Search related sites

Friday, June 11, 2021

 Where Does the NWT Falsify?  


This is such an overwhelmingly common complaint about the New World Translation (NWT) by "Orthodox" members of Christendom, that I would like to examine all such examples I can.


1.   John 1:1c.


I have seen that John 1:1c is the most-accused verse in the NWT for 'falsifying,' but I know from an intensive study of my own that the NWT is one of the very few Bibles which translates it properly according to John's own usage: 'a god' or its equivalent.  If you insist on the trinitarian translation of this important verse ("the Word was God"), here are my personal, detailed studies disproving it: (Longest and most detailed by far)

The second most attacked item concerning the translation of the NWT is probably the fact that the translators have replaced some of the words for 'Lord' [kurios] found in the oldest existing texts of the NT with 'Jehovah.'  But they have carefully explained in the NT itself why they did so.  So disregarding John 1:1c and the use of Jehovah in the NT, what else is found in the NWT which is 'falsely' translated?



2.    Heb. 1:8   


Heb. 1:8 in the KJV reads 'thy throne, O God, is forever and ever

Literally the NT Greek text reads for Heb. 1:8: “Toward but the son the throne of you the god into the age of the age.”

The American Standard Version (ASV), the Revised Standard Version (RSV), the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV), and The New English Bible (NEB) have provided alternate readings to the traditional trinitarian rendering of the KJV at Hebrews 1:8. These alternate readings (found in footnotes) agree with Dr. Moffatt’s, Dr. Barclay’s, Smith-Goodspeed’s, Byington’s, and the New World Translation’s renderings of this scripture (“God is your throne”).

Even Young’s Concise Bible Commentary (written by the famous trinitarian author of Young’s Analytical Concordance to the Bible) admits: “[Heb. 1:8] may be justly rendered ‘God is thy throne ...’ in either case it is applicable to the mediatorial throne only.”

Ps. 45 Quoted in Heb. 1:8

Psalm 45 is celebrating an Israelite king’s marriage, and the psalmist applies the words of Ps. 45:6, 7 literally to an ancient Israelite king. In fact, the trinitarian New American Standard Bible (NASB), Reference Edition, explains in a footnote for Ps. 45:1, “Probably refers to Solomon as a type of Christ.”

So, according to this trinitarian Bible, the words of Ps. 45:6, although figuratively referring to Jesus, were literally applied to an ancient Israelite king (probably King Solomon, it says).

So if Ps. 45:6 is properly translated, “your throne, O God ...” then that ancient Israelite King (Solomon?) was also literally called “O God” (or “O god”?). In fact, the highly trinitarian New American Bible, St. Joseph Edition, 1970, explains in a footnote for this verse:

“The Hebrew king was called ... ‘God,’ not in the polytheistic sense common among the ancient
pagans, but as meaning ‘godlike’ or ‘taking the place of God’.”

The RSV renders it as “Your Divine throne” and a footnote provides this alternate reading: “Or ‘your throne is a throne of God.’”

The NEB says: “Your throne is like God’s throne.”

The Holy Scriptures (JPS version) says: “Thy throne given of God.”

The Bible in Living English (Byington) says: “God is your throne.”

The Good News Bible (GNB), a very trinitarian paraphrase Bible, renders it: “The kingdom that God has given you will last forever and ever.”

The REB has: “God has enthroned you for all eternity.”

And the NJB gives us: “your throne is from God.”

We also see the following statement by respected trinitarian scholars in a footnote for this passage:

45:6 O God. Possibly the king’s throne is called God’s throne because he is God’s appointed regent. But it is also possible that the king himself is addressed as ‘god.’ - Ps. 45:6 f.n. in the NIV Study Bible.

In addition to the above renderings by many respected translators (most of whom are trinitarian), we have the statement by perhaps the greatest scholar of Biblical Hebrew of all time, H. F. W. Gesenius. In his famous and highly respected Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testament Gesenius renders Ps. 45:6, “thy throne shall be a divine throne.”

Obviously, then, the charge sometimes made that the NWT is “not being honest or scholarly” with its rendering of Heb. 1:8 is simply untrue, and it certainly may be honestly translated “God is your throne forever.”

Just the admission by so many trinitarian translators (above) that Heb. 1:8 may be honestly translated as it is in the NWT makes any insistence by other trinitarians that this scripture is acceptable evidence for a trinity doctrine completely invalid!

Even famed Southern Baptist New Testament Greek scholar and staunch trinitarian Dr. A. T. Robertson admits:

“It is not certain whether ho theos is here the vocative [‘your throne, O God’] ... or ho theos is nominative (subject or predicate) with estin (is) understood: ‘God is thy throne’ or ‘Thy throne is God.’ Either makes good sense.” - p. 339, Vol. 5, Word Pictures in the New Testament, Broadman Press, 1960.

So, if the NWT is 'falsifying' Heb. 1:8, it has a lot of respected Trinitarian company!! 



3.  Titus 2:13 

….Trinitarian scholar Robert H. Countess wrote concerning Titus 2:13 in the NWT:

"...the translation, ‘the happy hope and glorious manifestation of the great God and of our Savior Christ Jesus,’ interpolates the preposition ‘of’ before ‘our Savior.’ This addition to the text implies that the happy hope and manifestation of glory will be an event in which two personages will be seen, God and Christ Jesus." - p. 69.

The implication that the NWT has dishonestly added “of” to “our Savior” in Titus 2:13 is absolute devious deception! Every New Testament language scholar (from beginning novice to expert) knows that genitive nouns (like “Savior” at Titus 2:13) literally include “of” in their meaning! Yes, the genitive soteros in Titus 2:13 literally means “of savior” whether the translator decides to include it in his translation or not! It is no different from the genitives “God” (theou), “Christ” (christou), or “lord” (kuriou) which literally mean “of God,” “of Christ,” and “of lord.”  

For example, although theou is sometimes translated “God” at Eph. 5:5, the following trinitarian Bibles render it more literally as “of God”: “In the kingdom of Christ [literally “the Christ”] and of God” - KJV; also NIV; RSV; NRSV; LB; NEB; REB; MLB; NAB (both 1970 and 1991 editions); GNB (& TEV); MKJV; Webster; Weymouth; and Phillips translations. (Obviously “Sharp’s Rule” doesn’t work here for these respected trinitarian translations.)

And although kuriou is sometimes translated “Lord” at 2 Thess. 1:12, the following trinitarian Bibles render it literally as “of Lord”: “tender mercy of our God and of the Lord Jesus Christ” - Living Bible; also MLB; GNB; NAB (1970 ed.); Douay Version; Darby; Webster; and Weymouth translations; and Barclay’s Daily Study Bible. (Obviously “Sharp’s Rule” also doesn’t work here for these respected trinitarian translators.)

And although christou is sometimes translated “Christ” at 1 Tim 5:21, the following trinitarian Bibles render it literally as “of Christ”: “In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus” - Revised Standard Version; also NRSV; NASB; MLB; GNB (& TEV); and Weymouth’s translation.

This criticism of the NWT by Countess is false and inexcusable!

4.  John 8:58 

Some trinitarians claim that Jesus was declaring himself to be Jehovah God because he said “I AM” (ego eimi [egw eimi] in the original NT Greek) at John 8:58.

Their reasoning goes like this: Exodus 3:14 in some English Bible translations has Jehovah God revealing himself as “I AM WHO I AM” and “I AM.” So, they say, Jesus’ statement at John 8:58 shows him revealing himself by the same exclusive title (name? description?) as Jehovah (“I AM” at Exodus 3:14) and, therefore, he is Jehovah God!

Furthermore, some of these trinitarians say, the Jews understood perfectly that Jesus was claiming to be Jehovah when he used those two words because they immediately took up stones to kill him.

But these Jews of Judea had already decided beforehand to kill Jesus! (John 7:1, 25) They needed no further incentives. Nothing that Jesus said or did at this point would have made any difference to them.

If the Jews had really understood the phrase “I AM(ego eimi) to mean the speaker was claiming to be Jehovah and that they should therefore kill him, they would have immediately stoned Jesus at John 8:24 or :28. (The actual Greek in the ancient Bible manuscripts is identical to John 8:58, ego eimi, but many English Bible translations properly add “he” so that it can be understood as “I am he” in English.)

We know that even his disciples didn’t believe Jesus was God simply because he said ego eimi, for he identified himself to them with these very same words at John 6:20 (usually rendered into English as “It is I”), and their reaction was certainly not that of those who had come into the presence of God! - Cf. the parallel Matt. 14:27.

We should also know that the Jews didn't believe it either. Otherwise they would have immediately stoned the ex-blind man who identified himself to the Jews by saying ego eimi: John 9:9.

As for the charge that the Jews were going to stone him because he claimed to be God, we should be aware that the Jews stoned people for many offenses. For example, a person pretending to be a “wizard” was to be stoned to death according to the Law (Lev. 20:27 - KJV, RSV, ASV, LB). Today’s Dictionary of the Bible, 1982 ed., tells us

“Wizard, a pretender to supernatural knowledge and power .... such a one was forbidden on pain of death to practice his deceptions ... Lev. 20:26, 27.” - p. 654.

There are many other capital crimes including false prophecy and Sabbath breaking.

We also know that some of the Jews wanted Jesus killed for blasphemy because he admitted to being the Messiah (Christ) - see Matt 26:59-68 and footnotes for Matt 26:65 and Luke 22:71 in The NIV Study Bible, Zondervan Publ., 1985.

“But powerful forces in the Jewish congregation, jealous of his popularity, incensed by his denunciation of some of them, and bitterly critical of his disregard for formalism, his willingness to violate some of the minor laws of the Jews, and his heretical claim that he was the Son of God, repudiated him, conspired to kill him, saw him crucified, and after his death, persecuted his followers.” - The Portable World Bible, Viking Press, p. 230.  


John 8:58  (Continued)

This instance of Jesus saying ego eimi convinced some of the Jews that he was claiming to be the Messiah (so they attempted to stone him to death on the spot). Later, Jesus was taken before the high priest and all the chief priests and questioned by them (Matt. 26:59-66; Mk 14:53-64; Luke 22:66-71). 

Now if Jesus had really previously claimed to be God by saying ego eimi (or if the Jews had even thought he might have been making such a claim by saying those words), what questions would they have asked him now that they had him up before the highest Jewish court? Would they have asked “Are you the Christ?”? (Remember the Christ was not believed by the Jews to actually be God himself. - NIVSB f.n. for Mark 14:61.) Wouldn’t they have concentrated on “Do you claim to be God?”?

But what did they actually ask Jesus at this most important Jewish trial where the Jews were actually seeking to find a reason, no matter how false, to kill him? Even though they searched for any and all accusers, even false accusers (Matt. 26 59-60), to give them a reason to kill Jesus, no one accused him of claiming to be God!

“Now the chief priests and the whole Council kept trying to obtain false testimony against Jesus in order that they might put him to death; .... And the high priest said to him, ‘I adjure you by the living God, that you tell us whether you are the Christ, the Son of God.’” - Matt. 26:59, 63, NASB.

C’mon, be honest now! Could any honest person reasonably conclude that Jesus had claimed to be God at John 8:58 and that the deciding question at the Jews’ trial of Jesus would then be “are you the Christ?”

There is absolutely no suggestion that the Jews thought Jesus was calling himself God here! They asked no questions concerning such a thing. This is absolutely impossible if there could have been even a possibility that ego eimi at John 8:58 could mean the speaker was claiming to be God! Remember, this high court was looking for any reason to have Jesus killed!

But if his statement at John 8:58 could mean “I am the Christ,” what would these priests and chief priests have asked him? Just exactly what they did ask him: “Are you the Christ, the Son of God?”

Furthermore notice the reaction when Jesus admitted to being the Messiah: Matt. 26:65, 66!  


John 8:58 (Continued)

"I Have Been" as Translation for Present Tense ego eimi

Yes, the NWT (and a few others) renders John 8:58 as "before Abraham came into existence, I have been (perfect tense)." Here's why:

Trinitarian NT Greek scholar, Daniel B. Wallace wrote:

A. Extending-from-Past Present (Present of Past Action Still in Progress)

1. Definition

The present tense may be used to describe an action which, begun in the past, continues in the present. ....

.... It is different from the progressive present in that it reaches back in time and usually has some sort of temporal indicator, such as an adverbial phrase [such as ‘before Abraham came into existence’], to show this past-referring element. Depending on how tightly one defines this category, it is either relatively rare or fairly common.

2. Key to Identification

The key to this usage is normally to translate the present as an English present perfect. [And the presence of a ‘temporal indicator, such as an adverbial phrase, to show this past-referring element.’] Some examples might not fit such a gloss, however. [Wallace’s examples include Luke 13:7; Luke 15:29; John 5:6; 1 Jn 3:8.] - pp. 519-520, Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics, Zondervan, 1996. [As in all other cases, bracketed material and emphasis are added by me.]

Another NT scholar who verifies this is Kenneth L. McKay.

[["Kenneth L. McKay graduated with honours in Classics from the Universities of Sydney and Cambridge. He has taught Greek in universities and theological colleges in Nigeria, New Zealand, and England. Mr. McKay retired from the Australian National University in 1987, after teaching there for 26 years. His articles on ancient Greek syntax in various journals and his book on classical Greek Attic, Greek Grammar for Students, have helped draw attention to the aspectual functions of the verb in Greek from the time of Homer to well beyond that of the New Testament."-back cover of the book A New Syntax of the Verb in New Testament Greek, An Aspectual Approach.]]

McKay said in his book, A New Syntax of the Verb in New Testament Greek, An Aspectual Approach:

"Tense...4.2.4. Extension from Past. When used with an expression of either past time or extent of time with past implications (but not in past narrative, for which see 4.2.5), the present tense signals an activity begun in the past and continuing to the present time: Luke 13:7...Lu 15:29....Jn 14:9 [Tosouton khronon meth muoon eimi]..have I been with you so long...? ; Ac 27:33...Jn 8:58 [prin Abraam ego eimi], I have been in existence since before Abraham was born...."

Noted trinitarian NT grammarian A. T. Robertson also agrees with this understanding of the Greek present tense. He calls it “The Progressive Present” and tells us that such a present tense verb often

“has to be translated into English by a sort of ‘progressive perfect’ (‘have been’)...” - p. 879, A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research.

G. B. Winer (“the great Greek grammarian of the 19th century” - Wallace) also tells us:

“Sometimes the Present includes also a past tense (mdv. 108), viz. when the verb expresses a state which commenced at an earlier period but still continues, - a state in its duration as, Jno. xv. 27 [Jn.15:27]..., viii. 58 [Jn 8:58].” - A Grammar of the Idiom of the New Testament, Andover, 1897, p. 267.

Blass and Debrunner also list the following as NT instances of present tense verbs indicating the duration of an act up to and including the present: Lk 13:7; 15:29; Jn [8:58] (eimi); 15:27 (este); 2 Cor. 12:19. - p. 168 (#322), A Greek Grammar of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, University of Chicago Press, 1961.

Even A Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testament by trinitarians Dana and Mantey confirms this understanding:

“b. The present [tense] approaches its kindred tense, the perfect, when used to denote the continuation of existing results [D&M’s emphasis in italics]. Here it refers to a fact which has come to be in the past, but is emphasized as a present reality, as we say, ‘I learn that you have moved’ (that is, information has come to me in the past which I now possess). ....

“To say that this use is ‘present for perfect’ (Gildersleeve: Syntax, p. 87) is not accurately representing the case. It does approach quite closely the significance of the perfect [tense - 'I have been'], but stresses the continuance [D&M’s emphasis] of results through present time which the perfect [tense] would not do, for the perfect stresses existence of results but not their continuance. [The ‘perfect indefinite tense’ in English, however, as we have seen, does allow for such an understanding of continuance - RDB.] To say [manthano auton elthein], ‘I learn that he has gone,’ has a force which is approximated only by ... ‘I have learned that he has gone’.

“c. Sometimes the progressive present [tense] is retroactive in its application, denoting that which has begun in the past and continues into the present. For the want of a better name, we may call it the present of duration. This use is generally associated with an adverb of time [as ‘from the beginning’ in Jn 15:27 and ‘before Abraham came into existence’ in John 8:58 which both act as ‘adverbs of time’ - RDB], and may best be rendered by the English perfect. [Examples of this usage as given by Dana and Mantey are Jn. 15:27 (literally in the NT Greek: ‘from beginning with me you are’ and usually rendered into English as: ‘you have been with me from the beginning’ - RSV); Lk. 13:7; 2 Cor. 12:9 - RDB].” - pp. 182, 183, The Macmillan Company, 30th printing, 1965. [material in brackets and most emphasis has been added by me]

So how do you say that the NWT has falsified the translation of ego eimi in John 8:58 when so many respected trinitarian scholars have shown otherwise?






Another 'falsification' by the NWT as given by trinitarian scholar Robert H. Countess.

ASIARCHES - Countess continues his attack of the NWT’s honesty and accuracy: “In Acts 19:31 the NWT renders the plural of [asiarches] ‘the commissioners of festivals and games.’ The addition of the explanatory, and truly helpful, paraphrase ‘of festivals and games’ is unjustifiable on the basis of NWT principles [?]. More preferable is a rendering like that of the Authorized Version, ‘the chief of Asia,’ or, if desired, simply the transliteration, ‘Asiarchs.’ NWT’s ‘the commissioners of festivals and games’ is not found in Arndt-Gingrich or Liddell-Scott.” - pp. 76-78.

“The chief of Asia” is probably a mistranslation, and “Asiarchs” is basically meaningless to modern speakers of English. Obviously the NWT translators decided to make the term understandable. They could have used “Asiarchs” along with a footnote explaining the term, but apparently decided, instead, to include the meaning of the word in the translation itself. All literal Bibles do the same. For example, Luke 21:2 actually says that the poor widow donated to the temple “two lepta.” Lepta were small copper coins of very little value. But not even the very literal NASB translates the name of those tiny, insignificant coins literally: “He saw a certain poor widow putting in two small copper coins [lepta].” The unfamiliar term (lepta) is translated by a description understandable to modern speakers of English (“small copper coins”). Exactly the same method has been used by the NWT for the unfamiliar “Asiarchs”!

“These ‘Asiarchs’ were ten officers elected by cities in the province who celebrated at their own cost public games and festivals.” - p. 327, vol. 3, Word Pictures in the New Testament, A. T. Robertson.

“[Asiarchs] acted, doubtless, as presidents in local festivals as well as in the provincial games” - p. 172, Vol. 1, Hastings, A Dictionary of the Bible.

“[Asiarchs] were not ‘high priests of Asia,’ as some have thought, but delegates of individual cities to the provincial Council ... They were probably assembled at Ephesus, among other places, to preside over the public games and the religious rites at the festival” - p. 282, Vol. 1, The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia, Eerdmans, 1984 printing.

“[Asiarchs,] Officers chosen annually .... They had charge of the public games and religious theatrical spectacles” - p. 60, Smith’s Bible Dictionary, Hendrickson Publ.

“[Asiarch, one selected] to preside over the games to be exhibited that year” - A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, Thayer, p. 80 (#775), Baker Book House, 1977.

“An Asiarch was one of certain officers elected ... whose function consisted in celebrating, partly at their own expense, the public games and festivals” - p. 178, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, W. E. Vine, Nelson Publishers, 1983 printing.

“[Asiarchs -] These officials were chosen on an annual basis to preside over games and theatrical displays.” - p. 61, Today’s Dictionary of the Bible, Bethany House Publishers, 1982.

"... the Asiarchs were called upon to provide games, partly if not solely at their own expense, and to preside over them." - p. 415, Vol. 2, The Expositor's Greek Testament.

So, once more, even though the NWT's translation differs from what this Trinitarian wants, how is it a falsification of the Bible?? 



