Ten Things You THOUGHT You Knew About The Bible

It's often said that the best way to make more atheists is to get more people to read the Bible, as there is such a stark difference between what people commonly THINK it says and what it ACTUALLY says. For example:

ONE: Eve Was Made From One Of Adam's Ribs. As with so many of the Bible's other inconsistent and repetitive narratives, it depends upon which version you read. In Genesis chapter 1, Yahweh (the god of the Bible) creates all the animals (verses 21-25), THEN creates man and woman SIMULTANEOUSLY (26-27). However, in chapter 2, he first creates Adam (verse 7), THEN all the animals (18-20), THEN creates Eve from one of Adam's ribs (21-22).

TWO: Satan Led Eve Astray In The Garden Of Eden. It's commonly believed that Satan was the "serpent" who convinced Adam and Eve to eat from the Tree of Knowledge in Genesis (bolstered by a reference in Revelation 12 to Satan as "that old serpent"). Yet Satan is NEVER identified in the Eden story, and when Yahweh hands out punishment, he condemns the ANIMAL ("...upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat..."). If Satan were responsible for Adam and Eve's fall, why punish snakes?

THREE: Noah's Flood Lasted Forty Days. Only the rain lasted forty days (Genesis 7). After ten months (Genesis 8:5), the mountain tops reappeared. Forty days later, Noah sent the dove on its first trip. Two weeks later, on its third trip, the dove failed to reappear, and land was finally deemed dry enough to disenbark. All total, the flood waters (and everyone's incarceration in the ark) lasted for approximately 354 days -- nearly a year!

FOUR: God Wrote The Ten Commandments On Stone Tablets. NOT those from Exodus 20, which are commonly enshrined on plaques, posters and monuments everywhere. There's no mention of those commandments being written on stone (or broken) ANYWHERE in the Bible!

According to Exodus, the ONLY commandments written by Yahweh on stone tablets (and broken by Moses) -- and the ONLY group referred to specifically in the Old testament as "THE Ten Commandments" -- are from chapter 34, and are completely different from the more commonly known ten. They deal exclusively with methods of worship and devotions to Yahweh. (I've addressed this more completely in my hub "Which Ten Commandments?)"

FIVE: No Human Has Seen God (And Lived). In Genesis, Yahweh was "walking in the garden" (of Eden) when he confronted Adam and Eve about eating from the forbidden tree. In Exodus 24, Moses, Aaron and his sons and seventy of the Israelite elders went up Mount Sinai and "...saw the God of Israel...And upon the nobles of the children of Israel he laid not his hand: also they saw God..." The 'prophet' Isaiah also sees Yahweh in a vision (Isaiah 6), as does the 'prophet' Ezekiel (Ezekiel 8).

SIX: God Is Against Abortion. The Bible NEVER mentions voluntary abortion, but on at least one occasion, Yahweh COMMANDS involuntary abortion. In Hosea 13, Yahweh promises that Samaria will "fall by the sword," and that their "women with child shall be ripped up." (More can be found on Yahweh's zeal for exterminating youngsters in my hub, "Suffer The Children"). Then there's accidental abortion, which is treated as a mere triviality, and Yahweh's ONLY concern is for the father's financial loss (Exodus 21).

SEVEN: God Never Accepts Human Sacrifice. We all know the story of how Yahweh stopped Abraham before he killed his son Isaac. But in Judges 11, the Israelite general Jephthah vowed to Yahweh that, if granted a victory he would make a burnt offering of the first thing greeting him when he returned home. Unfortunately, it was his daughter, and this time Yahweh DIDN'T intervene! Yahweh also accepts the sacrifice of human slaves (Leviticus 27).

EIGHT: God Never Commits Evil. Apologists routinely insist that ANYTHING Yahweh does is, by definition, good. Yet the Old Testament contradicts this premise at least two dozen times, where Yahweh either personally admits to evil or is referred to as commmitting evil in a second person narrative.

In the first sense, the most notorious example is Isaiah 45:7 - "...I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil..." An example of the second is from Micah 1:12 - "For the inhabitant of Maroth waited carefully for good: but evil came down from the LORD unto the gate of Jerusalem."

NINE: The Antichrist Is Coming. This is one almost EVERYONE gets wrong, including preachers, priests and theologians who should know better. The ONLY mentions of "antichrist" in the entire Bible are in 1 John and 2 John. The examples below (both from 1 John 2) make clear there is NOT only one "antichrist":

"...even now are there many antichrists..." "...He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son..."

