(Investigator 149, 2013
The Christian Bible is
the world's best example of self-contradictions, misinformation and
plagiarism. Biblical scholars have known this for centuries. "God's
Word" the Bible has been edited, re-interpreted, mistranslated,
revised, censored, re-written, interpolated a countless number of times
down the centuries.
The first council 325
a.d. voted out "Acts of the Apostles" and "Revelation" from the Bible,
the second council 363 a.d. voted them in again. Another council 406
a.d. voted these two and others out of the Bible once more. Thus
various books were voted in and out of "The Infallible Word of God"
over the centuries by 24 different councils. These were altered and
amended by 50 or more translations and more than 150,000 alterations.
Here are a few more
Genesis 1. God made plants before the sun. God made man and woman
together, after the plants, the lights of heaven, fishes, birds,
animals. In Genesis 2 this is contradicted — God made man first, then
plants and trees, rivers etc, then animals, birds and the rest then,
last of all Eve from Adam's rib.
told Adam, if he ate the fruit of "knowledge" he would die at once,
this was a lie, Adam ate and lived to 930 years (Genesis 5:5) Obviously
a good health food.
decided to destroy everything on earth. (Genesis 6: 7-17) He then
changed his mind and saved Noah, his family, and two of every kind —
animal, bird, insect etc. Some say seven.
said "Everyone that asketh, receiveth, and he that seeketh, findeth,
and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened." (Matthew 7:7-8) OR "Only
a few will be saved, and many will seek to enter but will not be
admitted." (Luke 13:23-24)
tells his followers to go forth and preach without shoes and
staves (Matthew 10:10) OR to preach with nothing but shoes and
staves (Matthew 6:8-9)
assurance that the earth will abide forever. (Ecclesiastes 1:4) OR
"Heaven and earth shall pass away..." (Matthew 24:35 & Luke 21:33)
called himself "Prince of Peace" OR not to send peace but a sword.
J.C.'s last words "My God my God why hast thou forsaken me?" OR
"Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit" (Luke 23:46) OR "It is
finished" (John 19:30)
The Roman Church claims
that Peter was the first Bishop of Rome or Pope. But many scholars are
of the opinion that such a person as Peter never existed.
The Church created its
own history using forged documents, but in the earliest writings
listing the Bishops of Rome, Peter's name never appears. According to
Irenaeus an early church father, the first Bishop of Rome was Linus,
followed by Clement. Peter never had that title; he was invested
centuries after he died.
dead know nothing, and have no reward, there is no consciousness after
death." (Ecclesiastes 9:5-10) OR "They are deceased, they shall not
rise." (Isaiah 26:14) OR "The sea, death and hell will give up their
dead to be judged." (Revelation 20:13) OR "Believers will live
forever." (John 11:26) OR "The dead shall be raised incorruptible." (1
Corinthians 15:52) Take your pick what ever suits you — Ha! Ha!
are saved through faith...not works."(Ephesians 2:8-9) OR "By works is
man justified, and not by faith." (James 2:24)
"Drink wine not water." (1 Timothy 5:23) OR "Don't drink wine
(Proverbs 20:1 & Romans 14:21)
has been tempted 10 times." (Numbers 14:22) OR "God can't be tempted."
"Nations shall not lift up sword against Nations." (Micah 4:3) OR
"Nation shall rise against Nation." (Matthew 24:7)
your enemies." (Luke 6:27) OR "Kill your enemies." (Luke 19:27)
God all things are possible." (Matthew 19:26) OR "God can't prevail
against chariots of iron." (Judges 1:19)
punishes children for their parent's sins unto the 3rd and 4th
generations. (Exodus 20:5) OR The son shall not bear the iniquity of
the father. (Ezekiel 18:20)
was given vinegar and gall to drink on the cross. (Matthew 27:34) OR
J.C. was given wine and myrrh to drink on the cross (Mark 15:23)
Lord is very pitiful and tender of mercy." (James 5:11) OR "I (God)
will not pity nor spare, nor have mercy." (Jeremiah 13:14)
"Blessed are the peace makers." (Matthew 5:9) OR "The Lord is a
man of war." (Exodus 15:3)
It is estimated that over
9,000 scientific errors have been found in the Bible (e.g. cud-chewing
Hares, straw eating Lions, a flood covering every mountain on earth,
Yet the Catholic Church's
"Dogmatic Constitution" declares in 1965 that God is the true author of
the Bible and all the biblical stories are "accurate and true and
In 1972 Evangelical
Divinity Schools were requiring that all affirm that the "Bible is free
The notion of a god or
gods is rejected by the intelligent or by any person with common sense
and power to reason. But embraced by the fundamentalist no-brains who
have lost the power of reason. They still believe in "fairies at the
bottom of the garden."
