Whacked Bible Contradictions: 1

October 30, 2009 at 6:03 pm 38 comments

“There are no contradictions in the Bible.”  How many times have we heard that? Or, for many of us, how many times have we said that? Of course it’s silly. The Bible is chock full of ludicrous and obvious contradictions. So herein commences a series to showcase many of them.  

Y’all ready for all the christians to come screaming in here and give us the “right” interpretation that allows one to turn a blatant contradiction into wonderful, infallible Godspeak? It reminds me of the old saying, “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” 

When did Jesus actually ascend into heaven?
Luke Chap. 24 — the day of resurrection
John Chap. 20 — about 8 days after resurrection
Acts Chap. 1 – at least 40 days after resurrection

And now for something completely different, but still a contradiction, here’s a little OT to go with the NT contradiction.

Do you need balls to go to church?
Deut 23:1 — A castrate may not enter the assembly of the Lord.
Isaiah  56:4-5 — Some castrates will receive special rewards.
Matt 19:12 — Men are encouraged to consider making themselves castrates for the sake of the Kingdom of God.

I’ve got so many of these that I think I could dole out 2-3 at a time and get a couple dozen articles still. And my collection is not even close to exhaustive.

Entry filed under: LeoPardus.

The Inscrutable Jehovah Whacked Bible Contradictions: 2

38 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Joshua  |  October 30, 2009 at 7:12 pm

    But Leo, you do realize that if you are finding contradictions, it means you are taking the passages out of context and do not understand the grammatical-historical interpretation of Scripture. If you did, you would not find any errors, because the Bible is inerrant. Unless you start with that as your presupposition, you are likely to fall for your sinful nature’s desire to “suppress the truth in your unrighteousness”. These so-called “errors” are simply proof that the Bible is correct, because they reveal that what Paul said in Romans 1 is true about people like you: so-called “de-converts”. You are a man who never believed in the first place, because if you really believed, you would not have left. Now you just use these “contradictions” as a cover for your sinful lifestyle.



    I still think my favorite Bible contradiction is this:

    Why did God put David’s son to death for David’s sin when God said that children should not be put to death for the sin of their father?

    It nails just about everything: atonement, the man after God’s own heart, “God’s” hypocrisy, the fact that morality is relative, and it is a conceptual contradiction, not just a contradiction of wording – which can only be refuted by the believer intentionally inventing a justification of God. And you cannot use Scripture to defend this without creating more contradictions!

    Of course, if someone wants to make the Bible inerrant, they can. All they have to do is invent harmonies between the passages. That could keep you busy for a lifetime! God’s Word is truly deep.

  • 2. LeoPardus  |  October 30, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    Thanks for preaching the Word brother Josh.

  • 3. Joshua  |  October 30, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    As the Spirit leads, brother Leo.

  • 4. Lucian  |  October 30, 2009 at 8:14 pm

    Luke and Acts were written by the same person (so you tripped rather clumsily). Jesus showed Himself for 40 days to the disciples on various occasions: the three times described in the last chapter of Luke, the one time described in the next-to-last chapter of John (probably the same as Luke’s second encounter) and for the very last time at the beginning of Acts.

    As for the eunuchs in Matthew, they are those who castrate themselves not physically, but who live pure lives in the same manner as Jesus, or John the Baptist, or Elijah the Prophet, or St. Paul, or St. John, or the Holy Angels, and others who were well-pleasing to God.

    And to answer the other guy (the new guy), Enoch did NOT rise up to the same “Heaven“ from which Jesus descended (unless You believe that there are four Persons in the Holy Trinity).

  • 5. Quester  |  October 30, 2009 at 8:16 pm

    Bible contradictions are bad enough, but one of the most startling discoveries for me was that there is no claim in the Bible that the Bile is either God’s Word or inerrent. 2 Tim. 3:16 is as close as it gets, and that just says that all of what Paul knew of as scripture (certain parts of the Old Testament, and maybe some more) are useful.

  • 6. Shadowfx  |  October 30, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    Nice to see you getting this series started Leo. I look forward to it continuing.

  • 7. Warning!  |  October 30, 2009 at 9:07 pm

    “Do you need balls to go to church?”

    I guess that depends on what part of town your church is in!

    Sorry! I couldn’t help myself.

    Oh. No, no, no. I got one better: The devil made me do it!

  • 8. Joshua  |  October 30, 2009 at 10:01 pm

    I actually have to agree with Lucian on that point… I really don’t think Jesus ascending into heaven twice (between Luke and Acts) would be a contradiction.

    Boy does this put me in an odd spot. Hmmmm…

  • 9. Joshua  |  October 30, 2009 at 10:04 pm

    My biggest beef about contradictions was this in the church:

    If there were contradictions, how would I know?

