Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing (epiphany) of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Titus 2:13
occur 105 (15x7) times (226); th (6) +z (1) occur 7 (1x7) times (227); ph (2)+ch (2)+ps (3) occur 7 (1x7) times (228); n (41)+r (16)+s (41) occur 98 (2x7x7) times (229, 230); k (16)+t (38) +1 (16) occur 70 (10x7) times (231); b (5)+p (22) +d (8) occur 35 (5x7) times (232); and e (16)+g (9)+m (17) occur 42 (6x7) times (233); z, the numeral for 7 (lx7), is the only letter of the alphabet not occurring at all in the Magnificat (234). While the total of vowels is 303, no heptad, if sound alone determines the vowels and diphthongs total (173 vowel sounds and 65 diphthong sounds) 238 (34x7) sounds (235). The five main diphthongs occur 35 (5x7) times (236). The peculiar expression, from now on [= henceforth], which occurs in this song, is found 7 (1x7) times (237); God my (or our) Savior, 7 (1x7) times (238); and the future and aorist of kathaireo, to put down, occurs 7 (1x7) times (239). This song contains 14 (2x7) quotations from the Old Testament (240). In this short passage in itself and as related to other New Testament occurrences there are 56 (8x7) heptads (241) brought to our attention. We showed above that the 58 occurrences of elevens in the mere surface of the Bible had one chance of happening to hundreds of vigintillions of not happening and the 42 occurrences of sevens in that surface had one chance of happening to a number consisting of 47 figures of not happening and combined such elevens and sevens had one chance of happening to a figure of hundreds of figures of not happening. Here we have shown in but three short passages, Matt. 1; 2; Mark 1: 1-8; Luke 1: 46-55 (we did not count in among these those that lie on the surface of John 17) 241 heptads, without by any means exhausting these, and ignoring the many involved eights, nines, elevens, etc. The possibility of these merely happening to their not happening is as one to a row of several hundred digits, a number so enormous as to baffle human imagination and to rule the matter of its happening out of consideration. But these are not isolated phenomena;
for these heptads are found in the occurrence of most of the Bible's words, and in the numerics of every sentence, paragraph, section, division and book of the Old and New Testaments.
We will give one more illustration of this phenomenon of heptads, one from the Old Testament, which abounds in them, like the New Testament. Without giving the numerics of it, Ps. 23, as to vocabularies, forms and words, nor their alphabet distributions in the varied details in which these occur and in the various subdivisions as we gave them in Matt. 1, we will give some generalities on its heptads. In the Hebrew text there are 56 (8x7) compound words (1) and 84 (12x7) simple words (2), each prefix and suffix being counted a distinct word, and 210 (30x7) letters (3). We count the Hebrew word tsatmaveth [shadow of death] as two words, since it is such. There are 14 (2x7) verbs (4), 28 (4x7) common nouns (5) and 28 (4x7) prefixes and suffixes (6) in this Psalm. Of the letters (using the English equivalents), v occurs 7(1x7) times as a consonant (7), and 7 (1x7) times as a vowel (8). d and ch also occur each 7 (1x7) times (9, 10). The two weak gutturals, a and ai, occur 21 (3x7) times (11) and the strong ones, d and ch, with r, often classed with gutturals, 28 (4x7) times (12), the gutturals thus totaling 49 (7x7) (13, 14). The three vowel letters, a, y and v, occur 63 (9x7) times (15). In favor of counting the Hebrew words for the shadow of death two words is also the fact that as one word it has the sign called makkeph, which makes a surplus one, one more than 7, in the Psalm; it otherwise has 7 (1x7) (16). We could take up other Old Testament passages, e.g., Jonah 1: 1-5; Gen. 17: 15-27; Ex. 20: 18-26, all of which contain marvelous numerics; but our readers will agree that we have given illustrations enough to prove the Bible's verbal inspiration, when we remember that they are but examples of what is present in most of the words and in all of the Bible sentences, paragraphs, sections, divisions and books.
