List of Bible Contradictions

Here’s the list of contradictions I found from infidels.org.

Here an example of a few, there’s just too many.

Insects do NOT have four feet

LEV 11:21 Yet these may ye eat of every flying creeping thing that goeth upon all four, which have legs above their feet, to leap withal upon the earth;
LEV 11:22 Even these of them ye may eat; the locust after his kind, and the bald locust after his kind, and the beetle after his kind, and the grasshopper after his kind.
LEV 11:23 But all other flying creeping things, which have four feet, shall be an abomination unto you.

Snakes, while built low, do not eat dirt

GEN 3:14 And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:

Jesus’ first sermon plain or mount?

MAT 5:1,2: "And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying…."
LUK 6:17,20: "And he came down with them, and stood in the plain, and the company of his disciples, and a great multitude of people…came to hear him.. And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples and said…"

Jesus’ last words

MAT 27:46,50: "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, "Eli, eli, lama sabachthani?" that is to say, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" …Jesus, when he cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost."

LUK 23:46: "And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, "Father, unto thy hands I commend my spirit:" and having said thus, he gave up the ghost."

JOH 19:30: "When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, "It is finished:" and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost."

How long was Jesus in the tomb?

Depends where you look; MAT 12:40 gives Jesus prophesying that he will spend "three days and three nights in the heart of the earth," and MAR 10:34 has "after three days (meta treis emeras) he will rise again." As far as I can see from a quick look, the prophecies have "after three days," but the post-Resurrection narratives have "on the third day."

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11 comments so far

  1. tom on

    The common thing I see between atheists and fundamentalists Christians is their incessant demand that everything be 1. Literal, and 2. up-to-date with modern scienctific thought.

    both camps are wrong. ex. did it ever occur to you that the snake is a metaphorical creature symbolizing something negative witin ancient israelite culture?

  2. tom on

    I’m sorry, that previous post probably sounded rude. It was not intended to be rude – just to the point. It does really frustrate me that most of these ‘contradictions’ are really an imposition on the text of a modern ‘requirement’ for historicity or scientific accuracy that the ancient readers/writers were not concerned about.

    They’re not trying to relay pure, objective history. They’re trying to teach theology and ethics.

  3. Irish Atheist on

    “up-to-date with modern scientific thought.” We’re talking about the same fundamentalists Christians right? Fundamentalist Christians have no in science, only in how they can warp it to confirm their beliefs. They either are ignorant of the meaning of a scientific concept, or they know what it is and completely lie through their teeth.

    As for the bible being a book entirely made up of metaphorical imagines, that’s fine by me. But where I have the problem is how people use a fairy tale book to gain power and control over people.

    Now the sticky bit, the ethics and theology that the bible teaches is monstrous, barbaric, and should stay in the ancient world… that’s not even a slight exaggeration.

    The most glaring being the whole sale endorsement of slavery. Leviticus 25:44-46 NLT, Exodus 21:2-6 NLT, Exodus 21:7-11 NLT.

    BTW, don’t worry about being rude. 😉 When I started this blog I didn’t expect to make new friends!

  4. Daniel on

    Some of the supposed contradictions brought up are petty in my opinion. Do you think that the Bible writers were confused or trying to deceive people about the number of legs on an insect?

    The subject of slavery is not petty at all. I am glad you brought it up. I can’t tell you why God did not abolish slavery at that point. I would not say that He is approving of it at that time or any time. I think we should look at the concept of the hardness of man’s heart. Jesus mentions this during questioning about the law and divorce.

    See Mark 10:5
    And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female.

    See Mathew 19:4 – 8
    And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain(two) shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder (seperate). They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered (permitted) you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. KJV

    The religious leaders stated that the law commanded divorce. Jesus stated that the Law permitted divorce because of the hardness of man’s heart. The law did not endorse divorce or say that it was good. The law did provide some order in the event of a divorce. Slavery existed before the Law given by Moses and continues today in some places.

    There were two classes of slaves. One was bought from a foreigner and one was a fellow child of Israel. In the second instance you see a system of welfare with a built in way out of poverty.

    We see very little of the Law being followed in the records of the history of Israel. The only one who kept it perfectly was Jesus. The apostle Paul has something to say about the Law.

    Gal 3:19 What then is the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise hath been made; and it was ordained through angels by the hand of a mediator.
    Gal 3:20 Now a mediator is not a mediator of one; but God is one.
    Gal 3:21 Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could make alive, verily righteousness would have been of the law.
    Gal 3:22 But the scriptures shut up all things under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
    Gal 3:23 But before faith came, we were kept in ward under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.
    Gal 3:24 So that the law is become our tutor to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

    The New Testament talks about slavery. The early Church existed in the Roman empire. Slavery was common in the Roman empire due to military conquests. Some early Christians were slave and some were slave owners. People may have used Bible references to try to excuse the slave trade in American history. The Bible has been early and often twisted to excuse sinful behavior. Peter mentions this in regard to Paul’s writings.

