Modern objections to the Book of Daniel were started by German scholars who were prejudiced against the supernatural. Daniel foretells events that have occurred in history. Therefore, argue these scholars, the alleged predictions must have been written after the events.
But the supernatural is not impossible, nor is it improbable if sufficient reason for it exists. It is not impossible, for instance, that an event so marvelous as the coming of the Divine into humanity in the person of Jesus Christ should be predicted. So far from being impossible, it seems to common sense exceedingly probable; and furthermore, it seems not unreasonable that a prophet predicting a great and far distant event, like that indicated above, should give some evidence to his contemporaries or immediate successors that he was a true prophet. Jeremiah foretold the seventy years captivity. Could his hearers be warranted in believing that? Certainly. For he also foretold that all those lands would be subjected to the king of Babylon. A few years showed this latter prophecy to be true, and reasonable men believed the prediction about the seventy years.
But the attacks of the German scholars would have been innocuous had it not been for their copyists. The German scholars—even theological professors—are not necessarily Christians. Religion is with them an interesting psychological phenomenon. Their performances are not taken too seriously by their compeers. But outside of their learned circles a considerable number of writers and professors in schools, anxious to be in the forefront, have taken the German theories for proven facts, and by saying “all scholars are agreed,” etc., have spread an opinion that the Book of Daniel is a pious fraud.
There is another class of impugners of Daniel—good men, who do not deny the ability of God to interpose in human affairs and foretell to His servants what shall be hereafter. These men, accepting as true what they hear asserted as the judgment of “all scholars” and regretfully supposing that Daniel is a fiction, have endeavored to save something from the wreck of a book which has been the stay of suffering saints through the ages, by expatiating on its moral and religious teaching. It is probable that these apologists—victims themselves of a delusion which they did not create but which they have hastily and foolishly accepted—have done more harm than the mistaken scholars or the hasty copyists, for they have fostered the notion that a frand may be used for holy ends, and that a forger is a proper teacher of religious truth, and that the Son of God approved a lie.
The scholars find that in chapter 8 of Daniel, under the figure of a very little horn, Antiochus Epiphanes is predicted as doing much hurt to the Jews. The vision is of the ram and he-goat which represent Persia and Greece, so specified by name. A notable horn of the he-goat, Alexander the Great, was broken, and in its place came four horns, the four kingdoms into which the Greek empire was divided. From one of these four sprang the little horn. That this refers primarily to Antiochus Epiphanes there is no doubt. He died about 163 B. C. The theory of the rationalistic critics is that some “pious and learned Jew” wrote the Book of Daniel at that time to encourage the Maccabees in their revolt against this bad king; that the book pretends to have been written in Babylon, 370 years before, in order to make it pass current as a revelation from God. This theory has been supported by numerous arguments, mostly conjectural, all worthless and, in a recent publication, a few designedly delusive.
The imaginary Jew is termed “pious” because lofty religious ideas mark the book, and “learned” because he exhibits so intimate an acquaintance with the conditions and environments of the Babylonian court four centuries before his date. But as no man, however, learned, can write an extended history out of his own imagination without some inaccuracies, the critics have searched diligently for mistakes. The chief of these supposed mistakes will be considered below.
We meet a difficulty at the threshold of the critics’ hypothesis. Dan. 9:26 predicts the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple; a calamity so frightful to the Jewish mind that the Septuagint shrank from translating the Hebrew. What sort of encouragement was this? The hypothesis limps at the threshold.
Having Antiochus Epiphanes in chapter 8 the rationalistic critics try to force him into chapter 7. They find a little horn in chapter 7 and struggle to identify him with the “very little horn” of chapter 8. There is no resemblance between them. The words translated “little horn” are different in the different chapters. The little horn of chapter 7 springs up as an eleventh horn among ten kings. He is diverse from other kings. He continues till the Son of Man comes in the clouds of heaven and the kingdom which shall never be destroyed is set up. Antiochus Epiphanes, the little horn of chapter 8, comes out of one of the four horns into which Alexander’s kingdom resolved itself. He was not diverse from other kings but was like scores of other bad monarchs, and he did not continue till the Son of Man.
These divergences render the attempted identification absurd, but an examination of the two sets of prophecies in their entirety shows this clearly. Chapters 2 and 7 are a prophecy of the world’s history to the end. Chapters 8 and 11 refer to a crisis in Jewish history, a crisis now long past.
Chapter 2, the Image with its head of gold, breast of silver, belly of brass, legs of iron, feet and toes of mingled iron and clay, tells of four world-kingdoms, to be succeeded by a number of sovereignties, some strong, some weak, which would continue till the God of heaven should set up a kingdom never to be destroyed. Chapter 7, the Four Beasts, is parallel to the Image. The same four world-empires are described; the fourth beast, strong and terrible, to be succeeded by ten kings, who should continue till the coming of the Son of Man, who should set up an everlasting kingdom.
These four world-empires were Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome. There have been no other world-empires since. Efforts have been made to unite the divided sovereignties of Europe by royal intermarriages and by conquest, but the iron and clay would not cleave together. The rapidity of the Greek conquest is symbolized by the swift leopard with four wings; its division by four heads. The Roman empire is diverse from the others—it was a republic and its iron strength is dissipated among the nations which followed it and which exist today, still iron and clay.
These prophecies which are illustrated in every particular by history to the present moment stand in the way of the unbelieving theory. The Roman empire, the greatest of all, must be eliminated to get rid of prediction, and any shift promising that end has been welcomed. One set of critics makes the kingdom of the Seleticidae, which was one of the parts of the Greek empire, the fourth world-kingdom, but it never was a world-kingdom. It was part of the Greek empire—one of the four heads upon the leopard. Another set creates an imaginary Median empire between Babylon and Persia. There was no such empire. The Medo-Persian empire was one. Cyrus, the Persian, conquered Babylon. All history says so and the excavations prove it.
Among the nations which were to take the place of the fallen Roman empire, another power was to rise—a“little horn,” shrewd and arrogant. It was to wear out the saints of the Most High, to be diverse from the other ten sovereignties, to have the other sovereignties given into its hand, and to keep its dominion till the coming of the Son of Man.
Whatever this dread power is, or is to be, it was to follow the fall of the Roman empire and to rise among the nations which, ever since, in some form or other have existed where Rome once held sway. Whether that power, differing from civil governments and holding dominance over them, exists now and has existed for more than a thousand years, or is to be developed in the future, it was to arise in the Christian era. The words are so descriptive, that no reader would ever have doubted were it not that the prophecy involves prediction.
The attempt of the “very little horn” of chapter 8, Antiochus Epiphanes, to extirpate true religion from the earth, failed. Yet it was well-nigh successful. The majority of the nation was brought to abandon Jehovah and to serve Diana. The high priest in Jerusalem sent the treasurers of the temple to Antioch as an offering to Hercules. Jews out-bade each other in their subservience to Antiochus. His cruelties were great but his blandishments were more effective for his purpose; “by peace he destroyed many”. Idolatrous sacrifices were offered throughout Judea. Judaism was all but dead, and with its death, the worship of the one God would have found no place in all the earth.
This prophecy encouraged the few faithful ones to resist the Greek and their own faithless fellow countrymen. God foresaw and forewarned. The warning was unheeded by the mass of the Jews. Sadduceeism then did not believe in the supernatural and it has repeated its disbelief. Fortunately, there was a believing remnant and true religion was saved from extinction.
The Seventy Weeks. (Dan. 9:24–27.) “Weeks” in this prophecy are not weeks of days but “sevens,” probably years, but whether astronomical years of 3651/4 days or prophetic years of 360 days does not appear. Our Lord’s saying when referring to the prophecy of Daniel (Matt. 24:15), “Let him that readeth understand,” seems to indicate a peculiarity about the period foretold.
From the issuance of a commandment to restore and rebuild Jerusalem unto Messiah there would be sixty-nine sevens, i.e., 483 years. Messiah would be cut off and have nothing, and the people of a prince would destroy Jerusalem and the temple.
It came to pass in the procuratorship of Pontius Pilate. Messiah appeared; He was cut off; He had nothing, no place to lay His head, nothing except a cross. And before the generation which crucified Him passed away, the soldiers of the Roman emperor destroyed the city and sanctuary, slew all the priests and ended Jewish church and nation.
Unto Messiah the Prince there were to be 483 years from an edict to rebuild Jerusalem. That edict was issued in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes Longimanus. Somewhere between 454 B. C. and 444 B. C. is the date, with the preponderance of opinion in favor of the later date. Four hundred and eighty-three years brings us to 29–39 A. D. Or, if prophetic years are meant, the terminus ad quem is 22–32 A. D. Pontius Pilate was procurator of Judea from 26 A. D. to 36 A. D.
All this is plain enough, and if the words of Daniel had been written after the death of our Saviour and the fall of Jerusalem, no one could fail to see that Jesus Christ is indicated. But if written in the exile this would be supernatural prediction, and hence the struggles of the critics to evade somehow the implications of the passage. To find some prominent person who was “cut-off” prior to 163 B. C. was the first desideratum. The high priest Onias, who was murdered through the intrigues of rival candidates for his office, was the most suitable person. He was in no respect the Messiah, but having been anointed he might be made to serve. He died 171 B. C. The next step was to find an edict to restore and rebuild Jerusalem, 483 years before 171 B. C. That date was 654 B. C., during the reign of Manasseh, son of Hezekiah. No edict could be looked for there. But by deducting 49 years, the date was brought to 605 B. C., and as in that year Jeremiah had foretold (Jer. 25:9) the destruction of Jerusalem, perhaps this would do.
There were two objections to this hypothesis; one, that a prophecy of desolation and ruin to a city and sanctuary then in existence was not a commandment to restore and rebuild, and the other objection was that this also was a supernatural prediction, and as such, offensive to the critical mind. Accordingly, recourse was had to the decree of Cyrus (Ezra 1:1–4) made in 536 B. C. But the decree of Cyrus authorized, not the building of Jerusalem, but the building of the temple. It is argued that forts and other defenses, including a city wall must have been intended by Cyrus, and this would be rebuilding Jerusalem; but the terms of the edict are given and no such defenses are mentioned. Nor is it likely that a wise man like Cyrus would have intended or permitted a fortified city to be built in a remote corner of his empire close to his enemy, Egypt, with which enemy the Jews had frequently coquetted in previous years. At all events, the city was not restored until the twentieth year of Artaxerxes, as appears from Neh. 2:3, 8, 13, etc., where Nehemiah laments the defenseless condition of Jerusalem. Permission to build could safely be given then, for Egypt had been conquered and the loyalty of the Jews to Persia had been tested. Moreover, the date of Cyrus’ decree does not meet the conditions. From 536 B. C. to 171 B. C. is 365 years and not 483. A “learned and pious Jew” would not have made such a blunder in arithmetic in foisting a forgery upon his countrymen.
There were four decrees concerning Jerusalem issued by the Persian court. The first under Cyrus, alluded to above, the second under Darius Hystaspis. (Ezra 6.) The third in the seventh year of Artaxerxes. (Ezra 7:12–26.) All of these concern the temple. The fourth in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes was the only one to restore and rebuild a walled town.
The Book of Daniel was translated into Greek about 123 B. C., forty years after the death of Antiochus Epiphanes. This prophecy of the Seventy Weeks troubled the Jewish translators. It foretold disaster to Jerusalem. City and sanctuary would be destroyed. They had been destroyed 464 years before by Nebuchadnezzar. Would they be destroyed again? The translators were unwilling to believe that such a calamity would occur again. Could they not make out that the words referred to the troubles under Antiochus? It was true that he had destroyed neither city nor temple, but he had polluted the temple. Perhaps that was equivalent to destruction. At all events they did not dare to say that another destruction of Jerusalem lay in the future.
But there stood the words. From the going forth of commandment to restore Jerusalem unto Messiah the Prince would be seven weeks and three score and two weeks, 483 years. They could do nothing with those words. They left them out, and mangled the rest of the passage to give obscurely the impression that the disasters there foretold were a thing of the past.
This mistranslation of a Divine oracle to make it say what they wished it to say was a high-handed proceeding, but it did not prevent its fulfillment. At the time appointed Messiah came and was crucified and Jerusalem fell. The critics’ efforts to force some meaning, other than a prediction of Christ, into this prophecy is thus seen to be not without precedent.
But the rationalistic interpretations of the forementioned great prophecies are so unnatural, so evidently forced in order to sustain a preconceived theory, that they would have deceived none except those predisposed to be deceived. Accordingly, attempts have been made to discredit the Book of Daniel; to show that it could not have been written in Babylon; to expose historical inaccuracies and so forth. The scholars discovered some supposed inaccuracies, and, the fashion having been set, the imitation scholars eagerly sought for more and with the help of imagination have compiled a considerable number. They are in every case instances of the inaccuracy of the critics.
(1). First, may be mentioned, as the only one ever having had any weight, the fact that no historian mentions Belshazzar. It was therefore assumed that “the learned and pious Jew”, whom the critics imagined, had invented the name. Since 1854 this “inaccuracy” has disappeared from the rationalistic dictionaries and other productions. The excavations have answered that.
(2). Disappointed at the discovery of the truth, the critics now find fault with the title “king” which Daniel gives to Belshazzar and assert that no tablets have been found dated in his reign. It is not probable that any such tablets will be found, for his father outlived him and even though Belshazzar were co-king, his father’s name would be in the dates. The tablets, however, show that Belshazzar was the commander of the troops, that he was the man of action—his father being a studious recluse—that he was the darling of the people and that the actual administration was in his hands. He was the heir to the throne and even if not formally invested, was the virtual king in the eyes of the people.
(3). It is objected next that Belshazzar was not the son of Nebuchadnezzar as the queen mother says in Dan. 5:11. If he were the grandson through his mother the same language would be used, and the undisturbed reign of Nabonidus in turbulent Babylon is accounted for in this way.
(4). The quibble that the monuments do not say that Belshazzar was slain at the taking of Babylon is unworthy of the scholar who makes it. It is admitted that Belshazzar was a prominent figure before the city was captured, that “the son of the king died” and that he then “disappeared from history”. He was heir to the kingdom. He was a soldier. His dynasty was overthrown. He disappeared from history. Common sense can make its inference.
(5). It is hard, however, for the impugners of Daniel to let the Belshazzar argument go. To have him appear prominently in the inscriptions, after criticism had decided that he never existed, is awkward. Accordingly, we have a long dissertation (“Sayce’s Higher Crit. and Monuments,” 497–531) showing that the claim of Cyrus to have captured Babylon without fighting is inconsistent with the accounts of the secular historians, which dwell upon the long siege, the desperate fighting, the turning of the river, the surprise at night, etc. Very well, the two accounts are inconsistent. But what has this to do with Daniel? His account is as follows:
“In that night was Belshazzar the Chaldean king slain, and Darius the Mede received the kingdom” (Dan. 5:31). Not a word about a siege, etc. An account entirely consistent with the inscription of Cyrus. And yet the critic has the audacity to say that “the monumental evidence has here pronounced against the historical accuracy of the Scripture narrative”! (“H. C. & M.”, 531). This is not criticism; it is misrepresentation.
(6). Daniel mentions the “Chaldeans” as a guild of wise men. This has been made a ground of attack. “In the time of the exile”, they tell us, “the Chaldeans were an imperial nation. Four centuries afterward the term signified a guild; therefore, Daniel was written four centuries afterward”. It is strange that none of the critics consulted Herodotus, the historian nearest to Daniel in time. He visited Babylon in the same century with Daniel and uses the word in the same sense as Daniel and in no other. (Herod. 1:181, 185.)
(7). The Book of Daniel spells Nebuchadnezzar with an “n” in the penultimate instead of an “r”; therefore, the critics argue, it must have been written 370 years later. But Ezra spells it with an “n”. So do 2 Kings, 1 & 2 Chronicles, and so does Jeremiah seven times out of sixteen. Jeremiah preceded Daniel and if either Kings or Chronicles was written in Babylon we have the same spelling in the same country and about the same time.
(8). As to the Greek words in Daniel, relied on by Driver to prove a late date: when we discover that these are the names of musical instruments and that the Babylonians knew the Greeks in commerce and in war and realize that musical instruments carry their native names with them, this argument vanishes like the rest.
(9). But, it is urged, Daniel gives the beginning of the captivity (1:1) in the third year of Jehoiakim, 606 B. C., whereas Jerusalem was not destroyed till 587 B. C., therefore, etc.
Daniel dates the captivity from the time that he and the other youths were carried away. A glance at the history will suggest when that was. Pharaoh Necho came out of Egypt against Babylon in 609 B. C. He met and defeated Josiah at Megiddo. He then marched on northward. In three months he marched back to Egypt, having accomplished nothing against Babylon. The interval, 609 to 605 B. C., was the opportunity for Nebuchadnezzar. He secured as allies or as subjects the various tribes in Palestine, as appears from Berosus. Among the rest “Jehoiakim (2 Kings 24:1) became his servant three years”. During that time he took as guests or as hostages the noble youths. At the end of the three years, in 605, Necho re-appeared on his way to fatal Carchemish. Jehoiakim renounced Nebuchadnezzar, and sided with Necho. A merciful Providence counted the seventy years captivity from the very first deportation and Daniel tells us when that was. The captivity ended in 536 B. C.
(10). The Aramaic. One critic said Aramaic was not spoken in Babylon. Others, not so self-confident, said the Aramaic in Babylon was different from Daniel’s Aramaic. None of them knew what Aramaic was spoken in Babylon. There was Ezra’s Aramaic. It was like Daniel’s and Ezra was a native of Babylon. To save their argument they then post-dated Ezra too.
In 1906 and 1908, there were unearthed papyrus rolls in Aramaic written in the fifth century, B. C. It is impossible to suggest redactors and other imaginary persons in this case, and so the Aramaic argument goes the way of all the rest. Before these recent finds the Aramaic weapon had begun to lose its potency. The clay tablets, thousands of which have been found in Babylonia, are legal documents and are written in Babylonian. Upon the backs of some of them were Aramaic filing marks stating in brief the contents. These filings were for ready reference and evidently in the common language of the people, the same language which the frightened Chaldeans used when the angry monarch threatened them. (Dan. 2:4.)
There are some other alleged inaccuracies more frivolous than the above. Lack of space forbids their consideration here.
Two new objections to the genuineness of Daniel appear in a dictionary of the Bible, edited by three American clergymen. The article on Daniel states that “the BABA BATHRA* ascribes the writing not to Daniel but along with that of some other books to the men of the Great Synagogue”. this statement is correct in words, but by concealment conveys a false impression. The trick lies in the phrase, “some other books”. What are those other books? They are Ezekiel, Hosea, Amos—all the minor prophets—and Esther. The statement itself is nonsensical, like many other things in the Talmud, but whatever its meaning, it places Daniel on the same footing as Ezekiel and the rest.
The other objection is as follows: “Chapter 11 [of Daniel] with its four world-kingdoms is wonderfully cleared when viewed from this standpoint [i.e. as a Maccabean production]. The third of these kingdoms is explicitly named as the Persian. (11:2.) The fourth to follow is evidently the Greek”.
Every phrase in this is false. The chapter says nothing about four world-kingdoms. Nor does 11:2 say explicitly, or any other way, that the Persian was the third; nor that the Greek was the fourth.
No explanation or modification of these astonishing statements is offered. How could the writer expect to escape detection? True, the Baba Bathra is inaccessible to most people, but Daniel 11 is in everybody’s hands.
