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Bible contradictions?

Discussion in 'Christian Philosophy & Ethics' started by zika obratkovic, Feb 19, 2018.

  1. zika obratkovic

    zika obratkovic New Member

    United States
    Hello, brothers and sisters in Christ,

    I am wondering about these verses, not only many of them are contradictory, but they seem to condone war, taking captives and slavery. I am having a real trouble understanding these, please help.

    God bless you all.
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. zika obratkovic

    zika obratkovic New Member

    United States
  3. Babe Ruth

    Babe Ruth Active Member

    United States
    I believe in the old Ned Flanders addage:

    I believe everything the Bible says.. even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff.

    Words to live by..
  4. zika obratkovic

    zika obratkovic New Member

    United States
    While I certainly like to think as Ned Flanders, it's simply not logical and truthful. I am seeking a proper answer still.
  5. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    New Zealand
    When looking at a passage of Scripture one must consider the following:
    1. Who is saying it?
    2. Who is he saying it to?
    3. What is the cultural and historical context?
    4. Under what covenant is it being said?
    5. What to the ten verses before and after the quote say?
    6. Is the quote written for us (for our education) or to us (for our instruction)?
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  6. zika obratkovic

    zika obratkovic New Member

    United States
    Again, many of these are written in the same context and historical conditions, yet they are contradictory. I am not a Bible expert, you explain to me how they are not the way I see them currently.
  7. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    New Zealand
  8. salt-n-light

    salt-n-light Well-Known Member Supporter

    United States
    A usually good rule of thumb, anyone resorting to using Leviticus laws as a way to show holes in the Word, gets an automatic F. Those laws were phrase for a particular reason, for those people, and all were not carried to the new testament. Understand that Jesus wasn't in the picture yet, and God promised that the promised Saviour would come through those people, they have to be set apart from the other nations, so more means were necessary to connect with God as well as protect their line.Since Jesus was the fulfillment of all that, a lot of those "destroy people that are sinful" laws had to go away.

    So off the bat, 'punishing immorality' and 'destroying other people', taken out of context. Vengeance is the Lord's. (Romans 12:19)

    The 'slavery and subjugation of women ', were not condoning abuse or of the slaves nor women. And the submission of them to the master/husband is in turn of the master/husband sacrificing their lives for them. This is to illustrate the conditions of the convenantial love between God and His people, The bride ( church) and the bridegroom (Jesus). They were also required to take care of them, especially widows.

    ' Jesus on his Second Coming'
    section, tricky one. Matthew 24 was talking about the generation that would exist at His second coming, but I think Matthew 16 was addressing more of the disciples that would end up seeing His transfiguration before they died.

    'Scientific Errors' -You gotta take note that how they described things scientifically, sometimes will not be the same as how we describe things scientifically. Matthew and Psalms aren't meant to take as scientifically based.

    'Selected Contradictions' I don't see the contradictions,because they are taken out of context. Most of them are not meant to address the exact same line of thought.

    John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. (addressing the individual believer and the surety of peace in their Christian faith)
    Matthew 10:34 Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. (addressing His 2nd coming, and His war against Satan during that time)

    Not the same line of thought.

    How did you find that page anyways?
  9. Unofficial Reverand Alex

    Unofficial Reverand Alex Look up Jason Evert on YouTube; he changed my life Supporter

    United States
    Mskriskris laid out some great points; I'd like to add on 1 more.
    If any of your quotes are coming from the Book of Psalms, that's a different kind of book. It's not so much God's word, as it is man's word to God. Many violent verses can be pulled from there, but we must keep in mind how the world was (and in some areas, still is). The Psalmists lived in an area & time where, at any time, barbarians could charge in, destroy your house, burn down your farm (your primary food supply), steal your livestock, rape your wife before your eyes, and run off again. Of course people will be calling to God to run a sword through their enemies, break their teeth, bring justice to an unjust world! Far more has been written about the Psalms than I could ever read, but one point brought up about them is the artistic aspect; the Psalms are, in part, an expression of man's relationship with God.
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  10. Theadorus

    Theadorus Active Member Supporter

    United States
    On Punishing ‘Immorality’

    Leviticus 20:9

    If anyone curses his father or mother, he must be put to death.


    If a man commits adultery with another man’s wife—with the wife of his neighbor—both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death.


