WHO WAS JOHANNES GREBER?
Johannes Greber was an ex-Catholic priest who took it upon himself to translate his own version of the New Testament. To aid him in this endeavor, he contacted the "spiritworld" to reveal the proper remderings of the Scriptures he sought.
The Watchtower Society, desperately in need of scholastic references to support their own specific controversial translations, made full use of Greber's work even though they were aware of his involvement with spiritism. The Society discloses the true identity of Johannes Greber for the first time in a 1956 Watchtower article.
1. From the Forward to Greber's New Testament - 1937 edition
"The New Testament, as interpreted by the scholarly Pastor Johannes Greber,...is an absolutely independent translation, without restriction to the dogma of any Church.
This task was not simple. Many contradictions between what appears in the ancient scrolls and the New Testament, as we have grown to know it, arose and were the subject of his constant prayers for guidance - prayers that were answered and the discrepancies clarified to him by God's Spirit World.
At times he was given the correct answers in large illuminated letters and words passing before his eyes. Other times he was given the correct answers during prayer meetings. His wife, a medium of God's Spiritworld, was often instrumental in conveying the correct answers from God's Messengers to Pastor Greber."
2. WT 2-15-56 p.110
Greber was revealed as a spiritist who translated the New Testament with the help from God's spirits. This Watchtower page also discloses that the Society had access to the 1937 edition of Greber's translation:
"Says Johannes Greber in the introduction of The New Testament, copyrighted in 1937: "I myself was a Catholic priest, and until I was forty eight years old had never as much as believed in the possibility of communicating with the world of God's spirits.
Very plainly the spirits in which ex-priest Greber believes, helped him in his translation."
The Watchtower article mentions another publication by Greber, "Communication With the Spirit World of God", published 5 years before his New Testament translation.
3. The Word - Who is He According to John?, 1962, p. 5
This booklet, published by the Watchtower Society, sought any support possible to reinforce their own translation of John 1:1. Greber's New Testament was not overlooked. Greber's name and his 1937 New Testament are mentioned in a footnote on this page:
"...the reading by a former Roman Catholic priest: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was a god."
So there is no mistake about it: both the 1956 Watchtower article and the 1962 "Word" booklet are using the same edition of Greber's New Testament.
4. WT 9-15-62 p.554
Greber's rendering of John 1:1 is again quoted and his name along with his 1937 New Testament are cited in the footnote.
5. Make Sure of All Things, 1965 p.489
Greber's name is used in the "Trinity" section of this Society's book as a "scholarly" support for the 'a god' translation of John 1:1. This same book warns against practicing spiritism!
6. Aid to Bible Understanding, 1971 p. 1134
In the Society's first encyclopedia, under the entry 'MEMORIAL TOMBS' the Society refers to Greber's peculiar New Testament translation of Matthew 27: 52,53 in order to lend support to their own rendering of this verse.
Greber's translation of Matthew 27: 52,53:
"Tombs were laid open, and many bodies of those buried there were tossed upright. In this posture they projected from the graves and were seen by many who passed by the place on their way back to the city."
7. Aid to Bible Understanding, 1971 p. 1669
Under the entry 'WORD, THE' the encyclopedia cites Greber as a supporter for the "a god" rendering in John 1:1.
8. WT 10-15-75 p.640
The Watchtower Society denies that an actual resurrection occurred in Matthew 27:52,53. Therefore, they twist the wording in this verse to read:
"And the memorial tombs were opened and many bodies of the holy ones that had fallen asleep were raised up, (and persons, coming out from among the memorial tombs after his being raised up, entered into the holy city,) and they became visible to many people."
Thus, in this Watchtower issue, they appeal to the translation of Johannes Greber who believed as they did.
9. WT 4-15-76 p. 231
Greber is again used to support the fraudulent translation of Matthew 27:51-53.
10. Watchtower Letter 12-20-80
The Society writes the Greber Foundation acknowledging receipt of both of Greber's books. The letter, typed on Watchtower stationery with the Society's letterhead reads:
December 20, 1980
JOHANNES GREBER MEMORIAL FOUNDATION
139 Hillside Ave.
Teaneck, NJ 07666
This is to acknowledge receipt of the two books you recently sent to us, The New Testament translated by Johannes Greber, and his book "Communication with the Spirit World of God."
We appreciate you sending these volumes on to us. For some years we have been aware of the translation by Johannes Greber and have on occasion even quoted it. Copies of the translation, though, have been hard to obtain. Since we have four libraries in our headquarters facilities consulted by the members of our staff, including the writers for our journals and books, we wonder about the possibility of obtaining a few additional copies of The New Testament.
Please direct any communication about the above request to the Writing Department, Desk EG.
Watchtower Bible & Tract Society
of New York, Inc.
11. Letter to the Watchtower, 9-21-81
This is one of over 20 letters to which the Governing Body, sent just 9 months later, denying knowledge of how to obtain the Greber New Testament. They gave a false address and source of a building torn down years before. So it was obvious that the Society was involved in a cover-up. They did not want their readers or members to know who Greber really was.
On the same Watchtower stationery is a sample of one of those letters:
September 21, 1981
508 West Eleventh Street
Claremont, California 91711
Dear Sister McAllister:
Your letter of August 20, 1981, has been received, and is now before us for answering.
You ask for information as to how you may obtain a copy of The New Testament, by Johannes Greber. The only address we have is that given in the translation itself, which was a 1937 edition. It lists the publishers as being, John Felsberg, Incorporated, 80 Fourth Avenue, New York, New York. We do not note an up-to-date listing in the New York Directory, so it may be necessary to have your bookstore send out a search inquiry regarding the translation.
We trust our comments prove helpful. We take this occasion to send herewith an expression of warm Christian love and best wishes.
Your brothers in Jehovah's service,
Watchtower Bible & Tract Society
of New York, Inc.
12. WT 4-1-83 p. 31
In a response in the "Questions From Readers" section of this Watchtower issue, the Society made these statements as to why the Society had not made recent use of the New Testament translation by Johannes Greber:
"But as indicated in a foreword in the 1980 edition of The New Testament by Johannes Greber, the translator relied on "God's Spirit World" to clarify for him how he should translate difficult passages...The Watchtower has deemed it improper to make use of a translation that has such a close rapport with spiritism."
According to the answer given by the Society, it said it did not realize Greber was a spiritist until they obtained the 1980 edition of his New Testament. In essence they are saying that the 1937 edition did not reveal this information about Greber.
What nonsense! Their tampering with the truth can be shown by comparing this answer with the 1956 Watchtower article that was mentioned above.
Since the Society had access to the 1937 edition of Greber's New Testament, they also knew that the introduction made the following statement:
"Whoever then seeks to know what is true and what is untrue in the Bible as we have it today, can find out only in the way in which all God-fearing people in the past have sought the truth, namely by communicating with God's spirit world." (p.15)