Emphasis added in bold letters below
Emphasis added in bold letters below
The historical and archeological evidence for
Biblical accuracy & One Way to God
By Andy and Berit Kjos
"...always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you..."
1 Peter 3:15
"There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of Old Testament tradition." William F. Albright, one of the world's most renowned archaeologists.
"It may be stated categorically that no archaeological discovery has ever controverted a biblical reference."  Nelson Glueck, renowned Jewish archaeologist
"How can I prove to my atheist friend that Jesus was God incarnate and that all other prophets (Muhammad, Joseph Smith, etc.) were just men?" asked a recent visitor to our website. "How can I can I show him that Jesus is the ONLY WAY to God and His eternity? And how can I explain it without making him say, 'How narrow-minded! It's ridiculous to assume that your religion is the only way."
Those important questions deserve answers. And since the Bible itself is a key source, let's begin with a look at its validity. After all, if the Bible is made up of myths and stories like most religious literature, it would be useless. But if it's verified by history and science (including archeology), its message about Jesus and His Way can't be dismissed.
Naval officer and oceanographer Matthew Maury, illustrates its validity well. Disabled by an accident in 1839, he left active sea duty and became the superintendent of the US Naval Observatory. In charge of the US Depot of Charts and Instruments, he could now explore the answer to a nagging question on his mind: What were "the paths of the seas" mentioned in Psalm 8? Confident that the Bible doesn't lie, he "devoted himself to studying the winds, clouds, weather, and ocean features." From old ships’ logs--
"he compiled charts of ocean-wind and sea currents. To study the speed and direction of the ocean currents Maury set adrift weighted bottles known as ‘drift bottles’. These floated slightly below the surface of the water, and thus were not affected by wind....From the location and date on which the bottles were found, Maury was able to develop his charts of the ocean currents—the ‘paths’ of the seas—which greatly aided the science of marine navigation.... He was elected to the Hall of Fame for Great Americans. A monument erected in his honour... reads: ‘Matthew Fontaine Maury, Pathfinder of the Seas, the genius who first snatched from the oceans and atmosphere the secret of their laws. His inspiration, Holy Writ, Psalm 8:8; Ecclesiastes 1:6.’"
We agree that the Bible is not a scientific textbook. But if it's truly "given by inspiration of God" (2 Timothy 3:16), it will be full of amazing facts known only by the Creator until the rise of modern science:
"The excessive skepticism shown toward the Bible by important historical schools of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, certain phrases of which still appear periodically, has been progressively discredited. Discovery after discovery has established the accuracy of innumerable details, and has brought increased recognition to the value of the Bible as a source of history."
Scientific facts first found in the Bible
The evidence for Biblical accuracy is multiplying fast. Here are just a few more examples:
"Prior to 1906 critics of biblical historicity argued that the Bible's descriptions of the Hittite Empire were later insertions, since they were certain the Hittite Empire didn't exist.... But in 1906 archaeologists unearthed the Hittite capital and in the years following excavated what is now known to have been a massive and very prominent Hittite civilization."
"Job 26:7 says the earth is suspended on nothing. Early man thought Atlas, a huge turtle or elephants held up the earth..... Today we know it is gravity that holds the planets and stars in their orbits...."
"Job 38:16 tells us there are springs in the sea.... this was not known until 1913."
"Job 36:27-28; Ecclesiastes 1:6-7; Isaiah 40:12 and 55:10 explains the hydrological cycle. The condensation and hydrology maintain life, provide evaporation, transportation, precipitation and run-off . This describe the repeated cycle of precipitation, its evaporation, and condensation in the clouds....Here King Solomon, writing 3,000 years ago explains how the oceans are the origin of rain... tells us the wind has currents. ...'The phrase, 'the wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course' is an accurate and astonishing description of the circular flow of air around the earth, called the 'jet stream,' well known to anyone who watches the evening news weather reports”( also in Isaiah 40:12.)"
"Water is heavier than air, and is transported in clouds. Some see this process suggested as God continued in his conversation with Job “Dost thou know the balancing of the clouds, the wondrous works of Him who is perfect in knowledge?” (Job 37:16). Biblical evidences of science
Historical and archeological facts that validate the BibleUnlike the myths and legends of other spiritual traditions, the Bible's meticulous recording of historical events is consistent with secular history as well as archeological discoveries. Even the Old Testament droughts (which led to famines and wars) match the migrations, climatic changes, tree rings and other discoveries charted by recent scholars -- a fact that has baffled and persuaded skeptics through the centuries.