Biblical Numerics has many other uses than proving the Bible's verbal inspiration, some of which will now be briefly pointed out. One of these is helping to get the right translation when the same form can belong to different words; another is to correct wrong readings. Copyists have often made mistakes in the Greek and Hebrew MSS., sometimes leaving out right words or phrases, sometimes inserting wrong ones, sometimes giving us variant readings in a passage, sometimes inserting marginal notes into the text, sometimes leaving out parts, at times considerable parts, of sections. We will give some illustrations. As an example of correction of a wrong reading we might instance 2 Pet. 1: 1, where our version has it: "the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ"; but numerics show that it should read, in harmony with St. Peter's parallel expressions: "the righteousness of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." As a case of its helping to find the right among variant readings we might point out Luke 2: 14, where many MSS. give our A. V. reading and others the Vulgate's and A. R. V.'s reading: "peace on earth to men of good will." Biblical Numerics proves the A. V. to be correct: "peace on earth, good will to men." As illustrations of insertion of marginal notes into the text the passage of the three heavenly witnesses may be cited—1 John 5: 7, which numerics, like all MSS. before the 15th century, proved to be an interpolation; and the same is the case with the clause of Rev. 20: 5: "the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished," which also the Sinaitic, our oldest and best MS. of Revelation, and the Syriac, the oldest New Testament translation, omit.
Westcott and Hort's Greek N. T. text is one of the best; yet it puts in double square brackets 16 larger and smaller Scriptures as not genuine, while Biblical Numerics proves 14 of these to be genuine, including Mark 16: 9-20; most of Luke 22: 19 and all of 20, 43, 44; 23: 34 (first sentence); John 7: 53—8: 11, etc. Frequently Biblical Numerics helps to restore a lost
reading to eliminate a redundant reading, and at times to eliminate a false reading found in all ancient MSS., e.g., Matt. 27: 51-54, in its earthquake and dead-raising references. By what is called neighborhood numerics God points out errors that He foreknew would arise. By neighborhood numerics is meant heptads that are not exact, but that, if allowance is made for a number to be one or more short of a heptad, or one or more long of a heptad, the rest will come out by heptads, e.g., the figure 104 is short 1 of being a heptad, 105; but if treated as 105 it will make figures connected with it in the same connection come out in heptads. It is very apparent that such a way of treating heptads violates the principle of heptads, for the strength of Biblical Numerics lies in its working in perfect sevens; yet Mr. Ivan Panin uses it as a proof that a false chronology of the Bible is true! As to the punctuation of Luke 23: 43 as given in the A. V.: "Verily I say unto thee, Today thou shalt be with me in Paradise," many of God's children have been much perplexed, because they know that of the three paradises of the Bible two were non-existent that day, and that Jesus after His Resurrection expressly said of the third (Rev. 2: 7) that He had not yet been there since His death (John 20: 17). Here Biblical Numerics comes to our rescue. It shows that if the comma is put before the word today, as in the A. V., neighborhood numerics result in both clauses of the statement, but if it is put after the word today each clause comes out in perfect heptads. This is God's way of showing that error would prevail on this subject, and His way of correcting the error. This phenomenon occurs quite frequently in the Bible in passages foreseen as misused.
But for present needs one of the best uses of Biblical Numerics is its proof of the verbal inspiration of the Bible from its external forms. The best proof of the Bible's inspiration to the devout believer is its contents combined with his pertinent experiences, and its teachings on inspiration; but to others doubtless its best
proof is Biblical Numerics, which at the same time is the most powerful refutation of the documentary theory of the Bible's origin advocated by the so-called higher critics. The documentary theory of the Bible's origin is the following: various writers' pen-products, called by the critics documents, were by various editors combined into the Bible's books, e.g., Moses, a la higher criticism, was not the writer of the Pentateuch, but the writings, documents, of about eight different authors were combined, slapped together, sandwiched together, intertwined, intertwisted and interlocked, into the first five books of our Bible, so that some chapters are supposed to be compounded from as many as six writers' works. Nobody ever heard of these alleged original writers before higher criticism arose. Their creation is the product of the higher critics' imagination. They claim that they know of their existence because of peculiarities of vocabularies and style of writing; but, Hebrew scholars as able as they deny these peculiarities. A sober judgment of their views and work is that they are long on guesses and short on facts, as well as that they run in head-on collision with facts that they cannot explain in harmony with their views and that violently contradict their views. As at the end of our book on Creation we refuted Evolution as a method of creation, so at the end of our discussion of the inspiration of the Bible, we expect to give a refutation of the main claims of higher criticism, as contrary to the Bible's view of itself, especially in its development theory; for it exists in two forms: (1) the documentary theory, and (2) the development theory. Thereafter we will refute in detail their claims that the Bible contradicts itself. Biblical Numerics is an absolute and unanswerable refutation of the documentary theory. How could, if uninspired, any of the alleged original documents have numerics in many of its words, in all its sentences, paragraphs, sections, and in the document as a whole; for it is entirely beyond the ability of a human to produce such numerics, since