6. Hapax - ‘Once for All Time’ 


Another accusation of the NWT 'falsifying the Bible' by Trinitarian scholars:

The New World Translation of the Jehovah's Witnesses
By Dr. John Ankerberg and Dr. John Weldon (in blue)

".... If the Witnesses have not translated God’s revelation with care and accuracy—but instead have incorporated their own doctrinal bias in disregard of the Greek text—then it is unlikely that the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (WBTS) is, as widely proclaimed, God’s sole channel for communicating His will to mankind today."
Here is one of A&W's examples of 'perverting the Word of God':

Hebrews 9:27 [This verse has the insertion of "for all time" to justify their belief in conditional immortality.]

"And as it is reserved for men to die once FOR ALL TIME, [i.e., eternally] but after this a judgment." NWT

"And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment." NAS

Again looking at the Kingdom Interlinear (p. 988) we find the addition of the words "for all time" is without any justification. There is no Greek correspondence. Mantey states:

Heb. 9:27, which without any grounds for it in the Greek, is mistranslated in the J. W. Translation—"And as it is reserved for men to die once for all time, but after this is a judgment…." Note that the phrase "for all time" was inserted in the former versions without any basis in the original for it. No honest scholar would attempt to so pervert the Word of God!


But the trinitarian scholar, W. E. Vine, says (of the NT Greek word hapax that was translated “once for all time” by the NWT) in his An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, p. 809: “1. Hapax denotes a. once, one time.... b. once for all, of what is of perpetual validity, not requiring repetition.”

(Also see hapax in Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament; Liddell and Scott's An Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon; the Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (‘Little Kittel’), Eerdman’s Publ., 1985; the Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament, Vol. 1, Eerdman’s, 1990; and A.T. Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament, Vol. 5, p. 404.)

Like so many words (in NT Greek and OT Hebrew as well as in English) hapax has more than one meaning. Either the a. or the b. definition is an honest translation of the Greek word hapax!

Look at these trinitarian translations of hapax:

Heb. 9:26 - “He has appeared once and for all” [hapax] - Jerusalem Bible, NJB, GNB, TEV, NEB, Phillips.

- “once for all” [hapax] - NAB (1970), NAB (1991), RSV, NRSV, REB.
Heb. 9:27 - “reserved for men to die once for all” [hapax] - MLB.

- “Destined that men die only once” [hapax] - JB, NJB, Living Bible.

Heb. 9:28 - “Christ sacrificed once for all[hapax] - MLB.

- “Christ died only once[hapax] - JB, NJB, LB.

Jude 3 - “once and for all” [hapax] - NEB, JB, NJB, GNB, TEV, ISV NT,


- “once for all” [hapax] - RSV, NRSV, REB, NASB, NAB, NAB (1991), Mo, MLB, LB, AT (Goodspeed).

- "once for all time" [hapax] - GodsWord,

[[Since I wrote the above, I have seen the following Bibles saying the same about Heb. 9:6 (and I suppose they are also worded that way in the other verses above): CEV; DNLT; EHV; ESV; EXB; ISV; Mounce; NCV; NET; NIRV; NIV; NLT; NRSV; RSV; TPT.]]

(Also note John 10:38 which does not even have the word hapax, but TEV adds “once and for all” anyway!)

Even the trinitarian standard, The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, 1986, Zondervan, Vol. 2, pp. 717, 718, tells us hapax means 

“once in the sense of an event that cannot be repeated. It is so used of the sacrificial death of Christ (Heb. 9:26 ff; 1 Pet. 3:18).... The author of Heb. sees the death of Christ as the once-and-for-all [hapax] sacrifice” - p. 717.


“Jude 3 urges its readers ‘to contend for the faith which was once for all [hapax] delivered to the saints.’” - p. 718.

Barnes' Notes on the New Testament (Hebrews Chapter 9):

"Verse 26. For then must he often have suffered. That is, if his blood had no more efficacy than that which the Jewish high priest offered, and which was so often repeated, it would have been necessary that Christ should have often died.
"But now once. Once for all; once in the sense that it is not to be repeated again--\~apax\~."

Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament:

Hebrews 9 
Verses 25, 26
"For the significance of hapax as used here, see under Heb. 7:27. Its meaning is 'once for all.' The glory of Christ's sacrifice as set forth here consists of the complete, final, and irrevocable nature of the offering. It was not a repeated thing as were the offerings and sacrifices under Judaism but was a 'once for all' accomplishment."

A final note on hapax comes from the highly trinitarian (and highly anti-Watchtower Society) “cult” expert Dr. Walter Martin. This “born-again” spokesman likes to quote Dr. Mantey in an attempt to show the “mistranslations” and “perversions” of God’s Word by the Watchtower Society. Interestingly, Martin himself interprets hapax in Jude 3 as “once for all time”:

“ ‘...contend earnestly for the faith once [hapax] delivered to the saints,’ that’s King James, but the [NT] Greek is a little better,” says Martin. “The Greek says, ‘... put up a stiff fight for the faith once for all time [hapax] delivered to the saints.’” - Introduction to the Cults, cassette tape recording by Dr. Walter Martin, 1980. - Compare Jude :3 NWT.

So, then, what can we conclude from Mantey's quote (and Ankerberg and Weldon's agreement): "No honest scholar would attempt to so pervert the Word of God!"?

Either something is very wrong with their own 'scholarship' or, more likely, considering their education and knowledge, something is very wrong with THEIR honesty.


7.  Acts 20:28  

 Ankerberg and Weldon again:

Acts 20:28 [The phrase "with his own blood" is translated as "the blood of his own (Son)," to circumvent Christ’s deity.] 

"Pay attention to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the holy spirit has appointed you overseers, to shepherd the congregation of God, which he purchased with THE BLOOD OF HIS OWN (SON)." NWT

"Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God, which He purchased with His own blood." NAS

The NWT interlinear appendix justifying this translation (pp. 1160-61) refers to a few manuscripts using "Lord" (i.e., supposedly Jesus) instead of God and mentions "troublesome Greek words." It can offer this translation only by unnaturally translating the Greek and concludes, "The entire expression could therefore be translated ‘with the blood of his own.’"28

{{The Interlinear hardly 'concludes' anything at this point as the Appendix note is only about one-third completed at this point.}}

Nigel Turner, an authority who wrote the volume on Greek syntax in Moulton’s three-volume Grammar of New Testament Greek, explains why the Witnesses are wrong at this point:

{{but see what Moulton himself says in appendix of 1969 Interlinear, p.1160 - quoted below }}

The dying proto-martyr, St. Stephen, addressed Jesus as if he were God. A pious Hellenistic Jew would not pray at one less than God. It may not be so generally appreciated that St. Paul slipped naturally and casually into the affirmation that he who shed his blood upon the cross was God. The reference is to Acts 20:28, where St. Paul at Miletus spoke to the Christian elders about "the church of God which he bought for himself by his own blood." The blood of God! Some aberrant manuscripts have the inoffensive reading, "the church of the Lord"—implying the Lord Jesus. But they must be rejected on the ground that the more startling or difficult reading is the one likely to be correct; scribes would not invent a conception of such unexpected originality as "the blood of God." We are left with the original and plain statement of St. Paul that Jesus is God, and it worries those scholars who think that it represents a Christology grammatical expedient whereby "his own" is understood as a noun ("his own One"), rather than a possessive adjective. In consequence, standing as it does in the genitive case, one may place before it the word "of": i.e., "of his Own." The expedient lowers the Christology drastically and reduces St. Paul’s affirmation to something like this: "the church of God which he bought for himself by the blood of his Own"—as in the margin of the NEB. It is a theological expedient, foisting imaginary distinctions into a spontaneous affirmation, and is not the natural way to take the Greek. It is unlikely to have been the meaning envisaged either by St. Paul or the writer of the narrative. The easy thing would be for them to add the word "Son," if that was intended.29 

Even the Kingdom Interlinear appendix itself admits: grammatically, this passage could be translated, as in the King James Version and Douay Version, "with his own blood." In such case the verse would be saying that God purchased his congregation with his own blood. That has been a difficult thought with many…the ordinary translation would mean to say "God’s blood."30

Nevertheless, the more accurate and natural translation is rejected since it cannot be true according to Watchtower theology, which denies the deity of Jesus Christ.

There are 2 major uncertainties about the proper translation of Acts 20:28. Either one of those uncertainties completely nullifies any trinitarian “evidence” proposed for this scripture!

First, even some trinitarian Bibles translate this verse, “the church of the Lord.” - NEB; REB; ASV; Moffatt; Updated Bible Version 1.9; RSVCE; WE; La Biblia Reina-Valera (Cf. TPT - 'Jesus' and Lamsa - 'Christ'). Since Jesus was often referred to as “the Lord,” this rendering negates any “Jesus is God” understanding for Acts 20:28.

Yes, even the popular trinitarian The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, p. 838, Vol. 2, Zondervan Publ., 1986, uses this translation for Acts 20:28 also: “to feed the church of the Lord”!

And the respected, scholarly trinitarian work, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, p. 480, United Bible Societies, 1971, explains about this first uncertainty concerning the translation of Acts 20:28. Although, for obvious reasons, preferring the rendering “the church of God” at this verse, this trinitarian work admits that there is “considerable degree of doubt” about this “preferred” rendering. They admit that “The external evidence is singularly balanced between ‘church of God’ and ‘church of the Lord.’”

Second, even some trinitarian Bibles render this verse, “to care for the church of God which he obtained with the blood of his own Son.” - RSV, 1971 ed.; NCV; NRSV; NJB; NET; LEB; Mounce; Barclay ('of his own One'); New Century Version; Complete Jewish Bible; VOICE; (also see TEV, CEV, and GNB).

The New Testament Greek words tou idiou follow “with the blood” in this scripture. This could be translated as “with the blood of his own.” A singular noun may be understood to follow “his own.” This would be referring to God’s “closest relation,” his only-begotten Son.

Famous trinitarian scholar J. H. Moulton says about this:

“something should be said about the use of [ho idios, which includes tou idiou] without a noun expressed. This occurs in Jn 1:11, 13:1; Ac 4:23, 24:23. In the papyri we find the singular used thus as a term of endearment to near relations .... In Expos. vi. iii. 277 I ventured to cite this as a possible encouragement to those (including B. Weiss) who would translate Acts 20:28 ‘the blood of one who was his own.’” - A Grammar of New Testament Greek, Vol. 1 (Prolegomena), 1930 ed., p. 90.

Trinitarian New Testament scholars Westcott and Hort present an alternate reason for a similar rendering:

“it is by no means impossible that YIOY [huiou, or ‘of the Son’] dropped out [was inadvertently left out during copying] after TOYIDIOY [tou idiou, or ‘of his own’] at some very early transcription affecting all existing documents. Its insertion [restoration] leaves the whole passage free from difficulty of any kind.” - The New Testament in the Original Greek, Vol. 2, pp. 99, 100 of the Appendix.

And A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, p. 481, tells us:

“Instead of the usual meaning of dia tou haimatos tou idiou [‘through the blood of the own’], it is possible that the writer of Acts intended his readers to understand the expression to mean ‘with the blood of his Own.’ (It is not necessary to suppose, with Hort, that huiou may have dropped out after tou idiou, though palaeographically such an omission would have been easy.) This absolute use of ho idios is found in Greek papyri as a term of endearment referring to near relatives. It is possible, therefore, that ‘his Own’ (ho idios) was a title which early Christians gave to Jesus, comparable to ‘the Beloved’.”[*] 

[*] This is more than just a theory. Notice how Acts 20:28 was actually rendered by an early Christian writer (ca. 250-299 A.D.):

“ the Church of the Lord, ‘which he has purchased with the blood of Christ, the beloved...’” - The Ante-Nicene Fathers, p. 424, Vol. vii, Eerdmans Publ., 1989 printing.

Not only has this very early Christian writer used “Lord” here, but he has shown what the understanding of “the blood of his own” was at this time when the language of the New Testament was still used and clearly understood.

Therefore, we can see that a rendering similar to RSV’s “the church of God which he obtained with the blood of his own son [or ‘beloved’ ]” is obviously an honest, proper rendering.

Although the UBS Committee didn’t actually commit itself one way or another on this rendering of tou idiou at Acts 20:28, it did mention that “some have thought [it] to be a slight probability that tou idiou is used here as the equivalent of tou idiou huiou [‘his own Son’].” - p. 481. Obviously this includes those trinitarian scholars who translated the Revised Standard Version (1971 ed.); NRSV; NJB; NET; Today’s English Version; etc.

Note the even more certain conclusion of trinitarian scholar, Murray J. Harris, after an extensive analysis of this passage:

"I have argued that the original text of Acts 20:28 read [THN EKKLHSIAN TOU THEOU HN PERIEPOIHSATO DIA TOU AIUATOS TOU IDIOU] and that the most appropriate translation of these words is 'the church of God which he bought with the blood of his own one' or 'the church of God which he bought with the blood of his own Son' (NJB), with [HO IDIOS] construed as a christological title. According to this view, [HO THEOS] refers to God the Father, not Jesus Christ.

"If however, one follows many English versions in construing [IDIOS] adjectivally ('through his own blood'), [HO THEOS] could refer to Jesus and the verse could therefore allude to 'the blood of God,' although on this construction of [IDIOS] it is more probable that [THEOS] is God the Father and the unexpressed subject of [PERIEPOIHSATO] is Jesus. So it remains unlikely, although not impossible, that Acts 20:28 [HO THEOS] denotes Jesus." - p. 141, Jesus as Theos, The New Testament Use of Theos in Reference to Jesus, Baker Book House, Grand rapids, Michigan, 1992.

Since so many respected trinitarian scholars admit the possibility (and even the probability) of such honest alternate non-trinitarian translations for Acts 20:28, this scripture can’t honestly be used as proof for a trinity concept.

Furthermore for Ankerberg, et al. to claim the NWT rendering of Acts 20:28 is a "mistranslation" is specious, at the very least!  



8.  Mantey Attack About NWT’s John 1:1c


The late Dr. Julius Mantey, noted NT Greek scholar and strong trinitarian, allegedly wrote a powerful attack against the accuracy and honesty of the NWT in a July 11, 1974 letter to the Watchtower Society attributed to Mantey (when he was 84!), which anti-Watchtower writers are fond of reproducing and quoting.

His complaint that the WT Society dishonestly used his Grammar to support their translation is incredible! It’s undoubtedly true that he didn’t intend anything in his book to support a non-trinitarian interpretation of John 1:1c. (The Watchtower Society never claimed he did.) But the fact is that Mantey's own translation found in his Grammar does support it nevertheless! The quote by the Society refers to an example used by Mantey himself in pp. 148-149 of his A Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testament which is grammatically identical to John 1:1 (articular subject after the copulative verb and anarthrous predicate noun before the copulative verb), and which Mantey himself has translated as, “and the place was a market” - an exact parallel to the NWT’s “and the Word was a god.”

Mantey continues, “it is neither scholarly nor reasonable to translate John 1:1 ‘The Word was a god’ [as in the NWT]. Word order has made obsolete and incorrect such a rendering.” If this were really true, then Mantey himself has been neither “scholarly nor reasonable” in his rendering of an identical word order in complete agreement with the NWT rendering of John 1:1. Also examine the translations of parallel Greek constructions at John 4:19 (“a prophet”); John 18:37 (“a king”); and in the ancient Greek Septuagint at Judges 6:31 (“a god”); and 3 Kings 18:27 (“a god”).  



9.  Rev. 3:14


Mantey next berates the NWT’s “mistranslating arche tes ktisoos” as “beginning of the creation” at Rev. 3:14 even though this is the literal rendering of the NT Greek.

 But how do most trinitarian Bible translations themselves translate Rev. 3:14 ? - The KJV has “beginning of the creation.” So do the NKJV; ASV; NASB; RSV; MLB (1969 ed.); Douay; Byington; Darby; Lamsa; Lattimore (1979); New Century Version; Phillips; Rotherham; Third Millenium Bible; Webster; Revised Webster (1995); Wesley’s New Testament; Weymouth; and ISV NT.

How is it, then, that the NWT is “mistranslating ... as ‘beginning of the creation’”? Are all the above translations (including KJV) "mistranslating"?

 Rev. 3:14 (Cont.)

"...the beginning of the creation by God..." - NWT.  

Since we have answered one complaint about the NWT's translation of Rev. 3:14, we might as well note that certain anti-Watchtower writers (evidently not Mantey, however) have also condemned the NWT rendering of the genitive noun theou at Rev. 3:14 ("the creation by God"). This genitive noun, like most genitives, can be (and usually is) translated with the word "of" preceding it. Therefore, theou is usually translated "of God." So, at Rev. 3:14, most translations read: "the beginning of the creation of God." Certainly this is a grammatically correct translation, but it does allow a potential ambiguity. Grammatically it could mean "the creation belonging to God," or "everything created by God," or even, "God himself being created" !

For example, notice how the genitive noun at Acts 1:22 causes difficulties with its usual rendering of "baptism of John." This rendering can lead readers to believe that John's own baptism (by some other baptizer) is being spoken of here. Instead, many (if not all) Bible scholars believe the intended meaning here is a baptism performed by John! Therefore, some respected trinitarian translations have used the equally honest (and much clearer, in this case) rendering of "baptism by John" (or its clear equivalent): LB; NEB; REB; ISV; NET; JB; NJB; NLT; AT; CBW; VOICE and translations by Phillips, and Rotherham.

Also notice that the genitive form of "Jesus Christ" at Rev. 1:1 can be properly rendered as "by Jesus Christ" (rather than "of Jesus Christ" as in KJV, ASV, etc.): Mo, AT, and Beck's The New Testament in the Language of Today, 1964 ed. - see p. 236, So Many Versions?, Zondervan, 1983.

We can also find the genitive theou (as at Rev. 3:14 itself) at 1 Tim. 4:4 ("creation of God") is rendered "everything created by God" in the NASB, RSV, NRSV, NAB [1991] (or its equivalent: NEB, REB, JB, NJB, CBW, AT, NIV, NAB [1970], etc.)

And "taught of God" (theou as found at Rev. 3:14 itself) at John 6:45 is properly rendered "taught by God" in RSV, NRSV, NIV, JB, NJB, NEB, REB, AT, MLB, NAB (1970), NAB (1991), GNB, TEV, Mo, CBW.

Surely no honest Bible scholar can condemn the same rendering by the NWT at Rev. 3:14! . 


 10.  Luke 23:43 (Punctuation)

 Luke 23:43 - Punctuation

Dr. Mantey also complained about the NWT's “attempt to deliberately deceive people by mispunctuation by placing a comma after ‘today’ in Luke 23:43,” when he knows better than anyone that none of the earliest manuscripts (up to the 9th century A.D.) originally had capitalization or punctuation! Later copyists have added punctuation wherever they felt it should be!

Just because a modern text writer decides where he wants the punctuation and capital-ization to be in his interpretation of the original text (as Westcott and Hort did for the text that is used by the NWT and Nestle did in the text used by the NASB, etc.) does not mean that is how the original Bible writer intended the meaning - as explained in the Kingdom Interlinear footnote for this verse.

For example, at John 8:58, most (if not all) text writers have left ego eimi uncapitalized. However, some respected trinitarian Bibles (such as NASB, TEV, and Phillips) have ignored the text writer’s preference and used capitalization here in an attempt to make this verb appear to be a Name: “I AM.” Are these popular trinitarian Bibles also guilty of “deliberately deceiving,” then, by choosing their own capitalization?

Clearly, for Dr. Mantey to even hint that punctuation can be precisely determined at Luke 23:43 is totally dishonest. We see The Emphasized Bible by Joseph B. Rotherham also punctuating this scripture to produce the meaning found in the NWT:

“Verily I say unto thee this day: With me shalt thou be in Paradise.”

And the footnote for Luke 23:43 in Lamsa’s translation admits:

“Ancient texts were not punctuated. The comma could come before or after today.”

