I was recently browsing twitter and stumbled across a conversation between an atheist and a Christian. At some point the Christian made the claim that Bible had been scientifically tested for accuracy. I jumped into the conversation (yeah twitter) and asked her for a reference. The atheist then replied to me and said that the Christian of course can't point me toward anything, she's just being dishonest and making stuff up. While I agree that her claim about the bible is wrong, I think he's jumping the gun by assuming that she has just made it up.
I can see a couple of possibilities, one is that the atheist is right and she has just made this up. While this is possible I doubt it is really what is going on. My guess is that she either heard it in church or read it in a book and only has a vague memory of it. The other thing is, what does "scientifically test for accuracy" mean? It sounds like she was trying to say that the bible is 100% true and that has been tested. While this is clearly false, perhaps there are aspects that have been looked into that have been shown to be accurate. What are these things specifically? If that is the case, simply asking these questions could lead to her taking a second look at the source and realize she is overplaying her hand.
In my opinion, the whole purpose of these types of conversations is to change minds. We want to show people that they have made a mistake in logic or that they have relied on incorrect information or whatever. Asserting that they are lying will just make them disengage, it will make them think you are an asshole and stop listening to anything you have to say. I think it is much better to ask them to expand on their claim, give sources or explain themselves further. Don't get me wrong, I'm not delusional, I know this has a pretty low chance of getting them to change their mind as well, but at least you are getting them to think and justify their claims. It could be a small piece of the puzzle for her or possibly for someone else watching for a change of opinion down the line. Calling her a liar just cuts things short.
[Note: after I wrote this but before it went live she tweeted back and provided a source. I haven't had the chance to take a look yet, but I'm hoping to look at it soon. Perhaps that will be what I write about for Thursday]