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This argument is generally based on a misunderstanding of Genesis 2. Genesis provides us with a chronological account of what God did on each day during the week of creation. Genesis focuses in on day six and shows the events that took place on this day. If you look at what happened on day six, you see there is no discrepancy here.

In this chapter, we see that Adam is created Genesis and the Garden of Eden is created Genesis We also see the description of a river system in Eden Genesis Adam is put in the Garden and given instructions Genesis Adam names some of the kinds of animals Genesis In this chapter, God also creates Eve Genesis and a description is given of Adam and Eve being joined together Genesis At first glance, you may wonder how Chapter 2 is out of line with Chapter 1.

The issue many people have with Genesis 2 is that the order of the creation of man, animals and trees seems to contradict the order stated in Genesis 1. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. When you first look at these two texts against each other, there seems to be a contradiction because in Genesis 1, the text has the animals and trees created prior to the creation of man.

However, if you understand the original language of the text and the translation process, both of these issues are resolved. The Hebrew word for formed in both passages is yatsar. In particular translations like the New King James version previously mentioned the verb is translated in its perfect form. However, when the Hebrew word is translated in its pluperfect form, it reads had formed these creatures.

He brought them to man to see what he would name them. Surely, it is not reasonable to demand that a believer in inerrancy plod through one billion potential contradictions to prove negatives in every case. Instead, the believer in inerrancy can argue there is no proof for the existence of contradictions in the Bible, thus they don't believe in Biblical errancy thus they believe in inerrancy -- being without error. For papal encyclicals on the official Catholic teaching of Biblical inerrancy and approach to interpretation see. At this point, the critic's list comes in. It proposes to demonstrate that the Bible is full of contradictions, and the list of purported contradictions was one such demonstration.

And at this point, our response comes in. I have noticed several things about the list we are about to respond to and the nature of the purported contradictions. The List Such lists are quite common and have been around for decades. I have also encountered them on various BBSs throughout the years. My first impression is to scan such lists, noticing claims which are obviously bogus, and others which are quite challenging.

Because the lists are so long I tend to rationalize that any list which would include obviously bogus "contradictions" is suspect and that the more challenging ones could probably be resolved with some effort. The list has a psychological power in that it intimidates simply because of it's length and multitude of claims.

Your average reader simply does not have the time to respond to claims of contradictions! Thus, such lists often go largely unanswered, leaving the critic to believe that no one can answer it. I think a critic would do better in making a much shorter list 10 or 20 which contains what he considers to be the best examples of Bible contradictions. The Contradictions I have noticed that the supposed contradictions can in essence be classified according to the erroneous assumptions or methodologies that they employ.

A popular mistake is to take things out of context. It is easy to "create contradictions" when there are none by violating the context of the passage s in question. More significant, though less mentioned, is violating the context of belief. Christian understanding is a synthesis of many beliefs, and Biblical teachings are often interpreted through this background belief which has been synthesized. Such a synthesis may include other facts, not directly related to the contradiction in question, but nevertheless, relevant.

When the critic proposes a contradiction, he ought to do so within the context of this background belief. By failing to do this, he merely imposes alien concepts into the text as if they belong. This error is common when the critic tries to cite contradictions related to doctrine or beliefs about the nature of God. For example, orthodox Christians believe in the Trinity. One could argue about this concept elsewhere, but trying to impose contradictions by ignoring Trinitarian belief violates the context provided by the Christian's background belief.

Or consider a mundane example. Say that Joe is recorded as saying that Sam is not his son.

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But elsewhere, he is recorded as saying that Sam is his son. An obvious contradiction, right? But what if one's background belief about Joe and Sam includes the belief that Sam is Joe's adopted son? By ignoring the context this belief provides, one perceives contradictions where there are none.

The critic sometimes assumes that the Biblical accounts are exhaustive in all details and intended to be precise. This is rarely the case. As such, the critic builds on a faulty assumption and perceives contradictions where none exist. Also related to the context problem: Let's say that the only records of Joe speaking about Sam are the two cases where he affirms and denies that Sam is his son. Certainly Joe said many other things in his life, but they were not recorded -- including the fact that he adopted a boy and named him Sam. Another real-life case concerns a newspaper report which lists the time of birth of twin babies.

