Divinity students have a rude awakening in grad school

This PhD Candidate in New Testament at the prestigious Duke University, just tweeted this:

screenshot 2019-01-30 at 18.38.51

It is a notorious fact that Churches in the main do not discuss the issues raised by New Testament scholars that cast doubt on traditional Christian views, such as the apostolic authorship of New Testament books 1 and 2 Timothy and Titus (the so-called Pastoral Epistles).

In reaction to mainstream critical scholarship we have seen the rise of a vocal anti-critical movement in the churches, which its detractors call ‘fundamentalism’. This movement rejects any scholarly position that conflicts with the inerrancy of the Bible. So if 1 Timothy says it is authored by the apostle Paul (which it does), then the letter is certainly by him.

Critical scholarship however, does not assume inerrancy but attempts to look at ancient texts without assuming questions of authorship. It looks at the genre of a text, its literary style and vocabulary, and compares it with other texts from the period that claim to be by the same author. These, and other considerations, convince nearly all mainstream scholars that Paul did not author the three letters in question.

Notice that adherents of biblical inerrancy reject a priori any historical or literary considerations that can lead away from inerrantist positions on the Bible.  Historians however are not constrained by this presupposition and are free to follow wherever the evidence leads them.

Fundamentalist apologists typically malign NT scholars who reach the wrong conclusions as ‘liberal’ or ‘anti-supernatural’ or otherwise biased.  Indeed everyone has his or her biases, even fundamentalists as I have shown. But scholars reach their conclusions in ways that any reasonable student would accept if they did not start from a position of inerrancy. Even conservative evangelical scholars who are highly regarded by their colleagues have been convinced that traditional Christian beliefs about authorship are occasionally mistaken. The late great British professor FF Bruce for example taught that the internal evidence of the Book of Isaiah suggests at least three distinct authors, only one of whom was Isaiah himself.

Other highly regarded evangelical NT scholars such as professor Richard J. Bauckham have also reached uncomfortable conclusions. He acknowledged that 2 Peter is not by the apostle Peter, despite the text claiming to be by the apostle.

So the Church fails in its moral obligation to discuss the truth about the Bible by ignoring historical findings with its congregations.

 

 

 

 

 



Categories: Bible, New Testament scholarship, USA

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38 replies

  1. Kinda like Islam a-priori rejecting anything that historically demonstrates that the Qur’an was not inspired because it has so many historical errors and scientific errors in it? It had 600 years to learn, and speaks out of ignorance.

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    • There’re no historical nor scientific errors in Qur’an as we find in your bible, but you/they speak out of ignorance.

      «And We had certainly brought them a Book which We detailed by knowledge – as guidance and mercy to a people who believe. Do they await except its result? The Day its result comes those who had ignored it before will say, “The messengers of our Lord had come with the truth, so are there [now] any intercessors to intercede for us or could we be sent back to do other than we used to do?” They will have lost themselves, and lost from them is what they used to invent.» QT.

      You are an old man, so choose for yourself before that Day! We are not here to worship a human being who himself used to worship and (fear) Allah سبحانه وتعالى. Ask Allah سبحانه وتعالى with a sincere heart & good intention, and He will guide you.

      Liked by 2 people

      • 57 is old ?

        Ok, in your opinion, the Qur’an has no mistakes; and in my opinion, the Bible has no mistakes.

        Why do you not give the specific reference to the Qur’anic verses? QT is not enough.

        Please give the number or name of Surah, and verse (Ayeh)

        like this;
        Surah 7:99 or Surah Al-A’ref الاعراف (The Heights) verse 99

        أَفَأَمِنُوا مَكْرَ اللَّهِ ۚ فَلَا يَأْمَنُ مَكْرَ اللَّهِ إِلَّا الْقَوْمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ – 7:99
        Then did they feel secure from the plan of Allah ? But no one feels secure from the plan of Allah except the losing people.

        Liked by 1 person

      • It’s not?. Most people I know with your age are grandfathers :).

        Regrading the verses, it’s not intentional. I usually memorize Qur’an without paying attention to the numbers of verses. It just streams out of my mind. However, I think you can easily get the number or name of Surah, and verse (Ayeh).
        The point is what the verses say!

        Like this one, أَفَأَمِنُوا مَكْرَ اللَّهِ ۚ فَلَا يَأْمَنُ مَكْرَ اللَّهِ إِلَّا الْقَوْمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ. Christians’ failure could come from the very thing they think it brings the victory for them. Allah (sw) is all Knowing about your plots.

        Regarding bible and Qur’an, we are talking about a book revealed by Allah(sw) and detailed by His knowledge, and a book which has not these features.

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      • I guess 57 is pretty old. Only 3 years away from 60.

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      • May Allah سبحانه وتعالى guide you.

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    • Scientific errors? You mean like Matthew’s flat Earth or Leviticus’ phantom cud-chewing rabbits?

      Liked by 2 people

      • Ken actually meant Muhammad’s 7 flat earths suspended on the back of a whale:

        “It is Allah Who has created seven heavens, and earths as many…” S. 65:12, F. Malik

        Nor even how the earth has been FLATTENED out? S. 88:20 T. B. Irving

        The earth, how it was made FLAT? N.J. Dawood

        And the earth, how it was laid out flat?, and thus infer from this the power of God, exalted be He, and His Oneness? The commencing with the [mention of] camels is because they are closer in contact with it [the earth] than any other [animal]. As for His words sutihat, ‘laid out flat’, this on a literal reading suggests THAT THE EARTH IS FLAT, WHICH IS THE OPINION OF MOST OF THE SCHOLARS of the [revealed] Law, and not a sphere as astronomers (ahl al-hay’a) have it, even if this [latter] does not contradict any of the pillars of the Law. (Tafsir al-Jalalayn; capital emphasis ours)

        According to Muhammad b. Sahl b. ‘Askar-Isma’il b. ‘Abd al-Karim-Wahb, mentioning some of his majesty (as being described as follows): The heavens and the earth and the oceans are in the haykal, and the haykal is in the Footstool. God’s feet are upon the Footstool. He carries the Footstool. It became like a sandal on His feet. When Wahb was asked: What is the haykal? He replied: Something on the heavens’ extremities that surrounds the earth and the oceans like ropes that are used to fasten a tent. And when Wahb was asked how earths are (constituted), he replied: They are SEVEN EARTHS THAT ARE FLAT and islands. Between each two earths, there is an ocean. All that is surrounded by the (surrounding) ocean, and the haykal is behind the ocean. (History of Al-Tabari-General Introduction and From the Creation to the Flood, translated by Franz Rosenthal [State University of New York Press (SUNY), Albany 1989], Volume 1, pp. 207-208; capital emphasis ours)

        It was said that “Nun” refers to A GREAT WHALE that rides on the currents of the waters of the great ocean AND ON ITS BACK IT CARRIES THE SEVEN EARTHS, as was stated by Imam Abu Jafar Ibn Jarir. Narrated by Ibn Bashar, narrated by Yahya, narrated by Sufyan Al-Thuri, narrated by Sulayman Al-Amash, narrated by Abu Thubian, narrated by Ibn Abbas who related, “The first thing that Allah created was the pen and He said to it ‘Write’. The pen asked, ‘What shall I write?’ Allah said, ‘Write (the) fate (of everything).’ So the pen wrote everything that shall be from that moment until judgment day.

        Then Allah created the “Nun” and He caused steam to rise out of which the heavens were created AND THE EARTH WAS THEN LAID FLAT ON THE NUN’S BACK. Then the Nun became nervous and (as a result) the earth began to sway, but (Allah) fastened (the earth) with mountains lest the earth should move …

        It was narrated by Ibn Jarir, narrated by Ibn Hamid, narrated by Ata’a, narrated by Abu Al-Dahee, narrated by Ibn Abbas who stated, “The first thing my Lord created, may He be Exalted and Glorified, was the pen and He said to it, ‘Write.’ So the pen wrote all that will be until judgment day. Then Allah created the Nun (the whale) above the waters AND HE PRESSED THE EARTH INTO ITS BACK.

