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Category Archives: academics

Bad Archaeology & Archaeology

The first two terms are the name of a couple of websites owned and used by

http://www.badarchaeology.com/

The problem, of course, comes in when that person and his writing partner set themselves up as the final authority on the research field of archaeology. They aren’t but they like to see changes take place in the field of archaeology. We will look at some selected quotes taken from several different pages on that website.

#1. James and I are fed up with the distorted view of the past that passes for knowledge in popular culture. We are unhappy that books written by people with no knowledge of real archaeology dominate the shelves at respectable bookshops

They have good company. Eric Cline, Robert Cargill, Joe Zias and other archaeologists do not like this either. To a point we do not either. But the real problem  comes in when these archaeologists lump legitimate Christian and other researchers in with the likes of Ron Wyatt, S. Jacobovici and others who really do distort the field of archaeology with their weird views and conclusions.

We take issues with the authors of that website because they use their own standards to make the divide between real and bad archaeology. That is their first mistake. Their second mistake comes in when they declare that their accepted way to do archaeology is the only way to do it. Well archaeology is not like God’s plan of salvation which only has one way of being saved. There are many ways to dig into the past to get the information needed to decipher what actually took place.

Not all the paths are correct but there is more than one way to do archaeology. Oh and, once you get to the truth, no more corrections are needed.

#2. A quick look through the comments that have been made on various pages will throw up some interesting views. In particular, you will find that our critics accuse us of arrogance, bullying, closed-mindedness, even being in the pay of governments to suppress The Truth™. We are none of these. If you return to the site time and again, you will find that we update our pages when new information comes along, correcting errors that we have made. This is something that Bad Archaeologists never do.

You may say this is a good thing as science says it is self-correcting. But the problem is that who is to say that the corrections are correct? Because secular science and archaeology are deceived fields of research and do not have the Spirit of Truth guiding them, there is no guarantee that these men got it right with the second, third or even fourth correction. It is also wrong and irresponsible to develop theories based on limited information.

Another problem is that these men are not going for the truth. If they were, they would realize that the truth is not always found in their accepted ways of doing archaeological research. Sometimes the fringe people stumble onto the truth and do not know how they got there. For the believer, archaeology is all about getting to the truth not the best explanation or the best description of a given excavation site. We are not to lie or sin in our historical work. We are also not to mislead either.

#3. Bad Archaeology is all around us. Many of its ideas are pervasive in popular culture. Its publications sell more than publications dealing with real archaeology. Its web presence is much stronger than that of real archaeology. This is especially true of internet forums, where the most bizarre of conspiracy-oriented ideas are given free rein. With this site we are trying to show that most Bad Archaeology is completely vacuous and valueless. In doing so, I hope that we can also provide a reference point for Good (or at least, Better) Archaeology.

Again the issue is that the term Bad Archaeology is far too broad and generic. It is also very subjective and can contain anything the authors of that website do not like. That means they will include many good archaeologists and the information they uncover. We read several of their articles, the one we thought was the most honest and factual was the one on the Peri Reis map. They made some good points that bear analyzing and reconsidering. We like Dr.Hapgood and read his 3 books which are filled with a lot of useful information. We are prepared to take Matthews’ analysis if it bears out to be correct.

But with that said, real biblical archaeologists have debated this point and those arguments are featured over at Bible and Interp website. There are many problems with communication by real archaeologists which make this situation true. It is too long to go into here, but suffice it to say that sensationalism sells. It sells better than religion sells the ancient past.

We will agree that there are a lot of bad archaeologists out there and most of them try to convince everyone that aliens did it. The other problem we find with this category is that the authors of that website think they get to pick and choose who is a bad archaeologist and who isn’t. There is a lot of bias at play here and that is unfair to those archaeologists who do not meet the approval of the establishment. There is a lot of bias in the field of archaeology. But this does not make the searchers for Noah’s ark credible. Many of those would fit into the category of bad archaeology.

#4. By and large, Bad Archaeologists do not cite excavation reports, catalogues of artefact types, studies of monument classes or the sites and monuments records of places. Perhaps they find the amount of detail overwhelming. Perhaps they do not understand the technical jargon used by their authors. Perhaps they believe that the answers to the questions they pose are not to be found in these minutiae because their questions are too big.

We do not cite excavation reports catalogs, studies, etc., very often. This does not make us bad archaeologists. It makes us discerning because those reports are more subjective than factual. One example is Stephen Collins. He states in almost every report that Tall el-Hamman is likely Sodom. That is a biased opinion not a conclusion based on fact.

We also do not quote from many of the studies on monuments because again, those are subjective and a lot of reading into those monuments take place. Archaeologists tend to think they can read long dead minds and know the motivation behind why something was carved or placed where it was found. They can’t and sometimes, those monuments, if portable enough, could have been moved several times, for different reasons, over the millennia.

To say that good archaeologists must quote from these works is unrealistic and limits the work of archaeologist. We could say that non-Christian archaeologists’ work should be ignored because it is bad archaeology. Their work doesn’t fit with the Bible. We do apply that rule to their conclusions, assumptions, speculations and so on but it does not apply to their work.

Why is this so? Because Christians are not part of every dig. Non-Christian archaeologists do uncover information that no believer has first-hand access to. They cannot get it till the excavation report or book is published. We encourage believers to read non-Christian archaeologists not for their deceived opinions and conclusions but for the information they cannot get anywhere else. To cast them off would be a disservice to believers.

Same with this bad archaeology mentality used by Matthews and his writing partner. They are closing off sources of information needed to learn about the past. Bad archaeologists do dig up information that is sometimes useful. Not everything they do is bad. Of course, not everything established archaeologists do is good. Their work is filled with their perspective and their unbelief.

#5. Many Bad Archaeologists make extensive use of ‘out-of-place artefacts’ or ‘archaeological erratics’. The purpose of drawing these artefacts to their readers’ attention is to cast doubt on the orthodox interpretations of the past that have been developed by archaeologists, usually by questioning what they wrongly perceive to be a linear view of cultural evolution or by trying to undermine conventional chronologies. Occasionally, they are used to cast doubt on models of human evolution (either to demonstrate the creationist claim that humans were created a little over six thousand years ago on the sixth day of Genesis or to demonstrate that humans have been around for billions of years or originally came from elsewhere). More frequently, they are used to cast doubt on the origins of technological civilisation and to show that phenomena such as electricity were known and exploited in the distant past. A few have used them as evidence for time travel or clairvoyance.

The bias of Matthews and his writing partner are exposed. They do not like anything Christian which tells you that their whole definition of bad archaeology is based on their personal bias and nothing objective or superior to them. Those writers are also of the mindset that ony an archaeologist can determine what took place in the past. They are mistaken as archaeology is far too limited for them to ascertain much about past activities.

Because they do not accept the discoveries does not mean they did not take place when they are dated. Their skepticism is not the deciding factor on what did or did not take place. While we will agree that the use of time travel and clairvoyance is wrong, neither are of God, we do not agree with their bias about bad archaeology. Non-believers and bad archaeologists will get some things correct.

Archaeology does not help the theory of evolution at all. Archaeology is a study of ancient societies and civilizations not a study of supposed life development. Archaeology has yet to prove evolution correct and in all cases has shown it to be wrong.

