Validity of Holy Books
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03-05-2011, 08:20 PM
Validity of Holy Books
With the recent Young Earth Creationist debate appearing in the science section, I would like to address one argument that is commonly used, the citing of Holy Books as a source of information. I think it is a fair assumption to make that all religions cannot be correct, with their different doctrines, explanations, and histories.

For example (From the three holy books that I own):
The Bible:
John 14:6 - Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the trith, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

The Qur'an
The Immunity 9:33 - He it is Who has sent His Messenger with the guidance and the Religion of Truth that He may make it prevail over all religions, though the polytheists are averse."

Book of Mormon
1 Nephi 14:17 - "And when the day cometh that the wrath of God is poured out upon the mother of harlots, which is the great and abominable church of all the earth, whose founder is the devil, then, at that day, the work of the Father shall commence, in preparing the way for the fulfilling of his covenants, which he hath made to his people who are of the house of Israel." (The "mother of harlots" is the Catholic Church)

But aside from these ideas and the conflicting accounts (Example: 2 different accounts of Creation), what are some of the other ways in which Holy Books have been shown to be inaccurate (or accurate if you believe so). I only know of the documentary hypothesis that broke up the Torah.

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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03-05-2011, 08:40 PM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
In the Bible, the Israelites frequently attack cities that either didn't exist yet or had been ruins for centuries (please don't make me go find specific names). It also constantly contradicts itself as far as who was the son of who and how many sons some people had. Then of course, there are all the references to giants, witches, wizards,unicorns, and zombies. And all the many things I point out in my Bible review.

"Ain't got no last words to say, yellow streak right up my spine. The gun in my mouth was real and the taste blew my mind."

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03-05-2011, 10:21 PM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
Try to read all 4 gospels in the new testament. Then tell me what actually happened on the day jesus rose from the dead. Tell me one story...without disregarding three other Gospels. Tell me how many apostles there were.

You'll get conflicting answers no matter what, because the bible is one giant lie.
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03-05-2011, 10:43 PM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
I understand all of the contradictions in the Bible, but I'm curious about some of the more scientific approaches to determining whether or not it's valid.

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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03-05-2011, 10:54 PM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
@Buddy Also, Nazareth apparently wasn't around when Jesus existed - although that is quite controversial.

@Monk Weren't there 72 apostles? Or are there different numbers according to different gospels?


I think a very large nail in the coffin of christianity is the history of their book. Don't listen to people like Lee Strobel, they probably haven't even read the book.
We now know from biblical scholarship that many of the books of the bible - including the gospels - weren't written by the people they claim to be written by. The gospels were given apostalic authority arbitrarily to give the views credence, and were actually written by literate greeks. 1/2 Tim, Titus, 1/2 Peter, 1/2 Thes, James, Jude, etc are all pseudonymous (not written by who it is claimed to be by).
Then there are the hundreds of books, many of which are gospels, that were left out of the bible by fiat.
Gospels like that of Peter, Mary Magdalene, Thomas, Infancy Jospel of Thomas, Judas, Nazareans, Hebrews, The Epistle of the Apostles (which sounds fricking awesome), Philip, Egyptians, Nicodemus, the Gospel of the Saviour, Ebonites, Truth, Secret Gospel of Mark, and more.
You hear that the Bible is the big book of multiple choice, but this is overkill. You know, there were other 'bibles' being made. One by the marcionites, there was at least one (I think) from the Gnostic christians, and there may have been one from the ultra-jewish Ebionites.
Literally, we are just here with the one that won out and became the most popular.

So when people say to you that the bible is one of the most historically accurate books in existence, you can feel justified with simply laughing in their faces.

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect has intended us to forego their use." - Galileo

"Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do." - Voltaire
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03-05-2011, 11:44 PM
 
RE: Validity of Holy Books
The problem with presenting these inconsistencies to someone who accepts the Bible is that they can either call them minor details, chalk it up to errors in interpretation, the gap between the writings, etc.

If you then ask them what makes them valid, they will point to all the things they are consistent about, disregarding the inconsistencies. Although to be fair, if you were given four separate accounts of something many years after it occurred, and wanted to glean as many facts as possible about it, you would compare each person's account and take the similarities from them since those are much more likely to be correct and not the result of decaying memories.