        Al Tabarani narrated the same hadith above (from the prophet Muhammad) who narrated from Abu Habib Zaid Al-Mahdi Al Marouzi, narrated by Sa’id Ibn Yaqub Al-Talqani, narrated by Mu’amal Ibn Ismail, narrated by Hamad Ibn Zaid, narrated by Ata’a Ibn Al Sa’ib, narrated by Abu Al Dahee Muslim Ibn Subaih, narrated by Ibn Abbas who stated that the prophet – may peace and blessing be upon him and his family – said, “The first things Allah created were the pen and the whale and He said to the pen ‘Write.’ The pen asked, ‘What shall I write?’ Allah replied, ‘Everything that shall be until judgment day.’ Then He said ‘Nun. By the Pen and by what they write.’ So Nun is the whale and al-Qalam is the pen”…

        Ibn Abu Nujaih stated that Ibrahim Ibn Abu Bakir was informed by Mujahid who said, “It was said that Nun is the great whale WHO IS UNDERNEATH THE SEVEN EARTHS.” Furthermore, Al-Baghawy – may Allah rest his soul – and a group of commentators stated that on the back of this whale there is a great rock whose thickness is greater than the width of the heavens and the earth and above this rock is A BULL THAT HAS FORTY THOUSAND HORNS. On the body of this bull are placed the seven earths and all that they contain, and Allah knows best. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir)

        He also had in mind Muhammad’s fantasy sun that literally, physically sets in a muddy spring according to Allah and his profit:

        They will question thee concerning Dhool Karnain. Say: ‘I will recite to you a mention of him. We established him in the land, and We gave him a way to everything; and he followed a way until, WHEN HE REACHED THE SETTING OF THE SUN, HE FOUND IT SETTING IN A MUDDY SPRING, and he found nearby a people. We said, ‘O Dhool Karnain, either thou shalt chastise them, or thou shalt take towards them a way of kindness.’ He said, ‘As for the evildoer, him we shall chastise, then he shall be returned to his Lord and He shall chastise him with a horrible chastisement. But as for him who believes, and does righteousness, he shall receive as recompense the reward most fair, and we shall speak to him, of our command, easiness.’ Then he followed a way until, when he reached the rising of the sun, he found it rising upon a people for whom We had not appointed any veil to shade them from it. S. 18:83-90 Arberry

        One of the major signs of the Hour

        91. Abu Dharr narrated, “Once I was with the Prophet (riding) a donkey on which there was a saddle or a (piece of) velvet. That was at sunset. He said to me, ‘O Abu Dharr, do you know where this (sun) sets?’ I said, ‘Allah and His Messenger know better.’ He said, ‘IT SETS IN A SPRING OF MURKY WATER, (then) it goes and prostrates before its Lord, the Exalted in Might and the Ever-Majestic, under the Throne. And when it is time to go out, Allah allows it to go out and thus it rises. But, when He wants to make it rise where it sets, He locks it up. The sun will then say, “O my Lord, I have a long distance to run.” Allah will say, “Rise where you have set.” That (will take place) when no (disbelieving) soul will get any good by believing then.’” (Ahmad) (The Translation of: The Meaning of the Fifty Hadith of Jame Al-uloom Wal-Hakim (“A Compilation of Knowledge and Wisdom”), compilation by Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali (736 H-795 H), translated and spotlights by Yaseen Ibrahim al-Sheikh (Vol. 1), A Selection of Authentic Qudsi (Sacred) Hadiths, translated by Muhammad M. ‘Abdul-Fattah, edited by Reima Youssif Shakeir (Vol. 2) [Dar Al-Manarrah for Translation, Publishing & Distribution], pp. 319-320)

        And:

        (3991) Abu Dharr said: I was sitting behind the Apostle of Allah who was riding a donkey while the sun was setting. He asked: Do you know where this sets? I replied: Allah and his Apostle know best. He said: IT SETS IN A SPRING OF WARM WATER (hamiyah).3408 (Prof. Ahmad Hasan, Sunan Abu Dawud – English Translation With Explanatory Notes [Sh. Muhammad Ashraf, Publishers, Lahore, 1984], Volume III. Chapters 1338-1890, XXV. Kitab Al-Ahruf Wa Al-Qira’at [Book of Dialects and Readings Of The Qur’an], Chapter 1498, p. 1120; capital emphasis ours)

        3408. Qur’an, xviii. 86. The word hami’ah in this verse has two readings. Abu Ja‘far, Abu ‘Amir, Hamzah, al-Kisa’i and Abu Bakr read it hamiyah with long vowel a. Hamiyah means warm water. The others read it hami’ah meaning musky water. (Ibid.)

        Not only do we have a gross scientific error, we also have a variant reading. This shows that, contrary to Muslim propaganda, the Quran hasn’t been perfectly preserved since the extant manuscripts and the Islamic traditions show that it contains variant and conflicting readings.

        And now for a different translation of Abu Dawud’s report:

        4002. It was narrated that Abu Dharr said: “I was riding behind the Messenger of Allah while he was on a donkey, and the sun was setting. He said: ‘Do you know where this (sun) sets?’ I said: ‘Allah and his Messenger know best.’ He said: ‘IT SETS IN A SPRING OF WATER (fa innaha taghrubu fi ‘ainin hamiyah).’” (SAHIH) (English Translation of Sunan Abu Dawud, Compiled by Imam Hafiz Abu Dawud Sulaiman bin Ash‘ath – From Hadith no. 3242 to 4350, ahadith edited and referenced by Hafiz Abu Tahir Zubair ‘Ali Za’i, translated by Nasiruddin al-Khattab (Canada), final review by Abu Khaliyl (USA) [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors, First Edition: July, 2008], Volume 4, 29. The Book Of The Recitations And Readings Of The Qur’an, p. 375; capital emphasis ours)

        Ken further meant Muhammad’s wonderful knowledge of biology and genetics, where he thought that women have sperm and that a child resembles the parent that had an orgasm first!

        So let man consider from what he is created. He is created from a gushing fluid That issued from between the loins and ribs.S. 86:5-7 Pickthall

        (He is created from a water gushing forth.) meaning, the sexual fluid that comes out bursting forth from the man AND THE WOMAN. Thus, the child is produced from both of them by the permission of Allah. Due to this Allah says…

        (Proceeding from between the backbone and the ribs.) meaning, the backbone (or loins) of the man AND THE RIBS OF THE WOMAN, WHICH IS REFERRING TO HER CHEST. Shabib bin Bishr reported from `Ikrimah who narrated from Ibn `Abbas that he said…

        (Proceeding from between the backbone and the ribs.) “The backbone of the man AND THE RIBS OF THE WOMAN. IT (THE FLUID) IS YELLOW AND FINE IN TEXTURE. The child will not be born except from both of them (i.e., THEIR SEXUAL FLUIDS).”(Tafsir Ibn Kathir; capital emphasis ours)

        Narrated Anas:
        When ‘Abdullah bin Salam heard the arrival of the Prophet at Medina, he came to him and said, “I am going to ask you about three things which nobody knows except a prophet: What is the first portent of the Hour? What will be the first meal taken by the people of Paradise? Why does a child resemble its father, and why does it RESEMBLE ITS MATERNAL UNCLE?” Allah’s Apostle said, “Gabriel has just now told me of their answers.” ‘Abdullah said, “He (i.e. Gabriel), from amongst all the angels, is the enemy of the Jews.” Allah’s Apostle said, “The first portent of the Hour will be a fire that will bring together the people from the east to the west; the first meal of the people of Paradise will be Extra-lobe (caudate lobe) of fish-liver. As for the resemblance of the child to its parents: If a man has sexual intercourse with his wife and gets discharge first, the child will resemble the father, AND IF THE WOMAN GETS DISCHRAGE FIRST, THE CHILD WILL RESEMBLE HER.” On that ‘Abdullah bin Salam said, “I testify that you are the Apostle of Allah.”… (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 55, Number 546)

        Notice carefully that according to the “angel Gabriel,” a child’s physical features are determined by which of the parents has an orgasm first!

        Other narratives have Muhammad actually stating that women also have semen/sperm like men do, and even go as far as to quote him describing the color and density of their sexual fluid:

        It was narrated that Anas said: “The Messenger of Allah said: ‘The man’s water is thick and white, AND THE WOMAN’S WATER IS THIN AND YELLOW. WHICHEVER OF THEM COMES FIRST, THE CHILD WILL RESEMBLE (THAT PARENT).’”

        Grade: SAHIH (Darussalam)

        English reference: Vol. 1, Book 1, Hadith 200

        Arabic reference: Book 1, Hadith 201 (Sunan an-Nasa’i, The Book of Purification https://sunnah.com/urn/1002010; capital emphasis ours)

        It was narrated from Anas that: Umm Sulaim asked the Messenger of Allah about a woman who sees in her dream something like that which a man sees. The Messenger of Allah said: “If she sees that and has a discharge, then let her perform a bath.” Umm Salamah said: “O Messenger of Allah, does that really happen?” He said: “Yes, the water of the man is thick and white and the water of a woman IS THIN AND YELLOW. WHICHEVER OF THEM COMES FIRST OR PREDOMINATES, THE CHILD WILL RESEMBLE (THAT PARENT).”

        Grade: SAHIH (Darussalam)

        English reference: Vol. 1, Book 1, Hadith 601

        Arabic reference: Book 1, Hadith 64 (Sunan Ibn Majah, The Book of Ablution and Its Sunnah https://sunnah.com/urn/1256000; capital emphasis ours)

        There you have it folks. Even though science tells us that women do not have sperm like men do, and that a child’s physical features have nothing to do with which parent climaxes first, Allah and his messenger actually believed otherwise.

