I finished my last book (the very excellent Galileo's Daughter) before any of my new Amazon purchases arrived, so I headed out to Border's and picked up Who Wrote the Bible. As I delve further into the Bible I struggle to put it into historical and cultural perspective -- all those years of sleeping in while my friends were in Sunday school have left me constantly thinking, "What on earth is this guy talking about? And who is this guy anyway?" as I try to get through its text. So I've found Who Wrote the Bible to be invaluable in bringing these cryptic texts to light for me. Suddenly all the different versions of stories and little contradictions in facts make sense.
But the book is not necessarily pro-Christian. It's not anti-Christian, but the goal is to present accurate historical information moreso than to uphold Christian traditions. (I should note that this author seems to be one of the few people who is actually balanced on this subject rather than having a hidden anti-Christian agenda.)
So far I've only gotten through the first couple of chapters where he's talking about the Pentateuch. As I was reading his riveting case for who the books' likely authors are, I realized that I am just never going to believe that Moses wrote these books. I am also never going to believe that all of these Old Testament stories are literally true. I think some of them were written for personal or political gain.
Personally, I can probably find a way to reconcile this historical data with Christian beliefs, but I'm not sure if that's contradictory to being a Christian. So my question to those of you who are familiar with the Bible is this: is this a deal-killer? Is there anywhere in the Bible that specifically says something like, "All the stories in this book are 100% true and you are not a Christian if you don't believe them." I know there are a lot of people who hold that opinion, but what does the Bible say?
Any verses you could direct me to would be helpful.