- Religion and Philosophy
How true is the Bible?
Do people actually believe the Bible is true down to every last word?
Steve Falkenberg, professor of religious psychology at Eastern Kentucky University:
"I've never met anyone who actually believes the Bible is literally true. I know a bunch of people who say they believe the Bible is literally true but nobody is actually a literalist. Taken literally, the Bible says the earth is flat and sitting on pillars and cannot move (Ps 93:1, Ps 96:10, 1 Sam 2:8, Job 9:6). It says that great sea monsters are set to guard the edge of the sea (Job 41, Ps 104:26).
Have you ever run into a "True Believer"? Someone who claims to believe that the Bible is a 100% true document straight out of God's mouth (if he/she/it has a mouth) into the printed page. Where every single word in the Bible is the "God's honest truth" and if its in the Bible than it happen.
World created in seven days. Yup its true. Noah gathered every single animal, insect, bacteria, microbe on the planet and stored them two by two in a giant wooden ark and set sail for 40 days and 40 nights and lived to be 900 fathering hundreds of children. Yup! Its in there so it has to be true.
People turned into pillars of salt, burning bushes, conflicting accounts, miracle births, Resurrections, walking on water, turning water to wine - true, true, true. Gays are abominations, people should be stoned to death for all sorts of crimes, eye for an eye and split the baby in two - its the truth!
Actual no one can actually believe the Bible is true down to the very last word. At least not sane people. Delusional insane nut jobs, ok, they might just believe every word but should be committed. For the rest, for the sane, there is no way the rational mind can reason that the conflicts of things in the Bible with reality, are somehow true. One or another has to be wrong. For example either the photos of earth from space have been faked or the world really is round. Either the dinosaurs were all buried in the great flood or the world really is older than 4,000 years old. Those crafty scientists always trying to fool us with their carbon dating and earth science discoveries! Either Noah gathered up 50,000 varieties of beetles or that old yarn about the flood is a bunch of baloney. Those whale hip bones are simply an example of the Creator's artistic flair or a concrete example of evolution.
You can't have it both ways without your mind cracking.