I have tried to have a dialogue with professor Joel Baden of Yale University, without success. He blocked me at Twitter when I asked him the first question regarding his views on the Documentary Hypothesis.
Questions concerning this important subject require answers from those who make their assertions as scholars. This is particularly crucial when the professors views are in direct conflict with the texts of the Hebrew Bible he asserts are wrong.
The Assertion: Joel Baden, Professor at Yale University, teaching students the Hebrew Bible; asserts that the person known as Moses is fictional; the Exodus recorded in the Torah—never happened. Baden said that Moses did not write the five books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. The authors of the 29 other books of the Bible, who name Moses as the writer, 720 times in the Hebrew texts, and 96 times in the Koine-Greek texts, over a 1,450 year period of history, are all wrong, while Joel Baden, is correct.
If Moses didn’t exist, and the Exodus from Egypt never happened, how is it that Hebrew scholar, Paul, didn’t know this?
First century Hebrew scholar, Paul, said that “on every Sabbath the Jews went into the synagogue and read from the Books of Moses” (Acts 13:15). Joel Baden says Moses didn’t write the Pentateuch the historical record of the Jews, says you are a liar.
Paul Writing: “And who was it who rebelled against God, even though they heard his voice? Wasn’t it the people Moses led out of Egypt? And who made God angry for forty years? Wasn’t it the people who sinned, whose corpses lay in the wilderness?” ~Hebrews 3:16-17 (Paul citing (Numbers 14:2, 11, 30; Deuteronomy 1:35, 36, 38).
Paul Writing: “For Moses writes that the law’s way of making a person right with God requires obedience to all of its commands.” ~Romans 10:5 (Paul citing Leviticus 18:5)
Is the entire first century record of Hebrew scholars wrong, Professor Baden? You claim that these first century scholars who recorded that Moses wrote the Pentateuch are mistaken, while you, a man living in the twenty-first century, are somehow endowed with greater knowledge that Moses did not write the first five books of the Bible? Preposterous!
If Moses didn’t write Genesis, then why did Jesus cite Moses in His comments to the Pharisees?
“The Pharisees also came to Jesus, testing Him, and saying to Him, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?” And Jesus answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning made them male and female,’ and said, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” ~Jesus, Matthew 19:3-8
It is important to understand that Jesus stated He existed before Moses, and that Moses knew Jesus before He came to earth as a man, and wrote about Jesus:
“If you really believed Moses, you would believe me, because he wrote about me.” ~John 5:46
When Jesus cites the texts where He confirms that Moses wrote these texts, it is because Jesus said, He existed before Moses. It was the preincarnate Jesus who led Moses and the children of Israel out of Egypt. Jude, in the New Testament, confirms that it was Jesus who was there with Moses:
“So I want to remind you, though you already know these things, that Jesus first rescued the nation of Israel from Egypt…” ~Jude 1:5
Jesus, in proving the texts from Genesis, cites Moses in the Book of Genesis:
“So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” ~Moses, Genesis 1:27
“Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” ~Moses, Genesis 2:24
Jesus said that Moses wrote about Him in the Torah
“Yet it isn’t I who will accuse you before the Father. Moses will accuse you! Yes, Moses, in whom you put your hopes. If you really believed Moses, you would believe me, because he wrote about me. But since you don’t believe what he wrote, how will you believe what I say?” ~John 5:45-47
One of the chief criticisms made by atheists regarding Moses as the true author of the first five books of the Bible, is the idea that he could not have written his own obituary in Deuteronomy 34:
In Deuteronomy 32:48-50, God told Moses he was going to die, to prepare himself. Moses writes his own obituary in Deuteronomy 34:1-5. It’s no mystery how Moses was able to write about his own death. He recorded it before he died.
The question of whether Moses really wrote that Noah existed and a global flood happened, is confirmed by the people of the first century, who knew these things were true:
Did Noah exist? Was there a global flood? Jesus confirms Noah (Mt 24:38, Lk 17:27). Paul confirms Noah (Heb 11:7). Peter confirms Noah (1 Pet 3:20, 2 Pet 2:5). If Moses didn’t write Genesis; if Noah didn’t exist, and there was no flood, why didn’t they know this in the first century?
There are 96 citations for Moses and a large number of the primary events from the Torah, cited in the New Testament
How is it that Jesus and Paul, and the men who cited Moses in the New Testament, knew that Moses was a real person who wrote the first five books of the Bible, but Yale Professor, Joel Baden, doesn’t know this? Baden is wrong, this essay impeaches his assertions.
As a leading advocate for the Documentary Hypothesis, publishing books asserting his view that Moses is not the author—stating that up to four different persons penned these texts—all of Baden’s conclusions are primarily based on his opinions, conjecture, and superlative speculation. According to David McLain Carr, Professor of Old Testament at the Union Theological Seminary in New York City, “The consensus around the classical documentary hypothesis has now collapsed.” David Carr is a leading scholar of the textual formation of the Hebrew Bible.[A] See a list of scholars who support Moses as the true writer of the Torah[B]
- Proving Moses Wrote Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, From Historical Evidence
- Proving The Exodus Happened, And Moses Wrote The Pentateuch
Joel’s Baden’s Answer To My Inquiry, Was To Block Me So That We Could Have No Discussion
This is, of course, the right of every person—to not answer questions. Our right is to ask questions and make comments ourselves.
I visited the Yale University website for Joel Baden, and reviewed the first video that resides at his page. My first impression was that I was listening to a stand up comic, who masquerades as a scholar.
