Contradictions in the Bible
Regarding Maris Sanner's letter “Study the Bible” (Jan. 20): I have studied the Bible — read it cover to cover several times. Most people haven't. That's why I cited the quotes I did in my letter “Christmas not that unique” (Dec. 30), which contradict the quotes Sanner cited.
Like it or not, Matthew 25 and Revelation 20 both describe “Last Judgement” accounts citing only works, not faith, as the deciding qualifications for heaven or hell. I did not create the contradictions; they are contained within the Bible. James disputes Paul over faith versus works. Cite what you want, but my counters remain.
To save others the time of reading the whole Bible cover to cover to find the contradictions, I recommend two books to pinpoint and view what the Bible and the spirit shows those with eyes to see: William Henry Burr's “Self-Contradictions of the Bible” and C. Dennis McKinsey's “The Encyclopedia of Biblical Errancy.”
My intent in studying the Bible was not to find its errors or contradictions; I simply wanted to know what it said. The Catholic religion of my youth told me to seek and value truth. I have found the truth, albeit it was not what I or others of a particular faith expected or wanted me to find.
There was a security in my childhood faith that I miss. But the God I know expects me to have faith in the gifts of reason and to use the talents he has given me — even if I, too, am just a poor carpenter's son.
As to the salvation of the “good thief” on the cross with Jesus, the Luke Gospel says he was saved by his good of speaking well of Jesus when the other thief reviled Jesus.
But, in Mark and Matthew, both men crucified with Jesus “reviled him.” In those Gospels, therefore, there was no thief saved!
The writer, a Mt. Pleasant native, holds a master's degree in religion.