        And since your profit confirmed the copy of the Torah which he had access to as the uncorrupt word of his god:

        Abu Dawood narrated in his collection that Ibn Umar said:

        A group of Jewish people invited the messenger of Allah to a house. When he came, they asked him: O Abu Qassim, one of our men committed adultery with a woman, what is your judgment against him? So they placed a pillow and asked the messenger of Allah to set on it. Then the messenger of Allah proceeded to say: BRING ME THE TORAH. When they brought it, he removed the pillow from underneath him AND PLACED THE TORAH ON IT and said: I BELIEVE IN YOU AND IN THE ONE WHO REVEALED YOU, then said: bring me one of you who have the most knowledge. So they brought him a young man who told him the story of the stoning.

        The scholars said: if the Torah was corrupted HE WOULD NOT HAVE PLACED IT ON THE PILLOW AND HE WOULD NOT HAVE SAID: I believe in you and in the one who revealed you.

        THIS GROUP OF SCHOLARS ALSO SAID:

        Allah said:

        “And the word of your Lord has been accomplished truly and justly; there is none who can change His words, and He is the Hearing, the Knowing.” (Q. 6:115)

        AND THE TORAH IS ALLAH’S WORD. (Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah, Ighathat Al Lahfan, Volume 2, p. 351)

        And since that Torah contained “Leviticus’ phantom cud-chewing,” this means you just buried your profit deeper in Allah’s flat earth by proving that your profit was full of rabbits’ pellets! You can draw some solace from the fact that your profit would have had an easy time stuffing his face with rabbit pellets since he had plenty of camel urine to help him chew the cud!

        This is why I said you are garbage and a lowlife thug, and that it is a shame that Williams allows a lowlife like you to post here.

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      • LOL, no, no Shammy. I think Ken meant Matthew’s flat earth from which your mangod could see all the kingdoms of the world (kosmos). The word can mean an “ornament”, the “world” or “universe”, the “circle of the earth” or just the “earth”, or the “inhabitants of the world”.[22]

        Similarly, the 19th-century scholar James Austin Bastow defined “kosmos” as “the world” or “universe”, and specifically with regard to Matthew 4:8 as “the earth, as the abode of man”.[23] So it is clear that when Matthew used the word “kosmos”, he was referring to the entire world. This designation is furthered strengthened by the fact that the devil offered the “kingdoms” as if they were his to give. It would be far more impressive if he was referring to the entire world rather than to just a small region in the Middle East. As Jeannine K. Brown states in her commentary on the gospel of Matthew:

        “[t]he final temptation consists of an implicit claim by the devil that all the kingdoms of the world belong to him and that he will give them to Jesus if Jesus will worship him…”[24]

        Furthermore, if Matthew did not intend to refer to the whole world, he could have easily used a more ambiguous Greek word, similar to the Hebrew word “erets”. This is the Greek word γῆ (gē).[25] Matthew even used this word several times in his gospel, including later in chapter 4, when he was quoting Isaiah:

        “Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the Way of the Sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles…”[26]

        According to Thayer’s Lexicon, the Greek word can mean “arable land”, the “ground”, the “earth as a whole” or “a country”

        In contrast, “kosmos” always meant the entire world or even the “universe” as well, so why didn’t Matthew use the more ambiguous word when referring to the “kingdoms of the world”, as some commentators allege was his original intention? Clearly, this argument does not have any merit. Matthew meant the kingdoms of the entire world, and he thought that it would be possible to see them all from a “very high mountain”. Of course, we have to remember that his knowledge of the world would have been limited. There is no reason to expect him to know about far-off lands like North America, South America or Australia. To Matthew, the whole “world” could have been limited to the lands of the Roman Empire and some other lands outside its realm, like Parthia. But there is no doubt that Matthew believed that it was possible to see all the kingdoms of the known world from a tall mountain. This suggests a flat-Earth cosmology.

        Luke had to fix this debacle because he was more educated.

        Also, your Bible says the earth was flattened like metal sheets. The Hebrew word “raqa’” (pronounced raw-kah’) is used in three places to describe how God “spread” the earth (Psalm 136:6, Isaiah 42:5, 44:24). But according to Strong’s Definitions and other lexicons,[14] the etymology of the word suggests a “spreading” that occurs as a result of “pounding” or “hammering” an object:

        strong – raqa (ps 136-6, isaiah 42-5, 44-24)

        This meaning is also confirmed by Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon:

        gesenius lexicon – raqa isaiah 44-12 (spread out)

        And then there are the rabbits. 🙂

        While it is true that the word “gerah” does mean “grain” or “berry” etc., in the context of Leviticus 11 the Hebrew lexicons define it as:

        “…the food which ruminating animals bring up to chew…”[6]

        As for the second definition, while it could be argued that the partially digested food is of “value” to the ruminant, this is not the meaning within the context of Leviticus 11. Rather, as with Deuteronomy 14, it is specifically referring to the process of rumination. Also, it can be argued that the food that ruminants chew is also of “value”, and that is the context for the word “gerah”. But there is no indication that any type of “dung” or “feces” which could be of “value” to an animal is included. Also note that there are related Arabic words in both cases (for cud and grain/berry), and they are different words. The “Hans-Weir Dictionary” defines the Arabic word “jirra” as “cud (of a ruminant)”.

        In contrast, the Arabic word for “grain” or “berry” is “habba”:

        But the bigger and more embarrassing blunder that Shamoun makes, and which is a testament to his shabby research, is the following little nugget (or pellet, if you want):

        “[r]abbits go through a process called refection wherein they take their dung and chew on it in order to get at the remaining partially digested food.”

        Perhaps Shamoun should pick up a science book once in a while, because this is an inaccurate claim. While rabbits do perform the process called “refection”, also known as “caecotrophy”, in which they swallow soft feces, they do not “chew” it. Rather, the pellet of feces is swallowed whole. As stated in the book “Nutrition of the Rabbit”:

        “[h]ard pellets are voided, but soft pellets are recovered by the rabbit directly upon being expelled from the anus. To do this the rabbit twists itself around, sucks in the soft faeces as they emerge from the anus and then swallows without chewing them.”[7]

        The reason for this is that the pellets need to be covered by a protective layer of mucus, which would be impossible if the pellets were chewed before being swallowed.[8] I asked Shamoun for his view on this issue because it was expected that he would respond by pasting one of his long rants, and he did not disappoint. Unfortunately for him, I had already read this article and had commented on it recently on my blog.[9] No hard feelings Sam! It was just business!

        So this is a testament to Shamoun’s lack of scholarly attention to detail. It appears that he simply copied another Christian article on the subject and assumed it was true. In the article, he linked to Tektonics.org, which committed the same blunder:

        “…refection is a process whereby these animals pass pellets of partially digested food, which they chew on (along with the waste material) in order to give their stomachs another go at getting the nutrients out.”[10]

        So it appears that these Christian apologists just blindly copy each other, instead of actually researching these topics.

        Moving on, Shamoun also stated that:

        “…the Hebrew word for “dung” is used in Scripture to imply something defiled, unclean or useless and would not be suitable in describing what rabbits eat.”

        If that is the case, then the Bible commits a different error, in verse 7, where it claims that pigs do not “chew the cud”:

        “[a]nd the pig, though it has a divided hoof, does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you.”

        The problem here is that pigs actually do eat dung occasionally, and since Shamoun has argued that the process of “refection” is included in the Bible’s category of “chewing the cud”, then pigs should also have been described as cud chewers. Note that the process of “coprophagy”, eating feces, is not technically the same as “caecotrophy”, but is nevertheless similar. Moreover, coprophagy does have nutritional “value” to pigs, specifically with regards to vitamin B-12 (cyanocobalamin),[11] as well as vitamin K.[12]

        Worse still, and probably most importantly, Leviticus 11:29 states that rats and mice are forbidden to eat, but it does not group them with hyraxes and rabbits, even though all of these animals practice caecotrophy! According to Gordon Dryden:

        “[s]everal small hindgut fermenting herbivores (e.g. rabbits and hares, rats and mice, voles and the ring-tailed possum) harvest the nutrients produced by hindgut microbial metabolism through ‘caecotrophy’ or ‘coprophagy’…”[13]

        And yet, the Bible does not specify that rats and mice also “chew the cud”. If Shamoun and other Christian apologists want to be consistent, they need to explain why the Bible overlooked the fact that rats and mice “chew the cud” and only mentioned it with regards to hyraxes and rabbits.

        To continue, Shamoun next discussed the Hebrew word “alah” which is most commonly translated as “chew”. He argues that:

        “…the term used for “chew” is alah and literally means to “bring up.”

        And after providing examples from the Bible, he concludes that:

        “…the term does not necessarily imply regurgitation, but can refer generally to any type of movement such as lifting or bringing up an object. Hence, Leviticus 11:6 is completely acceptable and poses no serious problem with what we know of rabbits.”

