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QUESTION: hai rev



Why is there a contradiction?


2 Samuel 24:1 (ASV)
And again the anger of Jehovah was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them, saying, Go, number Israel and Judah.




compare:

1 Chronicles 21:1 (ASV)
And Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel.



>That's a BLASPHEMY!!! Can you explain why?



Thanks and L.F.

ANSWER: Hello L.F. and thank you very much for posing such a relevant and revealing question. I must admit, at first my response was going to take a totally different direction than the one I am about to present to you. Reason? Well I know that there is no contradiction here, however it is only because of my understanding of scripture.

Now as I ventured to say "my understanding" of scripture, understand that it was only through study that I understood the scriptures not to be a contradiction in explanation, however, it can not be denied that as written, there stands a strong contradiction, because for anyone that would read these two passages, they would immediately think as you have brought out, that God was the cause of David going against Israel in 2Sam 24.

Now you asked 2 questions: 1. Why is there a Contradiction? 2. Can I explain why? Well the answer to your first question is the contradiction exists because of the translators, I will explain this later. The answer to your second question is the same, except with the addition of : Yes, I can explain.



Let us look at the passage that makes it appear a contradiction from a couple of different translations; 2 Sam 24:1:

King James Version
24 And again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah.

NIV
24 Again the anger of the Lord burned against Israel, and he incited David against them, saying, “Go and take a census of Israel and Judah.”

New King James Version

24 Again the anger of the Lord was aroused against Israel, and He moved David against them to say, “Go, number Israel and Judah.”

The New Living Translation
24 Once again the anger of the Lord burned against Israel, and he caused David to harm them by taking a census. “Go and count the people of Israel and Judah,” the Lord told him.

Simply put L.F. this is the best example of why we must "study". For it is clear that the translators were negligent in their duties and did not compare the scriptures to make sure that they were in harmony one with another.

Now as for the NIV, King James, and New King James Version, through commentaries they attempt to explain away the issue of how it reads by explaining that it was not God who "provoked" David, it was Satan. They further explain that what is meant in this passage is that God "allowed" Satan to provoke David,, not that He Himself provoked David.

The Greater condemnation of translation falls upon 'The New Living Translation' for it specifically states that the "Lord" told David to 'count the people" although in the same translation at 1 Chron. 21:1 it states:


1 Chronicles 21

New Living Translation #NLT#

21 Satan rose up against Israel and caused David to take a census of the people of Israel. 2 So David said to Joab and the commanders of the army, “Take a census of all the people of Israel—from Beersheba in the south to Dan in the north—and bring me a report so I may know how many there are.”

The problem that this presents, is that the taking of the census was a "sin" and the unsuspecting reader of the translation would not fully understand this unless reading past verse 10. It then comes across as if God made David sin.

Here are a few translations that are far better and more accurate:


2 Samuel 24

Young's Literal Translation #YLT#
24 And the anger of Jehovah addeth to burn against Israel, and [an adversary] moveth David about them, saying, Go, number Israel and Judah.'


2 Samuel 24
21st Century King James Version #KJ21#

24 And again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he [Satan] moved David against them to say, “Go, number Israel and Judah.”

New World Translation
1And again the anger of Jehovah came to be hot against Israel, when one incited David against them, saying: “Go, take a count of Israel and Judah


So again, this inexcusable thing exists due to failure of the translators to properly perform their duties.

Now as for "blasphemy" I cannot place judgment on that. Blasphemy is an intentional act not based on ignorance or negligence but total understanding of what one is doing.



I hope this gives insight on my position regarding this. If anything needs clarification, please do not hesitate to follow up.

Sincerely
Rev. Darryl Murphy



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you very much Rev Murphy




I'm just confused with these statement from Rev Ross, (not from the spirit of controversy) But can you please make it clear? Are you in difference here? take a look:


http://en.allexperts.com/q/Bible-Studies-1654/2013/4/thought-1.htm




He said:


"So, YHWH tested David because of the latter's pride, and used the satan to do so."




Are you two in agreement?




Thank you

ANSWER: Hello Dave and thank you again for writing.


Allow me to answer your  second question first. "Are you two in agreement?" The answer to this question would be No. Now in answering this, I must first state that I do not want to come across offensive to my brother in Christ Rev. Ross, nor do I want to seem challenging, attacking, or to claim a superior position. I only choose to answer in the spirit of Truth which calls for extreme critical analysis of positions taken because of Theology and Doctrine, vs what is actually seen and learned from scriptures.

Before going further, it is noticed that Rev. Ross made a similar statement as I made, saying he knew there not to be a contradiction. It is also recognized by his statement that it is because of "study" that he knew this to be true. However, his reasoning and observation differs from mine. Again, this is not a critical analysis of Rev. Ross or his response too you, it is simply a full explanation of why we are not in agreement.

In answering your second question, it would be easier to address what is disagreed with and explain why. For this, I will start here: 2: "Are you two in agreement?"


"He said:"

"So, YHWH tested David because of the latter's pride, and used the Satan to do so."

