Bible Introduction Course
Chapter Four (Part 2 of 2)
Proof of the Bible
Those who reject the truth discount and despise prophecy, calling it mere speculation and fanaticism.
Proofs from History and Archaeology
(1) Does the Bible indicate that a worldwide flood during the time of Noah killed all humanity and land animals except those preserved in the ark?
Genesis 6:7, 13, 17; “7And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. 13And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth. 17And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die.”
Genesis 7:6, 21-22; “6And Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth. 21And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: 22All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.”
If all the different peoples on earth came from Noah, then we would expect to find many accounts of this flood in ancient legends handed down over the millennia, with the common thread of a worldwide flood and an ark in which only one family survived. This is precisely what we find.
Consider this quote from Halley’s Bible Handbook, concerning the universality of the Flood tradition: “Babylonians, Assyrians, Egyptians, Persians, Hindus, Greeks, Chinese, Phrygians, Fiji Islanders, Esquimaux, Aboriginal Americans, Indians, Brazilians, Peruvians, and indeed every branch of the whole human race, Semitic, Aryan, Turanian – have traditions of a Great Deluge that destroyed all mankind, except one family, and which impressed itself indelibly on the memory of the ancestors of all these races before they separated. ‘All these myths are intelligible only on the supposition that some such event did actually occur. Such a universal belief…must be based on an Historical Fact’” (pp. 75-76).
Archaeological evidence is equally overwhelming: “George Smith, of the British Museum, found…in tablets from the library of Assur-banipal at Nineveh, accounts of the Flood curiously parallel to the Bible account, which had been copied from tablets dating back to the first dynasty of Ur, a period about midway between the Flood and Abraham…In these tablets the expressions repeatedly appear: ‘The Flood,’ ‘the age before the Flood,’ ‘inscriptions of the time before the Flood’” (Ibid., p.76).
(2) Is there outside evidence that the tower of Babel existed?
Genesis 11:3-4, 7-8; “3And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them thoroughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for mortar. 4And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth. 7Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech. 8So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city.”
In the center of Babylon, George Smith (cited above) found an ancient tablet reading: “The building of this illustrious tower offended the gods. In a night they threw down what they had built. They scattered them abroad, and made strange their speech” (Ibid., p. 84). To this day, the remains of a number of ancient ziggurat structures exist, the largest attributed as possible sites of the tower of Babel.
Another ancient tablet quotes Marduk (Nimrod) declaring, “Let us build a shrine…Construct Babylon, whose building you have requested. Let its brickwork be fashioned. You shall name it ‘The Sanctuary’…Having built a stage-tower as high as Apsu [the gods]” (Ancient Near Eastern Texts, James Pritchard, 1969, pp. 68-69).
(3) Although many scholars traditionally regard the Biblical patriarchs listed in Genesis 11 as legendary heroes, is there any proof that they existed?
Genesis 11:18-25; “18And Peleg lived thirty years, and begat Reu: 19And Peleg lived after he begat Reu two hundred and nine years, and begat sons and daughters. 20And Reu lived two and thirty years, and begat Serug: 21And Reu lived after he begat Serug two hundred and seven years, and begat sons and daughters. 22And Serug lived thirty years, and begat Nahor: 23And Serug lived after he begat Nahor two hundred years, and begat sons and daughters. 24And Nahor lived nine and twenty years, and begat Terah: 25And Nahor lived after he begat Terah an hundred and nineteen years, and begat sons and daughters.
Unger’s Archaeology and the Old Testament shows that ancient cities and towns in Mesopotamia were named after Abraham’s forefathers: Peleg, Reu, Serug, Nahor, and Terah.
Genesis 24:10 directly refers to one of these cities named after Nahor.
Genesis 24:10; “10And the servant took ten camels of the camels of his master, and departed; for all the goods of his master were in his hand: and he arose, and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor.”
(4) Is there any way to verify the Bible’s claim that Joseph ruled Egypt, directly under Pharaoh?
Genesis 41:39-41; “39And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath showed thee all this, there is none so discreet and wise as thou art: 40Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou. 41And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt.”
The following is attributed to Djoser (Joseph) during Egypt’s seven-year famine: “I was in distress on the Great Throne, and those who are in the palace were in heart’s affliction…since the Nile had not come in my time for a space of seven years. Grain was scant, fruits were dried up, and everything which they eat was short. Every man robbed his companion…The infant was wailing; the youth was waiting; the heart of the old men was in sorrow…The courtiers were in need. The temples were shut up…Every[thing] was found empty” (Ancient Near Eastern Texts, p. 31).
