-10) Such practical advice is what we would expect from our Creator.

    WHAT IS THE REWARD? The wisdom found in the Bible can make even an inexperienced person wise. (Psalm 19:7) In addition, once we gain confidence in the Bible, it can help us as no other book can in taking the next step toward having stronger faith.

    http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2009321?q=bible+archaeology&p=par

  27. Kurt says:

    Abraham was the tenth generation from Noah through Shem and was born 352 years after the Deluge, in 2018 B.C.E. Although listed first among the three sons of Terah, at Genesis 11:26, Abraham was not the firstborn. The Scriptures show that Terah was 70 years old when his first son was born, and that Abraham was born 60 years later when his father Terah was 130 years old. (Ge 11:32; 12:4) Evidently Abraham is listed first among his father’s sons because of his outstanding faithfulness and prominence in the Scriptures, a practice that is followed in the case of several other outstanding men of faith such as Shem and Isaac.—Ge 5:32; 11:10; 1Ch 1:28.

    Abraham was a native of the Chaldean city of Ur, a thriving metropolis located in the land of Shinar, near the present junction of the Euphrates and Tigris rivers. It was about 240 km (150 mi) SE of Nimrod’s onetime royal city of Babel, or Babylon, so notorious for its unfinished Tower of Babel.

    In Abraham’s time, the city of Ur was steeped in Babylonish idolatry and the worship of its patron moon-god Sin. (Jos 24:2, 14, 15) Nevertheless, Abraham proved to be a man of faith in Jehovah God, even as his forefathers Shem and Noah; and as a consequence, he earned the reputation “the father of all those having faith while in uncircumcision.” (Ro 4:11) Since true faith is based on accurate knowledge, Abraham may have received his understanding by personal association with Shem (their lives overlapped by 150 years). Abraham knew and used the name of Jehovah; to quote him: “Jehovah the Most High God, Producer of heaven and earth,” “Jehovah, the God of the heavens and the God of the earth.”—Ge 14:22; 24:3.
    Watchtower online library see Ur:
    http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/1200270144

  28. Bardaisan Of Edessa says:

    Have you read your own statement at the beginning of your article? You mention
    “Abraham was said to have been born in Ur of the Chaldees, but there were many places named Ur in antiquity.”. If your statement is true about “many places named Ur”, although you do not provide details of “the other places named UR”, isn’t it clear that “of the chaldees” is a qualification of the exact location of the place UR? Ur was/is in southern Assyria (Iraq).

  29. Mervyn Kersh says:

    We frequently read that the Bible, written by Moses 3,500 years ago, is partly influenced by foreign myths. Why do we not accept that foreign myths are adapted from the Biblical events and beliefs? The Israelites/Jews believed that eavery letter was holy and must be accurately written down. That left little room for errors. I believe that the Bible is accurate.
    Mervyn Kersh

  30. MJ says:

    Love reading all your comments. It leaves me with much food for thought and reinforces my belief in the Bible. Thank you all for sharing your knowledge and theories…

  31. James says:

    It is puzzling to hear someone suggest as above, “It is a matter for the science of archeology to sort out how much of the Biblical story and its transcendant Truth is historical-factual, and how much is not.” When did we become smarter than God? It becomes more puzzling still considering the fact that history has repeatedly demonstrated that archeologists who theorize that the Bible isn’t accurate in a certain point eventually end up being proven wrong. People did not believe King David existed. They believed the Bible was wrong because there was no evidence of David’s existence. Then the Tel Dan Stele was discovered proving otherwise. People thought the Bible was wrong about the Hittites. Oops. Turns out they existed after all. There are many such examples. Time and again people show their arrogance by telling the world that they have discovered that the Bible is wrong only to have God blow the sands and reveal once again that the Bible is true and historically accurate. With not a single piece of proof positive evidence, people believe blindly in evolution, yet when they are unable to find proof positive evidence of a tiny detail of the Bible, no matter the overwhelming proof that already exists, they are ready to throw out the whole Bible. Talk about double standards. It is hard to make people believe you are an honest broker if you subscribe to such philosophies. Mankind’s knowledge is so puny and limited, and yet we are arrogant enough to believe that we know more about what happened millennia ago than the people who saw it for themselves in context. In most circles, such a world view would be considered insanity, but for critics of the Bible, it seems okay. Perhaps it is because they live in a world of insanity. For those who feel so smart and powerful that they can prove God’s word wrong, perhaps they should consider the questions God asked Job when he felt a bit self-important: “Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me. Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements? Surely you know” (Job 38:3-5)! The more digging we do, the more verification we find of the Biblical accounts that have been preserved unchanging for millennia. Yet scientists change their views seemingly with each new edition of a magazine or journal publication and repeatedly have their theories revised, because they found out that there was something they had not considered. Why then would we put our trust in the fickleness of ever changing theories and ideas of arrogant self-important scientists over that of the changeless God who got it right from the beginning?

  32. Tracey says:

    I can’t find my book of Genesis I want to read it because my bible study is in Genesis.. So please help me find it. I’m not to good with my IPad so be patients with me. I love your magazine and look for it to come in.i get the paper because I can’t read on here to long because my sight is bad..But thank you for the free down loads

  33. Marc Neddo says:

    When one starts separating Biblical truth from historical truth one starts undermining the divine inspiration of the Bible. That is to say in this context, if one believes God was the ultimate author of the Genesis account (see the biblical definition of inspiration, 2 Tim 3:16), then He didn’t mislead and misstate the historical truth. He doesn’t go to surrounding creation traditions and myths to fill-in His story. The Genesis account stands firmly alone: if anything, it influenced other cultures’ creation accounts. For sure it was a stalwart stand-alone contrast to man-made and error-laden, idol-generating origin accounts.
    So if one does appeal to other cultures’ origin accounts influencing Genesis, the unstated axiom is the Bible is not truly inspired as the Bible defines inspiration, God is not the ultimate author, truth is relative. BAR is surely allowed to operate under this unstated axiom. Let us not berate them for it. Obviously many of their readers operate under these presuppositions. I believe it to be false and destructive to truth, but it is their prerogative. For the record, however, let it be known that the literal interpretation of most Old Testament texts still remains the champion of biblical archaeology discoveries and analysis. When in doubt or stumped unbelieving archaeologists turn to a literal interpretation of the Scriptures and this approach has the best record of solving problems and leading to new discoveries…despite what critics falsely claim. Remember, they are defending a worldview that attempts to rid them of guilt and subordination to God. It is coherent that they discount the Bible’s worldview. I probably would too in their shoes. Let’s love them; we’re all under grace. Love leads to grace, grace leads to guilt resolution and humility, which leads to a liberating acceptance of the Bible and its truth…and better living. Woe am I, the sinner, but God has mercy…made available for all.