After five minutes of jokes and story telling about movies that have changed in the process of subsequent productions, Joel used this illustration to prove the Bible is not reliable. Essentially Baden’s proof that the Pentateuch is not a true narrative, is that it resembles modern fantasy movies in which the story has been changed many times over subsequent versions.
This is one of the premises of error in the Documentary Hypothesis; that the writings of the first five books of the Bible are really just imitations of other ancient works of literature. This ploy is also used by atheist New Testament scholars in their own critical assessments of the narratives about Jesus; asserting that the Gospels are nothing more that imitations of former works of ancient fiction.
In both criticism’s of Old and New Testament texts, the imitation and similar style assertions, bear no evidence to support these suppositions. These are merely the opinions of atheists and other critics of the Bible, not the conclusions born through historical or forensic evidence. The texts themselves in the preserved Hebrew scriptures, as well as the extant Koine-Greek texts we have today, bear absolutely no marks of being written in the style of other ancient works of literature.
There is a tremendous difference between Roman romance novels of antiquity, and the personal letters written by first century eyewitnesses, to real persons, at specific locations in Judea, Samaria, and Asia Minor.
In matters of preserved, extant manuscript evidence, it is not helpful or scholarly to make use of known fictional stories in proving the Bible is not true. All that this accomplishes is to make the speaker look foolish and unqualified to impeach the subjects he asserts.
What The Baden Video Reveals
For the next seven minutes Joel took us on his personal ride through the stories of the Bible and gave us his conclusions, that included no evidence whatsoever.
One of the common tactics of atheist scholars is to tell their audience entertaining stories to get their minds off the fact that they will present no proof to support the assertions they are making. Joel’s strategy was to get the audience to like him by entertainment, then by sleight of mouth—tell his audience that the stories we read in the Old Testament are all contrived.
Not once in the 15 minutes of this video did anyone listening to Joel Baden, receive anything scholarly that would convince an intelligent person, what he was saying, is actually true. We can learn more about truth of the Old Testament by simply reading the texts for ourselves, observing that none of the claims Joel made in this video presentation, are actually true. The following is a brief synopsis of the assertions Baden made in his video, all without any evidence:
- The global flood story in the Bible is not original, the Mesopotamian flood was first.
- The first five books of the Bible are not written by a single author, but at least four.
- Men made the Bible authoritative, but the Bible never intended authority
- In the flood narrative of the Bible, facts stated, contradict each other
- The Ark was too crowded
- Where did the water come from?
- How many days did the flood last?
- The flood killed the animals God blessed
- The assertion that the flood narrative became authoritative over time, but it never was intended as authoritative
- There are many more important stories that are not included in the Bible
Since a majority of the time used by Joel in this video was expended on the flood story of the Bible, I will direct this next portion of the essay to that subject.
First, the Biblical account of the global flood described by Moses in the Pentateuch, was not written during the time the flood took place, it was passed down to Moses, partially through Enoch who lived until just before the flood, as well as several other reliable transmitters of the preserved Hebrew Oral Records. At the time these events were taking place during the early history of man on the earth, an event like an approaching global flood, and what took place as a result of this flood, were extremely important to the people who lived after these events.
The Historically Reliable Jewish Oral Tradition
The oral tradition of God’s people in antiquity is a known reliable resource in preserving and accounting for reliable transmission of these events to subsequent generations. The ancient world—which did not have the ability to write, publish, and distribute materials to the masses—relied on the oral tradition. More than the telling of stories, the oral tradition was a major part of education and viewed as essential to conveying the facts of history, that required preservation.
In the Hebrew oral tradition, teachers memorized entire books by simply listening to them as they were spoken over and over. Students were taught to memorize everything that their teachers said or taught. When accounts of what God had said were being revealed, students memorized these accounts word for word.
These students were later tested for accuracy by recounting what they had learned—back to their teachers. In this early world before the distribution of books, this was considered the greatest and most important part of Jewish life, as the followers followers of God. Because of their high regard for the oral tradition used by those who memorized the words of God, we have great confidence today that what is written in the Old Testament scriptures are absolutely reliable and are an accurate account of the true words of God.
“Praise the LORD who has given rest to his people Israel, just as he promised. Not one word has failed of all the wonderful promises he gave through his servant Moses.” ~1 Kings 8:56
It is well understood today that the oral traditions of the Jews were also highly respected during the early days of the Christian church. Regarded as authentic and reliable, the oral tradition continued during the time of Jesus’ ministry here on the earth. Because of the high esteem attached to the memorization of scripture and the retelling of God’s word orally, the writers of the New Testament continued this extreme desire for accuracy in recording the events of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection.
Jesus told the men who He called to be His witnesses, that He would send the Holy Spirit to them, and He would live in these men, bringing to their remembrance, all that He has said and taught them. Jesus did this so that the oral narratives, combined with their stellar memories enabled by the Holy Spirit, would empower these men to write an accurate and reliable narrative of all they had seen and heard, concerning Jesus.
“I am telling you these things now while I am still with you. But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.” ~John 14:25-26
The Pharisees taught that when God gave Moses the law on Mount Sinai, He gave him two laws: the written law called the Laws of Moses, as recorded in the Old Testament; and the secret law, also called “the oral law.” Moses passed these oral traditions down to the elders of Israel vocally, as they were prohibited from writing them. These secret laws would not be revealed until a need arose, at the proper time; this is according to the Mishnah.
Moses received the oral law from God on Mount Sinai, wrote it and delivered it to Joshua, who delivered it to the elders of Israel, followed by the Judges. The Judges gave these oral and written traditions to the Prophets, and the Prophets delivered them to the sopherim of Ezra’s day.
