Because it has always been the tactic of Satan to challenge the authenticity of God's Word in order to cause man to doubt God (Gen. 3:1), those who belong to their father, the devil (Jn. 8:44), do the same thing. And because those who are genuinely born again believed the Word of God which resulted in their salvation (Rom. 10:17), His children know there can be no contradiction in the perfect Word of God. True believers make every effort to find out why two or more passages seem to be saying the opposite thing. A faithful student of the Word will find an explanation for most of these "apparent discrepancies," but until they do, they humbly have to say, "I don't know yet, but I know both are true."
One of the most "obvious errors" in the Word is found in the phrase "an eye for an eye." The Old Testament, which is one hundred percent truth, has this to say, "
"Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot" (Ex. 21:24). Breach for breach, eye for eye, tooth for tooth: as he hath caused a blemish in a man, so shall it be done to him again (Lev. 24:20). "And thine eye shall not pity; but life shall go for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot" (Deut. 19:21).
The New Testament seems to teach the opposite response to a loss caused by another. Jesus had this to say about the subject:
"Ye have heard that it hath been said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth,' but I say unto you, that ye resist not evil, but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also" (Matt. 5:38-39).
There is a simple explanation for the apparent contradiction: one is speaking to the action taken by the community's justice system, and the other is talking about an individual's response to injustice. In other words, justice is the responsibility of courts and not to be carried out by the individual. Another perfect example of this is the taking of a life. In Exodus 20:13, one of the Ten Commandments says, "Thou shalt not kill." In the very next chapter, the same writer says, "He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death" (Ex. 21:12). The first has to do with the behavior of a believer, while the second deals with the court of law.
I cannot explain every apparent contradiction, but there is one thing of which I am certain; every word of God's Word is true, and as a student of His Word, I need to be "working" in my study of it (2 Tim. 2:15). May the Lord increase our understanding a little each day until we are with Him. Amen.