    If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death.

    Deuteronomy 22:20-1

    If, however, the charge is true and no proof of the girl’s virginity can be found, she shall be brought to the door of her father’s house and there the men of her town shall stone her to death. She has done a disgraceful thing in Israel by being promiscuous while still in her father’s house.

    Exodus 35:2

    For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day shall be your holy day, a Sabbath of rest to the LORD. Whoever does any work on it must be put to death.

    One needs to understand that this was true during the Old Covenant, or during the time of the Law but we are no longer under the law anymore because we are now under grace. When the law was in-acted, God began to hold people’s sins against them because that was what the law demanded. You did good, you were blessed; you did bad, you were punished. Now go back before the time of the law, and you see there that the people were under grace as well. God wasn’t holding people’s sins against them (The Flood, and Sodom and Gomorrah were exceptions). Otherwise, Abraham should have been stoned for marrying his ½ sister just like the law required; And Cain should have been put to death because of murdering his brother Able, but God had mercy on them, and even protected Cain, the first murderer. It didn’t mean that God was okay with their sins, but he wasn’t imputing them to man.

    On the Evil of Biblical Law

    Ezekiel 20:25-26

    I also gave them over to statutes that were not good and laws they could not live by; I let them become defiled through their gifts—the sacrifice of every firstborn—that I might fill them with horror so they would know that I am the LORD.

    This is the same reasoning that Paul used in Romans 7. There are a number of verses that show the Law actually brought forth fruit unto death (Romans 7:5), gave sin an occasion against us to work in us all manner of concupiscence (Romans 7:8), made sin revive and kill us (Romans 7:9), and killed us (Romans 7:10), and that sin used the Law to deceive and kill us (Romans 7:11). This is not to say that the Law was sin or was wrong. Paul said just the opposite in Romans 7:12-13.

    However, the purpose of the Law wasn’t to set us free but to bind us (Galatians 3:12). No one could ever live up to all the standards of the Law. The Law showed us our guilt (Romans 3:19) and condemned us (2 Corinthians 3:9). This was necessary so we would not trust in our own righteousness but be ready to put faith in a Savior (Galatians 3:19 and 23-25).

    Both the New International Version and Amplified Bible translations of this verse say the Lord let them defile themselves by offering their children as sacrifices to the devil. The Message says He abandoned them to these actions. It’s certain the Lord never caused people to kill their children in sacrifice to a demon god (Jeremiah 7:31, 19:5, and 32:35).

    Selected Contradictions


    2 Kings 2:11

    As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind.

    John 3:13

    No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man.

    There were Old Testament examples of people who were caught up into heaven, but they didn’t return to tell of what they saw (Genesis 5:21-24 and 2 Kings 2:11). Jesus wasn’t caught up into heaven until after His resurrection, but He is the only one who came down from heaven (John 6:38) to give revelation of what it is truly like. Others had visions, but Jesus had been there. This is a direct reference to His divinity. He existed as God before His physical incarnation.


    Numbers 23:19

    God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind.

    Exodus 32:14

    Then the Lord relented and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened.

    He didn’t lie, there are many verses out there that explain how if a person repents and turns form their ways, that God will not do the things he promised. Take Nineveh for example, judgement was pronounced on them, but because they repented, God turned his wrath from them. There are many example of God taking back judgement on people who humbled themselves and repented.

    But in that exodus example, Moses was the one that interceded on his behalf of the people, and God turned away from his wrath. It happened many times throughout their travels in the desert, but Moses was always there praying on their behalf for forgiveness, otherwise God would have totally destroyed them and made a new nations out of Moses.


    Ephesians 2:8-9

    For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith . . . not by works.

    James 2:14-17

    What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? . . . Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

    There is a saying that actions speak louder than words. Many people say the trust and believe in God to be their provider, or healer, but then on the other hand, talk about how they are going to fail financially, or that if anyone is going to sick they are. In other words, there are no actions behind their faith. It’s faith without any actions behind your faith, that's what dead faith is. Just like how I can say I believe in God all I want, but if I don’t take the step of accepting Christ as my savior, then my faith/words is dead.

    (4) (Jesus speaking)

    Matthew 5:16

    Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your father in heaven.

    Matthew 6:1

    Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them.

