The Instigator
dtaylor971
Pro (for)
Winning
8 Points
The Contender
JonathanDJ
Con (against)
Losing
1 Points

The Bible contradicts itself.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
dtaylor971
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/4/2013 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 824 times Debate No: 41694
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (2)

 

dtaylor971

Pro

First round for acceptance.
JonathanDJ

Con

I accept. Instigator needs to be specific about what and where the contradictions are.
Debate Round No. 1
dtaylor971

Pro




Pleasure to be debating with you.
Please note that I can't use arguments like "God doesn't exist" (He does) and you can't use "God exists."

I will name specific contradictions right now. Later on, I will provide rebuttals only (maybe a few more contradictions) in hopes that you will do the same. No more rules, it's debating time! :)

Contradiction: A combination of statements, ideas, or features of a situation that are opposed to one another. [5]
That is the definition that we will be following. If there are two ideas (and one can't be true if the other is true) than I have posted a contradiction.

Argument 1: [1]

Genesis 1:11-12 and 1:26-27
Trees came before Adam.
Genesis 2:4-9 Trees came afterr Adam.
As we all know, one of the same can not come both before and after. There are also three others that mimic this:
Adam and Eve were made at the same time (1:26)
Adam was created first, Eve was created later (2:7 and 2:21-22)

I looked further into this contradiction. I have found more contradictions of the order of creations during chapter one and two, such as plants [2]. It states that humans came before plants, while another reader says that the plants wore in a 'dormant' state. Why would someone write something that awkward? Instead of to say, "plants came before man."

Argument 2: [3]

JOH 10:30 I and my Father are one.
JOH 14:28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.
This is another Bible contradiction. One can not be the same and lesser at the same time. Jesus is either equal or lesser than, but the Bible does not state which one he really is. It just contradicts itself.

Argument 3: [4]
Samuel 24:9: Five hundred thousand men fighting in Judah.
Chronicles 21:5: Four hundred and seventy thousand men fighting in Judah.
This is not the only numbers contradiction. Perhaps we should view a more well-known one with a 300,000 person difference:

1,100,000 men found fighting in Israel.
800,000 men found fighting in Israel.
Both are found in the same parts as the top ones (Samuel 24:9, Chronicles 21:5.)
This time, Samuel 24:9 states that there were less people fighting in Israel, but states that there were more people fighting in Judah.

Those are three contradictions in the bible. Out of a ton. To show you just how many, here you go:

http://www.patheos.com...

Go to the part where it shows the graph. Each one of those curvy red lines is a Bible contradiction, a big one a big contradiction and a small one a small contradiction.
I will post some more Bible contradictions in the later rounds.

[1] http://www.thethinkingatheist.com...

[2] http://errancy.org...
[3] http://www.infidels.org...
[4] http://sunnahonline.com...
[5] https://www.google.com...

JonathanDJ

Con

I'd like to start out by setting few guidelines that will be helpful. I assume that Pro means that the contradictions are meaningful. That they render the text meaningless. I must point out that the Bible is not a philosophical document. It is not a series of syllogisms. It is an historical document. When a police officer takes witness statements to an accident; the witnesses will almost certainly diverge from one another. One might say they saw a green car and another might say they saw a blue car. But which car hit which first is something they will probably agree on. The secondary details, in this case color, isn't really important. No court in the world would exclude their testimony as contradictory because of this divergence. As a matter of fact, if they had perfect agreement on every detail they would likely be accused of being coached by one of the attorneys. What is important is agreement on the primary details. This is the focus for the historian. The Bible should be allowed to use figurative language and round numbers just like any other document. The Bible should be given the same benefit of the doubt that any historical document would be given.

Now, as for Genesis. First, I do not interpret Genesis as a literal account of the creation of heaven and earth. I subscribe more or less to what's called a Framework hypothesis. One way of looking at this issue that my counterpart has brought up, even from a more literal view is that we can straiten out allot of problems by just reading it carefully. Notice: The first creation account mentions crawling things and fish. The second telling leaves them out all together. This may be because it is referring specifically to animals Adam will interact with. Beings like pets and agricultural animals. The references to plants isn't so much the issue as to where they are growing. In the first account it says Earth which in Hebrew is erets. But in the second account the word is sadeh which means field. Adam was set in charge of caring for the Garden of Eden not the whole of earth. God may have simply recreated the plants and animals in the Garden. The reference to Adam and Eve together in the first and separate in the second is explained because the first was making a general statement about humanity the second was making a detailed description of the creation of man and woman.

