Friday, February 25, 2011

Fundamental Friday's--The Fallacies of Higher Criticism Part VII

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.

One of the fixed points of the higher criticism is its theory of the origin of Deuteronomy. In I. Kings 22 we have the history of the finding of the book of the law in the temple, which was being repaired. Now the higher critics present this finding, not as the discovery of an ancient document, but as the finding of an entirely new document, which had been concealed in the temple in order that it might be found, might be accepted as the production of Moses, and might produce an effect by its assumed authorship. It is not supposed for a moment that the writer innocently chose the fictitious dress of Mosaic authorship for merely literary purposes. On the contrary, it is steadfastly maintained that he intended to deceive, and that others were with him in the plot to deceive. This statement of the case leads me to the following reflections:

1. According to the theory, this was an instance of pious fraud. And the fraud must have been prepared deliberately. The manuscript must have been soiled and frayed by special care, for it was at once admitted to be ancient. This supposition of deceit must always repel the Christian believer.

2. Our Lord draws from the Book of Deuteronomy all the three texts with which He foils the tempter, Matt. 4:1-11, Luke 4:1-14.' It must always shock the devout student that his Saviour should select His weapons from an armory founded on deceit.

3. This may be called an appeal to ignorant piety, rather than to scholarly criticism. But surely the moral argument should have some weight in scholarly criticism. In the sphere of religion moral impossibilities are as insuperable as physical and mental.

4. If we turn to consideration of a literary kind, it is to be observed that the higher criticism runs counter here to the statement of the book itself that Moses was its author.

5. It runs counter to the narrative of the finding of the book, and turns the finding of an ancient book into the forgery of a new book.

6. It runs counter to the judgment of all the intelligent men of the time who learned of the discovery. They judged the book to have come down from the Mosaic age, and to be from the pen of Moses. We hear of no dissent whatever.

7. It seeks support in a variety of reasons, such as style, historical discrepancies, and legal contradictions, all of which prove of little substance when examined fairly.

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