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Other Articles on 
and the Bible

Archaeology Verifies the Bible as God's Word

Ch. 1 - A Christian Skeptic Discovers God in Ancient Israel

Ch. 2 - Sir William Ramsay
Defends the New Testament

Ch. 3 - Was the Jesus of the Bible Fact or Fiction?

Ch. 4 - Bible Minimalists
Back Again!

Ch. 5 - King David
Was for Real!

Ch. 6 - Archaeological Evidence Verifies Biblical Cities

Archaeological Evidence
Verifies Biblical Cities

The Devil's War Against Biblical Archaeology



Archaeology Verifies the Bible as God's Word


Bible Minimalists

Back Again!

Chapter 4


Unfortunately, the “Biblical minimalists” or “Biblical nihilists” are back again. This time with both an anti-Semitic and a political agenda. They are distorting archaeology to defend Palestinian land rights by attempting to prove there is no historical evidence of a Jewish State. Fortunately, there are highly esteemed scholars qualified to unmask their political agenda. This controversy came to a head in October 2002 at the Bible and Archaeology Fest held in Toronto, Canada, and was evaluated in an article that appeared in the Toronto Globe and Mail.

Dr. Hershel Shanks, editor of the Biblical Archaeology Review (flagship of archaeology periodicals), observed that the scholarly debate has become tinged with more than a hint of present day politics.

They’re writing books with titles like The Invention of Ancient Israel: The Silencing of Palestinian History—not very subtle attempts to subvert the historical premise of the modern Jewish state.

As early as thirteen centuries B.C.E. and 200 years before the birth of David, a stele exhibited in the Cairo Museum states that Pharaoh Merneptah boasted of his army’s invasion of Israel. “This is very inconvenient stuff for minimalists,” Dr. Shanks said, “because there’s no other way to read it. This is a clear reference to ancient Israel.”

The elder statesman of American Archaeologists William Dever, of the University of Arizona, stated, “I think it’s important to unmask these people. They are not biblical scholars. They are certainly not archaeologists. They are social engineers manipulating the biblical texts for their own goals.”

Harvard University’s eminent Frank Moore Cross put it bluntly in the pages of Biblical Archaeology Review by observing that they are “driven by anti-Semitism.”