40 votes

What exactly is the Bible?

I'm writing this because in the last week, not just only DP, but I have had people argue for their beliefs of various topics, ranging from anarchy to minarchy, and more. But people keep telling me they hate Christians because Christians want and expect everyone to be slaves.

There seems to be a lot of confusion about this so I wanted to clear something up.

I will say first I completely accept your beliefs, if you do not wish to accept Christianity that's fine, but I have to set something straight so people can stop hatemongering and spreading the wrong message.

The Bible is not a book of tyranny. it is not a book that says, "You WILL obey God." It says, "You should obey God."

Throughout the whole Bible, the message of Liberty is spread. It says that man was meant to rule, and not each other, but over the earth and be caretakers of it. Man is NOT meant to be slaves to any man, and definitely not slaves to God. Each man has his own free will to choose.

The Bible does ask for submission. However to submit is not to be enslaved, it is to willingly serve. You will find that serving others inspires others to serve you. All of the principles of Bill of Rights and dare I say, yes, the Declaration of Independence and natures law, can be directly pulled from the Bible.

I just wanted to clarify that, because many seem to think the Bible is the cause of war. I guess if that's true, than so is Liberty. Because liberty and freedom is exactly what the Bible teaches us to take part in. Just for the record, it also teaches us to stay out of entangling alliances.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

You are right

The Bible contains all those words (well, not the English, but you know what I mean). But what is the context for those words? Who wrote them and to whom were they written? Please do not claim to 'understand' or tell me or others what those words 'mean' if you cannot answer these basic questions.

"Be a listener only, keep within yourself, and endeavor to establish with yourself the habit of silence, especially on politics." -Thomas Jefferson

OK We get it now.

You hate the bible. You hate God. You hate Christians.

So, that begs the question. WHY do you bother SO MUCH on this topic then?

Can't you just let Christians believe what they want in peace?

Why not?

Why don't you research?

You're 'hell'bent on being argumentative but have nothing to back up your nonsense. Took me about 3 seconds to find that 1 Timothy has been mistranslated.

"There are a few key words that are conveniently mistranslated in 1 Timothy 2: 11-15.
Hesuchios/Hesuchia: Traditionalists normally translate this word as “silence” (at least in passages concerning women), but the word in all other places is translated as “peacefulness” “Peaceable” or “quietness.” ... The same word is used just nine verses earlier and is translated as “peaceable,” 1 Timothy 2:1-2. Hesuchios/hesuchia is translated as quiet/quietness in 1 Thess. 4:11, 2 Thess. 3:12, 1 Peter 3:4. None of these verses are about silence, as in the literal absence of speech, but a tranquil quietness or peaceable presence/environment.
Now, onto the grand-daddy of mistranslations and controversy….
“…nor to have authority over [authentein] a man…”
Exousia is the normal word used for “authority,” a carrying out of one’s official duties. But this is not the word Paul uses here. He instead picks the word authentein and it is the ONLY time this word appears in the New Testament. Exousia, however, appears over 100 times. Other uses of authentein from the same time period show that this word does not simply mean legitimate or routine authority, but carries violent, sexual, and dominating meanings...
Consider this reality of ancient Greek culture pointed out by Catherine Koeger:
“Virtually without exception, female teachers among the Greeks were courtesans, such as Aspasia, who numbered Socrates and Pericles among her students. Active in every major school of philosophy, these hetairai (high-class, intellectual prostitues) made it evident in the course of their lectures that they were available afterwards for a second occupation. But the Bible teaches that to seduce men in such a manner was indeed to lead them to slaughter and the halls of death (cf. Prov. 2:18; 5:5; 7:27; 9:18). The verb authentein is thus peculiarly apt to describe both the erotic and the murderous.”

Link to article:
http://christianfeminism.wordpress.com/2008/07/04/the-mistra...
I'm downvoting you for not doing your homework. If you try to argue something you should at least inform yourself about your argument because to NOT do so makes you look very petty and foolish.

If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.
James Madison

So are you telling me...

