CreateDebate


Debate Info

47
38
Yes, I knew it! No, it changed over time
Debate Score:85
Arguments:61
Total Votes:95
More Stats

Argument Ratio

side graph
 
 Yes, I knew it! (29)
 
 No, it changed over time (26)

Debate Creator

addltd(5122) pic



Is the bible just another fictional tale?

Well, that latest assault again the validity of the bible as a valid historical text says that camels were not domesticated until well after the time period the bible is said to depict.  Here is the story from CNN:

http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/02/11/is-camel-discovery-the-straw-that-broke-the-bibles-back/?hpt=hp_t2

My question for you is:

Is the bible fiction or a historical text with accurate accounts of the time periods being written about?

OMG, I can't beleive it is all going to come down to the camel!!!!

Yes, I knew it!

Side Score: 47
VS.

No, it changed over time

Side Score: 38
5 points

Is the bible fiction or a historical text with accurate accounts of the time periods being written about?

The bible has some historical merit to it, but it is far from a historical text. Moby Dick has historical merit to it but it isn't a history book either. The aim of the bible isn't to be historically accurate it is to lend credence to a religion being divine.

Or to quote Joe Rogan "If I have a sandwich that is 90% shit and 10 percent ham, how inclined are you to call it a ham sandwich?".

How much history is needed for a text to be a historical text? Probably most of it rather than smatterings of it. Intent matters here.

Now whether all that other stuff pertaining to god and what not is fiction or not is up to someone to prove it is true or not, not for me to prove it is false.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
timber113(796) Disputed
2 points

I am a little late, but as far as we know this is just the earliest camel record they could find and it just so happened that the carbon dating does not match up to the Bible dates. To be honest, I think we can all agree that they did not analyze every single dead camel to have ever existed and they probably never even digged deep enough. Just my two cents.

Side: No, it changed over time
4 points

I believe the bible to be on par with Aesop's fables. They are stories to tell people to get them to behave, yet nothing in them are actually true. I doubt the stories are real, I believe more so that a great fiction writer, wrote fictions and used his surroundings to sort of set the setting.

One of Aesop's most famous fables was the story of Icarus. Icarus was a boy trapped on an island with his genius inventor father. His father caught and killed some birds, then used their feathers to construct some giant wings to fly off the island. He told Icarus not to fly to low, or he'd get hit by the waves, and not to fly too high, or he'd melt the wax used to keep the feathers on. Obviously the kid flew to high, and died. Moral of the story, heed the warnings of your elders or something along those lines.

That is comparable to the bible in an account of the bible's exaggerations. Maybe two cities didn't actually get burned to the ground, maybe this was just a story saying you should listen to God because he's vengeful. maybe the entire earth didn't flood. maybe this is just a fable to say God is powerful.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
2 points

This, I can agree with. Buddhism operates in a similar way, except the adherents are taught from the get-go that his stories are parables meant to explain difficult concepts and are not to be taken literally.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
NewVoice(41) Clarified
2 points

Well, technically the story of Icarus is from Greek Mythology, so I don't think its the best example. Still great argument though.

Side: Yes, I knew it!

I agree completely! Really. This is exactly what I always say... it shouldn't be taken literally, it should be read as stories or fables. I always compare the Bible to Greek myths... and that's probably how people will think of the bible in a couple thousand years (unless, you know, the apocolypse or something.)

Side: Yes, I knew it!

Is the bible fiction or a historical text with accurate accounts of the time periods being written about?

Hahahahahahahahahahhahahahaahahahahahahahahah

Side: Yes, I knew it!

I totes love how your arguments doesn't even tell us what your answer is since you laughed a question that had two sides open for agreement or disagreement.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
2 points

Oh... well dang, i thought this was going to point out all of the religions predating Christianity yet holds the same stories.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
QuestionMan(603) Disputed
1 point

Oh... well dang, i thought this was going to point out all of the religions predating Christianity yet holds the same stories.

Such as?