The first was born at AM, and second was born at AM. You have to know the whole story, or at least have a plausible explanation. Since the accounts in the Bible are rarely intended as exhaustive and precise descriptions, it would be prudent to see if differing accounts complement, rather than contradict one another. The critic seems to assume that the Bible is written in one genre: a literal and descriptive account.

Since the Bible is actually many books of different genres by several different authors, the critic's assumption leads her astray if it is used to create contradictions. Another point is related to the one above, namely, the alleged contradictions are often a function of a particular interpretation.

Thus, the "contradiction" exists only if the correct interpretation is applied by the author, and this is often not the case or at least, it is often not clear if this is the case. For example, in many situations, the critic uses particular incidents or rules of thumb and interprets these as absolute principles. Sometimes the critic equivocates. For example, peace could mean lack of war or it can mean an internal sense of tranquility. The critic sometimes reads contradictions into the accounts. This is often a function of all of the points listed above, but it could be due to plain ignorance.

In other cases, it is due to the fact that aspects of Hebrew idiom are not always captured in English translations. The critic assumes that the believer in Biblical inerrancy also believes that copyists could make no mistake. I have found not many believers in inerrancy to hold to this position. It is their belief that the original documents were without error, and were copied as faithfully as humanly possible.

Thus, copyist errors are of little concern and are unlikely to result in significant changes. This can be tricky, so let me set up my case by using one of the supposed contradictions cited: "Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you will be like him yourself.

Could the writer of Proverbs be so stupid as to not notice this? I hardly think so. In fact, I think it is very illuminating that these teachings are closely tied. In debating various non-Christians, I often encounter foolish responses and name-calling. I can either choose not to respond or ignore the foolishness and get to the point of contention. At such times, I follow Proverbs The key is knowing when to use which approach, and in such instances, I try to allow the Spirit to guide me. I encourage the reader to keep these points in mind as we go through the purported contradictions.

I have also taken the luxury of periodically referring to and drawing from the following book: Haley, John W. This book was in turn replying to the "biblical contradictions" found in the following book and many of these same ones are answered below : Burr, William Henry.


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So these contradictions have been around a while. Keep in mind that we are not biblical scholars, and our replies are not intended as the "final word" in these matters. Instead, they are offered as possible, even plausible, ways to resolve the apparent contradictions. Contradictions 1 to 55 Contradictions 56 to 99 Contradictions to 1.

Someday I may take the time to re-edit this list and re-consider all the answers given to these biblical "contradictions" and difficulties. For now I have to let the list stand as is. Hope it's been helpful. See also the shorter article "Defending the Gospels" on this site. I have chosen and consecrated this temple so that my Name may be there forever.

My eyes and my heart will always be there. The Lord said that he would dwell in the thick darkness" [ 1 Kings ]. But what could such seemingly contradictory metaphors convey? Note that in both cases there is the theme of the unsearchableness of God. That is, the light is unapproachable and the darkness is thick and covers a secret place. Thus, these verses could actually be teaching the same thing - simply that God is unapproachable.

One could also note that Paul's account is quite optimistic following from a consideration of Christ. Prior to the Incarnation, there was indeed a certain darkness associated with the hidden God. But the eyes of the blind have been opened! Or it could be said that the verses in 1 Kings and Psalms need be nothing more than a description of God perceived through the memory of His interation with His people described in Exodus Allow me to repost a reply which addressed a similar point, and in doing so, resolves this contradiction In a previous post, someone attempts to discredit the deity of Christ by appealing to John : "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

Sarai says "You are the God who sees me," for she said, "I have now seen the One who sees me" Gen Actually, this is a problem only for those who deny the deity of Christ while claiming to follow the teachings of the Bible. So for the Trinitarian, there is no Bible contradiction. This can be seen from many perspectives, but let's simply consider one from Isaiah 6. Isaiah "saw the Lord" v 1.

Four reasons we find apparent contradictions in the gospels

Seraphs were praising the "Lord Almighty" v 3. Isaiah is overwhelmed and responds, "Woe to me, I am ruined. For I am a man of unclean lips [this rules him out as the servant in Isaiah 53 ], and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty" v 5. Later, we read:. And who will go for us? Now it's time to jump to John John claims that the peoples failure to believe in Jesus was a fulfillment of these teachings Isaiah received from the Lord in Isaiah 6.

Then note verse This verse presents no problems for the Trinitarian, and in fact, when studied, serves as a great launching point for finding Christ in the OT. Prior to the Logos dwelling amongst us and revealing the Father to us, no one had seen the Father. Those who see the Son can see the Father.