  34. Ladislao says:

    That said, I disagree about the interpretation of the word “Ur”. If there’s more than one of such places, it may indeed represent some generic term for “town”, just as South Asia uses “pur”, even as Mogol India refers to “abad”.
    Ur doesn’t have to be used biblically as “town”, since the term could have been incorporated as a foreign expression.
    But Abraham is never depicted biblically as an Ur-dwelling urban citizen, rather as a full-fledged nomad of the open spaces. From the mentioned residences of some relatives, my feeling is that he would be considered in modern times as a wandering Kurd, and that his local hometown, if any, becomes therefore irrelevant.

  35. Ladislao says:

    For clarity and understanding of the above, please note that Ian usually writes “of” when he means “if”, and also writes “us” meaning “is”. He may be trying to express the phonetical sound of the Turkish “undotted i”.
    But this is not always done, so avoid using an editor to change “back” those words, or you’ll end up with something less understandable.
    Ian’s points are quite believable, in the light of legendary stories being constantly built up from actual historical events, duly mixed-up by each successive leader’s generation with some timely moral teachings, spiced-up by a lot of hero-worship, with some quite inevitable BS filler.
    The idea when reading ancient descriptions, whether legendary, biblical or else, is to look through the allegorical currently readable details, back into the historical facts that must have taken place. Any stark distillation that thus arises should be tested with the standard methods of legend-weaving, to see how plausible it is that such a basic fact could be eventually weaved into the current legendary description.
    This approach is never anti-biblical in any way, rather quite the opposite. It brings some real respect into biblical analysis, as opposed to the destructive blind faith exhibited by fundamentalists, who avoid any possibility of incorporating verifiable truth into their unscientific refusal.

  36. Motylos says:

    You are assuming, Launa, that ‘biblical’ has to mean pro-literalist Bible interpretation. Although archæology started out trying to find historic proof of what was in the biblical record, by the beginning if the 20th century that was quite rightly questioned, because biblical interpretation of the literal sort and archæology more often than not are contradictory. Unless you follow (the largely discredited) David Rohl school of thought, and believe in red-headed tribesmen originating in Eden-Edom, modern archæology is a scientific approach to analysing the evidence from the ground. There us very little evidence, for example, for a powerful southern kingdom of Judah alongside its northern neighbour Samaria. It us likely that Judah was a sub-kingdom of its more powerful neighbour, which is why, when Egypt even is mentioned as an ally, the only biblical King in the alliance at Qarqar is Ahab — Judah was assumed to part of Bit-Humri, the House if Omri. And from that point if view, Ahab did good, and was not ‘a bad king’. It all went wrong with Jehu, actually, who withdrew from the anti-Assyrian alliance and ended up bowing before the Neo-Assyrian king Shalmaneser III. The books if Kings are not historical books, they use history for a theological purpose — if the Deuteronomic History theory is right: it was, Why it all went wrong? It is fascinating to note that while scions of the Davidic royal line were still about in the Return there was no great movement to restore the monarchy.

  37. Motylos says:

    Sadly, Jürgen, you have your facts wrong. The biblical word for town is (Anglicised) kiriath. Ur certainly existed, and during its later period ruled a large kingdom across Sumer and Akkad. However, Ur ‘of the Chaldees’ is an anachronism, as the Chaldæans ruled Babylonia during the Iron Age, replacing the Late Bronze Age Kassites. During the time of Hammurabi, the whole of Mesopotamia was ruled by this Amorites people, and it would have been possible as a semi-nomadic pastoralists to move from Ur to Harran. Indeed, the Amurru (biblical Amorites) and the later Aramæans spread throughout the Levant and Mesopotamia. The latter introduced the Aramaic language into Palestine, and it became the ordinary spoken language through the Neo-Assyrian Empire.

  38. Jürgen Rahf says:

    The biblical “Ur” means only “town”. The place of Abraham was never in South of nowadays Iraq, but in nowadays Turkey in the place of URfa = Sanliurfa. There even the Muslims worship this place. Still Jewish and Christians worship without any evidence the place in “Ur”. – Beside this the biblical Nimrod was the area God of URFA/SANLIUFA and has his throne there.

  39. Brian says:

    I must disagree with the last comment. I am impressed with this organization. What I am not impressed with is L’s hostility to views not her own. “Anyone who accepts the authority of the Word. .” knows that the Word is primarily about Truth and not primarily about historical facts. The Bible contains information that is historical, however. It is a matter for the science of archeology to sort out how much of the Biblical story and its transcendant Truth is historical-factual, and how much is not. The confusion of the (whole, transcendant, spiritual) Truth with the historical-factual dimension of truth is a fundamentalist, anti-science view that in the end denies our God-given reason as well. Science is nothing more than common sense (capacity to use reason) applied in a systematic way. I love the Bible, and I love history, and I know that they are different, although often related. I appreciate Biblical Archeology’s attempts to articulate that relationship.

  40. Nicholas T. Cinelli says:

    I agree. Any org that has biblical in the name should be unfunded by any who believe in The Word. I’ll start by removing my name from their list. I knew of their motives when they continue to use B.C.E. and A.C.E. Common era my eye; it’s BEFORE CHRIST & AFTER CHRIST! I’ve asked them this question a few times, never to get an answer. I know they will not publish this as their “backroom un believers that fund this group” will pull the plug. What’s the saying; “it is better if a millstone were hung around their neck etc., etc. I dare you to print my opinion!

  41. Stephen McLaughlin says:

    Even better than supporting scriptural literalness, it would be nice to know the truth.This organisation isn’t too bad at questioning the pointless dogma,

  42. Launa says:

    Not impressed with this organization. Every article is an attempt to cast doubt on scripture as a historical reference by comparing other “mythical” stories. Any one who respects the authority of the Word accepts the global flood as fact. This leads to the obvious conclusion that all these other ancient cultures descended from Noah’s line. After the tower of babel they were divided and scattered – so obviously there would be very similar creation stories across these cultures, which would differ simply with the telling of it passed down to succeeding geneations! It’s no great mystery. The “Biblical Archeological Society” should stop their subterfuge and remove Biblical from their name. They are clearly not interested in supporting Scripture through archaeology, as their name implies.

  43. Shari says:

    My book went to my kindle app Carol. Try there. 😉

  44. Carol Stehlin says:

    I have downloaded 2 books but can not find out how to pull them up to read. Please explain how I can find them so I can read them.

