For more than two hundred years controversy has raged over the reliability of the Old Testament. Questions about the factuality of its colorful stories of heroes, villains, and kings, for example, have led many critics to see the entire Hebrew Bible as little more than pious fiction. In this fascinating book, noted ancient historian K. A. Kitchen takes strong issue with today’s “revisionist” critics and offers a firm foundation for the historicity of the biblical texts.
In a detailed, comprehensive, and entertaining manner, Kitchen draws on an unprecedented range of historical data from the ancient Near East—the Bible’s own world—and uses it to soundly reassess both the biblical record and the critics who condemn it. Working back from the latest periods (for which hard evidence is readily available) to the remotest times, Kitchen systematically shows up the many failures of favored arguments against the Bible and marshals pertinent permanent evidence from antiquity’s inscriptions and artifacts to demonstrate the basic honesty of the Old Testament writers.
Enhanced with numerous tables, figures, and maps, On the Reliability of the Old Testament is a must-read for anyone interested in the question of biblical truth.
In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.
Want similar titles? Check out Eerdmans Old Testament Studies Collection (16 vols.) for more!
The scope of this book is nothing less than the entire sweep of Old Testament history, and Kitchen introduces an impressive amount of evidence for the historical reliability of most Old Testament narrative. . . . This is a hugely impressive book, packed with detail and energetic argument.
—Biblical Studies Bulletin
Eminent Egyptologist and ancient Near Eastern scholar Kenneth Kitchen has produced here a tour de force that questions many of the simplistically assumed hypotheses of Old Testament scholarship while at the same time contributing to a more comprehensive understanding of the environment in which the Hebrew Bible was composed. Kitchen’s lifetime of study of the ancient context of the Old Testament makes this volume a must-read.
—K. Lawson Younger Jr., professor of Old Testament, Semitic languages, and ancient Near Eastern history, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Why should I be concerned about the historical reliability of the Old Testament? The overriding concern of most Bible readers is. Are this book’s claims about God, Jesus, and the afterlife reliable enough that I should carefully heed and believe what it says? ‘This is the absolute truth’ that Kenneth Kitchen in his preface states is beyond the purview of this book. Kitchen’s approach is not. How much historical reliability do I need for my faith? How much faith do the facts of archaeology (including ancient texts) tell me that I actually have? In the course of his tour through three pre-Christian millennia, Kitchen approaches his subject with the skill and experience of a bona fide expert and the frankness, honesty, and wit of a Scotsman. His book takes into account the very latest discoveries. There could be no better author for a book like this, an author who for over forty years has read, published, and taught most of the ancient texts he cites.
—Harry A. Hoffner Jr., professor of Hittitology, University of Chicago
K. A. Kitchen is Personal and Brunner Professor Emeritus of Egyptology and honorary research fellow at the School of Archaeology, Classics, and Oriental Studies, University of Liverpool, England. He is the author of many books on Egyptology, the ancient Near East, and biblical history, including Pharaoh Triumphant: The Life and Times of Ramesses II, Ancient Orient and Old Testament, and The Bible in Its World: The Bible and Archaeology Today.