New Bible Versions

I was reading Psalm 91 this morning, and came across two of the verses Satan misused when he was tempting Jesus Christ in the wilderness:

For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways;
they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone
(Psalm 91:11-12).

We humans are not always deceived by blatant lies, but by the subtle corruption of truth. The enemy of our souls is the prince of subtlety, able even to quote the words inspired by our God, and yet to twist them with the goal of the destruction of something or someone, and for the perversion of the word of God.

I tuned into Christian radio the other day, and heard a very popular (and usually Biblical) preacher within Calvary Chapel speaking about our culture. He said he was going to read from Romans chapter one, which addresses the decline and fall of a culture, and he said he would read from a modern translation. It was immediately obvious to me that the translation he proceeded to quote had extracted the intent and specifics from the text. Instead of Paul warning that homosexual perversion was a mark of the judgment of God, it was far more generic, suggesting that in the scenario Paul spoke of, people were being mean to each other and cheating. The Word of God had been emaciated and emasculated in this modern paraphrase.

Once we begin to snip pieces off the Word of God, and to change the meaning of portions of it, and to deny that some things mean what is clearly stated, we are like that cliched picture of a ship with no rudder, no anchor, and no navigational equipment, drifting towards the rocks. Worse than that, we are not truly seeking what God has said: we are constructing our own God. We are asserting that God can’t tell the truth.

It seems to me that either the creator of our world and of our minds and of language is capable of speaking His mind and of preserving that message, or He is not. If the latter is true, there’s no way of knowing what Truth is beyond what we can detect with our senses. If the latter is true-that God is incapable of passing on a solid, dependable, unchanging and testable message-we can only hope that there is a God; that God is good, and that He will forgive us of our shortcomings. We can only hope that there is a savior who might possibly, if we are lucky, rescue us from the power of mortality. We are, in this case, at the mercy of the multitude of conflicting voices and opinions and philosophies which now fill our world. We are then in the same condition that millions in the modern and pagan West are in: confusion, blindness and darkness.

Which set of beliefs is true? If the Word of God is up for grabs, and subject to the opinions and fads of human beings and those who think God speaks directly to them; once we begin to chop and hack at Scripture, and to add to it just what takes our fancy, there’s no way of knowing for sure. Do we pick the philosophy and theology that seems the most likely and the most believable to our fallen imaginations, or do we believe what our God has said, and let HIs words be our guide? What has been contained in our Scriptures until our time is testable. What is written in our dependable Bible translations can be found in great measure in the writings of the church fathers, in ancient manuscripts and fragments, in history, and in numerous amazing archaeological finds such as the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Over and over again in our Bible we’re told that Scripture is the inspired word of God. If, then, we alter, change, deny, ignore, remove, or re-write what’s contained therein, we’re actually doing the work of the devil himself, who, from the very beginning pushed doubt and unbelief into the minds of God’s created beings:

“Now the serpent was more cunning than any animal of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God really said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1).

Satan then went on to accuse God’s words of being untrue:

“The serpent said to the woman, “You certainly will not die! For God knows that on the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will become like God, knowing good and evil” (verses 4 and 5).

Changing Scripture even in the most subtle ways, is deception, and playing God. Jesus Christ said that Satan was “the father of lies” (John 8:44). You can deny the devil’s existence if you want, at your peril. You can deny that some people have dishonest or corrupted motives if you want, at your peril. But you should at least be aware that contradictory truths cannot all be True. Black is not white. Two and two do not make five. Not all that purports to be truth is true, and not all that claims to be the word of God is the word of God.


2 thoughts on “New Bible Versions

  1. The English version of the bible will indeed affect your understanding. I’ve been a kjv guy for 40 plus years. And while I also use strongs, and various Greek and Hebrew helps, I still use the kjv for my personal reading and study


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