God is tired and rests "In six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed. If not, I will know. So let's consider the instances in Genesis that are cited: Gen - "Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

How could one hide from God? Why does God need to ask this question? First, what Adam and Eve could have hid from is merely the visible and special manifestation of the Lord. As for God's seeming ignorance, anyone with children can recognize the utility of such questions. If a child is known to have broken a lamp, it is better to question the child than to simply accuse her. The former approach enables the child to take an active role in her wrong-doing, and allows for her to apologize.

Note that God asked several questions: "Where are you? Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the fruit of the tree? And perhaps, that's how the writer of these accounts understood God. But perhaps there is also another layer to the account. Obviously, it teaches God's transcendence. But it also demonstrates God's interest. He is not an aloof sky-god. And he doesn't watch from afar. He gets right down into human history. But there is more. Maimonides once noted that just as the word 'ascend', when applied to the mind, implies noble and elevated objects, the word 'descend' implies turning one's mind to things of lowly and unworthy character.

Thus, God is not "coming down" in a physical sense, but in a "mental" sense, where he turns his attention to the sinful activity of men and invokes judgment. Of course, it is hard to describe God in human language, but I think the above account is not unreasonable. Since these supposed contradictions depend on a particular interpretation which is or at the very least may be in error, no contradiction has been established.

Now I know that you fear God. Could it be that these three instances simply serve to reveal and verify to man that which is already known by God? Anyone who has ever had a college chemistry course can probably relate to the following. A chemistry professor comes into class, and says, "I will now add acetic acid to this compound to see what happens. After the experiment, he might even add, "I now know that such and such results will occur after adding the acid.

What the three verses could be showing is that once again, God is not some aloof sky-god who merely dictates. Instead, he relates. By asking questions, by claiming to have found something, he relates and allows man to play an active, not passive, role in the relationship. For example, Abraham now knew that God knew his heart. And he also knew God's knowledge was true in light of the 'test' that he just went through.

In this supposed contradiction, along with the one immediately prior, the critic perceives ignorance on the part of God because of a belief that an omniscient God ought to dictate. Why can't an omniscient God refrain from dictating, and simply relate in a way which intimately involves humanity?

They took possession of the hill country, but they were unable to drive the people from the plains, because they had iron chariots. Christianity has always believed that God is a God who relates and who is personal. And whenever there is a personal relationship, there is a dynamic. And dynamics can involve both immutability and change. Whenever you have a personal dynamic, when one person changes, the other responds in a way which reflects this change.

But all is not relative. If God's essence is immutable, then He is the standard by which such change is understood. For example, imagine you are in a field standing next to a tree. As you walk around the tree, you may end up north of the tree and the tree is south of you. If you continue walking, such a relative relationship changes, so that you might find yourself south of the tree and the tree is north of you. In the same way, our behavior towards God is like walking around the tree. Depending upon what we do, God is in a different relationship with us.

Let's consider a better analogy. A man and a wife are in a happy marriage. The man commits adultery, and the wife becomes unhappy. Has the wife changed in a significant manner? Not really. Her change is a function of what her husband did, and reflects the immutability of her belief that infidelity is wrong. In the purported contradictions, we have a set of Scriptures which speak of God's essence - it is unchangeable. The other set deal with God's relationships with men they don't abstractly speak of God's essence.

Thus, as the above analogies show, there need be no contradiction. Far be it from Thee! Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly? His work is perfect, For all His ways are just; a God of faithfulness and without injustice, righteous and upright is He. Is My way not right? Is it not your ways that are not right? However, it seems clear from the context that we are talking about God being impartial when it comes salvation being offered to both Jew and Gentile.

Thus, the verses cited below could only be contradictory if they teach that Christ's atonement was only for the Jews or Gentiles. Since they don't, we need only consider if God is unrighteous in any of them. The second set is as follows: "So he said, Cursed be Canaan; A servant of servants He shall be to his brothers. This leads me to believe this verse is hyperbolic and thus difficult to make into a contradiction. For example, is God really unrighteous for bestowing blessings for a thousand generations, yet visiting iniquity for ONLY three or four generations?

The thrust seems to run in the other direction. Whether or not one views this as "unrighteous" is a function of their ethics, and thus the "contradiction" is read into the scripture. BTW, I would note, however, that sinful behavior is often transmitted in families. For example, the son of an alcoholic is often an alcoholic himself. MaryAnna responds to another related "contradiction" which is also relevant here: Are children punished for the sins of the parents? Not a contradiction. This is not a clear case of unrighteousness.

