How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

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How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1

Post by otseng »

From the On the Bible being inerrant thread:
nobspeople wrote: Wed Sep 22, 2021 9:42 amHow can you trust something that's written about god that contradictory, contains errors and just plain wrong at times? Is there a logical way to do so, or do you just want it to be god's word so much that you overlook these things like happens so often through the history of christianity?
otseng wrote: Wed Sep 22, 2021 7:08 am The Bible can still be God's word, inspired, authoritative, and trustworthy without the need to believe in inerrancy.
For debate:
How can the Bible be considered authoritative and inspired without the need to believe in the doctrine of inerrancy?

While debating, do not simply state verses to say the Bible is inspired or trustworthy.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3091

Post by Athetotheist »

[Replying to otseng in post #3090
What "mechanism" are you referring to? What is the "mechanism" of the Big Bang theory?
Assuming that there was something physical before the BB, physics is the mechanism.

How exactly is divorce a doctrinal position? Is it in any creed or confessional? Is it on any church statement of faith? Do people need to believe in divorce in order to be classified as a Christian?
And I answered:

If your definition of "doctrine" is creed, confession or church statement of faith, then you can't separate doctrine from teaching. To believe doctrinally that everything Jesus did was correct, you have to believe that everything he taught was correct. If he taught anything which wasn't correct, nothing defined as Christian doctrine carries any weight.

We have many believers who have divorced. Are they still Christian?
And I answered:

Whether or not divorcees are Christian isn't the issue. The issue is the irreconcilable difference between why Jesus says divorce was allowed and why Moses says it was allowed.

Jesus already explained why Moses gave the law of divorce, because of the hardness of peoples' hearts. There is no misquoting of the law from Jesus. The religious people back then (and even now) were more concerned with the letter of the law, whereas Jesus was focusing on the heart of the law.
.....after proclaiming in Matthew 5:18 that the letter of the law, every jot and tittle, was still in force and still to be kept. I've pointed out that this is double-mindedness.

It's about the interpretation of what the law of Moses says. At the time of Jesus, there were at a minimum two ways the law could be interpreted by the Jews - the Pharisaical and Sadducaical. There were also the Essenes' views and the Zealots' views, though their views were not explicitly stated in the Bible. Among Among Christians, there are a myriad of ways the law is interpreted. Just on the topic of divorce alone there are many views.
Let's see how that works out:

Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

“Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?”

Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.”

And they answered and said to him, "That's just your interpretation of the Torah."

And Jesus, realizing that he couldn't argue with this, apologized and left.


Here are the verses:

Deut 4:2 (KJV)
2 Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish [aught] from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.

Deut 11:13 (KJV)
13 And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the LORD your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul,

Deut 13:18 (KJV)
18 When thou shalt hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, to keep all his commandments which I command thee this day, to do [that which is] right in the eyes of the LORD thy God.

Again, it's your interpretation, it's not what the text explicitly says.
How is it not what the text explicitly says when it's literally copied word for word from the text?

Further, I've never heard from anyone say that it is the letter of the law that we should follow.
I refer you----once again----to Jesus's "not-one-jot-or-tittle-shall-pass-from-the-law" statement in Matthew 5:18.

Deut 13:18 does not say divorce is right.

Deu 13:18
When thou shalt hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, to keep all his commandments which I command thee this day, to do that which is right in the eyes of the LORD thy God.
Deut. 13:18 does say that divorce is right, because "all his commandments which I command thee this day" include the command not to add to the law. If the law permits divorce and everything the law permits is "right in the eyes of the LORD", then the divorces permitted by the law must be right.

As a matter of fact, where in the Bible does it command someone to divorce?
Again, it's not about the law commanding divorce; it's about the law not prohibiting divorce.

As for not swearing/making a vow, it's another example of Jesus getting to the heart.
It's another example of Jesus violating the law's command not to add to the law.
There isn't really any contradiction with what Jesus said and Num 30:2.
There is a contradiction between what Jesus says and Deut. 4:2.


Moses does not say, "Do not swear at all" and does say, "Do not add to the law".
Again, where does it say "do not add to the law"?
Deuteronomy 4:2. You can drop that verse down an Orwellian memory hole as often as you want; it's not going away.

Your argument boils down to Jesus broke the command not to add to the commands. Again, I believe it was an interpretation of the command as you acknowledged that the Jews also did with the passages on divorce.
If others violated the law, did that give Jesus license to do so?

And if the Pharisees interpreted the law differently from the way Jesus did, what right did he have to criticize them for it?

I'm not presenting any scripture as an argument for the TS.
That's just as well, since Christian scripture doesn't support the TS.


