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Old 11-06-2001, 08:16 PM   #1
Layman
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Post The Skeptic's Annotated Bible

I've been enjoying the Skeptics Annotated Bible. Is this really where skeptics go to learn about the Bible? Or is the whole thing a joke? After my review, it looks like the latter.

There are several annotations that completely distort the verse that supposedly "contradicts" the one being annotated.

Verse:

Galatians

2:1-2: "Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also. And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain."

Annotation:

Paul disobeys Jesus by preaching the gospel to the gentiles.(Mt.10:5)

My Comment:

I checked out the reference to Matthew 10:5 and don't see the problem. Paul wasn't present for that missionary journey. Why would Jesus' words have applied to him? When Paul was commissioned by Jesus, he quite clearly was commissioned to go to the Gentiles.

Verse:

Hebrews 1:8: "But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom."

Annotation:

In this verse, Jesus is addressed as "O God." but according to John (8:40) and Acts (17:31), Jesus was only a man.

My Comments:

This is just a sad mischaracterization. Neither John 8:40 or Acts 17:31 say that Jesus "was only a man." They do refer to Him as "man," but then so has 2000 years of Christian theology.

If you want to argue that there is varying Christology in the New Testament, fine, but don't lie about what the scriptures say to do it.

John 8:40: "But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham."

Acts 17:31: "Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead."


There are also annotations that completely--and conveniently--misread the text being annotated.

Verse:

Mark 9:1: "And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power.

Annotation:

Jesus falsely prophesies that the end of the world will come within his listeners' lifetimes

My comment:

This is just plain untrue. Jesus did not say that they would see the end of the world, he said that they would see Kingdom come with power.

There are annotations that are--ironically--hyper-literal as to the English terms to the point of mischaracterization.

Verse:

10:34: "Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons"

Annotation:

This verse claims that God doesn't respect anyone. But elsewhere (Gen.4:4, Ex.2:25, Lev.26:9, 2 Kg.13:23, Ps.138:6) we see that God respects lots of folks.

My comment:

This is just silly. Peter is saying that God will accept those who pursue him, regardless of their race or ethnicity. (Remember, he was speaking to Jews from all over the world in town for the religious festival). These other verses are quite distinct. None of them imply that God will reject people who truly pursue him because of the race or ethnicity.

Note: This also effectively refutes the annotation of 1 Peter 1:1, "Peter says that God respects no one, but other Bible verses say otherwise (Gen.4:4, Ex.2:25, Lev.26:9, 2 Kg.13:23, Ps.138:6)."

Genesis 4:4: "And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering"

Exodus 2:25: "And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect unto them."

Leviticus 26:9: "For I will have respect unto you, and make you fruitful, and multiply you, and establish my covenant with you."

2 Kings 13:23: "And the LORD was gracious unto them, and had compassion on them, and had respect unto them, because of his covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and would not destroy them, neither cast he them from his presence as yet."

Psalm 138:6: "Though the LORD be high, yet hath he respect unto the lowly: but the proud he knoweth afar off."

Then there are some annotations that are a complete mystery to me

Verse:

Mark

7:21-22: "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness."

Annotation:

Jesus talks about the "evil eye."

My Comments:

Yes, I suppose he does mention an "evil eye." So what? Is there some pop culture reference I am missing?

Finally, we have completely redundant statements. I was under the impression that an "annotation" provided some sort of commentary on the text referenced, but perhaps the skeptical author has some secret--or gnostic--meaning of the term.

Verse:

John 7:5: "For neither did his brethren believe in him."

Annotation:

"Jesus' family didn't believe in him"

My Comments:

Keen observation.

_____________________________

So how many of you actually use this as a reference?
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:06 PM   #2
Kosh
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Quote:
Originally posted by Layman:
<STRONG>I've been enjoying the Skeptics Annotated Bible. Is this really where skeptics go to learn about the Bible? Or is the whole thing a joke? After my review, it looks like the latter. </STRONG>
Thanks for straightening that out! That was ONLY thing making all
your claims seem ridiculous.

See you on Sunday.

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Old 11-06-2001, 09:12 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kosh:
<STRONG>

Thanks for straightening that out! That was ONLY thing making all
your claims seem ridiculous.

See you on Sunday.

</STRONG>
I'd be thrilled to see you on Sunday! Remember, God's arms are always open.

So you don't take the SAB seriously? I'm trying to gauge its "position" in Skeptic Culture.
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:29 PM   #4
Quatermass
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Quote:
Originally posted by Layman:
<STRONG>Is this really where skeptics go to learn about the Bible?</STRONG>
I think it's from the Bible that they learn to be skeptics!
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:29 PM   #5
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Yeah, I admit, sometimes the author really should be taking context and wording into account, but I think he is generally on the mark. Your criticism of his note on Mark 9:1 seems just wrong to me. Seems like Jesus is pretty obviously telling them the world will end before they die, though it is certainly ambiguous enough to make another interpretation acceptable.
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Someone7:
<STRONG>Yeah, I admit, sometimes the author really should be taking context and wording into account, but I think he is generally on the mark. Your criticism of his note on Mark 9:1 seems just wrong to me. Seems like Jesus is pretty obviously telling them the world will end before they die, though it is certainly ambiguous enough to make another interpretation acceptable.</STRONG>
Where does Jesus say that the world will end before they die in Mark 9:1?
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Someone7:
<STRONG>Yeah, I admit, sometimes the author really should be taking context and wording into account, but I think he is generally on the mark. Your criticism of his note on Mark 9:1 seems just wrong to me. Seems like Jesus is pretty obviously telling them the world will end before they die, though it is certainly ambiguous enough to make another interpretation acceptable.</STRONG>
Argue what he was promising all you want. Either
way you believe, it didn't come true.
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Quatermass:
<STRONG>
I think it's from the Bible that they learn to be skeptics! </STRONG>
Well, if their reading comprehension skills aren't any better than the author or authors of the SAB, then I can see why they would have trouble.
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:36 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kosh:
<STRONG>

Argue what he was promising all you want. Either
way you believe, it didn't come true.</STRONG>
That's a silly statement. But it's irrelevant. The point I was making is that the author of the SAB didn't even read the text he was supposedly annotating.
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Old 11-06-2001, 09:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Layman:
<STRONG>

Well, if their reading comprehension skills aren't any better than the author or authors of the SAB, then I can see why they would have trouble.</STRONG>
Haven't really delved into the SAB but I can't imagine it has interpretations that are stranger than those of inerrantists.
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