What people who mistakenly use this term are ACTUALLY referring to is "The Beast" from the book of Revelation!

TEN: The End Times Are Near. Jesus is quoted directly (nearly 2,000 years ago!) in three of the gospels as declaring unequivocally that the end will come WITHIN THE LIFETIMES of those to whom he is directly speaking. For example, from Matthew 16:

"...Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom..."

From 1 John 2 (again, two millennia ago): "...Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time..."

In the final analysis, a few notable misconceptions with biblical knowledge aren't going to turn a believer into a skeptic overnight. That requires a much deeper and more comprehensive examination of what it is one believes, and an honest and objective confrontation with the Bible's more sinister, barbaric and morally incomprehensible aspects. Still, my hope is that the examples offered above will at least encourage believers to take that first step...

Other related hubs by Paladin:

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    When it comes to defending the Bible, nothing is more appealing to believers than prophecies, and one of the most widely quoted is Isaiah chapter 7, verse 14: "...Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son,...

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Comments 38 comments

lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Paladin

This was an enjoyable read. I knew about all ten of these (we've mentioned them in comments before) so no real surprises there though most scholars acknowledge Moses is using two different sources for the Adam and Eve story and rather than cancel one out he's letting both 'stand'.

Should be interesting to see where this goes

Lawrence


Oztinato profile image

Oztinato 14 months ago from Australia

If someone thinks the Bible says its ok to sleep with your daughters because Lot did they have left the train tracks of reason. Following this train of thought it is easy to see that just because an awful thing happens in the Bible that doesn't mean it is being promoted as good. Add to this a stubborn refusal to acknowledge ancient grammatical devices and ancient concepts and presto we have another hub by paladin.


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Oz

Paladin and I have been down that track! The Bible is also a record of what happened (often with comments by the chronicler) showing what happened and showing that God wasn't impressed at times (granted it doesn't say that with the story of Lot).


Oztinato profile image

Oztinato 14 months ago from Australia

PS

the absence of the obligatory conspiracy theory makes this hub very short.


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Thanks, Lawrence! I'm already taking note of more items for a possible second hub on this topic.

I'd say that your knowledge of the ten items I've mentioned puts you head and shoulders above most people's awareness of the Bible. I find it incredible that even "experts" get some of these wrong!

Oz, please explain for us what "ancient grammatical devices" I've refused to acknowledge, and how they have anything to do with what I've noted in this hub.

Thanks again to both for visiting and commenting!


Oztinato profile image

Oztinato 14 months ago from Australia

One at a time. Let's take "suffer the children" which actually means "put up with the children".


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Yes, Oz. Again, we all understand that meaning. Do YOU understand that there is (and was) more than one meaning for the word "suffer?"

You do love to focus on the irrelevant minutiae, don't you?


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Paladin

I've spent thirty years studying the Bible and have the advantage over many of the 'scholars' that I spent a large chunk of time actually in the lands of the Bible.

The people there are wonderful but they do use a very different 'Logic' to us which most would get a headache just thinking about!

Some of the stories we hear Jesus saying sound really good to us, but only when you look at the culture of the day do you realize just how radical they were!

For example the parable of the Good Samaritan sounds good until you realize what Jesus is saying is that you should look after the interested of your enemies so much that you actually run the risk of jail time in your own culture for helping that 'enemy'!

You also run the risk of huge fines from the family of that 'enemy' if they die 'on your watch!'

As I said I did enjoy the hub and I can see both sides.

By the way the bit about God never accepting Human sacrifice and the story of Jepthah seems to say that God does condone it but as you read the Bible is doesn't make it clear what happened to his daughter and the majority of Rabbis from ancient times seem to think that she was just entered into service at the tabernacle and not allowed to marry.

There is no evidence for what you infer, and while I can see what you are trying to suggest the actual evidence doesn't support it.

Lawrence


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 14 months ago from back in the lab again

Great Hub Paladin!

I'd like to add that Abraham also had a visit from God where he saw him.

I love that second set of 10 Commandments, the one that reminds us all never to boil a goat in it's Mother's milk. Such wonderful moral wisdom from the creator of the Universe.

