Official Blog of the Bishop of Durham

Shanks: ‘Deuteronomy Vindicated as Authentic Words of Moses!’

Posted by NT Wrong on November 5, 2008

REUTERS, TEL AVIV – Proceedings in the ‘Second Biggest Forgery Trial of the Century’ ground to a halt yesterday. Judge Moshe Yadin refused to hear the case against ‘Ezra the Scribe’, who was alleged to to have forged the Book of Deuteronomy.

“After the best part of two-and-a-half thousand years, I don’t see how evidence can be produced that will create a prima facie case against Ezra,” stated Judge Yadin in a Tel Aviv Court.

“And besides, the defendant is dead,” added the Judge.

“This decision completely vindicates the authenticity of the Book of Deuteronomy,” exclaimed a jubilant Kesev Shanks.

“If a Criminal Court is not the appropriate forum in which to determine delicate archaeological, philological, redactional, and paleographic questions, then what is?” questioned Shanks.

The Israel Antiquities Authority is presently considering whether it will reprosecute the forgery case, but with a new group of defendants – the mysterious ‘D’ and ‘Dtr’, and their alleged accomplice-after-the-fact, ‘P’.

Shanks is currently planning a ‘Tour of The Land of Moab Across the Jordan According to the Authentic Book of Deuteronomy’. Ticket prices begin at $18,500, and will include some of the superstars of the paleographic world as guides.

In related news, the case of U.S. vs. Unnamed Parties Who Removed A Stone From an Unknown Jerusalem Tomb has been thrown out of a New York Court before it was allowed to reach trial – again, for lack of evidence. “Surely this Court decision vindicates the historical resurrection of Jesus,” exclaimed jubilant apologist Gerald R. Habermas.

9 Responses to “Shanks: ‘Deuteronomy Vindicated as Authentic Words of Moses!’”

  1. Bad Bishop, bad. You’re obviously related to Mae West.

  2. Jim said


  3. Bob Schillaci said

    Satire is the highest form of comedy!

  4. OMG. I love you.

  5. J and E said

    In an related matter – the case has not been dismissed against J. Considering that J cannot be located and we are not sure that he ever existed – it is still ok to refer to certain portions of the Bible as having been written by him. ANd the same goes for E, though we are not sure exactly which portions belong to him either 😦

  6. ntwrong said

    J & E in Deuteoronomy?

  7. Jim said

    yes, in their time machine…

  8. J and E said

    I said ‘certain portions of the Bible,’ not Deuteronomy.

    Of course – it is perfectly good scholarship to say that Deuteronomy was written in 7th (or later) century – despite the FACT that there is no real EVIDENCE to support such a view either.

    It is humbler to agree with Lambdin and say that ‘we are working with NO DATA,’ or almost with no data.

    Don’t you think so?

  9. ntwrong said

    ‘J and E’ – I think I see what you’re saying. Yes – there are different standards of evidence between Criminal Courts and scholarship. Yes – scholarly arguments can still be made for dating Deuteronomy to the seventh century down to the third century, despite the lack of decisive evidence for any such dating.

    On an entirely anal note, it just occurs to me that there are actually bits of ‘J’ at the end of Deuteronomy, according to the classical theories. Luckily I have Driver at hand. And as every Commentary since Driver copies what he says without straying very far, unless they’re taking entirely ‘literary’ approaches, this is Scholarly Dogma for 2008:

    JE: Deut 27.5-7a; 31.14-15; 31.23; 34.1a; 34.1b-5a.

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