        But as we have already seen, Shamoun does not know much about rabbits. Nevertheless, he does not object to the fact that chewing is implied in the text, which is why he made the embarrassing blunder about rabbits “chewing” their dung (when in reality, they swallow the fecal pellets whole). Thus, the Bible is still wrong and the error remains. Indeed, virtually all English translations of the Bible, with the exception of “Young’s Literal Translation”, translate the relevant phrase as “chew the cud”.

        Finally, to finish off his apologetic train-wreck, and apparently trying to cover his bases, Shamoun claimed the following:

        “[t]here are some that actually do not believe Leviticus is actually speaking about rabbits. They rather feel that the verse is speaking of an animal that is no longer in existence…”

        This argument is simply an act of desperation in order to avoid any possible hang-ups with the proposed solutions discussed above. If the Christians want to claim that some unknown animal was mentioned in Leviticus 11, the question is which animal? We know of extinct animals that lived millions of years ago, so it should not be too hard to identify an animal that lived in the time of Moses (peace be upon him). It should be noted that the Hebrew word אַרְנֶבֶת (‘arnebeth) is similar to the Arabic أرنب (‘arnab).[14]

        According to the “Hans-Wehr Arabic Dictionary”, “’arnab” is defined as a “hare”, “rabbit” or “guinea pig”. Here is a screenshot:

        On a side note, guinea pigs also perform caecotrophy.

        So there we have it. We have analyzed Shamoun’s attempted rescue operation of the Bible, and he failed miserably.

        I know, I know. It hurts. 😉

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      • Now since he simply reposted his garbage, I am going to return the favor and repost my rebuttal showing how he buried his profit deeper within Allah’s flat earths. Enjoy!

        Refuting One Muhammadan’s Rabbit Trails

        HAHAHAHA right back at ya! It’s sad that Williams allows you to even post here since it brings the value of his site way down.

        With that said, since you introduced a red herring which I am and will continue to obliterate, I am going to follow suit and raise up an issue for you to address honestly, which I know is impossible for you to do.

        According to your profit, Jesus was sent to confirm the Torah in his possession:

        And He will teach him the Book and the wisdom and the Torah and the Gospel… “attesting to WHAT IS BETWEEN MY HANDS (Wamusaddiqan lima bayna yadayya) OF THE TORAH, and to make lawful to you a part of that which is forbidden to you.” S. 3:48, 50

        And in their footsteps (of Moses and the Jews) We sent Jesus the son of Mary, attesting to the Torah WHICH WAS BETWEEN HIS HANDS (musaddiqan lima bayna yadayhi); and We gave him the Gospel – therein is guidance and light and attesting to the Torah WHICH WAS BETWEEN HIS HANDS (wamusaddiqan lima bayna yadayhi): a guidance and an admonition to the righteous. S. 5:46

        Then will God say, “O Jesus son of Mary! Recount my favor to you and to your mother when I strengthened you with the Holy Spirit, so that you spoke to the people in childhood and in maturity. Behold! I taught you the Book and Wisdom, the Torah and the Gospel…” S. 5:110

        And remember, Jesus, the son of Mary, said: ‘Oh Children of Israel! I am the apostle of God to you, CONFIRMING THAT WHICH IS BETWEEN MY HANDS from the Torah (musaddiqan lima bayna yadayya mina al-tawrati)…” S. 61:6

        The Sunni Muslim commentator Ibn Kathir comments on Sura 3:50:

        … The Tawrah is the Book THAT ALLAH SENT DOWN TO MUSA, son of Imran, while the Injil is what Allah sent down to Isa, son of Maryam, peace be upon them, AND ISA MEMORIZED BOTH BOOKS…

        affirming the Tawrah AND UPHOLDING IT,” (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged, Volume 2, parts 3,4 & 5, Surat Al-Baqarah, Verse 253, to Surat An-Nisa, Verse 147 [March 2000], pp. 163, 165; capital emphasis ours)

        Jesus, according to Ibn Kathir, memorized and upheld the Torah that God taught him, even though Muhammadans like you would have us believe that in reality this was a corrupted Torah! And:

        … meaning, he believed in it AND RULED BY IT…

        meaning, HE ADHERED TO THE TAWRAH, except for the few instances that clarified the truth where the Children of Israel differed. Allah states in another Ayah that ‘Isa said to the Children of Israel,…

        So the scholars say that the Injil abrogated some of the rulings of the Tawrah… (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged, Volume 3, Parts 6, 7 & 8, Surat An-Nisa, Verse 148 to the end of Surat Al-An’am, Abridged by a group of scholars under the supervision of Shaykh Safiur-Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors, Riyadh, Houston, New York, Lahore; January 2000, first edition], pp. 193-194; capital emphasis ours)

        Finally:

        ‘Isa said, “The Tawrah conveyed the glad tidings of my coming, and my coming CONFIRMS THE TRUTH OF THE TAWRAH…” (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged, Volume 9, Surat Al-Jathiyah to the end of Surat Al-Munafiqun [September 2000, first edition], p. 617; capital emphasis ours)

        Make sure you don’t do your Islamic tap dance and bark wildly, by evading what these texts are saying, since all of the passages and citations affirm that Jesus testified and confirmed THE TORAH which the Jews possessed in his day, which Ibn Kathir says was the same that Moses received. Not a word is said about the Torah being corrupted.

        Stay tuned for the next part.

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      • And here is what the Islamic sources say regarding your profit’s attitude in respect to the Torah in his possession:

        36 Tribulations

        (26) Chapter: The disappearance of the Quran and Knowledge

        It was narrated that Ziyad bin Labid said:

        “The Prophet mentioned something and said: ‘That will be at the time when knowledge (of Qur’an) disappears.’ I said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, how will knowledge disappear when we read the Qur’an and teach it to our children, until the Day of Resurrection?’ He said: ‘May your mother be bereft of you, Ziyad! I thought that you were the wisest man in Al- Madinah. Is it not the case that these Jews and Christians READ THE TAWRAH AND THE INJIL, but they do not act upon anything of what is in them?’”

        Grade: Da’if (Darussalam)

        Reference: Sunan Ibn Majah 4048

        In-book reference: Book 36, Hadith 123

        English translation: Vol. 5, Book 36, Hadith 4048 (sunnah.com; capital emphasis ours)

        41 Chapters on Knowledge

        (5) Chapter: What Has Been Related About Knowledge Leaving

        Narrated Jubair bin Nufair:

        from Abu Ad-Darda who said: “We were with the Prophet when he raised his sight to the sky, then he said: ‘This is the time when knowledge is to be taken from the people, until what remains of it shall not amount to anything.” So Ziyad bin Labid Al-Ansari said: ‘How will it be taken from us while we recite the Qur’an. By Allah we recite it, and our women and children recite it?’ He said: ‘May you be bereaved of your mother O Ziyad! I used to consider you among the Fuqaha of the people of Al-Madinah. The Tawrah and Injil ARE WITH THE JEWS AND CHRISTIANS, but what do they avail of them?‘” Jubair said: “So I met ‘Ubadah bin As-Samit and said to him: ‘Have you not heard what your brother Abu Ad-Darda said?’ Then I informed him of what Abu Ad-Darda said. He said: ‘Abu Ad-Darda spoke the truth. If you wish, we shall narrated to you about the first knowledge to be removed from the people: It is Khushu’, soon you will enter the congregational Masjid, but not see any man in it with Khushu’.’”

        Grade: SAHIH (Darussalam)

        Reference: Jami` at-Tirmidhi 2653

        In Book Reference: Book 41, Hadith 9

        English translation: Vol. 5, Book 39, Hadith 2653 (sunnah.com; capital emphasis ours)

        Narrated Abdullah Ibn Umar:A group of Jews came and invited the Apostle of Allah to Quff. So he visited them in their school.

        They said: AbulQasim, one of our men has committed fornication with a woman; so pronounce judgment upon them. They placed a cushion for the Apostle of Allah who sat on it and said: Bring the Torah. It was then brought. He then withdrew the cushion from beneath him AND PLACED THE TORAH ON IT saying: I BELIEVED IN THEE and in Him WHO REVEALED THEE.

        He then said: Bring me one who is learned among you. Then a young man was brought. The transmitter then mentioned the rest of the tradition of stoning similar to the one transmitted by Malik from Nafi’ (No. 4431).”

        Grade: Hasan (Al-Albani) (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 38. Kitab al Hudud (“The Book of Prescribed Punishments”), Number 4434; capital emphasis ours)

        Not only does your profit claim that the Jews and Christians of his day possessed the uncorrupt Torah and Gospel, not a corrupted version of these revelations, he even shows love and respect for the very copy of the Torah in the possession of the Jews, which he places on a cushion and bears witness to his absolute faith in it!