Side: No, it changed over time

A lot of the stories in the Bible are historically inaccurate. A lot of stories have no evidence of existence. Plus Christianity does sound like it's used to control people. If you don't worship "God" you pay the price of Eternal damnation. Sounds a lot like North Korea, if you don't worship the leader, you get brutally punished.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
1 point

no .... the Bible is God's letter to man .. some do not agree or believe .. that's okay .. but for pete's sake find out what the freak it says http://dadmansabode.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=38#p38 .. please be blessed

Side: Yes, I knew it!

I believe it was made up to control people.

Side: Yes, I knew it!

It's failed as all it's done is make other tribes more likely to fight each other then anything. If it was meant to control people it has done a horrible job.

Side: No, it changed over time
1 point

It has controlled people in being able to get a lot of their wealth through out history and has been used as an excuse to go to war, to colonize, enslave people and other things. It has been used as a political instrument.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
1 point

It is interesting that Christians need to sort out Camels' domestication but have no problem with talking bush, talking snake, magical fruits, flat earth or woman made from rib of a guy made from mud...

Side: Yes, I knew it!
1 point

It is the most disproven book ever..........................................

Side: Yes, I knew it!
4 points

Well, while the writers of the bible may have made a few insignificant errors, I still believe it is a valid historical text!

Side: No, it changed over time
trumpet_guy(502) Clarified
3 points

This is not a new subject and has been disputed before:

"Perhaps the most convincing find in support of the early domestication of camels in Egypt is a rope made of camel’s hair found in the Fayum (an oasis area southwest of modern-day Cairo). The two-strand twist of hair, measuring a little over three feet long, was found in the late 1920s, and was sent to the Natural History Museum where it was analyzed and compared to the hair of several different animals. After considerable testing, it was determined to be camel hair, dated (by analyzing the layer in which it was found) to the Third or Fourth Egyptian Dynasty (2686-2498 B.C.). In his article, Free also listed several other discoveries from around 2,000 B.C. and later, which showed camels as domestic animals (pp. 189-190)."

-from https://www.apologeticspress.org/apcontent.aspx?category=6&article;=858

Their source:Free, Joseph P. (1944), “Abraham’s Camels,” Journal of Near Eastern Studies, 3:187-193, July.

And this is only one of any observations THAT HAVE BEEN DOCUMENTED, unlike the opposing side.

I researched to find this scientific report, reported by CNN and others, but could not find the actual report itself. I couldn't even find an abstract! My question is I have searched and searched to see what they did to get this data but find nothing, all I see is hype. I'm seeing two sides. On one side: THE BIBLES WRONG!!! On the other side: No the Bible is still affirmed to be true, and here's the evidence for it.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
kaveri(319) Disputed
1 point

so is Harry Potter and Narnia,etc.. .

Side: Yes, I knew it!
0 points

All hail Sir Pandy!

Heed the head debater of this site and his excellent execution of logical analysis!

Side: No, it changed over time

It totes changed greatly over time. I'm sure it became filled with inconsistencies that would only make sense to those translators.

Side: No, it changed over time
1 point

One of the arguments for Atheists is that if God truly meant to say something else in the bible wouldn't he have done so? These inconsistencies simply denote that God doesn't mind the illogical constraints present within the bible.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
GuitarGuy(6095) Clarified
2 points

Arguing with yourself... Nice.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
2 points

So,why the things in the bible is in the history,such as Assyrians? The thing in the bible appears on history,so we can conclude that Bible is not a fictional tale.

Side: No, it changed over time
J-Roc77(70) Disputed
2 points

You can conclude parts of the bible are not fictional. For instance Moby Dick has historical parts in it but the story is fictional.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
auyeungyat(72) Disputed
2 points

So,which parts of the bible is fictional?Genesis?Exodus?

Side: No, it changed over time
2 points

I don't think it changed in time. Actually, I think it remained quite the same. Also, what you're doing here is putting your faith in radiocarbon dating, something that scientists now don't normally use, as dinosaur bones yield dates of less than 60,000 years. Explain that. Is modern science just another fictional tale?