Daniel was a wise and well-known man in the time of Ezekiel, else all point in the irony of Ezek. 28:3 is lost. He was also eminent for goodness and must have been esteemed an especial recipient of God’s favor and to have had intercourse with the Most High like Noah and Job. Ezek. 14:15, 20: “When the land sinneth, though Noah, Daniel and Job were in it, they shall deliver but their own souls”. A striking collocation: Noah the second father of the race, Job the Gentile and Daniel the Jew.
Daniel is better attested than any other book of the Old Testament. Ezekiel mentions the man. Zechariah appears to have read the book. The bungling attempt of the Septuagint to alter a prediction of disaster to one of promise; our Saviour’s recognition of Daniel as a prophet; these are attestations. Compare Ezekiel; there is not a word in the Bible to show that he ever existed, but as he does not plainly predict the Saviour no voice is raised or pen wagged against him.
By Joseph D. Wilson
Must Daniel Be Dated in the Sixth Century?
Despite the numerous objections which have been advanced by scholars who regard this as a prophecy written after the event, there is no good reason for denying the sixth-century Daniel the composition of the entire work. This represents a collection of his memoirs made at the end of a long and eventful career which included government service from the reign of Nebuchadnezzar in the 590s to the reign of Cyrus the Great in the 530s. The appearance of Persian technical terms indicates a final recension of these memoirs at a time when Persian terminology had already infiltrated into the vocabulary of Aramaic. The most likely date for the final edition of the book, therefore, would be about 530 b.c., nine years after the Persian conquest of Babylon.
Daniel: Theory of a Maccabean Pseudepigraph
The great majority of critics regard this book as entirely spurious and composed centuries after the death of the sixth-century Daniel. They understand it to be a work of historical fiction composed about 167 b.c. and intended to encourage the resistance movement against the tyranny of Antiochus Epiphanes. There are a good many scholars, however, who are not completely satisfied with the Maccabean date for the earlier chapters in Daniel. Many, like Eichhorn (in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries), Meinhold, Bertholdt, and (in the twentieth century) Sellin, Hoelscher, and Noth have held that chapters 2–6 (some would include chap. 7) originated in the third century b.c. This multiple-source theory of Daniel will be examined later in this chapter. The arguments for dating the composition of this book in the Greek period may be divided into four general headings: the historical, the literary or linguistic, the theological, and the exegetical.
Historical Arguments for the Late Date of Daniel
- The Jewish canon places Daniel among the Kethubhim or Hagiographa, rather than among the prophets. This is interpreted to mean that the book must have been written later than all the canonical prophets, even the post-exilic Malachi and “Trito-Isaiah.” But it should be noted that some of the documents in the Kethubhim (the third division of the Hebrew Bible) were of great antiquity, such as the book of Job, the Davidic psalms, and the writings of Solomon. Position in the Kethubhim, therefore, is no proof of a late date of composition. Furthermore the statement in Josephus (Contra Apionem. 1.8) quoted previously in chapter 5 indicates strongly that in the first century a.d., Daniel was included among the prophets in the second division of the Old Testament canon; hence it could not have been assigned to the Kethubim until a later period. The Masoretes may have been influenced in this reassignment by the consideration that Daniel was not appointed or ordained as a prophet, but remained a civil servant under the prevailing government throughout his entire career. Second, a large percentage of his writings does not bear the character of prophecy, but rather of history (chaps. 1–6), such as does not appear in any of the books of the canonical prophets. Little of that which Daniel wrote is couched in the form of a message from God to His people relayed through the mouth of His spokesman. Rather, the predominating element consists of prophetic visions granted personally to the author and interpreted to him by angels. (Here a comparison may be drawn with Zechariah, which likewise features a series of visions. But in Zechariah far more emphasis is laid upon God’s communicating His message to Israel through a prophetic mouthpiece.) It was probably because of the mixed character of this book, partaking partly of historical narratives and partly of prophetic vision, that the later Jewish scribes relegated it to the third or miscellaneous category in the canon.
- It has been pointed out that Jesus ben Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) makes no mention of Daniel even though he refers to all the other prophets (in 170 b.c.). But it should be noted that other important authors like Ezra received no mention earlier. (Nor for that matter did he make mention of such key figures in Hebrew history as Job, or any of the Judges except Samuel, Asa, Jehoshaphat, and Mordecai. How can such omissions furnish any solid ground for the idea that these leaders were unknown to Jesus ben Sirach? See ZPEB ii 19A.) Critics have also pointed to ben Sirach’s statement that there never was a man who was like unto Joseph; and yet, it is alleged, Daniel’s career greatly resembled that of Joseph. Note, however, that in none of the particulars specified did Daniel resemble Joseph: “Neither was there a man born like unto Joseph, a governor of his brethren, a stay of the people, whose bones were regarded of the Lord” (Ecclus 49:15).
- It has been alleged that such historical inaccuracies occur in Daniel as to render it likely that the author lived much later than the events he describes. For example, in Daniel 1:1, it is stated that Nebuchadnezzar invaded Palestine in the third year of Jehoiakim, whereas Jer. 46:2 says that the first year of Nebuchadnezzar was the fourth year of Jehoiakim. Since the Chaldean conqueror became king upon his father’s death in the year that he invaded Judah, there is a discrepancy of one year between Daniel and Jeremiah. More recent investigation, however, has shown that the Jews reckoned their regnal year from the first month preceding the year of accession (reckoning the year as commencing in the month of Tishri, or the seventh month of the religious calendar). This would mean that 605 b.c. would have been the fourth year of Jehoiakim who came to the throne in 608. The Babylonians, however, reckoned the first regnal year from the next succeeding New Year’s Day, that is, from the first of Nisan (the first month of the Hebrew religious calendar).Therefore, the year 605 would be only Jehoiakim’s third year according to the Chaldean reckoning. Thus in D. J. Wiseman’s Chronicles of the Chaldean Kings (1956), it is stated that Nebuchadnezzar’s first regnal year began in April 604, even though he had been crowned in September 605.
- Critics point to the fact that one class of wise men or soothsayers in the book of Daniel is referred to as the “Chaldeans” (Kasdɩ̂m). They allege that this ethnic term for Nebuchadnezzar’s race could not have become specialized to indicate a class of soothsayers until a much later time. In Nebuchadnezzar’s own time it surely would have carried only a racial connotation. This indicates that the author of Daniel must have written at a time long after the Neo-Babylonian empire had collapsed and had become an almost forgotten memory. This theory, however, fails to fit the data of the text, for the author of this work was certainly aware that Kasdɩ̂m was the ethnic term for the race of Nebuchadnezzar. Thus in Dan. 5:30 Belshazzar is referred to as “the king of the Chaldeans”; in this case the term certainly could not refer to any class of wise men. Even in 3:8 the accusation against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego brought by certain “Chaldean men” seems to refer to high government officials who appear to be “Chaldean by race” (so Brown, Driver, and Briggs, p. 1098), which classifies these officials as Chaldean by race, which means “Chaldean” was used in two senses in this book. Chaldean did not only mean “soothsayer/priest,” but also can indicate a specific race of people. Therefore, the theory of late origin fails to explain the facts as we have them. We must look to other explanations for this twofold use of Kasdɩ̂m. Herodotus (vol. 1, sec. 181–83) refers to the Chaldeans in such a way as to imply that they were speedily put into all the politically strategic offices of Babylonia as soon as they had gained control of the capital. If this was the case, then “Chaldean” may have early come into use as a term for the priests of Bel-Marduk.
Another suggestion has been offered by R. D. Wilson (Studies in the Book of Daniel, series one) to the effect that the Akkadian Kasdu or Kaldu, referring to a type of priest, was derived from an old Sumerian title Gal-du (meaning “master builder”), a term alluding to the building of astronomical charts which were used as an aid to astrological prediction. Wilson cites such a use of Gal-du in a tablet from the fourteenth year of Shamash-shumukin of Babylon (668–648 b.c.). It should be noted that a good many Sumerian titles have been found which contain the element Gal (“great one, chief, master”). On a single page in Jacobsen’s Copenhagen Texts (p. 3) we find these titles: Gal-LU KUR, Gal-UKU, Gal-DAN-QAR, and Gal-SUKKAL. The resemblance between this Gal-du or Kaldu and the ethnic term Kaldu as a by-form of Kasdu would be purely accidental. Such an explanation clears up the divergent usages of this term by the author of Daniel. In 3:8, the accusation against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego is brought by certain “Chaldean men,” who are probably high government officials.
- The appearance of King Belshazzar in chapter 5 was interpreted by earlier critics to be unhistorical, inasmuch as Nabonidus was known to be the last king of the Chaldean empire. Later discoveries of cuneiform tablets referring to Belshazzar as “the son of the king” serve to discredit that criticism almost completely (one tablet from the twelfth year of Nabonidus calls for oaths in the names of both Nabonidus and Belshazzar [mar šarri]). Nevertheless it is still objected that Belshazzar is referred to in chapter 5 as a son of Nebuchadnezzar, whereas his father was actually Nabonidus (Nabunaʾid) who reigned until the fall of Babylon in 539. It is alleged that only a later author would have supposed that he was Nebuchadnezzar’s son. This argument, however, overlooks the fact that by ancient usage the term son often referred to a successor in the same office whether or not there was a blood relationship. Thus in the Egyptian story, “King Cheops and the Magicians” (preserved in the Papyrus Westcar from the Hyksos Period), Prince Khephren says to King Khufu (Cheops), “I relate to thy Majesty a wonder that came to pass in the time of thy father, King Neb-ka.” Actually Neb-ka belonged to the Third Dynasty, a full century before the time of Khufu in the Fourth Dynasty. In Assyria a similar practice was reflected in the Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III, which refers to King Jehu (the exterminator of the whole dynasty of Omri) as “the son of Omri.” Moreover, it is a distinct possibility that in this case there was an actual genetic relationship between Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar. If Nabonidus married a daughter of Nebuchadnezzar in order to legitimize his usurpation of the throne back in 556 b.c., it would follow that his son by her would be the grandson of Nebuchadnezzar. The word for “father” (ʾab or ʾabbāʾ) could also mean grandfather (see Gen. 28:13; 32:10; in 1 Kings 15:13 it means “great grandfather”).
There is fairly conclusive evidence that Belshazzar was elevated to secondary kingship (mar šarri, “son of the king”) during his father’s lifetime (just as Jotham had been during the lifetime of his father, Uzziah, in the kingdom of Judah—a common practice in ancient times in order to secure a peaceful succession). Recent archaeological discoveries indicate that Belshazzar was in charge of the northern frontier of the Babylonian empire while his father Nabonidus maintained his headquarters at Teman in North Arabia. Among the discoveries the site of Ur is an inscription of Nabunaid, dated 530 b.c., containing a prayer for Nabunaid himself followed by a second prayer for his firstborn son, Bel-shar-usur (Belshazzar)—such prayers being customarily offered only for the reigning monarch. Among the discoveries at the site of Ur is an inscription of Nabonidus, dated 543 b.c., containing a prayer for Nabonidus and Belshazzar (mar šarri—“son of the king”) followed by a second prayer for his firstborn son, Bel-šar-uṣur (Belshazzar)—such prayers being customarily offered only for the reigning monarch. Still other cuneiform documents attest that Belshazzar presented sheep and oxen at the temples in Sippar as “an offering of the king.” The fact that by the time of Herodotus (ca. 450 b.c.) the very name of Belshazzar had been forgotten, at least so far as the informants of the Greek historian were concerned, indicates a far closer acquaintance with the events of the late sixth century on the part of the author of Daniel than would have been the case by the second century b.c.
There is an additional detail in this account that makes the theory of late authorship very difficult to maintain, and that is that the writer of chapter 5 quotes Belshazzar as promising to the interpreter of the inscription on the wall promotion to the status of third ruler in the kingdom (5:16). Why could he only promise the third and not the second? Obviously because Belshazzar himself was only the second ruler, inasmuch as Nabonidus his father was still alive.
- It is alleged that the figure of “Darius the Mede” is an evidence of historical confusion. It is supposed that the author must have confused him with Darius the son of Hystaspes, who was the third successor after King Cyrus, and who was really a Persian instead of a Mede. But this interpretation is impossible to defend in the light of the internal evidence of the text itself. No explanation can be found for calling Darius the son of Hystaspes a Mede, when he was known to be the descendant of an ancient Achaemenid royal line. The author asserts that Darius the Mede was sixty-two years old when he assumed the rule in Babylonia, yet it was well known to the ancients that Darius the Great was a relatively young man when he commenced his reign in 522. In Dan. 9:1 it is asserted that Darius the Mede was made king (homlak) over the realm of the Chaldeans. This term indicates that he was invested with the kingship by some higher authority than himself, which well agrees with the supposition that he was installed as viceroy in Babylonia by Cyrus the Great. Similarly, in Dan. 5:31 we are told that Darius “received” (qabbēl) the “kingdom” (malkūtā). Note in this connection the reference by Darius I in the Behistun Inscription to his father Hystaspes as having been made a king. Since chronological reckoning shows that he must have been only a sub-king who ruled under the authority of Cyrus, this established that it was Cyrus’s policy to permit subordinate rulers to reign under him with the title of king.
It has been objected that a mere viceroy would not have addressed a decree to the inhabitants of “all the earth” (Dan. 6:25). If the word earth refers to the whole inhabited Near East, the objection is well taken (since the authority of Darius the Mede would necessarily have been confined to the former dominions of Nebuchadnezzar, which did not include Asia Minor, North Assyria, Media, or Persia). But it should be pointed out that the Aramaic word ʾar˓ā (like its Hebrew cognate ʾereṣ) may signify only “land or country,” rather than having the wider significance. So construed, the term presents no difficulty at all. Yet it should also be pointed out that part of the ancient titulary of the king of Babylon ever since the time of Hammurabi was the phrase šar kiššati or “king of the universe” (“king of all”). In his decree, therefore, Darius the Mede may simply have been following ancient custom in using terminology which implied a theoretical claim to universal dominion.
The question remains, however, who was this Darius the Mede? No ancient historian refers to him by this name. Nevertheless, there is powerful cumulative evidence to show that he is to be identified with a governor named Gubaru, who is referred to both by the cuneiform records and by the Greek historians as playing a key role in the capture of Babylon and its subsequent administration. For some decades it has been customary to identify this Gubaru (“Gobryas,” Greek) with the ruler mentioned by Daniel. Nevertheless, there have been some puzzling discrepancies in the ancient records concerning this personage, and these have encouraged critical scholars like H. H. Rowley to reject the identification between Gubaru and Darius the Mede as altogether untenable.
Rowley’s arguments have been superseded, however, by the able work of J. C. Whitcomb in his Darius the Mede (1959). Whitcomb has gathered together all the ancient inscriptions referring to Ugbaru, Gubaru, and Gaubaruva, to be found in the Nabonidus Chronicle, the Contenau Texts, the Pohl Texts, the Tremayne Texts, and the Behistun Inscription. By careful comparison and the process of elimination, Whitcomb shows that the former assumption that Ugbaru and Gubaru were variant spellings of the same name is quite erroneous and has given rise to bewildering confusion. Ugbaru was an elderly general who had been governor of Gutium; it was he who engineered the capture of Babylon by the stratagem of deflecting the water of the Euphrates into an artificial channel. While it is true that no cuneiform document yet discovered refers to Ugbaru’s role in this, and that the earliest historical record of the stratagem of river-diversion comes from Herodotus in the 540s (Hist i, 107, 191), nevertheless it is inconceivable that this account was a free invention of his own. It would have served the official propaganda line of Cyrus’s government to omit mention of this stratagem in the interests of representing that Babylon surrendered to him voluntarily. But according to the cuneiform records, Ugbaru lived only a few weeks after this glorious achievement, apparently being carried off by an untimely illness. It would appear that after his decease, a man named Gubaru was appointed by Cyrus as governor of Babylon and of Ebir-nari (“beyond the river”). He is so mentioned in tablets dating from the fourth, sixth, seventh, and eighth years of Cyrus (i.e., 535, 533, 532, and 531 b.c.) and in the second, third, fourth, and fifth years of Cambyses (528, 527, 526, and 525 b.c.). He seems to have perished during the revolts of Pseudo-Smerdis and Darius I, for by March 21, 520 b.c., the new satrap of Babylonia is said to be Ushtani.
Whitcomb goes on to say, “It is our conviction that Gubaru, the governor of Babylon and the region beyond the river, appears in the book of Daniel as Darius the Mede, the monarch who took charge of the Chaldean kingdom immediately following the death of Belshazzar, and who appointed satraps and presidents (including Daniel) to assist him in the governing of this extensive territory with its many peoples. We believe that this identification is the only one which satisfactorily harmonizes the various lines of evidence which we find in the book of Daniel and in the contemporary cuneiform records.”
Whitcomb further cites the statement of W. E Albright in “The Date and Personality of the Chronicler” (JBL, 40:2:11): “It seems to me highly probable that Gobryas did actually assume the royal dignity along with the name “Darius,” perhaps an old Iranian royal title, while Cyrus was absent on a European campaign.… After the cuneiform elucidation of the Belshazzar mystery, showing that the latter was long coregent with his father, the vindication of Darius the Mede for history was to be expected.… We may safely expect the Babylonian Jewish author to be acquainted with the main facts of Neo-Babylonian history.” As Albright suggests, it is quite possible that the name Darius (Darayavahush, in Persian) was a title of honor, just as “Caesar” or “Augustus” became in the Roman empire. In Medieval Persian (Zend) we find the word dara, meaning “king.” Possibly Darayavahush would have meant the “royal one.” (The personal name of Darius I was actually Spantadata, son of Wistaspa [Hystaspes]; Darayawus was his throne-name. Cf. E W. Konig: “Relief und Inschrift des Konigs Dareios I” [Leiden, 1938], p. 1.)
In this connection a word should be said about the remarkable decree referred to in Dan. 6 which forbade worship to be directed toward anyone else except Darius himself during the period of thirty days. Granted that the king later repented of the folly of such a decree when he discovered it was merely part of a plot to eliminate his faithful servant Daniel, it still is necessary to explain why he ever sanctioned the measure in the first place. In view of the intimate connection between religious and political loyalty which governed the attitude of the peoples of that ancient culture, it might well have been considered a statesmanlike maneuver to compel all the diverse inhabitants with their heterogeneous tribal and religious loyalties to acknowledge in a very practical way the supremacy of the new Persian empire which had taken over supreme control of their domains. A temporary suspension of worship (at least in the sense of presenting petitions for blessing and aid) was a measure well calculated to convey to the minds of Darius’s subjects the reality of the change in control from the overlordship of the Chaldeans to that of the Medes and Persians. In the light of ancient psychology, therefore, it is unwarrantable to rule out of possibility such a remarkable decree or to condemn it as fabulous or unhistorical, as many critics have done.
Literary and Linguistic Arguments for the Late Date of Daniel
- Foreign loanwords were found in the Aramaic of Daniel. It has been alleged that the numerous foreign words in the Aramaic portion of Daniel (and to a lesser extent also in the Hebrew portion) conclusively demonstrate an origin much later than the sixth century b.c. There are no less than fifteen words of probable Persian origin (although not all these have actually been discovered in any known Persian documents), and their presence proves quite conclusively that even the chapters dating back to Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar could not have been composed in the Chaldean period. This contention may be freely admitted, but conservative scholars do not maintain that the book of Daniel was composed, in its final form at least, until the establishment of the Persian authority over Babylonia. Since the text indicates that Daniel himself lived to serve, for several years at least, under Persian rule, there is no particular reason why he should not have employed in his language those Persian terms (largely referring to government and administration) which had found currency in the Aramaic spoken in Babylon by 530 b.c. While it is true that the Elephantine Papyri contain fewer Persian loan-words than Daniel (H. H. Rowley in 1929 contended that there were only two—actually there are several more), in the “Aramaic Documents of the 5th Century b.c.” published by G. R. Driver (Oxford, 1957) and composed for the most part in Susa or Babylon (op. cit. pp. 10–12), there are no less than twenty-six Persian loanwords.