  45. Varghese says:

    Bible uses terms consistently. It says Ur is in a place called “Land of the Chaldeans” but in Isa 23:13 bible uses that term again in a way that indicates Assyria (Turkey) is a different entity… “Look at the land of the Chaldeans! This is a people that no longer exist; Assyria destined her for desert creatures. They raised up her siege towers, they stripped her fortresses bare and turned her into a ruin.” There are several other verses and events (such as the Babylonian captivity which was certainly in the Land of the Chaldeans which did not happen to be in Turkey/Syria at least for the most part) which prove that Babylon/Chaldean’s Land is Iraq…

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62 Responses

  1. Raymond Kenneth Petry says:

    This [downloadable article] is going to include (as previous page says so) a common fallacy about the “Enuma Elish”—
    I learned about this—fallacy—in our Astronomy Institute Western Cosmology course a year ago, and I ‘advised’ the professor:
    The ENUMA ELISH (“When On High” aka ‘from-the-top’ aka the Enumeration [list of libel] (by) Elisha [brother of Methuselah]),
    describes the act of Rebellion In The East [Egyptian phrase] which wrecked the family of the first-lineage ‘gods’ {Apsu et al,,,},
    wherein Ilu’s first-son Ea [Yah] Enki murdered local-most-senior Apsu for purportedly laughing and plotting to destroy them all,
    and recounts much-younger third-generation-son Marduk [Mered-uk M’Irad-uk] murder-mutilated Apsu’s mother-consort-wife…
    And modern-professorial-types carry-on with this story as if it were a “Creation Event” but preceding that genetic insemination.

    A little dinner wine, a little foolishness, and your professional education is a wreck for the rest of your academic lifetime….

  2. David Kofh says:

    Paleontology lists extinct human species, exactly 22, which is the same number of names found in the Genealogy of “begots” listed in Genesis 4 and Genesis 5.

    The Genesis genealogy proposes extraordinarily long durations of life yimes for those 22 “kinds” of men, some living for as long as 950 years.

    I see this list as the proper mention of the evolutionary process. It is no coincidence that these identical listing match because the Torah is true and so is the factual discoveries which match that list.

  3. Anna says:

    As far as I know Genesis it is a Greek name, Beresheet is is the proper name… meaning in the beginning. So has nothing to do with anything pagan,the Jewish Scribes and Rabbis would never allow that.

  4. John says:

    BAR says: ” These ideas may explain why Joseph had to appear hairless—and circumcised—before entering Pharaoh’s palace.”
    Of course Joseph was circumcised, the Abrahamic covenant of circumcision was over 150 years before Joseph, and Joseph being an Israelite, would have been circumcised when he was eight days old.

  5. J says:

    Why does the name GENESIS have the name of the great mother goddess within it.
    GEN ESIS (ISIS)?

    1. John says:

      Genesis is split up like so: gen·e·sis, (look an any reputable dictionary), do not try to make something out of nothing……it is always best to check on word construction/pronunciation before commenting on a word…….this stops one from making incorrect assumptions, similar to the one that you have just made.

  6. John says:

    If I may be so bold as to ask, could you please tell me why my previous comment is awaiting your moderation; all I have done is say, how I personally see several of your comments and their relationship to God’s Word. As a Christian I believe that ‘God’s Word is truth,’……..like the Pharisee Gamaliel’s comments at Acts 5:34-40.

    1. John says:

      I see that you actually deleted the particular comment mentioned in my previous, would it be fair to say that you object to criticism…….especially when related to God’s written word?
      You are by your title, show that you at least should be interested in what God’s word has to say on any matter broached, therein………not just wipe it because you do not agree with it.

      1. John says:

        Not quite sure what is going on. Sometimes, the comment is not there, and other times it is there with the comment: “Your comment is awaiting moderation”
        Just asking!

  7. mervyn.kersh says:

    Could the “six days” simply mean “six eras”, a term unknown in those days?
    What matters more is who taught Adam to work the land when he was expelled from Eden? Who taught him a language to speak when he was first created? How did he know about the existence of God? Why did Adam and Eve see any necessity for clothes when no animals wore clothes? Why did their sons Cain and Abel offer sacrifices to God – a brand new way of ingratiating themselves to a great personage?
    Did God need such food and oblations? Or even such obeisance?
    And so it goes on… No one has yet solved those straight-forward problems.

    1. craig r. evans says:

      Mervyn asks some good questions. The first concerns “six eras” instead of “six days.”

      “With regard to humans arriving on the scene, the Talmud (Chagiga 13b) states clearly that there were 974 generations prior to Adam. The famous Tifferes Yisrael commentary to the Mishnah wrote in 1842 (prior to publication of Darwin’s Origin of Species): “In my opinion, the prehistoric men whose remains have been discovered in our time and who lived long before Adam are identical with the 974 pre-Adamite generations referred to in the Talmud, and lived in the epoch immediately before our own.” (from aish.com)

      Relative to the comment above, Adam would be the first fully sentient man, as in “in the image of God He created him.” Essentially, each person has the same thought-power as does God, with direct knowing, creative impulse and the assumption of knowledge.

      “…who taught Adam to work the land” is implied in the scripture Gn. 2.5, “For the Lord God had not caused it rain on the earth, and there was no man to till the ground.” The clear implication is that man was destined to till the earth, and that if there is no other way that the understanding to till the earth would be given, it would be given by God. That is, the understanding would be imparted, whether directly or cognitively, or by a step by step observance of plant life (dropping seeds), with instruction given.

      “Who taught him a language to speak when he was first created?” Language begins with thought, conception— words follow. Meaning followed by words may be imparted, nuanced, indicated specifically. We assume the world was always as we know it today, but I would assume the world as quite different for Adam. Thought may have been easily and directly transferred, and thus sound expressed. Today we intellectualize, we convince, we argue a point. It is foreign to us that direct knowing-forming-language could have at any time existed.

      “…existence of God” would be imparted, sometimes referred to as “direct knowing in the spirit.” Adam would have been in an enlightened condition relative to our own. God may have been, and I suggest probably was, as known and accepted as we accept the air.

      “…Cain and Abel offering sacrifices” has nothing to do with “ingratiating” themselves to God. The sacrifice is a showing of gratitude, or thanks to whom all bounty derives. In a simple example, it would be like the son who washes the car for his father, and without being asked. The term “great personage” is misapplied. “Personage” would already be of the earth, and God would have to be considered above all personages, as such.

      As to God needing such food (food given in sacrifice), He does not. The oblation aspect comes out of the attribute of gratitude, such as we may witness from the above mentioned son who washes dad’s car. “Obeisance” deals with a certain more formal respect given to those in a station above your own. It may be seen as deference expressing allegiance.

      All of Mervyn’s questions might better require a short or longer article to properly answer. Because these answers are shorter they may spur even more questions. If you think “enlightened understanding,” as Adam seems to have had, as opposed to intellectual analysis only, then the greener pastures God created begin to flower.

      Craig R. Evans
      The Way Missions.Org.

