The average American family owns three Bibles and rarely reads them. RNS Photo by Kevin Eckstrom

The average American family owns three Bibles and rarely reads them. RNS Photo by Kevin Eckstrom

READ: Bible Survey: Many Americans scramble their Scriptures

The American Bible Society’ surveyed 1,012 people on their Bible IQ. Now, quiz yourself to see if you know as much as you think you do.
  • *Questions taken directly from American Bible Society’s 2014 State of the Bible survey.
    **Question from the 2010 Pew Research quiz on religious literacy.
    ***Questions similar to the ABS survey.

Categories: Beliefs

Beliefs: ,

Cathy Lynn Grossman

Cathy Lynn Grossman

Cathy Lynn Grossman is a senior national correspondent for Religion News Service, specializing in stories drawn from research and statistics on religion, spirituality and ethics, and manager for social media.

85 Comments

    • 5 out of 6 ?
      I was slighted by the faultiness of this test.
      I know the Bible better than those who composed it.

      The Bible DOES encourage racism!:

      “It is not right to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs.”
      — Jesus, Matthew 15:26
      In other words, “Get lost. I’m only here for the Jews.”
      If you think that’s a distortion of scripture, it isn’t. Jesus comes right out and says it:
      “I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel”
      — Jesus, Matthew 15:24

      —-

      “My angel will go before you and bring you to the Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hivites, and Jebusites; and I will wipe them out.” (Exodus 23:23)

      If genocide isn’t racist I don’t know what is.

      —-
      CHRISTIANS MUST STAY UNITED AGAINST ARABS

      “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God … Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Galatians 3:29)

      This means the seed of Ishmael, all Arabs, are not welcome.

      —–

      ENSLAVE ANYONE YOU WANT AS PERMANENT PROPERTY – BUT NOT THE JEWS

      “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property. You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites so ruthlessly…. ” (Leviticus 25:44-46)

      I’m giving myself a 6 out of 6.
      The test was faulty.

      • That’s the one I got wrong too. And you’re right… it does encourage racism. Anyone not a Hebrew considered beneath the Hebrews in the Bible. Gentiles/Heathens are constantly degraded in the Bible as dogs and other choice insults.

        • Gotta disagree with that. Romans 1:16 makes it clear. As does John 1:11 – 13. Jesus did not ask if the people he helped were Jews. He healed the centurion’s servant based on FAITH not ethnicity. And the woman by the well was a Samaritan. Galations 3:6 – 9 is a powerful argument against the belief that Scripture condones racism.

      • “I’m giving myself a 6 out of 6. The test was faulty.”

        Yes. At best I’m willing to choose “both encourages and discourages,” but to say the bible doesn’t encourage racism at all is plainly false.

      • I believe it mentions in Galations 3 v 28 that there is neither Jew or Greek – the bible may promote nationalism – but we are all equal is the overriding theme – which is why ‘racism’ is discouraged. Love your neighbour as yourself also is a recurring theme. With the wiping out of tribes – that was for sin – not necessarily against the race. Although the Jews were the chosen race, other people could partake or even convert to Judaism – it wasn’t limited to just those born into it. So, on the whole. the message is – God so loved the world that he gave his only son that whoever believes in him will not perish but have eternal life – nothing racist in that…

      • I agree. If the test is directed simply toward racism against the negro race, one might find that it is fairly silent. However, throughout the old testament, war, discrimination, and enslavement are approved based on the race of the opponent being suppressed or murdered.

      • Look at Matthew 15:26 again. If Jesus wanted to cast the Caananite women out, then he would have done it. The disciples asked him to do, yet he did not… why? Then he went on to have this (admitedly difficult to grasp) conversation with her. What was Jesus doing? Why is he saying these things. To take them literally would be an instance that is far outside of the character of Jesus throughout the rest of the Bible.

        Jesus is using this conversation as a teaching tool, both for the woman, and his disciples. Again, you don’t know the context or the tone of voice Jesus is using when saying this. As I read it, I hear Jesus saying in a sarcastic/tongue in cheek way that Caananites aren’t even worthy of bread crumbs. That is the way the Jews thought and felt about other people. But if Jesus was serious in saying this, he would not have given her any more attention, yet the conversation doesn’t end there, and the woman is not offended. WHY? Because she see’s Jesus loves her and is treating her differently.