But bias plays a role in what information does or does not get out to the public. What we see in Matthews and his writing partner is the same attitude we see in Jim West, Eric Cline,Robert Cargill  and other biblical archaeologists. They think only they can determine what took place in the past and that the Bible can only be understood and expounded upon by scientific experts.  Those are very elitist attitudes and very wrong.

It tells us that they want to close the field of archaeology to only those who meet their demands and criteria, for the sole reason they do not want to be embarrassed. They know as well as we do that the majority of major archaeological discoveries have come from amateurs or non-archaeologists. Their jealousy plays a role in their division of the field.

Just think, if archaeological excavation was limited to professional archaeologists we would not have the Nag Hammadi library, the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Greek Computer and much more. Professional archaeologists do not always dig in the right places and there are far more sites waiting to be excavated than there are professional archaeologists.

You need to remember that dating is very subjective and fallible. The dating systems were created by sinful, fallible imperfect people. Do not expect perfection from imperfect people.

#6. Some Bad Archaeologists believe that there are missing elements of our shared history: achievements that have been overlooked or suppressed, links between times and places that have not hitherto been noticed, whole civilisations that are unknown to conventional history.

We know that the establishment has done just that. They did it with Woolley and they do it with anyone who disagrees with their accepted conclusions. This is a fact of life in the field of archaeology. Egyptologists do it to those who disagree with their theories about the Sphinx and the Pyramids. Now not all those people who disagree with the establishment is correct, but they need to be taken on a case by case basis and not lumped into one category based on secular human bias.

One of the most successful fringe writers of recent years, Graham Hancock is a leading light of a group of people who like to call themselves the ‘New Egyptologists’ to give a spurious sense of academic credibility. Others include his contemporary David Rohl, who has proposed a radical new chronology of Egyptian history to align it with the chronology of the Old Testament by reducing the dates of Egyptian kings. Hancock also tries to establish an alternative chronology, but it is one that pushes back some of Egypt’s most familiar monuments into a very distant past

We like Hancock because he does a lot of our legwork for us. His books are filled with information that is very useful in understanding the past and the Bible. We do not agree with his conclusions but that does not make him a bad archaeologist. It makes him misguided and wandering down the wrong path. It also shows us that evil will let people discover some truths while deceiving them to go into the wrong direction when talking about the past.

We do agree that the Egyptian chronology is off. By how much, we are not sure. The main source for the Egyptian chronology comes from a couple of sources. One source is Manetho. An Egyptian priest writing not from the beginning but somewhere in the middle or later stages of the Egyptian empire. We do not have one original or copy of his complete work. In fact, his work survives be mere quotes from other ancient authors. A couple of those authors also do not agree with each other on what Manetho said. This is not enough to build a whole history on but archaeologists and Egyptologists do it.

There are more details about this but again that would be a topic for another day.

While we like some of the information we can glean from the Bad Archaeology website, we do not like or agree with their elitist attitude. We also do not like their bias, their hatred for the truth and so on. People like this are not trying to get the truth exposed, they are trying to keep it under wraps. Their generic category hides so much information while letting false teaching get to the public. They are not doing anyone a great service.

We could say that they were doing a lot of self-serving work but we cannot read their minds. Their real reasons are their own. But one thing is for sure, they are not working with God to get the right information to the people. Believers need to work with the Spirit of Truth if they want the right information and to have the truth.

 

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A Rebuttal to

4 Reasons Archaeology Cannot Prove the Bible-

 

We have probably talked about this issue before as well. To narrow down the argument, and to provide a little understanding to the topic, Believers who write these type of articles are probably trying to temper the excitement of new and old believers and calm the zealots before they come to the conclusion that archaeology is a miracle cure for the problems of the Christian faith.
We would agree with that purpose if it were actually the case. Christianity is a belief whose main ingredient is faith, not evidence.We cannot lose sight of that fact. Without faith we cannot please God. Much of the Bible must be taken by faith for there will never be any physical evidence for its content. But that does not mean that we will not get physical evidence to shore up our faith.
Sometimes, though, we think that some believing scholars go a little overboard in their resisting the idea that archaeology can prove the bible true. This is the case with the article titled above. You can read it all at the following link:

#1. The goal of biblical archaeology is not to prove the Bible

That idea was once the goal of archaeology for some people. Not everyone but as time went on and more unbelievers took over the field, that goal was changed.

The danger of saying some archaeological discoveries prove the Bible is that the language is polarizing. Some discoveries seem to prove it; others seem to disprove it. Consequently, archaeologists fall into two camps: those desiring to prove the Bible and those desiring to disprove it.

It is good he used the word ‘seem’ because it takes a lot of research to make sure a discovery says what it says. Often, as in the case of the Noah’s ark expeditions and Minimalist conclusions, ideas and identifications are read into the discovery before any real research can properly identify the site and the discoveries.

Too often people jump the gun for whatever reason they may have and say something about the discovery before a clear identification can be made. For example, Noah’s ark. No one has a clue what gopher wood is. To say that an unidentified piece of wood is gopher wood is wrong and misleading because no one can be sure if the unidentified wood is gopher wood or not. It may be some other species of wood no one knew about.

It is impossible to disprove the Bible even if some unbelieving archaeologist claims he has made a discovery doing just that. Nelson Glueck said that no archaeological discovery has disproven the Bible before he died in the very early 70s. Since that time, we will add that no archaeological discovery has proven the Bible false. That is approx. another 50 years of archaeological work.

What tries to claim that the Bible is wrong are the conclusions, assumptions, leaps to conclusions, speculations and conjectures offered by any given archaeologist. We have seen a lot of that taking place over the years. See our example in our previous post about camels.

The main goal of archaeology of today may not be to prove the Bible true, but that does not mean that archaeology cannot prove the Bible true. It just has to stop following the secular world and start following God’s instructions. So that author is a little misleading with that point.

#2.The Bible presents an enormous historical and geographical portrait of the ancient world

The period of history reflected in Scripture is around 2,000 years, and includes locations spanning from the banks of the Euphrates in present-day Iraq to the Nile River delta in Egypt. Yet even though the world of the Bible is expansive, archaeology’s tools have become increasingly narrow.

Well he is wrong with that figure. The Bible covers around 6 to 10,000 years of history, not 2 thousand. He is also wrong with the geographical scope as well. Paul’s travels took him through Asia Minor and to Rome. Then he is wrong about archaeological tools. There are more tools available today for the archaeologist to use than there ever was when archaeology first began to be pursued. Even Kenyon and Wheeler invented one for excavation style. We disagree with the use of the Kenyon Wheeler invention but it is used extensively throughout archaeology.

Say archaeologists find something remarkable, like a series of proto-Hebrew inscriptions addressed to King David. This would not “prove the Bible is true.” It would simply prove that one aspect of Scripture seems to correspond to the extrabiblical witness about the existence of a ruler in Israel named David.

He does not have a good track record. He is wrong here as well. It does prove the Bible true in one aspect. It used the term King David in the right time period. We are ignoring his use of the term ‘proto-Hebrew’ because it is nonsensical and inaccurate. This example would show that the extra-biblical discovery agrees with the Bible. It also shows, like the Dan stele and others like it, that King David did exist. So the Bible is proven true about the existence of King David.