I find this the very opposite of unrighteousness. Answers to Biblical Contradictions, I am preparing a disaster for you and devising a plan for against you. So turn from your evil ways, each one of you, and reform your ways and actions. When disaster comes to a city, has not the LORD caused it? None of the above verses teach that God is unjust. Paul is speaking about God in the context of Church gatherings - that in such gatherings, God is a God of peace, not confusion.

None of the above verses speak of such Church gatherings. James teaches that God does not tempt anyone with evil. None of the above verses teach that God tempts with evil. I think Ez is best understood in light of Romans 1. Thus, no obvious contradictions in this set. Joshua says nothing about some asking, and God refusing to give. Is says nothing about someone asking, and God refusing to give.

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John says nothing about someone asking, and God refusing to give. In these three verses, it is mentioned that God "hardened the hearts" of someone. If someone never asked, and will never truly ask, it is not a contradiction to harden one's heart, yet give to those who DO ask. First of all, it is wisdom which is speaking. Those who laugh, scoff, and refuse wisdom are not going to magically find it when calamity strikes.

If one wishes to identify wisdom with God, the same principle holds - those who scoff, reject, and laugh at God are not going to find God when calamity strikes. After all, if they look, they look through the filters of selfishness i. Instead of calling on God or looking for God, they should be repenting. But those who live a life of scorning God are not those who repent when disaster strikes. Thus, no contradiction. Amen" [ Rom ] "For God is not a God of disorder, but of peace. So what of these NT teachings? This "contradiction" is premised on equivocation, where the NT references to peace are interpreted to be the antonym of war, when this is obviously not the case.

In Romans, Paul seems to be speaking of peace in a subjective, existential sense -- a relationship with God brings a sense of peace. In Corinthians, Paul is speaking about the activity of Church congregations -- they should be orderly and peaceful, not full of confusion and contention. No obvious contradiction here. They deal simply and bluntly with God's judgment. Yes, God is merciful and full of compassion. Yet, those who reject his mercy and compassion will find that His judgment in unrelenting and ferocious -- that is His nature.

Put simply, God's anger against Judah would endure long. In Num 32, God's anger burned against Israel because of their sin and he made them wander in the desert 40 years. In Num 25, we read that God had Moses slay those who sought to contaminate the Jews with pagan ideals in order that his fierce anger may turn away from Israel. Since there is no contradiction between a fierce anger, and an anger slow to rise, this is an irrelevant verse. So let's focus on duration. What of the Psalms? First, let's keep in mind that we have now entered the territory of another genre - poetry.

As such, it's going to be hard to make an unequivocal contradiction. Anyway, in Ps , we simply note that God is slow to anger. Nothing in Jer or Num contradicts this. In Ps , it appears as if David is speaking from his personal experience with God in saying that God's anger lasts only a moment. And what is a 'moment' in poetical terms anyway? And could this teaching be yet one more proverbial way of saying that God is far more gracious than angry?

That is, when all is said and done, what is revealed is a God who is slow to anger, quick to forgive, yet who can indeed demonstrate a fierce anger when provoked by great or ubiquitous sin. I see no obvious contradiction here. Nothing in the second set contradicts this. In Jer , we read, "I did not just give them commands about burnt offerings and sacrifices," The author of this supposed contradiction conveniently left out the next verse: " but I gave them this command: "Obey me, and I will be your God and you will be my people.

Jer speaks of the incense in Sheba, hardly contradicting the first set. The verses in Isaiah are also lifted out of context. God rebukes the people for the sacrifices because they represent religious hypocrisy. Is clearly demonstrate this. The account in 2 Sam is misnamed as a "human sacrifice. The verses in Judges do not obviously indicate that Jephthah offered his daughter as a "human sacrifice" and if He did, there is no indication that God "accepted it.

Just because in a moment of desperation, he accuses God of deceiving him, does not mean that God DID deceive him. Mt is part of the Lord's prayer, "lead us not into temptation. The only possible hope of a contradiction in this set is to equate testing with temptation. But is testing identical to tempting? For example, let's say God wants to test someone's honesty and puts them in a room with a lost wallet.