        Jesus then commends her faith and heals her daughter.

        Thank you for considering this alternate way of seeing Jesus.

        • It doesn’t say “Do you believe the NEW TESTAMENT encourages, discourages or is silent about racism?” It says the BIBLE. The Old Testament is awash with racism.

      • Thomas Aikenhead

        I agree, I answered the same as you on racism in the Bible, got 6 out of 6 if you count that one right, and I’m an Atheist as many others have pointed out themselves as well.

      • I’m going to pray for you, that like Saul on the Road to Damascus that the blinds will be lifted off your ignorant eyes. Also be wary of twisting the word of God to prove a foolish point.Jesus died for the sins of the WORLD and anyone that believes that this is why he came and died and that he rose on the third day can attain salvation. So in summary you can keep your 5 out of 6 once again don’t try to twist God’s word or paraphrase for the bible, please. You’re in my prayers.

        • The Genocide had to do with these people’s beliefs not their race. The only thing that set them apart in earlier times was their beliefs. They are all in that Middle Eastern area.

      • Slavery did not equate with racism in the ancient world — there are countless instances in documents of all sorts, not to mention within the Bible, of Semites enslaving Semites, Greeks enslaving Greeks, etc.The concept of race did not even exist in the way we understand it today.( See Marc Aronson’s highly regarded book “Race,” published by Atheneum.) So this is not evidence that the Bible encourages racism.

      • So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. (Galatians 3:26-29)

    • It has been determined that if you got 6 out of 6, you actually got the one about racism wrong, since the Bible certainly encourages a certain tribe to get all smitey on its neighbors.

    • If you got 6 of 6 on this test you got one wrong. The bible encourages the hell out of racism and it’s utterly insane to suggest otherwise. I got six answers right, so it marked me as 5 of 6.

  1. Excuse me, but the Bible absolutely encourages racism. I’ve read it. At best, I’d concede that it MAY both encourage it in some passages, and discourage it in others. But even that is a stretch.

    • Is that why God gave Moses sister leprosy when she became angry he married a Ethiopian? Is that why it says, “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:8? Please give a reference from the Bible that promotes racism. I have a Masters in Biblical languages and translated most of it and can not think of any.

      • @DARIAN,

        The Bible – and Jesus in particular – is certainly racist:

        “It is not right to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs.”
        — Jesus, (Matthew 15:26)

        In other words, “Get lost. I’m only here for the Jews.”

      • The only time the Bible is not racist is when it’s referring to Christians. Fellow believers are all equal regardless of race.
        However, the O.T. is full of racism, brought on by God, first of all for having a favorite race, then for ordering other races be destroyed, (except of course, young virgin girls, who the Israelites were told to keep as plunder to use for their own pleasure). Honestly, then people wonder why some of us have decided the Bible is a book written by ancient warriors, much of it based on mythology, not by a good, loving deity.
        And I don’t buy the idea that the other races were slaughtered because of sin. Were the Jews without sin?

          • @Simon,
            There is no difference between nationalism and racism
            unless the reason for the nation is the race
            or the reason for the race is the nation.

            In both situations the population would be wrong.
            Neither position is defensible.

      • The story about Lot’s daughters producing the founders of the Moabites and Ammonites is ludicrously impossible for several reasons. The only reason they could have invented it is to vilify those two neighboring groups.

    • Acts 10:34: “At this, Peter opened his mouth and said: “For a certainty, I perceive that God is not partial, but in every nation the man that fears him and works righteousness is acceptable to him”. True Christians should have the same attitude as God has concerning people of all races, nationalities and cultures. Jesus instructs us to love our neighbor as ourself (Matthew 22:39), and even to love our enemies and pray for those persecuting us (Matthew 5:44). This would include not going to war to kill our fellowman since Jesus said that those who use the sword will perish by it (Matthew 26:52). The great news is that soon God’s kingdom or heavenly government (Daniel 2:44) will put an end to all the problems of mankind, including all sickness and disease, hate, prejudice, racism, war, poverty, old age and death (Revelation 21:1-4). We can look forward to: “And he (God) will certainly render judgment among the nations and set matters straight respecting many peoples. And they will have to beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning shears. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, neither will they learn war anymore.” :-D

      • So many contradictions – so little time – whats a believe to do – make it up as you go I guess….