#3. Archaeology is unable to address the Bible’s theological claims

Biblical archaeology is capable of providing data that helps recreate the ancient Israelites’ world. But it is unable to address the Bible’s theological claims. For example, recent publications of cuneiform texts from “Judah town” in Babylon point toward the presence of a Judean community residing around Babylon during the sixth century B.C. This does seem to correspond to the witness prophetic books like Jeremiah and Ezekiel.

Yet these texts make no mention of why the people were in Babylon, or how their residence there ties to rampant idolatry and covenant disobedience, as the biblical writers depict. The documents corroborate the biblical narrative, but they do not speak to the theological realities of Israel’s exile.

He is going out on a limb here to make his title’s point true and accurate. It would be unrealistic to think or expect that the Babylonian records would mirror the biblical text. God’s reason for the Babylonian captivity may not have been revealed to the Babylonians. They may simply look at it as a conquest to have power and control over another people.

The fact that the Babylonians mention that they took Hebrews prisoner helps prove the biblical record true.That verification then lends its reputation to the credibility of the theological issues. If God was accurate in the captivity then he would be accurate in the theology as well. We do not look to secular works to judge God and his words.

#4.Archaeological discoveries can confirm but cannot prove the Bible

So how should we discuss biblical archaeological discoveries? They can confirm and support the Bible’s historical portrait, but they cannot inductively “prove” the Bible’s truthfulness.

That author does not seem to understand the definition of the word confirm’. If you confirm something, you have proven it true.

to establish the truth, accuracy, validity, or genuineness of; corroborate; verify

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/confirm

So if archaeology is confirming any biblical event, then it is proving the Bible true.

Even though archaeology does do what that author says it cannot do, we still cannot blindly accept everything coming out of the world of archaeology. As in the many cases of searching for Noah’s ark, even supposed believers make claims they cannot show as accurate or true. We still have to be discerning as archaeology is a very vulnerable discipline and easy to manipulate. The opinions and conclusions given by archaeologist are almost always subjective.

This is why we tell people to not follow the rules of secular science, even when doing archaeology. it is secular science that is deceived and blind, not the Bible or God’s instructions.

 

What Is Biblical Archaeology

We have talked about archaeology and biblical archaeology over the years. But as we think about our posts it is possible that we never defined what the term meant. Of course, we are not going to go back over 7 years worth of posts to find out if we did or not. We will just do it again here so that you do not have to do any searching for the definition.

There are several different views about the definition of biblical archaeology and we will put a few up on the board here to get the discussion going. We will make coments on different points these definitions make.

#1. Biblical archaeology is a branch of archaeology dealing with the archaeology of Biblical lands that informs our understanding of the Bible and/or the historicity of Biblical events. https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/glossary/

This is a very straightforward and simple explanation of the term. We like this because it does not put any unrealistic restrictions on the field and does not limit the dates of the Bible to any limited era. Biblical archaeology can address creation if it so chooses.

#2. Biblical archaeology encompasses archaeological investigations of cultures and peoples described in Jewish and Christian religious texts (including the Old Testament, Apocrypha, and New Testaments) from roughly 3200 BC to the first century AD. It combines archaeological investigations with textual analysis to aid in understanding everyday life and events from the time. A famous example of historical analysis combining biblical texts with archaeology is the inclusion of domestic camels in the biblical depictions of Abraham. Discrepancies between the date when camels first appear at archaeological sites and the supposed dates of Abraham’s life have led to debates about when the stories were first recorded and the degree of later editing that may have occurred since they were originally composed, either in written or oral form. https://www.chegg.com/homework-help/definitions/biblical-archaeology-51

This definition starts off well but the first sentence then ruins everyting by placing a limitation on the era. 3200 BC to 100 AD leaves out some vital information like the flood, the preflood civilization and so on. The second sentence is okay as that is part of doing biblical archaeology but how those aspects are handled is another story.

We will use their example to show how improper their use of those aspects are. According to that example, the mainstream archaeologist or like-minded historian etc., will say that the Bible is wrong because the domesticated camel only appears in the archaeological record long after the life of Abraham. But there is a problem with that conclusion. Those researchers who agree and adopt that conclusion forget many details from other disciplines.

One discipline, fossilization, tells us that it is rare for life forms to become fossilized. This would be one explanation for why there is a supposed discrepancy. Another discpline, related biological studies, tells us that bones and soft tissues do not last forever. They disappear over time. It is quite possible that the camels used in Abraham’s time did not survive the ravages of time.

Another discipine, zoology, tells us that wild animals get hungry and that they love to chew on bones. Have you ever seen a hungry dog chew on a bone? There is nothing left of the bone. A fourth discipline, business, tells us that every product for sale or used does not originated in every country. Some items are imported, marketed and the market has to have a beginning. It is highly possible that Abraham brought the camels with him from Mesopotamia and influenced other livestock business people to think about using camels. Or he made his fortune selling and trading camels.

We could go on and on with the disciplines to demonstrate that there is no real discrepancy. But we will limit ourselves to one more. Archaeology is a limited field and it is not a given that the archaeologist has uncovered the very first use of domesticated camels. In other words, the archaeological record is not chronological and does not uncover the real order of things. Plus, dating is left up to the archaeologist looking at evidence surrounding the discovery. Unfortunately for the archaeologist, that evidence may not have been placed at the site at the same time as the camel bones.

So to say that the archaeological record is more correct than the Bible, is wrong. The archaeologist does not uncover any written explanations for the remains they discover. That is an important factor when looking at their conclusions. The archaeologist cannot claim there has been editing done by biblical writers simply because they are not drawing that conclusions based on irrefutable fact. The archaeological record is not infallible and cannot guarantee when camels were actually domesticated in biblical lands.

#3. Biblical archaeology, “is a branch of biblical studies, an interdisciplinary pursuit that seeks to utilize the pertinent results of archaeological research to elucidate the historical and cultural setting of the Bible” (W.G. Dever “Biblical Archaeology”, in the Oxford Encyclopedia of Archaeology in the Ancient Near East, vol 1, p. 318). Biblical archaeology must carry out scientific archaeology according to international standards of best practice, but its research questions will be derived from the study of the biblical text. At the same time, professional scholarship and a nuanced academic approach to the biblical text must inform biblical archaeological research. http://www.ngsba.org/en/about/what-is-biblical-archaeology

A lot has transpired at the Nelson Glueck School of Biblical Archaeology since Dr. Glueck died. So do not take the present attitude of the school as a reflection on Dr. Glueck and his thinking. After all, he was the one who said that there has been no archaeological discovery that disproved the Bible. Since his death, there still has been no archaeological discovery that has disproven the Bible. You can see from our analysis of one example above to see the reason why that is so.

Dr. Dever makes the definition there, but over the decades, Dr. Dever has changed his mind and wants to change the title of Biblical Archaeology to something like Palestine Archaeology. He wants to ‘open’ up the discipline to broaden it to cover more information. You do not need to change the name to accomplish that objective.