"George Lamsa, the Aramaic scholar and translator, referring to Luke 23:43, puts the comma after the word 'today', explaining that what Jesus said was a common Aramaic idiom (Jesus spoke Aramaic as his native language), 'implying that the promise was made on a certain day and would surely be kept' (Lamsa)." [Gospel Light, and New Testament Commentary, George M. Lamsa, Copyright 1936 and 1945, A. J. Holman Company, Philadelphia, PA] - (by Hal Dekker)

The Concordant Literal New Testament renders it: "43 And Jesus said to him, 'Verily, to you am I saying today, with Me shall you be in paradise.'"

A Critical Lexicon and Concordance to the English and Greek New Testament by E.W.Bullinger, DD., page 811 says:

"'And Jesus said to him, Verily, to thee I say this day, with Me shalt thou be in the Paradise.' The words today being made solemn and emphatic. Thus, instead of a remembrance, when He shall come in...His kingdom, He promises a presence in association (meta, 'with') Himself. And this promise he makes on that very day when he was dying.... Thus we are saved (1) the trouble of explaining why Jesus did not answer the question on its own terms; and (2) the inconvenience of endorsing the punctuation of the [KJV] as inspired; and we also place this passage in harmony with numberless passages in the O.T., such as 'Verily I say unto you this day,' etc.; 'I testify unto you this day.' etc.; vii.1; x.13; xi.8;,13,23; xii.13; xix.9; xxvii.4; xxxi.2, etc., where the Septuagint corresponds to Luke xxii.43."

Yes, there is no reason to deny the rendering of Luke 23:43 as, “I tell you today, You will be with me in Paradise.”

Mantey knows better, but deliberately deceives in order to attack the JWs again!


A couple examples from the Hebrew Scriptures of the OT in modern Bibles:

(NKJV) Deuteronomy 30:18 "I announce to you today that you shall surely perish"

(NASB) Deuteronomy 30:18 I declare to you today that you shall surely perish.

(RSV) Deuteronomy 30:18 "I declare to you this day, that you shall perish"

(GodsWord) Deuteronomy 30:18 "If you do, I tell you today that you will certainly be destroyed"

(MKJV (Green)) Deuteronomy 30:18 "I declare to you today that you shall surely perish"


(NASB) Zechariah 9:12 "Return to the stronghold, O prisoners who have the hope; This very day I am declaring that I will restore double to you."

(KJV)  "even to day do I declare [that] I will render double unto thee;"

(TEV) "Now I tell you that I will repay you twice over"

(RSV) "today I declare that I will restore to you double."

(JPS) "even to-day do I declare that I will render double unto thee"  

(BBE) "today I say to you that I will give you back twice as much"

(God'sWord) "Today I tell you that I will return to you double blessings."

(CEV) "because today I will reward you with twice what you had."

(NJB) "This very day, I vow, I shall make it up to you twice over."

(NAB) "This very day, I will return you double for your exile."

[Also compare Deut. 5:1 and 6:6]  




11.  Diakonos 


DIAKONOS - Dr. Countess accuses the NWT of being “inconsistent” for rendering diakonos with the word “minister” (and various forms of “minister”) in all but one of its uses (“servants” - Mt. 22:13). He also criticizes the NWT for translating the noun diakonos as though it were a participle (“those ministering”) twice in Jn 2:5, 9. - p. 77.

But even the “most literal” modern Bible of Christendom, the NASB, translates diakonos three times as “deacons,” seven times as “minister” and 19 times as “servant(s)”! How consistent is that? As for translating a noun as though it were a participle, this is done in all translations (and in all other combinations of parts of speech) in order to make something as clear as possible to modern readers.

For example, the related diakonia is rendered in these various ways at Ro. 15:25 in these literal Bibles: “a ministry” [noun], NRSV; “to minister” [verb infinitive], KJV; “in the service” [noun], NIV; “aid” [noun], RSV; “ministering” [participle], ASV; ”serving” [participle], NASB.

And this same word (diakonia) at 2 Tim. 1:18 is also rendered: “services” [plural noun], NASB; “service” [singular noun], RSV, NRSV; “ministered” [verb], KJV, ASV; “helped” [verb], NIV.

The real question should be: why does the NWT consistently render diakonos with some form of “minister” (with the single exception of Matt. 22:13) and doulos as “slave”? We can see that other literal Bibles frequently render both diakonos and doulos as “servant(s)” (cf. Acts 4:29 [doulos] and Jn 2:9 [diakonos] in KJV, ASV, RSV, NIV, for example).

The reason for the NWT rendering can undoubtedly be found in the actual meaning of the two NT Greek words. What is the difference between diakonos and doulos?

diakonos represents the servant in his activity for the work; not in his relation, either servile, as that of the doulos, or more voluntary, as in the case of the therapon, to a person” - Thayer, p. 138 (#1249), Baker Book House. 

Diakonos is generally speaking, to be distinguished from doulos, ... diakonos views a servant in relationship to his work; doulos views him in relationship to his master.” - p. 265, W. E. Vine, Thomas Nelson, Inc., Publishers, 1983 printing.

“The difference between [diakonos] and doulos (slave), is important for our understanding of diakonos. doulos stresses almost exclusively the Christian’s complete subjection to the Lord; diakonos is concerned with his service for the church” - p. 548, Vol. 3, The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan Publ., 1986.

So, if you were to translate diakonos and doulos correctly, you would try to choose words that at least suggested the difference between them. The translators of the NWT obviously decided that “minister” (for diakonos) suggested the idea of service and emphasized that person’s work or activity rather than his subjection. And, of course, they decided that the term “slave” (for doulos) emphasized his subjection (or “relationship to his master”) more than his relationship to his work. Most objective people would readily agree.

As for rendering it as 'ministering' specifically in John 2:5,9, we have the example of Rotherham's Bible:

5 His mother saith unto them who are ministering--Whatsoever he may say to you, do!

9 And, when the master of the feast had tasted the water, now made, wine, and knew not whence it was,--though, they who were ministering, knew, even they who had drawn out the water, the master accosteth the bridegroom.…  

The NWT has attempted to distinguish between the uses of diakonos and doulos in such a way as to honestly show the originally intended meanings. It has done this more consistently than other literal translations. Countess’ criticism of this is unfounded and hypocritical!  



12.   "Is" Translated as "Means" 

Another strong criticism of the NWT concerns the occasional translation of "means" for the NT Greek verb estin ("is"). Zondervan's So Many Versions, 1983, (written by trinitarian Bible scholars Kubo and Specht) particularly objects to this (p. 102) and says of 1 Cor. 11:24-25 in the NWT:

"The Greek verb is 'is' and should have been translated thus. [The NWT's] concern for accuracy and literalism seems to be set aside whenever the literal text conflicts with their theological position."  

It is certainly no secret that the Greek verb "is" (estin and its related forms) may be (and often is in certain verses in most Bible translations) translated as "means," "represents," "symbolizes," etc. This understanding is clearly shown in NT Greek lexicons. The respected Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, for instance, plainly states this on p. 176. (Also see W. E. Vine's An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, p. 722.)

Actually, to see the truth of this, we only need to examine the following translations of "is": Matt. 9:13 RSV, NRSV, NASB, NIV, KJV, NEB, REB, NAB, AT, JB, NJB, etc.; Matt. 12:7; Matt. 13:38; Mark 9:10; Luke 8:9; and Eph 4:9 RSV, NASB, NIV, NEB, NAB, JB. (Also see John 17:3 GNB, AT, and C. B. Williams, and see Rev. 19:8 NIV, AT.)

Even the NIV (highly praised by SMV) has translated "is" as "leads to" at John 12:50 - "his command leads to [estin] eternal life." (To be consistent NIV should have done this at Jn 17:3 also.) - Cf. LB, CBW, and AT.

And the acclaimed Bible scholar and translator, Dr. James Moffatt, even rendered the scripture in question (1 Cor. 11:24-25) as: "This means my body …. This cup means the new covenant" - The Bible - A New Translation, Harper and Row, 1954.

And the footnote for 1 Cor. 11:24 in the NIV Study Bible says: "The broken bread is a symbol of Christ's body given for sinners." In other words, "this bread means (or symbolizes) my body" - Zondervan, 1985.

Even to imply that it is improper to translate this verb as "means" is dishonest in the extreme!  



13.  “In” Translated as “”In Union With”


Many anti-NWT 'scholars' decry the NWT's translation of "in Christ," "in "God," etc., as "in union with."

But Ralph P. Martin tells us that the phrase ‘in [ἐν] Christ Jesus’ is regularly used by Paul to mean “ ‘in union with Christ’, which is often tantamount to ‘in the fellowship of his people’.” - p. 99, Philippians.

Phil. 1:1, 'in union with' - AT, CBW, GNB, GW; ISV; TEV.

"ingrafted as it were in Christ, in fellowship and union with Christ, with the Lord .…

ἵνα εὑρεθῶ ἐν αὐτῷ, that I may be found (by God and Christ) most intimately united to him, Philippians 3:9 .... Since such union with Christ is the basis on which actions and virtues rest, the expression is equivalent in meaning to by virtue of spiritual fellowship or union with Christ;" - p. 211, #1722. 

In fact, the authoritative, trinitarian reference work, The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology says of some of the NT uses of the preposition ἐν (“in”) specifically as found in the phrase “in Christ” (ἐν Χριστῷ):

(a) Incorporative union: .... “those who are in union with Christ Jesus” (Ro. 8:1).... (b) Sphere of reference: “I know a Christian man” (2 Cor. 5:21). “We make our boast in the sphere of Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:3)... (c) Agency or instrumentality: “They are justified ... through the redemption accomplished by Christ Jesus” (Ro. 3:24). “The veil is not lifted because only through Christ is it removed” (2 Cor. 3:14). (d) Cause:.... “All will be made alive by virtue of their connexion and solidarity with Christ” ( 1 Cor. 15:22). (e) Mode:.... (f) Location: .... “Have this attitude among you that also characterized Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5). (g) Authoritative basis: “We urge you on the authority of the Lord Jesus” (1 Thess. 4:1).” - p. 1192, Vol. 3, Zondervan, 1986. 


How is it that so many anti-NWT 'scholars' condemn the NWT for translating ἐν Χριστῷ honestly? Who is really being dishonest here?




Here is extremely anti-JW Robert Bowman’s evaluation of one of the most respected NT Greek Bible scholars and Bible translators of modern times. That is Edgar J. Goodspeed, the translator of the New Testament portion of An American Translation (AT).

On p. 126 of his Understanding Jehovah’s Witnesses Bowman states:

“Edgar J. Goodspeed was without question one of America’s finest Greek scholars.” [Bowman also notes that Goodspeed was a trinitarian Christian - p. 129.]

I think it would be fair to say, then, that Bowman would acknowledge the translations by famed trinitarian Goodspeed in his An American Translation (AT) as honest, scholarly translations.

So, when Bowman criticizes the NWT's use of the NT Greek en how does Goodspeed translate it?

"In 1 John 5:20 the NWT reads in part: “And we are in union with [en] the true one, by means of [en] his Son Jesus Christ.” Reading this translation one would never suspect that “in union with” and “by means of” translate the same simple Greek preposition. ....

Again in Colossians 2:6-12 “in him” and “in whom” (en auto, en ho) becomes “in union with him” (v. 6), “in him” (vv. 7, 9), “by means of him” (v. 10), and “by relationship with him” (vv. 11, 12). These variations serve no useful purpose, undermine the unity of the passage, and obscure the passage ...." - p. 69.  

So how does Goodspeed translate the two uses of en at 1 John 5:20 (where the NWT has “in union with” and “by means of”)?

“and we are in union with [en] him who is true, through [en] his Son, Jesus Christ.” - AT (Goodspeed)

And yet, according to Bowman himself, trinitarian Goodspeed is a superb scholar worthy of our trust.

How is it, then, that the NWT is to be condemned by Bowman for its translation which is essentially the same as Goodspeed’s??

And again in Col. 2:6-12 how does Goodspeed render the preposition en?

Where the NWT translates en as “in union with him” (v. 6), Goodspeed has “in vital union with him”!

And where the NWT has “in him” (verses 7, 9), Goodspeed has “in him”!

And where the NWT has “by means of him” (v. 10), Goodspeed has “in union with him”!

And where the NWT has "By relationship with him" (v.11), Goodspeed has "Through your relation to him"!

And where the NWT has “by relationship with him” (v. 12), Goodspeed has “with him”!

So, again, how is it that the NWT is to be condemned for its dishonesty, bias, etc. when the much acclaimed, trinitarian, Bowman-praised Dr. Goodspeed renders it virtually the same?




14.  John 14:16-17 (‘Him’ or ‘it’)


"the Spirit of truth, which the world cannot accept, because it neither sees nor knows it. But you know it, because it remains with you, and will be in you." - NAB.

"the spirit of the truth, which [ho, not hos] the world cannot receive, because it neither sees it [auto] nor knows it. You know it [auto], because it remains with you and is in you." - NWT.

“Holy Spirit” in the original Greek is neuter and therefore the neuter pronouns meaning “it,” “itself” are used with it in the original NT Greek! Any strictly literal Bible translation would have to use “it” for the holy spirit (since it is really not a person, but God’s active force, a literal translation would be helpful in this case).

As the trinitarian New American Bible (Catholic), 1970 ed. admits:

“The Greek word for ‘spirit’ is neuter, and while we [trinitarians] use personal pronouns in English (‘he,’ ‘his,’ ‘him’), most Greek manuscripts employ ‘it.’” - New American Bible, St. Joseph ed., (footnote for John 14:17).

In other words, even if the Greek words for ‘holy spirit’ were in the masculine gender (and, therefore, the Greek masculine pronouns would be used with it), it still would not indicate that the holy spirit must be a person! Just as in many other languages things are often given feminine and masculine genders in Bible Greek.

However, since its literal title (“holy spirit”) is really neuter in the NT Greek and really uses the neuter pronoun (“it”) and takes the neuter definite article (Gr. to), there is the extremely high probability, from grammar alone, that it is not a person.

Not only is the literal “Holy Spirit” neuter in the original Greek, but so are the article (to - p. 34, Machen) and the pronouns (αὐτό [‘it’] and ὅ [“which”]- pp. 19, 68, Marshall) which go with it! 

"The JW's changed the Holy Spirit from a "him" and a "he" to an "it" in order to depersonalize God the Holy Spirit in an attempt to negate the Trinity. And they've done a lot of things like that. And once again, the earliest manuscripts don't conform to the JW's redactions on that."  - from an online discussion group.


All NT texts (including the KJV’s Received Text) have the NT Greek for “which,” “it,” and “it” again!

You seriously need to check out what JW-haters have told you before 'spreading the news.' Everything you wrote in the paragraph above is provably false! 




15.   Rev. 3:14 - 'Beginning' or 'Ruler'  

The Watchtower Society says that when Jesus called himself “the beginning [Greek – arkhe/arche, ἀρχὴ] of the creation by God” - Rev. 3:14, KJV, ASV, RSV, NASB, NKJV, MLB, Douay, Byington, Rotherham, Lattimore, Lamsa, Phillips, Darby, Webster, etc. - he meant “the first thing created by God.”

Some trinitarians, however, insist that the word arkhe (sometimes written in English as arche) here does not mean “beginning” but should be rendered “source” or “origin.” A few even suggest that John meant “the ruler of the creation of God.”

“To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler [arche] of God’s creation. - NIV.

"To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: The Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the Beginning [arche]of the creation of God, says this:" - NASB.

““To the messenger of the church in Laodicea, write: The amen, the witness who is faithful and true, the source of God’s creation, says: - GW.

The BAGD, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature by Walter Bauer, William F. Arndt (Translator), F. Wilbur Gingrich, and Frederick W. Danker (Editor), has been revised as the BDAG. On page 138, the interpretation of Rev 3:14 that `ARXH [arche] of creation' means that Christ was created ['beginning of God's creation'] has been upgraded from poss. [possible] to prob. [probable].

"BDAG states that the meaning `beginning = first created' for ARXH in Rev 3:14 `is linguistically probable.' The sense `origin' or `source' hardly seems to fit the context of Rev 3:14. This meaning of the word does not seem to figure in biblical usages here or elsewhere. See Job 40:19." -

Greg Stafford writes on this: "...a check of all the occurrences in NT of arkhe followed by a genitive expression ... show that it always denotes a beginning or first part of something." Further on he writes, "Thus the use of arkhe in general, and when used with a genitive expression specifically, favors (statistically at least) the meaning 'beginning' [rather than 'originator'] in Revelation 3:14." -Jehovah's Witness Defended, An Answer to Scholars and Critics, 1st ed.p.109.

It is because of this common Bible metaphor ("begotten," "born") that "father" was considered as synonymous (whether as "creator" or "procreator") with "source"! - See p. 190, Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, Baker Book House, 1984.

The famous Biblical Hebrew authority, Gesenius, tells us that "Father" [ab] means:

"Of the author, or maker, of anything, specially of the creator.... And in this sense God is said to be `the father of men,' Is. 63:16; 64:8; [etc.]. All these ... come from the notion of origin." - p. 2, Gesenius' Lexicon.

Trinitarian Robert Young in his Young's Analytical Concordance, p. 331, also shows this meaning for the Hebrew word ab: "Father, ancestor, source, inventor."

God's people have used "Father" synonymously with "source" or "origin" for thousands of years. When they wanted to use a word that denotes absolute "source" they most often used "Father." Obviously the Son is not the "source of creation" - his Father is! (And what could be more appropriate than the Father's very first creation being called his "Firstborn Son"?)

In all the writings of John you will find that he never uses arkhē (ἀρχ) to mean “ruler” but, more properly, always uses arkhōn (ἄρχων). If you will check the New American Standard Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible (1981), you will find that even the very trinitarian New American Standard Bible (NASB) never translates John’s uses of arkhe as “ruler” but does translate arkhon for “ruler” eight times: John 3:1; 7:26; 7:48; 12:31; 12:42; 14:30; 16:11; and Rev. 1:5. Not only is this word (arkhon) always used with the meaning of “ruler” by John, but it is the only word he uses for “ruler”! (underlined verses use the plural form).

Notice that the only use of “ruler” in Revelation by John, is, of course, arkhon: “from Jesus Christ, ... the first-born of the dead, and the ruler [arkhon] of the kings of the earth” (Rev. 1:5, NASB; cf. ASV; JB; NEB; REB; CEB; CEV; RSV; NRSV; NAB; NCV; NIV; NKJV; NLT; ERV; ESV; GNB (TEV); GW; HCSB; ISV; LEB; MEV; Mounce; ETRV; WEB; YLT; Barclay’s translation; and a number of others (such as KJV which render it “prince of the kings...”). And it is highly significant that it is applied to Jesus in a way that most likely would have been duplicated at Rev. 3:14 if he had also meant “ruler” to describe himself there.

To pretend that “ruler” was intended by John in Rev. 3:14 not only ignores John’s strict adherence to always using forms of arkhon to mean “ruler,” but also ignores the clear scriptural Messianic use of the terms arkhon and arkhe! The well-known Messianic scripture of Micah 5:2 sets the pattern for uses of arkhon as applied to the Messiah. The ancient Septuagint version, often quoted by the NT writers, renders Micah 5:2, “out of thee [Bethlehem] shall one come forth to me, to be a ruler [arkhonta, a form of arkhon] of Israel; and his goings forth were from the beginning [arkhe]...”. Clearly, if John wanted to use the term ‘ruler’ to apply to the Messiah, it would have been the already scripturally-established arkhon NOT arkhe! Arkhe was also scripturally-established as meaning “beginning” when applied to the pre-existent Messiah.

Conversely, the only NT word John has used when he intended the meaning of “beginning” is arkhe. (The only apparent exception to this is archomai (arkhomai) found at John 8:9 - see p. 139 in the New American Standard Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. However, even trinitarian scholars admit that this verse is spurious, not written by John but added by a later copyist! - [Jn 9:32 should be more literally translated “from of old”.])

