We’ve almost all heard the claim by now — “the Bible is filled with contradictions!!”, but despite that, we’ve almost never actually seen a self-proclaimed contradiction worth more than a few seconds to deal with. You’d imagine that the skeptic would eventually get it — that they have no clue what they are talking about, but they always seem oblivious to it. So I decided to put together a quick debunking of some funny Bible errors.
The first one has to do with where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount.
Matthew 5:1: When He saw the crowds, He went up on the mountain, and after He sat down, His disciples came to Him.
Luke 6:17: After coming down with them, He stood on a plain with a large crowd of His disciples and a great number of people from all Judea and Jerusalem and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon.
So, was it on a plain or a mountain? It clearly can’t be both!
Here’s a picture of a picture of a plain on a mountain.
It almost looks to much like a plain, but that plain right there is actually sitting on a mountain. So, it looks like it can be both. Next contradiction? How many sons did Absalom have?
2 Samuel 14:27: Three sons were born to Absalom, and a daughter named Tamar, who was a beautiful woman.
2 Samuel 18:18: When he was alive, Absalom had set up a pillar for himself in the King’s Valley, for he had said, “I have no son to preserve the memory of my name.” So he gave the pillar his name. It is still called Absalom’s Monument today.
So, did Absalom have three sons, or none at all according to 2 Samuel 18:18?
A way to resolve this passage is by actually reading the passage, something that gets in the way of most skeptics when trying to seep out a contradiction from anything. Absalom does “I have no sons”, he says “I have no sons to preserve the memory of my name” — in other words, we know he did have sons, but they all died, and Absalom therefore has no sons to preserve his lineage.
For the next one, only one verse needs to be quoted.
Judges 1:19: The Lord was with Judah and enabled them to take possession of the hill country, but they could not drive out the people who were living in the valley because those people had iron chariots.
According to this passage, it almost seems as if God is unable to defeat the people who were living in the valley because they had iron chariots! But isn’t God all-powerful, aren’t we told in the Bible that with God all things are possible? It’s almost pretty obvious, the verse specifically said that Judah went to war with both the hill country and the people living in the valley. We are told God was with and enabled Judah to take the hill country, the verse does not say that He was with Judah in the battle against the people living in the valley. And without the help of God, Judah was unable to defeat the people living in the valley. In fact, that is exactly what the verse is implying — that the Israelite’s, without God, are unable to defeat any of their foes. In other words, the contradiction only arises when one does not actually read the passage.
Genesis 4:17: Cain was intimate with his wife, and she conceived and gave birth to Enoch. Then Cain became the builder of a city, and he named the city Enoch after his son.
If you read Genesis 1-4, it notes that God created Adam and Eve, and then Adam and Eve had two sons — Cain and Abel. Which means, there are four humans in the entire world, right? So where on Earth does Cain get his wife from, if the only other recorded child of Adam and Eve is Abel (whom Cain killed)?
Notice, Cain and Abel are the only recorded children of Adam and Eve (aside from Seth, who is born later). In fact, we are not told a single daughter is born anywhere in the Bible until Genesis 5, as Genesis 1-4 hasn’t any interest in the women (aside from Eve) at this point into the story, rather it focuses on the predominant figures, which are obviously men. Genesis 1-4 simply was not recording the female descendants of Adam and Eve, and we know that they had female descendants anyways because Genesis 5:4 says “Adam lived 800 years after the birth of Seth, and he fathered other sons and daughters“. So there were in fact women around for Cain to marry, we just aren’t told any were born until Genesis 5:4.