Ponder these amazing links between the Biblical account and archeological discoveries:
1. King Sargon: The prophet Isaiah tells us that "Sargon the king of Assyria sent" his commander to fight "against Ashdod," a coastal city in ancient Israel. (Isaiah 20:1). That name probably won't ring a bell, yet this verse fueled a controversy back in the early days of archeology. Some researchers had uncovered a stone obelisk with an engraved list of Assyrian kings. But it didn't include Sargon! So the university of Chicago announced that they saw a "glaring contradiction in the Bible."
They were wrong. King Sargon's royal palace has now been excavated and studied. Researchers found Sargon's name engraved on numerous bricks in the palace walls -- along with a proud reference to his conquest of Ashdod. Later digs uncovered more engraved evidence of King Sargon's fame, arrogance and historical presence.
2. Ancient Israel: Even before God brought His precious people into the land He had promised them, he warned them through Moses not to follow the ways of corrupt neighboring nations. This brief summary of one such warning could be a wake-up call to Americans as well:
"...when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them... your heart is lifted up and you forget the Lord your God. ... [Y]ou say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.’ ... [I]f you by any means forget the Lord your God, and follow other gods... you shall surely perish. As the nations which the Lord destroys before you, so you shall perish, because you would not be obedient to the voice of the Lord your God." (Deuteronomy 8:10-20)
But the people didn't listen. Within one generation after entering the promised land, most of the Israelites had forgotten this warning. Through the centuries, God kept raising up leaders who taught the Truth and brought the people back to Him, but eventually their moral and spiritual corruption (which included pagan practices such as sorcery, witchcraft, necromancy, child sacrifice, etc.) -- had become so imbedded in their culture that God withdrew His protection. The powerful Babylonian empire, ruled by King Nebuchadnezzar, destroyed the land and exiled most of the people. Faithful men such as Ezekiel and Daniel, were among the captives brought to Babylon, where they continued to serve God and minister to the people.
3. The rise and fall of empires: When Babylon conquered ancient Israel, the faithful Daniel was among the first group brought to the court of Nebuchadnezzar. There he interpreted the king's strange dreams and won his respect. One dream in particular was obviously fulfilled:
"...it happened, when I, Daniel, had seen the vision and was seeking the meaning, that suddenly there stood before me one having the appearance of a man.... And he said, '...The ram which you saw, having the two horns—they are the kings of Media and Persia. And the male goat is the kingdom of Greece. The large horn that is between its eyes is the first king. As for the broken horn and the four that stood up in its place, four kingdoms shall arise out of that nation, but not with its power...." (Daniel 8:15-22).
Decades later, Media and Persia conquered and ruled the vast Babylonian empire. They were replaced when Alexander's Greek armies swept through the Middle East. When Alexander died, his empire was divided among four generals. Its glory would soon fade. God is always right! 
4. Casting Tyre into the sea: The prophet Ezekiel prophesied the unique destruction of Tyre -- a coastal center of Mediterranean commerce -- centuries before it was fulfilled:
"...because Tyre has said against Jerusalem, ‘Aha! She is broken who was the gateway of the peoples; now she is turned over to me... .Therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Behold, I am against you, O Tyre, and will cause many nations to come up against you.... And they shall destroy the walls of Tyre and break down her towers; I will also scrape her dust from her, and make her like the top of a rock. It shall be a place for spreading nets in the midst of the sea.... I make you a desolate city, like cities that are not inhabited, when I bring the deep upon you, and great waters cover you..." (Ezekiel 26:2-5,19-20)
Thrown into the midst of the sea? But that's impossible!
Not according to history and archeology. The rich maritime city was first attacked and destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar's armies. But most of its residents escaped to a large island near the coast. Five centuries later (in 332 B.C.), Alexander the Great decided to add the well fortified island city to his Greek empire. When it resisted Alexander's assaults, his army built a 200 feet wide causeway out to the island -- using the sand and stones from the ruins of the ancient city to build the passage. They literally cast the its remnants into "the midst of the water."
5. Petra: Years ago, Andy and I visited Petra, the "pink city" dramatized in the movie, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. The trip to Edom’s ancient capital began in Amman, Jordan, with a four-hour drive south through the desert. Only an occasional camel train or bedouin tent interrupted the sandy, stony bareness. Finally, at the mountainous entrance to Petra, the passage once blocked to Moses and his followers, we walked through a narrow gorge.