Is this tempting? I think not. To truly tempt, God would have to whisper, "Pick it up, keep it, no one will know, etc. As "sending forth lying spirits" is not the same as actually lying yourself. But, MaryAnna White notes: 1 Kings Lying spirit -- Here, of course, God does not lie directly nor approve of nor sanction man's lying. One could argue that all that happens on earth is permitted by God -- He could stop it if He saw fit. He even permitted Satan to cause Job to suffer -- a much more interesting case. But that does not mean that He is the source of all such things. They just afford Him opportunities, as here, to accomplish what He is after.

As they are useful to Him, He permits them to continue for a season. Like Judas. Eventually, those instruments no longer useful, all such spirits and men will be judged by being cast into the eternal lake of fire. That is neither approval nor sanction, but merely proof of God's sovereignty. After all, God allows us all to lie, but He is not a liar for allowing us to lie. Because of man's wickedness God destroys him [ Gen ,7 ] Because of man's wickedness God will not destroy him [ Gen ] This is only a contradiction because the critic interprets it as so.

Does Genesis say that God will not destroy man because he is wicked? For God says that he will never again curse the ground, even though man's heart is evil NIV. Furthermore, cursing the ground does not necessarily mean the same thing as destroying man, now does it? Job points out that we can never fully grasp the divine, it does NOT say that God cannot be inferred from nature.

Is notes that we can never hope to fully scrutinize the understanding of God. None of this is contradictory. Besides, what of Deut ? Instead, Moses chose the Hebrew word ehad, which signifies unity and oneness in plurality. This word is used in Gen where Adam and Eve are instructed to become "one flesh". It's also found in Numbers , where the Hebrew spies returned with a "single cluster" of grapes. So Deut actually supports the concept of the Trinity, by noting that God is "oneness in plurality" composite unity.

The same word which describes the oneness of a marriage relationship is also used to describe God's essence! Thus, these are not obvious examples of God commanding robbery. Besides, in Ex. Since the first set of scriptures do not say otherwise, we can dismiss this one. Proverbs speaks of lying as an abomination. Since the first set of scriptures do not say lying is not an abomination, we can dismiss this one. The verse in Ex is one of the Ten Commandments. It's not obvious to me that lying is approved of in the above situations. Concerning Rahab Josh , James says, "the harlot was justified by works, when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way" James Her act of saving the lives of these men is what is approved of.

The same goes for Ex 1, where the midwives refuse to kill the male infants which were birthed. As for 1 King , once again it is unclear if lying is truly approved of. According to one Bible scholar: "The whole declaration of Micaiah Putting aside its rhetorical drapery, the gist of the whole passage is that God for judicial purposes suffered Ahab to be fatally deceived.

God used the false declarations of the false prophets that Ahab was so enamored with as his instruments of judgment. Hatred to the Edomite sanctioned [ 2 Kings ,3 ] Hatred to the Edomite forbidden [ Deut ] The account in Deut indeed forbids hatred against the Edomite. Does the account in 2 Kings sanction it?

Not at all. It merely mentions that Amaziah slew many Edomites. And while hatred can be part of warfare, it need not be. And since the account in 2 Kings doesn't even mention hatred of the Edomites, this is obviously a concocted contradiction. The blood-shedder must die [ Gen ,6 ] The blood-shedder must not die [ Gen ] Gen makes no such generalization.

It is specific to Cain. This is an example where the critic takes an incident and transforms it into an absolute principle. Besides, the covenant in Gen 9 was made with Noah, who existed much later than did Cain. The making of images forbidden [ Ex ] The making of images commanded [ Ex ,20 ] Ex states than one should not make idols and bow down and worship them. The cherubims in Ex 25 are not idols, nor were they worshipped. He could have been killed for this, but instead he was merely told that some of his descendents would be slaves.

This is not a condoning of oppression, but a prophecy that such a judgment would indeed be carried out. Ones who died for rebellion include Korah and Absalom; Miriam was judged with a case of leprosy for a few days. This verse says nothing to those who would be the slave owners as to whether their action is condoned or not. Joel God punishes Tyre?

Still no mention of condoning oppression. Surely that cannot refer to include the yoke on the oxen, so there is some limitation to which yokes are broken. Some yokes are forbidden - i.


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  • The case of a foreign slave could be argued either way and hence this verse is not a clear contradiction of any of the above. Does not say, not permitted to buy them. Does not say, not permitted to buy and sell them. It says, "Neither be called instructors, because One is your Instructor, the Christ. Footnote: "Or, guides, teachers, directors.

