The Bible says a lot of things that not only I, but many contemporary Christians, no longer agree with, and I believe that that is because the Bible, like any holy text ever written in any religion, is fallible.
Not all, but almost all contemporary Christians believe in the infallibility of the Bible in some form (if not the inerrancy).
I should have been more clear and I apologize for the confusion on one point, that being that many of the Christians I know don't agree with certain parts of the Bible, but not necessarily with my own belief that it "like any holy text ever written, is fallible."
Most of the Christians I know agree that some passages of the Bible (mostly, as I am given to understand, the Old Testament) are at least outdated.
Just a few examples:
Exodus 35:2: Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day there shall be to you an holy day, a sabbath of rest to the LORD: whosoever doeth work therein shall be put to death.
Deuteronomy 21:18-21: 18If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them:
19Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place;
20And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard.
21And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear.
Deuteronomy 22:13-21: 13If any man take a wife, and go in unto her, and hate her,
14And give occasions of speech against her, and bring up an evil name upon her, and say, I took this woman, and when I came to her, I found her not a maid:
15Then shall the father of the damsel, and her mother, take and bring forth the tokens of the damsel's virginity unto the elders of the city in the gate:
16And the damsel's father shall say unto the elders, I gave my daughter unto this man to wife, and he hateth her;
17And, lo, he hath given occasions of speech against her, saying, I found not thy daughter a maid; and yet these are the tokens of my daughter's virginity. And they shall spread the cloth before the elders of the city.
18And the elders of that city shall take that man and chastise him;
19And they shall amerce him in an hundred shekels of silver, and give them unto the father of the damsel, because he hath brought up an evil name upon a virgin of Israel: and she shall be his wife; he may not put her away all his days.
20But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel:
21Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father's house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father's house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.
If I am not mistaken, there are parts of the Bible which also advocate slavery, but I don't know those passages, so I may be mis-remembering.
It was written by men, no matter Who or What it was inspired by, and men are fallible, and men have their own goals in mind.
Again, the majority of Christians do not believe this. If the Bible were divinely inspired, it wouldn't be corrupt in its underlying message.
It's not the underlying message with which I disagree. It is certain points in the Bible that I disagree with. Examples include but are not limited to those listed above, as well as the "sin" of homosexuality (but that's a conversation for another debate entirely and I won't go into that here), the concept of Hell as a place of eternal
suffering, and the "no other God before me" part.
This is a point at which I admittedly disagree with the majority of Christians. Perhaps I should have been more clear earlier in my post: Many of the Christians whom I personally know today agree that parts of the Bible are outdated, but my own beliefs are my own, and not held by most contemporary Christians.
And so far as the underlying beliefs go -- I think almost every religion, Christianity included, has that part right. Love the Divine, live well, treat people well. It's in the details that I believe every religion, including my own beliefs, is incapable of perfection.
"Thou shalt have no other God before me," is, I believe, one example of where men messed up the Bible, and I even believe I can deduce their motive for so doing: at that time, people's societal structure was based around religion. If you have converts who worship only one god, your society is more powerful than it might otherwise have been.
I am not saying that I have all of religion and God figured out. I think my belief system is pretty close though. But I don't think any person on the planet, nor any religion at all, has it completely right. And I do believe that God is too important, too incomprehensible to the human mind, too loving, too good, too understanding, to care what name I call Him, Her or It by, because really, getting mad when someone messes up your name is pretty petty.
It's not the name of God that's important; it's the character. It cannot be argued that all conceptions of God are equally correct because some conceptions are contradictory.
It is my belief that all of humanity's conceptions of Deity are to some degree or another in
I've stated several times that in my own opinion, no religion has it 100% right. It is my belief that all Deity is One, that humanity anthropomorphizes Deity to better understand the Divine (because I believe that the Divine is too vast and complex an entity for the human mind to encompass), and it is those anthropomorphic faces of Deity (constructs of humanity to try to relate better to the Divine) which contradict, not Deity itself.
I know that my belief in this regard is contradictory to Christian beliefs (and, indeed, to many other beliefs), and I have never stated otherwise. I've only stated what I believe. And I have always stated my beliefs as such -- as belief, never as fact.
And now, as I have done in other posts in which Christianity has been a topic of discussion, I'm going to add this disclaimer:
I've never been Christian. It's been a long time since I've studied Christianity. If I referenced Christian beliefs or Biblical verses and made an error in those references, I apologize -- those errors, if they are there, are mistakes, and at no point am I attempting to distort, skew, or purposely misrepresent anything. If I have made such errors, please point them out and explain them to me.