Why the doctrine of biblical inerrancy seems inherently improbable

In the introduction to his book Credible Christianity, Anglican Bishop Hugh Montefiore comments:

‘The doctrine of biblical inerrancy seems inherently improbable, for two reasons:

Firstly, the Scriptures contain what seem to be evident errors and contradictions (although great ingenuity has been applied to explain these away).

Secondly, the books of the Old and New Testaments did not gain their place within the “canon”, or list of approved books, as soon as they were written. The Old Testament canon was not closed until late in the Apostolic age, and the New Testament canon was not finally closed until the fourth century. If all the Bible’s contents were inerrant, one would have thought that this would have become apparent within a much shorter period.’

Huge Montefiore, Credible Christianity: The Gospel in Contemporary Society, London: Mowbray, 1993; Grand Rapids, Eerdmans, 1994. p. 5.



Categories: Bible, New Testament scholarship

308 replies

  1. Why didn’t Zaynabs husband honor kill her for allowing Mohammed to see her that way?

    Or why didn’t her husband honor kill Mohammed for looking at her uncovered?

    Because he was a “prophet”?

    The plot thickens.

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  2. My own theory was that Bathsheba normally put up a curtain when she bathed on the roof. But this time she didn’t.
    David is still looking better than Mohammed in my view.

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    • Yeah, no one cares about your moronic “theory”. As usual, there is no evidence for it. You are obviously quite embarrassed by this story, and your god’s unjust enforcement of his own laws.

      Does it strike anyone as odd that Iggy seems to be trying to pin the blame on the woman for David’s inability to control himself? Hmmm…interesting….

      Liked by 1 person

      • @ QB

        As I said he’s somebody who thinks a woman wanted to be raped because she dresses too provocatively.

        You know you call Ken a clown but Walter seems to have big feet and a red nose to me…

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  3. Did Mohammed pull aside any curtains or veils to get a better look?

    Or perhaps go through a door he knew he had no right to enter?

    Its not looking good for this “prophet”?

    Did his wives know anything about his schinnanigans?

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    • @ Watson

      You’re just throwing anything now

      1. Honor killings don’t exist in Islam. This practice was adopted from colonialism of “murders of passion”. There is no sin for accidentally seeing someone please list a proof otherwise.

      2. No in the story he knocked and she answered then he walked away. Also hijab was nit revealed yet.

      3. No evidence she had any intention to seduce David(as). Its ironic the only thing it doesn’t look good for is the Bible and its slander of the prophets which is why you are deflecting from the topic or that God forgave without Jesus(as).

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Looks like Mohammed liked what he saw if we judge by what happened afterwards. He didn’t waste any words of condemnation on his future wife and got the swap done quickly. Of course with the usual “revelations”.

    Wife swapping prophetic style or?

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  5. Mohammed enjoyed looking at a scantily clad woman, encouraged her to divorce, married her and then told all women to cover up or else.

    I wonder what Moses and Jesus would think about this little episode?

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  6. @ Watson

    I can say in all honesty this is the dumbest conversation I have ever had the displeasure of having on this blog. Uhh…

    1. If you go with this non referenced story yeah. Don’t recall arguing that. He is a human and obviously would find women attractive there’s no sin in this.

    2. He never encouraged a divorce in the story nor the Quran, its the opposite actually he told Zaid (ra) to stay with her (their marriage was already on the rocks) If you’re going to attack a story at least know it.

    3. Not forbidden for a woman to remarry don’t see an issue.

    4. Not really but I guess Nathan’s “revelations” got David (as) out of trouble of getting stoned for fornicating with the eyes, adultery and murder.

    5. Neither one of these stories make sense and I can easily throw out both non referenced sources wbu?

    6. Still avoiding those more serious issues of theology that have been mentioned such as early Christians making up prophecies and God forgiving without needing Jesus(as) I see.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Mohammed the opportunist just adding to his harem and enjoying something that he would make unlawful for women shortly after.

