Is the Bible, God’s Perfect Word?

This Post is Part of Series of Post called Dissecting the Anatomy of God.
Quick View: Table of Contents,

The Question begins with, Is God’s Word Perfect?,  Is the autobiographical text perfect?,  Is God original spoken word divinely perfect?…..Well the Christian or Christian Scholar would say Yes, Of Course.

“The Bible is inspired, but is it inerrant, that is without errors? The reason for a positive answer is simple: The Bible is the Word of God, and God cannot err; therefore, the Bible cannot err. To deny the inerrancy of the Bible one must either affirm that God can err or else that the Bible is not the Word of God.” (Norman Giesler )

“The theological basis of the belief of inerrancy, in its simplest form, is that as God is perfect, the Bible, as the word of God, must also be perfect, thus, free from error. Proponents of biblical inerrancy also teach that God used the “distinctive personalities and literary styles of the writers” of scripture but that God’s inspiration guided them to flawlessly project his message through their own language and personality” (New World Encyclopedia)

To infer that the Bible is perfect, because it was inspired by a perfect deity is a very rational expectation, but questionable.  Even the bible asserts that God’s way & word is perfect in 2 Samuel 22:31 & Psalm 18:30.  However this is deeply questionable because after careful consideration, there are a number of alleged bible difficulites, that one would have deeply re-consider the notion of a Perfect God given Word,- The Bible.  And I have never seen all the discrepancies addressed by anyone.

So how could the bible be so perfect if it contains so many alleged discrepancies?

Christian Answer Atheist Answer
“Yes, our Bible translations do have errors, let me tell you about them. But as you can see, less than 1% of them are meaningful and those errors don’t affect the major teachings of the Christian faith. In fact, there are 1000 times more manuscripts of the Bible than the most documented Greco-Roman historian by Suetonius. So, if we’re going to be skeptical about ancient books, we should be 1000 times more skeptical of the Greco-Roman histories. The Bible is, in fact, incredibly reliable.” –Johnathon Dodson “For the only reason (I came to think) for God to inspire the bible would be so that his people would have his actual words; but if he really wanted people to have his actual words, surely he would have miraculously preserved those words, just as he had miraculously inspired them in the first place. Given the circumstance that he didn’t preserve the words, the conclusion seemed inescapable to me that he hadn’t gone to the trouble of inspiring them.” – Bart Ehrman
“The Bible cannot err, since it is God’s Word, and God cannot err. This does not mean there are no difficulties in the Bible. But the difficulties are not due to God’s perfect revelation, but to our imperfect understanding of it. The history of Bible criticism reveals that the Bible has no errors, but the critics do.” – Norman Giesler “For my own part, my belief in the perfection of the Deity will not permit me to believe that a book so manifestly obscure, disorderly, and contradictory can be His work” – Thomas Paine 
“We have to be careful to not affirm too much though. We believe that the Bible is inerrant, but this does not mean that the writers always practiced perfect Greek. It also doesn’t mean that they put all their facts in modern, advanced scientific terms. …They can paraphrase the Old Testament, and even Jesus. But none of these things affect our belief that the Bible represents the facts correctly. Just because a statement is imprecise does not make it false.” – Royce Theology Blog “All Bibles are Man-Made.” –Thomas Edison

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About M. Rodriguez

When I first received Christ salvation, I made it a priority to read the whole bible and I did. But it was the Bible that made me question my faith. For I found it flawed and lacking. Due to this I launched a personal inquiry/investigation into my faith, and ultimately realized that the Christian God of the Bible was indeed man-made. Now I Blog about those findings and life after Christ.
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14 Responses to Is the Bible, God’s Perfect Word?

  1. I’d be interested in an issue by issue inspection of the discrepancies, purely for academic knowledge.

    • Nate says:

      Hi Corinne — I hope Marcus doesn’t mind me touting my own blog on his site, but I’ve covered a number of them (at least the ones that were big for me). If you’re interested, you can click on my link and then look in my About section, where I have them referenced.

