Why Translation and Context Matters

leor613
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Why Translation and Context Matters

Yesterday I pointed out that at least one of the "errors" in the Bible on Rook's list is only an error if you translate the Hebrew text a certain way, and you take the verse in question out of context. I am not some hick from the Bible Belt. I attended an acredited university where I took Biblical criticism classes, with professors who follow the Documentary Hypothesis. None of them would even dare to use the slipshod methods you use Rook. They would be laughed out of the profession in a heartbeat. You are as moronic as the KJV absolutists, taking a poor translation and not even bothering to learn the Hebrew necessary to critically examine the text. Your defenders are even worse, because I doubt they've ever actually read the Bible, in any translation. Rather than concede the point they change the topic. When Kirk Cameron does this you cry foul, but apparently you are allowed to do this. Why? Because you know the "Truth", and I'm a benighted fool. That's a logical fallacy by the way. So do you have a real answer for me? Or will you continue to dodge?


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REVLyle wrote: The resume

REVLyle wrote:

The resume comment was a joke.  I liked the Sith Lord thing.  Just trying to keep it lite. 

I am assuming that you do not believe that wrong conclusions have never been reached when all the information presented was accurate, but the intricate knowledge of the one making the conclusion was flawed.

My daughter is 4 years old.  She sees a tree outside.  She knows that the tree needs water and sun to survive.  Yet, the leaves fall off in the fall.  She comes to the conclusion that the tree is dead because it must not have gotten enough sun or water.  She has all the facts (tree needs sun and water) but she lacks the intricate knowledge of Botany in order to make the correct conclusion.

That is the point of what I was trying to say. 

What does an intricate knowledge of a topic, subject or discipline have to do with credentials?  There are tons of examples of brilliant, accurate, unbiased and tedious scholarship done by people who lack credentials (for whatever reason ...)  I attended a small but relatively prestigious university in New York City that was accredited and while I do have some skepticism with regards to those who receive degrees from unaccredited bible colleges and diploma mills, I generally can tell by the merits of their agruments (and not the degrees on their C.V.) whether or not they're trustworthy.

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REVLyle
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You wrote:  It is my

You wrote: 

It is my expert opinion that you are intellectually lazy and are looking for a way to simply ignore Rook's work. 

It is my expert opinion that when you speak of people 'blindly following others' that you are projecting your own flaws onto others, You are intellectual lazy, you cut and paste plagiarized works of others, merely because they agree with your position... you don't even bother to critically analyze the things you cut and paste, let alone critically analyze the works of opponent's arguments. In other words, you do this blindly.

I have good reasons, based on good evidence for my claims. Furthermore, I meet your criteria of 'expert'. Ergo, I trust that, in the sake of intellectual integrity and self consistency you will concede to my points here.

I pasted one thing, I explained why I did it (I was in a hurry) I apologized, I said I know better, and I said it wouldn't happen again.  I simply asked for one thing, "Can I see Rook's credentials since this website claims that he is an "expert in ancient texts."  Rook then states:

This is really a pathetic ploy to undermine somebody, which by the way is called character assassination.  If you want to kill me, do so with logic and reason, and present arguments that can be tested and examined. Trying to suggest that I am unqualified because I have not adequately presented my credentials is a dishonest tactic, and as Todangst put it, intellectually lazy.

I have been called lazy and dishonest simply for asking a question.  Yeah, this is good.  I looked at your list of contradictions and I simply took one of them.  It is 1:00 AM and I have to get up in the morning so here is my first look at what you wrote.

YOU WROTE:  Lot was Abraham's nephew (Gen. 14:12), brother (Gen. 14:14)

I see that in the KJV that Lot is called his brother but that does not necessarily mean "blood brother."  When one looks at the NASB, ESV, and NIV translation - none of them say "brother" in verse 14.

The Hebrew word is transliterated 'ach which means - brother, kinship, or relative.  It can even mean just "same tribe." 

This is nothing more than me calling my cousins "brothers."  The Jews certainly referred to each other as brothers and here is an example:

Nehemiah 5:7 - I took counsel with myself, and I brought charges against the nobles and the officials.  I said to them, "You are exacting interest, each from his brother." 

This word, "brother," in Nehemiah 5:7 is the exact same word that is used in Genesis 14:14 and it does not mean that they were exacting interest from their blood-brothers.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


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So your omniscient God was

So your omniscient God was being intentionally vague? Or doesn't transliteration imply vagueness?