Jesus statement about "The Father and I are One" is a reference to His essence. Jesus is God. When He says the Father is greater than I He is talking about His own willful submission to the Father.
The issue about 500,000 and 470,000 is something you see even today in modern history books. One historian rounds up and the other historian is precise. Neither is inaccurate nor would we accuse them of contradicting each other. Unbelievers in the Bible refuse to grant it the same latitude they grant any other historical document or even a daily newspaper.

I would like my counterpart to rewrite his last part I'm not sure what to make of it.
Debate Round No. 2
dtaylor971

Pro

Thank you for responding back; I was afraid of another forfeit as I have been through so many lately.

"I assume that Pro means that the contradictions are meaningful. That they render the text meaningless."
No, I do not. It may be my fault, but I did state the definition of contradiction. Even if it is a microscopic contradiction, it is still a contradiction. I would not go as far to say that the contradictions that I state render the Bible useless.

"I must point out that the Bible is not a philosophical document. It is not a series of syllogisms. It is an historical document."
That does nothing to help your argument. I don't care if it is a poem, a fairy tale, a historical document, or even a proved book, a contradiction is a contradiction.

"When a police officer takes witness statements to an accident; the witnesses will almost certainly diverge from one another. One might say they saw a green car and another might say they saw a blue car. "
This is a minor contradiction. I pointed out three major contradictions. I would put it like this:
Witness one: I saw the blue car with an American driver going at about 58 miles an hour collide into a yellow car.
Witness two: I saw the orange car with an African-American driver going at about 53 miles an hour collide into a blue car with an Asian driver. That would be the magnitude of the biggest contradiction in the Bible. It may be just an opinion, but it is accurate.

The rest of this part of the argument is about a crime. We are not talking about a crime, but rather about a document found Holy to many. And I didn't quite get the meaning of your second argument; please rephrase it.

"The issue about 500,000 and 470,000 is something you see even today in modern history books. One historian rounds up and the other historian is precise."
True. But how would you explain the 800,000 and the 1,100,000 difference I stated? 500,000 and 470,000 is a common mistake, but 300 thousand isn't. That is pure contradictory. And since the Bible is supposed to be the word of the Lord, it just makes it worse.

"Unbelievers in the Bible refuse to grant it the same latitude they grant any other historical document or even a daily newspaper."
I would like to call a hit on the non-believers. I see that as an insult, even if it wasn't meant to be. That is just your opinion. I would also like to state that you did not use any links to prove any of your arguments.

Now, it is time for more contradictions.

John 1:18: No man hath seen God at any time.
Genesis 32:30 records Jacob as saying: “For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.”
How can you explain that? ANY time means past, present, OR FUTURE. That said, only one can be right. Neither can be right if both are right, thus earning them the award 'contradiction.' [1] If you want, I can give you more times that God appeared before someone, in His own presence. Just ask for it.
Five passages claim that God has not been seen.
Six passages claim that God HAS been seen.

And now we see a multiple choice contradiction.

Who was at the Empty Tomb? [2]

A. MAT 28:1 "In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre."

B. MAR 16:1 "And when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him."

C. JOH 20:1 "The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre."

D. All of the Above

It's D, even though, logically, it can't be. This is also said in the video I posted in the second round of the debate. So to figure out if this is a contradiction, we need to see if it:

a) Opposes one or another? √
b) Combination of statements or ideas? √
Contradiction.

Where did Moses receive the Ten Commandments? [3]
According to six verses of the bible (Exodus 31:18, Exodus 34:4, Exodus 34:32, Leviticus 26:46, Leviticus 27:34, and Nehemiah 9:13) state that Moses received the Ten Commandments upon Mount Sinai. While three verses of the Bible (Kings 8:9, Malachi 4:4, and Chronicles 5:10) state that he received them upon Mount Horeb. So where did he receive them? On only one of those mountains. Since they both cant be true if one is true, it is a contradiction.