I'd also like to add that abortion was totally legal under Mosaic Law as long as a woman was accused of adultery. In Numbers Chapter 5 it outlines a method of abortion if a woman has been unfaithful. She is brought before the Priest and drinks a potion of sorts and the idea is that if she is guilty she will have a miscarriage.

Great stuff as always!


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

I would question whether that really was abortion or was it just a way of pacifying the Husband who thought his wife was having an affair? (but couldn't prove it!)

As for the not boiling a cow in it's mother's milk this is still practiced in the Jewish faith today! (Don't mix meat and dairy products), by passing this law it meant that the callous practice was removed!

The 'Potion' was simply water that was used to wash the ink off a parchment where the 'sins' had been written down that was collected and given to the woman to drink!

The 'potion' itself had no effect but the psychological effect (if the woman had been unfaithful which would have been highly unlikely) would have been devastating!

If she was found innocent (let's face it he may have accused her to simply get rid of her and it's highly likely she would be!) then the Husband could NEVER DIVORCE HER and had to provide for her for he rest of their lives!

To me that seriously protects the innocent party!


Oztinato profile image

Oztinato 14 months ago from Australia

Pal

the context of the word "suffer" is not minutiae as it is the core of this hub topic! Mixing up the context identifies the crucial flaw in your reasoning. I've seen a lot of atheists do the same thing with the same quote as they throw out their science solely when it comes to bible study.

What usually happens at this point is that "well meaning atheist mentors" try to come to your aid. Any tick of the clock we will see atheist elders try to assist with more obfuscation


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Lawrence, I beg to differ regarding the Jephthah episode. The narrative in Judges 11 actually makes it unequivocally clear what happens to his daughter [emphasis mine]:

11:31: "...Then it shall be, that whatsoever cometh forth of the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the children of Ammon, shall surely be the Lord's, and I WILL OFFER IT UP FOR A BURNT OFFERING..."

11:39: "...And it came to pass at the end of two months, that she returned unto her father, WHO DID WITH HER ACCORDING TO HIS VOW which he had vowed..."

There's simply no mistaking what happened here. So, yes, there actually IS evidence for what I'm inferring -- at least within the context of the Bible (if one considers that "evidence!")


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Thanks for the kind words, Titen! I'm afraid I missed the visit to Abraham (perhaps I'll update the hub later). I'll also check into that chapter of Numbers regarding abortion. I'm always looking to expand my theological knowledge, and appreciate the help from believers and non-believers alike!

As for you, Oz, I certainly don't need anyone to "come to my aid" with regard to you. You're more an annoyance than anything else.

I've seen guys like you before, and they always play the same silly little game. They come into a discussion making wild claims, but when pressed to support those claims -- or even expand upon them -- they quickly scurry into some meaningless tangential argument, hoping to distract from the reality that they actually have nothing meaningful to say.

I'll be happy to demonstrate. For example, in your last post, you claimed that others would appear here to "assist with more obfuscation." So, Oz, please cite ONE example of my supposed "obfuscation" in this hub.

Now, I'll replicate the amazing prognostications of the Old Testament 'prophets' by predicting that your next comments here will totally ignore my request. Instead, you'll revert back to your asinine little dispute about the meaning of "suffer" or perhaps you'll resurrect your old chestnut about "conspiracies" --

-- ANYTHING but an actual debate over the actual contents of my hub, or the truth of your accusations!


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 14 months ago from Somewhere in the universe

If the bible were the actual word of god, it would never NEED to be apologized for. But it is obviously the written narrative of the time period in which it was written. Why people can't SEE that is beyond me. It's painfully obvious to anyone with a reading comprehension ability beyond the 10th grade. All one has to do is sit down and READ the bible to recognize its immature ramblings.

I agree, people need only to read the "holy" books with a mature understanding of fact versus fiction; myth versus reality; and intelligence versus superstition. Once you read something that poorly written, it will be easy enough to become an atheist.


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Thanks for commenting Austinstar. I often say that, if the Bible were TRULY the work of an omnipotent and omniscient creator, it would be so clear, comprehensible and unequivocal that even a CHILD could understand it! (Instead of relying on apologetic websites, theologians and a library of concordances).

But whatever its state of comprehensibility, people who claim to believe what it says so very often don't actually KNOW what it says. At the very least, I hope this hub will cause such believers to raise an eyebrow and think to themselves, "Perhaps I need to look at this a little more carefully..."


