While reading non-Biblical ancient Near Eastern documents I could not help but to notice the apparent lack of multiple manuscript support as evidenced by the numerous gaps in the narrative accounts. These stories were not well preserved. A guess as to why might be that these stories were not accurate portrayals of history so they were not treated as history. The Old Testament, however, has at least enough copies in existence to show us the full story. I do not know how many copies that we have for each ancient Near Eastern text nor do I know how many copies we have of the Old Testament, but this argument does not depend on specific numbers. It depends on motivation. The Old Testament was preserved because it is true. The ancient Near Eastern documents were partially lost because they were not. I still have copies of important books I read many years ago because they are important to me in some way and helped to shape my life, but I couldn’t begin to tell you where my childhood copy of The Cat in the Hat is.
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