Near the end of the stony corridor the view grew spectacular. The vertical rock walls at our sides framed a sliver of the "pink palace,” permitting a teasing glimpse of the rose-colored columns and sculptured ornaments of a palatial wall. What an oasis! But when we reached the once-flourishing city, the stark sunlight exposed the faded facades of a lifeless ghost town. Behind the broken ruins of a lost civilization hid empty caves - the stripped tombs of a people who long ago rejected God. The path led no further. The well-traveled old roads were gone!
Actually, the Bible had told us what to expect in Petra:
"... it shall lie waste; No one shall pass through it.... and thorns shall come up in its palaces,
Nettles and brambles in its fortresses; It shall be a habitation of jackals...
The wild beasts of the desert shall also meet with the jackals...
There the arrow snake shall make her nest and lay eggs...." (Isaiah 34:9-15)
Talk about climate change! This calamity wasn’t caused by chlorofluorocarbons or overpopulation. God did it, because the ancient Edomites dared disobey the King of Kings. Smug and secure in their mountain hideout, they despised Israel and mocked God’s covenant. Their arrogant rejection of God’s truth and ways brought destruction to the land and people:
"This is what the Sovereign LORD says about Edom... 'The pride of your heart has deceived you, you who live in the clefts of the rocks and make your home on the heights, you who say to yourself, 'Who can bring me down to the ground?' Though you soar like the eagle and make your nest among the stars, from there I will bring you down'” (Obadiah 1, 34)
Edom literally dried, wilted, and died. Its streams and vineyards turned to dust, and they could do nothing to save their land:
"Edom may say, 'Though we have been crushed, we will rebuild the ruins.' But this is what the LORD Almighty says: 'They may build, but I will demolish.... You will see it with your own eyes and say, 'Great is the Lord - even beyond the borders of Israel' (Malachi 1:4-5).
As archaeologist Joseph Free said,"Archaeology has confirmed countless passages which had been rejected by critics as unhistorical or contrary to known facts."
Old Testament prophesies fulfilled by Jesus1. He would be born in Bethlehem: "But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Though you are little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of you shall come forth to Me
The One to be Ruler in Israel, Whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.” (Micah 5:2)
Fulfilled! "Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child.... And she brought forth her firstborn Son..." (Luke 2:4-7)
2. He would be born of a virgin: “...the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son...." (Isaiah 7:14)"Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph. ... [T]he angel said to her, 'Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest... and of His kingdom there will be no end.'
"Then Mary said to the angel, 'How can this be, since I 'do not know a man?'
"And the angel answered and said to her, 'The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God." (Luke 1:26-35)
3. His death would redeem us from sin
"He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.
All we like
gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way;
And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth...." (Isaiah 53:5-7)
Fulfilled! "For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps:
'Who committed no sin, nor was deceit found in His mouth'; who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness— by whose stripes you were healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd...." (1 Peter 2:20-25)
4. He was rejected by those He came to save: He is despised and rejected by men.... and we did not esteem Him." (Isaiah 53:3).
Fulfilled! "That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. (John 1:9)
5. Identified with our sins, Jesus was separated from our Holy God: "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" (Psalm 22:1).
Fulfilled! "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, 'Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?' that is, 'My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?'" (Matthew 27:46)
6. He would face mockery from ruling authorities: "All those who see Me ridicule Me; they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, 'He trusted in the Lord, let Him rescue Him; let Him deliver Him...” (Psalm 22:7-8).
Fulfilled! "...the chief priests also, mocking with the scribes and elders, said, 'He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him....’” (Matthew 27:41-43)
7. Nails would pierce his hands and feet: "They pierced My hands and My feet." (Psalm 22:16)
Fulfilled! When the resurrected Jesus appeared to His disciples, he said, "Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts? Behold My hands and My feet.... Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.'" (Luke 24:38-39)
"[Eight days later, Jesus appeared to all the disciples] He said to Thomas, 'Reach your finger here, and look at My hands... Do not be unbelieving, but believing.' And Thomas answered and said to Him, 'My Lord and my God!'
Jesus said to him, 'Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20:25, 27-29
8. They "cast lots" for his clothes: "They divide My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots." (Psalm 22:18)
Fulfilled! "And when they crucified Him, they divided His garments, casting lots for them to determine what every man should take." (Mark 15:24)
9. God's decree and promise after the fall: (speaking to the serpent) "And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” (Genesis 3:14)
Fulfilled! "And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath....
