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Have started reading the bible again from the beginning

(113 Posts)
NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Wed 02-Jan-13 13:41:38

am mightily confused about some things to do with the God in whom I believe.

anyone want to try to help with some of my questions?

Avuncular Wed 02-Jan-13 19:42:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JakeBullet Wed 02-Jan-13 20:04:15

Off topic here Avuncular but is the book you are reading called "Nothing to Envy". Fabulous book about the loves of people in North Korea....terribly sad.

zulubump Wed 02-Jan-13 20:04:19

To add to the list of books being recommended, for Christmas I got The Bible Jesus Read, a Philip Yancey book. Not read it yet, but I like yancey's books. It is about the OT, which is the Bible Jesus would have been raised with.

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Wed 02-Jan-13 20:16:10

this is turning into a more fascinating thread than I had thought it would be.

There are so many things that I find fascinating about the bible.

MrsMcCave Wed 02-Jan-13 21:19:08

Is this a new year resolution, op? If so can I congratulate you on getting to Exodus already? Otherwise, just marking my place...I started a new chronological bible study in December and have got as far as Job, which is also raising a lot of questions smile

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Wed 02-Jan-13 21:25:29

no not new year, started just before christmas smile
going to have to keep coming back to this thread as I am finding so many new questions.

Avuncular Wed 02-Jan-13 21:27:43


Well that must be ok then!

Why are all the Amazon Kindle books we want priced at £6.99? They must be rubbing their hands in glee tonight.


Avuncular Wed 02-Jan-13 21:34:18

Job came to life for us with a vengeance last year when DW got a full-body allergic skin reaction following a pre-emptive course of antibiotics.

Totally itchy all over but not allowed to scratch. Why, O why? Fortunately her DH was not targeted on that occasion. Still trying to work out what we learned from that little episode.

tabulahrasa Wed 02-Jan-13 21:42:52

Oh it's not even a collection of books, each book is a collection in itself - with some of them you can see just reading yourself that they're different pieces put together...with others it's not so obvious in translation, but very few bits show evidence of a single author or source.

The OT is essentially a history in literature condensed into a tiny book.

timidviper Thu 03-Jan-13 00:20:21

I think there are some reading plans that suggest the order in which to read things so as to get a more logical order than reading it from Genesis to Malachi IYSWIM

Avuncular Thu 03-Jan-13 00:47:37


Can't vouch for this, but looks reasonable and was easy to find (click on link below)

Chapters with dates and events

sashh Thu 03-Jan-13 04:25:02

Don't forget you are reading translations of translations that have also been edited a great deal.

Texts were removed and altered. Things were lost in translation and nothing was written down until about 70 years AD.

The gospels were written over a period of centuries, some in Greek, some in other languages.

Taking the Bible literaly is quite a recent concept, for most of Chritianity it has been a guide rather than an historic document.

So you get huge glearing differences between gospels. If you look at the lineage of Joseph it is defferent in two gospels (sorry can't remember which ones, probably Mark and Luke), the number of people fed by 2 loves and 5 fishes changes by about 2000 between gospels.

Does that matter?

I'm not a believer so to me the former was just someone showing Jesus birth fulfilled a prophecy and the second was a lot of people got fed and the numbers don't need to be acurate.

But if you are taking this as the literal word of God that might be a problem.

Avuncular Thu 03-Jan-13 11:12:03

Hi Sashh

What you say might matter if it were a technical manual telling me how to repair my car, or even - say - the Highway Code.

But it's not; it's understood to be a collection of writing by ordinary mortals trying to set out as honestly as possible (I hope) what we understand God has told us about himself, an indication of how he would like us to live, and why

Two helpful analogies I've heard:

1) Ask six blind people to explore an elephant from difference angles

2) Try to reconstruct a traffic collision from the point of view of and descriptions by 4 different bystanders

In both cases the output will be 'true', though there may be problems fitting it all together.
(Ever asked DCs for an account of 'what happened?' during an altercation?)

BTW I assume your comments about translations are intended to apply to the NT, not the OT

CoteDAzur Thu 03-Jan-13 21:08:38

Avuncular - re "DW got a full-body allergic skin reaction following a pre-emptive course of antibiotics... Still trying to work out what we learned from that little episode."

She learned never again to take that particular antibiotic, I hope.

This happened to me and it took a full week of antihistamine overdose culminating in a 48-hour hospital stay hooked to IV antihistamines to get rid of it. Allergies to ABs are the worst.

