Category Archives: BIBLE CONTRADICTIONS / CONFUSING VERSES SIMPLIFIED

Why do Daniel 1:1 and Jeremiah 25:1 conflict?

WHY DO DANIEL 1:1 AND JEREMIAH 25:1 CONFLICT?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Why do these verses disagree?

  • Jeremiah 25:1: “The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the people of Judah in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, that was the first year of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon;….”
  • Daniel 1:1: “In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem, and besieged it.”

Jeremiah claims the “fourth year” whereas Daniel speaks of the “third year.” Is this a mistake? We can account for this discrepancy as follows: Daniel speaks of Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar leaving Babylon to attack Jerusalem while Jeremiah marks the time Nebuchadnezzar actually invaded Jerusalem. That is, Nebuchadnezzar departed Babylon in Jehoiakim’s third year (Daniel’s perspective), and he fought against Jehoiakim in Jerusalem in Jehoiakim’s fourth year (Jeremiah perspective). What had Nebuchadnezzar been doing in the interim?

We turn to Jeremiah chapter 46 for the explanation: “[1] The word of the LORD which came to Jeremiah the prophet against the Gentiles; [2] Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaohnecho king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah.” Nebuchadnezzar (same as Nebuchadrezzar) attacked and defeated Pharaohnecho King of Egypt before moving on to conquer Jerusalem and vanquish Jehoiakim King of Judah.

The narrative now put forth in one succinct sentence: Nebuchadnezzar left Babylon in Jehoiakim’s third year, Nebuchadnezzar battled Pharaohnecho/Egypt at the beginning of Jehoiakim’s fourth year, and, later that year, Nebuchadnezzar fought with Jehoiakim. There is no contradiction or difficulty unless we are looking for mistakes.

By the way, it is highly significant that (Gentile) Nebuchadnezzar came against Jerusalem because of JEHOVAH God’s guidance and empowerment. Jerusalem had been an idolatrous city for centuries. Most of her kings had been wicked, and Jehoiakim was no exception. (Please see 2 Chronicles 36:1-21 and Jeremiah 25:1-7.) God Himself therefore brought Nebuchadnezzar into Jerusalem to punish and deport evil Jerusalem and Judah, carrying them off to Babylonian exile (exactly as Moses warned in Leviticus 26:27-39 several hundred years earlier).

Daniel chapter 1 bears this out: “[1] In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem, and besieged it. [2] And the LORD gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his [that is, Nebuchadnezzar’s] hand, with part of the vessels of the house of God: which he carried into the land of Shinar to the house of his god; and he brought the vessels into the treasure house of his god.”

Also, the LORD said in Jeremiah 22:25 years later: “And I will give thee [King Coniah/Jehoiachin the son of Jehoiakim] into the hand of them that seek thy life, and into the hand of them whose face thou fearest, even into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of the Chaldeans.”

Jeremiah 25:9 (the LORD speaking again): “Behold, I will send and take all the families of the north, saith the LORD, and Nebuchadrezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, and will bring them against this land, and against the inhabitants thereof, and against all these nations round about, and will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and an hissing, and perpetual desolations.” (Your attention is drawn to see that Nebuchadnezzar is called God’s “servant.” He is exacting God’s will in punishing heathen Judah.)

Now, Jeremiah chapter 27: “[1] In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah came this word unto Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, [2] Thus saith the LORD to me; Make thee bonds and yokes, and put them upon thy neck, [3] And send them to the king of Edom, and to the king of Moab, and to the king of the Ammonites, and to the king of Tyrus, and to the king of Zidon, by the hand of the messengers which come to Jerusalem unto Zedekiah king of Judah; [4] And command them to say unto their masters, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Thus shall ye say unto your masters; [5] I have made the earth, the man and the beast that are upon the ground, by my great power and by my outstretched arm, and have given it unto whom it seemed meet unto me. [6] And now have I given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant; and the beasts of the field have I given him also to serve him.” (Nebuchadnezzar is again called God’s “servant.”)

