Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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Do you really believe erroneous biblical stories like that of Jonah and many others? Are you ready to explain and justify your belief?

There is a discrepancy between the Holy Book of Deuteronomy 24:16 which says that each person should die for his own sins, and examples in the Holy Book of 2 Samuel 12 (David and Bathsheba's son dying for something they had done), Holy Book of 2 Samuel 21 (sons and grandsons of Saul being killed for something Saul had done), and Holy Book of 2 Samuel 24 (70,000 Israelites being killed for something David had done), which tell of people who were put to death for the sins of others. Can you resolve this discrepancy?

1. I am willing to explain the inerrancy of the Holy Bible to those who in humility desire to learn and benefit. However, I would not want to engage in unfruitful argumentative discussions that would benefit no one. The Lord Whom I trust instructed me to avoid foolish discussions (2 Tim 2:23-26) and it is not me that will defend the Word of God, it is God Himself who have kept and protected His word for thousands of years.

2. The questions you've asked are very old and the church Fathers answered all of them, also you can read the book by Walter C. Kaiser Jr. et al. called 'Hard Sayings of the Bible' published by InterVarsity Press.

3. An example of the inerrancy of the Holy Bible is in the Holy Book of Deuteronomy 24:16, "Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor shall the children be put to death for their fathers; a person shall be put to death for his own sin." God made sure that the principle governing the Israelitesí courts was that neither children nor grandchildren be accused of their fathersí guilt, but that each individual be responsible for his own guilt. However, God reserves for Himself the right to render all final decisions. Another element is that Holy Scripture warns us that there is corporate responsibility. Often a whole group is treated as a single unit. In the Holy Book of 1 Samuel 5:10-11, the ark of God came to Ekron of the Philistines and knowing that a plague had broken out in the previous cities where the ark had been taken, the whole group sensed that they would share in the guilt of what their leaders had done in capturing the ark of God. In the case of Saul's seven grandchildren this was a national guilt. Saul violated a treaty made with the Gibeonites in the name of the Lord (Josh 98:13-15). The whole nation was bound by this treaty made in Joshua's day. Thus when Saul, as head of the nation, committed this atrocity against the Gibeonites, it was an act against God and an act that involved the whole nation. When Achan sinned (Joshua 7:1), the whole nation was imputed for his transgression. God holds each person individually responsible for his or her own sin. But some, by virtue of their position or office, their offense against that which is sacred to God can also bring the wrath of God on their nation, or community. On the other hand the goodness of one person can bring blessing on the whole group. God blessed the whole world through Abraham (Gen 12:3) and we rarely complain when we enjoy the blessing and goodness of God on us as a result of the godly lives of our ancestors. God was willing to spare Sodom and Gomorrah if there were ten righteous people in them.

Now in all the examples mentioned the result of sin was death, but what kind of death? Real death, however, is not a physical death but the separation from God. In God's court no one will ever be denied eternal life because of what his or her forefathers had or had not done. Each will live eternally or suffer everlasting judgment for his or her own actions (Ezek 18). God promises life to those who follow His commandments "If he has walked in My statutes And kept My judgments faithfully; He is just; He shall surely live!" (Ezek 18:9). Surely God is not talking here about physical earthly life otherwise we would have among us people who would never physically die!!
You can read more about the inerrancy of the Holy Bible at
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