Evidently there are some Bible critics who say that, because the Gospel writers differ in their accounts of Jesus’ words and actions, one cannot trust Scripture to be infallible. That, my friend, is an argument that cannot hold water. I’ll tell you why.
I taught school for 37 years. So I saw 100 or more children walk through my classroom door 180 days during each of those 37 years. I would teach the same lesson to different groups of children throughout the day. Sometimes I’d teach a lesson to one group on one day, and the same lesson to a different group of children the next day. And sometimes I’d teach the same lesson to yet another group the next school year.
The message of those lessons didn’t change, but the audience, the exact words I used to convey the message, the location of the classroom I was in, and sometimes the school in which I taught changed. The message of the lessons stayed constant, however.
If Johnny wrote an account of my first period lesson, and Jimmy wrote an account of the same lesson given during third period, chances are their accounts would not be word for word. And if Johnny’s little brother wrote an account of that same lesson a year later, I’m pretty sure there would be some differences there, too. The message of the lesson would be the same. Some of the illustrations might be similar. But each boy would tell their own accounts from their own vantage point, using their own words.
Do you think Jesus taught his lessons only once? Or could it be possible he shared the same lesson in one city to one audience, and again in another city to a different audience?
My point is this: don’t get bent out of shape if you notice subtle difference in Scripture. Don’t miss the message God wants you to hear. And don’t think you can’t trust Scripture because of chronology or numbers or names.
Those are rabbit trails not worth pursuing. Satan loves it when we chase rabbit trails because it gets our focus off the truth he does not want us accepting. Read God’s Word for the message.
It’s a good one!