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Reddit mentions of Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why

Sentiment score: 42
Reddit mentions: 119

We found 119 Reddit mentions of Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why. Here are the top ones.

Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why
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Found 119 comments on Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why:

u/US_Hiker · 61 pointsr/atheism

1 - Mostly correct. There aren't many details of the crucifixion, and I wouldn't expect there to be (relatively common practice then, most would know what was entailed). Not a big deal either way though.

2 - Wrong.

3 - Almost entirely wrong. Much misrepresentation of the Bible and Xtian theology.

4 - Lots of wrong.

5 - big whoop.

6 - The broad overview is correct in that the Rapture as we think of it today and the emphasis on it is a fairly modern concept. Decent bit wrong otherwise.

7 - Last paragraph is reasonable...our modern conception of Satan is definitely different than the Church Fathers/etc. Lots of wrong in here though.

8 - Largely correct. Popular ideas about these things go far beyond the sparse details in the Bible and even in earlier Christian theology.

9 - The title is debatable (you can interpret Revelation to mean almost anything you want). Most of the rest is entirely bullshit.

10 - The title is correct. The rest of the section rapidly starts to fall down. While I haven't read Ehrman (don't have any of his books, and none @ local libraries), I think his quotes are being made too much of. Yes, there is a huge amount of variance between manuscripts. There is still in the eyes of interpreters and theologians a relatively good consensus as to what the NT is. Sure, we don't have the earliest manuscripts, and there are many problems, but the situation is nowhere near as dire as the blogger states.

Edit to add to 10: Here is a link to Ehrman's book. From the synopsis and reviews, it would appear his quotes are being used in support of a conclusion he would disagree with.

u/iCanon · 22 pointsr/atheism

Don't suggest a book you haven't read. If you pick your books you should read them first then give them to your mom. I recommend two books in this order. First, Second.

u/[deleted] · 21 pointsr/atheism

>I think it's pretty naive to just blithely assert

Well, sure, I was pretty casual (blithe) about it, but what's that got to do with naivety? You seem to be basing that on an appeal to popularity fallacy - which still doesn't make sense. That might make it arrogant or conceited, but not naive.

Splitting hairs aside, this acedemia you speak of; I feel you need to be more specific. A medical doctor is a scientist, but you wouldn't count the good Dr.'s opinion on climatology. What's the opinion among non-religious archeologists and historians? They would have to be non-religious otherwise they would be too likely to approach their analysis of the data from the pre-determined position that Jesus existed as the bible describes.

>It would be really fucking hard to build a religious cult around a non-existent person, not impossible just really fucking hard

Not that hard. It's been done, a lot (Scientology's Zenu comes to mind). Plus, even when it is based on a real person who actually existed, the character this person is described as never actually exists. It's just a regular guy.

>Do you have a good argument for his non-existence?

Getting into burden of proof territory here. I don't think I have to prove he didn't exist. Default position is non existence until it has been proven. I think there's not enough evidence to prove it and plenty of evidence to further doubt it. There is a lot of interesting historical and archelogical work that has been done on the Roman empire. You're never going to get an incontravertible yes he existed or no he didn't. It involves putting a lot of clues together. It's virtually certain the entire birth story was not only made up but plagiarised from other religions. Many of the facets of that story have been proven false. Then there's a huge gap and he suddenly turns up on the scene aged 30, performing miracles that have, once again, been plagiarised from other religions.

I'd suggest reading the following and deciding for yourself:
Book - Misquoting Jesus
Book - Caesars-Messiah
Wiki - Christ_myth_theory

There are literally dozens of books written on this. You could also try this website: http://www.jesusneverexisted.com/

u/WastedP0tential · 20 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist

You wanted to be part of the intelligentsia, but throughout your philosophical journey, you always based your convictions only on authority and tradition instead of on evidence and arguments. Don't you realize that this is the epitome of anti – intellectualism?

It is correct that the New Atheists aren't the pinnacle of atheistic thought and didn't contribute many new ideas to the academic debate of atheism vs. theism or religion. But this was never their goal, and it is also unnecessary, since the academic debate is already over for many decades. If you want to know why the arguments for theism are all complete nonsense and not taken seriously anymore, why Christianity is wrong just about everything and why apologists like Craig are dishonest charlatans who make a living out of fooling people, your reading list shouldn't be New Atheists, but rather something like this:

Colin Howson – Objecting to God

George H. Smith – Atheism: The Case Against God

Graham Oppy – Arguing about Gods

Graham Oppy – The Best Argument Against God

Herman Philipse – God in the Age of Science

J. L. Mackie – The Miracle of Theism

J. L. Schellenberg – The Wisdom to Doubt

Jordan Sobel – Logic and Theism

Nicholas Everitt – The Non-Existence of God

Richard Gale – On the Nature and Existence of God

Robin Le Poidevin – Arguing for Atheism

Stewart Elliott Guthrie – Faces in the Clouds: A New Theory of Religion

Theodore Drange – Nonbelief & Evil

[Avigor Shinan – From Gods to God: How the Bible Debunked, Suppressed, or Changed Ancient Myths and Legends] (http://www.amazon.com/dp/0827609086)

Bart Ehrman – The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings

Bart Ehrman – Jesus, Interrupted

Bart Ehrman – Misquoting Jesus

Burton L. Mack – Who Wrote the New Testament?

Helmut Koester – Ancient Christian Gospels

John Barton, John Muddiman – The Oxford Bible Commentary

John Dominic Crossan – Jesus: A Revolutionary Biography

Karen Armstrong – A History of God

Mark Smith – The Early History of God

Randel McCraw Helms – Who Wrote the Gospels?

Richard Elliott Friedman – Who Wrote the Bible?

Robert Bellah – Religion in Human Evolution: From the Paleolithic to the Axial Age

Robert Walter Funk – The Gospel of Jesus

u/OtherWisdom · 12 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

> There are other reasons for suspecting that Jesus’s prayer of forgiveness is original to Luke 23. Throughout both Luke and Acts, for example, it is emphasized that even though Jesus was innocent (as were his followers), those who acted against him did so in ignorance. As Peter says in Acts 3: “I know that you acted in ignorance” (v. 17); or as Paul says in Acts 17: “God has overlooked the times of ignorance” (v. 27). And that is precisely the note struck in Jesus’s prayer: “for they don’t know what they are doing.”

> It appears, then, that Luke 23:34 was part of Luke’s original text. Why, though, would a scribe (or a number of scribes) have wanted to delete it? Here is where understanding something about the historical context within which scribes were working becomes crucial. Readers today may wonder for whom Jesus is praying. Is it for the Romans who are executing him in ignorance? Or is it for the Jews who are responsible for turning him over to the Romans in the first place? However we might answer that question in trying to interpret the passage today, it is clear how it was interpreted in the early church. In almost every instance in which the prayer is discussed in the writings of the church fathers, it is clear that they interpreted the prayer as being uttered not on behalf of the Romans but on behalf of the Jews. Jesus was asking God to forgive the Jewish people (or the Jewish leaders) who were responsible for his death.

> Now it becomes clear why some scribes would have wanted to omit the verse. Jesus prayed for the forgiveness of the Jews? How could that be? For early Christians there were, in fact, two problems with the verse, taken in this way. First, they reasoned, why would Jesus pray for forgiveness for this recalcitrant people who had willfully rejected God himself? That was scarcely conceivable to many Christians. Even more telling, by the second century many Christians were convinced that God had not forgiven the Jews because, as mentioned earlier, they believed that he had allowed Jerusalem to be destroyed as a punishment for the Jews in killing Jesus. As the church father Origen said: “It was right that the city in which Jesus underwent such sufferings should be completely destroyed, and that the Jewish nation be overthrown” (Against Celsus 4, 22).

> The Jews knew full well what they were doing, and God obviously had not forgiven them. From this point of view, it made little sense for Jesus to ask for forgiveness for them, when no forgiveness was forthcoming. What were scribes to do with this text, then, in which Jesus prayed, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing”? They dealt with the problem simply by excising the text, so that Jesus no longer asked that they be forgiven.

u/YoungModern · 11 pointsr/exmormon

Reza Aslan is a fraud posing as a scholar and cannot be trusted. Anyone wanting to read authentic scholarship should read Bart Ehrman.

u/the_sleep_of_reason · 11 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist

Why should I believe a random Quora answer instead of a Yale Professor, or an actual textual critic?

u/recnvv · 11 pointsr/IAmA

> that is, the fact that the Bible has remained unchanged throughout the years

"Fact" - not at all. This isn't true. See Bart Ehrman's Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why

There have been errors introduced into the Bible by scribes copying it incorrectly.

Furthermore the Dead Sea Scrolls aren't much better:

>The scrolls are also important because they have enabled scholars to gather an immense amount of information about how the Bible was written and how it was transmitted from generation to generation. In many cases the scrolls show a remarkable similarity to the text of the Hebrew Bible currently in use. In some cases differences between the scrolls and the traditional Hebrew text help explain difficulties in the present Hebrew Bible, and most modern translations of the Bible (such as the NIV) incorporate some of the new information from the scrolls.