In my previous response to you I stated:

"through commentaries they attempt to explain away the issue of how it reads by explaining that it was not God who "provoked" David, it was Satan. They further explain that what is meant in this passage is that God "allowed" Satan to provoke David,, not that He Himself provoked David."

In reading the response to you by Rev. Ross, he mentioned that he consulted the Matthew Henry commentary. This is one of the commentaries that my statement was referring too. The Matthew Henry commentary states that David's sin was actually pride. This is a theological stance and explanation of something that is not seen or implied by scripture, but assumed by the actions of David.

The question would become; Would God cause us to sin? Now if we used the text as written, nowhere do we find the implication of a test. What we do see is the following:

2 Samuel 24:1 #ASV#
And again the anger of Jehovah was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them, saying, Go, number Israel and Judah.

Chronicles 21:1 #ASV#
And Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel.

2nd Samuel: 1. God was angry with Israel 2. He#in this case God as implied by the text# incited David against Israel and gave instruction to "Go number Israel" If we used this text alone, it would contradict the entire Chapter of 2nd Samuel 24, because as we read further in the chapter we find: 1. David had sinned by counting Israel  2. God punished Israel for the sin. Therein forms the question about God causing us to sin. It stands to reason, and as fully known, that if God commands or Instructs something to be done, there is no sin in it. Nowhere will we find God punishing anyone for something He directed someone to do.

Also in reading the 24 Chapter of 2 Sam it is not implied that David numbered Israel because of his pride as some commentaries suggest. The whole notion of pride being involved comes from David's interaction with Joab about the issue:

2 Sam 24 9 #ASV#
3 And Joab said unto the king, Now Jehovah thy God add unto the people, how many soever they may be, a hundredfold; and may the eyes of my lord the king see it: but why doth my lord the king delight in this thing?

4 Notwithstanding, the king's word prevailed against Joab, and against the captains of the host. And Joab and the captains of the host went out from the presence of the king, to number the people of Israel.

From reading this, although it is said that this can be taken as David's pride being involved, it would not have been David's pride that caused him to commit the sin; however, it could be argued, that it was Daivd's pride that caused him not to listen to Joab and argue his decision. Pride would then be secondary to the cause. Example: If a King in haste,anger or fear gives an order and a servant of the king argues with the king explaining his decision wrong; and the king therefore argues back and rests on the fact that he is king and because he said it, it should be done, then the king could be seen as guilty of pride in carrying out the order although it is wrong, but the cause of the decision would be either the fear, anger, haste etc.

1 Chronicles 21:1 #ASV#
And Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel.

Now as we examine the above passage of scripture, it gives us a different and more accurate view of what happened. Satan#the adversary# took a stance and stirred up Israel and incited or attacked David removing him from rational mind thereby "causing" him to speak against Israel and order them to be counted. The anger of Jehovah spoken of in 2Sam could be seen as to agree with this, for "Jehovahs anger was kindled against Israel".

It is clear from both accounts that the sin was actually the taking of the census, not "pride" let us examine what the scripture says:

1 Chron 21

7 And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel.

8 And David said unto God, I have sinned greatly, in that I have done this thing: but now, put away, I beseech thee, the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

As we see, God was displeased with the taking of the census and because of it, he punished Israel. David realized the taking of the census was a sin as we see in vs 8, notice what he says "I have sinned greatly, in that I have done this thing:" "this thing" was the taking of the census. It is therefore nowhere stated, implied, nor can it be inferred from scripture, that "pride" was the cause and David was being "tested" because of it.

It should also be noted that 2Sam 24 after the first verse is in total agreement with 1Chron 21.

When God tests, it is usually done for reasons of "faithfulness". Now as it is sometimes stated that Job had a pride problem and therefore was tested to bring him back to humbleness, this is a position that is not supported by the scriptures. Satan was allowed to test Job on his "faithfulness" and Job proved to be "faithful" and "humble" unto God until the very end regardless of what Satan did, his wife said, his friends rationalized etc. etc.

We also see this test of "faithfulness" with Abraham, Jesus, Peter. I personally like the account of Peter, for it is a very strong and revealing message:

Luke 22
31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

Notice what is going on. Jesus is letting Peter know that Satan desires to tear him apart. Jesus then tells Peter, 'I have prayed for thee #you# that thy "Faith" fail not"! Now notice what Jesus did not say; I will save you before he does or don't worry for I will defeat Satan before he attacks etc etc. What is actually going on is that Jesus is telling Peter he is going to have to let him go through the "testing" of Satan and that he is praying that during the "test", he keeps the "Faith".

This is confirmed by the later part of what Jesus says: "and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." The word "converted" is translated from a Greek word, "epistrepho".
This Greek word has a Transitive and Intransitive sense, however, note the meaning of the word in both senses:


"epistrepho": 1# transitively

a) to turn to; 1) to the worship of the true God; b) to cause to return, to bring back


intransitively; a) to turn to one's self; b) to turn one's self about, turn back

c) to return, turn back, come back


So when we read this scripture in context, Jesus is actually saying: Peter#Simon# Satan desires to have you and tear you apart. I am going to have to let you go through it and pray you keep the "Faith": And when you "return back to me, come back to me; return unto the protection and Love of God, Strengthen your brothers.