So are you telling me that the billions of bibles circulating in English are all translated wrong.... if so then you are basically saying the church doesn't even understand how to translate its own bible...

I don't doubt the church has translated it wrong, but it make me wonder what else is wrong within the word of god.

also again, you attack my character. ad hominid

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

Yes I am.

Translations are done by men, men who are under the power of whatever organization. The Bible doesn't actually 'belong' to any organization, but to those who have a certain bent of character that moves them to believe in a certain way. Organizations have sprung up because of one enlightened soul's teaching - that being Christianity. Jesus passed the torch to Peter, ir eventually became organised, and now consisted of many sects.
You know most people move in groups - be they political, religious, scholarly, ideological - and exist because those with like minds gravitate towards one another. You and I both frequent the DP because we have found others who think as we do, yet, within our 'group' are those who bend and twist all sorts of ways. What brings us all together, though, is our belief in our individuality and the fight for Liberty. But how good is our cause if we can't accept all the quirks and varied beliefs of our group?
Let people believe as they wish. When they begin to act dictatorial, call them out and explain why you don't agree. Posting quotes offers no explanation but is purely an act of belligerence. You didn't offer them in a spirit of unity or even as an enquiry, but to highlight what you believe to be inconsistancies. 1 Timothy isn't even God's or Jesus' words, they're the words of Paul from a letter. The same with Psalms. God didn't write Psalms, either.
And I will call you out on your negative character traits if that is what you use to cause discord on this thread. There was no reasoning or logic to your initial post. It was stricly put there to sneer at those who believe in a certain way. Don't try to deny that now because it won't work. You didn't write that post in the spirit of good faith, but to antogonize. I see your 'ad hom' and call 'straw man'.

If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.
James Madison

the logic of the first post was...

The logic of my original post was to show contrary evidence that the bible does IN FACT have many verses showing tyranny and acts of an EXTREMELY barbaric nature.

As to your first point, yes the bible was written by men and it has been used over the millennium to try and justify horrendous acts of violence in the name of god. This goes beyond the bible into almost all religions.

I agree that this website is brings together people of liberty. I just hope to show that the bible should never be used to justify violence and that people should consider all the aspect of the "good" book when they subscribe to its teachings.

Sadly most Christians are christian in name only and use the bible to try and justify undeserved righteousness. And even more sad, parts of the church have rigorously attacked the scientific community leading to horrible misinformation and stagnating legitimate scientific research that has cost people their lives. (like telling people not to wear condoms and countless other things over the last 2000 years)

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

Billboard Campaign?

This is a great start to an atheist billboard campaign! Oh, wait...it's ALREADY an atheist billboard campaign. If a century of atheists all rely on the same six, taken-out-of-context scriptures as "proof" of a hateful God, then I KNOW I'm on the right track with Christianity.

Just pointing out what "god" has said.

Just pointing out what "god" has said. As an atheist, How can I believe in a hateful god if I don't believe in a god at all? I think the lunatic people that heard a voice in there head and wrote this stuff down were sick in the head.

the first is kinda out of context the rest are in context.

If god advocates these kinda things in ANY context, I know that I shouldn't be a part of that group.
I'm fairly sure ted bundy or jeffery dahmer would agree with god on these quotes, and I DAYMN sure am not going to align my self with them regardless of what else they may have said that may be positive...

also how about you read the book you love so much and tell me these are out of context...(my god, look at timothy go... it worse off in context)
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Timothy+2&vers...
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Leviticus+25%3A4...
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus+21&versio...
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ezekiel+9&versio...
http://www.allaboutgod.com/truth/ezekiel-9.htm

they are in order and I left out the psalm since i agree it's out of context.

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

They're nuts?

You're sure working hard to prove God said this or that, when you do not believe in him at all. And THEY'RE the lunatics? I think your soul is a bit confused.

You can't pull out little

You can't pull out little parts... Must be read in full.... Now now...

Critics often bring up this verse as an attack on the validity of the Bible. But, does the Bible teach that it is okay to kill children? The answer, of course, is no it doesn't. But we must ask what the Psalmist was saying and why he was saying it.