The Nag Hammadi find also casts some doubts on the idea of a unified Christian message and theology in the early years after Jesus was crucified. There is a lot scholoraly historical work on the differences betweeen various forms of Christianity from the 1st and 2nd century.

So there were a lot more Gospels, they just didn't make it into the Bible. The Christian Bible you see today was basically established by the early Roman Church. This particular form of Christianity was state sanctioned and thus other forms were driven out, if not outright persecuted.

u/Iamstuckathope · 10 pointsr/exmormon

I'm no scholar, of course, but it seems like the majority of scholars believe that a man named Jesus existed in the first century C.E. and that he caused some trouble. Some of the New Testament (parts of Mark specifically) may be credible, but much of what we know about Jesus is myth. Pretty much everything written about him was written long after he died. The writings of Paul are some of the earliest Christian writings, and those don't go into much detail about Jesus.

I would recommend reading the book "Misquoting Jesus" if you are interested.

u/AreUCryptofascist · 10 pointsr/atheism

How do you know it recorded a ministry of any person, period?

Do you have proof of this alleged characters death, burial, and resurrection? If not, I assert Rand Al'Thor as the avatar of the creator.

u/sleepygeeks · 9 pointsr/exmormon

Most of it came from classes and lectures. I don't have the class book list and sources anymore. I do hope you really, really like reading!

Forged writingss

Misquoting Jesus A well known book.

Introduction to the new testiment

The new testament: a historical intoduction

Revelation and the End of All Things Also a somewhat popular book

You can also do some Wikipedia reading on Gnosticism and other early Christen sects to get an idea of just how many groups their were and how differing their beliefs could be. Also look for things on the Q, M and L source.


You can likely find a number of online pod-casts (or whatever you call them) and lectures on these things.

I am not a historian so my access to books and memorized sources is very limited, I am a student and have been accused of reading serial boxes at least once when I accidentally quoted the wrong book name, It was too much fun to make the correction as no one had ever said that too me before and I felt special, like I had hit an academic milestone.

Also, Don't feel bad about asking for sources.

u/plaitedlight · 9 pointsr/exchristian

It seems likely that the original authors were recording the existing mythos of their people, and the myths were used in their society like myths are used in every society: to explain and give meaning to a world they didn't understand, to provide a cohesive narrative for the group, to pass along and reinforce values. I have found learning just a little about the common mythologies of the world extremely interesting and helpful in putting the bible into correct perspective. Like, how many times a flood myth pops up and the different interactions between the diving and humanity in those stories.

You might enjoy Bart Ehrman's writing on the new testament and Jesus as he explores the story of Jesus, who wrote, changed and codified it and why, and how it became a religion.

Jesus Before the Gospels: How the Earliest Christians Remembered, Changed, and Invented Their Stories of the Savior

Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why

Forged: Writing in the Name of God--Why the Bible's Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are

u/doosjoos · 7 pointsr/exchristian

Maybe you could try showing that the Bible really isn't a reliable document in the first place. I'm currently reading Bart Ehrman's Misquoting Jesus which is opening my eyes to the problems with the accuracy of the text in the New Testament.

For example, the story of the woman caught in adultery in John 8 is not found in early manuscripts of John and was most likely added at a later date. If your family believes in the inerrancy of the Bible, it makes it hard to explain why something added by a scribe later should be counted as scripture. And if part of it has a dubious textual past, it calls into question the rest of it.

u/shady_mcgee · 7 pointsr/history

Most of my knowledge comes from Misquoting Jesus, and Lost Christianities and a bit of resultant self study. Unfortunately my copies are out on loan right now so I can't pull out and direct examples. In lieu of that I did find some examples of changes/omissions between different branches of copies.

There's an entire field of study which seeks to discern the original from all of the different copies. It's my understanding that the result of this work has been the elimination of most of the copy errors which occurred after ~300AD or so, but as /u/TheIceCreamPirate states, we don't have any complete copies, and very few fragments, of the gospels prior to then, so any errors which would have been introduced prior to that time are hidden from us.

u/astroNerf · 6 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist

So... that's a yes.

The problem is that scripture is often wrong or inaccurate. It also contradicts itself in numerous places.

If you are willing to have your view on this changed (I suspect you don't) check out Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman. Ehrman has a video talk by the same name here, if you're interested. If you're going to use the bible as the ultimate authority for your knowledge, you should at least hear what scholars have to say about the history of the bible as a collection of documents - who edited them, when, and why.

u/pianomancuber · 6 pointsr/exchristian

The Dead Sea Scrolls actually show that early Christians were very un-methodical in translation accuracy. I can pull sources when I get home, but the dead sea scrolls were in fact being produced by scribes in the process of copying and intentionally altering the text. Also they are just one of many hundreds of documents we've discovered. Even if they were somehow 100% like our modern Torah, the other hundreds which contain deliberate and huge negligent modifications show that in most cases they were not concerned with preserving the text's accuracy.

Early Christians commonly altered text on purpose, to support their own agendas. I really recommend you read some literary criticism of the Bible, like that of Ehrman. Certainly the vast majority of changes were of no theological significance--spelling errors, missed lines, etc--even though sometimes those innocent changes caused later scribes to misunderstand the text and then modify it even more in effort to "fix" it.

As just one example off the top of my google, John 8:3-11 is entirely a fabrication added by older scribes.

u/George_Glass · 6 pointsr/atheism

> I believe the New Testament is literal

I think you might enjoy Misquoting Jesus.

u/sp1ke0kill3r · 6 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

Bart D Ehrman Misquoting Jesus and Jesus Interrupted would be a valuable place to start.
There are also some videos on youtube of related lectures or debates.

Edit, I would add Dale Allison's book, The Historical Christ and the Theological Jesus.

u/xyzerb · 5 pointsr/todayilearned

If you're interested in reading more about how the Bible changed over time, read Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why.

It's a little on the dry side, but it's not a rant, and if you're unfamiliar with textual criticism, you may find it interesting on that point alone.

For example, while some stories sound very "Christ-like", the story of the good Samaritan doesn't appear in any of the earliest versions of the New Testament--it was added by monks hundreds of years afterwards.

Fascinating material if you have an open mind.

u/Norenzayan · 5 pointsr/exmormon

If she's interested in books, Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman really dismantled my belief in the veracity of the New Testament. I haven't read his other books but I've heard they're good. Also, Mormon Stories has a really interesting series on the New Testament featuring religious academic Jared Anderson.

She might want to check out the New Order Mormon board for a safe place to ask questions. It might feel less threatening than this sub.

u/regypt · 5 pointsr/TrueAtheism

The book you're looking for is "Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why"

I'm about 70% though it and it's been a great read. It's thick reading, but super interesting.


Free (legal?) ebook links here: https://archive.org/details/Prof.BartEhrman-MisquotingJesus

u/verveinloveland · 5 pointsr/DebateAChristian

Yep, I recommend misquoting jesus. It talks in depth about the translation issues in the Bible.


u/jpguitfiddler · 5 pointsr/todayilearned

> Its kind of like how Jesus' apostles wrote the New Testament.

No they didn't. None of the gospels are eye-witness accounts of Jesus' life, and, they are all written in Greek and not in the native tongues of anyone who met and followed Jesus. Here's a good read..

u/DeusExCochina · 5 pointsr/atheism

No answers yet?

Many of the atheists here agree on Bart Ehrman as a good source. He's a Bible scholar who used to be Christian but whose studies have left him an atheist. He's written a whole series of books about how the Bible was cobbled together and, self-plagiarized, forged and fiddled, and so on. There's a field or method of study called critical analysis that makes the Bible's authenticity problems apparent, and Ehrman writes that stuff into popular books.

Two of his hits have been Misquoting Jesus, Jesus, Interrupted and Forged. The latter is perhaps his most explicit indictment of the intellectual crimes behind the Bible. Lost Christianities and other books talk about the many gospels and other writings that never made it into or were excised from what's known as the Bible today.

Ehrman also has a bunch of talks on YouTube where he engagingly presents those same ideas.

There are alternatives, of course, and it could be argued whether Ehrman is "the best." But he certainly knows what he's talking about (mostly), is a recognized authority on this kind of stuff, and presents it well. Best of all (from our point of view) he doesn't Lie For Jesus.

u/TheFlyingBastard · 4 pointsr/europe

Np. If you like this kind of stuff, you should look into the books by Bart Ehrman. He's a New Testament scholar that writes about this stuff in a very easy to understand way. Misquoting Jesus and Jesus, Interrupted are the two books he became known for, and they have ruffled a lot of feathers, but his other books are very readable too.

u/timojen · 4 pointsr/DebateAChristian

The point of my comparison was: It seems unstructured to me. And I am often confused by that lack of rules moderates live by.

I constantly meet people who consider themselves Christian or Muslim or whatever but do not follow the rules of that religion. For instance a good friend of mine who is a Catholic, like many american's, believes the sacrament is symbolically the body and blood of Christ and also uses contraception. These are big no-nos for a Catholic. Another friend is Muslim and he loves bacon and also uses contraception and does not believe his daughter should grow up thinking herself less than a male.

