Christians Shoving Religion and The Bible Written By Men

  Another enlightening day in my email box today. I got an email from one of the many groups I belong to. A woman wrote and began to complain about the Bible verses that were at the end of the posts. Well, it didn’t end with that. She continued. The Bible was written by men inspired by religion. She claims it has been edited, translated and rewritten. She continues that unless you know Hebrew and have the original Scriptures, you are not quoting the true Bible. 

   As I read that, it looks like to me, that she is not so much concerned about the Bible verses at the end of people’s posts as much as what she believes about the Bible. I find it interesting that people can quote religious figures in History, and nobody complains about it, but if someone puts out Bible verses, it becomes upsetting to people. That is just more verification of the authenticity of the Bible. 

  Let’s take the claims that she wrote:

1. The Bible was written by men who were inspired by religion. Is this true? In part, it is. The Bible was written down by men. They were like the writing instruments for God. Were they inspired by religion? That depends upon the reader’s interpretation of the word religion. That word could mean several different things. Let’s say that the writer’s meaning of the word ‘religion’ means God. Then yes, the Bible writers were inspired by God. But if the writer meant religion in the sense of what people do to try to reach God or what kind of standard people set up that they think God requires, then no, it wouldn’t apply.

2. It has been edited, translated, and rewritten. Has the Bible been edited, translated, and rewritten? The words of the Bible were originally written down by the people who were either in the situations that they were writing about, or, by people who asked questions about what had happened (such as Luke). The words were written down and given out to other believers in different places. It is true that the original copies of those words are not available. But, copies of those were spread throughout the churches, not too long after the church began. The Bible was translated from Hebrew and Greek to Latin. Later on, it was translated from Greek to the different languages. It wasn’t translated, for example, from Greek to Latin, from Latin to German, from German to English, from English to Spanish, etc. The different languages that the Bible translations come from, all come from the Greek (New Testament). The Bible has not been rewritten either. Some people think that the Bible transmission is like the game of telephone. It starts with person A, then A tells person B, then person B, tells person C, etc. until it gets to the end person. You can see how different the word is by the time it gets to the end! That is linear transmission. But with the Bible, it is a matter of geometrical transmission. An example of this would be 1 letter birthed 5, 5 birthed 25 copies, etc. Plus, the kind of communication used was writing, not oral communication, which makes a big difference in finding differences in words. In other words, what was written in the Bible was not passed down orally throughout the past 2,000 years plus. It has been written down and preserved carefully by monks and scholars throughout the years. Plus, fragments of copies have been found that were written very close to the time of the originals, and comparatively looking at the copies, they have been very few discrepancies. The ones that were noted usually have to do with word order (Christ Jesus, Jesus Christ), or spelling. 

The ‘Patristic Quotations’ have been used also to verify what the original Scriptures said. It has been said that if all the sources of the knowledge of the text of the New Testament were destroyed, we could practically reconstruct the New Testament based upon the Patristic quotations (Metzger). Here is a wonderful article on the defense of the reliability Scriptures: http://www.str.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=6068 

  There were some retorts to the post by the woman who was displeased by the Scripture verses at the end of the posts. They all defended the person’s right to put Scripture at the end of the post. That was part of that person’s sharing him or herself and what that person held precious to him or her. But someone else had an interesting point. Even in defending people’s rights to post Bible verses, this person wrote about how he or she was on a mailing list and people were shoving Christianity down people’s throats. I find this interesting. I wonder what it looks like when someone is ‘shoving Christianity down my throat’. Is it a matter of putting a convicting Bible verse at the end of the post (e.g. ‘It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.’) or is someone threatening others to become Christians? I have to admit, I don’t ever remember seeing anyone shove Christianity down someone’s throat, but, sometimes people have accused me of doing that if I offer a tract. I just don’t see the connection of ‘shoving’ something down someone’s throat when just asking him or her a question. I find that as an irritating smokescreen that should be easy to diffuse. 

So, the words of the Bible were written down by men under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The Bible has been carefully preserved throughout the years, and the translations of the Bibles into different languages comes from Greek or Hebrew, not from one language to another. The next time you hear someone make these accusations, just remember what is true, and how it really happened. And that is True History.

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