Not a good move for a being who wants his message understood.

I'm glad you finally decided to actually try to take on one of the contradictions instead of kvetching about Rook not subjecting his credentials to your approval. 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


REVLyle
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Well, I can tell you this

Well, I can tell you this much . . . jcgadfly, you made me laugh this morning.  I am not sure by your post that you know what transliteration means.  The transliteration of the Hebrew word for brother or kinship or relative is 'ach.  There is nothing vague about a transliteration.  It does not imply meaning.  It is simply taking the Hebrew letters, and letter-for-letter spelling them out in our alphabet.  Please tell me how transliteration is vague.

Hey, jcgadfly, I am sitting here with my good friend Nathan.  Last week, Nathan was driving home and it was very stormy outside.  It was raining and lightning.  It was really bad.  The tires were not that great on his car and he meant to have them replaced several weeks ago, but he just did not have time.  He knew when he got on the road; it was going to be a long drive.  It got so bad that my brother almost slid off the road at one point in time.  What exactly did I mean?  I am writing in your language, in your culture, and in your time (2007).  The definition of brother in our dictionary.

1: a male who has the same parents as another or one parent in common with another

2: one related to another by common ties or interests

3: a fellow member — used as a title for ministers in some evangelical denominations

4: one of a type similar to another

5 a: kinsman b: one who shares with another a common national or racial origin; especially : soul brother

6 acapitalized : a member of a congregation of men not in holy orders and usually in hospital or school work b: a member of a men's religious order who is not preparing for or is not ready for holy orders <a lay brother>

Was I being vague?  Not at all.  Without any translation, we have 6 possible things that I could have been saying to you, and yet you followed the story just fine.  Brother, EVEN IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE, does not just mean "of the same father and/or mother.  Even in my lifetime we have changed the definitions of words.  Example:  Bad means good - That car is BAD.  The reason the dictionary is always being updated is that our language is constantly changing.

THE POINT:  There is no contradiction between Genesis 14:12 and 14:14.   I am also going to guess that no one is going to concede this point.  Let me see if I am surprised!!!!!!!

For the sake of argument, lets say the Bible is a farce.  Let's take God completely out of the picture right now.  The Bible does exist so someone had to write it, therefore an author existed.  (this even fits into your, I have seen an author write and I can go to a book factory definition)  I don't think anyone of you are suggesting that between verse 12 and 14 there is another author and that is why you believe there is a contradiction.  If so . . . good luck with that.  So if that is not the case, what you implying is that the author, who is simply writing a story (in your case you think it is fiction), was writing about Abraham and Lot and within the span of approximately 50 words by the English Bible or ONLY 27 words in the Hebrew text, he either forgot that he was writing about Abraham's nephew or he was simply too stupid to keep that in his mind for those 27 words.  The author must have also forgotten that he clearly identified who Lot was, not only 27 words earlier, but also at then end of chapter 11 when Lot is first introduced.

So let's see what happens on this one point, before I spend time on all the others.  I have got until I die or Christ comes to get me - so we can easily go point-by-point.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


jcgadfly
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Thank you for the

Thank you for the correction on transliteration.

So words with multiple meanings don't imply vagueness to you (in a case where the passage is not specific)? Or is it OK when you use those words but people who don't believe your way can't?

Why do I get the feeling you were one of those people who gave Bill Clinton hell when he used the legal definition of sex instead of the one the Republicans had their hands down their pants waiting for? 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


REVLyle
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Just curious, Can you give

Just curious,

Can you give me 10 words (not symbols or proper nouns) that only have one meaning out of the dictionary.  Let's simply look at our shortest word "a"  Are we looking at it as a:

Noun - 1 a: the 1st letter of the English alphabet b: a graphic representation of this letter c: a speech counterpart of orthographic a2: the sixth tone of a C-major scale3: a graphic device for reproducing the letter a4: one designated a especially as the first in order or class5 a: a grade rating a student's work as superior in quality b: one graded or rated with an A6: something shaped like the letter A7capitalized : the one of the four ABO blood groups characterized by the presence of antigens designated by the letter A and by the presence of antibodies against the antigens present in the B blood group