Proof of the resurrection
"Very early in the morning, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb.... And they said among themselves, 'Who will roll away the stone from the door of the tomb for us?' 'But when they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away—for it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a long white robe sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed. But he said to them, 'Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here." (Mark 16:2-6)
"After that, He appeared in another form to two of them as they walked and went into the country. And they went and told it to the rest, but they did not believe them either. Later He appeared to the eleven...." (Mark 16:12-14)
It's not surprising that many doubt or deny His resurrection. On that glorious event rests the ultimate victory of the gospel! Through the cross, Jesus redeemed us (bore the legal punishment for our sin and freed us from the judgment of the law). Having cleansed us from our sin, He could -- by His resurrection -- raise "us up together" with Himself, so that we could share in His heavenly victory even as we serve Him here on earth."(Ephesians 2:1-10)?
1. The massive stone had been rolled away! This is no small miracle. Weighing over a ton, it could hardly be moved without a lever. Meanwhile, the tomb was both sealed and guarded by a team of Roman soldiers who would face torture and death if they fell asleep or failed to carry out their mission. These guard would eventually be bribed to spread false explanations.
"Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it. His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men." (Matthew 28:1-4)
"...some of the guard came into the city and reported to the chief priests all the things that had happened. When they had assembled with the elders and consulted together, they gave a large sum of money to the soldiers, saying, 'Tell them, ‘His disciples came at night and stole Him away while we slept.’ And if this comes to the governor’s ears, we will appease him and make you secure.' So they took the money and did as they were instructed...." (Matthew 28:11-15)
2. The tomb was empty -- except for the burial wrappings: If the disciples stole the body, why they bother to uncover it before hiding it. No, the tomb was empty because Jesus had, indeed, risen!
3. More than 500 witnesses could confirm His post-resurrection appearances: As the apostle Paul wrote:
"For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now..." (1 Corinthians 15:3-6)
6. The disciples and others who followed Christ would face persecution and death for proclaiming the resurrection: Before the crucifixion, the disciples were too frightened to even defend their Lord. Their fear didn't diminish after the crucifixion. But after the resurrection, everything changed!
His faithful disciples boldly proclaimed the gospel, the resurrection and the victorious name of Jesus in spite of the threats against them. They faced imprisonment, torture, stoning and death. What changed them? Only an absolute certainty that Jesus, their Lord and King had indeed risen!
"...just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." (Romans 6:4).
Only One Way
Jesus is the Way - the only way - to life with God today and forever. Yet, millions of seekers are choosing spiritual paths that lead to bondage, disillusionment and despair. Most seek blindly, for they can neither read nor follow God's signposts. They don't see the chasm that separates His Way from all other ways; nor will they seek help from the only One who can bridge that gap.
Our sovereign Lord wrote the blueprint for life, salvation and victory! His Word will stand no matter how many people reject it. They make it abundantly clear that there are no alternative pathways -- no other trails up the mountain -- that can bring us near to God and open the Door into His wonderful eternal Kingdom. Only Jesus Christ, our Lord, can show us the Way:
"I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." (John 10:9-10)
'I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.'" (John 14:6)
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it." (Matthew 7:13-14)
The Victorious Life
Nothing is more wonderful than to live and walk with Jesus, our Lord!
"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? ... Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:31-39)
Are you, too, part of His family? Then nothing can separate you from His love! Then He will surely "guard your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forever." (Psalm 121:8)
"Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it. " (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24)
If you seek to be part of His family, please see this page: What it means to be a Christian
These testimonies show how God changes our lives and provides all the wisdom and strength we need to joyfully serve Him. We hope they will encourage you:
The story of the Mosuo | My Shepherd
The Village that Lived by the Bible
Guilty as Charged | Living in God's forgiveness
1. William F. Albright, The Archeology and the Religions of Israel, John Hopkins Press, Baltimore, 1956, p. 176. Cited by Rabbi Glenn Harris, http://www.gospeloutreach.net/bible.html
2. Nelson Glueck, Rivers in the Desert: History of Negev. Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia, 1969, P. 176. Cited by Rabbi Glenn Harris, http://www.gospeloutreach.net/bible.html
3. Matthew Maury’s search for the secret of the seas http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v11/i3/maury.asp
4. Albright, William Foxwell. The Archaeology of Palestine.Pelican Books, Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England, 1960, p. 127, 128. Cited by Rabbi Glenn Harris, http://www.gospeloutreach.net/bible.html
6. Biblical evidences of science at http://www.letusreason.org/Apolo6.htm
7. Sargon king of Assyria at http://www.biblehistory.net/newsletter/sargon.htm
10. Free, Joseph. Archaeology and Bible History. Scripture Press, Wheaton, IL, 1969, pg. 1
4. Sargon king of Assyria at http://www.biblehistory.net/newsletter/sargon.htm
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