Essentially, these types of people make up the bulk of religious people I meet. So maybe they are a good %age of the religious in america. But effectively they are not religious. They simply believe in a god and pick the rules they want to follow based on a number of different criteria. Those criteria are almost always cultural.

This seems like sentimental (in the philosophical sense) religion to me. Why not drop the religion altogether?

EDIT: have you read this book? http://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1347757261&sr=8-1&keywords=misquoting+jesus

u/aPinkFloyd · 4 pointsr/exmormon

They should replace it with this...

Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why https://www.amazon.com/dp/0060859512/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_VB4aBbPCBPNKZ

u/scottklarr · 4 pointsr/books
u/lisper · 4 pointsr/Creation

> The same techniques that lead us to suspect the ending of Mark might not be genuine show us that the vast majority of the New Testament exists largely unchanged from the original manuscripts, save for the odd spelling error.

No, they don't.


But we might just have to agree to disagree about that. In any case...

> I believe only in the God of the Bible.

With or without Mark 16:17-18?

Either way, let me just ask you: does faith in the God of the Bible produce any measurable (by a non-believer) effect that faith in some other god does not? If so, what is it? If not, then in what sense can such a god be said to exist?

u/surfingatwork · 4 pointsr/atheism

As far as Christianity goes, probably the best book I've read about the "unathenticity" of the Bible is "Misquoting Jesus."


I wrote the following book about Christianity that's less professional but still raises some interesting points. It's free. So don't accuse me of spamming:


u/RockyIV · 4 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist

I'm late to the party, so this comment may be buried, but /u/SergeantSully, I'd recommend you read some of the books by Bart Ehrman, a professor at UNC who attended Moody Bible Institute, Wheaton College, and Princeton Theology School. His works describe in extraordinary detail the evidence that the New Testament is entirely manmade and contradictory. You might start with Misquoting Jesus.

u/jdefriez · 4 pointsr/exmormon

Indeed. Such a person, however, would likely be unfamiliar with biblical textual criticism, the history of homosexuality in the Roman empire at the time of Christ, the history of homosexuality within the Christian tradition, the history of the interpretation of these scriptures, and unfamiliar with psychological literature that almost unanimously shows that people who live repressing same-sex attraction are nearly universally miserable.

Here's a to read list:



u/HaiKarate · 4 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

These are written on a more popular level

u/lesigh · 3 pointsr/books

Actually, I think Jesus Interrupted and Misquoting Jesus By Bart D. Ehrman would give better insight to christianity/bible.

u/alanX · 3 pointsr/atheism

Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why is a wonderful and much more complete picture of where we stand in textual criticism of the Bible.

And what the author fails to point out is that if you take the best translations of the best texts (many not available when the King James Version was written) and compare them, you just don't get that many differences.

The King James is often more poetically written, even with some slight inaccuracies in the process.

As a theist, I find the process of textual criticism fascinating, and it reinforces my belief that the very heart of Christianity isn't in its theology, but in the First and Second Commandments (as reportedly taught by Christ):

  • Love God with all your heart
  • Love your neighbor as yourself

    Nothing there about making my neighbor conform to my morals and ethics. Everything there about me treating my neighbor with respect and honor, as I would want to be treated myself. Coupled with other teachings of Jesus, and clearly the idea that we are supposed to police the behavior of others is not Christian, despite any issues of textual criticism. We are instead to police ourselves.

    Edit tl;dr: Anyone who invests heavily into theological concepts that hinge on just a word or two in these texts is already playing with fire. On the other hand, committing to the core ethical and moral teachings in these texts is pretty safe.
u/handlebartender · 3 pointsr/atheism

I'm in Texas now, but I grew up in the Toronto area. The church isn't quite so tied to the public school system, although it wasn't always so. I remember part of the daily opening exercises would include standing and singing along for O Canada, followed by recitation of the Lord's Prayer. Due to the growing cultural mosaic, they finally did away with the latter.

Then there was the Separate School system, where the Catholic Church was tightly interwoven with the school. Church doctrine was taught as part of the standard curriculum. Teachers needed to be Catholic in order to have/keep their teaching job. I also seem to recall hearing about one teacher whose husband wasn't Catholic and she was at risk of losing her job if he didn't convert.

I don't know if it's still the case, but the Separate School system somehow got additional government funding and/or tax breaks. Details escape me now. I just remember hearing time and again how they would have smaller classes, better school resources, and never on strike whereas the public school teachers would end up on strike every so many years.

To your previous point, I also find I have to watch what I say when folks here inject conversations with "I'll pray for you/him/her" or quote sections of the Bible. Certainly when I see it posted on Facebook I'm tempted to go try and dig up a Buddhist quote or possibly something from The Art Of War or some other non-religious but recognized quote (or simply post this link). Then the moment passes and I decide not to be a dick about it, and just move on.

u/jaywalkker · 3 pointsr/atheism

Inconsistencies begs the question of how they got in there, so I'd reference [Misquoting Jesus](http://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1255545310&sr=8-1 "eye opening") by Bart Ehrman. You can tie his work in with the modern equivalent [Conservative Bible Project](http://www.conservapedia.com/Conservative_Bible_Project "Cognitive Dissonance").

u/Diabolico · 3 pointsr/atheism

Many instances in which Jesus is referred to as actually being God or of divine origin in the bible were antiadoptionistic changes made to the texts by theologians in order to discredit a group best described as messianic Jews (the Ebionites). They believed that he was born via the natural union of Joseph and Mary, and that he was given a special calling by God that invested him with divinity only after his birth.

By this theology Jesus did not preexist creation and was truly a normal human being until after his crucifixion. The prevailing Christian groups who opposed this wen to extreme measures to wipe the group out, especially because they demanded that all Christians would also have to be Jews, as Jesus was, and this required circumcision and kosher eating practices: two things not very popular in the classical Roman empire.

See these excellent books for extensive details about Biblical alterations and pre-orthodox Christianity:

Misquoting Jesus

Lost Christianities

u/nicolaslloyd · 3 pointsr/atheism

this book is what finally pushed me over the edge into atheism / freedom. it's about how the bible as we know is completely inaccurate. this naturally led me to ask myself, if what we base our worship and knowledge of god is inherently inaccurate, then that's as good as believing a fiction. quite simply, believing a lie.

u/FunkyFortuneNone · 3 pointsr/exchristian

I highly recommend Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman.

Ehrman is a legitimate academic focused on the New Testament. Misquoting Jesus (and his other books) are great if you find yourself asking questions like this.

u/Supergeckodude · 3 pointsr/politics

You should give the book Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman a read. He walks the reader through the process of textual analysis to determine how the bible has changed from its original form, and ultimately casts doubt on the idea that it is the literal word of god. For example, there's evidence to suggest that the story of Jesus sparing the adulterous woman ("Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone") was a later addition.

u/xconde · 3 pointsr/todayilearned

The Bible was badly translated for 1,500 years, not just "at one point".


"For almost 1,500 years, the New Testament manuscripts were copied by hand––and mistakes and intentional changes abound in the competing manuscript versions."

u/Sansabina · 3 pointsr/exmormon

just remember that (well read) mormons don't interpret polygamy as a flaw or a problem, it is viewed as a critical core doctrine that is not currently practiced due to historic government interference (even though the modern PR driven church does everything to avoid discussion of it and minimise attention to it).

Also, while you can easily see the flaws in her religion (I mean it is kooky and obvious) don't forget to apply the same critical eye to your own Christian beliefs which appear equally kooky and obvious to outsiders.

If you haven't already I'd recommend Ehrman to start

u/AHarshInquisitor · 3 pointsr/atheism

>Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Matthew 24:35). Anthony DeStefano uses this Bible quote toward the end of his new book Inside the Atheist Mind: Unmasking the Religion of Those Who Say There Is No God, pointing to the resiliency and truth of Christianity. “You can hide it, persecute it, denigrate it, scoff at it, lock it up, even murder it—but all to no avail . . . those words of Christ have not passed away.” He talks a bit about the book and why he wrote it.

Um. Actually, now that I think about it, "Jesus'" "words" did pass away. Pretty well documented in the book, Misquoting Jesus, too. If you take the traditional view, that "Jesus" is also "God" and it's the same "words", that point is driven home, especially with the Old Testament.

For the New, one knows if he existed, or what this "Jesus" even said anymore, if he did, with any confidence.

I consider that another failed prophecy.

u/Decium · 3 pointsr/atheism

Good books. Did you have any particular subjects within atheism that you would like to read about?

If I can make 2 recommendations for what to read next;

Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman

Demon Haunted World by Carl Sagan

The FAQ has a nice little section on books.