That can still only account for a small portion of the errors, and I think it's much more productive to go after God's "benevolence" towards everyone in the Old Testament. Jesus claims to be the god of the old testament and that the old testament is accurate(I don't feel like looking for the passage that says those, but I'm pretty sure that's the case). Therefore, we can go and look at the many things that God used to enjoy doing.

Take any genocide that God orders the Israelites to perform. There are a number of ways one can try to reconcile this with God's supposedly benevolent nature.

1) All people are wicked and deserve death for their sin(including the kids and infants). Disregarding the fact that this makes an assumption that it is just for someone to be killed and sent to hell for any "sin," this statement has a number of implications that I doubt anyone would care to accept:
-Human life has no value, since everyone is a sinner and therefore deserves to die.
-You could say that it is ok to kill someone for the above reason, but this isn't quite as straightforward since you are also a sinner and not fit to enact justice unless God tells you to.
-If God were to, today, personally come and have one of your loved ones raped, tortured, murdered, etc. followed by an eternity in hell then you would be ok with that. There's no way around this one, so I think the argument would stop there and go back to find another reason that it's righteous and benevolent for God to have all the people killed.

2) Anyone who is innocent or good will go to heaven after they are killed. If this makes their deaths acceptable, then this means that death is something to rejoice about, and that killing someone does them a huge favor. I don't think anyone is going to go for this either, so the fact that they'll be sorted out once they die probably won't be used as a justification with that implication in mind.

Now, I seem to have lost some functionality in the part of my brain that comes up with absurd rationalizations for things like this, so I'm already out of ideas. To develop this into a proper refutation of the Biblical God's benevolence, it's probably necessary to go dig up a few apologetics websites. But really, if you just take something like this and follow any excuse given for God's behavior to its logical conclusion you will end up with something that no sane person would accept. As it is this doesn't address the myriad of creative excuses people might come up with, but I would think that this approach is enough on its own to show that the biblical god is not very benevolent Smile
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04-05-2011, 12:01 AM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
-When a college student writes a paper or thesis without citing sources, he fails.
-A theist may use any bible/qur'an/etc. verse he wishes, often without any scientific backing whatsoever, and then expects his argument to be valid...

If the holy books were consistent, scientifically plausible and verifiable, they might be given some credit. But they aren't!

If they can use a holy book as an argument, I think I'll get my Smurf comics off the attic. I'm very smurf that they'll shine a smurfing light on the evolution/creation debate.

"Infinitus est numerus stultorum." (The number of fools is infinite)
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04-05-2011, 03:36 AM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
I'm still waiting for a theist to explain to me how it was God thought the Earth was flat, square, and supported on four great pillars, the sun and the moon were the same size and distance from the Earth, the sky was a solid dome that had water above it, and that rain was caused by opening windows in the dome.

One would think that the creator of the planet would at least know it's basic shape and relation to the other celestial bodies around it. But of course the alternate explanation of this stunning scientific inaccuracy- that man invented God and wrote the Bible without any divine guidance- is still dismissed as impossible by millions if not billions of theists all over the (round) world.

The way to see by Faith, is to shut the eye of Reason. - Ben Franklin
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04-05-2011, 02:43 PM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
(04-05-2011 03:36 AM)hotrodmike Wrote:  I'm still waiting for a theist to explain to me how it was God thought the Earth was flat, square, and supported on four great pillars, the sun and the moon were the same size and distance from the Earth, the sky was a solid dome that had water above it, and that rain was caused by opening windows in the dome.

One would think that the creator of the planet would at least know it's basic shape and relation to the other celestial bodies around it. But of course the alternate explanation of this stunning scientific inaccuracy- that man invented God and wrote the Bible without any divine guidance- is still dismissed as impossible by millions if not billions of theists all over the (round) world.

Isnt it is odd that people who studied the bible for over 1,000 years insisted the circle of the earth was flat, and persecuted anyone who said otherwise. And once we discovered that the earth was a sphere, the pious claim that the bible said this all along.

It is far too easy to use hindsight to interpret modern meanings into vague biblical passages. Post hoc Bible interpretation is tantamount to reading tea leaves.
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05-05-2011, 02:10 AM
RE: Validity of Holy Books
@hotrodmike Cut him some slack. Not having eyes, he's a little optically challenged. =P

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect has intended us to forego their use." - Galileo

"Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do." - Voltaire
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