Dr. Adam Zertal
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30-09-2010, 04:28 AM
Dr. Adam Zertal
Hey guys!

My dad's on a campaign as it is to post what he claims to be evidence for the Bible's validity on his Facebook wall every day. He's a through-and-through believer in a couple of Ron Wyatt's hoaxes, so I expected him to post those, but he surprised me with something completely different that I had never heard of.

There's an Israeli Archaeologist named Dr. Adam Zertal (real archaeologist this time--not an amateur like Ron Wyatt as it turns out) that made the claim that he found a site mentioned in Biblical passages.

It's a minor point, but I'd like to know if any of you guys have heard of this before, had done any research on it, and had come to any conclusions. I'm in the middle of my research atm, but Google's not showing me anything. Of course there's the fact that it's not published in scientific journals that certainly hurts its validity.

Here's the post that my dad gave:

My Dad Wrote:#1) Deut 27:4-6 "And when you have crossed over the Jordan, you shall set up these stones, concerning which I command you today, on Mount Ebal, and you shall plaster them with plaster.
And there you shall build an altar to the LORD your God, an altar of stones. You shall wield no iron tool on them; you shall build an altar to the LORD your God of uncut stones."

[Image: joshuasaltar.jpg]

This Altar was found by Dr. Adam Zertal Chairman of Department of Archaeology University of Haifa(Now a former Atheist) who was conducting excavations all over the land of Manasseh, to see if what is mentioned in the Old Testament actually occurred.

"It does feel like something to be wrong; it feels like being right." -Kathryn Schulz
I am 100% certain that I am wrong about something I am certain about right now. Because even if everything I stand for turns out to be completely true, I was still wrong about being wrong.
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30-09-2010, 06:27 AM
 
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
Well I'm not going to do any research or anything as my feelings are simple. A pile of rocks that is mentioned in the bible really exists....um....so. The majority of the stuff in The DaVinci code is basically true and exists, but it's still a made up story. I don't see an A to B connection here. There is probably a ton of factual stuff in the Bible.
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30-09-2010, 07:19 AM
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
Yeah, and that's definitely a good point. Tongue I totally agree. I was just wondering since my dad's the type of person that would take that kind of answer as (ironically) me ignoring the facts and just disbelieving the Bible because I "want to live a sinful life".

The analogy to the DaVinci code was good and true, and I'll probably bring that up if he moves like I predict.

"It does feel like something to be wrong; it feels like being right." -Kathryn Schulz
I am 100% certain that I am wrong about something I am certain about right now. Because even if everything I stand for turns out to be completely true, I was still wrong about being wrong.
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30-09-2010, 07:32 AM
 
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
I really don't see anything that looks like an altar, to me. Looks more like a case of looking for something, and wanting it to be true so much that you see what you want to see, instead of what is really there.

One thing that several theists have tried on me is "Sodom and Gomorrah existed, therefore the bible is true" My response has been "So? England is real, does that make Harry Potter real?"

As far as "ignoring the facts so you can sin", tell your dad, once it gets printed in a serious scientific publication, you will take a look at it, until then there is no reason for you to take this claim seriously.
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30-09-2010, 07:40 AM
 
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
There's also thos big pointy stacks of rocks in Egypt, hmmm wonder what those mean?
Not sure if you have discovered this yet:

http://www.bible.ca/archeology/bible-arc...joshua.htm

Now this is obviously a biblically skewed site, but there is some info there. The biggest problem I see is that in science a very dangerous thing is a preconceived outcome. Basically is you have a theory that you believe adamatly is true, the evidence you find cannot be evaluated unbiasedly by you. You will tend to overlook evidence against your theory and accentuate evidence that can be interpreted to support your theory. This is very evident at the above site. I'm not an archeoligist, and certainly don't have the raw data here, but it sure seems like they are trying to force fit this find to a story they believe to be true. Of course there are SO MANY problems with the Exodous story that even getting to the alter story is in essence a "miracle" LOL
This is just one good site explaining the "problems" with the Exodous story:

http://www.bidstrup.com/bible.htm

For those who don't already know. So IF this is an altar and it IS as old as they say, there's a lot of splaining to do before I'll even entertain that it has anything to do with the Exodous.