NukethePope also has a nice list.

u/Scary_The_Clown · 3 pointsr/atheism

By the way, anyone interested in learning more about the Bible as a historical book of legend, I highly recommend Misquoting Jesus - written by a very spiritual man who considers the Bible a book written by man, not God.

u/getzdegreez · 3 pointsr/AdviceAnimals

Mistranslated and completely rewritten in many instances. Misquoting Jesus is an excellent book on the topic.

u/napoleonsolo · 3 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Misquoting Jesus. It's by a highly regarded New Testament scholar and covers the history of the creation and development of the New Testament brilliantly.

u/PRiles · 3 pointsr/funny

According to Misquoting jesus there were several meetings of the curch to decide what was allowed in the bible and what wasnt, on top of there being arguments about how to word things in each book and what to cut out of books. Some stuff in contradicted its self and they had votes to make changes that would support the position of the church at the time.

u/redbenn · 2 pointsr/lectures

Its a good book too

u/bdw9000 · 2 pointsr/Christianity

If you want to get intellectual, it is worth looking into how exactly the New Testament came together..rather than just learning the theology within it. This book is a good place to start.

u/throwawayaccount94 · 2 pointsr/ReasonableFaith

We have 4 things written 30+ years after an event, based on oral stories, that all say the event happened differently. It isn't a fact, because we don't for sure know it happened. We don't have video evidence, we don't have living witnesses. I can write something saying 30 years ago my friend was Batman, doesn't mean it's a fact.

I suggest you look at these two books.

u/_stuntnuts_ · 2 pointsr/TrueAtheism

A bunch of good books have already been mentioned, so I'll throw this one in the mix. Bart Ehrman's Misquoting Jesus does a very good job explaining how the documents that make up the Bible were compiled, altered, and repercussions of that process.

u/jmynatt · 2 pointsr/exchristian

Thanks for the feedback and thoughtful reply! "Condemns most" refers to several indications that the (currently) 2/3rds of the world that does not believe in Jesus will be lost.


I do think it's a position reasonably supported by the text. Not that I agree -- I find it morally reprehensible that any "good pagans" and/or the vast billions raised without much exposure to Christianity would be lost due to being born in the wrong place/time. William Lane Craig, a leading apologist, has written a thoroughly repulsive response on the topic: God already knew they'd be lost, so he put them in those places -- and, he says, for all we know, the ratio of saved-to-lost is is perfectly optimal. Ugh!


To your point, I'd have a hard time agreeing that Mk 9:40 and Lk 9:50 "whoever is not against us is for us" indicates Jesus believed people could be saved without him. For starters, he contradicts this in Mt 12:30 and Lk 11:23 "Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters." In context though, both seem to refer to doing miraculous works (casting out demons) and aren't discussing how to be saved at all.


In addition, there are ample NT verses saying Jesus saw himself as the only way to be saved:

  • Jn 3:18 and Mk 16:16 "whoever believes in Him will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned"
  • Jn 14:4 "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
  • Jn 3:36 "whoever does not obey Him does not have life; the wrath of God remains on him"
  • Mt 7:21-23 "And they will say 'Lord, did we not do many mighty works in your name?' And I will declare 'Depart from me; I never knew you, you workers of lawlessness'"
  • Mt 7:13-14 "the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. The gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few."
  • Acts 4:12 "there is salvation in no one else; there is no other name given among men by which we must be saved"
  • Jn 17:3 "and this is eternal life: that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent"
  • Rm 3:22-23 "The righteousness of God is through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. There is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus"


    Many contradictory religions claim exclusivity. If Christianity let go of the idea of needing Jesus to be saved, it's a slippery slope to not needing him for anything -- just be a decent person and live your life. But in holding onto the need for Jesus, it ran headlong into another huge problem: if it's all about "accepting God's free gift of love", then a serial rapist can accept Jesus and be fully saved on death row, while a lifelong moral non-theist will go to hell for not accepting the gift. This completely devalues any of our actions and puts all the emphasis on "believing on bad evidence" instead of what you actually do with your life.


    It's all a moot point, however -- as it's likely "Jesus", if he existed, never said most of the things attributed to him, and some epistles attributed to Paul were written pseudonymously also. The whole idea of a "final judgment" wasn't from the Old Testament (which focused largely on earthly kings and national victories); rather, it was borrowed from Zoroastrianism eschatology during Babylonian/Persian captivity, which is around the time the Jews rewrote their national history to better fit their unfortunate circumstances, leading to inclusion in Jewish inter-testamental scripture such as the Book of Enoch, which was accepted as scripture for hundreds of years and was quoted by and influenced the thinking of New Testament writers who were making all this stuff up at the time.


    So, yeah -- who cares what Jesus said anyway, it's a lousy plan that wasn't even original! :-)
u/mycroft999 · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Been reading Misquoting Jesus lately. It's a basic and well written introduction to biblical scholarship. The author does point out that the KJV did not use the best possible sources available so there is that. The author gets into some depth involving the earliest source material for the bible being letters written in Greek being copied and recopied to be circulated among the faithful throughout the known world. Because of this, there are many small errors over the centuries and not a few large ones as well. I won't get into too much detail, but he does make the statement that there are more discrepancies between the source material, than there are words in the new testament. It's definitely an eye opener.

u/beatle42 · 2 pointsr/Christianity

> Your assumptions about not looking for discussion are silly at best and spiteful at worst.

I didn't say you weren't looking for discussion, I said it seems the type of discussion you're looking for is likely better served in a different forum. I hardly think that's thoughtless or disrespectful.

Regarding legislation that is religiously motivated I'll first site gay marriage which attempts to limit people's rights because (in most cases) of religiously motivated "morals."

Second, I'll point out that (typically) religiously motivated opposition to stem-cell research is almost certainly condemning people in this world to addition suffering and death.

A third example is the increase in STDs and unwanted pregnancy caused by the instance, often by religiously motivated people, that only abstinence only sex education be taught.

I'll certainly accept your argument that good intentions do not equate to good outcomes, but certainly they don't necessarily require that they lead to bad outcomes. Does everyone do bad or wrong things at various points throughout their lives? Of course they do. Does that automatically define them as bad people? I would argue of course not. They are factors to be weighed, but to think that we are all born evil and have no hope of being better without having someone continually watching over us is a bleak view of human nature. Hobbes might agree with you, but I think that humans have the capacity for goodness as well, and that we can do good simply for the sake of being good, not because there's someone watching us or because we expect a reward for being good. That was more the point of my argument that atheists (and all people by extension) do good things. We are all capable of being good, at least most of the time. We need not have fear of, or hope for, what comes next to do so.

> You're presumptuous to speak for the billions of people you don't know.

So your claim, then, is that the people who live short unpleasant lives are the luckiest of us all? They have the most capacity to approach god because, like Paul, they suffered the most? Or, am I faulting God for being ignorant and there really are not billions of people suffering every day because they lack the basic necessities of life? I am pretty confident that it's true that they do lack such things, and I don't think it's much of a stretch to point out that that leads to suffering. Beyond that I don't think I did anything to "speak for [them]" as you suppose I did. I pointed out that the majority of people in the world are living short lives of nearly continual suffering. That isn't really putting many words in their mouths.

Interestingly about your point about pain being necessary and then suggesting I read, I just finished a book by Bart Ehrman on the topic of Biblical explanations of why people suffer (your view is only one of several presented in the Bible by the way). He's the dean of theological studies at UNC at Chapel Hill if you're unfamiliar with who he is. It's a very interesting read, and I would like to recommend you pick up your own copy of God's Problem. I think that many people who know me would be surprised to hear that I lack basic reasoning skills. I, obviously, disagree with your assessment there. As for your slight against the American education system, I'll point out that my University education anyway was in Canada.

I wouldn't say that I know nothing of Jesus' anger, although one of the most famous examples (throwing the money changers out of the temple) is probably not actually original to the Bible. We could get into a lot of textual criticism but I'll confess I only have knowledge of that from a single source (another Bart Ehrman book called Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why

If you think the Bible as you read it is the original way it was written you would do well to read that, just for the introduction into the search for the original text of the NT in particular.

u/B_Master · 2 pointsr/atheism

The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings - Bart D. Ehrman

I didn't see anything by him in the FAQ but I think he's a great author on the topic of Christianity and The Bible; he started out as a biblical scholar before becoming an atheist.

Edit: That book is actually a bit heavy to start with, it reads like a text book. I'd recommend starting with Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why or Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible

u/Parley_Pratts_Kin · 2 pointsr/mormon

Read these books in this order:

  1. Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Harari. Overview of the history of humanity. Fascinating.
  2. God: A Human History by Reza Aslan. Overview of the development of religion and ideas about God.
  3. The Bible Unearthed by Israel Finkelstein. Overview of the archeology of ancient Israel and historical criticism of the Old Testament.
  4. Authoring the Old Testament by David Bokovoy. Overview of textual criticism of the Old Testament.
  5. Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman. Overview of textual criticism of the New Testament.

    This mini library is a sort of behind the scenes peek into humanity, religion in general, and the Bible specifically. You’ll never look at these things the same way again.

    Now, after reading these, return and report and give us word.
u/Dilatair_Clear · 2 pointsr/askgaybros

I’m a gay atheist. At first when I finally accepted I was gay, I tried my best to reconcile my being gay with Christianity until I read the Bible cover to cover (OT and NT, New International Version) until I found out the glaring errors, contradictions and repugnant deeds and sayings by God himself, his prophets as well as Jesus Christ and that made me look into more until I found four books that made me realize that the Abrahamic god is a man made one and not someone who is all-powerful and all knowing.

