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  1. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Plot holes in the Bible

    Discussion in 'Debate Room' started by GingerCoffee, Apr 3, 2015.

    My apologies to the mods ahead of time, but I have faith ;) we can stay on topic here and not discuss matters of faith. The point of the thread is only to discuss plot holes in the Bible. This is not a discussion of contradictions or in irrational beliefs such as condemning homosexuals but not shrimp. It's fine if you think a contradiction is a plot hole. But it won't be a very good discussion if we just talk about the rationality of belief.

    This came up in a different thread on plot holes and it seemed a touchy subject to delve into anywhere but the debate room. Here are some major plot holes as I see them:

    The Moon is described as a night light, but you can see the Moon during the day as well as at night.
    Genesis 1:16 - And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night ....

    If Jesus is God's only son, how can the rest of us be God's children?

    Why couldn't God just forgive everyone? It makes no sense there had to be a sacrifice. God's making up the rules, it's not like the Bible says Jesus sat around heaven and asked to be punished in place of Adam and Eve.

    Where Cain got his wife has always been a plot hole.
    Genesis 4:16 - And Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden.

    If Eve was punished by the pain of childbirth that went on in perpetuity, why are women who accepted Christ not absolved of this pain now and why can non-believers use anesthesia?

    The disappearance of the Garden of Eden rather than having it exist with angels guarding the entrance is a plot hole.

    The Tower of Babel language divisions is a plot hole given we can learn other languages and given one cannot enter heaven via a tower anyway.


    I'm not trying to make a judgement about believers by bringing these up. Some in the other thread said they didn't think there were plot holes in the Bible and I felt it needed answering.
     
  2. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    You must really hate religion to keep making threads like this. :supermad:
     
  3. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    No, I just wanted to answer a denial that the Bible had any plot holes that came up in the other thread but it seemed off topic for that thread.

     
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  4. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    From the other thread, just to be clear:
     
  5. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    [​IMG]
    (Sorry to my fellow UKers)

    Things like this are natural in the recording of an oral tradition that needs to be added to after the initial writing, and clearly the result of terrible editors filling up the Council of Trent.

    Anyone familiar enough with even just Ovid will part know, part guess that many of the stories in both the OT and NT also occur in a number of different classical-era mythologies. Now I know Ovid isn't exactly common knowledge, so I'll sum up: book one of Metamorphosis, a world-wide flood because the bronze age of man (not our Bronze Age - but the age after the Gold and Silver ages of pre-history in Greek-Roman myth) had become a load of wankers, one man and his wife build a boat named Delucian and Pyrrha so they are left after the world-wide flood, and then to repopulate the planet the Gods tell Delucian and Pyrrha to throw stones over their shoulders, and the flying rocks turn into the new humanity.

    That's the perspective of a slightly bored and irritated atheist with a wildly passionate love of books and literature. Especially classical writing. How Christians defend these things is entirely up to them. I'm really, to be honest, leaving this message so I get responses flagged up. I'm interested.
     
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  6. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I think that very legitimately explains contradictions in the Bible and I said so in the other thread. That's why I made this thread about plot holes, not contradictions.
     
  7. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Regarding the moon ruling the night and the fact that we can obviously see the moon during the day being a contradiction (I choose to use the word "contradiction" because I regard "plot hole" as something that refers to fiction. To immediately assume the Bible is fiction seems a little insensitive to me) - I don't see the moon thing as a contradiction because it's quite true that the sun overpowers the moon in the day, thus "rules" the day. And obviously the sun is absent during the night. That's how I understood "rule".

    Related to how we could be children of God - there're plenty of Bible passages that says we're chosen by God. Specifically, the Jews are a chosen people and the Gentiles "grafted" into the vine - eg that the Gentiles were adopted into the family by God. In any event, mankind being the children of God is more of a choice on God's part. (I could find the passages if you want)

    Whereas Jesus being the Son of God - I suppose my understanding has always been that Jesus is part of the trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) and is God, not a created being nor someone who came into this world through natural means (eg. a woman giving birth). I can't say I've always understood the trinity and I won't try to explain it - because I honestly don't understand it well enough nor feel I have the vocabulary to do it justice. "Son of God" I think is more of a title that places Jesus in the role that he has within the trinity, as opposed to how we might naturally understand the word "son" such as "Isaac was Abraham's son".