Indefinite article - 1— used as a function word before singular nouns when the referent is unspecified <a man overboard> and before number collectives and some numbers <a dozen>2: the same <birds of a feather> <swords all of a length>3 a— used as a function word before a singular noun followed by a restrictive modifier <a man who was here yesterday> b: any <a man who is sick can't work> c— used as a function word before a mass noun to denote a particular type or instance <a bronze made in ancient times> d— used as a function word before a proper noun representing an example or type <the attractions of a Boston or a Cleveland> e— used as a function word before a proper noun to indicate limited knowledge about the referent <a Mr. Smith called to inquire about the job> f— used as a function word before a proper noun to distinguish the condition of the referent from a usual, former, or hypothetical condition <a triumphant Ms. Jones greeted her supporters>4— used as a function word with nouns to form adverbial phrases of quantity, amount, or degree <felt a bit tired>

preposition -1chiefly dialect : on, in, at2: in, to, or for each <twice a week> <five dollars a dozen>

How in the world would you know what I mean when I use the word "a."  The answer is simply "context."  The word in verse 14 is used in context with the fact that Lot has been already identified as Abraham's nephew.

Bill Clinton has nothing to do with this debate or this non-contradiction.

 

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


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REVLyle wrote: Just

REVLyle wrote:

Just curious,

Can you give me 10 words (not symbols or proper nouns) that only have one meaning out of the dictionary.

Yes I can. All were found on dictionary.com.

1. Candela -noun Optics. A unit of luminous intensity, defined as the luminous intensity of a source that emits monochromatic radiation of frequency 540 × 1012 hertz and that has a radiant intensity of 1/683 watt/steradian: adopted in 1979 as the international standard of luminous intensity.

2. Appellate -adj. Having the power to hear court appeals and to review court decisions.

3. Penis -noun Anatomy, Zoology. The male organ of copulation and, in mammals, of urinary excretion.

4. Dollar -noun A coin or note worth one dollar.

5. Fingernail -noun The thin, horny, transparent plate covering the upper surface of the end of a finger.

6. Demntia -noun Psychiatry. Severe impairment or loss of intellectual capacity and personality integration, due to the loss of or damage to neurons in the brain.

7. Lox -noun A kind of brine-cured salmon, having either a salt cure (Scandinavian lox) or a sugar cure (Nova Scotia lox), often eaten with cream cheese on a bagel.

8. Yeti -noun A hairy humanlike animal reportedly inhabiting the snows of the high Himalaya Mountains.

9. Silicon -noun Chemistry. A nonmetallic element, having amorphous and crystalline forms, occurring in a combined state in minerals and rocks and constituting more than one fourth of the earth's crust: used in steelmaking, alloys, etc. Symbol: Si; atomic weight: 28.086; atomic number: 14; specific gravity: 2.4 at 20°C.

10. Antidisestablishmentarianism -noun Opposition to the withdrawal of state support or recognition from an established church, esp. the Anglican Church in 19th-century England.

 

I can probably find more if you would like, but I am having a hard time seeing what this proves as to the 'immutable' word of God. If after 20 minutes of surfing the internet, I can find single definition words, why couldn't He have used such words for the Bible?  It's not as if words from the creator of the universe are important or anything.

 

"When you hit your thumb with a hammer it's nice to be able to blaspheme. It takes a special kind of atheist to jump up and down shout, 'Oh, random fluctuations-in-the-space-time-continuum!'"-Terry Pratchett


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Couple of points   Izzypop

Couple of points

 

Izzypop list of words, most of them do have multiple meanings depending on which dictionary you have (www.dictionary.com)

 

Regarding unbiased reviewing of the bible I don't see how anyone can be unbiased if they consider it to be the literal word of god. Basically if you are a christian you can't really review the bible in any sort of logical manner (I believe that is the opposite logic that chrisitans generall use)

 


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IzzyPop wrote: REVLyle

IzzyPop wrote:
REVLyle wrote:

Just curious,

Can you give me 10 words (not symbols or proper nouns) that only have one meaning out of the dictionary.

Yes I can. All were found on dictionary.com.

1. Candela -noun Optics. A unit of luminous intensity, defined as the luminous intensity of a source that emits monochromatic radiation of frequency 540 × 1012 hertz and that has a radiant intensity of 1/683 watt/steradian: adopted in 1979 as the international standard of luminous intensity.

