Bible Study: Daniel
I'm having a conversation with an evangelical about various matters pertaining two our widely divergent world views. In a recent corespondence he suggested that if I gave an honest look at this I would see that Daniel was an authentic example of prophecy.
Not diving into this in detail, I did what I usually do and see if this claim can even pass the 5 minute google test. Sure enough the authenticity of Daniel as legitimate prophecy is far from uncontroversial. And of course I knew this is what I would find before pushing the search button. It's just simply true that believers and non-believers (and everyone in between) have studied these issues ad naseum for hundreds of years. As with most of this stuff if you view it with the eyes of faith then you see more evidence of the divine working in the world. If you view it w/o faith you see it as another document written by men, flawed, clever and otherwise.
Partly as a present to "L" (my evangelical interlocutor) and partly because I'm curious to see where believer and non-believer diverge, I've decided to give the above essay as honest and open a chance as I'm capable.
My plan is as follows:
- read Daniel
- read the above essay
- read a sample of the for and against essays
- make a summary statement
I plan to blog each part of the above as I'm going thru. This is related to a larger project I'd like to complete which is to read the Bible end to end. I've read much of it. Certainly alot more than many who call themselves believers. But I'd like to be able to say I've read it all the way thru.
I'm partly inspired by this awesome Bible blogging project. My original plan was to do the New Testament first since it's shorter and more familiar, but this Daniel project will provide a nice test case.
Of course I already know the answer I'm going to reach, which doesn't seem very open minded I guess. Not so much close mindedness on my part (I hope), but the power of induction. N times I've heard claims for proofs of the existence of God, of signs that he is working in the world and loves us, etc. And N times my invesitgation has supported my skepticism. So it's not a stretch to guess what will happen with N+1.
But you need your hobbies I suppose...