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Started by Unbeliever, October 14, 2006, 11:00:20 am
Quote from: Vladimir NabakovA creative writer must study carefully the work of his rivals, including the Almighty.
Quote from: W. Arndt, [i]Bible Difficulties[/i]With the various revised versions at hand, with an analytical concordance, with reliable commentaries, and with the help of dictionaries of the Bible language, the reader need not know Greek or Hebrew to verify the original meaning of a given passage. He has in his mother tongue the means whereby he may determine the correctness of most of the obscure translations.
Quote from: Lemuel K. WashburnOf all the great inventions and discoveries that go to make human life easier, happier, more rich and glorious, not one can be laid to the work of theology. These triumphs all belong to science.... If man had no knowledge except what was got out of the Bible he would not know enough to make a shoe.
Quote from: A. E. Harvey, Christian scholarAll the Gospels, after having run closely together in their accounts of the trial and execution, diverge markedly when they come to the circumstance of the Resurrection. It's impossible to fit their accounts together into a single coherent scheme.
Quote from: Mark TwainYou believe in a book that has talking animals, wizards, witches, demons, sticks turning into snakes, burning bushes, food falling from the sky, people walking on water, and all sorts of magical, absurd and primitive stories, and you say we are the ones that need help?
Quote from: Thomas PaineWhen I am told that a woman called Mary said that she was with child without any co-habitation with a man, and that her betrothed husband Joseph said that an angel told him so [in a dream!] I have a right to believe them or not; such a circumstance requires a much stronger evidence than their bare word for it; but we have not even this - for neither Joseph nor Mary wrote any such matter themselves; it is only reported by others they said so - it is hearsay upon hearsay, and I do not choose to rest my belief upon such evidence.
Quote from: Mark Twain'In my schoolboy days I had no aversion to slavery. I was not aware that there was anything wrong about it. No one arraigned it in my hearing; the local papers said nothing against it; the local pulpit taught us that God approved it, that it was a holy thing, and that the doubter need only look in the Bible if he wished to settle his mind - and then the texts were read aloud to us to make the matter sure ...'
Quote from: Delos B. McKownThe Bible is a mine rich in the ore of cognitive dissonance.
Quote from: Dan Barker, in [i]Losing Faith in Faith[/i],The very concept of sin comes from the Bible. Christianity offers to solve a problem of its own making! Would you be thankful to a person who cut you with a knife in order to sell you a bandage?
Quote from: Luther BurbankLet us read the Bible without the ill-fitting colored spectacles of theology, just as we read other books, using our own judgement and reason, listening to the voice within, not to the noisy babel without. Most of us possess discriminating reasoning powers. Can we use them or must we be fed by others like babies?
Quote from: Joseph LewisIt is our duty to expose the Bible. We must continue to tell the truth about the Bible. We must continue to enlighten the people. And if after the true facts are known, there are some who still insist the Bible is good enough for them, they are welcome to it.
Quote from: J.S. Bullion, Jr.Armies of Bible scholars and theologians have for centuries found respected employment devising artful explanations of the Bible not really meaning what it says.
Quote from: Thomas PaineThe Bible has been received by the Protestants on the authority of the Church of Rome, and on no other authority. It is She that has said it is the word of God.
Quote from: Thomas PaineWhenever we read the obcene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we call it the word of a demon than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness which has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind.
Quote from: Thomas PaineEverything in the Old Testament is perverted and distorted into meanings never intended by the writers. The practice which the writers of the books employ is not more false than it is absurd. They state some trifling case of the person they call Jesus Christ, and then cut out a sentence from some passage of the Old Testament and call it a prophecy of that case. But when the words thus cut out are restored to the places where they are taken from, they give the lie to the New Testament.
Quote from: Robert G. IngersollIf a man would follow, today, the teachings of the Old Testament, he would be a criminal. If he would follow strictly the teachings of the New, he would be insane.
