Alan R. Millard on the Historical Accuracy of Daniel

In 2012 Crossway published an impressive collection of 21 essays defending the historical reliability of the Bible under the title Do Historical Matters Matter to Faith? The publishers have kindly granted permission for Theology on the Web to host Alan Millard’s contribution to that volume, dealing with the accuracy of Daniel’s account of Babylon:

Alan R. Millard, “Daniel in Babylon: An Accurate Record?” James K. Hoffmeier & Dennis R. Magary, eds. Do Historical Matters Matter to Faith? A Critical Appraisal of Modern and Postmodern Approaches to Scripture. Crossway, 2012. Pbk. ISBN-13: 978-1433525711. pp.263-280.

You can download a copy in PDF here.

Thomas McCall’s essay on religious epistomology (Chapter 1) is also available here.

Tiny tablet provides proof for the accuracy of the Old Testament

Personally I don’t have any doubts that the Bible provides an accurate historical record of the people and events it describes. Even so, it is nice when someone comes up with yet another piece of hard evidence for this. The evidence doesn’t get any “harder” than than the 2,500 clay tablet discovered recently in the collection of the British Museum. This tablet is a receipt from one of the temples of Babylon to Nabu-sharrussu-ukin “chief eunuch” of Nebuchadnezzar. According to a recent article in The Daily Telegraph It is almost certain that this is the same person as is mentioned in Jeremiah 32:3:

Then all the officials of the king of Babylon came and took seats in the Middle Gate: Nergal-Sharezer of Samgar, Nebo-Sarsekim a chief officer, Nergal-Sharezer a high official and all the other officials of the king of Babylon. [NIV]

The find is being hailed as the most important find in Biblical Archaology for 100 years, Prof. Irving Finkel of the British Museum is quoted as saying:

This is a fantastic discovery, a world-class find, … If Nebo-Sarsekim existed, which other lesser figures in the Old Testament existed? A throwaway detail in the Old Testament turns out to be accurate and true. I think that it means that the whole of the narrative [of Jeremiah] takes on a new kind of power.

A writer who set out to write about the fall of Jerusalem might be expected to know the name of the Babylonian king that captured the city, but such secondary details demonstrate that the book is, as it claims, a contemporary eyewitness account.