That's a very interesting discussion, folks. I wish I could add something deep as many of you are able to do.
However, let me add a little bit from a different perspective: when I left the Organization and started reading lots and lots of info from different people bringing different perspectives - some still believers in the Bible, some no longer, I started noticing something that I think plays a big role in Scripture interpretation: TRANSLATION.
I mean, if you're fluent in more than one language, you probably agree that sometimes it becomes a real challenge to translate precisely what was meant in the original writing. There are simply too many nuances that can go mistranslated.
I think this could explain some of the inconsistencies/contradictions we see so often in the gospels and NT writings, examples of which shown by Euphemism above.
Do an experiment one day: if you're fluent in languages A and D, ask someone to translate a less-than-basic text from A to B; ask someone else to translate from B to C; then, ask still someone else to translate from C to D. Don't allow the translators to communicate with one another. Now, read the D text and tell me what you think.
Now imagine the same problem as above, but with dead languages and biased translators. You got the picture.
In one passage, Jesus says "love"; in another, he says "hate". Then you get confused, until an "expert" come along and say "oh, in that second passage the hebrew word is a special case of 'hate' that actually means 'do good'.", and I say "what the heck?"...
I agree with Euphemism: it's an exercise of futility to try to make sense of non-sense.
Can you imagine how OMG and WTF will be translated 2000 years from now? I can just imagine.