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Biblical Inerrancy


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I think most people here come from a Bible believing church background. A church that goes to some lengths to "prove" that Biblical accounts are accurate history, all events actually happened. I suspect people in Christian churches who see the Bible as most others see their own holy texts - as mythology, allegory, a vehicle to provide some guidance in a confusing world having few answers to the Big Questions - do not end up here.

 

But what about the camels? (and other fantasies)

 

https://time.com/6662/the-mystery-of-the-bibles-phantom-camels/#:~:text=Last week%2C archaeologists Erez Ben,based on radioactive-carbon techniques.

 

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I think for me the big "wait a second..." moment was when a lay preacher said that the Bible proved evolution was false and said it had to be false or the Bible wasn't reliable. The stuff he said wasn't very convincing - I'd have to believe almost in a soft form of theistic solipsism or the truman show for it to be real, and that seemed odd. The next thing was that God wanted everyone to have a "rich and full life" and that it meant finding work, finding healing, etc. The people who found it stayed at the church, but oddly enough more people would trail out after going through the "church groups" for a few weeks. Then the gossiping and rumors, and the preaching perfect morality for members, etc. The part that gets me is that I love the book of Ecclesiastes - but all the commentaries on it tried to shove it away or reconstruct it to focus on how it points of the New Testament. When I'd read an archaeologist's take on it, or a religious scholar's take on it, it would conflict with the commentary... I also learned about the Ebionites, which really really really made me think about my views. In that sense, it was helpful to learn of multiple interpretations from Ehrman and Eisenman. It boils down to - it has to be perfect, or it has to not be. Tillich in that vein, helped make it real - and then Peter Rollins helped a good bit after...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Its great to be back here - I thought I would chime in here,  The problem that the Bible has is that is subjective truth based on the writings of unknown authors.  Indeed if you go further you can find there is mountains of other works such as the Gnostic Gospels that were never considered true by the church yet have Jesus wandering around the country saying and doing various mircales.  What made one set of texts any more believable than another.  We learn that from the writings that exist of Celsus that the Christians of the day target women and the poor.   Both these groups had little influence over men but did inspire children to follow in relgions of their mother and thus Christianity actually played a hat-trick.  The reason people continue to believe it is

1) Confirmation Bias - Everyone around them is doing it so by virtue surely someone would have said something if it wasnt true.

2) Money - How many preachers of the various churches have a house and a nice salary comming in.  Do you really think a preacher is going to say its a load of shit that is like me speaking to a news paper and shitting on my employer.  I wouldn't expect to have a job either.

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  • 4 weeks later...
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On 5/4/2021 at 6:12 PM, florduh said:

I think most people here come from a Bible believing church background. A church that goes to some lengths to "prove" that Biblical accounts are accurate history, all events actually happened. I suspect people in Christian churches who see the Bible as most others see their own holy texts - as mythology, allegory, a vehicle to provide some guidance in a confusing world having few answers to the Big Questions - do not end up here.

 

But what about the camels? (and other fantasies)

 

https://time.com/6662/the-mystery-of-the-bibles-phantom-camels/#:~:text=Last week%2C archaeologists Erez Ben,based on radioactive-carbon techniques.

 

 

The domestication of the camel is one of those details that gives away the Abraham myths as back dated from a time when the camel was already domesticated and the writers didn't know or understand that it hadn't yet been domesticated during the supposed time of Abraham. Sure, apologist's like to turn a blind eye or excuse this away. But it's one of the many damming bits of evidence revealing the errancy of the bible. 

 

The idea that it's not literally true but spirituality true has it's problems as well. I notice how the author tried to sort of apologize the inaccuracies away as spiritual and not literal. That's ok, but it leaves it up to everyone's personal subjective opinions about what the writers wrote and what they meant, likely never quite capturing what the writers did mean in the process. To say that camels meant status in some later period so the writer didn't care about the historical accuracy and purposely wrote in the camel bits for some other reason, is not proven. It's a subjective opinion from some scholar about what they think the writer must have meant. 

 

For all we know the writers were truly ignorant of the history, but nevertheless crafted tales about their own history completely expecting people TO take it literally as if true. Jesus seems to take all of this literally in the stories. He took Abraham and Moses literally. So did all of the other characters in the stories. As well as Adam literally. 

 

One thing that academic christian liberals run into is the problem that once you say these things are not literally true, there's not much truth involved in any of it. Spiritual or otherwise.

 

I don't know what's especially spiritual about a story of a guy who rode camels in the desert and arrived at a promised land, who didn't really ride camels in a desert and so must not have gone literally to a promised land either? It's materialistic, the entire thing. And ego centric. A barbaric nomad takes off looking for material riches promised by a god, but not really. 

 

It isn't given in the same way as something obviously metaphorical like a Hindu or Buddhist myth which is known and understood to be metaphorical. Does the Abraham story lead to enlightenment??? And if not, then what's the point??? I don't see anything enlightening about claiming land for yourself. Nothing about transcendence, unity, wholeness, or self realization. The camel story doesn't go in that direction.

 

Neither does most of the bible: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVETDYKuixc

 

 

 

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JRR Tolkien was completely honest, as an author, when he wrote/sketched/crafted the mythology of Middle Earth.  The various authors of the books of the Bible were not.

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