        In fact, Ibn Tayimiyya’s premiere student stated that Muslim scholars used this very hadith and Quran 6:115 to prove that the Torah is incorruptible:

        A group of Muslim scholars even used Q. 6:115 to prove that books such as the Torah could never be corrupted since they are the revealed words of Allah:

        On the other side, another party of hadith and fiqh scholars said: these changes took place during its interpretation and not during the process of its revelation. This is the view OF ABI ABDULLAH MUHAMMAD BIN ISHMAEL AL-BUKHARI who said in his hadith collection:

        NO ONE CAN CORRUPT THE TEXT BY REMOVING ANY OF ALLAH’S WORDS FROM HIS BOOKS, but they corrupted it by misinterpreting it.

        Al-Razi ALSO AGREES WITH THIS OPINION. In his commentary he said:

        There is a difference of opinions regarding this matter among some of the respectable scholars. Some of these scholars said: the manuscript copies of the Torah were distributed everywhere and no one knows the exact number of these copies except Allah. It is impossible to have a conspiracy to change or alter the word of God in all of these copies without missing any copy. Such a conspiracy will not be logical or possible. And when Allah told his messenger (Muhammad) to ask the Jews to bring their Torah and read it concerning the stoning command they were not able to change this command from their copies, that is why they covered up the stoning verse while they were reading it to the prophet. It was then when Abdullah Ibn Salam requested that they remove their hand so that the verse became clear. If they have changed or altered the Torah then this verse would have been one of the important verses to be altered by the Jews.

        Also, whenever the prophet would ask them (the Jews) concerning the prophecies about him in the Torah they were not able to remove them either, and they would respond by stating that they are not about him and they are still waiting for the prophet in their Torah.

        Abu Dawood narrated in his collection that Ibn Umar said:

        A group of Jewish people invited the messenger of Allah to a house. When he came, they asked him: O Abu Qassim, one of our men committed adultery with a woman, what is your judgment against him? So they placed a pillow and asked the messenger of Allah to set on it. Then the messenger of Allah proceeded to say: BRING ME THE TORAH. When they brought it, he removed the pillow from underneath him AND PLACED THE TORAH ON IT and said: I BELIEVE IN YOU AND IN THE ONE WHO REVEALED YOU, then said: bring me one of you who have the most knowledge. So they brought him a young man who told him the story of the stoning.

        The scholars said: if the Torah was corrupted HE WOULD NOT HAVE PLACED IT ON THE PILLOW AND HE WOULD NOT HAVE SAID: I believe in you and in the one who revealed you.

        This group of scholars also said: Allah said:

        “And the word of your Lord has been accomplished truly and justly; there is none who can change His words, and He is the Hearing, the Knowing.” (Q. 6:115)

        And the Torah is Allah’s word. (Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah, Ighathat Al Lahfan, Volume 2, p. 351; capital emphasis ours)

        Notice, once again, that Muhammad affirmed the very copy of the Torah which the Jews handed him as the uncorrupt revelation of his god, testifying that he believed in its absolute authority without a single word about it’s being corrupted. And the reasoning which these Muslim scholars employed to affirm the incorruptibility of the Torah is sound, since both their premises and the conclusion they drew from them are logically valid:

        1. None can change or corrupt the words of Allah.
        2. Books such as the Torah and the Gospel are the words of Allah.
        3. Therefore, none can change or corrupt the text of any of Allah’s Books such as the Torah and the Gospel.

        With the foregoing in view, here’s my first question to show why you have no business in apologetics and should actually be selling cars for a living. Did the Torah that Jesus and Muhammad have access to contain the verse of Leviticus 11:6?

        I hope your stupid enough to quote verses from the Quran such as Q. 2:79 to try to tap dance around this since I am going to have a field day exposing you, your profit and his deity.

        Like I said, I am going to have lots of fun at the expense of you, your profit and his lord.

        So go ahead and make my day! 😉

        Like

      • Awww, I know Shammy, it hurts. It must be even worse when you are unable to refute me and so have to go on your typical rants (which again, no one reads 😉 ). So let me repeat: Matthew’s choice of the word “kosmos” proves conclusively that he believed the earth was flat. Luke used a different word, probably because he realized the embarrassing error. As for the rabbits, the Hebrew word “gerah” refers to “the food which ruminating animals bring up to chew”. The Arabic word is similar and also means the same thing. You committed a semantic fallacy by arguing that it can mean other things like “berry” and so forth. This dooms your pathetic apologetic defense. And then I exposed your shoddy research further by showing that rabbits do not “chew” the caecotroph pellets, in contrast to your ignorant claim that you copied from Tektonics. So, in conclusion, your Bible commits two major errors which cannot be fixed.

        Liked by 2 people

      • More scientific errors in Shammy’s Bible:

        One of the most controversial aspects of the Bible is the Genesis account of the creation of the universe and Earth, with many regarding it as a completely fictional account of the origin of all things. Others argue that the story does not necessarily have to be taken literally.[3] However, it can be argued that some parts of the creation story, even when taken literally, are at least in rudimentary agreement with science. For example, it is stated in Genesis 1 that animals and plants were created before humans. This agrees with established scientific consensus, since it is acknowledged that humans are a relatively recent arrival on Earth. Animals and plants had existed for millions of years prior to the arrival of man (Homo sapiens), which appeared around 150,000 years ago.[4] However, there are obvious conflicts between other aspects of the creation story and established scientific facts. Let us now examine these.[5]

        First, Genesis 1 states that the act of creation took 6 days.[6] During this period, the heavens and the Earth were created and the latter was populated with plants and animals as well as the first humans (Adam and Eve). This conflicts with scientific data since it is firmly established that the formation of the universe and even the Earth took billions of years. For example, the scientific consensus is that the Earth:

        “…began to take shape slightly over 4.5 billion years ago. Within 50 million years, its core had formed and, in turn, generated a magnetic field. However, it was not until the atmosphere and surface of the crust were relatively stable, about 3.8 billion years ago, that life had a good chance to evolve and thrive.”[7]

        Some Christians have objected to the claim that the Bible describes the creation of the world in six literal days.[8] They refer to Psalm 90:4, which states that a day was not necessarily a literal 24-hour period:

        “A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night.”

        Yet even if a day was 1,000 years, it would still not agree with scientific facts since “six days” would be like “six thousand years”. The creation of the universe took billions of years.[9] Moreover, other passages in the Bible clearly show that a day was really a 24-hour day. For example:

        ““Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.”[10]

        We can see very clearly that a regular day like the Sabbath is compared to the seventh day of Creation when God allegedly “rested” and that the six days wherein laboring was allowed are compared to the six days of Creation. If the seventh “day” was supposed to be thousands or even millions of years long, the comparison to the Sabbath of the Israelites would not be appropriate. Similarly, if the six “days” of Creation were supposed to be thousands or millions of years, the comparison to the six-day work week of the Israelites would not be appropriate.

        Moving on, Genesis 1:6-8 states that water was placed on the Earth on the second day. However, scientific data shows that the formation of the oceans took much more time:

        “Ocean formation probably began during the first 500 million years of Earth’s history, when the planet first cooled sufficiently to allow water molecules to condense, fall onto the surface, and persist as free-standing water bodies. Zircon mineral grains laid down by water have been dated to over 4 billion years old, indicating that some surface water existed at that time. […] Australian limestone formations known as stromatolites, which were formed by microscopic blue-green algae or cyanobacteria, indicate that fully saline oceans existed around 3.5 billion years ago.”[11]

        Hence, the Bible’s claim of ocean formation on the second day is impossible to defend.

        Another problem with the Genesis account is the creation of the stars. Genesis 1 claims that the sun was created after the creation of the Earth.[12] Yet, this contradicts established scientific data, which shows that:

        “The Solar System began to form about 4.56 billion years ago, when an immense cloud of gas and dust, the solar nebula, started to collapse under gravity. As it collapsed, the cloud flattened into an ever-faster spinning disk, with a bulging center that heated and condensed to form the Sun. The orbiting debris formed the four inner rocky planets.”[13]

        It should be noted, however, that the moon was certainly formed after Earth, as Genesis accurately states.[14] However, Genesis states that the sun and the moon were both formed at the same time, which contradicts the scientific evidence.

