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Posted February 21, 2014
Josephus was a Jewish historian commissioned by the Romans to write an accurate, comprehensive history of the Jewish people. The penalty for ignoring or failing to carry out a direct order of the Roman ruling class was death; consequently, Josephus was circumspect in his research and painfully accurate in his chronicles of his contemporary Jewish culture. Serious students of the Bible simply must have this book in their libraries. People who doubt and/or dismiss the authenticity of the Scriptures likewise need to read and study Josephus; it's a popular behavior of atheists and agnostics to blow off the Bible as a book of myths and superstitions, but those who claim to find "inconsistencies" and "untruths" are always hard-pressed to site evidence of falsehoods (most likely because they haven't read the Scriptures at all)... and this is exactly where The Antiquities of the Jews fits in. Josephus' epic work puts to rest just about all of the arrogant claims that the Bible is irrelevant by substantiating events, genealogies and histories handed down from generation to generation by those who believed that the Scriptures are God-breathed, while employing the timeless tools of research and objectivity.
This is NOT light reading; it requires diligent attention, so be warned. But the reward of studying Josephus is, for the skeptical, the revelation that the Bible's claims are true; for the believer, a historicity that confirms what he's always clung to.
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