Lastly, Jeremiah 32:28: “Therefore thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will give this city [Jerusalem] into the hand of the Chaldeans, and into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and he shall take it:….”

Also see:
» Why does “overturn” appear thrice in Ezekiel 21:27?
» Was King Nebuchadnezzar a saved man?
» Is “divine right of kings” a Scriptural concept?

Is there a geographical error in 2 Kings 2:2?

IS THERE A GEOGRAPHICAL ERROR IN 2 KINGS 2:2?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Second Kings chapter 2 opens with: “[1] And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. [2] And Elijah said unto Elisha, Tarry here, I pray thee; for the LORD hath sent me to Bethel. And Elisha said unto him, As the LORD liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they went down to Bethel.”

Gilgal is situated in the (low-lying) Jordan River Valley, just north of the Dead Sea. Prophets Elijah and Elisha leave Gilgal and “went down to Bethel” (verse 2). However, as any Bible atlas shows, Bethel is in mountainous terrain—some 3,000 feet higher than Gilgal! Is there is a problem with the Bible text here? No.

There is a second Gilgal, also known as Jiljilia (or modern Jiljulieh). It is roughly halfway (4 miles or 6 kilometers, either way) between Bethel and Shiloh. (It is northwest of the Gilgal located in the Jordan floodplain.) Jiljilia is likely the Gilgal of 2 Kings 2:2 and 4:38. It was at a higher elevation than Bethel, so the Scriptures are correct in saying “went down to Bethel” from Gilgal. The Gilgal of the Jordan River is something else entirely, as leaving there would have required going up to Bethel.

Friends, it is always important that we keep the following in mind when critiquing the Bible’s geographic data. Locations today cannot always be identified with absolute precision—especially ancient places and names. Physical landscapes changing because of natural forces, names being revised due to cultural influences, and so on, are factors in complicating the pinpointing of exact locations. Even in Bible days, multiple locations shared one name (as in Gilgal), and one location had several names (specific, regional, colloquial, former, latter, et cetera). If we are going to be honest with the Bible, we should give it the benefit of the doubt. Rather than immediately dismissing a verse as wrong, we should research it. Without fail, we will see we are wrong because we had limited knowledge of the situation. The problem does not lie in the Scripture; the problem lies in us!

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Also see:
» Is the King James word “borrow” a mistranslation in Exodus 3:22?
» Is Israel “cast away,” or not? Has Israel “fallen,” or not?
» Does the Bible contain a contradiction about Solomon’s molten sea?

Did Jacob wrestle with a man—or an angel?

DID JACOB WRESTLE WITH A MAN—OR AN ANGEL?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Once, a teacher confidently asserted, “The Bible says that Jacob wrestled with a ‘man.’ It was not an ‘angel’ as some people assume and claim.” Is this so? Was it a man? Or an angel? Why are these two different positions taken? “For what saith the Scriptures?”

In Genesis chapter 32, we read: “[24] And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day. [25] And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him. [26] And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me. [27] And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob. [28] And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed. [29] And Jacob asked him, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, thy name. And he said, Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after my name? And he blessed him there. [30] And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved. [31] And as he passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh. [32] Therefore the children of Israel eat not of the sinew which shrank, which is upon the hollow of the thigh, unto this day: because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh in the sinew that shrank.”

After this brawl, the Bible says in verse 28 that Jacob is renamed “Israel,” Hebrew for “the prince that prevails with God.” Verse 24 indeed says Jacob wrestled with “a man.” The word “angel” indeed does not appear in the Scriptures here. However, look closely at verse 30—do not read it quickly. Jacob claims, “I have seen God face to face.” It was no ordinary man that Jacob fought. No mortal man would be called “God.” What is going on here?

The Bible abounds with a literary feature known as “subsequent narrative.” Scripture may withhold information about a particular idea for centuries. Moses, when writing Genesis, reported that Jacob wrestled with a “man.” However, when we go to the Book of Hosea, something the Holy Spirit wrote about 700 years after Genesis was written, we learn more about Jacob’s encounter here.