“ARCHE (ἀρχὴ) means a beginning. The root arch- primarily indicated what was of worth. Hence the verb archō meant ‘to be first,’ and archōn denoted a ruler.” - p. 103, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, W. E. Vine (trinitarian), Thomas Nelson Publ., 1984.

The NWT's rendering is not only honest, but the most likely intended by the original inspired writer.



16.  Dr. Walter Martin complains that the NWT falsely renders Philippians 1:21-23.

"The rendering, `but what I do desire is the releasing ...,' particularly the last word, is a gross imposition upon the principles of Greek exegesis because the untutored [Jehovah's Witnesses] have rendered the first aorist active infinitive of the verb analuo (analusai) as a substantive (`the releasing') which in this context is unscholarly and atrocious Greek." - p. 77.

It turns out, then, that this terrible "perversion" is not merely the basic meaning of the word, but the rendering of a verb infinitive ("to run," "to give," "to release," etc.) as a substantive ("the giving," "the releasing," etc.).

According to Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary, a substantive is "... a verbal noun, or any part of speech used as a noun equivalent." So most of Martin's diatribe here has to do with the rendering of an infinitive verb as a noun equivalent. Before we examine this "calculated perversion," let's look at the basic meaning of the word analuo.

NT scholar Ralph P. Martin tells us that this word in Phil. 1:23 "is a euphemism for death; it is a military term for striking camp ... and a nautical expression for releasing a vessel from its moorings." - p. 81, Philippians, (Revised ed.), Tyndale New Testament Commentaries, Eerdmans, 1991 reprint.

The New American Standard Exhaustive Concordance, The Lockman Foundation, 1981, states:
"360. analuo; from 303 and 3089, to unloose for departure" - p. 1631.
"303. ana ... upwards, up" - p. 1630.
"3089. luo; a prim. vb.; to loose, to release ...." - p. 1664.

Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, Baker Book House, tells us:
"360... 1. to unloose, undo again, (as woven threads)...." - p. 40.
"3089... 1. to loose any person (or thing)...fastened" - p. 384.

Obviously, then, it is certainly proper to translate this verb as "to release"!

Phil. 1:23 -

"desiring to be loosed and to be with Christ" - GNV.

"I desire to be released and to be with Christ" - NMB.

"having one eager desire to be loosed, and be with Christ" - Julia Smith.

"having, the coveting, to be released, and to be with, Christ" - Rotherham.

"constantly having the craving (holding the strong desire and impulse) into the [situation] to untie and loose back up again [as in loosing tent pins and ropes when striking camp, or loosing moorings to set sail], and to be (to exist being) together with Christ" - JMNT.

But what about rendering it as a substantive or a verbal noun? Can the infinitive to analusai (literally "the to be loosing up") be rendered "the releasing"? Yes, this is a common practice in all Bible translations as anyone (NT Greek scholar or not) who takes the time to examine an interlinear Bible can easily discover! Honest New Testament scholars, of course, already know this elementary fact:

"The neut. to [the definite article, `the'] before infinitives a. gives them the force of substantives." - Thayer, p. 435, #6.

"The Greek infinitive, being a verbal noun, can have the article, like any other noun.... The infinitive with the article can stand in most of the constructions in which any other noun can stand." - pp. 137, 138, New Testament Greek for Beginners, Dr. J. Gresham Machen, The Macmillan Company.

For example, the verb infinitives at Phil. 1:21 (literally, "the to live" and "the to die") are rendered in the following Bibles as :

1. "As life means Christ to me, so death means gain" - Moffatt translation.
2. "For, to me, `life' means Christ; hence dying is so much gain" - NAB.
3. "For to me life is Christ, and death gain" - NEB; BBE; and REB.
4. "Life to Christ, but then death would bring me ... more" JB; NJB
5. "what is life? To me it is Christ. Death, then will bring more" - TEV.
6. "For to me LIVING means Christ and DYING brings gain" - CBW.
7. "LIVING means Christ and DYING something even better." - AT.
8. "LIVING is Christ and DYING is gain." - NRSV.
9. "To me, LIVING means having Christ ...." - NLV.
10. "For me, LIVING is Christ and DYING is gain." - HCSB.
11. "Because for me, LIVING serves Christ and DYING is even better." - CEB.
12. "for to me, the LIVING is Christ, and the DYING is gain." - DLNT.
13. "To me the only important thing about LIVING is Christ, and DYING would be profit for me." - NCV.
14. "For to me, LIVING is Christ and DYING is gain." - NET.
15. "For to me, LIVING means living for Christ, and DYING is even better." - NLT.

Yes, In spite of Martin's falsehoods, these respected Bibles translated the literal NT Greek infinitive verbs as nouns! Again, just who is falsifying here?  



17.   Phil. 2:6 (harpagmos - ‘grasped’ or ‘seizure’?)


Although the following Bible has plenty of mistranslations, it has rendered this part of Phil. 2:6 correctly:

“He did not think that by force [harpagmos] he should try to become equal with God” - GNB.

The reason is because of the clear meaning of the New Testament (NT) Greek word harpagmos (ἁρπαγμὸς).

Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance (by trinitarian writer and trinitarian publisher) tells us that harpagmos means “plunder” and that it comes from the source word harpazo which means: “to seize ... catch away, pluck, take (by force).” - #725 & 726, Abingdon Press, 1974 printing.

“725 harpagmós – to seize, especially by an open display of force. See 726 (harpazō).” - HELPS Word-studies, copyright © 1987, 2011 by Helps Ministries, Inc.

And the New American Standard Concordance of the Bible (also by trinitarians) tells us: “harpagmos; from [harpazo]; the act of seizing or the thing seized.” And, “harpazo ... to seize, catch up, snatch away.” Notice that all have to do with taking something away by force. - # 725 & #726, Holman Bible Publ., 1981.

In fact, the trinitarian The Expositor’s Greek Testament, 1967, pp. 436, 437, vol. III, tells us:

“We cannot find any passage where [harpazo] or any of its derivatives [which include harpagmos] has the sense of ‘holding in possession,’ ‘retaining’ [as preferred in many trinitarian translations of Phil. 2:6]. It seems invariably to mean ‘seize’, ‘snatch violently’. Thus it is not permissible to glide from the true sense [‘snatch violently’] into one which is totally different, ‘hold fast.’ ”

Even the very trinitarian NT Greek expert, W. E. Vine, had to admit that harpagmos is “akin to harpazo, to seize, carry off by force.” - p. 887, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words.

And the trinitarian The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology tells us that the majority of Bible scholars (mostly trinitarian, of course)

“have taken harpagmos to mean a thing plundered or seized..., and so spoil, booty or a prize of war.” - p. 604, vol. 3, Zondervan, 1986.

The key to both these words (harpagmos and its source word, harpazo) is: taking something away from someone by force and against his will. And if we should find a euphemism such as “prize” used in a trinitarian Bible for harpagmos, it has to be understood only in the same sense as a pirate ship forcibly seizing another ship as its “prize”!


So those critics who deride the NWT for its translation of “gave no consideration to a seizure (harpagmos), namely, that he should be equal to God” (Phil.  2:6) are not being honest.




18.  Rev. 5:10


A criticism I have been confronted with concerns the rendering of Rev. 5:10 in the NWT. Most translations have "reign upon [epi] the earth" or similar renderings.

The NWT has: " ... and they are to rule as kings over [epi] the earth."

The NT Greek word in question ("upon" or "over") is epi (ἐπὶ ).

The scripture is:

(King James Version) Revelation 5:10 “And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on [epi] the earth.” - cf. most translations.

(Darby) Revelation 5:10 and made them to our God kings and priests; and they shall reign over [epi] the earth.

(AT - Smith-Goodspeed) Rev. 5:10 ...and they are to reign over the earth.

(C.B. Williams) ... and they will rule over [epi] the earth.

(W.F. Beck) ... and they will rule as kings over [epi] the earth.

So the question is: what does epi mean?

Well, NT Greek dictionaries give the major meaning as "on" or "upon." However a significant alternate is "over."

For example of the 54 times that epi is rendered as "over" in the NASB, the following have to do with ruling over or having authority over:

Luke 1:33; 9:1; 19:14; 19:27; Acts 7:18; 7:27; Ro. 9:5; Eph. 4:6; Heb. 2:7; 3:6; 10:21; Rev. 2:26; 9:11; 13:7; 17:18.

Sticking with Revelation alone we find:

Revelation 2:26 `He who overcomes, and he who keeps My deeds until the end, TO HIM I WILL GIVE AUTHORITY OVER [EPI] THE NATIONS; - NASB. Also KJV; NKJV; RSV; TEV; ASV; and many more.

Revelation 9:11 They have as king over [epi] them, the angel of the abyss; - NASB. Also KJV; NKJV; RSV; TEV; ASV; and many more.

Revelation 13:7 It was also given to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them, and authority over [epi] every tribe and people and tongue and nation was given to him. - NASB. Also KJV; NKJV; RSV; TEV; ASV; and many more.

Revelation 17:18 "The woman whom you saw is the great city, which reigns over [epi] the kings of the earth." - NASB. Also KJV; NKJV; RSV; TEV; ASV; and many more.

Furthermore in all other cases in the KJV where 'reign' and epi are used together it always means 'over':

Luke 1:33; 19:14; 19:27; Romans 5:14; Rev. 17:18.

It is not inappropriate, therefore, to use "over" at Rev. 5:10 also.

In fact, Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon notes specifically that epi "A. with the GENITIVE .... I. of Place; and 1. of the place on which; .... d. fig. used of things, affairs, persons, which one is set over, over which he exercises power .... Rev. v. 10;" - p. 231, Baker Book House, 1977.




19.  Petra (‘Rock Mass’?)


So Many Versions? (SMV?), by trinitarian Bible scholars Dr. S. Kubo and Dr. W. Albrecht:

On p. 108 we find a complaint about the NWT translating the Greek petra as “rock-mass.” But we see The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan Publ., Vol. 3, p. 381, declaring that petra can mean “a mass of rock,” and that this held true for the writers of the Septuagint (which was quoted in many places in the NT), p. 381.

And W. E. Vine tells us precisely that

PETRA (petra) denotes a mass of rock, as distinct from petros, a detached stone or boulder, or a stone that might be thrown or easily moved.” - An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, p. 974.

Vine also gives Matt. 16:18 as an example of petra used as a metaphor for Christ [“rock-mass”] which is contrasted with the metaphorical word-play petros [“rock” or “Peter”] for the Apostle Peter! (Compare the correct translation of Matt. 16:18 in the NWT with most other translations - also cf. Matt. 7:24.) Also notice the “strange” translations of petra at Matt. 27:60 in NAB (1970) and GNB !

petra denotes a large ‘rock,’ but also a ‘cliff’ or ‘rocky mountain chain.’ .... petros is more often used for smaller rocks, stones, or pebbles.” - p. 834, Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, Kittel and Friedrich, abridged and translated by G. W. Bromiley, Eerdmans Publ., 1992 reprint.

We even find A. T. Robertson admitting in his discussion of Matt. 16: 18:

On this rock … [petra] Jesus says, a ledge or cliff of rock like that in 7:24 on which the wise man built his house. Petros is usually a smaller detachment of this massive ledge.” – p. 131, Word Pictures in the New Testament, vol. 1, Broadman Press.

And we have the following notes found in C.B. Williams’ New Testament in the Language of the People and in the New American Standard Bible:

16:18 – “…your name from now on is to be Peter, Rock, and on a massive rock like this [note e] I will build my church” - Note e: ‘A different word from the word trans. Peter [petros]; i.e., petra, a massive rock, meaning faith in the Christ, the Son of God.’- CBW.

16:18 – “…you are Peter [note 1], and upon this rock [note 2] I will build My church” – Note 1: ‘Gr., Petros, a stone.’ And note 2: ‘Gr., petra, large rock, bedrock.’ – NASB, Reference Edition, Foundation Press, 1975.

So why is the accuracy of the NWT’s translation of petra denigrated by the trinitarian experts of SMV? 




20. “Reads in an undertone” vs. “meditates”


SMV criticizes The NWT's Ps. 1:2 - “But his delight is in the law of Jehovah, And in his law he reads in an undertone day and night” vs. the RSV's - “But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates [hagah] day and night.”

The Hebrew word hagah here means:

“to meditate; moan, growl, utter, speak... reflecting the sighing and low sounds one may make while musing, at least as the ancients practiced it.” - Nelson’s Expository Dictionary of the Old Testament, p. 245, Thomas Nelson, Inc., 1980.  

Gesenius also tells us that hagah means

“(1) to murmur, to mutter, to growl.... (2) poetically, to speak. - absolutely (to utter sound)....[and] (3) to meditate (prop. to speak with oneself, murmuring and in a low voice, as is often done by those who are musing...)...Ps. 1:2” - Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testament, p. 215, Baker Book House.

And A Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament says of hagah:

" .... c) read in an undertone Ps I:2" - p. 76, Eerdmans Publ., 1988.

So, just how do these respected Bible scholars of SMV get away with such a specious criticism of the NWT? Not only can hagah have the meaning of "reads in an undertone," but Ps. 1:2 is specifically mentioned as a verse where this is intended.  




21.  Is. 58:1 - SMV criticizes NWT's “Call out full-throated; do not hold back” vs. RSV's “Cry aloud, spare not.”


The Hebrew here is qara “to call” and garon “(with) the throat” -Young’s Analytical Concordance to the Bible, pp. 28, 213, Eerdmans Publishing.  

And Gesenius tells us:

“[garon]...the throat,.... Isa. 58:1 [qara garon] ‘cry with the throat,’ i.e. with the full voice. For those who speak in a low voice use only the lips...while those who cry with a loud voice propel their words from the throat and breast.” - p. 179.

The NJV (New Jewish Version or Tanakh published by the Jewish Publication Society) is highly praised for its accuracy by SMV:

“The NJV is a monument to careful scholarship .... It ranks as one of the best translations of the Hebrew Bible [the Old Testament] available.” - p. 143, SMV.

And how, then, does NJV translate Is. 58:1? - “Cry with FULL THROAT.” Also compare NAB (1970) ['full-throated'], NAB (1991) ['full-throated'], Young’s ['with the throat'], and ASV [footnote: 'with the throat'] and OT Interlinears.

So, why is this not noted by the authors of SMV? If their “monument to careful scholarship” can render this verse as “cry with full throat,” why should the NWT be criticized for essentially the same (accurate) wording?

As with so many other critics of the NWT, the points being criticized are often more literally accurate in the NWT than in other more “praiseworthy” works.  




22. 1 Cor. 2:7 - NWT‘s “sacred secret” vs. (according to SMV) RSV’s “mystery. 


Examine NIV, NEB, TEV, and GNB. But above all, look at the RSV, 2nd ed., 1971. This was the current edition of the RSV at the time SMV (1975, rev. 1983) was published. And yet, in spite of the fact that SMV claims to compare the NWT’s “peculiar” translation here with the RSV’s, we find that the RSV, 2nd ed., 1971 (as well as the revised 1952 edition), actually says, “We impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God” and not “mystery” as SMV claims! And even the earlier 1946 RSV version reads the same! And the 1989 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) still has “God’s wisdom, secret and hidden” !

The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology further tells us:

"Practically everywhere it occurs in the NT mysterion is found with vbs denoting -> revelation or -> proclamation, i.e. mysterion is that which is revealed (cf. TDNT IV 819). It is a present-day secret, not some isolated fact from the past which merely needs to be noted, but something dynamic and compelling." - p. 504, Vol. 3, Zondervan, 1986.

And The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia also tells us of musterion:

"Its usual modern meaning (= something in itself obscure or incomprehensible, difficult or impossible to understand) does not convey the exact sense of the Gr musterion, which means a secret imparted only to the initiated, what is unknown until it is revealed, whether it be easy or hard to understand. The idea of incomprehensibility, if implied at all, is purely accidental." - p. 2104, Vol. 3, Eerdmans Publ., 1984.

Notice what the word actually means:

“In the N[ew] T[estament] mysterion signifies a secret which is being, or even has been, revealed, which is also divine in scope, and needs to be made known by God to men”. - New Bible Dictionary, 2nd ed., p. 805, Tyndale House Publishers, 1984. (Also see the MINOR study.)

Even many Catholic scholars admit the above truth:

“Mystery.... In a derived sense, the word is synonymous with divine secret.... In scripture it must never be taken in the sense (to which catechism has accustomed us) of revealed truth incomprehensible to the human intelligence (for example, the mystery of the Blessed Trinity).” - New American Bible, St. Joseph Edition, p. 339 (NT), Catholic Book Publishing Co., New York, 1970.

Now, I ask you, why shouldn’t the NWT translate mysterion (musterion) as “sacred secret” when it actually means “divine secret”? It's too bad more Bibles don't 'falsify' as the NWT is said to.




23. Rev. 13:1 - SMV criticizes NWT's “wild beast [therion]” vs. RSV’s “beast.”


The NT Greek word here is therion. This word (therion) means “wild beast” in distinction to ktenos (“beast” or domestic animal) - New Bible Dictionary, 2nd ed., Tyndale House, p. 127.

The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia, vol.1, p. 419, also distinguishes therion as a "wild beast" in contrast to ktenos which is a domesticated beast. - Eerdmans, 1984.

And W. E. Vine states that therion

“almost invariably denotes a wild beast....Therion, in the sense of wild beast, is used in the Apocalypse [Revelation]...[Rev.] 11:7; 13:1-18; 14:9, 11...” - p. 95, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, Thomas Nelson Publ., 1984 printing.

Noted NT scholar Gerhard Kittel agrees: see p. 333, Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, (Abridged in one Volume), Eerdmans Publ., 1985.

And highly respected NT scholars Liddell and Scott write:

“[therion] a wild animal, beast .... of savage beasts” - p. 396, An Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon, Liddell and Scott, Oxford University Press, 1994 printing. (Cf. A. T. Robertson’s Word Pictures in the New Testament, Vol. vi, p. 398.)  

Adam Clarke agrees: Commenting on the word often translated as ‘beast’ in Rev. 13:1, Clarke refers us to its use for the four beasts in the Book of Daniel. The Hebrew word used for these beasts was היח (chaiyah).

“This Hebrew word [היח, chaiyah] is translated in the Septuagint by the Greek word θηρίον, [therion], and both words signify what we term a wild beast; and the latter is the one used by St. John in the Apocalypse. Taking up the Greek word θηρίον [therion] in this sense, it is fully evident, if a power be represented in the prophetical writings under the notion of a wild beast, that the power so represented must partake of the nature of a wild beast. Hence an earthly belligerent power is evidently designed.” - pp. 1109, 1110, Vol. 6B, Adam Clarke’s Commentary.

Also examine NAB (1970); CBW; CLV; TPT; Julia Smith; Rotherham; Lamsa; and Weymouth which all use “wild beast” at Rev. 13:1.

And here’s how most Bibles translate therion at Mark 1:13:

Wild beasts” - RSV; NRSV; NKJV; KJV; ASV; NASB; JB; NAB (1970); NAB (1991); NEB; REB; AB; CBW; Mo; Byington; Webster (and Revised Webster); KJIIV (Green); Darby; Weymouth; and Lamsa. “Wild animals” - NIV; NJB; GNB; AT; NLV, Beck; and Phillips.

We can see the same thing at Rev. 6:8 where RSV; NASB, ASV; NIV; NEB; REB; NJB; NAB (‘70); MLB; GNB; Moffatt; and Phillips translate therion as “wild beasts.” Also LB; CBW; NRSV; and AT render it as ‘wild animals.’

Why do you think the authors of SMV criticizes the NWT's translation of therion at Rev. 13:1 when there is so much evidence for it? Hmmmm, I wonder.  




24.  “marshmallow”?


 Recently I was informed by LDS missionaries who had knocked at my door that the NWT was a false translation. The example they gave was its translation concerning 'marshmallow'! They said this fluffy candy did not exist at the time Job 6:6 was written.

