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A Challenge To The Assumed Foundation Of Christianity

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Posted by Mike Maddeford on October 6, 2000 20:32:32 UTC

I have read in this forum, and heard all my life, that christianity relies upon the assumption that God inspired the authors of the bible to write what they wrote word for word, thought for thought, idea for idea. I respectfully challenge that assumption.

I suggest a firmer foundation. Doesn`t the resurrection of Jesus Christ provide all the foundation the faith needs? If the four accounts of his life, death, and ressurection can be shown to be historically reliable and internally consistent (a debate for another time), and if one doesn`t start out assuming that God can`t do miracles ( unfounded--what do we know about what God might do during His one in-person visit? If there is a God, and if He became incarnate, mighten`t He want to give a calling card?) then a belief in the resurrection becomes intellectually reasonable. I do not say logically provable--nothing really is because we can never make completely perfect assumptions, but to believe in something it must at least be intellectually reasonable, well researched, etc. Of course showing that a thing is intellectually reasonable doesn`t require one to believe it. One must have faith to believe anything, a wise one will do the research and homework before embracing any faith.

So, this could lead one reasonably to a faith in Jesus Christ as the actual incarnation of God who spoke to disciples who wrote down what he said to the best of their ability. With such a faith one might cherish the gospels as accounts of this momentous event in history, and study His words carefully to see what was important to Him. But such a faith doesn`t reasonably require a faith in the divine inspiration of the bible.

Of course, those who chose (some reasonably, some without doing their homework) not to embrace this faith in the resurrection don`t really care about this question, and that`s fine. For those who have, why should one believe that this book, cannonized centuries after Christ`s resurrection and assumption, was inspired by God as a book of instruction and doctrine? I find no evidence to suggest this. One may say that if Jesus was God and all-knowing, then anything He said must be true. Quite so. Then one may proceed to quote Jesus saying that not one jot or tiddle would pass away, but that`s a single passage and it`s not clear whether He refers to `the bible`, His literally uttered words, or what. Certainly He wasn`t referring to the bible as we know it because it didn`t exist then.

I look forward to any insight people may have one way or another.

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