How to Explain the Contradiction of Matthew 2:1 and Luke 2:2


According to Matthew, Jesus was born during the reign of Herod the Great (Matthew 2:1).

According to Luke, Jesus was born during the first census in Israel, while Quirinius was governor of Syria (Luke 2:2).

This is impossible because Herod died in March of 4 BC and the census took place in 6 and 7 AD, about 10 years after Herod’s death.
Some Christians try to manipulate the text to mean this was the first census while Quirinius was governor and that the first census of Israel recorded by historians took place later. However, the literal meaning is “this was the first census taken, while Quirinius was governor …” In any event, Quirinius did not become governor of Syria until well after Herod’s death.


How to refute this statement?


It is not a history textbook.
the story is about THAT He was born not who was governor when

The accounts were written decades after the events described and in a pre-industrial society with limited educated and scant research books available so bracketing a date within 10 years doesn’t seem too bad at all.

Jesus was a common poor child born to a common poor family in a small village in a conquered land.
Contemporary historians wouldn’t write down the birth of such a person.


Try this:

A non-Catholic, btw, but it shows that there is not a slam-dunk contradiction.


actually we are arguing, because he is saying that it is much proper to use old testament book rather than new testament… he said, the new testament books are twisted… My answer, The old testament begins the teaching, or revelation, while the New testament finishes (or completes) that same revelation. In other words, the story is incomplete without the New Testament!!!

Then, he post the contradiction between Matthew 2:1 and Luke 2:2, maybe to show proof that the new testament is not really reliable…


Twisted? Simple. Your debate opponent is playing textual hopscotch. That is, when the NT says something he doesn’t agree with, it’s twisted. When he lands on something he thinks disproves the NT, then the passages are authentic. He can’t have it both ways.

Is this a debate with a muslim perhaps?


Good answer

What does he mean by “twisted”

Well if he is going to play that sort of silly game then ask him about the two different creation accounts in Genesis
Or the part in the OT that implies that Pi =3

they are not history or science texts
to use them as such sells them sort


[According to the Clementine Tradition]
Dennis Barton
The Gospels are Historical**

[size=2]Quirinius (Cyrinius) did not become governor of Syria until 10 AD so, at first sight, there appears to be a genuine problem here. It is true that other historians are not able to confirm the taking of a census at this time, but they are also unable to say with certainty that it did not occur. Our knowledge of the administrative background of the period is very fragmentary. Roman census did not take place at the same time in each part of the empire, and when one was carried out it could be spread over many years. As Luke mentions the first enrolment, he was presuming Theophilus knew of at least one later one. If Luke were so ignorant of the history of the period, would he have left himself so open to criticism, by attempting such precision?


He is a jehovah’s witness…

Contradictions of Genesis 1 and 2?


An inconsistency is not a contradiction. For instance, Matthew 27:5 tells us that Judas hanged himself, while Acts 1:18 tells us he fell headlong and his body ruptured. These are inconsistent but not contradictory (both could be true). A contradiction would be if one verse said the census occured during Herod the Great’s life and another verse said it didn’t occur until after his death. The difference is significant because an inconsistency can be explained fairly easily. For instance, if I tell you that I went to the bank yesterday, and I tell my wife that I went shopping yesterday, my two statements are inconsistent (they don’t match) but both might be true.


And he will just tell me, that the New Testament is inconsistent


There is no contradiction in the scriptures, Matthew was written by a separate man than the one who wrote Luke. They the writers are telling there story of what they saw and understood. Each writer will always be different. Then we have the translators who really can screw things up. I would advise you to stop looking for the wrong in what you read, and look for the good and feel the spirit of the message. Besides the bible may not even be in its true order they were gathered, from all sores and then compiled, each one trying to fit in with the story Matthew maybe should of been the second book rather than the first. So just read each book as a separate book, and enjoy the writers who are trying to tell you of what happened in his day. Each writer is expressing his memory and you’ll just have to forgive him for not seeing it as Luke saw it. God bless us in our simpleness, to understand his greatness, and be thankful we have something of the pass to hang on to.


Toledoths of Genesis


Good luck with that

Minor little things in the order of creation

Like Genesis 1 saying that the animals were made first and then man

While #2 says that God made Adam first then made the animals so that he wouldn’t be alone


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