Job 6:6 - "Will tasteless things be eaten without salt, Or is there any taste in the slimy juice of marshmallow?"- New World Translation (1971). (bolding is mine throughout.)

The Hebrew word rendered here by the NWT as "marshmallow" is, according to Strong's Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary of the Old Testament, [chal·la·muth] transliterated as challamuwth [or hallamuth] (pronounced khal·law·mooth).  

The New American Standard Version reads in part here "...white of an egg," its footnote in its Reference edition informs us "Heb[rew], hallamuth, meaning uncertain. Perhaps the juice of a plant."

Another Bible translation, this time the English Standard Version reads, in part here:

"...or is there any taste in the juice of the mallow" (bold mine)

and its footnote reads: "The meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain."

The Lexham English Bible renders it: “Can tasteless food be eaten without salt,
or is there taste in the white of a marshmallow plant?”

S. T. Byington's translation, The Bible in Living English (1972) reads:

".....or is there any flavor in marshmallow?"

A University of Maryland site tells us:



Marshmallow (Althea officinalis) -- the herb, not the white puffy confection roasted over a campfire -- has been used for more than 2,000 years as both a food and a medicine. The Romans, Chinese, Egyptians, and Syrians used marshmallow as a source of food, while the Arabs made poultices from its leaves and applied them to the skin to reduce inflammation. Both the root and leaves contain a gummy substance called mucilage. When mixed with water, it forms a slick gel that is used to coat the throat and stomach to reduce irritation. It is also applied topically to soothe chapped skin.” - also writes:

marsh mallow (althaea officinalis), perennial herbaceous plant of the hibiscus, or mallow, family (malvaceae), native to eastern Europe and northern Africa. It has also become established in North America. The plant is usually found in marshy areas, chiefly near the sea. …. The root was formerly used to make marshmallows, a confection.”

TheEpicTimes, June 28, 2011:

Real marshmallow (Althaea officinalis) is a native herb of Europe, where it was also used as a staple vegetable in times of crop failure and can be found growing along the banks of tidal rivers, damp-meadows, in marshes and usually near the sea.

Note that the plant is spelled as one word, "marshmallow" as well as "marsh mallow."

Also here [ ] where we can read from its "additional comments": 

“Pliny wrote that 'whosoever shall take a spoonful of the Mallows shall that day be free from all diseases that may come to him'. Marshmallow is mentioned in the Bible and in Arabic and Chinese history as a valuable food during times of famine. In rural France, the young tops and leaves are eaten in salads for their kidney-stimulating effects. All members of the mallow family, such as the hollyhock and common mallow, have similar properties and can be used medicinally.”- [bolding mine.]

In our copy of the Webster's New World Dictionary of the American Language (College edition, 1964) under "marsh mallow" we find two entries. The second reads: "a plant of the mallow family, with large, pink flowers, growing in marshes..." From this then we doubt very much if a reader of the New World Translation here at Job 6:6 would think the reference to "marshmallow" is anything but a plant.

So, the fact is that the New World Translation's choice of the English word "marshmallow" is quite acceptable linguistically and above any pedantic, quibbling reproach from those who might prefer another rendition.

Hence, there is no consensus among Biblical translators and scholars in how this word should be translated into English. Given that this is a fact that cannot be disputed and that there is certainly support for the choice made by the NWT Translation Committee for so rendering this Hebrew word chal·la·muth' as "marshmallow" rather than as "egg" or "purslane/purslain" then that choice is above any criticism even if one is to prefer another meaning such as "egg."

And it is certainly no 'evidence' that the NWT Translation Committee "mis-translated" this "un-certain," "obscure" Hebrew word! 




25.  “Grease” vs. “Anoint”


Of all the criticisms of the “peculiar” translations of the NWT that are found on pp.108-109 of So Many Versions? (SMV), one of the most interesting to me is that Matt. 6:17 reads “grease [aleipho] your head” in the 1984 NWT whereas the more-respected RSV (and NASB) has “anoint your head.” As minor as this is, it does show the great efforts taken by the NWT translators to translate accurately.

Since “anoint” in traditional Bible English has strong connotations of “consecration to a holy or sacred use” - Today’s Dictionary of the Bible, p. 40, Bethany House Publ. - and “to signify holiness, or separation unto God” - New Bible Dictionary, 2nd ed., p. 50, Tyndale House Publ., it should come as no surprise that the accuracy-seeking NWT translators used “grease” for all 8 instances of the word aleipho found in the NT to distinguish it from the word which is more properly rendered “anoint” (chrio in NT Greek).

“In contrast with the more important word ‘chrio,’ it [aleipho] refers consistently to the physical action of anointing, performed exclusively on people: for care of the body (Matt. 6:17); as a mark of honor to a guest (Lk. 7:38, 46; Jn 11:2; 12:3); to honor the dead (Mk. 16:1); and to heal the sick (Mk. 6:13; James 5:14).” - The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Vol. 1, p. 120.

That same source also tells us that

aleipho ... denotes the process by which soft fat [grease]... or oil ... is smeared upon ... a person.” - p. 119.

And Thayer tells us that aleipho is “allied with lip-os grease.” - p. 25.

On the other hand, W. E. Vine tells us

“‘Chrio’ is more limited in its use than [aleipho]; it is confined to sacred and symbolical anointings .... in the Scriptures it is not found in connection with secular matters.” - pp. 50, 51.

The RSV has been revised. Significantly, the revisers have changed SMV’s model for the “correct” rendering of “anoint your head” to “put oil on your head.” - NRSV, 1989.

So the NWT, instead of being criticized, should be praised for properly showing the clear distinction between the actual meanings of these two NT Greek words. The same thing can be said for most, if not all, of the criticisms of the NWT made by So Many Versions?. 




26. Ro. 9:5 - “ ... Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen.” - KJV.  


Bowman not only insists that the KJV has the only proper translation of this verse and that it proves that Jesus is definitely called God, but that the NWT “systematically abused the divine ... titles” by mistranslating it “so that Jesus is not called God at all”! - p. 71.

NWT: "Israelites .... to whom the forefathers belong and from whom the Christ [sprang] according to the flesh: God, who is over all, [be] blessed forever." Ro 9:4, 5.

This is the scripture that A Catholic Dictionary calls “the strongest statement of Christ’s divinity in [the writings of] St. Paul, and, indeed, in the N[ew] T[estament].”

The Jerusalem Bible (Roman Catholic) renders it, like the equally trinitarian KJV, in such a way as to make Christ appear to be God: “Christ who is above all, God for ever blessed! Amen.”

And the very trinitarian The NIV Study Bible, 1985, in a note for Ro. 9:5, calls it: “One of the clearest statements of the deity of Jesus Christ found in the entire NT, assuming the accuracy of the translation (see NIV text note).”

However, the trinitarian The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology is forced to acknowledge that even IF such a trinitarian rendering of the Greek were accurate,

“Christ would not be equated absolutely with God, but only described as being of divine nature [see the study paper on ‘The Definite John 1:1’ (DEF)], for the word theos has no article. But this ascription of majesty does not occur anywhere else in Paul. The much more probable explanation is that the statement is a DOXOLOGY [praise] DIRECTED TO God.” - Vol. 2, p. 80, Zondervan, 1986.

Even the trinitarian United Bible Societies makes the same admission:

“In fact, on the basis of the general tenor of his theology it was considered tantamount to impossible that Paul would have expressed Christ’s greatness by calling him ‘God blessed for ever’.” And, “Nowhere else in his genuine epistles does Paul ever designate ho christos [‘the Christ’] as theos [‘God’ or ‘god’].” - p. 522, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, United Bible Societies, 1971.

The UBS has therefore punctuated their NT Greek text in such a way as to show the separateness of Christ and God at Ro. 9:5.

The noted NT scholar and translator, William Barclay, although an admitted trinitarian, has translated Ro. 9:5 as "And from them [Israelites], on his human side, came the Anointed One of God. Blessed for ever be the God who is over all! Amen." - The Letter to the Romans, Rev. ed., The Daily Study Bible Series, The Westminster Press, 1975.

And A Catholic Dictionary admits the possibility that the scripture in question is really a doxology directed to God and not to Jesus: “There is no reason in grammar or in the context which forbids us to translate ‘God, who is over all, be blessed for ever, Amen.’” And this statement is from the very same trinitarian reference work that calls Ro. 9:5 “the strongest statement of Christ’s divinity” in the entire New Testament!! If this is the “strongest” such statement, where does that put the rest of the trinity “proof”?

Illustrating the high probability that the last part of Romans 9:5 is directed as a doxology to the Father, not to Jesus, are these translations of Ro. 9:5 found in trinitarian Bibles where the statement in question is a separate thought, a separate sentence which is not directed to Jesus:

The New American Bible (NAB), 1970 ed. - “Blessed forever be God who is over all! Amen.”

The New American Bible (NAB), 1991 ed. - “God who is over all be blessed forever, Amen.”

The New English Bible (NEB) - “May God, supreme above all, be blessed forever!”

Revised English Bible (REB) - “May God, supreme above all, be blessed forever!”

The Revised Standard Version (RSV) - “God who is over all be blessed for ever. Amen.”

- See p. 165, So Many Versions? (SMV), Zondervan, 1983.

New Life Version (NLV) - “May God be honored and thanked forever.”

Today’s English Version (TEV) - “May God, who rules over all, be praised forever! Amen.”

The Bible, A New Translation, (Mo) by Dr. James Moffatt - “(Blessed for evermore be the

God who is over all! Amen.)”

Easy-to-Read Version (ETRV) - “May God, who rules over all things, be praised forever”(f.n.)

An American Translation (AT) - “ - God who is over all be blessed for ever!”

Yes, even Dr. Goodspeed, the trinitarian scholar praised by Bowman himself, translates Ro. 9:5 in a non-trinitarian fashion in his An American Translation!

Not only can Ro. 9:5 be interpreted as having two different statements about two different subjects (1. Jesus came to earth as an Israelite, and, 2. Bless God who is over all.), but that is almost certainly the meaning intended by Paul (compare Ro. 15:5, 6; Ro. 16:27; 2 Cor. 1:3; Gal. 1:3-5; Eph. 1:3; 1 Tim. 1:16, 17).

Some trinitarians have, instead, run these two separate statements together in such a way as to give the interpretation that they both refer to the same subject: Jesus.

But notice how the highly respected trinitarian Bible, the Revised Standard Version (RSV) renders this verse:

[An Israelite] “according to the flesh, is the Christ. God who is over all be blessed for ever. Amen.”

And just how is it that the Bowman-praised trinitarian translator Dr. Goodspeed (in basic agreement with many other trinitarian translators and respected scholars) renders Ro. 9:5 as:

“from them [Israelites] physically Christ came - God who is over all be blessed forever! Amen”

while “the NWT has systematically abused the divine names or titles” (according to Bowman, p. 71) by rendering Ro. 9:5 as:

“from whom the Christ [sprang] according to the flesh: God, who is over all, [be] blessed forever. Amen.”

There is NO ESSENTIAL DIFFERENCE!  Ro. 9:5 is simply not necessarily a trinitarian statement! And Bowman is being incredibly hypocritical and dishonest by accusing the NWT of purposely distorting and mistranslating this scripture and abusing the divine titles!




27.  1 John 5:20  


1 Jn 5:20 (Bowman again)- “his Son, Jesus Christ. This [outos] is the true [alethinos] God, and eternal life.” - KJV.

“We are in union with him who is true, through his son, Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.” – AT (Goodspeed).

“his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and life everlasting.” - NWT.

Bowman complains about the interpretation of 1 John 5:20 by JW’s! Obviously the translation itself is little different from most trinitarian translations.

Some trinitarians, like Bowman, actually insist that the word “this” (outos) here refers to Jesus. In other words, “[Jesus Christ] is the true God and eternal life.” For example, Bowman in his Jehovah’s Witnesses, Jesus Christ, and the Gospel of John states that Jesus is called

“‘the true God and eternal life’ ... indisputably identifying Christ as the Almighty God of the Old Testament.” - p. 41, Baker Book House, 1991 printing.

I understand why trinitarians are so desperate in their search for scriptural “evidence” that they have to make it up, but this is incredibly poor!

It is obvious that grammatically the word “this” (outos) could be referring to either the Father or Jesus in this particular scripture (see the footnote for 1 John 5:20 in the very trinitarian NIV Study Bible and the comments on 1 Jn 5:20 by the staunchly trinitarian scholar A. T. Robertson in his Word Pictures, Vol. VI, p. 245.). But the fact that the true God (or “the true One”) has just been identified as the Father of Jesus (1 Jn 5:20, TEV and GNB) makes it highly probable that “this is the true God” refers to the Father, not Jesus.

The noted trinitarian NT scholar Murray J. Harris sums up his 13-page analysis of this scripture as follows:

“Although it is certainly possible that outos refers back to Jesus Christ, several converging lines of evidence point to ‘the true one,’ God the Father, as the probable antecedent. This position, outos = God [Father], is held by many commentators, authors of general studies, and significantly, by those grammarians who express an opinion on the matter.” - p. 253, Jesus as God, Baker Book House, 1992.

Notice how this trinitarian scholar actually admits that the probability is that the Father (not Jesus) is being called the true God here. He even tells us (and cites examples in his footnotes) that New Testament grammarians and commentators (most of them trinitarian, of course) agree!

So this single “proof” that the “true God” is a title for anyone other than the Father alone is not proof at all. The grammar alone merely makes it a possibility. The immediate context makes it highly improbable since (as in all other uses of the term) the true God (or the true one) was just identified as the Father (“We are in the one who is true as we are in his Son, Jesus Christ. He is the true God and this is eternal life.” - NJB; and “We know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we know the true God. We live in union with the true God - in union with his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and this is eternal life.” - TEV.).

So the immediate context makes it probable that the true God is the Father in this scripture also. If we include the context of all the uses of the ‘true God’ in the NT, it is certain that He is the Father (whose personal name is Jehovah - Jer. 10:10, ASV; Ps. 83:18, KJV; Ex. 3:15, NEB). A quick glance at 1 Thess. 1:9 and 10, for example makes it very clear that “the true God” is the Father.

To clinch John’s intended meaning at 1 John 5:20, let’s look at his only other use of the term “the true God”: John 17:1, 3, where, again (as in 1 Jn 5:20), he mentions Father, Son, and eternal life.

At John 17:1, 3 Jesus prays to the Father: “Father, .... this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” - New International Version (NIV). Here the Father alone is not only very clearly identified as the only true [alethinos] God, but Jesus Christ is again pointedly and specifically excluded from that identification (“and Jesus Christ whom you [the only true God] have sent”)!

Notice how this trinitarian Bible has rendered John 17:1, 3 - “Father,....This is eternal life: to know thee who alone art truly God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.” - New English Bible (NEB).

Once again we find that even many trinitarian scholars agree with the JW interpretation. So just how is it that the NWT has “abused the divine name or titles” by translating 1 John 5:20 essentially as many trinitarian Bibles do OR by interpreting it as many, if not most, trinitarian scholars also do? Bowman is knowingly accusing the JWs falsely!




28.  Phil. 2:5 


I found criticisms of the NWT in a simple list comparing verses in ESV with those in NWT (but without commentary). I have listed them both and then added other Bible translations of the same verse.

PHIL. 2:5 (ESV) "Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus," - ESV.

"Keep this mental attitude in you that was also in Christ Jesus," - NWT.

"Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus," - NASB.

"Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus," - NRSV.

"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:" - KJV.

"In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:" - NIV.

I don't see that the NWT is in error in this scripture.




29.  Acts 2:17  



Continuing from the above-mentioned list:


Acts 2:17

".... I will pour out from [apo] the spirit of me on all flesh ...." - Nestle's Greek Text.

“‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh," - ESV.

‘“And in the last days,” God says, “I will pour out some of my spirit on every sort of flesh," - NWT.

‘It will come to pass in the last days,’ God says, ‘that I will pour out a portion of my spirit upon all flesh' - NAB.

Certainly in all other cases ekxeo ἐκχέω (“poured out”) refers to things. It would be unreasonable to insist that this is not the case in Acts 2 (and Titus 3:6) also. We can see that if we pour out something from something, it can mean one of two things. If we said we poured out from our bowl, for instance, we actually mean we poured from a container which contained some substance (thing). We may have poured some of it or all of it. But if we said we poured out from our wine onto your roast beef, it can only mean that we poured a portion of our wine (out of some container, of course) onto the meat. We would not say we poured from our wine if we had poured it all out.

What was it that God poured out from his Spirit? Well, what did the people receive when God poured out from his Spirit? Acts 2:4, 33 tells us they received Holy Spirit! If, then, God poured Holy Spirit from his Holy Spirit as described in Acts 2:17, 18, it means he poured out a portion of his Holy Spirit, as rendered in the trinitarian translations of the New American Bible (1970 and 1991 editions), the New English Bible, and the Revised English Bible. (It is similar to our pouring out some wine from our wine.) So God poured out some of his spirit here, some of it there, but certainly he still kept an infinite amount.

Also see Numbers 11:17, 25.

As for the rendering "every sort of" for the word "all" in NT Greek:

Thayer's - "b. any and every, of every kind (A.V. often all manner of)" - Matt. 4:23; 5:11; 10:1; Acts 10:12; Ro. 7:8; Rev. 21:19.

The NWT is not 'falsifying' here.




30.  Acts 5:29


Acts 5:29 - (Peitharchein) translated as "obey" in most Bibles. The NWT has been criticized for translating it as "obey as ruler."

“In answer Peter and the [other] apostles said: ‘We must obey God as ruler rather than men.’ ” - NWT. [Underlining added]

So, some anti-NWT critics claim that the NWT has falsely added “as ruler” to this scripture. But let’s examine what other authorities have to say about the word in question (peitharchein).

We must (dei). Moral necessity left them no choice. They stood precisely where Peter and John were when before the Sanhedrin before (Acts 4:20). Obey (peitharchein). Old verb from peithomai and arche, to obey a ruler. Only by Luke and Paul in the N.T.” - Robertson’s Word Pictures in the New Testament, p. 65, vol. 3.

Peitharchein: “to obey (a ruler or a superior)” p. 497, Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, Thayer, Baker Book House, 1977.

“The term ‘obey’ (peithomai) is used twice in [Acts 5] verses 36 and 37; it picks up the related verb ‘obey a leader’ (peitharchein) in verses 29 and 32.” - Note for Acts 5:37 in Sacra Pagina, The Acts of the Apostles, p. 100, the Liturgical Press, 1992.
(All emphasis above was added.)

The NWT is certainly not 'fasifying' here!  




31.  Theon (with article or not)  


"The most revealing evidence of the Watchtower's bias is their inconsistent translation technique. Throughout the Gospel of John, the Greek word theon occurs without a definite article. The New World Translation renders none of these as 'a god.' Even more inconsistent, in John 1:18, the NWT translates the same term as both 'God' and 'god' in the very same sentence." 

John uses the article ton ('the') with theon 9 times in his Gospel. Four times theon occurs without the article: Jn 1:18; 10:33; 20:17 (2). Of these three verses, the NWT translates theon at John 10:33 as 'a god' (as does the NEB)!!

At Jn 1:18 The NWT renders theon (θεόν) as "God" because of word order - 

"... in John 1:18, the NWT translates the same term as both 'God' and 'god' in the very same sentence."

There are two different 'terms' here in John 1:18: theon and theos. The first is explained in the link to my study above. The second 'term' (theos) is rendered as 'god' in the NWT and has no article with it. - 

At Jn 20:17 the article is found before the first 'Father' in the series and, therefore, can apply to the other words in the series (including both uses of theon making them ton theon: 'God'). Another grammatical reason is that the 'prepositional' uses of theon makes the use or non-use of the article uncertain (either definite or indefinite):

+++ In section VIII, ‘The Absence of the Article,’ Professor A. T. Robertson quotes Gildersleeve and tells us, “prepositional phrases and other formulae may dispense with the article” - p. 790. And “(b) with GENITIVES. We have seen that the substantive MAY still be definite if anarthrous, though not necessarily so.” - p. 791, A Grammar of the Greek New Testament.

