Apologetics - Are There Contradictions in the Bible?
Hello and welcome back. Have you ever heard someone say, “How can I trust what your Bible says? It’s full of contradictions.”? This response is all too familiar to me. Not only have I heard it before, but have also said it myself. My argument was that God said not to kill yet, many did who were considered His people. This was my response during a season of severe pride, covetousness, hardened heart, and lack of any empathy.
I grew up in a very small town of GA where if you did not know a certain person, you more than likely knew someone that did. My brothers and I were raised in a God-fearing home. When I went into the military, it changed my world. I was exposed to many different people and a plethora of people’s personal ideology and views on various religions. It had only been a week after graduating high school that I was surrounded by a host of different people from all around the world. My mind was like playdoh…malleable and easily molded into what anyone wanted it to be.
I never actually read the Bible but knew of the highlight reels that it contained. So, when someone came along and told me anything about the Bible, I would take their word for it and not check for myself. I’m telling you this because the people you encounter that use this response and others that I’ve shared may just be like how I used to be. Maybe they were told something and just took it as truth without verifying it with the written Source of Truth. Regardless of reasoning, we are to rebuke and correct with great patience, gentleness, and kindness (2 Timothy 3:16; Acts 17:11; 2 Timothy 4:2).
No one knows everything. As we share the Gospel, it is imperative that we follow the guidance and prompting of the Holy Spirit. We need to have a certain level of wisdom and knowledge concerning Scripture, not just only being familiar with the highlight reels like David killing Goliath and Sampson being really strong. More importantly, we should have the Scriptures with us. Through modern technology, we do not have to carry around a large book, we can have the Bible at our fingertips through an app on our phone.
No more appetizers. Let’s get to the entrée.
(Skeptic) “How can I trust what your Bible says? It’s full of contradictions.”
(Christian) “Well sir, I would be lying if I told you that saddens my heart. May I ask why you feel this way?”
(Skeptic) “In the Bible, it says thou shall not kill and yet God’s people were commanded to kill many people and even David openly killed a man.”
(Christian) “You brought up an excellent argument. Do you have a few minutes to which I can try to bring light to what you just said?”
(Christian) “Thank you so much. Have you ever heard of the word ‘military’ and do you know why it exists? Tell me, if a country was to threaten the people and livelihood of another country, do you feel that the threatened country should respond?”
(Skeptic) “Of course, or else over time, they would cease to exist.”
(Christian) “Let’s say you have a puppy that you loved dearly and it loved you. How would you react to a full-on attack from larger dogs that would not stop, regardless of all peaceful attempts?”
(Skeptic) “Well, I believe the humane society usually puts them down when all other options have been exhausted.”
(Christian) “Yes. Now let’s say you built a truck in your garage from scratch and you don’t want to haul or tow anything. You only want to race it. Does anyone have the right to tell you you’re wrong and how to use your truck?”
(Skeptic) “No! It’s mine, I built and made it. I created it, and if I want to change how I use it, it would be my decision to do so. Not anyone else’s.”
(Christian) “You’re justly entitled to that right. The Canaanites during the time of Joshua were very wicked. They openly indulged and participated in adultery, witchcraft, incest, and sacrificed their own children to an idol named Molech. They became extremely dangerous to God’s people and their way of life. The Canaanites ways of life was beginning to spread. So, God made the decision that their time on His planet had come to an end. HE created the Earth and all its inhabitants and is justly entitled to do what He deems best for His creation. David did not murder the giant, rather, it was in defense for his people and nation. We can rightfully assume that should Goliath had not been defeated, the Israelites, God’s people, would have been enslaved for a very long time or even wiped out. Just like the scenario with the puppy, all peaceful negotiations had been exhausted. However, know this. God is a loving God. Jesus, His only begotten Son, teaches and commands us to love one another and to live in harmony. Due to the free will of all, many choose not to do so and inflict pain and suffering on others. So, I ask, what then is one to do? Scripture does not contradict itself. It’s the thoughts and actions of mankind that causes contradiction to Scripture.”
From here, you have many options. I personally would encourage them to read Scriptures to get a better understanding of God’s love. The Book of John is a great place to start. Suggest reading 1 chapter a week and to get plugged in to a local church, maybe give your contact info should they have questions on what they read.
“The Lord does not delay His promise, as some understand delay, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9 [HCSB])”
And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these. (Mark 12:30-31 [NLT])”- JesusMay God bless you and protection as you go and be His feet and hands.