    Then getting Allah’s ok.

    If it was all so natural and above board to marry your daughter in law why does Mohammed need a revelation to get rid of the stigma attached?

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    • LOL, the monkey is making excuses for David’s adultery, while trying desperately to make Muhammad (pbuh) look worse. Sorry Iggy, but your moronic hypocrisy only further exposes your religion and its demonic double standards. You are making your religion look really bad.

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    • Dummy, the wife of an adopted son is not your “daughter in law” because there is no biological basis for that. It’s really quite simple. However, the pagan Arabs were just as stupid as you, so they made a big deal out of it; hence, the ayat was revealed from God.

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      • @ Watson

        1. Rules don’t necessarily transfer nation to nation the verse of Jesus(as) allegedly disallowing divorce is proof of that genius. I can turn the question easily as to why is he overriding Moses’s(as) law of divorce (that says nothing about having a hard heart). If you really want to debate this then go have sex with your sister like Adam’s(as) children.

        2. For the sake of discussion let’s say he wanted to “add to his harem” it would be easier to have not put a limit (as this was what everybody was doing) or just abrogate it.

        3. She wasn’t “scantily clad” retard she was wearing normal clothes. Again, if you actually knew the story he allegedly went to see Zaid(ra) and she answered so he turned around and left.

        4. He never encouraged any divorce either in this story or the Quran he does the opposite and tells Zaid to stay with his wife:

        “When you said to the man who was favored by God as well as you: “Hold on tight to your wife and stay god fearing…” (33:37)

        5. There is no threat in the verse of hijab.

        6. Again nothing wrong with looking at women for marriage. If I was courting a woman I can ask to see her without her hijab this prohibition is for your not buying.

        7. Don’t recall saying everyone was okay with it (this is another reason why story 2 is stronger). This is the point of God setting this up, which is too show He does not care about your cultural taboos in relation to His laws:

        “…When Zaid no longer wanted to be with her, I gave her to you in marriage so that it would not be difficult for the believers to marry their adopted sons ex-wives who they were no longer intimate with. God’s commands must be carried out. The Prophet is not at fault for what God has decreed on him. This was God’s way with those who came before and God’s command will be fulfilled. (33:37-38)

        Sometimes people have social stigmas that God has no issue with or legislated (like for example polygyny or marrying divorced women) Even though no sin is committed, people try to isolate them and God is saying His command is to be carried out in ALL case not what you think it should be.

        8. Probably good job lowering your gaze and walking away unlike the Biblical David(as) who lusted after a woman and then paid Nathan to get him out of it (you know this is just my theory)

        9. Still avoiding those theological issues brought up?

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Jesus : “But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.

    Who’s right, Jesus or Mohammed?

    Why does Allah sanction or with a revelation what Jesus condemned?

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    • Hmmm, let’s see. A silly, extreme view on marriage and divorce (the NT) or a sane, moderate view (the Quran and Sunnah). Which one could be from God?

      Iggy, what if a woman is being abused by her husband. Are you telling me that your mangod would not have allowed such a marriage to be dissolved and allow the woman to remarry someone who is not abusive?

      Iggy, should the NT law be enforced in secular countries?

      Oooh, I can’t wait for the moron to answer these countries! I’m giddy with excitement!

      Liked by 1 person

    • ““But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.”

      “marry her that is divorced” what a crap law. ask those poor women who are divorced with children and cannot find a person to marry them, krists law will cause the following situation

      1. prostitution ( ancient israle very likely)

      2. starvation

      3. christ already told his pals to abandom women, children and parents and forget familial duty.

      your gods a complete retard. he tells the jews “don’t separate what god has joined…..” then he tells them that fornication can separate what god has joined lol…..so any christian woman caught fornicating can always keep the union under the flesh “sacrifice” of jesus.

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  9. “Why didn’t Zaynabs husband honor kill her for allowing Mohammed to see her that way?”

    LOL, you must be confusing the Quran with the Bible.

