Old Testament vs New Testament
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29-07-2014, 12:25 AM
Old Testament vs New Testament
Quick back story:

I'm relatively new to atheism (about 3 years), but I've essentially been agnostic my entire life. I didn't grow up in a religious household; we didn't go to church, discuss 'God', pray, but at the same time we weren't 'atheists' either, if that makes any sense. We just went about our daily lives and shit. My agnosticism grew into atheism after getting a regular taste of organized religion (a girl i was serious about grew up in church and wanted me to be a part of what was a big part of her life, it's why we're no longer together), reading some of the bible, and basically seeing how utterly ridiculous it all was. Tithing was a big thing that just blew my mind. God wants you to give him money so he can give you more money down the line. What in the actual F%^& is that all about? Anyway, wrapping this up, the absolute dip-shittery of it all was all the push I needed to start researching and learning and it was all to easy for me to see that it was a bunch of bullshit.

So now a few years down the line, I am a full blown atheist and love debating the religiously indoctrinated yahoos who surround me in Oklahoma. However, because I never had strong feelings one way or the other, I'm not all to familiar with the bible. What I'm looking for is some of you borderline experts here who have clearly done their research, to simply give me a little direction on what books of the bible I need to read up on. More specifically, what books and contradictions I can and should be aware of in the New Testament. It seems that a regular excuse around these parts is that "Jesus died for our sins so it essentially makes the laws of the Old Testament obsolete", therefore allowing these brainwashed sheep to cherry pick the stuff that is harder to argue against.

The more ammo against the New Testament the better. The Old Testament's ridiculousness is obvious.
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29-07-2014, 06:29 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
(29-07-2014 12:25 AM)Fodder_From_The_Truth Wrote:  What I'm looking for is some of you borderline experts here who have clearly done their research, to simply give me a little direction on what books of the bible I need to read up on. More specifically, what books and contradictions I can and should be aware of in the New Testament. It seems that a regular excuse around these parts is that "Jesus died for our sins so it essentially makes the laws of the Old Testament obsolete", therefore allowing these brainwashed sheep to cherry pick the stuff that is harder to argue against.

There are some weird ones. Note, that seasoned apologists are well aware of these and have engaged in some impressive mental gymnastics to remove the contradictions. Other options include saying that the Bible isn't meant to be literal or flat out ignoring you, so, don't expect to convince anyone of anything. That being said:

When was Jesus born?
Matthew 2:1 says that Jesus was born "during the time of King Herod". Now, we know that Herod the Great was dead by 4 BCE. That's no biggie in and of itself. The Gregorian monks who created this date system could have been off on when they thought Jesus was born. Now, Luke 2:1-2 say that Jesus was born around the time of the first census, which happened while Quirinius was governor of Syria. We know the census of Quirinius happened around 6 or 7 CE.

So, was Jesus born in 4 BCE, 6 or 7 CE, or some other time? At least one of the two gospels has the date wrong.



Jesus fulfilling the law
The most commonly cited verse for why we no longer have to listen to the Old Testament is Matthew 5:17

Matthew 5:17 Wrote:17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.

So, the way this is interpreted is that Jesus has showed up (2,000 years ago) and fulfilled the law! Yay! It no longer applies! They always leave out the next verse, though:

Matthew 5:18 Wrote:18 For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.

Woah! It looks like it still applies, given that the heaven and the earth haven't disappeared! Oops...



What happened on Easter?
Holy crap, is this hard to parse. Each gospel says something different. I don't feel like dredging up all the verses to read it (I'll let you do that), but I will link you to a satirical post I made on the matter, attempting to cram all four contradictory stories into one. Here it is:

Jesus was in the tomb for three days and three nights. Now after two-and-a-half days, they arrive at the tomb after sunrise, while it was still dark. Three women (including Mary Magdalene) approach the tomb and see a guard posted. Mary Magdalene, who came alone, goes and gets two disciples.

The five women (one of whom is Mary) walks up to the unguarded tomb and rolls the stone out from in front of the entrance that was already rolled away. Then, an angel shows up and moves the stone away for them, so they can get in. The guards posted at the tomb witness this event.