But it is alleged that the presence of at least three Greek words in Daniel 3 indicates that the work must have been composed after the conquest of the Near East by Alexander the Great. These three words (in 3:5) are qayterôs (kitharis, Greek), psantērɩ̂n (psaltērion, in Greek), and sūmpōnyah (symphonia, Greek). The last of these three does not occur in extant Greek literature until the time of Plato (ca. 370 b.c.), at least in the sense of a musical instruments.9 From this it has been argued that the word itself must be as late as the fourth century in Greek usage. But since we now possess less than one-tenth of the significant Greek literature of the classical period, we lack suflicient data for timing the precise origin of any particular word or usage in the development of the Greek vocabulary.
It should carefully be observed that these three words are names of musical instruments and that such names have always circulated beyond national boundaries as the instruments themselves have become available to the foreign market. These three were undoubtedly of Greek origin and circulated with their Greek names in Near Eastern markets, just as foreign musical terms have made their way into our own language, like the Italian piano and viola. We know that as early as the reign of Sargon (722–705 b.c.) there were, according to the Assyrian records, Greek captives who were sold into slavery from Cyprus, Ionia, Lydia, and Cilicia. The Greek poet Alcaeus of Lesbos (fl. 600 b.c.) mentions that his brother Antimenidas served in the Babylonian army. It is therefore evident that Greek mercenaries, Greek slaves, and Greek musical instruments were current in the Semitic Near East long before the time of Daniel. It is also significant that in the Neo-Babylonian ration tablets published by E. F. Weidner, Ionian carpenters and shipbuilders are mentioned among the recipients of rations from Nebuchadnezzar’s commissary—along with musicians from Ashkelon and elsewhere (cf. “Jojachin Konig von Juda” in Melanges Syriens, vol. 2, 1939, pp. 923–35).
Two or three other words have been mistakenly assigned by some authors to a Greek origin, but these have now been thoroughly discredited. One of them was kārôz (“herald”) which was supposedly derived from the Greek kēryx (Brown-Driver-Briggs Lexicon). But in more recent works, like Koehler-Baumgartner’s Hebrew Lexicon, this derivation is explicitly rejected in favor of the old Persian khrausa, meaning “caller.” Kitchen suggests that the word ultimately came from the Hurrian Kirenze or kirezzi, “proclamation.” C. C. Torrey and A. Cowley regarded pathgām as derived from Greek, but Kutscher, in Kedem (2:74) published a leather roll of Arsames from about 410 b.c. in which this term occurs more than once. Needless to say, this renders a Greek derivation impossible. In all probability it was derived from the Old Persian pratigama, which meant originally something which has arrived, hence a “communication” or “order.” Actually, the argument based upon the presence of Greek words turns out to be one of the most compelling evidences of all that Daniel could not have been composed as late as the Greek period. By 170 b.c. a Greek-speaking government had been in control of Palestine for 160 years, and Greek political or administrative terms would surely have found their way into the language of the subject populace. The books of Maccabees testify to the very extensive intrusion of Greek culture and Greek customs into the life of the Jews by the first half of the second century, particularly in the big cities.
Furthermore it should be observed that even in the Septuagint translation of Daniel, which dates presumably from 100 b.c., or sixty-five years after Judas Maccabeus, the rendition of several of the Aramaic technical terms for state officials was mere conjecture. For example, in Dan. 3:2 ˓aḏargāzerayyā, (“counselors”) is rendered hypatous (“grandees”); gedobrayyā’ (“treasurers”) by dioikētēs (“administrators, governors”); and tiptayyē, or detāberayyā, (“magistrates,” or “judges”) by the one general phrase tous ʾepʾexousiōn (“those in authority”). (Theodotion uses still other translations, such as hēgoumenous and tyrannous, for the first two officials just mentioned.) It is impossible to explain how within five or six decades after Daniel was first composed (according to the Maccabean date hypothesis) the meaning of these terms could have been so completely forgotten even by the Jews in Egypt, who remained quite conversant in Aramaic as well as in Greek. (Cf. D. J. Wiseman, Some Problems in the Book of Daniel, p. 43.)
This is especially significant in view of the fact that the Aramaic of Daniel was a linguistic medium which readily absorbed foreign terminology. It includes approximately fifteen words of Persian origin, almost all of which relate to government and politics. It is hard to conceive, therefore, how after Greek had been the language of government for over 160 years, no single Greek term pertaining to politics or administration had ever intruded into Palestinian Aramaic. The same generalization holds good for the Hebrew portions of Daniel as well. It contains such Persian terms as palace (appeden in 11:45, from apadāna), noblemen (partemɩ̂n 1:3, from fratama) and king’s portion (paṯbāg in 1:5, from patibaga). Yet the Hebrew chapters contain not a single word of Greek origin (even though, according to some critics, Daniel’s Hebrew is later than his Aramaic sections).
It was formerly asserted that the Aramaic of Daniel is of the Western dialect and hence could not have been composed in Babylon, as would have been the case if the sixth-century Daniel was its real author. Recent discoveries of fifth-century Aramaic documents, however, have shown quite conclusively that Daniel was, like Ezra, written in a form of Imperial Aramaic (Reichsaramaisch), an official or literary dialect which had currency in all parts of the Near East. Thus the relationship to the Aramaic of the Elephantine Papyri from southern Egypt is a very close one, inasmuch as they too were written in the Imperial Aramaic. E. Y. Kutscher, in a review of G. D. Driver’s Aramaic Documents of the Fifth Century b.c. (1954), comments upon linguistic peculiarities of these letters which were sent from Babylon and Susa in the Eastern Aramaic area. He states: “With regard to Biblical Aramaic, which in word order and other traits is of the Eastern type (i.e., freer and more flexible in word order) and has scarcely any Western characteristics at all, it is plausible to conclude that it originated in the East. A final verdict on this matter, however, must await the publication of all the Aramaic texts from Qumran.” (Noteworthy is the uniform tendency to put the verb late in the clause.)
- Grammatical evidences for early date of Daniel’s Aramaic. One noteworthy characteristic in the Aramaic of Daniel which marks it as of early origin is to be found in the fairly frequent interval-vowel-change passives. That is to say, instead of adhering exclusively to the standard method of expressing the passive (by the prefix hit- or ʾet-), the biblical Aramaic used a hophal formation (e.g., ḥonḥat from neḥat, hussaq from seliq, hūbad from abad and hu˓al from ʾâlal). Note than an occasional hophal appears also in a 420 b.c. Elephantine papyrus (CAP #20, line 7) “they were entrusted.” No such examples of hophal forms have as yet been discovered in any of the Aramaic documents published from the Dead Sea caves (some of which, like the Genesis Apocryphon, date from scarcely a century later than the Maccabean wars). Such forms cannot be dismissed as mere Hebraisms employed by the Jewish author of Daniel, since even the Jewish scribes of the Targums never used such forms; but only the ʾet- type of passive. If Hebrew influence could have produced internal-vowel passives it might reasonably be expected to have shown itself even in the Targums.
Largely because of the close relationship of biblical Aramaic to the Elephantine Papyri (which date from the fifth and fourth centuries b.c.), many scholars have been forced to date chapters 2–7 of the book of Daniel as no later than the third century b.c. Even H. H. Rowley concedes that the evidence is conclusive that biblical Aramaic stands somewhere between the Elephantine Papyri and the Aramaic of the Nabatean and Palmyrene Inscriptions. Sachau states quite plainly that the language of the Papyri is in all essential respects identical with biblical Aramaic.
- C. Torrey and Montgomery came to the conclusion that Dan. 1–6 was written between 245 and 225 b.c., and that a later editor translated chapter 1 into Hebrew around 165 b.c. Eissfeldt (Einleitung, 1934) likewise indicated that the first six chapters came from the third century b.c. and the last six were from the Maccabean period and were intended as a continuation of the older work. Gustav Hoelscher in Die Entstehung des Buches Daniel (1919) followed the view of Ernst Sellin, who stated that an older Aramaic Daniel apocalyptic or biography comprised chapters 1–7 (chap. 1 being later translated into Hebrew, and Maccabean insertions having been made in chaps. 2 and 7), whereas chapters 8–12 were truly Maccabean in date. Hoelscher states that it might have been possible that the author of the collection of legends (chaps. 2–6) took them directly from oral tradition or found them already in older written form. Yet he points out that they show unmistakably the hand of a single author running throughout the text because of a certain uniformity in style and method of treatment. Both Hoelscher and Martin Noth (Zur Komposition des Buches Daniel, 1926) attempted to date the origin of certain elements and motifs by a correlation with current events of Hellenistic history insofar as they were known to them.
The mere fact that chapters 2–7 of Daniel were written in Aramaic and the remainder in Hebrew has been adduced by some writers as a ground for a late dating of the document. Some have argued that Aramaic would hardly have been favored over the traditionally sacred Hebrew until a period so late in Jewish history that Hebrew had become almost unintelligible and forgotten by all except the rabbis themselves. (This position is impossible to maintain, however, if the Hebrew chapters were composed even later than the Aramaic—a clear self-contradiction.) It should be understood, however, that the claim of the sacrosanctity of Hebrew is a mere theory which rests on slender foundations. The Jews apparently took no exception to the Aramaic sections in the book of Ezra, most of which consist of copies of correspondence carried on in Aramaic between the local governments of Palestine and the Persian imperial court from approximately 520 to 460 b.c. If Ezra can be accepted as an authentic document from the middle of the fifth century, when so many of its chapters were largely composed in Aramaic, it is hard to see why the six Aramaic chapters of Daniel must be dated two centuries later than that. It should be carefully observed that in the Babylon of the late sixth century, in which Daniel purportedly lived, the predominant language spoken by the heterogeneous population of this metropolis was Aramaic. It is therefore not surprising that an inhabitant of that city should have resorted to Aramaic in composing a portion of his memoirs.
As to the question of why half the book was written in Aramaic and half in Hebrew, the reason for the choice is fairly obvious. Those portions of Daniel’s prophecy which deal generally with Gentile affairs (the four kingdoms of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, the humiliation of that king in the episode of the fiery furnace and by his seven years of insanity, and also the experiences of Belshazzar and Darius the Mede) were put into a linguistic medium which all the public could appreciate whether Jew or Gentile. But those portions which were of particularly Jewish interest (chaps. 1, 8–12) were put into Hebrew in order that they might be understood by the Jews alone. This was peculiarly appropriate because of the command in chapter 12 to keep these later predictions more or less secret and seal them up until the time of fulfillment (12:9).
So far as the Hebrew of Daniel is concerned, we have already seen that it contains a significant number of Persian governmental terms, indicating its origin during the period of Persian domination. There is no trace whatsoever of Greek influence on the language. It is interesting to observe that the Hebrew text of Ecclesiasticus, dating from about 200–180 b.c., shortly before the Maccabean period, furnishes us with a fair sample of the type of Hebrew which would have been current at the time Daniel was written—according to the late-date theorists. Since Ecclesiasticus is a document of the wisdom literature, it is to be expected that it would bear no great stylistic resemblances to the later chapters of Daniel. Nevertheless, it is quite striking that Ecclesiasticus exhibits later linguistic characteristics than Daniel, being somewhat rabbinical in tendency. Israel Levi in his Introduction to the Hebrew Text of Ecclesiasticus (1904) lists the following: (a) new verbal forms borrowed mainly from Aramaic, (b) excessive use of the hiphil and hithpael conjugations, and (c) peculiarities of various sorts heralding the approach of Mishnaic Hebrew.
So far as the Qumran material is concerned, none of the sectarian documents composed in Hebrew (The Manual of Discipline, The War of the Children of Light Against the Children of Darkness, The Thanksgiving Psalms) in that collection show any distinctive characteristics in common with the Hebrew chapters of Daniel. Cf. J. H. Skilton, ed., The Law and the Prophets (Nutley, NJ.: Presbyterian & Reformed), chap. 41: “The Hebrew of Daniel Compared with the Qumran Sectarian Documents,” by G. L. Archer, pp. 470–81. Nor is there the slightest resemblance between the Aramaic of the Genesis Apocryphon and the Aramaic chapters of Daniel.
Dated in the first century b.c., this copy of the Genesis Apocryphon presents us with at least five legible columns of Aramaic composed within a century of the alleged date of Daniel, according to the Maccabean date hypothesis. As such it surely should have exhibited many striking points of resemblance to the Aramaic of Dan. 2–7, in grammar, style, and vocabulary. This is especially true since the editors of this manuscript, N. Avigad and Y. Yadin, suggest that the original was composed as early as the third century b.c. Kutscher describes (“The Language of the Genesis-Apocryphon” in Scripta Hierosolymita (Jerusalem, 1958], p. 3) the language of the Apocryphon as neither Imperial Aramaic in general nor biblical Aramaic in particular. It should be noted that in contrast to the Eastern dialectical traits of Daniel, the Apocryphon shows distinctly Western traits, such as the prior position of the verb in its clause, the use of kaman instead of kemah for “how much, how great?” and of tammān instead of tammah for “there.” Note also the appearance of a mif˓ōl instead of a mif˓al for the peal infinitive; for instance, misbōq (“to leave”), instead of the biblical misbaq, a form which hitherto had been classed as peculiar to the Palestinian Targumic or Midrashic dialect. If Daniel then was composed in Eastern Aramaic, it could not possibly have been written in second-century Palestine, as the Maccabean theory demands.
At this point mention should be made of one phonetic characteristic of Daniel’s Aramaic to which appeal has been made by H. H. Rowley, J. A. Montgomery, and others, as an evidence for a later date of composition. In the earlier Aramaic inscriptions, as well as in the Elephantine Papyri of the fifth century, a certain phoneme appears as z, which in biblical Aramaic almost always appears as d. It is urged that if Daniel had been written as early as the fifth century b.c. (to say nothing of the sixth century) the older spelling with z should have been retained.
In answer to this, it ought to be pointed out that up to the present time no Aramaic documents from any region have been discovered from the sixth century b.c., much less from the eastern or Babylonian section of the Aramaic-speaking world. Until such documents are discovered, it is premature to say whether the shift from z to d had taken place by that period. It certainly ought to be recognized that this shift had consistently taken place in the Aramaic chapters of Ezra (at least so far as the text has come down to us), which presumably reflected the pronunciation of Aramaic in Persia, from which Ezra came. It would therefore appear that the shift from z to d took place earlier in the East than it did in the West (since the Elephantine Papyri show this shift only in four or five examples: ʾ-, h-d for ʾh-z [“take”], d-y 1-k-y for z-y 1-k-y [“yours”] in A. Cowley’s Aramaic Papyri of the Fifth Century b.c. (London: Oxford, 1923), (hereafter CAP), 13:7, 11, 16; d-k-ʾ for z-k-ʾ [“clean”] CAP 14:6, 9; d-k-y for z-k-y [“that”] CAP 21:6; 27:12; d-n-h for z-n-h [“this”] CAP 16:9). See also CAP 30 m-d-b-h-ʾ (“altar”) and d-b-ḥ-n (“sacrificing”) instead of m-z-b-ḥ and z-b-ḥ-n. It is by no means necessary to suppose all the consonantal shifts took place simultaneously in Aramaic throughout the whole area of the Near East where this language was current. (For example, in the history of Medieval German it may be verified from documentary evidence that the High German consonantal shifts took place earlier in some regions of Germany than they did in others.)
Moreover, many grammatical traits mark the Apocryphon as centuries later than the Aramaic of Daniel, Ezra, or the Elephantine Papyri, such as -haʾ for the feminine third person possessive pronoun, instead of –āh; dēn for “this” instead of denah; the ending -iyat for third feminine singular perfect of lamed-aleph verbs instead of –āt—and many other examples. As for the vocabulary, a considerable number of words occur in the Apocryphon which have hitherto not been discovered in Aramaic documents prior to the Targum and Talmud. (A full account of these distinctives in grammar and vocabulary will be found in the author’s article [chap. 11] in New Perspectives on the Old Testament, ed. B. Payne [Waco, Tex.: Word, 1969]). Neither in morphology, nor syntax, nor style of expression can any evidence be found in Daniel for a date of composition approaching the period of these sectarian documents. According to the Maccabean Date Theory, the entire corpus of Daniel had to have been composed in Judea in the second century b.c., only a few decades before these documents from Qumran. In the light of this newly discovered linguistic evidence, therefore, it would seem impossible.
Theological Arguments Advanced to Show the Late Date of Daniel
ADHERENTS OF THE MACCABEAN THEORY customarily lay great emphasis upon the supposed development or evolution of religious thought of the Israelite nation. They point to motifs and emphases in Daniel which they believe to be akin to those characterizing the apocryphal literature of the Inter-testamental Period (such works as the Book of Enoch and the Testament of the Twelve Patriarchs, or even such books of the Apocrypha as Tobit and Susanna). These emphases include the prominence of angels, the stress upon the last judgment, the resurrection of the dead, and the establishment of the final kingdom of God upon earth with the Messiah as the supreme ruler of the world. It is conceded that there are occasional references to angels and judgment, the kingship of God, and the Messiah in some earlier books of the Old Testament, but it is felt that these teachings have achieved a far more developed form in Daniel than in Ezekiel or Zechariah. The angelology in particular is thought to resemble that of the Book of Enoch (first century b.c.).
This, however, is a very difficult statement to substantiate. Any reader may easily verify the fact that Zechariah also mentions the Messiah and angels on several occasions in his prophecies, which date from 519 to approximately 470 b.c. (2:3; 3:1; 6:12; 9:9; 13:1; 14:5). Furthermore, angels play a very similar role in Zechariah to that in Daniel, namely, that of interpreting the significance of visions which were presented to the prophet. The affinity is close enough to warrant the deduction that either Zechariah had influenced Daniel or Daniel had influenced Zechariah. There are two significant references to the Messiah in Malachi as well (Mal. 3:1 and 4:2) and to the last judgment also in chapter 3. On the other hand, works which are admittedly of the second century b.c., such as 1 Maccabees and the Greek additions to Daniel, Baruch, and Judith, show none of these four elements (angelology, resurrection, last judgment, and Messiah) which are asserted to be so characteristic of this period that they betray the second-century origin of Daniel. Even the Jewish apocryphal literature from the first century a.d. contains only two works (out of a possible sixteen) having all four characteristics, namely, the Vision of Isaiah and the Ascension of Isaiah.
Perhaps it would be well at this point to review the occurrence of these four elements in the earlier books of the Old Testament. Concerning the ranks of angels, Genesis mentions cherubim, Joshua refers to a prince of the angels. Their function was said to be the delivery of messages to Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Gideon, and various prophets such as Isaiah, Zechariah, and Ezekiel. Thus as early as the Torah we find the angels revealing the will of God, furnishing protection for God’s people, and destroying the forces of the enemy. So far as the resurrection is concerned, there is the famous affirmation of Job in Job 19:25–26 (although another interpretation of this passage is possible); Isaiah’s affirmation in 26:19 (“Thy dead shall live; my dead bodies shall arise,” ASV); Ezekiel’s vision of the valley of dry bones, and possibly the resuscitation of the dead by Elijah and Elisha. On the other hand, of the large number of postcanonical works, only the Book of the Twelve Patriarchs refers to a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked as is found in Dan. 12:2. The doctrine of the last judgment is mentioned in Isaiah, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, and in many of the psalms. In many instances this judgment pertains to the nations of the world as well as to Israel. References to the book of life or a book of remembrance go back as far as Ex. 32:32–33 and Isa. 4:3 (cf. Isa. 65:6; Ps. 69:28; and Mal. 3:16). The concept of the Messiah appears as early as Gen. 3:15 and 49:10 (cf. Num. 24:17; Deut. 18:15; Isa. 9:6–7; 11:1; Jer. 23:5–6; 33:11–17; Ezek. 34:23–31; Mic. 5:2).