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Paladin

Thanks for the reply. First of all Children have absolutely no problem understanding the Bible, It's the Adults that have problems!

Okay that was a cheeky one I know, but it's true! They take things 'on trust; but we adults want all the details explainable!

Anyway back to our discussion. If you read the account it's clear that Jepthah never intended for Human Sacrifice! The horror that is recorded (chapter 11 verse 35) means something he never intended happened!

He was in a bind as he did make a promise to God and as a man of his word he had to fulfill it!

Human Sacrifice was against the Law in Israel (Leviticus 20 verse 2-5 "Giving their descendants to Molech" and defiling the sanctuary, Deuteronomy 12 verse 31) It was practiced by the Canaanites and was why the Israelites were ordered to totally destroy them.

The Bible isn't condoning this, it's telling the story of what happened and even possibly pointing out just how far away the Israelites were "Everyone did what was right in their own eyes" (Judges 21 verse 25 the writer is making the point that having a King to make the laws was better).

The key is that he 'Fulfilled his vow" and that could mean simply that she was sent to work at the tabernacle and remain a virgin all her days!

Lawrence


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Again, Lawrence, I must disagree with you. Surely you just read the passage from Judges 11 where it clearly states that Jephthah did "as he had vowed." And the vow was to make a burnt offering. There's really no honest way to re-interpret this!

And whether or not Jephthah intended to make the sacrifice is really irrelevant. After all, Abraham was a man of his word as well, and was "fulfilling his vow" just as Jephthah was. Yet, as you recall, Yahweh stopped Abraham just before he committed the deed. He could have easily done the very same thing in Jephthah's case, but didn't.

And human sacrifice was most definitely NOT against Yahweh's law in Israel, at least with regard to slaves. From Leviticus 27 [emphasis mine]:

"...Notwithstanding no devoted thing, that a man shall devote unto the Lord of all that he hath, BOTH OF MAN AND BEAST, and of the field of his possession, shall be sold or redeemed: every devoted thing is most holy unto the Lord. None devoted, which shall be devoted of men, shall be redeemed; but SHALL SURELY BE PUT TO DEATH.

That seems pretty unequivocal to me...


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Paladin.

Leviticus 27 took place in combat! The order was "No prisoners" but phrased in a way that the Israelites should listen to (I say 'should' as Achan didn't listen.)

The point of Judges is just how far away from God the Israelites were, the passage tells us Jepthah 'fulfilled his vow' and you may be right but it says nothing of if the vow was accepted by God!

The fact Jepthah allowed his daughter to mourn her 'virginity' (not her life) says it was probably that she was to be a perpetual virgin ministering at the tabernacle.

Incidentally no evidence of Human sacrifice has been found in Israel that dates from this period thus indicating that the practice was stamped out by the conquest!

Lawrence


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Lawrence, I don't know what you mean when you assert that Leviticus 27 took place "in combat." The commandment says NOTHING about prisoners of war, and clearly is only one among many of a set of rules regarding oblations and sacrifices to Yahweh. In fact, this is the concern of the entire chapter (and has nothing to do with war or combat)!

As for whether Yahweh "accepted" Jephthah's sacrifice of his daughter, doesn't this sound a bit like legal hair-splitting?

You're absolutely right that the narrative says nothing about whether or not Jephthah's sacrifice was "accepted." So why should we assume that it WASN'T, when the rest of the Bible's examples give us every reason to believe that Yahweh accepts sacrifices as a matter of practice? (And when he DOES have a problem with them, as in the case of Cain, it is pointed out).

As for your proposition regarding Jephthah's daughter's mourning of her virginity, I'm afraid it doesn't make much sense. You suggest that Jephthah's allowing her this period of mourning suggests that she is to be a 'perpetual virgin.' But this fails on two counts:

First, the story ends by explaining how "...the daughters of Israel went yearly to lament the daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite four days in a year..." It doesn't say that they go to lament her VIRGINITY, but the daughter herself! Why would you lament someone still living?

Second, I'll cite again the direct quotes from earlier in our discussion, where it clearly states that Jephthah vows to make a BURNT sacrifice, and that he later "...did with her according to his vow..." I honestly don't see how anyone could re-interpret this to somehow mean perpetual service as a virgin in some tabernacle!