What bothers us in that definition are the following words:

Biblical archaeology must carry out scientific archaeology according to international standards of best practice, but its research questions will be derived from the study of the biblical text

We disagree. Biblical archaeology and any field of research, business, enterprise and so on, must follow God’s rules. Scientific rules are not written by true believing Christians and does not seek answers or the truth.While there are certain rules and regulations that should be followed to make any research or investigation credible and get all the information possible, the believer must follow God’s rules and instructions over that of science.

We do not read into any discovery nor make very bad theories. We follow the Holy Spirit to the truth, accept and announce the truth. Science is not the authority any believer is to follow.

We encourage you to read the rest of the information found at the reference for #3. It is all interesting. One note, though, we should address one item

often called “processual” archaeology)

This is a very polite way to say the term Minimalist. You may be more familiar with this term than the one quoted above. Minimalists do not believe or accept most of the OT. Partially because they subscribe to the thinking attached to the example we disagree with. They go with the archaeological record instead of following the Holy Spirit to the truth. They think that the archaeological record states emphatically real history in its right chronological order.

That is why so many of them will say that the OT has been edited. Basically, they are applying  the unbelieving archaeological double standard. They will not change their mind until they see a discovery predating the camel bones to Abraham’s time. Of course, they may not accept that discovery, which I. Finkelstein has shown on many occasions concerning King David and 10 century BC discoveries.

Having an archaeological discovery prove the Bible true and accurate is no guarantee that it will be accepted. This is why we do not care if Noah’s Ark is discovered. It is also why we do not go searching or support searches for the ark. We do not need it and it is highy unlikely it will be accepted even if the ark is uncovered. The ark’ discovery may change a few minds but only a minority of them.

Biblical Archaeology may have many definitions but one thing that is constant is that it is like the rest of archaeology. it is very easily manipulated and falls under the old saying- history is in the eyes of the historian. Most archaeologists do not paint an accurate or correct picture of the past.They paint it to be what they want it to be and join with each other to sustain certain theories and conclusions.

If you want the truth, you will find that the past is not much different from the present.

 

James McGrath & Inerrancy

James McGrath is another professor we have talked with through his website over the years, until we were banned. We do not see eye to eye on many things, including inerrancy. We are using his meme article as it is short and says the points we like to address. Unfortunately, we cannot copy memes, but will do our best to manually quote them

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/religionprof/2018/06/inerrancy-redux.html

But first a look at his opening statements.

#1. As I emphasized in recent posts, the reason that I abandoned biblical inerrantism is that it is not merely unbiblical, but anti-biblical

What authority makes this claim? if you follow the link in the quoted words, you have to go to his article to do that, you will see that his conclusion is not based on any religious authority, it is not based on God’s words, but merely of his misunderstanding of the bible and the way it was written. His reason is as follows:

The contradictions, discrepancies, and difficulties are there within the Bible, because human beings have put these texts with their differences into the collection we call the Bible.

He cannot prove those claims and most contradictions are not contradictions. The same goes for discrepancies. Rational and logical research has borne that out.

#2. It silences all but at most one of the diverse voices within the Bible, and denies or explains away rather than accepts the evidence that the Bible itself provides for its own human fallibility

Actually, it silences false teachers, false prophets and those who reject the truth.  There is no evidence showing any hint of human fallibility. These are mere accusations to allow someone to pursue and believe their own personal subjective ideas about Christ, God and Christianity. By removing the label of inerrancy, people get to import their personal preferences into the faith and the Bible.

#3. Bible inerrancy has no real impact on making the Bible clearer or making those who read it correct, but rather the only effect of Biblical inerrancy is to make its adherents more dogmatic

Dr. McGrath is in error here as we see that his argument is not really against inerrancy but the truth. He does not like what the Bible says so he needs a way to change it. Instead of providing real evidence, from alternative divinely inspired material, he goes after the softer and easier target. Inerrancy does make the Bible clearer for we see that God created as he said he did and we learn in Genesis 2 that God provides different details about his creative act. If the Bible was not inerrant, then any opinion, theory and conjecture would be clouding the issue.

Confusion is not of God but that is what Dr. McGrath is promoting with these words and his stance on biblical inerrancy. He takes away the answers God gives us and opens the questions up to a multitude of ideas that would overwhelm anyone who didn’t know any better.

#3. Inerrancy is about the desire to have one’s own views regarded as inerrant

There is more to that quote but this is the main point. It is a wild accusation because Dr. McGrath cannot verify this and he cannot state that those people he claims to be presenting their own views are actually presenting their own views over the truth. The above statement also flies in the face of Jesus’ words– ye shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.

Inerrancy helps us see the truth and know it. Any other status for the Bible does not do that. Those alternatives merely hide the truth from its readers.

and the failure to humbly recognize one’s own human proneness to err… shows that this doctrine is not merely wrong but a direct frontal assault about the Bible’s teaching about God…

What makes that quoted statement wrong is the fact that Dr. McGrath thinks that anyone who disagrees with him is wrong. Changing to the truth actually does show that people recognize humbly that they made an err and now change to what God is saying in the biblical text. Inerrancy helps correct those erroneous views. His words also show that he and others like him are the ones doing the frontal assault on biblical teaching about God. They are changing the Bible and who God is, not those who declare it inerrant.

We are not going to quote more from that article because the issue of inerrancy has ramifications that Dr. McGrath does not like to think about. if the Bible is not inerrant and filled with human thinking, then we have no assurances of salvation or eternity. It is impossible for anti-inerrantists to pinpoint exactly which scripture passage is inerrant and of God and which one is from a human point of view.

Under their thinking, we cannot know God or Jesus and we can never find the truth even though Jesus said we could. In that article, that we quoted from, there were many links to other articles. We took the time to read through some of them and what we found was that Dr. McGrath and others he quotes, do not use one biblical argument to support their view.

It is all their personal opinion and the faulty use of passages that bring them to their conclusions. It is not God leading them to the truth because Dr.McGrath and others like him have never found any alternative divinely inspired scriptures to replace the passages they claim are in error and of human origin. We have made that point before but it is an important point.

Without those verified alternatives, and by verified we mean approved of by the ancient church, written by apostles, etc., they have no foundation for their arguments. Those alternatives have to meet the ancient criteria and not modern ones.

If their arguments are correct, then we must ask, where are the replacement scriptures to guide the church and believers today? Who gets to decide which  scriptures are out and which new ones are in? Obviously, we cannot appeal to the apostles because they have been gone for some time now. We should note that when the apostles caste lots for replacement disciples, they did not impose their personal views or preferences at all. They left the selection up to God. We do not know of one Bible scholar willing to do that today.

The argument against anti-inerrantists is not long. We just point to the passage that says God is not the author of confusion. Anti-inerrantists introduce confusion not bring the truth to light. Who are the anti-inerrantists that they think they know better about the Bible than God does? They do not have any smoking guns, they do not have any historical verification for their words and they do not have textual confirmation for their claims. If you get a chance to compare the ancient manuscripts, you will see that they all basically say the same thing.