Those who choose to live
without this mythical God's convoluted plan for some mythical
salvation, are quite well off without it, free of guilt or need to
believe in a mythology handed down from the Dark Ages, that cannot
stand up to reason or investigation.
Brian de Kretser
Institute for Research
(Investigator 150, 2013
I refer to Brian De
Kretser's article in Investigator #149 on Bible Contradictions.
In this article Brian provided a list of supposed contradictions in the
Bible to demonstrate its unreliability.
Now for some of them I actually agree that it appears that way. One
example that Brian cites is when Jesus sent out the 12 disciples. In
Mark 6:8 Jesus says "take nothing for your journey except a staff".
(Brian incorrectly attributes this to Matthew 6:8). However, in Matthew
10:10 and Luke 9:3 Jesus is recorded as saying "Take nothing for your
journey, not even a staff". Now I am sure that some clever person has
provided a reconciliation of this contradiction. However, explanations
of this type appear lame to me. I don't seek to prove Biblical
inerrancy, and inconsistencies at this level do not concern me. Who
cares if the disciples carried a staff or not? (Actually both Matthew
and Luke had a copy of both Mark and Quelle when they authored their
gospels. They may have simply preferred Quelle to Mark on this
occasion.) What I do contend is that the gospels reflect records based
on highly reliable historical testimony.
The more serious
inconsistencies that Brian claims reflect more on Brian than on the
Bible. He just fails to read the Bible intelligently. I will just
demonstrate this with a few examples.
In Matthew 7:7-8 Jesus
says "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock
and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the
one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be
opened." However, in Luke 13: 23-25 Jesus says, "Make every effort to
enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to
enter and will not be able to. Once the owner of the house gets up and
closes the door, you will stand outside knocking and pleading, 'Sir,
open the door for us.' But he will answer, 'I don't know you or where
you come from.'" So in Matthew Jesus says "Ask and you will receive"
but in Luke some ask to enter but are denied. According to Brian this
is a contradiction. However, in Matthew, Jesus is addressing his
followers, but in Luke he is addressing those who are not his
followers. Brian has just failed to take the context into account.
In Luke 6:27 Jesus
commands his followers to love their enemies. However in Luke 19:27 the
enemies of the king are killed. Again Brian ignores the context. The
first passage applies to Jesus followers and it is well known what it
means. The passage from Luke 19 is taken from Jesus parable of the
vineyard. God is the king and the event refers to the final judgment.
Between now and the final judgment Jesus followers should be kind to
their enemies. They should leave judgment to God. However, the enemies
of God will not get away with their evil forever and will finally be
judged by the king in accordance with their deeds. There is no
If you fail to take
context into account and do not read the text sympathetically then you
can discover all kinds of contradictions that aren't really there, but
that is your problem, not a problem with the text.
Brian concludes, "The
notion of a god or gods is rejected by the intelligent or by any person
with common sense and power to reason..." By this he compliments
himself and maligns those who disagree with him. However, I don't think
that Brian has demonstrated his case.
"CONTRADICTIONS" CLEARED UP
(Investigator 151, 2013
In the 1980s the world of
science began to accept that global destruction by asteroid impact
could one day come from Space. This, however, is something I learned
from the Bible years earlier. (Investigator #62) To appreciate the
power of such evidence Mr De Kretser — who accuses the Bible of
"contradictions, misinformation, plagiarism and mistranslation" (#149)
— should try returning science to its previous position of denial.
Then there is racism
which is opposed in the Bible. Racism killed tens of millions in the
1940s and was defended by numerous scientists but is now refuted by the
science of genetics. To appreciate the power of such evidence De
Kretser should try getting racist beliefs re-accepted as science.
And there are a thousand
other examples showing the Bible regularly correct and its critics
This includes hundreds of
geographical locations archaeologically confirmed, about 100 Bible
people confirmed, and scores of statements in ethics, medicine,
psychology, astronomy, history, theology and zoology, plus numerous
alleged contradictions cleared up (in the Encyclopedia of Bible
Difficulties and other publications).
De Kretser seems to
consider it a contradiction if something is done on one occasion but
something different next time. By this viewpoint someone who breathes
in and then out, or starts his car and later stops it, is contradicting
Are the two statements
"Tony opened the door" and "Tony did not open the door" contradictory?
Only if both statements refer to the same door, the same Tony, and the
same point in time. Change one of these — the person, the door or the
time — and there's no contradiction.
Let us go through De
Q. Is the sequence of
creation in Genesis 1 different to Genesis 2?
A. Genesis 2 is not an
alternative "creation story" to Chapter 1 but focuses on the Garden of
Eden. Compare this to a book in which Chapter 1 gives a broad summary
(e.g. a broad summary of World War I) and subsequent chapters discuss
specifics (e.g. specific battles). To do this is not "contradictory".
