In my own scholarship of the Bible I have often been surprised by the source of many debates that I have with people. Today was one of those surprise encounters. Dr. Josh Bowen is described as a scholar of the Pentateuch, asserting that Moses in not the author of the first five books of the Bible.
The following is Dr. Bowen’s description of himself found at Amazon:
“Dr. Joshua Bowen graduated from the Johns Hopkins University in 2017, with a Ph.D. in Assyriology. He wrote his dissertation on the lamentational liturgies of the city of Kiš, and specializes in the Sumerian language. Joshua was awarded the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (D.A.A.D.) and Fulbright scholarship during the 2014-2015 academic year, allowing him to spend the year in Tubingen, Germany, working with Dr. Konrad Volk on his dissertation project.”
Like myself, Dr. Bowen frequents the discussions at Twitter, and attempts to answer questions and pose questions regarding the Bible. Dr. Bowen has done his due diligence and has earned his academic credentials. For this we owe him respect.
Concerning the Bible, Dr. Bowen and I, do not agree
On Saturday, March 19, 2022, I received a question from Josh regarding a post at Twitter that I made earlier in the morning, as follows:
“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.”
Josh apparently saw my post and presented the following question to me:
“Can you think of any Pentateuchal specialists that would agree with you?”
My answer was the following:
“If you are describing Source Criticism, this remains a fractured field. Predominately Source-critical studies have conjectured that there is a probability that the current Pentateuch/Hexateuch insinuates multiple sources, but this posit has never been proven conclusively.”
“Your failure to reference any Pentateuchal specialist is telling to me. Interesting.” *specialists
The following was my question presented to Dr. Bowen:
“Let me ask you a question: do you believe the God of the Bible exists?”
“I do not.”
“Can’t wait to see where this question is leading 🙄”
My response and the follow up to my question:
“I asked you this question because your view of whether the Biblical God exists, determines your Cognitive Bias. Critical Scholarship is not inherently biased, but many scholars are. Every human being is capable of cognitive prejudice. People tend to choose their preferred conclusions and then justify their choices by often fallacious and unprovable assertions.
You, not believing that God exists, have chosen a hypothesis to explain the Pentateuch that fits that bias. Although this hypothesis cannot be proven conclusively, you reject the simple exegesis of the text themselves.
You incorrectly assert these suppositions upon unsuspecting readers, as established facts, when they are not. The evidence presented by the extant manuscript evidence for these texts, impeaches your hypothesis.”
Dr. Bowen responded:
“Good one. People have biases. Awaiting the logical progression to your fringe position being shown to be the most plausible.”
“If your hypothesis cannot be conclusively used to explain the Pentateuch, why is the extant manuscript evidence of the actual texts, not evidence that Moses is the author?”
To this question, there was no response from Dr. Bowen.
The reason I asked the esteemed Doctor this question is because, what he and his other atheist colleagues are using to assert that Moses is not the author of the Pentateuch, when the extant manuscript evidence from antiquity, proves Moses wrote these texts, Bowen’s hypothesis does not prove Moses is not the author.
The entire supposition that is asserted by Bowen, comes from his Cognitive Bias that God does not exist, therefore, the Bible is not the Word of God. This view further causes the error that Moses is not the author of the Torah, causing the people who read their comments to believe the Bible is flawed and cannot be trusted.
The actual physical evidence of the surviving manuscript evidence for the Torah, proves that Moses is the true author. The Hebrew scholars of the first century have written extensively that Moses is the author. Only modern atheist scholars today, assert that Moses is not the writer of these texts, but four other unknown persons wrote the first five books of the Bible.
If the hypothesis that Dr. Bowen is relying upon to prove Moses did not write the Torah is correct, how do you explain that preeminent Hebrew scholars in the first century, didn’t know this?
Josh Bowen and his colleagues use this hypothesis in an attempt to impugn the reliability and truth of the Hebrew Bible, which causes the entire 66 books of the Old and New Testament to be called into question. The problem for these scholars is that their hypothesis is just their opinions, their conjecture, their speculation.
Dr. Bowen has written several books where he alleges that texts from the Old Testament are flawed. This brief encounter with Josh Bowen demonstrates that he is biased, and not honest in his conclusions. The actual extant texts of the first five books of the Bible, are archeological, historical evidence that demonstrates, Josh Bowen’s conclusions about the Old Testament are flawed.
There is not a single citation in the historical record made by any Hebrew scholar, before the seventeenth century, that claims Moses is not the author of the Pentateuch. This is a modern fabrication made by atheists that exists with absolutely no evidence whatsoever to prove it is true.
If Dr. Bowen would like to continue this debate with me, he can post his arguments at the end of this essay:
UPDATE: April 25, 2022. Josh Bowen never returned to continue this debate.
- Impeaching Dr. Josh Bowen And “The Atheist Handbook To The Old Testament”
- Impeaching The Poor Scholarship Of Yale Professor Joel Baden
- Impeaching Yale Professor Joel Baden And His Views On The Documentary Hypothesis
- Proving Moses Wrote Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, From Historical Evidence
- The Historicity Of Moses
Categories: Archeological Confirmation, Atheists, Agnostics and Skeptics, Bible, Common objections by Atheists, Controversy, Destruction of the Canaanites, Exegesis and Hermeneutics, Inability to perceive evidence for God, Jesus is God, Jesus is the Messiah, Josh Bowen, Literary authenticity of the New Testament, Principles of Biblical Interpretation, Reliability of the Bible, Robert Clifton Robinson, Why God Allows Evil