From BibleStrength
Revision as of 23:00, 9 July 2014 by Jzyehoshua (talk | contribs)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The following is a complete debunking of Jim Meritt's list of alleged Biblical contradictions. Please note that this is just a concise summary of all answers to the alleged contradictions, for more detail and sourcing please see the related pages. Meritt's comments when quoted are italicized.

Allegation Solution
God good to all, or just a few?

Psalms 145:9 The LORD is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.
Jeremiah 13:14 And I will dash them one against another, even the fathers and the sons together, saith the LORD: I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, but destroy them.
Biblically, mercy is the result of repentance and turning from evil, it is conditional upon one's actions. Ultimately God could not be good if He did not punish the evil actions of wicked people. God does send goodness upon all, sending rain on both the just and unjust, but must ultimately punish the wicked to stop their perpetuation of evil. With the Jeremiah passage, the unusually harsh punishment was in part because Israelite society was burning their own children alive in sacrifice to idols.
War or Peace?

Exodus 15:3 The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.
Romans 15:33 Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.
This is no more a contradiction than God saying He gives us peace inside even though we will have tribulation outside. We have peace in God even though outwardly there is trial, war, and tribulation. God is a God of inward peace and yet a warrior as well. This is no contradiction, indeed some of the great martial artists like Bruce Lee focused on inner peace even as their fighting capabilities were honed to a razor's edge. The concept of God's glory is as aptly stated by John Dryden and characterized by Jeff Bridges in Tron Legacy, "Beware the wrath of a patient man."
Who is the father of Joseph?

Matthew 1:16 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.
Luke 3:23 And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli.
Matthew contain's Joseph's genealogy and account, Luke contains Mary's genealogy and account. A straightforward reading of the early chapters of both Gospels will show that Matthew's early chapters are told from Joseph's point of view, just as Luke's early chapters are told from Mary's point of view. Jewish custom gives the mother's genealogy in the father's name as occurs here. Additionally, the Greek word translated son, huios, can simply mean descendant, as it does in Mt. 1:1 and 1:20.
Who was at the Empty Tomb? Is it:

Matthew 28:1 In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.
Mark 16:1 And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him.
Luke 24:10 It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles.
John 20:1 The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre.
None of the verses remotely appear to contradict one another. Matthew 28 mentions two of the three present, Mary Magdalene and another Mary. Mark 16 mentions all three, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Jesus, and Salome. John 20 mentions only Mary Magdalene. Luke 24 mentions Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Jesus, Joanna (who may be the same as Salome and/or the mother of Zebedee's children in Matthew 27:56), and other women.

If one author was aware of one person present, another of two people, and another that three were there, it is in no way a contradiction. One writer may see fit to mention only one, another two, and yet another writer to mention all persons present. Had the Matthew or John passages said "ONLY X persons were at the sepulchre" then that would be a contradiction, but to put words in the mouth of the writers when that is not what they said is to falsely accuse the Bible of a contradiction that does not in fact exist.
Is Jesus equal to or lesser than?

John 10:30 I and my Father are one.
John 14:28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.
This is not a contradiction but caused by (A) Jim Meritt's lack of understanding about what the Bible means by "oneness" - something many are confused about, and (B) the incorrect assumption that being 'one' means having the same status. Oneness seems to mean the indwelling of God. Thus Jesus was indwelt with the Spirit of God the Father and said to be "one" the same as we are all said to be one with both Jesus and God the Father, because God's Spirit indwells us. (John 17:21) Nonetheless, Jesus is greater than Christians (John 13:14), while God the Father is greater than Jesus. (John 14:28) Oneness does not mean one in all things, but refers to a bond whereby we are indwelt with God's Spirit.
Which first--beasts or man?

Genesis 1:25-26 And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
Genesis 2:18-19 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
The simple and straightforward answer here is that Genesis 1:1-2:3 (1:1, an account of "In the beginning") is not the same account as Genesis 2:4-4:26 (2:4, "generations of the heavens and the Earth") - Genesis 1 relates God's account of how the Earth and creation were made, Genesis 2-4 relates Adam's account of God creating individual life in the Garden of Eden, including himself. Genesis 2:19 does not relate the original creation of cattle and birds, but recreation of more animals of the types already created to see what Adam will name them. Genesis 2 does not show an additional account of the original creation, which would make no sense, rather it starts with Day 6 and Adam's creation as told from his point of view, and relates God recreating animals already made in the Garden of Eden to see what Adam will name them.
How many stalls and horsemen?

1 Kings 4:26 And Solomon had forty thousand stalls of horses for his chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen.
2 Chronicles 9:25 And Solomon had four thousand stalls for horses and chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen; whom he bestowed in the chariot cities, and with the king at Jerusalem.
The verses do not contradict because they describe different stalls. Whereas 1 Kings 4:26 mentions 4,000 stalls for chariots only, 2 Chronicles 9:25 says there were were 40,000 for both chariots AND horses. Logically far fewer stalls would be needed for only chariots than for both chariots AND horses. We are told there were 12,000 horsemen, presumably in addition to the 4,000 chariot crews. So 12,000 stalls for their individual horses, plus 4,000 for chariots. (16,000) This means the chariot horses likely accounted for the bulk of the remaining 24,000 stalls. (40,000-16,000) 6 horses to a chariot is hardly unthinkable (24,000 stalls / 4,000 chariots) although some stalls could be for spare horses. At any rate, the math makes perfect sense between the two passages.
Is it folly to be wise or not?

Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.
Ecclesiastes 1:18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.
1 Corinthians 1:19-21: For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
The first two passages in Proverbs and Ecclesiastes do not contradict at all. One can be urged to get wisdom and understanding, yet the road to doing so will include sorrow and grief. Concerning 1 Corinthians, the passage does not refer to godly wisdom, but the wisdom of this world, as revealed by other Scriptures. That 1 Corinthians 1 is referring to the wisdom of the world specifically is clear from verses 20-21, which Infidels failed to quote, and by doing so did not provide the correct context. Verse 21 clearly shows this "wisdom of the world" is being contrasted with "the wisdom of God". If were honest, they would quote the next chapter as well, which shows wisdom of this world is being contrasted with the wisdom of God, but they do not do so because it would not serve their dishonest aim to disprove the Bible.
Human vs. ghostly impregnation

Acts 2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;
Matthew 1:18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.
Logically this is not a contradiction at all, since both can be true, Jesus could be the child of a human by the Holy Ghost. Both Mary and Joseph were descended from David (see Matthew 1 and Luke 3). Therefore, "child of the Holy Ghost" is simply additional detail. Furthermore, "child of the Holy Ghost" does not imply a Virgin Birth, as the Holy Ghost could design the child in the womb.
The sins of the father

Isaiah 14:21 Prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities.
Deuteronomy 24:16 The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.
Yes, they were destroyed for the "sins of their fathers" but only because they were engaging in them as well. While God does visit punishment upon wicked peoples during this life for the "sins of the fathers" to slow the spread of evil in this world run by Satan, God determines eternal life by individual actions. God is merciful to those who repent and turn from the ways of their fathers.
Rabbits do not chew their cud

Leviticus 11:6 And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you.
Fowl from waters or ground?

Genesis 1:20-21 And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
Genesis 2:19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
The Genesis 1 and 2 passages are of course not accounts of the same event with contradicting details. Rather, Genesis 1:1-2:3 is God's account of creation, and 2:4-4:27 is Adam's account of the Garden of Eden. Thus, birds were originally created over the water, and recreated later in the Garden of Eden to see what Adam would name them.
Odd genetics

Genesis 30:39 And the flocks conceived before the rods, and brought forth cattle ringstraked, speckled, and spotted.
It seems somewhat ironic that skeptics like Jim Meritt say God could supernaturally provide the dream to Jacob showing him what to do, but that the event itself must necessarily exclude God's supernatural intervention and be purely naturalistic. Why accept God's working of a miracle in telling Jacob what to do, but deny that the event performed did not include God's miraculous intervention? The Bible never says such an event was the result of genetics as opposed to a miracle by God, indeed many of the details clearly appear to show this was a special, miraculous act by God rather than an everyday naturalistic phenomenon. If the Bible presented it as naturalistic rather than miraculous, we would expect to see later individuals reproducing Jacob's God-inspired event, but this is never mentioned.
The shape of the earth

Isaiah 40:22 It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:
Matthew 4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;

Astronomical bodies are spherical, and you cannot see the entire exterior surface from anyplace. The kingdoms of Egypt, China, Greece, Crete, sections of Asia Minor, India, Maya (in Mexico), Carthage (North Africa), Rome (Italy), Korea, and other settlements from these kingdoms of the world were widely distributed.
First of all, "circle" is the English KJV translation of the Hebrew word chuwg, and carries the idea of a circuit - it's used just 3 times in the Bible. There is plenty of room for debate whether so rarely used a word means circle or sphere. Critics of the Bible are of course quick to try and claim the word means circle rather than sphere, when in reality there is no clear reason for doing so. Secondly, Matthew 4:8 never says it was because of the mountain's height that Jesus could be shown all the kingdoms of the world. While such a naturalistic explanation might be considered inferred, it is quite possibly an incorrect assumption on the part of Jim Meritt to make. Other possibilities include a supernatural vision of all the world's kingdoms there. We simply aren't told, and to prove a definite contradiction in the Bible, one should certainly not resort to putting words in its mouth as Meritt does here.
Snakes, while built low, do not eat dirt

Genesis 3:14 And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
As sarcastically and hilariously pointed out by Genesis and Science, snakes will naturally eat whatever happens to get on their food - including dirt and dust.[1] So what is recognized as the major difference between dinosaurs and today's reptiles? Most obviously, that they stood erect due to differences in their thigh structure. Here in Genesis 3 we can clearly see God said He would alter the shape of what here are called snakes (Heb. nachash) so they would crawl on their bellies in the dust, even as one could argue is the difference between today's reptiles and the dinosaurs of old.
Earth supported?

Job 26:7 He stretcheth out the north over the empty place, and hangeth the earth upon nothing.
Job 38:4 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding.
Logically one could consider the "foundations of the earth" to mean the Earth's core itself. There is no reason to infer a contradiction with Job 26:7 - which clearly states scientific fact about the Earth's positioning in outer space - unless one is already looking for a contradiction. The outer mantle of the Earth is 'founded' upon the core of the Earth, and in looking at geologic history, one would consider formation of the core the 'foundation' of Earth's beginnings.

The Hubble Telescope on April 1, 1995, captured a photo of what are being called the "Pillars of Creation", huge pillars of gas and dust in the Eagle Nebula.[2] As such, it may be premature to assume, as Meritt did, that "pillars" necessarily referred to a solid foundation holding up the universe
The hydrological cycle

Ecclesiastes 1:7 All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again.
Job 38:22 Hast thou entered into the treasures of the snow? or hast thou seen the treasures of the hail,
Perhaps Meritt was unaware of how snow and hail are formed within extratropical cyclones. The snow/hail formation within such extratropical cyclones could well be the "treasures of snow/hail" referred to by the Bible, and there is no reason to assume a contradiction when there is a ready explanation. Ecclesiastes 1:7 by the way is a very good summary of the hydrological cycle.
Note that there are "days," "evenings," and "mornings" before the Sun was created. Here, the Deity is referred to as "Elohim," which is a plural, thus the literal translation, "the Gods." In this tale, the Gods seem satisfied with what they have done, saying after each step that "it was good."

How orderly were things created?

1: Step-by-step. The only discrepancy is that there is no Sun or Moon or stars on the first three "days."
2: God fixes things up as he goes. The first man is lonely, and is not satisfied with animals. God finally creates a woman for him. (funny thing that an omniscient god would forget things)

How satisfied with creation was he?

