Just a few lines to advise you that a number of visitors on 16 January 2003 from your website appeared today at my website, www.bibleorigins.net
I suspect that there may be some confusion for these readers. Although my brief letter made mention of "archaeology proving the bible NOT to be God's word," the index page doesn't deal directly with this subject.
My site explores a number of issues concerning the Bible.
1) The use of archaeology to determine "when" the various books of the Bible were written.
2) The use of "failed prophecies" to establish when various books were written.
3) The pre-biblical origins of religious concepts and motifs appearing in the Old Testament (derived from Mesopotamia).
4) The pre-Christian origins of beliefs not found in the Old Testament (these Christian beliefs being traced to Hellenistic Greek metaphysical thought, such as the role and influence of Demons).
5) The location of biblical sites like Eden, the route of the Exodus, Mt. Sinai's location,etc.
6) Links and bibliography.
If I had to choose "important" articles for your readers to consider on the Bible's NOT being God's word, I would recommend the following urls
As "demonology" is an important concept with Armstrong's church, everyone "ought" to read the following article on the '"pre-Christian origins of demons." The New Testament's concept of Demons and their powers is derived from Hellenistic Greek thought, NOT the Old Testament. cf.
Another important teaching of Armstrong's church is Hell and the Lake of Fire for sinners. This concept IS NOT derived from the Old Testament, it IS DERIVED from Hellenistic Greek metaphysics, which in turn is indebted to Egyptian concepts picked by Greeks in Egypt ca. 640 BCE to 200 AD, cf.
Armstrong also emphasized the "Millennium" when Christ would return to rule the earth with the faithful. The notion of a Millennium IS NOT derived from the Old Testament, it IS DERIVED from Hellenistic Greek and Roman motifs, and transformed by Hellenized Christians. cf.
The bestowal of God's "Holy Spirit" is completely different in Old Testament thought as revealed by the prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel, as opposed to Christian teachings. The prophets DID NOT portray God giving his spirit after the Messiah's death, God was to give his Holy Spirit upon the restoration from Exile to ALL his people in one fell swoop on the whole nation, not on an individual case by case basis as preached by Christianity. Cf.
An important "mainstay" of the Armstrong Church was the claim that they and they only had a direct hot-line to God and that they could predict the coming end of the world by the study of Old Testament prophecies (as well as New Testament prophecies), claiming these prophecies were "for our times." My research reveals that Christianty is employing a FALSE and BOGUS methodology in applying ancient prophecies to our times. My research into the Old Testament reveals that the prophecies were intended for the present audience NOT an audience thousands of years into the future. CF.
The Christian notion that Christ "had to die" for our sins IS NOT derived from the Old Testament, it is derived from Hellenized Judaism. Cf.
Anomalies are noted about Christ's alleged "resurrection" from the dead and "contradictions" arising about Christ as God in the Old Testament and Christ as "Saviour" in the New Testament. Cf.
The Old Testament is interpreted very differently by mainstream Judaism vs. Christian understandings. I explore the sources for the different understandings and how they arose. Christianity is ACTUALLY an "ALMALGUM" of Hellenistic Greek metaphysical thought, fused to Hellenized Judaism. Christianty's teachings about man's relationship to God via a Messiah is based on Greek motifs and Concepts which entered certain Hellenized Jewish mindsets (opposed by the Rabbis) circa the 3rd century BCE- 2nd century AD. Cf.
All the best, Walter
Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld, M.A. Ed.
I thought the below letter "addressed to you readership" might be helpful. It is of course up to you, as to whether you want to publish it or not.
Genesis' Pagan God
The Armstrong Worldwide Church of God made a claim to being THE ONLY church "properly" worshipping God, and that ALL OTHER churches were actually "pagan" churches. The Armstrong version of the "History of Christianity" claimed that as increasing numbers of Gentiles or Pagans entered the early church, PAGAN beliefs and practices came to be 'grafted" on to Christianity. Armstrong claimed his church had "excised" these pagan beliefs and practices and had returned to the beliefs of the Old Testament and the various feasts or festivals noted in the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible).
With a "programmed mindset" that ALL OTHER Christian denominations are pagan-christian hybrids, observing pagan customs like Christmas, Halloween and celebrating Birthdays, it is indeed understandable that those who for whatever reasons, came to leave the Armstrong church, would find it "distasteful" to fellowship and join these "pagan-christian" churches. They understandably, lead a very "lonely" existence, religiously speaking.
