Here’s a rhetorical question: Why on earth if you reject biblical inerrancy do you feel the need to attack and antagonize those who do not? I mean seriously. I just saw a post on Facebook where the author has written a blog post on the subject of inerrancy, and the tagline to the post goes something like this: ‘the two passages of the bible that serve as the death knell to inerrancy’. Okay, great, you have been enlightened beyond your fundamentalist past, and now you feel the need to enlighten others. But when I see things like this what it makes me think is that said people are highly insecure, and worse, immature. What difference does it make to you, inerrancy-denier, if your neighbor affirms inerrancy? Does it bother you that they apparently aren’t as smart as you? And something else, once you jettison the North American conceived doctrine of inerrancy, do you feel the need to continue to engage Holy Scripture on the same ground that have given us inerrancy to begin with; i.e. positivism? It sure seems like you do! So why don’t you all grow up, and move on with your lives. People who hold to inerrancy, in general, are not out to hurt anyone; maybe they hurt you, and so now you feel like it is your turn to hurt back, by attacking inerrancy, by using the same fundy mode of engagement that you apparently have rejected (but apparently you haven’t!). People who hold to inerrancy, generally, believe in the crazy idea of Deus dixit (God has spoken); their goal is simply to hold to the idea that the Bible has an integrity as God’s spoken voice in written words. The people I am referring to in this post usually have no alternative theory of revelation (like from Barth or Torrance); the people I am referring to would usually still self-identify as North American evangelicals who are in the biblical studies camp. And so they want to “nobly” admit that there are factual errors in the bible (again based on positivism), but without adopting a theory of revelation, like from Barth, these evangelicals have to some how hold that the Bible is still God’s Word, but on the force of their capacity to hold that together (so rationalism).
Anyway let me exhort my evangelical brothers and sisters: Stop it! Stop attacking people who hold to inerrancy, and get on with your lives; this attack is a waste of time. And more practically and pastorally it could have severely damaging impact upon young Christians who are not as critically minded as you. You might cause people to actually doubt God’s Word. To me there are better and more constructive ways to “attack” inerrancy; better than throwing out apparent bible contradictions.
PS. When I refer to inerrantists in this post, I am not referring to its academics, I am referring to its people in the pews; to everyday non-specialist evangelical Christians.