1: God says "it was good" after each of his labors, and rests on the seventh day, evidently very satisfied.
2: God has to fix up his creation as he goes, and he would certainly not be very satisfied with the disobedience of that primordial couple. (funny thing that an omniscient god would forget things)
First of all, the fact that days, evenings, and mornings existed before the sun's creation means only that another light source was present. The Bible even states such a pattern will exist once more at the end of creation. Jesus Himself is said to be all the light the New Jerusalem requires. (Revelation 21:23-25) Since Jesus claimed to have existed from the beginning of Creation (John 17:35) there is no reason at all to think Jesus Himself could not have been the original light source, and thus giving special relevance to His title "the Light of the world." (John 8:12, 9:5)

Secondly, Meritt claims it a "funny thing that an omniscient god would forget things." However, since Meritt is quoting the KJV, he ought to be aware that not once in the entire KJV are the words "omniscient" or "omniscience" ever used, although "omnipotent" is used once. (Revelation 19:6) Omniscience is an arbitrary concept that's been attached to God by philosophers to explain the Bible's repeated references to God's absolute knowledge. However, to assume God knows everything the future holds does not necessarily follow from what the Bible says.

For more on this, see Epicurus' Trilemma.
Moses' personality

Numbers 12:3: Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.
Numbers 31:14-18 And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, with the captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, which came from the battle. And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive? Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.
Jim Meritt rather dishonestly omits from his quote at the crucial v. 16 showing that God wanted evil nations destroyed because they were causing Israelites to sin through sacrificing their children alive to Baal and possibly eating them as well. The Midianite leaders infiltrated Israel and seduced Israelites into burning their children alive as sacrifices to Baal. (Psalms 106:28-40) They are also said to have "ate the sacrifices of the dead", meaning that not only did they kill their own children, but may have actually eaten them as well; cannibalism.

God never commanded that only female children be left alive. Moses did this of his own decision, just as he is seen to have done elsewhere as well. God originally commanded that the entire nations be wiped out with no exceptions. (Deuteronomy 7:2; Exodus 23:32-33) God also specifically forbade marrying their daughters. (Exodus 34:11-12; Deuteronomy 7:3-4) Moses disobeyed God by not destroying the nations. (Psalms 106:34)

Moses was so meek he didn't stand up to the Israelites and created commandments they wanted which God never intended like allowing divorce and sparing young females of evil nations. As such it is more confirmation of his meekness rather than a contradiction.
Righteous live?

Psalms 92:12-13 The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Those that be planted in the house of the LORD shall flourish in the courts of our God.
Isaiah 57:1-2 The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come. He shall enter into peace: they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness.
Meritt very dishonestly quotes only the first part of the passage in Isaiah 57:1, "The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart," omitting the telling remainder of the passage. He also omits the remainder of the Psalms 92:12-13 passage. When looked at as a whole, it becomes apparent that God is actually removing some good people from the Earth as a merciful act to them. The obvious question to be asked is when the flourishing is to occur, this life or the next? If the next, there is no contradiction, the righteous perish in this life, but flourish in the next, and only the good die young. As Paul puts it, "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable." (1 Corinthians 15:19) Jesus warned "in the world ye shall have tribulation." (John 16:33) Paul repeats this is in 2 Timothy 3:12 stating "Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution."
Matthew 27:3-8: Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that. And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself. And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood. And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day.
Acts 1:16-19: Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus. For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry. Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out. And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
There is no reason the verses need to contradict. Judas could have hanged himself from a high area in the field. Hanging literally involves "falling down" after all. The rope could have broken from the stress or been cut after the hanging, so that his body fell onto some rocks and burst open. It could have been hanging there for weeks as it rotted until a buzzard perched on it and it fell apart onto the ground for all we know. Whatever the scenario was, the verses appear complementary in relating it with no clear reason for assuming contradiction.
Jesus' first sermon plain or mount?

Matthew 5:1: And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:
2 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
Luke 6:17-20 And he came down with them, and stood in the plain, and the company of his disciples, and a great multitude of people out of all Judaea and Jerusalem, and from the sea coast of Tyre and Sidon, which came to hear him, and to be healed of their diseases; And they that were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed. And the whole multitude sought to touch him: for there went virtue out of him, and healed them all. ¶ And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God.
First Jesus withdrew with His disciples to the sea coast of Tyre and Sidon and was followed by a great multitude from Galilee, Judea, Jerusalem, Idumaea, Jordan, Tyre, and Sidon. (Luke 6:17, Mark 3:7-8) Jesus went into a ship with His disciples so He wouldn't get crowded by the multitude. (Mark 3:9-12) Jesus then went up to a mountain and taught. (Matthew 5:12, Mark 3:13-35) After all of this Jesus "began again to teach by the sea side" and again entered into a ship, teaching the multitude through parables from the ship. (Mark 4:1-34) both are true, Jesus was at a plain near the sea coast and then went up into a mountain.
Jesus' last words

Matthew 27:46,50: "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, "Eli, eli, lama sabachthani?" that is to say, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" ...Jesus, when he cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost."
Luke 23:46: "And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, "Father, unto thy hands I commend my spirit:" and having said thus, he gave up the ghost."
John 19:30: "When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, "It is finished:" and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost."
None of the passages say what were Jesus' last words, the phrase "Jesus' last words" is an expression originated by Meritt, not the Bible. The passages all actually complement one another, since neither Matthew 27 or Luke 23 say what it was that Jesus cried. As seen from the chronology of the passages, Jesus' first cry was "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:46) He then cried out again with a loud voice (Matthew 27:50), a cry that apparently included "It is finished" John 19:30 and then "Father, unto thy hands I commend my spirit". (Luke 23:46) Since John 19:30 does not specify a loud cry, this statement presumably is the last of the three.
Years of famine

2 Samuel 24:13: So Gad came to David, and told him, and said unto him, Shall seven years of famine come unto thee in thy land? or wilt thou flee three months before thine enemies, while they pursue thee? or that there be three days' pestilence in thy land? now advise, and see what answer I shall return to him that sent me.
1 Chronicles 21:11-12 So Gad came to David, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Choose thee Either three years' famine; or three months to be destroyed before thy foes, while that the sword of thine enemies overtaketh thee; or else three days the sword of the LORD, even the pestilence, in the land, and the angel of the LORD destroying throughout all the coasts of Israel. Now therefore advise thyself what word I shall bring again to him that sent me.
The only possibility that in my mind seems an alternate explanation to scribal error is that provided by Answers In Genesis' Michael Belknap:

"So according to the text, numbering the people was nearly a year-long process, and there is no clear indication that God had suspended the initial three-year famine prior to the events in chapter 24. Now if God had combined three additional years of famine (1 Chronicles 21:12) with the three years of initial famine, and a possible intervening year while the census was conducted, the resulting overall famine would have totaled about seven years (2 Samuel 24:13)."
-Michael Belknap, Answers In Genesis[3]
2 Samuel 24:1 And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah.
1 Chronicles 21:1 And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.
As for why both Satan and God would have been said to be involved in the provoking, the likely answer is that God originally allowed Satan to test David as occurred with Job.
God CAN be seen:

Exodus 33:11 And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle.
Exodus 33:22 And it shall come to pass, while my glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a clift of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by:
23 And I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen.
Genesis 32:30 And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.