The books are here:
Who Was Jesus? Fingerprints of the Christ
Misquoting Jesus
Is It God’s Word?
The God Delusion

u/Pi4Ra · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Misquoting Jesus might be of interest to you, albeit maybe not from the perspective you wanted.

u/raintree420 · 2 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist

I had been reading this book, Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why and it was very integral in my final transition into full blown atheism. It was written by an evangelical too. I really try not to debate ppl, whatever they want to believe is fine with me, but when it infringes on my personal space I'll open my mouth. I read it for my own interests, not to shoot ppl down. I'm not a typical reddit atheist.

u/Fuzzy_Thoughts · 2 pointsr/mormon

The book list just keeps growing in so many different directions that it's hard to identify which I want to tackle next (I also have a tendency to take meticulous notes while I read and that slows the process down even further!). Some of the topics I intend to read about once I'm done with the books mentioned:

u/PeeGump · 2 pointsr/atheism

Misquoting Jesus by Bart Erhman: https://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512
Great read, very fascinating!

u/moom · 2 pointsr/atheism

There's all sorts of evidence of significant corruptions in what we currently think of as the Bible. Off the top of my head, here are some seriously major things, fundamental core beliefs of modern Christianity, that are known to have been simply inserted into the Bible many years (centuries, in some cases) afterwards:

(1) The main passage which is used to support the concept of the Trinity - i.e. that the three are one but three yadda yadda - says absolutely nothing about the Trinity in any of the known early copies of the Bible; someone at some point much later just inserted some unrelated words, and voila, Trinity. More info: The Comma Johanneum

(2) The famous story of the woman taken in adultery ("Let he who is without sin cast the first stone") is not present in any known early Bible. More info: The Pericope Adulterae

(3) The ending of the Gospel of Mark (where Jesus, risen from the dead, appears before the disciples) is not present in any known early Bible. In the original (actual) Gospel of Mark, no one witnesses a risen Jesus (one man who is not identified claims to have witnessed him, but presents no evidence, and risen Jesus certainly doesn't show up). More info: Mark 16

And there are all sorts of other things, ranging from more outright insertions like the above all the way down to transcription errors which propagated; even some of the transcription errors have significant theological implications.

If you're interested in this sort of thing, I heartily recommend the book Misquoting Jesus, by Bart Ehrman.

u/spoiled_orange · 2 pointsr/exmormon

You're right, I was snarky.

An eye opening book for me was Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman on biblical textualism. I think by the end of his studies Erhman was no longer christian and perhaps an atheist.

Strangely enough, COLDS realized sometime in the early 1900's they had nobody educated in the church on biblical issues with advanced degrees. They sponsored a number of students from BYU to attend University of Chicago to pursue divinity degrees. I believe www.bycommonconsent.com wrote on it. They did have problems with the program because many students would end up leaving the church.

You mentioned being a history major. I can understand studying religion as a historical phenomenon and the influence it has on society. Critical thinking would be involved. However, I had too many Institute teachers that would happily tell you about the validity of pillars of fire/smoke/vapor that lead the Israelites through the wilderness. Critical thinking takes a vacation on that one. We have a fellow in my ward that is highly respected for his understanding of the scriptures and is consistently called to be the GD teacher or an institute teacher. He will tell you unequivocally that when the 2nd coming happens that the moon will literally be turned into a giant drop of blood. I tried to talk him off that particular ledge with no success. I now listen to what he says on any subject with a huge grain of salt if his thinking skills are that highly impaired.

Edit to add words.

u/lilbowski · 2 pointsr/Freethought

An easy and informative read of many such errors and additions is Bart Ehrman's Misquoting Jesus. I recommend you check it out if you haven't yet.

u/spinozasrobot · 2 pointsr/atheism

For a very readable book about how the Bible was formed try Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman. Highly recommended for those who haven't already read it.

u/Jswizzy84 · 2 pointsr/atheism

Bart D. Ehrman use to be a conservative Bible Scholar and he has written several books that summarize the errors and contradictions in the bible. Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why

Honestly though the New Testament is virtually untouched and unmodified when compared to the text of the Hebrew Bible. Literary critics, scholars , scientist and archeologist have proven time and time again that the stories in the Hebrew bible prior to Chronicles, Kings and Judges are pure invention of myth.

u/Irish_Whiskey · 2 pointsr/atheism

There's a Skeptic's Annotated Bible online. You can simply read the text, then just look to the right if you have questions. There's also a printed Annotated Bible that discusses things in theological terms. Or you could just read the copies lying about in hotel rooms. Either before or after though, I recommend reading books about the Bible (they're much shorter so it shouldn't be a problem) like this or this.

> How can i decide to not believe in god without first hearing how the Christians can prove he is real. If that makes sence.

I hope you understand why that doesn't make sense. There's literally an infinite number of possible definitions of God, and thousands that are major beliefs on this planet. The Christian definition isn't any more important or relevant than others.

You don't need to read any or every book on vampires, in order to not believe in vampires. Disbelief is the default position, until given a reason to believe. It's up to the people making the claim to present the evidence.

As for why you don't need to know all the details of a religion to reject it, PZ Myers put it thusly:

>I have considered the impudent accusations of Mr Dawkins with exasperation at his lack of serious scholarship. He has apparently not read the detailed discourses of Count Roderigo of Seville on the exquisite and exotic leathers of the Emperor's boots, nor does he give a moment's consideration to Bellini's masterwork, On the Luminescence of the Emperor's Feathered Hat. We have entire schools dedicated to writing learned treatises on the beauty of the Emperor's raiment, and every major newspaper runs a section dedicated to imperial fashion; Dawkins cavalierly dismisses them all. He even laughs at the highly popular and most persuasive arguments of his fellow countryman, Lord D. T. Mawkscribbler, who famously pointed out that the Emperor would not wear common cotton, nor uncomfortable polyester, but must, I say must, wear undergarments of the finest silk.

>Dawkins arrogantly ignores all these deep philosophical ponderings to crudely accuse the Emperor of nudity.

u/VaccusMonastica · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Fallible humans writing over many years of what they believed to be true regarding Nature and the Universe that got copied and recopied sometimes with scribes making honest mistakes while others actively changing the Bible to suit their needs making it say what they thought it should say and cutting out parts they didn't want in it.

Book Suggestions:

[Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why (Plus)](http://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1320261985&sr=1-3]()

Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don't Know About Them)

u/jacknbox · 2 pointsr/atheism

Uh, pretty much all of them. But some gems:

> The New Testament is far and away the best-attested manuscript from antiquity. The next best is Homer’s “Illiad,” for which our earliest extant copy was scribed 500 years after the original writing. For the New Testament, that time lapse is less than 50 years.

She offers no facts whatsoever here. On the contrary, scholars who actually research the bible for a living have shown that this is patently false. See Bart Ehrman or Karen Armstrong for examples.

> While the four Gospel writers chose different events of Jesus’ life to write about, they all gave a clear description of the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus.

No, they all gave conflicting accounts of important details surrounding his death and resurrection. All one has to do is read the relevant parts of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John to see this. You'd think she's never actually read the bible before.

u/i_am_a_freethinker · 2 pointsr/mormon

>I read the NT last year on my own

This really stood out to me. Good job doing your own research and coming to your own concluisions, I know it can be hard.

That said, I assume that you read the KJV NT, since you are BIC. I highly recommend books like Jesus, Interrupted, which are introductory books into the actual history of the New Testament.

As a teaser, did you know that the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John) weren't written until at least 40 years after Christ died? Mark is the oldest book, but Mark was used as a source by Matthew and Luke. Further, the Gospels are excellent examples of pseudepigrapha, or books inappropriately attributed to an author. I.e., the Gopels weren't written by the apostles named.

u/MalcontentMike · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Yes, if changes from the original transcript were propagated in the period where things were in flux, and the "settled" version included those changes, it absolutely changes future translations.

This book is a worthwhile read on how we can see and find many of these changes and even reverse some of them by comparing different manuscripts and through knowledge of the original languages and their sources: https://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512

I recommend it, if you're curious about the topic.

u/Morpheus01 · 2 pointsr/atheism

You are doing it wrong. Never agree to read a book without getting them to read one in return. And they will not read a Dawkins book. Instead go for a Rachel Held Evans book (Faith Unraveled), where the author is still a Christian. https://www.amazon.com/dp/0310339162/

Also, Peter Enns (The Bible Told Me So) is a Christian theologian and is another one to challenge their view of the Bible. Again both are Christians still, but it will challenge their fundamentalism. That's the first step just to get them to learn to safely ask questions of their own faith. https://www.amazon.com/dp/0062272039/

Review by Rachel Held Evans of Peter Enns' book:

Pick one of those books, and promise to discuss it with them afterwards, in exchange for reading a book they pick.

The key is that you want them to realize that you know more about the Bible than they do. When you are ready for it, I recommend Bart Ehrman (Misquoting Jesus). https://www.amazon.com/dp/0060859512/

And finally, watch more Street Epistomology videos on youtube. You need to focus more on the "Why" of what they believe. You are spending too much time arguing, and not enough time trying to learn about "why" they believe. For most, it's fear of death.

u/r271answers · 2 pointsr/religion

> Are there any articles I can read about parts/chapters missing or stuff that's been added throughout the years?

