TRANSPONDER wrote: ↑Thu Nov 04, 2021 2:16 am
I don't get why we are going over the same ground.
The post was not specifically addressed to you. Only posts that contain a link to your post would be specific to you. If I do not include any link to a previous post, then it's targeted to the general audience.
I argue that there is enough evidence of falsification, Spin, fabrication and invention to make the basic claim of the Bible to tell us about God, Jesus and the resurrection (the point on which Christianity is founded) open to question.
We can continue our discussion on the Jerusalem siege to see where we draw the line on whether the Bible is reliable or not.
TRANSPONDER wrote: ↑Thu Nov 04, 2021 11:03 am
This is as good evidence of a Biblical event confirmed by an extra - Biblical source as you could wish. The Bible and the Assyrian records agree that Sennacherib attacked the coalition, smashed Babylon, clobbered Egypt and demolished Lascheish (or Laschish) after a siege and then ...well I'd always credited that there was a siege of Jerusalem as Isaiah said. It may be that Sennacherib sent a surrender demand to Hezekiah backed up by an army. Sooner or later, Hezekiah gave in and paid tribute. Bot sources, Bible and Assyria, agree that.
To me, this is the bulk of the story. If you accept these as historically factual, then I pretty much rest my case.
So either God or mice had demolished that army...why did he submit? True, Sennacherib still had his army investing Limnah and could have taken it to Jerusalem. Sure, he might have been afraid his army would suffer the same fate as the one he'd sent under his messengers, but if so, why did Hezekiah submit? If The Lord has smit one army it could smite another.
Not sure I see the sequence of events the same as you. Hezekiah gave the tribute to Sennacherib while he was at Lachish and before he attacked Jerusalem.
2 Kgs 18:13-17
13 Now in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah did Sennacherib king of Assyria come up against all the fenced cities of Judah, and took them.
14 And Hezekiah king of Judah sent to the king of Assyria to Lachish, saying, I have offended; return from me: that which thou puttest on me will I bear. And the king of Assyria appointed unto Hezekiah king of Judah three hundred talents of silver and thirty talents of gold.
15 And Hezekiah gave [him] all the silver that was found in the house of the LORD, and in the treasures of the king's house.
16 At that time did Hezekiah cut off [the gold from] the doors of the temple of the LORD, and [from] the pillars which Hezekiah king of Judah had overlaid, and gave it to the king of Assyria.
17 And the king of Assyria sent Tartan and Rabsaris and Rab-shakeh from Lachish to king Hezekiah with a great host against Jerusalem. And they went up and came to Jerusalem.
None of his army was "smitten by God" yet when Hezekiah gave the tribute.
Hezekiah just gave in and paid tribute - which both sources agree - that was the reason Sennacherib marched away.
Yes, both sources agree Hezekiah paid tribute. Hezekiah paid what Sennacherib demanded to not attack Jerusalem. But, even though he got what he demanded, he still attacked Jerusalem anyways.
And even if it was a camp disease, or mice, why does God have to have anything to do with it? I know - it's Biblical apologist spin again.
No more than insurance companies also "spinning" things and say things happen because of an "act of God".
They think that perfectly natural occurrences can't be proven to not have God behind it (even though the evidence is against it) and that leaves the God -claim intact. But rationally, if there is a natural explanation (disease or mice) there is no reason to suppose God in the first place.
I don't believe they knew what happened to the Assyrian army. But, even if it was a plague or some natural cause, God could've been the secondary cause of it. And so it's fine for them to attribute the cause to God.
I do think God did have a hand in destroying the Assyrian army while at Jerusalem. If Jerusalem fell, I personally think that would've been the end of Judah as a nation, and the end of the Jewish race. And there would be no Jesus or Christianity. But, that's just my opinion.
The point is that even true events, places and persons in the Bible do nothing to validate the God -claim.
I would disagree. It would make the Bible stand out among other religious texts and also confirm the reliability of the Bible.
To make it quite clear, even if some events in the Bible are true but naturally explainable events, there is no more reason to suppose a god behind it than in finding your car keys. You may say that you are only making a case for some true events in the Bible (even if no reason to suppose a miracle) but if so, such a discussion is proper to the history forum, not here. This is about the God -claim, essentially.
I don't think you can have it both ways. I offer natural explanations and then you say it must have a spiritual explanation. And if I offer a spiritual explanation, then it's rejected because it's not a natural explanation.
I'm sure you can't be missing the problem here.
Yes - the event is surely factual/historical. The circumstances are agreed by both sides.
But the Bible has an additional claim that God smote the Assyrians and that was why they marched away, and with no mention of tribute.
Thus Isaiah contradicts what we have in Chronicles and in that respect of Biblical spin, not to say lies. And the spin is that God effectively helped Hezekiah to beat the Assyrians and yet Chronicles makes it clear that they didn't.
The point is to lie to make a case for God.
The point about ending the Jewish race is not even hypothetically valid. Since Hezekiah submitted, Sennacherib didn't raze Jerusalem, so your point is Hypothetical. But later, the 2nd Babylonian Empire did just that, and yet the Jews came back from Exile and became an effective nation again under the Persians.
You strawman my argument, to put it politely. I don't say it must have a 'spiritual' (I suppose you mean God -advocacy) 'explanation'. It is Isaiah that argues that and the facts agreed by both sides are evidence that the God - claim is false. No, it is not 'fine' for them to attribute a hypothetical problem for the Assyrian army to God, even if there was some such problem. If there had been a camp sickness problem, then (hypothetically) Hezekiah (who history/Archaeology tells us prepared his defences well) would have toughed it out. But the Bible says the army was smitten and the King marched away and there would have been no submission or tribute. And evidence of the Bible and the Assyrian records shows that there was.
The Bible is thus trying to bamboozle us about God being real and intervening. There is no reason to see God having anything to do with it, even of some kind of camp sickness is true. And the submission and tribute suggests that it isn't.
I agree your point about the Bible standing out amongst other Holy Books because of the amount of historical record it contains. But the relevant point here is that it does not have any more credibility in its' God/ Jesus claims than any other Holy Book has for their own gods.
The 'Insurance' analogy is not the same. 'Act of God' means that no human agency is responsible for an accident. Here, the evidence is that no 'accident' (e.g camp disease) actually happened. Even if it had, there is no more evidence that God is real than the Insurance claim of an accident for which no human is responsible actually shows that a god is involved.
This is the case no matter the order of events. It seems likely that Sennacherib did not take his army to Jerusalem himself (he attacked Limnah) but sent his deputies with an army. Whether there was an actual siege or not Hezekiah gave in and paid tribute. I can see a scenario where the deputies invested Jerusalem, there was disease or some other problem and Hezekiah offered terms which Sennacherib accepted. That was a climb -down for him, too which is why (I suspect) he had to put out public propaganda about how Hezekiah grovelled. I even suspect that Sennacherib left it to others to conduct the siege because he thought that it might fail.
But the point here is that there is no reason at all to see a hand of God in it. It is no more than attributing successful surgery, a winning goal or finding your car - keys to God. The Biblical story is spun to look like there is no explanation for Hezekiah's unexpected win. there was no win - He gave in and paid tribute.