The New Oxford Annotated Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version

Author: Pheme Perkins
This Month Reddit 4


by DronedAgain   2019-07-21

And the Oxford Annotated NRSV has the background material and footnotes that will be a great aid for the approach you (OP) want to take.

by PhotogenicEwok   2019-07-21

> Does anything in the archaeological record necessarily contradict the Bible?

Well that's a scary question to answer on a sub that affirms the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. To be blunt, short answer is yes, long answer is that it's very complicated.

> Do you mean they have bad methodology, or do you mean their conclusions are not historically supportable?

They have bad methodology, and their conclusions are vague and misleading. In just a couple seconds of scrolling I found a few blatant lies, like this one on an article regarding the Dead Sea Scrolls:

>Most importantly, the existence of Daniel in the DSS disproves the skeptical position that Daniel was originally written in the 2nd century BC.

Completely ignoring the question of when Daniel was written right now, Daniel being included among the Dead Sea Scrolls doesn't prove anything about its dating. It only means that it was written by at least 70 AD--we have other evidence that shows is was obviously earlier than that, but the DSS prove nothing.

But on to your questions!

>Does anyone have any good resources on:
>-The composition of the Old Testament
>-The history of the Israelities, and the broader tribes of Canaan.
>-The establishment of the United Monarchy
>-The history, and background, of the groups in the New Testament.

A really great intro to Biblical studies can actually be found right here on reddit, surprisingly. r/AcademicBiblical and r/AskBibleScholars are both decently active subs with a ton of info on their wikis with massive lists of resources.

One resource in particular that would cover basically all of your questions is the New Oxford Annotated Bible. It's an NRSV translation with great footnotes, introduction essays for each book, and good essays in the back that'll give you a solid background in the history of the Old Testament. The essays are a little lighter for the New Testament, but they're still there.

This is a documentary that lays out a pretty good overview of the general consensus in Biblical Archaeology.

There's also the classic Yale Old Testament course for free on YouTube. That's a time sink, but it's a really good introduction for new students.

> -Whether An Early History of God by Mark S. Smith and Israel Finkelstein's The Bible Unearthed is a good resource to read

Finkelstein is on the more "Biblical minimalist" side of the scale, which means he doesn't think much of the Bible is true. He's still a very respected author, and I think it's worth hearing him out, but keep that in mind. I personally disagree with his views quite a bit. Which is funny, because he helped put together that documentary I linked, though he seems somewhat tame in that.

> -Does archaeology and scholarship backup the biblical record? Or is a lot of it taken on faith?

It's somewhat of a mixed bag. Archaeology does back up much of the Biblical record surprisingly well, especially once you get into the era of the monarchy. However, the further back you go, the fuzzier things get. There is absolutely zero archaeological evidence for any of the patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob), however, that makes sense since it would be basically impossible to prove the existence of an individual person several thousand years ago.

The biggest points of debate you'll find are the Exodus and David's kingdom. Basically, did the Exodus happen, and if it did, how big was it? And was David's kingdom as large as the Bible claims it was?

> -Has reading about it helped your faith?

To be honest, at first, absolutely not. It was really difficult at first, and I avoided it for a while, but eventually curiosity got the best of me and I started reading. Once I got through it, I actually think it greatly strengthened my faith and gave me a much clearer view of God's heart for his people.

Hopefully this is somewhat helpful, I'm typing this up quick before bed so I may have missed something. This is a super sensitive topic on this sub, so I don't usually talk about it, but I think it's really cool when people show initiative to look into it.