Was Paul Inspired?
M S M Saifullah
On 5 May 1997, Jochen Katz wrote:
But it is also your eternal destiny which you might be in danger to entrust to a collection of legends ...
Someone's destiny should not be based on lack of evidence of Divine Inspiration. Let me first start off with Epimenides Paradox. Epimenides was a Cretan who said: "All Cretans are liars". In the books which deal with logic this statement is called Epimenides' Paradox. And quite surprisingly, you find in the book of Titus 1 Paul writes:
Even one of their own Prophets has said, "Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons." This testimony is true. Therefore, rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith and will pay no attention to Jewish myths or to the commands of those who reject the truth. (Titus 1:12-14)
One of the interesting things is that Paul quote the Epimenides' Paradox, specifying that the speaker himself was a Cretan. "Cretans are always liars..." he then says that the man himself spoke the truth. But when the statement is spoken by a Cretan it is definitely not true. If it was true then at least once, a Cretan was not a liar, in which case the statement is false. The conclusion is the denial of the assumption, so the statement is not true. The writer Paul at least on this occasion, was without Divine Guidance for he did not discern the subtlety. (The other one being 1 Corinthians 7:25).
People have been trying to show that it is no longer a paradox when fuzzy logic is brought into the scene. Yet, no one has convincingly proved that fuzzy logic really solves the problem. Another way of looking at the problem is that the solution of fuzzy logic is anachronic because this is a very recent concept and in the days of Paul the only logic that was available was that of Aristotle.