In the earliest form of the oral traditions concerning the Hebrew scriptures, scholars committed the entire body of God’s word to memory. When a particular passage was recited, it would remind the listener of several other places in the scriptures where a similar passage spoke or illustrated a comparable principle. It was through this method that early scholars divided the Hebrew Bible into sections. It was not until many years later that verses were added to delineate the text within the books of the Bible.
The Flood of Noah, A Reliable Transmission
The flood narrative of Genesis 6, is one of these earliest Oral Traditions that was passed down to Moses, and he became the vehicle through which we can know, today, what really happened. Every known event of antiquity is transmitted to us through time, by the recording of these events, through persons who either saw these events, or received reliable eyewitness testimony, transmitted by oral or written records. Added to the oral tradition, the texts of Genesis states that God Himself, told Moses about the flood and all the details he wrote in Genesis 6-8.
No one but Moses was capable of assembling, researching, and writing the texts of the Pentateuch. Trained by the finest minds in Egypt, raised as a son of Pharaoh, Moses was uniquely chosen by God because he had the writing skills and intelligence necessary for God to use him for this important task. More important, Moses believed what God said and acted on this faith.
Everything that comes after the Pentateuch, depends upon the first five books that were written by Moses before. When we enter a house and see all of the beautiful things within that structure, we must remember that none of these useful items for our life would be possible if there was not a strong foundation. The first five books of the Bible are the foundation that everything else is built upon: “Having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets.” ~Ephesians 2:20
All the events of Jesus’ life, miracles, crucifixion, death, and resurrection, depend upon what Moses wrote. It was in Moses’ first prophecy of the Bible, found in Genesis 3:15, that we learn about the Savior God promised the world; Jesus, born of a woman without the aid of a human father. The term, “seed of a woman,” in Genesis 3:15, was both a reference to the future seed of Abraham, the Messiah, but also, Mary, whom the angel Gabriel of Luke’s Gospel, said Mary would conceive Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:26-38).
There are 400 Messianic Prophecies in the Old Testament. Moses wrote 46 of these prophecies in Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. I recorded these prophecies in three of my published books: “The Prophecies of the Messiah,” The Messianic Prophecy Bible,” “These Things Were Written.”
Without the reliable testimony written by Moses in the first five books of the Bible, there would be no possibility of proving that Jesus is the True Messiah. This would completely invalidate the entire Bible. In this reality we can see why the first five books, written by Moses, are under such great opposition by critics of God and His Word.
The Global Flood, Who Recorded It First?
Critics often date the flood of Gilgamesh, earlier than the Biblical account of Noah, found in Genesis 6-8. This is due to the assumption that Moses could not have written these texts during the period ascribed to him in 1450 B.C. An important assertion made by the Documentary Hypothesis, states that there was no alphabet or writing system in use when Moses is alleged to have written the Pentateuch at this early date. This assertion has been impeached by the archeological record.
Today we know from archeological evidence that the Jews created the world’s first alphabet, and were writing texts by the time Moses began writing the five books of the Pentateuch.
The assertion that Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, are fabrications written by many authors, much later than the events these texts describe, is without any evidence to prove this assertion.
The Masoretic Text of the Torah places the Great Flood 1,656 years after Creation, or about 3,500 B.C., long before the flood of Gilgamesh. In the 17th century B.C., Joseph Scaliger cited the Creation at 3950 B.C., Petavius stated it took place in 3982 B.C., and according to James Ussher’s conclusions, Creation happened in 4004 B.C., placing the Great Flood at 2348 BCE.
The Gilgamesh flood narrative is alleged to have been written before 2,000 B.C., but it was assembled from material dated as early as 3.300 B.C.[10,11]
The problem with assuming that the Gilgamesh flood happened and was written before Noah, is due to the assumption that Noah had no ability to write about this event, since the early Hebrews did not have an active writing system. This assumption is not only incorrect, and impeached by archeological evidence that proves the first alphabet did not come from the Phoenicians, but from the early Hebrew people.
Moses Received The Information He Recorded In Genesis, Directly From God
“Now God saw that the earth had become corrupt and was filled with violence. God observed all this corruption in the world, for everyone on earth was corrupt. So God said to Noah, “I have decided to destroy all living creatures, for they have filled the earth with violence. Yes, I will wipe them all out along with the earth! “Build a large boat…” ~Genesis 6:11-14
This testimony written in Genesis 6, is similar to Paul’s account of God giving him information about events that were previously unknown before that time: “We tell you this directly from the Lord…” (1 Thessalonians 4:15). “I received this by direct revelation from Jesus Christ” (Galatians 1:12).
God told Moses everything about the flood of Noah, so that he could accurately, and truthfully, record these events for us in Genesis. We see many places in the Old Testament where the Lord spoke to Moses and gave him specific and detailed instructions and information of specific events:
“God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel: Yahweh, the God of your ancestors—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.” ~Exodus 3:15
“Then the LORD said to Moses,…” ~Exodus 4:6
“Then the LORD said to Moses, “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel. ….” ~Leviticus 4:1-2
“The LORD said to Moses…“Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain.”~ Exodus 25:1, 40
One of the reasons that atheist scholars do not accept that God spoke to Moses, results from their view that God doesn’t exist, therefore, it is not possible He could speak. This demonstrates how an incorrect assumption can lead to further errors. The Bible is replete with statements that “God spoke.” This is the entire premise of the Bible: That God has spoken to man and revealed Himself to us. This communication comes to us by 66 books, written by 40 authors, over a 1,450 year period of time. God spoke to Moses, and this is how he knew many of the details he wrote in the Torah.