        Moreover, both the sun and the moon are described as “lights” in Genesis:

        “God made two great lights—the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars.”[15]

        According to the Jewish commentator Rashi, these two “lights” were “created equal” except that the moon was made smaller:

        “…the two great luminaries: They were created equal, but the moon was made smaller because it brought charges and said, “It is impossible for two kings to use the same crown.” – [from Chullin 60b] Rashi (ad loc.) explains that this derash is based on the discrepancy of the two expressions, “the two great luminaries,” which intimates that the moon was a great luminary, and “the lesser luminary,” which intimates that the moon was smaller than the sun. To reconcile this difference, the Rabbis asserted that the moon was originally created equal to the sun, but, because of its complaint that the sun wielded the same power that it wielded, it was forced to relinquish that power.”[16]

        The meaning is that both the sun and moon provide light, but that the sun is a greater source of light. This can be seen even more clearly by the fact that the same Hebrew word is used to describe the sun and moon as “light”.[17] The problem with this verse is that while the sun is definitely a “light” (in fact the only major source of light on Earth), the moon is not. Scientific research has shown that the moon actually reflects the light of the sun onto Earth but is not itself a direct source of light.[18]

        Having dealt with the creation of the universe and Earth, let us now consider the Genesis account of the creation of life on Earth. It is claimed in Genesis 1 that vegetation appeared on land on the third day.[19] On the fifth day, marine life and birds appeared, while animal life appeared on land on the sixth day, shortly before the creation of man.[20] This account contradicts scientific facts since the fossil record conclusively shows that plant life did not appear on land until the Ordovician period, becoming more common only in the Silurian.[21] Meanwhile, marine invertebrates had existed as early as the Proterozoic eon,[22] which lasted from 2.5 billion to 542 million years ago.[23] An example of such an invertebrate was Spriggina, a segmented animal which existed in the Precambrian.[24]

        Another difficulty with this account is that birds were created before land animals, which would include reptiles and mammals. This directly contradicts the fossil record which shows that there were many different animals (such as dinosaurs) which preceded the arrival of birds. An example is Dilophosaurus, a 20-foot long theropod dinosaur from the early Jurassic period.[25] Even as early as the Devonian period, arthropods like Pleophrynus, a spider-like arachnid, lived on land.[26]

        Next, let us consider the age of the Earth according to the Bible. Since the Bible provides a detailed genealogy starting from Adam,[27] it becomes clear that from the first day of Creation to the present day, only about 6,000 years have gone by.[28] In other words, according to the Bible, the Earth is only about 6,000 years old. Given the scientific evidence presented above, the Biblical claim is a clear error.

        However, some Christians have argued that the age of the Earth cannot be determined from the genealogies and hence argue that the Biblical genealogies should not be taken literally.[29] Instead, they argue that when the genealogy refers to “father” and “son”, it could also be referring to an “ancestor” and a “descendant” and hence, we cannot know how many years had lapsed from Adam to Abraham. While it is true that the Hebrew word “ab” can mean both a literal “father” and “ancestor”,[30] and the word “ben” can mean both a literal “son” and “descendant”,[31] this argument fails for some very simple reasons in the case of the genealogies.

        First, if the Biblical figures mentioned in the genealogies of Genesis 5 and 11 are not necessarily “father” and “son”, then it means that the genealogies have gaps which can exceed thousands of generations (if we attempt to harmonize the Bible with science). If that is true, then these genealogies have no meaning and we have to question why they are even part of scripture.[32] What would be the point of mentioning a genealogy which separates two people by hundreds or thousands of generations?

        Second, the context of the genealogies indicates that nothing other than a literal father-son relationship is implied. As “Answers in Genesis” points out:

        “…additional biographical information in Genesis 5 and 11 strongly supports the view that there are no gaps in these chapters. So we know for certain that the following are literal father/son relationships: Adam/Seth, Seth/Enosh, Lamech/Noah, Noah/Shem, Eber/Peleg, and Terah/Abram. Nothing in these chapters indicates that the “X begat Y” means something other than a literal father/son relationship.”[33]

        Put schematically, we can see that from Adam to Shem in the Genesis 5 genealogy, six of the eleven names mentioned are clearly linked in literal father-son relationships:

        Adam–Seth–Enosh-Kenan-Mahalel-Jared-Enoch-Methusaleh-Lamech–Noah–Shem

        Thus, why would we assume that the other five names are also not linked by the same relationships? In fact, the New Testament helps us to lock in Kenan, Mahalel, Jared and Enoch in literal father-son relationships as well.[34] According to Jude 1:14, Enoch was the “seventh from Adam”:

        “Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about them: “See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones…”

        If Enoch was the “seventh from Adam”, it means he was Adam’s great-great-great-great-grandson, which makes Jared the great-great-great-grandson and so on. Therefore, ten of the eleven names are now linked, with only Methuselah left:

        Adam (1)–Seth (2)–Enosh (3)–Kenan (4)–Mahalel (5)–Jared (6)–Enoch (7)-Methusaleh-Lamech–Noah–Shem

        Keeping the “ancestor-descendant” argument in mind, there is nothing outside of Genesis 5 which clearly links Methuselah as Enoch’s literal son, even though he is mentioned in other genealogies as the son of Enoch (and that is all the context really allows).[35] Nevertheless, it is clear that the other names are all part of literal father-son relationships and not “ancestor-descendant” relationships, and thus, Enoch and Methusaleh should be no different. Now let us look at the genealogy in Genesis 11.

        The genealogy goes like this:

        Shem-Arphaxad-Shelah-Eber-Peleg-Reu-Serug-Nahor-Terah-Abraham

        We already know that Eber/Peleg and Terah/Abraham have literal father-son relationships. That leaves six names unaccounted for. Yet, we can also add Shem and Arphaxad because it is clear that Shem was the father of Arphaxad and not his “ancestor”, as is clear from Genesis 11:10, which states that Shem “fathered” Arphaxad only two years after the flood:

        “This is the account of Shem’s family line. Two years after the flood, when Shem was 100 years old, he became the father of Arphaxad.”

        Hence, six of the ten names are now linked:

        Shem–Arphaxad-Shelah-Eber–Peleg-Reu-Serug-Nahor-Terah–Abraham

        But Shelah can certainly be added since it would not make sense to place a distant “ancestor” between Arphaxad and Eber. Indeed, why would we assume that Shelah was perhaps only a distant “ancestor” of Eber or that Reu was a distant “descendant” of Peleg? Similarly, why would we assume that the other three are also not linked? Clearly, there is no rhyme or reason to claiming that “ab” and “ben” had any other meaning other than as literal “father” and “son”, respectively. Indeed, out of the twenty names mentioned in Genesis 5 and 11, from Adam to Abraham, sixteen can be undoubtedly linked. Based on this undeniable proof, the only reasonable conclusion is that when we add the number of years together in these genealogies, we can calculate the age of the earth as being around 6,000 years.

        Earth –

        In our discussion of the Creation account in Genesis, the creation of Earth played a prominent role. In this section, we will discuss some other statements in the Bible about Earth itself which cannot be reconciled with science.

        First, one of the most recognized stories in the Bible is that of Noah, the ark and the flood. It is well-known that Genesis mentions a global and catastrophic flood which wiped out all living things except for a few people on the ark and the animals that had been brought on board.[36] Since we can reasonably date the flood to around 2100-2300 BC,[37] it should be easy to find evidence of this event in the geological record and we should also have a veritable treasure-trove of the remains of animals which perished in the flood. Unfortunately, there is no evidence in the fossil record of a relatively recent mass extinction on the likes of that caused by the Biblical flood. Indeed, the flood was so destructive that only a few animals of each species were spared. Yet even the largest mass extinctions acknowledged by scientists did not approach the destructiveness of the flood. One such event was the Permian-Triassic mass extinction. According to established scientific facts, the late Permian period:

        “…saw the extinction of 96 percent of marine species, 70 percent of terrestrial vertebrate species, and 83 percent of insect genera.”[38]

        Surely, if there had been a mass die-off only 4,300 years ago, there would be clear evidence for it.

        Another conflict between the Bible’s description of Earth and established scientific principles is in its shape. It was a common belief in ancient times that the Earth was actually flat and evidence for a flat Earth can be seen in a few places in the Bible. Of course, we now know that it is in fact round. It should be noted, however, that the Bible does not literally say “the Earth is flat”. Rather, it alludes to it. For example, Isaiah 11:12 states:

        “He will raise a banner for the nations and gather the exiles of Israel; he will assemble the scattered people of Judah from the four quarters of the earth.”

        The New International Version uses the phrase “four quarters of the earth” though the more correct translation is “four corners of the earth” which strongly alludes to a flat shape.[39] After all, a round object does not have “corners”.[40] Since there are four corners, the allusion is to a flat shape like a square or rectangle.

        It may be argued that the “four corners of the earth” are just metaphorical, though there is no evidence to suggest that. But then what about Matthew 4:8, which claims:

        “Again, the devil took [Jesus] to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor.”

        This is perhaps the clearest example of a flat Earth in the Bible, for if the devil had to take Jesus to a “very high mountain” in order to show him “all the kingdoms of the world”, it implies the author’s belief that the Earth was flat. Why else did Satan take Jesus to the mountain? The text also suggests that these “kingdoms” were clearly visible.

        Zoology –

        We saw previously how the Bible provided an erroneous account of the beginning of animal life. In this section, we will discuss specific examples of zoological errors, regarding certain Biblical descriptions and observations about animals.

