Friday, March 22, 2019


His reply to my Quiz Show: Bible Contradictions post:

The fact that a kind of narrative glue CAN be applied so as to give some semblance of continuity or unity to texts that on their face contradict each other DOES NOT MEAN that the glue is valid, true, reasonable, acceptable, or plausible. The test is not whether or not some narrative bridge can be invented post-hoc so as to apparently reconcile contradictions, but whether or not the narrative bridge that is created has greater explanatory power than “Well, maybe it just got written down wrong or something.” It’s always possible that it got written down wrong, either by the original author, the first person to make a copy, the second person to make a copy, the first person to translate their copy into a new language, the fifth person to translate a seventh copy of a bad translation of a copy of a translation, a scribe who was tired when they made their copy, or an unskilled translator who did an incomplete job. Any of those people could have made an error which then got copied and copied and copied and came to be considered reliable and original. Historical textual scholarship is largely focused on understanding and detecting where and when these things happened. The fact that people have come up with narrative glue that is satisfactory to THEM does not mean, at all, that it is a better explanation than "Perhaps it just got written down wrong."
steve hays 
i) Unresponsive to what I wrote. Apparently, this is your stock reply, which you mechanically repeat regardless of the actual content of the rebuttal. ii) In general, my critique didn't appeal to scribal errors. I only brought that up in relation to numerical discrepancies, where that's sometimes a legitimate consideration, but even then I said that's probably not the entire explanation. I offered other, non-text critical explanations for numerical discrepancies. iii) Finally, you seem to labor under the illusion that modern versions of the Bible retranslate translations of the Bible. But anyone with a modicum of knowledge is aware of the fact that they are translated direct from Greek and Hebrew manuscripts.

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