Back to the original questions. 1. "I'm just confused with these statement from Rev Ross, #not from the spirit of controversy# But can you please make it clear? Are you in difference here?"

2.Are you two in agreement?

As stated, me and Rev. Ross are not in agreement on this issue.  Where we begin to separate is the fact that I based my decision disregarding all theology and knowledge. It therefore left only to look at 1 Chron. 21: 1 and 2Sam 24:1 as they are written. When this is done, there is an undeniable contradiction. We do agree that is was "Satan" that incited David not God.

We become further distanced, because of the different way of examining the passages. I do not accept the "theological" explanation of the differences in the passages offered by commentaries such as the Matthew Henry Commentary. The Matthew Henry Commentary is a theological work and does not charge the translator for error, but rather chooses to explain away the error. It further drifts from scripture by making the assumption that David had an issue with pride, thereby building on this assumption into a theological answer, rather than an answer based on "context" of scripture. Other Commentaries such as The Oxford Bible Commentary, take a different approach.

So whereas Rev. Ross is in agreement theologically with Matthew Henry, I base my understanding for what I see as context of the passages only using what is seen in them, whether expressed or implied.

Now again...I hope that you do not take this as a position against Rev. Ross and I pray that if he reads this, he does not take it as an offence in any way.

I hope this clarifies my position more clearly. If I can be of further assistance, pease do not hesitate to follow up.


God Bless and Keep You

Rev. Darryl Murphy



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you very much for your time answering my question Rev. Murphy


However, if you mind sir, since you always choose to answer in the spirit of TRUTH, I'll just want you to "just" check this answer from "Mr Derrick Holland" one of the expert here(not in this forum but to JEHOVAH's WITNESSES') about the same matter. I am not saying that he's WRONG but seeing the TWO sides of opinions, honestly, It made me CONFUSE!!!

Here's the LINK: http://www.allexperts.com/user.cgi?m=6&catID=1617&expID=28352&qID=5049014



Any justification?
Thank you once again sir



P.S. (I am not from the spirit of controversy)

Answer
Hello Dave, good to hear from you. I am very familiar with Mr. Holland we have spoken on occasion. I discuss a great deal on the Witness side with the experts there.

Now as you ask is there any justification for the way Mr. Holland answered, I would have to say yes...he detailed it very well. Now if the question was "Do I agree,  the answer would be no, at least in part.

There are no "contradictions" in Gods Word, however, there are contradictions due to the way some translators have translated the Bible.

Now Dave, it is hard to comment on the way others view or answer things without seeming like a critic. The best way I can answer your question is by stating simply that Mr. Holland views the passages differently than I, and his explanation of Job is different than the way I would see it.

Let me deal with the subject of Job:

Job 2:3-  "And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that [there is] none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause."

This passage of scripture and the explanation given is very diffent than the case of the scriptures you question.  Let us look at just one part of this passage:


"although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause."

In the Hebrew it reads: Cuwth bala chinnam  

Cuwth=insite, instigate, allure (movedst)  bala =(swallow up, engulf, end etc.)  Chinnam =(freely, for nothing, without cause)

So what is being said is: you try to tempt me to end Jobs life without cause.

In context of the scriptures, God is being tempted by Satan for the purpose of getting at Job to try and prove to God that he can make him lose faith and curse God. God allows it, knowing Job will come throught it. It was Jobs faith that was being tested by Satan.

I would have not used Job in my explanation because, at least in my view, is a totally different scenario. Reason? There is no written "contradiction", or anything that would cause someone to think that God did something that Satan actually did. However, in viewing it theologically and in a broad sense, I understand why Mr. Holland used it.

The issue is this; eliminate theology, doctrine,commentaries, etc...examine the words


1 Chronicles 21:1 (ASV)
And Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel.


2 Samuel 24:1 (ASV)
And again the anger of Jehovah was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them, saying, Go, number Israel and Judah.

When you read them, they give two very different views. One says God did it, the other Satan. There is no other implication or anything that can be infered other than what is stated. So these two contradict.

Reason: Translation

Notice also, that Mr. Holland states that there a things in the Bible that seem to be contradictions and are not. This is true. Becuase of wording etc, especially in the KJV, sometimes you think your reading one thing, but it is actually saying something else. However, in the case of the scriptures you challenged, this is not the case and the "contradiction" is in the wording and not in perception.


Dave I think your confusion comes because when you say to someone Gods word is contradicting itself, if the person is not careful, they will immediately get into "Christian Apologetic" mode and begin defending God's word and miss the wording. Because of it, you tend to get "theologic" answers. When you add the word "Blasphemy" into it, that takes it into another realm.

You know the verses to be in conflict, you also know that Satan was the one who incited David, so there should be no confusion.


I hope this gives you a little insight on what is going on when these passages are viewed ..

If something needs to be clarified, or I can assist you any further, please feel free to follow up.

God Bless and keep you

Rev. Darryl Murphy

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