God CANNOT be seen:

John 1:18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.
Exodus 33:20 And he said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live.
1 Timothy 6:16 Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.
The first half of Exodus 33 seemingly refers to Jesus appearing as the Angel of the Lord and speaking to Moses, just as He did throughout the Old Testament to many of the patriarchs, and was called God frequently when doing so. The last half of the chapter refers to God the Father Himself speaking and saying none can see His face. Genesis 32:30 refers to Jesus, the Angel of the Lord, as God, as do many other places in the Old Testament. Thus Jesus could be seen face to face, yet be considered God, while God the Father could not be seen face to face as something in God the Father's glorious nature meant those who looked on His face would die.

Jeremiah 13:14 And I will dash them one against another, even the fathers and the sons together, saith the LORD: I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, but destroy them.
1 Samuel 15:2-3 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt. Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
James 5:11 Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
1 Chronicles 16:34 O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.
Psalms 145:9 The LORD is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.
1 John 4:16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
For a full explanation of how God could be justified in His destruction of the Canaanite nations and punishment of Israel, see 'Destruction of Canaanites where it is pointed out that both were being punished for widespread practice of the horrible crime of child sacrifice. Meritt in quoting Jeremiah 13:14 here ignores the fact that the Israelites were being so horribly punished by God for sacrificing their own children by burning them alive.

Concerning Amalek, God wanted to destroy the nation that had cowardly attacked the women and children of Israel. (Exodus 17:16) Ultimately, the answer to this question of whether God is cruel or kind is both. God is cruel to the wicked and unrepentant and kind and merciful to those who turn from their wicked ways. This answer is reinforced throughout the whole Bible. Making this an Either/Or ignores the truth of the Bible.

Genesis 22:1 And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham.
James 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God; for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man.
The KJV just chose a bad word for Genesis 22:1 in 'tempt,' the Hebrew word nacah is usually translated elsewhere as 'prove' meaning to test, try, or prove without the negative connotation of "tempt." Nacah as seen from how it's used elsewhere in the Old Testament would be better translated as 'prove,' 'test,' or 'try.' The same word is most often translated by the KJV as 'prove' and had it been translated that way here would have removed the confusion. At any rate, God was just testing Abraham to see what was in Abraham's heart, and whether Abraham would trust Him unconditionally. This is evident from v. 12.
Judas died how?

Matthew 27:5-8: And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself. And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood. And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day.
Acts 1:18-19: Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out. And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
There is no reason the verses need to contradict. Judas could have hanged himself from a high area in the field. Hanging literally involves "falling down" after all. The rope could have broken from the stress or been cut after the hanging, so that his body fell onto some rocks and burst open. It could have been hanging there for weeks as it rotted until a buzzard perched on it and it fell apart onto the ground for all we know. Whatever the scenario was, the verses appear complementary in relating it with no clear reason for assuming contradiction.
Ascend to heaven

2 Kings 2:11 And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.
John 3:13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.
Genesis 5:24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.
Because the Bible throughout uses the word heaven in three different ways and other similar Biblical events involved transportation to other parts of Earth rather than death-defying removal to heaven, there is no reason to assume other Bible verses saying none have ascended to heaven and all have died are incorrect. Rather, they form a composite whole showing the heaven Elijah ascended to was not the third heaven Jesus spoke of ascending to where His Father lived.
How many times did the cock crow?

Mark 14:30 And Jesus saith unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice.
Mark 14:72 And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. And when he thought thereon, he wept.
Matthew 26:74-75 Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.
Luke 22:60-61 And Peter said, Man, I know not what thou sayest. And immediately, while he yet spake, the cock crew. And the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.
John 13:38 Jesus answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, still thou hast denied me thrice.
John 18:27 Peter then denied again: and immediately the cock crew.
The simple answer is twice, but only once after some of these passages. The rooster had already crowed once, and Jesus predicted Peter would deny him three times before it crowed a second time. Therefore Peter did so before it crowed once more, a second time. There's nothing contradictory about these passages in the slightest.
How many beatitudes in the Sermon on the Mount

Matthew 5:3-11 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Luke 6:20-23 And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled. Blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh. Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.
Obviously it's not a 'contradiction' for one account to give more detail than another since neither passage states "there are X amount of beatitudes." The pattern of the Bible is that some accounts give more detail than others, complementing one another to form a cohesive whole and filling in spots left unexplained elsewhere.
Does every man sin?

1 Kings 8:46 If they sin against thee, (for there is no man that sinneth not,) and thou be angry with them, and deliver them to the enemy, so that they carry them away captives unto the land of the enemy, far or near;
2 Chronicles 6:36 If they sin against thee, (for there is no man which sinneth not,) and thou be angry with them, and deliver them over before their enemies, and they carry them away captives unto a land far off or near;
Proverbs 20:9 Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?
Ecclesiastes 7:20 For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.
1 John 1:8-10 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
1 John 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
The distinction is between past and present. Every person has sinned, the Bible makes that abundantly clear in Romans 3 and elsewhere. It is only by grace, i.e. God's undeserved mercy, that we can be justified. A Christian is not merely someone who is forgiven, but who is made a new person in Jesus. They surrender themselves and die to sin, being given a new heart, spirit, and mind. (Ezekiel 11:19, 18:31, 36:26) They are no longer under the power of sin, but have now the ability to live without sin. Rather than being slaves to sin as before, they now have the ability constantly to CHOOSE not to sin. Rather than being slaves to their lusts, passions, and environments, they are suddenly freed so that it has become a question of will and decision to do right.