Boy I sure lied about not doing any research didn't I ;-)
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30-09-2010, 09:38 AM
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
As far as I can tell, this is a wonderful example of what I've heard dubbed "the Spider-Man fallacy" - essentially the same thing that inkracer mentioned. New York is a real place, and the Spider-Man comics often show real buildings and places from New York, but none of it means Spider-Man is real.

Let's say that there's solid evidence to indicate that this pile of rocks is in fact the altar that was mentioned in the Bible. So what? All that would mean is that that particular part of the Bible appears to be factual. It says nothing about whether or not God exists or whether or not God actually commanded that this altar be built. There's lots of altars and temples all over the world built to serve various gods - are we to assume that all those gods are real as well? It's always all or nothing for Conservative Christians: either everything in the Bible is true or none of it is. Why in the world is it not remotely possible that it's a mixture of both?!

Unfortunately I don't know of a way to explain it to someone like your Dad that would actually make them consider this possibility with any real thought.

Our brains deceive us on a regular basis, so we have to find ways to fight back.
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30-09-2010, 11:46 PM
 
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
Lots of things mentioned in the bible actually exist. This isn't the problem for atheists.

Herod actually existed, the pharoahs existed, many of the cities and sites mentioned actually existed (or still exist). The existence of a place does not give validity to something supernatural that is said to have occurred in that place. Bethlehem exists! Ahhh, the bible is all true!

The temple in Jerusalem was actually destroyed by the Roman army. There was actually a localized flood in the region. It's likely that these places and events are at least partly factual because they are referred to in multiple sources by people from multiple cultures.

Perhaps there was a Moses, and perhaps he really believed god told him to put those rocks there. Even if this were true, it would prove the very non-miraculous existence of a guy who believed god spoke to him. I tend to think it proves that mankind had learned to write better than that god learned how to talk.
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01-10-2010, 12:06 AM
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
Speaking of Herod, I read that the bible has him taking part in an event that happened six years after his death as recorded by the Roman records. The Romans where meticulous record keepers, eary christians where not.
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01-10-2010, 07:41 AM
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
If they were supposedly plastered, there should still be plaster sticking to them somewhere that can be dated.
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01-10-2010, 09:13 AM (This post was last modified: 05-10-2010 11:25 PM by ebilekittae.)
RE: Dr. Adam Zertal
(30-09-2010 07:40 AM)Dregs Wrote:  There's also thos big pointy stacks of rocks in Egypt, hmmm wonder what those mean?
Not sure if you have discovered this yet:

http://www.bible.ca/archeology/bible-arc...joshua.htm

Now this is obviously a biblically skewed site, but there is some info there. The biggest problem I see is that in science a very dangerous thing is a preconceived outcome. Basically is you have a theory that you believe adamatly is true, the evidence you find cannot be evaluated unbiasedly by you. You will tend to overlook evidence against your theory and accentuate evidence that can be interpreted to support your theory. This is very evident at the above site. I'm not an archeoligist, and certainly don't have the raw data here, but it sure seems like they are trying to force fit this find to a story they believe to be true. Of course there are SO MANY problems with the Exodous story that even getting to the alter story is in essence a "miracle" LOL
This is just one good site explaining the "problems" with the Exodous story:

http://www.bidstrup.com/bible.htm

For those who don't already know. So IF this is an altar and it IS as old as they say, there's a lot of splaining to do before I'll even entertain that it has anything to do with the Exodous.

Boy I sure lied about not doing any research didn't I ;-)

Wow, thanks for that, Dregs! And thanks to everyone else's input, too! The fallacy is definitely there. I hope he'll see it--he still used the "good person test" "you might a well believe in God because you've got nothing to lose" thing even after I painstakingly detailed how it fails even in his own eyes. Tongue But it's definitely worth a shot to try explaining! Big Grin

"It does feel like something to be wrong; it feels like being right." -Kathryn Schulz
I am 100% certain that I am wrong about something I am certain about right now. Because even if everything I stand for turns out to be completely true, I was still wrong about being wrong.
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