    I don't understand why the curse of pain in labour means Christian women should be absolved from the pain just because they believe in the Jewish/Christian God? Could you expand?

    Also, @GingerCoffee - you said:
    I don't get it. Why not...? o_O For a start, this is a NON-believer. I don't see how the Bible is relevant to them. For seconds, are you implying that Christian women are forbidden by the Bible to use anaesthetics? I've been a Christian all my life and I can honestly say I've never heard of this. I'm pregnant right now and totally intend on using epidural. My father-in-law, a doctor, anesthetist and a devout Catholic, even said he'd go as far as to pay for epidural for me if for whatever reason that's needed. My sister, who's had 2 children now, definitely used epidural. I mean, did I understand you correctly??

    As for why can't God just forgive everyone - the typical logic the church gives is this: because God is just, He must punish wrongdoing as it deserves (whether you believe every sin deserves death is another matter though). So sin cannot go unpunished. Thus a sacrifice is needed to carry the punishment.

    For all that, I'll offer a contradiction of my own because I'm trying to wrap my head around it too - that is, how does punishing someone else, however willing the person who took the punishment, mean justice?

    A popular illustration pastors give is this:
    You're in court and you're guilty of your charges. And right before the judge gives you your jail sentence, the judge's son comes into the court room and takes your place, and takes your sentence. Thus, the wrongdoing is paid for and justice is done.

    I get that the wrongdoing is paid for. But how is it justice?
     
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  8. Catrin Lewis
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    OK, I'll bite on the biggest ones.

    Christ is the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of His Father before all worlds; Light from Light, true God from true God; begotten, not made; of one Being with the Father. (Yes, I just quoted the Nicene Creed. It's a creed for a reason.)

    Human beings are "children" of God only by creation and derivation. There is a way in which we are all His offspring, as St. Paul quotes one the Greek poets in Acts 18:28. But as far as being children in the way of being heirs, eligible to receive all the blessings of the heavenly Father including eternal life, that comes only through faith in Christ, in His sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins. See Galatians 3:25-4:7 and Hebrews 2:10-15, among other places. (Read the surrounding context, too. That's the first rule in biblical interpretation.)

    As for why God can't "just forgive" everyone, yes, there is something God cannot do. And that's deny or contradict His own nature. And first and foremost God is holy. He has the right to demand that everyone and everything be perfect in His sight. The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23), and He has mercifully provided a substitute for us humans in the person of His Son who took on flesh specifically to pay for our offense against God's holiness. See Mark 10:45; John 3:16-21; Romans 3:21-26.
     
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  9. Catrin Lewis
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    About whether Genesis 3:16 forbids painkillers in childbirth (vs. the Lord just saying the pain would be greatly multiplied), maybe you might better ask why it's ok for men to use tractors and combine harvesters in farming. After all, does it say in Gen. 3:17-19 that it would be toil and sweat and terrible difficulty for Adam to get his living after he sinned!

    The fact is, it says nothing about whether we can use the smarts God gave us to alleviate our toil, trouble, and pain. Obviously we can-- nowhere does He forbid us from sewing ourselves clothes or using medicine or building houses!

    The point of Genesis chapter 3 is that human sin brought disruption into creation. Instead of our bodies and the earth working in harmony with us in the most basic areas of life (reproduction and sustenance), they're now working against us-- just as the first humans chose to work against God.

    But I really must go wash the floors (more of that broken creation thing-- cat kakk on the floors :rofl: ). I've got a Good Friday service to attend at 7:30 tonight.
     
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  10. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    OK, one more for @Mckk
    I cited this passage before, but I think it helps answer your question.
    The short answer is that God in His grace and mercy has chosen to accept His Son's sacrifice in our behalf. And because Jesus had no sin of His own to be judged for, He could pay the penalty for us. And "us" includes everyone, unrestricted by background or nationality-- and all of us need it paid for us, whether we were "born" Christian or not.