    It earlier says to call no one "father. These titles should be reserved for God alone, not bestowed on men. But our physical father is still our father, our school teachers are still our teachers, and our masters, if we are slaves, are still our masters and are to be called such if they so demand.

    The President is still the President, etc. We are admonished in the Bible to show honor to those in authority over us in our families, in the government, etc. This does not necessarily read as the ordination of "slavery and oppression" by God. The verses in Lev refer to a mild form of servitude. Joel simply threatens captivity as a punishment for sin. None of these verses unequivocally ordain "slavery and oppression. The verse in Mt. These teachings serve to balance each other. MaryAnna observes: "Improvidence enjoyed" Matt.

    They don't tell us not to work for our living. Luke tell us to give to those that ask, and to lend without expecting any return. This again is not telling us not to provide for our own needs. If we didn't have it in the first place we wouldn't be able to give or lend it. And it doesn't say that the borrowers or askers are approved by God.

    The reward mentioned here goes to the givers, not to the takers. This is made obvious by verse 29, which says to turn the cheek to those who smite it. Clearly the Bible is not meaning that we are supposed to go around slapping people in the face. Luke says "Therefore what you have said in the darkness will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in the ear in the private rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops. That would be a really strange inter- pretation of this verse, looking at the context.

    Doesn't say we need to be full of anxiety, just do it. Proverbs - a good man leaves an inheritance to his children's children Anger approved "In your anger do not sin: do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.

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    I do not view Paul's admonitions as being approving of anger. In fact, the advice about not allowing the day to end while you are angry is anything but an approval of anger. P adds: the context of Eph says explicitly to "let all The KJV reads "whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. KJV only folks say Christ would be sinning. Let's see if this makes sense. IOW, it doesn't say "whosoever shall say, Thou fool, without a cause Does this mean Christ is sinning and in danger of hell fire? Of course not. The answer to the "anger" passage is simple.

    There are different types of anger -- righteous and unrighteous -- just as there are different senses to the use of "FOOL" atheists are called "fools" for denying God by the Psalmist There is "anger" that is not necessarily sinful. Jesus, who is said to be "without sin" throughout the Bible 2 Cor ; Heb ; ; 1 Pet ; 1 John was "angry" in the sense of "righteous anger" -- He was "grieved" Gr sunlupeo because of the hardness of the hearts of those who criticised His healing on the Sabbath day see the context Mark Jesus also was "angry" at the death of Lazarus -- he "groaned in the spirit" John ,38 and saw death as the "last enemy" 1 Cor Anger is a desire for revenge.

    Thomas Aquinas]. If anger reaches the point of a deliberate desire to kill or seriously wound a neighbor, it is gravely against charity; it is a mortal sin. The Lord says, "Everyone who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment" [Matt ]. It is this kind of "anger" that is forbidden. As Paul writes -- "Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you" Eph KJV.

    Good works to be seen of men [ Matt ]. Here is a case where context matters. In Mt 5, Jesus is speaking in the context of being the salt of the earth. It is by allowing Christ to work through us that people will be drawn to Him. That is, one does good works to glorify God. In Mt 6, Jesus is talking about doing good works in a self-righteous sense, where one draws attention to self.

    Consider a very practical example -- a Christian who serves by feeding the poor ought to do so humbly and quietly. They will eventually be noticed, if only by those they serve. The same Christian shouldn't be bragging about his work among acquaintances, where a "holier-than-thou" sense is evident.

    The former approach draws people to God, the latter repels them. Judging of others forbidden [ Matt ,2 ]. This is a commonly employed 'contradiction' which also ignores context. Mt 7 is not dealing with judging in of itself, rather, it speaks of hypocrisy -- judging others by standards that one does not live by.

    Since using a scourge to drive out the animals and overturn the tables is not as case of "physical resistance," the verse in John is irrelevant. In Luke, it appears as if Jesus is teaching the disciples that in their changed circumstances, self-defense and self-provision might be necessary.

    The very fact that two swords was "enough" indicates a restrained theme to this teaching. Mt 5 is where Jesus teaches that one ought to "turn the other cheek. In Mt 26, someone with Jesus struck out at the legal authorities. Here the context is different from that of Lk I read this as saying that those who raise the sword against the legal authorities can expect to die by the sword and of course, this in of itself is not necessarily a moral principle. Then again, in light of vs 53,54, one cannot establish that this teaching goes beyond the immediate circumstances.

