Open Challenge to Caleb (But All Skeptics Welcome)
In my previous post, I recounted the sad deconversion of a close friend. Although I tried to keep him anonymous, he outed himself in the first commment. The deconverter is Caleb, a good personal friend of mine and regular commenter on this blog. It is sad to see any brother (or sister) in Christ reject the gospel, but it is even more sad when that person is good friend.
In reading some of the links provided by Caleb, and the little bit of his own writing that he has done on the subject of his deconversion, I’ve uncovered two recurrent themes that seem to come up in most deconversions.
First, the assertion that the Bible is full of errors and contradictions. What errors and contradictions we are always left to guess, because this is generally argued by soundbite. That is, it is asserted without any corroborating evidence being provided.
Second, that the deconverter faced many situations that simply could not be reconciled using a Christian worldview. Again, we are always left to wonder what situations the writer is speaking of, because this is always asserted with no evidence being provided.
That brings me to the purpose of this post. I’m issuing a two-fold challenge to Caleb, but any skeptic is welcome to participate. This is my proposal:
Challenge #1: Provide an example of where the Bible is in error, or else provide a bona fide contradiction. In over 2000 years of biblical scholarship, the Bible has never been found to be in error, nor has anyone been able to show a bona fide contradiction.
Challenge #2: Provide an example of a situation that simply cannot fit into a Christian worldview. I look most forward to the entries for this challenge. I have yet to see any situation that contradicts a Christian worldview.
All right, skeptics, you have your homework. I’m looking forward to seeing your entires in the comment section below. Of course, no entires at all will speak volumes on its own…
Posted on December 19, 2009, in Apologetics and tagged Personal. Bookmark the permalink. 46 Comments.
Okay. Admittedly I don’t know if I can do this in the way you want. Especially since you say that, “In over 2000 years of biblical scholarship, the Bible has never been found to be in error, nor has anyone been able to show a bona fide contradiction.” Where is YOUR evidence to back up that statement?
I showed you the link to the Skeptics Annotated Bible (google it folks). While it is true that many of the contradictions they listed can be reasonably explained, there are many that cannot be. A common Christian response is that “well then there was an error with the scribes when coyping…” This then seems to indicate that a person my go and fine the original manucripts and learn the original languages to really understand what is being said. And still, even if the error was in copying, IT’S STILL AN ERROR.
So let’s check out if Jesus baptized anybody… look at John 3:22 and John 4:2… in the first scripture it says “After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized.” Now… let me ask you reasonably, WHO is the subject matter of that sentence? It seems quite obvious to me that it is indeed Jesus. Actually, it almost exclusively indicates that it is Jesus only doing the baptizing. But I suppose it could be interpreted that Jesus and the disciples were baptizing. Yet just a few verses later in John 4:2, scripture explicitely states that Jesus was NOT baptizing. And just to ask the question, why would the son of God NOT be baptizing anybody???? Some study bibles say that Jesus was overseeing the baptism… well why not just say that in the first place?
And here’s a GREAT contradiction, to which I have yet to see anything that explains this one… it’s in regards to the death of Goliath. How was he killed? 1 Samuel 17:49-50 says it was by a sling: “David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth. David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but there was no sword in the hand of David.” But yet when one reads 1 Samuel 17:51, it says: “David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him,and cut off his head therewith.” WHAAAT???
The next contradiction is also about Goliath, and it’s in regards to 2 Samuel 21:19 which states: “And there was again a battle in Gob with the Philistines, where Elhanan the son of Jaareoregim, a Bethlehemite, slew (the brother of) Goliath the Gittite, the staff of whose spear was like a weaver’s beam.” The italicized part was added to the KJV (and NKJV) and is not found in the NIV or ESV… why is this? It was added so as not to show a blatant contradiction to the reader. Any explanations Cory? Any BELIEVABLE explanations?
Oh and REMEMBER FOLKS… CHRISTIANITY ALWAYS ASSUMES IT IS RIGHT AND THEREFORE TAKES EVERY PIECE OF INFORMATION IT GETS AND AUTOMATICALLY FORCES IT TO CONFORM TO ITS WORLDVIEW.
