My Views on The Bible

Let me preface this discussion by saying that anytime I write one of these posts, I am saying what I personally believe. You are free to believe whatever you want; I am only saying what the Bible says about various topics. You are free to choose what you believe and what you don’t – but I pray you test your beliefs against the scriptures.

I view the Bible as the infallible word of God, despite it being written by man. I also feel that we cannot pick and choose what to believe out of the Bible – it is all, or nothing. I place my trust, hopes, and aspirations on the Bible. I believe everything that is written in the Bible to have happened, or will happen; and that all of it is useful. I believe that many have been led to believe that the Bible is fallible, or prone to error. I also believe that many have been led to believe that the Bible isn’t true; that only parts of it are. I am going to talk about all of my beliefs and why I believe them. I hope that you will join me, and I hope that if you have concerns, please comment.

I believe God to have written the scriptures, in their entirety, through men via the Holy Spirit. I believe this because God is all powerful and He wants us to prosper in Him. He wants us back, essentially.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV)

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

The entire Bible is about God, who is jealous, longing for His people, His creation, to love Him. It is one big love story, rife with the longing of a just God who will do anything to have us back, while allowing us the freedom to choose. I believe that if God wants us back so badly, and if He wants us to hear His voice, He will make it happen.

He created the stars, in all their beauty. He created the sunset, all for us to enjoy. He spoke through people who would hear His voice. They listened to Him, and He gave us His word through those that listened. God wrote the Bible. Men were the pens, or writing utensils. It is His words, not ours.

I do not see God as a liar. I view Him as the only blameless one there is. He cannot lie, for it is not in His nature. Men lie because men followed satan’s directions in the garden of Eden. We became adversaries against God when the fall happened. Sin entered our being at the fall. He only wants us back, He wants us to follow Him again.

in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, (Titus 1:2 emphasis added)

God’s word to us is held in the bible. Man picked the different books to put in the Bible, but again, God put this book together. Even though man falls short, and man is evil:

The LORD works out everything to its proper end… (Proverbs 16:4)

I firmly believe that the Bible is put together and composed by God. I will stand by that no matter the opposition to it. I will defend that no matter the persecution it creates. God’s will was set forth in the creation of the 66 books in the bible. Each book was penned by God.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16,17 NIV, emphasis added)

You have to remember that the scripture the early church had was still the Torah, or Old Testament. What we read in the New Testament is primarily composed of different letters to the various churches (still considered scripture though).

If what I say, based on what the bible says, is true – do you think that we can pick and choose what to believe and follow? I do not think it is possible. I firmly believe that when one does this, they are calling God a liar and casting a shadow of doubt and fallibilty on the rest of the Bible, if not the whole Bible. They call God a liar because He says that all scripture is useful. There is no way we can say then, that one portion or part of the Bible no longer holds value or truth to us. If we do this, we also create two gods, in my opinion – the vengeful yet loving god of the Old Testament, and the cheerful and loving god of the New Testament. The problem with this arises when Jesus holds the same character traits that the god of the Old Testament holds, and vice versa. God and Jesus are one and the same, yet separate at the same time. That topic is for another post though. When we choose to glance over the offensive aspects of Jesus, we are destroying who He is. This is not to say that God is not loving or He doesn’t have grace, because He is and He does. All I am trying to get across is my belief that we must take the entire Bible in context, or else it loses all meaning.

For the time is coming when [people] will not tolerate (endure) sound and wholesome instruction, but, having ears itching [for something pleasing and gratifying], they will gather to themselves one teacher after another to a considerable number, chosen to satisfy their own liking and to foster the errors they hold,

4And will turn aside from hearing the truth and wander off into myths and man-made fictions. (2 Timothy 4:3,4 AMP)

Clearly there are false prohpets in the world, they aim to lead us asray. They may not consciously do this but that is the aim of satan, the adversary of God, and he will lead people who follow him.

Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. (Ephesians 6:11,12 NIV)

I urge you then to test every spirit against the word of God, which is the truth.

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.

4 You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 5 They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood. (John 4:1-6)

Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. (2 Timothy 4:2)

Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen. (2 Peter 3:17,18)

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8 comments on “My Views on The Bible

  1. I’ve only read a little of your blog so far, mostly just this post. But you are obviously a very sincere person, so I thought I’d leave this comment. By the way, feel free to delete it if you like — my goal isn’t to disagree with you, but just to offer you some information that you may not be aware of.