    The verse in Matt was talking about hypocrisy. He was warning his disciples not to go around boasting about everything they did. It becomes more clearer as you read on in Matt 6. But as for our light shining, our actions testify to who we are, and can either be used to Glorify God, or not. When we act out of love, or turn the other cheek, or help those in need, our acts of righteousness testify to who we are in Christ and therefore people in turn give glory to God.

    (5) (Jesus speaking)

    John 14:27

    Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.

    Matthew 10:34

    Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.

    This statement seems like a contradiction to some prophecies concerning Jesus (Psalms 72:7, 85:10; Isaiah 9:6-7; and Luke 2:14), some of His own statements concerning peace (John 14:27 and 16:33), and what was written of Him in the New Testament epistles (Romans 5:1, 14:17-19; Ephesians 2:14-17, 4:3; Philippians 4:7; Colossians 3:15; and Hebrews 12:14). However, the peace that Jesus purchased was peace between God and man. We have peace with God (Romans 5:1). We are exhorted to take this peace and extend it to all people (Romans 12:18 and Hebrews 12:14), but it is also made very clear that not all people will receive it (John 16:33 and 2 Timothy 3:12). Therefore, as Jesus was explaining here, the Gospel will always produce opposition from those who don’t receive it.

    This “sword of division,” even among family members, is not God’s will nor is it God who causes it, but it will inevitably come. Jesus was simply preparing His disciples. As much as we would like to see everyone receive the good news, we must not think it’s strange when even our loved ones don’t receive it. Jesus was rejected by His own (John 1:11), and we will be also (Matthew 10:24-25). We must remain faithful to keep preaching the Gospel, for there are others who will receive.


    Genesis 32:30

    So Jacob called the place Peniel, saying, “It is because I saw God face to face, and my life was preserved.”

    Exodus 33:11

    The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend.

    John 1:18

    No one has ever seen God.

    You can also add that Moses saw God

    No one has ever seen the true nature of God. The O.T was a progressive revelation of God, but when Jesus came, he gave us the full revelation of who God was, and his true nature.

    (7) (Jesus speaking)

    John 5:31

    If I testify about myself, my testimony is not valid.

    John 8:14

    Even if I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is valid.

    This is a reference back to the law of Deuteronomy 17:6 where it took the testimony of two or three witnesses to establish anything legally. Any testimony Jesus gave of Himself would, of course, be the truth (John 8:14), but He was simply saying that to be accepted by others as being accurate, He needed the testimony of someone else to bear witness to who He was. Then, He proceeded to use John’s witness (John 5:32) and the miracles that He had done (John 5:36) as well as the Father’s testimony (John 5:37).

    Jesus wasn’t the only one who bore witness of who He really was. The Father had borne witness through the miracles He performed (John 8:18), and John the Baptist had borne witness too. But since nearly everyone around Him was so carnal, Jesus had to speak in His own behalf.
  11. Doug Melven

    Doug Melven Well-Known Member

    United States
    Most of those contradictions are easily explained. Some are a little more difficult.
    First section: On punishing immorality
    God took sin quite seriously, no second chances for dishonoring parents, adultery or Sabbath-breaking.
    These sins were representative of the Covenant.
    Second section: On destroying other people
    These people were given over to sin completely and if allowed to continue could have corrupted the pure line of Christ.
    Third Section: On the evil of Biblical law Ezekiel 20:mad:5-26
    These are the preceding 4 verses
    20:21 Notwithstanding the children rebelled against me: they walked not in my statutes, neither kept my judgments to do them, which if a man do, he shall even live in them; they polluted my sabbaths: then I said, I would pour out my fury upon them, to accomplish my anger against them in the wilderness.
    20:22 Nevertheless I withdrew mine hand, and wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be polluted in the sight of the heathen, in whose sight I brought them forth.
    20:23 I lifted up mine hand unto them also in the wilderness, that I would scatter them among the heathen, and disperse them through the countries;
    20:24 Because they had not executed my judgments, but had despised my statutes, and had polluted my sabbaths, and their eyes were after their fathers' idols.

    They rejected God, God rejected them.

    Fourth section: On Slavery & Subjugation of Women
    First, subjugation of women
    Why was this verse left out of Ephesians 5:22-24
    5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

    Husbands should be willing to die for there wives. That does not sound like subjugation to me.
    Also, look at how Christ loved the church. Gave Himself for it and prays for it continually.