it requires omniscience to effect it? Moreover, how could it, if uninspired, have happened all unconsciously to its writers? How could the same thing have happened, limiting ourselves to the Pentateuch, to seven other alleged writers of "documents" allegedly underlying the Pentateuch? Even if the original documents had such intricate numerics, how could the editors who sandwiched together these documents, all unconscious of the situation, have preserved these numerics, considering that they excluded parts of them, added parts of their own, modified other parts, fused still others, intermingled in the same sentences parts from several "documents," etc., etc.? The documentary theory of the Bible's construction is, in the face of the myriad forms of Biblical numerics, an absolutely impossible theory. And if this documentary theory is completely impossible, certainly the development theory of higher criticism, which rests upon it as its foundation, is likewise completely impossible. But more on this phase of the subject later. We have from facts, those of Biblical numerics, proven the inspiration of the Bible, as we have also proven it from general Biblical considerations and specific Bible passages.
Above was given a brief refutation by Biblical numerics of the documentary theory of higher criticism. Before proceeding to a many-sided refutation of its documentary and its evolutionary theories, a brief description of higher criticism would be in place—a description that is at the same time a disproof of both of its forms. The father of higher criticism, in its documentary theory's first stage, was a Jean Astruc, a Protestant French physician, who, in 1753, noting that Gen. 1—2: 3 calls the Deity God, and Gen. 2: 4-25 calls Him Yahveh, concluded that Moses used two documents as sources of his information and copied the former into the parts of Genesis where the name God appears, and the latter where the name Yahveh appears, and used a third document where both of these names appear in Gen. He called the alleged first document
the Elohist, the second the Yahvist, and the third, the Elohisto-Yahvist. Thus the documentary theory arose. But later "higher critics" went further than Astruc, who held that Moses compiled Genesis out of three alleged documents; they claimed to find seven or eight documents which, they claimed, not Moses, but editors allegedly living about 1,000 to 1,200 years later, mixed up into Genesis and the rest of the Pentateuch. The superficiality of the viewpoint is manifest in that they did not search deeper to find a satisfactory reason for the use of these different names for the Deity in the accounts where they occur. This real reason is already indicated in the meanings of the words; for elohim means the Mighty One, and is used in the creation story, because creation is above all things an expression of God's power; and Yahveh, meaning the self-existent one of perfect wisdom, power, justice and love, designates Him as the Covenant God of His people in His attributes of person and character, and Gen. 2: 4-25 describes God in His Covenant relations with Adam and Eve. These two uses for the reasons just given continue throughout Genesis, and the combined use occurs when works of might and covenants are united.
Higher criticism claims that the alleged Elohist and Yahvist documents appear severally in the two accounts of man's creation, the former being that given in Gen. 1: 26, 27 and the latter being that of Gen. 2: 4-25. But the sophistry of this superficial view is apparent when we consider that many authors, orators, lecturers and preachers very frequently first give a brief synopsis of their subject matter, then give details, which is exactly what Moses did in the two accounts of man's creation. So, too, they claim that these two alleged documents appear in the flood story. But here, too, power toward wicked mankind characterizes the account wherein the name God appears, and God's attributes of character appear in its parts implying His covenant relations with Noah and his family. Furthermore,
in the Babylonian account of the flood in the Gilgames epic, the same two lines of thought are brought out and no "higher critic" has had the temerity to offer the documentary theory as to it, an epic poem that was written at least 400 years before Moses. In refutation of the documentary theory as applied to the flood story, opponents of the critics, applying their methods to some of Dean Stanley's works, have shown two alleged documents underlying them! Apart from the inherent weakness of the documentary theory, Biblical numerics literally annihilates it.