Quote from: Robert G. IngersollThe case, however, is that the Bible will not bear examination in any part of it, which it would do if it was the word of God. Those who most believe it are those who know least about it, and priests always take care to keep the inconsistent and contradictory parts out of sight.
Quote from: Eli S. Chesen, M.D.The Bible, then, is used not as an authority, but as a vehicle with which a man can promote his own prejudices.
Quote from: Charles KingsleyWe have used the Bible as if it was a constable's handbook--an opium-dose for keeping beasts of burden patient while they are being overloaded, a mere book to keep the poor in order.
Quote from: Jonathan SwiftThe scripture, in time of dispute, is like an open town in time of war, which serves indifferently the occasion of both parties.
Quote from: FausteThe books called the Evangelists have been composed long after the time of the apostles by some obscure men, who, fearing that the world would not give credit to their relation of matters of which they could not be informed, have published them under the names of the apostles, and which are so full of sottishness and discordant relations, that there is neither agreement nor connection between them.
Quote from: FausteIt is thus that our predecessors have inserted in the scriptures of our Lord many things, which, though they carry his name agrees not with his doctrines. This is not surprising, since that we have often proved that these things have not been written by himself, nor by his apostles, but that for the greater part they are founded upon tales, upon vague reports, and put together by I know not what, half-Jews, but with little agreement between them, and which they have nevertheless published under the names of the apostles of our Lord, and have thus attributed to them their own errors and their lies.
Quote from: Steve AllenIf the Old Testament were a reliable guide in the matter of capital punishment, half the people in the United States would have to be killed tomorrow.
Quote from: George Bernard ShawNo man ever believes that the Bible means what it says: He is always convinced that it means what he says.
Quote from: Bishop Augustine of HippoIt is a disgraceful and dangerous thing to hear a Christian, presumably giving the meaning of Holy Scripture, talking nonsense on topics non-Christians know from reason and experience. If they find a Christian mistaken in a field which they themselves know well and hear him trying to support his foolish opinion from the Bible, how are they going to believe the Bible on the important matters of faith when they think the Bible is full of falsehoods on facts which they themselves have learnt from experience and the light of reason? Reckless and incompetent expounders of Holy Scripture bring untold trouble and sorrow on us all when they are caught in one of their mischievous false opinions and are taken to task by those who are not bound by the authority of the Bible.
Quote from: Martin Luther"Heart speaks to heart" - John Henry Cardinal Newman The Perspicuity ("Clearness") of Scripture Tuesday, September 27, 2005From 1996:**********Martin Luther stated the classic Protestant understanding of the perspicuity of Scripture in his own favorite (and arguably most important) writing, The Bondage of the Will (from translation by Henry Cole, Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1976, 25-27,29; emphasis in original):But, that there are in the Scriptures some things abstruse, and that all things are not quite plain, is a report spread abroad by the impious Sophists; by whose mouth you speak here, Erasmus . . .This indeed I confess, that there are many places in the Scriptures obscure and abstruse; not from the majesty of the things, but from our ignorance of certain terms and grammatical particulars; but which do not prevent a knowledge of all the things in the Scriptures . . .All the things, therefore, contained in the Scriptures, are made manifest, although some places, from the words not being understood, are yet obscure . . .And, if the words are obscure in one place, yet they are clear in another . . . For Christ has opened our understanding to understand the Scriptures . . .Therefore come forward, you and all the Sophists together, and produce any one mystery which is still abstruse in the Scriptures. But, if many things still remain abstruse to many, this does not arise from obscurity in the Scriptures, but from their own blindness or want of understanding, who do not go the way to see the all-perfect clearness of the truth . . . Let, therefore, wretched men cease to impute, with blasphemous perverseness, the darkness and obscurity of their own heart to the all-clear scriptures of God . . .If you speak of the internal clearness, no man sees one iota in the Scriptures, but he that hath the Spirit of God . . . If you speak of the external clearness, nothing whatever is left obscure or ambiguous; but all things that are in the Scriptures, are by the Word brought forth into the clearest light, and proclaimed to the whole world.
Quote from: Isaac AsimovProperly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived.
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