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justwannaknow's avatar

Is the Bible outdated?

Asked by justwannaknow (1369points) April 30th, 2009

Is thye teachings in the bible now outdated with the changes and views of society or is something that should still be followed as is?

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31 Answers

Ivan's avatar

That would depend on what you are trying to get from reading it.

justwannaknow's avatar

A guide to live a proper christian life in the eyes of the allmighty.

Supacase's avatar

It has some good basic guidelines. Society changes, how to be a decent person is still basically the same.

Those who follow the bible literally or very closely will, of course, be more affected by how society diverges from the way of life when the bible was written… I can’t speak for them.

arnbev959's avatar

You don’t have to follow the Bible as it was intended for its audience thousands of years ago. Just be a good person. Love your neighbor, and keep the Ten Commandments. I think that would be considered a “proper christian life in the eyes of the Almighty”.

tehrani625's avatar

Some of the lessons are still valid but their is a lot of BS and extra “stuff” that just freaks some people out. The intent of the Bible is also relatively good but their are some things that are hard to ignore.

Oh and I think that their has to be some sort of “God” like figure out their based on the fact that most of the worlds population beleaves in some variation of an “all mighty power”. I do think that the Christian god is an Ass based on all the things that hardcore Christians make up to explain away Dinosaur bones.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

That’s a classic question every Christian needs to think about on their own.

Does the bible have relevance to me in my life?
Are the bible’s teachings something that resonates with me?

Understand that not agreeing with the bible is completely acceptable.

justwannaknow's avatar

So by following the Bible I can be considered not politacally correct in my views if I state them. And just a luke warm not on fire for Christ christian?

Ivan's avatar

The difficulty arises in trying to determine just what is seen “in the eyes of the Almighty.” If you just want to live a good, selfless life, there are some good lessons in the Bible and there are some horrible ones. Take everything with a grain of salt. That is, if the Bible says something that you don’t agree with, don’t feel obligated to believe it.

MrKnowItAll's avatar

The bible is filled with many wonderful lessons on how to live together, along with history.

Plus a lot of fairy tales.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

I think we most of us, if not all, agree that political correctness is artificial and disingenuous. So that shouldn’t have any bearing upon your personal belief system.

Bluefreedom's avatar

I think the 10 Commandments still have merit.

aidje's avatar

Cultural and historical context is important, as with anything else.

NaturalMineralWater's avatar

The wisdom contained within its pages is undeniable and timeless. There is much that isn’t readily understandable.. and for that reason many turn away from it… but imho it’s foolish to do so knowing how clearly potent it is.

Great leaders in our history are often quoted vocalizing some tidbit of wisdom that seemed original. Often times that tidbit actually came directly from the bible.. or a variation of something written there.

The meaning of “living a proper Christian life”, to me, is already pointed out to us:
Matthew 5:14–16 [14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.]

seVen's avatar

Does pottery have any right of voice to its’ maker?

Harp's avatar

Christians see much of the Old Testament as outdated, since they believe that the arrival of Jesus radically changed the rules of the game. No Christian now looks to Leviticus as a guide for living.

As a literal treatment of natural history, yes, it’s outdated.

In the New Testament there are some ideas put forward that clash with the modern Western sense of social justice, such as the benign view of slavery and the relegation of women to a subordinate status. I don’t think many of us would want to restructure our society to mirror those views.

flameboi's avatar

well, what can I say, I hope to live long enough to see all religions collapse… the bible is good fiction-literature…

mattbrowne's avatar

Yes and no.

bea2345's avatar

…want to restructure our society to mirror those views. @Harp, perhaps we are not expected to do so. The Bible is a very large work, you can spend a lifetime reading from it and never finish, and it contains much that is relevant to the present time (And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions (Joel 2:28). I would say, that is what is happening right now, with the young people so much better educated and informed than their parents (even if their spelling, grammar and syntax are alike weak). In any event, does not each civilisation have a book or books, a cycle of stories, songs and legends, on which to base the moral authority of its leaders? The Iliad, or rather the tales, etc. that it represents, had such a role.

