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"... it was presupposed that supernatural events in ancient texts are the equivalent of what is referred to as "myth"
All religion was then redefined to be mythical, and some 5300 years of ancient history was discarded for any historical purpose.
The actual roots of this problem started during the first days of German Higher Criticism.
German Higher Criticism's primary goal was to establish the biblical text as the most correct and accurate of the ancient historical books, particularly from the perspective of papal interpretation.
The German Higher Critics were professors, scholars and priests of the Holy Roman Catholic order, who took it as a solemn duty to rip the ancient world apart and put it back together again in a way that would elevate the papacy's view of the biblical cannon above everything else -- bar none.
This had negative ramifications for the rest of the ancient world, as you can well imagine.
Firstly, the Papacy of the final days of the Holy Roman Empire
(?), viewed the planet as being only 5000 or so years old. This, of course, colored their approach to interpretation of other ancient texts as well.
The German Higher Critics knew that to advance their study, it would have to be in agreement with the papal "status quo", whom were both their science authorities and their historical authorities.
Obviously, something was wrong with papal interpretation but this was not for the Critics to decide. All they had to do was prove the papal interpretation of scripture was accurate and that all other historical accounts were mere contenders for the throne. And so the real trouble began.
Armed with the volumes of knowledge available at the time, the Higher Critics arrived at the erroneous conclusion that the ancient Greeks couldn't write.
This theory was initially advanced by Friedrich August Wolf in his book "Prolegomena ad Homerum" (1795). He concluded that Homer couldn't have possibly written the Iliad and the Odyssey because the ancient Greeks couldn't write, or so he thought.
One thing lead to the next, and all the ancient greek epics, poems and histories were tossed out and labelled unhistorical myth: This included the Greek histories of Egypt, Assyria, Media, and the annals of the Greek city-states.
As a result, greek histories were removed from historical consideration and taken out of historical and scholarly texts at the university level. Any remaining references were called "myth".
Troy never existed, or so they said.
Those whose job it was to provide the new version of history (we call these people historians, today) took the data compiled by the Higher Critics and reshaped history. And so Greece fell from glory, that is, till it was discovered some 40 years later, that the ancient Greeks could write. Unfortunately, their decision to call their ancient texts mythological, was never recanted.
As the study advanced, so fell the Ancient Hindu, the Norse, the Egyptian, the Chinese, the pagan Roman, the Babylonian, and so on, until finally,
when the dust cleared, there was literally nothing left in history that was true EXCEPT the papal interpretation of the bible.
Mind you, archaeology had yet to be created as a science.
Most of the ancient world was still buried under sand, newer civilizations and so on. They had virtually no clue about the ancient past but were determined to recreate it in the image most befitting the papacy's view of biblical texts. It was a mess.
Here science picks up the ball and runs down the field with it, gleefully reshaping history into whatever configuration is necessary to define their knowledge of science AT THE TIME --- that is, till they run into that proverbial wall where it's finally determined that the papacy is simply wrong.
It is at this point, the bible goes the same way the rest of the ancient world had gone - relegated to obscurity.
They couldn't separate the papacy's interpretation of it from the actual words in the text. To them, the two were synonmous, and so into the trash bin of history it went, along with the rest of the ancient world.
German Higher Criticism had literally, in just a couple of decades, destroyed 5300 years of ancient history, based almost entirely on their own limited understanding of the cultures it stood in judgement of, without the benefit of archaeological record, and from the standpoint that papal interpretation was the only viable possibility, else it was all false.
Now the show was on for earnest. Since the ancient past was all just a myth, the new progenitors of truth (who had replaced the papacy in that career designation) had the problem of archaeology to deal with.
It became a sore spot as it tended to disprove prior pronouncements that the ancient texts were purely myth.
Again and again, archaeological digs had proven the ancient texts of these long ago people, were in fact, quite historical. This was a BIG problem.
Before the ball could be snatched out of their court, something had to be done. They needed a new timeline by which to gauge the passage of their new history.
Obviously, they surmised, the supernatural events mentioned in nearly every ancient text, were unscientific.
Afterall, what ignorance to suppose that dragons were emperors or that people could be born in any fashion other than via the birth canal or that men/angels, could fly in the sky or travel amongst the stars!
Perhaps the texts had been merely massaged for dramatic purpose, but were otherwise historical, they deliberated. It was merely a matter of determining which were the MOST reliable, if at all. They settled on Ancient Egypt, but removed from consideration any of the supernatural references.
...This is, I believe, the second biggest conspiricy of mankind."
Originally posted by Titen-Sxull
If God is real and chooses to damn me to hell, than so be it, I can only do my best to try to find and understand Him and to the best of my knowledge the Bible and the religion surrounding it are flawed so I have given up any attempt to find God within them.
Yes we are imperfect, this proves my point about religion, everything we humans touch is tainted. That being said even if God's holiness is far above my own is it wrong to expect a Holy being to be more merciful then a sinner like me? If God wants to set an example why do the writers of the Bible have him doing all those horrific and evil things? I at least would expect him to follow his own commandments and yet the Old Testament makes clear that he can't even do that. There isn't a human being in the world I would wish into damnation for an eternity, Hitler perhaps. And the worst part of all is that they are not damned for their deeds but instead damned for not believing in some guy who lived 2000 years ago that there is no evidence for. There are too many flaws in the Bible and in the religion itself, God may well be blameless as you state, but the stories about him paint him as anything but. It just doesn't make one lick of sense in my mind that God would choose one divided messed up religion, choose one majorly flawed book, send one son, and force you to believe it all without evidence, and then damn you if you don't. Sorry but that creates a little too much Cognitive Dissonance for my taste. I end with some quotes:
Originally posted by dthwraith
reply to post by Skyfloating
The God of the Old Testament is not the God Jesus is referring to in the New Testament. The Old Testament God is an Extraterrestrial who is posing as God. The God Jesus refers to is the Supreme Source.
It's very seldom I see someone say something so stupid and so wrong, someone who clearly beyond a shadow of doubt has no understanding whats so ever of what they are talking about.
Jeff Foxworthy would say "heres your sign."
I long ago stoped caring about what people posted here, but I just had to respond to that cracked out post.
Originally posted by Tormentations
Flaw 1: God is supposedly loving and merciful, yet sees fit that every first born CHILD of Egypt is to be mercilessly killed, this punishment is said to befall all who do not spread the blood on their doors, this would include innocents (who are, I remind you CHILDREN). Rather than punishing Pharaoh for his sin God punishes the most innocent of Egyptian people.
Originally posted by Bean328
you cant use the old tesament when talking about the bible and comparing God of today and God of the old testament. the old testament is the old covenant of abraham and that was replaced when God sent Jesus to die on the cross for our sins and thus begins the new testament and a new age of grace/forgiveness/love/mercy ect..
i for one am glad God IS a God of mercy and compassion and loved us enough to send his son to die for us.
I consider God far too big a concept to be found in one religion or one book, that's humans limiting God to one specific group that claims to have all the answers.... God knows were to find me, its up to him now.