How Writers Create The Past
For the last century, archaeologists, historians and biblical scholars have believed that the stories of the Bible describe real historical events, such as the Exodus, the Kingdom of David and the Exile. But in the last two decades this understanding has been radically challenged: it is generally accepted today that there is very little archaeological or historical evidence that confirms the stories of the Bible.
In this lucid and fascinating book, Professor Thompson - who has been at the forefront of the international debate for many years - shows that we misunderstand the Bible if we read it as history, a modern concept completely incompatible with the world-view of antiquity. Combining literary criticism of biblical texts and detailed analysis of ancient history, he shows that we have to look at the Bible as a body of literature that reflects the philosophical and moral views of its authors. By examining the social and political forces at work in the Middle East during the period that saw the bible's texts composed, Thomas Thompson puts the Bible in its historical context and sheds new light on the relationship between the Old testament and the New, Judaism and Greek philosophy, Yahweh and Christ.
'The Bible in History' is the first book to bring this complex and scholarly debate to the attention of a wider audience.