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hosted by the Center for Interdisciplinary Research (www.thecir.info)
Sept. 10 – Dec. 10, 2016
This advanced interdisciplinary course meets for eight 3-hour Saturday morning sessions over a 3-month period.
No background in theology or science is required, but a commitment to reading the notes, which are drawn from Ron Choong’s PhD dissertation, is expected.
This inaugural CIR Master-Class will feature Ron Choong’s doctoral work submitted as an interdisciplinary PhD dissertation in 2009 to Princeton Seminary.
In a brief article in the ‘Opinion‘ section of New Scientist titled “Should We Thank God for Civilization” recently discusses how the current model of how civilizations first developed in human history is being challenged, namely with the discovery of Göbekli Tepe in Turkey.
As the article states:
The answer once seemed clear: food. Farming was more efficient than foraging and so people gravitated towards it. Cities, writing and organised religion soon followed… Yet the people who built them were nomads, not farmers. So the radical suggestion now is that it was not agriculture that drove the revolution, but religion. Some archaeologists oppose this idea, arguing that the ruins could have been domestic buildings, or were once surrounded by dwellings that did not survive. But the ceremony-first model is in the ascendancy, supported by further evidence unearthed in the Levant.
Keep in mind that Göbekli Tepe dates back to around 11,000 BCE. That in and of itself is amazing.
Whenever you read a Bible or a children’s Bible with illustrations, you’re bound to come across images of camels alongside Abraham, Issac, or Jacob. We take this for granted most of the time.
The New Bible Dictionary: 3rd Ed. states,
In Scripture, camels are first mentioned in the days of the Patriarchs (c. 1900 – 1700 BC) [a bit different from the caption above]. They formed part of the livestock wealth of Abraham and Jacob (Gen. 12:16; 24:35; 30:43; 32:7, 15) and also of Job (1:3, 17; 42:12). On only two notable occasions are the Patriarchs actually shown using camels as transport: when Abraham’s servant went to Mesopotamia to obtain a wife for Isaac (Gen. 24:10), and when Jacob fled from Laban (Gen. 31:17,34)- neither an everyday event. Otherwise, camels are attributed only to the Ishmaelites/Midianites, desert traders, at this time (Gen. 37:25). This very modest utilization of camels in the patriarchal age corresponds well with the known rather limited use of camels in the early 2nd millenium BC. (p. 160)
However, recent archaeological and scientific studies provide new evidence that suggests that camels were domesticated in the regions associated with the biblical Patriarchs centuries later than is portrayed in the biblical accounts.
This research and issues with the domestication of camels is not new news and has been known for some time now.
This research is interesting when trying to place a time-frame on when and where the Pentateuch was written and compiled.
How science and biblical studies converge – read the article here.