2. Appellate -adj. Having the power to hear court appeals and to review court decisions.

3. Penis -noun Anatomy, Zoology. The male organ of copulation and, in mammals, of urinary excretion.

4. Dollar -noun A coin or note worth one dollar.

5. Fingernail -noun The thin, horny, transparent plate covering the upper surface of the end of a finger.

6. Demntia -noun Psychiatry. Severe impairment or loss of intellectual capacity and personality integration, due to the loss of or damage to neurons in the brain.

7. Lox -noun A kind of brine-cured salmon, having either a salt cure (Scandinavian lox) or a sugar cure (Nova Scotia lox), often eaten with cream cheese on a bagel.

8. Yeti -noun A hairy humanlike animal reportedly inhabiting the snows of the high Himalaya Mountains.

9. Silicon -noun Chemistry. A nonmetallic element, having amorphous and crystalline forms, occurring in a combined state in minerals and rocks and constituting more than one fourth of the earth's crust: used in steelmaking, alloys, etc. Symbol: Si; atomic weight: 28.086; atomic number: 14; specific gravity: 2.4 at 20°C.

10. Antidisestablishmentarianism -noun Opposition to the withdrawal of state support or recognition from an established church, esp. the Anglican Church in 19th-century England.

 

I can probably find more if you would like, but I am having a hard time seeing what this proves as to the 'immutable' word of God. If after 20 minutes of surfing the internet, I can find single definition words, why couldn't He have used such words for the Bible?  It's not as if words from the creator of the universe are important or anything.

 

But now, let's examine context.  If i take the word "penis", fo example and use it a sentence like "John is a penis."  Does this mean that John has turned into a walking, talking penis?  No, it means that I don't hold a very high opinion of John.

How about if I describe my brother as a yeti?  I'm not Himalayan mountain monster, so my brother probably isn't.  Maybe I'm trying to say my brother has a hairy body, or enjoys living in high altitudes, or has a low IQ.

Or  if I were to state that my boss must be suffering from dementia.  Maybe I'm trying to say that although he hasn't suffered brain injury or disease, perhaps I'm trying to illustrate the point that I belive he's made a poor decision in some manner.

Or if I had a dollar for everytime I heard that one.

Or if I say she's holding onto life by her fingernails.

All based on context, huh?

 

"With its enduring appeal to the search for truth, philosophy has the great responsibility of forming thought and culture; and now it must strive resolutely to recover its original vocation." Pope John Paul II


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You're right, and in Greek,

You're right, and in Greek, in the LXX, it has been translated to be adelphos. The word is metaphorical or general. There is a variant of the Hebrew word used which would have meant brother, literally, however it is not that variant. So you are correct. I wonder then why the translaters of some of the versions used "brother" instead of "kin"? Perhaps by using the LXX they determined that in order to keep good with the theme in the Greek NT, they decided to keep it "brother", but that doesn't seem to jive well with the Hebrew, or the intentions of the seventy scholars.  This is why I am not a fan of english versions, because I don't like how they alter or paraphrase a word or sentence in Greek into english.

But either way, you're correct.  I should go through and update my list. 

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REVLyle
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mrjonno wrote:  Regarding

mrjonno wrote:  Regarding unbiased reviewing of the bible I don't see how anyone can be unbiased if they consider it to be the literal word of god. Basically if you are a christian you can't really review the bible in any sort of logical manner (I believe that is the opposite logic that chrisitans generall use).

 Just to reiterate what mrjonno stated.  I will take one of your words:

dementia - 1 : a usually progressive condition (as Alzheimer's disease) marked by deteriorated cognitive functioning often with emotional apathy 2 : madness, insanity <a fanaticism bordering on dementia>

NOTE:  The second defintion even references other words (madness and insanity) that are futher defined themselves.

So even dictionaries, (I hope this definition is suffice) what we depend on to define our words, differ somewhat.  I admit, I should not have even issued the challenge because it has nothing to do with the topic at hand. 

 I will most certainly tell you that I am biased toward scripture.  But, it is ridiculous to even think that only those who deny the existence of God and those who look at the Bible, which is according to this website is - nonsense, a fairytale, stupid, irrational, repressing, and unreliable - can look at scripture unbiased. . . That is not an intellectually honest belief.  Those statements alone show bias.