    2. John says:

      “Could the “six days” simply mean “six eras………..”

      It certainly does, each creative day is thousands of years in length……it is reasonable to assume that all creative days are of the same length. This being the case, we read what Paul said at Hebrews 4:1-11, which is over 4 000 years after the start of the 7th day……….the promise of entering into his rest, existed then, and still exists today (we are now 6 000 years into that day of rest)…….up until the end of this system that is under Satan’s control, and through Satan’s demise at the end of Jesus’ 1 000 year reign, (Revelation 20:1-6).
      Genesis 2:2 tells us when God started his seventh day of rest………this does not mean that God has remained idle all this time……..He rested from His creative works. (see John 5:17)

  8. mervyn.kersh says:

    Surely, Joseph was shaved before being presented to the Pharaoh simply because he had been a prisoner for years and was filthy with an long unkempt beard and hair.

    I am sure that prisons in those days – and until modern times – were not hotels as today. Of course Joseph was required to wash and clean up before meeting the greatest man in the world. Why make an issue of that simple recorded fact?

    1. Furienna says:

      Because it was uncommon for men to shave in many Bronze Age cultures, where a full beard was the norm. Egypt would have been an exception to this though, so it would be correct that Joseph shaved before he met the Pharaoh.

    2. John says:

      Mervyn says: “…… the greatest man in the world.”
      Rather a sweeping statement,I feel……….If you could have asked him, he probably would have agreed.
      Look at what Pharaoh said to Aaron and Moses at Exodus 5:2 “And Pharaoh said, ‘Who is Jehovah, that I should hearken unto his voice to let Israel go? I know not Jehovah, and moreover I will not let Israel go'”(ASV)………….no one tells me what to do, I am Pharaoh ….well he certainly did find out who Jehovah was…..the ten plagues also showed the ‘strength’ of the Egyptian gods……..or rather, the weakness of those gods. Jude, at Jude 5 also speaks of the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt.

  9. John C. says:

    Reading all the comments here shows me the depth of confusion there is about the writings here. Any text taken out of its proper context is a pretext. By taking the Bible out of its context you can get it to support almost any wild and foolish idea. You need to put the Bible back in context in order to understand its truths. And what is the context. The New Testament emerged in the 2nd to the 4th century of the Roman Empire. You need to understand what was happening here in order to truly understand what the New Testament is about. The Torah and the “old Testament” emerged in the period of from the Babylonian captivity of the Jewish elite to the coming of the Greeks. This is the environment that led to the collection of the books that later were translated into Greek, Latin or English. Fail to understand this and you will not understand what you are reading.

    1. John says:

      John, (I am a different John), says: “The Torah and the “old Testament” emerged in the period of from the Babylonian captivity of the Jewish elite to the coming of the Greeks.”

      Not sure where you arrived at your information………Moses is credited with the writing of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy and Psalm 90……..and the Israelite Nation lived under that written Code from 1513 BCE until 33 CE………not to mention other Bible writers like Joshua, Nathan David, etc…..all who well dead by the time of the nations exile in Babylon………and the Israelites would have had ALL those scrolls written up to that time, e.g. at Daniel 9:1, 2 we find that Daniel knew from studying the writings of Jeremiah 25:11 that the exile was to be for 70 years.

      John also says: “The New Testament emerged in the 2nd to the 4th century of the Roman Empire.”
      Again you have a small problem Matthews writing was completed in 41 CE and the last book of John, Revelation was completed in 96 CE……..most of Paul’s letters were completed in the 60’s ………and these books were read by the early Christians, until the ‘oppressive wolves’ stepped in………and remember Paul had been a Pharisee, (therefore well educated), before he accepted Christianity and he spoke at least Hebrew and Greek fluently………and by means of holy spirit he was able to speak many other languages (1 Corinthians 14:18)……..and these were used to teach others………and there had to be an interpreter 1 Corinthians 14:27, 28.
      Don’t forget that these letters were sent as encouragement/counsel for the various congregations in his day……….and of course for our benefit today.

  10. Michael Ledo says:

    The Bible from creation to the crowning of Solomon is a great cosmic myth which also combines Akkadian history retold as an Amorite text. It was all based on their myths and history from creation thru Abraham (Ishum) through Moses (Marduk) to David (Davika/Naram Sin.)

    1. John says:

      With all due respect Michael, you do have it wrong way around.
      The myths originate in Babylon and Gilgamesh, and Babylon went into decay in the fourth century CE………it is now just a pile of rubble……..but, it certainly had a ‘colourful’ history, and it would have certainly been something to see in its heyday.
      However, ignoring the account of creation, in favour of the lie, does not change things…………..Babylon and Gilgamesh are fairy tales.
      Genesis 1:1 says: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”, from then on it is all history……as Genesis 2:4 says: “These are the generations, (or history) of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that Jehovah God made the earth and the heaven” (ASV)………..and of course this included the first human pair, Adam and Eve. It is all there in the first two chapters of Genesis.
      Also, Michael, if we could just mention a personage from around that era, let’s say Noah………immediately one generally thinks of a global deluge, that flooded the entire earth.
      Now, if ,as you speculate that Noah and the flood were myths………why did Jesus and his apostles speak of them……….or were they lying???
      I think not. Jesus had a reputation of being a perfect, sinless man. (Hebrews 5:7-10)
      This would not only discount the Bible from creation to Solomon…….but the entire Bible. Therefore Michael I would have to strongly disagree with your thoughts on this matter.

  11. josephs81 says:

    Its the differences, not the commonalities, that made Genesis varied from all other ancient writings. Let not the simple, ancient form of writing confuse – these are apparently made for all generation’s understanding, a feat in itself.

    For the first time, Monotheism became ‘No other Gods’ – negating the head-bashing deities battling for supremacy; or even Mono-Sun Deity. For the first time, an order of creation appeared that introduced a new science that changed the universe. It became the E=MC2 of both humanity and history. The elite Greek minds were first to recognize the Hebrew superiority, with the first translation of the Septuagint Bible which aligned with Aristotle’s ‘First Course’.

    Beyond Darwin. Genesis’ Creation premise squashes the BBT, noting that Darkness [V2] emerging prior to Light [V3]; that life forms emerged in an order of protocol [Species]; and that Life emerged ‘after’ their sustenance provisions [critical light, separation of water & land, vegetation].

    Science. Genesis is also the first document that said the universe was finite [with an ‘In the beginning’], defining Infinite as that without ‘change’ [“I am the Lord I do not change”], and first to allude to the age of the Universe and the Earth, and their sizes: “And He separated the water from the land” – takes Billions of non-hour based years; and “Look now if you can account the stars” – that the universe size is unaccountable.

