How do we deal with "hard to swallow" verses in the bible

Like 1 Timothy or all the Deueteronomy ones.

Can you clarify, @NickolaosPappas?

Often it is context
It can be cultural
However, I do believe that ultimately, each of us has to answer to God for our own conscience. Far be it from me to urge someone to believe an evil against their conscience.

Struggling with God is like prayer. If He is true, he is not frightened by the questions that arise from the good minds He made.

1 Like

I mean God commanding disspobedient children to be stoned or that women cannot be welcomed in the church if they dont cover their heads. Those type of things. Its really hard to see them as a a cultural thing really or any kind of . It seems to me that God really commanded this and im trying to explain why. Ive been reading them recently and cant get them out of my head.

1 Like

Yes the end of chapter 2 in 1 Timothy (from verse 11) is not just over the top misogyny but verse 15 contradicts the whole gospel of grace taught by Paul elsewhere. It is either some insertion, not written by Paul, or cultural. And the only question is whether I throw out the whole Bible just because of this one section or not. Not quite enough, but I will make my rejection of this portion quite clear.

A google of “children to be stoned” only turns up Deut 21:18-21 and that is not talking about children at all. It does suggest a lower tolerance of delinquents – that much is true.

For me I just don’t struggle with it personally. It is what it is.

God ordered the death of a lot of people and eventually he destroys a lot of people with the second death. It’s up to him to sustain life eternally and he does not do it for everyone. There are all kinds of guesses on why God ordered things like disobedient kids to be stoned to death. I dont know why. It seems cruel. I simply accept it for what it says. God is more than love. He’s be vengeance and justice. A lot of people only want to paint a picture of some old grandpa who loved everyone and because he loves everyone he gives everyone grace and mercy. But he does not. Some don’t get their names in the book of life.

The same for Jesus. Many paints Jesus out to just be this soft spoken passive guy who because he loves everyone that he just accepts everyone as they are. He doesn’t. He has a standard. He took a whip to the temple being used as a money spot, he says to some go away I never knew you and in revelation it paints him as a guy coming back sword in hand about to slaughter his fathers enemies and judge them.

But again, God is not just wrath and justice. He’s also mercy, grace, and love. We see him offer his hand to those who fail him, he offers salvation to the world. Jesus also is loving. He feed the poor. He took care of the sick. He loved the rejected. He gave himself for us to be able to be rectified.

The problem is that people often think that you can only be one way. You can only be loving, mind, and full of empathy but allow the world to step on you, or you can be cruel, wicked and get your way all the time and don’t care about others. They are both extremes.

As for the other questions I don’t have a particular view on it. It’s not just cut dry and requires systematic theology.

It’s like how in some verses it says just believe and confess and you’re saved , but later on it says not everyone who says lord lord will be saved so go away from me evil doer.

Not any one single Bible verse is valuable without the rest. Any verse pulled out of the Bible and just used for itself is meaningless.

Well ok men. Does that make it less violent?

1 Like

I don’t live in a fantasy world where violence is unnecessary. Not even now in the 20th century let alone more than 2000 years ago. What did it take for a nation to survive during the times when such laws were written?

But the fact that surgery kills doesn’t make surgery a bad thing. Delinquency is a difficult problem. I am not all that sure that we have all the right answers in modern times – not at all! I am certainly hopeful we can find a better solution than Deut 21:18-21 in modern times, but we haven’t done so yet.

What we have in the developed world with regard to juvenile delinquency isn’t better than stoning or setting bears on children?

Jesus thought otherwise though. I wonder if he would agree with that punishment. Although i guess he did?

I don’t grant you the power to know what Jesus thought or to speak for Him. The teachings of Jesus in the Bible do not support your claim. There is support for avoiding violence whenever possible, but that is all.

No, it is not better when we have gangs of youth shooting up neighborhoods fighting over the selling of drugs and terrorizing anyone who would dare to seek justice. It is certainly not a better solution when innocent children lie in graves because of these delinquents – sorry! And I certainly do not accept a magical interpretation of 2 Kings 2:24.