The context of Psalm 137 is the Babylonian captivity. The Psalmist speaks of the captors tormenting the people of God (vv. 1-3), a promise to remember Jerusalem (vv. 5-6), and a curse against the captors (vv. 7-9).

The Psalmist is in exile and had probably witnessed the atrocities committed against his people, babies included. In the revenge-style that was so common at the time, he wishes the same upon his enemy as a description of their utter destruction. Nowhere does it say that God approves of the Psalmist’s request or that he fulfilled it. Just because it is recorded that the Psalmist wrote the imprecation, doesn’t mean it was approved by God.

It is worth noting that the Old Testament records many atrocities. The fact is that God allowed people their sinful desires and he worked within their culture, even as he does now, as he permits all kinds of bad things to happen. Nevertheless, God introduced what is called the Apoditic Law (Exodus 21:24): an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. The Apoditic Law was instituted to prevent the increase of blood revenge, a practice where revenge would escalate out of control between two parties. Since the hearts of the fallen are so wicked and the harsh environment and culture produced difficulties for survival, God has a few options to counter their proclivity towards evil. He can run roughshod over their free will and force everyone to obey him, or he could wipe them all out (he had already done this with Noah's flood), or he could work within the situation at hand. In the case of this psalm, and it's Babylonian captivity context, God chose to work with people and through them instead of violating the freedom he had given them and forcing them to act in a manner that he instructs. Therefore, the Psalmist is expressing his curse against Babylon, a natural response to what his people have already suffered.

the first one

the first one is somewhat out of context... I'll give you that.

But the rest are in context... and would sound INSANE to a person who knows nothing about god, because it is insane.

Seems like the church does a fine job picking and choosing which verses to read... I cant recall ever hearing these fine verses I just quoted in the church.
The christian fanatics love to pick and choose verses out of the Quaran to discredit islam but have a hissy fit when people pull the same trick on them.

"But, does the Bible teach that it is okay to kill children?"
Indeed... yes it does advocate the "slaughter" of children
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ezekiel+9&versio...

see verse 6 of ezekiel 9 And don't try and tell me that is out of context or even that it is justified, becuase the slaughter of CHILDREN is exactly what the "good" book advocates.

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

Speaking of insanity...

...here's another Bible verse, and this one you may want to consider:

"The message of the crucifixion is insanity to the lost, but to those of us who have life it is the power of God." ~ 1 Corinthians 1:18

So is the slave..... Moses

So is the slave..... Moses did what he could do for the slaves of the time... They are all out of context... You need to read more.. Not just bites on the net.... The bible....

Why do you think I left the church?

Why do you think I left the church?

Because I have read the bible and I seen how the church distorts the bible to fit their agenda.

I also have seen how most church goers use the bible to justify sin and bad behavior.(like scientific persecution and hating other people based on what they believe.)

You tell me to read the bible, while you claim the bible doesn't advocate killing children when it CLEARLY states otherwise...
Now that the evidence is shown to you, you CAN'T refute the FACT that the bible advocates killing children. I think it is you that needs to read and understand the bible.

God burned 2 whole cities for not doing as the bible commands (false idols and sexual stuff)

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

God also flooded the world

God also flooded the world and killed everyone who was not on the ark... Again you have to read to fully understand what was going on at the time... Also everything wrote in the bible is not Gods quoted words... Lucky for us Came Christ...

You have very little

You have very little understanding of the word... Please read more...

ad hominids... nice

ad hominids... nice

You said and I quote
"Critics often bring up this verse as an attack on the validity of the Bible. But, does the Bible teach that it is okay to kill children? The answer, of course, is no it doesn't."

When in FACT the bible CLEARLY states "Slaughter the old men, the young men and women, the mothers and children"
which is in PERFECT context
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ezekiel+9&versio...

Who is it that understands the bible? clearly not you.

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

Until you understand New and

Until you understand New and Old and what happened between you just won't get it.