    Singularity. That a lone singular entity with no internal or external components cannot exist and cannot perform an action. That all emerged as a duality [Heaven & Earth, Darkness and Light; Day & Night; water & Land].

    That “Man & Women He Created Them” – originally a duality, then separated. This is correct:
    If a green marble produces a red marble, it means the green had to contain red. How else?

    That life forms were fully completed, and were yet not Alive, awaiting a trigger factor. Analogy is of a completed car that won’t move without an external trigger factor. How else?

    That Adam remains the first recorded ‘NAME’ of a speech endowed life form. Regardless if the story is seen as mythical.

    Thanks.
    http://www.amazon.com/BEN-HUR-II-happened-Centuryebook/dp/B00PPTDDFK/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1444455269&sr=8-1

  12. Luke says:

    While I respect the views of people who don’t agree with me, I must serve as a reminder that a historically literal interpretation of Genesis is not a fundamental piece of Christianity. Augustine himself did not hold a very literal interpretation, and even instructed us to allow science to speak before interpreting the stories (see his writing, the Literal Interpretation of Genesis). I believe that he had a lot of respect for the authority of the Word

    1. John says:

      Sorry Luke, I cannot follow your thinking …….you would listen to a man that tried to push for the Apocrypha to be included in the Bible canon………..but, I will admit, he did get some things right…..only some things.
      Don’t think that science is a ‘friend’ of God’s word, while a few scientists have a respect for God’s Word, many do not………a Christian’s faith plays a leading role in how he accepts the Bible………and that is not a blind faith…….it requires intensive study of God’s Word.

  13. archaeopteryx says:

    “Gene R. says
    NO ONE has ever successfully challenged the historical accuracy of the Bible. It refers to real people and real events.”

    Really, Gene?
    William G. Dever, for thirty-five years an archaeologist excavating in the Near East, in his book, “What Did the Bible Writers Know and When Did They Know It,” writes: “After a century of exhaustive investigation, all respectable archaeologists have given up hope of recovering any context that would make Abraham, Isaac, or Jacob credible ‘historical figures.’” He writes of archaeological investigation of Moses and the Exodus as having been “discarded as a fruitless pursuit.

    Perhaps you need to enlarge your knowledge base.

    1. John says:

      You put that much trust in archaeology, sorry Arche, but that is ‘blind’ faith, men think that just because there is little or no evidence, it there did not, or could not have happened.
      Jesus and his disciples mention the name of Abraham more than seventy times, why would that have occurred if Abraham was a figment of someone’s imagination?
      The apostle Paul mentioned Abraham by name several times, James, the half brother of Jesus, although not an apostle, named Abraham, in writing of his book, James.
      Why would this have occurred, if no such a person had ever existed.
      As far as Jacob is concerned…….Jacob’s sons were the progenitors of the twelve tribes of Israel……….also Jacob’s third son Levi, became the father of the priestly tribe of Israel ……………so much for William G. Dever, who obviously thinks that he knows better than what is stated in the Bible……..he obviously doe not know better.

      1. John says:

        Ooops! A typo……2nd line ‘it there did not”……therefore, not ‘there’

  14. archaeopteryx says:

    Şanlıurfa, in southeastern Turkey, is also known as ‘Ur-fa’ – the citizens of Şanlıurfa regularly celebrate it as the birthplace of Abraham. Further, it is only 20 miles from Haran – how much more likely that Abraham and his family made the 20-mile trek from Urfa to Haran, than that he traveled 700 miles – the length of the entire Mesopotamian valley – from the city of Ur (which is the Sumerian word for ‘city’) at the southern end of Mesopotamia?

    1. John says:

      At Acts 7:2-4 Stephen when replying to those in a synagogue said that Abraham was in Ur of the Chaldeans, and in Mesopotamia ……….so was Stephen incorrect……certainly not.

  15. Adamu Dominic says:

    The outcome of what the bible talk about is true and it is the guide to protect our life what we should do and not to do so God is real and need our life.

  16. SHUNIL KUMAR BEECHAM says:

    February 5, 2016.
    Mumbai.

    For the Laymen (People of God) to understand the facts established by Archaeology should be examined by a Committee of top scholars of the world and their opinion should be made public:

    (1) The facts on which they agree and
    (2) The facts on which there is not agreement.

    Thereafter only such facts on which there are disagreement should be researched by all available technology so the the disagreements are narrowed down and hope fully one day with the grace of God the facts as appear in the Bible are confirmed or corrected.

    1. John says:

      The accuracy of God’s Word does not rely on archaeology to prove that it is correct.
      Christians should accept that the Bible is the Word of God, because, as the Bible says at 2 Timothy 3:16, “ALL scripture is inspired of God…….” by studying the Bible it builds faith in a person, that causes them to believe that it truly is God’s word.
      You should not accept it on ‘blind’ faith……that is why study is essential…….we need to be like the Beroeans, who in Acts 17:10-12 explains, they examined the scriptures daily.
      So many times archaeologists have cast doubt on certain events, people, places, etc., in the Bible, saying there is just no evidence………..then some time after they have had to retract the statement, due to recent ‘finds’ that back up the Bible’s account.
      Whilst archaeology, will many times support certain Biblical accounts, it should have nothing to do with a Christian’s faith, in the Bible being God’s Word of truth.

  17. allan nielsen says:

    I am an adult ( born 1950 ) student at Ambrose Seminary, an evangelical university in Calgary, Alberta. I am writing a paper on the Deluge considering both liberal and conservative views. Thank you for your comments and assistance in finding scholarly material.

    1. John says:

      You should not worry about the scholarly view, this is man’s thinking, and man is imperfect, and often known to ‘tamper’ with the truth, to justify their own ends or beliefs.
      Included in that is, of course, liberal and conservative views………if you want the real truth you should go to God’s word and get his viewpoint……..you can then be sure you have the truth. John 17:17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 3:16.
      Interesting too, is a comment made by the noted physicist, Sir Isaac Newton, concerning the Bible: He said of Biblical history: “I find more sure marks of authenticity in the Bible than in any profane history whatsoever.” (Two Apologies, by R. Watson, London, 1820, p. 57)………… even Abe (Abraham Lincoln) called the Bible “the best gift God has ever given to man . . . But for it we could not know right from wrong.”
      Even though we do not need the word of man to propound the the truth contained in God’s Word ,it is of interest to note, what some say on the subject of the Bible.

  18. Gene R. Conradi says:

    NO ONE has ever successfully challenged the historical accuracy of the Bible. It refers to real people and real events.

    People.

    Bible critics questioned the existence of Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea who handed Jesus over to be impaled. (Matthew 27:1-26) Evidence that Pilate was once ruler of Judea is etched on a stone discovered at the Mediterranean seaport city of Caesarea in 1961.

