You know how some people believe in the words of Scripture so literally that their solution to seeing discrepancies within the biblical text is not just to harmonize, but to mishmash the differing texts together in an all-too literal way - stretching the text in the process?
How does one reconcile Matthew’s indication that Jesus was denied by Peter three times before the cock crowed but Mark indicates that Peter denied Jesus before the rooster crowed twice? Simple, they answer: Peter actually denied Jesus six times. Three times before the cock crowed, and another three times before it crowed again. (Never mind Jesus only said “three times,” not six!) How does one reconcile Matthew’s and Mark’s statement that the two criminals reviled Jesus while Luke said that one of the two criminals was repentant? They’ll say Jesus was actually crucified with four criminals, three of whom mocked Jesus; they’ll try to get around this by saying that Matthew and Mark only recorded two of these supposed four men while Luke wrote only about the other two. In both cases, their literal attempt to solve ‘contradictions’ in the text, somewhat paradoxically, ends up flat-out contradicting a plain reading of the gospels themselves.
I think the most extreme example I’ve ever encountered though (thank goodness I’ve encountered this only once) is the claim that the ‘Jesuses’ who appear in the four gospels are not exactly the same Jesus. To be honest, I forgot the specifics, but the guy who was claiming it either said they are either four different Jesuses who somehow had a huge number of similarities in their lives, or Jesus somehow was incarnated for four times, apparently getting born and crucified over and over again (!) In other words, each gospel was recording one specific incarnation. Well, something along those lines. You know, they’re all inerrant, so they all gotta be 100% literally accurate, right? :eek:
Anyone else encountered this? Or other possible examples?