    So if I started by looking for contradictions, I found them all over the place. If I started by assuming there were not any, I could make the passages harmonize. I could basically get the result I wanted by intentionally looking for an interpretation that fit.

  • 10. Quester  |  October 31, 2009 at 2:45 am


    While Luke and Acts are usually credited to the same author, if you read Luke 24 it sure looks like it all happened on one day.


    I recommend misread messianic prophecies as a later subject in this topic!

  • 11. Stephen P  |  October 31, 2009 at 6:18 am

    Luke and Acts were written by the same person (so you tripped rather clumsily)

    Because we know that no Christian in the entire history of the church ever made two mutually contradictory statements …

    Far from “tripping”, this aspect actually reinforces LeoPardus’ point – there are contradictions to be found within the work of a single author, never mind when comparing different authors.

  • 12. Joshua  |  October 31, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    “While Luke and Acts are usually credited to the same author, if you read Luke 24 it sure looks like it all happened on one day.”

    I’m not saying that it isn’t poor communication, I’m just saying that… well… go back and read all of the different times I’ve shared my de-conversion story.

    Goodness, in some of them my wording makes the sequence of events seem quick and in others it seems slow.

    Sometimes I am brief, and then elaborate more as time goes on.

    That’s why I don’t think it can be considered a “contradiction”.

    I’d just chalk it up to “poor communication”.

    In my opinion, the Bible does not need to be full of contradictions, it just needs to be full of poor communication.

  • 13. LeoPardus  |  October 31, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    Oh fer cryin’ out loud.
    OK. We start on the resurrection day. (Watch for bold print hints to follow the time.)

    13Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16but they were kept from recognizing him.
    17He asked them, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?”
    They stood still, their faces downcast. 18One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, “Are you only a visitor to Jerusalem and do not know the things that have happened there in these days?”
    19″What things?” he asked.
    “About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. 20The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; 21but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. 22In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning 23but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. 24Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.”
    25He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26Did not the Christ[b] have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” 27And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.
    28As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus acted as if he were going farther. 29But they urged him strongly, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them.
    30When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 31Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”
    33They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together 34and saying, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.” 35Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.
    36While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”
    37They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. 38He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? 39Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.”
    40When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” 42They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43and he took it and ate it in their presence.
    44He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”
    45Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46He told them, “This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48You are witnesses of these things. 49I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”
    50When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them. 51While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven.

    Now there ain’t room in there for 40 days is there.

  • 14. Lucian  |  October 31, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    This event is obviously not the one described in Acts, the final ascension, the one that took place 40 days after Easter, and in different circumstances. (Luke mentions at the beginning of Acts that there were a certain number of such encounters with the resurrected Christ during those 40 days, and three of them are described in the passage you referenced, but neither of these is the last one).

  • 15. Joshua  |  October 31, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    I’m just saying I don’t read the passage that way. I just read Luke as a super condensed version and Acts as a longer version. That’s all.

    Peace man, no reason for us to split over the Bible too.

  • 16. Lucian  |  October 31, 2009 at 4:00 pm

    In John again we find mention of that late Sunday-evening / Sunday night encounter at Jerusalem; then the next Sunday again, and this time Thomas was present; and then another encounter afterwards (after Thomas Sunday and before Ascension) on the sea-shore. — until now, I see no contradiction in Luke, Acts, or John.

    Matthew and Mark recall some of the above events, but not with so much chronological detail, but they’re still recognizable nonetheless.

  • 17. Quester  |  October 31, 2009 at 9:39 pm


    I don’t know. I read the same verses you did, and noted the same highlights, but while it implies that verse 50 took place the same day as the rest, you can choose to read the trip to Bethany as happening 40 days after all the rest.

  • 18. Joshua  |  November 1, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    I think I’d just like to jump in again and point this out, because this is one thing we can all agree upon.

    Look at our conversation. Here we are, a bunch of ex-Christians who studied this stuff in depth for year after year and we still cannot agree on what an author / authors meant despite the fact that we would hope such an extremely important issue would be made more explicit in a divinely inspired book!

    In my mind, that is an extremely important point – and actually backs up the spirit of Leo’s post: that the Bible cannot make sense. It is not that it does not make sense, it is that it cannot make any objective sense since each person has a subjective interpretation.

    Whether one person “sees” a contradiction or not is not the point at all, the point is that one person can “see” a contradiction and another person not “see” a contradiction. That is the point, from my perspective. We could spend endless hours explaining our perspectives and never, ever come to the same conclusion on a passage. Isn’t that what we all saw in the church that ultimately bothered most of us so much anyway?

    Where is the Divine Interpreter and why do we have to lean on our own understanding and the world’s “wisdom” (logic, reason, research, etc.) no matter how much we try not to?