At any rate, it's important to note that the Old Testament verses being quoted were before the way of salvation was provided. As for those in 1 John 1:8-10 they refer to life before Christ, as evidenced by phrases like "cleanse us from all unrighteousness" and "have not sinned" (past tense). As Christians we are expected to live without habitually sinning, though isolated cases can occur. Therefore, while Christians are saved by repentance and the mercy of God through trusting in Jesus, not by works, that new life is to produce works.
Who bought potter's field

Matthew 27:6-8: And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood. And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day.
Acts 1:18-19: Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out. And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
In essence Judas did purchase the field with the cost of his betrayal, he attempted to return the silver for Jesus' freedom, was refused, killed himself, and the Pharisees bought for his burial ground the place where he hanged himself. The Pharisees essentially bought the field on Judas' behalf, since they had refused his return of the silver. Ultimately speaking, Judas' reward for Jesus' betrayal ended up being a land where he killed himself and was buried, so in that sense he did purchase a field in exchange for betraying Jesus.
Who prophesied the potter's field?

Matthew 27:9 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value;
10 And gave them for the potter's field, as the Lord appointed me.
Zechariah 11:12 And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.
13 And the LORD said unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD.
Meritt makes a serious mistake in assuming the verse would need to be in the book of Jeremiah, first of all, since Jeremiah is also believed to have authored the books of 1 Kings, 2 Kings, and Lamentations. Secondly, Meritt is incorrect that no similar verses exist in the book of Jeremiah, as Jeremiah does speak of a field's purchase with 17 pieces of silver. (Jeremiah 32:6-10) The field mentioned was in Anathoth which like the field Judas bought in Aceldama would have been very close to Jerusalem. Jeremiah also contains a prophecy which involves Jeremiah buying a "potter's earthen bottle", going to the "valley of the son of Hinnom" (exactly where Judas' field of Aceldama was), and prophesying an "evil upon this place". Jeremiah 19:1-3 Since Jeremiah lived shortly before Zechariah, it is quite possible Zechariah was reporting an earlier prophecy spoken by Jeremiah just as Paul and the Gospel authors later reported what Jesus spoke.
Do you answer a fool?

Proverbs 26:4-5 Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.
There are times not to answer a fool's foolishness because he is only using insults or distorting your arguments through logical fallacies dishonestly because he cares nothing for truth, only appearing to be right for reputation's sake, and making his opinions seem correct. However, there are also times when to let a fool's claims go unchallenged would allow the unlearned to think a fool is correct, and thus one must confront publicly the claims of a fool. To phrase it another way, we should not sink to the level of a fool in using insults and distortions, dishonest arguments, their "folly" or foolishness in other words, yet to let them go unrefuted would be to give credence to their claims; thus one must publicly rebuke them, making their foolishness apparent that the easily misled are not deceived by their false claims.
How many children did Michal, the daughter of Saul, have?

2 Samuel 6:23 Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.
2 Samuel 21:8 But the king took the two sons of Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, whom she bare unto Saul, Armoni and Mephibosheth; and the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite:
This may be a scribal error though it appears only in newer manuscripts. As AIG authors Bodie Hodge and Jeremy Ham have pointed out, two ancient manuscripts of the Septuagint and Syriac do correctly have Merab's name in 2 Samuel 21:8 without the error.[4]

Since it was Merab who was married to a Meholathite, and not apparently Michal, it would seem the scribe mixed up the names of Saul's daughters. Since both were engaged to be married to David and both given away to different men by Saul, and since both even have rather similar names, it's not hard to see how the scribe when copying from an older scroll may have made the mistake. Thus this does appear to be a scribal error, but not one which appears in the oldest manuscripts available to us.
How old was Jehoiachin when he began to reign?

2 Kings 24:8 Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he began to reign, and he reigned in Jerusalem three months. And his mother's name was Nehushta, the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem.
2 Chronicles 36:9 Jehoiachin was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months and ten days in Jerusalem: and he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD.
Both passages are correct. Jehoiachin began to reign in Judah at age 8 (2 Chronicles 36:9) and in Jerusalem at age 18 (2 Kings 24:8). For a more detailed (and excellent) explanation of this, see KJV Today.[5] As KJV Today points out:
"Jehoiachin’s co-regency of ten years corresponds perfectly with his father Jehoiakim’s reign of eleven years (2 Chronicles 36:5). Moreover, as soon as the Babylonian invasion looms into the picture, Chronicles begins to use the phrase, 'king over Judah and Jerusalem' (2 Chronicles 36:4, 10)."
-KJV Today
In regards to Meritt's quibbling that one account mentioned additional days, the first account was simply giving time in number of months, and never mentioned the days as did the second account. Many Biblical accounts when saying someone reigned for X years, for example, are not mentioning how many months or days, but just giving the number of years, as they would not keep track of the exact number of months, days, hours, or minutes. Rather than a contradiction, it's just a matter of additional detail.

Proverbs 18:22 Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.
1 Corinthians 7:1 Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.
2 Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.
1 Corinthians 7:29 But this I say, brethren, the time is short: it remaineth, that both they that have wives be as though they had none;
1 Corinthians 7:37 Nevertheless he that standeth stedfast in his heart, having no necessity, but hath power over his own will, and hath so decreed in his heart that he will keep his virgin, doeth well.
1 Corinthians 7:40 But she is happier if she so abide, after my judgment: and I think also that I have the Spirit of God.

As explained at length in Virgin Birth and Priestly Celibacy this longstanding confusion is caused by the incorrect translation of the Greek word parthenos in the New Testament as meaning virgin instead of widow by the Catholic Church and subsequent translators (like the KJV). A reading of 1 Corinthians 7 shows the topic being discussed is whether widows (what parthenos should have been translated as) should be allowed to remarry. In that context, Paul in 1 Corinthians 7 was actually encouraging those married to stay with their spouses, even if their spouses were unbelievers.

