This review of Rebooting the Bible Part 2 is an incredibly well-written piece. If you have been following my posts on the topics related to my most recent book, you will find this review exceptionally helpful. It’s certainly worthy to share with others who you think will find RTB Part 2 a helpful study on how we got our Bible and what difference it makes to get the Bible’s chronology right. If you want to truly grasp biblical history before Noah’s Flood, RTB-2 is indispensable.
Reviewed in the United States on August 26, 2020
I was pleased to discover the large dimensions of this book when it came in. It was a hefty and dense read, one that is most certainly not for everyone. I must admit my sincerest graditude for the incredible effort put into this book, and its first installment as well. Besides all the writing and assembling of helpful references to follow up with, there are so many valuable tables and visual aides crammed into these volumes. The fact that I review so few of the many books that I read, alone puts my graditude into perspective.
It goes without saying that reading part one of the series serves as an indispensable foundation for its follow up, this current book being ideally appreciated with a prior reading of its predecessor and maybe some supplementary research too. I would naturally recommend the recently updated 2nd edition of Rebooting the Bible, Part 1 (my Amazon review under the same username is of the 1st edition, yet I’m certain the 2nd edition of part 1 is even better than the initial one). On a personal note, I admit having enjoyed the subject matters discussed in RTB1 more than its sequel.
For the few who want to unwarrantedly detour around the first book, or even if a refresher of it is needed to a prior reader, part two of the series briefly summarises its first installment. I must make mention again how the author helpfully outlines the contents of the book from its inception.
The author’s stated intent for this book is to align empirical science (Egyptology & Mesopotamian archeology) with Biblical evidence, cutting through the dross of pagan mythos to boot (might I add). This of course is a commendable effort given how slighted and scoffed at the conventional (Hebrew Masoretic Text based) Biblical chronology has become, both by non-believers and believers alike. Apologetics like this are paramount for there to be a scholarly reintegration of the preserved Biblical timeline in the Greek.
It was a privilege and convenience to tune in to a compiling of the discussions between able scholars and researchers, many of whom are advocates of the Old Greek (OG) chronogeneological testimonies of chapters 5 and 11 of Genesis. I especially appreciated the book’s thorough defense of said lists as they had been preserved, with a proficient articulation of why there is no need for the comtemporarily vogue and presumtive gap view of the patriarchal lists. On a related note, the book convincingly posits that the extraordinary recorded ages of the biblical patriarchs are vouched by both Sumerian and Akkadian cuneiform records.
The sections of Peleg, Nimrod, and Babel were of quite some intrigue. It dawned on me that much of what I had come to believe regarding these topics actually stemmed from Alexander Hyslop’s Two Babylons, a work that I admittedly not even read yet. It seemingly received well deserved criticisms from here and elsewhere (over the years). I must finally regrettably admit that the combination of both parts one and two of the RTB series has cast a serious shadow of doubt on the veracity and authority that I had previously assigned to both Jubilees and Jasher. These two books do not stand up to the collective scrutiny of the MT timeline, and too much of their narratives fall together with the MT. Yet I stubbornly cling to them for now, since they still have invaluable archaic insights and incredible storylines. Here I will interject the other chronological takeaway I had from this book: the fact that the A.D. (anno domini) designation can be attributed to the OG timeline of the early Church after around the 6000 year after (re?)creation.
The maintaining of the universality of the flood by the author was duly noted too. Modernist mental gymnastics to water down (pun intended) and ignore the cross-cultural testimony of the scope of the Deluge, becomes downright absurd when one meditates on the implications of such a stance (some of them being disclosed in the book). As the book author’s endorsing of him, I too respect and am indebted to the work of Dr. Michael Heiser. There has been a plethora of knowledge and insights I have gleaned from his various formats of resources. Yet his grasping of the local flood view (amongst other convictions of his) has me regularly cringe.
It was interesting to read yet another perspective on the antedilluvian world, together with speculations on the location of the Garden of Eden. What is detailed here seems like it would be convincing, but the study, like most others, is constrained by the scholarly construct of being Levant-centric. After wading through an involved and studious presention titled the Solomon’s Gold series by “The God Culture” on Youtube, I cannot help but be turned off from the array of consensus-underpinned speculations on the Garden of Eden’s location. This is not the time or place to elaborate so I will leave it at that.
I treated the last section about the pre-Adamaic hypothesis as bonus material, and thought it to be wisely placed at the end as to not be a point of contention to anyone. I will opine that speculating about “prehistoric” ages is more than the mere thought exercises. The resources compiled on the subject were helpful for those who want to know more. For the record, I share Woodward’s endorsement of the masterful 19th-century work entitled Earth’s Earliest Ages by George H. Pember. For those who got to the end of this review, seriously consider getting yourself a copy. I assure you it’s more than just about the “Gap Theory,” having a plethora of biblical and historical insights. I assure you it’s more than just about the “Gap Theory,” having a plethora of biblical and historical insights.
All that to say bravo for a worthy Rebooting the Bible sequel!