    Ahem…

    “If a priest’s daughter defiles herself by becoming a prostitute, she disgraces her father; she must be burned in the fire.” (Leviticus 21:9)

    Zing!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. “You have no proof that Enoch was written before Jude. You don’t know when, why, or by whom it was written. The oldest extant copy is from when? 1000 AD?”

    Actually we do, dummy. There are manuscripts of Enoch from Qumran, which predates Jude by more than 200 years. See here: https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/scrolls/scr3.html

    Do your homework, moron. Stop embarrassing yourself.

    “The Ethiopians will probably canonize the Koran at some point in the future.”

    Well, that would be great!

    But nice try with the deflection. The fact remains that 1 Enoch was written before your pathetic “Jude” came along.

    “I suppose it was just a coincidence that Mohammed was alone with her in her house, right? Before she was divorced. Took a peek or two didn’t he? Before he got Allah’s help.”

    LOL, making accusations without proof? What does your Bible say about that, I wonder?

    “As far as David is concerned God is sovereign and can overrule a punishment if he so wishes.”

    Well, how convenient! “God” decides the law should be changed for the king of Israel, who just happens to be the most powerful man in the region. Hmm, yeah…nothing fishy going on there.

    “If a man is found sleeping with another man’s wife, both the man who slept with her and the woman must die. You must purge the evil from Israel.” (Deuteronomy 22:22)

    “God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?” (Numbers 23:19)

    Nice job Ignoramus! Thank you for proving you worship a false god!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. “David acted out of weakness but that was no excuse.”

    yhwhs holi spirit is a failure , even his elect are filthy fornicators , rapists and adulterers. why do you trust the bible, yhwhs elect wrote them.

    “You could say the death of their son is a parable of justification and how Jesus dies for us.”

    what a pathetic and crappy parable. since jesus is like an animal sacrifice, then yhwh should have told dave to bring out his favorite bull

    the child was made to suffer to make daves pals laugh, in judaism MORAL guilt is not transferred.

    ” The child dies for his parents.”

    he didn’t die for his parents. he was made to suffer to make daves friends laugh:

    God instead tortured a baby to death over a period of several days, not because of David’s sin, but because the Lord’s enemies were given occasion by that sin to laugh:

    “Adam is totally different. He had no excuse.”

    ” His wife persuaded him to eat against his knowledge that God forbade him to do so. There were no hormones driving him to eat the fruit.”

    so the hormones which drove his temptations to listen to his wife, to eat fruit, to disobey god were all present in adam.

    but.krist died for this disobedience of adam which means in this story adam should not have been punished but someone innocent like the baby….so how come the animals which yhwh shed in heaven didn’t appease yhwh lol? after all yhwh was pathetic god , he had to kill animals to dress adam , right?

    .
    david even after being elected , guided , inspired, gifted with many things…..banged the bathing one.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. ” There were no hormones driving him to eat the fruit.””

    genesis already acknowledged Adams and eve were made as food eaters. yhwh gave them hormones and a garden full of trees with fruits.

    one could make the argument that according to genesis, if adam did not eat he would die.

    he still did not eat from “tree of eternal life” yet.

    so the other trees were there to keep his life going, but if he stopped eating from them , he would die.

    “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden;”

    not from tree of knowledge since that helps them identify tree of life!!!!


    So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate.

    The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit from the tree, and I ate.”

    ” There were no hormones driving him to eat the fruit.””

    yhwhs spirit is a hormone buster, he helped jesus “the fully human” out, remember?

    dave god inspired, revelation, gifts of many wives , gifts of palace….why yhwh spoiled dave ?

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  13. So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate.

    2 The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit from the tree, and I ate.”

    1.. the woman is the one full of desires.

    2. she gave some to her husband, the text does not say that adam knew where the “some” came from, notice he says “the woman whom u gave me (one full of wrong desires)….”she gave me the fruit….” adam is saying that it is gods fault for giving adam one with full of wrong desires.

    yhwh even thinks adam has a point :

    Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?”

    adam was completely innocent , he didn’t even know. iggy is comparing king david with adam, which is an unjust comparison.

