The Bible on History

Bible, on HistoryMy degree is in history and political science.  I taught history for eight years, and if I’ve learned anything it’s this: take what you see on the History Channel with a grain of salt.

UPDATE: Read my review of episode 1 here.

I enjoyed America: the Story of Us so much that I bought the DVD set.  I watch Pawn Stars and American Pickers which are entertaining and quasi-historical.  But History is also the cable network home of reality series such Ax Men and Ice Road Truckers; and then there’s Ancient Aliens.  Everything on History (owned by A&E Networks) is not of equal historical value.  Let’s leave it at that.

Which brings me to The Bible.  History has produced biblical/ religious type programming since it first came on the air.  During the da Vinci Code phenomena History aired programs that both supported conspiracy theories and also programs that debunked them.  So after seeing the first teaser commercial that the Bible was coming, I sort of winced.  Will this be an unbiased presentation of research and facts, or will it “lean?”  And if it leans, will it be toward acceptance of the biblical account as historical record or attempt to debunk the credibility of scripture?  I’m sort of excited about watching it and sort of nervous at the same time.

The grass withers, the flower fades,
but the word of our God will stand forever.
(Isaiah 40:8 ESV)

The Bible has been subjected to criticism for centuries, just like every spring around Easter news magazines and t.v. networks run stories on how Christianity is on the brink of disappearing.  And yet both endure.  You may recall I had the same misgivings about The American Bible Challenge on GSN.  I was hoping for the sake of Christians everywhere that it wasn’t going to be stupid.  I happened to think that turned out well.  It was also the highest rated original programming GSN ever produced.  The Bible is a two-year project of Mark Burnett and his wife Roma Downey.  Burnett is the king of reality television (most recently The Voice) and Downey starred on the CBS drama Touched by an Angel.  I’m going to follow my own advice: Hope for the best, be prepared for the worst.

I couldn’t find anything on history.com.  This article at Huffington Post provided my details.

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