    Before 1993, there was no proof outside the Bible to support the historicity of David, the brave young shepherd who later became king of Israel. That year, however, archaeologists uncovered in northern Israel a basalt stone, dated to the ninth century B.C.E., that experts say bears the words “House of David” and “king of Israel.”

    Events.

    Until recently, many scholars doubted the accuracy of the Bible’s account of the nation of Edom battling with Israel in the time of David. (2 Samuel 8:13, 14) Edom, they argued, was a simple pastoral society at the time and did not become sufficiently organized or have the might to threaten Israel until much later. However, recent excavations indicate that “Edom was a complex society centuries earlier [than previously thought], as reflected in the Bible,” states an article in the journal Biblical Archaeology Review.

    Proper titles.

    There were many rulers on the world stage during the 16 centuries that the Bible was being written. When the Bible refers to a ruler, it always uses the proper title. For example, it correctly refers to Herod Antipas as “district ruler” and Gallio as “proconsul.” (Luke 3:1; Acts 18:12) Ezra 5:6 refers to Tattenai, the governor of the Persian province “beyond the River,” the Euphrates River. A coin produced in the fourth century B.C.E. contains a similar description, identifying the Persian governor Mazaeus as ruler of the province “Beyond the River.”

    Accuracy in seemingly minor details is no small matter. If we can trust the Bible writers in even small details, should that not bolster our confidence in the other things they wrote?

  19. Gene R. Conradi says:

    Sorry for the accidental double quote from source.

  20. Gene R. Conradi says:

    Often, those who question the reliability or usefulness of the Bible have not investigated the matter for themselves. They merely repeat what others say. However, the Bible warns: “Anyone inexperienced puts faith in every word, but the shrewd one considers his steps.”—Proverbs 14:15.

    Instead of blindly accepting what others say, why not follow the example of the first-century Christians who lived in Beroea, in what is now northern Greece? They did not just accept what others told them. Rather, they had a reputation for “carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so.” (Acts 17:11
    Often, those who question the reliability or usefulness of the Bible have not investigated the matter for themselves. They merely repeat what others say. However, the Bible warns: “Anyone inexperienced puts faith in every word, but the shrewd one considers his steps.”—Proverbs 14:15.

    Instead of blindly accepting what others say, why not follow the example of the first-century Christians who lived in Beroea, in what is now northern Greece? They did not just accept what others told them. Rather, they had a reputation for “carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so.” (Acts 17:11
    http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2009321?q=bible+archaeology&p=par#h=5

  21. Gene R. Conradi says:

    The green grass dries up,

    The blossom withers,

    But the word of our God endures forever.” Isaiah 40:8

  22. Felipe says:

    I thought people who follow archaeology websites had gotten over the idea of the bible being a history book. It’s not factual, its not accurate, its not a moral guide. Its only a reflection of the mores and superstitions of the time when it was written. The farther back from the monarchy, the more myth and legend is found. Genesis is mostly myth, perhaps only myth and legend.
    These myths of the God of the Jews and Jesus divinity look like are going to stay here for a long time.

  23. wayne davies says:

    Remember this ,to the gentile he accept foregiveness of his sin and accept Jesus christ’s blood on Calvery,to the Jew that they accept Jesus as their messiah,all the rest is interesting, remember all scripture is holy through the holy ghost,empowering the scripture.archaeology can give insights to boost our faith but everything that glitters is no gold!

  24. Dolores Bradwell says:

    7/24/15

    So many things have changed from the original Bible of St. James and the
    original Bible of the Gideon. In fact, the New Gideon’s Bible published in the
    late 1970’s took our Black history and culture out of the Bible and inserted what
    they wanted. King Solomon in the book of Songs of Solomon says he’s black, they
    took Black out and say he’s tan, and in Jeremiah 8:18 -22, God says he’s black, Thomas Nelson the Publisher of the Bibles and Gideon says they are tan. So these people with all of their money and power think they can just take over a history and
    a culture of a people and insert what they want is really sick and evil to me! How would they like for someone to try to steal the history and culture of their race of people! If people wake up, they cannot steal it because all of those people in that Bible are black from the same family except a few Arabs , Italians,Chinese, Greeks and Indians, and since they are the first people of those other races, they came directly from Abraham who is a black man. The game of lying and fooling the public is over, most people can read now, it is 2015, and they are still trying to hide the truth! There are books with the original race and color of the people! You see, the history of God and the Bible is for all mankind, but the race and color of the people and the culture is the culture of the Black race! They didn’t need to go there, we are the first people, but no race is superior to another, that is the way it was manifested in
    the beginning, because God told us in Genesis, everything was black, he was black, so he made black people. Later he said,”Let their be light!” There was light, and he saw how to make lighter people , and he did, and told us in the book of Roman, we are all Abraham and Sarah’s children. Dol

    1. John says:

      “……..he original Bible of St. James …….”
      When was King James made into a saint
      “………. book of Songs of Solomon says he’s black……..”
      King Solomon was Semetic, in other words his line goes back to Shem, the progeny of Ham is where the darker races of man originate………sorry Dolores; you actually have no idea of the races of mankind that sprung from Noah’s three sons Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Abraham was also of Semetic origin……he has the same lineage as Solomon.
      I think that your brain is ‘scrambled’ in relation to any lineages in God’s Word.

  25. louis says:

    Gracias por la información;es muy interesante ayuda bastante si es q le damos el enfoque desde un punto hebreo

  26. Gene R. Conradi says:

    Regarding the historical accuracy of the Bible, the October 25, 1999, issue of U.S.News & World Report said: “In extraordinary ways, modern archaeology has affirmed the historical core of the Old and New Testaments—corroborating key portions of the stories of Israel’s patriarchs, the Exodus, the Davidic monarchy, and the life and times of Jesus.” While faith in the Bible does not hinge on archaeological discoveries, such historical accuracy is what you would expect of a book inspired by God.

    The practical wisdom contained in the Bible benefits people of all backgrounds. Long before the discovery of microorganisms and their role in spreading disease, the Bible recommended hygienic practices that are still relevant today. (Leviticus 11:32-40; Deuteronomy 23:12, 13) Family members who apply the Bible’s advice about how to treat one another are happier. (Ephesians 5:28–6:4) A person who lives by Bible principles may become a more conscientious employee or a more reasonable employer. (Ephesians 4:28; 6:5-9) Applying Bible principles is beneficial for emotional health as well. (Proverbs 14:30; Ephesians 4:31, 32; Colossians 3:8-10) Such practical advice is what we would expect from our Creator.