And as for the world view, I offer this:
Over the last 5 years, National Geographic has conducted “The Genographic Project” to establish human origins. They have tested the DNA of approximately 35,000 people and what they have found will have a profound impact, especially on inerrant bible believing Chistians.
Why? The study has shown that ALL males share the same Y chromosome (Male Y chromosome is passed on unchanged from generation to generation), which traces back to a single male – Adam, Garden of Eden, 4000BC, right? – No, the East Coast of Africa, 50-60,000BC (let’s call him Alpha Y). From this extensive, highly documented, and practically indisputable research we can’t help but come to the following conclusions:
Adam cannot possibly have been the first male on earth – as he has a fixed genealogy dating him at an exact time in history (approx 6,000 years ago). This means God had to do this miraculous intervention against the laws of nature to make a new man out of the dust of the ground – for what reason? To set him up as the fall guy for all of humanity?
Hold that thought. Let’s suppose that is true, that would imply there are two strains of Y chromosome in existence, the one Alpha Male, and one for Adam (so far 35,000 people have been tested (Jew and Gentile) and only Alpha Y has been discovered),we must deduct the following:
1.Adam’s “Original Sin” would only apply to his offspring – as God was into cursing the lineage (in some cases to a 1000 generations).
2.The Alpha Y lineage therefore was sinless; otherwise God would not have had to manufacture Adam.
3.Even if there was a lot of intermarrying between the two strains, there could still be “sinless” people on the earth today. That being said, if Adam was a divine creation made by the hand of God himself, surely it would have been the Adam Y chromosome that would have dominated to this day.
4.As most all of us have the Alpha Y chromosome, we cannot be Adams descendants and therefore “Original Sin” does not apply to us.
5.No Original Sin, No Savior required
Oh and let’s not forget the part in Genesis where God created Adam and Eve and they had Cain and Abel… yet Cain somehow went off to find women to start a family and build a city… yet the bible makes no mention of those other people. Obviously God either made a lot more people, or Adam and Eve had female children and Cain married a sister or something. How do the Christians explain this? Oh well the bloodline was still pure back then so having sex with your close relatives didn’t pose a problem.
Like I said before… Christianity comes up with all kinds of philosophical ideas to conform to its belief that it MUST be right.
The idea that BILLIONS of people are condemned (most of the world is NOT Christian, never has been, and hopefully never will be) because they haven’t heard the gospel or accepted Jesus as their savior is absurd. The idea of hell is absurd… actually as one person put it, the idea of hell is a blatant defect in a person’s thinking.
Many folks around the world claim to have spiritual awakenings regardless of their local belief systems.
The reason most people scoff at Christianity the first time they hear about it (as I did because I was not raised in a household of ANY belief system) is because IT IS COMPLETELY IRRATIONAL, UNREASONABLE, AND ABSURD.
Christianity feeds on fear of the unknown, and those who are in an emotionally downtrodden state. I didn’t come to Christianity until I was at a low point in my life, and honestly I give it credit for being a positive influence in my life. But when I cleaned myself up, the questions started forming in my mind, and I realized it was ME that chose to clean myself up, not any holy spirit or God-friend.
I am convinced that the god of Christianity is a myth and blatant lie, and that Jesus is NOT the savior of the world.
sorry folks I forgot to turn off the italics… if you can fix that Cory, please do…
Also, I typed an error in the second paragraph that says “This then seems to indicate that a person my go and fine the original manucripts…”
I meant to say “that a person must go and find…”
You answered it. Jesus oversaw the baptisms without baptizing anyone himself. Why is that even a problem? See here.
This is an example of why I could never be a skeptic of Christianity. I can’t get my head that far up my posterior. Is your reading comprehension really this limited? Read the passage very carefully, and note what I’ve highlighted:
I thought you had a degree in communications. Wouldn’t that entail a study of English grammar? Read the same passage in the NIV.