I mentioned this in another post in this thread too but I'm not sure if you get updates on new posts so I'll put this as a reply also:

You might want to pick up a copy of the revised translation of the Nag Hammadi Library and check out http://earlychristianwritings.com where you can find a lot of the stuff you are looking for. You might also like the book Misquoting Jesus

u/Mablun · 2 pointsr/exmormon

Why Evolution is True

The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality (free online!)

Guns, Germs, Steel

The God Delusion

Misquoting Jesus (Conceptional this is very compatible with Mormonism--the Bible not being translated correctly so we need the BoM!--but the specifics about what got mistranslated are devastating as Mormonism doubled down on the mistranslated parts. oops.)

Don't even both learning anything more about Mormonism. Just be widely read and you'll soon see that the Mormon version of history is in incongruent with reality. This will cause cognitive dissonance and when you're ready to resolve it, go back and read independent sources about Mormonism and it will be very obvious that the narrative they indoctrinated into you as a child doesn't stand up to scrutiny.

u/EllieMental · 1 pointr/exchristian

That "double think" may never completely go away for me. I've made peace with it, though, by trying to understand the psychology behind it.

All of the books recommended so far are a great place to start. A book that made a big impact on me was Bart Erhman's Misquoting Jesus. I was always taught that the bible was infallible, so reading about how it was actually written helped peel away some of that double think for me.

u/Neanderthal-Man · 1 pointr/Christianity

>The statements you made before this one, about what each gospel author wrote, similarities and differences, are factual statements. This conclusion on what it "seems" is an opinion, even if it is an opinion "based on evidence."

All rational conclusions are opinions drawn from evaluation of evidence or premises. I use words such as seem, appear, or suggest, to allow for some element of inconclusivity when making assertions about authorial intention or other elusive subjects. We don’t know, for example, why the author of the Gospel of Luke omitted instances of Jesus experiencing emotions like compassion and anger, but we can reasonably argue that Luke may have considered such depictions inconsistent with his conception of the Son of God, or, possibly, he was concerned with what his readers might extrapolate from a God who displays emotion.

It’s hard to say for sure; Luke’s motivation could have been something else entirely. What we do know, is that Luke made conscious editorial decisions when incorporating Mark’s material into his own gospel, and that these conclusions make sense of the available data. Based on the evidence, textual-analysis, and logical reasoning, one can eliminate certain incorrect interpretations of the data easier than locking down a definitive conclusion.

>But even if it is fully correct that Luke was intentionally sending a different message about the meaning of Jesus' life and death... There is a difference between "they have two different messages" and "there is no conceivable way to combine the two into a coherent single message," much less "the two contradict each other."

Much of this semantic quibbling preoccupied with the meaning and appropriate use of terms such as message. I would argue that Luke and Mark have different soteriological concepts which are, on some significant points, at odds with one another. This is not to say that they don’t have substantial commonalities.

I’ve never made a statement like, “there is no conceivable way to combine the two into a coherent single message" because I realize that Christian apologists and theologians conceive numerous ways to reconcile, harmonize, and gloss over such difficulties. My criticism of their efforts is that they don’t make the best, most reasonable sense of the data. Furthermore, I would contend that apologetics and harmonizing is ultimately motivated by a felt need to protect an untenable belief about the nature and origin of the Bible, (i.e., their doctrine of scripture and the inextricable concepts of its infallibility and inerrancy), and is not prompted by a desire to follow the evidence, wherever it may lead.

In practice, people effectively harmonize the differences between the gospels all the time. Most are unaware that Mark and Luke have different soteriologies; that Matthew and Luke have conflicting infancy narratives; and that John has no parables and changes the essential message of Jesus from that found in Mark, Matthew, and Luke. Some Christians argue that such differences are complementary, the authors only highlighting portions of the story left out by the other writers. This is, technically, a “conceivable way to combine [the multiple accounts] into a coherent single message,” but is it the best, most rational way to make sense of the readily apparent differences? Would someone draw the same conclusion if they didn’t have so much at stake? If they didn’t already assume that the Bible was supernaturally inspired? It’s a considerable, rationally-indefensible bias which Christians must overcome.

>… it makes more sense to me, and is more of an evidence of veracity, for there to be noticeable differences between authors than for the versions to be suspiciously in lock-step as if someone intentionally modified them to make them match up better.

>Confusion and/or contradiction would be for example if gospel 1 & 2 say Jesus came to pour out His blood for the sins of many, Gospel 3 says Jesus was incorporeal and didn't actually have blood or a body, and Gospel 4 says Jesus is Ba'als son by Asherah and demands you worship at your nearest temple prostitute.

From comparing the two gospels, it’s evident that Mark considered Jesus’ death to be atonement for sin while Luke did not, though he did think it necessary to fulfill God’s plan of salvation. You’re free to dismiss this difference as inconsequential and easily reconciled. Much of the divergences between the biblical texts are of this sort, small but significant theological disparities and narrative contradictions which present multiple interpretations and accounts.

>The "textual elements" -- Differences, similarities, incongruities, changes, omissions, recurrent words and themes -- are facts. The explanation "posited" is an opinion, no matter how closely it looks at the facts in coming to those conclusions. Do all textual critics agree perfectly on their conclusions? Or at least all "true" textual critics?

Unanimity is hard to come by due to the complexity of the issues but it’s not required for one to draw conclusions. You don’t seem to understand that a conclusion is an explanation based upon premises and evidence. You’re equivocating about terms which can be used synonymously, i.e., an explanation, opinion, belief, or judgment can all appropriate be identified as a conclusion in the right context.

>… it strikes me as pretentious to say that Bible students' opinion that they are revealing different faces of a coherent single truth is, in your eyes, proven false by textual critics' opinion that there is some alternate motive at play behind the differences.

I don’t know that I can make the difference between the armchair theologian and the biblical scholar apparent enough for me to persuade you that some positions are more rational than others. You would need some more info besides what little I can effectively articulate here.

I do appreciate that fact that from your perspective, the book I recommend is equally as suspect as religious propaganda. That’s a fair expectation. Thankfully, you have to ability to read and evaluate for yourself. Should you so choose, you could take that Book of Mormon, peruse it, study its origins, and determine the reasonableness of the positions held about it by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Likewise, you can look at the text of the Bible and assess what the best rational explanation for its origin and nature. Until you’re aware of the “textual elements” to which I’ve alluded, you’re ill-equipped to make an evaluation.

If you’re interest in textual-criticism, you can check out Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman, despite its sensationalist title, it’s a good, popular introduction to the field. As to be expected, there are apologetic responses to Ehrman's claims. If you like, read the book and a response, and determine which makes the most compelling case.

u/bdwilson1000 · 1 pointr/TrueAtheism

Grab a used copy of Misquoting Jesus for $4 shipped here: http://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512

It goes into great detail on how the New Testament came together. It's fascinating stuff that every Christian should be aware of.

u/extispicy · 1 pointr/Christianity

You might be interested in "Misquoting Jesus: The Story of Who Changed the Bible and Why", which was written my one of the leading NT textual critics. I don't know that you are going to find a vast conspiracy where anyone has altered the text radically, but there certainly are variations in our early manuscripts.

If you are interested in the Old Testament, I recommend "Who Wrote the Bible?".

u/chrisjones74 · 1 pointr/atheism

Misquoting Jesus is a reasonable resource about the historical history of the bible, as in the bible the book not 'the bible' the scripture.

u/TonyBLiar · 1 pointr/Christianity

>Yet while he never delineates Gospel specifics (other than the Last Supper, the Crucifixion & Resurrection- three of them you claimed he doesn't)

Sorry, I should have been clearer when I said…

>the only part of the Jesus story Paul does write about, just so happens to match almost exactly the same death and resurrection arc attributed to hundreds of hero warrior gods throughout antiquity

…that this is exactly the part I was referring to. The death and resurrection narrative is, contrary to your assertion, littered throughout ancient folklore.



>I suggest you read the early Church Fathers objectively. Seems as if you're actively looking to prove a thesis you already have (that Jesus never existed or that he wasn't what Christians claim he is or whatever). Early Church history is actually quite fascinating.

I couldn't agree more on that—and I'm sorry if I seem 'pre-convinced', because I'm not. The historicity of it is, as you say, truly fascinating stuff. But as I'm sure you'll also concede that doesn't necessarily make any of it true. And I don't mean that in a small way. I mean how, for example, would you explain to someone in 2000 years time what the narrative of the Superman story was supposed to impart, if you were to travel forward in time and arrive in a future where astronomers who could prove there was never a planet Krypton were accused of being selective, or "actively looking to prove a thesis [they] already have"?

I'm sure you're intelligent enough to have noticed by now, incidentally, that I might just as easily say the same about Christianity's truth-claims as you say about mine to the contrary—which I would like to assure you extend much further than having watched merely a few direct-to-web documentaries, however well the one to which you refer to happens to have been made. I was born and raised for the first 16 years of my life a Catholic and "got saved" at around 10 or 11. I've been religion free for the best part of the last 20 years and an atheist since September 11th 2001.

u/CreationExposedBot · 1 pointr/CreationExposed

> No, they don't.
> https://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512
> But we might just have to agree to disagree about that. In any case...

