Dead Sea Stone

Daily Galaxy is one of my favorite websites. The other day, they had an interesting article about a Dead Sea Stone. In order to get the full story, you need to read the articles cited at the end of Galaxy’s post, too.

In short, a stone was found that dates decades before the birth of Jesus. Written in Hebrew, the partially-deciphered text contains a “vision” of the apocalypse.  One line of the text tells the ‘prince of princes’ slain by the evil government that ‘in three days you shall live.’

The story on Daily Galaxy implies that the stone specifically mentions someone named Simon as the being the resurrected person.  Actually, that’s just an idea that one scholar (who doesn’t like Christianity) suggested the stone is talking about.

Now, what’s humorous is reading people’s reactions to the story (check out the comments on Digg to see what I’m talking about.) A lot of people are jumping on the “this is going to destroy Christianity!” bandwagon. But the funny part is that it won’t do any of that. Anyone who has studied Christianity, whether he/she is a Christian or not, knows the Old Testament contained many prophecies about a coming Messiah. The fact that a Jewish group was writing about such a prophecy before Jesus is no surprise at all.

I’m amused because it’s interesting to see how people often lose objectivity when confronted with an emotional debate. In this case, critics of Christianity, rather than reading the whole article, jumped on the bandwagon that this should be the “end” of the faith. In the same way, many Christians jumped on Dobson’s bandwagon that Obama’s speech in 2006 was heresy (check my blog post a bit below for details.)

No matter what side you’re on, it’s important to look at the facts on both sides before joining a debate. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I’ve made the same mistake plenty of times in my life, too. It’s an easy one to do!

But sometimes it can be entertaining to watch the fights that result. 😉

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17 responses to “Dead Sea Stone

  1. it seems like a lot of people on Digg will distort just about anything to further their argument. I think it only backs up what the Bible says!

  2. Most prophets today, those who hear voices telling them to follow a path are usually highly medicated and restrained in hospitals. If the people who wrote those prophecies were alive today, you, me and anyone sane would want to see them locked up for their safety and ours. I don’t see what 6000 or 2000 years makes for a difference. Do you? The world wasn’t more mystical 6000 or 2000 years ago, it was merely more ignorant.

    When archaeologists find art in old Europe about dwarfs and dragons… they call it folklore and mythology.

    We’re all atheist about other gods, some of us take it one god further. (Dawkins) and God himself is an atheist because he himself can’t believe in a higher power 😉

  3. I came to a completely different conclusion. Too many people just say “NO!” as soon as someone suggests something new that has religious significance because it might interfere with what they already believe.

    But if you believe that your faith is 100% right, you should have nothing to fear from an intellectual article. It seems to me that the prince of princes being slain by an evil government fits pretty good into what actually happened.

    Simon-Peter wasn’t resurrected in flesh, but his successors (all the Popes after him) have, in a sense, kept his mission alive.

    If you what you believe is true, factual evidence shouldn’t contradict your beliefs… they should verify them.

  4. Hey Kev, that’s actually kinda what I was saying. 😉 I think we believe the same thing on this, just coming at it from two different angles.

    Adam – yea, that’s true. It’s fun to read comments on Digg, as long as you don’t take them seriously. 🙂

    Dave – you said “most” prophets, so I guess that means you think some of them are the real deal. 😉

  5. As in not all of them get the treatment they need and run free in the streets and hear voices coming from dogs telling them to kill. I’m an atheist. I don’t believe in anything supernatural. If you hear voices in your head… you got problems, not angels.

    When I read stuff like:”If you what you believe is true, factual evidence shouldn’t contradict your beliefs… they should verify them.” I just vomit a little in the back of my throat. This type of “logic” completly overwhelms me. This is the logic that insists the sky is green when everyone else insists it blue. That’s the type of logic that permits personal truths and denies truth, the truth and is akin to the similar philosophical cul-de-sac known as solipsism.

    This is android smashing logic from 60s sci-fi lore. Everything I say is a lie… does not compute… android melts down 🙂

  6. Does Chuck make an argument at some point? Because I didn’t see one, other than attacking some people by parenthetically adding the word liberal in there.

  7. Hey Anon! You came here from Pippa Wagstaff’s blog, right? Unfortunately, I don’t know anything more than her post says. In fact, I didn’t even know about it at all until you alerted me in this comment! I may have to write a post about it soon, so thanks for the info.

