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Contradictions in the Bible?
|Created by Gerard de Vos|
Category: Bible related
We live in an age in which it is ‘politically correct’ to doubt the Bible. It is the goal of many skeptics, atheists, evolutionists, and other religions like Islam, to teach people that there are so many contradictions in the Bible, that it clearly cannot be the truth. We know that if the Bible was written by men alone, we would have no reason to stake our lives on it. We accept it as the Word of God (among other reasons) for the remarkable influence and spread of the Gospel over the last 2000 years.
From where are these contradictions?
We quote: ‘No Christian doctrine is free from problems: and that for a very good reason. God has put forward His truth as an object for faith, and the proper ground of faith is God’s own authoritative testimony.... Man’s original sin was a lust after self-sufficient knowledge, a craving to shake off all external authority and work things our for himself (Genesis 3). God deliberately presents saving truth to sinners in such a way that their acceptance of it involves an act of intellectual repentance, whereby they humble themselves and submit once more to be taught by Him. Thus they renounce their calamitous search after a self-made wisdom (1 Corinthians 1:19-25) in order to regain the kind of knowledge for which they were made, that which comes from taking their Creator’s word. So as to make this renunciation clear-cut, God has ensured that no single article of faith should be demonstrable as, say, a geometrical theorem is, nor free from unsolved mystery. Man must be content to know by faith, and to know, in this world at any rate, in part. We must not, therefore, expect to find the doctrine of biblical inspiration free from difficulties, any more than are the doctrines of the Trinity, incarnation or atonement. Nor must we expect to be able to solve all its problems in this world. Nor must we wonder that Christians easily fall into heresy over this doctrine, as over others (Edited by D Guthrie, Motyer, Stibbs and Wiseman, The New Bible Commentary, revised, InterVarsity Press, 1970, p 17).
To summarize this excellent comment:
Adam and Eve did not believe God’s word. They listened to the devil’s contradiction of God’s command. So they rejected God’s word and did what He forbade. They ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Their new knowledge estranged them from God.
But God’s Word is designed in such a way that it is an article of faith: do we believe it, even if we do not understand everything? Through the Bible, God asks the same question of all people through the ages: do you trust Me enough to accept My Word (words) as truth?
The Bible has been written for a certain goal: to either build faith, or give a person reason to reject it. God’s kingdom still functions on free will and God will never force any body to love Him. ‘God reveals Himself in His Word, as He does in His works. In both we see a self-revealing, self-concealing God, who makes Himself known only to those who earnestly seek Him. In both we find stimulants to faith and occasions for unbelief. In both we find contradictions, whose higher harmony is hidden, except from him who gives up his whole mind in reference (Neander, quoted in J Haley, Apparent Discrepancies of the Bible, Whitaker House, 1992, p 15).