Might I venture another point? The Bible, above all, is pragmatic. Believers must live alongside unbelievers; adulterers and celibates may know each other. If the Bible provides rules for the acquisition of slaves, it also provides for their welfare. This is neatly summed up in the text, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox when he treadeth out the corn _(Deut. 25:4). I have often felt that the strength of the abolitionists was from scripture: it was fairly evident that most slave owners had, or have, never known the text, … the labourer is worthy of his hire _(Luke 10:7)

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

In my opinion, it’s vastly out dated. there’s a few lessons in the new testament that still hold true, and most likely always will, but, the Old Testament is really rediculous if you ask me…

bea2345's avatar

@ABoyNamedBoobs03 – don’t knock it. Some years ago, I listened to the Parliamentary Debates in the House of Commons; it was a regular BBC feature. Mrs. Thatcher was Prime Minister. Many of the speakers, during question time, quoted from the OT, to illustrate their arguments. It is a remarkably effective technique. And it works, not because the Bible is a source of good quotes (which it is), but because it has a value to our civilization that is quite apart from its importance to believers. “Look, what I say has been said before, so it has meaning” is the idea. Those evangelists and prophets knew human nature, knew how we could be strong, and be very weak; knew how evil the human heart could be, but also be forgiving and loving. Take a read in Proverbs; isn’t this a classic? 1:17 Surely in vain the net is spread in the sight of any bird. and what about this? 5:15 Drink waters out of thine own cistern, and running waters out of thine own well. That advice is still sound.

Blondesjon's avatar

@mattbrownei wish i could give you a hundred points for that answer.

bea2345's avatar

:) thank you!

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

@bea2345 I’m not saying it’s totally void of quotables.

I’m saying I don’t really value a text written over 3000 years ago that still tells me the proper way to go about slavery, in what manner I should damn homosexuals, and how to properly discipline my wife. It’s outdated, there’s no way around that.

And it’s remarkably contradicting. You have this “all loving and all Caring” God that shows a very spiteful and somewhat childish seeming tendancy to spite all those nonbelievers. Do what he says or he’ll send you to a fiery pit to burn in unimaginable agony and a swirling dervish of insanity and countless ironies couple with such pain that no mortal can bear for the rest of eternity… but he loves you. to quote George Carl
The Old Testament, to me, is nothing more than the story of a fat kid on an ant hill with a magnifying glass…

Ivan's avatar


Lol. Is the Bible relevant for today? Let’s see what the Bible says!

bea2345's avatar

@ABoyNamedBoobs03 – you really must read the book. Not from cover to cover; but start with, say, the first five books of the OT, and read them like a story, full of incident and human wrongdoing (which is always interesting) and human efforts to go “straight”. The mistake you make is thinking that the God of the written text is the real God. Not that the writers are telling lies; but they are trying to describe experiences that are intensely personal. What Isaiah, for example, saw, and experienced, we can only experience and see at a very distant remove. Of course the work we have now is contradictory. How could it be otherwise? It was written not as a single work, but by many hands, writing individually and independently. As an Anglican, I join in the basic beliefs of all Christians. Because I believe that the Bible was inspired by God, I have to take it seriously.

At the same time, one must read with a modicum of common sense. Was Onan punished for “spilling his seed” or was the punishment for disobedience? When Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed, some commentators feel, the reason was the failure to show hospitality to strangers. It had nothing to do with homosexuality.

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

I’ve read it. It’d be rather ignorant of me to condemn something I don’t know anything about. Like you said, it’s up to interpitation, I respect your opinion, but I must disagree.

tadpole's avatar

a) how Christian are you?

b) have you ever tried seriously reading it all? in which case you might choose not to believe it all..

c)it’s quite a black and white question in any case….

Spreader's avatar

No,some of the most important questions that humans have ever asked. such questions as these,
Does God really care about us?
Will war and suffering ever end?
What happens to us when we die?
Is there any hope for the dead?
How can I pray and be heard by God?
How can I find happiness in life?
But where would you look for answers to these questions?

iamthemob's avatar

I think that this point: “non-Protestant Christians include a few more books and parts of books (which also originated in Jewish circles) in their Old Testaments” isn’t emphasized enough. The volume of non-canonical gospels Gospels is huge.

Also, they mention that the Bible is a translation for the most part – but not the fact that prior to the printing press we were dependent on transcription – and therefore we are uncertain about the source material being wholly original. Further, prior to writing the stories were shared orally. Now, oral cultures have been able to hand down accurate, consistent information over time…so this isn’t a condemnation of accuracy because of it. However, subtlety, nuance and emphasis can be changed over time.

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