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Before the sacred authors were declared sacred, they were fair game for attack or revision. If you open up the Bible and read it straight through, you will notice two things that should not be true if it had been written as a coherent whole and with a single purpose. First, the Bible is quite repetitious; second, the Bible frequently seems to contradict itself. Readers have often ignored these contradictions, apologists have long tried to reconcile them, and critics revel in them. Randel Helms chooses another course — to understand the contradictions by looking at the cultural and historical factors that produced them. Bible book authors were often motivated to write because they wanted to challenge or correct those who had written before them. Helms respectfully navigates a thoughtful passage through the books of the Bible to explain how and why they were written, and to reveal who the authors of the Bible were writing for or against.
Dr. Randel Helms is a Bible scholar and professor of English at Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ. He is the author of Gospel Fictions and Who Wrote the Gospels?
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