    On slavery
    This is a difficult one, but I don't believe Jesus would want us to go out and get slaves based on His teaching on servants/masters.
    He that would be the greatest among you, let him be servant of all.

    Fifth Section: Jesus, on His Second Coming
    Jesus' Kingdom is here, but He has not yet come in His Father's glory.
    Romans 14:17 The Kingdom of God is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.
    Luke 17:20 The Kingdom of God is within you.

    Sixth section: Scientific Errors
    Rabbits don't chew cud
    " Rabbits actually DO rechew their food, but apparently they swallow the food, poop it out and rechew it a second time directly from their anus (yeah... I know... Do you still want a rabbit for a pet?)"
    Taken from What does "chew the cud" mean?

    No insects (including grasshoppers) are 4-legged.
    It is man's definition that says insects are 6 legged without hands.
    God says otherwise. I know this is about a spider, but I believe it applies to insects as well.
    Proverbs 30:28 The spider taketh hold with her hands, and is in kings' palaces.

    This is only possible on a flat earth.

    pi does not = 3.
    (Sceptics have ridiculed the Bible for saying that the mathematical constant is 3 instead of the more precise 3.14159. (This number is an "irrational number" and needs an infinite number digits to specify it exactly.) Two explanations for the apparent lack of precision in the measurement are given.

    1) The circumference given may be for the inside circumference and the diameter may be the diameter including the thickness of the rim. This would yield a very accurate mathematical result for the inside circumference of thirty cubits. The outside circumference would be about 31.4 cubits giving a rim thickness of four inches or an hand breadth agreeing with 1 Kings 7:26.

    2) In 1 Kings 7:26 we read the vessel "was wrought like the brim of a cup." That is the brim on the top of the vessel was wider than the main part of the vessel. The diameter would be given for the brim. If the brim or lip extended about four inches past the main body of the vessel then the outside circumference of the main part of the vessel would be exactly thirty cubits.

    In each case the mathematical ratio for circumference of the circle is d, where "d" is the diameter and is the number 3.14159 ..... For a more complete discussion on this see the article by Russel Grigg. (r). Editor.)
    Taken from 1 Kings 7:23 He made the Sea of cast metal, circular in shape, measuring ten cubits from rim to rim and five cubits high. It took a line of thirty cubits to measure around it.

    The earth moves. It does not have a foundation.
    Yes, it does have a foundation, I believe it is called bedrock.
    The Earth spins, and it does not move out of its orbit around the sun.

    Seventh section: Selected Contradictions
    Enoch and Elijah were taken up, Jesus went up of His own power.

    God changing His mind.
    God tells us of the cautionary nature of some of His declarations and the fact that He will act in accordance with our choices: “If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted, torn down and destroyed, and if that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent and not inflict on it the disaster I had planned. And if at another time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be built up and planted, and if it does evil in my sight and does not obey me, then I will reconsider the good I had intended to do for it. Now therefore say to the people of Judah and those living in Jerusalem, ‘This is what the Lord says: Look! I am preparing a disaster for you and devising a plan against you. So turn from your evil ways, each one of you, and reform your ways and your actions’” (Jeremiah 18:7– 11). Note the conditional word if: “If that nation I warned repents [like Assyria in Jonah 3] . . . then I will relent.” Conversely, God may tell a nation they will be blessed, but “if it does evil in my sight [like Israel in Micah 1] . . . then I will reconsider the good I had intended to do.”
    Taken from: Does God change His mind?

    Saved by grace alone versus needing works.
    Paul and James are not talking about the same viewpoints.
    In James he is referring to those who SAY they have faith, but they actually don't have it.
    It would be as if someone wearing filthy rags and driving a junk car said, "I have a million dollars in the bank".
    Do you really think he actually has that much money?

    Jesus speaking about good works.
    What is the motive for doing the good deeds? When He says not to do it to be seen, that is meant to not seek glory for yourself.
    When He says to do it so others may see it, He means to do it so God gets the glory.

    Jesus speaking about peace
    Already dealt with by poster above.

    John 1:18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.
    No one has seen the Father is what is being stated here, as He is a Spirit.

