Monday, June 12, 2017
Bible “Contradictions” Rebutted, #4
Contradiction claim #22, Who was the mother of Abijah
2 Chron. 11:20: Maachah the daughter of Absalom
2 Chron 13:2: Michaiah the daughter of Uriel
There is a difficulty here in that Tamar was Absalom’s only daughter. A possibility is that the Hebrew word here translated as “daughter” can also mean “grand-daughter”. Considering the time involved, she most likely is Absalom’s grand-daughter.
Contradiction claim #23, Who was Josiah's successor?
2 Chron. 36:1: Jehoahaz
Jer. 22:11: Shallum
Both these names refer to the same person. Jehoahaz is a personal name, while Shallum means “replacer.”
Contradiction claim #24, The differences in the census figures of Ezra and Nehemiah.
This is from “When Critics Ask”:
First, it is possible that each of these is a copyist error. One of the most problematic areas of transcription for the Jewish scribe was copying numbers. It is certainly conceivable that out of these rather large lists of names and numbers there would be a number of copyist errors (see Appendix 2).
Second, it is also possible that Ezra and Nehemiah compiled their lists at different times. Ezra may have compiled a list of those who left Babylon with Zerubbabel, while Nehemiah compiled his list of those who actually made it to Jerusalem. In some cases, people who left Babylon with the intention of going back to rebuild Jerusalem may have turned back or died along the way. In other cases, a family may have enlisted recruits to bolster their numbers. Perhaps family members in other lands got word of the migration and rendezvoused with their relatives along the way from Babylon to Jerusalem.
Contradiction claim #25, How is the Earth supported?
Job 26:7 He stretcheth out the north over the empty place, and hangeth the earth upon nothing.
Job 38:4 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if thou hast understanding.
The point of Job is that the earth is not supported. He says it hangs “upon nothing.” Laying “the foundations” is a figure of speech that means when he created the earth.
Contradiction claim #26, Heaven is supported also.
Job 26:11 The pillars of heaven tremble and are astonished at his reproof.
Figure of speech, as anyone should so understand.
Contradiction claim #27, The hydrological cycle.
Eccl. 1:7 All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again.
Job 38:22 Hast thou entered into the treasures of the snow? or hast thou seen the treasures of the hail,
Storehouses (KJV “treasures”) are not part of the cycle
These are nothing more than poetic metaphors.
Contradiction claim #28, Snails do not melt.
Psa. 58:8 As a snail which melteth, let every one of them pass away: like the untimely birth of a woman, that they may not see the sun.
This is no different than when we say a snail “melts” when we pour salt on it. It doesn’t melt really, but it appears to do so. It is a figure of speech.
Contradiction claim #29, Do the righteous live or perish?
Psa.92:12: The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree.
Isa. 57:1: The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart.
Let’s look at these passages in context. Ps. 92:12 is discussing the general blessings of the righteous man on earth. Isa. 57 is in the context of things happening to the wicked and righteous. Verse 1 continues, “and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.” The point is that no one is concerned about righteous men dying or when merciful men are taken away. The passage continues in vs. 2 where God says that “He [the righteous] shall enter into peace: they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness.” God says that the reason the righteous men are dying in this particular situation is that He is saving them from the coming evil, and that in death with Him they have their peace and rest. There is no contradiction.
Contradiction claim #30, Is God good to all, or just a few?
Psa. 145:9 The LORD is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.
Jer. 13:14 And I will dash them one against another, even the fathers and the sons together, saith the LORD: I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, but destroy them.
Psalm 145:9 is in the context of God’s overall character and of giving grace to all His creation. He is indeed good to all who deserve nothing but His wrath. Jer. 13:14 is a totally different context. Here God is bringing punishment to Israel for their apostasy, idolatry, etc. If a parent punishes his child, does that mean the parent no longer does good? Isn’t punishment overall good? God punishing evil is certainly good.
Contradiction claim #31, Do you answer a fool?
Prov. 26:4 Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.
Prov. 26:5 Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.
This one is a bit confusing, but when understanding the whole of the teaching in Proverbs, it becomes clear. The first passage is telling us not to answer a fool in the same way he speaks or we will be like him. For example, when someone calls us a name, we don’t retort with, “and you’re another.” In the second passage it tells us to answer a fool as his foolishness requires. In other words, we rebuke and correct his foolishness.