Banned from the Bible part 2 will come next week
Robert Beckford learned the Bible at his mother’s knee and grew up believing that it was literally true.
But, 20 years on from his Baptist upbringing, Beckford is no longer so sure that ‘the good book’ is the pure, unadulterated word of God untouched by human hand.
For Beckford, who wrote the Bible matters more today than perhaps at any other moment in living memory.
His journey takes him from Birmingham to the West Bank, from Jerusalem to Turkey, and from Rome to Bible Belt America.
Can we find the Garden of Eden? Bible scholar Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou thinks so. In the final episode of her series re-examining conventional readings of the Bible, she argues that the Garden of Eden has nothing to do with the origins of humanity, but is rather a story concealing dramatic events about a particular figure in a particular place, two and half thousand years ago.
Marshalling compelling evidence from archaeology, Islam and the Bible text itself, she identifies and visits the exact site of Eden.
It’s a revolutionary theory which challenges some of the most cherished preconceptions about Eden in both Christianity and western culture.
Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou asks whether the ancient Israelites believed in one God as the Bible claims.
She puts the Bible text under the microscope, examining what the original Hebrew said, and explores archaeological sites in Syria and the Sinai, which are shedding new light on the beliefs of the people of the Bible.
Was the God of Abraham unique? Were the ancient Israelites polytheists? And is it at all possible, that God had another half?
part 3 coming next week
Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou goes on the trail of the Biblical King David and his fabled empire. A national hero and icon for the Jewish people, and a divine king for Christians, David is best known as the boy-warrior who defeated the Philistine giant Goliath. As king, he united the tribes of Israel. But did he really rule over a vast Israelite kingdom? Did he even exist?
Stavrakopoulou visits key archaeological excavations where ground-breaking finds are being unearthed, and examines evidence for and against the Biblical account of King David. She explores the former land of the Philistines, home of the giant Goliath, and ruins in the north of Israel and in old Jerusalem itself purporting to be remains of David’s empire.
episode 2 coming next week
the final part of the Bible Unearthed series. This final episode show that the Ancestors of the Israelites are Canaanites. The ancestors of the Israelites settled in the central hills of Canaan after the city state systems collapsed at the end of the bronze age. Judaism slowly emerged among these settlers in the hills.
stay tunes for more stuff that the rabbis, priests, pastors, bishops, deacons and the imams won’t tell you
The so called conquest of Canaan by the Israelites described in the book of Joshua is pious fiction. During this time dated by biblical chronologists (14th-13th century BCE), Canaan was a province of Egypt. Egyptian soldiers were all over Canaan defending the area from any foreign invasions. Cities that the book of Joshua described were not occupied during that period and some where destroyed centuries before.
Jerusalem during the time of David and Solomon was a rural village. their so-called United Empire never existed. Canaan was ruled by two kingdoms. the Stronger, richer cosmopolitan Kingdom of Israel to the North and the rural, poorer Kingdom of Judah to the South. After the Assyrian destruction of Israel. Judah under the rule of Josiah invented the pious fictional story of the united Kingdom under David and his son Solomon the wise king. Josiah wanted to add the lands in north previously ruled by Israel and united it and Judah to form a new united Israelite Kingdom with Jerusalem as the capital. it is the Kingdom of Judah that wrote the entire story with a Judah/Jerusalem bias.
Part 4 coming next week