God's Role in Biblical Events:
A Historiographical View of the Bible as a Model for a Modern Understanding of God's Role in History

Moshe Abelesz

In this paper I: a) Examine two specific Biblical episodes in which the narrator views God's intervention as the critical and deciding factor in the outcome of events. I will suggest alternative reasons for the outcome. b) Show how the ancients designated God as the sole determiner of history and events. c) Show how the Bible's view of historiographical events can be used as an educational model for an understanding of God's role in history.

The two episodes I examined were the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11:1-9) and Deborah’s victory at Mount Tabor (Judges 4-5).

My purpose was to solve a problem that I had when I was a child, i.e. that these stories appeared to me to be children’s fairy stories which I could not relate to. Therefore, I try to show what I believe the people experiencing these episodes actually experienced.

My purpose was to make the stories more believable, not to stop them from being miracles. I wanted to show how God performed the miracles. I believe that if students are presented with the Bible in the same manner that I have presented these two episodes, Bible study will be far more enjoyable and will be taken more seriously. I also believe that the student will be able to forge a closer relationship with his ancient ancestors and with God.

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