Question:

Being a member of the Body of Christ, I have found your answers to those seeking, sound and exact, always using the Word of God.† In your response on the Book of Jasher, you chose to†focus on†what the scholars believe was written in 1625; I am basing†my question†on the mention of Book of Jasher in the Old Testament,†both in Joshua and in†II Samuel.††We†know that God does not waste words, and when He repeats something, we are to take notice.† I cannot understand the chronological legitimacy of it being mentioned in both of these books and the book not being written until 1625.† How could have been written in 1625, when it first mentioned in Joshua after the death of Moses?† Would it have not been written prior to that?† Also, again in II Samuel when David discovers both Saul and Jonathan were dead.†

Thanks for your continued work in teaching the Word of God.† Many Blessings!


Answer:

"So the sun stood still, And the moon stopped, Till the people had revenge Upon their enemies. Is this not written in the Book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and did not hasten to go down for about a whole day" (Joshua 10:13).

"and he told them to teach the children of Judah the Song of the Bow; indeed it is written in the Book of Jasher" (II Samuel 1:18).

The person asking the question, "Are ancient writings unreliable because the Book of Jasher differs from the Bible?" quoted from a document titled The Book of Jasher which was published in 1840. It was regarding this document that I focused my remarks.

Just because a document happens to bear the same title as a document mentioned in the Bible, it does not follow that they are the same document. As was noted we currently have three documents all claiming to be the Book of Jasher, yet all of them read differently. The histories of each of the three documents show that they are relatively modern works and could not be the document mentioned in Joshua and II Samuel. The fact that the 1840 edition of the Book of Jasher can only be traced back to 1625 and contains several anachronisms that confirm that it was written in that era, indicates that it is a fraudulent book. There are more details given in The Book of Jasher.

Why the same title? Because when someone wishes to create a forgery, it is easier to fool people if you start with something people know. Thus you have forgeries titled The Gospel of Peter, The Gospel of Thomas, or The Book of Enoch. Using something familiar gives the forgery a look of legitimacy.

The fact that writers of the Bible mention the book does not necessarily mean it was an inspired book. Just as a childrenís Bible story book is not inspired though it tells stories found in the Bible. There are a number of possible external books mentioned in the Bible (See Bible for a list). In fact, most scholars believe that the Book of Jasher, mentioned in Joshua and II Samuel, was likely a Bible story book because the two stories specifically mentioned as being recorded in it are some of the dramatic stories of the Bible that would appeal to children.

I just want to say thanks for not only answering my question but for building and maintaining this web site. I know its through Him. I cannot tell you the countless hours another brother in Christ and I spend on this web site. This as been a tremendous asset in my growth as a Christian. If we don't ever meet on this side of life, I pray we do in Heaven. Thanks again!

Thank you for the encouragement. It means a lot to me.