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  14. so iggy , yhwhs “great prophet ” with lust and penetration on his mind banged sheba….yhwh knowing full well that even EATING apple harms his holiness…..dave SHAGGY SHAGGY in eyes of “holi” yhwh, yet yhwh let him go.yhwh is filthy scum bag

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  15. yhwhs spokes persons and earthly reprentitives from a biblical perspectice have vagina on mind and take pleasure in their lust, yhwhs holiness should demand the FIRING of david …..yet yhwh PLUCKS his child hahahahabahab

    lets talk about yhwhs affair with fornicating dave

    So David reigned over all Israel, and he administered justice and equity to all his people.

    lusting dave got a reputation

    Saying, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?” They said to him, “The son of David.”

    as if they never knew what a lusting naked womanizer lusting dave was

    like i said

    Holi spirit filled david

    jesus was plucking his eyes out even though jesus needed lusting dave for his prop ups

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  16. “2. He never encouraged a divorce in the story nor the Quran, its the opposite actually he told Zaid (ra) to stay with her (their marriage was already on the rocks) If you’re going to attack a story at least know it.”

    ” its the opposite actually he told Zaid (ra) to stay with her ”

    But he doesn’t say why does he? Its not for certain that he has any moral qualms about it, the opposite could be true. It is just a lifestyle choice for him whereas for Jesus it is a serious transgression amounting to adultery. Everyone decides for himself when his or her marriage is “on the rocks”.

    So Mohammed was waiting for a revelation and when he got that it was full steam ahead. It could safely be assumed that there was never any real opposition on his part to the breaking up of the marriage based on moral grounds. His initial opposition was based on the backlash of public opinion that he would have to face.

    Its another case of Muslims joining the dots to create their ideal picture of Mohammed where the texts are silent. Whereas Jesus lays out clearly the grounds for God being against divorce Mohammed is silent about why he tells the woman to stay with her man, for now at least. And Allah knows best.

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    • ” It is just a lifestyle choice for him whereas for Jesus it is a serious transgression amounting to adultery.”

      “Whereas Jesus lays out clearly the grounds for God being against divorce”

      where does God not allow a person to divorce and if i find ONE text in ot which allows a person to divorce then you will agree that yhwh enjoyed causing adultery?

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      • yhwh ALLOWS ADULTERY

        :::::::::::::::::::::

        I am alarmed that you believe it to be speculation that Moses did not amend the Torah, because we were not privy to their meetings. With such a statement, you deny the whole of Torah!

        Can you tell us what other emendations Moses made to the Torah? Can you tell us when he faithfully transmitted the teaching of God, or when instead he passed on his own ideas? Surely you know the purpose of the Sinai revelation: the mass revelation was performed so that the people would know they could trust Moses as a prophet (See Ex. 19). If Moses had the temerity to alter God’s law, he would have been removed. He would have to be, or we would always be left speculating if we were obeying God or following Moses.

        Please understand that the speculation is yours and not mine. The Torah says nothing about Moses granting a leniency. Therefore, you have had to speculate that this is what has happened. That speculation is based on the teachings of a man over 1,000 years after the giving of the Torah. You have interpolated what is not in the text. This is speculation.

        Of course, no one denies that it is ideal for people not to separate. No one is saying that divorce is ideal. But that is not the question. The question is whether or not God permitted divorce. And He did.

        Actually, the question is much larger. It is prohibited to add or subtract from the Torah. And that is what Jesus has done. He has created a prohibition not found in the Torah. And worse, he created a new category of adultery.

        The seriousness of this cannot be overstated. The Torah takes adultery quite seriously. It is a crime that carries the death penalty. By Jesus altering the law, he is making people liable to the death penalty for a practice previously allowed. Jesus has created a new category of a capital crime.