But, since you’ll undoubtedly check other translations, you will note that the NIV stands alone in this rendition. So what if it does? Saying that there was no sword in the hand of David certainly doesn’t preclude one being in David’s sheath. The sword that he drew in verse 51 to cut off Goliath’s head. Either way, not a contradiction. Just bad reading comprehension. Goliath wasn’t so much killed twice as David ensured that the job was finished.
As for 2 Samuel 21:19, you allege (uncritically, I assume, directly from SAB) that “the brother of” was inserted to avoid a blatant contradiction. Probably so, since the KJV is hardly the most scholarly translation. The modern versions omit it. But is this a contradiction with the above story? Likely not. Compare it with the parallel passage in 1 Chronicles 20:5, which says that it was Goliath’s brother that was slain. Therefore, the KJV’s “fix” isn’t without merit. J.P. Holding summarizes Gleason Archer’s rectification here.
As I read it, it says he took the giant’s sword and chopped off his head with his own sword. We later find Goliath’s sword being kept in Solomon’s temple as a memorial of this.
I was going to bring that up later, if it came to it.
Why are athiests so bad at finding contradictions in the Bible??? As a Christian, I could find a slew of real ones. But you atheists are all illiterate apparently. You think David killing the giant with a rock and a slingshot contradicts him cutting off the giant’s head after he already done fell down dead? Are you crack or something?
As to contradictions about Jesus’ baptism, the text of John saying at the end of chapter 3 that Jesus baptized then explaining in 4:1 that Jesus did not purposefully baptize but only oversaw as the disciples did it, is obviously not a contradiction. Its basically in the same sentence!! I mean come on!
There is a contradiction about Jesus’ baptism, however. In John’s gospel JB says that he didn’t know who the coming one or Messiah was until he baptized him: “I didn’t know him but only that He who sent me to baptize said ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending and abiding, that is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.'” In other words, when Jesus came to JB to be baptized, JB didn’t know who Jesus was, and certainly didn’t know Jesus was the Messiah he was looking for. Only after he baptized him did he realize that Jesus was the one that was intended because it was only after he saw the Spirit descend and abide on him that he realized that Jesus was the MEssiah.
Yet in Matthew, when Jesus comes to be baptized, JB already knows he’s the MEssiah to the extent that he says “You want to be baptized by me? I need to be baptized by you!” THat is a real contradictions. Apply all your sophistry and magic to it, but there is no way to fix this one.
Luke makes it even worse by making Jesus and JB be cousins. Not only does JB now know JEsus is the Messiah before baptizing him (per Matthew) and yet lie in John saying ‘I didn’t know him’ but now he’s also his cousin and the whole thing is being faked? IS JB just a liar? IS this just a hoax that JEsus and his cousin JB concocted? Can JB’s witness to Jesus as Messiah and to having seen the Holy Spirit descend on him be trusted if he’s JEsus’ counsin? isn’t that nepatism????
Clearly MAtthew and Luke are corrupted with idiots monkeying with the texts. JB was not JEsus cousin. John intrdouces him merely as “a man sent from God” not as Jesus’ cousin. He himself says he didn’t know Jesus till after he baptized him and din’t know he was the messiah till he saw the spirit abide on him. I will take JB’s word in John over the Catholic lies in Matthew and Luke which seek to fill in missing information about who JB was and seek to assist orthodox Christology by making John recognize Jesus as Messiah prior to his baptism, but in doing so create a contradiction and nearly invalidate the story!!!! How dare the Catholics have put their impious hands to the gospel of Christ in such a manner!!!!!!!!!!!
Catholic conspiracy theories? Purposely corrupted texts? Is that you, Rey?
But seriously, check this explanation out.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHA I WAS THINKING THE SAME THING!!!!
That explanation is just silly. If the text said “because Jesus didn’t confess any sin, John sarcastically said ‘I need to be baptized by you'” then I would buy it. As it stands, it is simply Catholic corruption. And if Rey would agree with that, then I guess he’s more sharp than you.
Well, let’s see… the Catholic Church as we understand it didn’t exist until around a.d. 500 or so. We have MS evidence for the complete NT long before that date–about 200 years or more, give or take–and it shows no evidence of the corruption of which you speak. You can assert “Catholic corruption” all you like, but you’re a long way from proving it.
