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Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Questions and Answers 108 - 112


Contradictions in the Gospels

Question 108: In the Gospels we have eye-witness accounts, yet there are contradictions in the accounts, such as in the accounts of the Resurrection of Christ. How do you explain this and does not this prove the Gospel accounts are untrustworthy?

Answer: In 1912 the Titanic sank. According to eye-witness accounts of the time, some said the Titanic sank in one piece, while others said the ship broke in half before it sank. We know now that the Titanic broke in half, then sank. Does this contradiction from the eye-witnesses mean that the Titanic never existed? Or that the Titanic never sank? Or that the eye-witnesses were lying and were untrustworthy? To all these questions, the answer is no, of course not. The reason this is so is because the eye-witnesses saw the sinking of the Titanic from different perspectives and vantage points. If you saw the Titanic sink from the front or back, or perhaps from a far distance, then you probably saw the Titanic sink as one piece from your perspective and vantage point, but if you saw it sink from the side, then you saw it break in half. Similarly in the Gospels, you have different eye-witness accounts written from different perspectives and vantage points, with apparent contradictions. For example, in one Gospel it says the Myrrhbearing women encountered two angels at the empty tomb of Christ, while another Gospel says there was one angel. This is an apparent contradiction, but it is in fact not a contradiction but a difference. In one Gospel account it says there are two angels, but only one angel is recorded to speak, but in the other Gospel account it only records the one angel speaking. The account which speaks of the one angel never says that there was only one angel, but it just stresses the fact that one angel spoke, and there could very well have been two angels, but it was not necessary to record there were two angels, whereas the other account wanted to be clear that there were in fact two angels. Yet we must also remember, none of the Myrrhbearers wrote a Gospel, so the Gospel writers were not recording something they saw or witnessed, but they are interpreting the oral account they heard, and so one emphasized one thing while the other emphasized something else about the same thing. Similar things can be explained with all the other apparent contradictions in the Gospels. What I would be more worried about is if all the accounts were in total agreement from perspective and vantage point, cause then they would be accused of conspiring and colluding.

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