Bible and its issues

How do I respond to the following statement?

We can’t just blindly follow something [bible] without proof. It’s only normal to question those instances, especially because the Bible itself is full of large inconsistencies. The Bible is written by many different sources, and in instances of this, the writing of these segments are subject to the biases and prejudices of the individuals, so there’s never one unified vision.

How do I address:

(1)“A book without proof”
(2) Inconsistencies within the Bible
(3) Many sources make up the Bible, therefore it is inconsistent & unified
(4) Due to this set up of multiple authors/writers, there are multiple biases & prejudices (no objectivity)

Who’s making these claims? It matters, because there would be different subtext.

First, avoid such sources if you can, and pray for them. Second, this sounds like typically shallow atheistic thinking. “Proof” runs counter to faith, which is always consistent with reason. How does an atheist blindly follow the faith-based religion of atheism with zero proof that there is no God? This is simply illogical and defeats itself.

**(1)“A book without proof”
**
At the very least the Bible is an anthology of primary sources from ancient times. The Bible, therefore should be judged based on the same proofs that historians use to study and derive truth from ancient historical texts. When the same standards are applied to the Bible as other historical documents from the time that claim to be histories the Bible is a great historical source. Proof and Evidence mean different things to empiricists and historians.

**(2) Inconsistencies within the Bible
**
There are inconsistencies in the Bible (dates; chronology; names of people and places), and there are two main explanations I would give to this. The first is that these things very in the same way eye-witness testimony in courts very. The second is that when it comes to these minor things, the ancient writers wrote history differently than we do today. We today are focused much more on getting all the minor details right. The ancient historians took liberties with rearranging chronology and places for a variety of different reasons. Yet the ideas— what was said, who said it, why it was said are all very important to the ancients. This is the way their memories were trained based off of centuries of oral tradition.

**(3) Many sources make up the Bible, therefore it is inconsistent & unified
**
Let’s take a look at an example of this. The Book ofJob has a very specific answer to the problem of suffering: God is bigger than suffering. He created you and you should accept whatever he gives you because God is God and you are not. While that may be true, Jesus offers an entirely different answer for suffering: God suffers for you and he suffers with you. These two perspectives are not contradictory but they are not the same, either. The Bible contains a variety of perspectives that Christians need to keep in tension, but those perspectives are not inconsistent.

(4) Due to this set up of multiple authors/writers, there are multiple biases & prejudices (no objectivity)
First we must answer the question of “what is objective?” I define objective as something that is true no matter what culture you are from, were you are from, who you are or when you were from. The only thing that is true no matter what is Jesus Christ. Jesus says that he is the way, the truth, and the life." There is no truth apart from Jesus Christ. Therefore, as long as the Bible points to Jesus, it is objective.

(1) I don’t know much, but I think Aquinas’ proofs go a long way towards answering these, plus 300+ prophecies fulfilled by Jesus
(2) There are almost no inconsistencies that can’t be resolved with a sound translation/proper context/ logical interpretation
(3) This statement IMO presents what’s called a false dilemma argument (just because many sources make it up, this doesn’t mean it is inconsistent and not unified), in fact the bible has almost no contradictions, and this is amazing given the number of sources
(4) Again, false dilemma (multiple authors/writers doesn’t necessarily indicate multiple biases and prejudices)- Christians believe that all books were inspired by the holy spirit

There is one unified vision: the understanding/knowledge that comes through the grace of the Holy Spirit - the one ultimate Source and Ground of our being.
“Inconsistencies” exist in the person’s mind, arising as a result of a lack of understanding.
The more one participates in the sacraments, loving one’s neighbour, praying and immersing oneself in the Church’s teachings, the closer one will get to Christ, who is the Way.
Living one’s life in this fashion, making the most of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, one grows in love, knowledge, and understanding.
How does one get to know one’s beloved: through tests, proofs? One knows her/him as she/he reveals her/himself.
I’m not sure how you should respond to the statement. I would probably:shrug: and continue reading. When your friends want to listen, you will be able to help them, not only through your words, but through your actions.

It was from a guy who was responding to a supposedly anti-gay song, which uses the Bible and God as a reference in its lyrics. Another guy said, and I quote:

Christians really hurt themselves when they act so intolerant and hateful.

As is usually the case, it is more than an intellectual discussion; there is something behind the questioning of the Bible.
So, no matter how good one’s arguments, they will fall on deaf years because they don’t want to hear the message.

Chastity: it’s a tough one.

Here we have Genesis 3 all over again:

1 Now, the snake was the most subtle of all the wild animals that Yahweh God had made. It asked the woman, ‘Did God really say you were not to eat from any of the trees in the garden?’

In the case you describe, we have:
“Does the Bible really represent the truth?”

2 The woman answered the snake, 'We may eat the fruit of the trees in the garden.
3 But of the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden God said, “You must not eat it, nor touch it, under pain of death.” ’
4 Then the snake said to the woman, ‘No! You will not die!
5 God knows in fact that the day you eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like gods, knowing good from evil.’
6 The woman saw that the tree was good to eat and pleasing to the eye, and that it was enticing for the wisdom that it could give. So she took some of its fruit and ate it. She also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate it.

So you get statements to the effect that:
“You will be happy, better even, doing what you will. The church does all this to maintain control and power.”
“If it feels good, do it; be free.”

It’s all been heard before, since the beginning.

Some verses to consider:

John 4:13-26 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.” He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.” “I have no husband,” she replied. Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. 18 The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.” “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. 20 Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”
“Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.”

John 8:7-12 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more. Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

So, would it be logical to conclude that a book written by many different people, over centuries and through many different cultures, regions and languages, yet still making a cohesive whole, is less objective, than a book written over twenty years by one person, who may or may not have their own individual biases and prejudices? The fact that many people have contributed to scripture tends towards authoritativeness - it’s hard to honestly refute generations and generations who all have a similar experience despite their differences. One person, on the other hand, is relatively easy to refute, especially when those experiences are different or otherwise unsupported throughout time and space.

The bible has many many issues. It is riddled with scientific errors, contraindications, failed prophecies and evil quotes that it is filled with half the time. Thank god you Christians don’t take the bible literally nowadays or we would be in massive trouble.:smiley:

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On a side note and friendly advice, if you know little about the Bible or about anything else , it is not wise to hurl accusations and insults as it truly showcase your type and depth of character. If you come in to humbly seek knowledge, you find many folks here, Catholics and non-catholics, eager to enlighten you.

It is futile to insult or provoke us Catholics as we have 2000 yrs of experience to deal with such people.:smiley:

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