    WHAT IS THE REWARD? The wisdom found in the Bible can make even an inexperienced person wise. (Psalm 19:7) In addition, once we gain confidence in the Bible, it can help us as no other book can in taking the next step toward having stronger faith.

    http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2009321?q=bible+archaeology&p=par

  27. Kurt says:

    Abraham was the tenth generation from Noah through Shem and was born 352 years after the Deluge, in 2018 B.C.E. Although listed first among the three sons of Terah, at Genesis 11:26, Abraham was not the firstborn. The Scriptures show that Terah was 70 years old when his first son was born, and that Abraham was born 60 years later when his father Terah was 130 years old. (Ge 11:32; 12:4) Evidently Abraham is listed first among his father’s sons because of his outstanding faithfulness and prominence in the Scriptures, a practice that is followed in the case of several other outstanding men of faith such as Shem and Isaac.—Ge 5:32; 11:10; 1Ch 1:28.

    Abraham was a native of the Chaldean city of Ur, a thriving metropolis located in the land of Shinar, near the present junction of the Euphrates and Tigris rivers. It was about 240 km (150 mi) SE of Nimrod’s onetime royal city of Babel, or Babylon, so notorious for its unfinished Tower of Babel.

    In Abraham’s time, the city of Ur was steeped in Babylonish idolatry and the worship of its patron moon-god Sin. (Jos 24:2, 14, 15) Nevertheless, Abraham proved to be a man of faith in Jehovah God, even as his forefathers Shem and Noah; and as a consequence, he earned the reputation “the father of all those having faith while in uncircumcision.” (Ro 4:11) Since true faith is based on accurate knowledge, Abraham may have received his understanding by personal association with Shem (their lives overlapped by 150 years). Abraham knew and used the name of Jehovah; to quote him: “Jehovah the Most High God, Producer of heaven and earth,” “Jehovah, the God of the heavens and the God of the earth.”—Ge 14:22; 24:3.
    Watchtower online library see Ur:
    http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/1200270144

  28. Bardaisan Of Edessa says:

    Have you read your own statement at the beginning of your article? You mention
    “Abraham was said to have been born in Ur of the Chaldees, but there were many places named Ur in antiquity.”. If your statement is true about “many places named Ur”, although you do not provide details of “the other places named UR”, isn’t it clear that “of the chaldees” is a qualification of the exact location of the place UR? Ur was/is in southern Assyria (Iraq).

  29. Mervyn Kersh says:

    We frequently read that the Bible, written by Moses 3,500 years ago, is partly influenced by foreign myths. Why do we not accept that foreign myths are adapted from the Biblical events and beliefs? The Israelites/Jews believed that eavery letter was holy and must be accurately written down. That left little room for errors. I believe that the Bible is accurate.
    Mervyn Kersh

  30. MJ says:

    Love reading all your comments. It leaves me with much food for thought and reinforces my belief in the Bible. Thank you all for sharing your knowledge and theories…

  31. James says:

    It is puzzling to hear someone suggest as above, “It is a matter for the science of archeology to sort out how much of the Biblical story and its transcendant Truth is historical-factual, and how much is not.” When did we become smarter than God? It becomes more puzzling still considering the fact that history has repeatedly demonstrated that archeologists who theorize that the Bible isn’t accurate in a certain point eventually end up being proven wrong. People did not believe King David existed. They believed the Bible was wrong because there was no evidence of David’s existence. Then the Tel Dan Stele was discovered proving otherwise. People thought the Bible was wrong about the Hittites. Oops. Turns out they existed after all. There are many such examples. Time and again people show their arrogance by telling the world that they have discovered that the Bible is wrong only to have God blow the sands and reveal once again that the Bible is true and historically accurate. With not a single piece of proof positive evidence, people believe blindly in evolution, yet when they are unable to find proof positive evidence of a tiny detail of the Bible, no matter the overwhelming proof that already exists, they are ready to throw out the whole Bible. Talk about double standards. It is hard to make people believe you are an honest broker if you subscribe to such philosophies. Mankind’s knowledge is so puny and limited, and yet we are arrogant enough to believe that we know more about what happened millennia ago than the people who saw it for themselves in context. In most circles, such a world view would be considered insanity, but for critics of the Bible, it seems okay. Perhaps it is because they live in a world of insanity. For those who feel so smart and powerful that they can prove God’s word wrong, perhaps they should consider the questions God asked Job when he felt a bit self-important: “Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me. Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements? Surely you know” (Job 38:3-5)! The more digging we do, the more verification we find of the Biblical accounts that have been preserved unchanging for millennia. Yet scientists change their views seemingly with each new edition of a magazine or journal publication and repeatedly have their theories revised, because they found out that there was something they had not considered. Why then would we put our trust in the fickleness of ever changing theories and ideas of arrogant self-important scientists over that of the changeless God who got it right from the beginning?

  32. Tracey says:

    I can’t find my book of Genesis I want to read it because my bible study is in Genesis.. So please help me find it. I’m not to good with my IPad so be patients with me. I love your magazine and look for it to come in.i get the paper because I can’t read on here to long because my sight is bad..But thank you for the free down loads

  33. Marc Neddo says:

    When one starts separating Biblical truth from historical truth one starts undermining the divine inspiration of the Bible. That is to say in this context, if one believes God was the ultimate author of the Genesis account (see the biblical definition of inspiration, 2 Tim 3:16), then He didn’t mislead and misstate the historical truth. He doesn’t go to surrounding creation traditions and myths to fill-in His story. The Genesis account stands firmly alone: if anything, it influenced other cultures’ creation accounts. For sure it was a stalwart stand-alone contrast to man-made and error-laden, idol-generating origin accounts.
    So if one does appeal to other cultures’ origin accounts influencing Genesis, the unstated axiom is the Bible is not truly inspired as the Bible defines inspiration, God is not the ultimate author, truth is relative. BAR is surely allowed to operate under this unstated axiom. Let us not berate them for it. Obviously many of their readers operate under these presuppositions. I believe it to be false and destructive to truth, but it is their prerogative. For the record, however, let it be known that the literal interpretation of most Old Testament texts still remains the champion of biblical archaeology discoveries and analysis. When in doubt or stumped unbelieving archaeologists turn to a literal interpretation of the Scriptures and this approach has the best record of solving problems and leading to new discoveries…despite what critics falsely claim. Remember, they are defending a worldview that attempts to rid them of guilt and subordination to God. It is coherent that they discount the Bible’s worldview. I probably would too in their shoes. Let’s love them; we’re all under grace. Love leads to grace, grace leads to guilt resolution and humility, which leads to a liberating acceptance of the Bible and its truth…and better living. Woe am I, the sinner, but God has mercy…made available for all.