Bias does not have anything to do with the non-contradiction I have pointed out.  So far, since I have put my original post concerning this non-contradiction:

1.  Someone has attempted to classify me as a republican who didn't like Bill Clinton   AND NOW

2.  I am now biased so my research into this non-contradiction is somehow untrue   BUT

when I simply asked about Rook's credentials I was labeled as someone who was up to character assassination, I was intellectually lazy, and I had a reading comprehension problem.

The Bible does not contradict itself in Genesis 14:12 and Genesis 14:14.  Again, what is the point of going any further if this one point cannot be conceded? 

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


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REVLyle wrote: when I

REVLyle wrote:

when I simply asked about Rook's credentials I was labeled as someone who was up to character assassination, I was intellectually lazy, and I had a reading comprehension problem.

 All of which is true.

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REVLyle
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So the other day, I sat

So the other day, I sat down and watch the movie, The Last Samurai, with Tom Cruise. You will remember that at the end of the movie, Katsumoto (the last leader of an ancient line of Samurai) is shot up by the Emperor's army. Tom Cruise, Captain Nathan Algren who is at Katsumoto's side, fulfills Katsumoto's request and gives him a sword so that Katsumoto can die honorably.  Katsumoto then takes the sword and shoves it into his own mid-section and dies.  I was just curious . . .

Who is responsible for the death of Katsumoto?  The Emperor's army shot him.  Captian Nathan Algren gave him a sword in order for him to kill himself and Katsumoto is the actual one who pushed the sword into his own stomach.  

I don't pretend to think that you do not know where I am going with this . . . I was just wondering what you guys thought.  What is the correct answer?

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


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REVLyle wrote:

REVLyle wrote:
mrjonno wrote: Regarding unbiased reviewing of the bible I don't see how anyone can be unbiased if they consider it to be the literal word of god. Basically if you are a christian you can't really review the bible in any sort of logical manner (I believe that is the opposite logic that chrisitans generall use).

Just to reiterate what mrjonno stated. I will take one of your words:

dementia - 1 : a usually progressive condition (as Alzheimer's disease) marked by deteriorated cognitive functioning often with emotional apathy 2 : madness, insanity <a fanaticism bordering on dementia>

NOTE: The second defintion even references other words (madness and insanity) that are futher defined themselves.

So even dictionaries, (I hope this definition is suffice) what we depend on to define our words, differ somewhat. I admit, I should not have even issued the challenge because it has nothing to do with the topic at hand.

I will most certainly tell you that I am biased toward scripture. But, it is ridiculous to even think that only those who deny the existence of God and those who look at the Bible, which is according to this website is - nonsense, a fairytale, stupid, irrational, repressing, and unreliable - can look at scripture unbiased. . . That is not an intellectually honest belief. Those statements alone show bias.

Bias does not have anything to do with the non-contradiction I have pointed out. So far, since I have put my original post concerning this non-contradiction:

1. Someone has attempted to classify me as a republican who didn't like Bill Clinton AND NOW

2. I am now biased so my research into this non-contradiction is somehow untrue BUT

when I simply asked about Rook's credentials I was labeled as someone who was up to character assassination, I was intellectually lazy, and I had a reading comprehension problem.

The Bible does not contradict itself in Genesis 14:12 and Genesis 14:14. Again, what is the point of going any further if this one point cannot be conceded?

First, I did not classify you as a republican - I simply claimed that you might have been one of the people who gave Clinton hell for his use of language because he didn't use the word "sex" in the way you, as a Christian, thought he should've. The fact that your view of the word was the one that the GOP was playing with themselves hoping to hear was a bonus.

The whole reason I got into this is because my experience has been when a major conflict has been shown (such as faith alone v. faith with works) it gets disregarded by Christian types. Instead, we get a discussion on a word that has meanings that get adjusted until a fitting meaning can be found. Because you claim there is no contradiction on the small points, Christians expand it to "There are no contradictions in the Bible."

If the word for "brother" can mean "relative" or "tribesman" or "ally", why can't an omniscient God use the word with the meaning he wanted to convey?

He can't even get "Thou shalt not kill" right. I've seen "Thou shalt not murder" and heard so many exceptions to that commandment from pulpits it makes me wonder why the commandment is even there.

REVLyle, I apologize for any offense given - sometimes my need for answers gets on the overzealous side.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


REVLyle
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I appreciate your post

I appreciate your post Jcgadfly. I came in here to debate and discuss.  I wanted to know who I was debating and that seems to be too difficult a question for anyone to answer.  I then presented my argument and I was told that my bias made my point invalid.  So instead of debating, many have chosen to simply call names.