And, this highly respected trinitarian New Testament Greek authority also tells us:

“In examples like this [“prepositional” constructions] (cf. ... Mt. 27:54) ONLY THE CONTEXT CAN DECIDE [whether the anarthrous noun is definite or indefinite]. Sometimes the matter is wholly doubtful.... [Please note that the example Robertson has given (Matt. 27:54) has the anarthrous predicate noun coming before the verb as in Colwell’s Rule!] In Jo. 5:27 [‘son of man’] may be either ‘the son of man’ or ‘a son of man.’” - p. 781. [Robertson says this in spite of the fact that John 5:27 also has an anarthrous predicate noun preceding its verb!! It’s “prepositional” (noun modified by a genitive noun in these cases) and, therefore, the use of the article is ambiguous!] - A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research, A. T. Robertson, 1934.

+++ “The article … is sometimes missing, especially after prepositions … and with a genitive which depends on an anarthrous noun (especially a predicate noun): Mt 27:43.” - Blass & Debrunner, A Greek Grammar of the New Testament and other Early Christian Literature, p. 133, University of Chicago Press, 1961.

+++ “#1146. A substantive followed by an attributive genitive and forming with it a compound idea, usually omits the article.” - H. W. Smyth’s A Greek Grammar for Colleges, p. 291.

This NWT critic's statement is false!

The NWT is certainly not falsifying here!   



32. John 14:14 

Robert Bowman in his Understanding Jehovah’s Witnesses, Baker Book House, 1991:

"John 14:14 should also be mentioned [as a 'faulty translation' in the NWT]. In the NWT this reads: “If you ask anything in my name, I will do it.” The Greek text in the KIT [Kingdom Interlinear Translation], however, has me after ask, so that it should be translated: “If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.” It is true that some later Greek manuscripts omitted this word, but most of the earlier ones included it, and most modern editions of the Greek New Testament include it. At the very least, the NWT ought to have mentioned this reading in a note." - pp. 67-68.  

But at John 14:14 'me' is omitted after 'ask' in the following trinitarian Bibles:

ASV; CBW; Darby; GNV; JB; KJ21; KJV; MLB; NEB; REB; NKJV; LB; MKJV (Green); NLV; RSV; WEB; WE; Young’s.

Many of them do not mention an alternate reading of 'me' in a note! And, likewise, many of the Bibles which do translate ‘ask me’ in this verse do not mention an alternate reading without ‘me’!!

The prestigious The Expositor’s Greek New Testament (Vol. 1, p. 824) also omits “me” from its text and does not even bother to address the matter in its voluminous notes. Bible Analyzer calls this 5-volume work “The Premier Greek Resource.

This is a disputed text. There exists manuscript evidence that ‘me’ may not have been used by the original writer. (Also see Sahidic Coptic Insight on NT Verses - Nov. 2, 2010 - where ‘Memra’ explains the importance of the ancient Coptic translation of this verse.)

However, there is no such dispute about John 16:23 where John wrote: “... whatever you ask the Father for, he will give you in my name.” We should ask the Father (not the Son) in Jesus’ name. Therefore 'me' at John 14:14 is even more in doubt.

Bowman has access to a copy of (and is quite familiar with) the 1984 NWT Reference Bible. He repeatedly quotes from it and refers to notes in it in both this 1991 publication (Understanding Jehovah’s Witnesses) and his 1989 publication, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Jesus Christ, and the Gospel of John.

Yes, the 1984 NWT Reference Bible (which does have notes, of course) says in a footnote for John 14:14:

14* “Ask,” ADIt and in agreement with 15:16 and 16:23; P66 [Aleph]BWVgSy(h,p), “ask me.”

So for Bowman to pretend here that the NWT does not even mention that some Greek manuscripts have the word ‘me’ in this verse is simply inexcusable!  





33. Col. 1:16 (“Other”) Part A


Other” at Col. 1:16 (Part A)
“For through [Jesus] all things were created in heaven and on earth” - MLB.
“by means of [Jesus] all [other] things were created” - NWT (1984).

The use of the word “other” by the NWT at Col. 1:16 makes many trinitarian “scholars” very upset. Dr. Walter Martin tells us in his The Kingdom of the Cults, 1985 ed., p. 75 that this “dishonest rendering of Col. 1:16, 17, and 19 by the insertion of the word ‘other’” is “one of the most clever perversions of the New Testament texts that the author has ever seen.” He further states that “attempting to justify this unheard of travesty upon the Greek language and simple honesty, the New World Bible Translation Committee enclosed each added ‘other’ in brackets.”

Here the accusation is perfectly clear: Martin is claiming that the NWT has dishonestly added to God’s Word! But what is the truth about words added to the original text?

Well, the KJV also adds words at many places in the scriptures and frequently signifies these additions by italicizing such added words. In fact all Bible translations add words to make the intended meaning of the original language clear to the readers of another language. The NWT in its earlier editions indicated added words with brackets [ ] and did so at Col. 1:16, 17 with [“other”]!

Yes, all Bible translators supply needed words in accordance with their own understanding of what meaning they believe the Bible writer actually intended. Any serious Bible student knows this elementary fact. You can see that the KJV translators (and NIV, NKJV, TEV/GNB, Beck, etc.) added the word “other” at Acts 5:29 (and rightly so) even though it is not actually written in the original text (also compare KJV at Job 24:24). Were they, then, dishonestly, blasphemously adding to God’s Word? Of course not!

The Bible writers often excluded the subject (and others with him) when using the term “all” (and “every”). This is a common usage even today. For example, the police lieutenant making an arrest of a criminal group might tell his men: “Arrest everyone in this room!” Obviously the lieutenant does not include himself (nor his men who are with him) even though he says “everyone”!

[Here is the most recent example that just presented itself a few minutes after I was re-reviewing this study paper in 2004:
Jun 5, 5:47 PM (ET)


WASHINGTON (AP) - Ronald Reagan, the cheerful crusader who devoted his presidency to winning the Cold War, trying to scale back government and making people believe it was "morning again in America," died Saturday after a long twilight struggle with Alzheimer's disease. He was 93.
"Reagan lived longer than any U.S. President, ...."

But to be accurate we must remember that Reagan was one of those U.S. Presidents! Obviously the AP writer did not mean to imply that Reagan hadn’t ever been President. We all understand that what he meant was “Reagan lived longer than any other President”!– added 5 June 2004, emphasis added]

This also applies to the word “all” [πάντα, πάντὸς, πᾶς, etc.] as used in the early Greek manuscripts of the Bible.

And we find NEB; REB; NJB; NAB (‘91); GNB; and LB (for example) have honestly added “other” at Ezek. 31:5 to show that a certain tree towered above “all other trees” whereas KJV, NASB, RSV (for example) have it towering “above all trees.” Since it does not tower above itself, the Bible writer obviously excluded it from the phrase “all trees” (even though it is also a tree itself and a part of “all trees”) just as Col. 1:16 excludes Jesus from all other things.

In Matthew 10:22, Jesus tells his followers: “and you will be hated by all [παντων] because of my name.” - NRSV. Certainly, Jesus didn’t mean that his followers would be hated by Jesus himself or by God. And most certainly he didn’t mean they would be hated by themselves! (Remember, the subject – as in 1 Cor. 1:16 - is often understood to be excluded from the “all” statements.)

The Moffatt translation, An American Translation, The Common Bible, The Amplified Bible, and translations by C. B. Williams, and Beck all add “other” after “all” at 1 Cor. 15:24 (e.g. “when he will put an end to all other government, authority, and power” - C. B. Williams, The New Testament in the Language of the People, Moody Press, 1963). Although the NWT does not happen to add “other” at that scripture, its translators (as well as every other Jehovah’s Witness on earth) would whole-heartedly agree that those who have added “other” there have done so properly and that the original Bible writer so intended the meaning!

And conversely, at Jn 2:10 the NWT has added “other,” and, although most [other] translations do not add it, I’m sure most people would agree that, whether actually written in the scripture or not, context demands such an understanding: “Every other man puts out the fine wine first...”

Again, at 1 Cor. 6:18 the respected trinitarian Bibles NIV, NASB, NEB, REB, AT, GNB, TEV, JB, NJB (among others) have added “other” to the text. And the NWT agrees whole-heartedly! And at Matt. 6:33 JB, AT, GNB, TEV, and Beck (Lutheran scholar) have added “other” (NEB has added “the rest”), and, again, the NWT agrees.

Or how about Luke 13:2 where many trinitarian translations add ‘other’:
“all the other Galileans” - NIV
“all other Galileans” – NASB 
“all other Galileans” – NAB (’91)
“all other Galileans” - NRSV
"all the other Galileans" - ESV
“all other Galileans” - NKJV
“all the other Galileans” – RSV
“anyone else in Galilee” – NEB and REB
“than any other Galileans” - JB
“than all other Galileans” - NJB
“any other Galileans” - AT
"above all the other Galileans" - KJ21
"than all the other Galileans?" - CEB
"everyone else in Galilee" - CEV
"than all the other Galileans" - MEV 
"than all the other Galileans" - CSB
"all other Galileans" - TEV 
"than the rest of the Galileans" - TLV
"than all the other Galileans" - Mounce
"than all the other Galileans" - WEB
"than all the other people in Galilee?" - WE 
"than other people from Galilee?" - GW
"all other Galilaeans" - BBE
"other people from Galilee" - GodsWord
"all the other Galileans" - ISV NT
"than all others from Galilee?" - ICB
"than all the other Galileans" - ISV
“the rest of the Galileans” - Moffatt
"than all others from Galilee?" - NCV
"than all the other Galileans" - NET

When Gen. 3:20 tells us that Eve “was the mother of all living,” does that really make her the mother of Adam? of all animals? of all plants? of angels? of God? So, although the literal Hebrew says “all,” we know from the teachings of the rest of the Bible that this is a severely qualified “all,” and it would be perfectly honest to add some qualifying word or phrase (“all other humans” - after all, she, although the subject, wasn’t her own mother, or Adam’s).

Another good example of honest adding can be seen in reference to another too literal interpretation of “all.” Romans 3:23 says literally, “All have sinned” -- but, obviously, Jesus, the Father, and myriads of faithful angels have not sinned! So some Bibles (including TEV and NAB [1970 ed.]) have honestly qualified this “all” by adding to this scripture and translated it “All men have sinned.” You may notice also that they haven’t even bothered to indicate that the word “men” has been added.



Part B ("Other")
Also in Romans we find the very same words used by Paul in Col. 1:16 (ta panta) - “He [God] didn’t spare His own Son but gave him up for all of us - He will certainly with Him give us everything [ta panta].” - Ro. 8:32, Beck (Lutheran). Obviously, the “everything” that is given to Christians does not include God or Jesus, or even fellow created Christians. It certainly would not be improper to translate this as: “He will ... give us all [other] things.” In fact, notice these trinitarian Bible translations:

“... how can he fail to lavish every other gift upon us?” - REB.
“ ... will he not with him also give us everything else?” - NRSV
“... won’t he also surely give us everything else?” - Living Bible.
“... will he not also give us everything else along with him?” - NAB (‘91)
“... will He not with Him graciously give us everything else?” - CBW.

Since ta panta does not include all created things in this scripture, it certainly does not have to mean all created things in Col. 1:16!

Yes, Col. 1:16, 17 needs a qualified “all” as the teaching of the rest of the Bible testifies. It is similar to Hebrews 2:8 in this respect.
At Heb. 2:8 we read: “Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him.” However, it would certainly be honest and proper for a translator familiar with the teachings of the rest of the Bible (e.g. 1 Cor. 15:27) to add the qualifying words to this scripture that were understood and intended by the original writer. E.g., “Thou hast put all [other] things in subjection...;” or even, “Thou hast put all things [except the Father and yourself] in subjection...” - see 1 Cor. 15:27 below.

(KJV) 1 Corinthians 15:27 For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under [him, it is] manifest that he [the Father] is excepted, which did put all things under him.

(NASB) 1 Corinthians 15:27 For HE HAS PUT ALL THINGS IN SUBJECTION UNDER HIS FEET. But when He says, "All things are put in subjection," it is evident that He [the Father] is excepted who put all things in subjection to Him [the Son].

(NIV) …. Now when it says that "everything" has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything [ta panta] under Christ.

Similarly, we find Paul saying at Phil. 2:9 that God exalted Jesus and “bestowed on him the name above all names.” - NEB. But, obviously, his name is not above the name of the God who exalted him. Therefore, it is not wrong to add “other” and render this as “God ... gave him the name which is above all other names” as did the translators of JB; NJB; NAB (1970); NCV; NLT; AT; GNB/TEV; CEV; LB; CBW; Beck (NT); ETRV; GW; and NLV.

Paul continues in Phil. 2:10, “So that in the name of Jesus every knee should bend of those in heaven and those on earth....” But, obviously, the Father in heaven does not bend his knee, and Jesus certainly does not bend his knee to himself! This, too, should be a qualified “every knee”! (And analyze 1 Pet. 4:7)

So how accurate are those who say the translators of the NWT have made a “dishonest rendering of Col. 1:16, 17, and 19 by the insertion of the word ‘other’”?

Well, let’s look at Col. 1:17 itself: “And he is before all things.” - KJV. This is the literal wording and what Martin wants.

But look at what these [other] trinitarian translations have added to this verse:
“He is before all else that is...” - NAB (‘70)
“He was before all else began...” - LB
“God’s Son was before all else” - CEV
“He existed before anything else” - NLT
"He himself existed before anything else did" - ISV

Since it is obvious that Christ did not exist before himself, nor before the Father, these two, at least, have to be excluded from “all things.”

Therefore, the very trinitarian NAB, LB, and NLT, etc. above have properly added “else” to this scripture. This is the same thing as writing “before every [other] thing”!

Consider John 10:29: “My Father … is greater than all” – KJV.
Then the Father is greater than the Son and greater than the Holy Spirit and “greater even than Himself???”

The Living Bible says, My Father “is more powerful than anyone else,” which still means He is greater than the Son and greater than the Holy Spirit [if it were really a person], but, at least, shows He is not greater than Himself. - also NLT; ISV; AMP; God’s Word; CEV; Worldwide English Bible.

And, Rev. 4:11 “For you [the Father seated on the throne - see Rev. 5:6-9] created everything [panta]” – CBW. (But, literally, panta -“all” or “all things” – would have to include the Father Himself and the Son and the Holy Spirit!).

Notice how the subject (“the Father") is excluded from “all things” [ta panta] in these scriptures and is clearly understood to mean that he created all other things. If this understanding is necessary here (as it is), then it is equally valid at Col. 1:16-17.

Certainly it is not wrong from a grammatical viewpoint (nor is it a “dishonest rendering”) to add “other” as the NWT has done at Col. 1:16, 17 (and the LB and the NAB have done with “else” at Col. 1:17) and so many trinitarian translators have done in other similar situations. Whether it is doctrinally correct as Rev. 3:14, Prov. 8:22-30, 1 John 4:9 (“only-begotten”), and Col. 1:15 (“firstborn of all creation”) suggest is a matter for all honest-hearted persons to discover but not a reason for falsely accusing someone of dishonestly rendering God’s Word! 




34.  “Jehovah” in NT  (part A)


The translators of the NWT have examined the text of the NT and determined that it contains some quotes from the OT text which contain the name of God (YHWH or 'Jehovah' as transliterated in the KJV and the ASV). Because of this they have replaced the NT Greek word found in the NT text with that name ('Jehovah') as found in these OT quotes. They have carefully given the reason for this in their footnotes and appendix so no one should misunderstand.

Nevertheless, many anti-NWT writers have tantrums about this.

Robert H. Countess authored a book defaming the Bible translation of the Jehovah’s Witnesses: “The Jehovah’s Witnesses’ New Testament - A Critical Analysis of the New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures [NWT],” Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1982 (2nd ed. 1987). (I got my copy from Christian Book Distributors [CBD] in October 1994.)

It is noteworthy that this book was originally produced as a doctoral thesis by Mr. Countess in 1966. He then published it in 1982. After 5 years he made a few corrections and published the present (second edition) version in 1987. He says in the preface to this second edition: “The present edition of The Jehovah’s Witnesses’ New Testament embodies all of the earlier text except for the correction of typographical errors noted by the author and the readers.” - p. vii.

He strongly criticizes the NWT for replacing the name 'Jehovah' when the existing NT MSS read kurios ('Lord') even though they are in quotes from or clear references to OT scriptures which use the Divine Name. He, nevertheless, also criticizes them for NOT using 'Jehovah' when 'Lord' is used in the NT text for Jesus (at places where he claims the OT is also being quoted).

For example, in his Table IV (p. 104) Countess claims that John only quoted twice from the OT where it originally used “Jehovah,” whereas the NWT has used “Jehovah” 5 times in the Gospel of John. Furthermore, of those 5 times, he claims, only one is actually based on an OT use of “Jehovah”! In other words, the NWT is dishonest in 4 of its 5 uses of “Jehovah” in the Gospel of John because they are not based on an OT use of “Jehovah”!

We have seen that even respected trinitarian scholars disagree as to whether certain NT scriptures are quotes (or clear, direct references) to OT scriptures or not. Sometimes the evidence is simply not strong enough to make it certain. However, for a Bible to disagree with all other Bibles and scholars in 80 per cent (4 out of 5) of such cases might justify an honest accusation of dishonesty.

The five uses of “Jehovah” in John by the NWT are Jn 1:23; 6:45; 12:13; and 12:38 (twice). Is it really true, as Countess claims, that only one of these uses a quote from the OT where “Jehovah” was used?

(1) ALL of the trinitarian Bible translations I used above to determine what was a quote from the OT and what was not (NKJV; RSV; NRSV; NASB; NIV; REB; NAB (1970); NAB (1991); JB; NJB; MLB; Moffatt; and Beck) show Jn 1:23 to be a quote from the OT: Is. 40:3 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV actually uses its keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was in the original!

(2) ALL of those same trinitarian Bibles show Jn 6:45 to be a quote from the OT: Is. 54:13 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts).

(3) Six of those same trinitarian Bibles (NKJV; NASB; JB; NJB; Moffatt; and Beck) show Jn 12:13 to be a quote from the OT: Ps. 118:26 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV again uses its keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was in the original!

(4) & (5) ALL of those same trinitarian Bibles show Jn 12:38 to be a quote from the OT: Is. 53:1 (which does use “Jehovah” once in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV again uses its keyword ‘LORD’ here (once only, however) which indicates “Jehovah” was in the original! The only possible accusation of “dishonesty” here could be the fact that the NWT has rendered both ‘Lord’s in Jn 12:38 as “Jehovah” whereas the OT text being quoted uses only one “Jehovah.” However, the context certainly suggests that the first “Lord” is directed to Jehovah also. And a number of Hebrew New Testament translations have rendered both ‘Lord’s at Jn 12:38 as “Jehovah.” This includes the two I have in my possession which are translated by respected trinitarians: (1) by the United Bible Societies, 1983 printing; and (2) Delitzsch’s Hebrew New Testament, The Trinitarian Bible Society, 1981 printing.

So just how is the NWT being “dishonest” by using “Jehovah” 5 times in these 4 verses in the Gospel of John where John is quoting from the OT? And how honest is Mr. Countess when he tells us that only one use of “Jehovah” in the NWT is supported by a quote from the OT by the Gospel of John?

Exactly who is being dishonest?




35. “Jehovah” in NT  (part B)


Another good example from Dr. Countess’ table is that of Mark.

In Mark, he claims, there are only two times that Mark quoted from the OT where “Jehovah” was used in the OT manuscripts. But there are 9 times in Mark that the NWT has used “Jehovah.” Therefore, according to Countess, the NWT has used the Divine Name in Mark ”dishonestly7 times!

