If the Bible were actually written by God, it would look very different from the book so many Christians revere. You would think anything written by or inspired by the most powerful being in the universe, would be equally as amazing, but it’s not. The blogger Southern Skeptic did an excellent job of explaining why — you can see the link below — and he gave me permission to share and expand upon his ideas. So, how do we know the Bible is not a well-written book? It’s not well-organized. The Bible is a huge mess. I mean, it’s written in chronological order, not thematic order. And that might be okay if the Bible were a history book, but not so much when it’s a guidebook for life. And that’s especially a huge problem when Christians use the Bible to justify their beliefs and actions. They have to flip through the book all over the place to find passages that support their views. You want passages about love? Marriage? Homosexuality? Abortion? You won’t find them in one spot. There’s not even a helpful index. And this forces Christians to quote verses out of context all the time. There are no pictures. I know, not all books need pictures, but sometimes diagrams and charts can be very helpful. I mean, even Lord of the Rings came with a map. Where’s the diagram of a family tree instead of a long list of begats? What about a timeline to help you keep track of what all the various characters are doing all the time? I’m just saying. It would be helpful. It’s not very specific. When it comes to things you’re not supposed to do, the list is scattered everywhere. A more helpful book would just include a check list of things you’re supposed to do and things you’re not supposed to do. And maybe that list would include page numbers, just in case you want to go to the actual document for reference. And you know, maybe a sidebar to let you know when killing other people in the name of your faith is okay. It would be helpful. It’s not easy to understand. We shouldn’t need theologians and pastors to explain all of this material to us if God felt it was that important. It’s not like their doing a good job of it anyway, since all these different Christian pastors interpret the book in so many different ways. I mean, you show me a hundred Christians, I’ll show you a hundred different Christianities. If all these people think God is saying very different things, that’s partially his fault as a communicator. I mean, he should’ve been more explicit in terms of saying what he wants from us. It’s not consistent. There are so many contradictions throughout the Bible. And it’s not like they’re hard to spot. I mean, even Genesis 1 and 2 have difficulties reconciling with each other. And the Gospels have contradicting accounts of the details of Jesus’ life. I remember J. K Rowling made a mistake somewhere near the end of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and the fans picked up on it right away, and they called her out on it. And you know what she did? She apologized. She admitted it was a mistake. And she said she would correct it for later editions of the book. That’s how you handle a mistake. But instead of fixing the Bible, where is clearly wrong and clearly contradictory, people just keep replicating it. God doesn’t need a copy machine. He needs an editor. It doesn’t make any clear predictions. The Bible makes this vague prophecies like, “The Messiah will come soon” or “We’re going to have a war”. But there are no specific predictions that you would have needed some sort of insider knowledge to figure out. There’s a lot of reverse engineering going on to make sure that our modern reality retroactively fit what the Bible supposedly said. There are people who think the end of the world is coming soon because of biblical clues. And people who think Jesus is coming back to earth in their lifetime. They’re never right, but they base their predictions on vague passages in the Bible. Maybe if the Bible predicted a national disaster with, you know, dates and locations, and the number of victims, then skeptics like myself would have to take that book a little more seriously. God has the same psychic abilities as Nostradamus. You can read into it whatever you want, but the prophecies are vague enough that they will eventually be fulfilled by someone if you’re willing to look hard enough. That’s just not impressive. It lacks knowledge that humans of the time could not have had. The Bible is only as scientifically accurate as the people of the time. Isn’t that a coincidence? It says nothing about modern astronomy, or mathematics, or medicine. There are no passages about light bulbs, or vaccines, or the sun being a star with the Earth revolving around it. And there’s no mention of the United States. It’s exactly the sort of book that you would expect people of that time to have written. In other words, it’s just not that special. The characters make no sense. If you read really great books, the main characters are very complex. You know, the heroes often have flaws and the bad guys sometimes have good intentions. In that sense, the Bible doesn’t even bother with complex characters. God is always good no matter what. Even when he kills people with reckless abandon, it’s for the greater good. Jesus is supposed to be without sin. And the redemption stories aren’t really even that inspirational. Isaac, who did nothing wrong, is almost a victim of slaughter at the hands of his father. Job suffers and suffers for the crime of being faithful to God. It really makes you wonder who you should be rooting for. It’s too repetitive. The Bible tells the same story multiple times and it doesn’t even bother to keep all those versions consistent with each other. A good writer tells the story once, properly, and then moves on. Or if you’re like William Faulkner writing “Absalom, Absalom!” maybe you tell the same story from different perspectives and add more to each layer of the story. The Bible doesn’t do that. Just look at the genealogy sections as an example. I mean, they are a chore to read. Surely you can explain lineage in a more interesting way than, “This person gave birth to that person”. And “That person gave birth to somebody else”. And on and on for pages on end. It goes too far with the stories. If you wanted to convince people to take the Bible seriously, the stories would be a little more plausible. And yet there are so many miracles that deny any semblance of plausibility. Between talking snakes, and virgin births, and great floods, and people almost living to the age of a thousand, it’s a wonder anyone could take this book seriously. God should’ve backed off. Instead, he jumped the shark in the first chapter. The Bible isn’t a good book. It sure as hell isn’t a great book. It’s cut-and-paste mythology thrown together by men thousands of years ago. All the action takes place in a very small speck of the world. All the action takes place in a tiny little speck of the world. If the Bible was a better written book, it’d be more convincing, too. As it stands, there’s a reason a lot of people are leaving the church. And in part, that’s because a lot of them realize that the Bible isn’t worth taking all that seriously. As the saying goes: “The Bible is just fan fiction based on an ancient game of telephone”. My name is Hemant Mehta, and I write at FriendlyAtheist.com What do you want to see a video about? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll be sure to check it out.