Archeology Proves That Moses Had The Ability To Write The Torah
It is also a fact of archeology that we have discovered evidence that Moses had a working alphabet by 1,450 B.C., during the same period that he would have begun writing the first five books of the Bible. This evidence is documented on this website, at the following link:
There is no evidence in the historical record that the Gilgamesh account is older than the narrative written by Moses. This assertion is merely conjecture by Joel Baden, and others like him who do not believe the God of the Bible exists, nor that the Bible is the word of God. It is tenuous at best that any intelligent person would rely upon the opinions of anyone, scholar or not, who doesn’t believe that God exists in the first place, while asserting they are an expert on anything concerning God.
The evidence we have today demonstrates that the global flood described in the book of Genesis, predates the epic flood of Gilgamesh. The texts which describe the flood of Gilgamesh were not discovered until the mid-nineteenth century at the ruins of the great library at Nineveh.
Joel Baden’s opposition to the narrative written by Moses is nothing more than statements made by him that the accounts in Genesis are not true, and Moses could not have written them. Great! Now provide us something more than your opinions to prove this supposition. You are a scholar, you have the academic standing as a Phd, provide us with actual evidence that Moses is not the author.
If you read Baden’s books regarding the Documentary Hypothesis, you will not find this evidence. Instead there are allusions to similar types of writing in the first five books that resemble other known works of fiction from antiquity. This is not proof Moses didn’t write these texts and no intelligent person should accept these conclusions made by simple assertions, instead of actual evidence.
Enoch and Methuselah
Moses received reliable evidence from men (Enoch and Methuselah) who had actually lived during the period of history immediately before the flood of Noah, and Moses recorded this information in the Bible for us. It is significant that the Gilgamesh texts also describe the occurence of a universal flood with near identical parallels to the Flood of Noah’s day.[13,14] This provides us with significant physical evidence that the Gilgamesh flood is the same flood of Noah, confirmed by a second source that is non-biblical, yet nearly identical to the texts of the Bible.
The flood of Gilgamesh took place in the third millennium B.C., and was clearly recorded by a polytheistic people, yet documenting the same events presented to us by Moses, much earlier. Noah’s flood predates the Gilgamesh flood, as well as the many other flood narratives which recount the same global flood Noah records.
Flood stories written on cuneiform tablets, have often been described as written before the Noah account. This is primarily due to an agenda set forth by scholars who oppose the Bible and the idea that God exists. Rarely do atheist scholars teaching the Hebrew Bible, stipulate that the scriptures of the Jews bear credible narratives. The Jews of the the first century, and the extant record of the Dead Sea Scrolls, provide us with substantial evidence to prove that the global flood of Noah, predates all other records in the historical record.
The texts from the Gilgamesh narrative are very early extant writing, but they do not predate the Noah’s account. This assumption is often asserted by critics of the Bible, but they do so without knowledge that what Moses wrote, he received from the reliable Oral Traditions of the Jews, who preserved these events for Moses.
The dates at the Sinai mines for the Proto Sinaiticus Scripts have been confirmed during the middle kingdom, the period as the Exodus, near 1450 B.C. This confirms that this early script was known during the time that Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible. Also important, this script was found in the same region of Egypt where the Hebrew people are documented as living, as recorded in the historical record.
When this early ancient script is compared to modern Hebrew, scholars confirmed this early Hebrew writing and the first, and earliest form of Hebrew.
At the Griffith Institute in Oxford, England, Sir Allen Gardiner, Egyptologist, linguist, philologist, and independent scholar, was the person responsible for verifying these ancient texts. He is one of the worlds most preeminent experts in ancient languages. Gardiner determined that not only was this script made by early Semitic People (the Hebrews), it was also the world’s oldest known alphabet.
Allen Gardiner wrote: “The case for the alphabetic character of the unknown script is overwhelming… The meanings of these names, translated as Semitic words, are plain or plausible in seventeen cases.”
The Great Isaiah Scroll
The Great Isaiah Scroll (1QIsaa) is one of the original seven Dead Sea Scrolls discovered in Qumran in 1947. It is the largest (24 feet) and most preserved of all the biblical scrolls. The 54 sections of Isaiah, contain all 66 chapters of the Hebrew version of Isaiah. Dated from 125 B.C., these texts are also one of the oldest from the Dead Sea Scrolls. These texts from the Great Isaiah Scroll, were written more than one thousand years before the oldest manuscripts of the Hebrew Bible that were previously known before discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
This version of Isaiah is in agreement with the Masoretic version of Isaiah, as well as the Aleppo Codex. This scroll is different from many of the texts found at Qumran, as it reveals a full orthography, providing us with evidence for how Hebrew was pronounced during the Second Temple Period.
This scroll from the Book of Isaiah, includes the words of the prophet Isaiah himself, dated during the time of the First Temple, near 700 BCE. In the words of Isaiah, we find the prophets reference to Moses, twice in these texts, confirming from the oldest surviving texts from the Hebrew Bible, affirmation that Moses is the author of the Pentateuch, and the flood narrative he describes was written by Moses. These extant manuscript copies of the Hebrew scriptures, impeach Baden’s assertion that Moses is fictional.
In fact, we find an enormous record of texts in 19 different books of the Old Testament which confirm by all these writers, that Moses is a real person, and he is the author of the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. These are facts that a modern atheist scholar cannot overcome. By themselves, the extant texts of the Hebrew scriptures demonstrate that Joel Baden doesn’t know what he is talking about. If the writers of the Hebrew Bible say that Moses did write the Pentateuch, nothing that Joel Baden or any other critic writes, is able to impeach the preserved testimony of men who wrote these 19 books of the Hebrew Bible.
