[Fwd: Re: Contradictions in Acts?]

From: Ron Rhoades (rrhoades@telis.org)
Date: Wed Apr 29 1998 - 18:29:06 EDT

attached mail follows:

David McKay wrote:
> A new Christian is perplexed by apparent contradictions in the accounts >of the conversion of Saul.


Different facts in the accounts do not mean a contradiction. We do not
have to easily bow to those who want to assume "a priori" that the
Scriptures contradict. Both accounts can be complimentary of each other
and still highlight different facets.

The genitive FWNHS can indeed be used to refer to a "sound" verses a
specific "voice" (accusative) and translators render it so in other
places that have no theological implications.

This is similar with the witnesses seeing the "light" (22:9) and yet not
"seeing the person (9:7)."

The phrases "stood speechless" (9:7 and "fallen to the ground," (26:14)
if taken idiomatically can mean exactly the same thing. If taken
literally they can still be reconciled without the witnesses
contradicting themselves: 1.) The majority could have fell down with
some remaining dazed while standing. 2.) Those in the immediate vicinity
of Paul and thus in his personal view fell down, while some to an
outside viewer were still standing. etc. etc. etc.

These variations of eyewitness only confirm that the Bible is not a
fabricated story; each witness saw and recorded his personal viewpoint.
While some hyper-critics claim these variations as "contradictions" in
most cases they can be reasonably reconciled.

Some apparent inconsistencies in the Bible are difficult to reconcile.
But we should not assume that they are difinite contradictions. Often it
is merely a case of lack of complete information. The Bible does not try
to give us every detail about every event mentioned.

This is no different than what we accord each other in our writings. As
a rule we assume no writer contradicts himself and we read into his
words what he is trying to say rather than critically pick at every
grammatical miscue.

Actually, the Bible is a miracle of condensation. It contains enough
information to enable us to recognize it as more than merely a human
work. In comparison to any other writings the outstanding unity of the
Bible demonstrates without any doubt its divine origin.


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