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Apparent contradictions in the Bible


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TeleMad: Hey, I think you're onto something. All of those millions of human embryos and fetuses that God kills each year were probably just going to turn out to be mass murders: that's why He killed them. Well, I guess He just misses a couple future mass murders ever few years ... He's only human afterall.

 

Southtown: How exactly does God kill embryos?

 

I doubt anyone will reject the fact that millions of human embryos/fetuses die yearly, and not because of a willful abortion on the woman's part: they die without direct human intervention.

 

Now, the Bible tells us that God oversees whether a woman’s womb will bear fruit or not, and that He can make a woman barren at one point in her life and open her womb at another time. The Bible also tells us it is God who forms us in the womb.

 

So God is responsible for which women can and which women can't give birth and He is also responsible for the forming of the human in the womb. Now, with the millions of human embryos that die yearly, God is doing a awful lot of killing.

 

 

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First, the Bible tells us that God opens or closes a woman’s womb.

 

"And Isaac intreated the LORD for his wife, because she was barren: and the LORD was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived." (Genesis 25:21)

 

"And when the LORD saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb: but Rachel was barren." (Genesis 29:31)

 

"And God remembered Rachel, and God hearkened to her, and opened her womb. And she conceived, and bare a son; and said, 'God hath taken away my reproach." (Genesis 30:22)

 

"So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son." (Ruth 4:13)

 

For the LORD had fast closed up all the wombs of the house of Abimelech, because of Sarah Abraham's wife." (Genesis 20:18)

 

"But unto Hannah [Elkanah] gave a worthy portion; for he loved Hannah: but the LORD had shut up her womb." (I Samuel 1:5)

 

"There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years. And it came to pass, that while he executed the priest's office before God in the order of his course...there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said unto him, 'Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John.'" (Luke 1:5-13)

 

 

"And when Rachel saw that she bare Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister; and said unto Jacob, 'Give me children, or else I die.' And Jacob's anger was kindled against Rachel: and he said, 'Am I in God's stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of the womb?'" (Genesis 30:1, 2)

 

Second, the Bible tells us that it is God who forms us in the womb.

 

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well" (Psalm 139:13,14)

 

”Did not he who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same one form us both within our mothers?” (Job 31:15)

 

”Job said, "Did not he that made me in the womb make him? and did not one fashion us in the womb?" (Job 31:15)

 

”Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart.” (Jeremiah 1:5)

 

"Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee...." (Jeremiah 1:5)

 

"Thus saith the LORD that made thee, and formed thee from the womb, which will help thee; Fear not, O Jacob, my servant; and thou, Jesurun, whom I have chosen." (Isaiah 44:2)

 

"Thus saith the LORD, thy redeemer, and he that formed thee from the womb, I am the LORD that maketh all things; that stretcheth forth the heavens alone; that spreadeth abroad the earth by myself." (Isaiah 44:24)

 

Solomon said, "As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all." (Ecclesiastes 11:5)
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Regarding the Gen 1 and 2 issue of creation, it was suggested to me some time ago that "creating" something (gen 1) wasn't necessarily the same as "forming from dust" in the case of man (gen 2), or "c

I would like to suggest that Genesis, for one is but a fragment of an expanded story written in clay tablets of the Sumarian Civilization, some 5000 yrears BC. I suspect that Skippy will not budge mu

My point was that kids don't learn to lie. It is something that is natural for them. Have you ever met a totally honest person, even a child? I doubt it. I know that I have never met one. Was it 'unsa

Back in biblical days, conceiving out of wedlock would prove the mother to be a whore, and I suppose the first instinct would be to stone her to death, as the bible dictates. Remember, it's only later in the NT that Jesus proclaimed whores to also be people, also deserving of His Love.

 

Actually, it's only in certain versions of the New Testament that the story of Jesus forgiving the whore that's being (or about to be) stoned appears.

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Don't know if the contradictions surrounding Judas' death have been mentioned yet, but ...

 

1) How did Judas die? Did he hang himself or did he fall and his intestines pop out?

 

2) Did Judas return the money or keep it?

 

3) Who bouth the Field of Blood? Judas or the high priests?

 

 

"(With the reward he got for his wickedness, Judas bouth a field; there he fell headlong, his body burst open and all his intestines spilled out. Everyone in Jerusalem heard about this, so they called that field in their language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.)" (Acts 1:18-19)

 

"When Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty silver coins to the chief priests and the elders. "I have sinned", he said, "for I have betrayed innocent blood."

 

"What is that to us?" they replied. "That's your responsibility."

 

So Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself.

 

The chief priests picked up the coins and said, "It is against the law to put this into the treasury, since it is blood money." So they decided to use the money to buy the potter's field as a burial place for foreigners. That is why it has been called the Field of Blood to this day." (Matthew 27:3-8)

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Don't know if the contradictions surrounding Judas' death have been mentioned yet, but ...

 

1) How did Judas die? Did he hang himself or did he fall and his intestines pop out?

 

2) Did Judas return the money or keep it?

 

3) Who bouth the Field of Blood? Judas or the high priests?

 

All of those statements are perfectly conherent together, given normal language uses. There's no contradiction there, other then superficial.

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Why take that tack? Why assume its an all or nothing thing. Could it be divinely inspired, but perhaps the human beings God was trying to speak through put some of their own bias into the stories?

That is exactly why Doctor Luke's gospel is different from the other three. That is why some books of the OT seem stiff and others seem very poetic. God gives each of us different talents and interests and those will come out in our words and deeds though the same thing might motivate us. Eg.- unless I'm mistaken you have a job and that job is not the same as Tiger Woods or Barry Bonds or Steve Jobs - though the work you do has the same motivation of those three and others - money.

 

 

If the bible is inerrant, because its been divinely inspired, why would he allow translations of it to not be divinely inspired? Wouldn't this mean that every translation is divine word, and hence inerrant?

NO! Why has He allowed mass murderers to do their crimes? One day I hope to be able to ask Him just that. An example is a recent translation which was undertaken by "scholars" with an agenda other than truth. In it, these quote/unquote scholars/intellectuals have removed all references to gender and any other reference which shows favor. Examples of their changes include when John asked Jesus which of them would sit at His right hand, it was changed to "mighty hand." Another is any pronoun referencing male qualities to God. Obviously these are not inspired translations. Then we could discuss The New World Translation of the Jehovah's Witnesses - inspired by Russell, definitely not inspired by God.

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That is exactly why Doctor Luke's gospel is different from the other three. That is why some books of the OT seem stiff and others seem very poetic. God gives each of us different talents and interests and those will come out in our words and deeds though the same thing might motivate us. Eg.- unless I'm mistaken you have a job and that job is not the same as Tiger Woods or Barry Bonds or Steve Jobs - though the work you do has the same motivation of those three and others - money.

 

So you concede my point that each author's bias creeps in a bit. Wouldn't that mean the work, while divinely inspired, may not be quite divine? Human's aren't perfect, perhaps the message was recorded wrong. Wouldn't that mean the bible is not, in fact, inerrant containing the bias of the humans who wrote it?

-Will

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So you concede my point that each author's bias creeps in a bit. Wouldn't that mean the work, while divinely inspired, may not be quite divine? Human's aren't perfect, perhaps the message was recorded wrong. Wouldn't that mean the bible is not, in fact, inerrant containing the bias of the humans who wrote it?

-Will

Not in the way you want me to concede, because your premise is wrong. I see your argument, but the author was God, the penman was Moses, David, Solomon, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, etc. The words they put down were God's words but they were presented with the various talents of the penman. E.g.- I was just looking at Carole King's Tapestry, she and James Taylor recorded You've Got a Friend and even though each was true to the notes and lyrics on the page, each put his/her own talented spin on the song... that didn't change the "truth" of the song but it did make it sound different to the ear.

