Scriptural examples supporting claim of Bible as word of God

(Mitchell W McKain) #41

I guess I look at things from the opposite direction in many ways. Our primary contact with reality is subjective and the objective (that which is the same for everyone) has to be constructed as an abstraction. The methods of science have proven most successful at doing this and since some of the results strongly defy the expectations of the scientists themselves, this is strong evidence that despite being the product of abstraction, the objective is definitely an aspect of reality outside of ourselves. But the evidence is not sufficient to establish that reality is exclusively objective (completely independent of ourselves and the same for everyone). Furthermore, I see good pragmatic reasons for believing that there is an irreducibly subjective aspect to reality as well (i.e. it means that the diversity of conceptions of reality does not automatically lead to the conclusion that since only one of these can be correct, most people must be deluded and out of touch with reality).

But none of this means that I am anything like a solipsist. On the contrary, my view of reality is pretty much the same as yours. The scientific worldview is ingrained in my perceptual process. It is just that I see reasons to doubt that this worldview should equated with reality itself. I think there is something about this picture of reality which is both superficial and approximate. But it does not justify something so simplistic and obvious as Cartesian dualism, which I see as fundamentally flawed. So I go with the physicalist solution to the mind-body problem and posit a subjective non-physical aspect of reality which is beyond our ability to substantiate in any way.

(Mark D.) #42

But if the picture is superficial and approximate would that indicate a limitation in the physical aspect of reality or in our subjective apprehension of it? Admittedly there is no end to what the naive physical conception of reality may be leaving out. You might even say that it is a mystery. But it just seems far more likely to me that it would be because of our intrinsic sensory/cognitive limitations.

Viva la difference?

(Mitchell W McKain) #43

But we are not talking about our subjective apprehension of reality we are talking about the objective abstraction constructed via the methods of science which are self-correcting. We are already dealing with the limitations of subjective using the methods of science. I am not going use the limits of the subjective as an excuse to give the objective a free pass any more than I am going to use the limits of the objective to give the subjective a free pass. And one thing I will certainly not do is buy in to the “that is a mystery” talk which has been so prominent in religion. The fact that each has limits tells me that neither is the sum total of reality, but that both should be taken seriously within their own limitations.

And I think that is actually selling science short. One of its most remarkable features is that it has been able to get a handle on its own limitations.

(RiderOnTheClouds) #44

I agree, I believe the rulers interpretation is the one which best fits the pieces of the puzzle. That being said, at least one biblical author believed Enoch was canon.

The book of enoch still helps us to identify the identity of the sons of god. They are identified with the mesopotamian Apkallu in Enoch (as Amar Annus has shown). Michael Heiser treats this as if it’s a smoking gun for the fallen angels view, but he ignores how the sons of Lamech appear to be the equivalent of the Apkallu in Genesis.


Which one? What passage?

Also, spirit beings having gender, genitals and engaging in the act of ‘mating’ is absolutely preposterous!
We can thank the KJV for starting the whole ‘giant’ race garbage.

(Randy) #46

Jude refers to Book of Enoch–
I’ve seen discussions of this in footnotes in study Bibles and Norm Geisler, I think–mainly that it doesn’t mean that Enoch is entirely inspired.

(RiderOnTheClouds) #47

The epistle of Jude.

I agree it is preposterous and it is not my belief.

However the nephilim probably were giants (even if their name means fallen ones), the KJV didn’t make this up, and a giant by the standards of the ancients needn’t be a giant by our standates, no supernatural DNA is needed.

(Randy) #48

@Truth_Seeker, have you read “The Bible Tells Me So” and “Incarnation and Inspiration” by Pete Enns? they would maybe help with this question. The first one is easiest to read and doesn’t excuse the Israelites for genocide; in fact has interesting views on Noah’s cursing of Kenan (Ham’s offspring).



I don’t believe Jude is referring to Enoch, but rather Enoch (and whoever wrote it) is copying Jude.

Although, now I need to study this too. Because if the Book of Enoch is in any way genuine, then I’ll have to throw the whole Bible out :frowning:

As it is, I’m pretty fragile with it. I consider myself an agnostic theist, and try to live as a Christian. But the more I learn, the more the Bible keeps getting pushed into a corner and I once again have to make excuses for it… Seems this is the case for everyone. Perhaps the atheist has just saved himself the trouble and is waiting for us to catch up?

(Randy) #50

I really think that the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy, as strict as it is, throws many people out of any trust of the Bible when they see that it’s unrealistic.

You might really want to read Pete Enns 'The Bible Tells Me So"–Why Defending Scripture Has Made Us Unable to Read It. I am not an inerrantist.

I don’t think that quoting from Enoch makes Jude all wrong, but I don’t think that even the NT is word for word inerrant. I don’t even know why we think that fallible prophets in the OT or eye witnesses with people derived from them are expected to be exact. Even George Macdonald asked why, if several accounts of the Resurrection and Jesus’ life, don’t agree on all points, we would reject the whole story.

If Paul confronted Peter, and Peter recanted from Judaizing, why would we think that what Peter wrote is inerrant when he himself is not inerrant?

Rather, the messiness of the Bible–where the canon kept conflicting accounts–makes it more reliable. They wanted everyone to be able to read the whole thing. That’s my take, and also what Enns and others have written.

It’s ok to be fragile, and I don’t think God is going to bonk us on the head if we doubt or question–especially if our house of cards, as Boyd calls it, falls down to get a better understanding.

