Friday, October 1, 2010

Fundamental Friday's--Evidence for Mosaic Authorship of the Pentateuch

In the early 1900's. a twelve volume work on theology titled The Fundamentals was published. This massive work, in my most humble of opinions, is just as relevant today if not more so with the ever increasing attacks on the faith of Christians--and that's just from folks inside the church. I wanted to publish some excerpts from this work that I think will be greatly encouraging to you.

The Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch is supported by the following, among other weighty considerations:

1. The Mosaic era was a literary epoch in the world's history when such Codes were common. It would have been strange if such a leader had not produced a code of laws. The Tel-el-Amarna tablets and the Code of Hammurabi testify to the literary habits of the time.

2. The Pentateuch so perfectly reflects the conditions in Egypt at the period assigned to it that it is difficult to believe that it was a literary product of a later age.

3. Its representation of life in the wilderness is so perfect and so many of its laws are adapted only to that life that it is incredible that literary men a thousand years later should have imagined it.

4. The laws themselves bear indubitable marks of adaptation to the stage of national development to which they are ascribed. It was the study of Maine's works on ancient law that set Mr. Wiener out upon his re-investigation of the subject.

5. The little use that is made of the sanctions of a future life is, as Bishop Warburton ably argued, evidence of an early date and of a peculiar Divine effort to guard the Israelites against the contamination of Egyptian ideas upon the subject.

6. The omission of the hen from the lists of clean and unclean birds is incredible if these lists were made late in the nation's history after that domestic fowl had been introduced from India.

7. As A. C. Robinson showed in Volume VII of this series it is incredible that there should have been no intimation in the Pentateuch of the existence of Jerusalem, or of the use of music in the liturgy, nor any use of the phrase, "Lord Of Hosts," unless the compilation had been completed before the time of David.

8. The subordination of the miraculous elements in the Pentateuch to the critical junctures in the nation's development is such as could be obtained only in genuine history.

9. The whole representation conforms to the true law of historical development. Nations do not rise by virtue of inherent resident forces, but through the struggles of great leaders enlightened directly from on high or by contact with others who have already been enlightened.

The defender of the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch has no occasion to quail in presence of the critics who deny that authorship and discredit its history. He may boldly challenge their scholarship, deny their conclusions, resent their arrogance, and hold on to his confidence in the well authenticated historical evidence which sufficed for those who first accepted it. Those who now at second hand are popularizing in periodicals, Sunday School lessons, and volumes of greater or less pretensions the errors of these critics must answer to their consciences as best they can, but they should be made to feel that they assume a heavy responsibility in putting themselves forward as leaders of the blind when they themselves are not able to see.

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