The Bible is, at its core, a false historical text. The trouble with that is, you can’t (very often) disprove something in history. Christians will often challenge atheists to “disprove” some biblical story. They’ll say, “You can’t prove it didn’t happen.”
I also can’t prove that the British Isles weren’t created by Norse ice giants. But that’s not how it works.
The idea is to prove the opposite. In court, an accused man doesn’t prove he wasn’t at the scene of the crime; he proves that he was somewhere else at the time. Geologists have shown definitively how the British Isles were formed, and it wasn’t Norse ice giants. Likewise, many biblical stories have been debunked, not by direct “disproof,” but by showing the world how said story’s opposite is true.
The example I use most often is Genesis 11, the Tower of Babel. This is the story of how different languages happened. Of course, God did it.
See, in this story, all the people of the earth spoke the same language, and they came together in one place and tried to build a tower to reach “to the heavens,” in order to “make a name for ourselves.”
But God came down to see the tower, and decided that if they could do that, nothing would ever be impossible for them, and therefore he decided to “confuse their tongues” so they’d speak different languages, and then he scattered them all over the earth.
Confronted with the idea that this ridiculous story might not be true, a Christian will say something like, “You can’t prove it’s not true.” The comes from the idea that the Bible is the true and final authority in all things, as taught by fundamentalist churches all over the United States.
But we know how languages develop (and are still developing). A linguist who specializes in linguistic development or in language patterns would be able to show the development any language’s most commonly used words or expressions. In English, I like to use the word “tea”.
It comes, originally, from China. The Chinese have, for at least seven thousand years, used the word 茶 cha for tea (which must be thorn in the side to those American young-earth Christians who think the world is only 6000 years old). But one can follow the progression of the word as it traveled west with the actual product into India, where cha became chai, and then into Persia, where chai became che or chei. چای
From Persia and the Arab Middle East, it moved into Asia Minor where it’s pronounced Çay. From there, it moved into Italy, where it’s pronounced tè, and then into France, where it’s thé. Of course, from France it’s just a quick channel hop to England, where we know it as tea.
In this way, we can show not only the development of a single word, but the development of entire languages – in fact, we can show the development of every human language on earth. It happens through trade, through war, through migration, and more recently, through mass media. Languages borrow words from each other and assimilate whole passages. And more importantly, we can show how linguistic development is NOT a product of magical gods descending from the heavens to thwart the efforts of man. Instead of proving the biblical nonsense isn’t true, we’ve shown it to be nonsense by showing how its opposite is true – and this can be done to almost every biblical story, with little more than a rudimentary understanding of a few basic disciplines, beginning with history, mathematics, geology, geography, linguistics, astronomy and zoology.
As hard as we might try, we still have no proof - in fact, no credible evidence - for most biblical stories. And we certainly have no evidence that can stand against the strength of simple study, which is where we find that, while the Bible might be the "highest authority," in most (if not all) cases, the opposite is true.