Doubtless it is possible to make out some kind of progression in the development of these doctrines during the history of God’s revelation to Israel, but it is a mistake to suppose that Daniel contains anything radically new in any of the four areas under dispute. Moreover, these precise doctrines were most appropriate for Israel’s comfort and encouragement during the time of captivity and on the threshold of their return to the promised land.
Exegetical Arguments for the Late Date of Daniel
Champions of the Maccabean Date Theory allege that it was impossible for a sixth-century author to have composed such detailed predictions concerning coming events in the history of Israel as are contained in the prophetic chapters of the book of Daniel. They also allege that it is a suspicious circumstance that such accurate predictions only extend to the reign of Antiochus IV (175–164 b.c.) but nothing beyond this time. The obvious conclusion to draw, therefore, is that the entire work was composed by one who lived in the reign of Antiochus IV and who composed this literary fiction in order to encourage the Jewish patriots of his own generation to join with the Maccabees in throwing off the Syrian yoke. Thus, all of the fulfilled predictions can be explained as vaticinia ex eventu.
This explanation of the data in Daniel, which is as old as the neo-Platonic polemicist Porphyry (who died in a.d. 303), depends for its validity on the soundness of the premise that there are no accurate predictions fulfilled subsequently to 165 b.c. This proposition, however, cannot successfully be maintained in the light of the internal evidence of the text and its correlation with the known facts of ancient history. Yet it should be recognized that considerable attention in Daniel is devoted to the coming events of the reign of Antiochus, for the very good reason that this period was to present the greatest threat in all of subsequent history (apart, of course, from the plot of Haman in the time of Esther) to the survival of the faith and nation of Israel. Assuming that these predictions were given by divine inspiration and that God had a concern for the preservation of His covenant people, it was to be expected that revelations in Daniel would make it clear to coming generations that He had not only foreseen but had well provided for the threat of extinction which was to be posed by Antiochus Epiphanes.
This prophetic emphasis was all the more warranted in view of the fact that Antiochus and his persecution were to serve as types of the final Antichrist and the great tribulation which is yet to come in the end time (according to Christ’s Olivet discourse, recorded in Matt. 24 and Mark 13). This is made evident from the startling way in which the figure of the Greek emperor Antiochus suddenly blends into the figure of the latter day Antichrist in Dan. 11, beginning with verse 40. (Note that the Little Horn is said in 11:45 to meet his death in Palestine, whereas Antiochus IV actually died in Tabae, Persia.) It is interesting to note that even S. R. Driver admits that these last mentioned verses do not correspond with what is known of the final stages of Antiochus’ career; actually he met his end at Tabae in Persia after a vain attempt to plunder the rich temple of Elymais in Elam.
It is fair to say that the weakest spot in the whole structure of the Maccabean theory is to be found in the identification of the fourth empire predicted in chapter 2. In order to maintain their position, the late-date theorists have to interpret this fourth empire as referring to the kingdom of the Macedonians or Greeks founded by Alexander the Great around 330 b.c. This means that the third empire must be identified with the Persian realm established by Cyrus the Great, and the second empire has to be the short-lived Median power, briefly maintained by the legendary Darius the Mede. According to this interpretation, then, the head of gold in chapter 2 represents the Chaldean empire, the breast of silver the Median empire, the belly and the thighs of brass the Persian empire, and the legs of iron the Greek empire. Although this identification of the four empires is widely held by scholars today, it is scarcely tenable in the light of internal evidence. That is to say, the text of Daniel itself gives the strongest indications that the author considered the Medes and Persians as components of the one and same empire, and that despite his designation of King Darius as “the Mede,” he never entertained the notion that there was at any time a separate and distinct Median empire previous to the Persian Empire.
In the first place, the symbolism of Dan. 7 precludes the possibility of identifying the second empire as Media and the third empire as Persia. In this chapter, the first kingdom is represented by a lion. (All scholars agree that this represents the Chaldean or Babylonian realm.) The second kingdom appears as a bear devouring three ribs. This would well correspond to the three major conquests of the Medo-Persian empire: Lydia, Babylon, and Egypt (under Cyrus the Great and Cambyses). The third empire is represented as a leopard with four wings and four heads. There is no record that the Persian empire was divided into four parts, but it is well known that the empire of Alexander the Great separated into four parts subsequent to his death, namely, Macedon-Greece, Thrace-Asia Minor, the Seleucid empire (including Syria, Babylonia, and Persia), and Egypt. The natural inference, therefore, would be that the leopard represented the Greek empire. The fourth kingdom is presented as a fearsome ten-horned beast, incomparably more powerful than the others and able to devour the whole earth. The ten horns strongly suggest the ten toes of the image described in chapter 2, and it should be noted that these toes are described in chapter 2 as having a close connection with the two legs of iron. The two legs can easily be identified with the Roman empire, which in the time of Diocletian divided into the Eastern and the Western Roman empires. But there is no way in which they can be reconciled with the history of the Greek empire which followed upon Alexander’s death.
In Dan. 8 we have further symbolism to aid us in this identification of empires two and three. There a two-horned ram (one horn of which is higher than the other, just as Persia overshadowed Media in Cyrus’s empire) is finally overthrown by a hegoat, who at first shows but one horn (easily identified with Alexander the Great) but subsequently sprouts four horns (i.e., Macedon, Asia Minor, Syria, and Egypt), out of which there finally develops a little horn, that is, Antiochus Epiphanes.
From the standpoint of the symbolism of chapters 2, 7, and 8, therefore, the identification of the four empires with Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome presents a perfect correspondence, whereas the identifications involved in the Maccabean Date Theory present the most formidable discrepancies.
History of Kingdoms
Diadochi (i.e. “Successors”):
Antipater, reigned as regent 321–319 b.c.
Cassander, his son, ruled 319–317 b.c. and secured Macedonia and Greece. He assumed the title of king in 305 after he had murdered Alexander IV in 310.
Lycimachus received custody of Thrace in 323 b.c., and Asia Minor in 301, assuming the title of king in 305 b.c.
Ptolemy took over Egypt in 323 b.c.; after 301 b.c. he also took over Phoenicia and re-conquered Cyprus in 294 b.c. He also assumed the title of king in 305, expelling Demetrius Poliorcetes from Macedonia in 288, and died in 281 b.c.
Seleucus I independent king of Babylon in 311 b.c., conquered all the way to the Indus River in 302 b.c.—died in 281.
Perdiccas served earlier as regent of the empire from 323 to 321 b.c.
Antigonus I assumed postion of regent in 320, fought Eumenes, killing him in 316 b.c. and then claimed all Asia under his control. He died in 301 at the Battle of Ipsus.
Demetrius Poliorcetes defeated Ptolemy at Cyprus in 306 b.c. (although Ptolemy later conquered it). Demetrius narrowly escaped from his own defeat at the Battle of Ipsus in 301 b.c.
To sum up, then, it should be understood that prior to the development of these four realms an effort was made to keep the Alexandrian empire together. First Perdiccas was chosen as regent, but he passed away in 321 b.c. After him came Antigonus I who defeated King Eumenes of Pergamum, slaying him in 316 b.c., and subsequently claimed all of Asia under his control. Eventually, however, Antigonus and his son, Demetrius Poliorcetes, were defeated by the armies of Antipater, Lycimachus, and Seleucus at the Battle of Ipsus in 301 b.c. Then, along with Ptolemy, the way was clear for each of them to claim the title of king and maintain a seperate realm.
In this connection it ought to be noted that the strongest argument for identifying Daniel’s fourth empire with that of Alexander and his Greek successors is derived from the appearance of the little horn in chapters 7 and 8. That is to say, in chapter 7 the little horn admittedly develops from the fourth empire, that is, from the fearsome ten-horned beast who overthrows the four-winged leopard. But in chapter 8, the little horn develops from the head of the he-goat, who plainly represents the Greek empire. As we have already mentioned, this goat commenced its career with one horn (Alexander the Great), but then produced four others in its place. There can be no question that the little horn in chapter 8 points to a ruler of the Greek empire, that is, Antiochus Epiphanes (cf. 8:9). The critics therefore assume that since the same term is used, the little horn in chapter 7 must refer to the same individual. This, however, can hardly be the case, since the four-winged leopard of chapter 7 (i.e., 7:24) clearly corresponds to the four-horned goat of chapter 8; that is, both represent the Greek empire which divided into four after Alexander’s death. The only reasonable deduction to draw is that there are two little horns involved in the symbolic visions of Daniel. One of them emerges from the third empire, and the other is to emerge from the fourth. It would seem that the relationship is that of type (Antiochus IV of the third kingdom) and antitype (the Antichrist who is to arise from the latter-day form of the fourth empire). This is the only explanation which satisfies all the data and which throws light upon 11:4–45, where the figure of the historic Antiochus suddenly blends into the figure of an Antichrist who is yet to come in the end time.
Two other considerations should be adduced to show that the author regarded the Medes and Persians as constituting the one and same empire. In Dan. 6, Darius is said to be bound by “the law of the Medes and Persians,” so that he could not revoke the decree consigning Daniel to the lions’ den. If the author regarded Darius as ruler of an independent Median empire earlier in time than the Persian, it is impossible to explain why he would have been bound by the laws of the Persians. Second, we have the evidence of the handwriting on the wall as interpreted by Daniel in 5:28. There Daniel is represented as interpreting the inscription to Belshazzar, the last king of the first empire, that is, the kingdom of the Chaldeans. He says in interpreting the third word, peres, “Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.” This is obviously a word play in which the term parsɩ̂n, or rather its singular peres, is derived from the verb peras, meaning “to divide or separate.” But it is also explained as pointing to pārās, or “Persian.” This can only mean that according to the author, the Chaldean empire was removed from Belshazzar as the last representative of the first empire and given to the Medes and Persians who constituted the second empire. This cannot mean that the rule was first given to the Medes and only later to be transmitted to the Persians, because the significant word which appeared in the handwriting on the wall was quite specifically the word “Persia.” The sequence, therefore, is clear: the empire passed from the Chaldeans to the Persians. There can be no legitimate doubt that the author regarded the Persians as masters of the second empire. This being the case, we must conclude that the fourth empire indeed represented Rome.
If, then, the fourth empire of chapter 2, as corroborated by the other symbolic representations of chapter 7, clearly pointed forward to the establishment of the Roman empire, it can only follow that we are dealing here with genuine predictive prophecy and not a mere vaticinium ex eventu. According to the Maccabean Date Theory, Daniel was composed between 168 and 165 b.c., whereas the Roman empire did not commence (for the Jews at least) until 63 b.c., when Pompey the Great took over that part of the Near East which included Palestine. To be sure, Hannibal had already been defeated by Scipio at Zama in 202 b.c., and Antiochus III had been crushed at Magnesia in 190, but the Romans had still not advanced beyond the limits of Europe by 165, except to establish a vassal kingdom in Asia Minor and a protectorate over Egypt. But certainly, as things stood in 165 b.c., no human being could have predicted with any assurance that the Hellenic monarchies of the Near East would be engulfed by the new power which had arisen in the West. No man then living could have foreseen that this Italian republic would have exerted a sway more ruthless and widespread than any empire that had ever preceded it. This one circumstance alone, then, that Daniel predicts the Roman empire, is sufficient to overthrow the entire Maccabean Date Hypothesis (which of course was an attempt to explain away the supernatural element of prediction and fulfillment). As we shall presently see, there are other remarkable predictions in this book which mark it as of divine inspiration and not a mere historical novel written in the time of Maccabees.
It should also be pointed out that the Maccabean Date Theory fails to explain how the book of Daniel ever came to be accepted by the later Jews as Holy Scripture. In Deut. 18:22 the principle was laid down: “If the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken.” That is to say, any person claiming to be a genuine prophet of the Lord, whose predictions of coming events do not come to pass, is to be utterly rejected. There can be no doubt that the description given in Dan. 11:40–45 relative to the latter end of the little horn does not at all correspond to the manner in which Antiochus Epiphanes met his death; there is a definite break in the prophetic revelation beginning at 11:40. This break is indicated by the words, “and at the time of the end.” Those who espouse the Liberal theory can only allege that the Maccabean author of Daniel was unsuccessful in his effort to predict the manner of Antiochus’s downfall. He did his best, but it simply did not come out that way. Yet if this was actually the case, it is impossible to conceive how the Jews could have continued to regard this writing as canonical or authoritative, since it contained false prophecy. If, however, the work was composed by the historic Daniel, it is easy to see how this work would have been preserved as the genuine Word of God. The fact that so many events in subsequent history were accurately predicted back in the sixth century by the historic Daniel would serve as an authentication of its trustworthiness as a divine revelation.
Additional Proofs of Daniel’s Authorship
First of all, we have the clear testimony of the Lord Jesus Himself in the Olivet discourse. In Matt. 24:15, He refers to “the abomination of desolation, spoken of through [dia] Daniel the prophet.” The phrase “abomination of desolation” occurs three times in Daniel (9:27; 11:31; 12:11). If these words of Christ are reliably reported, we can only conclude that He believed the historic Daniel to be the personal author of the prophecies containing this phrase. No other interpretation is possible in the light of the preposition dia, which refers to personal agency. It is significant that Jesus regarded this “abomination” as something to be brought to pass in a future age rather than being simply the idol of Zeus set up by Antiochus in the temple, as the Maccabean theorists insist.
Second, the author of Daniel shows such an accurate knowledge of sixth-century events as would not have been open to a second-century writer; for example, in 8:2, the city of Shushan is described as being in the province of Elam back in the time of the Chaldeans. But from the Greek and Roman historians we learn that in the Persian period Shushan, or Susa, was assigned to a new province which was named after it, Susiana, and the formerly more extensive province of Elam was restricted to the territory west of the Eulaeus River. It is reasonable to conclude that only a very early author would have known that Susa was once considered part of the province of Elam.
Third, we have in chapter 9 a series of remarkable predictions which defy any other interpretation but that they point to the coming of Christ and His crucifixion ca. a.d. 30, followed by the destruction of the city of Jerusalem within the ensuing decades. In Dan. 9:25–26, it is stated that sixty-nine heptads of years (i.e., 483 years) will ensue between a “decree” to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, and the cutting off of Messiah the Prince. In 9:25–26, we read: “Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks.… And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.”
There are two ways of computing these sixty-nine heptads (or 483 years). First, by starting from the decree of Artaxerxes issued to Nehemiah in 445 b.c. (cf. Neh. 2:4, 8) and reckoning the 483 years as lunar years of 360 days each, which would be equivalent to 471 solar years and would result in the date a.d. 26 for the appearance of the Messiah and His “cutting off” (or crucifixion). Or, more reasonably, the starting point may be identified with the decree of Artaxerxes in his seventh year, issued for the benefit of Ezra in 457 b.c. This apparently included authority for Ezra to restore and build the city of Jerusalem (as we may deduce from Ezra 7:6–7, and also 9:9, which states, “God … hath extended lovingkindness unto us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to give us a reviving, to set up the house of our God, and to repair the ruins thereof, and to give us a wall in Judea and in Jerusalem,” ASV). Even though Ezra did not actually succeed in accomplishing the rebuilding of the walls until Nehemiah arrived eleven or twelve years later, it is logical to understand 457 b.c. as the terminus a quo for the decree predicted in Dan. 9:25; 483 solar years from 457 b.c. would come out to a.d. 26 as the time of Christ’s ministry (or a.d. 27, since a year is gained when passing from 1 b.c. to a.d. 1). Note that the wording of verse 26, “And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off,” does not compel us to understand the 483 as pinpointing the time of the actual crucifixion; it is simply that after the appearance of the Messiah, He was going to be cut off. It should be noted that in Neh. 1:3–4 Nehemiah was shocked and disheartened by the news that the walls and gates of Jerusalem had recently been destroyed (presumably by the same hostile neighboring nations as later tried to frustrate Nehemiah himself—(Neh. 2:19–20, 4:1–3; 7–23). This strongly suggests that Ezra himself had earlier attempted to rebuild but had been overcome by these malicious raiders. (It is out of the question to understand that in 446 … Nehemiah could have been shocked with the news that the walls of Jerusalem had just been destroyed in 587, 140 years ago!)
Theory of Diverse Sources for the Origin of Daniel
Mention has already been made of the concessions by Hoelscher and Torrey that the Aramaic portions of the book of Dan. originated from the third century b.c., although they feel that the chapters in Hebrew were quite definitely composed by an unknown Maccabean novelist. Since the allowance of such earlier components would seem to undermine the supporting structure for the Maccabean date as a whole, it is appropriate to summarize the suggestions made by proponents of this earlier source theory and to append a few pertinent comments.
In 1909 C. C. Torrey published his view that the first half of Daniel was composed about the middle of the third century b.c., whereas the second half originated with a Maccabean author who translated chapter 1 into Hebrew and then composed chapter 7 in Aramaic in order to make it dovetail more closely with chapters 2–6. Montgomery in the ICC accepted this suggestion with this exception: he regarded chapter 7 as a composition distinct from the other two sections. Otto Eissfeldt in his Einleitung (1934) espoused the same view: that the first six chapters were from the third century, and the last six were from the Maccabean period and composed as a continuation of the older work.
Gustav Hoelscher in Die Entstehung des Buches Daniel (1919) had strongly supported the pre-Maccabean origin of chapters 1–7, demonstrating very convincingly that Nebuchadnezzar as portrayed in chapters 2–4 represented a far more enlightened and tolerant attitude toward the Jewish religion (generally speaking) than did the Greek tyrant Antiochus Epiphanes, and therefore could not have served as a type of the latter. Martin Noth in Zur Komposition des Buches Daniel (1926) went so far as to date the original portions of chapters 2 and 7 from the time of Alexander the Great; then, during the third century, the legends of chapters 1–6 were collected and the vision of the four kingdoms was included in a remolded form.
- L. Ginsburg in his “Studies in Daniel” (cf. pp. 5ff., 27ff.) in 1948 undertook to isolate six different authors who contributed to the corpus of Daniel: chapters 1–6 were composed between 292 and 261 b.c.; chapter 2 was then subjected to reworking and insertions between 246 and 220 b.c.; chapter 7 came from the Maccabean period generally; chapter 8 was composed between 166 and 165; chapters 10–12 came from a different author from the same period; and chapter 9 came from a slightly later period than 165. H. H. Rowley in The Unity of Daniel (1952) conceded the earlier existence in oral form of some of the materials composing chapters 1–6, but nevertheless undertook to defend quite vigorously the essential unity of the composition of Daniel in its present literary form—that is, in the time of the Maccabees.
It should be noticed that the assignment of considerable sections of Daniel to a century or more before the time of the Maccabean revolt serves to endanger the whole hypothesis of a second-century origin as propounded by advocates of the late-date theory. Thus, if the portrait of Nebuchadnezzar greatly contrasts with the character and attitude of Antiochus Epiphanes, his relevance to the Maccabean situation becomes rather obscure. The same is true with the rest of the historical episodes in which the heathen government seems to treat the Jews with toleration and respect. Moreover, it should be observed that the whole concept of vaticinium ex eventu is fatally compromised if Dan. 1–7 was in fact composed before the fulfilment of the political developments so explicitly foretold in those seven chapters.