Q. Was Adam told he
"would die at once" if he ate of the fruit?
A. Adam's dying began the
same day but took many years to finish. (Genesis 5:4)
Q. Did God decide to
destroy everything on earth (Genesis 6:7-17) but changed his mind and
A. Genesis 6:13 says: "I
will destroy them from the earth [i.e. the land]". Subsequent verses
(6:14 to 7:4) state that representatives of all "kinds" would survive
on the Ark.
Q. "Everyone that asketh,
receiveth, and he that seeketh, findeth, and to him that knocketh, it
shall be opened." (Matthew 7:7-8) OR "Only a few will be saved, and
many will seek to enter but will not be admitted." (Luke 13:23-24)
A. Everyone is invited
into the Kingdom of God but many refuse or delay until too late.
Q. Did Jesus tell his
followers to preach without shoes and staves (Matthew 10:10) OR to take
shoes and staves (Mark 6:8-9)?
A. Matthew 6:9-10 says:
"Take no gold, or silver, or copper in your belts, no bag for your
journey, or two tunics, or sandals, or a staff…" The point (which is
clearer in Mark 6) is, don't take a second pair of sandals or second
Jesus doubtless often
repeated his teachings on the same day to changing audiences. In
Matthew's version some disciples who already had a staff may have asked
about a second staff, so that "Take no staff" meant no additional staff.
Q. Will the earth abide
forever (Ecclesiastes 1:4) OR "Heaven and earth shall pass away..."
(Matthew 24:35; Luke 21:33)
A. Ecclesiastes describes
what people could find out about the world by observation and
experience. One observation is: "A generation goes and a generation
comes, but the earth remains forever." The Hebrew "olam" refers to
unknown/indefinite lengths of time which can be forever but not
necessarily. And that's what was observable — people die but the land
stays. The New Testament goes beyond what ancient people could observe
and foretells of "new heavens and a new earth." (II Peter 3:13)
Q. J.C. was "Prince of
Peace" OR not to send peace but a sword. (Matthew 10:34)
A. Jesus will bring
universal peace (Isaiah 9:6-7), and preached "Blessed are the
peacemakers…" (Matthew 6:9) But until universal peace occurs many
people oppose Jesus. The "sword" refers to conflict within families.
Q. What were Jesus' last
words on the cross?
A. The Gospels are based
on "eyewitnesses". Different witnesses would have observed from
different distances, were present at different but overlapping times,
experienced different distractions, and therefore heard and noticed
In Matthew and Mark Jesus
says: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (27:46; 15:34) These
were not the final words since Jesus was then offered sour wine
(Matthew 27:48) and "gave a loud cry and breathed his last." (Matthew
27:50; Mark 15:37)
John 19:30 states: "When
Jesus had received the wine, he said, 'It is finished.' Then he bowed
his head and gave up his spirit." These words occurred after "My God,
My God…" but they are not the "loud cry".
Jesus' "loud cry"
occurred between saying "It is finished" and bowing his head. Luke
gives the words of this loud cry: "Then Jesus, crying with a loud
voice, said, 'Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.' Having said
this, he breathed his last." (Luke 23:46)
Q. The Roman Church
claims that Peter was the first Bishop of Rome or Pope. But many
scholars are of the opinion Peter never existed. Peter never had that
title; he was invested centuries after he died.
A. Hundreds of New
Testament claims are already confirmed by archaeology, which suggests
that confirmation of Peter will eventually occur. Human bones excavated
under the altar of St Peter's Basilica in Rome in 1968 have been
forensically identified as a 1st century man in his 60s. Peter's bones?
Q. Do the dead "know
nothing" (Ecclesiastes 9:5-6), "they shall not rise" (Isaiah 26:14), or
are they conscious?
A. The theme of
Ecclesiastes is what someone who believes in God could discover about
life's purpose by observing the world. Observation tells him that the
dead "know nothing" (9:5-6) and people die like animals. (3:18-21)
Observation therefore finds no final meaning — "everything is vanity".
The last chapter of
Ecclesiastes goes beyond observation and states: "the spirit shall
return to God who gave it." (12:7) Other Bible passages foretell a
future "resurrection". (Daniel 12:2; John 5:28-29; 11:24-26; Acts 23:6;
"They shall not rise"
(Isaiah 26:14) is true of that time in history and assured the Jews
that the nations (Isaiah 14-25) that had oppressed them and their
rulers (26:13), won't oppress them again.
Q. "Ye are saved through
faith...not works." (Ephesians 2:8-9) OR "By works is man justified,
not by faith." (James 2:24)
A. Faith that "Jesus died
for sinners" (Romans 5:6-8) comes first, but faith also produces "good
works" which demonstrate one's faith.
