Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Inerrant Errors, Infallible Fallacies

At the center of Christianity sits the Bible. This book is said to be instructions from a non-physical, supremely omnipotent, and perfectly good being - God - on how to live and get into Heaven. Heaven is a place of happiness and bliss that, if you follow God’s commands, you will go to after you’re dead. It also includes stories on how the universe was made, why humans are innately evil (as God says they are), and many stories of humans and their dealings with God, back when he used to show himself all the time. This book cannot contain errors, because if it did, it couldn’t be the word of an omnipotent being.

This book has glaring errors. There are scientific errors, historical errors, conflicting accounts of events, contradicting statements on right/wrong, contradicting statements on the nature of God, accounts of acts sanctified by God that are immoral today, and in general a lot of strange passages that don’t seem to belong in a perfect book. About half of the contradictions I have used here are taken from The Skeptic’s Annotated Bible, which is an invaluable source for this stuff.

Jesus himself states that religious laws are not absolute:

Scientific errors:
  • Lev. 11:6 states rabbits chew their cud
  • Lev. 11:20-23 talks about four-legged insects, including grasshoppers
  • 1 Chronicles 16:30 and Psalm 93:1 states that the Earth is immobile, but not only does in revolve around the sun, it is gravitationally influenced by other bodies
  • Genesis 1: 1) states that the Earth was created from the beginning of the universe, when in fact the Earth formed 9.5 billion years after the beginning of our universe. 2) God creates light before he makes light-producing objects. 3) “night” and “day” existed before there was a sun to mark them.
Historical errors:
  • no flood ever happened: Egypt had a flourishing civilization, starting long before Noah, and it was never interrupted by a flood
  • there were a multitude of Egyptian scholars a the time of God’s ten curses on the Egyptians. You’d think someone would’ve mentioned raining frogs, devastating plagues, or all of the nation’s firstborn sons dying
  • Daniel 5 states that Nebuchadnezzar, the Babylonian king, was succeeded on the throne by his son, Belshazzar. but historians tell us that Belshazzar was not the son of Nebuchadnezzar, and was never king.
  • the family lines of the Bible add up to an Earth that is about 6,000 years old. This is inconsistent with everything we know about the universe. Chemistry, physics, biology, geology, astronomy - all these fields tell us this isn’t true.
Contradictory accounts:
  • there are two differing genesis accounts: one where the animals were created first, then the first man and woman created simultaneously (Gen. 1:25-27), and a second where man was created first, then the animals, then the woman from the man’s rib (Gen. 2:18-22)
  • differing accounts of where Jesus first appeared to the eleven disciples after the resurrection: Matthew 28:16 says on top of a mountain in Galilee, while Mark 16:14, Luke 24:33-37, and John 20:19 state that it was in a room in Jerusalem.
  • when did Jesus ascend into Heaven after the resurrection? On the day of his resurrection: Luke 24:1-51, Mark 16:9-19. At least 8 days after the resurrection: John 20:26. “Many” days after the resurrection: Acts 13:31. 40 days after the resurrection: Acts 1:2-3, 9
  • who buried Jesus? Joseph of Arimathea: Matthew 27:57-60, Mark 15:43-46, Luke 23:50-53. Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus: John 19:38-42. The Jews and their rulers: Acts 13:27-29
  • two very conflicting genealogies of Jesus: Mark 1:6-16 and Luke 3:21-31
  • I have also posted a video in the links on the right of the page about the many glaring contradictions between the Four Gospels’ account of Jesus’ tomb after the resurrection.
The nature of God:Morals:Immorality of God:
  • Story of Jephthah, Judges 11: Jephthah asks God for military victory, and in return Jephthah promises to kill whoever comes out of his house first to greet him when he returns, and offer the body up to God (trade military victory for human sacrifice). God accepts his deal, and helps Jephthah commit a “great slaughter.” Jephthah then goes home and sacrifices his daughter.
  • Sodom and Gomorrah, Genesis 19: God basically nukes two cities. Surely there were innocent children? He also chooses Lot and his family to be allowed to escape before the nuking, because they are good and should not be killed. But then Lot’s wife turns back to look at the destruction, and gets turned into a pillar of salt, and Lot himself gets drunk in a cave and impregnates his two daughters.
One flaw is all it takes to stop something from being inerrant. Here I have listed only a fraction of them. To see more, I highly recommend visiting The Skeptic's Annotated Bible.

- Evan

1 comment:

  1. Interesting post, Evan. I was raised Catholic, and it wasn't until the last 4 years or so that I started to really question my beliefs. I'm glad that I finally did...better late than never :) Anyways, I enjoy your blog. I've got a book that I think you will like- I'll bring it Thursday.