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So you concede my point that each author's bias creeps in a bit. Wouldn't that mean the work, while divinely inspired, may not be quite divine? ...
Perspective is different than bias. Peter wrote to the Jews, as did the author of Hebrews. Paul (usually) wrote to the gentiles. Each author used their knowledge base to communicate effectively with his audience.

 

The problem we often have currently is that we have a less than perfect understanding of their audiences.

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Originally Posted by Erasmus00

So you concede my point that each author's bias creeps in a bit. Wouldn't that mean the work, while divinely inspired, may not be quite divine? Human's aren't perfect, perhaps the message was recorded wrong. Wouldn't that mean the bible is not, in fact, inerrant containing the bias of the humans who wrote it?

-Will

 

 

 

Not in the way you want me to concede, because your premise is wrong. I see your argument, but the author was God, the penman was Moses, David, Solomon, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, etc. The words they put down were God's words but they were presented with the various talents of the penman. E.g.- I was just looking at Carole King's Tapestry, she and James Taylor recorded You've Got a Friend and even though each was true to the notes and lyrics on the page, each put his/her own talented spin on the song... that didn't change the "truth" of the song but it did make it sound different to the ear.

 

I would like to suggest that Genesis, for one is but a fragment of an expanded story written in clay tablets of the Sumarian Civilization, some 5000 yrears BC. I suspect that Skippy will not budge much friom his statement in the post above. I say this as a matter of experience when discussing the bible with those who would say something strongly like "the author was God". I may bne wrong, but it makes little difference here and now.

 

I have been reading the bible seriously the past few years and am doing so by taking the written words in their literal sense. I am not claiming any expertise, only a point of view.

 

For instance, when Jehovah is quoted in Genesis as:

"Let us make man in our image", I read that some entity, Jehovah, God, is talking to an assembled group of at the very least biological "peers" , more or less.

,

Likewise when in genesis the story continues:

(Gen 6-1) Now it came about that when men started to grow in numbers on the surface of the ground and daughters were born to them

 

(Gen 6-2) then the sons of the [true] God began to notice the daughters of men, that they were good looking; and they went taking wives for themselves, namely all whom they chose.

 

(Gen 6 -3) After that Jehovah said: "My spirit shall not act towrd men indefinitely in that he is also flesh. Accordingly his days shall number to a hundred and twenty years."

 

So god is like us, not an etheral wispy energy bundle lurking in the background of our souls, but real fleshand blood.

The 120 years is about the maximum longevity of mankind today, probably set by DNA manipulation
.

The as the story goes,

(Gen 6-4) "The Nephilim proved to be in the earth those days and also after that, when the sons of the [true] god continued to have relations with the daughters of men and they bore sons to them {and daughters I suppose -Geistkiesel} they were the mighty ones who were of old the men of fame."

 

The Nephilim have to be godlike peers of jehovah, biological peers at least, though perhaps lesser in ranking in whatever political orand/or social hierarchy existed at the time. -G

 

(Gen 6-6 ) "And Jehovah felt regrets that he had made men in the earth ...."

 

(Gen 6-7) " So Jehovah said:I am going to wipe men whom I have created off the surface of the ground . . .because I do regret that I have made them"

 

I read this as it is written . Some assembly of "gods", my guess alien colonizers, miners or something of this nature came to earth and did what we see now as hiostory. When the blood line began to become diluted with the sons of the gods procreating children from mere daughters of men, he , or they decided to wipe the slate clean, or at least do nothing to protect mankind from a tragedy that was opredicted, like a collision with a massive stellar object of near earth size.v - G

 

In Gen 6-7 above we get a glimpse of the nature of god, not exactly your soft spoken loving entity from my perspective. But let us read on- G:

 

In Deteronomy 2:26 TO 2:35 Moses is speaking to the jews reminding them of the dictates of jehovah and how god abandonded the KIng Si'hon to the jews which god ordered to take the land of Si'hon for themselves.