  • 19. LeoPardus  |  November 1, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    Oh , I’ll admit you can stick 40 days between vs 49 and 50 if you want. It’d be a ridiculous stretch, but that’ the beauty of the Bible. You can make it say anything you want.

  • 20. Lucian  |  November 1, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    Where is the Divine Interpreter … ?

    Somewhere in the East, I think…

  • 21. HeIsSailing  |  November 1, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    Joshua rages:

    still cannot agree on what an author / authors meant despite the fact that we would hope such an extremely important issue would be made more explicit in a divinely inspired book!

    Amen brother. That is why most Christians do not rely on the Bible, even if they do read it. They rely instead on their pastors, their priests, their creeds and their hymns.

  • 22. Shadowfx  |  November 1, 2009 at 6:17 pm


    “Where is the Divine Interpreter and why do we have to lean on our own understanding and the world’s “wisdom” (logic, reason, research, etc.) no matter how much we try not to?”

    You make a very good point. On the one hand, I want to believe that some kind of miraculous events took place around the time of christ and that is what got the christian religion going. But as a basis for a world religion, the bible comes up short. Because we can’t agree on a way to interpret it. So we get splinter groups. Many of the people at the time belived that Christ would return in their lifetimes. And all along the church has been predicting that christ would come at any time. So here we are 2000 years later and no sign of when Christ will return. I”ve been a christian since I was 5 years old. I’ve read the bible a lot. But I eventually got to the point were I was reading to figure out prophesies. And I just got lost. Everything is so vague. The book of revelations is hardly any help at all. To be honest I like the Great Spirit of the Lakota Souix better than the god of the bible. The Lakota believe that all life and the entire world should be respected. I believe in that. But I don’t really believe in hell. So what is the reason for being a christian? Is it for the good teachings? What about all the people who can’t even agree on what the bible teaches? Respect life and respect the world we are a part of is what I believe. Maybe the Great Spirit is not omnicient or omnipotent, but he loves this world and he respects all life. I can believe in a god like that. The christians are too concered with making people say “I love Jesus” to give a damn about the world itself and all the life in it. If YHWH is god, I think he is a limited god and not the creator of the Universe. Hey the Universe is huge and filled with contless galaxies. If it was created by some god, then why would he be spending his time on just one planet? Or conversely, if there is only life on this one planet, why did he create all the other solar systems? I can be happy with a limited god who is good and wants peace and respect between peoples.

  • 23. Joshua  |  November 1, 2009 at 8:34 pm


    The whole concept of respect is so important, but we cannot learn to respect others until we genuinely understand that ones perception of the world is subjective. Truth is objective, but understanding is subjective.

    Once someone understands that, it becomes more clear – at least to me – that respect is a genuine outflow of that understanding. We may not respect what someone else believes, but we can respect the person out of the fact that we are sympathetic to the understanding that to them – it is true.

    Excellent points 🙂

  • 24. Shadowfx  |  November 1, 2009 at 9:17 pm


    Thanks for your response. I’ve been reading a lot of your posts here and they are very good. I think you are right, we need to remember that truth is objective but what we see is subjective. In order to respect others we need to see where they are coming from and why. That helps us to respect them as people whether we agree with what they believe or not. However, respecting other people is only part of the story. I think we need to respect all of creation and not treat it as our domnion to do with as we please. If we follow that path we may well destroy this beautiful earth. Sometimes we need to take a stand. The good news is that I hear the younger generation of christians is actually taking an interest in the environment. That is encouraging. I thouight it would never happen. So that gives me some hope. I also think science will eventually grow in understanding the animal kingdom. We may learn the language of dolphins or whales for instance. If we can see that they have intellgience it may give us more comapssion for them. But I think we need to consider that the growth of the human species is a work in progress. If we can give up our obsession with appocolypic thinking, maybe we could learn to make the world a better place while we are still here. If you believe in God, then you should respect the earth as his creation. If you don’t believe in God, then you should respect the earth for the beauty that it provides and for being our home. The american indians have a saying that goes something like, only when you have pulled the last fish from the water will you realize that you cannot eat money.

  • 25. Brian  |  November 2, 2009 at 11:17 am

    Oh , I’ll admit you can stick 40 days between vs 49 and 50 if you want. It’d be a ridiculous stretch, but that’ the beauty of the Bible. You can make it say anything you want.

    Hey I know people who insert 4 BILLION YEARS between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. With the morally committed, anything is possible.

  • 26. LeoPardus  |  November 2, 2009 at 12:37 pm

    LOL Brian.

  • 27. HeIsSailing  |  November 2, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    Brian says:

    Hey I know people who insert 4 BILLION YEARS between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. With the morally committed, anything is possible.