    The ineffable answer to your question is here

    "Amazing love! How can it be
    That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?"
    ---Charles Wesley
     
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  11. Mckk
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    Re the garden of Eden disappearing - that depends on whether the creation story should or can be taken literally. Genesis, as far as I'm aware, isn't any kind of prophetic book where people noted down the direct word of God like there is in say, Isaiah.

    So one must ask the question: how do we know how God created the world? I'm not familiar with the history of Genesis or who actually wrote it (somehow in my head I'm thinking Moses??)

    From this lack of knowledge, it would be reasonable for me to assume the creation story is more allergorical or somehow poetic rather than literal. In that light, I don't see the problem re Eden disappearing.

    This probably brings problems of its own... other than original sin I can't think of much else right now, but definitely interested if anyone's got anything to expand on this. eg. what problems would there be in current Christian beliefs/doctrine if we do not take the creation story literally?

    I'm not disputing that we need Christ to pay for the penalty of sin, nor do I dispute that salvation is a gift from God by His grace. It's a famous passage you cite and the answer you've given is no different to what I've been taught, heard over and over, and actually, that I accept.

    What it does not answer is: how is it justice?

    I get that it is mercy and grace. I don't get how it is just.
     
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  12. GingerCoffee
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    Let me touch on two of the biggest plot holes and get to other things later.
    You misunderstood me. No surprise if you aren't aware of this punishment Eve suffered for her transgressions in Eden. I'm sure I was less than clear.

    Genesis 3:16 - To the woman he said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.”

    That's the American standard translation as the King James Translation calls it "sorrow". Perhaps that's why you weren't familiar with it. The majority of translations say "pain" and only a couple translate the passage as "sorrow".

    So here's what I meant by plot hole. If accepting Christ means you are forgiven, why was the punishment not withdrawn? And why 2,000 years later does science give us the ability to forgo the punishment, while accepting Christ has no impact on that option?


    So you yourself see the plot hole and have no answer that plugs the hole.

    Not only that, but say you consider yourself the wronged person, and, you control the fate of the guilty person. So instead of just forgiving the person you make yourself go to jail to pay you for the wrongdoing. That makes even less sense.

    I fail to see how punishing yourself for a transgression against yourself makes a lick of sense.
     
  13. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    Here's what I don't get: if God was willing to basically ruin Egypt's economy to free his people, then why didn't he rain hellfire apocalypse to save his own son?
     
  14. Mckk
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    I honestly have no idea what you mean... The pain of childbearing is the curse from original sin - the belief is that everyone is under that curse, even Christians, because even Christians were born in sin and must struggle with that sin daily. The forgiveness of our sins is more to do with our eternal souls - that when we die and are judged for how we've lived our lives, we're forgiven for any mistakes and wrongdoings we've made. It speaks more towards the future.

    And yeah I was aware that Eve was cursed to go through pain in childbearing. I don't get why that means we can't use painkillers. I also don't get why just because science allows us to alleviate the pain of childbirth while accepting Christ doesn't is a contradiction. Where in the Bible does it say science cannot do so, or that we are not allowed to do anything to help ourselves?
     
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  15. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm more interested in why someone would feel the need to point out contradictions in the bible to strangers. From an atheist/agnostic perspective, this is the equivalent of a teenager trying to wreck santa Claus for a toddler. It's entirely unnecessary and worse, a waste of time and effort.

    Not to mention scholars have been arguing over the bible for over a thousand years. It is called ecclesiology.
     
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  16. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    It's simple, not sure what you are not understanding. First, I never said anything about it being wrong to take pain relief for childbearing. That was yours and @Catrin Lewis' misunderstanding from the beginning.

    Probably my fault for how I worded the post.

    Anyone can get pain relief, forgiven or not. And pain relief wasn't available for 2,000 years after the sacrifice.

    Eve is cursed for her sin. Jesus dies. People who accept Christ are forgiven for Eve's sin. If the punishment is not withdrawn, you aren't really forgiven.
     
  17. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    :confused:
    No one is pointing out Biblical contradictions. We are discussing plot holes that came up in another thread.
     
  18. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Oh, OK. My bad!


