So Nimm Denn Meine Hande...

Monday, November 20, 2006

Something really funny to me...

When I was in grade 12, I had a class called Western Civilizations with Ian Kluge, my teacher. He was a Bah'ai and the class should have been called Intro to why every religion is wrong except mine, although my religion somehow thinks that every religion is also somehow correct. Being a high school kid, I was cocky...cocky because I had learned exactly 2 things and thought that there was nothing else to learn.

As Mr. Kluge took stabs at every world religion, I kinda laughed and thought to myself "Ha! Suckers!". He made some good points and got me thinking, for as deep a puddle as I was at that time (think 1/2 inch, at best).

Then, he started taking on Christianity, but like most skeptics, he throttled attacks against Catholics, Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormons and Protestants with the same brush. Now I knew that I wasn't a Catholic, JW, or Mormon, and I let him know that it wasn't much of a problem to attack those sects because I didn't belong to them (and yes, I know that they're cults now).

So he decided to really light me up with some impossible to overcome attacks and gave me a book called 101 Contradictions in the Bible. I didn't know such books existed and was shocked at all the "obvious" contradictions that this book found. I spoke to some of my youth pastors, and they didn't really have much help to offer me. I pounded through a few of the questions and answered a few for myself, but I had to give him the book back and didn't get a chance properly refute all the "contradictions".

SO...

I recently found a PDF document of that book, and I opened it up this afternoon. 101 contradictions in the bible, eh? I'm a little more capable of sorting through all those problems now, and I was totally surprised at what I discovered.

101 contradictions lasted 13 minutes.

There were dozens of numerical "contradictions"; things like "so and so had 800,000 troops" verses "so and so had 1,800,000" troops. Now that I know Hebrew, I understand how a single point (like the dot on an "i") can change a number, and there are different ways of writing the same number. I won't bore with details, but around 40 of the contradictions were basically solved instantly.

There were literally 15+ on discrepancies within geneologies, but now that I understand that geneologies aren't closed listings but instead are designed to show lineage (not HOW many generations, but WHO the generations descend from), the "contradictions" within geneological lists (especially in Matthew 1 and Luke 3) are plain stupid.

Then the rest were built on hyper literalistic readings of scripture (reading with no concern for context, figures of speech, etc.) and over half were from the Old Testament.

Here's one example, "contradiction 64:

64.Is the Law of Moses useful?

(a) Yes. β€œAll scripture is... profitable...” (2 Timothy 3:16)
(b) No. β€œ . . . A former commandment is set aside because of its weakness and uselessness... β€œ(Hebrews 7:18)

Are Hebrews and 2 Timothy talking about even remotely the same thing, in the same way?

HA! No. Not even close.

I guess all this edumacation is paying off! Ha! It's funny though how people cling to "contradictions" in the bible, somehow thinking that minor errors in Masoretic vowel pointing, paragraph breaks, quotation marks, etc. somehow corrupt the Bible.

For an interesting look at an OLD debate I had with some Mennonite Pastors on this (like 2 years ago), consider this conversation that eventually bled over into this conversation. The title of "inerrancy case study" itself betrays my opponents lack of understanding of what "inerrancy" means. Here is a similar debate that arose here, on this very blog, in June. I cannot understand, for the life of me, how people want an errant, untrustworthy Bible and an incompetent, powerless, bumbling idiot of a God.

Oh wait. Romans 1 explains that. DOH! Until Next Time,

TAT

4 Comments:

Blogger Mike said...

The class you took sounds awfully similar to an "Intro to World Civilizations" class I took at college, which should have been subtitled "The History of China, Why Confusionism is great and Christianity is the epitome of evil." I noticed he also lumped every group even remotely close to Christianity with Christians. He blamed Christians for the crusades regularly and whatnot.

12:19 AM

 
Blogger Jen2 said...

Wow.....reading that I think I just lost some weight. It was a lot of work !

Other religions baffle me. I especially love your remark about your teacher's preaching that his religion is right, and yet everyone is right at the same time gag. LOL - seriously. People use that argument all the time...it is just a sign of our depravity

7:48 AM

 
Blogger 4given said...

Good post Armchair. Praying for you.

12:28 PM

 
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