    2Pe 3:15-18
    (15) And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also, according to the wisdom given to him, wrote unto you;
    (16) as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; wherein are some things hard to be understood, which the ignorant and unstedfast wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
    (17) Ye therefore, beloved, knowing these things beforehand, beware lest, being carried away with the error of the wicked, ye fall from your own stedfastness.
    (18) But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and for ever. Amen. ASV

    Thank you again for reading my comments.
    Daniel

  5. Irish Atheist on

    Listing contradictions isn’t petty, it’s simply making the point that the bible isn’t the unshakeable word of god. If god is all knowing AND made the bible know to a select few through the holy spirit, don’t you he’d reveal his word a bit more accurately?

    The whole point of showing any of this is to prove that the bible is wholly man-made- that there is no straight, consistent line of thought.

  6. Errancy on

    Listing biblical contradictions isn’t petty at all, it casts light on the nature of the Bible. That should be interesting, particularly to people who are trying to base their lives on it.

    That said, I don’t think that showing that the Bible contains errors shows that it’s wholly man-made; it just shows that God didn’t inspire it in the particular way claimed by biblical inerrantists. It could still be, for instance, that God inspired the Bible to make it infallible (i.e. inerrant on faith and practice, but not on history).

  7. Irish Atheist on

    That logic is so circular my head is spinning.

    But then, how is god omnipotent? If the bible said it, it must be true. Why is the bible true, because the bible said it.

    Also this faith business I’ve one or two problems with it. Why does god require faith? If, according to the bible, god created the entire universe, why is he so needing and insecure that he needs our constant reassurance, when the human races’ entire atomic mass takes up a tiny, TINY fraction of the universe.

    What makes you so sure he actually cares about you? Because it says it in the bible? But like you’ve just said, god made it with errors. Maybe he wanted some authors to say he didn’t care about people, but the author didn’t accept this and so said god loved us instead.

  8. Errancy on

    “That logic is so circular my head is spinning… If the bible said it, it must be true. Why is the bible true, because the bible said it.”

    You’re putting words into my mouth; that isn’t what I said. I didn’t give any reason for thinking that the Bible is true, or even claim that it is.

    All that I said is that showing that the Bible contains a few contradictions falls short of showing that it’s wholly man-made. Then, to illustrate, I gave an example of a position that accepts that the Bible contains errors but nevertheless maintains that it is in some sense inspired by God (i.e. that it isn’t wholly man-made).

    I wasn’t trying to defend biblical infallibility, just suggesting that the existence of contradictions doesn’t quite prove what you seem to think it proves, that there’s little more work to be done.

    • Irish Atheist on

      But what I’m trying to do is to show people who see the bible as complete truth that it clearly isn’t.

      Even in the case of morality, examining the bible pulls back the veil of the bible being a bastion of morality for humanity. The bible is brutal and vicious, even in the new testament.

      Out of curiosity, what are your beliefs and why do you believe them?

  9. Errancy on

    > But what I’m trying to do is to show people who see the bible as complete truth that it clearly isn’t.

    Okay, fine, but that’s slightly different to showing them that the Bible is wholly man-made.

    > Out of curiosity, what are your beliefs and why do you believe them?

    They’re complex and in many cases provisional, but here’s a partial picture: I’m a Christian. I find some philosophical arguments for theism forceful (particularly modern forms of the teleological argument), but not others. I think that the best explanation of the emergence of the early Church is that the gospels contain a historical core, including a Jesus who was raised bodily from the dead. However, I think that Christians often mistreat the Bible, attributing to it claims that it doesn’t make and a degree of authority that it doesn’t possess, and that we desperately need a much better understanding of hermeneutics in the Church. I believe in evolution, but not materialism (not least because it can’t yet offer a satisfactory account of consciousness). My ethical (and metaethical) views are particularly tentative right now, so I don’t have a lot to say about them, but I am convinced that consumer capitalism in its current form is profoundly destructive of freedom, virtue, and happiness.

    That covers a fair bit of my world-view; I hope it satisfies your curiosity?

    I do, of course, reserve the right to change any or all of my beliefs at any time, as everyone should.

    • Irish Atheist on

      That is a really good comment. My favorite part being the “reserve the right to change any or all of my beliefs at any time”. Thats the starting steps to becoming a skeptic.

      What is your option on the other holy text? Do you think they’re all the same as the bible i.e. created by the same god?

      Update: my original comment was just terrible. Here’s the fixed one.


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