Dr. Bart Ehrman and others may claim that there are over 400,000 errors found in the NT alone. According to Dr. Daniel Wallace that is more than the number of words in the NT .Also, according to Dr. Wallace over 99% of those errors do not change a doctrine, an instruction, a command and so on. In other words, anti-inerrantists have nothing to stand on except the fact that they cannot humbly accept God’s word and feel the need to change it according to their personal preferences.

The Bible is inerrant and that should scare a lot of people.

 

Robert Cargill & The Bible

Before we get started we need to say two things. First, Dr. Cargill was appointed Editor of Biblical Archaeology Review, one of our favorite archaeological magazines. There are so few of these so it is not hard to get to the favored list. The magazine was founded by Hershel Shanks. We do not agree with Dr. Cargill on many things both archaeologically and biblically but we are sure he deserves the appointment.

Second, he is free to disagree with the Iowa law that he writes about

An Explanation of Why I Oppose the Proposed Iowa “Bible Literacy” Bill

We are not sure if we even agree with it. All we know about it is what we read in his post.But what we are writing about are certain points he makes in his opposition. Dr. Cargill is an atheist who thinks he can teach the Bible. We have spoken to him on that point before and we disagree on that issue. Why atheists cannot teach the Bible is very simple. Jesus said the unbelieving world cannot receive the Spirit of Truth and we are to follow the Spirit of Truth to the truth. We are not to use interpretation to get to God’s word.

We will address just important points as his post is very long

#1. Were option 2 to be chosen, it would cease to be a “Bible” literacy course, and would become a “New Testament” literacy course, as the New Testament comprises only 30% of the Christian Bible. That is to say, the Hebrew Bible is the complete Bible for Jews, and the Old and New Testaments comprise the Bible for Christians. However, a “New Testament only” course is NO ONE’S BIBLE. No Christian denomination views the New Testament alone as its Bible. Marcion of Sinope attempted this very thing in the second century CE, and he, his Bible (with no Old Testament), and his entire movement were branded heretics and excommunicated!

Basically, he is right here. You can’t have the NT without the OT, it just won’t work. Marcion was declared a heretic and rebuted successfully.

#2. However, we don’t speak King James English anymore. So, this bill proposes that Iowa public high school teachers teach the Bible (which was originally written in Biblical Hebrew, Biblical Aramaic, and Hellenistic Greek) in English translation.

So students can’t learn? How are they going to understand Shakespeare if they do not know old English? Studying the KJV would help students in their other studies and broaden their minds. It is odd for a teacher to hinder learning.  But what we find interesting is that both Hebrew and Aramaic get the label Biblical, even though Aramaic was spoken by more than just Hebrews and Christians, and Greek gets the label Hellenistic. Doesn’t being included in the Bible make Hellenistic Greek, biblical Greek

These are minor points, of course, but they stick out.

#3. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS TRANSLATION WITHOUT INTERPRETATION!”

We left his emphasis in but he is wrong. Yes, it may be the ‘fundamental rule in translation’ but it is not God’s rule and it is a rule which leads people away from the truth. There is such a thing as translation without interpretation. It is called going for the truth. The truth can be found no matter what language is used.

This is true for any language, and it is not limited to religion. It is simply not possible to translate without interpreting. It is certainly not possible to translate religious scriptures without making theological value judgments while making said translation.

Again he is wrong. A person dedicated to finding the truth can easily translate without interpretation. But you see why we disagree with Dr. Cargill when he says atheists can teach the Bible. They can’t because their eyes are deceived, their minds misled, and they do not follow God’s rules. This fundamental law is aiding and abetting those who do not want to hear the truth.

#4. Understanding the holy scripture of any religion requires extensive training, preferably in the original languages in which the religious texts were produced.

Not neccessarily. A believer can understand the Bible quite easily, if they are hearing Christ’s voice. They do not need years of formal training, they just need to learn how to distinguish the voice of the Spirit of Truth from all other voices. Then they must be willing to follow that voice, ignoring the rest. We do not need the original languages to understand the Bible. Not only is that impossible for the majority of the world to do that, it also makes God an elitist god who favors only a few.

It is an unrealistic view held by Dr. Cargill, one that makes us think that he wants the Bible restricted to bible scholars only. We know off other scholars who want control over the content of the Bible so in reality, it is their words, not God’s, that gets to the people.That is not the intent of the Bible or God. The Bible is written so those lacking education can still understand the key doctrines, instructions, and commands. You do not need years of training to understand, ‘In the beginning God…’ and many other passages of scriptures.

#5. When I teach the Bible at the University of Iowa, I give my students the English translation, and then show them the Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek that underlies the text. They don’t need to know Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, I just want to show them that these verses come from a context–a context that is not in America, and not in Europe, but a context that is in the Middle East about 2000-3000 years ago

We do agree that the Bible was written in different areas throughout the old world (It wasn’t called the Middle East back then) but the context is not from a human culture. We also agree that the culture used was not American or European. Since the Bible was written by God, the culture used was God’s kingdom. There is no earthly cultural influence involved. Of course, not every civilization in the old world actually had the same culture. So Dr. Cargill has to tell us which culture was actually used if he thinks a human one influenced biblical writing.

We do not know exactly where each book of the Bible was written. Daniel was in Babylon, Esther was in Persia, Revelation in Patmos and we do not know where Peter wrote his epistles. So to say that any particular earthly culture had a hand in writing the Bible is a little ridiculous. Then not every ancient civilization practiced patriarchy.  From what we know of the Minoans, women enjoyed unlimited equality and freedom.

#6. For instance, Iowa high school teachers could show their students where slavery in America came from. When we established the United States, slavery was legal. Interestingly, the Bible supported, defended, and positively influenced the ownership of slaves in the United States

This is an issue that cannot be fully addressed here. Then others have debunked this notion far better than we can. But we can say that Dr. Cargill is wrong here. The Bible does not condone slavery and we are willing to say that many people take the American definition of slavery and apply it to the Bible.  They do not understand how God used the term and misapply the Bible to fill their sinful desires.

If you look at those verses Dr. Cargill quotes and compare those instructions to American slave owners, you will see that very few slave owners actually followed the Bible in their treatment of slaves. Since Dr. Cargill does not have the Spirit of Truth guiding him, it is fair to say that he misrepresents what the Bible says about slavery.

#7. An Iowa public high school teacher could then turn to the role of women. The issue of equal pay for equal work for men and women is hotly debated today, but before that it was women’s suffrage–a woman’s right to vote–that dominated the national debate. When this country was established, women did not have the right to vote. But why was that the case? Why weren’t women afforded equality with men?Once again, the Bible is an excellent place to turn to see why women always took a back seat to men.

Dr. Cargill again demonstrates his lack of understanding the Bible. He goes to verses that do not even address the questions he initially raised. The Bible does not teach that women cannot vote nor get equal pay for equal work. Instead, he goes to specific instructions that do not place women beneath men in any way shape or form.

Because a woman is unpure longer for a female child is not evidence that women are unequal to men. It does show that Dr.Cargill does not do his research on the issue. Since God knows medicine and medical issues better than humans do, he has his reasons why this is to take place but it wasn’t to place women as inferior or unequal to men. That idea is read into the passages of scripture Dr. Cargill uses. There is no mention by God that this makes women inferior or unequal to men.