At this point, the women enter the tomb and two men appear. They do not enter the tomb and find two men already waiting inside. The women keep quiet about the events, telling no one, and promptly go and tell the disciples. Mary stays behind and cries while the disciples just go home.



Anyway, that's a bit to get you started. I'll let others fill in some gaps, or you can do a Google search on it. Here is an interactive site that lists and links many (all?) of the contradictions. It's hard to go through them, and some are petty, but it is fun to look at.
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29-07-2014, 07:16 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
Hey, I'm from Oklahoma too! I don't think you should totally ignore the Old Testament, Jesus' sole purpose for coming to Earth was to pay the price for original sin, Jesus is inextricably linked to the creation myth. Also keep in mind many apologists like to refer back to the Old Testament when saying that Jesus fulfilled Old Testament prophecies.

I've been particularly interested in the passages of Isaiah 7 that the gospel of Matthew likes to apply to Jesus. Matthew was certainly off in his translation abilities or I guess he was just stretching the scripture to suit his purposes. Now doesn't that sound like a familiar story?

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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29-07-2014, 07:38 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
(29-07-2014 07:16 AM)TheInquisition Wrote:  I don't think you should totally ignore the Old Testament, Jesus' sole purpose for coming to Earth was to pay the price for original sin, Jesus is inextricably linked to the creation myth. Also keep in mind many apologists like to refer back to the Old Testament when saying that Jesus fulfilled Old Testament prophecies.

This is true. Also, the OT allows you to focus on unfulfilled/failed prophesies. Again, note that a seasoned apologist will jump through hoops to keep their prophesies accurate. When talking about the Nile drying up, they'll claim that in the same prophesy (all in Ezekiel 30) that God switches from talking about the near future (Nebuchadnezzar sacking Tyre) to talking about the far future (as in, God will dry up the Nile... eventually, thousands of years later). He switches like this within the span of two verses.

God: "Egypt, I'm so mad at you! I'm going to send Nebuchadnezzar to fuck you up in the next several years (you know, before he dies), and then, several thousand years later, I'll dry up the Nile! Cuz I'm mad at you now!"

Yes. That's their actual stated position.
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29-07-2014, 07:46 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
Thanks guys.

I don't intend to ignore the OT but I'm more familiar with it and a few of its books are easier to slam than the fat girl sitting alone at the bar when the lights come on.
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29-07-2014, 07:50 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
(29-07-2014 06:29 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  
(29-07-2014 12:25 AM)Fodder_From_The_Truth Wrote:  What I'm looking for is some of you borderline experts here who have clearly done their research, to simply give me a little direction on what books of the bible I need to read up on. More specifically, what books and contradictions I can and should be aware of in the New Testament. It seems that a regular excuse around these parts is that "Jesus died for our sins so it essentially makes the laws of the Old Testament obsolete", therefore allowing these brainwashed sheep to cherry pick the stuff that is harder to argue against.

There are some weird ones. Note, that seasoned apologists are well aware of these and have engaged in some impressive mental gymnastics to remove the contradictions. Other options include saying that the Bible isn't meant to be literal or flat out ignoring you, so, don't expect to convince anyone of anything. That being said:

When was Jesus born?
Matthew 2:1 says that Jesus was born "during the time of King Herod". Now, we know that Herod the Great was dead by 4 BCE. That's no biggie in and of itself. The Gregorian monks who created this date system could have been off on when they thought Jesus was born. Now, Luke 2:1-2 say that Jesus was born around the time of the first census, which happened while Quirinius was governor of Syria. We know the census of Quirinius happened around 6 or 7 CE.

So, was Jesus born in 4 BCE, 6 or 7 CE, or some other time? At least one of the two gospels has the date wrong.


Jesus fulfilling the law
The most commonly cited verse for why we no longer have to listen to the Old Testament is Matthew 5:17

Matthew 5:17 Wrote:17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.