All of the 9 uses of “Jehovah” in Mark by the NWT are: Mark 1:3; 5:19; 11:9; 12:11; 12:29 (twice); 12:30; 12:36; and 13:20. Is it really true that only two of these use a quote from the OT where “Jehovah” was actually used?

(1) ALL of the 13 trinitarian Bible translations I used above to determine what is considered a quote from the OT and what is not show Mk 1:3 to be a quote from Isaiah 40:3 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). The NKJV also uses the name LORD here which means "Jehovah" was intended.

(2) NONE of those same trinitarian Bibles indicates Mk 5:19 to be a quote from the OT. However, the context makes the connection to Jehovah probable. In addition, 7 Hebrew New Testament translations do use “Jehovah” at Mk 5:19. This includes the two respected trinitarian Hebrew New Testaments I have: Delitzsch’s and the UBS’.

The Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges tells us for Mark 5:19: "... ὁ Κύριος occurs only twice, here and Mark 11:3. Here it doubtless means Jehovah, as Lk. interprets it, placing ὁ θεός at the end with emphasis. In Mark 11:3 it means Christ, but probably in the sense of 'Master' rather than 'Lord'.”

It certainly does not seem dishonest for “Jehovah” to be used here, but it apparently is not a quote from the OT.

(3) SIX of those same trinitarian Bibles (NKJV; NASB; JB; NJB;; Moffatt; and Beck) show Mk 11:9 to be a quote from Ps. 118:26 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV and DNKJB use the keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was in the OT original! The NIVSB also tells us in a footnote for Mk 11:9, “A quotation of Ps. 118:26.” Also 14 Hebrew New Testaments use “Jehovah” at Mk 11:9. This includes the two modern, respected trinitarian Hebrew New Testaments I have in my possession.

(4) ALL of those same trinitarian Bibles show Mk 12:11 to be a quote from Ps. 118:23 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV and DNKJB use the keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was also in the original quote!

(5) ALL of those same trinitarian Bibles show Mk 12:29 (“Hear, O Israel, the Lord God....”) to be a quote from the OT: Deut. 6:4 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV again uses its keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was in the OT!

(6) ALL of those same trinitarian Bibles show Mk 12:29 (last part of verse: “...the Lord is one.”) to be a quote from the OT: Deut. 6:4 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV and DNKJB again use the keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was also in the original quote!

(7) ALL of those same trinitarian Bibles show Mk 12:30 to be a quote from Deut. 6:5 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV and DNKJB again use the keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was also in the original quote!

(8) ALL of those same trinitarian Bibles show Mk 12:36 to be a quote from Ps. 110:1 (which does use “Jehovah” in the OT manuscripts). And NKJV and DNKJB again use the keyword (‘LORD’) here which indicates “Jehovah” was also in the original quote!

(9) NONE of those same trinitarian Bibles shows Mk 13:20 to be a quote from the OT. However, as in Mk 5:19 above, the context makes the connection probable. In addition there are 10 Hebrew New Testament translations which use “Jehovah” here in Mk 13:20. This includes the 2 respected trinitarian translations I have in my possession. It certainly does not seem dishonest for “Jehovah” to be used here, although it does not appear to be a quote from the OT.

The Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges tells at Mark 13:20: "κύριος. Elsewhere in Mk this use of Κύριος without the art. is found only in quotations: Mark 1:3, Mark 11:9, Mark 12:11; Mark 12:29-30, Mark 12:36." And they all are quotes from the OT which include the Divine Name!

It is obvious that at least 7 of the 9 uses of “Jehovah” in Mark by the NWT are from quotes by Mark of the OT which also used “Jehovah”!

So exactly who is being dishonest? Are there really only 2 places in Mark where an OT passage using “Jehovah” is being quoted or referred to by Mark? Dr. Countess insists there are! Everyone else says there are at least 7! And some other respected trinitarian sources agree that “Jehovah” is also an appropriate understanding in the two other places where the NWT uses “Jehovah” in the Gospel of Mark! So, honestly, exactly who is being dishonest?




36. Zech. 12:10/John 19:37


Jehovah says: “...they shall look upon ME whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for HIM, as one mourneth for his only son” - Zech 12:10, KJV.

Of course Dr. Countess insists that Jehovah’s saying, “me whom they have pierced” proves that Jesus is Jehovah. He has no real explanation for the NT text that actually clarifies this scripture, but insists that it, too, somehow, shows that Jesus is Jehovah.

Although Countess is trying to show the “dishonesty” of the New Testament of the JW translation, the NWT, as it concerns “evidence” of Jesus being Jehovah, the “evidence” is so sparse that he is forced to slip back to an acknowledged corrupt text in the Old Testament for further “proof”!

Unfortunately for Dr. Countess (and the many other charlatans who attempt this particular “proof”), even many trinitarian translations of Zech. 12:10 disagree:

“... when they look upon him whom they have pierced” - RSV. Also in agreement with this rendering (and completely ignored by Countess) are NRSV; GNB; MLB; NAB (1970); NAB (1991); LB; Mo; AT; JB; NJB; NLV; BBE; and Byington. (The ASV says in a footnote for “me” in Zech. 12:10: “According to some MSS [manuscripts], ‘him’.” Also see Rotherham footnote.)

Even the context tells us that the latter non-trinitarian rendering is the correct one. Notice that after saying that they will look upon me (or him) God continues with “they shall mourn for him”! Notice how the KJV (and those following its tradition) contradicts itself here. The “me” in the first half simply does not agree with the “him” of the second half. Since there has never been any question about the accuracy of the word “him” in the second half, the disputed word of the first half (which has manuscript evidence for both renderings) must also properly be rendered as “him” (or “the one”).

The testimony of the first Christian writers to come after the NT writers (the ‘Ante-Nicene Fathers’) confirms the non-trinitarian translation of Zechariah 12:10 (“him”). Ignatius, Irenaeus, and Tertullian (repeatedly) rendered Zech. 12:10 as “him whom they pierced”! This is specially significant because trinitarian scholars and historians claim these particular early Christians (including Origen who doesn’t quote Zech. 12:10 at all in his existing writings) are the very ones who actually began the development of the trinity doctrine for Christendom! If any of the earliest Christian writers, then, would use a trinitarian interpretation here, it would certainly be these three. Since they do not do so, it must mean that the source for the ‘look upon me’ rendering originated even later than the time of Ignatius, Irenaeus, and Tertullian (early 3rd century A.D.)!

The Septuagint (LXX) uses “me” (in the existing copies, at least - 4th century A. D. and later), but it is significantly different from the Hebrew: “They shall look upon me, because they have mocked me, and they shall make lamentation for him, as for a beloved [friend], and they shall grieve intensely, as for a firstborn [son].” - Zech. 12:10, Septuagint, Zondervan, 1976 printing. In other words, (1) they will look upon God whom they have mocked [not “pierced”] as their judgment arrives and (2) they will mourn Christ. The two are not the same person here, nor the same God!

“The [Hebrew] text of Zech. 12:10 is corrupt. The LXX [Greek Septuagint] text reads:... (‘they shall look upon me whom they have treated spitefully’) .... The text in [Jn 19:37] does not follow the LXX; but it has also avoided the impossible [‘me’] of the Hebrew text.” - p. 195, John 2, Ernst Haenchen, Fortress Press, 1984.

The JPS translation of Zech 12:10 in Tanakh (NJV) also reveals that the text of Zech 12:10 is corrupt. The NJV (New Jewish Version or Tanakh published by the Jewish Publication Society) is highly praised for its accuracy by noted trinitarian Bible scholars Sakae Kubo and Walter F. Specht in their book So Many Versions? which analyzes and critiques modern Bibles:

“The NJV is a monument to careful scholarship .... It ranks as one of the best translations of the Hebrew Bible [the Old Testament] available.” - p. 143, SMV, Zondervan Publ.
A footnote says that the Hebrew sometimes rendered “when they look upon” is “uncertain.” Although it uses the pronoun “me,” it renders Zech 12:10,

“they shall lament to Me about those who are slain, wailing over them as over a favorite son and showing bitter grief as over a first-born.” - Jewish Publication Society, 1985.

But most important of all, closely examine John 19:37 (even in the KJV) where this scripture has been quoted by John! All translations show John here translating Zech. 12:10 as “They shall look upon him [or ‘the one’] whom they pierced.” So we have this Apostle and inspired Bible writer telling us plainly (and undisputed even by trinitarian scholars) that Zechariah 12:10 should read: “They shall look upon him” (not ‘me’). Therefore, Jehovah is speaking in Zech. 12:10 of someone else who will be pierced - not Himself!

"John gives a more accurate translation [of Zech 12:10]: ὄψονται εἰς ὃν ἐξεκέντησαν: 'They shall look on Him whom ( ἐκεῖνον ὃν) they pierced.' The same rendering is adopted in the Greek versions of Aquila, Theodotion and Symmachus, and is also found in Ignatius, Ep. Trall., 10; Justin, I. Apol., i. 77; and cf. Revelation 1:7, and Barnabas, Ep., 7." - The Expositor's Greek Testament, John 19:37.

There simply is no real evidence strong enough for Dr. Countess, or anyone else, to honestly insist that “the antecedent of ‘the one’ in the phrase ‘the one whom they pierced’ [Jn 19:37] can be none other than Jehovah God.”

And for him to insist that the NWT is dishonest for translating Zech. 12:10 in the same way that so many respected trinitarian scholars have done is dishonest in itself!




37.     “a horn of salvation

Terms that Dr. Countess objects to in the NWT:

KERAS SOTERIAS - Literally this is “a horn of salvation,” and Countess strongly objects to the NWT translating this as “a mighty savior” in the 1951 ed. at Lk. 1:69. - p. 76 (even though the NWT translators provided a footnote which said: “Literally, ‘raised up a horn of salvation.’”)  

However, the NWT, since 1969 (at least), has rendered it more literally as “a horn of salvation” in the main text. (It should be noted that Countess' book was Copyrighted in 1982, first printed in April 1982, and the second edition which I am examining came out in January 1987.)

But look at these renderings of Lk. 1:69 by other respected Bibles: “a mighty savior” - NRSV; “a mighty Saviour” - CBW; “a mighty Savior” - AT; “a powerful Savior” - MLB; “a strong deliverer” - REB; “a saving power” - NJB; “victorious Savior” - Beck (NT); “a power for salvation” - JB; “a deliverer of victorious power” - NEB; “a mighty Deliverer” - Weymouth; “a mighty Savior” - CEV; “a mighty Deliverer” - Wesley; “a strong saviour” - Moffatt.

Obviously the NWT translators thought (as did the translators of NRSV; NEB; REB; JB; NJB; AT; MLB; etc.) that “horn of salvation” would “hide the thought,” and so they rendered it in the “modern English idiom” at first. When they revised it later, however, they restored the more literal “horn of salvation.” But, as proved by the renderings of many other translators, neither rendering is improper in a literal Bible!

Countess' denigration of the NWT is false once more!  




38.   “Only-begotten”  


MONOGENES - It is certainly understandable that many will do their utmost to avoid the Biblical references to the creation of Jesus by God before the earth was created. Many modern trinitarian Bibles have therefore “retranslated” such NT words as “Firstborn,” “Beginning” (of God’s Creation), and, as here, “only begotten” (monogenes).

This word which Countess wants to mean “only, unique” is literally from either monos, (alone, solitary) and genos, (offspring) - W. E. Vine, p. 811, or from monos (alone) and ginomai (to come into being) - pp. 1667 and 1640, New American Standard Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, #3439, 3441, 1096.

It literally means “onlyborn” or “onlybegotten” and is used with this sense no matter how it is translated!

Generally acclaimed as among the most literally accurate translations of the 20th century, the ASV (1901) and NASB (including my 1963 edition of the NASB [NT] and my 1975 edition of the complete NASB Bible) both translate monogenes as “onlybegotten”at Jn 3:16, 18; and 1 Jn 4:9 ! (Also see MEV; NKJV; KJ21; MKJV; KJIIV; The Interlinear Bible; and KJV.)

Noted trinitarian New Testament Greek scholar, Dr. Alfred Marshall also agrees that monogenes literally means “only begotten.” - see John 3:16 in The Zondervan Parallel New Testament in Greek and English, Zondervan Bible Publishers, 1975.

So for Countess to insist on “only” as the only proper translation of monogenes, and to condemn the NWT for rendering it as “onlybegotten” is certainly specious to say the least. - p. 77-80.

Furthermore, his claim that some modern trinitarian Bibles have begun rendering monogenes as “only” is true enough, but his claim (p. 80) that perhaps one of the most literal trinitarian Bibles of all, the NASB [NT], does so also is inexcusable! How could such an obvious and easily disproved statement have “accidentally” remained through all the careful editing, revisions, etc. that have been done on this “Critical Analysis” since 1966?

If Countess can improperly denigrate the NWT for the literal use of "onlybegotten," what should we think of his obvious misinformation concerning the NASB?  


#39 1 Tim. 3:16  

Another mistranslation (by way of the Received Text) of the NKJV:

(NKJV) 1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.

The NKJV (and the few other Bibles still based on the flawed Received Text) has also rendered this passage as "God was manifested in the flesh" when it is quite clear that this was a change to the earlier manuscripts purposely made by trinitarian copyists around the eighth or ninth century A.D. (See A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, United Bible Societies, 1971.   And even noted Bible scholar Dr. Frederick C. Grant writes:

  “A capital example [of NT manuscript changes] is found in 1 Timothy 3:16, where ‘OS’ (‘who’) was later taken for theta sigma with a bar above, which stood for θεὸς (‘God’).   Since the new reading suited …. the orthodox doctrine of the church [trinitarian, at this later date], it got into many of the later manuscripts ….” – p. 656, Encyclopedia Americana, vol. 3, 1957 ed.  (This same statement by Dr. Grant was still to be found in the latest Encyclopedia Americana that I examined – the 1990 ed., pp. 696-698, vol. 3.)   

 Trinitarian scholar Murray J. Harris also concludes:

 “The strength of the external evidence favoring OC [‘who’], along with considerations of transcriptional and intrinsic probability, have prompted textual critics virtually unanimously to regard OC [ὃς] as the original text, a judgment reflected in NA(26) [Nestle-Aland text] and UBS (1,2,3) [United Bible Societies text] (with a ‘B’ rating) [also the Westcott and Hort text].  Accordingly, 1 Tim 3:16 is not an instance of the Christological [‘Jesus is God’] use of θεὸς.” -  Jesus as God, p. 268, Baker Book House, 1992.  

 And very trinitarian (Southern Baptist) NT Greek scholar A. T. Robertson wrote about this scripture:

  “He who (hos [or OC in the original text]).  [This is] the correct text, not theos (God) the reading of the Textus Receptus ... nor ho (neuter relative [pronoun]), agreeing with [the neuter] musterion [‘mystery’] the reading of Western documents.” - p. 577, Vol. 4, Word Pictures in the New Testament, Broadman Press. 

And even hyper-trinitarian NT Greek scholar, Daniel B. Wallace uses the relative pronoun ὃς (‘who’) in this scripture and tells us:

 “The textual variant θεὸς in the place of ὃς has been adamantly defended by some scholars, particularly those of the ‘majority text’ school.  Not only is such a reading poorly attested,* but the syntactical argument that ‘mystery’ (musthrion) being a neuter noun, cannot be followed by the masculine pronoun (ὃς) is entirely without weight.  As attractive theologically [for trinitarians, of course] as the reading θεὸς may be, it is spurious.  To reject it is not to deny the deity of Christ, of course; it is just to deny any explicit reference in this text.”  [italicized emphasis is by Wallace].  - pp. 341-342, Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics, Zondervan, 1996.

*  Wallace’s footnote for the above says: “In particular, it is impossible to explain the Latin reading of a neuter R[elative] P[ronoun] as deriving from θεὸς, showing that ὃς was quite early.  Not one firsthand of any Greek witnesses prior to the 8th century read θεὸς.” 

Here are a number of trinitarian-translated Bibles which show that their translators admit the truth of the above.

  (NASB) 1 Timothy 3:16 By common confession, great is the mystery of godliness: He who was revealed in the flesh, Was vindicated in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Proclaimed among the nations, Believed on in the world, Taken up in glory. 

  (CEV) 1 Timothy 3:16 Here is the great mystery of our religion: Christ came as a human. The Spirit proved that he pleased God, and he was seen by angels. Christ was preached to the nations. People in this world put their faith in him, and he was taken up to glory.  

  (TEV) 1 Timothy 3:16 No one can deny how great is the secret of our religion: He appeared in human form, was shown to be right by the Spirit, and was seen by angels. He was preached among the nations, was believed in throughout the world, and was taken up to heaven.  

  (RSV) 1 Timothy 3:16 Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of our religion: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.  

  (Rotherham) 1 Timothy 3:16 And, confessedly great, is the sacred secret of godliness,--Who was made manifest in flesh, was declared righteous in spirit, was made visible unto messengers, was proclaimed among nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory.  

 (BBE) 1 Timothy 3:16 - And without argument, great is the secret of religion: He who was seen in the flesh, who was given God's approval in the spirit, was seen by the angels, of whom the good news was given among the nations, in whom the world had faith, who was taken up in glory.  

  (Holman NT) 1 Timothy 3:16 And most certainly, the mystery of godliness is great: He was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.  

 (ASV) 1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He who was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the spirit, Seen of angels, Preached among the nations, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.  

  (Wey NT) 1 Timothy 3:16 And, beyond controversy, great is the mystery of our religion-- that Christ appeared in human form, and His claims justified by the Spirit, was seen by angels and proclaimed among Gentile nations, was believed on in the world, and received up again into glory.  

 (Douay-Rheims) 1 Timothy 3:16 And evidently great is the mystery of godliness, which was manifested in the flesh, was justified in the spirit, appeared unto angels, hath been preached unto the Gentiles, is believed in the world, is taken up in glory.  

(ESV) He was manifested in the flesh  

(Mounce)   who was revealed in flesh  

(NRSV)  He was revealed in flesh 


#40  1 John 5:7 (KJV)   

                                                                 1 John 5:7
The King James Version (A. D. 1611) says at 1 Jn 5:7: “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.”   

Of course even this would not mean the three are the one God as trinitarians want.  The word for “one” here is in the neuter form, hen, which cannot mean “one God” since “God” is always in the masculine form in NT Greek, and grammatically adjectives (such as “one”) applied to it must also be masculine (heis ‘one,’ masculine form).  

NT Greek words meaning “one”: ἓν    εἷς   μια   
        - hen (ἓν as written in Greek letters) is the neuter form for “one.”
        - heis (εἷς as written in Greek letters) is the masculine form for “one.”
        - mia (μια as written in Greek letters) is the feminine form for “one.”

When the neuter “one” (hen) is applied to persons, it means “one thing.”  In other words they have become united in some thing such as “purpose,” “will,” etc.  That is why Jesus prays to the Father “that they [Jesus’ followers] may be one [hen, ἕν - neuter] just as we are one [hen, ἕν - neuter].” - Jn 17:22.   Jesus, the Father, and Jesus’ followers are all one [hen, neuter] in something.  Of course they are all united in the Father’s will and purpose! - see the ONE study.  

Even though Christians have one will with Jesus and the Father, it certainly is not their wills which dominate; it is the will of the Father  which they make their will also.  And Jesus, too, subordinates his will to that of the Father so that, therefore, their will and purpose become one: the Father’s alone.   (“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” - Luke 22:42, NIV. cf. Mark 14:36.) 

 There is no way that Jesus would pray at Jn 17:22 that Christians may be one “just as we (Jesus and the Father) are one” if he were truly God.   In that case he would be praying that these Christians become “equally God” with him and the Father!  