The topic for this discussion is, "Does context and translation matter?" I personally cannot even begin to understand why anyone would believe that it DOESN'T matter. When you and I begin a story with,

1. I was watching TV at my house the other day . . . OR

2. I was at Starbucks the other night . . .

What you and I are doing is putting our story in context.  For anyone to look at scripture and say that context doesn't matter is simply not being honest.  I am aware that if I say something like, "Whoever loves discipline love knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid." (Proverbs 12:1) then context is not important.  That is a wise saying.  It may be important to whom I am speaking and why I am speaking, but the statement of wisdom is not dependent on context. 

If one is telling a story, such as the narratives in the Bible - context is very important.  For anyone to point out a proverb and say that it is proof that context is not important in the Bible is simply lying to themselves and to others.  They obviously do not understand that the Bible is made up of many different genres of writing.  I wrote you the fictional story of Nathan and you completely understood the term "Brother" because you read it in context with the other part of the story.  If you did not consider context you might easily say that I contradicted myself.  In one sentence I said Nathan was a good friend and in another sentence I stated that he was my brother. 

You wrote a while back:  So words with multiple meanings don't imply vagueness to you (in a case where the passage is not specific)? Or is it OK when you use those words but people who don't believe your way can't?

Even in grade school, my son is taught that if you do not understand a sentence, try to understand it by the other sentences around the one you have difficulty in understanding.  In other words, look at the context of the one sentence in relationship with the other sentences.  I do believe that there are passages that are difficult to understand and some that are open to interpretation, BUT many passages are clearly defined not only within themselves but by other passages in the Bible and by the context in which they are set.

Again, we will debate online about defining a word and look at our situation.  We both live in the same year, we both speak the same language, and we both have the same culture (some assumption there).  BUT then we look at a text that was written 14th or 15th century BC, in a language that is vastly different from our (different alphabet and it is even read from right to left) and in a completely different culture.  YIKES.  For anyone to say that context and translation is unimportant is once again simply not being honest.  I can tell you from studying Hebrew - you CANNOT simply write a word-for-word translation.  It would absolutely make no sense in English.  Translators must be given some liberties or we would not have the Bible in our language.  We can disagree on many things, but if anyone were to argue with me on these facts, they are simply being untruthful. 

Just curious JCgadfly - Who is responsible for the death of Katsumoto?  I actually cannot believe this is an issue for discussion.  The fact that it is makes me question Rook's expertise. 

 

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


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I think the reason it

I think the reason it becomes an issue is because of those who claim an Omni-(put an attribute here) God.

It seems strange that a God with those attributes is unable to explain himself without people with their own agendas interpreting his words as they see fit (often coming up with opposing interpretations based on the same verses).

As for the Scientologist's pseudo-samurai movie, the character in question was killed by a government and a foolishly overblown sense of honor. 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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REVLyle
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First, I would like to put

First, I would like to put things in context.  A theist began to attack you guys because of your lack of scholarly work:  Here are a couple of quotes from todangst in response to the theist. 

"Your continued use of personal attacks makes it difficult to take you seriously."  AND

"If you want to be taken seriously, please refrain from launching into insults." SOOOOOOOOOO,

Do those statements apply to you guys as well?  Even after you realized that I was right, you continued to insult me.  Up to this point "todangst" has only threatened to remove me from the site and then made personal attacks.  This is the best that a double major from Rutgers can do . . . they may want to reevaluate their program. 

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jcgadfly
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REVLyle wrote: First, I

REVLyle wrote:

First, I would like to put things in context. A theist began to attack you guys because of your lack of scholarly work: Here are a couple of quotes from todangst in response to the theist.

"Your continued use of personal attacks makes it difficult to take you seriously." AND

"If you want to be taken seriously, please refrain from launching into insults." SOOOOOOOOOO,

Do those statements apply to you guys as well? Even after you realized that I was right, you continued to insult me. Up to this point "todangst" has only threatened to remove me from the site and then made personal attacks. This is the best that a double major from Rutgers can do . . . they may want to reevaluate their program.

Maybe it was a question of approach. For me, your demand for Rook's qualifications came off as a belief that his education needed to meet with your approval before you even bothered to look at his arguments.

