Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


ENCYCLOPAEDIA OF BIBLE DIFFICULTIES ON NEW TESTAMENT

Gleason W Archer’s Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties (two editions considered in this work) is one of the books at the forefront of religious systems that allege that there is no error in the Bible for it is the word of God. Let us quote from the book and put this claim to the test.  We are considering some letters and writings of the New Testament.

QUOTE: 1 CORINTHIANS 8:4 - If idols are nothing, why does God condemn idolatry? PROBLEM: Paul affirms here that "an idol is nothing in the world." Yet the Bible repeatedly condemns idolatry (cf. Ex. 20:4), and even Paul said there are demons behind idols (I Cor. 10:19). Is he then claiming that demons are nothing? SOLUTION: Paul does not deny the existence of idols, but simply their ability to affect mature believers who eat meat that has been offered to them (cf 8:1). It is not the reality of idols, but their divinity which Paul denies. The devil does deceive idolaters (1 Cor. 10:19), but he cannot destroy the meat which God has created and pronounced good (Gen. 1:31; 1 Tim. 4:4), even if someone else has offered it to an idol.

COMMENT: It is warning that any god beside God is useless and demons cannot do a good job of substituting for non-existent gods.

QUOTE: JAMES 1:15 - If God doesn't tempt anyone, then why did He tempt Abraham? PROBLEM: The Bible says "God tempted Abraham" (Gen. 22:1, KJV), and Jesus taught His disciples to pray to God, "do not lead us into temptation" (Matt. 6:13). How then can James say of God, "nor does He Himself tempt anyone" (James 1:13). SOLUTION: God did not tempt Abraham (nor anyone) to sin. Rather, He tested Abraham to see if he would sin or be faithful to Him. God allows Satan to tempt us (cf. Matt 4:1-10; James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:8-9), but James is correct in saying, never does God "Himself tempt anyone." God cannot be tempted by sin, since He is absolutely and unchangeably perfect (Matt 5:48; Heb. 6:18), nor can He tempt anyone else to sin (James 1:13). When we sinful human beings are tempted, it is because we allow ourselves to be drawn away by our own lustful desires (James 1:14-15). The source of temptation comes from within, not from without. It comes from sinful man, not from a sinless God. While God does not and cannot actually tempt anyone to sin, He can and does allow us to be tempted by Satan and our own lustful desires. Of course, His purpose in permitting (but not producing or promoting) evil is to make us more perfect. God allowed Satan to tempt Job so that Job could say "When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold" (Job 23:10). God allowed evil to befall Joseph at the hands of his brothers. But in the end Joseph was able to say to them, "you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good" (Gen. 50:20).

COMMENT: We tend to think of an evil deed as a real evil and which leads to God later having to find ways of disabling it and neutralising it and bringing good out of it. But here we are told that you can mean evil while God means good by it. That is a totally different concept. It amounts to saying evil is not really evil.

QUOTE: On the subject of the Bible saying you should pray for one whose sin leads to death, “Whatever John envisioned, there is no reason that it could not refer to a sin so serious that it would eventuate in physical death. Paul mentioned that the Corinthians had so participated in the Lord's Supper in an unworthy manner that some were sick and others were dead as a result (1 Cor. 11:29-30). In fact, the priests Nadab and Abihu were smitten dead for their disobedience to the Lord (Num. 3:4), as were Ananias and Saphira for their sin (Acts 5:1-9). So, it is entirely possible that John has some such serious sin in mind here whereby the believer is turned over to Satan for "the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus" (1 Cor. 5:5).”

COMMENT: To say it refers to a sin that may lead to you being saved if you are killed by it virtually could endorse suicide. And if John had such a sin in mind he would not have said there is no point in praying. He would have seen that as grounds for more praying. Rather than suppose damnation starts when you die, early Christianity says damnation starts when you are alive and just fulfilled when you die. It is an affirmation of the doctrine that there is no salvation for the person who living or dead makes a final choice against God.

QUOTE: The rite of circumcision (i.e., the surgical removal of the prepuce) was intended as a sign and a seal of the covenant relationship between God and the believer. Even as a wedding ring is a sign and seal of the total and exclusive commitment of the bride and the groom to each other so long as they both shall live, so the sacramental removal of this portion of the male organ was a blood-sealed testimonial that the believer had turned his life over to the Lord, with the commitment to live for Him and in dependence on His grace for the rest of his earthly life. As a seal the act of circumcision amounted to a stamp of ownership on the Old Testament; it testified that he belonged not to the world, Satan, or self, but to the Lord Yahweh who had provided for his redemption.

COMMENT: New Testament doctrine is that circumcision is nothing unless treated as prayer. It says it is no good for all who get circumcised break God's law and make the circumcision mean nothing.

QUOTE: Does 1 Corinthians 7 refer to divorce at all? Apparently not. The Matthew passages speak of remarriage after the original couple has broken up (under the law of Moses, the guilty party in such a case was to be executed by stoning, along with the paramour; cf. Lev. 20:10; Deut. 22:24). But 1 Corinthians 7 makes no reference to a second marriage on the part of the innocent partner. On the contrary, it says quite specifically in v.11: “But if she [the separated wife who is a Christian] ...


