am not a well educated Christian scholar and I have
been challenged by a very dangerously learned agnostic
who has made a claim that I have never heard before. He has
suggested that the Old Testament was written in order to
keep control over people using a god to claim authority.
First, ask him to prove it! Ask him to give you some evidence! There is no
evidence...only speculation...If he gives you some more theory, ask for
historical evidence! Ask for something from archeology or history, not
just a speculative possibility!
Second, you might point out that if he is right, IT DIDNT WORK VERY WELL! The Jews
were never under control by the prophets--they killed every one of them! The prophets wrote the bible, not the controlling leadership!
The leaders always killed the messengers of God--even Jesus referred to
this in Matt 23.30: And you say, `If we had lived in the days of our
forefathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood
of the prophets.' 31 So you testify against yourselves that you are the
descendants of those who murdered the prophets.
and in Matt 23.37: "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and
stone those sent to you..."...This is REAL historical data that proves him wrong
Continuing the same theme he suggested that the New
Testament was written by people who wanted to reform the
Again, ask for evidence and hard facts--not just 'clever sounding
In one sense he is right--Jesus DID want to reform the religon, by
preaching the New covenant to the Jews and by saving us!...this position
is not necessarily wrong; its just not complete enough...what would be important to analyze this further, would be to find out which (if any) passages in the NT he would say were 'untrue' or 'propaganda'...then we could begin to think through that issue...
He has basically claimed that the Bible is
a beautifully written piece of fiction.
Again, ask for proof and evidence--nobody thought that for centuries
Every historical fact in it bears out in archeology...every detail
looks like an eyewitness...the authors died as criminals for their belief
that this was true...common people in the 1st century Palestine didn't
write fiction! (that was for the elite Greeks and Romans outside of Palestine)...there is
simply no reason in the world to believe this guy!
hope this makes sense,