Today in my Sunday school class, in mentioning the depiction in Nehemiah of armed Israelites wielding both weapons and tools, inadvertently said “guns” instead of “swords.”
This led to an important observation: if the Bible were not a collection of texts constrained by the knowledge available to its authors, but included revelation of information not thus available, then we should be very surprised that there is no gunpowder in the Bible.
Those most surprised ought to be the young-earth creationists and others like them, who claim that the Bible does reveal more advanced science than it was possible to know it those times – that the language used supposedly corresponds precisely to what science subsequently uncovered. And of course, when it does not, they argue against the science rather than adopt the far simpler and more logical explanation, i.e. that the Bible doesn’t reflect modern science because it wasn’t available to them.So what do you think? If the Bible revealed truths ahead of its time, should we not expect to find a recipe for gunpowder in its pages? It might not have changed the story of David and Goliath or Joshua and the invasion of Canaan significantly. But it would have provided a clear indication of supernatural revelation, in a manner that some people claim that the Bible does, but so subtly that everyone else is prone to miss it.