 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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REVLyle
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Let me remind you of my

Let me remind you of my first post:

Before I say anything in this forum - I was wondering. Rook, what is your background as far as education and when it comes to historical documentation. What are your qualifications? I am not attacking - I have been looking basically for your resume. That way I know where you are coming from. I know what Brian says your area of expertise is - but in the world of academia, what are your qualifications. What groups recognize you as an authority in the area of history, historical documents, or ancient cultures.

So what you are saying is that if I would have simply said, "please" that would have made all the difference in the world.  I simply asked and the response from todangst was that I was trying to discredit him.  I never demanded and I specifically stated that I was not attacking.  Even "vessel" wrote:

All that being said I will agree with you on the point that, in the American culture, to reference someone as an expert in a particular field carries with it an implication of formal education. If Rook is not formally educated in biblical mumbo-jumbo, or whatever the field may be known as, to call him an expert without making this clear seems dishonest. Once we get past that and the dishonesty is cleared from the air, the fact that one does lack formal education in a particular field is not sufficient reason to disregard their arguments. Their arguments still hold as much wieght as those made by any PhD unless you can show them to be incorrect.  

BUT, of course nothing is coming as far as education.  The point of my last post is that Rook and todangst are doing the very things they condemn . . . Attacking the person rather than addressing the issues.  The issue was first - is Rook qualified to be called an expert.  The second was the issue of Genesis 14:12 and 14.  The issue was not me.  Rook's education did not need to meet my approval - I just wanted to know where and by whom he had been educated.  If the answer is nowhere or if the answer is he has a degree in business - I am not sure he should be listed as an expert in legal documents.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


REVLyle
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Rook wrote this is another

Rook wrote this is another inconsistency:  (i) Saul was killed by his own hands (1 Sam. 31:4), by a young Amalekite (2 Sam. 1:10), by the Philistines (2 Sam. 21:12)

We have already established that Genesis 12:12 and 14 was a non-contradiction so lets look at this "inconsistency" that Rook wrote about.  We will see this is not an inconsistency either.

The story of Saul's death is told in the last chapter of 1 Samuel 31.  Saul, his sons, and the men of Israel are fighting against the Philistines.  The Philistines kill three of Saul's sons and scripture then states in verse 3, "The battle pressed hard against Saul, and the archers found him, and he was badly wounded by the archers."  In other words, Saul had been over taken and he had been shot by the archers.  There was no escape.  He was already mortally wounded and he would certainly die.  This is very clear in the story by the fact that Saul turns to his armor-bearer and tells him, "Draw your sword and thrust me through with it, lest these uncircumcised come and thrust me through and mistreat me."  Saul's armor-bearer is is afraid and he will not do it, therefore; Saul took his own sword and fell upon it. 

So the question is . . . out of this first account of the story,  "Who is responsible for the death of Saul?" 

#1 - Some may simply say, "Saul did it.  He killed himself."  They would be right.  

#2 - Some would say, "The Philistines are responsible for the death of Saul.  They killed him"  They would ALSO be right.

That should take care of Saul was killed by his own hands (1 Sam. 31:4), AND by the Philistines (2 Sam. 21:12).

BUT WHAT ABOUT a young Amalekite (2 Sam. 1:10)

Rook is not exactly honest when he says that there is an inconsitency here.  The Bible DOES NOT say that a young Amalekite killed Saul.  The Bible says that a young Amalekite SAID that he killed Saul.  The Amalekite was simply lying.  This is a narrative and the story regarding the Amalekite as recorded in 2 Samuel 1:5-10 says this: 

5Then David said to the young man who told him, "How do you know that Saul and his son Jonathan are dead?" 6And the young man who told him said, "By chance I happened to be on Mount Gilboa, and there was Saul leaning on his spear, and behold, the chariots and the horsemen were close upon him. 7And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called to me. And I answered, 'Here I am.' 8And he said to me, 'Who are you?' I answered him, 'I am an Amalekite.' 9And he said to me 'Stand beside me and kill me, for anguish has seized me, and yet my life still lingers.' 10So I stood beside him and killed him, because I was sure that he could not live after he had fallen. And I took the crown that was on his head and the armlet that was on his arm, and I have brought them here to my lord."