  34. Ladislao says:

    That said, I disagree about the interpretation of the word “Ur”. If there’s more than one of such places, it may indeed represent some generic term for “town”, just as South Asia uses “pur”, even as Mogol India refers to “abad”.
    Ur doesn’t have to be used biblically as “town”, since the term could have been incorporated as a foreign expression.
    But Abraham is never depicted biblically as an Ur-dwelling urban citizen, rather as a full-fledged nomad of the open spaces. From the mentioned residences of some relatives, my feeling is that he would be considered in modern times as a wandering Kurd, and that his local hometown, if any, becomes therefore irrelevant.

  35. Ladislao says:

    For clarity and understanding of the above, please note that Ian usually writes “of” when he means “if”, and also writes “us” meaning “is”. He may be trying to express the phonetical sound of the Turkish “undotted i”.
    But this is not always done, so avoid using an editor to change “back” those words, or you’ll end up with something less understandable.
    Ian’s points are quite believable, in the light of legendary stories being constantly built up from actual historical events, duly mixed-up by each successive leader’s generation with some timely moral teachings, spiced-up by a lot of hero-worship, with some quite inevitable BS filler.
    The idea when reading ancient descriptions, whether legendary, biblical or else, is to look through the allegorical currently readable details, back into the historical facts that must have taken place. Any stark distillation that thus arises should be tested with the standard methods of legend-weaving, to see how plausible it is that such a basic fact could be eventually weaved into the current legendary description.
    This approach is never anti-biblical in any way, rather quite the opposite. It brings some real respect into biblical analysis, as opposed to the destructive blind faith exhibited by fundamentalists, who avoid any possibility of incorporating verifiable truth into their unscientific refusal.

  36. Motylos says:

    You are assuming, Launa, that ‘biblical’ has to mean pro-literalist Bible interpretation. Although archæology started out trying to find historic proof of what was in the biblical record, by the beginning if the 20th century that was quite rightly questioned, because biblical interpretation of the literal sort and archæology more often than not are contradictory. Unless you follow (the largely discredited) David Rohl school of thought, and believe in red-headed tribesmen originating in Eden-Edom, modern archæology is a scientific approach to analysing the evidence from the ground. There us very little evidence, for example, for a powerful southern kingdom of Judah alongside its northern neighbour Samaria. It us likely that Judah was a sub-kingdom of its more powerful neighbour, which is why, when Egypt even is mentioned as an ally, the only biblical King in the alliance at Qarqar is Ahab — Judah was assumed to part of Bit-Humri, the House if Omri. And from that point if view, Ahab did good, and was not ‘a bad king’. It all went wrong with Jehu, actually, who withdrew from the anti-Assyrian alliance and ended up bowing before the Neo-Assyrian king Shalmaneser III. The books if Kings are not historical books, they use history for a theological purpose — if the Deuteronomic History theory is right: it was, Why it all went wrong? It is fascinating to note that while scions of the Davidic royal line were still about in the Return there was no great movement to restore the monarchy.

  37. Motylos says:

    Sadly, Jürgen, you have your facts wrong. The biblical word for town is (Anglicised) kiriath. Ur certainly existed, and during its later period ruled a large kingdom across Sumer and Akkad. However, Ur ‘of the Chaldees’ is an anachronism, as the Chaldæans ruled Babylonia during the Iron Age, replacing the Late Bronze Age Kassites. During the time of Hammurabi, the whole of Mesopotamia was ruled by this Amorites people, and it would have been possible as a semi-nomadic pastoralists to move from Ur to Harran. Indeed, the Amurru (biblical Amorites) and the later Aramæans spread throughout the Levant and Mesopotamia. The latter introduced the Aramaic language into Palestine, and it became the ordinary spoken language through the Neo-Assyrian Empire.

  38. Jürgen Rahf says:

    The biblical “Ur” means only “town”. The place of Abraham was never in South of nowadays Iraq, but in nowadays Turkey in the place of URfa = Sanliurfa. There even the Muslims worship this place. Still Jewish and Christians worship without any evidence the place in “Ur”. – Beside this the biblical Nimrod was the area God of URFA/SANLIUFA and has his throne there.

  39. Brian says:

    I must disagree with the last comment. I am impressed with this organization. What I am not impressed with is L’s hostility to views not her own. “Anyone who accepts the authority of the Word. .” knows that the Word is primarily about Truth and not primarily about historical facts. The Bible contains information that is historical, however. It is a matter for the science of archeology to sort out how much of the Biblical story and its transcendant Truth is historical-factual, and how much is not. The confusion of the (whole, transcendant, spiritual) Truth with the historical-factual dimension of truth is a fundamentalist, anti-science view that in the end denies our God-given reason as well. Science is nothing more than common sense (capacity to use reason) applied in a systematic way. I love the Bible, and I love history, and I know that they are different, although often related. I appreciate Biblical Archeology’s attempts to articulate that relationship.

  40. Nicholas T. Cinelli says:

    I agree. Any org that has biblical in the name should be unfunded by any who believe in The Word. I’ll start by removing my name from their list. I knew of their motives when they continue to use B.C.E. and A.C.E. Common era my eye; it’s BEFORE CHRIST & AFTER CHRIST! I’ve asked them this question a few times, never to get an answer. I know they will not publish this as their “backroom un believers that fund this group” will pull the plug. What’s the saying; “it is better if a millstone were hung around their neck etc., etc. I dare you to print my opinion!

  41. Stephen McLaughlin says:

    Even better than supporting scriptural literalness, it would be nice to know the truth.This organisation isn’t too bad at questioning the pointless dogma,

  42. Launa says:

    Not impressed with this organization. Every article is an attempt to cast doubt on scripture as a historical reference by comparing other “mythical” stories. Any one who respects the authority of the Word accepts the global flood as fact. This leads to the obvious conclusion that all these other ancient cultures descended from Noah’s line. After the tower of babel they were divided and scattered – so obviously there would be very similar creation stories across these cultures, which would differ simply with the telling of it passed down to succeeding geneations! It’s no great mystery. The “Biblical Archeological Society” should stop their subterfuge and remove Biblical from their name. They are clearly not interested in supporting Scripture through archaeology, as their name implies.

  43. Shari says:

    My book went to my kindle app Carol. Try there. 😉

  44. Carol Stehlin says:

    I have downloaded 2 books but can not find out how to pull them up to read. Please explain how I can find them so I can read them.

  45. Varghese says:

    Bible uses terms consistently. It says Ur is in a place called “Land of the Chaldeans” but in Isa 23:13 bible uses that term again in a way that indicates Assyria (Turkey) is a different entity… “Look at the land of the Chaldeans! This is a people that no longer exist; Assyria destined her for desert creatures. They raised up her siege towers, they stripped her fortresses bare and turned her into a ruin.” There are several other verses and events (such as the Babylonian captivity which was certainly in the Land of the Chaldeans which did not happen to be in Turkey/Syria at least for the most part) which prove that Babylon/Chaldean’s Land is Iraq…

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