    ;) ;) ;)
     
  19. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Aha, okay, thanks for clarifying re the fact that you don't think it's wrong to take pain relief.

    The curse of sin is the permenant state of the world until Christ comes again when he basically establishes the new heaven and new earth - thus the curse of pain in childbearing remains regardless of faith. As I said, the forgiveness extended to those in Christ is relevant for the afterlife - by virtue of being in Christ we are given the strength to withstand evil and choose the better - godly - way, as it were. But that says nothing about the curse being lifted while we're on this earth. The promise was for the future.

    Btw I forgot to add previously, the way you worded the whole punishing yourself for being wronged doesn't make a lick of sense - that made me giggle :rofl: I can totally see your point, but I'm afraid I can't answer the question because I don't get how it's justice in the first place. However if you see it as giving your life for someone whom you love, then it can make sense - comes back to how I can accept it as the grace and mercy of God, but still can't wrap my head around why it's justice.

    What I'd love is for someone to define justice, although I'm sure there're books on that...
     
  20. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Btw, I don't really see it as a bad thing if an atheist or anyone else wants to point out the contradictions in the Bible. The truth is, like it or not, these questions and issues are valid. They exist, and they should be answered to some extent. I think it would be more dangerous for a Christian - as in, in danger of losing their faith - if they're utterly unaware of these questions. For a Christian to blindly deny there are any issues in the Bible or simply to be ignorant of any that exists also to some extent discredits their reliability as witnesses - as someone you can trust when they tell you about Christianity.

    I think we're often afraid that staring these things in the face might cause us to lose our faith - but then how much is our faith worth if it's based on nothing but thin air, without intelligent, conscious, deliberate assessment through which we come to a conscious choice to believe?

    I remember a very nice illustration I heard in a sermon once. Your faith is like a house built on the shore and you've got these wooden pillars (no clue what they're called lol) holding your house above the sea. You need to make sure all 4 legs are strong and stable. If one of them is weak and wobbling - eg. you have any questions, any doubts about your faith - and if you simply ignored it like it didn't exist, what's gonna happen when the storm hits? Your house (faith) will collapse. So it is better to explore those doubts and ask honest questions, and seek honest answers - build that wobbly leg up so when the storm hits, it's gonna stand.

    I guess for that reason I would not use the analogy you did re adult ruining Santa Claus for toddlers. I would also not be so quick to see things that way, because it implies a very patronising view of religious people. For the same reason, I am no longer comfortable when Christians very often imply that we have to guide non-believers to the right way and teach them how to live, because they're unable to do anything except follow their own sinful nature and are blind to the light.

    I just think if we lost that patronising attitude, maybe the religious and non-religious would have much more productive conversations. Not saying you're necessarily being patronising - simply that the analogy was a little and reminded me of the same attitude Christians often have of non-Christians, and such attitude coming from whichever group can often prevent productive discussions because we end up coming into the conversation already assuming there's nothing to learn from the other party.
     
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  21. Lea`Brooks
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    This thread is a horrible idea.... lol It's surely going to end in catostrophic failure.
     
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  22. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    You're forgetting the OP cleverly denied you the right to use your faith as an argument.
     
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  23. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    It's not an argument. I'm saying it's far from a bad thing to be aware of any contradictions that exists in the Bible, and that this thread can be very educational, especially for the Christian, who perhaps more than other people have far more personal interest in learning more about this.

    And oh my word did I just abuse the word "more" or what!? :wtf:
     
  24. 123456789
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    Well there's two perspectives here. From the atheist perspective, the Santa Claus analogy holds, and yes it is condescending to Christians. From a Christian perspective(also some agnostics including myself) all plot holes in the bible can be answered for by either giving the bible a figurative context or by placing faith above logic. Both of these are valid interpretations, but the OP specifically asked us not to argue the rationality of belief. That's all I meant.
     
  25. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Sure :) In all honesty I don't even think I understood what arguing about the rationality of belief is supposed to be lol. I'm just a regular Christian who completely did not study either theology or philosophy and am actually a pretty crappy debater :D (because I can express my opinions strongly without ever providing any evidence lol) I actually think it's probably safer for me to lurk on this thread rather than be too active :supercool:
     
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