Just click on the link I provided in the second round to see all of the Bible's contradictions.

Onto you!


[1] http://carm.org...
[2] http://www.infidels.org...
[3] http://skepticsannotatedbible.com...


JonathanDJ

Con

I would like to explain what we do and do not mean by inspired as Christians and Jews. We do not mean what Muslims mean when they speak of the Qur'an. They believe that every single word was spoken from the lips of Allah to Muhammad thru the angel Gabriel. We believe that God inspires the message in a human being and superintends it. But he allows the uniqueness of the person and their historical time and setting to be reflected in the document. It will not teach error but it will reflect the limits of the author. I saw Gene at 2 and I the other says I saw him at 1 is not error, it's a part of being human. We have imperfect memories and information. Saying the moon is made of green cheese thus saith the Lord is error.
OK, let's have a look at the situation. First off, I don't really care if Pro wants to define a problematic contradiction as anything no matter how tiny. It's silly, nit picky, and no reasonable and intelligent person would set such a standard. I will make due with my own. A contradiction is a problem if it renders the main point of the passage half or greatly obscured by said contradiction.
Let me give you an example. I decide to go to my friend Gene's house. I knock on the door and Lorie answers the door. She invites me to come in and sit down. She informs me that Gene was complaining that it was hot and stuffy in the apartment. He said that he wanted to go somewhere where he could feel the grass under his feet and see a tree. He walked out the front door and she saw him drive off to the North. That was at 1 PM.
So, I thank Laurie for the info and leave. I'm walking down the sidewalk and I run into George. I tell him that I'm in the area hoping to see Gene but that he wasn't home. George said he talked with Gene at around 2 PM. Gene said that he was roasting from the heat and thought it would be nice to find a shady place to sit by a waterfront. George said that Gene went North East. From the two testimonies we figure out that Gene is at Johanna's Park. It's the only park in the North/North East of the city with a view of water.
What can we glean from this seemingly contradictory set of reports. The main point is Gene isn't home right now. He left by his own choice. He was feeling uncomfortable because of the weather. It happens in the early afternoon. We know exactly what park he's at because even though the witnesses gave us completely different information we can extrapolate from it what place Gene's at. One more thing. I know Gene didn't pay off both people to lie to me. They would have gotten all their details strait if they had been paid off.
You can see here that so called contradictions do nothing to lessen the meaning of the passage. As a matter of fact this is precisely what one would expect from real testimony rather than doctored testimony.

In your Samuel passage you'll notice that Joab refused to count some of the people and we get Joab's count number in the passage. In the later passage it doesn't mention that fact and the number listed is larger. It is reasonable to think that the people Joab refused to count were added to the later document. David would have likely known about Joab's disobedience and sent someone else to count the uncounted people.

When Jacob says he saw the face of God he was stating his personal impression, not necessarily what he really saw. The statement in John is a statement of fact. Those two things are different.

If you consider what I told you above you'll see that this isn't a problem. Matthew is the tax collector and is telling things from his sources and recollections. Mark is Peters telling of things. John belongs to John. Why does John not mention the other women. Simple if you read Mark closely.

Mark:9 "Now when he rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, from whom he had cast out seven demons. 10 She went and told those who had been with him, as they mourned and wept. 11 But when they heard that he was alive and had been seen by her, they would not believe it." John chooses to focus on Mary M. as the first person Jesus met after the Resurrection.

Horeb is traditionally thought to be another name for Sinai.

FINALLY, DON'T ARGUE BY LINK. IT'S REALLY BAD MANNERS TO TELL SOMEONE TO CLICK A LINK AND DEAL WITH WHAT EVER IS THERE.
Debate Round No. 3
dtaylor971

Pro

"We believe that God inspires the message in a human being and superintends it. But he allows the uniqueness of the person and their historical time and setting to be reflected in the document."
I really don't get how that is supposed to help your argument in any way. Even if God allows them to write in in unique ways, it is still a contradiction. It doesn't matter. The Bible may or may not be the word of the Lord, but it doesn't matter. As I said earlier, a contradiction is a contradiction.