Then to use the difference in shekels for the value of a man and a woman is equally ridiculous and shows why interpretation cannot be used when handling scripture. Everyone knows, and women do not like to admit it, that women are the weaker sex. They have different health issues, they are not as strong as a man, they do not normally do the same work of a man. It stands to reason that there would be some disparity in the price of shekels.

Making those values an equality or inferiority issue is interpretation gone wrong. But Dr. Cargill does not stop there and uses a common verse we all know to make his point that the Bible brings inequality to the world.

But it is not just in the Old Testament that the value of women is less than that of men. The New Testament preserves the subjugation of women in its literature. For instance, 1 Corinthians 11:3 says the following:

1 Cor. 11:3–But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and THE HUSBAND IS THE HEAD OF HIS WIFE, and God is the head of Christ.

Dr.Cargill does not understand that someone has to be the leader and the head. God has made his choice and he disagrees with God. That puts Dr. Cargill on the losing side and exposes his lack of biblical knowledge, even after his years of formal training. The NT does not preserve subjugation of women, it is preserving God’s order of things. There has to be an order and since man was not made for the women but women for the man it stands to reason that women are not to be leading men.

#8. We the high school students have a discussion about whether it is ok for women to have authority over men, either as Governor of Iowa, Mayor of an Iowa city, CEO of an Iowa corporation, or the Speaker of the Iowa General Assembly. And imagine the awkwardness when all of the wonderful women teaching in our Iowa public high schools read 1 Tim. 2:12: “I permit no woman to teach.”

Dr. Cargill does what most atheists and unbelievers do, they shorten or change a verse to make their point. The verse does not say that women cannot teach but leave it to atheists to distort the issue. The verse actually reads

12 But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. (NASB)

Women can teach as long as they do not teach men or have authority over them. Then God gives his reasons why this is so:

13 For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. 14 And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. (NASB)

Dr. Cargill conveniently leaves that reason out of his point.

#9. here are other bits of literature that we can read from the Bible that pertain to issues in the United States. For instance, Iowa high school teachers can show their students the proper way to commit genocide, as strictly prescribed by God himself in 1 Sam. 15:2-3:

Again, Dr. Cargill distorts and misrepresents what God said in that passage of scripture. Divine judgment is not the same as genocide. The former is for sins committed and left unrepented. The latter is done out of hatred for a variety of reasons and none of those reasons seek to punish unrepentant sin.

This text is often overlooked as an “American value”, because like slavery, it is a period in our nation’s history that we’d like to forget. But in the Midwest, and to our Native-American brothers and sisters, the biblical verses depicting God instructing his faithful exactly how to obliterate those peoples who fight against them and do not worship as they do as they attempt to conquer and settle the new land they believe to be given to them by God is as relevant today as it was two centuries ago.

Dr. Cargill continues to distort the biblilcal passage. The Bible may be used to justify a person’s sinful actions but the Bible does not tell people to commit sin. It does not give permission for people to commit sin. There was NO biblical command given by God to commit genocide against the American Indian. It was hatred, lust, greed and other deadly sins that motiviated that action.

Blaming the Bible for the decisions of sinful man is wrong. This is why you need the Spirit of Truth to guide you. Teaching others means you need to have the truth not interpretation. Interpretation is subjective and influenced by a multitude of mitigating factors. The truth exposes sin and faulty application of the Bible. There is a reason why God put a warning in James 3 for teachers. They need to consider that warning prior to committing themselves to being teachers. Dr. Cargill does not do that.

#10. Let me put it another way: BY SIMPLY READING BIBLE VERSES IN A PUBLIC HIGH SCHOOL CLASSROOM AS PART OF A “BIBLE LITERACY” COURSE, TEACHERS ARE ENGAGING IN THEOLOGY! This is because the verses they choose to read in class are chosen in an effort to paint the Bible in a particular light.

Here is his point. Because the law does not do what he wants, Dr Cargill opposes it. You cannot make laws to please everyone, someone is going to oppose every law made. This is a well-known attitude of Dr. Cargill as he is on the front lines to force academic freedom on Christian academic institutions. Dr. Cargill does not believe God nor the Bible so he becomes an unwitting tool of evil to help destroy the Church and God’s creation. He does this by distorting the Bible, teaching it erroneously and trying to stamp out the truth from being heard.

This is why atheists cannot teach the Bible regardless of how much training they have and how many ancient languages they learn. They cannot represent the Bible correctly and are supported by evil who deceives them, blinds them to the truth and uses their emotions etc., to get them to a faulty conclusion. Christians need to do their children a favor and prepare them first before they go off to study at secular and some Christian academic institutions.

Walking not in the counsel of the ungodly applies to non-Chrisian professors as well.

 

Rachel Held Evans & Patriarchy

Over the years we have analyzed many of Ms. Evans’ posts. Jim West likes to bash her because she only has a journalism degree and not a theological one. We analyze her words simply because she is wrong. While one does not need theological degrees to understand the Bible, they should be following the Holy Spirit to the truth. But most of the time, they ignore that instruction and use their own understanding, their own preferences, their own desires when attacking Biblical teaching.

This is the case with Ms. Evans. For some reason her year’s experiment in being a biblical woman has led her to believe that she can pontificate on any topic concerning the church. That is the understanding we get when we read her words on patriarchy. Those words are actually addressing John Piper’s but we are merely looking at her response not his interview. You can read his interview at the following link:

https://www.desiringgod.org/interviews/sex-abuse-allegations-and-the-egalitarian-myth

We have our own issues with some of Mr.Piper’s words but those will have to come at another time.

Her words in full at the next link:

https://rachelheldevans.com/blog/me-too-john-piper

#1. In this interview, Piper’s response to the sexual harassment and abuse highlighted by the #MeToo movement is to call for a return to patriarchy, wherein men rule over and “protect” women who in turn “submit” to men. This is a dangerously misguided response for a few reasons.

So we see that Ms. Evan’s has her hackles raised because she does not like to be considered one of those women who needs protection by a man. She should be careful as if we appeal to Jesus, we would note that he did not alter patriarchy. Plus, while on the cross, he committed his mother to the care of one of his disciples. So what is really dangerous is this attack on patriarchy itself by Ms. Evans.

It is often misunderstood by both men and women and it is the result of this misunderstanding that causes many women like Ms. Evans to over-react.

#2.The #MeToo movement does not reflect some sudden increase in the abuse of women; rather, it reflects a growing awareness of those abuses, and a mounting, collective fervor to confront them. It’s a movement led by and for women, women who aren’t asking for some sort of paternalistic “protection” because they are fragile females, but rather to be treated with the dignity and respect they deserve simply because they are human being

What we are going to address here is the topic of abuse of women. We have spoken much on this issue recently and probably have made the same point but the issue is not really about patriarchy. It is about sin. Patriarchy is merely the fall guy. Men sin so the system must be broken and needs to be changed. If we want to be blunt and bold, we would say ‘women think they can do a better job than men.’

In those words, the message given by Ms. Evans is that men need to treat women with dignity simply because they are women. Men do need to  treat women in a biblical way, that goes without saying but women also need to be dignified if they want to receive dignity. Christianity is not a one-way street. Women have to be biblical, this includes being submissive, if they want their men to be biblical. The sad news is, it is not always going to happen and women and men get abused.