No, the only thing I'll agree to is that both you and Ehrman are totally wrong.


>Either way, let me just ask you: does faith in the God of the Bible produce any measurable (by a non-believer) effect that faith in some other god does not? If so, what is it? If not, then in what sense can such a god be said to exist?

You're asking the wrong question. The only effect my faith in God produces is my personal salvation, which is not testable. But is there good evidence that the God of the Bible is the one true God? Yes, there is very good evidence of that. One of the most powerful of these is fulfilled prophecy.



Posted by: K**5

u/mystikphish · 1 pointr/atheism

I'm curious how can possibly relate the study of programming to the study of the Bible?

In my mind (obviously as an atheist) there are only two ways of approaching the Bible:
As an interpreted text.
As a literal text.

If you are taking the "interpreted" route, then you can hardly compare the Bible to learning programming. You don't interpret the meaning of a using pointers to reference memory, you do it in one of several well understood ways. If you are implying that logic can b applied to the interpreted Bible then you have to take the historicity of the Bible into account, especially the New Testament. I recommend you read Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman before using your programming skills to interpret the Bible any further.

On the other hand, if you are attempting to imply that you can use the logical training afforded by studying programming to study the LITERAL Bible, then you're either insane or are not studying your programming hard enough. Too many inconsistencies in the Bible to even bother going though, here's a starter list.

u/squeaker · 1 pointr/tipofmytongue

You're killing me. I read about this exact phenomenon a while ago here but can't find what it's called anywhere onlibe. Now it's driving me crazy.

I'll look it up in the book when I get home.

u/MarcoVincenzo · 1 pointr/atheism

The only "original" biblical account of Jesus appears to be from Mark. All the other accounts of Jesus in the bible seem to have been written at an even later remove in time and used Mark as the primary source--variations on a theme if you will. Take a look at Bart Ehrman's Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why.

u/hedgeson119 · 1 pointr/atheism

There is no single argument to deconvert a person. For a person to go from theist to atheist is potentially hundreds of hours of research, debate, and argument, the the biggest one is, they have to be open, truly open to change.

I can offer a few resources but pretty much none are comprehensive to attack each different point of a theist's belief.

Here are some:

Why I am no longer a Christian

Christianity Disproved

Anything by Bart Ehrman:

Youtube Books: Misquoting Jesus, [Jesus, Interrupted] (http://www.amazon.com/Jesus-Interrupted-Revealing-Hidden-Contradictions/dp/0061173940/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1372755420&sr=8-3&keywords=bart+ehrman), Lost Christianities

A History of God by Karen Armstrong

Mistakes of Moses by Robert Ingersoll, which I think is free on the internet.

There are tons of things listed in the Recommended reading and viewing

I will update with more if you want, there are tons of things out there. do a youtube search for Christopher Hitchens, or any other atheist.

Keep in mind these will not work unless she is actually open to considering their arguments.

u/ResearchLaw · 1 pointr/atheism

I highly recommend two key books by renowned New Testament scholar and professor Bart Ehrman. Professor Ehrman is among the most respected authorities on New Testament Studies and Scholarship in the United States.

(1) Jesus Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don’t Know About Them) (2010);



(2) Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why (2007).


u/LIGHTNlNG · 1 pointr/islam

Here you go. I hope you benefit from them.



u/trailrider · 1 pointr/atheism

There's more to chrisitinty than just the resurrection. What about Adam/Eve? Moses and the Exodus? Pretty much the rest of the OT? I mean, if Adam/Eve never existed, then why the need for Jesus? Basically there's no reason to think they did exist. There's no evidence for them. Same for Moses and the Exodus. No evidence of ~2M people wandering around for 40 yrs. To put that into perspective, that would be like everyone in modern day Austin, Tx picking up and roaming the mid-west without leaving a trace. Can you imagine that? And I don't even need to talk about Noah's flood, do I?

As for your other specifics, #1: There is no contemporary accounts backing up the bible's claim of a resurrection. Nothing about about the temple curtain ripping, an earthquake, the sky going black for 3 hrs, or (and this is one of my fav's) not a PEEP about dead saints coming out of their graves and were "seen by many". All of these were certainly note-worthy events but yet...*crickets*. The historians who do mention are people who lived after Jesus's time and were not eyewitness's. They're just relaying what was told to them and even that can't be considered reliable. The one that Christians like to point out is Josephus where he talks about people worshiping a guy named Jesus. Aside from just saying there were christians, which means nothing because it's like pointing out we have scientologist today, most historians consider that passage a later addition because it doesn't fit within that particular works. Kinda like seeing Darth Vader appear in a Star Trek film.

#2: What were their names? Where do they live? Where's their accounts? 10 million people saw me fly around in the air by me flapping my arms! Must be true because soooo many people saw it. Oh, who are they? Just ... people. No, I don't know any of their names but trust me, they saw it!

See how that works?

#3 & #4: Whether he was even buried by no less than a member of the Jewish high council who was calling for his death just the night before is a matter to cause one to raise their eyebrows but let's go with it. Let's assume he was. Which do you think it more likely: That someone removed the body? Or that he rose from the dead?

#5: Read up on the Heaven's Gate cult. All died for their beliefs but I'm gonna go out on a limb here and declare that there was no UFO waiting for them behind the Hale-Bopp comet. Seriously....if you never heard of it, this was back in '97 so may be before your time, read about it. Then I can point out the 9/11 hijackers. They obviously died for their belief's yet I don't see christians rushing to convert to Islam. I don't doubt the sincerity of their beliefs but that doesn't make it true. I can believe that I can fly if I flap my arms hard enough but something tells me that if I jump off a cliff, gravity is gonna prove that belief off.

There's a lot more to this than what I've written here. Books have been written. I would recommend that, if you're interested, start with anything from Dr. Bart Ehrman. He's the chair of the Theology Dept. at the Univ. of N. Carolina. He's a proper authority on this issue. I've read/listened to pretty much every book he has. Might want to start with "Misquoting Jesus". It's the first book I read from him and the stuff I read in there blew my mind. Stuff that you're not likely gonna hear at your school. There's other accounts of Jesus outside the bible and most christians would certainly clutch their pearls over the "Greater Questions Of Mary" account. There's also numerous Youtube vids of his lectures, talks, and debates. He runs a blog as well that you can access for $25/yr which he's pretty good at updating regularly. Money goes to charity.

Might also want to look up Candida Moss who wrote " The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom" She's a NT scholar as well and I learned a lot by reading her book. Like, did you know there were ISIS like groups of christians roaming the area back then? That groups of christians demanded to be killed?

One last book I'd like to recommend is "The Dark Side of Christian History" by Hellen Ellerbe. While I've not found much on her, she does a great job in citing her sources. What will you learn? Know where the phrase "Kill them all, let God sort them out" came from? While I can't recall the specifics, there was basically two groups of christians fighting and the leader of one, when asked how will we know our own from them, proclaimed to kill them all, God will know his own! This book helps to disabuse people of the notion that christianity has been nothing but loving and caring, not to mention persecuted, through the centuries.

Hope this helps and good luck!

u/DetentionMrMatthews · 1 pointr/DebateReligion

Misquoting Jesus is a good one

u/otakuman · 1 pointr/AdviceAnimals

Um... okay, how do I put this...
do you have any extrabiblical sources for that?

And I mean archaeology, not tradition. (This means Science, not Dogma)

EDIT: Here are a few books which might help you understand the question.

u/trixx1 · 1 pointr/DebateReligion

>Assertions from church fathers and theologians have NO BEARING bearing on what textual scholars have discovered over the past 19 centuries my friend.

That is a ridiculous statement. The gospel of John for example was completed around 98CE. You believe what contemporaries of John wrote just a few years later in the early 2nd centuries doesn't matter? That is ridiculous. You say you believe in textual examination to determine the author, then why did you dismiss exactly that. Here's what certain textual scholars have said:

>Since Matthew had been a tax collector, it was natural that he would be explicit in his mention of money, figures, and values. (Matt. 17:27; 26:15; 27:3) He keenly appreciated God’s mercy in allowing him, a despised tax collector, to become a minister of the good news and an intimate associate of Jesus. Therefore, we find Matthew alone of the Gospel writers giving us Jesus’ repeated insistence that mercy is required in addition to sacrifice. (9:9-13; 12:7; 18:21-35) Matthew was greatly encouraged by Jehovah’s undeserved kindness and appropriately records some of the most comforting words Jesus uttered: “Come to me, all you who are toiling and loaded down, and I will refresh you. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am mild-tempered and lowly in heart, and you will find refreshment for your souls. For my yoke is kindly and my load is light.” (11:28-30)

I also mentioned how 42% of Matthew's account is not to be found in any other gospel.

>I love the way you emphasized the Matthew specific material while leaving out the fact that 50% of his gospel is copied WORD FOR WORD from Mark

58% of what he wrote is also written about by one or more of the other gospel writers. However, the claim that he copied word for word from Mark has no basis.

>On top of that there are verbal cues in the text that show beyond doubt it was originally composed in Greek..with many of the so-called OT prophecies referenced by Matthew worded (and mistranslated) exactly as they were in the Septuagint, which was a Greek version of the OT that the author used for a source.