        Matthew 10 34:39
        “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn “‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law–a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.”

    • I’m pretty sure the Amalekites and Amorites and such would have gotten that question “wrong” as well — except that the Bible that exclusively “discourages” racism details their decimation.

      That question needs a “both encourages and discourages” option. As it is, it’s simply incorrect. Just ask, say, all the “foreign” women and children divorced, abandoned and banished at the end of Nehemiah.

    • @tjmcardle

      YES. The Bible encourages racism in many places.
      CHRISTIANS MUST STAY UNITED AGAINST ARABS

      “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God … Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Galatians 3:29)

      This means the seed of Ishmael, all Arabs, are not welcome.

      • Last I checked Ishmael was Abraham’s son as was Isaac, and there was God’s covenant for Ishmael and descendants, Genesis 16. No exclusion of Arabs mandated. Paul’s point in Galatians 3 is that all who are in Christ (Jews, Arabs, Gentiles, Africans, Asians, etc.) are heirs according to the promise.

      • You’re misquoting and misrepresenting that. Read in context, it says, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.”

        It’s saying that anyone who is a Christian is, by default, heirs of Abraham’s promise. It doesn’t matter what race, creed, color, or who your ancestors were, as long as you are a believer. There is no racism there.

        • God told Abraham that He would establish his covenant through Isaac, and when Abraham inquired as to Ishmael’s role,
          God answers that Ishmael has been blessed and that He “will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.” (Genesis 17)

          The Israelites are the chosen people.
          Ishmaelites were not the chosen people.

          Not racist? How’s that working out so far?

          • I’m confused Atheist Max…why are you quoting the scriptures (the Holy Word of God), when atheism means the absence of belief that any deities exist? Therefore, until you acknowledge that there is a God, consisting of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, is this for arguments sake alone? Or to prove knowledge alone? I’m praying that in your studies to prove all believers wrong, your eyes will be opened. Similar to what happened to C.S. Lewis.

  2. The Bible both encourages and discourages some forms of nationalism (it’s a theme that is discussed throughout the OT and NT because of Israel and election) but I don’t know if you can say that it encourages or discourages racism. Race wasn’t really a concept two thousand years ago.

  3. The Great God Pan

    A “quiz” of this sort really ought to focus on questions with more objective answers, such as the ones about the 10 Commandments and the first five books of the Bible. Questions about what the Bible does or doesn’t encourage are open to interpretation.

    For instance, many racists over the years have quoted chapter and verse in justifying their views on race. Those who do not believe in “miscegenation,” for instance, cite the Biblical story of Phinehas as their justification. This account is the inspiration behind the “Phineas Priesthood,” a loose-knit network of US white supremacists who believe in murdering “race mixers.”

    That RNS agenda keeps popping up. There is a definite slant here towards portraying religion as nice and fluffy and harmless. “Racism? The Bible? Oh, heavens no! An ancient text would never contain anything so retrograde and non-progressive as racism! It was written by Social Justice Warriors who tweet against privilege!”

  4. How can one grade objectively a question that begins “Do you believe”? I may BELIEVE that the Bible encourages all kinds of things that it doesn’t and BELIEVE that it does not encourage things that it does.

    (And yes, the person who says it encourages racism is correct, or at least it encourages strong ethnic distinctions and keeping to one’s own ethnicity. The end of Ezra, is an example. Ezra has all the Israelite men abandon their foreign wives. One of the reasons why Esau is given bad press in the Bible is because he married “foreign” that is Canaanite women and did not marry his own kind like Jacob.)

  5. Ernesto Tinajero

    Not to quibble too much. But the Bible could not encourage racism as Racism was a 19th century conception. The Bible was certainly ethnocentric with understanding of the chosen people, but to place a concept as racism loaded with history as Racism.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historical_race_concepts

    • @ERNESTO TINAJERO,

      So racism didn’t exist in olden days because it wasn’t a concept yet?
      I’m sure the non-jewish slaves were relieved to know they were at least not the victims of racism.