Like I said, I hope we can find a better solution, but no I don’t see any such thing yet.

See thats a contradiction then. It begs the question of the"two gods". Since the same God is in the OT and in the NT didnt Jesus agreed with the punishment ?

Same God different circumstances. The Bible is a story of change and growth. It is NOT a list of unchanging absolute instructions.

You get a good Bible commentary and research the context. Often the verses make a lot more sense when you understand what was implicitly understood by the original audience. Some passages remain troubling, but none of the things you bring up are understudied.

1 Like

Deut 5:16 "Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

1 Cor 6: 9 Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders 10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

Rom 1:28 Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

Mark 7:9 And he said to them: “You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions! 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death.’ 11 But you say that if a man says to his father or mother: ‘Whatever help you might otherwise have received from me is Corban’ (that is, a gift devoted to God), 12 then you no longer let him do anything for his father or mother. 13 Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that.”

These are not hard sayings at all. In reference to rebellious offspring, when you understand how Holy, Pure and Righteous God is you will realize that a rebellious person will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven. When God made a covenant with the people, He laid out the requirements and they agreed to them. If parents had offspring that continually dishonored and disobeyed them, drunkards and lovers of the pleasures of the flesh, they needed to be cut off from the people. God wanted the people to understand that this character was contrary to His nature and not allowed in His Kingdom or the people of God. This same judgment continues in the final judgment, the rebellious will be cast away from the Kingdom into the Lake of Fire.

That is why the Good News of Jesus’s death, judgment, resurrection and accession is a priceless treasure. Those who repent, humble themselves and put their trust in Jesus and what He said and did are forgiven for past sins and are free from their slavery too sin. Those who trust, love and obey will be obedient sons and daughters of God and will be able to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but those who are rebellious and disobedient will be thrown into the Lake of Fire. God will separate the wicked from the righteous.

Since the Law was given to reveal sin, take note. Save yourselves from this perverse and corrupt age. Continually cling to Jesus, for He alone is our salvation.

                                               The Character Of A Godly Woman

A godly woman is not caught up in the deceptive trappings of this present age. They are not sidetracked with the concern of outward adornment. They understand the true beauty of a meek and quiet spirit. They don’t have to put on an outward facade of beauty for their hearts are already filled with the beauty of righteousness

A godly wife respects, loves and honors her husband as the church does hers.

A godly woman is not brash, harsh or impetuous and a godly wife would not act in that manner toward her husband. She has a gentle and meek attitude when interacting with him.

A godly woman, who loves Jesus, does not look at the character of the women of this wicked age and desire to be like them, she would not look to them for advice or counsel. Ps 1-1 Blessed is the man (or woman) who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. 2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. 3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.

A godly woman loves the Lord. Her life is devoted in loving service to Him and others. She is not caught up in the temptations of this temporary life; her sights are on the eternal Kingdom and its King.

Cody… Mark 7:9-13 is interesting. I am reminded of the story of how Solomon was dedicated to God.
Perhaps it is different when someone dedicates himself to God though. It should make you wonder how much of Christianity is really from God and how much is just the tradition of men.

And… are any of these things which you say is the character of a Godly woman not also the character of a Godly man and husband? This is not say that they have to be precisely the same in every way. But the virtues apply to both don’t they?

So i guess sacrificing children for the pagan gods was “justyfiable” because of “circumstances”?

What ARE you talking about?!?

It is more like the sacrificing of children to pagan gods is what justified God telling the Israelites to exterminate some people.

A better example might be the reforms in the Bible regarding the practice of slavery rather than the complete prohibition of slavery.

What circumstances then forced the isralites to stone dissobidient people or let the children die because they didnt want to gather food?

1 Like

Do you have any suggestions christy? Im not very keen with bible commentaries. I just have my Greek bible at home and read it when i have time. Thanks and take care!

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

This is a place for gracious dialogue about science and faith. Please read our FAQ/Guidelines before posting.