Hosea chapter 12: “[2] The LORD hath also a controversy with Judah, and will punish Jacob according to his ways; according to his doings will he recompense him. [3] He took his brother by the heel in the womb, and by his strength he had power with God: [4] Yea, he had power over the angel, and prevailed: he wept, and made supplication unto him: he found him in Bethel, and there he spake with us;….”

Verse 2 occurred in Genesis 25:20-26, some nine centuries prior to Hosea. Isaac’s wife Rebecca gave birth to twins—Esau followed by Jacob. Jacob grabbed Esau’s heel as Esau was being delivered. Jacob, not Esau, would give rise to the nation Israel started with Abraham and Isaac. The Jews to whom Hosea is preaching and writing are the very descendants of Jacob. Hosea 12:4 says Jacob “had power over the angel, and prevailed.” Genesis 32:28 again, “And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.” Jacob’s encounter with the angel here is their national history—when they gained the name of “Israel.” (This is why the Jews are also called “the children of Israel,” with “Israel” being the new name God gave Jacob.) But, why did Genesis say the “angel” was a “man?”

Through various other passages of Scripture, we understand that when God’s angels appeared to people, they assume the form of men (never women!). Remember the two men in Jesus’ tomb on resurrection morning? Luke 24:4 says, “And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments:….” Two men appeared at His ascension in Acts 1:10: “And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;….” These were angels. Gabriel the Angel appeared as a man to the prophet Daniel. Daniel 9:21 documents: “Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation.”

Angels are repeatedly referred to as “he” in the Bible. Zechariah 5:5-11, for example: “[5] Then the angel that talked with me went forth, and said unto me, Lift up now thine eyes, and see what is this that goeth forth. [6] And I said, What is it? And he said, This is an ephah that goeth forth. He said moreover, This is their resemblance through all the earth.… [8] And he said, This is wickedness. And he cast it into the midst of the ephah; and he cast the weight of lead upon the mouth thereof. … [10] Then said I to the angel that talked with me, Whither do these bear the ephah? [11] And he said unto me,….” Also, Revelation 19:10 speaks of an angel that the Apostle John desired to worship: “And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

We say all that to show that the argument that Jacob fought with a man rather than an angel is trivial and actually specious. The Bible says an angel fought with Jacob and a man fought with Jacob. Using common sense, we conclude that an angel took on the form of a man there. The angel was God’s representative, and this being may have been the angel of the LORD. That “angel of the LORD” sometimes seems to be God Himself (Jesus Christ pre-incarnate), which explains why Jacob said he “saw God face to face” (and thus named the place “Peniel”—Genesis 32:30). Jacob encountered a man (in appearance) but it was not a normal man. It was an angel, a supernatural being of some kind. There is no need to get confused. We simply read the Bible, believe what we read in the Bible, and not worry about the opinions and baseless claims of preachers and teachers.

Also see:
» Did Pharaoh die in the Red Sea?
» Are angels women?
» Jacob have I loved, Esau have I hated?

Can you shed light on Galatians 3:20?

CAN YOU SHED LIGHT ON GALATIANS 3:20?

by Shawn Brasseaux

The Bible says in Galatians 3:20: “Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one.” What should we take from this?

It is better to read the context first to get the thought-flow of the passage: “[15] Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; Though it be but a man’s covenant, yet if it be confirmed, no man disannulleth, or addeth thereto. [16] Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. [17] And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect. [18] For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

“[19] Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. [20] Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one. [21] Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. [22] But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.”

No mediator was necessary between the LORD God and Abram back in the opening verses of Genesis chapter 12: “[1] Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: [2] And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: [3] And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” God made promises to Abram, but Abram did not promise God anything. Abram was under no obligation because the Abrahamic Covenant was God’s grace (gift to Abraham). The promise was certain (unconditional) because God alone was the party who needed to perform to bring it to pass. “Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one.”

