ABC:John 2

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Verse 1[edit]

Jim Meritt of Infidels.org seems to think a contradiction is here, asking "Strong drink?"[1]

Proverbs 31:6 Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts.
7 Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.

John 2:1 And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there:
2 And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage.
3 And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine.
4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come.
5 His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.
6 And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.
7 Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.
8 And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it.
9 When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,
10 And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.
11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.

What Meritt was thinking in claiming this a contradiction I have absolutely no idea. First of all, there appears no reason for thinking the wine involved in John 2 is specifically "strong" drink. Secondly, Proverbs 31 is a commandment for those of weary hearts to drink, rather than not to drink, so why it would contradict John 2 Meritt doesn't explain. It never says those who don't have weary hearts shouldn't drink, which perhaps would be Meritt's extremely faulty reasoning. At any rate, it's unclear what sort of thought process could have been occurring for Meritt to claim this as a contradiction.

Verse 18[edit]

American Atheists claims the Bible is wrong about the passage (and makes the following comments (italicized).[2]

The End of the World

Matthew 16:28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.

Luke 21:32-33 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.

Romans 13:11-12 ¶ And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.

James 5:8 Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.

John 2:18 Then answered the Jews and said unto him, What sign shewest thou unto us, seeing that thou doest these things?

1 Peter 4:7 ¶ But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.

These words were written between 1800 and 1900 years ago and were meant to warn and prepare the first Christians for the immediate end of the world. Some words are those supposedly straight out of the mouth of the “Son of God.” The world did not end 1800 or 1900 years ago. All that generation passed away without any of the things foretold coming to pass. No amount of prayer brought it about; nor ever so much patience and belief and sober living. The world went on, as usual, indifferent to the spoutings of yet another batch of doomsday prophets with visions of messiahs dancing in their deluded brains. The world, by surviving, makes the above passages contradictions.

All of the passages simply show that the time of Christ's return is drawing near, with the exception of Matthew 16:28 where Jesus states that some of those standing with Him will see Him coming in His kingdom, which was fulfilled by John's visions of the end recorded in Revelation, and Luke 21:32-33, which says the generation wouldn't pass away until everything was fulfilled. However, Luke 21, like Matthew 24, was a response to two questions: 1) when the Temple of Jerusalem would be destroyed, and 2) when Christ's coming would occur. (Luke 21:5-7; Matthew 24:1-3) The Temple of Jerusalem was destroyed within one generation of Christ speaking when Nero destroyed it in 70 A.D.[3] Thus the first response was definitely fulfilled within one generation. Furthermore, because John saw all that occurred as recorded in the book of Revelation, the second response can be considered fulfilled as well.

Jesus clearly told the apostles what had to happen first before His return in Matthew 24. Jesus told them there would be numerous wars, famines, earthquakes, and false prophets first. (vv. 7-11) The Gospel would first be preached throughout the entire world followed by a massive tribulation perpetrated by the antichrist against Christians. (vv. 14-22) Jesus plainly told them that the exact time of His return was not known even to Him, only to God the Father. (v. 36) Just because then apostles warned one another to be constantly ready for His return as Jesus had urged them to do (Matthew 24:36-51) does not mean they claimed a return would occur during their own lifetimes. Nor do the passages which quote them show otherwise; merely that they considered Christ's return to be nearing.

Sources[edit]

  1. Meritt, Jim (1992). A list of Biblical contradictions. Retrieved from http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/jim_meritt/bible-contradictions.html.
  2. N.a. (2019). "Biblical Contradictions? American Atheists.
  3. Religious Literacy Project (2019). "Destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE." Harvard Divinity School.