Why would Jehovah raise from the dead someone who had made a false statement about him, thus giving the false impression that the false statement was true?
Even if someone makes an erroneous statement, it does not preclude God from being able to resurrect that person.
If someone makes an erroneous statement about what a code of law says, that does preclude God from resurrecting that person as a fulfiller of that law. I've repeatedly cited examples of Jesus misrepresenting and countermanding the law of Moses, and all you've been able to do is hide behind "interpretation". So tell me----if the image on the Turin cloth is somehow supernatural and a Hindu interprets it as evidence that Jesus was the tenth avatar of Vishnu, how do you argue that the Hindu is wrong?

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3092

Post by otseng »

Athetotheist wrote: Wed Aug 23, 2023 10:51 pm Assuming that there was something physical before the BB, physics is the mechanism.
Actually, that's not possible. Even at the very beginning with the singularity, the laws of physics does not apply.
And I answered:
Yes, we had a long back and forth on divorce and inerrancy. Again, it has no direct relevance with the resurrection.
That's just as well, since Christian scripture doesn't support the TS.
It explicitly supports it up to the moment Jesus was buried in it. As for post resurrection, I believe there are indirect references to it.
I've repeatedly cited examples of Jesus misrepresenting and countermanding the law of Moses, and all you've been able to do is hide behind "interpretation".
Yes, and I've repeatedly argued you are incorrect with your interpretation. So, who's the one hiding behind the interpretation? And why do you want to spend so much time on debating something that no direct bearing on the resurrection? Is it because you have no arguments that can directly address it?
So tell me----if the image on the Turin cloth is somehow supernatural and a Hindu interprets it as evidence that Jesus was the tenth avatar of Vishnu, how do you argue that the Hindu is wrong?
If they have Hindi texts that claim this, then we can explore that claim.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3093

Post by otseng »

Richard Corfield wrote an article, Chemistry in the face of belief, Dec 2013, discussing the 1988 C-14 dating and the shroud.
The Shroud is one of the most important relics in the Christian church and almost from the moment that Willard Libby invented the radiocarbon dating technique in the 1940s, the Shroud has been an obvious and high profile candidate for measurement. The problem in those days was that carbon-14 is present in such low abundance that for many years very large sample sizes (handkerchief size or larger) would have been required for a measurement to be made. And removing – and destroying – such a large sample would never have been permitted.

The subsequent development of AMS radiocarbon dating meant that smaller samples (of about 50mg weight) could be measured. An added benefit was that the technique became more sensitive, with its potential time range almost doubling from 50,000 to 100,000 years. A sample that could not, by definition, be more than two thousand years old should be easy to date.
https://www.chemistryworld.com/features ... 18.article
One area of the Shroud, selected because it was obvious that it was not a later repair but the original fabric, was sampled by two Italian textile experts in the presence of Tite and Anastasio Ballestrero – a cardinal and the archbishop of Turin.
Highly doubtful the sample area was selected because they knew it was not a repair. If what he means is because it was not a repair done by the Poor Clare nuns, that is true. But what is claimed by Joe Marino is that area was done by someone else, not the nuns. So they would not have known about it.
After the samples were taken, they – and the two control samples that had been selected from other, unrelated, ancient fabrics – were taken into an adjoining room where they were sealed into metal ampoules labelled only A, B and C.
And they could never explain why they had to go into another room to put the samples into the vials.
Never in the history of radiocarbon dating were samples treated with such care.
Actually, completely the opposite. I've pointed out 12 protocol violations that happened with the testing:
viewtopic.php?p=1113255#p1113255

As art historian Thomas de Wesselow states, "The carbon dating of the shroud will probably go down in history as one of the greatest fiascos in the history of science."

After the measurements were made, the media lid became hermetic and the silence deafening. And then in February 1989, the results were published in Nature after painstaking statistical work by Tite.
That's incorrect. BBC was there while they were doing the testing and also broke the results prior to the 1989 Nature official report.
1988 May. Although everything related to the results was to be confidential, no less than a BBC TV crew filmed the testing at the Zurich lab. The program was broadcast well before the announcement of the dates on October 13th.

The BBC film team was present in Wolfli's laboratory when he broke the seals of his three containers and laid out the cloth pieces before him, and anyone could see which one belonged to the Turin Shroud.
http://newvistas.homestead.com/POLITICS ... UD_PT3.pdf
The last being suggestions that the scientists in charge had swapped samples in between sampling and measurement.
I do not believe samples were switched. But it is understandable why some would suspect this when the samples were placed into the vials in another room and it was not filmed.
In fact no such chicanery was possible since the characteristic herringbone weave of the Shroud clearly identified it to all the scientists in the three labs as soon as the ampoules were opened.
Yes, and this is evidence it was not a blind test.
The problem with that argument is that no radiocarbon sample’s provenance is ever known.
This is an interesting admission. If this is true, then why do skeptics argue the shroud's lack of a known provenance shows it is not authentic?

