Re: [asa] Error/Contradiction was: Star of Bethlehem presentation?

From: Michael Roberts <>
Date: Tue Nov 24 2009 - 12:37:17 EST

Another problem are the 42 generations from Abraham to Jesus in Matt1. That makes over 45 years between each generation.

Questions inerrancy

  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Ryan Rasmussen, P.E.
  To: Dehler, Bernie
  Sent: Tuesday, November 24, 2009 5:19 PM
  Subject: [asa] Error/Contradiction was: Star of Bethlehem presentation?

  Bernie said:
    ... a challenge for those who take a stand for Biblical inerrancy- one of the most obvious Bible errors (contradictions) is in the nativity story. Matt 2;13 says that after Jesus was born, Joseph/Mary moved to Egypt. Luke 3:39 says no, they returned back to Nazareth. Bart Ehrman says "yes, there is a contradiction, but it is also interesting to see why." Both gospel writers had a job to do: explain how Jesus came to be born in Bethleham instead of from Nazareth, where his parents are from. So Matt creates a story about persecution with Herod, and Luke makes up a scenario about a census. Two different stories, both created to resolve the same prophecy problem. So join the 2 to make a new third version if you want, as long as you understand you are creating a third version (non-Biblical) of your own.

  Error? Contradiction? Awfully strong words for silence between the two accounts, Bernie.

  Biographical accounts take different aspects of a whole into consideration. Add to that the literary conventions of the time. It was not uncommon for much to be omitted or condensed in order to summarize a point. The Jarius story in Matt.9, Mark 5, & Luke 8 or the Cursing of the Fig Tree in Matt. 21 & Mark 11 are examples.

  There is no reason why Jesus couldn't have been: born in Bethlehem, traveled to Jerusalem for the purification rights, the words of Simeon and Anna make their way to Herod, the Magi arrive in Jerusalem and continue on to Bethlehem, Joseph is warned and flees to Egypt, Herod slaughters the innocents, Herod dies, Jesus and family returns from Egypt.

  Of course, this is all written in the Gospel of Ryan. Perhaps you should pick it up and take a look... :p


  From: Ted Davis []
  Sent: Monday, November 23, 2009 11:38 AM
  To: asa; Dehler, Bernie
  Subject: RE: [asa] Star of Bethlehem presentation?


  I see there's been a flurry of activity related to ideas about the Star of Bethlehem. If in fact a misprint of Josephus led Kepler and others to accept of a birth year for Christ of 4 BC or earlier, that would be very interesting. I'm looking into that claim.


  Many years ago I undertook a translation (which I won't be making public) of Kepler's treatise, "De vero anno quo Aeternus Dei Filius Humanam Naturam in Utero Benedictae Virginis Mariae Assumpsit," in which Kepler offered his view on this topic--I have a longstanding interest in it myself. In general, I recommend the following book on this topic:


  Let me comment as follows, for Bernie: the dominant Christian view on astrology, Bernie, has since the time of Augustine been as follows. Deterministic astrology, in which the stars actually determine & control human affairs, is verboten. But it was OK for Christians to hold that God can use the stars to reveal events under his own control, and in that context the magi were led to Bethlehem. Most contemporary Christians, including evangelicals, probably no little or nothing about the history of astrology and Christian views of it; the same is true of almost everyone else as well--nothing peculiar to Christians here, Bernie. Thus, many evangelical preachers might be very reluctant to see the magi as "astrologers," despite the use of the word "Magi" in the Bible. Others might know something about this and mention it helpfully.





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Received on Tue Nov 24 12:37:59 2009

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