Women should not hold their men to unrealistic expectations. Especially if the woman does not want to meet the teachings of Proverbs 31. The call for both men and women to be biblical and spiritual starts BEFORE they are married. This is a fact that is often overlooked by both genders. Living a holy life begins at an early age. Women need to be submissive to God’s teaching before they can become submissive to their husbands.

#3. That’s because contrary to Piper’s argument, patriarchy isn’t about protecting women; it’s about protecting men. It’s about preserving male rule over the home, church, and society, often at the expense of women.

When people like Ms. Evans start to attack God and biblical instruction, they tend to make a lot of wild excuses and claims. This is one example of those. Patriarchy is not about protecting men’s leadership roles. They are god-given and it is women who are trying to usurp authority from the man and take over those institutions. Patriarchy is about protecting women in one sense and it is about protecting them from sinning.

Another on e of its duties, as seen in 1 Cor. 7, is to make sure the woman is marrying the right man. Submitting to patriarchy can save a woman from her own misguided thinking and from abuse. Why women are upset about this extra layer of protection is a little mystifying. Given that women complain about how much men lie to them. God’s love for women established patriarchy to help protect women from those men and women who ignore biblical teaching. He didn’t do it to insult them or make them second class citizens.

Having the right perspective on God’s actions is helpful here. Patriarchy was never a license to men to do as they please to women. Women seem to forget that God placed instructions for the men in the Bible as well. He did not target women only.

#4. Ironically, in Genesis, the woman is literally the “strong protector” of the man!

There is always a problem when those who attack the Bible start turning their attention to the meaning of biblical words. They are not using the Spirit of Truth to get to the truth. Instead, they are using their own desires to guide them, plus they get a little help from the influence of evil. Not only do they find like-minded scholars to support their acceptance of certain definitions, they ignore context.

The context of the passage does not indicate that God made the woman to be man’s protector. These people also ignore other passages of scripture, like Paul’s, which state that women were made for the man and not man for the woman. They also ignore the passage that states that women are the weaker gender which shoots down the above revision of the definition of the word ezer.Then they ignore credible tradition and practice in order to get people to change their views on women’s roles.

The first word in the phrase, עזר (ezer, Strong’s #5828), is simple and means “helper.” The second word, כנגדו (kenegedo) is a little more complex. The base word is the word נגד (neged, Strong’s #5048), which will be discussed shortly, with the prefix כ (k) meaning “like,” and the suffix ו (o) meaning “of him” of “his.” {http://www.ancient-hebrew.org/articles_helpmeet.html}

Which definition is right? From our brief use of scripture the facts point to the definition directly above. To use one of the favorite examples of the advocates for women as preachers, we point to Deborah. When the word of the Lord came to her about overthrowing the Israelite overlords God told her to get a man to do it. He di d not tell her to get a woman to lead the army of Israel. Then when the man would only go if Deborah came with him, it was at that reluctance that a woman was given the victory. The woman was not being a strong protector of the man.

#5. What makes the household codes of the New Testament different is not that they reinforce the patriarchal ordering of a household, but that they point to the humility of Jesus as the model for every relationship, inviting the first Christians

We appealed to Jesus first and now we get to rebut her appeal. Unfortunately for her, Jesus did not overthrow patriarchy, who is to lead the temple or the family. Nor did he change who is to lead civilization. Ms.  Evans ignores the scripture we alluded to earlier and goes on to quote Paul not Jesus when it comes to patriarchy and its legitimacy. Her appeal to Jesus fails because she does not show that Jesus altered patriarchy in any way, shape or form. her quote:

a strange mix of Jews and gentiles, masters and slaves, husbands and wives and widows and orphans—to look beyond cultural status to a better Kingdom in which “there is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28)

It is another favored verse used by those who hate patriarchy and who want to see women as ministers in the church. Their use of the passage is erroneous, misguided and very dangerous. This bad use of that passage helps destroy the church not protect it from evil. There is nothing in Paul’s words in that passage that over-rule God’s patriarchal design for the home or the church. There is nothing in that passage that says God’s rules for the family and the church do  not apply anymore. They do not even address the issue of patriarchy and leadership.

We see that Ms. Evans and people like her like to cherry pick passages and use the ones they think fit their agenda. But Jesus said Satan cannot overthrow Satan. so how can Ms. Evans think that Paul can overthrow Paul? What Ms. Evans also does not understand is that the situation described by Paul existed even when God gave his instructions on who is to lead the family and the church.

The other error in those quoted words is Ms. Evans states that we are to look beyond cultural status when addressing the biblical instruction.  Yet she is appealing to the exact same culture to make her point. She cannot have it both ways. Since the Bible was written in God’s culture, secular human culture does not apply and does not shed light on biblical instructions.

#6.In conclusion—

Banning women from the pulpit and silencing their voices in the church doesn’t protect women; it harms them.

Instructing women to submit to their husbands by “enduring abuse” doesn’t protect women; it harms them.

Handling abuse and assault allegations “in house” by reporting them to the male elders of a church instead of to the police doesn’t protect women; it harms them.

Misusing Scripture to reinforce gender stereotypes based more on white, American, post-World War II cultural ideals than biblical truth doesn’t protect women; it harms them.

Calling for a return to patriarchy doesn’t protect women; it harms them.

Letting women disobey God and sin is far more harmful to women than any of those charges bring. The church and its elders must follow God first, not Ms. Evans. But notice, she puts being banned from the pulpit first giving it more importance than the issue of abuse. At least we could make that point if we wanted to.

The people misusing scripture is actually her and people like her. They are using it to get their own personal desires into the church and remove God’s instruction. That is more harmful to both men and women, not to mention children.

#7. Patriarchy is not counter-cultural. It has for centuries been the norm. What’s truly counter-cultural is imitating Jesus, who, “being in very nature God,” surrendered his power and privilege to become a human—one birthed, nursed, protected, befriended, and BELIEVED by women.

When did being counter-cultural become criteria for being biblical? Does not MS. Evans understand that most cultures use the biblical model when they use patriarchy? Does she not know God’s influence on culture came first then evil started to lead it away from the truth? Just because secular cultures practice patriarchy does not mean that patriarchy is sin and wrong. It means that it has been co-opted by unbelievers, under the influence of evil, and distorted to make the system look bad.

How can she realize this? She does not listen to God and is under evil’s influence. Patriarchy is not the problem, it is God ordained. The problem comes in when men and women love darkness rather than light. They sin, which corrupts patriarchy. Just like the sin corrupted this world, patriarchy is not immune to its effects. When you attack patriarchy you are attacking God’s order of things and God himself.

 

 

Benjamin Corey & Women Preachers

To continue to  address the writings of those who claim to be Bible scholars etc., we turn to the following website

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/formerlyfundie/10-reasons-christians-affirm-women-pastors-preachers/

and the title of the article is

10 Reasons Christians Should Affirm Women as Pastors & Preachers

This topic has been discussed when we were in undergraduate school. We remember participating in such discussions though our arguments were not as good then as they may be now. But it isn’t a new discussion. Most likely it started after the original last disciples died out and when people thought it was safe to question biblical writers like Paul.