If the Catholic church didn’t exist yet then it is what the egg heads like Bart Ehrman call proto-orthodox. You know, the people who weren’t part of the Catholic church because it didn’t exist until 500 or so and yet they were strangely already calling themselves by the term Catholics at least as early as Tertullian in the first decade of the third century, that’s 200-210 AD.
Now I will provide a contradiction, but not to invalidate the Bible. Rather to show that the Samaritans were right that David and Solomon’s kingdoms were usurpations and not glorious examples of God’s will, for theses kings and their kingdoms were ungodly. This contradiction shows that Deuteronomy was written after Exodus specifically by someone not Moses to contradict and change the rules of Exodus in a post-Solomon world, to make the Temple of Solomon legit when it was not, and to establish rules to make the kings behave better in the future.
You want examples of contradictions. I will give only one, so as not to confuse you or give you room to pass over some. In Exodus when the rules for altars is given, God says “you can build an altar in every place where my name is and sacrifice there and I will come and bless you there.” In Deuteronomy this is directly and purposefully contradicted by the author of that book saying “make sure NOT to sacrifice in every place but only in THE place where the Lord will place his name. There you will have one altar and you can only sacrifice there. But you can kill meat to eat wherever you want.” Exodus 20:24+, Deut 12:13+. My quotes were from memory, read it for yourself. In Exodus, God’s name is in many places (presumably anywhere where his people are) and therefore they can sacrifice anywhere so long as they make an earthen altar and do not use any tool in contructing it. But in Deuteronomy, they can only sacrifice in one place. Also Exodus makes no distinction between sacrifice and killing to eat, but Deut does. As to the date of Deut’s composition, it is a fact that Deuteronomy tells the king not to multiply wives, prophecies that Israel will have a king, and makes the king copy the Law and it becomes obvious that Deuteronomy was written post-Solomon. Samuel was angry when the people asked for a king, but if he had ever read Deut then he would have known it was ‘prophecied’ of beforehand and would not have spazzed out over it. Also, during the times of Samuel, Saul, and even David, they would have established one place to sacrifice, had they known of Deut’s “only in one place” rules, and would not have followed the build an altar of earth anywhere you want rule of Exodus. Deut is post-Solomon, clearly. It cannot be any other way. In fact, wasn’t it written in the reign of Josiah and miraculously ‘discovered’?
We find then that the original religion of Israel was less onerous than what evolved with Solomon and post-Solomon. They were allowed by Moses/Exodus to sacrifice anywhere on a simple altar of dirt or stone (but not chiseled stone). But Solomon changed it to where you had to come to his temple. And even the priests who wrote Deuteronomy to prevent future kings from acting like Solomon and multiplying horses and wives (and horse wives) to themselves, yet they continued Solomon’s innovation as far as making everyone come to sacrifice in Jerusalem because it gave them more power than did the original rules of Exodus which allowed people to have a more personal relationship with God and be their own priests essentially to sacrifice wherever they were on an altar of earth.
Therefore, when Jesus says “the time is coming and now is when ye will worship neither in Jerusalem nor this mountain” he returned worship to the Exodus 20 way, where God’s name is recorded everywhere and he can be worshipped anywhere. However, he did not keep the carnality of animal sacrifice but proclaimed that because God is Spirit he must be worshipped in Spirit, not worshipped like a carnal being who needs to drink the blood of bulls and goats, as even Psalm 50:13 says “Will I eat the flesh of bulls or drink the blood of goats?”
First of all, you’ll get no objections from me in saying that Deuteronomy was written after Exodus. That is clearly the case. In fact, it is necessary to establish that the single altar specified in Deuteronomy doesn’t contradict the multiple altars allowed under the Law in Exodus. In another post, I implored Caleb to investigate progressive revelation, which is something that I am now going to ask you to do.
In the wilderness, the people would have had need to sacrifice at various altars. Exodus, therefore, is describing a condition prior to taking possession of the Promised Land. However, Deuteronomy is describing the condition of the nation after they take possession of the land, when they can build a single altar. They are no longer nomadic. This can, I believe, be sufficiently explained by progressive revelation.