    I was once very much like you. I believed the Bible was the inspired word of God, infallible and inerrant. Whenever I heard people disagree with that, they never gave any real reasons to explain why they felt that way, so I didn’t think any real reasons existed. I feel differently now.

    I now feel certain that the Bible was not inspired at all. And even if you never come to that conclusion, it would probably be good for you to look into those claims so no one blind-sides you with them down the road. And if you’re already aware of them, then I apologize for taking up your time.

    Prophecies you should look into:
    The prophecy of Tyre in Ezekiel 26-28. Ezekiel says that Tyre would never be rebuilt, but this is not true. Tyre is still there today. Just look up “Tyre, Lebanon” in Google Maps, and you can see it for yourself.

    The virgin birth in Matthew 2. The actual prophecy is given in Isaiah 7, but if you look it up, you’ll see that Isaiah’s prophecy concerned something happening in his own time. The prophecy was fulfilled in chapter 8 of Isaiah — it appears that Matthew was misusing it. Also, the prophecy in Isaiah actually says the “young maiden” would become pregnant — not the “virgin.” They are two different words in Hebrew, but the Greek Septuagint translated it “virgin,” and that’s the version Matthew would have been familiar with.

    The prophecy of Herod slaughtering the infants in Matthew 2. That prophecy comes from Jeremiah 31:15, but the context shows it was talking about the nation of Israel poetically, not a future massacre of children.

    Contradictions:
    The birth narratives for Jesus in Matthew and Luke have some differences that can’t be squared. If Jesus and his family had to flee to Egypt, as Matthew says, why does Luke say they went straight home to Nazareth after taking the baby Jesus to Jerusalem? If they were originally from Nazareth, as Luke says, why does Matthew say they tried to go back to Judea after leaving Egypt and only settled in Nazareth as a second choice?

    The genealogies are different for Jesus in Chronicles, Matthew, and Luke. No two of them are the same. Worse, Matthew says that there were 14 generations between Abraham and David, 14 between David and the Babylonian captivity, and 14 between the captivity and Christ. But this isn’t true. When you compare his list to the one in Chronicles, you see that he had to cut some people from the list to make this fit.

    Matthew’s account of the death of Judas doesn’t fit with the one in Acts. In fact, Matthew says that Judas’s death fulfilled a prophecy in Jeremiah, but that prophecy actually seems to have come from Zechariah.

    Leviticus says that hares chew the cud, but they do not.

    There are many other issues that seem to throw severe doubt on the Bible, and it was a huge shock to me when I first became aware of them. You may feel the same way. If so, I would recommend really doing some research on these issues. If you only read the apologists’ writings about these things, you’ll find some good responses — but they are usually responding to straw men. And if you only read the skeptics’ writings, you’ll find that they call many things contradictions that aren’t really contradictions when taken in context. The best approach is to see what both sides say about the issues and go from there. I’ve written about these things on my blog as well — there are links in my “About” section, if you’re interested.

    Anyway, I didn’t write this comment to argue with you at all. I just know that after I became aware of these things, I was very thankful to the people who pointed them out to me. You don’t have to feel the same way toward me — I would completely understand if you didn’t. But I feel obligated to pass this on to those who seem to be fellow truth-seekers. And as I said, please feel free to delete this from your site. I just wanted to make sure you had the info.

    Good luck to you in your spiritual travels, wherever they lead you.

    • Thank you for your comment, Nate. I appreciate your concern with these issues. I was not aware of them before now. So, I am going to go through each one and address them. Please note, however, that I will not be going to a biased source for this information (be it atheist or apologist). Rather, I am going to go to the source – the Bible, and see what it says and draw my conclusion from that (with research outside the Bible that isn’t biased).

      The example of Tyre – So, I am not abreast of this prophecy, so before I read it I want to pose a question that likely will be answered in my coming research – who is to say that this city in existence now is the same as the one prophesied about? There are many cities that share the same name. But, let us go to this prophecy.