We doubt it will ever go away. Mr. Corey starts off with the following words

I’ve heard a lot of arguments as to why women are prohibited from teaching and preaching.

Just kidding.

There aren’t a lot of arguments– there’s just a lot of people quoting a couple of passages from Paul’s epistles in a way they believe “proves” that ministry positions which involve leading men, or teaching or preaching to men, is a boys-only job.

If you are going to have a credible discussion and want to be taken seriously n these issues. It is best that you do not insult the other side of the debate. Saying that the side you opposed doesn’t have serious arguments only shows that you do not consider them arguments. It makes you look foolish as well. Especially when you demand that others take you seriously and do not insult you.

Anyways, it doesn’t get better. Here are his points addressed in the order he gives them:

#10. The testimony of Scripture bears witness to female leadership in both the Old Testament and the early Church

Uhm there was one female leader attested to in the OT and that was Deborah. But as we pointed out she did not lead the temple or sought to be included as a priest. We also know that Anna served in the temple but she was not a priest and she never tried to become one or encouraged other women to be one. Anna was not formerly of the NT church as Jesus was just born when she was old.

Then when we encounter women in the NT church there is not one passage of scripture that describes them as disobeying Paul’s instructions. Sure one was called an apostle but being an apostle does not mean that one breaks God’s rules and occupies leadership roles he has banned them from holding. An apostle obeys both Jesus and God.

It is more likely that the women attested to stuck to their roles in the church and taught women, nurtured new believing women, and so on. There is no indication that they violated scripture and taught men. In the case of Apollos we are not sure what role Priscilla played in his teaching. We have little information on these women and it is not right to read anything into their situations.

What we do know is that Paul laid out certain instructions from God so all could read what God wanted for his church.

#9. Jesus trained female disciples– and they were the most loyal ones

There is no evidence of that latter part. We know that women were part of the group surrounding Jesus and his disciples but the only time the word disciples was used (and you can correct us if we are wrong here) in the gospels referred to the original 12 men. Mr. Corey goes a little astray here as he mentiones that the women were at the crucifixion and the men were not. He ignores the fact that John was there as Jesus gave his mother over to John to care for.

Making distorted points does not help anyone’s arguments. Then just because the men were not mentioned does not mean they were not there.

#8. God chose two women to become the first evangelists who proclaimed the Gospel– and they proclaimed it to men.

Uhm…no. Proof please. That is one of the bad things that comes when discussing this or any topic with people who do not follow scripture. They do not provide specific examples to support their point. When did Jesus appoint these women? What are the chapters and verses? We know Jesus told Mary M to tell his disciples that he had risen BUT she was not made an evangelist, she was given instructions to let his disciples know what had happened. They were already followers of Jesus so she was not evangelizing anyone. Mt. 28 does not provide any appointment either.

#7. Paul was not writing a manifesto to every church in every time, but wrote to specific churches facing specific issues that are not completely known to us

This is the most common point made by those who want to see women elevated to th eposition of pastor. it is wrong and misguided but they all make it. One, there is no proof that Paul’s instructions was for the 1st century only. Two, if it were, then where are the divinely inspired words of God to direct the modern church? or the medieval church? or the church during the Dark Ages?

This argument cannot be substantiated and is absurd. There is no instruction from Jesus or any of the disciples limiting the words of any biblical writer to the first century or prior to that time. people who use this argument can also say that John 3:16 does not apply to today but they won’t because they benefit from that verse. Mr. Corey’s words of explanation fall short as well

Since we are not the people Paul was writing to, and our church context is not the same as theirs, it would be dangerous at best to approach his letters as being blanket prescriptions for all times and circumstances.

This is just as absurd a point as the above point. God did not write different instructions to different centuries. One reason is that it wouldn’t be fair to anyone to have a different set of rules for the same church. Another argument against those quoted words comes from the example of the OT temple. God gave his instructions to Moses roughly 2,000 years before Christ and in Christ’s day we see the temple operating according to those original instructions.

Why would God do something different for the NT church? Mr. Corey is very wrong here.

#6. If Paul was issuing a decree for all churches in all times, he completely contradicts himself in the same letter and elsewhere.

Paul does not contradict himself. It is more likely that Mr. Corey misunderstands Paul’s words.It is hard to say as he fails to provide exact scripture to support his point. If you are going to make a biblical point and claim the Bible is wrong, then you should be giving precise references to show that error. Being general does not cut it.

#5. The cultural context of Paul’s letters must be considered—some instructions were clearly meant to be applied within a specific cultural context.

His point here demonstrates Mr. Corey’s ignorance of culture and which one applies. He thinks that secular culture determined the content of the Bible. He is off the mark because Paul was not writing from a secular culture’s point of view. He was writing from God’s culture and God’s culture does not follow secular culture nor is the latter greater than the former.

The Bible is written by members of God’s kingdom who lived and wrote God’s culture to his followers. God doe snot tell anyone to follow the blind deceived, lost secular cultures of the world.

#4. Jesus said the Holy Spirit is free to go where it wills.

Yes it does BUT the Holy Spirit does not lead people to sin or disobey God.  Then his following words

Who are we to limit the authority of the Holy Spirit by claiming that the Spirit is only allowed to gift men to preach and lead the Church?

We are not saying it. God is saying it. We are not limiting it but God is limiting it. There is a difference here.

#3. The Bible never commands us to abandon evidence and reason, but commands us to consider them.

It also doesn’t tell us to use evidence and reason to say that God is wrong. Mr. Corey seems to forget the myriad of passages that warn us about false teachers. We can use evidence and reason, but if we say that God is wrong or the Bible is in error thenthe problem is not with God or the Bible but how we used evidence and reason. The Bible also says not to walk in the counsel of the ungodly where a lot of evidence and reason is distorted and made absurd.

#2. God gives people gifts with the intent they be used– not squelched.

Yet God did not teach us to use those gifts to disobey Him and his instructions. Those gifts can be used but Mr. Corey forgets that God gave rules for his followers to follow. We cannot use gifts as an excuse to break God’s rules.

#1. Our mission is far too critical to exclude gifted teachers and leaders.

So Mr. orey goes to the ‘ends justify the means’ argument. No, the mision is not so critical that it i smarred by sin. The first battle of Ai, the mission was lost because of one man’s sin. How much more is the mission defeated because more people claiming ot be of God sin? No one is stopping women from teaching women and children a fact lost on Mr. Corey.

No on e is stopping women fromusing their gifts. What is being done by enforcing God’s rules is that women are being stopped from sinning. Jesus sid if you love me keep my commandments. Since all of the NT are Jesus’ words, then the commands for women to be silent in the church not to teach men etc come from Jesus not Paul.

As you can see Mr. Corey did not make one credible argument. Like Mr. Enns, he does not use one bible verse to support his opposition to the bible. He also did not use any alternative divinely inspired book to counter Paul’s words. His arguments are not from God but from evil.

This is the issue. Those who seek to change the instructions to the church are not working from marching orders from God. They are leading people to destruction, sin and disobedience. They need prayer and hopefully they can be restored to true faith but until then their words are not to be considered.

 

 

 

 
 
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