The impetus was given the second stage of the documentary theory by a German Professor, Wolf by name, in his introduction to his edition of Homer's poems, 1795, claiming that Greek writing was unknown in Homer's day, about 800 B. C., and that hence his poems were memorized and thus handed down until in the days of Solon, about 600 B. C., Greek writing was invented. This theory was soon refuted, but it went over from profane to sacred literature, higher critics claiming that in Moses' day writing had not been invented anywhere, hence that he could not be the author of the Pentateuch. In the absence of archaeological finds this theory flourished widely in the first quarter and a few years later of the 19th century. But in the 1860's and 1870's higher criticism, laying hold on the evolution theory, claimed that the Bible was not a revelation from God, but was a record and statement of man's growth in religious ideas as a result of his groping and searching through his mental, artistic, moral and religious faculties after a knowledge of, and fellowship with God. Hence, according to these critics the Bible was simply a record and statement of man's evolution as to religion. They claimed, e.g., that before the days of Amos and Hosea man was too low in the scale of evolution to have worked himself into the idea of there being but one God, Monotheism; hence they claimed that the Pentateuch, which throughout teaches Monotheism, could not in any part of it have been produced
before these prophets, who flourished about 800 B. C. They claim that Deuteronomy, actually the last book of the Pentateuch to be written, was the first one of it to be written, and that just before it, and allegedly not the rest of the Pentateuch, was shown to Josiah about 650 B. C., at which showing it was allegedly, by a "pious" fraud, misrepresented to him as a writing of Moses. The book of Leviticus and other sacrificial features of the Pentateuch, according to evolutionary higher critics, were allegedly written after the return from Babylon, probably by Ezra, and also fraudulently palmed off by him and others as written by Moses. This phase of higher criticism denied the authenticity of the historical books of the Old Testament; and because of the different styles of Is. 1—39 and 40—66, a difference easily accounted for by the vastly different subjects of these two parts of Isaiah, they claimed that there were two Isaiahs, both of whom allegedly wrote after the return from Babylon. Similarly they began to treat the Gospels; all of these books they allege were palmed off as pious frauds and given names of alleged authors of very ancient times, to pave the way for an easier and wider acceptance of them. Above we have described higher criticism in general in terms that will fit both the infidel and so-called evangelical schools.
Our first objection to higher criticism, into the discussion of whose details we cannot enter, for lack of space, since such a discussion would require several sizable books, as the writings of its opponents like Sayce, Green, Urquhart, Finn, Ruprecht, Orr, Moeller, Bissell, etc., prove, is that it is a child of irreverence. It is certainly irreverential to treat the Bible, which comes to us with unanswerable proofs of its being a Divinely-inspired revelation of God and His plan, as we would treat any secular book or a heathen sacred book of religion, as these critics do. It is certainly irreverent to approach it in subjecting its views to the criticism of the evolution theory, which the Bible refutes, as these critics do. It is certainly irreverent to treat large parts
of it as pious frauds, as they do. It is certainly irreverent to palm Jesus off as one who knew that much of the Old Testament was pious frauds and yet appealed to such frauds in proof of His teachings, as some of them do. It is certainly irreverent to deny that its miracles were actually wrought, as the Bible claims, as most higher critics do. It is certainly irreverent to deny that the Bible prophesies the future; and to allege that its prophecies were uttered after the events, as they do in the cases of Isaiah, Daniel, Jesus, etc. It is certainly irreverential to foist upon the Bible one's own notions and fancies, as these critics do. It is certainly irreverential for an unbeliever in the Bible to seek to undermine faith in it, as most higher critics do. The fact that these critics, especially the most influential of them, like Graf, Kuenen, Wellhausen, etc., are in almost all cases irreverential toward the Bible and thus toward the God that it reveals, proves that they are destitute of the Truth on the subject; for the Bible teaches and experience corroborates that the fear [reverence] of the Lord is the beginning [foundation] of wisdom and knowledge (Job 28: 28; Ps. 111: 10; Prov. 1: 7; 9: 10; 15: 33). Therefore, what they teach on this subject is not wisdom and knowledge. Rather, it is rank error. That there are difficulties in the Bible no real student of it will deny; and God designedly placed them therein to test the faithful and to stumble the unfaithful; for the Bible teaches that it is so constructed by Divine design, to stumble the irreverent, who in every case are unfaithful (Is. 28: 13, 14; 29: 9-16). Therefore, let us not look for Biblical truths to higher critics who lack reverence for God and His works. In the nature of the case they are waterless wells and rainless clouds. Some may think us uncharitable in so speaking of them; but it is God's judgment of them; and we, as a mouthpiece of Him, announce it as a criterion whereby they should be tested.
