Considering what Christ and Revelations tell us about what the anti-Christ will be able to do and the extraordinary feats he'll be able to accomplish, is it really so difficult to believe that a pagan priest/magician was able to turn a stick into a snake? Have you read about what exorcists report about stuff that comes out of people they pray for who've been cursed/bewitched by a priest of Satan?
The OT is set in an age that's very far back, so much archaeological evidence will be missing. But it's far far easier for me to believe the History of the Hebrews as recorded in the OT than it is to believe that this tiny nomadic tribe just came up with this unique truths about God and a very unique morality in that time and age all on their own, without Divine intervention happening to them in ways that were absolutely convincing to them.
Consider what was going on around them everywhere they went. Why on Earth were they so different? So stubborn in their weird ways (per everyone else)?- What could possibly convince them to stick it out regardless of anything else everybody else believed, unless God had proven to them time and again that these laws and beliefs were really from him and not some Prophet? It was far easier for them to adopt the cultures and beliefs that dominated the area- It just makes no sense to me that they would insist on this unique, sole God and a very strict and specific morality in contradiction to everyone else around them.
For them to adopt this and stick to it through thick and thin against all odds, God must have shown them time and again that he was God- wasn't joking around. So they knew that it was the truth and held on to it against the grain. That's why I believe much of the Old Testament stories about the great feats of God and the Prophets among the Israelites- There's just no other way the Hebrews could have accepted this strange religion and stuck to it against all odds otherwise :shrug:.
Consider how even in the Old Testament, it's told how they were constantly struggling to remain faithful to God and the Covenant in that world. Constantly adopting pagan ideas and practices- It was VERY hard to remain a child of the Covenant in that era. Yet, they kept coming back, sticking to it, against all odds and to me, beyond all reason, really.
For me, the religion itself and its setting in its origins and development, its survival, is proof enough for me, logically speaking, that this tiny group really did encounter and witness things that no one else in that world ever did. :shrug: