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Featured Jehovah's Witnesses and the king james bible

Discussion in 'Religions Q&A' started by Frank Goad, Jan 5, 2022.

  1. Frank Goad

    Frank Goad Well-Known Member

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    Do the Jehovah's Witnesses believe the king James version of the bible is a bad translation of scripture?I believe it is an ok go to book.When it comes to scripture.:)
     
  2. Orbit

    Orbit I'm a planet

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    I'm not a JW, but I enjoy the KJV for the Elizabethan English, which is quite beautiful. Biblical scholars, however, have pointed out that there are some translation errors in that version. I was raised on KJV, but if I want to know the most accurate text of a passage, I also consult another, more modern version.
     
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  3. nPeace

    nPeace Veteran Member

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    The JWs believe they are certain things which would constitute a translation being called "a good translation."
    See what those are.
     
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  4. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

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    The KJV *is* a bad translation, but my understanding is that JW's will only use their own, the New World Translation. They only trust what comes out of the watchtower.
     
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  5. Bree

    Bree Active Member

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    The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society was established on the use of the King James bible.

    We also printed it for many years and distributed it to millions.

    It is quite well known that it was written in the old english language and sadly today we just dont speak like that anymore. There are words used several hundred years ago that have a totally different meaning in todays english so to continue to use a book that uses such words is out of touch with reality.

    Languages change over time and since the 1600s' it has changed a lot. Being able to understand the meaning of the bible is far more important then clinging to a tradition of men.
     
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  6. Bree

    Bree Active Member

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    you may be surprised to know that used the KJV bible for many decades before we created the 'New world Translation'

    It was the deep study of the scriptures and some amazing old manuscripts of the bible discovered in the early 1900's that caused the WT to begin a new translation. You see, translators of the bible for hundreds of years were basing their translations on 'classical greek'. It wasnt known until the discovery of certain manuscripts that the language used to write the scriptures was actually 'koine greek' They are quite different and when the koine greek was used as the translation language, things changed to reveal a more truer and more accurate translation of scripture.
     
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  7. nPeace

    nPeace Veteran Member

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    It has become known to some persons, that there have been several revisions of the KJV - the 21st Century, being the latest.
    They make these acknowledgments.
     
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  8. Bree

    Bree Active Member

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    Yes and i think its because its more important to understand the meaning of the message rather then be entertained by the style of the language.
    Some people will only use the KJV because of its 'poetic' character. But that is not the reason why we should be reading the bible. The bible is so much more then the language its written in...it is Gods communication with us! So we would want to be absolutely sure we can understand its message and thats why the New World Translation is so good. It really expresses the meaning of the text in the english that we all speak today so that we can all understand its meaning.
     
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  9. AdamjEdgar

    AdamjEdgar Member

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    The problem with the Watchtower translation:

    1. the original NWT was first put together by a former priest who's wife was a spirit medium. He would go to her and ask for her advice when working on the translation. When watchtower found out about this, they distanced themselves from him, however, they did not distance themselves from his translation...it remains.

    For those interested Johannes_Greber

    and the watchtower NWT conspiracy


    A horrifyingly enlightening pair of online articles!

    Even within my own church, a teacher wrote his own bible translation (well its a study guide "paraphrase" actually)...however, I have nothing whatsoever to do with it!

    2. In key areas where the JW's denomination theology differs from mainstream theology, the NWT translation has been changed from the originals used by mainstream religious scholars. To add to this, if one compares various production versions of this text, it is clear that where serious theological mistakes have been made (where WT have not realised contradictions within their own translation exist) they then go and make changes accordingly to better suit their theology...it a gross changing of original bible writings

    3. In the same areas where JW theology has changed their translation, their own New Testament interlinear (the greek ) does not agree with what has been translated).

    Unfortunately, one way of determining error in theology is manifested by this very organization...they very have clearly violated Duet 12:32 and Rev 22:18&19 under the guise that the KJV is outdated and hard to understand. If so, why not use the many other well proven ones (such as NIV, NKJV, ESV, NASB etc etc). Well the answer to that is simple, none of these other translations support JW theology!

    Also , the claim about Koine greek does not account for Old Testament writings (these most definately were not greek) and therein lieth the problem, an attempt at altering NT writings put the NWT in conflict with itself in so many areas that its a mess of convoluted theology due to intentional changes in the NWT/NT that in all honesty requires its readers to avoid other translations at all costs...otherwise the errors are widespread and damning.

    I have a flying mate (i fly paragliders) who is a JW. His reasoning behind why the NWT is a better translation than the KJV..."the KJV (and all other translations) is plagiarising the true publisher of the bible by not using the name Jehovah instead of God! It is a "straw man argument" because the original culture of biblical times (the Israelites) as far as i understand it, did not speak the real name of God as a sign of reverence...how this can be ignored by JW's is a surprising revelation considering that!
     
    #9 AdamjEdgar, Jan 11, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2022
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  10. Bree

    Bree Active Member

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    I cant say i agree with much of what you've stated. The NWT was put together by a committee, not by 1 individual. So that is quite incorrect.

    And with regard to the use of Gods personal name, it was quite clearly in use by the ancient israelites as can be seen by the fact that it was written in the scriptures over 7,000 times by every writer of the bible.
    If they weren't using it they certainly would not have it written down in their scriptures.
     
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  11. AdamjEdgar

    AdamjEdgar Member

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    of course not...i dont know of any who would in that religion, they always believe only what they are told not what is actual fact historically? Clearly, the history tale that you have been told about the origins of the NWT has been hiding the truth. If you search back through your history extensively, you will certainly find reference to Johannes Greber you will also find the article of dissociation with him once they found out about his spirit medium wife and his own apostasy into the world of spiritualism.

    The claim that the committee put together the translation is also false. The church at the time when it was first completed, did not have any academics who are experts in textual criticism or ancient languages...they could not possibly have achieved this task without outside scholarly help (hence the approach to Johannes Greber)...unless one is now claiming God spoke it to them directly?

    My point is this, whether or not one is JW or any other religion, one should never consider a publication of said denomination as an authority...especially where the bible is concerned and especially where that translation is universally condemned by practically every scholar around the world outside of your religion! Clearly, that should be of great concern to you. As i said, even my own church has a teacher who produced a study bible...I have absolutely nothing to do with that publication...i have neither a copy, nor ever opened it pages...I would never trust such a bible because it must contain biases of my denomination simply because it was written by a member of my denomination.
     
  12. Bree

    Bree Active Member

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    once again you are spreading unfactual and false information.

    • Commenting on the New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures, British Bible critic Alexander Thomson wrote: “The translation is evidently the work of skilled and clever scholars, who have sought to bring out as much of the true sense of the Greek text as the English language is capable of expressing.”—The Differentiator, April 1952, page 52.

    • Despite noting what he felt were a few unusual renderings, author Charles Francis Potter said: “The anonymous translators have certainly rendered the best manuscript texts, both Greek and Hebrew, with scholarly ability and acumen.”—The Faiths Men Live By, page 300.

    • Although he felt that the New World Translation had both peculiarities and excellences, Robert M. McCoy concluded his review of it by stating: “The translation of the New Testament is evidence of the presence in the movement [Jehovah’s Witnesses] of scholars qualified to deal intelligently with the many problems of Biblical translation.”—Andover Newton Quarterly, January 1963, page 31

    • Professor S. MacLean Gilmour, while not agreeing with some renderings in the New World Translation, still acknowledged that its translators “possessed an unusual competence in Greek.”—Andover Newton Quarterly, September 1966, page 26.

    • In his review of the New World Translation that forms part of the Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures, Associate Professor Thomas N. Winter wrote: “The translation by the anonymous committee is thoroughly up-to-date and consistently accurate.”—The Classical Journal, April-May 1974, page 376.
    • Professor Benjamin Kedar-Kopfstein, a Hebrew scholar in Israel, said in 1989: “In my linguistic research in connection with the Hebrew Bible and translations, I often refer to the English edition of what is known as the New World Translation. In so doing, I find my feeling repeatedly confirmed that this work reflects an honest endeavor to achieve an understanding of the text that is as accurate as possible.”

    • Based on his analysis of nine major English translations, Jason David BeDuhn, associate professor of religious studies, wrote: “The NW [New World Translation] emerges as the most accurate of the translations compared.” Although the general public and many Bible scholars assume that the differences in the New World Translation are the result of religious bias on the part of its translators, BeDuhn stated: “Most of the differences are due to the greater accuracy of the NW as a literal, conservative translation of the original expressions of the New Testament writers.”—Truth in Translation, pages 163, 165.
     
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  13. nPeace

    nPeace Veteran Member

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    I have a question... or two. :)
    Why do you believe your source? Is it because you want to, or you know it is actually true? If the latter, how do you know it is?
     
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  14. AdamjEdgar

    AdamjEdgar Member

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    What is your question exactly?
    I don't think you got my point...its the part after "my point is"

    If you are looking for a couple of expert sources that claim the NWT js a terrible translation, lookup Dr James White or Dr Daniel Wallace...(heck I would imagine even well known at agnostic Bart Erhman might have something to say about it)...i could give you many more but honestly, a Google search will save the hassle of proving the obvious! It's truly a doctrinally biased paraphrase...nothing more. It continues to be change to suit as the doctrinal errors are pointed out to it's publishers...so much so, it does not even agree with the new testament interlinear used by the JW's and their publishers!
    I mean honestly, if I'm translating from Greek, I have my original text right next to me, and I refuse to follow the wording of my own original what does that say about my ability and credibility to translate? Clearly it's deceptive at best an absolutely corrupt and untrustworthy at worst!
    I suspect the problem that the places where the NWT has been changed just so happen to also be the places where weird JW doctrines don't agree with the mainstream texts. So they wrote their own and changed it...and continue to make changes !
     
    #14 AdamjEdgar, Jan 15, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2022
  15. nPeace

    nPeace Veteran Member

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    Yes. I did note your point, and have no problem discussing that with you, if you are open, but I hope you are equally willing to consider others' point as well.
    My question is, why do you believe your source - the ones you linked regarding the translation of the NWT is reliable? Do you believe it because you want to, or do you know it is actually true? If you believe it is actually true, how do you know it is?

    The point you were making is that people make their own Bible translations, which deviate from the translations that were from the early 1600s, which... and this is not your point, but an actual fact to consider... is actually over 1000 years after the first century Christian congregation... a century and a half, and is itself a translation by people - thus their own translation.
    So my question is, why do you accept a translation that someone made - their own translation, and have nothing to do with other translations?
    The earlier translations did not drop from heaven, as some people seem to think.

    The other thing is, when Jesus and his apostles walked the earth, there were copies of the scriptures. In fact, Matthew's Gospel was evidently first written in Hebrew and later translated into Greek. So that itself is their own translation.
    I'm just repeating your words for clarity of the point, but it's not their own translation. It is a translation, just like every other.

    Some make the mistake of thinking that translators used the earlier translations to translate from. :( I know that sounds bad. That would be a copy. Not a translation... even if changes are made.
    Translations are based not on previous translation, but earlier Greek and Hebrew manuscripts... which are prior to any translation from the original languages - Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek.
    The Tyndale Bible generally refers to the body of biblical translations by William Tyndale into Early Modern English, made c. 1522–1536. Tyndale's Bible is credited with being the first Bible translation in the English language to work directly from Hebrew and Greek texts.

    I hope you understand that point.

    So now, with that knowledge, how is the NWT "a gross changing of original bible writing"? Can you please explain?
    Please note that the KJV followed the same pattern as many other translations, removing the name of God from their Bible... replacing it with titles such as Lord and God.
    Don't you find that to be "a gross changing of original bible writing"?
    Your thoughts.
     
  16. AdamjEdgar

    AdamjEdgar Member

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    yes sure...
    Dr. Bruce M. Metzger, professor of New Testament at Princeton University, calls the NWT "a frightful mistranslation,.. Erroneous...pernicious...reprehensible.. If the Jehovah's Witnesses take this translation seriously, they are polytheists." (Professor of New Testament Language and Literature)


    Dr. William Barclay, a leading Greek scholar, said "it is abundantly clear that a sect which can translate the New Testament like that is intellectually dishonest."


    British scholar H.H. Rowley stated, "From beginning to end this volume is a shining example of how the Bible should not be translated....Well, as a backdrop, I was disturbed because they (Watchtower) had misquoted me in support of their translation." (These words were excerpted from the tape, "Martin and Julius Mantey on The New World Translation", Mantey is quoted on pages 1158-1159 of the Kingdom interlinear Translation)


    Dr. Julius Mantey , author of A Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testament, calls the NWT "a shocking mistranslation...Obsolete and incorrect...It is neither scholarly nor reasonable to translate John 1:1 'The Word was a god...I have never read any New Testament so badly translated as The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of The Greek Scriptures.... it is a distortion of the New Testament. The translators used what J.B. Rotherham had translated in 1893, in modern speech, and changed the readings in scores of passages to state what Jehovah's Witnesses believe and teach. That is a distortion not a translation." (Julius Mantey , Depth Exploration in The New Testament (N.Y.: Vantage Pres, 1980), pp.136-137) the translators of the NWT are "diabolical deceivers." (Julius Mantey in discussion with Walter Martin)

    Here is an entire youtube video from Dr James White's Alpha and Omega ministries where he debates a former Jehovahs Witness (Greg Stafford) on the topic of the deity of Christ


    Now the interesting thing about Greg Stafford is that he has changed the use of the word "Jehovah" to "Jah"...so if the word Jehovah is such an important interpretation of the text and irrefutably the correct one according to Jehovahs Witnesses, how is it then that a man who was widely known and publishes as their foremost biblical textual apologist, now uses the name "Jah"? Are we now using nicknames for God in that Jah must be short for "J" ehov "ah"...is that how we use the name of God now...we "come boldly before the throne" (as stated by the apostle Paul) and call out, hey "Jah", "how you doing homie"!


    I also have this...
    Jehovah’s Witnesses regard The New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures as “an accurate, easy-to-read translation of the Bible” (jw.org). What many don’t realize is that four of the five men on the translation committee producing the complete 1961 edition had no Hebrew or Greek training whatsoever.

    The fifth, who claimed to know both languages, failed a simple Hebrew test while under oath in a Scottish court. Four examples of where the New World Translation gets it wrong

    there is plenty more...
     
  17. AdamjEdgar

    AdamjEdgar Member

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    Lets look at Acts 20:28

    NWT
    Pay attention to yourselvesz and to all the flock, among which the holy spirit has appointed you overseers,a to shepherd the congregation of God,b which he purchased with the blood of his own Son.c

    Now here is a non JW interlinear (biblehub.com) of that same text...
    Acts 20 28.png

    Clearly, the JW's have changed the text to avoid the damning evidence this text provides in support of God shedding His own blood (therefore this proof text that Jesus is God is removed completely from the bible)

    I also add the codex Sinaiticus text for Acts 20:28 (translated into English i believe in 1911)

    προϲεχετεεαυτοιϲκαιπαντιτωποιμνιωενωϋμαϲτοπνατοαγιονεθετοεπιϲκοπουϲποιμενιντηνεκκληϲιαντουθυηνπεριεποιηϲατοδιατουαιματοϲτουϊδιου
    28 Take heed therefore to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit made you overseers, that you act as shepherds to the church of the Lord, which he purchased with his own blood.

    The NWT paraphrase has completely changed the reading and therefore intentionally corrupted the meaning of Acts 20:28!

    and whilst i think of it, why have the Watchtower not changed the word "God" here in the NWT to Jehovah?
    The answer cannot be because its refering to Jesus in the NWT, because according to JW doctrine, Jesus is "a god" (lower case G)!
     
    #17 AdamjEdgar, Jan 15, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2022
  18. nPeace

    nPeace Veteran Member

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    This has not shown how the NWT "a gross changing of original bible writing". You have only quoted a few opponents of JWs.
    That's like looking for every person that calls JWs a cult, and quoting them.
    You say you have plenty more. Let's look at it... keeping in mind that you haven't given me anything so far.
     
  19. nPeace

    nPeace Veteran Member

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    This one is valid, because at least you are here trying to show how the NWT changed the Bible.
    The question I would ask is... Does the text read... the blood of his own, or his own blood?
    Perhaps that's a good place to start.
    I'm hoping you give me more than just, "It says..." I am looking for you to explain how you arrive at your answer.
     
  20. AdamjEdgar

    AdamjEdgar Member

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    that is your counterargument...honestly???

    I think if you cant look out the windows and see that blue sky above you means it's not cloudy, then there is a somewhat illogical delusion to your counterargument that means that, like most JW's, you are simply blind to the obvious. It's a pointless exercise as the second half of my previous post, and the one immediately following it, both provide an irrefutable example of changing og the text in error and contrary to correct scholarly works!

    As i have said previously, and this has not once been refuted, the original NWT was completed by a former priest whose wife was a spirit medium. Johannes regularly approached and received Counsell from her spirit medium sessions in order to resolve translational issues he encountered.

    Anyone stupid enough to consider that man and his works, as well as any subsequent works based on it, as a source of authority, are being guided by Satanic forces and not God. A far better option is to simply do what I have already stated...

    I never take denominational writing of the bible text as authoritative (because it will clearly be biased in support of doctrines of that denomination). It is 100% accurate that claims against EG Whites writings in the SDA church are an example of where there is a perceived danger with that model...i agree completely with such a view in reply to any claim my own church founder is authoritative over the Bible (I do not believe she is to be pedestalled in that way). If JW's cannot understand this, then we are engaging with a group of individuals who are, in religious terms, vapid, aphonic, or both! Add to this the truth that they are discouraged from getting higher education, almost none of their church leadership at the local levels (and likely also at higher levels) hold any kind of theological degree (unlike most other denominations including SDA's, where a bachelor degree majoring in theology is the usual requirement), how anyone can give credibility to this organization any more than non-SDA's give credit to the authority of EG White above the Bible.

    Therefore, if indeed there are doctrines of my church that do not align with mainstream theology (and there obviously are), then i would be very hesitant to reference an SDA Bible to attempt to support those doctrines as it would immediately lead any critic to legitimately make the claim, i am being brainwashed...and they would be 100% correct in making such a claim!
     
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