Review: Jonathan Park: Ep. 86 – The Mysterious Artifact of Qumran, Part 2

For more Jonathan Park reviews, click here.

Background Information

The Jonathan Park CDs are produced by Vision Forum Ministries.  Through these CDs, VF hope to ‘provide children and adults with scientific evidence that is in harmony with the Word of God’.  [Which raises the questions, ‘What does “in harmony” mean?’ and ‘What do they do with scientific evidence that is not in harmony with the Word of God?’]

Tagline: This is our Father’s world, God created it; we can explore it, so live the adventure!

NOTE: The producers of this series neglect to reference their information in any form.  No references is ever given either on the CD or in the Study Guide for ANY information presented in the series.  Even the voice actors of the series are not given any credit anywhere.  We only know that the series is a production of Vision Forum Ministries.

Plot Summary:

The Copper Scroll appears to reference a second scroll that contains important clues about where vast treasures are hidden. While visiting the Dead Sea Caves, Jonathan discovers an inscription that may lead the Creation Response Team to that second scroll. Meanwhile, Jim finds himself at a loss while debating a member of the “Free Thinkers Society.” (Taken from here.)

There is NO Study Guide for Volume 8.  You’re on your own!

Review

King David

The STORY: The Tel Dan Stele is a memorial celebrating a king’s victory in a battle over Israel. The king has been identified as Hazael who lived during the lifetime of Elisha. The battle is not only mentioned on the stele but also in the Bible in 2 Kings 8:28-29 and 2 Kings 13:3. This is more affirmation of biblical records.

The Mesha Stele which was found a hundred years earlier also mentions King David. The Mesha inscription tells of another battle also mentioned in the Bible: 2 Kings 3. Finally, there’s been an inscription found at the Temple of Amun in Karnak, Egypt that also appears to mention David. David is not only mentioned in the Bible, but on the tablets of history.

(3:38-5:20)

The FACTS:  Stele is pronounced STEE-lee.  It can also be spelled stela and is pronounced STEE-luh.  The characters all mispronounce it as STELL-uh.  At the end of the episode, someone comes on to give a summary of the episode’s real events and keeps saying ‘Stella’.

Yes, proper pronunciation is important.  The people involved with this production obviously don’t think so.

More about the Tel Dan Stele here and here.

The importance of the Tel Dan Stela lies not in its record of history, because the Bible gives a much fuller account. Its importance, rather, lies in the fact that it is an independent, contemporary, witness to the events of ca. 841 BC and the accuracy of the Biblical record. (taken from https://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/2011/05/04/The-Tel-Dan-Stela-and-the-Kings-of-Aram-and-Israel.aspx )

More about the Mesha Stele here and here.

The Mesha Stele (also known as the “Moabite Stone”) is a stele (inscribed stone) set up around 840 BCE by King Mesha of Moab (a kingdom located in modern Jordan). Mesha tells how Kemosh, the God of Moab, had been angry with his people and had allowed them to be subjugated to Israel, but at length Kemosh returned and assisted Mesha to throw off the yoke of Israel and restore the lands of Moab. Mesha then describes his many building projects. (taken from wikipedia)

More about the Temple of Amun here and here.

The historicity of David is here.

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YEC vs. Free Thinkers Society (Part 2)

The STORY: This is a continuation from the previous episode where Jim Brenan (the good guy) debated Edwin Maxwell (the bad guy). Mr Maxwell asserted that Bible stories are similar to earlier legends, namely the Enuma Elish, the Epic of Gilgamesh and the Code of Hammurabi.

Jim Brenan says that there are only three options:

  1. The legends came from the Bible
  2. The Bible could have come from these legends.
  3. The biblical account and the legends were inspired by real events.

Since the legends do date earlier than the Bible, we are only left with the last two options.

There is a general trend in archaeology that older artifacts speak of one god and then deteriorate through time into legends of multiple gods. Sceptics claim that Jews rewrote the legends from the stories of multiple gods into the one God of the Bible. However, that seems to go in the opposite direction than expected.

After Jim compares the Tale of Gilgamesh and Noah’s Flood, Jessie concludes, ‘We’re always talking about the scientific evidence that is in harmony with the biblical flood, but in comparison, Utnapishtim’s flood seems like a fairy tale…. The idea that Genesis was taken from these legends fails because they refer to multiple gods, do not stand up to the scientific believability and do not meet the test of historical accuracy like  Genesis.

So, the most likely explanation is that the Creation and worldwide flood were real events recorded by the Scriptures and also through legends that were passed down and changed.

As for the Ten Commandments being very similar to the Code of Hammurabi, Romans 2:14 says that God’s laws are written upon men’s hearts.  It is not surprising that men everywhere have common codes of conduct. However, one main difference between the Code of Hammurabi and the Ten Commandments is that the Commandments have their foundation on the worship of the One True God.

(5:50-9:28)

The FACTS:

I. can’t. even….but I’ll try.

There is absolutely NO scientific evidence for the biblical flood.  There is no evidence of a worldwide flood that occurred 4000 years ago. 

*****************************************************************************************

The Isaiah Scroll

The STORY: The Book of Isaiah can be divided into two portions: the first talks about the judgment of God upon Israel, and in the second, we read about the fulfillment of those prophecies. But sceptics cannot accept that God would allow Isaiah to accurately predict the future. They claim the book was written by different authors; they say that Isaiah wrote up to chapter 39 only. The Isaiah scroll challenges sceptics who want to deny the sole authorship of the prophet Isaiah. The end of chapter 39 and the beginning of chapter 40 appear on the same scroll.  The Isaiah Scroll is one of the major discoveries of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

John 12:38 quotes Isaiah as being the author of Isaiah 53. Paul does the same in Romans 10:16.  Matthew 3:3 attributes Isaiah 40 to the prophet. Jesus read from Isaiah 61 and claims that the author to be Isaiah.

(15:30-17:06)

The FACTS:

More about the Isaiah Scroll here and here.

The Great Isaiah Scroll (1QIsaa) is one of the original seven Dead Sea Scrolls discovered in Qumran in 1947. It is the largest (734 cm) and best preserved of all the biblical scrolls, and the only one that is almost complete. The 54 columns contain all 66 chapters of the Hebrew version of the biblical Book of Isaiah. Dating from ca. 125 BCE, it is also one of the oldest of the Dead Sea Scrolls, some one thousand years older than the oldest manuscripts of the Hebrew Bible known to us before the scrolls’ discovery. (taken from http://dss.collections.imj.org.il/isaiah)

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Conclusion

Unless one is a biblical scholar or is interested in that field, this is not an easy program to follow. The writer(s) seem to seek to prove that the Bible is accurate and reliable.

There is a bit of a subplot where one character is given a donkey as a gift.  He later finds out that the animal is actually an onager.  Some characters pronounce it ON-uh-ger (hard ‘g’) and one pronounces it ON-uh-jer. The proper pronunciation of this creature’s name is the latter.  This isn’t a case of ‘you say to-MAY-to, I say to-MAH-to’ – there is only one accepted pronunciation of the word.

<< Previous: Ep. 85 | List of Reviews | Next: Ep. 87 >>

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Posted on Sunday, May 5th, 2013, in Bible, Jonathan Park, Jonathan Park Reviews, Language, Logical Fallacies, Vision Forum and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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