Corfield mentions a few proposed hypotheses for what could've affected the C-14 dating:
Of the credible hypotheses, one centred on the possibility that the radiocarbon age of the Shroud had been altered by the fact that it was exposed to high temperatures during a fire in 1532.

Another plausible hypothesis involves the possibility that textile fibres can gain a coat of biofilm over the years.
He does not even mention the invisible reweave hypothesis.
Ramsey is responsive to reasoned criticisms of the dating of the Shroud, which is why he is open to the idea of resampling. ‘I don’t think it’s very healthy for people to go around in circles wishing various things to be true. I think that damages science. So, I would quite like to see [the date] either corroborated or not; that’s a very useful thing to know 25 years after the original dating.’
It goes both ways, even the C-14 scientists should not go around in circles wishing for things to be true.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3094

Post by Athetotheist »

[Replying to otseng in post #3092

Assuming that there was something physical before the BB, physics is the mechanism.
Actually, that's not possible. Even at the very beginning with the singularity, the laws of physics does not apply.
The present laws of physics may not have applied, but it can be assumed that some principle did.


I've repeatedly cited examples of Jesus misrepresenting and countermanding the law of Moses, and all you've been able to do is hide behind "interpretation".
Yes, and I've repeatedly argued you are incorrect with your interpretation. So, who's the one hiding behind the interpretation? And why do you want to spend so much time on debating something that no direct bearing on the resurrection? Is it because you have no arguments that can directly address it?
You've repeatedly tried to dismiss my direct, verbatim citations as an "interpretation", presumably because you have nothing else to go on. I've argued----with those citations----that their inconsistency has a direct bearing on the resurrection since no one who taught as inconsistently as Jesus did would have been so resurrected.

When you quoted me above, here's the part you left out:

"If someone makes an erroneous statement about what a code of law says, that does preclude God from resurrecting that person as a fulfiller of that law."

From post #2999:

I said:

"You realize that there's no way to follow the new preacher's teaching without violating the law of Moses, but at the same time he says that the law of Moses isn't to be violated."

You responded:

I would agree with that as well.
Here you concede that Jesus was not a fulfiller of law.


Which translation of the Bible renders Deut. 28:58-59 like this.....?

"If you do not carefully follow all the words of this law, which are written in this book, and do not revere this glorious and awesome name—the Lord your God—, your individual interpretations of the text are perfectly fine and it means whatever you think it means."


So tell me----if the image on the Turin cloth is somehow supernatural and a Hindu interprets it as evidence that Jesus was the tenth avatar of Vishnu, how do you argue that the Hindu is wrong?
If they have Hindi texts that claim this, then we can explore that claim.
Would you accept the Hindu's "interpretation" of his own religious text, or would you insist on coming up with your own?


And you haven't answered my other question: What gave Jesus the right to question the Pharisees' "interpretation" of the divorce law?

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3095

Post by otseng »

Athetotheist wrote: Fri Aug 25, 2023 12:39 am The present laws of physics may not have applied, but it can be assumed that some principle did.
Same with the TS.
You've repeatedly tried to dismiss my direct, verbatim citations as an "interpretation", presumably because you have nothing else to go on.
I've been more than gracious of going down this long rabbit trail and presenting many posts in response to this. It is not I who is avoiding the real debate, which is the resurrection.
"You realize that there's no way to follow the new preacher's teaching without violating the law of Moses, but at the same time he says that the law of Moses isn't to be violated."

You responded:
I would agree with that as well.
Then I misunderstood and retract that statement. I had read that as "You realize that there's no way to follow the new preacher's teaching, but at the same time he says that the law of Moses isn't to be violated."
So tell me----if the image on the Turin cloth is somehow supernatural and a Hindu interprets it as evidence that Jesus was the tenth avatar of Vishnu, how do you argue that the Hindu is wrong?
If they have Hindi texts that claim this, then we can explore that claim.
Would you accept the Hindu's "interpretation" of his own religious text, or would you insist on coming up with your own?
You need to present the actual text first and not simply propose some hypothetical text.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3096

Post by otseng »

Earlier, I had mentioned I consider Hugh Farey to be a very educated shroud skeptic:
otseng wrote: Tue Jun 20, 2023 7:03 am I'll even let you know who I consider to be the most educated shroud skeptic there is - Hugh Farey. He has many articles and is very active in the shroud community.
Well, I now have the privilege of actually debating with him!

I had spoken at church on the TS and posted it on YouTube.



And somehow it got the attention of Hugh Farey. You can follow our conversation in the comment section of the video.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3097

Post by Athetotheist »

[Replying to otseng in post #3095
I've been more than gracious of going down this long rabbit trail and presenting many posts in response to this. It is not I who is avoiding the real debate, which is the resurrection.
Even if the Turin cloth were to give you a resurrection, which is far from certain, it wouldn't be the resurrection of the Jesus of the Christian Bible. The Christian claim is that Jesus was the Jewish Messiah, and Jesus's violations of the law of Moses disqualify him from that role.