    • That is how I interpreted the question, but at that point I had no idea whether or not the author of the quiz would agree. The minute a question begins with “Do you believe…” it has moved from Bible knowledge to hermeneutics, which is not appropriate for a quiz such as this. There are many Bible texts which support xenophobia, violent nationalism, and ethnic cleansing. But those are tribal thinking, not racism as understood in the 20th and 21st centuries. It is altogether an extremely poorly constructed quiz.

  6. I was pretty sure that the first five books were: “Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy”

    Isn’t Joshua number 6? https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bible?lang=eng

    Also, I think the racism question is misleading. There are parts of the Bible that definitely encourage many different forms of prejudice including against specific ethnic groups.

  7. I started to take this quiz, but I agree with some of the earlier comments.

    The Bible is clearly both supportive of racism and opposed to racism.

    Some of the many examples of both –

    You cannot have a chosen people and claim that you are not supporting racism.

    You cannot have the parable of the Good Samaritan and claim that you are not opposed to racism.

    You did not include a choice of both as one of the answers, so your quiz is not allowing a correct answer.

    .

    • “You cannot have a chosen people and claim that you are not supporting racism.”

      You can if the other people in the region are technically the same “race”. It becomes nationalism, not racism.

  8. Where is “spanking” ever mentioned in the Bible? If you want to phrase this question correctly, ask something more general like whether the Bible encourages “physical discipline.” Have parents been slapping butts for milennia?

    • @Greg,

      Parents who spank unruly children are doing it wrong.
      They are supposed to KILL them;

      “If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, ….all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die…” (Deuteronomy 21:18-21)

    • @Greg –

      For the record Jesus agreed with Deuteronomy that killing kids was a good idea.

      Jesus scolded them, “And why do you break the command of God for the sake of your tradition? …. ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’…hypocrits! (Matthew 15:3).

  9. It’s anachronistic to say the Bible speaks to “racism” or “spanking.” Just like people have said, these are contemporary labels with very particular meanings in our day. There is nothing in scripture comparable to our contemporary conception of race. And “spanking?” Please. One verse in proverbs about “spare the rod” and we have “spanking?” Maybe they should have asked “Does the Bible encourage beating children with rods?” A lame “quiz” at best.

  10. I take issue with the bias of questions and specifically on whether the Bible encourages racism and the question on the Ten Commandments refers to only the first version that was destroyed before it was viewed by anyone other than Moses and then a different set was given in which was to become the official set which is silent on stealing, adultery, etc. What part of the Old Testament “after Exodus” does not encourage racism? Even part of the NT takes issue with Jew and Gentile mixing.

    While I agree Paul is fairly open on the issue (post vision) and there are specific contradictory statements in the OT, the majority calls one race special and called of God; the Jews. The Jew’s entering Canaan are not only to not work with the current inhabitants, they are to kill them,,, ALL. They are considered to have sinned when they don’t. Sounds like a Jewish version of a Klan meeting to me.

    In all, it appears to be a questionnaire with a sales pitch instead of a query.

  11. One can justify or condemn any practice by being selective when quoting the New and Old Testaments.. In many places, the authors of the New Testament contradict one another and the Old Testament. For example, did God appear physically before Abraham? The Old testament says yes. In the New Testament, John quotes Jesus as saying no one has seen the face of God. Or this: When did Jesus overturn the money changers tables in the Temple? Two evangelists say it was shortly before he went on trial before Pilate. John says it was early in his public ministry. There are dozens more.

  12. Priests were forbidden to serve drunk. Because of drink ordinary fire was used on the alter and the Priest were killed, I would say that discourages alcohol. The Bible being the word of God cannot both encourage and discourage an action if properly understood.

    • That is not true – I believe it can discourage drunkenness and encourage wine in moderation for the health of the body – the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it. In fact the bible discourages excess in everything except the worship and love of God – we are to do all other things in moderation – that is the overriding theme – do not get drunk – treat your body as a temple – food is good – but an excess of food is not. With alcohol, it was part of the Jewish festival so was not discouraged – and Jesus first miracle – turning water into wine. However, we are encouraged to treat our weaker brother with respect – so if alcohol is a problem to him or her, then we should discourage it’s use in front of the person regardless of it’s merits. It’s all about balance – that is why I believe it can be both.