    4 Billion years? heresy. I am happy to say that I was not one of those Christians who believed this.

    Rather, I inserted an unknown and indeterminate time of who knows how many years between 1:1 and 1:2. After all, we needed to cram everything in there from the Fall of Lucifer, thorugh the Big Bang, creation of spacetime, etc… Because Chuck Missler and Cyrus Scofield told me that Genesis 1:2 was mistranslated, and should *really* read, “BUT the earth BECAME without form and void.” Forget the actual text of the Bible, if Chuck can twist it in a way to soothe my Faith, it was good enough for me. Chuck said it, I believed it and that settled it…

    …I am ashamed to say.

  • 28. paleale  |  November 2, 2009 at 11:57 pm

    I was elated to find the “Genesis Gap”. I was so happy have a place to put my dinosaurs.

  • 29. Mike Davis  |  November 9, 2009 at 10:33 pm

    If you are looking for a good collection of Bible contradictions, try The Atheist’s Bible Companion to the New Testament: A Comprehensive Guide to Christian Bible Contradictions. It’s just been released (10/31/2009) and is available on amazon.com. It contains more New Testament contradictions than any other published source. It shows that Bible contradictions are not taken out of context. In fact, it’s the Christians who take passages out of context, in order to hide the contradictions.

  • 30. HeIsSailing  |  November 10, 2009 at 1:23 am

    Mike Davis:

    “If you are looking for a good collection of Bible contradictions, try The Atheist’s Bible Companion…”

    I don’t actively look for Bible contradictions – it is kind of a non-issue to me these days.

    But if you are seeking them, it is far more fun (for me anyway) to try digging them out myself. It a great way to pass the time on a long trip – far more fun than a book of sudoku puzzles..!! The best resource I have found for this game is Burton Throkmorton’s ‘Gospel Parallels’, which aligns the synoptic gospels in columns – with contradictions galore to be found as a result. Throkmorton does not even include John’s Gospel in his parallels – that would make the game far too easy.

    Happy Hunting..!!

  • 31. The Inscrutable Jehovah « de-conversion « Watching Ibises  |  November 13, 2009 at 12:56 am

    […] There’s a post by Phil Stillwell on the d-C blog that lists some of the contradictions that can be found in the Bible. Leopardus seems to have followed his lead with his own lists, beginning with this one. […]

  • 32. Melanie Stephan  |  November 27, 2009 at 4:57 pm

    I have a good contradiction for you. My dubius Divine source says that Jesus was taken to Rome with other prisoners. At a Roman event he is served up to the Goddess Diana (the moon goddess). After the event there are bodies to dispose of. Jesus’ body is tossed over the Tarparian Rock with the rest of the trash after the event. My reliable divinie source says that after you die your old body is trash. You don’t get your old body back. You get a new one at your Father House.

    Now if you find Contradictions all over the place it usually means that someone is making something up. Liars usually can’t remember the first story they told so the second story comes up different than the first.

    I think you agree with me that the NT was made up. It is really a book about mythology.

  • 33. daedreven  |  March 30, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    I would just like to make a point on the “inerrant” philosophy…. The bible was translated… The translators did not even get Yeshua ben Yosef’s name correct… It is proven fact that his aramaic name is Yeshua ben Yosef… So I pose this question… If the translators got his name wrong, isn’t it safe to that the bible is full of errors?

  • 34. Joe  |  March 30, 2010 at 3:09 pm


    Not sure about that logic. Because one name is “wrong”–I’m taking your word for that—it doesn’t follow that everything else must be full of errors also. Several translations differ on God’s name also—from “Jehovah” to “YWHW”–due to choice of the translators—it doesn’t follow that the two translations totally contradict one another as a result.

  • 35. Outsider  |  March 30, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    There many other errors, but we are talking about names, it seems god has many different names depending on which book of the bible you read:
    Are these all the same god? Jeez…

  • 36. Joe  |  March 30, 2010 at 4:59 pm

    I’m finite and yet on this board I’ve been called several diffent names. 🙂 I would imagine an eternal God could have as many names as he wanted.

  • 37. DSimon  |  March 31, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    Joe, on the other hand, it only takes a single mistake to demonstrate that it’s not inerrant. That’s all daedreven was pointing out.

  • 38. Melanie Stephan  |  July 4, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    I think you will find that the Contradictions are in the New Testament. Now, why is that?
    Answer: Because the Jews are still waiting for the Messiah to come.

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Attention Christian Readers

Just in case you were wondering who we are and why we de-converted.

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Whether or not you believe in God, you should live your life with love, kindness, compassion, mercy and tolerance while trying to make the world a better place. If there is no God, you have lost nothing and will have made a positive impact on those around you. If there is a benevolent God reviewing your life, you will be judged on your actions and not just on your ability to blindly believe in creeds- when there is a significant lack of evidence on how to define God or if he/she even exists.



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