In stark contrast, the Mosaic Covenant (the Law) was conditional. God would work and give Israel the blessing—but only if Israel kept all His commandments first! Both Israel and God were obligated to perform under this arrangement. The Jews had to obey God 100 percent to get His blessings (impossible for sinners, for sinners “transgress”—see Galatians 3:19 above). This two-party agreement meant that God had to give Israel the Law through a mediator—Moses. Again, no such mediator was present or required in Genesis chapter 12 with Abram (later renamed Abraham). “Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one.”

Exodus chapter 19 speaks of the Law being given to Israel through Moses: “[1] In the third month, when the children of Israel were gone forth out of the land of Egypt, the same day came they into the wilderness of Sinai. [2] For they were departed from Rephidim, and were come to the desert of Sinai, and had pitched in the wilderness; and there Israel camped before the mount. [3] And Moses went up unto God, and the LORD called unto him out of the mountain, saying, Thus shalt thou say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel; [4] Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles’ wings, and brought you unto myself. [5] Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: [6] And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel. [7] And Moses came and called for the elders of the people, and laid before their faces all these words which the LORD commanded him. [8] And all the people answered together, and said, All that the LORD hath spoken we will do. And Moses returned the words of the people unto the LORD.”

Also see:
» What are the “sins that are past” in Romans 3:25?
» Does God see us Christians as sinners?
» Was the Law of Moses given by the LORD or by angels?

Do Galatians 6:2 and Galatians 6:5 contradict each other?

DO GALATIANS 6:2 AND GALATIANS 6:5 CONTRADICT EACH OTHER?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Why does God’s Word tell us to “bear one another’s burdens” (Galatians 6:2) and then command in the same passage, “Every man shall bear his own burden” (Galatians 6:5)? Is this not a contradiction? Is this a mistake in the Bible? Friends, we just need a good English dictionary and a little common sense, and it will become quite simple!

“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2).
“For every man shall bear his own burden” (Galatians 6:5).

Those who enjoy “running to the Greek,” point out that “burdens” in Galatians 6:2 is bare, while “burden” in verse 5 is phortion. One seminary-trained minister recently criticized the King James Bible because the distinction in Greek was “lost in English.” My wonderful readers, before we criticize our English Bible, perhaps we had better consult an English dictionary. (Nothing is “lost in English!” The “scholar” says this so we depend on him to learn the real Bible. It is a form of Romanism, “Come to the priest, who has been educated to function as the ‘true’ interpreter of the Bible!”) I have a good pastor friend who wisely says, “Do not get angry at your Bible when it knows more about the English language than you do!” What is a synonym for “burden?” How about “load?” Why not leave “burden” in both verses and just remember what they mean?

Consider this ridiculously simple illustration. Suppose we have two coworkers. Each is being paid to do his or her own job, correct? However, what if both are carrying a heavy load? The one with the lighter load can come behind the other and help lift the object. This is not difficult to understand. It is when we come to the Bible—spiritual matters—that the battle wages and confusion arises. A struggle between good and evil and the souls of men begins. People have no trouble comprehending real-world scenarios apart from the Bible. When concepts in the Bible parallel the real-world scenarios, that is when people oppose. What should be simple is needlessly complicated. They do not want the Bible to say what it says. They want to find fault with it. They want to change it.

God wants us to function fully on our own, and yet, when necessary, we can help each other out. This is especially true of trying to recover Christians from “the snare of the devil” (2 Timothy 2:26). “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted” (Galatians 6:1). Christian living is not about serving self. “Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2). Now Galatians 6:3: “For if a man think himself to be something, which he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.” And finally, verses 4 and 5: “But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For every man shall bear his own burden.” God expects every Christian to be mature enough to carry his or her own weight, not needing “crutches” or “aids” continually. How simple!

Also see:
» Do Hosea 11:12 and Hosea 12:2 contradict?
» Is Galatians 1:6-7 contradictory?
» Do John 5:31 and John 8:14 contradict?