 

Moses said

D 2:34" And we went capturing all his cities at that particlular time and devoting every city to destruction, men, women and
little children
. We left no survivor. Only the domestic animals did we take as plunder for ourselves together with the spoils of the cities that we had captured"

 

Now if this event was conducted today in the name of god, who would be the ones to "follow" along. It seems that Jehovah, God, wasn't a very nce space man and that he treated his "creation" as little more than gross, slobbering animals that he could massacre as he chose. What is confusing to me is why would any sane rational person, using an intellect and mind unstressed by fear and intimidation want to follow in this biblically described god's way? and for eternity? Does anyone want my seat on the ship to heaven? Well, just say geistkiesel gave it to you, that is if for some reason you may not be an invited passenger yourself- G
.

 

The worst case scenario presently?: That some of the "original" gods are with us yet , manipulating as they choose, with "devoted" slaves to do carry out their bidding.

 

Well what can we do about this?

 

Geistkiesel

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In Gen 6-7 above we get a glimpse of the nature of god, not exactly your soft spoken loving entity from my perspective. But let us read on- G:

I have never heard a reasonable interpretation of the first half of Genesis 6. But this is the section that gets the most air time for folks with wild ideas.

 

It is generally not held as hermeneutically reasonable to take on obscure passage (and Genesis 6 surely counts) and use it to overturn hundreds of others.

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I have never heard a reasonable interpretation of the first half of Genesis 6. But this is the section that gets the most air time for folks with wild ideas.

 

It is generally not held as hermeneutically reasonable to take on abscure passage (and Genesis 6 surely counts) and use it to overturn hundreds of others.

Biochemist, I may have written my post with a lack of total clarity. If you read the post as a unit , then genesis 6:7 is merely a glimpse , but a very sustained and clear glimpse, into the nature of the biblically described God, or Jehovah. There is the assumption that God is one of a group of biological peers and for whatever reason the decision was made to wipe the slate clean Jehovah needs a 'dream team' to defend his case here, especially when the Deuteronomy passages are included. Remember, these are just two examples of how god operates, The language describing his/her activities is clear and unambiguous. For instance, I have read and discussed with some the passage where jehovah, God, says "let us make man in our image" as meaning something akin to t he "father, son and holy ghost", where reference to books written much later, even referencing some NT passages. To me this kind of analysis is stretching the point a bit too far. Some liken the passage to be equivalent to a queen saying "We are not impressed" as a rationalization away from a plurality of gods as implied explicitly in the statement.

 

Like I said, I strive to take the bible literally for the reason that I see it as a deeply edited version of the "whole story". Also, it is less cumvbersome as a reading to take the matters on face value and sort out the logical and factual errors, in describing miracles etc. Of all interpretations I have been presentyed with through the years the "alien connection" is to me the most reasonable and believable, certainly more so than evolutionary theory. I dio not expect much agreement even with those rationalists who view the bible as a conjoined fictional novel borne from the imaginations of writers through the ages.

 

I am assuming that readers of this thread are somewhat familair with the bible in general and my two examples would not be taken out of context and as slight divergences from the "true" totality of the description of "the Man".

 

For example, in Genesis 1 there is not much anyone can say that ignites any critical flaws in religious history. I see nothing anti-scientific, nor even contrary to scientific principals from whatever viewpoint stated. Certainly there is nothing in Genesis 1 approaching the scope of contradictions and inconsistencies seen in modern Special Relativity Theory. Genesis 1 is a 'factual neutral' to my view.

 

Now, when reading on to Genesis 2, I get the strongest message that the writers of Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 are not the same person, or committee, or even the same God as author. For one, the order of creation of the wordly entities becomes skewed and inconsistent as God takes on not merely man like qualities, but as mangerial like qualities with a perverse ability to at least attempt to dominate the thinking of the reader, even to intimidate and frighten the reader into obedient submission.