        On a related note, you should question Jesus’ reasoning. He bases his argument on Genesis 2. But note how selectively he uses it. His disciples recognize that his stringency regarding divorce is difficult, and they say that it is better that one should not marry. Jesus affirms their conclusion, though acknowledging that not everyone can follow the teaching. But then one must ask, does not Genesis 2 teach that man should not be alone? Genesis 1 teaches that God made humanity to be male and female. If Jesus were consistent, he would teach that a man is not wholly complete until he has married. But Jesus is not consistent. And he has not thought through these matters very well.

        I hope you can forgive my tone. It may seem a little harsh, but these are weighty matters and I do not wish the truth to be lost in the name of niceness.

        ….
        In any case, you have not addressed the main issue in any way. Jesus created a new definition of divorce (and marriage as well). He altered the Torah. He forbade what was permitted. Moreover, by attributing the law to Moses, he denied its true origin. This makes it seem like he is only rewriting Moses, a man. But he is actually rewriting God.

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  17. “Actually we do, dummy. There are manuscripts of Enoch from Qumran, which predates Jude by more than 200 years. See here: https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/scrolls/scr3.html

    Just speculation. The precise dates can’t be fixed. No hard evidence.

    If Enoch prophesied when he lived how comes Moses knows nothing about it and did not record it?

    Where is the Hebrew account?

    Any Jew could have written it in Aramaic in the time of the Romans.

    Its all very fishy.

    You have nothing that proves any of your claims beyond doubt.

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    • “Just speculation. The precise dates can’t be fixed. No hard evidence.”

      😂😂😂 Iggy in his desperation is now denying the dating of the Qumran manuscripts! I suppose you feel the same way then about all the manuscripts of your OT as well?

      “If Enoch prophesied when he lived how comes Moses knows nothing about it and did not record it?”

      Lol, don’t ask me dummy. Jude was the moron who quoted the book. I don’t believe in any of these books. They were all forgeries written by anonymous potatoes.
      Where is the Hebrew account?

      Any Jew could have written it in Aramaic in the time of the Romans.

      Its all very fishy.

      You have nothing that proves any of your claims beyond doubt.”

      This coming from a moron who believes in Greek gospels that could not even have been written by the disciples of Jesus!

      Once again moron, I am not arguing that Enoch is authentic. I am saying that it predates your NT by at least 2 centuries.

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  18. You tell me when the Qumran community ceased to exist if you can.

    Just because something was written in Aramaic doesn’t mean it is necessarily ancient.

    The disciples couldn’t write greek. What a load of hogwash!

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    • “You tell me when the Qumran community ceased to exist if you can.”.

      Oy vei, Iggy doesn’t seem to understand how paleography works. 🤦‍♂️

      “Just because something was written in Aramaic doesn’t mean it is necessarily ancient.”

      I never said that stupid. Strike two.

      “The disciples couldn’t write greek. What a load of hogwash!”

      😂😂 Yeah, a couple of illiterate Jewish peasants who couldn’t even read and write their OWN language all of a sudden became experts in Greek!

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  19. I could be like Muslims and claim that the disciples were illiterate therefore the NT is a miracle 🙂

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    • It wouldn’t be a miracle because they evidently still didn’t know their own language. 🙂

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      • The greek expert now I see.

        Still inspired for me. Till somebody proves otherwise.

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      • Lol, your strawman arguments show you’re clueless about this topic. Your own scholars are Greek experts and they admit that the Greek in John, for example, is much too sophisticated for an uneducated Jewish peasant.

        In other words, what you are saying is you will continue to believe in your fairy tales. But of course, it has already been proven that the gospels were not inspired.

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  20. What scholars are you parroting now?

    Why don’t you apply for a job as a ventriloquist’s dummy?

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    • You know I can’t take your job from you Iggy. You do such a great job playing the village idiot, you’re perfect for the role of a dummy also. The only difference is you’re the ventriloquist and dummy. That must be awkward having your hand in your own backside. 😲

      Liked by 1 person

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