" I saw Gene at 2 and I the other says I saw him at 1 is not error, it's a part of being human."
You have missed the whole point of what I have been saying. I completely understand that humans make errors in writing. I just don't get how the heck it crosses out the definition of contradiction. I showed you the definition of contradiction earlier. The statement you just made above is actually a contradiction, based on the definition. And we follow definitions in debates, not opinions.

"It's silly, nit picky, and no reasonable and intelligent person would set such a standard."
Okay, you have no right to bash me like that. A contradiction can be microscopic or big. Maybe I'm not intelligent by your standards, but don't you dare judge me before you know me. I call a personal hit on that one.

"A contradiction is a problem if it renders the main point of the passage half or greatly obscured by said contradiction."
I set the 'contradiction' definition, and you obviously have not read it. Also, I have pointed out those big ones that follow your rules. You are focusing on the small ones that I have mentioned, but not the big ones. Did you know that there are actually 60,000 contradictions in the Bible? [1]. But I actually have been focusing on the big ones.

" The main point is Gene isn't home right now. He left by his own choice."
I'm going to show you ONE. LAST. TIME. This is the definition of contradiction:
Contradiction: a combination of statements, ideas, or features of a situation that are opposed to one another.
Where does it EVER say how big it has to be or if it is the main idea?! Seriously, you are starting to irritate me at this point. That goes for every single point you made that it says "does nothing to lessen the passage" or "not the main point." It doesn't have to be.

"When Jacob says he saw the face of God he was stating his personal impression, not necessarily what he really saw."
The wording begs to differ. Also, how do you know? Were you there when the Bible was written? Maybe at once, he actually did see the face of God. We can't truthfully know, so it stays a contradiction due to its wording.

"FINALLY, DON'T ARGUE BY LINK. IT'S REALLY BAD MANNERS TO TELL SOMEONE TO CLICK A LINK AND DEAL WITH WHAT EVER IS THERE."
It's bad manners to make someone read in all caps. I don't see what's wrong with giving you a link. Countless people have done that here. Why should I be any different?

I would like to point out that:
My opponent bashed me
He didn't include any links
Didn't follow the definition.

Thank you for reading!

[1] http://www.patheos.com...
JonathanDJ

Con

I've noticed that my counterpart hasn't managed to bring up a "Contradiction" yet that I couldn't deal with. He doesn't realize that the little list at the bottom of his post makes him sound like a tattle tale and a whiner. My counterparts idea of a contradiction is confusing. If he means any discrepancy whatsoever but he realizes that the Bible is indeed an historical document then his whole criticism is entirely academic. If he means any discrepancy whatsoever invalidates the entire document then he's being willfully ignorant about it. I accept discrepancies as normal to real historical documents. What's important is the central point. I guess you guys can decide this one. One thing I do know; is that many of these so called contradictions can be either cleared up or at least understood by careful reading. Why is it that my counterpart and the atheists he got allot of his information from are unwilling to do that? Is it that the Bible is contradictory? Or is it that they simply don't want to be held accountable to the God who it teaches us about. I'm sorry I didn't provide links. I could have for the Hebrew words in the first post. I'm not sure I would have needed to anywhere else. Of course I didn't follow my counterparts definition because it was a pathetic and transparent attempt to trap me. Go back and read what I said to my counterpart and see if any of it can really be called "Bashing" someone. If not, then I think you should vote against him for the misconduct section because he tried to get you to falsely to that to me.
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Silentsvc 3 years ago
Silentsvc
dtaylor971JonathanDJTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
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Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:21 
Reasons for voting decision: conduct went a little south, but overall good debate. Con appears to have a cleaner writing style and is easier to understand. I gave the points to Pro for sources, but remember it is important to use the sources to amplify your case, not let them overrun your personal views or opinions
Vote Placed by 19debater19 3 years ago
19debater19
dtaylor971JonathanDJTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro wins by a fairly wide margin here. For conduct, con bashed PRO. It's an easy point for pro there. For spelling and grammar, pro did not make a single mistake on his end, but neither did con. So it is tied. For arguments, pro wins. He brought up many contradictions, and at least one of them con couldn't deal with. All con did was refute pros arguments, but did not make any himself. Lastly, pro was the only one to use a link. Free two points for him.