As to your contention that Deuteronomy is written by a priestly writer during the reign of Josiah, you are mistaken. Deuteronomy follows the exact literary form of a suzerainty treaty from the Second Millennium b.c. Later treaties followed a markedly different form. A later writer is unlikely to have even been familiar with the format. This argues for an ancient date of composition. More on Mosaic authorship here. The internal evidence alone is sufficient to attribute the majority of the Pentateuch to Moses.
How do you explain that Samuel freaks out about the idea of the Israelites having a king if Deut was written before him and prophecies of it? And how David the “man after God’s own heart” shows utter contempt for the Deuteronomic injunction against the king “multiplying wives to himself”? Furthermore, progressive revelation scheme is a bunch of bull. Moses could have very easily mentioned in Exodus 20 that the earthen altar anywhere you are concept would expire on entering the promised land if that was the case. An entirely new book did not need to be written for this unless it was human innovation. Moreover, I forgot what I was about to say…..Ah yes, moreover, it actually would have made more sense for the Israelites to use one and only one altar during the wilderness wanderings when they were all together in one place then it does for them to use only one after settling in the land, since they would be established in faroff places and the establishment of one and only one altar would be nothing more than a hardship. Rationally, therefore, it should have been the opposite: one altar before entering the land, many altars after entering the land. This IS what actually happened, as they had the one altar of the Tabernacle during the wanderings! This disproves the progressive revelation hoax. Exodus is correct and a simple altar of earth was enjoined for after entering the land while a single altar (that of the Tabernacle) was used while wandering in the wilderness. This shows that the Exodus allowance for multiple earthen altars was given for AFTER entering the land, since one single altar (that of the Tabernacle) was used prior to entering the land!
I’m not prepared to speculate on the motives of someone who is long dead. Samuel’s “freaking out” doesn’t preclude a prophecy. And, I’m taking your word that there is a prophecy at all, because you haven’t specified an actual verse and I haven’t re-read all of Deuteronomy looking for such a prophecy. For all I know, you’re misreading that too–which is a likely scenario given that you seem to ignore much evidence that Genesis through Deuteronomy was written early. It isn’t that much of a stretch to think that you can misread Scripture as well.
Oh, David and Solomon broke the law about multiple wives? SCANDALOUS. Especially since the Bible records that they were perfect angels otherwise, never breaking any other commandments. That was sarcasm, by the way. You seem pretty dense, so I thought I’d specify.
As for the remainder of your argument, it boils down to this: 1) In my opinion, God should have inspired Scriptures to read THIS way. 2) Based on the evidence, he did not inspire Scripture THIS way. 3) Therefore, God did not inspire Scripture. Very weak. And a complete NON SEQUITUR. Sorry, you lose.
Here’s the verse. Deuteronomy 17:14-17 “When you come to the land which the LORD your God is giving you, and possess it and dwell in it, and say, ‘I will set a king over me like all the nations that are around me,’ (15) “you shall surely set a king over you whom the LORD your God chooses; one from among your brethren you shall set as king over you; you may not set a foreigner over you, who is not your brother. (16) “But he shall not multiply horses for himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, for the LORD has said to you, ‘You shall not return that way again.’ (17) “Neither shall he multiply wives for himself, lest his heart turn away; nor shall he greatly multiply silver and gold for himself.”
Not only does the ‘prophecy’ foretell that they will be given a king, but it ‘foretells’ the exact sentiment that the people display to Samuel about having a king to be like all the other nations. Do I have to find this verse for you too? Never read that one either?