Higher criticism started on a twofold delusion, i.e., (1) a la Astruc, the use of the two Hebrew names for
the Deity, Elohim and Yahveh, proves a plurality of authors in the books that use them, and a la Wolf, in Moses' day the art of writing was unknown. How illogical the former claim is can be seen from the facts that Mr. Gladstone wrote of Victoria in one place as queen and in another as empress, that Mr. Mower, the famous correspondent, in some places wrote of Mr. Stalin as Russia's prime minister and in other places as marshal, that Time's China's correspondent in some places writes of Chiang Kai-shek as president and in other places as generalissimo, that its Washington correspondent writes of America's chief executive in some places as Mr. Roosevelt, in other places as Commander-in-chief, in still other places as Mr. President, and that its London correspondent in some places calls the chief minister of his Majesty George VI Mr. Churchill, in other places prime minister, in other places premier and in still other places, head of the War Cabinet. These are not, of course, proofs of a plurality of documents underlying each one's pertinent writings out of which they are an amalgamation! On such an illogical basis was the documentary theory's start founded. It clearly is a delusion. And what shall be said of the Wolfian claim that the art of writing was unknown in Moses' day, a claim made before archaeological monuments in Bible lands were excavated? It has by archaeological discoveries been as completely overthrown as ever a delusion was overthrown as such. The Egyptians had not only hieroglyphics and Babylonians parallel written figures before the days of Abraham; but in his days had cuneiform inscriptions, alphabets and syllabolaries and an extensive literature on greatly varied subjects, as clay tablets, sculpture, temple and tomb inscriptions and papyri of those times and later times, both before Moses as well as afterward, abundantly prove. The Tel el Amarna tablets, discovered in 1887, which consist of diplomatic letters filed in the archives of the Pharaohs, and which, among other things, were the reports of Pharaoh's
deputies in Palestine on conditions there during the times of the Exodus and of Joshua's conquest of Canaan, so completely disprove the second delusion maintained for years as the chief objection to the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch, namely, that the art of writing was then not known, that no scholars, not even higher critics, now hold this delusion. Yet Astruc's delusion was the father and Wolf's delusion was the mother of higher criticism! This leaves the theory disowned of father and mother; and it evidently is an invention of Satan, the father of lies (John 8: 44), who in higher criticism uttered great falsehoods.
Another objection to higher criticism is that it is based upon the personal imaginations, attitudes, prejudices and predilections of theorists ("literary tact"!), and not on inductions from facts nor on deductions derived from factual principles. The inventors and main proponents of the evolutionary phase of higher criticism are Teutonic professors, who spent their lives in their studies framing their theories according to their notions of how things ought to have been according to their preconceived opinions, prejudices, attitudes and predilections, and not on how things actually were. In educational circles their method is called the "subjective," as opposed to "objective," method of investigation. By the former term is meant one's viewpoint based upon his personal mental attitudes and predilections and prejudices, and by the latter term is meant one's viewpoint based upon facts and factual principles irrespective of his personal mental attitudes, prejudices and predilections. Accordingly, higher criticism is the subjective theory of impractical theorists. While many German professors have been brilliant scholars, they have been men mainly detached from the practical facts of life, and therefore are very poor judges of life's affairs. Moreover, their viewpoint was that of Occidentals, Europeans, and not that of Orientals, Asiatics. They approached the Bible, which is a preeminently Oriental book surcharged with Oriental forms
of language, methods of thought, points of view and modes of sentiment, as though it were an Occidental book surcharged with Occidental forms of language, methods of thought, points of view and modes of sentiment. Such a method of approach cannot but misunderstand the Bible in its setting of things, disqualify its user for the task of rightly appraising the Bible, and produce a thoroughly false theory of the Bible's nature, composition and contents, even as it acting in higher critics has as the sum total of its great mental exertions produced. If there were no other objection to it, this one alone is sufficient to condemn it; for a true science is based on facts treated inductively, and on objective, factual principles treated deductively—things on which higher criticism is not based, despite its learned twaddle on words very often of uncertain meanings, a course unworthy of the name science and productive of a thousand exploded hypotheses, even as higher criticism's rejection of not a few of its own earlier hypotheses based on words alone proves.