What most Christians DO NOT KNOW is that God in the Old Testament is actually A PAGAN GOD, and that Christ is a PAGAN GOD TOO. Secular Humanists have determined that the Hebrews developed their notions about God and man under the influence of cultures which PRECEDED them, Sumerian, Mesopotamian, Canaanite and Egyptian. They "borrowed" from these cultures and TRANSFORMED the notions of various motifs and themes about man and God and made them into their own particular "interpretation" or "spin."
Secular Humanists understand THAT ALL RELIGIONS are the "creation of men" they consist of various reformattings of earlier myths, motifs and concepts, THEY ARE NOT REVELATIONS FROM HEAVEN.
In Genesis God is portrayed as resting on the 7th day after making man and the world. He denies immortality to man for breaking a commandment not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. He replaces man's "animal companions" with a woman who later "ensnares" man with the forbidden fruit. Both seeing they are naked clothe themselves and are expelled from paradise. Later, God destroys a sinful mankind with a Flood. ALL OF THESE MOTIFS EXIST IN EARLIER PRE-HEBREW MYTHS of the Mesopotamians. The characters appearing in the Genesis stories are in reality REINTERPRETATIONS and TRANSFORMATIONS of PAGAN individuals and PAGAN GODS.
Adam is in reality Enkidu of the Gilgamesh epic. Eve is the Temple prostitute brought by the hunter to "ensnare" Enkidu. Adam is also the PAGAN character Adapa of the "South Wind myth", who is summoned to heaven to account for his actions. He is warned by his god, Enki, NOT to eat anything offered for it is the food of death (in reality it is the food bestowing IMMORTALITY). Mankind loses out on his bid for immortality BECAUSE HE OBEYED A LYING GOD, but in the re-worked Hebrew version, mankind loses out on his bid for immortality BECAUSE HE DISOBEYED HIS GOD, this is called in the scholarly language AN INVERSION (or REVERSAL) of an earlier motif or concept. In the Mesopotamian myths ALL THE GODS RESTED ON THE SEVENTH DAY after destroying mankind with the FLOOD. In the Hebrew INVERSION, ONLY ONE GOD RESTS ON THE SEVENTH DAY after "creating a world and mankind" BEFORE THE FLOOD (another INVERSION or REVERSAL of an earlier motif or concept).
Who is GOD in the Genesis myths ? In REALITY he is an AMALGUM of earlier PAGAN GODS, re-worked and transformed by the Hebrews. God IS ENKI of the Sumerian myths, the famous "TRICKSTER GOD," who plays tricks on other gods and on mankind. Enki "tricked" Adapa (Adam's prototype) into refusing to eat the food that would confer immortality on mankind. ENKI warned King Ziusudra of Shurrupak in Mesopotamia to build an ARK and save himself and his family from a FLOOD the Gods were sending to destroy all of mankind. ENKI plays another "trick on mankind," he confounds mankind by changing their ONE LANGUAGE into a BABEL of many languages. It is a PAGAN GOD, ENKI, who "lurks behind" the portrayal of God in Genesis.
So, to take a leaf from Armstrong, What are you going to do, "former" Worldwide Church of God" Christians, you know that PAGANISM is an aspect of today's Christian beliefs and practices and NOW YOU KNOW that the Hebrew God IS HIMSELF in reality a PAGAN GOD too ?
To "learn for yourselves" the TRUE ORIGINS of the Hebrew BIBLE from PAGAN motifs, concepts and beliefs, you are invited to my website to read the articles there on the Old Testament. But as the Editor of the _Herbert W. Armstrong Painful Truth website_ has warned you, DON'T believe what you are told, DO YOUR OWN INVESTIGATIONS into what the truth really is. Check up on me, investigate my sources or bibliography, am I correctly understanding what I have read. Are the authors I cite from correctly informed ? Is TRUTH determined by FAITH and REVELATIONS or is it determined by RATIONALITY and REASON ? Only the TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE. Cf. the following articles at this url http://www.bibleorigins.net/OldTestament.html
All the best, Walter
Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld, M.A. Ed.
(A former member, 1969-70 of the World Wide Church of God, Bakersfield, California)
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