1 Samuel 8:4-22 Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah, (5) and said to him, “Look, you are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.” (6) But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to judge us.” So Samuel prayed to the LORD. (7) And the LORD said to Samuel, “Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them. (8) “According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt, even to this day; with which they have forsaken Me and served other gods; so they are doing to you also. (9) “Now therefore, heed their voice. However, you shall solemnly forewarn them, and show them the behavior of the king who will reign over them.” (10) So Samuel told all the words of the LORD to the people who asked him for a king. (11) And he said, “This will be the behavior of the king who will reign over you: He will take your sons and appoint them for his own chariots and to be his horsemen, and some will run before his chariots. (12) “He will appoint captains over his thousands and captains over his fifties, will set some to plow his ground and reap his harvest, and some to make his weapons of war and equipment for his chariots. (13) “He will take your daughters to be perfumers, cooks, and bakers. (14) “And he will take the best of your fields, your vineyards, and your olive groves, and give them to his servants. (15) “He will take a tenth of your grain and your vintage, and give it to his officers and servants. (16) “And he will take your male servants, your female servants, your finest young men, and your donkeys, and put them to his work. (17) “He will take a tenth of your sheep. And you will be his servants. (18) “And you will cry out in that day because of your king whom you have chosen for yourselves, and the LORD will not hear you in that day.” (19) Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, “No, but we will have a king over us, (20) that we also may be like all the nations, and that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.” (21) And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he repeated them in the hearing of the LORD. (22) So the LORD said to Samuel, “Heed their voice, and make them a king.” And Samuel said to the men of Israel, “Every man go to his city.”
It seems a little odd to me that the LORD didn’t just tell Samuel to go read Deuteronomy and see how he had said long ago in Moses’ time that they would have a king! And the great prophet pseudo-priest (for he was raised by the high priest and officiated although not of the tribe of Levi, his father per I Samuel 1 vs 1 being an Ephraimite) had never read Deuteronomy? If it existed before Josiah came up with this Josiah Concept that was conveniently (I mean miraculously) found in the temple all of the sudden, then why didn’t anybody ever know about it before Josiah? It truly was a Josiah Concept. Maybe you don’t know where that’s at either although your blog is named after it. 2 Ki 22:8
And the rest of the prophecy about the king: Deuteronomy 17:18-20 “Also it shall be, when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write for himself a copy of this law in a book, from the one before the priests, the Levites. (19) “And it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God and be careful to observe all the words of this law and these statutes, (20) “that his heart may not be lifted above his brethren, that he may not turn aside from the commandment to the right hand or to the left, and that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he and his children in the midst of Israel.”
Yet for all these provisions made in advance by prophecy, about the king copying the book of Deuteronomy for himself and making sure to follow it, it still gets ‘lost’; and for how long? From all the way before Samuel to the times of Josiah! How were the kings supposed to copy Deuteronomy for personal use if God let it get lost before the first king Saul was ever anointed as ‘Messiah’ by Samuel who had never read Deuteronomy himself and was flabergasted when the people came at him with the exact sentiment of the Deut ‘prophecy’ saying ‘I will set a king over me like all the nations that are around me’?
(See above comment also for the first part of the ‘prophecy’)
Still waiting for the response on the world view.
And to add… that even if there are no serious provable contradictions, that still doesn’t mean that any of it is true.
But it goes a long way toward establishing credibility. Contradictions can be shown in the Harry Potter series, a mere 7 books by the same author, written in under two decades. Contradictions can be shown in the body of Sherlock Holmes novels and stories, again all by the same author written in under three decades. But the Bible, 40 authors writing over 4000 years not contradicting themselves even once is a feat to behold. But, alas, you’re right. It doesn’t make it true. But it does indicate that the authors are reporting truth.
hmmm… I would more likely say that it indicates that the authors are reporting what they BELIEVE is truth…
What 4000 years and no re-writes? You have to back up that absurd claim.
I will admit, I am not at all trained in this stuff, so no doubt I’m easily overcome in the arguements.
Secondly, I’m not an atheist.
Thirdly, your demeaning comments, though funny, really aren’t good for your character.
You have followed my blog for a while. You know that the teasing is in direct proportion to the absurdity. The answer to your worldview conundrum will receive far more respect, as it is a very reasonable query and will require much thought and some research on my part. In short, it is a very interesting dilemma that you pose.
It’s cool man… it will be interesting to see how you fair when you step out of your typical boundaries…
I’m interested to see this one…
Well, since I know you’re an apologist, the biblical stuff obviously came as soft butter for you.