  13. I am an non believer and missed 2. But like others there are passages that speak to topics that the writer of this quiz minimizes…For example psalm 104 15 says thank god for wine which gladdens men’s hearts. Regarding the race question the answers others have given are also clear.

    • Wine in the Bible includes fresh grape juice and alcoholic.

      >>101 – Bible\Proverbs\23
      23:31 Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright.

      The word wine does not always mean alcohol.

      >>92 – Bible\Psalms\104
      104:15 And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man’s heart.

      Obviously this is non alcoholic wine as it is classed in with oil and bread which have no bad effects.

      >>1 – Bible\Leviticus\10
      10:9 Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations:

  14. Isn’t this the point of the exercise – we can take individual verses and make a meaning – but it is the bible as a whole we need to be understanding – not just snippets of information. For God so loved the WORLD, Love your NEIGHBOUR as your yourself – who is my NEIGHBOUR? The one who shows MERCY. I agree, much of the old testament shows God commanding the wiping out of tribes and other nations – but nations that were sinning uncontrollably – sacrificing children, worshipping other gods – that is why he gave victory to his people – not because it was necessarily against a nation per se – it was against the sin. This quick quiz absolutely shows why it is so IMPORTANT to know the Bible as a way of life and not just words on a page. There is neither Greek nor Jew, Slave nor free, male nor female – we are all one in Jesus Christ.

    • I always wonder about this claim of the Amalekites and Midianites being deserving of their fate because they were “sacrificing children”. First of all it doesn’t say that in the Bible. This is an invention to justify an unjustifiable proposition.

      More importantly how is it possibly just or moral to respond to people sacrificing their children by murdering every single one of them including the children?

      • Because the Bible is history too – I mean God had almost destroyed every human during the flood – that is is his prerogative – we all deserve to die – but he decides who goes first – His ways are not our ways – so we’re never going to understand that command – taken even 100 years ago – people, Godly people, made decisions which we totally disagree with now – but it does not mean to say that at the time, it was so off the wall – no – we should not repeat those decisions – but we can’t place ourselves out of our historical viewpoints. So God chose to destroy nations – I might question that – but God is God – and I have to believe that He was right for that time – because if I don’t believe that, then I make myself God and that is worse.

  15. `You shall do no injustice in judgment; you shall not be partial to the poor nor defer to the great, but you are to judge your neighbour fairly. – Leviticus 19 v 15

    The rich and the poor have a common bond, The LORD is the maker of them all. Proverbs 22 v 2

    For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes. Deuteronomy 10 v 17

  16. The bible most certainly is racist – I challenge that..
    It claims the Hebrews are the chosen people and then send them off slaying everyone it can that is different from them. I will score myself 5 out of 6, as an agnostic.

    It is interesting that skeptics know these stories so much better than the average believer – just the opposite that the pulpit master would have them believe.

  17. The racism question was the most challenging. For me, the thing that tipped the scales toward “Discourages” is Paul’s teaching that there is neither Jew nor Greek. I don’t remember the exact verse, but I think it’s in Romans 8. Anyway, I’m a Christian, and I got 6 of 6. It’s cool that this quiz attracted so many non-Christians!!

  18. Sharon Corpening

    I missed the racism question, too, because scripture doesn’t address race by modern interpretations. If scriptures favor Israel, it’s to preserve the law and covenant legacy. Our understanding of race and racism was a 18th century invention that Britains and Americans probably inherited from centuries of Norse medieval practices of racial slavery. My understanding is they typically kidnapped slaves from Slavic tribes or haggled with North African traders. They were the first to make the black-white distinction we call racism today, in my opinion. Different cultural interpretation than in ancient Canaan.

  19. This quiz highlights one of the problems with the current discussion on Christianity and interpretation. The first two questions are straight forwardly factual, while the remaining include some interpretation. Either the Bible says very little among its 1000+ pages about the topic, or is so various in what it says as to make a single undeniable interpretation impossible; but the quiz makes no such distinction, or even cites any Bible references to support the quiz writers’ view.