    John 5:31 vs John 8:14
    Verse 31. - At this point the Lord proceeds to meet the clamour which most probably arose, the doubt and questioning which broke the silence with which his solemn defence had been received. We can hear between the lines the cries of an excited crowd, declaring that these words are simply his own. Such testimony as this to himself must be sustained and sanctioned. Why and how can this Teacher take such ground as to assert about himself what no prophet, no rabbi, no chief priest of the people, not even the greatest man of men, Moses himself, had ever dared to claim? Christ admits that such assumptions as these need justification and approval over and above his ipse dixit. The words that follow are startling: If I bear witness concerning myself, my witness is not true. At first sight this is in direct contradiction to John 8:14, where, in reply to the Pharisees' "Thou bearest witness concerning thyself; thy witness is nor true," he replied, "Though I bear witness of myself, my witness is true; because I know whence I came, and whither I go." The absolute unison with the Father, which he was not only conscious of, but had also revealed to the Pharisees, lifted his own word to the grandeur of a word of God. The Divine beamed through the human, the infinite through the finite. Here he says, "If I bear - if I and I alone were bearing witness to myself," then - supposing a case, which, as a matter of fact, is impossible - "my witness is not true." If he were acting alone, which is an inconceivable supposition, seeing that in the depths of his consciousness he knew that he was one with the Father, then for his human nature to break away thus from the Father and disdain his testimony would nullify and falsify his witness. He is not bearing witness alone.
    Taken from John 5:31 "If I testify about myself, my testimony is not true.

    No Bible contradictions.
  12. Sketcher

    Sketcher Born Imperishable

    John 3:13 - In this context (made clearer by verses 9-12), Jesus is saying that no person has gone into Heaven to learn of Heavenly things and come back to teach about them. Jesus is not denying the story about Elijah being taken at the end of his life on Earth.

    Numbers 23:19 is not complete without Numbers 23:20 or Numbers 22. God gave a word to bless Israel, and Balaam the diviner could not alter that. God's mode of operation, which has been consistent throughout Scripture, is given in Jeremiah 18:1-8. Balaam may have known this and advised the mass idolatry orgy in Numbers 25:1-3 as the best he could do.

    Anyone who thinks that Ephesians 2:8-9 and James 2:14-17 are contradictory doesn't understand saving faith, or that Abraham's works were an expression of his faith. There are certain things you don't do unless you have faith. Abraham going through the motions he did, for instance - he believed that one way or another, God would create nations from Issac's direct line, even though Issac had no children yet. And God provided a ram and commanded him to not harm the boy.

    Anyone who thinks that Matthew 5:16 and Matthew 6:1 contradict each other fails to get Jesus's message. Jesus demonstrated what this should look like throughout his ministry. Mark 7:36 sums up how he went about doing good, but not making a show of it like many Jews in that day would do. And surprise, surprise, his light shined.

    John 14:27 and Matthew 10:34 are not at all contradictory. Matthew 10 is Jesus briefing his disciples on a short-term mission trip in Judea. John 14-16 is Jesus preparing them for their mission after he dies and rises again. In fact, Jesus told them in John 15:18-16:11 similar things to Matthew 10:14-40.

    John 1:18 is not a denial of the Old Testament stories concerning God, but rather it is speaking to a superior revelation of God in Christ. Moses saw the Lord's backside on the mountain, but all God's fullness dwells in Christ.

    John 5:31 is an example from the Law speaking as a man. John 5:37 speaks of the Father testifying on his behalf. John 8:14 is essentially not backing down from that, speaking in conjunction with the Father.
  13. JackRT

    JackRT Well-Known Member Supporter

    Quite a few of the contradictions listed refer to the cultural context of that particular time and place in history rather than something that is "God ordained".
  14. zika obratkovic

    zika obratkovic New Member

    United States
    Thank you very much, I appreciate it greatly.
  15. zika obratkovic

    zika obratkovic New Member

    United States
    Thank you very much, I appreciate it greatly.
  16. dreadnought

    dreadnought Lip service isn't really service. Supporter

    United States
    United Methodist
    As far as contradictions in the Bible, Paul, Peter, or James might seem to disagree on an issue. Why should that bother anyone? Neither is our Lord.

    The Lord sometimes waged war. Wouldn't you want him to do that for you if you were being oppressed?