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Monday, May 20, 2013

Did Jehovah's Witnesses Really "Change the Original Meaning of the Bible to Suit their Beliefs" as Opposers Claim?

Most religions have their own preferred version of the Bible. Jehovah's Witnesses translated and produced our own version of the Bible because we wanted a more accurate translation of the Bible.

In doing this Jehovah's Witnesses have not "changed the original meaning of the Bible". Jehovah's Witnesses will use almost any modern translations when they study with others, while at the same time they realize that some translations are better overall than others.

However, the accuracy of the NWT is proven by facts such as rules of grammar and translation principles.

I have personally found that in every case where the NWT is criticized it has usually proved to be accurate and in most cases more accurate than the most other translations. Most criticisms brought against it are usually themselves unwarranted and unfairly biased and usually demands an ignorance from hearers of Greek words and semantics according to standard Greek Lexicons and Dictionaries.

People who claim that we needed to translate "our own bible" in order to support our beliefs are being misled. Most of Jehovah's Witnesses beliefs had been long established before the NWT ever came into existence.

Further, the claim that the NWT has been “changed to deny there being the possibility of a Trinity“ is a ludicrous statement. Even according to Trinitarians own scholars the Trinity is NEVER found in the Bible. And of you think that the NWT is the only bible which reads as it does in your cited examples, then you have been misled. The NWT has not removed any part which calls Jesus “God.” And in EVERY verse in which the NWT differs from the reading of the KJV other non-JW translations have rendered it exactly like the NWT.

In fact, the NWT reads EXACTLY like the KJV at Rm. 1:7! And no version calls Jesus “God” here. In fact this verse completely destroys the Trinity because it clearly and explicitly differentiates Jesus from “GOD.” According to the Trinity there can only be one God and while Jesus can be separated from the Father he cannot be separated from God. Yet the Bible repeatedly shows that Jesus is separate from and less than “GOD” and the Trinity is destroyed!!!

Those who post such simplistic and fallacious criticisms dishonestly demand that hearers do not do even the most basic of research.

Next, the claim that replacing the Greek word KURIOS with Jehovah is incorrect actually requires us to be ignorant of standard translation principles and practice.

The NWT inserts the Name Jehovah in the NT because textual and translation principles demand it. Many other translators have acknowledged these principles either by placing Jehovah "Jehovah" in the NT, or in the case of most translators by capitalizing LORD which ALWAYS denotes Jehovah (e.g., Ac.2:34; Mt.22:44; Mk.12:36). These versions usually state that when "Lord" is written as "LORD" it stands for Jehovah, so they are actually doing exactly what the NWT does.

Also confirming this as a valid principle, some respected Bibles replace the original Greek pronouns "he" or "him" with "Jesus" or “God” (NIV; NJB; NAB). For example look at 1Cor.15:27,28 in several Bibles (e.g., NIV, TEV) and you will see how much clearer replacing the pronouns with “Jesus” and “God” makes the text (cf. 1Jn 5:14, 15).

Now, it can be claimed that there is absolutely no Greek textual support for these translators to use this device, but this claim is simply based on theological bias and not translation principles.

In the above places "Lord" is textually accurate, though factually incorrect. But a translator's prime concern is with transmitting the meaning of the original writer, and it is a fact that in many occurrences of KURIOS the absolute semantic equivalence in the target language must be "Jehovah" (e.g.; Mk.12:25-36; Ac.2:21, 33-34; Rm.10:13) (see Girdlestone’s Synonyms of the OT p. 43).

Standard reference works provide evidence that this is in accord with translation principles:

"In the NT, likewise, KURIOS, when used as a name of God...most usually corresponds to hwhy Jehovah, and in this sense is applied." --A Greek and English Lexicon to the New Testament, by J. Parkhurst

So in EVERY place where the NWT and others have restored Jehovah to the text of the N.T. it has been fully in accord with the rules of translation. Therefore the NWT fulfills the requirement for accuracy in translation in this regard.

Christ is NEVER placed on an equal level with Almighty God in the Bible.

Even after his return to heaven the Bible speaks of Jesus having a God over him at least 17 times! (Jn.20:17; Rm.15:6; 1Cor.11:3; 2Cor.1:3; Eph.1:17; Heb.1:9; Rev.1:6; 3:2,12). It is illogical to believe that Christ could have equal glory with the One who is called his God.

SOURCE: This is an answer provided by BAR_ANERGES to a question at Yahoo Answers.

Also see:

New World Translation (NWT) - Links to Information that DEFEND THE NEW WORLD TRANSLATION BIBLE (Defend Jehovah's Witnesses)

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