    That is, if the disciples had fought, they would have been killed, and Jesus had better things in mind. That's why he told them He could summon supernatural aid if need be. Christ warned his followers not to fear being killed [ Luke ]. Luke 12 is a generalized teaching which states that one ought to fear God more so than men read vs.

    John says nothing about Jesus being afraid that the Jews would kill him. It simply mentions that He avoided them since they wanted to kill Him. It wasn't His time to die yet. Mt 6 not 5 does not as much focus on public prayer as it does on hyocritical prayer -- "And when you pray, you are not to pray as hypocrites. Nothing contradictory here. Importunity in prayer commended [ Luke ,7 ]. The vain repetitions "as the heathen do" Jesus speaks of in Mt hardly seem to me to be the fervant supplications that Luke relays.

    Put simply, there's a difference between fervant, real prayer and repetitive chanting or mouthing words over and over in order to twist God's arm so to speak. Judg the Nazarite is not permitted to cut his hair. Num teaches the same thing. Yes, true. The Nazarites kept long hair even though it was a dishonor to them. So the Nazarites submitted to God even though it meant suffering some shame, for the duration of their vow. They also stayed away from dead things and any product of the grape, I think.

    Circumcision instituted [ Gen ] Circumcision condemned [ Gal ] Gen God institutes circumcision to set His people apart. This is in the Old Testament where God would use a special people through which His Messiah could be brought forth. Gal Spoken to ones who already believe in Christ but were not circumcised - if they go to be circumcised, they are going back to the law. This means they are denying the effectiveness of Christ's death This is not the only such verse. Paul says elsewhere that we should beware those of the circumcision, also calling them the concision and even dogs.

    This is referring to the Judaizers who were trying to get the believers to be circumcised as a condition of their salvation.. They were trying to bring the believers under the law, even though these believers had been previously Gentiles and not Jews. Paul tells us - it is not that all who have been circumcised are condemned, but rather that circumcision is no longer necessary in the New Testament because it has been replaced by the cross of Christ. And that exercise would be futile. Seventh-day Adventists.

    Exod teaches that the Sabbath was instituted. But it was also practiced by God Himself even as early as day seven. Isaiah God says the wicked people are displeasing to God, and He no longer delights in anything they do, including keeping the Sabbath and making offerings to Him. No surprise there. Romans and Col. Romans neither supports the Sabbath nor repudiates it, though.

    It just says some keep and some don't and both are to be accepted as genuine believers. No problem there. See verse Colossians is the same story. The middle wall of partition between Jews and Gentiles has been torn down by Christ on the cross and there is no longer any difference among Christians. See discussion with James in Acts regarding this matter. Take your evil deeds out of my sight! Stop doing wrong, learn to do right! Nevertheless, even if we take the above claims as truth, namely, that God instituted the Sabbath in Exodus, and repealed it through Paul and we need not debate if this is the true interpretation , as it stands, this is not contradictory.

    It is not contradictory to institute X and then repeal it much later. The Sabbath instituted because God rested on the seventh day [ Ex ] The Sabbath instituted because God brought the Israelites out of Egypt [ Deut ] In this case, I see no reason why both explanations cannot be true. As such, the Sabbath could have been rooted in the order of things and in the historical intervention of the Creator. Why was the Sabbath instituted?

    Exod tells us the Israelites should rest because God rested on the seventh day. Deut tells the Israelites that God commanded them to keep the Sabbath because of their deliverance from Egypt. The wording is different between the two statements. Exo does not, but merely tells us a good reason why they should keep it. Anyway, it is not uncommon to do something for more than one reason.

    Especially good reasons. As for his disciples, they were charged with breaking the Sabbath because they picked some heads of grain and ate them. Jesus corrected the Jewish leaders on their legalism read the entire discussion in Mt Jesus did not condone working on the Sabbath, he just pointed out the folly of taking this law to the extreme were people could not eat or help others on the Sabbath. No work could be done on Sabbath but Jesus worked on Sabbath and justified His disciples in doing the same. In the Old Testament no work could be done on the Sabbath, although it was ok to pull an ox out of the ditch.