"You realize that there's no way to follow the new preacher's teaching without violating the law of Moses, but at the same time he says that the law of Moses isn't to be violated."

You responded:

I would agree with that as well.
Then I misunderstood and retract that statement. I had read that as "You realize that there's no way to follow the new preacher's teaching, but at the same time he says that the law of Moses isn't to be violated."
Then how do you follow Jesus's teaching without violating the law of Moses?


Would you accept the Hindu's "interpretation" of his own religious text, or would you insist on coming up with your own?
You need to present the actual text first and not simply propose some hypothetical text.
"Some people believe that Jesus was an avatar, or divine being, who came to Earth to teach humanity about love and peace. Others believe that Jesus was a great teacher and prophet, but not an avatar. Still others believe that Jesus was simply a man who lived and died like any other. Ultimately, what each person believes about Jesus is a matter of faith."

https://www.dvaita.org/is-jesus-an-avatar-of-vishnu-2/

That's a lot like your take on the Bible, isn't it?

From the same source:

"Because it is a mythical term, it can be perfect or imperfect in the theology of avatar. As a theologian, Dr. Paul David Tripp claims, the term “avatar” refers to Hindu mythology rather than Christian theology. The figure is referred to as a messenger or god in Hinduism in order to benefit others. The term ‘incarnation’ is used in Christian theology to describe the arrival of Jesus Christ into the world. In the flesh, Jesus was imperfect and made mistakes. He is also the perfect God, in addition to being God in the flesh."

There's a take on Jesus which allows for the imperfect behavior he exhibits in Christian text, making a Hindu "interpretation" of Jesus potentially more viable than the Christian one.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3098

Post by otseng »

Athetotheist wrote: Fri Aug 25, 2023 11:05 pmEven if the Turin cloth were to give you a resurrection, which is far from certain, it wouldn't be the resurrection of the Jesus of the Christian Bible.
The Shroud of Turin matches the account of the Biblical text in the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus. So, yes, it would be the resurrection of Jesus in the Christian Bible.
Would you accept the Hindu's "interpretation" of his own religious text, or would you insist on coming up with your own?
You need to present the actual text first and not simply propose some hypothetical text.
"Some people believe that Jesus was an avatar, or divine being, who came to Earth to teach humanity about love and peace. Others believe that Jesus was a great teacher and prophet, but not an avatar. Still others believe that Jesus was simply a man who lived and died like any other. Ultimately, what each person believes about Jesus is a matter of faith."

https://www.dvaita.org/is-jesus-an-avatar-of-vishnu-2/
This is not a religious text, but simply someone's opinion.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #3099

Post by Athetotheist »

[Replying to otseng in post #3098
The Shroud of Turin matches the account of the Biblical text in the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus. So, yes, it would be the resurrection of Jesus in the Christian Bible.
But Jesus doesn't meet the criteria for the Jewish Messiah, so it doesn't matter if the Turin cloth matches Jesus.

This is not a religious text, but simply someone's opinion.
But it's based on religious text, so their "opinion" would be an interpretation.

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Start discussing the Messiahship of Jesus

Post #3100

Post by otseng »

Athetotheist wrote: Sat Aug 26, 2023 11:01 pm But Jesus doesn't meet the criteria for the Jewish Messiah, so it doesn't matter if the Turin cloth matches Jesus.
OK, we can now go into if Jesus was the Messiah.

There's two main arguments Jesus was the Messiah - artifact evidence and textual evidence.

The artifact evidence is the TS. It testifies to the plan of salvation for all people, that Jesus was the sacrifice for the sins of all people and he conquered death and sin through his resurrection from the dead.

The textual evidence is the Bible. We can look at it both from the OT and NT point of view.

Jesus fulfilled the prophecies of the OT, in particular Isa 53.

Isa 53
1 Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?
2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, [there is] no beauty that we should desire him.
3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were [our] faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
5 But he [was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.
8 He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither [was any] deceit in his mouth.
10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put [him] to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong [his] days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, [and] shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore will I divide him [a portion] with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Some NT references to Jesus being the Messiah:

Mat 16:16-17
And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed [it] unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

Jhn 11:27
She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.

Mar 14:61-62
But he held his peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him, and said unto him, Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed? 62 And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

Heb 5:5
So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee.

Luk 4:41
And devils also came out of many, crying out, and saying, Thou art Christ the Son of God. And he rebuking them suffered them not to speak: for they knew that he was Christ.
This is not a religious text, but simply someone's opinion.
But it's based on religious text, so their "opinion" would be an interpretation.
Please present the Hindi religious text the interpretation is based on.

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