Higher criticism is in gross error in that it holds that the bulk of the Old Testament and parts of the New Testament are pious frauds, i.e., frauds knowingly palmed off as such by their perpetrators in order to serve the purposes of religion. Above we saw how it set forth Deuteronomy as a pious fraud invented about the time of Josiah and palmed off as a work of Moses to give it currency and authority. They claim that the bulk of the rest of the Pentateuch was written by Ezra or some contemporaries of him, but fraudulently palmed off by them as written by Moses, to give it a wider and deeper acceptance. Daniel, they allege, was not written by a contemporary and statesman of Nebuchadnezzar and Cyrus, but by some one who lived after the Maccabean wars and wrote the book as an alleged prophecy of the Maccabean struggles after they were past events, and ascribed the authorship to an alleged Daniel who allegedly never lived, but whose existence was invented to lend authority to the alleged
book of Daniel. Similarly, they claim that Isaiah was a series of alleged prophecies delivered after the events occurred, and palmed off as written by an alleged Isaiah contemporary with King Hezekiah, in order to secure for it wide and deep acceptance. They claim that his mention of Cyrus by name (Is. 44: 28; 45: 1) is a certain proof that the second part of Isaiah (40—66) was post-exilic, as though God, who knows the future as well as He does the past, could not have inspired the naming of Israel's deliverer two centuries before time, and as a type of Christ, who delivers God's spiritual Israel from symbolic Babylon. They allege that David did not write the bulk of the Psalms, very likely none of them. These, too, they claim to be in almost all cases post-exilic, but assigned mainly to David in a pious fraud, to give them greater currency and acceptance. John, of course, they allege could not have written the Gospel, and the Revelation that go by his name; but some fraud wrote these to combat certain errors that arose long after the second century began, and then issued them under John's name to insure their acceptance and authority. Thus these critics reduce large parts of the Bible to pious frauds. To the true Bible student this course of higher criticism buries it as a rotten carcass deep in the rubbish pile of infidel theories.
The reasons that they give, as based on the Bible, for denying the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch are certainly fallacious; for they are, in some cases, torn out of their connection, and in some based on false ideas as to the difference between the obligatoriness of justice and the non-obligatoriness of sacrifice. E.g., they quote Ps. 40: 6: "Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears has thou opened; burnt offering and sin-offering hast thou not required." This Psalm they claim was pre-exilic, because they think it can be used as a proof that the whole sacrificial system of the Old Testament was post-exilic. Here, they cry out, is a proof that the Old Testament sacrificial system was not in vogue before this Psalm was written; hence
Moses did not give it, they cry out in triumph. But hold! we say to them. These words are not historical, they are prophetic of Christ (Heb. 10: 5-10). They do not say one word to the effect that God did not wish, nor have pleasure in, the typical sacrifices before Christ came with their antitypes. They say this of them only after Christ set them aside as types by putting in their place their antitypes, as Heb. 10: 5-10 proves. They quote Hosea 6: 6: "I desired mercy, and not sacrifice," as another proof that in the 8th century B. C. the Mosaic sacrifices were not by God desired; and, hence, that such sacrifices were not of God's suggestion, at least up to 700 years after Moses' times. To this we answer: You are tearing the passage out of its connection. The connection shows that God desired no sacrifice offered Him by those who showed no mercy, and no burnt offerings made contrary to the Divine Truth. But this is a far cry from God's not wanting them at all, as higher critics loudly claim.