But even more important is the fact that John did not write the words found at 1 Jn 5:7 in the KJV!  And we must consider why trinitarian scholars and copyists felt compelled to add it to the Holy Scriptures.
The only other Bibles which include this passage that I am aware of are the Catholic Douay Version (A. D. 1609), the New Life Version (1993), the New King James Version (1982), and the King James II Version (1982).  These last two are modern translations which have as their stated purpose the preservation of the text and traditions of the King James Version and which, therefore, translate from the thoroughly discredited Received Text.  

Of these four Bibles the KJIIV at least indicates the unscriptural addition of 1 John 5:7 by writing it in all italics.  And buried in the Preface is the admission that 1 Jn 5:7 (among others) is not to be accepted as true Scripture.  

The New Life Version, however, claims to put an asterisk (*) to mark words or passages which are “missing in some of the early writings.”  And it does so in such passages as Mark 16:9-20 and John 8:1-11, but it does not do so at 1 Jn 5:7.  

Since Greek was the “universal language” at the time the New Testament writers wrote and for many years thereafter, the earliest copies of the manuscripts of the New Testament were most often written in Koine Greek.  Therefore the very best manuscripts (and the oldest) of New Testament writings in existence today are the most ancient (4th and 5th century) Greek manuscripts.   These early Greek manuscripts were later translated into various other languages, including Latin.  Although Bible translators often compare these ancient Greek manuscripts with NT manuscripts of other languages, they nearly always translate from a text that was composed from the oldest and best Greek manuscripts.  

Highly respected trinitarian scholar, minister (Trinity Church), Professor (University of Glasgow and Marburg University), author (The Daily Study Bible Series, etc.), and Bible translator  Dr. William Barclay states the following about this passage:  

Note on 1 John 5:7   
   “In the Authorized Version [KJV] there is a verse which we have altogether omitted [in Barclay’s NT translation].  It reads, 'For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word and the Holy Ghost; and these three are one.'”  

  “The Revised Version omits this verse, and does not even mention it in the margin, and none of the newer translations includes it.  It is quite certain that it does not belong to the original text. 

   “The facts are as follows.  First, it does not occur in any Greek manuscript earlier than the 14th century.  The great manuscripts belong to the 3rd and 4th centuries [most scholars date them to the 4th and 5th centuries], and it occurs in none of them.  None of the great early fathers of the Church knew it.  Jerome’s original version of the [Latin]Vulgate does not include it.  The first person to quote it is a Spanish heretic called Priscillian who died in A. D. 385.  Thereafter it crept gradually into the Latin texts of the New Testament although, as we have seen, it did not gain an entry to the Greek manuscripts. 

   “How then did it get into the text?  Originally it must have been a scribal gloss or comment in the margin.  Since it seemed to offer good scriptural evidence for the doctrine of the Trinity [and since there was no good scriptural evidence for this new doctrine introduced by the Roman church in 325 A. D.], through time it came to be accepted by theologians as part of the text, especially in those early days of scholarship before the great manuscripts were discovered.   [More likely it was written in the margin of an existing manuscript with the intention that future trinitarian copyists actually add it to all new copies.] 

   “But how did it last, and how did it come to be in the Authorized [King James] Version?  The first Greek testament to be published was that of Erasmus in 1516.  Erasmus was a great scholar and, knowing that this verse was not in the original text, he did not include it in his first edition.  By this time, however, theologians [trinitarians, of course] were using the verse.  It had, for instance, been printed in the Latin Vulgate of 1514.  Erasmus was therefore criticized for omitting it.  His answer was that if anyone could show him a Greek manuscript which had the words in it, he would print them in his next edition.  Someone did produce a very late and very bad text in which the verse did occur in Greek; and Erasmus, true to his word but very much against his judgment and his will, printed the verse in his 1522 edition.  

   “The next step was that in 1550 Stephanus printed his great edition of the Greek New Testament.  This 1550 edition of Stephanus was called - he gave it that name himself - The Received Text, and it was the basis of the Authorized Version [KJV] and of the Greek text for centuries to come.  That is how this verse got into the Authorized Version.  There is, of course, nothing wrong with it [if the trinity were really true as trinitarians like Barclay himself want!]; but modern scholarship has made it quite certain that John did not write it and that it is a much later commentary on, and addition to, his words; and that is why all modern translations omit it.” - pp. 110-111, The Letters of John and Jude, The Daily Study Bible Series, Revised Edition, The Westminster Press, 1976.  [Material in brackets and emphasis added by me.]  

Noted Trinitarian scholar Daniel B. Wallace admits the same:  

And respected (and highly trinitarian) New Testament Bible scholar Dr. A. T. Robertson writes:  

“For there are three who bear witness (hoti treis eisin hoi marturountes).  At this point the Latin Vulgate gives the words in the Textus Receptus [Received Text], found in no Greek MS. [Manuscript] save two late cursives (162 in the Vatican Library of the fifteenth century, 34 of the sixteenth century in Trinity College, Dublin).  Jerome [famed trinitarian, 342-420 A. D.] did not have it.  Cyprian applies the language of the Trinity [ ? - - see UBS Commentary below] and Priscillian [excommunicated 380 A. D., executed 385 A. D.] has it.  Erasmus did not have it in his first edition, but rashly offered to insert it if a single Greek MS. had it and [ms.] 34 was produced with the insertion, as if made to order.  The spurious addition is: en toi ouranoi ho pater, ho logos kai to hagion pneuma kai houtoi hoi treis hen eisin kai treis eisin hoi marturountes en tei gei  (in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost; and the three are one.  And there are three that bear witness in earth).  The last clause belongs to verse 8.  The fact and the doctrine of the Trinity do not depend on this spurious addition.” - p. 240, Vol. VI, Word Pictures in the New Testament, Broadman Press, 1960.  

The highly respected (and trinitarian) United Bible Societies has published a commentary on the New Testament text.  It discusses 1 John 5:5-7 as follows [‘Symbol’ font used for Greek portion]:
“After μαρτυροῦντες  [“bearing witness”] the Textus Receptus [Received Text] adds the following: εν
 τῷ  οὐρανῷ, ὁ  πατήρ,  ὁ  λόγος, καὶ  τὸ Ἅγιον Πνεῦμα.  καὶ οὗτοι οἱ τρεῖς ἐν εἰσι.  (8) καὶ τρεῖς εἰσιν οἱ μαρτυροῦντες  εν τῇ  γῆ.  That these words are spurious and have no right to stand in the New Testament is certain in the light of the following considerations.

     “(A) EXTERNAL EVIDENCE.  (1)   The passage is absent from every known Greek manuscript except four, and these contain the passage in what appears to be a translation from a late recension of the Latin Vulgate.  These four manuscripts are ms. 61 [this is ms. 34 in the earlier numbering system used by Robertson above], a sixteenth century manuscript formerly at Oxford, now at Dublin; ms. 88, a twelfth century manuscript at Naples, which has the passage written in the margin by a modern hand; ms. 629 [ms. 162, Robertson], a fourteenth or fifteenth century manuscript in the Vatican; and ms. 635, an eleventh century manuscript which has the passage written in the margin by a seventeenth century hand.
   “(2)  The passage is quoted by none of the Greek Fathers, who, had they known it, would most certainly have employed it in the Trinitarian controversies (Sabellian and Arian [certainly at the Nicene Council of 325]).  Its first appearance in Greek is in a Greek version of the (Latin) Acts of the Lateran Council in 1215.
    “(3)  The passage is absent from the manuscripts of all ancient versions (Syriac, Coptic, Armenian, Ethiopic, Arabic, Slavonic), except the Latin; and it is not found (a) in the Old Latin in its early form (Tertullian Cyprian Augustine), or in the Vulgate (b) as issued by Jerome (codex Fuldensis [copied A. D. 541-46] and codex Amiatinus [copied before A. D. 716]) or (c) as revised by Alcuin (first hand of codex Vercellensis [ninth century]).
     “The earliest instance of the passage is in a fourth century Latin treatise entitled Liber Apologeticus (chap. 4), attributed either to the Spanish heretic Priscillian (died about 385) or to his follower Bishop Instantius. ....
   “(B)  INTERNAL  PROBABILITIES.  (1)  As regards transcriptional probability, if the passage were original, no good reason can be found to account for its omission, either accidentally or intentionally, by copyists of hundreds of Greek manuscripts, and by translators of ancient versions.
    “(2)  As regards intrinsic probability, the passage makes an awkward break in the sense.”  -  pp. 716-718, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, United Bible Societies, 1971.  

Notice the comments concerning this disputed passage found in the respected trinitarian reference work, The Expositor's Greek Testament
It says in a note for 1 John 5:7 (as found in the Received Text and the KJV):  

"A Latin interpolation, certainly spurious.  (I) Found in no Gk. MS. [Greek Manuscript] except two late minuscules - 162 (Vatican), 15th c., the Lat. Vg. [Latin Vulgate] Version with a Gk. text adapted thereto; 34 (Trin. Coll., Dublin), 16th c.  (2) Quoted by none of the Gk Fathers.  Had they known it, they would have employed it in the Trinitarian controversies (Sabellian and Arian [325 A.D.]).  (3) Found in none of the early versions - in Vg. but not as it [originally] left the hands of St. Jerome." - p. 195, Vol. 5, Eerdmans Publishing Co.

The very trinitarian Zondervan Publishing House has published a book by trinitarian scholars Dr. Sakae Kubo and  Prof. Walter Specht entitled So Many Versions?  It is an examination and critique of  the most popular Bible translations of the 20th century.  In the chapter devoted to the New King James Version [NKJV] this book says: 

   “In the original printing of the NKJV, the famous Trinitarian passage in 1 John 5:7-8a had the only textual footnote - one that advised the reader that these words “Are from the Latin Bible, although three Greek mss. [manuscripts] from the fifteenth century and later also contain them”  (the note has since been revised to read “four or five very late Greek manuscripts....”).  It is well known that the first and second editions of Erasmus’s Greek New Testament lacked this passage because he did not find it in any Greek manuscripts available to him.  He was so certain that it was a recent addition to the text that when he was criticized for not including it he promised to insert it in his next edition if anyone could produce a single [Greek] manuscript that contained it.  Such a manuscript (Codex Montfortianus, #61 of the sixteenth century) was finally shown him in England, and he kept his promise in his third edition of 1522 [the early sixteenth century].  But this passage clearly had no place in the autograph [actual writings by John] of John’s first epistle.”  - pp. 293-294.  

So, even those who finally added this spurious text to the English Bible translations knew it was not written by John!  But, even with many revisions and thousands of changes to the KJV, this trinitarian tampering with the word of God has remained for nearly 400 years! 

The trinitarian authors of So Many Versions? (who were very biased in favor of trinitarian interpretations in other parts of their book) were so upset by this modern Bible’s use of clearly spurious passages such as this that they continued:

“The brochure advertising this revision [the NKJV] gives as the purpose of the project “to preserve and improve the purity of the King James Version.”  To improve the purity would surely include the removal from the text of any scribal additions that were not a part of the autographs [original writing].  No devout reader of the Bible wants any portion of the sacred text as penned by the original authors removed.  But neither should he want later additions, in which some passages have crept into the text, published as part of the Word of God.” - p. 294, So Many Versions?, Zondervan Publ., 1983 ed. 

I find that my more recent copy of the NKJV does not even contain the note that So Many Versions? mentioned above.  There is no indication whatsoever in my New King James Version, Thomas Nelson Publishers, #412B that 1 John 5:7 is anything but the original inspired writing!  And, yet, the publishers and editors found room for many other notes and references in this same copy (see Hosea 1:6, 9, for example.)  They also found room to furnish an explanation of the symbol they used on the title page:
“Title page logo: The triquetra (from a Latin word meaning ‘three-cornered’) is an ancient symbol for the Trinity.  It comprises three interwoven arcs, distinct yet equal and inseparable, symbolizing that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three distinct yet equal Persons and indivisibly One God.”   - p. ii.  

I also see that my trinitarian-edited and published King James Version, Collins Press, 1955 (with center column of notes and references) also gives no indication whatsoever of the clear, spurious nature of 1 John 5:7!  This is in spite of the fact that the original translators of 1611, themselves, and all the many revisers for the last 380+ years have known that this verse was not added to the scriptures until many hundred years after John wrote this letter.  

Trinitarian scholar Robert Young [Young’s  Analytical Concordance of the Bible; Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible; etc.] writes in his Concise Critical Commentary:

“These words are wanting [lacking] in all the Greek MSS except two, in all the oldest Ancient Versions, and in all the quotations of v. 6-8 in the ancient Fathers before A.D. 475” -  Note for 1 John 5:7, Baker Book House, 1977. 

Noted Lutheran scholar and Bible translator, William F. Beck (trinitarian, of course) states in a footnote for 1 John 5:7 in his The New Testament in the Language of Today, 1964 printing: 

“Our oldest manuscripts do not have vv. 7b-8a: 'in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit, and these three are one.  And there are three testifying on earth.'  Early in the 16th century an editor translated these words from Latin manuscripts and inserted them in his Greek New Testament.  Erasmus took them from this Greek New Testament and inserted them in the third edition (1522) of his Greek New Testament.  Luther used the text prepared by Erasmus.  But even though the inserted words taught the Trinity, Luther ruled them out and never had them in his translation.  In 1550 Bugenhagen objected to these words “on account of the truth.”  In 1574  [about 30 years after Luther’s death] Feyerabend, a printer, added them to Luther’s text, and in 1596 [in spite of the fact that scholars knew it was spurious] they appeared in the Wittenberg copies.  They were not in Tyndale’s or Coverdale’s Bible or in the Great Bible [which were used by the KJV translators, and often copied nearly verbatim in many places by them].” 

The following modern trinitarian Bibles do not include the spurious words found in the  KJV at 1 Jn 5:7: Revised Standard Version; New Revised Standard Version; American Standard Version; New International Version; New American Standard Bible; Living Bible; Good News Bible; New English Bible; Revised English Bible; New American Bible (1970 and 1991 editions); Jerusalem Bible; New Jerusalem Bible; Modern Language Bible; Holy Bible: Easy-to-Read Version;  An American Translation (Smith-Goodspeed); and translations by Moffatt; C. B. Williams; William Beck; Phillips; Rotherham; Lamsa; Byington; Barclay; etc.

[[Added from information found on an internet site: 

Edward Gibbon (1737-1794), “one of the greatest historians who ever lived” explains the reason for the removal of 1 Jn 5:7 (as found in KJV) from most modern Bibles:
"Of all the manuscripts now extant, above fourscore in number, some of which are more than 1200 years old, the orthodox copies of the Vatican, of the Complutensian editors, of Robert Stephens are becoming invisible; and the two manuscripts of Dublin and Berlin are unworthy to form an exception...In the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the Bibles were corrected by LanFrank, Archbishop of Canterbury, and by Nicholas, a cardinal and librarian of the Roman church, secundum Ortodoxam fidem. Notwithstanding these corrections, the passage is still wanting in twenty-five Latin manuscripts, the oldest and fairest; two qualities seldom united, except in manuscripts....The three witnesses have been established in our Greek Testaments by the prudence of Erasmus; the honest bigotry of the Complutensian editors; the typographical fraud, or error, of Robert Stephens in the placing of a crotchet and the deliberate falsehood, or strange misapprehension, of Theodore Beza." - Decline and fall of the Roman Empire, IV,  Edward Gibbon, p. 418.

Gibbon was defended in his findings by his noted contemporary, British scholar Richard Porson who also published conclusive proofs that the verse of 1 John 5:7 as found in the KJV was only first inserted by the Church into a few Latin texts around 400 C.E. - Secrets of Mount Sinai, James Bentley, pp. 30-33).

Regarding Porson's clear proof, Gibbon later said: 

"His structures are founded in argument, enriched with learning, and enlivened with wit, and his adversary neither deserves nor finds any quarter at his hands. The evidence of the three heavenly witnesses would now be rejected in any court of justice; but prejudice is blind, authority is deaf, and our vulgar Bibles will ever be polluted by this spurious text."
To this day, the Bible in the hands of the majority of Christians, the King James Version (KJV), also known as the Authorized Version (AV), still unhesitatingly includes this verse as the "inspired" word of God (often without so much as a note to inform the reader that nearly all respected scholars of Christendom acknowledge it as a non-scriptural late addition by uninspired trinitarian copyists).

Peake's Commentary on the Bible also tells us: 
"The famous interpolation after 'three witnesses' is not printed even in RSV, and rightly. It cites the heavenly testimony of the Father, the logos, and the Holy Spirit, but is never used in the early Trinitarian controversies. No respectable Greek MS contains it. Appearing first in a late 4th-cent. Latin text, it entered the Vulgate and finally the NT of Erasmus."]]  

WHY  did trinitarian copyists and scholars think it necessary to construct this “scripture” and actually add it to the Holy Scriptures?  What, then, does this tell us about the evaluation of the rest of the “evidence” for a trinity  by these very same trinitarians?   Isn’t this most terrible, blasphemous action by them actually an admission that the rest of the “evidence” for a 3-in-one God is completely inadequate?  Why else would they do such a desperate, terrible thing?  

WHAT  does this tell us about those men who first constructed the “trinity doctrine” and forced it on an unwilling Roman Church in 325 A. D. at the Nicene Council?  (See HIST  and CREEDS studies .)  

WHY do so many trinitarians feel it necessary to “preserve” this clearly dishonest King James Version tradition in not only the most-used King James Version  itself (which has been revised many times with thousands of other changes in its 400-year history while still leaving this spurious verse), but even in at least three modern translations (NKJV, KJIIV, NLV)?   

 #41 Faith, Believe

Bowman claims the NWT is attempting to “obscure the truth” by “the rendering of ‘exercise faith’ instead of ‘believe.’” (John 3:16) 

But the word usually translated ‘believe’ in many Bibles (pisteuo) may honestly be rendered ‘exercise faith,’ which implies certain action on the part of the believer.  For example, the highly reputed (and highly “orthodox”) Kittel’s Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, (Abridged in One Volume) tells us:

I. The OT Legacy.  OT faith corresponds to Gk. pisteuein inasmuch as both involve trust in  persons and belief in words (including God and his word).  The OT term, however, carries a stronger element of acknowledgment and obedience. - p. 852.

II. General Christian Usage.

1. Continuation of the OT and Jewish Tradition.


   b.  pisteuo as “to obey.”  Heb. 11 stresses that to believe is to obey, as in the OT.  Paul in Rom. 1:18; 1 Th. 1:8 (cf. Rom. 15:18; 16:19) shows, too, that believing means obeying.  He speaks  about the obedience of faith in Rom. 1:5, and cf. 10:3; 2 Cor. 9:13.  - pp. 853, 854, Eerdmans Publ., 1985.

And  Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, p. 511, also tells us:

pisteuw [pisteuo] .... g.  used especially of the faith by which a man embraces Jesus, i.e. a conviction, full of joyful trust, that Jesus is the Messiah .... conjoined with obedience to Christ   - Baker Book House, 1977.

So, even some of the most respected New Testament scholars admit that pisteuo includes the idea of obedience with belief!  This requires belief in and acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice on our behalf and action on the part of the believer.  There are many things true believers must do and must not do.  Doing (or not doing the forbidden things) certainly does not earn salvation.  But not acting in obedience to the word of God may well prevent you from receiving the free gift of salvation.

There is clearly an inseparable union between true faith and actions on the part of the true Christian.  As James 2:14-26 tells us:

What use is it, my brethren, if a man says he has faith, but he has no works?  Can that faith save him?   .... Even so, faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. .... You believe that God is one.  You do well; the demons also believe and shudder.  But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless? .... For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead. - NASB.

Notice, “just as the body without spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead”!  Faith and works (or active obedience to the word of God) are just as inseparable as  the body and spirit are inseparable in a living man!  When this faith is spoken of, then, it certainly should not be considered dishonest to translate it with that understanding: “exercise faith.” (See the FAITH study.)