Q. "Drink wine not water"
(1 Timothy 5:23) OR "Don't drink wine (Proverbs 20:1 & Romans
A. In I Timothy wine is
prescribed for Timothy's stomach ailments. Aside from illness, it's OK
to drink wine in moderation for enjoyment without getting drunk. (Psalm
104:15) However, avoid wine or anything else if it "stumbles" those
"weak in faith" — Romans 14:1-23.
Q. "God has been tempted
10 times." (Numbers 14:22) OR "God can't be tempted." (James 1:13)
A. In the Old Testament
the Hebrew for "tempt" ("Nahsah") can mean "test" as in testing
someone's loyalty, patience or truthfulness. God's patience is "tested"
when evil-doers ignore Him and persist in their evil. God too can
"tempt" by testing people's worthiness for a task or assignment. In
modern English "tempt" often implies trying to entice someone to act
unethically. In this sense God cannot be tempted nor tempts. (James
Q. "Nation shall not lift
up sword against nation." (Micah 4:3) OR "Nation shall rise against
nation." (Matthew 24:7)
A. Matthew refers to wars
between the 1st century and Christ's second coming; Micah refers to the
peace afterwards when God rules humankind.
Q. "Love your enemies."
(Luke 6:27) OR "Kill your enemies." (Luke 19:27)
A. There's a time for
both. Luke 19:27 refers to Christ at his return when he judges — read
from verse 11 onwards.
Q. "With God all things
are possible." (Matthew 19:26) OR "God can't prevail against chariots
of iron." (Judges 1:19)
A. "The LORD was with
Judah, and he [Judah] took possession of the hill country, but could
not drive out the inhabitants of the plain because they had chariots of
iron." (Judges 1:19)
That "the LORD was with Judah" is seen in verses 4-19, but having God's
favor does not guarantee getting everything immediately when one wants
it. Jesus himself said "Not what I want but what you want…"
Q. God punishes children
for their parent's sins unto the 3rd and 4th generations. (Exodus 20:5)
OR The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father. (Ezekiel 18:20)
A. "Punishing the
children" refers to them suffering consequences of their parents'
behavior. That this commonly happens is obvious. New Scientist
magazine reports: "The sins of the fathers are, indeed, visited on
subsequent generations. Nutrition and smoking in early life may
influence the health of men's sons and grandsons, a new study has
revealed." (7 January, 2006, p. 10) Ezekiel 18 refers to judicial
punishment for crime, sin, unrighteousness and negligence. Punishment
for any of these is on the perpetrator, not his relatives.
Q. Was Jesus given
vinegar and gall to drink on the cross (Matthew 27:34) or wine and
myrrh? (Mark 15:23)
A. Not "on" the cross but
before. Two soldiers may each have offered a different drink and Jesus
refused both. Alternatively the vinegar contained both "gall" (a bitter
additive, possibly pain-killer) and myrrh.
Q. "The Lord is very
pitiful and tender of mercy." (James 5:11) OR "I will not pity nor
spare, nor have mercy." (Jeremiah 13:14)
A. Compare today's
judicial system which can protect or punish depending on innocence or
guilt. God is "tender in mercy" but ultimately judges unrepentant,
merciless evil-doers without mercy.
Q. "Blessed are the peace
makers" (Matthew 5:9) or "The Lord is a man of war." (Exodus 15:3)
A. The Bible teaches
peace, and followers of God promote peace. (Romans 12:18) Many people,
however, see peace as weakness and start conflicts and wars. This makes
God their enemy and ultimately brings out his "man of war" or warrior
De Kretser claims
thousands of errors such as cud-chewing hares, straw-eating lions, and
a flood covering all mountains.
Hares and rabbits eat
their own partly-digested fecal pellets and the food therefore goes
through the digestive system twice — a fact discovered in 1940. (#145)
Ruminants such as cattle and deer regurgitate their food for re-chewing
and it goes through part of the digestive system twice. This similarity
explains why Moses refers to hares as "chewers of cud". (#149)
What about "straw-eating"
lions? Isaiah 11:7 pictures straw-eating lions to describe future world
peace. Lions, however, also literally eat grass. Carr (1965) says: "I
am sure it is also the desire to make up a dietary deficiency which
sometimes makes lions eat quantities of fresh grass… This habit is also
quite common with wild lions…" (Return to the Wild, p. 108)
And regarding Noah's
Flood: This was a large local flood since there was "earth" i.e. land
not covered by the water — Genesis 8:1.
De Kretser claims that
all who can reason reject the notion of God.
Actually modern science
developed out of Christianity, millions of science graduates believed
in prayer, and the Human Genome Project was headed by a Christian.
Professor Paul Davies,
physicist and cosmologist, writes: "Through my scientific work I have
come to believe more and more strongly that the physical universe is
put together with an ingenuity so astonishing that I cannot accept it
merely as a brute fact." (The Mind of God, 1992)
Scores of Bible debates on this website: