Craig Blomberg wrote a good post on what passes for biblical engagement in the once reliable National Geographic magazine. Over the last few years, NG has become more and more myopic on historical detail surrounding the life of Christ and the early church, manifesting itself in their infamous apology for their reporting on the Gospel of Judas. They were so anxious to produce a document that discredited the Christian faith, that their scholarship went right out the window.
Blomberg’s present issue is with a report on Herod’s slaughter of infants in Bethlehem.
But, gratuitously, and highlighted by a quotation box, they insert the claim that Herod almost certainly did not kill the babies two years old and under in Bethlehem at the time of Jesus' birth. The sole reason given is that the report of this massacre occurs only in the Gospel of Matthew.
Blomberg goes on to detail the reasons why this is a simplistic view, and to recount much of the scholarship that has gone into supporting the detail that Herod did slaughter infants.
The big issue, in my view, is that the naturalistic presupposition built into most of our scientific world creates a blind spot where serious scholarship is done opposing an atheistic worldview. If we can all agree that we can begin as metaphysical naturalists, then we can a priori ignore all those crazies who disagree.
HT: Between Two Worlds