Only if 1 Corinthians 7 and Revelation 12:4 are read with parthenos translated as virgin is there a contradiction. However, as clearly explained in Virgin Birth and Priestly Celibacy such a reading would make little sense in the context of 1 Corinthians 7, Paul's own teachings, and the entire Bible; and parthenos as shown from all the evidence appears to mean widow instead.

Did those with Saul/Paul at his conversion hear a voice?

Acts 9:7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.
Acts 22:9 And they that were with me saw indeed the light, and were afraid; but they heard not the voice of him that spake to me.
It's open for debate whether the voices they heard were their own or of angels and whether they included the "voice of him that spake to [Paul]." If committed to giving the Bible the benefit of the doubt (which I am), then one will certainly be reluctant to assume the voices the men heard included the one specific to Paul when not overtly stated otherwise. Therefore this does not have to be a contradiction.
Where was Jesus three days after his baptism?

Mark 1:12 And immediately the spirit driveth him into the wilderness.
John 1:35 Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;
John 1 never states Jesus' baptism was occurring, only that John was bearing witness that he had done so in the past. John 1:15-36 never says the baptism itself is taking place, only that John the Baptist sees Jesus coming and professes that the events of Matthew 3:13-17 and Mark 1:9-10 had occurred.
How many apostles were in office between the resurrection and ascension?

1 Corinthians 15:5-8 And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.
Matthew 27:3-5 Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that. And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself.
Acts 1:26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.
Matthew 28:16 Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.
Meritt is trying to say Paul should have said there were eleven instead of twelve at the time. However, Paul was writing after the fact when there were once again twelve apostles (now including Mathias, who had replaced Judas). Therefore Paul was justified in using the phrase "the twelve" after the fact, since Mathias doubtless saw the risen Lord as well, even if Mathias was not considered one of the twelve yet.

The term "the twelve" was likely a common way of referring to the twelve apostles at the time Paul wrote that, just as the Beatles frequently were referred to as the "Fab Four" when they were alive. Yes, Paul was referring to a time Mathias wasn't yet considered one of "the twelve" but at the time Paul was writing Mathias had become one of "the twelve."

Even if one really wanted to nitpick like this, Judas didn't technically stop getting considered one of "the twelve" until Acts 1:26, so even if he died a few days before Peter saw Jesus (compare Matthew 27:3-5 and 28:7) he was still considered one of "the twelve." Meritt assumes Judas just stopped being considered one of "the twelve" upon dying which the Bible never states.

1 Corinthians 2:15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.
There are actually TWO Greek words translated "judge" here. Whereas 1 Corinthians 2:15 uses the Greek word anakrino 4:15 uses the word krino; there are actually two different words being translated 'judge' just as today we use the word judge with different meanings. The Greek word anakrinos used in 1 Corinthians 2:15 simply means judgment in the sense of scrutinizing or examining. Christians are shown to use this kind of judgment and there is nothing wrong with doing so according to the Bible. However, the Greek word krinos used in 1 Corinthians 4:5 is a legal term referring to judging, sentencing, or condemning with punishments to (often negatively) affect another person. Christians are repeatedly told not to use this kind of judgment of other people in the sense of punishing them in court of law. Christians are commanded to judge concepts, not people.
Good deeds

Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
Matthew 6:3-4 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.
As should be readily apparent, there is no contradiction here. Matthew 5:16 does not say to do good works before all - obviously those receiving alms will "see your good works and glorify your Father which is in Heaven." Matthew 5:16 is not a commandment to do alms openly in contradiction of 6:3, but to do them at all.
For or against?

Matthew 12:30 He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.
(default is against)

Mark 9:40 For he that is not against us is on our part.

(default is for)
Luke 9:50 And Jesus said unto him, Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.
(default is for)
None of the verses say anything about a default. That's simply Meritt's own faulty, so-called reasoning. All three verses simply maintain the same approach, that there are only two sides at work, the world's/Satan's, and God's. Jesus draws the same parallel constantly throughout the Gospels, that there is a kingdom of this world opposing the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, if there are only two sides, it can safely be said that if one is not on the other side, they are on your side, and vice versa - hence, no contradiction.
Whom did they see at the tomb?

Matthew 28:2-5 And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it. His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow: And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men. And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.

Mark 16:5 And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted.
Luke 24:4 And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments:
John 20:12 And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.
None of the accounts contradict one another and all can be true. All the accounts except John mention the original arrival of the women to see where Jesus was laid, John doesn't mention it. Then the women all go to the tomb to anoint Jesus, all the accounts mention this, although John mentions only Mary Magdalene and Matthew mentions only her and another Mary. Luke and John mention the visit of Peter and the book of John mentions John and Mary Magdalene went with Peter as well.

It's not a contradiction for four different accounts to mention varying levels of detail about an event, if they all related the same exact detail there would be no need for four accounts, and they'd obviously have copied from one another and conspired to make a single cohesive account, right? Meritt appears to foolishly assume that "contradiction" means simply relating different levels of detail, a definition that makes absolutely no sense.
God change?

Malachi 3:6 For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.
James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
1 Samuel 15:29 And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.
Jonah 3:10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.
Genesis 6:6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.
Clearly God by saying "I change not" is referring to His covenants with Abraham, Jacob, and David to preserve a lineage as His chosen people. God does not change His covenants and promises, and this is repeated throughout the Bible. Nonetheless, God can be seen numerous times to change His mind or regret His decisions. (e.g. Ge. 6:6; 1 Sam. 15:11,35; Jon. 3:10) While God does not regret doing wrong (since God does not sin or do wrong), He can be seen to regret justifiable punishments enacted on evil human beings.

