“The Bible is the inerrant Word of God,” or so says many Christians.
But it’s not. I’m sorry, but I’m not sorry.
Now, before you gird up your loins and fit yourself ready for battle, here’s 7 reasons why I say such an inflammatory thing.
I. The Bible Never Claims to Be
Let’s start with the obvious. The Bible never claims to be the inerrant Word of God. Not in Genesis. Not in Exodus. Not in Deuteronomy. Not in the rest of Torah. Not in the Prophets. Not in Psalms. Not in the Apocrypha. Not in the Gospels. Not in the Epistles. Never. Not once. Nunca. Zilch. Nada.
II. The Bible Says Christ Is
In John’s prologue, however, the Bible tells us that Christ is the “Word” of God. Better yet, Christ is the “Logos” of God. What is the Logos? Put simply, according to Greek philosophy, the Logos is the “structuring principle of reality.” Again . . . Christ. Not the Bible.
III. The Bible is Human
Sure, the Bible is inspired by God. But what isn’t? Humans are inspired by God, too. Other books are inspired by God. The Bhagavad Gita is inspired by God. The Koran is inspired by God. My books are inspired by God (though perhaps not entirely endorsed by God). And no one would claim we are inerrant. Well, unless you are a narcissist. Then perhaps you’d argue for personal inerrancy. But for the rest of us, we’re aware that we mess up. We’re aware that we aren’t “without error.”
IV. The Bible Contains Errors
Let’s put aside the crazy stuff for a second – like a sun that stops midway through the sky (imagine what would happen if that really happened!), or leviathans that roam the open waters, or dragons with 7 heads, or wooden ships that contain meat-eating predators for half a year without having prey to devour. The Bible contains theological errors. How do I know? It makes contradictory claims. That’s okay though, because again, it’s human. Humans debate. Humans disagree. And that’s okay.
V. There Are Different Bibles
Yes, that’s right! There are different Bibles. You may need to sit down Protestants, but other Christians have more than 66 books. Catholics have 73. Eastern Orthodox have 75. Georgian Orthodox and Russian Orthodox have 76. And the Ethiopian have a whopping 81+. That’s 15 more than Protestants! ‘Nuff said.
VI. The Bible Has Been Edited . . . A lot!
The Bible as we currently know it has undergone a lot of changes. It’s been edited. Heavily. Hell, it was even edited for the folks in the Bible. What?! Yeah, I know. The Septuagint – the Greek translation of the Hebrew Masoretic Text – was translated and interpreted by 70 (or 72) Jewish scholars and then that was the “Bible” folks were using. So, I guess that doesn’t necessarily mean it still isn’t the “Word of God,” but . . . c’mon, it’s not likely, is it?
VII. Jesus Didn’t Have a Bible
News flash: Jesus didn’t carry a Bible with him. That wasn’t a thing back then, unless you were a scholar at a University or something. And sure, while Jesus studied his Scriptures, it’s not entirely clear what his Scriptures were. Why? Because, like Christianity, different Jewish sects have different canons. Further, when Jesus did quote Scripture, he, like Paul after him, did so creatively. In my book Heretic!, I give a bunch of examples.
So, there you go. Now that you’re good and pissed, feel free to come at me in the comments. But beware, haters and trolls get banned quicker than water gets turned into wine.
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