On a Facebook website called “Jesus or Mohammad, who’s the Right Way to Heaven,” the following was posted by a Muslim, I presume.
I present it here to demonstrate how many go to the Bible to find fault with what it says, without having understood it, and probably without having read it.
This example is an example of how not to interpret the Bible. The error, of course, is failing to consider the context of each passage, and arbitrarily linking passages which have no obvious connection with each other. To learn much more about how to interpret the Bible, read the two major posts I have placed in the October 2010 Archives at the link given at the right hand side of this page.
How to Murder Children: Bible Style
Matthew 18:6 Drown them
Lamentations 2:20 Moms should eat daughters
Ezekiel 5:10 Fathers should eat sons
Lamentations 4:4 Starve them to death
Genesis 9:24; Lev 10:3 Set fire to them
Exodus 12:29 Smite them all dead
Deuteronomy 21:21 Stone them to death
Joshua 10:36 Use a sword
Nahum 3:10 Smash them in the streets
Matthew 19:29 Abandon them
Revelation 2:23 Kill them with death
Deuteronomy 32:24 Poison them
Very interesting list, but all these Bible texts are taken out of context. That means that none of these texts actually support the claim that is made for them, namely, that the Bible gives instructions on how to kill children.
The Bible says, “Judas went and hanged himself.” It also says, “Go and do thou likewise.” It also says, “And what thou doest, do quickly.”
See Matthew 27:5; Luke 10:37; John 13:27.
It ought to be quite clear from my short example that taking words out of context or combining them arbitrarily is not the proper or correct way to interpret or understand the Bible.
The Bible gives us accurate history. It does not commend the evil actions of some of the people it records. David had multiple wives, committed adultery which led to murder. The Bible does not commend those evil actions on the part of David. But the Bible told the truth about the people it gives the history of, even when that truth reflects badly on those people.
By the way, no other ancient literature has come down to us which faithfully records the character flaws of ancient heroes and important persons like the Bible does. The Bible declares the whole truth, even when that truth reflects unfavorably upon the person spoken of. Secular literature reports the good deeds, not the bad deeds, of the important people it tells about.