- You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and these are they which testify about me. Yet you will not come to me [Lord Jesus Christ], that you may have life. (John 5:39–40)
The Dead Sea Scrolls were first discovered by Bedouin in 1947. Over 80,000 scroll fragments that came to be known as the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in 11 caves near the Dead Sea site of Khirbet Qumran. The Dead Sea Scrolls date between 250 B.C.E. and 68 C.E. and represent the largest group of Second Temple Jewish literature ever discovered. The Dead Sea Scrolls contain two types of documents: fragments of the oldest Hebrew Bible texts and writings that—most scholars argue—describe the beliefs and practices of a community of Jews living and writing at the nearby settlement of Qumran.—Biblical Archeological Society
The oldest portion of Scripture that has been discovered was announced in 2010 and is believed to date from 3000 years ago:
After years of careful study, it has been concluded that the Dead Sea Scrolls give substantial confirmation that our Old Testament has been accurately preserved. The scrolls were found to be almost identical with the Masoretic text. Hebrew Scholar Millar Burrows writes, “It is a matter of wonder that through something like one thousand years the text underwent so little alteration. As I said in my first article on the scroll, ‘Herein lies its chief importance, supporting the fidelity of the Masoretic tradition.'”—The Dead Sea Scrolls Shed Light on the Accuracy of our Bible
Prof. Gershon Galil of the University of Haifa who deciphered the inscription: "It indicates that the Kingdom of Israel already existed in the 10th century BCE and that at least some of the biblical texts were written hundreds of years before the dates presented in current research."While I cannot verify the above reports, like everything else, everyone of us is obligated for our own sake to make diligent inquiry whether such finds are true. If we are not personally affected by what a person claims, it is okay to take these things at face value; but if what they say is going to have some bearing upon us, we need to take personal responsibility for what we are willing to believe or not. History can be made up by anyone. Scholars are not necessarily trustworthy. They are human after all.
A breakthrough in the research of the Hebrew scriptures has shed new light on the period in which the Bible was written. Prof. Gershon Galil of the Department of Biblical Studies at the University of Haifa has deciphered an inscription dating from the 10th century BCE (the period of King David's reign), and has shown that this is a Hebrew inscription. The discovery makes this the earliest known Hebrew writing. The significance of this breakthrough relates to the fact that at least some of the biblical scriptures were composed hundreds of years before the dates presented today in research and that the Kingdom of Israel already existed at that time.
English translaton of the deciphered text:
- you shall not do [it], but worship the [Lord].
- Judge the sla[ve] and the wid[ow] / Judge the orph[an]
- [and] the stranger. [Pl]ead for the infant / plead for the po[or and]
- the widow. Rehabilitate [the poor] at the hands of the king.
- Protect the po[or and] the slave / [supp]ort the stranger. —Archeological Discoveries
Learning Truth Requires Us To Be Responsible For Our Own Beliefs And Actions