I am going to focus on Christianity in this article, more specifically the fundagelical [fundamentalist + evangelical] types, the ones that claim the bible is the one true word of god. Before I go into this article in earnest let me just state that there are many good people of all faiths, even people of no faith, so at the outset I am not ‘bashing’ all Christians or even all faiths.
Do I see a problem with faith? Well faith that leads one to believe the bible is the word of god, yes I have a problem with it and I will attempt to explain why. So if you will allow my to quote Matthew 11:15 from the King James Version of the bible,
He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
Only in this case replace ears with eyes and hear with read.
Starting at the beginning in Genesis there are no less than 10 instances of incest in the first chapter. These range from the unsaid ‘begats’ from Adam and Eve‘s children to the daughters of Lot getting him drunk and seducing him not once but twice. Please understand that this is in the first chapter of ‘god’s word’. Through the Old, or first, testament we find that god’s word wants us to stone rebellious children, kill witches and warlocks, drive awls through the ears of humans we keep as slaves and many other barbaric practices. In answer to the objection that some are sure to raise that the Old testament was a different time and place, it was applicable to the culture of the time but not today I will say, thanks for explaining why the bible isn’t god’s inerrant and unchanging word.
Enough of the Old testament though, Christianity deals with the New testament, which version though remains a mystery. Enough Christians, I say too many, of the fundagelical persuasion don’t read the bible for much more than devotion. Pretty much they read snips here and there in a somewhat haphazard fashion while those same Christians will read a novel from cover to cover as a book is meant to be read. When you read in order there are certain inconsistencies that pop up all over the text and there are many differences between the gospels themselves.
Lets look at one inconstancy found in the book of John. John 2:1-11 says:
1 On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus‘ mother was there, 2 and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. 3 When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.” 4 “Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”6 Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. 7 Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.8 Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.”They did so, 9 and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside 10 and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.” 11 What Jesus did here in Cana of Galilee was the first of the signs through which he revealed his glory; and his disciples put their faith in him.
Yet a few verses later in John 2:23 we read that
23 Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many people saw the signs he was performing and believed in his name.
And then we come to John 4:46-54 and read
46 Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. 47 When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death. 48 “Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.” 49 The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”5 0 “Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.” The man took Jesus at his word and departed. 51 While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. 52 When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him.” 53 Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and his whole household believed. 54 This was the second sign Jesus performed after coming from Judea to Galilee.
Ok did anyone reading closely see anything “fishy”? First we had Jesus preforming his first miracle, then we had him performing many miracles and than in a feat of prestadigitation we are back to his second miracle. What the heck happened to the many inbetween the first and second. Is this really the inerrant word of god?
Sorry to pick on John but this article would be worthless without bringing up my all time favorite headscratching discrepancy in the New Testament. I can pretty much assure you that not a single Christian has ever noticed it but if they read this far they will never see the bible the same. In John chapters 13-17 in what can be called Jesus farewell to his disciples, we read in John 13:36
36 Simon Peter asked him, “Lord, where are you going?”
Jesus replied, “Where I am going, you cannot follow now, but you will follow later.”
Then we read in John 14:5
5 Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
Now in John 16:5 we read Jesus saying
5 but now I am going to him who sent me. None of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’
Anybody see what happened there? Did Jesus have no memory, which would lead one to believe he is not god. Or is this really the inerrant word of god?
Arguably the most important story in the New testament, at least to Christians. is the resurrection of Jesus. Again we have discrepancies. For this example I am not going to cite any bible verses and if the reader wants, he or she may. On the third day the women went to the tomb to annoint his body. Mark says they saw a man, Luke says it was two men while Matthew says it was an angel. Again is this an example of god’s inerrant word?
I can go on like this all day, especially with the Old Testament but to keep my promise from the first page, I won’t. I will however leave you with three verses for Christians to ponder.
God is love. – John 4:16
Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous – 1 Corinthians 13:4
You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God – Exodus 20:5
Some further reading you might enjoy
- 101 Contradictions in the Bible.
- The Biblical Unicorn – Believe In It Or Burn
- Taking the Red Pill
- The Bible for Dummies
- John 2:1-11
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