What is Biblical Inerrancy?

The doctrine of biblical inerrancy holds that the Bible contains no errors, that everything that it affirms is true.

Key to this is the idea that God inspired the Bible’s authors, guiding them in what they wrote, that the words that it contains are not theirs but his. If the Bible is the very word of a perfect God, then it stands to reason that it must be perfect too, and an error would be an imperfection.

There are various versions of this doctrine: some believe that the original manuscripts (which are now lost to us) were inerrant, but that the process by which those manuscripts were copied and handed down to us is fallible, and so that the modern biblical text may contain what are referred to as “transmission errors”; others believe that God miraculously guided the translators of the King James Version of the Bible, that that translation (and that translation alone) is God’s true word; some hold that the Bible is inerrant only on matters of faith and practice, that it may contain incidental historical or scientific errors.

No version of the doctrine of biblical inerrancy is a necessary part of Christian faith (although some more conservative Christians may tell you otherwise). You can follow the Bible, even make it the basis for your life, while recognising that it isn’t divinely inspired in such a way as to make it inerrant. More to the point, Christian faith is faith in Christ, not faith in a book about him. You don’t have to believe in the inerrancy of the Bible to be a Christian.

Please, explore the site, and then register and use the ratings system to let me know which claims of error you find the most and least persuasive.

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