    (For my readers, Pippa’s blog about Christopher is here: http://onewalesgovernment.blogspot.com/2008/07/christopher-glamorganshire-what-price.html)

    Dave – I know you’re atheist, I was just teasing ya. 😛 I can’t speak for what Kevin meant by his statement though. He’ll have to do that himself. 🙂

    Aaron – Thanks for the link, I enjoyed reading the article. Chuck’s basically saying what I said. Some members of the media acted out of ignorance of Christianity’s beliefs when they claimed the discovery would “rewrite the Bible.” It’s a very interesting artifact, but also not surprising since the Old Testament has prophesies of the same thing.

    I need to write a post about scifi again sometime soon! Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten the lighthearted side of this blog. 🙂

  8. Dave, I stand by that statement. If Christ had said the sky was green, as a Catholic, I’d probably just assume that I probably should have been held back in pre-school for not learning my colors properly.

    Let me explain what I said in the comment above using secular terms…

    I have a scientific theory that I stand firmly by. Then some guy in Greece makes a discovery that, according to him, contradicts my theory.

    I have two options… abandon my theory forever or figure out how my theory can co-exist with his scientific discovery. If they cannot co-exist, then my theory is bogus. If they can co-exist, then it’s remains a legitimate theory.

    Now, as a Catholic, I believe strongly in the existence of the Holy Trinity. But if someone provided factual evidence that the Trinity does not exist, I would have a very hard time ignoring it.

    As an atheist, you’re now tasked with proving to me that something you cannot define, describe, see, touch, smell, taste, or hear doesn’t exist.

    And I am then tasked with proving to you that something of the same nature DOES exist.

    Personally, I know I can’t do that so I’m not going to waste my time or yours.

    Dave, you’d find your life a lot less stressful if you decided to not waste your time the same way.

    If you ever have questions about Catholicism or religion in general, I’ll be happy to answer them. Likewise, if I have questions about atheism, I’m sure you’ll be happy to answer those as well. But until one of us decides to make the personal decision to convert… we’re better off agreeing to disagree.

  9. I often wonder if people who get all emotional about these things feel so threatened because of their own doubts. I mean, if you have principal that you believe in, you should be comfortable enough to entertain other opinions – there is no law that says you must agree. Unfortunately, it’s this very emotionalism that causes most of the trouble. Like a naughty child, if you try to break his tantrum by scolding and punishing you only get more of the same. However, if you just let it play itself out it’s usually over in a few minutes.

    Annie

  10. Kevin – that was a great explanation. Don’t worry about the length! Thanks for jumping in & explaining.

    WriterChick – That’s a really good question. It’s very possibly the case!

  11. Kevin. You are unfortunately wrong. The burden of proof rests upon the religious. Empiricism has already given its answers.

    Belief in the One God that is really a trinity, but not… is not a scientific theory. It’s faith. The two are incompatible. One relies on fact the other on lack thereof. One is seeded in the “personal truth” the other in the universal truth. So please lets not throw the words Scientific Theory around so loosely.

    Dave, you’d find your life a lot less stressful if you decided to not waste your time the same way.

    That’s just a polite and long winded way of telling me to shut up. I’ve heard this many times before.

    I love Mark Twain quotes, don’t you? 🙂

    Man is a Religious Animal. He is the only Religious Animal. He is the only animal that has the True Religion – several of them. He is the only animal that loves his neighbor as himself and cuts his throat if his theology isn’t straight. He has made a graveyard of the globe in trying his honest best to smooth his brother’s path to happiness and heaven. The Lowest Animal

  12. Dave,
    I simply used a theory to explain this in secular terms. If I were trying to convince you God was real and you demanded physical evidence, I’d pretty much be limited to statues and icons of the Virgin Mary which have cried blood and gold in scores of locations. I’d refer you to the Fatima incident. But none of these confirm the details of my faith and I wouldn’t expect them to convince you by themselves.

    You believe there is no God and I don’t try to convince you of that because I can’t meet your burdens of proof.

    Likewise, you can’t meet mine to make me change my mind about the existence of God.

    You say I’m the one that needs to provide the burden of proof for my faith. Yet, you’re the one that is trying to prove something… that there is no God. I already made it clear I have no intent on converting you because it’s quite obvious you don’t want to be converted.

    It’s a theological stalemate. You can chose to ridicule we who believe and we who believe can chose to damn you to hell. Either way, we’d all be satisfying nobody but ourselves and accomplishing absolutely nothing.

    Perhaps that’s your style, but it’s not mine.

  13. Even as a child, I hated reading Mark Twain. I didn’t have a religious childhood (probably why I swear so much and just edited a picture of John McCain without a shirt on for my blog), I just never liked his writing style.

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