Originally posted by checkbaiter
I learned about this 30 years ago and am glad to finally see it on a website.
Here is the first problem:
This identifies the root of the problem: a lack of real faith in the integrity of the Word of God. Such faith leads to the indispensable conviction that the Word cannot contradict itself. When one is rooted and grounded in that premise, he has a basis from which to work out what seem to be apparent contradictions, of which there are many in the Bible.
I've pointed our irrefutable contradictions on this site before which no literalist
(verbal acrobatics nonewithstanding) has been able to explain.
The second problem is that the site uses the King James translation which, although
by far the most elegant to read, is also woefully unreliable. If you are going to tackle
a passage, you should turn to the Greek.
Thirdly, the blithe disregard of tradition is a mistake. If we have records saying
2 people with Jesus going back to the early Christians, then what makes a person
think that 1900 years later we have a better answer?
The site misrepresents the interlinear translation of 'one' in their examination
of St John's Gospel -- the 'one' is implicit in the word form used. We encounter
this in many other languages (e.g., My father used to call his mother 'la vieja'
which means 'the old' but, implicitly, 'the old [one]'
. So the out that they
leave themselves for a multiplicity of crucified folk is founded on sand.
Regarding the Greek, Sts Matthew and Mark report two 'robbers' and St Luke
reports two 'criminals.' These are synonyms. To try to reconcile the contradiction
(wherein Sts Matthew and Mark the criminals apparently both revile Him, in St
Luke one comes to God) by inventing a tradition is silliness.
Recall that none of the authors were present for the crucifixion, and so they were
relying on reports that they got. If you believe St Luke is a literal report, then
it is a simple matter of Sts Mark and Matthew not hearing about the story. But,
more likely, St Luke was embellishing upon the events at the crucifixion to make
a theological point: that one can truly come to God in their last moments, if they
act in sincerity.
To panic because of a literal contradiction is an expression of weakness of faith.
However, if you can look beyond the literalness of a text to see the greater theological
presentation, then you have reached a greater maturity of faith.