‘Let us read both sides in each claim & then decide for ourselves which is right because we only see what we want to believe whenever alternate possibilities exist’ – Anonymous
Four major “Fallacies in Logic” & “Exegesis” are done by those who ‘seek to prove that the Bible has contradictions’, namely:
(i) The copyist error
It is true that among the many tens or thousands of copyist manuscripts which exist for the “same” verse, there could be “different” or “missing” words.
This does NOT prove that the Bible is Infallible but that the copyists which differ got it “wrong”. The only problem is to determine which ‘slightly differing’ manuscripts is ACCURATE to the Originals which had to be copied for preservation not being able to survive thousands of years in the Original papyrus, animal skin or some type of paper (scrolls).
Thus, the Inerrancy of God’s Word refers to the ORIGINALS and “not” every copyist error in ‘just any’ such manuscripts’.
Often, to determine which ‘differing copyist’ manuscripts are RIGHT, we may see the “MAJORITY” of the surviving manuscripts or even in reference to earlier Christians before us (such as the “early Church fathers” or “Jewish rabbis” for the “copyist” manuscripts which they endorsed for the New Testament vs Old Testament copies respectively).
(ii) The misinterpretation of Facts presented
We also see “alternative interpretations” to seemingly contradicting passages because these passages need to be seen “together” to understand the “Hidden” workings as differing verses could point to “differing details” for the “same” incident (micro-points).
We “only” see a contradiction when we “assume” these verses are referring to the “same details” (micro) in “both verses” which may NOT be the case as each speaks of a “different micro detail” which refer to the “same” Incident (Big Picture – Macro).
(iii) Translational Errors
Just because our “English” translation offers that ‘contradictory meaning’, it does NOT necessarily mean that in the Originals due to the nature of the Hebrew & Greek words which could have “two slightly different meanings” (these languages are such).
We will believe the ‘scholar’ we ‘choose to’ according to our “OWN hearts” (a Revelation of our hearts by Scripture being written in such manner at times, explaining ‘why’ is it written that way? —> God is The Genius):
“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12, NASB)
“and a sword will pierce even your own soul– to the end that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.” (Luke 2:35, NASB)
(iv) Apply it to “All” verses in the Bible
This must be the most common form of “Generalisation Error”.
Such who ‘think’ that they have found ‘contradictions’ or errors based on say, ‘any of the three false deductions aboce’ to which they have ‘believed’ to be ‘true’, “next” —-> make another “new error” in Logic or thought —> that it must be “likewise” For “All” verses in the Bible
In fact, most of these “difficult” verses do NOT affect anything major as most just are due to describing EVENTS in slightly “different” details. That is, these do NOT refer to any Theological point which may be ‘generalised’ but rather ‘refer to specific cases, MOSTLY of how God allows Judgment/Temptation even via Satan’s own choice/freedom to do it’.
The verse where God speaks “DIRECTLY” have NO contradictions (I have NEVER seen a contradiction produced for this “type” of verses).
So, we cannot argue from “specifics to generality” as it is a common logical fallacy and further, these may refer to “different” cases too.
For example, the Universal Reconciliation verses which refer to “all” refer to “all” (Acts 3:21) as these are FACTUAL THEOLOGICAL verses and NOT incident descriptions and thus God speaks LITERALLY in these (e.g. Colossians 1:20 under the Context of Colossians 1:16 ONLY).
The “incident description” verses may contain “figures of speech” or other “literary styles” But verses such as 1 Timothy 2:4 is to be seen with the correct context of 1 Timothy 4:10 where “all men” and “those who believe (believers)” are contrasted meaning that these are NOT ‘figures of speech’ but A FACT pointing to God Who “Will have” (Verb in Original Greek) “ALL men” to be “Saved” eventually (NOT believers only) being the “Saviour of ALL men” But “specially (Emphasis) on Believers” all ‘as it is written’.
The best part is that to ‘prove’ alternate meaning to their FALSE claim that ‘all men’ refers to ‘believers only’ one has to prove it with “usage” by apostle Paul within this “same” letter which does NOT exist!
Also, if the FALSE claim that these are allegorical or figures of speech in 1 Timothy 2:4 or 1 Timothy 4:10 are true, then where is the proof?
Next, if the FALSE claim that these verses also are ‘fallible’ due to the ‘error claims’ explained in points (i) to (iii) earlier, where are the “ALTERNATE copyist manuscripts” which state ‘otherwise’ (e.g. ‘not all men’) & which early Church ‘father’ or authority endorsed that ‘imaginary, non-existent copyist manuscript to be the correct one as matching the originals’?
The absence of such “Proof” proves all such shallow claims as FALSE.
Now, which Church “father or authority” from the EARLIEST six Theological Schools ever argued that “Holy Scripture is Fallible? (where one taught eternal torment, one taught annihilation while the remaining “four” taught Universal Reconciliation), to quote (from a Neutral Scholastic Encyclopedia found in link below too):
“Under the instruction of these great teachers many other theologians believed in universal salvation; and indeed the whole Eastern Church until after 500 A.D. were inclined to it.”
“In the West this doctrine had fewer adherents and was never accepted by the Church at large. In the first five or six centuries of Christianity there were six known theological schools, of which four (Alexandria , Antioch, Cæsarea, and Edessa or Nisibis) were Universalist, one (Ephesus) accepted conditional immortality; one (Carthage or Rome) taught endless punishment of the wicked. Other theological schools are mentioned as founded by Universalists, but their actual doctrine on this subject is unknown. Doederlein says that “In proportion as any man was eminent in learning in Christian antiquity, the more did he cherish and defend the hope of the termination of future torments.” In the dark ages Universalism almost disappeared, but in the ninth century it had one great representative, John Scotus Erigena (see Scotus Erigena, Johannes), who was the chief Christian luminary of his time. In the Middle Ages, some of the lesser mystics and probably Johann Tauler and Jan van Ruysbroeck (qq.v.), and one leading scholastic, Albertus Magnus (q.v.), were Universalists. In the times of the Reformation Universalists were found among Anabaptists, Lollards, and Protestant mystics; and later there were increasing numbers of individual believers in this doctrine in all northern European countries, including such men as Kant, Schleiermacher, Ritschl and many of his followers, Archbishop Tillotson, Tennyson, the Brownings, Wordsworth, and Coleridge.
Who Was Rev. Philip Schaff D.D.?
Career of the man whom theologians regarded as one of the greatest teachers on Church History
Who Was Johann J. Hertzog?
Now, here’s an example into proper Christian Apologetics answering some famous so called ‘proof of the fallibility of all the Bible’ with respect to the ‘famous difficulties’ (I am quoting the website or links simply because I didn’t author these and are opinions of top scholars in these areas to whom I concur in “these aspects” as well for reasons mentioned prior):
1) What time did Lord Jesus Christ Die?
2) When was Lord Jesus Christ Crucified & Resurrected?
3) Did Jairus’ Daughter die or was about to die?
4) Why are there different genealogies of Christ in the Gospel? Or is there?
5) Why did God condemn Jehu?
6) Did God or Satan incite David against against Israel in the Census Incident?
7) Who killed Goliath?
“The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.” – Lord Jesus Christ (Luke 6:45, NASB)
“I repeat, God is The Genius” – Anonymous
“Through all this Job did not sin nor did he blame God.” (Job 1:22, NASB)