Bible Review 11:5, October 1995

Divine Authorship?

Computer reveals startling word patterns

By Jeffrey B. Satinover

Among the oft-derided Christian literalists, it is said that the Bible is the wholly inspired and inerrant Word of God, and that Holy Spirit guided the mind and hand of its human authors. Orthodox Jews are even more extreme in their literalism: Among them, tradition holds not merely that every word of the Bible is inspired, but that every letter of the Torah (the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Hebrew Bible) was dictated directly by God to Moses in a precise and unerring sequence. So-called “higher criticism” and modern linguistic analyses have tended to undercut these claims, critiquing them with what is generally regarded as superior scientific method. Few of the methods used, however, meet the rigorous criteria of hard science and mathematical statistics.

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