COMMENT: The 1 Corinthians 7 is about the right of pagans to end a marriage by mutual consent if one of them becomes Christian. It refers to separation not divorce. Notably Matthew is so strict about marriage that it would rather see a man or woman free to remarry upon the execution of their spouse. It prefers murder to divorce.

QUOTE: God is good, devoid of all evil or deceit. Is He that way because some outside force has so conditioned Him that He could not be anything but good? Or is God good because He chooses to be good and wills to reject evil? One may raise a real question as to whether there could be any moral yardstick outside of God by which His goodness could be measured or evaluated. But surely God’s will is unfettered and undetermined by any outside authority or power.

COMMENT: In principle, it does not matter how God gets his authority to lay down morality as long as he has it. This argument is obsessed with stopping at God. That is its downfall. It is as silly as saying the dinner you need to keep yourself alive gets its value from being a dinner. It does not. Its source is important for what if the meat is not meat but some kind of synthetic material that will not nourish?


QUOTE: In Galatians 3:16 Paul referred to the promises made to Abraham in Genesis 13:15 (after he had returned from his sojourn in Egypt) and in Genesis 22:18 (after he had returned from Mount Moriah and the near sacrifice of his son Isaac: “And in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice” NASB). If Isaac was about twelve at the time of the near sacrifice...

COMMENT: The New Testament is clear that God rewarded Abraham for being willing to kill Isaac. It is total rubbish that the New Testament is softer and more liberal than the Old. This link with Abraham is a core teaching of the New Testament and Christianity which marks them as unworthy of respect and credence.

QUOTE: Revelation 16:8–10 we read of the true reaction of fallen man toward divine punishment: The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and the sun was given power to scorch people with fire. They were seared by the intense heat and they cursed the name of God ...they refused to repent or glorify him. The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom was plunged into darkness. Men gnawed their tongues in agony and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done (NIV).

COMMENT: The idea is that God punishes you in Hell and instead of admitting its your due you rebel and get more engrained in evil and sin. Revelation may not be describing an afterlife Hell here but it remains true that it is indeed Hell it is on about.

QUOTE: In view of all this explicit evidence from the text itself as to Petrine authorship, we are forced to conclude that the author of this epistle made such a definite claim to being the apostle Peter himself that it would have been grossly fraudulent and deceptive on his part if the epistle were not authentically Petrine. If it was not really by him, it should not be used or respected by the church at all; and it is unwarranted hypocrisy to use it for preaching purposes, for it should be removed from the New Testament altogether as a sheer imposture. It would be hard to conceive of any valid revelation of divine truth as emanating from such a dishonest pen.

COMMENT: Well said. The liberals who try to justify what they think is an imposture being in the Bible would make your blood boil.

QUOTE ABOUT HOW IN THE NEW TESTAMENT:  the calling of a soldier is considered an honorable one, if carried on in a responsible and lawful fashion (Matt. 8:5; Luke 3:14; Acts 10:1–6,34–35). Paul even uses the analogy of faithful service in the army as a model for Christian commitment (2 Tim. 2:4), without the slightest suggestion of reproach for military service.

COMMENT: We need to know that for the allegation that Christianity is pacifist or that Christ was is very rife despite being utter nonsense.

QUOTE: As for the 144,000 who appear in Revelation 14:1–5, the identity in number suggests (though it does not necessarily prove) an identity in constituency. In other words, it looks as if these represent the raptured church

COMMENT: The rapture is an unbiblical fantasy. The text if referring to raptured people is referring to Jews!

QUOTE ABOUT SATAN GOING TO HEAVEN TO GOD TO ACCUSE PEOPLE: Satan has been officially expelled from heaven, but he still actually has access there. Several places in Scripture present the idea that Satan has access to the presence of God in order to accuse the saints. In Zechariah 3:1 we find a vision of Joshua standing before the angel of the Lord with Satan on his right hand accusing him. Revelation 12:10 identifies Satan as the accuser of the brethren "who accused them before our God day and night." Apparently, as the prince of the power of the air (Eph. 2:2), Satan has had opportunity to appear before God for the purpose of accusing God's people of sin. This is what he is doing against Job in both Job 1:6 and 2:1.

COMMENT: Christians don’t want to think that the damned or the evil spirits can get into Heaven. It contradicts the claim that Hell is about quarantining the bad away from the God forever. It contradicts what Jesus is about - saving means quarantining and protecting from sin. But the text says what it says. Jesus was a fake.

COMMENT: Maybe it is the same with Jesus. The New Testament does not always try to make him likeable and does seem to describe behavior on his part that can only be called immoral.

All attempts to prove that Jesus the Bible (the Bible calls Jesus the word of God and calls itself that too so in a sense it is claiming to be Jesus) is the word of God fail because the Bible contradicts itself and attempts to hide this are stupid, irresponsible and are fabricated.  Disgusting is the only way to describe such determined efforts to defend and promote and use for worship such a twisted volume as if the blood splatters on it do not count.