There are scholars who love to find “problems” or “Bible contradictions” to “prove” that it is not the word of God, but rather the mere translation of men. They point to the problems to justify their sins (Lk. 16:15) and to elevate their scholarship (2 Tim. 6:4-5), but there are no Bible contradictions.
The “problems” are usually not too hard to reconcile. Most of the time you just need to study every word in the verse or verses very carefully and note the differences. The contrast or the comparison will generally unravel the “problem.”
A classic example is the “calling” of Peter, Andrew, James and John. In Matthew 4:18-22 and Mark 1:16-20, these disciples are called before Peter’s mother-in-law is healed (Matt. 8:14-15 and Mark 1:29-34). In Luke 5:1-11, these disciples are called after Peter’s mother-in-law is healed (Lk. 4:38-40).
Really, there is no problem on the healing following the “call” in Matthew and Mark but coming before the “call” in Luke. These are two different “calls.” In Matthew and Mark, Peter and Andrew are washing their nets and John and James are mending their nets. They left “their nets” or “the ship and their father” when they followed Jesus.
In Luke, they had been fishing all night and were washing their nets. Instead of following Jesus right away, they listened as Jesus taught the people. Then they fished again and caught so many that the net brake. After they landed the boats, they forsook “ALL” and followed him. These are two different days.
A little more difficult reconciliation is found in Matt 20:29-34 with Mk. 10:46-52 and Lk.18:35-43. It is only more difficult because you simply have to believe what God’s word says until you understand the circumstances. The problems are the number of blind men healed and the place outside of Jericho where this healing took place.
The reconciliation is this. There were two blind men, one of whom was named Bartimaeus. They were sitting in a place that was between the city limits of Jericho. In other words, there was a place in Jericho where you departed from the city and then reentered it as you journeyed.
Houston is like this in several places. You leave Houston when you enter West University Place and then as you pass to the other side of West U you reenter Houston. So you could say “as they departed from Houston,” (like Matt. 20:29) or you could say “as he was come nigh unto Houston” (like Lk. 18:35) and both would be right.
Hope this helps,
Pastor Bevans Welder