Who is the wounded man of Zechariah 13:6?

WHO IS THE WOUNDED MAN OF ZECHARIAH 13:6?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Zechariah 13:6 is one of the most debated verses in the Book of Zechariah: “And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.” Some Bible teachers suggest that this “wounded” man is the Messiah (Jesus Christ). However, most commentators claim that it applies to the false prophet of the earlier verses. Can we shed some light on the subject by looking at the context?

“[3] And it shall come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live; for thou speakest lies in the name of the LORD: and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesieth. [4] And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied; neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive: [5] But he shall say, I am no prophet, I am an husbandman; for man taught me to keep cattle from my youth.”

The man in verse 6 has wounds in his hands, which he claims he received “in the house of my friends.” Although it is argued that the false prophet was wounded in his pagan religion mutilation practices, this explanation for the wounds seems unlikely. At this author sees it, it does not appear to fit verses 3-5. What makes people—including this author—believe that Zechariah 13:6 refers to Jesus Christ?

The Prophet Zechariah had already stated in chapter 12, verse 10: “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.” This is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Israel is converted nationally after seeing Him with His identifying wounds. The Apostle John quotes the verse in Revelation 1:7: “Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.”

John and Zechariah point back to what King David wrote centuries earlier in Psalm 22:16: “For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.” In John 19:37, we read of Jesus Christ’s crucifixion: “And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced.” Zechariah 12:10 applies not only to the Second Coming, but also the First Coming (Calvary).

It is better to make Zechariah 13:6 refer to Jesus Christ. It really makes no sense for a false prophet to be wounded in his hands—especially in the house of his friends (whatever that would mean?!). However, we know that Jesus Christ was wounded in His hands. Notice what the Apostle John reported.

John 20:24-28: “[24] But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. [25] The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe. [26] And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. [27] Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. [28] And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.”

Zechariah 13:7 says, “Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones.” Matthew 26:31 and Mark 14:27 quote this to pertain to Jesus Christ. Hence, Zechariah 13:6 likely points to Messiah as well. The false prophets would be in verses 3-5, but Messiah would be in verses 6-7. It is this author’s personal belief that verse 6 should not be paired with verse 5 but with verse 7. Zechariah 12:10 is one verse about Messiah’s Second Coming and Zechariah 13:6 is another. In between, we have a parenthetical passage (12:11–13:5).

Let us now hear from an opposing view. One commentator says the following: “Considerable discussion also surrounds the identity of the individual who possessed ‘wounds between your arms’ (13:6). Some have identified him with Christ, the wounds supposedly referring to His crucifixion. But Christ could neither have denied that He was a prophet, nor could He have claimed that He was a farmer, or that He was wounded in the house of His friends. Obviously, it is a reference to a false prophet (cf. vv. 4,5) who was wounded in his idolatrous worship. The zeal for the Lord will be so great in the kingdom of Messiah that idolaters will make every attempt to hide their true identity, but their scars will be the telltale evidence of their iniquity.”

We agree with the above quote that Christ would not deny Himself to be a prophet, or claim to be a farmer. However, Christ is not speaking in verses 3-5 anyway. He is speaking in verse 6. That is, the words spoken in verses 3-5 do not automatically disqualify Messiah from speaking in verse 6. We can have a change in speakers between verse 5 and verse 6, and this author believes that to be the case.

The same expositor later wrote: “The phrase [NKJV—wounds between your arms] cannot refer to Messiah, but it is a continuation of the false prophet’s behavior in vv. 4,5. When the false prophet denies any association with pagan practices, others will challenge him to explain the suspicious wounds on his body. False prophets would cut themselves to arouse prophetic ecstasy in idolatrous rites (Lev. 19:28; Deu. 14:1; 1 Ki. 18:28; Jer. 16:6; 48:37), but they will claim the scars represent some attack they suffered from friends.”

