Is the Bible Credible?

Many people point out the Bible discrepancies, and state because there are contradictions in the bible, it can’t be viewed as a credible resource. Let’s look at those contradictions.

1. What was written above Jesus’s head when he was crucified. Matthew 27:37 says, “This is Jesus the King of the Jews.” Mark 15:26 says “The king of the Jews.” Luke 23:38 says, “This is the King of the Jews.” John 19:19 says, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.”

If it actually said “This is Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews, ” then they all would be correct. We need to keep in mind that according to John 19:20 the sign was written in three different languages. It’s not like the writing said it only said “King of the Jews.” .

2. How many angels were at Jesus’s tomb after the resurrection? Matthew 28:2 mentions one angel. Mark 16:5 says there was a “young man” in the tomb. Luke 24:4 mentions two men clothed in dazzling robes.

3. How many blind men greeted Jesus outside Jericho? Mathew 20:30 says two (neither is named), Mark 10:46 mentions one named Bartimaeus.

4. How many demon possessed men did Jesus meet in the region of the Gadarenes? Mathew 8:28 say Jesus met two. Mark 5:2 mentions one.

5. How man donkeys did Jesus ride on as he entered Jerusalem?

Mathew 21:7 mentions two, a donkey and a colt. Mark 11:7 and Luke 19:35 only mention one, a colt. Speaking of that Zachariah 9:9 mentions both a donkey and a colt therefore supports Mathew but seems to contradict Mark and Luke.

In 2-5 we need to keep in mind that authors may have different levels of detail. If I say John Lennon was in the Beatles, and you say John Lennon and Paul McCartney were in the Beatles were are both correct. The person who says John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Star, and George Harrison were in the Beatles is the most accurate. However, none of us were wrong. It’s not like we said, “Paul McCartney is the only Beatle.

6. Did the centurion outside Capernum ask Jesus to heal his servant, or was it someone else who came to Jesus?

Mathew 8:5 say it was the centurion. Luke 7:3-6 says the centurion sent two Jewish elders, then some friend to speak to Jesus on his behalf.

Today it is reported that a President of a country stated something. Many times this is a prepared statement that is delivered by a press secretary who said it on their behalf. In that scripture the centurion mentions how Jesus’s power is much like other chains of command. He only need to “say the word” and those under his command do their bidding.

7. How did Judas die? Mathew 27:5 says he went out and hanged himself. Acts 1;18 tells us he fell and “his body split open, spilling out all his intestines.”

This is one of the most brought up contradictions. I can speak to this one personally. I work for a company that inspects properties for banks. In some cases the property is being foreclosed on. We find houses in really bad condition. In one instance the home owner had hung himself from a tree in the backyard. However, the inspector didn’t see him (his backyard was very large and he was way off in the distance). However, gases build up in a body (especially one that is in the sun) and left alone the body exploded. Thus both these scriptures could be accurate. Other say that Judas hung himself over a cliff and the branch broke which would catapult his body down the cliff.

8. How was the bible transcribed?

Most of the newer translations like the NIV and others go back to the original documents with the best translators. So many people think of the “telephone game” where you tell one person a phrase who gives it to the other person, and the next, and the next and finally the last person states what they heard and you find out how much was lost in translation. This is not the case. We start at the original. We are not translating a translation.

The original documents were written by scribes. These were special people who were mind boggling exact. More than 5,600 Greek manuscripts contain pars or all of the New Testament an amount far beyond that of any other ancient book. Compare that the Honer’s Iliad and only seven copies of Plato’s writings. When you compare the copies of the New Testament the manuscripts are nearly perfect. Much more accurate of other writings.

If you look at the Hindu Mahabharata is approximately 260,000 lines and is 90% accurate. Homer’s Iliad is 15,600 lines and is 95% accurate. The New Testament is 20,000 lines and is 99.98% accurate.

There was a Time Gap between when the items happened and when it was written. Here again the Bible is in better shape than other documents. The New Testament was written 50-100 A.D. and the earliest copy is 100-300 A.D. (30-250 years). Compare this to Homer, Plato, or Aristotle and you see a time gap of 500 (Homer) to 1,400 (Aristotle) years.

Authors of the New Testament wrote almost all of the New Testament  within 40 years of Jesus’ crucifixion, and all within 65 years. Forty years is a long time to remember, but the authors were able to cross references each other and keep each other accurate.

Why are You Trying to Discredit the bible?

If you are a Christian, and someone says, “The Bible is full of contradictions.” First don’t take it personal. Second, ask them for specifics. Ask, “Which on in particular do you find the most contradictory?” Another question you might ask is, “Is there something in your life that you’re afraid you’d have to change or give up if the Bible turns out to be what it claims—the Word of God?”


2 thoughts on “Is the Bible Credible?

  1. I appreciated the explanation of the contradictions…10 people can all be at the same event and all have 10 TRUE perceptions of the experience. Given the time periods the books were written in and the various authors, it’s no wonder there’d be discrepancies.


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