Some of the confusion may be caused the archaic usage by the KJV of the word "repent" which is used to mean God simply being sorrowful, even for executing just punishments, and usage of the word "evil" which is used simply to mean a harsh punishment. See for example its usage in [[ABC:Jeremiah 18|Jeremiah 18:8-13 where God says He will "repent of the evil" He does in punishing evil nations as long as they turn from their evil, and that if they do evil then He will "repent of the good".
Whose sepulchers

Genesis 23:17-19 And the field of Ephron, which was in Machpelah, which was before Mamre, the field, and the cave which was therein, and all the trees that were in the field, that were in all the borders round about, were made sure Unto Abraham for a possession in the presence of the children of Heth, before all that went in at the gate of his city. And after this, Abraham buried Sarah his wife in the cave of the field of Machpelah before Mamre: the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan.
Acts 7:15-16 So Jacob went down into Egypt, and died, he, and our fathers, And were carried over into Sychem, and laid in the sepulchre that Abraham bought for a sum of money of the sons of Emmor the father of Sychem.
Stephen in Acts 7 actually transposes two different accounts in two different ways. If he'd stated Joseph (not Jacob) was buried in the Acts location referenced and that Jacob (not Abraham) had made the purchase, he would be correct. If on the other hand he'd stated Jacob was carried to a different location (Machpelah, not Shechem, Shechem was the location Jacob purchased) as purchased by Abraham from Ephron the Hittite (not Hamor the father of Shechem, Hamor was the one Jacob purchased his land from) he would be correct. Instead, Stephen combined the details of both accounts.

It is quite possible the Bible itself does not contain a contradiction, and was simply recording faithfully the exact words of Stephen, even his own mistake during what was a complex accounting of Israel's history in Acts 7. In fact, Stephen's mistake may have even helped give rise to the Jewish outrage against him that caused his death in vv. 54-60, though of course this is mere speculation.
When second coming?

Matthew 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
Mark 13:30 Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done.
Luke 21:32 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
What most probably do not notice when seeing such an apparent contradiction is that Jesus was indeed answering at least two different questions, (1) When the destruction of Jerusalem's Temple He spoke of would occur, and (2) What the signs of His coming and the end of the world would be. Thus His answer referred to two very separate, distinct points in history, one to come soon (the destruction of Jerusalem) and one to come much later (His return and the end of the world).

Given 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 it appears the disciples themselves may have been confused and expected Jesus' return to occur within their own lifetimes, given that some were worried Jesus would return for them after some of them had died. If so that was because they inappropriately assumed they were asking one question about the destruction of Jerusalem, Christ's return, and the end of the world, when really they were asking at least two.

At any rate the prophecy above seems quite valid and divided into two parts, one which was fulfilled in the generation Jesus spoke of by the destruction of Jerusalem and Rome's persecution of Christians, and the later prophecies echoed in the book of Revelation about Jesus' return and the end of the world that have yet to be fulfilled. Some signs, like the Gospel being preached in all nations, the Jews returning to Israel after being scattered through all nations, and the temple of Jerusalem being rebuilt where the Beast/Abomination of Desolation will enter, are all very near to being fulfilled. When these are fulfilled it will indicate the end of the world and Jesus' return are imminent.
Solomon's overseers

1 Kings 9:23 These were the chief of the officers that were over Solomon's work, five hundred and fifty, which bare rule over the people that wrought in the work.

2 Chronicles 8:10 And these were the chief of king Solomon's officers, even two hundred and fifty, that bare rule over the people.
A close examination of other passages, 2 Chronicles 2:18 and 1 Kings 5:15-16 reveals there is no contradiction. 1 Kings 5:16 says there 3300 ruling over the people apart from the chief of Solomon's officers. These were apparently part of the 3600 overseers in 2 Chronicles 2:18, meaning 300 of them were a separate class. 1 Kings 5:16 may even be incorrectly translated into English by the KJV, and perhaps should be translated "Three thousand, and three hundred which ruled over the people". The simple inclusion of a comma would make it clear there's a separate 300 officers here, but either way it's plain from doing the math.

Regardless, when added to the elite 250 of 2 Chronicles 8:10, they formed the top 550 overseers mentioned in 1 Kings 9:23. At any rate, there is no contradiction here, the numbering matches up perfectly. Apparently God just likes to make people who think they find contradictions in His Word do math.
The mother of Abijah:

2 Chronicles 13:1 Now in the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam began Abijah to reign over Judah.
2 He reigned three years in Jerusalem. His mother's name also was Michaiah the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah. And there was war between Abijah and Jeroboam.
2 Chronicles 11:20 And after her he took Maachah the daughter of Absalom; which bare him Abijah, and Attai, and Ziza, and Shelomith.
21 And Rehoboam loved Maachah the daughter of Absalom above all his wives and his concubines: (for he took eighteen wives, and threescore concubines; and begat twenty and eight sons, and threescore daughters.)
22 And Rehoboam made Abijah the son of Maachah the chief, to be ruler among his brethren: for he thought to make him king.
The Old Testament authors frequently refer to descendants as the "son" or "daughter" of X descendant when they were in fact the grandson, great-grandson, granddaughter, great-granddaughter, or even further back. You see, "son" and "daughter" are modern English terms, but the Bible was not authored in English. Translators like those involved with the KJV were actually translating Hebrew words thousands of years old, and trying to find English words (which themselves are now centuries out of date) to best translate them into.

The verses complement one another, Abijah was the son of Maachah who in turn was called the descendant of both Abishalom and Uriel of Gibeah. Both Abishalom and Uriel are thus in her lineage. For example, if you've ever seen or read 'Narnia' you will observe they imitate the Bible's style of referring to individuals as "Son of Adam" or "Daughter of Eve". As correctly pointed out by Lyons, it is not uncommon for the Bible to thus refer to a descendant as the son or daughter of someone who is descended farther back in their lineage. This is simply a stylistic language difference that can be readily observed in the Bible.
When did Baasha die?

1 Kings 16:6-8 So Baasha slept with his fathers, and was buried in Tirzah: and Elah his son reigned in his stead. And also by the hand of the prophet Jehu the son of Hanani came the word of the LORD against Baasha, and against his house, even for all the evil that he did in the sight of the LORD, in provoking him to anger with the work of his hands, in being like the house of Jeroboam; and because he killed him. In the twenty and sixth year of Asa king of Judah began Elah the son of Baasha to reign over Israel in Tirzah, two years.
2 Chronicles 16:1 In the six and thirtieth year of the reign of Asa Baasha king of Israel came up against Judah, and built Ramah, to the intent that he might let none go out or come in to Asa king of Judah.
The passages are not equivalent because 1 Kings 16:8 is referring to the 26th year of Asa as king over JUDAH, whereas 2 Chronicles 16:1 refers to the 36th year of Asa as king over ISRAEL. Israel was divided into two separate kingdoms, Judah and Israel, so the logical answer is that Baasha simply ruled Israel at least 10 years longer than he did Judah. What is more, the previous chapter, 1 Kings 15, even gives the time spans for when he reigned over the kingdoms of Judah and Israel separately.
How old was Ahaziah when he began to reign?