There are numerous other archaeological references to Joseph and the Hebrews in Egypt. In fact, no reliable archaeological evidence exists that contradicts the biblical record.
(5) Did any of the leaders of the major world empires ever look into the Bible and acknowledge its description of his particular empire?
Daniel 8:20-22; “20The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia. 21And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king. 22Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.”
As an extension of the description of the four major world empires in Daniel 7, chapter 8 is a more detailed account of the Medo-Persian and Grecian empires, leading up to the break-up of the Grecian empire into four divisions.
Pertaining to the time that Alexander the Great traveled through Jerusalem before confronting the Persians in a decisive battle, Josephus records, “…and when he (Alexander) went up into the temple, he offered sacrifice to God, according to the high priest’s direction, and magnificently treated both the high priest and the priests. And when the book of Daniel was showed him, wherein Daniel declared that one of the Greeks should destroy the empire of the Persians,
Daniel 8:5-8; “5And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes. 6And he came to the ram that had two horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power. 7And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand. 8Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.”
….he supposed that himself [Alexander] was the person intended…” (Antiquities of the Jews, Bk. XI, ch. viii, sec. 5).
Just as Nebuchadnezzar finally acknowledged the supremacy of God,
Daniel 4:34-37; “34And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation: 35And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? 36At the same time my reason returned unto me; and for the glory of my kingdom, mine honour and brightness returned unto me; and my counsellors and my lords sought unto me; and I was established in my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added unto me. 37Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase.”
….Alexander also respectfully honored God according to his understanding. Thus, here again, military leaders of empires more readily acknowledge the supremacy of God and His written Word than do scholars, skeptics and theologians who claim to be experts on the Book they discredit and doubt.
In the fields of history and archaeology, there are hundreds of other verifications of the Bible record. (What we have covered is only a brief sampling to stimulate the reader’s interest.)
Proofs from the Geological Record
When God renewed the face of the earth, He adjusted the orbit of the earth with respect to the sun, and the moon with respect to the earth. He then put the flora and fauna on the earth after first modifying the land masses and oceans, as well as the atmosphere. This renewal of the earth took place about 6,000 years ago. But many millions of years before this re-creation, a great destruction occurred, resulting from Satan’s rebellion and God casting him back down to the earth with one-third of the angels (now demons) under his command.
This great destruction has correctly been termed the “Pre-Adamic Destruction.” While many Bible scholars have attributed this awesome devastation to the Noachian Flood, the geological record reveals that it occurred many millions of years ago. The destruction that preserved ancient dinosaur remains was a powerful and sudden catastrophe of colossal proportions.
Fossilized fishes and other sea life are found in the highest state of preservation – further evidence of the sudden pre-Adamic destruction. The rigid fins and open mouths of these fossil fishes show their stark terror. Unprecedented shock waves must have killed all animal life. Sharks over five feet long were pressed to a thickness of only one-fourth of an inch. Evidently, they were trying to swim in water suddenly saturated with sediment. The action of this sediment-laden water actually produced most of the earth’s strata as we know it today. These sediment layers then hardened into rock. The strata containing plant and animal life on the surface became compressed and stratified, as well. The coal deposits in the earth resulted from this great catastrophe.
The Pre-Adamic strata were deposited in quick succession. Vast numbers of fossilized trees and plants are often found in upright positions, extending across successive layers of strata. So sudden was the destruction that delicate plants and rushes have been found in perfect condition, preserved in sandstone. These strata of the pre-Adamic destruction are much harder and thicker than strata caused by the Flood. The animals preserved in that destruction were huge reptiles. Animal and plant life was unlike that of the earth today, in size and scope. The fossil remains of dinosaurs weighing up to 40 tons stand as stark testimony of this alien world.
The Flood also left evidence such as vast erosion of the Grand Canyon and other similar traces. But the evidence in the strata was not as prominent as the pre-Adamic destruction.
Isaiah, Ezekiel and Revelation record the casting down of Satan as a result of this titanic battle.
Isaiah 14:12, 15; “12How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! 13For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: 14I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. 15Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.”
Ezekiel 28:16-17; “16By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire. 17Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.”
Revelation 12:7-9; “7And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. 9And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.”
The point here is that the physical evidence of the pre-Adamic destruction is lost upon religionists who suppose that life has only existed for 6,000 years. Evolutionists also grossly misinterpret the evidence in the earth’s strata. But the key to this truth is found in Scripture.