SteveMT's picture

Do you mean stuff like this that needs more study?:

32,000 virgins saved from the wholesale slaughter for what, I wonder?
One of the most wretched lines in the Bible spoken by Moses, but who knows: "Have ye saved all the women alive?"

Numbers 31

31:15 And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive?
31:16 Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD.
31:17 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him.
31:18 But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.
---
31:35 And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him.

Exactly this is within the

Exactly this is within the old testament.... One has to understand this is before Christ came and changed everything...

thanks for backing me up

thanks for backing me up.

The religious will try and justify even the most insane of barbaric acts described in a fiction book.

provide any sort of proof... :"but you don't understand, read more": as if reading it 1000 times will somehow make it sink into my head :/

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

Anything can be taken out of context...

Example:

Original...
"We hold these truths to be self-evident..."

Out of context as you like to take things:
"We hold these..."
Using Firefoxes approach to context, one could surmise they were talking about their own b@lls.

But of course they were not.

So, let's have a grown up IN-CONTEXT discussion, ok?

Knock off your childish purposefully misleading quotes out of context.

Thanks.

READ THE BIBLE

READ THE BIBLE, I even provided a link for the WHOLE 6 paragraphs in which the verse is in...

that line and every other one is PERFECTLY in context.(except the psalm)
in any case... IN WHAT CONTEXT IS IT OK TO CALL FOR THE SLAUGHTER OF CHILDREN?

You failed at the argument... so now you resort to ad hominid attacks on me. textbook move

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

Let's see.

The stories span THOUSANDS OF YEARS.

So, do you think POSSIBLY, that the context might go beyond one chapter or paragraph?

hmmmm.....

You tell me

You tell me? If I post a link to the whole book will you read it like I have? So that you can then tell me that its a story and not everything in the bible is literal?... because I have had this argument a THOUSAND times and it always goes back to this same process.

HERE is how it works with the religious fanatics...
I post up some quotes, then you tell me it's not in context... then I post the whole section of a chapter.... and you then tell me I need to read more and it's still not in context... I then post up the WHOLE BOOK and you attack my character and AGAIN tell me i just don't understand it and i need to read some more. all the while you tell the world it is an easy book to understand.

Sure it's easy to understand... when you don't read it and instead have the priest pick and choose quotes out of it then twists the interpretation to however he sees fit.

also, you didn't answer the question... In what context is it OK to slaughter children?

answer that. you can't and will revert back to the "good" book trying to justify the book and yourself.

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

When God chose to destroy the

When God chose to destroy the world.... Again keep reading because then came Christ..

How is this answer rational?

How is this answer rational to you?

Chose to destroy the world.... let that sink in for a second. he DESTROYED the world because he did not agree with what people were doing.

I mean, seriously, how does that sound like a just god to you?
He killed every man women and child(harmless babies too) plus all the animals but the ones moses put on a ship?

sounds alot like north korea to me... believe in and do as dear leader says or perish.

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

Today

doctors would point out to autistic childhood if that were written today.... No guns would be allowed, medications or not.

An epiphany and smoking shoes

I was raised in the catholic church and as soon as I left school I ran as far and fast as I could from organized religion...there must have been smoke coming from the bottom of my shoes when I finally slowed down to realize what I was really running from....hypocrisy...power and control....spiritual abuse and enslavement...

And many years later...I had an epiphany....and the epiphany was simple...it was that Jesus was a good guy....an incredible guy....a prophet...a teacher....and what he was telling us...was the the kingdom of God is within you...not in the church..not by way of the pope or the king or the dictator trying to rule you....but in you....and that give's you the power to be free...and you don't need anyone to give it to you...you already have it....you just need to open your heart to it...you are that powerful....

and what a mighty threat that was...

Such a threat in fact....

He preached the non-aggression principle: treat others as you yourself would like to be treated.

His message was such a threat they tortured him and murdered him more violently than the execution of MASS MURDERERS.

The reaction of the anti-religionists on here is not dissimilar except in degree. They are obviously threatened by the message because they are unable to treat others as they would like to be treated.