A modern critic of the Bible cannot overturn the long history of extant manuscript evidence we have today that demonstrates, from evidence, Moses is the author of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
Moses In The Old Testament (720 times)
- Exodus: 264
- Leviticus: 81
- Numbers: 220
- Deuteronomy: 41
- Joshua: 52
- Judges: 4
- 1 Samuel: 2
- 1 Kings: 4
- 2 Kings: 6
- 1 Chronicles: 9
- 2 Chronicles: 12
- Ezra: 3
- Nehemiah: 7
- Psalms: 8
- Isaiah: 2
- Jeremiah: 1
- Daniel: 2
- Micah: 1
- Malachi: 1
If Moses is a fictional person and he did not write the first five books of the Bible, how is it that Moses is named 720 times in the Old Testament by 15 other writers? How is it that the oldest extant manuscript copy of the Hebrew Bible, has Moses name listed in the text of the Great Scroll of Isaiah?
The Writers of The New Testament, Also Cite Moses As The Author of The First Five Books, On 96 Occasions:
- Jesus: 27 times
- Peter, in Acts 3
- Acts: 30 times
- Stephen in Acts 6
- Paul: 7 times in Romans, 2 times in 1 Corinthians, 3 times in 2 Corinthians, 5 times in Galatians, 2 times in 1-2 Timothy, 19 times in Hebrews.
- Jude 1 time
- Revelation 2 times
Stephen cites Moses by name, 11 times in his dissertation of Acts chapter 7, before the religious leaders of Israel, demonstrating that he and all of the Jews in Israel during the first century, knew well, that Moses wrote the Torah. Virtually every major event concerning the deliverance of the Hebrew people from Egypt, into the land God promised, is narrated by Stephen in Acts chapter 7. Stephen cites Moses as the man whom Genesis and Exodus first name as the leader of the Exodus, and the writer of these texts. How is it that Moses is a fictional character and he did not write the texts of the Torah, as Joel Baden asserts, while the Pharisees and every other religious leader in Israel during the first century, were not aware of this?
These leaders of Israel who were listening to Stephen, knew that Moses was the author of these five books. There is no record anywhere in the New Testament, where any writer of these 27 books, state that Moses was not the author of the Torah. The entirety of the New Testament confirms that Moses wrote these texts and this extant manuscript record impeaches all of the false and unprovable assertions of Joel Baden.
It is Professor Baden who is the liar—a modern atheist seeking to overturn the truth and the long history of the Jewish people. The Jews of history have long expressed their certainty that Moses is the true author of the Torah. Where is the physical evidence from the entire historical record of the Jews, that proves there were four different writers for the Torah? It doesn’t exist—except in the mind of Joel Baden and other critics who also cannot prove the multiple writer theory of the Documentary Hypothesis.
In All Four Gospels, Jesus Cites Moses As A Real Person Who Wrote These Texts:
- Matthew 5:17: “Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose.”
- Matthew 11:13: “For before John came, all the prophets and the law of Moses looked forward to this present time.”
- Matthew 12:5: “And haven’t you read in the law of Moses that the priests on duty in the Temple may work on the Sabbath?”
- Matthew 19:8: “Jesus replied, “Moses permitted divorce only as a concession to your hard hearts, but it was not what God had originally intended.”
- Mark 7:10: “For instance, Moses gave you this law from God: ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and ‘Anyone who speaks disrespectfully of father or mother must be put to death.’”
- Mark 10:3: “Jesus answered them with a question: “What did Moses say in the law about divorce?”
- Mark 12:26: “But now, as to whether the dead will be raised—haven’t you ever read about this in the writings of Moses, in the story of the burning bush? Long after Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had died, God said to Moses, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’”
- Luke 10:26: “Jesus replied, “What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?”
- Luke 16:16: “Until John the Baptist, the law of Moses and the messages of the prophets were your guides. But now the Good News of the Kingdom of God is preached, and everyone is eager to get in.”
- Luke 24:44: “Then he said, “When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled.”
- John 1:45: “Philip went to look for Nathanael and told him, “We have found the very person Moses and the prophets wrote about! His name is Jesus, the son of Joseph from Nazareth.”
- John 3:13-15: “And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life.”
- John 5:45-47: “Yet it isn’t I who will accuse you before the Father. Moses will accuse you! Yes, Moses, in whom you put your hopes. If you really believed Moses, you would believe me, because he wrote about me. But since you don’t believe what he wrote, how will you believe what I say?”
- John 6:32-33: “Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, Moses didn’t give you bread from heaven. My Father did. And now he offers you the true bread from heaven. The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
Is there any possibility that Jesus and all the writers of the Old and New Testaments are wrong, and Joel Baden is right? No. There is no possibility, because there is no evidence to prove what Joel Baden asserts, is true.
Paul was one of two preeminent Jewish scholars of the first century, with Gamaliel, and both confirm that Moses is the author of these texts. There is not a single refutation from the first century that states Moses didn’t write the first five books of the Jewish Bible,
This is evidence that the conclusions of Joel Baden are incorrect, and that these claims are merely his opinion as an atheist. The actual evidence presented to us by the historical record, impeaches Joel Baden, and demonstrates his callous disregard for the stellar historical and archeological evidence that exists.
