More than ever before, truth is a victim of political correctness today.
Many years ago in 1907, a British-Israel journal, The Banner of Israel, had a leading article that commented, “For thirty years this journal has produced its evidence in support of the identity of the British race with lost Israel, and never more abundantly than during the year just closed. Its arguments have been both multitudinous and multifarious, dealing not only with prophecy but every branch of historical research; yet there is still an idea abroad that the ‘theory’ will not bear the test of strict logic.” (J.G. Taylor, BOI xxxi:5)
This assessment is even truer today, for there are a growing number of historical proofs that substantiate our teaching, but they have been largely ignored or disallowed by the scholarly community. In addition, a scholar who champions an unpopular position, especially one with racial overtones, can find himself shunned by universities and his colleagues, especially on sensitive issues. Of course, there is probably no more sensitive subject than the Jewish people, their origins, and their right to the land of Palestine today. More than ever before, truth is a victim of political correctness today.
It is a little-known fact now, but when the famous Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in 1947, they were disallowed as fraudulent by much of the scholarly world. This was done outright, unconditionally, and usually without any actual inspection of the documents themselves or a proper assessment.
Professor W.F. Albright, a well-respected American scholar of the era recounted, “The discovery of the original group of these scrolls was followed by a series of fantastic onslaughts on their antiquity and even on their authenticity, over the signatures of some well-known scholars in America and Europe, both Christian and Jewish…It is true that such sensational discoveries are always challenged, but in this case the data are so well substantiated that the attacks must be connected with the fact that the new finds disprove the already published views of the attacking scholars.” (“The Bible After Twenty Years of Archaeology,” 1952, pp. 539-540)
“I strongly advise a study of the Scripture prophecies upon British-Israel lines”. The late Archbishop Bond of Montreal
In the same vein, the late nineteenth-century Anglican minister, Rev. Robert Douglas, remarked, “If the clergy accepted the Anglo-Israel theory, it would necessitate the relegation of nine-tenths of their old sermons and commentaries to the wastepaper basket.” Few would be willing to do that!
It was not until 1955 that the Palestine Exploration Quarterly journal could report, “The relatively early date and authenticity of the Dead Sea Scrolls now generally considered to have been established by the further discoveries in the Qumran Caves are no longer the subjects of heated controversy, and the shrill protests from Dropsie College have grown faint and remote.” (PEQ87, May-Oct. 1955, p. 103)
It is important to recognize that the famous Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in the spring of 1947, but it took nearly a decade before they were widely acknowledged as legitimate. Until then many leading scholars and scholarly institutions resolutely insisted that they were fraudulent. The turning point came when Dr. W.F. Albright, whose scholarly opinions were seldom questioned, put his own reputation on the line in insisting on the genuineness of these scrolls. Professor Albright very astutely recognized that scholars are very loath to change their minds about anything or admit they were wrong in the past. In addition, there is a sense of safety and a comfort factor in not bucking the prevailing mindset. As the philosopher Sidgwick said, “We think so because other people think so, or because we were told so, or because we once thought so, and we think we still think so.”
Christian ministers are guilty to an alarming extent in following this “herd mentality,” teaching what is popular, safe, and politically correct. I found that out myself in Bible college years ago when a professor privately told me, “You may be right, but I can’t teach that because it is not accepted by our institution.” Horace Smith in “Heads And Tails,” wrote on “Submission to authority in matters of opinion,” and decried the prevailing attitudes, “Making names the measure of facts, deciding upon truth by extrinsic testimony, not intrinsic evidence, surrendering our reason, which is the revelation of God, to the reasons of men, not necessarily more competent to judge than ourselves. Better to be a slave with an unfettered mind than a pseudo-freeman whose opinions, his most precious birthright, are bond-slaves to a name. Had authority always been our guide we should still have been savages.”
The late revered English Bishop Benjamin Hoadley (1676-1761), bishop of Salisbury and Winchester, remarked, “Authority is the greatest and most irreconcilable enemy of truth and argument that this world ever furnished out. All the sophistry, all the colour of plausibility, all the argument and cunning of the subtlest disputer in the world, may be laid open and turned to the advantage of that very truth which they designed to hide or depress; but against authority there is no defense. It was authority which would have prevented all reformation where it is, and which has put a barrier against it where it is not.”
Fortunately, there are still Christians today that remain steadfastly committed to Biblical facts and truth, resulting in three of the four books by author Steven M. Collins in his lost tribes of Israel series once again being nearly completely sold out. These valuable books on biblical history will be going into a fourth printing by Bible Blessings this summer. Collins’ books give a wealth of historical evidence to support an Israelite presence in Europe and Britain in ancient times. In “Israel’s Lost Empires,” for example, Collins discusses on page 30 the ancient sepulchral monument of Adoniram, “servant of King Solomon” (1 Ki. 4:6; 5:14), which was found in Spain. This is one of many physical evidences of Israelite migration westward to Europe during the time of Solomon. Scholars, however, have discounted this evidence and kept it out of view under the unproven assumption that it must be fraudulent. We are reminded of the Scriptural warning to those who are “Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.” (Mark 7:13)
Why should we care about facts and truth? Author William Bowling observed, “Falsehood has an evil tendency; it feeds on itself; one false statement leads to another.” Very true, because doctrines are interrelated, and do not stand or fall all on their own. As the poet well-stated:
“Truth for ever on the scaffold,
Wrong for ever on the throne,
Yet that scaffold sways the future,
And behind the dim unknown
Standeth God within the shadow,
Keeping watch above His own.” Amen!