    I just finished reading the Bible straight through and considered myself “moderately” knowledgeable for purposes of this quiz, and got 4 out of 6 correct. I feel I have *some* sense of the overriding “feel” and importance of certain topics, with others seeming trivially small or completely forgotten in the context of 1000+ pages.

    For example, when asked the question about racism, I felt that that the Bible said hardly anything concerning the morality of slavery, while constantly referencing it as a ubiquitous arrangement during Biblical history. The relative silence on actively supporting slavery may suggest a sympathetic position but that is an interpretation, not a factual point.

    In contrast, the Bible says so little said about spanking, that when asked about it in the context of 1000+ pages it just seemed odd to even make a point of it at all, though I realize many do.There is always interpretation in discerning how to weigh the many things said in the Bible.

  20. The point of the Bible is how it relates to our everyday lives NOW – the Bible was relevant when it was written to the people at that time and is relevant today. On of today’s issues is – racism – the belief that one race is superior over another. The question was whether we are given guidance in the Bible on the issues TODAY – and I think yes – the Bible teaches we are all equal – that God does not favour one over the other – we are all sinners. In an election, I vote for someone – so I choose them – but I don’t consider them superior to anyone writing on this board – they are just chosen for a different role in life – The Jews therefore were chosen – but God knew they were flawed and definitely not superior – but they had a different purpose in life than the Gentiles – I don’t consider that racism whether it was an actual term in those days or whether it is a modern word. The overreaching conclusion in the Bible is of us as equal individuals before God, knit together in the hidden places – and our race is irrelevant.

  21. The Bible pretty clearly both encourages and discourages racism. It encourages racism by giving stories about how certain ethnic groups descend from disreputable characters like Ishmael and Esau, by encouraging ancient Israelites to slaughter or enslave other ethnicities, by calling the Israelites a “chosen people,” by referring to non-Jews as “dogs,” and so on. It discourages racism by mentioning one mixed marriage in the Book of Ruth, by Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan, by Paul reaching out to the gentiles in the New Testament, and so on.

    This is pretty typical fare. It is just not possible to give one consistent statement of what “the Bible” as a whole promotes. Different books give different perspectives.

  22. If the author had chosen to provide a “both encourages and discourages” option for racism (as provided for alcohol) I would have chosen it. However, while I am a Christian I can not honestly say that the bible as a whole discourages racism. My question to the author is this: why did you choose THIS as a question on a biblical literacy test?

  23. I’m an atheist, and I became one in part by reading the Bible cover to cover. I scored 5 out of 6, and I also “missed” the one about racism. The Bible absolutely encourages racism, one of the greatest examples being the so-called “Curse of Ham” from Gen. 9:20–27. Christian apologists’ attempts to explain this passage away notwithstanding, the reality is that passage was used for centuries as a justification for the enslavement of sub-Saharan Africans.

  24. There are definitely many instances of bigotry and racism in the Bible but the THEME of God’s Word is that, at the foot of the cross, we are all equal. We shouldn’t get bogged down with examples but see God’s message to us all. If you do that, you will see that God in His Word discourages racism.

  25. We must remember that men were led by the Holy Spirit to tell it like it was (not to clean it up and look good). God did not hate or dispise other nations. The Jews did. God hated sin. He is a jealous God and did not tolerate the nations that worshiped anything and everything. But he honored faith wherever it was found. Just look at Matthew 1 geneology. 4 women mentioned in the geneology of Christ and all 4 from “heathen” (non-Jewish) nations. Tamar, the Cannanite woman; Rahab, the harlot from Jericho; Ruth, from Moab; Bathsheba the wife of Uriah the Hittite. God had a point that we need to pay attention to. When you dwell in the land of the heathens – beware that you don’t become like them. “Bad company corrupts good morals.” Are we becoming like all the “ittes” around us or are we keeping ourselves faithful to the one true God? Are we “peculiar” – “set apart” – His image to a dying world? I hope so.

  26. we all should study more ….good or bad..beliver or not …..LOVE ONE ANOTHER AS THYSELF ! ANY AND ALL man made religion will get us all in trouble …..

  27. In God’s eyes there are believers and non believers. It is a choice to believe or not. Since God knows our hearts ( because He made us), we should show others the same love and mercy that He has shown to us before we confessed and repented of our sins. Race should not be an issue.

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