He was talking to Gabi Barkay, an accomplished Archeologist. Gabi is also a great resource when it comes to the Bible's relationship to historical fact.He guided Bruce through this tricky relationship.
"I'm a local Jew," he said. "I don't care whether this or that detail is incorrect in the Bible. It doesn't change my attitude toward the Bible, toward religion, toward God. Or toward myself. But In America, there was an idea that the Bible is a kind of machine; if you prove that two of the screws really existed, then the whole machine existed, and if you take out two of the screws, the whole thing collapses. But the Bible is not a machine. It doesn't have screws."
Gabi switched on a light for me in many ways. First of all, I noticed how my western mind and cultural influence effected the way I look at the Bible. I had to ask some tough questions about what I believe, which I think strengthened my faith in the end. Lastly, he taught me that the writers of the first testament (most Christians call it the Old Testament) did not have an interest in recording history as we know it today. I can't expect the writers of these texts to anticipate what people thousands of years in the future would be interested in. They recorded a magnificent story about land, people, creation, and redemption.
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