So what about the world view? What about dinosaurs? And don’t just give me the vague behemoth/leviathin/Kent Hovind gobbledegook…
While I agree that your arguements against my contradictions are defeating in that realm, what about the stuff that we see in the real world around us? The stuff that archeology has uncovered? And PLEASE don’t try to use scripture to explain it, because as I said, even if you can find no contradictions of the bible against itself, that still doesn’t mean it’s true, because those arguements are within a closed system of beliefs.
I want to ask you this… I mean… this is in regards to absurdities… as far as the law was concerned… if you ejaculate you are unclean? If you have sex with a woman during menstruation, you are to be killed? No deformed or imperfect humans are allowed to come before God?
I know your answer will be something like “well that’s what God wants and his ways and thoughts are not ours…”
C’mon… my b.s.-o-meter is off the charts here…
And Jesus miraculously healing the blind and sick? Raising the dead (were they decomposed?)???, ascendence into heaven???
Your commentary on the Law is nothing more than Argument from Outrage.
Mentioning Jesus’ miracles the way that you do simply begs the question. You should read up on logical fallacies.
oh good grief!
b.s.-o-meter just shot past the atmosphere…
oh this is that little footnote next to the commandment “you shall not murder…” (unless of course GOD tells you to)…
no doubt you have some nifty antecdote for this statement…
I’m finding it increasingly evident that Christianity is great at making fantastic analogies and excuses to support its authority, without actually being able to prove that it is true.
It’s like you’ve got this big house, supported only by faith, which of course is the point of religion.
I too have faith, a healthy Fear of All Irrational Thinking.
“oh this is that little footnote next to the commandment “you shall not murder…” (unless of course GOD tells you to)…”
But the obvious question is how can you know it was God that told you to? Take Abraham for instance. If a voice from heaven (or seemingly from heaven) told me to kill my son, I would immediately know the devil was trying to trick me. I wouldn’t believe it was God. Who would believe it was God except for blasphemers who hate God?
You know… I would love to disprove your faith, there’s an equal amount of me that wants you to disprove my doubt. And also remember, I firmly believe in a creator (Lee Strobel proved that case for me)… I’m just skeptical about it’s true nature.
I totally see your points about the Jewish culture and OT laws, however, that begs so many questions. If it makes me an arrogant bastard jerk to think that my culture is any better, then it seems that it would also make me an arrogant bastard jerk to assume that the god of their culture is any better than the god of another’s. After all, every culture had their gods… the bible just points at Yahweh as being the real one… leaving every other culture on earth automatically condemned and screwed because of Israel’s exclusivity.
This appears to fly in the face of Jesus’ inclusive teaching. If the only way to really understand what Jesus was saying is to be a first century Jew, then where does that leave the rest of us?
How many other cultures and religions have you studied? Has all of your studying been within the Judeo-Christian realm? Have you spent equal time researching the beliefs and history of Hindu? Of Buddhism? Of Taoism? Of Islam? Of the Scandanavian Gods? The Greek Gods? The Roman Gods? The Egyptian Gods? The list goes on and on and on… And then we have the breakups of Christian denominations too… you and I used to both agree that Roman Catholicism is totally fucked up and blasphemous… yet they were the first Christian church…
Cory… something just isn’t right here. You are good at arguing within the Christian bubble of rationalization… but I have yet to see you step out of that… this leaves you extremely biased… and no doubt you are… but do you see what I’m getting at here???
What of all those who have not heard the gospel? And why leave us totally and ridiculously imperfect beings to spread it? We fuck everything up. What of the mongoloid that totally doesn’t understand? What of the idiot that just has a seriously low IQ? What of the deaf and dumb and blind? They’re not possessed by devils… actually, I think (though I don’t offer direct proof here, go look for yourself), our total being exists in our brain, because you can totally fuck with the brain to change a person’s complete personality… there is proof of this… I remember reading about a man who had a large rod impaled through his brain and the person he was before the accident was totally nice and calm and collected, and afterwards he was like a violent animal.
And even you can’t reconcile the totally messed-up crap that happens. That’s probably more than 50% of my arguement against religion, period.
