Author`s name Olga Savka

Italian Journalists Unveil Biblical Mistakes

Researchers come to conclusion that a lot of Biblical statements were misinterpreted

Eve did not eat an apple. Jesus did not die at the age of 33. He was not born in the first year A.D. Two Italian journalists and a theologist from the Vatican unveil mistakes and incorrect ways of reading the Bible.

Israelis did not walk across the bottom of the Red Sea. There were not ten, but eleven or twelve commandments. The manna did not fall down from heaven. The whale, in which Jonah lived, did not exist. The Three Wise Men, who came to see baby Jesus,  were not actually wise, there were not three of them either. Jesus was not born on December 25th, he did not die at the age of 33 either. The Apostle Paul did not fall off a horse on his way to Damascus. Christians have believed all these Biblical statements for centuries, although it turns out that such affirmations are actually moot questions. The Bible is full of such discrepancies, they can be found both in the Old and in the New Testament.

Milan-based theologist Gianfranco Ravasi consulted Italian journalists, who had recently published the results of their research. Journalists Roberto Beretta and Elisabetta Broli work for the newspaper Avvenire, which is the official newspaper of the Pope Biblical Committee. Therefore, these two journalists are not just some heretics - they are respectable people, who enjoy the Vatican's blessing.

The two journalists published a book titled "The Eleven Commandments," in which they collected about 60 wrong statements, false information, incorrect interpretations of the Bible. The research was based on the discoveries, which were recently made and approved by the Church, although they have not been exposed to the public eye yet. Enrique Miret, the President of the Association of theologists believes that faith has always had two branches: one of them belonged to the educated elite, who watched new discovered in the biblical research, while the other one belonged to common people, who were kept ignorant for hundreds of years in order not to make them indignant, probably. However, the revision of the Bible has already become an issue for the Church.

So, according to the two mentioned journalists, the fruit that Eve ate was not an apple. The explanation of that is very simple: there were no apple-trees in the place, where the Garden of Eden supposedly was. Such a mistake occurred because of an unknown Biblical writer, who translated "malus-malum" ("evil" or "fruit") as an apple. Jews believe that Eve picked a fig or a nut, while Orthodox Christians believe that an apple was actually an orange. Protestants blame honey for that, while Muslims believe that Eve offered Adam to have a glass of wine.

The Ark that God told Noah to built in order to save living beings was not actually a boat, but something like a submarine. The Flood was meant to turn Earth to the Sea, but Noah found himself between the water of the earth and the heaven, so he had to fulfil the mission of God. In addition to that, hard rain did not last for 40 days - it lasted for a year and ten days. Furthermore, Noah took only seven couples of "clean" animals and one couple of "unclean" animals.

Jews did not walk across the bottom of the Red Sea. Everything turned out to be rather prosaic: Jews made their way onto another shore in the place that was called Bitter Lakes or Reed Sea, which was not deep at all, so Jews crossed it during a low-tide. Egyptian soldiers were stopped with a rising tide. John Wyclif correctly translated that place as the Reed Sea in the 13th century. Lutero mixed that up with the Red Sea three centuries later.

It is generally believed that there were ten commandments that Moses was given on Mount Sinai. There were twelve commandments, and it was not Moses, who received them. Modern researchers of the Bible say that commandments appeared gradually, one after another, and were finally formed by the end of the 7th century B.C. However, the Exodus of Jews from Egypt and Moses' years of living are approximately dated with the year 1200 B.C. Moreover, seven latest commandments were already known in Egypt. Jews still learn twelve commandments, while the Catholic Church teaches only ten.

The heaven-sent manna was not some sort of miraculous meal, it was a resinous substance. It can still be found on certain bushes that grow in the Sinai area. The walls of the ancient city of Jericho did not tumble down because of the sound of Judaic horns. The town did not exist at all during the Exodus. A whale did not swallow Prophet Jonah either. The Bible simply said that a common man, who plunges in thought and turns to God, can become a prophet, being able to overcome any obstacles.

Millions of Catholics are certain that Joseph - the alleged father of Jesus Christ - was a carpenter, who married Mary at a rather old age. This is absolutely not true. Joseph was a builder, and he married Mary, when he was 18-25 years of age.

There were no Three Wise Men, no Bethlehem Star, no crib. Nothing has been found yet to prove the existence of the Three Wise Men. There was no star, that showed them the way to Bethlehem, and they found nothing in the city: no cattle-shed, no ox, no donkey. The story with the Three Wise Men is nothing but a holy tale.

Jesus was not born on December 25th. He was not born at night, not in the first year A.D. Jesus Christ was born either in the fifth or the seventh year A.D. This mistake was made by monk Dionisio el Exiguo, who calculated our calendar in a wrong way. There is some evidence to prove that Jesus Christ was crucified on April 7th, in the year 30, so Jesus was 36 or 37 years at that time. In addition to that, he did not fall down three times on his way to Calvary, Veronica did not wipe his face with her handkerchief, and it is not ruled out that Jesus was bare when he was crucified.

"The Eleven Commandments" book by Roberto Beretta and Elisabetta Broli was published by Piemme publishing house.

Jose Manuel Vidal
El Mundo