        Our first example is Genesis 1:30, which claims that all animals were given green plants for food. In other words, all animals were originally herbivores. Yet this claim is scientifically inaccurate as certain animals cannot survive on plants. Instead, they need to eat other animals to thrive. These animals are known as “obligate carnivores”, as an article in the “National Geographic” explains:

        “Some carnivores, called obligate carnivores, depend only on meat for survival. Their bodies cannot digest plants properly. Plants do not provide enough nutrients for obligate carnivores. All cats, from small house cats to huge tigers, are obligate carnivores.”[41]

        It would also be absurd to claim that an animal like Tyrannosaurus rex, one of the most fearsome carnivores in the history of life on Earth, was originally an herbivore. Thus, the Biblical claim that all animals were originally herbivores is erroneous.

        Our second example is James 3:7, which states:

        “All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.”[42]

        While this is obviously a parable, it clearly utilizes a faulty argument since never have all “kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures” been “tamed” by mankind. As Jason Long observes:

        “Like the earlier writers, [the author of] James probably never ventured too far outside of Mesopotamia. If he had taken the time to make this journey, he would have eventually realized that there were other animals to be discovered, let alone tamed. James’ premature proclamation hardly seems consistent with what I would consider a divinely inspired statement.”[43]

        It is simply incorrect for the author of “James” to have claimed that mankind has tamed all animals or was in the process of doing so. Even those animals which have been tamed are related to animals which have not been tamed. For example, house cats have been domesticated by humans. However, there are some species of cats, such as lions and tigers, which have not been tamed. In fact, scientists recently captured video footage of a rare species of wild cats that lives in Borneo. This species, known as the Bornean marbled cat, is endangered and is rarely seen by humans.[44] It would be inaccurate to claim that this animal has been tamed by mankind.

        The author of “James” even included “sea creatures” in his impressive list of “tamed” animals, but as Long observed, there were plenty of animals yet to be discovered. Hence, how could they have been tamed? As an example, we can consider the sheer abundance of sea life. Incredibly, in 2012, scientists announced the discovery of 1.5 million new species in the world’s oceans![45] Since these new and wonderful animals have just been discovered, how can anyone claim that they have been “tamed”?[46]

        Another strange zoological claim made in the Bible concerns an animal known as the “leviathan”.[47] Among the fantastical descriptions about this unknown animal are the following:

        “Its snorting throws out flashes of light; its eyes are like the rays of dawn. Flames stream from its mouth; sparks of fire shoot out. Smoke pours from its nostrils as from a boiling pot over burning reeds. Its breath sets coals ablaze, and flames dart from its mouth.”[48]

        Even though these descriptions appear to be symbolical, it is obvious that they do not describe any known animal, whether extinct or alive. No evidence for it has even been catalogued. Moreover, the “leviathan” apparently breathed fire, and no animal in existence, living or dead, could breathe fire. The only animals that clearly resemble the “leviathan” are dragons, which of course, are nothing but myths.

        As a final example of inaccurate Biblical zoology, let us examine the following:

        “May they be like a slug that melts away as it moves along, like a stillborn child that never sees the sun.”[57]

        Regarding the meaning of the word “melts”, Rashi stated:

        “…it continuously melts. תֶּמֶס is a noun, the “mem” being the fundamental radical and the “tav” a defective radical, like the “tav” of (Lev. 20:12)…””[58]

        We can see that, according to the author of this psalm, snails/slugs “melt” as they move. To an ancient Hebrew, that would certainly have been a logical observation to make. The reality, however, is that snails and slugs secrete mucus to help facilitate movement and adhesion.[59] In fact, it also helps to protect the animal from sharp surfaces.[60] Hence, snail slime is actually a remarkable adaptation and has nothing to do with “melting”.

        Of course, Christian apologists have tried to deny that this is a scientific error. The apologetic website “Tektonics” has claimed the following:

        “The Hebrew word here is temec, and this is the only place where it appears in the Bible. The main meaning here is liquefaction, with a root in a word referring to dissolution. All agree that slugs and snails leave a trail behind as they move — this is not something that is hard to observe or unknown. And of course, it is obvious that this liquid comes from their own bodies — and presumably, especially in a hot, desert climate like Palestine’s, a snail that doesn’t find a source of moisture to replenish itself is going to eventually shrivel away: hence the comparison to the “untimely birth of a woman.”

        For this objection to work, it would have to be assumed that temec means “dissolve” in the sense that snow, for example, melts — but there is no point of comparison, and no reason why this word cannot refer to the dehydration process we describe.”[61]

        Not only is this argument regarding the meaning of the Hebrew word completely false, but so is the zoological argument regarding the purpose of the so-called “liquid”. The author of this apologetic article is completely ignorant about what the “liquid” is. It has nothing to do with “dehydration”, as shown above. It is a natural adaptation in snails and slugs which aids in movement and sticking to vertical surfaces, as well as for protection. In fact, slime also helps to protect snails and slugs from dehydration and is not the result of it.[62]

        Botany –

        In this final section of our analysis, we will discuss some examples of Biblical errors regarding botany.

        First, let us consider Genesis 1:29-30, which states:

        “Then God said, ‘I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.’ And it was so.”

        The problem with this verse is that there are many seed-bearing plants which are toxic and will cause death if ingested. An example is the castor bean plant. It contains the poisonous substance ricin, which according to Coopman et al.:

        “…is considered as one of the most toxic natural poisons.”[63]

        So, how could God have given humans and animals all seed-bearing plants for food if many of them would have been toxic?

        Another example of a botanic error can be found in Mark 4:30-32:

        “Again he said, “What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth. Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.””

        The claim that the mustard seed is the smallest of all seeds is contradicted by the evidence. According to W.P. Armstrong of Palomar College, the smallest seeds on Earth are actually orchid seeds:

        “Without any doubt, the orchids have the record for smallest seeds. The seeds of some species are no larger than fungal spores and occur in a loose cellular sheath.”[64]

        In fact, mustard seeds are not even the second smallest seeds. Poppy seeds and Wolffia seeds are also smaller.[65]

        https://quranandbibleblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/science-in-the-bible-and-the-quran/

        Like

    • Ken, the article is not about Islam. Care to comment on the issues it raises?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. George Knight’s scholarly commentary on the Pastoral Epistles. (scholarly and with faith )

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  3. page 84 of Towner’s commentary:

    “the majority view (pseudonymity in one permutation or another) assumes a historical reconstruction (a ‘construal’, in Johnson’s language) that remains largely hypothetical at numerous critical junctures and has yet to address adequately numerous methodological questions.”

    Bottom line, most of the scholars you like to emphasize are posing hypothetical guesses and theories without much evidence.

    Differences in vocabulary and style are understandable when the subject matter is so different from the other letters; and if Luke is helping Paul write it, then that is also a legitimate factor.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This is a good depiction of how Satan’s temptation of Jesus may have happened. (showing Jesus a vision in the sky – like a movie screen) (from Luke’s version in Luke chapter 4)
    Matthew and Luke together communicate a general idea, the words in Matthew are not to be take woodenly.
    Satan showed Jesus a vision of the kingdoms of the world. the Bible uses hyperbole also, as in Colossians 1:6; 1:23 and Acts 2:5

    Liked by 1 person

    • R. T. France, in his commentary on Matthew, a conservative scholar that even Paul Williams has used in the past to make a point, notes that the “transportation is not physical but visionary” . . . see further the visionary visit of Ezekiel to Jerusalem when in fact he was in Babylon.” (Ezekiel 8:1-3; 11:24)

      Commentary on The Gospel according to Matthew, page 131-132

      Liked by 1 person

    • I recall this question about that incident reported in the gospels!

      Like

    • Ugh, I already refuted this claim.

      1. First, it is widely believed that Luke was a Gentile, most likely a Greek physician.

      2. Luke’s version of Jesus’ temptation differs from Matthew by the addition of the phrase “in an instant” but also in the latter’s choice of the word for “world”. Whereas Matthew used the word “kosmos”, Luke used the word “oikoumenē”. While this word can mean the whole world as well, it is interesting that it was often used by Greek writers to refer to the land inhabited by the Greeks or to the Roman Empire. See Thayer’s Lexicon: https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G3625&t=KJV. Strong’s Definitions also notes that it was usually used to refer to the Roman Empire by Greek writers:

      “οἰκουμένη oikouménē, oy-kou-men’-ay; feminine participle present passive of G3611 (as noun, by implication, of G1093); land, i.e. the (terrene part of the) globe; specially, the Roman empire:—earth, world.”

      So did Luke really mean the whole world or just the Roman Empire? It is an intriguing possibility that he could have meant the latter. Why does this matter? Since he was an educated Greek physician, he would probably not have believed in a flat earth to begin with. This would explain his choice of words. In fact, Luke used “oikoumenē” three times in the gospel (2:1, 4:5, 21:26), whereas Matthew used it only once (24:14). In contrast, Luke used “kosmos” three times (9:25, 11:50, 12:30), whereas Matthew used it 9 times. Also, Luke is considered to also be the author of Acts, and there he used “oikoumenē” 5 times, but “kosmos” is used 0 times.