CoteDAzur Thu 03-Jan-13 21:20:45

"Yes I can't prove Genesis wrong, I can though look at the theories of evolution and say it's unlikely the world was created in seven days....very unlikely."

Iirc, the story is that God created the world in 7 days, and people were created on day 6.

Yet we have dinosaur fossils over a hundred million years older than first humanoid fossils.

I see two options:
(1) Genesis story is completely false.
(2) God is messing with us smile He created the world in a few days, but with 240 mn year old fossils in the ground.

Does anyone have another explanation?

Avuncular Thu 03-Jan-13 22:12:29

Hi Cote

1. The OT book of Job features someone who had a similar affliction (only worse) - it helps some of us to cope with and face up to nasty things happening to us

2. Re 'hundreds of thousands of years' etc you need to look a lot more closely at the assumptions made in reaching the generally accepted 'scientific' conclusions reached. They are reasonable assumtions, but that's what they are - assumptions.

I'm not saying 'Biblical Creationists' have it all correct by a long chalk, but they raise a lot of reasonable and unanswered issues. The book I flagged up earlier even looks at some of the political issues (esp in USA) which have given rise to the 'war' on this. The media love a fight - of course. It sells newspapers, and airtime.

I got my first 'wake up' call on all this when as an engineer with a bit of hydraulics knowledge, I calculated (fairly simple maths) that the amount of the water in the oceans today is quite enough to cover the mountains to a significant depth (enough for Joanna Lumley's Ark to float), provided the mountains were a bit lower than they now are. And we do know that some mountain ranges are still rising, from current measurements.

So for me, the jury is still out on this one.

CoteDAzur Thu 03-Jan-13 22:18:10

Yes, I'm familiar with Job.

I haven't said anything about 100,000s of years. I have said that there are fossils of dinosaurs that roamed the Earth 100s of millions of years ago.

I don't see what that has to do with assumptions. Carbon dating is fairly precise when you are looking in the million-year range.

So what do you say? Is the 7-day creation story bogus, or is God messing with our heads? smile

CoteDAzur Thu 03-Jan-13 22:19:42

Re flood - Water doesn't have to cover all the mountains, all over the Earth. If only the mountains in the observers' immediate vicinity was covered, visible peaks beyond the horizon wouldn't have mattered to whoever wrote that story.

JakeBullet Thu 03-Jan-13 22:21:53

I am guessing it's the thoughts of those who spoke it all those years ago. I have never taken Genesis literally. ..and there is discussion somewhere about it being written in several stages by different people. I go with creation via evolution myself.

My DS says that "God created dinosaurs" when he talks about creation....this has mainly come from school. We have looked at fossils and used to live in an area where ammonites were plentiful so he is under no illusions about evolution. He has books about fossils and loves imparting how they were formed over thousands of years. He is in a Catholic school so gets some religious input there but the priest is more than happy to talk dinosaurs thankfully.

I think from what I've read that the book of Genesis had its foundations during the time of Exodus. People trying to make sense of their world.

Tbh I don't think about it in any more detail than that....I'd be really hacked off though if DS was taught about creation without any reference to can't ignore evolution though the real Creationists seem to want to.

I actually saw on a forum that "God planted the fossils to test us" and the Earth was only 6000 years old. Weird....but perhaps no more weird than me having a faith without any scientific proof .

Avuncular Thu 03-Jan-13 22:30:30

Does anyone have another explanation?

Well you might try this - not a final answer by any means but my DS1 and DS2 actually know one of the authors Andrew Snelling (I think). Also it's cheap on Kindle so a useful start.

Re carbon dating on a million year timescale - I think you are mistaken.
I'm off to Wikipedia now to check that out .... but maybe not tonight.

JakeBullet Thu 03-Jan-13 22:37:15

Amazon have done well out of me for Kindle stuff due to this thread grin .

Avuncular Thu 03-Jan-13 23:01:07

BTW I hate Ken Ham's approach - even worse in the flesh than in print.

But the style and personality doesn't necessarily negate the message. I believe Isaac Newton wasn't all that easy to get on with either!

Avuncular Thu 03-Jan-13 23:06:43

Wikipedia 62,000 years max for Carbon Dating - Oops!

Mind you one mustn't believe everything one reads on Wiki - I've started editing it!

headinhands Thu 03-Jan-13 23:22:01

Think the particular dating method is called radiometric. I think we sometimes say carbon dating as an umbrella term when referring to the range of dating techniques.

Avuncular Thu 03-Jan-13 23:23:35

Ah thanks ....

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