It never ceases to amaze me how theists constantly deny the many contradictions in the bible. Not just self-contradictions, but contradictions to known and proven scientific facts. One example is in the field of astronomy, and it is my opinion that no manner of circular reasoning or apologetics can change the fact that the following story in the bible demonstrates clearly that its authors were no more divinely inspired than the imaginary personage of Christ himself.In the book of Joshua chapter 10: 12-14 it says:
12 Joshua then spoke to Yahweh, the day Yahweh delivered the Amorites to the Israelites. In the presence of Israel, Joshua said: Sun, stand still over Gibeon, and, moon, you too, over the Vale of Aijalon! 13 And the sun stood still, and the moon halted, until the people had taken vengeance on their enemies. Is this not written in the Book of the Just? The sun stood still in the middle of the sky and delayed its setting for almost a whole day.14 There was never a day like that before or since, when Yahweh obeyed the voice of a man -- for Yahweh was fighting for Israel. (NJB)
According to this mythical tale which Jews and Christians take as literal, the sun and the moon both stood still in the heavens for almost an entire day!! Now considering that this was written a few thousand years ago and was the current belief of the time that the planets revolved around the earth it is understandable that this mistake was made. But if the authors of the bible were truly inspired by God wouldn’t you think that the good Lord would use this as proof of his divine inspiration and his existence?
I am led to believe by the facts that we know from astronomy today that those people did not know that the earth revolved around the sun. They believed in geo-centrism and it is not hard to see from a spectator’s perspective on the earth, how this mistake could have come about. Every day we are treated to the optical illusion of the sun rising in the East and setting in the West and if we observe for a few hours we can see its apparent traverse across the skies giving the illusion that the sun is revolving around the earth. So for the times in which this chapter was written it is a forgivable mistake. But to believe that these things are true in today’s world is insane and irrational.
When I ask Christians about this inconsistency I am told that this was not an error on God’s part but rather an error on the author’s part. If this is the case then we must ask what happened to divine inspiration. It seems that the cherry picking believers simply accept what is convenient for them to believe and what they can’t account for is simply ignored and left to rot on the wayside. Or they try to defend it by calling it a miracle on God’s part or one of those many mysterious ways in which God works. This is nothing more than circular reasoning that makes no sense.
Just for the record if the sun and the moon were to “stand still” in the heavens as the bible states it would simply mean that the Earth would be no more. In fact, we would never have read that tale and I would never have written this post. For the sun to stand still would require two things to happen. The first would be that the Earth would have to stop moving in its orbit and the second is that the Earth would have to stop spinning on its axis. The sun would just continue doing what it has been doing for billions of years the same goes for the moon. It doesn’t take a genius to see that if this were to really happen that it would lead to a disaster of epic proportions that might even affect other nearby planets in our solar system.
Once again, this demonstrates one of many ways in which faith is incompatible with science. When this situation arises Christians seek alternative ways to interpret their scriptures to fall in line with the discoveries of science. Christian apologetic literature is chock full of reinterpretations of things in the scriptures that science has disproven. After all of their circular arguments for their insane beliefs they come to one conclusion: God did it! Many more liberal churches now accept evolution as a fact with one twist. God used evolution as a means of creation! No matter how much reason you present to a theist you just can’t win. The blinders of faith know nothing of logic.