So, the way this is interpreted is that Jesus has showed up (2,000 years ago) and fulfilled the law! Yay! It no longer applies! They always leave out the next verse, though:

Matthew 5:18 Wrote:18 For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.

Woah! It looks like it still applies, given that the heaven and the earth haven't disappeared! Oops...



What happened on Easter?
Holy crap, is this hard to parse. Each gospel says something different. I don't feel like dredging up all the verses to read it (I'll let you do that), but I will link you to a satirical post I made on the matter, attempting to cram all four contradictory stories into one. Here it is:

Jesus was in the tomb for three days and three nights. Now after two-and-a-half days, they arrive at the tomb after sunrise, while it was still dark. Three women (including Mary Magdalene) approach the tomb and see a guard posted. Mary Magdalene, who came alone, goes and gets two disciples.

The five women (one of whom is Mary) walks up to the unguarded tomb and rolls the stone out from in front of the entrance that was already rolled away. Then, an angel shows up and moves the stone away for them, so they can get in. The guards posted at the tomb witness this event.

At this point, the women enter the tomb and two men appear. They do not enter the tomb and find two men already waiting inside. The women keep quiet about the events, telling no one, and promptly go and tell the disciples. Mary stays behind and cries while the disciples just go home.



Anyway, that's a bit to get you started. I'll let others fill in some gaps, or you can do a Google search on it. Here is an interactive site that lists and links many (all?) of the contradictions. It's hard to go through them, and some are petty, but it is fun to look at.

A true classic! Thumbsup

We have enough youth. How about looking for the Fountain of Smart?
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29-07-2014, 09:20 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
Learning about the bible so as to better understand the religion and gain an appreciation of its history, as well as the impact of the book on history, is worth while (in a sort of scholarly way). I would advise against debating random yahoos in Oklahoma for your own health and sanity.

Revenant directed me to these a while ago. Good summary of old testament.

















This thread is a good source of random knowledge. I wouldn't put to much stock in the OP, but Matt and others make some great posts about the new testament history and authorship. I learned a lot.

http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...lent-stuff

In general I would check out the skeptics annotated bible:
http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/

As well as do some research into the early church, life and teachings of paul the apostle, and check out something called the post exilic period.
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29-07-2014, 09:23 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
(29-07-2014 12:25 AM)Fodder_From_The_Truth Wrote:  It seems that a regular excuse around these parts is that "Jesus died for our sins so it essentially makes the laws of the Old Testament obsolete", therefore allowing these brainwashed sheep to cherry pick the stuff that is harder to argue against.

My favorite reply to this excuse is what Jesus said in Matthew 5:17:
Quote:Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.
So Jesus validated the Old Testament as continuing Law, not obsolete.

I am not accountable to any God. I am accountable to myself - and not because I think I am God as some theists would try to assert - but because, no matter what actions I take, thoughts I think, or words I utter, I have to be able to live with myself.
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29-07-2014, 09:41 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
(29-07-2014 09:23 AM)Impulse Wrote:  So Jesus validated the Old Testament as continuing Law, not obsolete.

Jesus even flat out says that in Matthew 5:18. Right in the next verse that they cherry-picked. They just don't like to mention it. We, apparently have grown accustomed to our mixed fabrics and bacon.
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29-07-2014, 10:06 AM
RE: Old Testament vs New Testament
(29-07-2014 09:41 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  
(29-07-2014 09:23 AM)Impulse Wrote:  So Jesus validated the Old Testament as continuing Law, not obsolete.

Jesus even flat out says that in Matthew 5:18. Right in the next verse that they cherry-picked. They just don't like to mention it. We, apparently have grown accustomed to our mixed fabrics and bacon.

Ha!
Matthew 5:18 Wrote:For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.
I forgot all about that! I'm going to have to start citing Matthew 5:17-18. Thanks!

Edit:
Oops, I see you already wrote about those 2 verses earlier in the thread. My bad, I'm multitasking today and only skimmed the thread before posting before.

I am not accountable to any God. I am accountable to myself - and not because I think I am God as some theists would try to assert - but because, no matter what actions I take, thoughts I think, or words I utter, I have to be able to live with myself.
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