As to the lack of evidence of human sacrifice indicating that the practice was eliminated by the Israeli conquest, that can be a rather problematic double-edged sword. If we're going to go beyond the Bible to cite archaeological evidence, we must therefore also consider the utter lack of evidence for the Jewish enslavement and exodus from Egypt -- which brings wholly into question entire swaths of the Old Testament! Do we really want to go down that road?


Oztinato profile image

Oztinato 14 months ago from Australia

Pal

Your obfuscation : one minute you say your not scientific the next you say you are. This gives you the chance to say whatever you want when you lose arguments.


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 14 months ago from back in the lab again

Judges 11:29-30

"Then the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah, and he passed over Gilead, and Manasseh, and passed over Mizpeh of Gilead, and from Mizpeh of Gilead he passed over unto the children of Ammon.

30 And Jephthah vowed a vow unto the Lord, and said, If thou shalt without fail deliver the children of Ammon into mine hands"

It seems like it was the Spirit of God that inspired Jephthah to make his fateful vow in the first place. After all the vow is that if the Lord gives him victory he will make the sacrifice and God, who supposedly knows the future, goes ahead and gives him victory.


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Oz, first I must congratulate you on actually following up on my request to 'man up' regarding your accusation against me. And I'll follow that up by observing that you're totally full of shit.

I never said I wasn't "scientific." I simply never said I was a "scientist." These are two different things, and you KNOW this. I think it's obvious to everyone now that you're here only to troll. So, unless you have something constructive to say about the topic at hand, you're gone.

I don't like censoring speech on my hubs, but I really don't have time to waste with your bullshit. Either contribute something constructive to the conversation, or be deleted. It's up to you...


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

That's an interesting observation, Titen, and certainly something else to consider with regard to the Jephtha episode. Thanks for the input!


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Paladin

Sorry I haven't gotten back to you before now but I was writing a hub on an unrelated subject (and enjoying being 'off topic :-) )

1). Leviticus 27

I got this wrong here. Sorry for that but reading the passage is interesting. It deals with items 'dedicated to God' and once someone committed something to his service but then changed his mind he had to add 20% of its value, the part about a person or item/animal 'devoted to God' meant they couldn't be 'redeemed' but the average person couldn't 'devote' something to God, that was left only for the priests or ruling body (the seventy elders) to do. In effect they were under the death sentence and 'devoting them to God' meant that no blood money could be paid!

2) Jepthah's sacrifice. I might not like it but the text does indicate it may have taken place, but it doesn't tell us if God was happy about it!

3) Did God ever reject offerings? Frequently, read Genesis 4 God rejects Cain's offering,

Isaiah 58 God rejects their prayer and fasting!

Malachi (whole book) show God rejecting defective offerings, so he frequently rejects offerings that aren't right in his eyes

Did he reject Jepthah's offering? Did Jepthah carry out his original vow? Or modify it so it would be acceptible? We just don't know but we do know he condemned Human 'sacrifice' as such.


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Lawrence, please don't be sorry for not quickly replying to comments here. We're all busy with other things, and there's no need to apologize! It's actually nice to have a rational debate with a believer, instead of the usual nonsense I get from some of our resident trolls.

You make a good point with your Malachi reference (actually, only chapter one). Of course, in the case of Cain it doesn't actually say that the offering was rejected, only that Yahweh didn't "respect" it (whatever that means). And the example from Isaiah 58 doesn't actually refer to sacrifices.

Still, for the purposes of this discussion, let's include ALL of them as examples of Yahweh rejecting sacrifices. That's a mere THREE examples out of an Old Testament chock full of sacrificial offerings -- surely more than either of us cares to count!

Therefore, I must disagree with your suggestion that these three examples mean that Yahweh "frequently" rejects offerings. It seems clear to me that such rejections are the exception, not the rule.

As for Leviticus 27, again, there's no need to apologize. You're not the first person here to make a casual misinterpretation, and certainly won't be the last! Perhaps I'll gently remind you of that one once I make my next (inevitable) mistake in our discussion. ;-)

As for the offerings themselves, the percentages you quote actually refer only to those things that are "sanctified" -- that is, pledged or consecrated to Yahweh. They are assigned a monetary value by the priests for assessing tithing, as well as for computing the penalty you mention if the property is reclaimed.

However, nothing that is DEVOTED to Yawheh -- that is, GIVEN to Yahweh -- can be "redeemed" (returned), and must be sacrificed (which, in the case of animals and humans, means killing). I won't repeat the verses again (28-29), as you can surely revisit them on your own.

