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In this provocative yet persuasive book, now in paperback, Eric H. Cline uses the tools of his trade to examine some of the most puzzling mysteries from the Hebrew Bible and, in the process, to narrate the history of ancient Israel. Combining academic with an accessible style that has made him a favorite with readers and students alike, he lays out each mystery, evaluates all available evidence—from established fact to arguable assumption to far-fetched leap of faith—and proposes an explanation that reconciles Scripture, science, and history.
Numerous amateur archaeologists have sought some trace of Noah’s Ark to meet only with failure. But, though no serious scholar would undertake such a literal search, many agree that the Flood was no myth but the cultural memory of a real, catastrophic inundation, retold and reshaped over countless generations. Likewise, some experts suggest that Joshua’s storied victory at Jericho is the distant echo of an earthquake instead of Israel’s sacred trumpets—a fascinating, geologically plausible theory that remains unproven despite the best efforts of scientific research.
Cline places these and other Biblical stories in solid archaeological and historical context and reserves judgment on ideas that cannot yet be confirmed or denied. Along the way, our most informed understanding of ancient Israel comes alive with dramatic but accurate detail in this groundbreaking and entertaining book by one of the rising stars in the field.
Posted January 25, 2008
Rarely does anyone manage to credibly combine Ancient Near Eastern studies and Classical studies, but Cline balances well between the two in his archaeological research and many publications. As this thoughtful and well-written book FROM EDEN TO EXILE shows, Cline has also managed something even rarer: to sensibly communicate biblical problems without taking sides in religious controversy or demeaning others' ideas. The topography and texts are carefully allowed to speak for themselves. Enormously fascinating topics like the location of Eden and where Noah's Ark went - old favorites that have been mystifying for millennia and will continue to do so - will have Cline's readers note how fair he is to divergent opinions. Very refreshing to find a scholar with a such a readable voice.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 27, 2009
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