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Word of the Day…Pseudepigrapha

“But those writings which are falsely inscribed with their name (ta pseudepigrapha), we as experienced persons reject… (wiki).”

“It may be one of the greatest ironies of the Christian scriptures that some of them insist on truth, while telling a lie. For no author is truth more important than for the “Paul” of Ephesians. He refers to the gospel as “the word of truth” (1:13); he indicates that the “truth is in Jesus”; he tells his readers to “speak the truth” to their neighbors (4:24-25); and he instructs his readers to “fasten the belt of truth around your waist” (6:14). And yet he himself lied about who he was. He was not really Paul (the super awesome Bart Ehrman the not awesome Huff Po).”

We were lied to about prayers being answered, about the creation stories (notice that is plural) and about the construction, or compiling of the bible. The bible as a contradiction-less, inerrant word of an all powerful all loving God is only believed by the most hard core evangelical believers. More and more there are biblical scholars, in spite of job security concerns, that are fessing up to the truth. Hector Avalos in End of Biblical Studies says something to the extent that biblical scholars can’t tell the truth, otherwise they would be out of a job. For example, in the field of biblical archaeology there have been no discoveries that confirm the prophecies of the bible, the places or the events (Exodus, the gate on Pauls road to Damascus, the Garden of Eden etc…). What we have is a lack of evidence, and the evidence we do have is, as Ehrman states in the article, “lies.”

Why is this important. Prof. Ehrman says that the author of 1 Timothy used Paul’s name to address the problem of women speaking out, “teaching men,” and exercising authority. 1 Timothy 2:11-15 is so damming and damaging to women. Preachers has used this verse to quiet “strong willed women (read, women that are your equals)” into submissiveness. Because Eve had the misfortune, and certainly not her fault, of being created second-and from Adams rib for that matter (if that is the one particular creation story you choose to use or believe)-then all her ancestors for eternity must suffer second class status and inequality, after men. Adam was not “deceived”, Eve was, or at least that is the perception of the anonymous author under the pen name of Paul wants you/us to believe. And if you believe that, then you naturally believe that women are naturally with sin, they are sinners by nature and that is all there is to that.

Pseudepigrapha was commonly used in ancient times (Ehrman), as was stories of dying and rising Gods/saviors, but this is not ancient times. Letters attributed to Paul (some not all), New Testament book of 2 Peter, etc…are all pseudepigrapha-y. Contradictions, both in the bible and in faith, is one of the many reasons peeps become atheist. Are we to believe in “the word of God”, when the word was built on lies. Just look at the damage that the one verse has done to women under the charade of authorship. What about verses on GLBT, slavery, our dominion of the earth and its creatures…can we ‘chalk up’ all it’s tragedies and hate to “that was common in ancient times”-I don’t think so.

One more thingy…ladies don’t trip on that you are with sin automatically because you are a woman and because 1 Timothy 2:11-15 says so. It also has an out.

“…it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.”

* Huff Po

* Pseudowhatchamacallit

* Timmy, or is it Paul

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