My Two Favorite Books on Ancient Israel

If you’re wondering where I get a lot of the information that I share about the Late Bronze Age and Israel, it is from William Dever. Dr. Dever was the professor of Near East Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of Arizona, and is currently Distinguished Professor of Near Eastern Archaeology at Lycoming College in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. His book Who Were the Early Israelites and Where Did They Come From? is, to me at least, a modern classic.

When it comes to the Monarchy period or Early Iron Age Israel, I get a lot of my chronological data from Gershon Galil’s book The Chronology of the Kings of Israel & Judah. (Yes, I own it. No, I did not pay $165 for it.) Dr. Galil is Senior Lecturer in Biblical History in the Department of Jewish History at the University of Haifa, Israel.

These two works are by far my favorite books on Ancient Israel, although I own a great many others and have read far more.

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7 thoughts on “My Two Favorite Books on Ancient Israel

  1. For being a sponsor of unorthodoxy you are rather orthodox in supporting scholars determine to minimalize the importance of scripture. In their rush to validate a non-scriptural understanding of the Bible, for the Bible itself provides no dates in the Old Testament.

    Yet, the 17th century A.D. scholars Sir John Marsham, and Sir Isaac Newton determined scriptures Iron Age date based upon what knowledge? While the 19th century Biblical scholars focus on the newly discovered Assyrian remains are even more outrageous in their denial of Biblical infallibility. Certainly none of these archaic scholars had the knowledge we know today based upon archaeological evidence that dates to the late 20th century.

    Along with a firm knowledge of how traditional Bible chronology evolved over its 17 centuries of dominate thought in European history. Real evidence from archaeology is substantial in providing a much older Old Testament history entailing the use of cultural changes, famines, droughts, plagues, wars, and ancient people. While Dr. Dever and friends are satisfied with kennels of truth found in their preferred Bible chronology, I am not.

    My Lord does not provide kennels of truth but the whole thing for he is the Truth, and archaeology when used as the tool it is proves scripture. In ways that are impossible, when using it as a means to validate a Biblical chronology based upon man’s best reasoning over 17th centuries.

  2. I was certain that entire post had undergone one of those automated translation services like Babel Fish, but then the kennels typo blew that theory out of the water. So much for giving the benefit of the doubt.

    • I’m honestly not trying to make fun of you. It is incredibly difficult to follow your English syntax. I get the general idea of your thesis, but your use of the language makes any point you make difficult to decipher.

    • Allow me to illustrate my point with your own words:

      For being a sponsor of unorthodoxy you are rather orthodox in supporting scholars determine to minimalize the importance of scripture.

      “determine to minimalize” should be “determined to minimize”.
      Scripture should be capitalized.

      In their rush to validate a non-scriptural understanding of the Bible, for the Bible itself provides no dates in the Old Testament.

      This is a fragment with no predicate.
      Beside that, the Bible does nothing “itself.” It is an inanimate object, even if it is the Word of God. It is a book that cannot act.

      Yet, the 17th century A.D. scholars Sir John Marsham, and Sir Isaac Newton determined scriptures Iron Age date based upon what knowledge?While the 19th century Biblical scholars focus on the newly discovered Assyrian remains are even more outrageous in their denial of Biblical infallibility. Certainly none of these archaic scholars had the knowledge we know today based upon archaeological evidence that dates to the late 20th century.

      “scholars focus…are even more outrageous” should be “scholars focus…was even more outrageous”.
      “archaic scholars” is poor word choice since the 17th and 19th centuries are hardly archaic. Virtually any other determinative such as “Enlightenment” or “modern” would have been appropriate.
      “had the knowledge we know today” is just an awkward and redundant turn of phrase.

      Along with a firm knowledge of how traditional Bible chronology evolved over its 17 centuries of dominate thought in European history.

      Again, this is a fragment without a nominative or a predicate. It is essentially a dependent clause with nothing to depend on.

      And did “traditional Bible chronology” revolve over 17 centuries? Which 17 centuries are we talking about specifically?

      Real evidence from archaeology is substantial in providing a much older Old Testament history entailing the use of cultural changes, famines, droughts, plagues, wars, and ancient people. While Dr. Dever and friends are satisfied with kennels of truth found in their preferred Bible chronology, I am not.

      Beside awkward phrases, this is your improper word choice of “kennel” instead of “kernel”.

      My Lord does not provide kennels of truth but the whole thing for he is the Truth, and archaeology when used as the tool it is proves scripture. In ways that are impossible, when using it as a means to validate a Biblical chronology based upon man’s best reasoning over 17th centuries.

      Again, capitalization and word choice.

      If I were writing your comment, it would have been written thus:

      While claiming to espouse unorthodoxy, you are rather orthodox in your support of scholars who minimize the importance of Scripture. These scholars rush to validate an unscriptural understanding of the Bible. The Old Testament does internally date itself.

      What knowledge did the 17th century scholars Sir John Marsham and Sir Isaac Newton use to determine the dates of the Iron Age? The 19th century Biblical scholars focused on newly discovered Assyrian remains to support their outrageous denial of Biblical infallibility. None of these Enlightenment scholars had the knowledge base of archaeological evidence we have today.

      If you understand how the traditional Bible chronologies have evolved and dominated European history, you can see that there is substantial archaeological evidence for a much older Old Testament. This is supported through our understanding of cultural changes, famines, droughts, plagues, wars and ancient people.

      While Dr. Dever are satisfied with building their preferred Bible chronology on kernels of truth, I am not. My Lord does not provide kernels of truth, but the whole truth because He is Truth. Archaeology is a tool to prove Scripture, but that proof is impossible when you are using archaeology to validate a chronology based on man’s reason and tradition rather than the Scriptures themselves.

      If that is your premise, then I have an understanding of it. It took me half an hour to parse your four paragraphs and make sense of them. If you wish to make valid points and engage in intelligent discussion of a topic, you must use language properly. Otherwise, no one will respect your position. That is just the way it is.

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