Matthew was actually written in Aramaic and Koine Greek. So when the book of Matthew refered to OT prophecies it used the Greek septugent OT translation. I do agree with that but I fail to see how you are claiming this proves Matthew did not write the book that bears his name.

>There are a myriad of other reasons why mainstream scholars believe that all of the gospels were composed by anonymous Greek-speaking Christians long after the death of anyone who knew Jesus. If you are sincerely interested in how the NT came together, rather than bolstering conclusions you have arrived at for other reasons, this book is a good starting place: http://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1330919177&sr=8-1

I have in fact read a good part of that book as well as other books of Bart Ehrman. He takes things people have known all along and tries to sensationalize them. His basic argument is that the new testament has hundreds of differences with many early manuscripts. What he doesn't tell you prominently is that almost all the differences are attributed to trivial things like misspellings which don't in fact change the meaning of the words. I invite you to share with me two or three points that absolutely convince you that the Bible was altered. You will quickly realize the book is largely designed to make huge claims through sensationalizing of things we already know.

> I refer you to this site, created by Christians, maintained by Christians, and used by students in every major seminary on earth for research purposes. http://www.earlychristianwritings.com

I fail to see why you refered me to this site. A majority of it is talking about writings of early christians after the first century. Are you claiming these writings are also part of the Bible?

u/peepholeofreddit · 1 pointr/exmormon

Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why https://www.amazon.com/dp/0060859512/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_GsRiDbSWBQ8GX

u/johninbigd · 1 pointr/atheism

The History of God

Misquoting Jesus

You could also go to Yale Online Courses and watch the courses on New Testament and Old Testament history.


u/limbodog · 1 pointr/AskReddit

http://www.amazon.com/Noahs-Flood-Scientific-Discoveries-Changed/dp/0684859203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1323376708&sr=8-1 Noah's Flood had some very interesting information brought about in part by the mapping of the sea floor in the black sea for the US Navy.

http://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1323376738&sr=1-1 This book was fantastic. If you ever wanted to know how the bibles (because there are many versions) came to be the way they are, this is where you start. The author truly gets into great detail about the documents on which we based our current bibles.

u/fragglet · 1 pointr/atheism

> EDIT Thanks for the thoughts so far. I see that disproving God was probably the wrong way to put it. Could anyone point me to some material that clearly, logically shows fallacies in the bible? That would be appreciated.

If you want to see what shaky material the Bible is, do some reading on textual criticism. I can recommend Bart Ehrman's book Misquoting Jesus - he's a biblical scholar who was once a fundamentalist and eventually abandoned his belief when he realised they could not be supported by evidence.

You might also want to take a look at the Skeptic's Annotated Bible, which annotates the text with comments that point out all the fallacies and contradictions.

u/TruthWinsInTheEnd · 1 pointr/Christianity

Bart Ehrman has a number of good books on this subject. I just finished Misquoting Jesus and am in the middle of Forged. Ehrman has a nice writing style that is easy to read.

u/srg2k5 · 1 pointr/AdviceAnimals

>>What tangible evidence would that be exactly?

Me repeatedly telling you I don't care to talk about it anymore.

Alright Mr. Fair Shake At All Sides I will give you 4 books you should read. You say you are well versed, prove it. If you have read counter points to your beliefs, go ahead and list them for me. Otherwise you should read these 4 books:

Atheist Material:

Dawkins - The God Delusion

Harris - End of Faith

Actual Scholar Material:

Friedman - Who Wrote The Bible?

Ehrman - Misquoting Jesus

Actually Ehrman has many books, but I don't want to overload you.

Until you actually READ the counter material, you won't get anywhere.

u/ChurroBandit · 1 pointr/DebateAChristian

Holy shit, dude. That sounds like the exact opposite of fun. If they've got something important to say, then summarize it here.

Just for fun, why don't you read Misquoting Jesus or The History of God, if you're not afraid to expose yourself to some scholarship that will challenge your most cherished illusions.

u/Aquareon · 1 pointr/Christianity

>I've examined other texts and other religions and found them unconvincing.

Non-Christians have examined the Bible and also found it unconvincing.

>This statement of yours means nothing unless the person in question is wholesale ignorant of other religions and other religious claims.

It isn't so much that you're ignorant of their claims, but that you're not in those religions. A religion looks very different from the inside than it does from the outside. This is why people on the inside cannot see certain things about it that are obvious to you as an outsider.

>Despite the fact that it is very possible that there is a legitimate argument here, you are choosing to outright deny it upon mention simple because you have created this group in your head of examples of poor YouTube apologetics.

Youtube in general isn't a valid scholarly source, I am not being unreasonable in saying so.

>Some are sketchy. I've already admitted that Christian apologetics are sometimes bad. Very popular arguments are bad ones including the very popular Kalam Cosmological Argument, the Modal Ontological Argument, and any iteration of the Teleological Argument.

What I hoped to convey there is that the apologetics of a given religion generally seem much more airtight to someone actually in that religion than to an outsider. This is unrelated to the quality of the arguments.

>Show me where the Bible has one of these long "he said she said" introductions outright stated.

You can read about it here.

u/tfmaher · 1 pointr/DebateAChristian

It's not stupid at all. When you're dealing with a text that is (parts of it, anyway) roughly 3,500 years old (assuming the pentateuch was completed in roughly 1,500 BCE) AND wasn't available for wide release until the creation of the printing press in the mid-15th century during which time illiteracy was the norm and- until that point- was copied by scribes, then of course you have to wonder about the veracity of today's bible.

I read a really interesting book called Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman that helped me understand this very problem. Note: he is a biblical scholar and practicing Christian, lest you think this is an attack on the bible.

u/Apokolyptyk · 0 pointsr/changemyview

Oh, I AM correct in my criticism and evaluations.

>It's known that all Bible translations have the same message, so it doesn't particularly matter which version you use. On top of that, there are thousands of manuscripts, among other scripts, of various books of the bible, which shows that the bible has had an extremely consistent translation across time.

Bullshit. Read this book written by a well known bible scholar. https://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Jesus-Story-Behind-Changed/dp/0060859512

>You cannot conclude that since the bible doesn't talk about same sex marriage then it could be okay

Didn't say that, the bible is clear, homosexuality is sinful according to the texts.

>There is no need to study Jewish history

There is always a need to study Jewish history if you wan't to argue on the internet about the bible, or even understand the context in which the book is written.

>being gay is identified as a sin by the bible, further indicating that gay marriage is wrong.

The bible says gay marriage is wrong, I believe the bible to be immoral and hateful. It is your book that is wrong.

>I do agree that there are many people who like to "interpret" the bible to their liking, but that means they are going against the text, so it doesn't matter what they believe, since it's already outside of the biblical teachings.

Religion is today's world isn't always practiced "by the book" because the many errors in the book make it obvious to any person that possesses even the tiniest bit of logic and common sense that the text can;t be trusted. Therefore the church is backed into a corner to find other means to explain and interpret the problems.

>Also, if you are idiotic enough to just toss aside all the passages that talk about being saved and going to heaven and those that talk of damnation, then you are hopeless

You are misinterpreting the bible and doing exactly what you say is wrong for other people to do. If you are going to go by the text, you must agree that the bible has no clear concept of what happen's to a non saved person after death. Point to to a place in the bible that makes it clear that a non saved person is punished in hell for eternity after death. The western idea of hell came from Dante's Inferno.

>Many people that like to say the bible contradicts itself, are also the same people that don't have much a clue about the bible.



>Just cause you browsed anti-christian threads on r/atheist and looked up "contradictions in the bible" doesn't make you an expert.

I never said I was an expert, but I do live in the bible belt, went to church all my life, and even went to a christian school where I had 2 bible classes a day every day. These things are things we talked about in class constantly as there ARE problems with the bible that can't be dismissed as easily as you would like to. I did my research over the course of many years and came out the other end an atheist and I am all the happier for it because my life has been 1000x better since I found a way out of the constant brainwashing that is religion.

u/TASagent · -2 pointsr/atheism

I wonder how the theist in question would respond to finding out that that particular referenced passage was added to the bible much later. Any mildly intellectually honest bible includes a footnote on this entire story stating that "our earliest and most reliable sources do not contain this passage", meaning "this passage was added later, by other people." If anyone is interested in reading more about it, they can look here for a quick resource, and here for a much better one.

Edit: Sorry, my intent with this comment was a little unclear. I am certainly glad to see theists who use more of their brain and accept people for how they are, rather than the two typical responses: 1) spewing hateful dogma or 2) distancing themselves (superficially) from the 'twisted ideology' that would cause such an attack. I would much prefer to see many mild Christians than no change at all, obviously. This response, however, presents me with two problems. First, the passage doesn't say the gay person did nothing wrong, simply that we are in no position to judge someone who does something wrong. That is not actually a particularly progressive view. "Yes, homosexuality is a problem, but who am I to judge you?" the ideology says. Second, this passage is so often used to justify accepting homosexuals, yet was not actually in the bible, originally. It would be more accurate to attribute it to Anon., which would make it meaningless to most Christians.

Anyway, I hope that makes my intent more clear.