Side: No, it changed over time
invidious(30) Disputed
2 points

Who do you trust more, a tribe in the middle east from 2,000 years ago, that has little grasp on science or technology, or the modern day scientist who has created the computer, the airplane, and many more amazing advances. Radiocarbon dating is more accurate than some tribes people in their hurts.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
Client444(61) Disputed
2 points

I'd trust the tribe much more, especially if they actually, you know, were talking to the omniscient and omnipotent God. Besides, in your position, you would say that Dinosaurs lived millions, if not billions, of years ago. So, why do radiocarbon dates yield dates MUCH LOWER than that? You'd probably dismiss it. But, why would you dismiss it there, but claim it to be right here?

Side: No, it changed over time
2 points

Although I do not believe in Biblical veracity, the information in the article only indicates that certain passages in the Bible cannot be older than 10th Century BC. But the oldest extant copies of any Biblical verse are the Dead Sea Scrolls, which at oldest dates to only about 400 BC. Even presuming that there were older OT copies at one point and that the Bible was carried by vocal transmission before it was written, that's around 9 and a half centuries of wiggle room.

So, while this is an interesting discovery, it doesn't damn the Bible.

Side: No, it changed over time
ColumCille(9) Clarified
1 point

The problem is that the article makes some critical mistakes. First, it cites a study that is not at all about what the article discusses, rather it is a discussion of Environmental constraints on copper production at a specific mine in the Levant. http://www.maneyonline.com/doi/pdfplus/10.1179/033443512X13424449373786

1) Initially, I was concerned with his dismissal of the earlier camel bones as "wild," but this turns out to be yet another example of terrible scientific reporting. Rather what the professor notes is that older examples of camel bones tend to be in midden (trash) mounds which suggests possible predation by humans, which is unlikely if this is a trade or pack animal (more on my objection to the pack animal assumption later). The NYT writer mistakes this phrase for suggesting they are wild.

2) His data is confined to just a few number of sites, with all the dating coming from a single site of habitual habitation (a copper mine). That site doesn't have any human habitation around the time of the patriarchs so it seems an odd evidence source for whether or not they had camels. If that was a valid conclusion, we could well argue that humans didn't exist in the levant around that time period either.

3) The patriarchs he takes issue with (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) lived in quite a few regions, and only in the levant itself during the times proceeding the famine in egypt (not exactly a bountiful time). Most of the Abraham story comes from a region near northern Iraq and so whether or not camels are present in the Levant is more of a side issue to whether or not Genesis is accurately depicting this story.

4) This copper mine site is a "high place," in Hebrew Har. The high places were where the Israelites tended to form settlements during the Judges and Kings period because of their defensibility. They are notoriously hard to live on and would not have been good locations for nomadic herders like Abraham or Isaac. Those peoples tended to live in the lower regions of canaan where grass was more abundant and water available.

5) As I just mentioned, most of the earliest patriarchs were nomadic herders. Nomads are infamous for not leaving large archeological footprints (especially if you are looking a place they probably didn't frequent like a Har in the Israeli wilderness) and so archeologists are usually very reluctant to make any definitive conclusions about them based on sparse archeological evidence. If we were to confine ourselves to archeology there would be virtually no record of the existence of Bedouins, however we can see them if you travel to the right regions.

6) Given the location objection noted above the timeline he proposes seems to hold no objection. Generally it agreed that Abraham was around sometime around 2100BC (he also proposes that time period in his paper). He was generally known to have lived in the vicinity of Ur (southern Iraq) and spent a lot of time near Ninevah (northern Iraq). Both of these cities are known to have extensive trade and cultural exchange with the Arabian Peninsula (where camels were domesticated no later than 3000BC). Now we can judge the spread of the camel by noting that it is present in Shar-i Sokhta in 2600BC. That city is in the eastern edge of present day Iran with Ur between it and Arabia. That means that camels must have been present in Ur prior to 2600BC, 500 years before Abraham is there.

7) The professor bases his levant timeline on the presence of trade routes. I have two objections to that. First, it seems to presume his conclusion since the trade routes could not have developed until after the Patriarchs had settlements large enough to warrant trade. Second, the use of camels far precedes their use as pack animals in trade. Camels were used in much the same manner as sheep (and still are) in nomadic groups nearly a millenia before their use in trade routes by the Egyptians. This second objection is critical to understanding why his evidence set is so odd. If I am looking for evidence of the domestication of dogs in America, I wouldn't go to an airport, find that dogs are first present in the 1990s as drug sniffing animals and then conclude dogs were first domesticated in the US in the 1990s.