Again, although bringing to light some useful insight, this author thinks that the commentator is wrong in suggesting Jesus Christ could not say that He was wounded in the house of friends. The Lord Jesus Christ most definitely could claim that. He came to His own people, the nation Israel, but they did not receive Him. The culmination of their rejection of Him was when they crucified Him on Calvary’s cross. This crucifixion would be the source of the wounds in His hands. The Jews of all people should have accepted Him, for their Hebrew Bible had predicted His coming for many centuries. He was the fulfillment of their Abrhamic Covenant. Alas, they were willing to turn Him over to the pagan Gentiles for a most brutal execution. Read these sermons spoken to Israel during early Acts. This is the Holy Spirit condemning unsaved Israel for not only wounding but actually killing God’s Son!

Acts 2:22-24: “[22] Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: [23] Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain: [24] Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.”

Acts 3:13-18: “[13] The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go. [14] But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; [15] And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses. [16] And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all. [17] And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers. [18] But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.”

Acts 5:29-31: “[29] Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men. [30] The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. [31] Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.”

Acts 7:51-53: “[51] Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. [52] Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers: [53] Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.”

SUPPLEMENTAL: THE MODERN BIBLE VERSIONS ONLY OBSCURE TRUTH AND ADD TO THE MISUNDERSTANDINGS

Unfortunately, Zechariah 13:6 is totally misconstrued in modern English Bible versions—only making the discussion more confusing. The following (eye-opening!!) sampling of excerpts from popular contemporary translations demonstrates just how dangerous and mystified modern Bible scholarship is. There are great variations of this one verse. It would be downright hilarious, except it is a most serious matter. The precious Word of God has been brutally butchered and—in this author’s view—His only begotten Son has been blasphemed and mocked.

The two most perverted modern English Bible renderings of Zechariah 13:6 will be read first.

The Living Bible: “And if someone asks, ‘Then what are these scars on your chest and your back?’ he will say, ‘I got into a brawl at the home of a friend!’” (Whoever it is, he was fighting and got injured!! Forget trying to put Jesus Christ in this verse—and even the mutilated false prophet with his graphic rituals would not fit here!!)

The Message: “And if someone says, ‘And so where did you get that black eye?’ they’ll say, ‘I ran into a door at a friend’s house.’” (Preposterous!! The man got a black eye after running into a door?!?!?! Stupid!! Nothing of the sort is implied in the Hebrew!!! And, to think this is marketed and purchased under the guise of it being a “Bible!!”)

Wounded (general) — Contemporary English Version: “And if any of them are asked why they are wounded, they will answer, ‘It happened at the house of some friends.’” (Where are the wounds located on the body?! We are not told.)

Wounds in the midst of thy handsDouay-Rheims Catholic Bible 1899: “And they shall say to him: What are these wounds in the midst of thy hands? And he shall say: With these I was wounded in the house of them that loved me.”

Scars on your chestGod’s Word translation: “When someone asks him, ‘What are these scars on your chest?’ he will answer, ‘I was hurt at my friend’s house.’”

Deep cuts on your bodyNew Century Version: “But someone will ask, ‘What are the deep cuts on your body?’ And each will answer, ‘I was hurt at my friend’s house.’”

Wounds on your bodyNew International Version: “If someone asks, ‘What are these wounds on your body?’ they will answer, ‘The wounds I was given at the house of my friends.’”

Wounds between your armsNew King James Version: “And one will say to him, ‘What are these wounds between your arms?’ Then he will answer, ‘Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.’” (New American Standard Bible and American Standard Version agree.)

Wounds on your chestNew Revised Standard Version: “And if anyone asks them, “What are these wounds on your chest?” the answer will be “The wounds I received in the house of my friends.” (New Living Translation, Good News Translation, Holman Christian Standard Bible, and New English Translation agree.)

Wounds on your backRevised Standard Version: “And if one asks him, ‘What are these wounds on your back?’ he will say, ‘The wounds I received in the house of my friends.’” (English Standard Version agrees.)