Similarly, they quote Amos 5: 21-25 as a proof that God, in the 8th century B. C., disapproved of sacrifices and services such as the Pentateuch inculcates. Again, we answer that they ignore the statements accompanying and following His disapproval. These are to the effect that the wickedness and the hypocrisy of the Israelites of those times made Him disapprove, not of properly brought sacrifice, but the sacrifices and services of the wicked, which the Bible expressly calls an abomination to the Lord (Prov. 15: 8). Again, Jer. 7: 22: "I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the Land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings and sacrifices," is appealed to as a proof that God did not, up to the time of the exile, give the Jews a charge concerning the sacrifices of the Israelitish priesthood. In answer we would say several things: (1) The passage truly says that on the day of Israel's deliverance from Egypt, no priestly offerings were given them to perform. This was not done until they were at Sinai a while. (2) The
passage specifies the two main offerings of the Levitical law, (a) burnt offerings and (b) sin offerings, even as Heb. 10: 5-10 shows, both typically and antitypically. In Heb. 10: 8 the word and between the words offering and burnt offerings should be even, for Paul here is defining sacrifice and offering by the words, burnt offerings and offering for sin. Of course, these were not given at the time of the deliverance from Egypt, but first at Sinai. (3) Neither burnt offerings nor sin offerings were by God commanded as a duty, but were by Him suggested as privileges. (4) The contrast as to what was not commanded, but was given as a privilege at Sinai, and what was commanded but violated, existing between v. 22 on the one hand, and vs. 23 and 24 on the other hand, shows that Jeremiah is rebuking the Jews for violating commands, i.e., violating the demands of justice, while performing things, sacrifices, not demanded by justice, but things suggested as privileges. In no sense does this passage prove that the Levitical sacrifices were not revealed at Sinai nor performed before the Babylonian exile, as higher critics claim. Thus he was rebuking sacrifices made in wickedness, and not disapproving of sacrifices made in righteousness. Hence the critics' thought is read into, not taken out of the passage. Thus is exposed the fallacy of their thought that God disapproved of burnt offerings and sin offerings as such, before the exile. How flimsy is their alleged proof that the Bible disproves the Levitical service's use before the Babylonian captivity!
Higher criticism is, in its grosser forms, blatant infidelity, and in its milder forms clearly infidelistic. In their great majority denying that the Bible is a revelation of God, that miracles were wrought in attestation of it, and claiming that its prophecies were written after the events, that Jesus was a sinful man begotten by a sinful father, but more than others was successful as an overcomer of His alleged natural depravity, and thus became a good example to others, and that the writers of the Bible in some cases were imposters and
frauds, and in some cases were ignoramuses, they are in spirit much akin to outspoken blasphemous infidels, like Thomas Paine, Robert Ingersoll and Charles Bradlaugh. But the difference is this: Whereas the latter stood outside the fortress of the Bible as outspoken enemies of it, attacking it from without, the former stand in that fortress and as pretended friends, but really traitors and enemies, fight it from within—thus of the two classes by far the deadlier class of its foes are the higher critics. They have gotten the chief professorial chairs in many universities and theological seminaries and the pulpits of the more fashionable and larger churches, and sit in the chief pews, and do their deadly work under the guise of friends of the Bible, most of them practicing gross elasticity of conscience in subscribing to creeds, which they reject, and drawing salaries for defending the Bible, which they attack.
Higher critics have always spoken of their theories as assured results of Biblical scholarship. But their assured results have time and again been overthrown by archaeology. They take the position that the Bible's historical statements are to be questioned and denied, unless extra-Biblical evidence corroborates them. Thus they denied the Mosaic account of creation, until the assured findings of both geology and archaeology overthrew their view. They denied the historicity of the flood, until the Gilgames Epic was discovered, giving an account of it, much like that in Gen. 6—8, and until antelopes, mammoths, etc., with undigested green grass in their stomachs, were found embedded in the ice of Siberia, drowned by the flood waters and quickly frozen, proven by the undigested grass, in the soon congealed ice when the canopy that made this earth a hothouse, even at the poles, dropped and quickly changed that hothouse condition in the far north and south to frigid climates. They denied the historicity of Gen. 14, claiming that no kings of the names of the four and five mentioned there existed, and that at that time the eastern kingdoms did not rule over Palestine,
until archaeology came along with their names and the history of the extension of their rulership to the Mediterranean given in the monuments. They denied Israel's enslavement in Egypt until a stele of the great Raamses, found in Besan, the Biblical Bethshan, described his enslaving them and making them build his store cities, Pithom and Rameses, which the Swiss archaeologist, E. Naville, had previously excavated and proved to be the store cities that the enslaved Israelites had built. They denied the overthrow of Sodom, etc., until a few years ago excavators discovered their sites and the proof of their being suddenly overwhelmed by great fires. We would not at all be surprised, if in one of the salt pillars of Usdum, south of the Dead Sea, the embedded body of Lot's wife will be found, excavated by explorers. They denied that writing was known in Moses' day, until the Egyptian monuments and papyri and Babylonian monuments and clay tablets gave the lie to their assertions. They denied the invasion and conquest of Canaan by Joshua, until the Tel el Amarna letters disproved their assertions. They denied various events given in Kings and Chronicles, until Babylonian and Assyrian monuments corroborated them. According to them, Cyrus never restored Israel to Palestine and aided them in the rebuilding of the temple, until a stele was found setting these things forth. To them Solomon was a myth, until his very smelting furnaces were discovered. Hezekiah's making a tunneled aqueduct to bring waters through a very long channel excavated through the solid rocks into Jerusalem was, according to them, a mere myth, until this tunnel was found, explored and the Hebrew inscription telling of the two sets of workmen laboring from both its ends met in the middle, where it was chiseled, was deciphered. Archaeology giving the solid facts of ancient history has made a sorry mess of "the assured results" of higher criticism. As with Biblical Numerics, so with Archaeology, God allowed the higher critics to make worldwide their denials of the Bible's being a Divine
revelation, and of its being true to facts; He then nicely brought these two sciences to light in relation to the Bible, to the confounding of the so-called higher critics.