Side: Yes, I knew it!
Hitler(2364) Disputed
0 points

I believe the bible to be on par with Aesop's fables. They are stories to tell people to get them to behave, yet nothing in them are actually true. I doubt the stories are real, I believe more so that a great fiction writer, wrote fictions and used his surroundings to sort of set the setting.

One of Aesop's most famous fables was the story of Icarus. Icarus was a boy trapped on an island with his genius inventor father. His father caught and killed some birds, then used their feathers to construct some giant wings to fly off the island. He told Icarus not to fly to low, or he'd get hit by the waves, and not to fly too high, or he'd melt the wax used to keep the feathers on. Obviously the kid flew to high, and died. Moral of the story, heed the warnings of your elders or something along those lines.

That is comparable to the bible in an account of the bible's exaggerations. Maybe two cities didn't actually get burned to the ground, maybe this was just a story saying you should listen to God because he's vengeful. maybe the entire earth didn't flood. maybe this is just a fable to say God is powerful.

Side: Yes, I knew it!

This, I can agree with. Buddhism operates in a similar way, except the adherents are taught from the get-go that his stories are parables meant to explain difficult concepts and are not to be taken literally.

Side: Yes, I knew it!

Remember that the bible was not written as a single work, but is in fact more of an anthology of works, most or all from different authors, published in a single volume.

As such, and without actually digging into the specifics of what parts are which, I suspect that the modern bible contains a combination of five types of writings:

-Accurate historical accounts (or as accurate as can be expected from an oral tradition, at least)

-Significantly embellished and/or downplayed historical accounts

-Fictional stories intended to teach life lessons, eg. parables, fables

-Fictional stories intended to engender solidarity amongst the community

-Any of the above altered (ranging from subtlely to significantly) to fit a given personal/political agenda

If we assume, for the sake of argument, that the christian concept of god is in fact true, two more categories added to the above, for a total of seven (the any of the above... would come after these):

-The word of god, given via divine inspiration

-The word of the devil, worked into the canon via manipulation

Two of the books in the bible specifically threaten significant divine repercussions for anyone who modifies, adds to, or removes from the texts; this warning implies that the bible is not some sacrosanct object protected from violation by divine forces. If the christian take on god is correct, then it's almost certain that the word has been tampered with, probably many times. If it isn't, then there was never any kind of divine inspiration or protection, so again it's almost certain that the word has been tampered with.

In neither case, though, is it correct or fair to say that the entire thing is fact or that the entire thing is fiction. Regardless of whether or not a god or gods exist, and regardless of whether the christians got it right, the book is a combination of fact and fiction.

Side: No, it changed over time

Its from the bronze age era. If language can change so much in just a short time, then imagine what it can do to translations.

Side: No, it changed over time
1 point

While it seems there are some errors it's still a valid historical text. Just don't take every single thing in there as pure fact.

Side: No, it changed over time
1 point

For a second i thought srom was going to be in this debate but the bible is mysterious what if camels where domesticated?what if we're wrong and camels were domesticated back then you never know?

Side: No, it changed over time
1 point

The bible predicted Israel would once again become a nation & it happened in 1948. In the book of Daniel chapter 11,it states that Alexander The Great would defeat Persia & that he lived a short life. It also said that it'd be divided into four lands. Anyone who's a historian(secular or christian)will tell you that that did indeed happen. Daniel chapter 7 also predicted that Greece would defeat Persia & that Rome would be the next supreme empire. Also the bible stated that the stars were numerous & that the earth was round. In the 1400s or so people thought the earth was flat & only few hundred stars. Now the results now backup the bible.

In Job 40:15 it states an animal that has a tail as long as a Cedar Tree. Anyone who's seen a Cedar Tree,knows there's no current animal that has a tail that long. So what was it? It was a dinosaur.

Side: No, it changed over time