Occasionally, I run into articles or discussions of people who say that the Bible has (no) contradictions. Perhaps you too hear similar things. Some people try to prove contradictions in the Bible as a way of discrediting the scripture. Those Christians who believe that alleged contradictions in the Bible somehow discredit the book take a defensive position and try to prove otherwise, which I believe doesn’t really help. Other people assert and point out contradictions in the Bible as a way of reminding people that the Bible requires a unique approach because it is an ancient text, and assumptions behind the book may not be fully aligned with our modern ways of thinking.
I don’t know where you stand on this matter, but I have decided to share my opinion as a Bible geek, minister, and former lawyer who revels in uncertainties. I hope it will help you clarify your mind. Before we go any further into this muddy theological-political and pastoral issue, let me lay down my cards for transparency. I personally don’t see anything threatening with contradictions in the Bible — I tend to believe that if there are contradictions in the Bible (which is highly probable), then it’s exactly how it should be. It must have contradictions if it is to be a holy book speaking to us from the past and into the future. I will tell you why I’m more than lenient to the idea of contradictions in the Bible, but let me say two things before we move on.