Rich Mullins wrote in one of my favorite songs, “Playing Hard to Get,”
You who live in Heaven
Hear the prayers of those of us who live on earth
Who are afraid of being left by those we love
And who get hardened by the hurt

Do you remember when You lived down here?
Where we all scrape to find the faith to ask for daily bread
Did You forget about us after You had flown away?
Well I memorized every word You said

Still I’m so scared, I’m holding my breath
While You’re up there just playing hard to get

You who live in radiance
Hear the prayers of those of us who live in skin
We have a love that’s not as patient as Yours was
Still we do love now and then

Did You ever know loneliness, did You ever know need?
Do You remember just how long a night can get?
When You were barely holding on and Your friends fall asleep
And don’t see the blood that’s running in Your sweat

Will those who mourn be left uncomforted
While You’re up there just playing hard to get?

And I know You bore our sorrows
And I know You feel our pain
And I know it would not hurt any less
Even if it could be explained

And I know that I am only lashing out
At the One who loves me most
And after I figured this, somehow
All I really need to know

Is if You who live in eternity
Hear the prayers of those of us who live in time
We can’t see what’s ahead
And we can not get free of what we’ve left behind
I’m reeling from these voices that keep screaming in my ears
All the words of shame and doubt, blame and regret

I can’t see how You’re leading me unless You’ve led me here
Where I’m lost enough to let myself be led
And so You’ve been here all along I guess
It’s just Your ways and You are just plain hard to get

(Christy Hemphill) #51

“Canon” wasn’t even a concept when Jude was writing.


Simply because we’re talking about naturally unbelievable things like miracles and resurrections.

Amazing point!

(Randy) #53

Right, it would be nice, but God hasn’t kept a bunch of kooky interpretations (New World, Qur’an, Book of Mormon) from twisting even what we have–why would we expect this all to be word for word?

Enns said that at one time, someone tried to make a syncretistic gospel of all of them together (AD 200 or so I think) but dropped it because they wanted each voice to be heard. I’d be interested in what you read. I do think that Enns actually solidified my faith when I had gone through all the retching about reading Joshua, Numbers 31, etc.–at the same time as calling out tribalism and genocide for what it was.


I’ve got the book on my Ebay wishlist, going to buy it tonight and give it a read.

Although, rebuking someone for giving their story a Jewish spin is a bit different to getting actual facts of the story wrong.

(Randy) #55

Best wishes with it. By the way, I don’t agree with everything. However, I’d like to hear what you say.

Not sure what the reference is to the Jewish spin? Maybe to Second Temple Judaism? he actually got that from one of his Jewish professors at Harvard. That’s actually an interesting part–not applicable to all Jewish thought, and only to that portion really-I think you will find it really interesting.

To counter it (I usually get a better idea of something when I read 2 or 3 accounts, even if I enjoy one better than the other), you may want to read Five Views on Biblical Inerrancy. Vanhoozer and especially Bird do a great job of expounding on their own ideas of inerrancy (Bird is an Aussie and criticizes American inerrancy very appropriately; he’s got a great sense of humor and does well in criticizing complementarianism at Euangelion, his website–@Christy enjoys him and can teach more in that area than I. I think Mohler could have given a much better argument for inerrancy than the one he gives.


“If Paul confronted Peter, and Peter recanted from Judaizing”
Maybe I misunderstood what you meant here. Was Peter putting a Jewish teaching/law spin onto the teachings of Christ?

(Randy) #57

Oh, yes, sorry, got it–Paul Opposes Peter Galatians 2: 11-14

11 But when Cephas [Peter] came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned. 12 For before certain men came from James, he was eating with the Gentiles; but when they came he drew back and separated himself, fearing the circumcision party.[a] 13 And the rest of the Jews acted hypocritically along with him, so that even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy. 14 But when I saw that their conduct was not in step with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas before them all, “If you, though a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you force the Gentiles to live like Jews?”

But I am editing this to say that the Rule o Faith in Allert’s podcast with Enns does weed out such discrepancies.

I do think that the Bible is inspired and reliable–Enns is pretty interesting. I do think Bird is a great counterpoint (Bird and Boyd have both countered the nonbelievers Ehrmann) and Vanhoozer even has an article at which shows great insight. It helps me to read all points of view. I’m not going to say Enns is right all the time. Warning…sometimes I don’t know where he even stops in deconstructing, though I believe he really does believe (Sin of Certainty is a more positive book).So on second thought maybe 5 Views on Biblical Inerrancy, which includes Enns, would be better for you to start. There is a thread about it here Five Views On Biblical Inerrancy: A Review

(Randy) #58

Ok one last thing…I think having a reasonable inerrantist like Vanhoozer is even more important than Enns. Enns can be perhaps a bit extreme in his language though he is a believer. Thanks.

(Randy) #59

I edited my 2nd to last post…I am sorry. You may find a more solid and broad review than The Bible Tells Me So in the book here. It is more faithful to biblical integrity but includes Enns too. Five Views On Biblical Inerrancy: A Review
I am thinking that Enns alone can be a bit misleading towards skepticism. Counterpoints (five views) is more thorough and balanced.

(Phil) #60

I would agree with that, in that when confronted with troubling passages that conflict one with another, it is comforting to see how they can be still be seen as part of the greater story rather than be contradictory.