ABC:1 Timothy 2

From BibleStrength

Verses 3-4

The ReasonProject lists the following as a Bible contradiction with the headline "Does God want some to go to hell?"[1] Critic's words are italicized.

John 12:40 like Romans 9:18 is referring to the Jews, how God has hardened their hearts and blinded their eyes. However, Paul specifically addresses this in Romans 11, stating that it is NOT God's intention that they should fall, but rather that through their hard-heartedness salvation might come to the Gentiles as well, that God might have mercy upon everyone.

This is consistent with the Old Testament. God's righteousness rejected leads to God's wrath and hardening of hearts (or as the Scofield Study Bible III puts it, "Light rejected, rightful obedience refused, inevitably hardens conscience and heart."[2]), but it is still God's intention that the wicked repent like Nineveh did. That is why God pleads with Israel to turn from their wickedness so they will not die.

So what about the other two passages? With 2 Thessalonians 2:12, when reading in context it is plain that God gave the wicked ample opportunity to repent, and they refused to repent and follow the Truth, Jesus. God did not set them up to fail because He did not want them to find eternal life, they deliberately rejected the truth of the Gospel in favor of lies and the deceptive pleasures of evil pleasures. Thus God in His wrath finally damns them by allowing them to pursue the lies that they prefer.

To put it bluntly, God does want everyone to become saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. God has given everyone enough knowledge that they are inexcusable. Romans 1:18-32 shows the pattern. God has shown mankind enough that they should recognize His power and authority and glorify Him. Instead, people choose vain imaginations over God. God in His wrath then allows them the consequences of their evil desires, lusts which enslave and destroy them. If God hardens their hearts, He nonetheless provides key opportunities for them to repent and forgives and heals those who do, like Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 4:34).

Proverbs 16:4 requires understanding of the original Hebrew language which the Old Testament was written in before being translated into English. As excellently pointed out by Robert L. Boldt, God has made everyone to give account to Himself, or give an answer to Him, as more clearly seen from reading the other surrounding verses in context.[3] Proverbs 16:1-8 is about how all consider their actions correct but it is God who determines the truth of one's ways. (v. 2) We should submit ourselves to God, abandon evil, and let the Lord direct our steps. (vv. 3-8)

The Hebrew word ma'aneh is usually translated "answer" in the KJV, indeed 7 out of 8 times it is translated that way. Only in Proverbs 16:4 did the KJV translate it differently, instead as "for Himself."[4] Thus if translating the passage consistently with the rest of the Bible, God creates the wicked TO ANSWER to Him, not simply as evil. God is not the author of evil, as mentioned by the Scofield Study Bible III (see also Lamentations 3:38).[5]

Thus, all passages simply represent the reality of God's wrath towards those who abide in evil. God wants them to repent and find salvation, but if they refuse to obey God, He will harden their hearts by allowing them to remain in the enslaving, wicked pleasures which will ultimately prove their destruction.

Verse 12, Are Women Allowed to Prophesy?

RationalWiki lists the following as a Bible contradiction with the headline "Women allowed to prophesy or not?"[6] Comments by the critic are italicized.

First of all, cases of women prophesying and teaching throughout the Bible can be readily identified. The four widowed (Grk. parthenos) daughters of one man all prophesied, per Acts 21:9. Godly women throughout the Bible prophesied. Deborah, a leader of Israel, was also described as a prophetess in Judges 4:4; and prophesied in Judges 5 following a military victory in which she was aided by God. There are a number of cases where godly women prophesied upon giving birth, see Hannah (1 Samuel 2), Elisabeth (Luke 1:42-45), and Mary (Luke 1:46-55). There is also the case of Priscilla, who with her husband Aquilla, instructed Apollos, who with Paul was one of the greatest teachers of the early Church. (Acts 18:26) Priscilla is one of several women Paul describes as fellow helpers in Romans 16, indeed she and her husband stayed with Paul while all working together making tents (Acts 18:2,18); Paul also mentions Phebe, and urges the early Church to assist her in whatever business she is engaged in, (Romans 16:1) who sent the entire letter of Romans on Paul's behalf, and may have even transcribed it for Paul. (Romans 16:27; cp. Galatians 6:11)

Sources

  1. Marlow, Andy (2009). Contradictions in the Bible. Project Reason.
  2. Scofield, C.I. (2006). "The Scofield Study Bible III." p. 92. Oxford University Press.
  3. Boldt, Robert L. Did God Make the Wicked for Punishment? GreatBibleStudy.com.
  4. Brown, Driver, Briggs, Gesenius Lexicon. Ma'aneh. BibleStudyTools.com.
  5. Scofield, C.I. (2006). "The Scofield Study Bible III." p. 934. Oxford University Press.
  6. RationalWiki Editors (2019). "Biblical Contradictions." RationalWiki.