The Gilgamesh Account of the Flood, is Very Similar To the Genesis 7-8 Account
The table below presents a comparison of the primary facts of the flood of Noah, in comparison with the Gilgamesh account:
Comparing Genesis and Gilgamesh:
|Extent of flood||Global||Global|
|Cause||Sin of man||Sin of man|
|Who was it intended?||All humans||Just one city and all humans|
|Flood from who?||Yahweh||An assembly of gods|
|How it was announced||From God||As a dream|
|Build a Ship||Yes||Yes|
|The builder complains||Yes||Yes|
|Height of boat||Several stories||Several stories|
|Windows||At least one||At least one|
|Human Passengers||Only Family members||Family and others|
|Animal Passengers||All “Kinds” of animals||All “Kinds” of animals|
|Flood Origin||Subterranean and rain||Rain Only|
|Duration of flood||Forty Days and Nights||Six Days and Nights|
|Test||Release a Dove||Release a Bird|
|Types of birds||Raven and Three Doves||Dove, Swallow, Raven|
|Where Ark Landed||Mount Ararat||Mount Nisir|
|Sacrifices Afterwards flood?||By Noah||By Utnapishtim|
|People Blessed After the Food||Yes||Yes|
The Gilgamesh command by Utnapishtim to build a boat is incredible: “O man of Shuruppak, son of Ubar-Tutu, tear down thy house, build a ship; abandon wealth, seek after life; scorn possessions, save thy life. Bring up the seed of all kinds of living things into the ship which thou shalt build. Let its dimensions be well measured.”
The actual cause of the flood, described as a judgement by both Moses and Gilgamesh, is striking. In the eleventh tablet, of the Gilgamesh account, line 180, it reads, “Lay upon the sinner his sin; lay upon the transgressor his transgression.”
There is no coincidence between the similarities of the Gilgamesh narrative, and the narrative written by Moses in Genesis 6-9. Utnapishtim, of the Gilgamesh flood narrative, took a pilot for the great ship and a craftsmen into the Ark, not just his family.
Both narratives recount a similar landing place after the waters of the flood receded; Mount Ararat and Mount Nisir, are only 300 miles apart.
From the beginning when these two narratives were compared with each other, there is agreement that they are both describing the same event. Both describe a large global event, and through the ages, these two similar recollections have remained relatively consistent.
In all attempts at accurately dating these two accounts, the Gilgamesh narrative was originally thought to have taken place before the Genesis narrative. This is based upon the dates determined by the oldest fragments of the Gilgamesh account.
In light of this physical evidence, the existence of the accurate Hebrew Oral Tradition, or a written form that was handed down to Noah through Enoch, Methuselah, or other Hebrew Patriarchs, defines the Genesis narrative as much older than the Gilgamesh, and Sumerian accounts, that were simply restatements of the original account.
The assertion that the Hebrew writers borrowed their narrative in Genesis from the Babylonians, exists as only conjecture, as no evidence to prove this posit has ever existed.
The significant differences that include, ethical, religious and the sheer number of specific details, renders it highly unlikely that the Biblical account depended on an extant source from the Sumerian traditions.
In spite of a significant lack of evidence to prove the Noah Narrative is a derivative of the Gilgamesh account, atheist, agnostic, and progressive scholars are not hindered by their insistent declarations that the Moses account is a fraud.
This is a common and known commodity of atheist scholars: assert their assumed facts enough time, along with their advanced degrees, to enough unsuspecting people, and the false becomes believable.
The Documentary Hypothesis And Joel Baden
My first encounter with Joel Baden was through a Youtube presentation hosted by an atheist who asked him to give his views on the Documentary Hypothesis. Essentially Joel said that four different writers “squished the stories together,” and constructed the five books that are known today as the Pentateuch.
I thought in this first encounter that he was expressing humor, and that I would soon hear or see the actual scholarly evidence to prove what he had just postulated. There was none then, nor throughout the entire hour video.
This did not really surprise me as it is well known amongst scholars that there is no documents that prove the Documentary Hypothesis. The entire posit is based on conjecture, speculation, and the opinion of atheist, agnostic, progressive scholars.
In order to impeach the Bible as the Word of God, atheist scholars often create methods that will give their view credibility. The term, “Document Hypothesis,” sounds quite scholarly, and a majority of people who hear the synopsis of this assertion, accept it on the word of these scholars alone.
After all, if a man or woman has a Phd. after their name, they must know what they are talking about, correct? Here is the problem: how can someone who doesn’t believe God exists, or the Bible is the word of God, make impartial scholarly conclusions? They cannot.
These scholars will tell you that they are perfectly capable of being unbiased in their conclusions. Those of us who have lived in the real world know that such claims are not true. Every person is capable of Cognitive Bias, based upon our particular world view.
What we believe, determines how we think, and who we are. There is a profound difference in the thought processes of atheists and believers in the God of the Bible. The evidence that this is true, is observed in the conclusions these two groups write about the same texts.
Non-believers always see the texts of the Bible in a critical manner that detracts and brings doubt to the texts. Believers always see the texts of the Bible in a critical manner, bringing out the facts, principles, teaching, and reliability of the texts. How can two groups of scholars have such diverse opinions and conclusions about the same texts?
Both the Old and New Testaments tell us why: The Bible was inspired by the God who created the universe: “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” ~2 Timothy 3:16
For the atheist scholar, the Bible is nothing more than ancient literature that may be evaluated as any other work from antiquity. This is where the fatal error begins. According to the Bible, it is perfect as it is, and requires no critical assessment by men. What defined Abraham as a Righteous man, was determined on what God said, and Abraham believed God.
The Bible demands that either we believe the words of these texts; that they are inspired and directed by God, or they are not. If we agree that God is capable of communication with us by human words, and preserving what He wants to say to us, through every generation, then we have a place to begin.
From this premise and belief, we can begin to read, study, and understand the texts of the Bible. I have been a Biblical scholar for more than 47 years. I have written commentary on the entire Bible. I have published more than 30 books, and 3,200 essays on the Bible. I have taught at university, students who want to learn the Bible. In all of this I still feel like I am a student and I have only begun to learn the depth and wisdom of the Bible.
