Iron and Bronze

Ian Goldsmith iangoldsmith1969 at
Thu Sep 5 05:16:52 EDT 2002


> of and I 'believe' them to be in origin much older
> than the later books (in regards of narrative).

...Why don't you attempt to give some substance to
your belief in the age 
of the texts? Look at the historical context that can
be reconstructed 
from the archaeological and epigraphic record. Did the
Hebrew language 
exist prior to the tenth century BCE? If not in which
language were 
these oral traditions of yours? Why are there no
Egyptian words in the 
basic Hebrew language? (Not simply a few names, but
after hundreds of 
years in a more advanced culture not a single word to
describe the benefits 
of that culture remains.) If there is evidence against
the exodus, what 
hope is there for the traditions which are placed
before it? 

You should read about Erra, Gilgamesh, Zuisudra,
Sinouhe, Wen-Amun and 
a host of others who are definitely pre-biblical to
get a perspective 
of the literature of the Ancient Near East. Of course
there is a lot of 
religious literature as well, Mesopotamian, Ugaritic,

Thanks for the tip. I've read Gilgamesh and found it
thoroughly unimpressive in comparison with Genesis.
I've little interest in reading the others mentioned
if they're like it.

Yes. The key word that you kindly quoted from my
previous message is 'believe'. I may have little
'evidence' as you see it (all 'evidence' is subject to
interpretation), but I still believe in the
superiority of the texts of the OT over such as
Gilgamesh etc. 

Most of the OT and the NT assign Mosaic authorship to
the Torah (Gen,Ex,Lev,Num,Josh,Kngs,Mal etc.). This
comes from historical characters (most of which due to
the lack of evidence to validate them, probably didn't
exist right?), much older than a handful of 21st
century grad's looking to rubbish the texts. They must
all be incorrect in their beliefs though right?

We seem both to have a religion in action here, mine a
faith in the texts and the God of the texts and yours
of a humanistic nature, but if I'm not mistaken I am
as entitled to my 'point of view' as you are.

If you find it irritating to have someone like me
stick to those beliefs in the face of your 'evidence'
then perhaps you may wish to just politely disagree
and not waste your time in debating the point.

Apologies if this message strays from the guidelines
of the list.


Ian Goldsmith.

Dibrah Torah kilshone bnei-adam
'The Torah spoke in the language of ordinary men.'
Berakot 31b

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