      3. Given Luke’s education, it also explains his addition of the phrase “in an instant”. He still has the devil take Jesus to a high mountain, but the use of the phrase “in an instant” is Luke’s own addition. It is accepted that Luke wrote after Matthew, so either Luke used Matthew as a source or they were both relying on a similar third-party (perhaps an oral tradition). Either way, Matthew never used the phrase “in an instant”, so appealing to Luke changes nothing. Matthew’s flat earth remains. Perhaps Luke was trying correct the blunder, especially given his audience which was supposed to be an educated Gentile class. We see this many times when comparing the Synoptic gospels. For example, Luke mysteriously omitted the story of the Gentile woman begging Jesus to help her daughter. Why would he do that? Given his audience, a possible motive could have been to not offend them with such a story.

      Like

    • “R. T. France, in his commentary on Matthew, a conservative scholar that even Paul Williams has used in the past to make a point, notes that the “transportation is not physical but visionary” . . . see further the visionary visit of Ezekiel to Jerusalem when in fact he was in Babylon.” (Ezekiel 8:1-3; 11:24)

      Commentary on The Gospel according to Matthew, page 131-132”

      LOL!!! So what does that prove? That a “conservative scholar” wants to avoid the clear reference to a flat earth out of embarrassment? Why would Jesus and the devil need to go to a “very high mountain” in order to have this “vision”? Why couldn’t the “vision” happen on the ground? Jesus could have even simply had a “dream” like Nebuchadnezzar:

      “I looked, and there before me stood a tree in the middle of the land. Its height was enormous. 11 The tree grew large and strong and its top touched the sky; it was visible to the ends of the earth.” (Daniel 4:10-11)

      Like

      • Why would Jesus and the devil need to go to a “very high mountain” in order to have this “vision”?

        The problem with your argumentation, Faiz, and this is a big problem with many Muslims I have noticed over the years (since 1983, when I first started reaching to Muslims in evangelism and discussions), is that you (and many) assume that this was a “need”, rather than just reporting on a historical event. The text does not say that the devil “needed” to take Jesus up on a high mountain or that that was necessary for the vision to take place. Muslims tend to say lots of statements with the word “need” in there, in trying to refute Christian truth.

        Sometimes the words for Kosmos and οἰκουμένη oikouménē, are interchangable. You are making arguments from dictionary entries without a deeper knowledge of context and hyperbole, etc.

        Colossians 1:6 and 1:23 and Acts 2:5 are hyperbole – “all over the world” does not mean literally – rather it is a general statement.

        Like

      • The problem with your argumentation, Ken, and this is a big problem with many Christians I have noticed over the years, is that you (and many) assume that this was “reporting on a historical event” rather than just a made-up story. Matthew said nothing about any “vision” (and neither does Luke). This is just an assumption that Christians have invented to avoid the literal meaning. The very fact that Luke changed the story slightly shows that there is very little in terms of “historical” fact and more in terms of myth-making. Christians tend to say lots of statements in assuming “Christian truth” (when it is actually more likely just a myth), something they do would never extend to any other religion.

        The word “kosmos” meant the whole earth, whereas “oikoumene” could mean the whole earth or more specifically the lands of the Roman Empire. This has already been explained. Also, another word that Matthew could have used was “ge” which can simply mean the land and not necessarily the whole earth. Matthew chose to use “kosmos” instead. He said that the devil took your savior to the mountain and showed him the kingdoms. A “vision” is not implied.

        You are committing a semantic fallacy, instead of looking at the actual context. The context shows that Matthew had the whole word in mind. Get over it. Do you really think it was “hyperbole” for the devil to offer “all the kingdoms of the world” to your savior, whom you believe created the ENTIRE universe?!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. “He said that the devil took your savior to the mountain and showed him the kingdoms. A “vision” is not implied.”

    Why is a vision, in your opinion, not implied?

    ” Why couldn’t the “vision” happen on the ground?”

    If the vision was a large picture cast on to the ground it would have been difficult to view it from the ground. It would have made sense to view it from a higher elevation.

    ” Jesus could have even simply had a “dream” like Nebuchadnezzar:”

    So what?

    Like

    • “Why is a vision, in your opinion, not implied?”

      Um, because there is nothing in the text to suggest that? They went to a “very tall mountain” and the devil offered “all the kingdoms of the world”. Being at the top of the mountain apparently allowed a fantastic view of all these kingdoms. There is nothing implying a vision. You just want that to be true because the alternative is inconvenient and embarrassing.

      “If the vision was a large picture cast on to the ground it would have been difficult to view it from the ground. It would have made sense to view it from a higher elevation.”

      LOL!! And seeing the kingdoms in real-time would also have been difficult to see from the ground, wouldn’t they? Hence, they went to the mountain.

      Nebuchadnezzar had a “dream” where he saw the large tree. He was able to see its leaves despite not being at the top. He was simply standing in front of the tree as it grew. Obviously, a dream or vision does not require one to be physically able to see. That’s why it’s a vision.

      So if what the devil showed to Jesus was merely a “vision”, going to the top of the mountain would have been unnecessary.

      Like

  6. My own view, for what it is worth, is that Jesus saw something like a movie with the flat desert plain as a kind of giant screen.

    We all believe in the supernatural do we not?

    Like

  7. “LOL!! And seeing the kingdoms in real-time would also have been difficult to see from the ground, wouldn’t they? Hence, they went to the mountain.”

    Yes, depending on the size of the image being projected.

    Assuming for arguments sake that the earth was flat you would not see anything in any detail from the top of the mountain. All you would see would be a large expanse of the earths surface.

    This does not correspond to the description that the evangelists give of what Jesus saw.

    Faiz fails again.

    Like

    • Ignroamus fails again…in more ways than one!

      “Yes, depending on the size of the image being projected.”

      “Projected”? Your bias aside, there is nothing in the text about any “projection”. The reason for going to the mountain was precisely so that all the kingdoms could be seen with the eye.

      “Assuming for arguments sake that the earth was flat you would not see anything in any detail from the top of the mountain. All you would see would be a large expanse of the earths surface.”

      You would see the land full of villages and buildings, and of course the land itself. You are trying to insert your a priori knowledge which Matthew did not have. He didn’t have the luxury of modern science that you and I have.

      “This does not correspond to the description that the evangelists give of what Jesus saw.”

      Except that they did! LOL!!

      “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.

      The kingdoms and their “glory” could be seen from the top of the mountain. That is why, in Matthew’s mind, the devil and Jesus had to go to the mountain. Iggy fails again.

      Like

      • “You would see the land full of villages and buildings, and of course the land itself.”

        That is not the kingdoms and their glory. So there had to be something more and this was under the control of Satan, which would not be the case if Jesus was just looking at the landscape in his own time:

        And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.

        Faiz fails again.

        Like

      • Iggy keeps failing!

        “That is not the kingdoms and their glory. So there had to be something more and this was under the control of Satan, which would not be the case if Jesus was just looking at the landscape in his own time:”

        What on your flat earth are you talking about? 😉

        Matthew says that the devil took your mangod to the top of the mountain and showed him all the kingdoms and their glory. What else does “glory” mean other than the vast expanse of territory?

        Again, if it was just a vision, why couldn’t the devil just do it from the ground, like Nebuchadnezzar’s vision of the tree? He saw it from the ground. Why did your mangod need to go to a mountain and magically see the kingdoms?

        “And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.”

        Oy vei. That’s Luke’s version, you silly goose. Matthew didn’t say that. Why are you ignoring him?

        “Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;”

        See? Nothing about “in a moment of time”. Luke was trying to clean up Matthew’s mess.

        Iggy fails again.

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  8. “https://quranandbibleblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/science-in-the-bible-and-the-quran/”

    Faiz makes common cause with atheist “science” so they can bash the bible together.

    The quran can only hide behind vague generalities when it comes to creation.

    Like

    • Aww, I know, I know. It hurts to see the Bible smashed under the weight of facts.

      Hmm, but I don’t see any actual response, just idiotic and vague ramblings. Iggy at his best!

      It’s not “atheist” science, stupid. The age of the Earth is a fact. You can be atheist or theist. The age of the Earth is still what it is. The same applies to the other facts I mentioned, which your Bible contradicts. And I explained why the same contradictions with science do not apply to the Quran. Iggy fails again.

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      • “The age of the Earth is a fact. You can be atheist or theist. The age of the Earth is still what it is.”

        Wow, are you a phd? Or too much head banging?

        Like

      • Again no response? Am I going way over your head? Do you have any actual rebuttal or are you going to keep making an idiot of yourself?

        What is the age of the Earth, Iggy?

        Like

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