      “For this is what the Sovereign LORD says: From the north I am going to bring against Tyre Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, king of kings, with horses and chariots, with horsemen and a great army. He will ravage your settlements on the mainland with the sword; he will set up siege works against you, build a ramp up to your walls and raise his shields against you. He will direct the blows of his battering rams against your walls and demolish your towers with his weapons. His horses will be so many that they will cover you with dust. Your walls will tremble at the noise of the warhorses, wagons and chariots when he enters your gates as men enter a city whose walls have been broken through. The hooves of his horses will trample all your streets; he will kill your people with the sword, and your strong pillars will fall to the ground. They will plunder your wealth and loot your merchandise; they will break down your walls and demolish your fine houses and throw your stones, timber and rubble into the sea. I will put an end to your noisy songs, and the music of your harps will be heard no more. I will make you a bare rock, and you will become a place to spread fishnets. You will never be rebuilt, for I the LORD have spoken, declares the Sovereign LORD.” (Ezekiel 26:7-14)

      God will bring Nebechenezer against Tyre to besiege it. This happened in 585BC. It was a 15 year siege, ending with Tyre under the authority of the Babylonian king. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nebuchadnezzar_II)

      Alexander the great actually demolished the city in 332BC. (http://www.livius.org/aj-al/alexander/alexander_t09.html). (fulfilled – Your walls will tremble at the noise of the warhorses, wagons and chariots when he enters your gates as men enter a city whose walls have been broken through. The hooves of his horses will trample all your streets; he will kill your people with the sword, and your strong pillars will fall to the ground. They will plunder your wealth and loot your merchandise; they will break down your walls and demolish your fine houses and throw your stones, timber and rubble into the sea.)

      These prophesies were fulfilled then. How about the ‘never rebuilt’ part? Could it be that this is referring to the grandeur that Tyre had? Consider this part of the prophecy –

      “‘Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says:
      “‘Because you think you are wise,
      as wise as a god,
      7 I am going to bring foreigners against you,
      the most ruthless of nations;
      they will draw their swords against your beauty and wisdom
      and pierce your shining splendor.
      8 They will bring you down to the pit,
      and you will die a violent death
      in the heart of the seas.
      9 Will you then say, “I am a god,”
      in the presence of those who kill you?
      You will be but a mortal, not a god,
      in the hands of those who slay you.
      10 You will die the death of the uncircumcised
      at the hands of foreigners. (Ezekiel 28:6-10)

      Is it possible that the never rebuilt part has yet to be fulfilled? I could take this rebuilt part as being the grandeur that the city had, as it’s grandeur is talked about and how the king thought was a god –

      “‘In the pride of your heart
      you say, “I am a god;
      I sit on the throne of a god
      in the heart of the seas.”
      But you are a mere mortal and not a god,
      though you think you are as wise as a god. (28:2)

      A footnote in the Amplified version of the Bible says this in reference to Ezekiel 26:14 –

      “Mathematicians have estimated, according to the “Law of Compound Probabilities,” that if a prophecy concerning a person, place, or event has twenty-five details beyond the possibility of human collusion, calculation, coincidence, and comprehension, there is only one chance in more than thirty-three and one-half million of its accidental fulfillment. Yet Tyre’s history at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar, and then more than two centuries later at the hands of Alexander the Great, and centuries after that at the hands of the Crusaders, was the striking fulfillment of each detail of the prophets’ forecasts. No other city in the world’s history could have fulfilled them.”

      As for the prophecy of a virgin birth –

      Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14)

      All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”). (Matthew 1:22-23)

      The prophecy you see fulfilled in Isaiah 8 is not this prophecy. Isaiah 8 says:

      “The LORD said to me, “Take a large scroll and write on it with an ordinary pen: Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz.” So I called in Uriah the priest and Zechariah son of Jeberekiah as reliable witnesses for me. Then I made love to the prophetess, and she conceived and gave birth to a son. And the LORD said to me, “Name him Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz. For before the boy knows how to say ‘My father’ or ‘My mother,’ the wealth of Damascus and the plunder of Samaria will be carried off by the king of Assyria.” (Isaiah 8:1-4)

      These are likely two different prophecies – note the difference in the names. Immanuel means God is with us, while Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz represents Judah suffering and Ahaz’s enemies being plundered (from notes in my NIV study Bible – the meaning of the latter name at least).

      As for the word for virgin –

      “virgin, young woman
      a) of marriageable age
      b) maid or newly married
      “There is no instance where it can be proved that ‘almâ designates a young woman who is not a virgin. The fact of virginity is obvious in Gen 24:43 where ‘almâ is used of one who was being sought as a bride for Isaac.” (R. Laird Harris, et al. Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, p. 672.)”
      (retrieved 4-11-12 http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H5959&t=KJV)

      As for the prophecy in Jeremiah – he was a prophet, yes? I am not certain of anything he prophesied about, but if he did and those came true, why should his poetic writing style stop it from being a prophecy? It simply means that he wrote well. Case and point –