    The Lord Jesus in the New Testament is the Lord of the Sabbath and perfectly free to break it and even abolish it, since He is the one who set it up in the first place. Also, He is the reality of the shadows. This is not talking about an outward ritual of sitting around all day once a week reading the Torah, but about resting in Christ as our real inward peace and rest and sanctuary in this age and in full in the age to come. Like I said earlier, this can be a pretty controversial issue, but at least grant me that it's a possible explanation which removes the validity of 43 as a contradiction in the Bible.

    Others may explain it differently. Baptism commanded [ Matt ] Baptism not commanded [ 1 Cor ,14 ] This is not a contradiction.

    Bible Contradictions Explained: 4 Reasons the… | Zondervan Academic

    Paul simply responded to the favoritism which sprang up along the lines of who baptized whom. Furthermore, Paul notes that his particular calling was not as a baptizer, but as a preacher. The NT references stem from the New Covenant. The Genesis reference indicates that God sanctioned non-vegetarian diets. The Deut references are particular to the Jews and the Old Covenant that was made with them. Jesus is trying to get beyond human conventions and the frivolous oaths which were common and was calling for simple and pure honesty.

    Does the Bible sanction or forbid oaths? In the Old Testament they are not commanded, but permitted. God Himself made an oath as recorded in Heb. In Matt. The explanation given is that we are powerless to change our hair color. Natural color. But surely God is not similarly powerless, so if He wants to swear something, He is perfectly able to carry it out and nothing can come up to stop Him.

    No contradiction there. So OT permits swearing doesn't command it and sets limits on it. The uplifted NT law abolishes it altogether on the grounds that we are powerless to guarantee the outcome. But God is not powerless, so He can swear as He likes. He is simply saying that it is good to be unmarried. Saying it is good to not marry is not saying it is bad to marry.

    Being unmarried is good in the sense that particular blessings can stem from it in fact, Paul even describes celibacy as a "gift". However, another set of blessings can stem from being married. Does God approve of marriage? Let's just look at the verses cited as saying that God dis approves of marriage, since obviously He approves. It is because of the present necessity. Well, these three verses do not tell us that God disapproves of marriage, but only that there is nothing wrong with staying single.

    This is surely a good thing, although most people are not like that. As verse 7 says, each has his own gift from God, and for most people it is not the gift of staying single forever, although Matt. Anyway, none of these verses say that God disapproves of marriage. To teach others not to marry is to spread the doctrines of demons. He Himself intends to be married. In 1 Tim. Genesis It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a help suitable for him.

    He now issues a higher calling. One has to read adultery INTO Num -- it is not obvious that this verse is talking about adultery. Besides, the exception doesn't prove the rule. Does the Bible permit adultery? Numbers doesn't say that the "yourselves" were already married. Obviously it doesn't refer to the females among the Israelites, and so it can just as easily also exclude all the married and under-age males. Hosea God commands Hosea to marry a prostitute. The very idea of using this as a justification of adultery is absurd.

    The point here is to expose the nation of Israel at that time for her unfaithful and treacherous treatment of her Husband, God. Israel was a prostitute in the eyes of God, because she was going after idols, yet He still would marry her and even take her back after she ran after idols again. This is an example of an incredible level of forgiveness, not of a condoning of the evil that she had done. Hosea God commands Hosea to go back and reclaim his unfaithful wife back from the man she was messing around with.

    See above. The point is that this is an extremely difficult thing for a man to do, to take back his wife even from the house of her lover and to have to pay a price to get her back. Yet this is what God did for the children of Israel and also did for us. What an incredible heart He has for us, even though we were spiritually harlots in His eyes; He still loved us enough to pay the price to redeem us.

    Gen ignores Gen Abraham had people believing that Sarah was his sister out of fear -- it was a lie. Is it ok to marry or cohabit with one's sister? Well, in the early generations man didn't have a choice. Cain for example married someone, and the only gals around were his siblings. Abraham also lived long before Moses, who wrote Deuteronomy and Leviticus. After Moses, nope, not a good idea to marry your sister.

    A man may marry his brother's widow [ Deut ] A man may not marry his brother's widow [ Lev ]. Hatred to kindred enjoined "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters -- yes, even his own life -- he cannot be my disciple" [ Luke ]. I have seen this verse used numerous times from atheists in an attempt to show that Jesus was not a nice guy. But let's see if this verse really supports that position. Many atheists interpret this verse literally. To them, it is clear that Jesus was instructing us to hate our families.

    But is it? It is a fairly basic rule in hermeneutics that a particular teaching should be interpreted in the light of general teaching, that is, in light of its context.