Well, here is another "inconsistency" that needs to be taken off the list.  By the way, I checked and the Genesis 12 issue is still there.  Come on, let's update this website.  I wonder which "inconsistency" will be next to fall.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


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REVLyle wrote: You wrote:

REVLyle wrote:
You wrote:

It is my expert opinion that you are intellectually lazy and are looking for a way to simply ignore Rook's work.

It is my expert opinion that when you speak of people 'blindly following others' that you are projecting your own flaws onto others, You are intellectual lazy, you cut and paste plagiarized works of others, merely because they agree with your position... you don't even bother to critically analyze the things you cut and paste, let alone critically analyze the works of opponent's arguments. In other words, you do this blindly.

I have good reasons, based on good evidence for my claims. Furthermore, I meet your criteria of 'expert'. Ergo, I trust that, in the sake of intellectual integrity and self consistency you will concede to my points here.

I pasted one thing, I explained why I did it (I was in a hurry)

That's a lie. You have plenty of time to post here.

You plagiarized something you didn't even bother to critically examine. 

As for 'credentials', just read his arguments. Evaulate them.  

"Hitler burned people like Anne Frank, for that we call him evil.
"God" burns Anne Frank eternally. For that, theists call him 'good.'


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REVLyle wrote: Well, here

REVLyle wrote:

Well, here is another "inconsistency" that needs to be taken off the list. By the way, I checked and the Genesis 12 issue is still there. Come on, let's update this website. I wonder which "inconsistency" will be next to fall.

Most likely those in your own arguments.

"Hitler burned people like Anne Frank, for that we call him evil.
"God" burns Anne Frank eternally. For that, theists call him 'good.'


REVLyle
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"Your continued use of

"Your continued use of personal attacks makes it difficult to take you seriously."  AND

"If you want to be taken seriously, please refrain from launching into insults."

Does that sound familiar????  Oh yeah, let me give the proper reference:  the above quotes are from Todangst.

Once again Togangst, you bring nothing to the table.  REALLY, a double major . . . hard to believe.  You failed once again to address my arguments, you simply continue to attack my character.  Your posts are simply WEAK.  Please do not waist my time.  I will have to say though . . your lack of ability to debate the issues really do make me laugh.

BY THE WAY:  Since you threatened to "kick me off because I copied and pasted info"  I was looking into the rules.  Since you are a core member surely you know this one:

2.1. Antagonism.
Antagonism is giving one or more members a hard time. Cases typically comprise a series of provocations, each not necessarily sanctionable in its own right. Incidents can include, but are by no means limited to the following:

  1. Slander/Libel
  2. Clear intent to not argue a position, but to merely attack a person
  3. Trolling
  4. Abuse
  5. Bullying

You have yet to argue a position.  You simply attack me.  Am I going to have to report you?  I wonder. . . to whom do I report you????  I guess the rules do not apply to you.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


caseagainstfaith
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In attempt to put the

In attempt to put the thread back on topic...

 

The OP says that if there seems to be contradictions, it is because of translation and/or contextual errors.  I agree with those that say a perfect diety could have foreseen and protected against such problems.  But, even ignoring that, there are tons of problems with the claim.  For one, what's stopping God from providing a correct translation now?  If he wants to correct some errors, well, lets have the corrections!

Next, since nobody has the original hebrew and aramaic, it is fundamentally impossible for us to construct exactly the original works.  Yes, I know that via textual analysis of existing copies, we can probably get "reasonably close" to the original, but, there is no way to quantify exactly how "reasonably close" is.  So, if to get the real meaning of the Bible you need the original words in the original language, it doesn't exist so EVERYBODY is screwed!

Next, even if we had the first original copy, ALL translations, by necessity, are approximations.  Every human being has slightly different internal understanding of the meanings and connotations of each word.  We all expect that the understanding between two different people is close enough to allow reasonable communication, but, communication is never perfect even in the same language.  When translating from another language, it would be fundamentally impossible to impart every nuance of meaning and connotation that was in play at the time of original writing.

 And, finally, this whole BS about the people of the time being fully able to understand the meaning is clearly disproved by the Bible itself!  Time and again the disciples are depicted as not understanding what they are told.  Paul's epistles were written often to try to clarify what he saw as misunderstandings.  And, despite Christian claims to the contrary, there were many different sects and beliefs instantly.

So, in short, the OP argument is wrong.  And even if it wasn't wrong, it would still be wrong a dozen different ways.  And even it it wasn't wrong in those dozen different ways, it would still be wrong in a thousand other ways.