We are told to confess "to one another," not to a priest. And historically the confessional has been badly misused as all kinds of personal information is given to priests who don't respect it and can use it against people. And the idea that God needs a human representative is already a horrible violation of the truth. God is there to hear us, no intermediary is required.
The only consideration is the requirement for objective evidence from those making the claim of god. So far there has been none.
Oh nonsense. The Bible is chock full of such objective evidence. All sorts of miracles witnessed by lots of people from beginning to end. That is objective evidence and that's what the evidence was provided for: to be evidence of the reality of God. It's really bizarre that it's dismissed because it got written down.
Of course that just makes people wonder why there aren't miracles going on now. Well, sometimes there are but they get dismissed too.
After spending some time hearing the Buddhist point of view recently I noticed interesting comparisons with Biblical teachings, particularly the Buddhist view of Karma with the Biblical view of the Moral Law. The Bible tells us to pay attention to the events of life because they have meanings. You may notice that your own attitudes and behaviors are followed by interestingly similar events in your personal experiences. The teachings on karma are very explicit about such correspondences. But unless you are tuned into those things it all just seems chaotic and unrelated. Even when you notice some correspondences you just dismiss them as "coincidence" without meaning. So these things aren't miracles but they are clues to an overarching spiritual reality if you are paying attention.
I think you are having a problem with the word "objective." Just because we only know of the objective evidence through written accounts of witness testimony doesn't make the evidence itself less objective. Either the Red Sea parted leaving a path of dry land or it didn't. Witnesses say it did, Moses or his scribe wrote what the witnesses said. If it did that's objective evidence of some kind of supernatural intervention, which the witnesses call God. Same with all the other miracles. I can't show them to you because they were one-time events that came and went and left only witness testimony to their having been. You think you can dismiss it all because it was written down, but that's nonsensical. CALLING it "myth" is just a case of poisoning the well. You have no justification for calling it that. I know you think you do but you have merely convinced yourself based on not liking the idea and for no other reason.
I kind of think any clues to the encampments in the desert would long since have been erased after almost four thousand years.
"Far from disinterested" doesn't mean they lie and there is such a thing as the Fear of God to keep them honest.
AND for another futile side note, I think it was C.S. Lewis who said anyone who thinks the Bible reads like a book of myths doesn't know anything about myths. As a Professor of such literature he should have known but I realize that isn't going to change your mind.
So I have to content myself with personally knowing it's not mythical and politely nodding at your belief that it is.
You answer my thought that any evidence of the encampments in the Sinai desert would be long since erased, by saying no, that the desert preserves everything. Then you link to an article about a very questionable identification of Mount Sinai, and make no mention of evidence of encampments either.
Fear of God means fear to violate God's commandment against lying.
The context of what I said was the claim that there is no evidence for God, which is a sort of asking for evidence so I gave it. Perhaps you should read back to that point in the thread. You also seem to have gotten the wrong idea about what I said about its being written down: I did not give that as any verification of the truth of the Bible but the opposite: I said that it is disputed merely because it is written down. Which provides the excuse for calling it a myth.
I sure didn't want to have to be so skeptical about the sciences that establish such things and think they have the dates right, but I am. Shrines and other cultic objects on the mountain just can't be as old as they say they are. If it is Mt. Sinai then they had to have been built there after the Exodus but it doesn't sound like Mt. Sinai. There's another mountain also designated for that honor but I don't remember much about it except that it seemed a likely choice when I read about it.
Anyway the evidence of encampments in the sand isn't going to last very long. Stone shrines and other cultic memorabilia should last much longer.
We get called liars all the time these days. I don't know how often it may be true but a lot less than you think. Fear of God was probably even more scary back in the days of the Exodus but it works today too.