By Gleason Archer Jr.
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WHAT IS A MIRACLE? It is an event that goes beyond all known human and natural powers and is generally attributed to some supernatural power. Why should YOU be interested in miracles?
“Miracles, by definition, violate the principles of science.”—RICHARD DAWKINS.
“Belief in miracles is entirely rational. Far from being an embarrassment to religious faith, they are signs of God’s love for, and continuing involvement in, creation.”—ROBERT A. LARMER, PROFESSOR OF PHILOSOPHY.
SHOULD YOU believe in miracles? As we can see from the above quotations, opinions vary considerably. But how could you convincingly answer that question?
Some of YOU may immediately answer, “Yes, I believe.” Others might say, “No, I don’t believe.” Then, there are some who may say, “I don’t know, and I really don’t care! Miracles don’t happen in my life!” Really, why should YOU be interested in miracles? The Bible promises its readers that in the future some miracles far beyond all ever recorded or experienced is going to occur and will affect every living person on earth. Therefore, would it not be worth some of your time and energy to find out whether those promises are reliable? What does God’s Word really teach about miracles of Bible times, after that, our day, and the future?
Andrews, an author of over 100 books, has chosen the 40 most beneficial Proverbs, to give the readers an abundance of wise, inspired counsel to help them acquire understanding and safeguard their heart, “for out of it are the sources of life.” (4:23) GODLY WISDOM SPEAKS sets things straight by turning the readers to Almighty God. Each Proverb is dealt with individually, giving the readers easy to understand access to what the original language really means. This gives the readers what the inspired author meant by the words that he used. After this, the reader is given practical guidance on how those words can be applied for maneuvering through life today. GODLY WISDOM with its instruction and counsel never go out of date.
Yes, God will be pleased to give you strength. He even gives “extraordinary power” to those who are serving him. (2 Cor. 4:7) Do you not feel drawn to this powerful Almighty God, who uses his power in such kind and principled ways? God is certainly a “shield for all those who take refuge in him.” (Psalm 18:30) You understand that he does not use his power to protect you from all tragedy now. He does, however, always use his protective power to ensure the outworking of his will and purpose. In the long run, his doing so is in your best interests. Andrews shares a profound truth of how you too can have a share in the power of God. With THE POWER OF GOD as your guide, you will discover your strengths and abilities that will make you steadfast in your walk with God. You can choose to rise to a new level and invite God’s power by focusing on The Word That Will Change Your Life Today.
Herein Andrews will answer the “why.” He will address whether God is responsible for the suffering we see. He will also delve into whether God’s foreknowledge is compatible with our having free will. He will consider how we can objectively view Bible evidence, as he answers why an almighty, loving and just God would allow bad things to happen to good people. Will there ever be an end to the suffering? He will explain why life is so unfair and does God step in and solve our every problem because we are faithful? He will also discuss how the work of the Holy Spirit and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit should be understood in the light of wickedness. Lastly, Andrews will also offer biblical counsel on how we can cope when any tragedy strikes, …
GOD knows best. Nobody surpasses him in thought, word, or action. As our Creator, he is aware of our needs and supplies them abundantly. He certainly knows how to instruct us. And if we apply divine teaching, we benefit ourselves and enjoy true happiness. Centuries ago, the psalmist David petitioned God: “Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me” (Psalm 25:4-5) God did this for David, and surely He can answer such a prayer for His present-day servants.
Whom do we lean upon when facing distressing situations, making important decisions, or resisting temptations? With good reason, the Bible admonishes us: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways know him, and he will make straight your paths.” (Prov. 3:5-6) Note the expression “do not lean upon your own understanding.” It is followed by “In all your ways know him.” God is the One with a truly sound mind. Thus, it follows that whenever we are faced with a decision, we need to turn to the Bible to see what God’s view is. This is how we acquire the mind of Christ.
Yes, God will be pleased to give you strength. He even gives “extraordinary power” to those who are serving him. (2 Cor. 4:7) Do you not feel drawn to this powerful Almighty God, who uses his power in such kind and principled ways? God is certainly a “shield for all those who take refuge in him.” (Psalm 18:30) You understand that he does not use his power to protect you from all tragedy now. He does, however, always use his protective power to ensure the outworking of his will and purpose. In the long run, his doing so is in your best interests. Andrews shares a profound truth …
All of us will go through difficult times that we may not fully understand. The apostle Paul wrote, “in the last days difficult times will come.” (2 Tim. 3:1) Those difficulties are part of the human imperfection (Rom. 5:12) and living in a fallen world that is ruled by Satan (2 Cor. 4:3-4). But when we find ourselves in such a place, it’s crucial that we realize God has given us a way out. (1 Cor. 10:13) Edward Andrews writes that if we remain steadfast in our faith and apply God’s Word correctly when we go through difficult times, we will not only grow spiritually, but we will …
Why should you be interested in the prophecy recorded by Daniel in chapter 11 of the book that bears his name? The King of the North and the King of the South of Daniel are locked in an all-out conflict for domination as a world power. As the centuries pass, turning into millenniums, first one, then the other, gains domination over the other. At times, one king rules as a world power while the other suffers destruction, and there are stretches of time where there is no conflict. But then another battle abruptly erupts, and the conflict begins anew. Who is the current King of the North and the King of the South? Who are the seven kings or kingdoms of Bible history in Revelation chapter 17? We are living in the last days that the apostle Paul spoke of, when he said, “difficult times will come.” (2 Tim. 3:1-7) How close we are to the end of these last days, wherein we will enter into the Great Tribulation that Jesus Christ spoke of (Matt. 24:21), no one can know for a certainty. However, Jesus and the New Testament authors have helped to understand the signs of the times and …
The theme of Andrews’ new book is “YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE.” As a Christian, you touch the lives of other people, wherein you can make a positive difference. Men and women of ancient times such as David, Nehemiah, Deborah, Esther, and the apostle Paul had a positive influence on others by caring deeply for them, maintaining courageous faith, and displaying a mild, spiritual attitude. Christians are a special people. They are also very strong and courageous for taking on such an amazingly great responsibility. But if you can make a difference, be it with ten others or just one, you will have done what Jesus asked of you, and there is no more beautiful feeling. YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE with joy.
Many have successfully conquered bad habits and addictions by applying suggestions found in the Bible and by seeking help from God through prayer. You simply cannot develop good habits and kick all your bad ones overnight. See how to establish priorities. Make sure that your new habits work for you instead of your old bad habits against you. It is one thing to strip off the old habits, yet quite another to keep them off. How can we succeed in doing both, no matter how deeply we may have been involved in bad habitual practices?
It may seem to almost all of us that we are either entering into a difficult time, living in one, or just getting over one and that we face one problem after another. This difficulty may be the loss of a loved one in death or a severe marriage issue, a grave illness, the lack of a job, or simply the stress of daily life. As Christians, we need to understand that God’s Word will carry us through these times, as we maintain our integrity whether in the face of tremendous trials or the tension of everyday life. We are far better facing these hurdles of life with the help of God, who can make the worst circumstances much better and more bearable.
The world that you live in today has many real reasons to be fearful. Many are addicted to drugs, alcohol, bringing violence into even the safest communities. Terrorism has plagued the world for more than a decade now. Bullying in schools has caused many teen suicides. The divorce rate even in Christian households is on the rise. Lack of economic opportunity and unemployment is prevalent everywhere. Our safety, security, and well-being are in danger at all times. We now live in a prison of fear to even come outside the protection of our locked doors at home. Imagine living where all these things existed, but you could go about your daily life untouched by fear and anxiety. What if you could be courageous and strong through your faith in these last days? What if you could live by faith not fear? What if insight into God’s Word could remove your fear, anxiety, and dread? Imagine a life of calmness, peace, unconcern, confidence, comfort, hope, and faith. Are you able to picture a life without fear? It is possible.
John 3:16 is one of the most widely quoted verses from the Christian Bible. It has also been called the “Gospel in a nutshell,” because it is considered a summary of the central theme of traditional Christianity. Martin Luther called John 3:16 “The heart of the Bible, the Gospel in miniature.” The Father had sent his Son to earth to be born as a human baby. Doing this meant that for over three decades, his Son was susceptible to the same pains and suffering as the rest of humankind, ending in the most gruesome torture and execution imaginable. The Father watched the divine human child Jesus grow into a perfect man. He watched as John the Baptist baptized the Son, where the Father said from heaven, “This is my Son, the beloved, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matt. 3:17) The Father watched on as the Son faithfully carried out his will, fulfilling all of the prophecies, which certainly pleased the Father.–John 5:36; 17:4. …
This commentary volume is part of a series by Christian Publishing House (CPH) that covers all of the sixty-six books of the Bible. These volumes are a study tool for the pastor, small group biblical studies leader, or the churchgoer. The primary purpose of studying the Bible is to learn about God and his personal revelation, allowing it to change our lives by drawing closer to God. The Book of James volume is written in a style that is easy to understand. The Bible can be difficult and complex at times. Our effort herein is to make it easier to read and understand, while also accurately communicating truth. CPH New Testament Commentary will convey the meaning of the verses in the book of Philippians. In addition, we will also cover the Bible background, the custom and culture of the times, as well as Bible difficulties. …
SECTION 1 Surviving Sexual Desires and Love will cover such subjects as What Is Wrong with Flirting, The Pornography Deception, Peer Pressure to Have Sexual Relations, Coping With Constant Sexual Thoughts, Fully Understanding Sexting, Is Oral Sex Really Sex, …SECTION 2 Surviving My Friends will cover such subjects as Dealing with Loneliness, Where Do I Fit In, Why I Struggle with Having Friends, …SECTION 3 Surviving the Family will cover such subjects as Appreciating the House Rules, Getting Along with My Brothers and Sisters, How Do I Find Privacy, … SECTION 4 Surviving School will cover such subjects as How Do I Deal With Bullies, How Can I Cope With School When I Hate It, … SECTION 5 Surviving Who I Am will cover such subjects as Why Do I Procrastinate, … SECTION 6 Surviving Recreation will cover such subjects as … SECTION 7 Surviving My Health will cover such subjects as How Can I Overcome My Depression, …
Who should read THIRTEEN REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD KEEP LIVING? Anyone who is struggling in their walk as a young person. Anyone who has a friend who is having difficulty handling or coping with their young life, so you can offer them the help they need. Any parent who has young ones. And grade school, junior high or high school that wants to provide an, in touch, anti-suicide message to their students. … Many youths say that they would never dream of killing themselves. Still, they all have the deep feeling that there are no reasons for going on with their lives. Some have even hoped that some sort of accident would take their pain away for them. They view death as a release, a way out, a friend, not their enemy. …
The purpose of Waging War is to guide the youth of this program from start to finish in their therapeutic efforts to gain insight into their patterns of thinking and beliefs that have led to the current outcomes in their life thus far and enable them to change the path which they are on. Waging War is a guide to start the youth with the most basic information and work pages to the culmination of all of the facts, scripture, and their newly gained insight to offer a more clear picture of where they are and how to change their lives for the better. Every chapter will have work pages that Freeman has used and had found to be useful in therapy, but most importantly, this workbook will teach the Word to a population that does not hear it in its’ most correct form. What is the significance of controlling ones’ thoughts and how does that apply to you? Doubts, fears, and insecurities come from somewhere, especially when they are pervasive. Understanding this idea will help one to fight those thoughts and free them from the shackles their mind puts around their hearts, preventing them from achieving their dreams and the plans God had intended for them when they were created.
There are many reasons the Christian view of humanity is very important. The Christian view of humanity believes that humans were created in the image of God. We will look at the biblical view of humanity. We are going to look at the nature of man, the freedom of man, the personality of man, the fall of man, the nature of sin and death, as well as why God has allowed sin to enter into the world, as well as all of the wickedness and suffering that came with it. Andrews will answer the following questions and far more. How does the Bible explain and describe the creation of man and woman? Why is it imperative that we understand our fallen condition? What does it mean to be made in the image of God? …
In FOR AS I THINK IN MY HEART – SO I AM, Edward D. Andrews offers practical and biblical insights on a host of Christian spiritual growth struggles, from the challenge of forgiveness to eating disorders, anger, alcoholism, depression, anxiety, pornography, masturbation, same-sex attraction, and many others. Based on Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV): “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he,” Andrews’ text works from the position that if we can change the way that we think, we can alter the way we feel, which will modify the way we behave. FOR AS I THINK IN MY HEART – SO I AM offers far more than self-help to dozens of spiritual struggles, personal difficulties, and mental disorders. It will benefit Christian and non-Christian alike. The Scriptural advice and counsel coupled with cognitive behavioral therapy will be helpful even if every chapter is not one of your struggles. For As I Think in My Heart enables readers to examine the lies and half-truths …
THERE IS A GENUINE HAPPINESS, contentment, and joy, which come from reading, studying and applying God’s Word. This is true because the Scriptures offer us guidance and direction that aids us in living a life that coincides with our existence as a creation of Almighty God. For example, we have a moral law that was written on our heart. (Rom. 2:14-15) However, at the same time, we have a warring against the law of our mind and taking us captive in the law of sin, which is in our members. (Rom. 7:21-25) When we live by the moral law, it brings us joy, when we live by the law of sin; it brings about distress, anxiety, regrets to both mind and heart, creating a conflict between our two natures. In our study of the Bible, we can interact with a living God who wants a personal relationship with us. And in APPLYING GOD’S WORD MORE FULLY, we will learn how to engage His words like never before. Andrews helps his readers …
THERE IS ONE MAJOR DIFFERENCE between Christian living books by Andrews and those by others. Generally speaking, his books are filled with Scripture and offer its readers what the Bible authors meant by what they penned. In this publication, it is really God’s Word offering the counsel, which is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness.” (2 Tim. 3:16-17) From the moment that Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden, humans have been brought forth in sin, having become more and more mentally bent toward evil, having developed a heart (i.e., inner person) that is treacherous, and unknowable to them, with sin’s law dwelling within them. Sadly, many of us within the church have not been fully informed …
A clean conscience brings us inner peace, calmness, and profound joy that is seldom found in this world under the imperfection of fallen flesh that is catered to by Satan, the god of the world. Many who were formerly living in sin and have now turned their life over to God, they now know this amazing relief and are able today to hold a good and clean conscience as they carry out the will of the Father. WALK HUMBLY WITH YOUR GOD, has been written to help its readers to find that same joy, to have and maintain a good, clean conscience in their lives. Of course, it is incapable of covering every detail that one would need to consider and apply in their lives …
This book is primarily for WIVES, but husbands will greatly benefit from it as well. WIVES will learn to use God’s Word to construct a solid and happy marriage. The Creator of the family gives the very best advice. Many have been so eager to read this new publication: WIVES BE SUBJECT TO YOUR HUSBANDS. It offers wives the best insights into a happy marriage, by way of using God’s Word as the foundational guide, along with Andrews’ insights. WIVES learn that marriage is a gift from God. WIVEStake in information that will help them survive the first year of marriage. WIVES will be able to make Christian marriage a success. WIVES will maintain an honorable marriage. WIVES will see how to submit correctly to Christ’s headship. WIVES will learn how to strengthen their marriage through good communication. …
This book is primarily for HUSBANDS, but wives will greatly benefit from it as well. HUSBANDS will learn to use God’s Word to construct a solid and happy marriage. The Creator of the family gives the very best advice. Many have been so eager to read this new publication: HUSBANDS LOVE YOUR WIVES. It offers husbands the best insights into a happy marriage, by way of using God’s Word as the foundational guide, along with Andrews’ insights. HUSBANDS learn that marriage is a gift from God. HUSBANDS take in information that will help them survive the first year of marriage. HUSBANDS will be able to make Christian marriage a success. HUSBANDS will maintain an honorable marriage. …
Technological and societal change is all around us. What does the future hold? Trying to predict the future is difficult, but we can get a clue from the social and technological trends in our society. The chapters in this book provide a framework as Christians explore the uncharted territory in our world of technology and social change. Some of the questions that Anderson will answer are: What are the technological challenges of the 21st century? How should we think about the new philosophies like transhumanism? Should we be concerned about big data? What about our privacy in a world where government and corporations have some much information about us? How should we think about a world experiencing exponential growth in data and knowledge? What social trends are affecting baby boomers, baby busters, and millennials?
Government affects our daily lives, and Christians need to think about how to apply biblical principles to politics and government. This book provides an overview of the biblical principles relating to what the apostle Paul calls “governing authorities” (i.e., government) with specific chapters dealing with the founding principles of the American government. This includes an examination of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Federalist Papers. The thirteen chapters in this book not only look at the broad founding principles but also provide an in-depth look at other important political and governmental issues. One section explains the history and application of church and state issues. Another section describes aspects of political debate and discourse. A final section provides a brief overview of the Christian heritage of this nation that was important in the founding of this country and the framing of our founding documents.
Economics affects our daily lives, and Christians need to think about how to apply biblical principles to money, investment, borrowing, and spending. They also need to understand the free enterprise system and know how to defend capitalism. Chapters in this book not only look at broad economic principles, but a section of the book is devoted to the challenges we face in the 21st century from globalization and tough economic times. A section of the book also provides an in-depth look at other important social and economic issues (gambling, welfare) that we face every day …
Do you desire to follow Jesus Christ and transform the culture around you? Are you sure you know what it means to be a disciple and follow a dangerous revolutionary who often comforts the afflicted and afflicts the comfortable? Jesus Christ is not the mild status quo rabbi you may have been taught in your local church. He is dangerous and anyone who follows him is on a dangerous journey. The demands he places upon you and the challenges you will encounter are necessary on the journey. The journey with Jesus Christ is not for the fainthearted. If you are really serious about joining Jesus Christ in the transformation of the culture around you, here is a raw outlook on what to expect on this DANGEROUS JOURNEY.
Each of the twenty-five chapters in the POWER THROUGH PRAYER provides helpful methods and suggestions for growing and improving your prayer life with God through the power of prayer. So, what can we expect if we make prayer a part of our life? Prayer can give you a peace of mind. Prayer can comfort and strength when facing trials. Prayer can help us make better life choices. The Bible says: “If any of you lacks wisdom [especially in dealing with trials], let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” (James 1:5) Prayer can help to avoid temptation. Prayer is the path yo forgiveness of sins. Your prayers can help others. You will receive encouragement when your prayers are answered.
DOZENS OF QUESTIONS WILL BE ANSWERED: Why is prayer necessary? What must we do to be heard by God? How does God answer our prayers? Does God listen to all prayers? Does God hear everyone’s prayers? What may we pray about? Does the Father truly grant everything we ask for? What kind of prayers would the Father reject? How long should our prayers be? How often should we pray? Why should we say “Amen” at the end of a prayer? Must we assume a special position or posture when praying? There are far more than this asked and answered.
What forms of prayer do you personally need to offer more often? Who benefits when you pray for others? Why is it important to pray regularly? Why should true Christians pray continually? To whom should we pray, and how? What are the proper subjects for prayer? When should you pray? Does God listen to all prayers? Whose prayers is God willing to hear? What could make a person’s prayers unacceptable to God? When Jesus says, “whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive if you have faith,” an absolute guarantee that we will receive it? HOW TO PRAY by Torrey and Andrews is a spiritual gem that will answer all of these questions and far more. HOW TO PRAY is a practical guidebook covers the how, when, and most importantly, the way of praying. An excellent devotional resource for any Christian library.
Christian Apologetics and Evangelism
The role of women within the church has been a heated, ongoing debate. There are two views. We have the equal ministry opportunity for both men and women (egalitarian view) and the ministry roles distinguished by gender (complementarian view). This biblically grounded introduction will acquaint the reader with the biblical view: what does the Bible say about the woman’s role in the church? Both views mention the teachings of the apostle Paul in 1 Timothy 2:12 in order to support their viewpoint. Andrews will furnish the reader with a clear and thorough presentation of the biblical evidence for the woman’s role in the church so we can better understand the biblical viewpoint.
Some of the questions asked and answered in THE YOUNG CHRISTIAN’S SURVIVAL GUIDE are “You claim the Bible is inspired because it says it is, right (2 Tim. 3:16)? Isn’t that circular reasoning?” “You claim the Bible was inspired, but there was no inspired list of which books that is true of. So how can we know which ones to trust?” “With so many different copies of manuscripts that have 400,000+ variants (errors), how can we even know what the Bible says?” “Why can’t the people who wrote the four Gospels get their story straight?” These questions and many more will be asked and answered with reasonable, rational, Scriptural answers.
Was the Gospel of Mark Written First? Were the Gospel Writers Plagiarists? What is the Q Document? What about Document Q? Critical Bible scholars have assumed that Matthew and Luke used the book of Mark to compile their Gospels and that they consulted a supplementary source, a document the scholars call Q from the German Quelle, or source. From the close of the first century A.D. to the 18th century, the reliability of the Gospels was never really brought into question. However, once we enter the so-called period of enlightenment, especially from the 19th century onward, some critical Bible scholars viewed the Gospels not as the inspired, inerrant Word of God but rather as the word of man, and a jumbled word at that. In addition, they determined that the Gospels were not written by Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, saying the Gospels were written after the apostles, denying that the writers of the Gospels had any firsthand knowledge of Jesus; therefore, for these Bible critics such men were unable to offer a record of reliable history. Moreover, these critical Bible scholars came to the conclusion that the similarities in structure and content in the synoptic (similar view) Gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke), suggests that the evangelists copied extensively from one other. Further, the critical Bible scholars have rejected that the miracles of Jesus and his resurrection ever occurred as recorded in the Gospels. Lastly, some have even gone so far as to reject the historicity of Jesus himself.
Inside of some Christians unbeknownst to their family, friends or the church, they are screaming, “I doubt, I doubt, I have very grave doubts!” Ours is an age of doubt. Skepticism has become fashionable. We are urged to question everything: especially the existence of God and the truthfulness of his Word, the Bible. A SUBSTANTIAL PORTION of REASONABLE FAITH is on healing for the elements of emotional doubt. However, much attention is given to more evidenced-based chapters in our pursuit of overcoming any fears or doubts that we may have or that may creep up on us in the future.
How can you improve your effectiveness as teachers? Essentially, it is by imitating JESUS CHRIST The Great Teacher You may wonder, ‘But how can we imitate Jesus?’ ‘He was the perfect, divine, Son of God.’ Admittedly, you cannot be a perfect teacher. Nevertheless, regardless of your abilities, you can do your best to imitate the way Jesus taught. JESUS CHRIST The Great Teacher will discuss how you can employ all of his teaching methods. What a privilege it is to be a teacher of God’s Word and to share spiritual values that can have long-lasting benefits!
How can you improve your effectiveness as teachers? Essentially, it is by imitating THE APOSTLE PAUL: The Preacher, Teacher, Apologist. You may wonder, ‘But how can we imitate Paul?’ ‘He was an inspired author, who served as an apostle, given miraculous powers.’ Admittedly, Paul likely accomplished more than any other imperfect human. Nevertheless, regardless of your abilities, you can do your best to imitate the way Paul taught. THE APOSTLE PAUL: The Preacher, Teacher, Apologist will discuss how you can employ all of his teaching methods. When it comes to teaching, genuine Christians have a special responsibility. We are commanded to “make disciples of all nations . . . , teaching them.” (Matt. 24:14; 28:19-20; Ac 1:8)
How true is the Old Testament? For over two centuries Biblical scholars have held to the so-called documentary hypothesis, namely, that Genesis – Deuteronomy was not authored by Moses, but rather by several writers, some of whom lived centuries after Moses’ time. How have many scholars questioned the writership of Isaiah, and are they correct? When did skepticism regarding the writership of Isaiah begin, and how did it spread? What dissecting of the book of Isaiah has taken place? When did criticism of the book of Daniel begin, and what fueled similar criticism in more recent centuries? What charges are sometimes made regarding the history in Daniel? Why is the question of the authenticity of the books of Moses, the Book of Isaiah and the Book of Daniel an important one? What evidence is there to show that the books of Moses, the Book of Isaiah and the Book of Daniel is authentic and true? Do these critics have grounds for challenging these Bible author’s authenticity and historical truthfulness? Why is it important to discuss whether Old Testament Aurhoriship is authentic and true or not?
Who wrote the first five books of the Bible? Was it Moses or was it others centuries later? If Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible, then how was his own death and burial written in Deuteronomy Chapter 34? Many mainstream Bible scholars argue that Moses could not have written the Pentateuch since he likely existed many centuries earlier than the development of the Hebrew language. When was the origin of the Hebrew language? Popular scholarship says that if Moses had written the Pentateuch, he would have written in the Egyptian language, not the Hebrew. Moreover, most of the Israelites and other people of the sixteenth century B.C.E. were illiteral, so who could have written the Torah, and for whom would it be written because the people of that period did not read?
Finally, analysis of the first five books demonstrates multiple authors, not just one, which explains the many discrepancies. Multiple authors also explain the many cases of telling of the same story twice, making the same events appear to happen more than once. The modern mainstream scholarship would argue that within the Pentateuch we see such things as preferences for certain words, differences in vocabulary, reoccurring expressions in Deuteronomy that are not found in Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, all evidence for their case for multiple authors.
What does the evidence say? What does archaeology, linguistic analysis, historical studies, textual analysis, and insights from Egyptologists tell us? Again, who wrote the first five books of the Bible? Was it Moses or was it others centuries later? Andrews offers his readers an objective view of the evidence.
Agabus is a mysterious prophetic figure that appears only twice in the book of Acts. Though his role is minor, he is a significant figure in a great debate between cessationists and continualists. On one side are those who believe that the gift of prophecy is on par with the inspired Scriptures, infallible, and has ceased. On the other side are those who define it as fallible and non-revelatory speech that continues today in the life of the church. Proponents of both camps attempt to claim Agabus as an illustration of their convictions. This study defends the position that Agabus’ prophecies are true in every detail. Beginning with a survey of major figures in the debate, the author conducts an exegetical analysis of passages where Agabus appears in defense of the infallible view.
Islam is making a significant mark on our world. It is perhaps the fastest-growing religion in the world. It has become a major obstacle to Christian missions. And Muslim terrorists threaten the West and modern democracies. What is the history of Islam? What do Muslims believe? Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God? Why do we have this clash of civilizations? Is sharia law a threat to modern democratic values? How can we fight terrorists in the 21st century? These are significant questions that deserve thoughtful answers. This book provides practical, biblical answers so Christians can understand Islam, witness to their Muslim friends, and support efforts by the government to protect all of us from terrorism.
IS THE QURAN THE WORD OF GOD? Is Islam the One True Faith? This book covers the worldview, practices, and history of Islam and the Quran. This book is designed as an apologetic evangelistic tool for Christians, as they come across Muslims in their daily lives, as well as to inform them, as a protection again the misleading media. The non-Muslims need to hear these truths about Islam and the Quran so they can have an accurate understanding of the Muslim mindset that leads to their actions. Islam is the second largest religion in the world. Radical Islam has taken the world by storm, and the “fake media” has genuinely misled their audience for the sake of political correctness. This book is not a dogmatic attack on Islam and the Quran but rather an uncovering of the lies and describing of the truths. The reader will be introduced to the most helpful way of viewing the evidence objectively. We will answer the question of whether the Quran is a literary miracle, as well as is there evidence that the Quran is inspired by God, along with is the Quran harmonious and consistent, and is the Quran from God or man? We will also examine Islamic teachings, discuss the need to search for the truth, as well as identify the book of truth. We will look at how Islam views the Bible. Finally, we will take up the subjects of Shariah Law, the rise of radical Islam, Islamic eschatology, and how to effectively witness to Muslims.
The average Christian knows somewhat how dangerous radical Islam is because of the regular media coverage of beheadings of Christians, Jews, and even young little children, not to mention Muslims with which they disagree. However, the average Christian does not know their true beliefs, just how many there are, to the extent they will go to carry out these beliefs. Daily we find Islamic commentators on the TV and radio, offering up misleading information, quoting certain portions of the Quran while leaving other parts out. When considering Islamic beliefs, other Islamic writings must be considered, like the Hadith or Sunnah, and the Shariah, or canon law. While Islam, in general, does not support radical Islam, the vast majority do support radical beliefs. For example, beheadings, stoning for adultery or homosexuality, suicide bombings, turning the world into an Islamic state, and far too many other heinous things. THE GUIDE TO ISLAM provides Christians with an overview of Islamic terminology. The reader will learn about Muhammad’s calling, the history of the Quran, how Islam expanded, the death of Muhammad and the splinter groups that followed. In addition, the three sources of their teaching, six pillars of belief, five pillars of Islam, the twelfth Imam, and much more will be discussed. All of this from the mind of radical Islam. While there are several books on Islam and radical Islam, this will be the first that will prepare its readers to communicate effectively with Muslims in an effort toward sharing biblical truths. …
If you have the desire to become better equipped to reach others for the lost or to strengthen your faith, Judy Salisbury’s guide—written specifically to meet the needs of Christian women today—offers you a safe, practical, and approachable place to start. In her lively, … If you have the desire to become better equipped to reach others for the lost or to strengthen your faith, Judy Salisbury’s guide—written specifically to meet the needs of Christian women today—offers you a safe, practical, and approachable place to start. In her lively, straightforward style, Salisbury covers such issues as: Does God exist? Can I trust the Bible? Does Christianity oppress women? Can we know truth? Why would God allow evil and suffering? Was Jesus God and did He really rise from the dead? How does or should my faith guide my life?
A Time to Speak: Practical Training for the Christian Presenteris a complete guide for effective communication and presentation skills. Discuss any subject with credibility and confidence, from Christian apologetics to the sensitive moral issues of our day, when sharing a testimony, addressing a school board, a community meeting, or conference. This exceptional training is the perfect resource for Christians with any level of public speaking ability. With its easy, systematic format, A Time to Speak is also an excellent resource for home-schooled and college students. The reader, in addition to specific skills and techniques, will also learn how to construct their presentation content, diffuse hostility, guidance for a successful Q&A, effective ways to turn apathy into action, and tips on gaining their speaking invitation.
Historical Criticism of the Bible got started in earnest, known then as Higher Criticism, during the 18th and 19th centuries, it is also known as the Historical-Critical Method of biblical interpretation. Are there any weakness to the Historical-Critical Method of biblical interpretation (Historical Criticism), and why is historical criticism so popular among Bible scholars today? Its popularity is because biblical criticism is subjective, that is, based on or influenced by personal feelings or opinions and is dependent on the Bible scholar’s perception. In other words, biblical criticism allows the Bible scholar, teacher, or pastor the freedom to interpret the Scriptures, so that God’s Word it tells them things that they want to hear. Why is this book so critical for all Christians? Farnell and Andrews will inform the reader about Biblical criticism (historical criticism) and its weaknesses, helping you to defend God’s Word far better.
Biblical criticism is an umbrella term covering various techniques for applying literary historical-critical methods in analyzing and studying the Bible and its textual content. Biblical criticism is also known as higher criticism, literary criticism, and historical criticism. Biblical criticism has done nothing more than weaken and demoralize people’s assurance in the Bible as being the inspired and fully inerrant Word of God and is destructive in its very nature. Historical criticism is made up of many forms of biblical criticism that are harmful to the authoritative Word of God: historical criticism, source criticism, form criticism, redaction criticism, social-science criticism, canonical criticism, rhetorical criticism, structural criticism, narrative criticism, reader-response criticism, and feminist criticism. Not just liberal scholarship, but many moderate, even some “conservative” scholars have …
FEMINIST CRITICISM will offer the reader explicitly what the Bible says. Feminist criticism is a form of literary criticism that is based on feminist theories. The worldview of feminism uses feminist principles to interpret the word of God. Biblical feminists argue that they are merely focused on creating equal opportunities to serve. They say that they want the freedom to follow Jesus Christ as he has called them. They assert that they merely want to use the gifts that he has given them in God’s service. Biblical feminists maintain that Scripture clearly states the worth and value of men and women equally when it comes to serving God. Biblical feminists also say that they want to partner with the men when it comes to taking the lead in the church and parenting in the home. They seek mutual submission and subjection in the church leadership and the home headship, not what they perceive to be a male hierarchy. FEMINIST CRITICISM will gently and respectfully address these issues with Scripture.
APOLOGETICS: Reaching Hearts with the Art of Persuasion by Edward D. Andrews, author of over seventy books, covers information that proves that the Bible is accurate, trustworthy, fully inerrant, and inspired by God for the benefit of humankind. The reader will be introduced to Christan apologetics and evangelism. They will learn what Christian apologetics is. They will be given a biblical answer to the most demanding Bible question: Problem of Evil. The reader will learn how to reach hearts with are the art of persuasion. They will use persuasion to help others accept Christ. They will learn to teach with insight and persuasiveness. They will learn to use persuasion to reach the heart of those who listen to them.
REVIEWING 2013 New World Translation of Jehovah’s Witnesses is going to challenge your objectivity. Being objective means that personal feelings or opinions do not influence you in considering and representing facts. Being subjective means that your understanding is based on or influenced by personal feelings, tastes, or ideas. If the reader finds these insights offense, it might be a little mind control at work from years of being told the same misinformation repeatedly, so ponder things objectively. We can also have preconceived ideas that have been a part of our thinking for so long; we do not question them. Preconceived is an idea or opinion that is formed before having the evidence for its truth. If we are to be effective, we must season our words, so that they are received well. Then there is the term preconception, which means a preconceived idea or prejudice. Seasoned words, honesty, and accuracy are distinctive features of effective apologetic evangelism.
Use of REASONING FROM THE SCRIPTURES should help you to cultivate the ability to reason from the Scriptures and to use them effectively in assisting others to learn about “the mighty works of God.” – Acts 2:11. If Christians are going to be capable, powerful, efficient teachers of God’s Word, we must not only pay attention to what we tell those who are interested but also how we tell them. Yes, we must focus our attention on the message of God’s Word that we share but also the method in which we do so. Our message, the Gospel (i.e., the good news of the Kingdom), this does not change, but we do adjust our methods. Why? We are seeking to reach as many receptive people as possible. “You will be my witnesses … to the End of the Earth.” – ACTS 1:8.
Why should we be interested in the religion of others? The world has become a melting pot of people, cultures, and values, as well as many different religions. Religion has the most significant impact on the lives of mankind today. There are only a few of the major religions that make up billions of people throughout the earth. According to some estimates, there are roughly 4,200 religions in the world. God’s will is that “all sorts of men should be saved and come to an accurate knowledge of truth.” (1 Tim. 2:4) God has assigned all Christians the task of proclaiming the Word of God, teaching, to make disciples. (Matt. 24:15; 28:19-20: Ac 1;8) That includes men and women who profess a non-Christian religion, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam to mention just a few. If there are Hindus, Buddhist or Muslims are in your community, why not initiate a conversation with them? Christians who take the Great Commission seriously cannot afford to ignore these religions. …
Evangelism is the work of a Christian evangelist, of which all true Christians are obligated to partake to some extent, which seeks to persuade other people to become Christian, especially by sharing the basics of the Gospel, but also the deeper message of biblical truths. Today the Gospel is almost an unknown, so what does the Christian evangelist do? Preevangelism is laying a foundation for those who have no knowledge of the Gospel, giving them background information, so that they can grasp what they are hearing. The Christian evangelist is preparing their mind and heart so that they will be receptive to the biblical truths. In many ways, this is known as apologetics. Christian apologetics [Greek: apologia, “verbal defense, speech in defense”] is a field of Christian theology which endeavors to offer a reasonable and sensible basis for the Christian faith, defending the faith against objections. It is reasoning from the Scriptures, explaining and proving, as one instructs in sound doctrine, many times having to overturn false reasoning before he can plant the seeds of truth. …
MOST Christian apologetic books help the reader know WHAT to say; THE CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST is HOW to communicate it effectively. The Christian apologist’s words should always be seasoned with salt as he or she shares the unadulterated truths of Scripture with gentleness and respect. Our example in helping the unbeliever to understand the Bible has been provided by Jesus Christ and his apostles. Whether dealing with Bible critics or answering questions from those genuinely interested, Jesus referred to the Scriptures and at times used appropriate illustrations, helping those with a receptive heart to accept the Word of God. The apostle Paul “reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and proving” what was biblically true. (Ac 17:2-3) The material in THE CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST can enable us to do the same. Apologist Normal L. Geisler informs us that “evangelism is planting seeds of the Gospel” and “pre-evangelism is tilling the soil of people’s minds and hearts to help them be more willing to listen to the truth (1 Cor. 3: 6).”
THE EVANGELISM HANDBOOK is a practical guide (for real-life application) in aiding all Christians in sharing biblical beliefs, the Good News of the Kingdom, how to deal with Bible critics, overturning false beliefs, so as to make disciples, as commanded by Christ. (Matthew 24:14; 28:19-20; Ac 1:8) Why do Christians desire to talk about their beliefs? Jesus said, “And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed in the whole inhabited earth for a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” (Matt 24:14) This is the assignment, which all Christians are obligated to assist in carrying out. Jesus also said, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matt. 22:39) Jesus commanded that we “go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them” and “teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” (Matt. 28:19-20) If one failed to be obedient to the great commission of Matthew 28:19-20, he or she could hardly claim that they have genuine faith. All true Christians have a determination to imitate God, which moves us to persist in reflecting his glory through our sharing Bible beliefs with others.
“Absorbing, instructional, insightful. Judy Salisbury’s book Divine Appointments embodies examples of truly speaking the truth in love. The stories she weaves together provide perfect examples of how to relate to others through conversational evangelism… Divine Appointments is an apt companion to any apologetics book, showing how to put principles into practice. It’s an apologetics manual wrapped in a warm blanket. Snuggle up with it.”— Julie Loos, Director, Ratio Christi Boosters
The reader will receive eight small introductory books in this one publication. Andrews’ intention is to offer his reader several chapters on eight of the most critical subject areas of understanding and defending the Word of God. This will enable the reader to lay a solid foundation for which he can build throughout his Christian life. These eight sections with multiple chapters in each cover biblical interpretation, Bible translation philosophies, textual criticism, Bible difficulties, the Holy Spirit, Christian Apologetics, Christian Evangelism, and Christian Living.
“‘Deep’ study is no guarantee that mature faith will result, but shallow study guarantees that immaturity continues.”(p. xiii)—Dr. Lee M. Fields.
The Culture War. How the West lost its greatness and was weakened from within outlines how the West lost its values, causing its current decline. It is a forceful attack on the extreme liberal, anti-religious ideology which since the 1960’s has permeated the Western culture and weakened its very core. The West is now characterized by strict elitist media censorship, hedonism, a culture of drug abuse, abortion, ethnic clashes and racial divide, a destructive feminism and the dramatic breakdown of the family. An ultra-rich elite pushes our nations into a new, authoritarian globalist structure, with no respect for Western historical values. Yet, even in the darkest hour, there is hope. This manifesto outlines the remedy for the current malaise and describes the greatness of our traditional and religious values that once made our civilization prosper. It shows how we can restore these values to bring back justice, mercy, faith, honesty, fidelity, kindness and respect for one another. Virtues that will motivate individuals to love one another, the core of what will make us great again.