Not once in nearly five decades, have I ever found any evidence to conclude that the Bible is anything less than the Word of God, and absolutely true and accurate in all that it teaches. In every place where a critic has asserted an discrepancy, contradiction, or problem, I have been able to solve these asserted difficulties by simply reading and understanding the texts.
In my opinion, the Bible is true and perfect as it is, and it does not require review by atheists, agnostics, and progressive Christian scholars.
Inspired, Directed, Preserved
We call it “The Word of God,” because every part of these texts was inspired by the God who created all that exists. In its totality of the Old and New Testaments, God tells us a complete revelation of Himself, His will, and the plan and purpose of salvation that He gave to this world.
In the New Testament we read the words of Jesus, in John 3:3, that unless a person is born again by the Spirit of God, they cannot see or understand the kingdom of God. A knowledge of God and the deep things hidden in the Bible, are not for outsiders who have not entered into a personal relationship with God.
Paul echos this principle in Romans chapter 8 where he states that unless the Holy Spirit resides inside us, we do not belong to God, and cannot understand the deep things of the Bible.
In John chapter 14, Jesus said that after He returns to heaven, He will send the Holy Spirit to live inside every person who has committed their life to Him. He said the Holy Spirit will never leave us, and that He will bring our minds into all truth, regarding the Bible, how to live for God, and who God is.
Jesus said that unless we have been born again by the Holy Spirit, after we have determined to turn from our sins, and follow Jesus with all of our heart, we will not have the capacity to be a true Biblical scholar.
The mistake that the world makes is that it doesn’t’ know, understand, or believe in the Holy Spirit. Without the Spirit in us, we all become people who achieve an academic degree, but lack the knowledge and understanding that comes only by the Holy Spirit living inside the person who has truly committed themselves to Jesus.
In John chapter 17:6, Jesus thanks the Father for all of those who believe in Him, and says that they were “always His.” In order for someone to always belong to Jesus, this would mean there never was a time when they were not his. This would define our salvation as taking place in eternity, before God created the universe. This is exactly what Paul described in Ephesians and Romans. We were “chosen by God before the foundation of the world.”
How can God choose us for salvation and still give us a choice? God’s decisions to save us before the foundation of the world, was possible because He knew before He made anything, who would truly believe and be saved, and who would not. Those whom God knew would really believe, He chose them for eternal life. Those who He knew would not choose Christ, or would believe for only a time, He did not choose for eternal life.
This defines people who claim to have once been a Christian, but now deny Jesus and have defined themselves as an atheist, as never saved in the first place. God knew who would believe and continue to believe for all of their life, and who would stop and not believe. He did not choose those who give up; He did choose those who continue for all of their life.
Many of the modern atheist and agnostic scholars today, claim that they were once committed Christians. Jesus said they are not telling the truth. They never were saved, because they did not remain with Jesus. Jesus said that when He returns to earth to conduct the final judgment of every person, these people who claimed to belong to Jesus, He will say: “I never knew you.”
Atheist and agnostic scholars believe that they can be just as effective and bring just as much intelligence to their conclusions about the Bible, that a genuine believer in Jesus, can. According to Jesus and Paul, they cannot. Without the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, an unbeliever is just ordinary man or woman. With the Holy Spirit living in the believer, they become wise above all earthly people, and able to know and discern the texts of the Bible in all their truth.
This is why atheists and agnostics always oppose the truth of the Bible. They do not have the capacity to understand what they are reading. We see this with Joel Baden. All of his conclusions about the Old Testament are wrong, because he sees these texts as a man of this world, not as a man filled with the Holy Spirit.
For Professor Joel Baden, the Bible is filled with many stories, but none are really true or reliable. He seeks to reconcile his views by relying upon foolish and unprovable assertions like the Documentary Hypothesis. These methods do not help anyone understand the texts of the Bible. They only bring confusion, and push people away from God and the chance to receive eternal life—the entire point of the Bible.
[A] Carr, David M. (2014). “Changes in Pentateuchal Criticism”. In Saeboe, Magne; Ska, Jean Louis; Machinist, Peter (eds.). Hebrew Bible/Old Testament. III: From Modernism to Post-Modernism. Part II: The Twentieth Century – From Modernism to Post-Modernism. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht. ISBN 978-3-525-54022-0.
[B] The following is a partial list of scholars supporting Moses as the single writer of the Torah. This complete list is in the thousands:
- Bush, George. Notes on Exodus. 2 vols. Reprint. Minneapolis: James and Klock, 1976.
Cassuto, Umberto. A Commentary on the Book of Exodus. Translated by Israel Abrahams. Jerusalem: Magnes, 1967.
- Childs, Brevard S. The Book of Exodus: A Critical, Theological Commentary. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1974.
- Clements, Ronald E. The Cambridge Bible Commentary: Exodus. Cambridge: At the University Press, 1972.
- Cole, R.A. Exodus: An Introduction and Commentary. Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries.
- Downers Grove, Ill.: Inter-Varsity, 1973.
- Cook, F.C. The Holy Bible: An Explanatory and Critical Commentary: Genesis-Exodus. Vol. 1, Part 1. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1899.
- Davies, G. Henton. Exodus. Torch Bible Commentaries. London: SCM, 1967.
- Driver, S.R. The Book of Exodus. Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges. Cambridge: University Press, 1911.
- Durham, John I. Exodus. Word Biblical Commentary. Waco: Word, 1987.
- Ellison, H.L. Exodus. The Daily Study Bible. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1982.
- Gispen, W.H. Exodus. Bible Student’s Commentary. Translated by E. van der Maas. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1982.