Ritual wounds on your chest and backThe Voice translation: “And if anyone happens to say, ‘How did you get these ritual wounds on your chest and back?’ then the answer will come back—another deception—‘Oh, I received these at my friend’s house.’” (Notice how the translators added an interpretation—the word “ritual” without manuscript support!)

Wounds between your handsNew World Translation (“Jehovah’s Witness” “bible”): “And one must say to him, ‘What are these wounds [on your person] between your hands?’ And he will have to say, ‘Those with which I was struck in the house of my intense lovers.’”

Also see:
» Who are the “three shepherds” of Zechariah 11:8?
» Who, crucified on Calvary, mocked Jesus?
» How could Jesus say His killers knew not what they were doing?

Does the Bible contain a contradiction about Solomon’s molten sea?

DOES THE BIBLE CONTAIN A CONTRADICTION ABOUT SOLOMON’S MOLTEN SEA?

by Shawn Brasseaux

The Bible says the following:

  • 1 Kings 7:23: “And he made a molten sea, ten cubits from the one brim to the other: it was round all about, and his height was five cubits: and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.”
  • 2 Chronicles 4:2: “Also he made a molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and five cubits the height thereof; and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.”

Kings and Chronicles agree that the molten sea, a gigantic pool made of metal (brass?), was 10 cubits in diameter—15 feet (4.6 meters) across. It was five cubits or 7.5 feet (2.3 meters) high. Its distance around (circumference) was 30 cubits or 45 feet (13.7 meters). However, when we come to the volume, Bible critics have complained that there is an discrepancy.

What was its capacity?

  • 1 Kings 7:26: “And it was an hand breadth [4 inches, or 10 centimeters] thick, and the brim thereof was wrought like the brim of a cup, with flowers of lilies: it contained two thousand baths.”
  • 2 Chronicles 4:5: “And the thickness of it was an handbreadth, and the brim of it like the work of the brim of a cup, with flowers of lilies; and it received and held three thousand baths.”

Kings says 2,000 baths… but Chronicles reports 3,000 baths. This is quite a significant disparity. However, we do not have to assume a mistake. Remember, measurements can be complicated because various factors are involved.

For example, a skyscraper may have its highest inhabitable floor at 1,000 feet. If it features a 100-foot-tall spire or antenna, its height is increased to 1,100 feet. Therefore, if I said, “The building is 1,000 feet high,” I would be telling the truth. But, I would also be right in saying, “The building is 1,100 feet high.” There is no dishonesty on my part. The absolute maximum height is 1,100 feet; its highest occupied floor is 1,000 feet. Depending on what architectural features you want to include or exclude, the precise height can vary drastically (as in setting world records). We give people the benefit of the doubt, so why do we not treat the Bible the same way? (Is it that we are really not interested in the truth, but are rather merely seeking to unfairly nitpick at the Scriptures to discredit them?!)

Now, let us think in terms of volume (as in the case with the molten sea). Imagine a water tank with a maximum capacity of 500 gallons. However, the container can also hold 450 gallons, 100 gallons, or even one gallon. That is the easiest way to address the controversy surrounding the volume of Solomon’s molten sea. The maximum capacity was 3,000 baths (2 Chronicles 4:5) but it was only two-thirds full in 1 Kings 7:26. If we are going to be objective, we will see that there is no mistake in the Bible text here.

By the way, a bath was a unit of volume equal to approximately 8 gallons (30 liters). At 66 percent capacity, Solomon’s molten sea held 16,000 gallons (60,000 liters). Completely filled, it contained 24,000 gallons (90,000 liters)! It was massive reservoir for water in the Temple. What was its purpose? Second Chronicles 4:6 says, “the sea was for the priests to wash in.”

Also see:
» Was the Law of Moses given by the LORD, or by angels?
» How is Joshua a high priest in Zechariah 3:8?
» Is the King James word “borrow” a “mistranslation” in Exodus 3:22?