      • M. Rodriguez says:

        actually your blog is probably one of the top blogs I visited when I had general questions on Bible difficulties.

      • Arkenaten says:

        I am surprised God hasn’t paid your blog a visit already, Nate, corrected all your mistakes, the typos, and pointed out all your contradictions.
        He’s probably still in the pub. Give Him time.

    • M. Rodriguez says:

      really there is none. The closet thing that address all the bible discrepancies from the Christian perspective is CARM-Christian Apologetics and Research Minsitry
      http://carm.org/introduction-bible-difficulties-and-bible-contradictions

      and from the atheist perspective the skeptics annotated bible- http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/contra/by_name.html

      I one common theme I heard during my deconversion was that there were answer to all the bible difficulties and contradictions. And I searched for that list. But it did not exist. But Carm came the closest, because it was the most extensive with apologetic answers.

  2. Nate says:

    Marcus, as you know the problems in the Bible were huge for me. I really identify with your Bart Ehrman quote — that’s exactly how I felt. And the Geisler quotes just remind me how much his books irritated me. I don’t like to pass judgment, but I have trouble thinking that he’s sincere in what he writes. I find many of his statements to be recklessly inaccurate.

    • M. Rodriguez says:

      yeah, and that why I included this topic and that quote in my perfect God series. Because in my opinion (very much like Ehrman) If God is perfect, would not be an obvious inference to assume that God’s word was also perfect.

      And if God’s message was so important and perfect, why did God not take the care to make sure his message came across accurate and precise.

  3. I think Paine is closer to the truth for in one sentence he dismisses the entirety of the three big monotheistic religions. Without their holy text as pefection, there is no reilgion. It seems almost unanimous that all of these religions require revelation as well. That is to say that the books alone are not enough without also having a revelation or believing someone else did..

    If god reveals himself in order to validate the contradictory text or in fact to create it then it is possible for god to reveal himself to all of humanity, both individually and in large numbers. That this revelation does not happen is proof enough for me that I need not waste time believing in what is merely written down.

    It seems the very evidence that most atheist want to see is the bit you’re supposed to get to verify the texts are true yet it doesn’t seem to happen. If ever there were a test for a god, we’d expect to see something in this regard. We do not. Claim dismissed.

  4. M. Rodriguez says:

    I also think one of the larger points in this message, is that if God’s Word was PERFECT at first inspiration and breath. But if God did not care ensure to preservation of his perfect word, Why should I care?

  5. Arkenaten says:

    A perfect god would ensure his perfect word was just that. And it would have no ambiguity at all.
    If the bible is inerrant blaming humans for not understanding the bible rather undermines the Creator, wouldn’t you say?

  6. Another point of view to consider is that the Bible doesn’t claim to be the word of God at all – that’s a Christian tradition. Inerrantists don’t like admitting this, because they tend to say that their faith is based exclusively on Scripture, and not on any external traditions.

    But there are three verses in the New Testament where Paul explicitly states that he is giving his opinion, and is not sure that what he writes is the word of God: 1 Corinthians 7:12 and 25, and 2 Corinthians 11:17.

    Furthermore, the first chapter of John says “In the beginning was the Word…” and says the Word was God, and became flesh and dwelt among us. In other words, Jesus is the Word of God, according to the Bible. So the Bible can’t also be Jesus, unless in some mysterious sense the Bible is Jesus (and I have heard a preacher say that). That would make the Bible some kind of fourth member of the Trinity, I guess.

  7. Arkenaten says:

    “I actually would disagree on this part, I would say inerrancy is a implied doctrine of the bible. Not directly stated, but can inferred just by reading the bible.”
    Excellent point , Marcus, I had not looked at it in this fashion before. I will remember this point when someone wants to state that the bible does not claim inerrancy.

  8. Pingback: Is the concept of a Perfect God Illogical? | The BitterSweet End

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