The argument from silence is used by the critics to deny statements of the Bible. They assume that practically every history given in the Bible is false, unless and until corroborated by the archaeology of Egypt or Babylon or Palestine. It is this principle that nerved them, before pertinent archaeological discoveries of the 19th and 20th centuries, to deny the historicity of most Old Testament stories. But the argument from silence is decidedly unscientific, which is proven so by archaeological finds disproving one point after another of the critics' denial of Old Testament facts based upon the silence of extra-Biblical corroborations. They fought every one of these findings at its early announcement, until they were compelled by facts to yield a reluctant acceptance of them. One would think that the great numbers of the overthrowals of their points before claimed as "assured results" of their principles would destroy their pertinent dogmatism on their principles; but not so; for they are of those "ever learning but never coming to a knowledge of the Truth."
Another great error of their methods leading to "assured results" (!) is their course of making Oriental literature to conform to Occidental notions, methods, forms of thought, habits of life and rules of interpretation. Oriental literature, of which the Bible is a part, has a coloring, works with methods, illustrates forms of thought, reveals habits of life and follows rules of interpretation so different from pertinent Occidental ways that to make the former conform to the latter results in gross misunderstandings. Take for example, Abraham's negotiations for a burial place of Sarah (Gen. 23). No occidental can understand this story unless he understands Oriental ways of bargaining. Among Orientals one must obtain consent for the sale of property from the pertinent compatriots of the seller; and the thing bargained for is always offered
free at first and that to ingratiate the seller with the buyer, and often ends with charging a price many times larger than the property is worth. Note that unlike with us, everything in the land bought at an Oriental sale must be expressly mentioned, e.g., trees, grass, a path, etc., etc., otherwise it is not included in the sale of a piece of land, which accounts for the mention of certain details in this story. The sale must be witnessed, as well as be sanctioned, by the generality of the seller's compatriots. At first, not knowing these things, higher critics ruled the whole story as a myth; but its conformity to Oriental customs found out later made them recede from their denials. But impractical professor critics still insist in making Occidental views force their ways into construing Oriental matters to their greater confusion.
Another false method of these critics is in making words the criterion of history. They start out with an array of words, often of uncertain and fanciful etymologies, many of which are of uncertain derivation and sense. To these words, to which often arbitrary and fanciful meanings are attached, they seek to make facts conform, and if they do not conform, so much the worse for the facts. A method that makes historical facts conform to theoretical views by false rules based upon words frequently misunderstood is certainly a false one; for nothing is more illusive than making words the criterion of facts; for we are not to look to grammars and dictionaries for historical facts. Certainly, we need words to decipher the record of facts, history. But those words do not create those facts, nor make the facts bend to the words. The history of words, the varied meanings that many words have (e.g., the word nathan, he gives, has about 70 different translations in our A. V.), the changes in meanings that they assume (e.g., the word, prevent, etymologically means, and used to mean, precede [1 Thes. 4: 15]; but it has lost that meaning and now means to hinder) and the uncertain use of words with many