      “JEREMIAH preached from about 628 BC to 586 BC (about 2600 years ago) in Jerusalem. During that time, Babylon took control of Jerusalem. Babylon began taking Jews as captives to Babylon as early as 605 BC and 597 BC. Babylon destroyed Jerusalem in 586 BC. Jeremiah prophesied that the Jews would be scattered from their homeland and persecuted. He also said that God would protect the Jews from total destruction and that they would one day return to their homeland and that the second Israel would be more impressive than the first. Today, we can see with our own eyes that the Jews have indeed survived widespread persecutions and that they have re-established Israel (in 1948), after 19 centuries of exile and persecutions throughout the world.” (retrieved 4-11-12 http://www.aboutbibleprophecy.com/jeremiah.htm)

      Nate, unfortunately I do not have time at the moment to go through the rest of your concerns. I will do so at a later date – possibly tomorrow. I appreciate your concerns, and I hope I addressed them appropriately. It seems to me, however, that you should reconsider your stance on the inerrancy of the word of God. I pray that you can do so.

      When I do return to your comment, I will pick up at your seemingly contradictory points.

      • Thanks for the reply. I appreciate the care and concern you show in dealing with these issues. I’m familiar with the information you’ve found so far, though in the end, I didn’t find them to be satisfactory explanations. There are some various reasons for that, but I won’t tie up your blog with it. As I said, I mostly wanted to point some of these things out to you in case you weren’t aware of them. Good luck as you continue to go through them.

      • It’s no problem – souls are at stake based on what you brought up, so it should be taken with care.

        I don’t mind you tying my blog up with the reasons for why they are not satisfactory. If you would rather they remain private, however, you can email me at the.hope.that.is.in.me@gmail.com

        I would like to hear why they aren’t satisfactory, as it satisfies me..

      • Thanks. I don’t mind commenting here, but at the same time, it might be simpler if you just check out what I’ve already written about them. If you’d rather not do that, just let me know. But the posts I’ve done on the issues I mentioned above are:
        http://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2011/02/18/prophecy-part-3-egypt-rachel/

        http://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2011/02/22/prophecy-part-5-virgin-birth/

        http://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2011/02/24/prophecy-part-6-tyre/

        http://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2011/03/09/contradictions-part-4-hares-chewing-the-cud/

        http://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2011/03/10/contradictions-part-5-out-of-egypt/

        http://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2011/03/11/contradictions-part-6-jesuss-genealogy/

        http://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2011/03/14/contradictions-part-7-judas/

        It was really difficult for me to deal with these, and it took a while for me to work them out. They may not end up affecting you the same way — I don’t want to imply that I’m absolutely right. But I do feel confident about my current position. Anyway, I only mention all that because I don’t want to come off as argumentative. I think when these kinds of discussions become arguments, it becomes harder for both sides to rationally look at the issues. So even if one of us decided that we were wrong, it would be harder to retract — we wouldn’t want to be seen as “losing face.” Does that make sense? That’s why I don’t want to tie your blog up too much, or to make you feel like you need to answer this stuff right away. That’s not fair to you if you didn’t know about these before today.

        Anyway, if you’re interested in seeing what bothered me about them, I go into most of the issues in my blog posts and the subsequent comments. If you would like to discuss them further, I don’t mind doing it here on your blog — I just didn’t want to come off like I was attacking you. I admire your efforts to study the Bible and follow it, regardless of what that might cause you to change in your own life. It’s consistent, and I really appreciate that.

        Thanks again for taking your time, and for writing with such a considerate tone.

      • I understand, Nate. You wrote in a considerate tone as well, and I greatly appreciate that. I do my utmost to make sure I do not come across as argumentative also. It can be hard to do that with such issues as these, and I apologize if my tone ever comes across that way – it isn’t intentional. I will check your posts out as time allows.

      • Hi, Nate, I am going to post this to my blog as well as your related post. The verse you are talking about where a hare is said to chew its cud, may not be talking about a hare. In my spare time, I decided to look into it as that would be an easy one to do. I went to a blue letter bible app on my phone – which corresponds with blueletterbible.org. It is essentially a website where one can easily find words in the Strong’s concordance or other dictionaries directly from the verse. Here is what I found –

        H768 – ‘arnebeth (from Leviticus 11:16):

        Outline of Biblical Usage:
        1) hare
        a) probably an extinct animal because no known hare chews its cud, exact meaning is unknown, and best left untranslated as “arnebeth”

        I don’t know if this helps answer your concern at all, but it answers mine. You see, sometimes translating can be a difficult task.

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