Sunday, May 13, 2007

Archaeology – the CSI of the Past

I'm astonished at how science and logic enables someone to piece together clues that can unveil the unknown. I started trusting science much more after realizing this. Upon this realization, I also began to notice a correlation between my level of trust in science and the weakening of faith concerning my religious beliefs.

Years ago, I saw one of the many episodes of America's Most Wanted where a man had avoided the law for quite a while. The FBI only had very old photos of this certain fugitive. This fact contributed to the fugitive's success in staying on the run. Since law enforcement couldn't post current images of the fugitive's face, the public wasn't able to contribute any tips to the FBI or police.

But, guess what? The FBI put together a team that examined the skeletal structure of the man's face from the older photos. Then, they applied age progression techniques to figure how he might look in the present. With these techniques, the experts generated a photograph and a bust to present to the public.

When the man was finally captured, I was utterly shocked at the resemblance between the fugitive and the bust made by the FBI. Experts seemingly predicted how he looked in the present by using pictures which were decades old.

The bust pinned him down with razor accuracy.

So, when I saw Nation Geographic do a bust of King Tutankhamen, I trusted the work. I couldn't forget what happened on America's Most Wanted; I was too impressed by the previous work from other experts to believe that King Tut's bust was a sham.

Then, later, I saw a bust of Queen Nefertiti done by Discovery magazine online. I will point out however that this bust does looks quite different from ancient busts made long ago. Then again, the mummy found may not actually be Nefertiti. But still, I'm fascinated at how today people could make a life-like bust from the bone structure of a photograph or from ancient remains.

Here's a question . . . if you walk into any given room in your home and find red marker scribbled all over your wall . . . and let's assume you have children living with you . . . who did it?

Well, you should look at the evidence before jumping to conclusions. I did say children . . . so you have to conclude which child did it – or if all of them were in on it.

One child blames the other sibling(s) and boldly proclaims he or she isn't guilty.

However, the child who is proclaiming innocence has red marker smeared all over his or her hands. The other child or children don't, however. Also, the marker gives off a distinct fume that is all over only one child – the one with marker smeared on the hands; however, still claiming innocence.

So then, who “dun” it?

The little lair standing in front of you.

The more I watched shows on the Discovery, Science, and History channels, the more archeology started reminding me of the CBS show CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. I enjoyed watching people from the world of archeology take bits of evidence and piece together the past and uncover more realistic ideas about what really happened in history.

I started respecting archeology.

So, then, I wanted to read more about it concerning my faith. Surely, if my faith is true, archeology will prove it. Especially since my Thompson Chain Reference Bible had that huge archeology section in the back.

So, I started with a title that I hoped would really prove it all for me – The Bible Unearthed.

I won't dare try to review The Bible Unearthed here. Check out reviews on Amazon or better yet, buy it and read it!

I'll let you decide for yourself if you trust it as a scholarly work.

But for me, that book shattered my faith into splinters. It was the final blow that penetrated my hard shell religious beliefs.

The Bible Unearthed demonstrates through archeology that Israel's Judaism evolved from other ancient folk religions. Israel never left Egypt to come to Canaan according to The Bible Unearthed. The Israelites developed as a people and culture from and among the Canaanite culture already surrounding them.

Follow the implications of that idea and you can see why my faith failed under a crushing, fatal blow.

If Judaism never happened like the Bible says it did, how about Christianity?! After all, Christianity is deeply rooted into Judaism – why it hinges on it!

Oh man, the thought! You mean to say that Yahweh did not personally hand Judaism down to Abraham and Moses?! You mean that Judaism evolved from the Canaanite culture instead?!

If this is true, then the Bible is nothing more than a series of literary works by mere men – so much lower in status than being the inerrant Word of God.

Would an inerrant God issue out his Word in a text that contains errancy, myths and legends?

If God would do something like that, please explain to me how or why.

Such an explanation would clear up a lot of important things for me.
blog comments powered by Disqus