So, rather than condemn human sacrifice, Yahweh insists that, once you commit to sacrificing a human, you (and the priests) MUST finish it! Which appears to be the case with Jephthah.


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

But the only times it talks of things being 'devoted' is when a death sentence is passed eg Achan was 'devoted' to God when the sentence was passed on him and no redemption was possible!

I said 'frequently' because those texts make it clear that it happened more than once and was happening a lot at that time!

To me it wasn't so much a 'Human sacrifice' as 'sending him to meet his maker' and let the maker deal with him.


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Hehe. I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree regarding the meaning of "frequently." In any case, what's important is whether the acceptance of sacrifices by Yahweh is the norm or the exception, and I think the bulk of the Bible's examples point to the former.

As for things being "devoted," the only references I could find were in the verses from Leviticus, to which I referred earlier. To be fair, I had to look to external sources to completely discern the separate meanings of "sanctified" and "devoted."

While the narrative and specific contexts in the Leviticus chapter offer slender clues, the exact meanings of the two words aren't made perfectly clear (which, unfortunately, seems to be a recurring problem in the Bible). So I had to rely on other, more scholarly sources for help in defining them more sharply.

So I'm pretty certain of the two respective definitions, but not 100%.


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Paladin

Thats the problem with a document written in one language and 'translated' or 'interpreted' in another! You never get the full strength of the original meaning!

I was going to look the phrase up in my Dictionary of Biblical words (I use the 'Vines expository dictionary') but haven't got there yet!

By the when you 'translate' you go for a literal word for word and can sometimes lose the meaning (languages use different phrases for things) where 'interpreting' isn't so much word for word but going for the original meaning behind a phrase!

The confusion comes when one group wants literal and another wants only the 'meaning'

Lawrence


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

By the way about 99% of people don't realize the Bible is the only book they'll come across that is translated from at least three languages! (Quite a few think it was written in King James english:-) )


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Paladin

Just trying to look up the meaning of the word 'devoted' to God found in Leviticus 27 and you're right! The Hebrew word is cheram and appears only twice in the Bible(once here and once in thepsalms) it's a verb meaning literally "to devote to destruction!' To make accursed or utterly destroy (strongs exhaustive concordance) the three other times in thus passage its referring to a doomed object 'dedicated thing that should have been utterly destroyed'

Its clear the thing isn't a 'sacrifice' but I'm not sure my idea totally fits either! Guess it means something we can't properly translate but only get close to!

Hope this helps

Lawrence


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 14 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Thanks for the info, Lawence!

As for the Bible's multiple translations, it reminds me of the humorous quote (incorrectly attributed to Michelle Bachman) from an anonymous fellow in Arkansas (back in the 1920s) who quipped, "If English was good enough for Jesus, it's good enough for me!" ;-)


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 14 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

About sums it up really :-)


CatherineGiordano profile image

CatherineGiordano 12 months ago from Orlando Florida

An excellent explanation of contradictions between what people believe and what the Bible actually says. I think the main reason people turn away from religion after reading the Bible is the incredible amount of violence that God both commands, rewards, and approves in the Bible. Also perhaps the realization that if so much in the Bible can't be literally true, then maybe the rest isn't literally true either. For instance, you mention Noah's ark--a small wooden boat that purportedly sustained all land life (I guess God didn't want to kill the fish, although the dilution of the saline content of the salt water must have killed some fish) for about a year. Wolves living side by side with sheep the whole time. The Bible writers didn't know about genetics, but without genetic diversity all of the animals would have shortly gone extinct. I guess all of those issues were solved by a miracle. Anyway, good work, Paladin. It is great when someone who knows the Bible well is available to refute the claims of those who try to defend the bible as absolute truth.


CatherineGiordano profile image

CatherineGiordano 12 months ago from Orlando Florida

I just thought about another thing about Noah's Ark. would 40 days be enough to raise the water above the level of the mountains? The heaviest rains I'm aware of is about 12 inches in a day. That is only 40 feet in 4o days. Quadruple it and it is only 160 feet, barely enough to cover a large hill. Also if there was that much rain, wouldn't it have swamped the boat? How fast could Noah and his family bail?


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 12 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Thanks for visiting and commenting, Catherine. In the final analysis, I suppose the Noah's ark tale is the biblical myth with the most obvious holes, and one could write an entire book analyzing them all. Bill Nye covered just a few of them in his debate with Ken Ham, and he barely touched the surface!

