History

I believe that God has acted, acts, and will continue to act in the lives and societies of His children. He is in our history. The true account includes and depends on reference to the divine, for this is things as they really were, are, and will be. Inasmuch as God is our Father, and all that has transpired on this earth is part of His great plan to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man, history is His story. And you cannot tell His story correctly and completely and leave Him out of it.

There are many scholars who set forth an interpretation of history that avoids any reference to or dependency on God. While I have benefitted in many ways from the works of such scholars, and I believe that many of the principles of rigorous investigation and study used by these scholars are inspired and useful, I believe they cannot be 100% correct. If God really was a part of our history, and we try to explain that history some other way, we cannot get it all right.

This predicament is especially poignant in the field of Bible scholarship. This field specifically attempts to understand the events recorded in the Bible from a non-theological standpoint. They use anthropological, archeological, linguistic, and other academically rigorous sources of information to explain what happened. I have really enjoyed and benefited from some of their work. My faith is deeper and stronger because of academic research of the scriptures and other religiously significant accounts. But, the academic histories are wrong. They are not entirely wrong, but we know that somewhere, somehow, they must be incorrect. You cannot tell God’s story correctly and completely and leave Him out of it.

Now, if you don’t believe in the God of Christianity, you probably don’t care about this observation. But you cannot believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and rationally believe 100% of academic scholarship on religious history. The two are not logically compatible.

So, how do you know when a scholar is right, and how do you know when he is wrong?

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