EARLY CHRISTIANITY IN THE FIRST CENTURY will give its readers a thrilling account of first-century Christianity. When and how did they come to be called Christians? Who are all obligated to be Christian evangelists? In what way did Jesus set the example for our evangelism? What is the Kingdom of God? What was their worship like and why were they called the Truth and the Way? How did 120 disciples at Pentecost grow to over one million within 70-80-years? What was meant by their witness to the ends of the earth? How did Christianity in its infancy function to accomplish all it did? How was it structured? How were the early Christians, not of the world? How were they affected by persecution? How were they not to love the world, in what sense? What divisions were there in the second and third centuries? Who were the Gnostics? These questions will be answered, as well as a short overview of the division that grew out of the second and third centuries, pre-reformation, the reformation, and a summary of Catholicism and Protestantism. After a lengthy introduction to First-Century Christianity, there is a chapter on the Holy Spirit in the First Century and Today, followed by sixteen chapters that cover the most prominent Christians from the second to fourth centuries, as well as a chapter on Constantine the Great.
The intention of this book is to investigate the biblical chronology behind Jehovah’s Witnesses most controversial doctrinal position that Jesus began to rule invisibly from heaven in October 1914. This biblical chronology of the Witnesses hinges upon their belief that the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians, which they say occurred in 607 B.C.E. The Witnesses conclude that Chapter 4 of the book of Daniel prophesied a 2,520 year period that began in 607 B.C.E. and ended in 1914 C.E. They state, “Clearly, the ‘seven times’ and ‘the appointed times of the nations’ refer to the same time period.” (Lu 21:24) It is their position that When the Babylonians conquered Jerusalem, the Davidic line of kings was interrupted, God’s throne was “trampled on by the nations” until 1914, at which time Jesus began to rule invisibly from heaven. …
In order to overcome and church problems, we must first talk about the different problems of the church. Many of the church problems today stem from the isms: liberalism, humanism, modernism, Christian progressivism, theological liberalism, feminism, higher criticism, and biblical criticism. Moreover, many are simply not a biblically grounded church regardless of how much they claim to be so. The marks of a true Christian church would be like the different lines that make up a church’s fingerprint, a print that cannot belong to any other church. The true Christian church contains their own unique grouping of marks, forming a positive “fingerprint” that cannot belong to any other church. William Lange Craig wrote, “Remember that our faith is not based on emotions, but on the truth, and therefore you must hold on to it.” What truth? Jesus said to the Father in prayer, “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” (John 17:17) Are you doing the will of the Father? Is your church doing the will of the Father? – Matthew 7:21-23; 1 John 2:15-17.
Evangelist Norman Robertson claims that “Tithing is God’s way of financing His kingdom on the earth.” He asserts that “It is His system of economics which enables the Gospel to be preached.” Not bashful about telling his followers of their duty to give, he flatly states: ‘Tithing isn’t something you do because you can afford it. It is an act of obedience. Not tithing is a clear violation of God’s commandments. It is embezzlement.’ Most likely you accept that giving should be part of Christian worship. However, do you find continuous demanding appeals for money disturbing, perhaps even offensive? FLEECING THE FLOCK by Anthony Wade is an exhaustive examination of all of the popular tithing arguments made from the pulpit today. …
DECEPTION IN THE CHURCH by Fred DeRuvo asks Does It Matter How You Worship? There are 41,000 different denominations that call themselves “Christian” and all would claim that they are the truth. Can just any Christian denomination please God? Can all be true or genuine Christianity if they all have different views on the same Bible doctrines? DeRuvo will answer. He will focus on the largest part of Christianity that has many different denominations, the charismatic, ecstatic Signs and Wonders Movements. These ecstatic worshipers claim … DeRuvo will answer all these questions and more according to the truth of God’s Word.—John 8:31-32; 17:17.
Plunkett exposes the errors corrupting the Christian church through the Word of Faith, New Apostolic Reformation, and extreme charismatic movements. LEARN TO DISCERN, by author Daniel Plunkett highlights how an encounter with a rising star in the Word of Faith / “Signs and Wonders” movement was used by God to open his eyes to the deceptions, false teachings, and spiritual abuses running rampant in the charismatic movement today. These doctrines are thoroughly explored as taught by some of today’s most prominent speakers and evangelists and contrasted with the clear teachings of Scripture. LEARN TO DISCERN is an invaluable resource …
Translation and Textual Criticism
The King James Bible was originally published in 1611. Some have estimated that the number of copies of the King James Version that have been produced in print worldwide is over one billion! There is little doubt that the King James Version is a literary masterpiece, which this author has and will appreciate and value for its unparalleled beauty of expression. This book is in no way trying to take away from what the King James Version has accomplished. The King James Version is a book to be commended for all that it has accomplished. For four centuries, when English-speaking people spoke of “the Bible,” they meant the King James Version. The question that begs to be asked of those who favor the King James Bible is, Do You Know the King James Version? What do most users of the King James Bible not know about their translation? Whether you are one who favors the King James Version or one who prefers a modern translation, Andrews will answer the questions that have long been asked for centuries about the King James Bible and far more.
THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO BIBLE TRANSLATION (CGBT) is for all individuals interested in how the Bible came down to us, as well as having an insight into the Bible translation process. CGBT is also for those who are interested in which translation(s) would be the most beneficial to use. The translation of God’s Word from the original languages of Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek is a task unlike any other and should never be taken lightly because it carries with it the heaviest responsibility: the translator renders God’s thoughts into a modern language. It is CGBT’s desire to take challenging and complex subjects and make them easy to understand. CGBT will communicate as clearly and powerfully as possible to all of its readers while also accurately communicating information about the Bible. …
We have come a long, long way from the time that the KJV was The Bible in English and the many translations available today. Finding the right Bible for the right person can be daunting, with almost too many choices available. However, it is still possible to divide the options into two broad categories: literal translations and dynamic equivalents. What is the difference, and why should you care? Bible publishers used to say that literal translations are good for study purposes, and dynamic equivalents are better for reading. So literal translations were advertised with terms like “accurate,” “reliable,” and, of course, “literal.” For dynamic equivalent translations, terms like “contemporary,” “easy to read,” and “written in today’s English” were used. Naturally, publishers do not advertise the negatives, so they did not point out that the literal translations might be a little harder to read, or that the dynamic equivalents might not be entirely faithful to the original languages of the Bible. However, more recently, some scholars have been taking this analysis in a new direction, assessing literal translations as less desirable than dynamic equivalents even for accuracy and reliability.
There are more than 150 different Bible translations in the English language alone. Some are what we call literal translations, which seeks to give the reader the exact English equivalent of what was written in the original language text, thus allowing the reader access to the actual Word of God. Then, there are dynamic equivalents, where the translator determines what the author meant by the original language text, and this is what they give the reader. There is also a paraphrase translation, which is an extremely interpretive translation. Exactly what are these differences? Are some translations better than others? What standards and principles can we use to determine what makes a good translation? Andrews introduces the readers to the central issues in this debate and presents several reasons why literal translations are superior to dynamic equivalent and paraphrase translations. We do not need to be a Bible scholar to understand these issues, as well as the importance of having the most accurate and faithful translation that is reflective of the original text. …
THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT (TTNT) is an introduction, intermediate and advanced level coverage of the text of the New Testament. Andrews introduces the new and relatively new reader to this subject in the first few chapters of the TTNT. Andrews deepens his handling of the material, while still making it easy to understand in the next few chapters of the TTNT, all the while being very informative in both sections. All of this prepares the reader for Wilkins’ advanced chapters. THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT was copied and recopied by hand for 1,500 years. Regardless of those scribes who had worked very hard to be faithful in their copying, errors crept into the text. How can we be confident that what we have today is the Word of God? Wilkins and Andrews offer the reader an account of the copying by hand and transmission of the Greek New Testament. They present a comprehensive survey of the manuscript history from the penning of the 27 New Testament books to the current critical texts. What did the ancient books look like and how were documents written? How were the New Testament books published? Who would use secretaries? Why was it so hard to be a secretary in the first century? How was such work done? What do we know about the early Christian copyists? What were the scribal habits and tendencies? Is it possible to establish the original text of the NewTestament? …
INTRODUCTION TO THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT is a shortened 321 pages of Andrews and Wilkins 602 page TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT without losing the value of content. The foremost thing the reader is going to learn is that the Greek New Testament that our modern translations are based on is a mirror-like reflection of the original and can be fully trusted. The reader will learn how the New Testament authors made and published their books, the secretaries in antiquity and their materials like Teritus who helped Paul pen the epistle to the Romans, and the book writing process of the New Testament authors and early copyists. The reader will also discover the reading culture of early Christianity and their view of the integrity of the Greek New Testament. The reader will also learn how textual scholars known as paleography determine the age of the manuscripts.
The reader will learn all about the different sources that go into our restoring the Greek New Testament to its original form. Then, Andrews will cover the ancient version, the era of the printed text, and the arrival of the critical text. After that, the reader will be given a lengthy chapter on examples of how the textual scholar determines the correct reading by his looking at the internal and external evidence. Finally, and most importantly, the reader will find out the truth about the supposed 400,000 textual errors within the Greek New Testament manuscripts. The last chapter will be faith-building and enable you to defend the Word of God as inerrant.
THE READING CULTURE OF EARLY CHRISTIANITY provides the reader with the production process of the New Testament books, the publication process, how they were circulated, and to what extent they were used in the early Christian church. It examines the making of the New Testament books, the New Testament secretaries and the material they used, how the early Christians viewed the New Testament books, and the literacy level of the Christians in the first three centuries. It also explores how the gospels went from an oral message to a written record, the accusation that the apostles were uneducated, the inspiration and inerrancy in the writing process of the New Testament books, the trustworthiness of the early Christian copyists, and the claim that the early scribes were predominantly amateurs. Andrews also looks into the early Christian’s use of the codex [book form], how did the spread of early Christianity affect the text of the New Testament, and how was the text impacted by the Roman Empire’s persecution of the early Christians?
The Bible has been under attack since Moses penned the first five books. However, the New Testament has faced criticism like no other time over the 50-70-years. Both friend and foe have challenged the reliability of our New Testament. Self-proclaimed Agnostic textual scholar Dr. Bart D. Ehrman has claimed that there are 400,000+ scribal errors in our Greek New Testament manuscripts. A leading textual scholar, Greek grammarian, and Christian apologist Dr. Daniel B. Wallace has stipulated that this is true. This is of particular interest among all Christians, who have been charged with defending the Word of God. – 1 Peter 3:15.
In this volume, textual scholar Edward D. Andrews offers the churchgoer and textual student a defense against this specific attack on the New Testament. Andrews offers the reader a careful analysis of the relevant evidence, giving his readers logical, reasonable, rational assurances that the New Testament can be trusted more than ever before. He will explain the differences between the older Bible translations and the newer ones. Andrews will explain why we do not need the original manuscripts to have the original Word of God. He will reveal how reliable our manuscripts are, how they survived the elements and the persecution of early Christianity, as well as withstanding careless and even deceitful scribes. Finally, Andrews will deal with the 400,000+ scribal errors in the Greek New Testament manuscripts extensively. The author takes a complicated subject and offers his readers an easy to understand argument for why they can have confidence in the Bible despite various challenges to the trustworthiness of Scripture, offering an insightful, informed, defense of God’s Word.
This fourth edition will be dealing with the Greek text of our New Testament, through the Eyes of Dr. Bart D. Ehrman, in his New York Times bestseller: Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why (2005). First, in the introduction, we will look into Bart D. Ehrman’s early life and spiritual decline as he moved from being an evangelical conservative Christian to becoming an agnostic skeptic. Second, we will open with chapter one covering the book writing process of the New Testament authors and early Christian scribes. Then, we will spend three lengthy chapters covering the reading culture of early Christianity because of Ehrman’s claim of just how low the literacy rates were in early Christianity. After that, we will take one chapter to investigate the early Christian copyists because of Ehrman’s claim that most of the scribal errors come from the first three centuries. Following this will be one of the most critical chapters examining Ehrman’s claim of 400,000 textual variants [errors] and what impact they have on the integrity of the Greek New Testament. We will then investigate Bible Difficulties and what they mean for the trustworthiness of God’s Word. After that, we will give the reader the fundamentals of some of Ehrman’s complaints, debunking them as we investigate each one throughout seven chapters.
CALVINISM VS. ARMINIANISM goes back to the early seventeenth century with a Christian theological debate between the followers of John Calvin and Jacobus Arminius, and continues today among some Protestants, particularly evangelicals. The debate is centered around soteriology, that is, the study of salvation, and includes disputes about total depravity, predestination, and atonement. While the debate has developed its Calvinist–Arminian form in the 17th century, the issues that are fundamental to the debate have been discussed in Christianity in some fashion since the days of Augustine of Hippo’s disputes with the Pelagians in the fifth century. CALVINISM VS. ARMINIANISM is taking a different approach in that the issues will be discussed as The Bible Answers being that it is the centerpiece.
A comprehensive book on HOW TO STUDY YOUR BIBLE by observing, interpreting, and applying, which will focus on the most basic Bible study tools, principles, and processes for moving from an in-depth reading of the Scriptures to application. What, though, if you have long felt that you are not studiously inclined? Realize that the primary difference between a serious Bible student and a less serious Bible student is usually diligence and effort, not being a gifted student. Being a gifted Bible student alone is not enough. Efficient methods of Bible study are worth learning, for those seeking to become serious Bible students. The joy missing from many Bible students is because they do not know how to study their Bible, which means they do not do it well. Perhaps you dislike Bible study because you have not developed your study skills sufficiently to make your Bible study enjoyable. Maybe you have neglected your Bible study simply because you would rather be doing something else you enjoy.
How can we find more enjoyment in studying the Bible? How can we make our study periods more productive? What circumstances contribute to effective personal study? How can we derive real benefit and pleasure from our Bible reading? From what activities can time be bought out for reading and studying the Bible? Why should we watch our spiritual feeding habits? What benefits come from reading and studying the Scriptures? There is a great and constantly growing interest in the study of the English Bible in these days. However, very much of the so-called study of the English Bible is unintelligent and not fitted to produce the most satisfactory results. The authors of this book already have a book entitled “HOW TO STUDY: Study the Bible for the Greatest Profit,” but that book is intended for those who are willing to buy out the time to put into thorough Bible study.
Why is personal and family Bible study so important in our life now? How can we apply the Word of God in our lives? How can we use the Bible to help others? How can we effectively use the Scriptures when teaching others? How can we make decisions God’s way? How can Bible principles help us to decide wisely? Why should we have faith in God and his word? The Psalmist tells us, God’s Word “is a lamp to my foot, and a light for my path.” (Psalm 119:105) Since the Bible is a gift from God, the time and effort that we put into our personal Bible Study is a reflection of how much we appreciate that gift. What do our personal Bible study habits reveal about the depth of our appreciation of God’s Word? Certainly, the Bible is a deep and complex book, and reading and studying are not easy at times. However, with time and effort, we can develop a spiritual appetite for personal Bible study. (1 Peter 2:2)
Correctly interpreting the Bible is paramount to understanding the Word of God. As Christians, we do not want to read our 21st-century worldview INTO the Scriptures, but rather to takeOUT OF the Scriptures what the author meant by the words that he used. The guaranteed way of arriving a correct understanding of God’s Words is to have an accurate knowledge of the historical setting, cultural background, and of the people, governments, and religious leaders, as well as the place and time of the New Testament writings. Only with the background, setting, and context can you grasp the author’s intended meaning to his original readers and …
The life of Christ is an exhaustless theme. It reveals a character of greater massiveness than the hills, of a more serene beauty than the stars, of sweeter fragrance than the flowers, higher than the heavens in sublimity and deeper than the seas in mystery. As good Jean Paul has eloquently said, “It concerns Him who, being the holiest among the mighty, and the mightiest among the holy, lifted with His pierced hands empires off their hinges, turned the stream of centuries out of its channels, and still governs the ages.” …
Stalker’s Life of St. Paul became one of the most widely read and respected biographies of the Apostle to the Gentiles. As an insightful compendium on the life of Paul, this work is of particular interest to pastors and teachers who desire to add realism and vividness to their account of one of the greatest Christians who ever lived. Stalker’s work includes a section at the back entitled “Hints for Teachers and Questions for Pupils.” This supplement contains notes and “further reading” suggestions for those teaching on the life of St. Paul, along with a number of questions over each chapter for students to discuss. In addition, seventeen extra chapters have been added that will help the reader better understand who the Apostle Paul was and what first-century Christianity was like. For example, a chapter on the conversion of Saul/Paul, Gamaliel Taught Saul of Tarsus, the Rights, and Privileges of Citizenship, the “Unknown God,” Areopagus, the Observance of Law as to Vows, and much more.
With solid scholarship and exceptional clarity, beginning in Gethsemane, Stalker and Andrews examine Jesus’ trial and crucifixion. Their work is relevant, beneficial and enjoyable because they cover this historical period of Jesus’ life in an easy to understand format. Stalker’s expressive and persuasive style provides a great resource to any Bible study of the events leading to the death of Jesus Christ. THE TRIAL AND DEATH OF JESUS CHRIST is an academicish book written with a novelish style.