- Greenberg, Moshe. Understanding Exodus. New York: Behrman House, 1969.
- Hyatt, J. Philip. Commentary on Exodus. New Century Bible. Greenwood, S.C.: Attic, 1971.
- Keil, C.F., and Delitzsch, Franz. The Pentateuch. KD. Translated by James Martin. Vols. 1 and 2. Reprint. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1956.
- Knight, George A.F. Theology as Narration: A Commentary on the Book of Exodus. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976.
- Lange, John Peter. Exodus. Translated by Charles M. Mead. Reprint. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1960.
- Lowenstamm, S.E. The Tradition of Exodus in Its Development. 2d edition. Jerusalem: Magnes, 1972.
- McNeile, A.H. The Book of Exodus. Westminster Commentaries. 3d edition. London: Methuen and Co., 1931.
- Meyer, Lester. The Message of Exodus: A Theological Commentary. Minneapolis: Augsburg, 1983.
- Napier, B. Davie. The Book of Exodus. The Layman’s Bible Commentary. Richmond: John Knox, 1963.
- Noth, Martin. Exodus: A Commentary. Translated by J.S. Bowden. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1962.
- Plastaras, J. The God of Exodus. Milwaukee: Bruce, 1966.
- Ramm, B. His Way Out: A Fresh Look at Exodus. Glendale, Calif.: Regal, 1974.
- Rawlinson, George. Exodus. The Pulpit Commentary. New York: Funk and Wagnalls, 1913.
- Rylaarsdam, J. Coert. “Introduction and Exegesis to the Book of Exodus.” Interpreter’s Bible. Edited by G.A. Buttrick. Vol. 1. Nashville: Abingdon, 1952.
- Youngblood, Ronald F. Exodus. Chicago: Moody, 1983.
 Rediscovering the Traditions of Israel by Douglas A. Knight 1973. Semeia (1976a), The Hebrew Bible and Its Modern Interpreters (1984) An encyclopedia on oral tradition by Robert E. Coote in 1976 Leander E. Keck, “Oral Traditional Literature and the Gospels: The Seminar” (1978). Werner Kelber’s work (1979, 1983) Güttgemanns (1979, original German 1971).
 All of this information is available in the Tractate Avot, Tractate Berachot, Tractate Sanhedrin, Tractate Yevamot and Tractate Eruvin.
 Tractate Avot 10:1
 Tractate Avot 10:1
 One of the challenges to this theory of an early Semitic alphabet, has been the idea that the Phoenicians invented the alphabet around 1100 B.C., long after the time of Moses. The discovery of this early Semitic script, now dated at 1450 BC, impeaches the Phoenician text theory. This evidence proves that what has existed in modern textbooks as the earliest alphabet and written language—the language of the Phoenicians—is now known to be an error. It was the early Semites, that invented the first alphabet. Moses had a form of this early Hebrew text, and it was this alphabet that he used to write the first five books of the Bible, the Torah.
 Barr, James (28 March 2013). Bible and Interpretation: The Collected Essays of James Barr. Volume II: Biblical Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 380. ISBN 978-0-19-969289-7.
 Young, Davis A.; Stearley, Ralph F. (18 August 2008). The Bible, Rocks and Time: Geological Evidence for the Age of the Earth. InterVarsity Press. p. 45. ISBN 978-0-8308-2876-0.
 James Barr, 1984–85. “Why the World Was Created in 4004 BC: Archbishop Ussher and Biblical Chronology”, Bulletin of the John Rylands University Library of Manchester 67:604 PDF document.
 Whitcomb, John C. and Morris, Henry M., The Genesis Flood, (Phillipsburg: Presbyterian and Reformed, 1961), p. 38.
 Heidel, Alexander, The Gilgamesh Epic and Old Testament Parallels, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1949), p. 13.
 O’Brien, “Flood Stories of the Ancient Near East”, p. 61.
 From the genealogy of Luke 3:23-38: “the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch…” From Mary’s genealogy, showing Methuselah who was the last person before the great flood arrived when everyone, except Noah and his family, died. This judgment was preceded by the Rapture of Enoch, just prior to the judgment of the flood. Enoch was a righteous man of such great character, that after walking in fellowship with the Lord for 365 years, God took him directly to heaven and he never experienced death. Enoch’s son, Methuselah, is the oldest person described in the Bible, and was specifically chosen by God to live up until the beginning of the flood so that he could record these events by reliable testimony for Moses who would later place them into the preserved written record.
 Keller, Werner, The Bible as History, (New York: William Morrow and Company, 1956), p. 32.
 Sanders, N.K., The Epic of Gilgamesh ,(an English translation with introduction) (London: Penguin Books, 1964), p. 9.
 Rehwinkel, Alfred M., The Flood in the Light of the Bible, Geology, and Archaeology, (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing, 1951), p. 129.
 Alan Gardiner–The Egyptian Origin of the Semitic Alphabet.
 The Bible as History, p. 33.
 Sanders, The Epic of Gilgamesh, p. 109.
 Morris, Henry M., Science and the Bible, (Chicago: Moody Press, 1986), p. 85.
 O’Brien, “Flood Stories of the Ancient Near East”, p. 64
 O’Brien, “Flood Stories of the Ancient Near East”, p. 64
Categories: Abhorrent teaching about Jesus, Alleged Contradictions, Apologetics, Atheists, Atheists uneducated observations, Disregard for the Bible, Exegesis and Hermeneutics, Historical Validity of the New Testament, Jewish rejection of Jesus, Joel Baden, Literary authenticity of the New Testament, Principles of Biblical Interpretation, Robert Clifton Robinson, Salvation is a free gift, Studying the Word of God