Again I point out that your arguements make a lot of sense withing the Judeo-Christian way of thinking, but outside they seem to have little foundation.
Prove me wrong.
And if the author of the book of First Samuel had ever read Deuteronomy, how odd of him to not bring up the prophecy????!!! You would think he would say in Matthewesque fashion “this came to pass that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Moses the man of God, saying, ‘When you come to the land which the LORD your God is giving you, and possess it and dwell in it, and say, ‘I will set a king over me like all the nations that are around me,’…'”
Deut is alone in mentioning a future king. Deut is alone is saying there will be only one place for sacrifice later on. Deut is clearly post-Solomon. I provided the verse somewhere above. Threads have died and the blog has become disorganized somehow. There is a book called Hebrew Records by John Giles. It shows that there are many anachronisms related to place-names which help to indicate the Torah was written during or after the Babylonian exile. That along with various other arguments. Hebrew Records by John Allen Giles (Google Books) Part of the reason the author is convinced of this is that the books continue right where the previous one left off. If I recall correctly the idea is that the Old Testament we have was pieced together from various sources which were then discarded. Some of them may have been written by Moses, but the whole of Exodus or Deuteronomy etc. are not by Moses, only fragmentary quotations not in any real chronological order. Read Exodus and you will see that it has no real chronological order from chapter 20 on. Even the Jewish rabbis says ‘the Torah has no chronological order.’ (This I get from another book, Heavenly Torah by Abraham Joshua Heschel a Jewish rabbi who wrote it in Hebrew about what the ancient rabbis said about the Torah and how much was from Heaven and how much was from Moses’ or the sages’ own think-sos, and his book Heavenly Torah was translated into English with the title Heavenly Torah As Refracted through the Generations, translation by Gordon Tucker.) Anyway you can read Giles’ Hebrew Records for yourself, but be warned you will be convinced if you are honest that the Old Testament we have now was composed from various earlier documents which were used only selectively and then discarded, and that the editor clearly didn’t have a clear chronology in mind with the Torah from Sinai on, probably because the various accounts he was drawing from were so very contradictory (much like the gospels). One must look at our present Torah much like one would look at Tatian’s Diatessaron. It is a harmony. Yet I think Tatian was better at harmonizing than the compiler of the Torah.
Oh yes, and Giles mentions the variations of Jethro’s names. His own son in law would unlikely call him three different names. But a harmonist or compiler running into three different names in three different sources would use them all. Anyway, it’d be better to read his words than my foggy recollection of what I read about two years ago now.
“were so very contradictory (much like the gospels)” as respecting chronology I mean, for it is impossible to authoritatively create a chronology or discover one in the four gospels. So also with Exodus from 20 onwards. The same thing seems to be related twice or more with variation in Exodus. God’s various appearances and callings to Moses to come up onto the mountain and receive the law seem to be different versions of the same event that the author found in his four canonical torahs if I can say that to follow the four gospel motiff, and rather than pick one he included them all even though it makes for confusing reading. So in one, God abides in thick darnkess on the mountain, in another in bright fire. in one God has to yell at Moses and send him down the mountain (moses is arguing that it isn’t necessary) to strictly warn the people that they better not try to climb the mountain to see God lest he ‘break out on them.’ But in another, the people are so scared they would never dream of coming close to the mountain (so also in Deuteronomy). In one he is on the mountain alone, in another with the 70 elders. Yet even here, it appears he takes Joshua with him although it was said he was alone. The confusion clearly indicates an attempt (yet a frustrated and unsuccessful one) to harmize earlier Torahs into one more orderly Torah.
Catholic church has moved away from the Bible!!!
No error or contradiction on the buybull?
You must be kidding!!
For starters, how did a bunch of rural dwelling animal herders end up telling us tha rabbits chew the cud?
pi having a value of three I can understand, though I do draw the line at believing that the sort of notches you put in a stick in fronr of which you mate your goats has an effect on the coat markings of the resultant offspring.
Hi! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any problems with hackers?
My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended
up losing many months of hard work due to no backup.
Do you have any methods to protect against hackers?
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