:::Ask the Alliance Question #3:::
Question submitted by Jimmy: Maybe I didn’t do my research right, but it seems like there are many books about apologetics about Jesus and the Gospels and the New Testament, but it seems like there aren’t any apologetics about the Old Testament. I listen to lectures about old testament on the web from well-known schools and most scholars seem to be set with the idea that most of Torah was just a fairy tale, and that the idea of monotheism only appeared after the exile. I wonder if there are any books or websites of apologetics that talk about the Old Testament. Thanks
Eric Chabot answers: If you go to Cross Examined website, Ted Wright who has a specialty in the area did a series of posts on this topic. You have to click on the right under the archeology section.
The Old Testament Documents: Are They Reliable and Relevant? By Walter C. Kaiser
On the Reliability of the Old Testament [K. A. Kitchen]
Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties
W Russell Crawford answers: Also, for those that are not familiar with any evidential apologetic for the O.T. – You have access to the *indirect* argument for the O.T. via the resurrection of Christ (If God raised Christ from the dead, then God validates the claims made by Christ. Christ affirms the validity of the O.T., therefore the O.T. is validated).
Of course, your argument for the resurrection must be adequate.
Larry Lund answers:
Robert Ketchum answers: The Torah a fairy tale?
Faddish historical analysis has come into the lime light recently with the publication of several books that highlight the evolution of monotheism. These are a few: Evolving God: A Provocative View on the Origins of Religion Paperback by Barbara J. King The Evolution of God by Robert Wright, The Evolution of Religion: Studies, Theories, & Critiques (The Humanity Series, 2nd) by et.al Bulbia Joseph (Author), and a recent Time Magazine article on 100 Ideas That Changed The World, which includes a story of the “evolution of monotheism.” These ideas generally make the rounds in academic circles before they hit the popular press. Unfortunately, (young) Christian Scholars are not immune to the sway of pop history.
At my age such things are not new. They come and go, raising up a lot of dust and confusion in their wake. I am reminded of what Solomon said so long ago: All things are full of labor; Man cannot express it. The eye is not satisfied with seeing, Nor the ear filled with hearing. That which has been is what will be, That which is done is what will be done, And there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which it may be said, “See, this is new”? It has already been in ancient times before us. There is no remembrance of former things, Nor will there be any remembrance of things that are to come By those who will come after. (Ecc. 1:8-11)
We are also reminded by the apostle Paul that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting. (Eph 4:14)
Suggested reading (not all of these are from Christian Sources):
Israelite Religions: An Archaeological and Biblical Survey Hardcover by Richard S. Hess
On the Reliability of the Old Testament by K. A. Kitchen
Archaeology and the Old Testament by Alfred J. Hoerth
The Jewish apologetic to the Grecian world in the apocryphal and pseudepigraphical literature by Isaac George Matthews
A Brief History of Old Testament Criticism: From Benedict Spinoza to Brevard Childs by Mark S. Gignilliat
Ancient Post-Flood History: Historical Documents That Point to Biblical Creation by Ken Johnson Th.D (Author)
Stay grounded in the faith once delivered to the saints.
Edgar Andrews answers: We should not overlook the fact that the greatest apologetic work on the OT is the New Testament! Here we see OT prophecies fulfilled and above all Jesus’ own confidence in the OT scriptures (far too many instances to quote but my favourite is Luke 24:25-27, where Christ shows the discouraged disciples ‘in all the scriptures the things concerning himself’). Even a sceptic who denies the inspiration of the NT must admit that the NT documents are 2000 years closer to the events recorded in the OT than we are, and that the NT provides unique insight into OT events and practices (e.g. the Epistle to the Hebrews’ powerful interpretation of the Levitical religious system). And, of course, our modern OT apologetics are not inspired but are no less effective for that.
Selected resources from the CAA Facebook group Files tab:
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