Eventually, I'll probably write another of these hubs, as there are AT LEAST another ten popular misconceptions about what's actually in the Bible. Thanks again.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Paladin.....I double checked! I know you wrote this & not Patrick!

The home I was raised in was not of a religion that used the actual book (Bible) but in one form or another, quoted scripture from it within their own teachings. There were no Bibles in our churches (in the pews) nor were we encouraged to read it. I'm sure I just gave away the fact that I was raised by R.C parents. In fact my Dad's parents were Orthodox RC. I adored my parents. Their insane beliefs, not so much. I forgave them for they were brainwashed.

Please take it from me, my sister, all my friends & private school classmates & nearly every RC-raised adult I've met in my 60+ decades of life~~ That particular religion is the easiest, quickest & surest way to F%$k up your kids, if you happen to curse the day they were born or even if you love them to bits! I probably needn't say much more but frankly, I don't care to say much more about that anyway.

Then, as I matured in many ways yet remained quite ignorant in others, I made the fatal (or maybe not) mistake to "search." Much to the chagrin and dismay of the Holier-than-thou self-entitled "Christian" who insisted I r-e-a-d the Bible, oh yeah, that sent me running as quickly as my little feet could handle, in the way-way- far-away opposite direction. Oops. Then of course that Christian who refused to untangle me from his claws, explained that I "got it all wrong" and probably because I wasn't infused by the Holy Spirit.

OK. Really? I lied and said I would put in my request for an infusion and get back to him. See ya.

I'm an avid reader, my huge library consisting of 90% non-fiction while the 10% fiction is totally void of "science-fiction." Steven King or like-authors were forbidden on my shelves. The latter includes the bible. If I want horrendous night mares and morbid fear of the dark & booming voices from the sky& to shake every time it rains....I'll do drugs, just like every other F%$ked-up, red blooded American. Thanks anyway.

Do I appreciate and relate to your hub? I'll conclude my comment now because I want to read your hub again.....and again. Peace, "P"


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Paladin_ 3 months ago from Michigan, USA Author

Thanks for visiting and commenting, "P!" Your story is a very common one, and very similar to mine. My path to atheism and enlightenment went straight through a more comprehensive examination of the Bible (prompted by my desire to be a 'better' and more devoted Christian). Up until then, I had simply never bothered to go beyond what others had told me.

I sometimes wonder about Catholic schools and all the rumors I've heard about their strict disciplinary nature. I'm reminded of the line from a "Death Cab For Cutie" song:

"...Catholic school, as vicious as Roman rule..."

Was your childhood experience in Catholic school as brutal as so many others claim it to be? If so, I suppose I can be happy that I went to public school! :-)


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fpherj48 3 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

LOL. I wouldn't refer to it as brutal. The fact is, we students were much more intelligent, talented and versatile than any of the faculty (men & women in Black). It was challenging to say the least yet we outsmarted them 90% of the time.

Also, because our student body count was a fraction of that in the public school system, in four years we became really close to one another. Keep in mind that the most important factor to encourage a group to take up arms together, is a common enemy. We were our own proof of that fact. We were the army, they, the enemy.

Just 3 weeks ago was our 50th. Class Reunion.....a complete success, positively wonderful time. (To confirm our camaraderie, our class had reunions every 5 years, rather than the standard 10 yrs.) A class filled with extremely great people as well as quite successful. As much as it hurts to be positive about this type of private school, it is undeniable that the overall education in general "was" superior. I say was, simply because I don't know how they fair today. My particular school closed right down about 10 yrs after our class graduated. It became un-affordable to the area's residents.

The outrageous attempts at discipline, rules, punishments, guilt-tripping etc ?? after a while, it all became a game. Speaking for myself, considering it was the '60's, they tried desperately to squelch my free spirit. aka rebellious attitude. My parents repeatedly wished them luck. :)

There was a lot of regimen, finger-pointing, and if looks could kill....but in contrast to what the hierarchy hoped it would achieve, it merely created a class full of wild demonic teens! LOL

Ah, but that was then and this is now...and the long, bumpy road to ultimate freedom was rough enough that I refuse to forgive their pent-up, frustrated & cruel attempts to control. Ya just cannot PRAY EVERYTHING AWAY. What a shock to my system!

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