 

The author in Genesis 1, to me, was writing a treatise in a language familiar to himself (he had no notions of calculus and Newtonian Physics, biochemistry and DNA at least we see none of this in the writing. One would have to stretch unreasonable distances to include modern sceintific notions in Genesis1) and the described things in a reasonable manner. For sure there are disagreements vis a vis current evolutionary therory on some of the order of appearance of biological entities, but then there are insonsistencies with respect to Geneisi 1 and Genesis 2, which to me are more significant than the differences with prevailing evolutionary theories we see today.

 

I did however learn a new word which I had to look up in the dictionary, "hermeneutically" is now a significant entry into my vocabulary.

 

Thank you for your response,

 

Geistkiesel

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...Of all interpretations I have been presebntyed {sic} with through the years the "alien connection" is to me the most reasonable and believable, certainly more so than evolutionary theory...
There are a couple of folks in this forum who agree with you. I, personally, think that evolutionary theory includes such a broad array of ideas (some of which are nearly contradictory) that I find it hard to agree or disagree with "it", whatever it is. For example, I think natural selection is fine. Speciation by genetic drift is fine. Punctuated equilibrium is fine. I think speciation via mutation is very poorly supported. Am I an evolutionist?

 

But the Biblical evidence for alien manipulation is pretty thin. If you exempt the first 12 chapters of Genesis (whcih are extremely difflcult to interpret because of their age) the plain reading of the Bible does not lead to any statements of extraterrestrial influence.

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...Now, when reading on to Genesis 2, I get the strongest message that the writers of Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 are not the same person, or committee, or even the same God as author....
Hmm. There are a gazillion possibilities here, all consistent with a conservative view. One would be that Moses penned these at different times, perhaps years apart. I don't know if you have ever gone back and reread stuff you wrote in your freshman year of college, but in my case, I don't even recognize them. I can see the handwriting is the same, but my word useage is completely different. And I am only 49.

 

Moses also could have consolidated stories from different authors, since Moses was certainly not personally present. Moses could have transliterated a vision, leaving open the possibility that even he did not understand what he was writing, much like John in the Revelation. Moses could have had a scribe or two (or four, similar to the documentary hypothesis) write it for him, much like Paul did.

 

And this is all before we discuss what the text actually means.

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Like I said, I strive to take the bible literally for the reason that I see it as a deeply edited version of the "whole story". Also, it is less cumvbersome as a reading to take the matters on face value and sort out the logical and factual errors, in describing miracles etc. Of all interpretations I have been presentyed with through the years the "alien connection" is to me the most reasonable and believable, certainly more so than evolutionary theory. I dio not expect much agreement even with those rationalists who view the bible as a conjoined fictional novel borne from the imaginations of writers through the ages.

Unless you are able to read Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic you cannot possibly try to read the Bible in such a literal sense. The translations from those classic languages to English, even King James' English, makes it look as if all of it can be taken literally. I'm no Greek or Hebrew scholar, but I've been told by some who are that many of the phrases in the original languages are "picture words." Those languages do not lend themselves to a literal translation like we English speaking people crave. (Have you ever tried to translate a Spanish phrase into English in a literal way... it'll make you sound like you have a mental issue to people who know nothing but English)

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Unless you are able to read Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic you cannot possibly try to read the Bible in such a literal sense. The translations from those classic languages to English, even King James' English, makes it look as if all of it can be taken literally....
I am franlky always a little suspicious of folks that contend their knowledge fo Greek and/or Hebrew is better than the team of folks that wrote the NASB Bible (the one regarded as the most accurate translation). A couple of dozen scholars of both ilks collaborated on this translation. I don't think the issue is whether the translation is accurate. The issue is more related to the intent of the writer, the nature of the audience, and the use of figurative, idiomatic or vernacular language.

 

If someone wrote that I was a "nut" in a canonized document, I am afraid one sect would believe I was hexagonal. chromium and threaded, and another sect would believe that I grew on a tree and was harassed by squirrels.

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