Yes, Leo, I'm echoing bohm here--even a "rough" unfinished research post would be wonderful, if you don't mind sharing...
Do the Dead Sea Scrolls...
The thing which finally did it for me was the dawning realization that the Bible in my hands contained OTHER than what I had been led to believe.
Direct quotations by people such as Jesus or his apostles is impossible and yet whole theologies stand or fall by "exact" wordings.
Insight into what people were "thinking" is impossible for so-called bible writers--let alone precise quotes word-for-word.
Yet, denominations of Christianity argue and bicker over "True" meaning of these hand-me-down stories.
The Dead Sea Scrolls were insulated by the Catholic Church and controlled for decades lest anything come out in a manner that might be inconvenient to their teachings. This alone demonstrates an awareness of how tricky "older versions" of scripture are viewed by the oldest christian institution around.
The other denominations had Spin Control on high alert as things started coming out which strayed from nominal expectations.
The Watchtower Society put a huge filter on their own pronouncements by slanting their own reporting while highligting Catholic tampering!
Consensus among your average christian today is that the Dead Sea Scrolls are proof positive how reliabe the bible is which we now have.
Mainly by ignoring every single OTHER thing within them which goes counter to that view!
May I remind you that the the PRESERVATION of said holy bible is a ludicrous way of speaking about shreds of rotting manuscripts amounting
to confetti and composte throughout the world!
It has been the Herculean efforts of countless obsessive compulsives over the centuries which produces the shimmering chimera of inerrant "Truth".
Ask yourself the following question: "How old is the oldest New Testament scroll; how extensive is it and how many years removed from the events it purports to accurately describe?"
Could you accurately quote word-for-word entire conversations from even 24 hours ago?
I join with the others, Leolaia, (in pleading tones) asking that you share your unfinished/finished comments on Daniel. I think it is the most interesting book in the whole Bible canon, if for no other reason that it once played such a major role in our lives as we constantly watched, what we imagined to be part of the sign of the end, as the WT interpretations of the K of the N versus the K of the S struggle played out daily in our newspapers. I see the role of this book as being far greater in influence on Christian end-times themes, than even the classic matt 24/luke 21 texts. It likely plays a role still in International affairs as Christian influenced western politicians and military leaders imagine that they are acting as God's agents in bringing Armageddon.
But for myself, I am now left, after a far too short an analysis of Daniel in a course on the Macedonian empire(s) with the thought that it was all Macabbean religio/political propaganda.
So yes please - do reconsider
I will place my vote in the queue Leo!
Wow, okay, I will reconsider. The main problem is that there is still a lot of writing to do and an incomplete post wouldn't really make the point I'm trying to make; it's about halfway there. But maybe look forward to it appearing later this spring. :)
LEo Dahlink -
You may vant to be a lawn, but on this issue you have no choice.
Vun chapter at a time pleessse.
Or i shall come ant steel your boox.
The WT's interpretation of Daniel's "statue" (as per the last Daniel book, published in the early-mid-90s) pretty much lines up with mainline-ish Protestant evangelical eschatology, does it not? Less'n it's been covered over with Noo Lite, of course...