The following article is written by a great biblical scholar, Philip R. Davies, Professor Emeritus at the University of Sheffield, England. It was originally published on The Bible and Interpretation website in September 2009.
In the Fellowship, we appreciate the insights offered by the latest scholarly research, even when they challenge long-held beliefs and dogmas. In fact, we appreciate them especially when they do exactly that, because it reminds us that long-held opinions can be wrong. If we truly value truth, then we must truly value evidence, and we must approach that evidence with critical minds. We may not always agree with their religious-spiritual-metaphysical convictions (or lack thereof), but that doesn’t mean they can’t offer us important data in other areas.
The path to truth is difficult, and it requires sacrificing our self-importance, admitting that we can be and often are wrong. Engaging in this process is a truly spiritual activity. With that said, here is Professor Davies’s article, with some commentary below.