2/ Can the bible be relied upon, as a historic record?
It is the fundamental belief of all Jews, (the only surviving tribe out of twelve) that the Old Testament is “The Word of God”. The Christians believe the Old and New Testament.
With this in mind, they believe, that it is without error, and written under the direct inspiration of God. They teach and conclude, that it is “the truth” and that God is not the author of false lies or confusion. “For all scripture is given under the inspiration of God” (a subject for further study)
If this is true, then why do we find literally hundreds of contradictions within it?
How can we rely on its authenticity as historic literature, if it counter claims itself?
(We will look at the subject of Biblical contradictions - in a further chapter)
On many an occasion, it states as historic fact one thing, and then latter, says another. So how then can this be seen and believed as historically accurate?
Here is one of the many contradictions found in the bible, regarding eye witnesses to the existence of god. In the Old Testament we read in: Gen. 32: 30, “I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved” Then in the New Testament we read: John. 1:18, “No man has seen God at any time”
So much for eye witnesses, these two testimonies can’t even agree with each other. As far as it being a reliable testimony, I don’t think so.
I was handed a skit the other day by a friend depicting a courtroom scene, I do not know who wrote it. (If anyone knows the identity of the author, I would gladly give him/her the credit, for such a master piece)
Lawyer: “Your Honor, I would like to read from the evidence that I have acquired, on the case in question.”
Judge: “When and where does this evidence come from?”
Lawyer: “They were written about seventy years or so after the fact, your Honor.”
Judge: “I beg your pardon, are you saying that you didn’t collect this evidence yourself?”
Lawyer: “Ah, no your honor, but I am confident that the persons responsible for writing and collecting them, where of good standing.”
Judge: “Is this evidence written by direct eye witnesses?”
Lawyer: “Ah, not necessarily, Sir, some, maybe.”
Judge: “Not necessarily, some, maybe, did you say?”
Lawyer: “Yes your honor, but some of them may have been, your……”
Judge: “So they are hearsay then?”
Lawyer: “Yer…. No, but.”
Judge: “Are they or are they not man? You say they were written down after the actual event and that your not sure if they are hearsay, is that what you are saying, or not?”
Lawyer: “Yes your honor, as I stated before, about seventy years, maybe a little more, but ah, I do have it on good account, that most scholars agree that the translations are reasonably accurate.”
Judge: “Translation, good god man, you say, reasonably accurate, weren’t they even written in English?”
Lawyer: “Well your honor, they couldn’t have been, as the English language did not existence at the time.”
Judge: “Let me see if I heard you correctly, your saying that this supposed evidence that you wish to present before my court, firstly, was written down before the English language was even in existence, how long before.?”
Lawyer: “Um, about a thousand years your honor.”
Judge: “A thousand years! How old are this suspect evidence then?”
Lawyer: “Ah, nearly two thousand years, give or take a decade or two, your honor.”
Judge: “And you expect this court to take this evidence seriously, do you?”
Lawyer: “Well yes sir, I have it on good authority that is reliable, as everyone accepts and believes it to be, your honor.”
Judge: “Oh you don’t say, then who exactly, is everyone?”
Lawyer: “Well, all the people that believe in them, Sir.”
Judge: “Do you know anyone who doesn’t believe in them?”
Lawyer: “Ah, yes, of course your honor, but they are all unreliable and unbelievers your honor. They have denied the truth of this evidence, and, are heathen’s sir.
Judge: “And what make you say that they are unreliable?”
Lawyer: “Well your honor, these accounts, well they are the truth, or it is believed to be the truth, so it stands to reason that anyone who says they aren’t, are unreliable, doesn’t it? - Ah your honor - Sir.”
Judge: “I can not believe what I’m hearing, I find that these reports - of so called, reliable evidence, to be totally outside the parameters and guiding principle of this court, and to even consider these documents as conclusive proof of anything, would be to ridicule the justice system of this country. Just one more thing, before I dismiss you for wasting the courts and my time with these absurd ideas that you, and ‘everyone else’, as you put it, where on earth did you find this supposed documented evidence?”
Lawyer: “Ah, yes your honor, um, in this courtroom your honor, you made all involved in this case, hold them up and swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, your worship, ah, your eminence, Sir.”
Judge: “Oh, those accounts.”
I think that quite sums it up.
Just because a person or persons believes something to be the true, does not make it the truth -. It is only evident that those people believe it to be. - What they believe is only the truth, because they believe it so, and not because it is, because it may not be.
The bible hasn’t even enough evidence within itself, to prove its own message. The only available evidence to Judaism and Christianity is the bible or history, both of which give a horrific testimony of cruelty and evil. The modern gospel however, does not teach such things, it carefully conceals them. But this does not excuse or eliminate its historic witness. Both history and the bible, are religions worst enemy, as we will find out.
Think about it.
We found that the bible can not be relied upon as a historic record, because it contains to many contradictions, not to mention its suspect translations and then interpretations.