Another question is who has known about it since then. Was the information passed down through the generations orally and secretly by a few selected rabbis over the past 26 centuries? Or has the information been more widely known? Wouldn't it be interesting if even the Vatican has known about the deception all along.
It could be argued that this scroll, which later developed into Deuteronomy, is only one book of the Torah, and the deception, if it occurred, doesn't necessarily cast doubt on the other books' credibility. But it seems that Deuteronomy was the first book to be made available to the newly literate population of Israel in the 7th century BCE, and during the Babylonian exile and the centuries afterward, the rest of the books were developed into the form we're familiar with today. It may be that the entire Bible, including the New Testament, developed out of this initial deception. What preceded the Book of Deuteronomy may have been unrelated regional oral traditions recently written down as a result of the rise in literacy at the time. The synthesizing of the regional histories of Israel into a single, unified story that we know as the Old Testament may have started with the creation of this one scroll.
If the secret was successfully kept by those immediately involved, and went to the grave with them, then no one else can be implicated in the deception. But if the knowledge has been passed down secretly since then by a few, or by more than a few, then everyone who kept the secret and allowed Judeo-Christianity, as well as Islam, to develop into the huge structure it is now, is responsible for an enormous number of people being deceived. There are a billion Catholics alone; add to that the number of Protestants, Jews, Muslims, and even Mormons, and you have a significant percentage of human population. Think of all the tithes and offerings that have been given in good faith over the past 26 centuries; would that amount be in the trillions or quadrillions?
When viewed from that standpoint, a simple episode of priests fabricating a bit of history in order to increase their control over the worship system of their time takes on much greater significance.
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