A ‘Jeopardy!’ Question About The Bible Has Some Fans UpsetNovember 17, 2022
Jeopardy! is a world where there are right and wrong answers. In a reality full of misinformation and denials of the truth, you either answer correctly or incorrectly with the occasional clarification from the judges. The folks behind Jeopardy! work incredibly hard to make that the case with lots of research and debating how questions are phrased, but it doesn’t mean that things won’t fall through the cracks. And in Wednesday’s episode, the Final Jeopardy question left some fans claiming the show got it wrong.
The Jeopardy! Tournament Of Champions has featured some impressive play from Amy Schneider, Andrew He and Sam Buttrey. Tuesday’s episode featured a comeback for Schneider in Final Jeopardy, a tough question no player actually got right. And Wednesday’s episode featured another comeback, with Schneider faltering on a Daily Double in the second Jeopardy! round and He betting big to take a lead he lost before the last question.
That question was about a Jeopardy! mainstay: the bible. But it involved a question some New Testament scholars say doesn’t have a clear answer.
“Paul’s letter to them is the New Testament epistle with the most Old Testament quotations,” the question read.
As CNN detailed, the answer got a number of scholars talking about the question on Twitter, and there’s been plenty of formal discussion about the subject in the past.
All of the answers refer to books in the Bible that are collections of epistles, or letters, ostensibly from Jesus’ apostle Paul to different groups in the formative days of the Christian church. However, experts have varying opinions on whether Paul actually wrote the letter to the Hebrews – and thus, whether the answer was actually correct. In fact, there are bitter divisions among different schools of Christian thought regarding Paul’s Biblical influence and authorship.
Many “Jeopardy!” viewers thought Buttrey’s answer should have been the correct one, since scholars generally agree Paul was the author of the book of Romans.
Both Buttrey and He’s answers were deemed incorrect on Wednesday, with a big bet from the former making He the champion for the day. But as many scholars weighed in online, a different ruling would have given Buttrey his first win of the tournament and evened the matches at one win apiece.
When you need to study theology to answer Jeopardy…
The challenge: Hebrews has the most OT quotes of any NT letter; it was historically attributed to Paul; but today most argue he didn’t write it based mainly on internal evidence.
(Romans is right if Paul didn’t write Hebrews.) https://t.co/iBf5Y1jSSL
— Fr Matthew P. Schneider, LC (@FrMatthewLC) November 17, 2022
BUT PAUL DIDN’T WRITE HEBREWS!!!!!!!
— Diana Butler Bass (@dianabutlerbass) November 17, 2022
So far, however, there’s been no correction from the Jeopardy! crew. And since the tournament has been pre-taped, the results are unlikely to change. But it’s certainly giving biblical scholars something to talk about this week, which is always fun.
You can watch the full highlights for Game 3 of the Tournament of Champions — including the final controversial question — above.