2 Kings 8:26 Two and twenty years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign; and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Athaliah, the daughter of Omri king of Israel.
2 Chronicles 22:2 Forty and two years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign, and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. His mother's name also was Athaliah the daughter of Omri.
Older manuscripts of 2 Chronicles 22 like the Syriac and Arabic actually have the correct number of 22, not 42. This is a case of scribal error, but the oldest manuscripts of the Bible discovered do not have the error.
The differences in the census figures of Ezra and Nehemiah.

Ezra 2:1 Now these are the children of the province that went up out of the captivity, of those which had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away unto Babylon, and came again unto Jerusalem and Judah, every one unto his city;
Ezra 2:64 The whole congregation together was forty and two thousand three hundred and threescore,
Nehemiah 7:5-6 And my God put into mine heart to gather together the nobles, and the rulers, and the people, that they might be reckoned by genealogy. And I found a register of the genealogy of them which came up at the first, and found written therein, These are the children of the province, that went up out of the captivity, of those that had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away, and came again to Jerusalem and to Judah, every one unto his city;
Nehemiah 7:66 The whole congregation together was forty and two thousand three hundred and threescore,
It's a little-known fact that the books of Ezra and Nehemiah were actually one book originally, just like the books of Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles originally were, and just got subdivided. Whereas the Ezra 2 account presents the information as recorded firsthand, the Nehemiah 7 account speaks of finding an earlier registry. Perhaps the early chapters of Ezra (which were one book with Nehemiah) were part of this early registry the book's author discovered, and he presented the account first before providing his own.

If so, then there were two censuses taken, with the author trying to perform his own census similar to the original census by re-counting the tribes once again. The first census appears to have been taken in the empire of Babylon, the most powerful in the world at the time, for the children of Israel leaving captivity, around 538 B.C. The second, on the other hand, appears to be an account years later by the Jewish immigrants attempting to rebuild their destroyed homeland, around 444 B.C., nearly a century later.

Ultimately, since these were part of the same book, it makes no sense for there to be two accounts at all unless such a scenario had happened. Why recount the same census in the same book, unless there were really two censuses being attempted?
What was the color of the robe placed on Jesus during his trial?

Matthew 27:28 And they stripped him, and put on him a scarlet robe.

Mark 15:17 And they clothed him with purple, and platted a crown of thorns, and put it about his head,

Meritt is apparently ignorant of the fact that the original Gospels were not written in modern English but in Greek. "Purple" and "scarlet" are English words chosen by the KJV translators in an attempt to correspond to the Hebrew words kokkinos and porphura. Kokkinos and porphura are of course Greek words, not English, and may be more synonymous than our English terms purple and scarlet. Even if the colors were different the robe may have been multi-colored. Regardless, there is no contradiction apparent here.
What did they give him to drink?

Matthew 27:34 They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink.

Mark 15:23 And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not.

Meritt is just making himself look silly here in two different ways. First, by not knowing what vinegar is. If he's going to accuse the Bible of contradictions he should at least do some minimal research on what he's talking about. Vinegar is essentially sour wine. The word translated 'wine' in Mark 15:23 from the original Greek text is "oinos" while the word translated 'vinegar' in Matthew 27:34 is the Greek word "oxos"[6]

Secondly, even if vinegar and wine weren't essentially synonymous, Mark 15:36 actually says separately that Jesus was given vinegar (not just the wine mentioned earlier). Meritt apparently never even bothered reading the rest of the chapter, just assumed he'd found a contradiction, thinking that vinegar wasn't the same as wine and was being referred to.
How long was Jesus in the tomb?

Matthew 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

Mark 10:34 And they shall mock him, and shall scourge him, and shall spit upon him, and shall kill him: and the third day he shall rise again.

The Hebrew concept of a day did not begin with the day, but with the night, so each 'day' was a combination of night/day, not day/night. Even today the Jewish day is considered to start at sundown, not sunup.[7] Jesus was crucified at the end of Friday's day during which an eclipse began. He was in sheol the heart of the earth throughout Saturday as well until the beginning of Sunday. So Friday day/Saturday night/Saturday day/Sunday night/Sunday day.

God made a supernatural night per what was an apparent eclipse per Matthew 27:45, Mark 15:33, and Luke 23:44-45. The Gospel writers knew this was important and gave special attention to it because it was this that fulfilled the last night of the prophecy, so counting this, Jesus was indeed three days and nights in sheol, the heart of the earth. Indeed, if Jesus died before the eclipse began, one could consider there to be an extra full day and night rather than just night since the sun came out again. Thus by counting the eclipse the time could indeed be easily considered three days and nights by Jewish reckoning.

In a few cases Meritt repeated the same contradiction in different places on the list, and rather than address the same thing twice, I have only addressed it once. For example, the sections "Who prophesied the potter's field?" and "Destruction of cities (what said was jeremiah was zechariah)" are identical in content, and thus only the first was addressed.


  1. Snakes Do Eat Dirt.
  2. Hester, J. & Scowen, P. (1995, April 1). Picture Album: Gas Pillars in Eagle Nebula (M16): Pillars of Creation in a Star-Forming Region. Hubble Site.
  3. Belknap, Michael (2012, August 14). Contradictions: A Famine of Three or Seven Years? Answers In Genesis.
  4. Hodge, Bodie & Ham, Jeremy (2010, July 23). Feedback: Did Michal Have Children or Not? Answers In Genesis.
  5. 'Eight years old' or 'Eighteen years old' in 2 Chronicles 36:9? KJV Today.
  6. 3631:oinos. Strong's Exhaustive Concordance.
    3690: oxos. Strong's Exhaustive Concordance.
  7. Hecht, Mendy. Why does the Jewish day start at sundown?
    The Jewish Day. Chabad-Lubavitch Media Center..