Delving into the basics of biblical interpretation, Edward D. Andrews has provided a complete hands-on guide to understanding what the author meant by the words that he used from the conservative grammatical-historical perspective. He teaches how to study the Bible on a deep, scholarly level, yet making it understandable to all. He has sought to provide the very best tool for interpreting the Word of God. This includes clarification of technical terms, answers to every facet of biblical interpretation, and defense of the inerrancy and divine inspiration of Scripture. Andrews realizes that the importance of digging deeper in our understanding of the Bible, for defending our faith from modern-day misguided scholarship. Andrews gives the reader easy and memorable principles and methods to follow for producing an accurate explanation that comes out of, not what many read into the biblical text. The principal procedure within is to define, explain, offer many examples, and give illustrations, to help the reader fully grasp the grammatical-historical approach. …
Anybody who wants to study the Bible, either at a personal level or a more scholarly level needs to understand that there are certain principles that guide and govern the process. The technical word used to refer to the principles of biblical interpretation is hermeneutics, which is of immense importance in Biblical Studies and Theology. How to Interpret the Bible takes into consideration the cultural context, historical background and geographical location in which the text was originally set. This enables us to obtain clarity about the original author’s intended meaning. Linguistic and literary factors are analyzed so that the various genres of Scripture are examined for their true meaning. The importance of having sound principles of interpretation cannot be overstated as …
Once upon a time, Postmodernism was a buzzword. It pronounced Modernism dead or at least in the throes of death. It was a wave that swept over Christendom, promising to wash away sterile, dogmatic and outmoded forms of church. But whatever happened to postmodernism? It was regarded as the start of a major historical transition to something new and promising and hailed as a major paradigm shift. Is it a philosophy that has passed its “sell-by” date? No! The radical fringe has become the dominant view and has been integrated into all aspects of life, including the Christian church. With the emergence of multicultural societies comes interaction with different belief systems and religions. Values like tolerance and a dislike of dogmatism have become key operating concepts, which reflect a change in worldview. …
In an age obsessed with physical and psychological health the author emphasizes the importance of spiritual well-being as an essential element of holistic health for the individual Christian and for Christian communities. This work constitutes a template for a spiritual audit of the local church. It offers an appointment with the Great Physician that no Christian can afford to ignore. Developing Healthy Churches: A Case-Study in Revelation begins with a well-researched outline of the origins and development of the church health movement. With that background in mind the author, aware that throughout the history of the church there have been a number of diverse views about how Revelation ought to be interpreted, presents the reader with four distinct interpretive models. These are the idealist, preterist, historicist, and futurist. Beville explains these interpretive approaches simply and critiques them fairly.e …
This is a comprehensive study of euthanasia and assisted suicide. It traces the historical debate, examines the legal status of such activity in different countries and explores the political, medical and moral matters surrounding these emotive and controversial subjects in various cultural contexts. The key advocates and pioneers of this agenda-driven movement (such as the late Jack Kevorkian, popularly known as “Dr. Death” and Philip Nitschke, founder of Exit International) are profiled. Not only are the elderly and disabled becoming increasingly vulnerable but children, psychiatric patients, the depressed and those who are simply tired of life are now on a slippery slope into a dystopian nightmare. The spotlight is brought to bear on the Netherlands, in particular, where palliative care and the hospice movement are greatly underdeveloped as a result of legalization. These dubious “services” are now offered as part of “normal” medical care in Holland where it is deemed more cost-effective to be given a lethal injection. The vital role of physicians as healers in society must be preserved and the important but neglected spiritual dimension of death must be explored. Thus a biblical view of human life is presented. …
Journey with Jesus through the Message of Mark is an insightful and engaging survey of Mark’s Gospel, exploring each major section of the text along with key themes. It is a work that can be enjoyed by laypersons as well as pastors and teachers. Pastors will find the abundant use of illustrations to be helpful in preparing their own messages and as such, it will find a welcome place in the preacher’s library. Simply, powerfully, with great precision, and exegetical accuracy, Kieran Beville masterfully brings us on a life-transforming journey. Readers will be both inspired and challenged as they hear the words of Jesus speaking afresh from the page of Scripture and experience the ministry of Jesus in a spiritually captivating way. The author has a pastor’s heart, a theologian’s mind, and a writer’s gift. His style is gripping, as he beautifully explains and illustrates Mark’s Gospel. Kieran Beville has done a great service to the church, and especially to true believers, who desire to grow in grace, increase in their knowledge of truth, and experience the intimacy, joy, and underserved and unspeakable privilege of walking, as disciples, with Jesus. This book is ideal as a study companion for Mark’s Gospel. One can read a section from the gospel and then read the corresponding section to receive a fresh viewpoint and a practical application. …
What are angels & demons? Can angels help us? What does the Bible say about angels? What is the truth about angels? Can Angels affect your life? Who were the “sons of God” in Genesis 6:2? Who were the Nephilim in Genesis 6:2? Who is Michael the archangel? Can Satan the Devil control humans? How can we win our struggle against dark spiritual forces? How can you resist the demons? Do evil spirits exercise power over humankind? Is Satan really the god of this world and just what does that mean? What did Jesus mean when he said, “the whole world lies in the power of the evil one [i.e., Satan]”? Andrews using the Bible will answer all of these questions and far more. …
Donald T. Williams learned a lot about the Christian worldview from Francis Schaeffer and C. S. Lewis, but it was actually Tolkien who first showed him that such a thing exists and is an essential component of maturing faith. Not only do explicitly Christian themes underlie the plot structure of The Lord of the Rings, but in essays such as “On Fairie Stories” Tolkien shows us that he not only believed the Gospel on Sunday but treated it as true the rest of the week and used his commitment to that truth as the key to further insights in his work as a student of literature. “You can do that?” Williams thought as a young man not yet exposed to any Christian who was a serious thinker. “I want to do that!” His hope is that his readers will catch that same vision from this book. An Encouraging Thought elucidates the ways in which Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings are informed by and communicate a biblical worldview. This book will help readers appreciate the ways in which a biblical worldview informs Tolkien’s work, to the end that their own faith may be confirmed in strength, focused in understanding, deepened in joy, and honed in its ability to communicate the Gospel.
The Bible describes the events that will occur before and after the destruction of Gog of Magog. Who is Gog of Magog mentioned in the book of Ezekiel? Why should we be interested in the prophecy recorded in Daniel chapter 11? Find out in a verse-by-verse explanation of Daniel Chapter 11, as you discover who the kings of the North and the South are from before Jesus’ day throughout the last days. You will benefit from paying attention to Daniel’s prophecy about the battle between the two kings? Taken together, the Bible books of Daniel and Revelation not only identify eight kings but also show the sequence in which they would appear. We can explain those prophecies.
People grow old, get sick, and die. Even some children die. Should you be afraid of death or of anybody who has died? Do you know what happens if we die? Will you ever see your dead loved ones again? “If a man dies, shall he live again?” asked the man Job long ago. (Job 14:14) Did God originally intend for humans to die? Why do you grow old and die? What is the Bible’s viewpoint of death? What is the condition of the dead? Are the dead aware of what is happening around them? What hope is there for the dead?
Herein Andrews will give the reader exactly what the Bible offers on exposing who the Antichrist and the Man of Lawlessness are. If we look at the texts that refer to the antichrist and the man of lawlessness, we will have lines of evidence that will enable us to identify them. Why is it important that we know who the antichrist and the man of lawlessness are? The antichrist and the man of lawlessness have had a greater impact on humanity and Christianity over the past centuries than many know. Moreover, the influence on the true worshipers of Christianity today has been even more significant and will only go from bad to worse as we come closer to the second coming of Christ. …
Throughout the Scriptures, God is identified as the Creator. He is the One “who created the heavens (He is the God who formed the earth and made it, He established it.” (Isa 45:18) He is the One “who forms mountains and creates the wind” (Am 4:13) and is the One “who made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and all that is in them.” (Ac 4:24; 14:15; 17:24) “God . . . created all things.” (Eph. 3:9) Jesus Christ tells us that it is the Father who “created them [humans] from the beginning made them male and female.” (Matt. 19:4; Mark 10:6) Hence, the Father is fittingly and uniquely called “the Creator.” (Isa 40:28) It is because of God’s will that we exist, for He has ‘created all things, and because of his will they existed and were created.’―Revelations 4:11 …
Eschatology is the teaching of what is commonly called the “Last Things.” That is the subject of Andrews’ book, which will cover, Explaining Prophecy, Explaining Clean and Pure Worship, The New Testament Writers Use of the Old Testament, Explaining the Antichrist, Explaining the Man of Lawlessness, Explaining the Mark of the Beast, Explaining Signs of the End of the Age, Explaining the Rapture, Explaining the Great Tribulation, Explaining Armageddon, Explaining the Resurrection Hope, Explaining the Millennium, Explaining the Final Judgment, Explaining the Unevangelized, Explaining Hell
The information herein is based on the disciples coming to Jesus privately, saying, “Tell us, (1) when will these things be, and (2) what will be the sign of your coming, and (3) of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3) What will end? When will the end come? What comes after the end? Who will survive the end? These questions and far more will be answered as Andrews delves into The SECOND COMING of CHRIST. In chapters 1 and 2, we must address why Jesus is saying there would be an end to the Jewish age. In chapter 3, we will take a deep look at the signs that establish the great tribulation is closing in, and when is it time to flee. In chapter 4, we will go over the signs of the end of the Jewish age. In chapter 5, we will walk through the events leading up to the end of the Jewish age from 66 – 70 C.E., and how it applies to our Great Tribulation in these last days. In chapter 6, we will cover the second coming of Jesus where the reader will get the answers as to whether verses 3-28 of Matthew Chapter 24 apply to Christ’s second coming. We will close out with chapter 7, and how we should understand the signs, and how we do not want to be led astray, just as Jesus warned even some of the chosen ones would be misled. We will also address what comes after the end.
What Really Is Hell? What Kind of Place is Hell? What Really Happens at Death? What Did Jesus Teach About Hell? How Does Learning the Truth About Hell Affect You? Who Goes to Hell? What Is Hell? Is It a Place of Eternal Torment? Does God Punish People in Hellfire? Do the Wicked Suffer in Hell? What Is the Lake of Fire? Is It the Same as Hell or Gehenna? Where Do We Go When We Die? What Does the Bible Say About Hell? Andrews Shares the Truth on WHAT IS HELL From God’s Word.
Miracles were certainly a part of certain periods in Bible times. What about today? Are miracles still taking place? There are some very important subjects that surround this area of discussion that is often misunderstood. Andrews will answer such questions as does God step in and solve every problem if we are faithful? Does the Bible provide absolutes or guarantees in this age of imperfect humanity? Are miracles still happening today? Is faith healing Scriptural? Is speaking in tongues evidence of true Christianity? Is snake handling biblical? How are we to understand the indwelling of the Holy Spirit? The work of the Holy Spirit. Andrews offers his readers very straightforward, biblically accurate explanations for these difficult questions. If any have discussed such questions, without a doubt, they will be very interested in the Bible’s answers in this easy to read publication.
Today there are many questions about homosexuality as it relates to the Bible and Christians. What does the Bible say about homosexuality? Does genetics, environment, or traumatic life experiences justify homosexuality? What is God’s will for people with same-sex attractions? Does the Bible discriminate against people with same-sex attractions? Is it possible to abstain from homosexual acts? Should not Christians respect all people, regardless of their sexual orientation? Did not Jesus preach tolerance? If so, should not Christians take a permissive view of homosexuality? Does God approve of same-sex marriage? Does God disapprove of homosexuality? If so, how could God tell someone who is attracted to people of the same sex to shun homosexuality, is that not cruel? If one has same-sex attraction, is it possible to avoid homosexuality? How can I as a Christian explain the Bible’s view of homosexuality? IT IS CRUCIAL that Christians always be prepared to reason from the Scriptures, explaining and proving what the Bible does and does not say about homosexuality, yet doing it with gentleness and respect. Andrews will answer these questions and far more.
If you’ve struggled in the world of difficulties that surround you, you’re not alone. Maybe you have looked for help, and you have been given conflicting answers. 40 DAYS DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS: Coming-of-Age In Christ, can help you. Its advice is based on answers that actually work, which are found in the Bible. God’s Word has helped billions over thousands of years to face life’s challenges successfully. Find out how it can help you! 40 DAYS DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS includes seven sections, with several chapters in each. It includes the following sections: Sexual Desires and Love, your friends, your family, school, recreation, your health. You need advice you can trust! 40 DAYS DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS will give you that. This author has worked with thousands of youths from around the world. The Bible-based sound advice helped them. Now you can discover how it can help you.
Young ones and teens, you are exposed to complex problems that your parents may not understand. Young Christians, you are bombarded with multiple options for solving everyday problems through social media. Where do you turn to find answers? Where can you look to find guidance from Scripture? In order to provide a Christian perspective to problem-solving, the author of this devotional book decided to take a different approach. Terry Overton was determined to find out what problems middle school children and teens were worried about the most. While visiting her grandchildren one weekend, she asked her granddaughter to send topics to her so that she could write a devotional about the topic. In a matter of weeks, not only did her granddaughter send her topics, but the other grandchildren and their friends sent topics of concern. Once the author wrote a devotional for a topic, it was sent to the teen requesting the devotional. Soon, these requests were happening in real time. Students sent text requests about problems happening in school and asked what the student should do? How should this be handled?
This devotional book follows the author’s own faith journey back to God. Significant life events can shake our world and distort our faith. Following life’s tragedies, a common reaction is to become angry with God or to reject Him altogether. Examples of tragedies or traumas include life-changing events such as physical or sexual assault, destruction of one’s home, the tragic death of a loved one, diagnoses of terminal diseases, divorce, miscarriages, or being a victim of a crime. Tragedies or traumas can cause feelings of anxiety, depression, shame, and guilt.
Throughout the book, common themes emerge to support caregivers. The reader will find interesting Bible Scriptures, offering a Christian perspective, for handling issues that may arise. These inspiring passages will assist the caregiver in finding peace and faith as they travel their journey as a caregiver. Although caregivers may not know how long they will play this role, they take on the responsibility without any question. Taking care of others is often mentioned in the Bible and, as noted in this devotional, this self-sacrificing, highly valued, and often challenging service will ultimately be rewarded.
Humans must breathe in the air of our atmosphere to survive. Many cities because of pollution face a dangerous level of contamination in their air. However, an even more deadly air affects both Christians and nonChristians. Ordinary methods or devices cannot detect this poisonous air. The apostle Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, spoke of the “air,” when he said that Satan was “the ruler of the authority of the air.” (Eph. 2:2) In that, very same verse Paul said the “air” is “the spirit now working in the sons of disobedience.” If we breathe in this “air,” we will begin to adopt their attitude, thoughts, speech, and conduct.
Humans must breathe in the air of our atmosphere to survive. Many cities because of pollution face a dangerous level of contamination in their air. However, an even more deadly air affects both Christians and nonChristians. Ordinary methods or devices cannot detect this poisonous air. The apostle Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, spoke of the “air,” when he said that Satan was “the ruler of the authority of the air.” (Eph. 2:2) In that, very same verse Paul said the “air” is “the spirit now working in the sons of disobedience.” If we breathe in this “air,” we will begin to adopt their attitude, thoughts, speech, and conduct.
BREAD OF HEAVEN helps the reader to have a greater understanding of the timeless truths of Scripture and a deeper appreciation of the grandeur of God. It offers meditations on selected Scriptures which will draw the reader’s attention upwards to the Savior. Kieran Beville’s daily devotional combines down-to-earth, unstuffy humanity in today’s world with a biblical and God-centered approach, and draws on rich theology in a thoroughly accessible way. He addresses not just the intellect and the will but gets to the heart, our motivational center, through the mind. If your Christian life could benefit from a short, well-written daily blast of Christ’s comfort and challenge, get this book and use it! These short Bible-based meditations are fresh and contemporary. Beville gives to the twenty-first-century reader what earlier authors have given to theirs. Here is practical wisdom that is a helpful guide to stimulate worship and set you thinking as you begin each day with God.
The Conversation: An Intimate Journal of the Emmaus Encounter is a unique and riveting reconstruction from the unnamed disciple’s account found in Luke 24 regarding his journey with Cleopas on the road to Emmaus after witnessing Jesus’s crucifixion and burial, along with hearing claims of His empty tomb. Suddenly, a Stranger begins walking with them. With their eyes “prevented” from recognizing Him as the risen Lord Jesus Christ—Yeshua the Messiah, their new, wise Traveling Companion correlates the Old Covenant Scriptures, by way of Moses and the prophets, with what they witnessed.
This “journal” is your opportunity to eavesdrop and learn what that conversation might have been like, as pertinent prophecies unfold revealing evidence that the Messiah’s suffering, death, burial, and resurrection were, in fact, specifically foretold.
Unique and life-changing, More Than Devotion, through a melding of accounts from both the Old Covenant and New, proves that our trustworthy God truly is the same yesterday, today, and forever. All fifty convicting devotions draw from a rich scriptural context, concluding with a practical, achievable call to action, plus journaling space for personal reflection. New believers and veteran followers of our Lord can grow in the innermost areas of their lives and enjoy a more intimate walk with the Savior.
Stella Mae Clark thought she had a wonderful life. She idolized her father, a military man who raised her to love Christ with all of her heart. She had a mother who loved her father and their example of true love gave her the sparkle in her eyes. That is until the unimaginable happens and her life is completely shattered. One decision at the age of sixteen would again turn her world completely upside down. Stella Mae makes the decision to leave her life and her family behind to seek refuge from her painful past. She desperately seeks solace, answers, and for something to fill the aching void within her heart. Just as she thinks she has settled into a new life with Christ, tragedy once again strikes and shatters any hope she had for a normal life. She abandons Christ and turns to a life of sin before it ultimately consumes her and breaks her down. Will it take nearly losing her life to find her way back to God or will her shame and regret keep holding her back? Join Stella Mae on her journey to find meaning and purpose in the midst of all her tragedy as she seeks to find the One her heart has been missing. The story of her past is one of loss, shame, heartbreak, and fear. With the help of those who see her for more than her past, she is able to become the person she always wanted to be and a new creature.
AN APOCALYPTIC NOVEL: As you are no doubt are aware, Jerry B. Jenkins and Tim LaHaye in 1995 wrote a novel entitled “Left Behind.” Jerry and Tim had some prior success with a major publisher and were able to get their novel published. The Left Behind novel was published by Tyndale House beginning in 1995 within a multiple volumes Left Behind series resulting in sales exceeding 60 million books. In 1992 Don Alexander wrote the storyline embedded in Left Behind. He copyrighted the novel in 1992 under the title “Oren Natas” [who is the Anti-Christ in his storyline]. The entire novel is contained in a single volume. It is a novel written depicting a colorful and witty cast of characters who live through all the “end time” Bible prophecies.
A routine classified telepathic interrogation of a potential terrorist, followed by an assignment that doesn’t go as planned thrusts Tabatha – the world’s only telepathic human – into the public eye. The exposure leads an evil neuro-scientist requesting a meeting with her in hopes of luring her to his cause as well as unveiling a deadly creative work that has spanned three decades of research and development.
ONLINE REVIEW: “Very fun read. Fast paced and honest. Tons of evolution occurs during the process thru the story. Wonderful girl trying to become an adult Christian in a world that also pits her superpowers against terrorists with the help of her own special forces team. Buy this book and just enjoy!”
In June 1985, an excavation project was undertaken by The British Antiquities Volunteers (BAV) at a plot of rocky land where the Kidron and Hinnom Valleys meet near the eastern side of Old Jerusalem. That year many hundreds of (mostly redundant) ‘small finds’ were recovered in the Judean desert but none of such significance as a handful of scrolls retrieved from a buried Roman satchel (presumed stolen) at this site. The discovery has since come to be known as ‘The Diary of Judas Iscariot.’ In The Diary of Judas Iscariot Owen Batstone relates the observations and feelings of Judas, a disgruntled disciple, as he accompanies Jesus of Nazareth during His ministry, and uses this fable and allegory to explore some of the ways a person might resist becoming a Christian.
Kevin Trill struggles with the notion that he may have missed the Rapture. With nothing but the clothes on his back and a solid gold pocket watch, he sets off towards Garbor, a safe haven for those who haven’t yet taken the mark of the beast. While on his way to Garbor, he meets up with an unlikely trio who befriends him. Together, they set out towards Garbor. Unfortunately, however, they are soon faced with their first major catastrophe, which sparks debate among them as to whether or not they really are in the Great Tribulation. On their journey, the group meets up with many people, some of them good and some of them evil. …
There grew an element in the valley that did not want to be ruled by the Light of the Word. Over time, they convinced the people to reject it. As they started to reject this Light, the valley grew dim and the fog rolled in. The people craved the darkness rather than the Light because they were evil. They did not want to embrace the Light because it exposed their wickedness. They rejected the Light of the Word and ruled themselves. Those few who had embraced the Light and hated the darkness were killed. Since that time anyone who embraced the Light of the Word, pursued or talked about it were arrested. Those arrested were sentenced to death by stoning. The last prophet gave a prophecy before he was martyred. “The whisperer will come and empower three witnesses that will make manifest the works of darkness and destroy it, and deliver my people from the grip of darkness to the freedom found in the light.” All the Children of the Light were killed off or went into hiding living among the Children of Darkness in secret, not mentioning the Light for fear of death. Generations grew up being ignorant of the Light of the Word and never knowing the difference. No one ever mentioned the Light or dared to even talk about the Light. …