New light!, says JW-Archive. The inspired word can have mistranslations, says Dec 2015 WT

by StarTrekAngel 27 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason

    The word translated as "inspired" is theopneustos, which means "God-breathed", as shown in the NIV. The word "inspire" is to "breathe in" while the word for "breathing out" is "expire".

    How do we know that the person who wrote 2 Timothy 3:16 is telling the truth?

    What writings was the child Timothy reading? Certainly not the Christian Scriptures, since they were not canonised until centuries later. And there was no Hebrew Canon at the time when the Christian texts were being written.


  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason

    And it is interesting to note the number of times that NT writers cited writings that were later not included in the Hebrew canon. These include writings such as: 1 Enoch; 1, 2, and 4 Maccabees; 3 and 4 Esdras; Wisdom of Solomon; Sirach; etc.

    See the list at "The Biblical Canon", pages 452 to 464, by Lee Martin McDonald.


  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason


    Thanks for pointing out that Watchtower article. It's simply a marketing tool for their own version, but I wonder why they had to write it.

    Its thrust is that others made mistakes but the Watchtower's Bible has fixed them. Indeed, the WTS says it has even improved its own version.

    I doubt that any modern translator would advertise that they relied on the Masoretic Text and on Westcott and Hort. The WTS need to drag themselves out of the 19th and early 20th centuries.

    Despite their trumpeting of its use of "Jehovah" (even in their NT, which beggars belief), I wonder when they will drop that absurd word, pretending that this was the "Name" (Ha Shem). If they wish to follow the pronunciation from the German scholars, the first letter of "Jehovah" is soft, like the letter "Y" as in "yellow". I know this because of my mother's maiden name (Jellinek). The closest true revelation should be "Yahweh" - not that he started out as the Supreme God; that honour belongs to EL - the God of Genesis 1.


  • kepler

    Doug Mason,

    You've provided some interesting background on text origins and variations already, but I hope that you might share a few more observations. I started looking at some Dead Sea scroll summaries, but didn't get very far. One of the things I wondered about was what a document like the Isaiah scroll might show us: i.e., how it might differ from the Masoretic texts that were compiled later on. Did the Isaiah scroll say much the same in Hebrew as what the Septuagint did? Or is it different?

  • mynameislame
    That must be why the word generation is used incorrectly in the Greek Scriptures.
  • Vidiot
  • Vidiot
    The admission discussed in the OP is really just another way of saying, "no, we're not infallible, but you still have to behave as though we are"...
  • John Aquila
    John Aquila
    There's older watchtowers that say the same thing that the translaters were not inspired. This religion is such a joke.

    Here's one I always use with the JWs when I feel like freaking out someone and getting a laugh for the day. It always works, they totally lose it for a while.

    *** w96 4/15 p. 19 Why True Worship Receives God’s Blessing ***
    Bible translations themselves are not inspired by God. Translations, by their very nature, may reflect variations of the understanding of the original tongues in which the Bible was recorded.

  • CalebInFloroda


    The Dead Sea Scroll of Isaiah represents the proto-Masoretic tradition that in some instances differs greatly from the Masoretic text.

    However, what many people exposed to JW theology sometimes forget is that neither Judaism nor Christianity ever viewed the proto-Masoretic text as canonical. Canonization did not occur for either religious tradition until after the first century CE. All interpolations and redactions to the texts, both Hebrew and Christian, up to that point are accepted as part of the inspiration process, and the inspired text is only that which existed at the time the canonization process began.

    This is why the Dead Sea Scroll variations are not part of the official Jewish canon or the official Catholic/Orthodox canon either. What people are looking at in the Dead Sea Scrolls is the shaping of the texts that would one day be canon, but not the canonized texts themselves.

    The original texts of the Jews and Christians are not the inspired works. If the first works were then we would not have Genesis chapter 1. Matthew would exist only of Jesus' saying and no narrative. Isaiah would be a quarter of the length it is today. There would be no chapter 21 of John and no 2 Peter at all.

    JW theology likes to teach that the most ancient texts were the important ones, but it is the completed works that offer the full inspiration process according to those who did the canonizing. The "drafts" may have taken generations to work through, but it is their final state at the time of Marcion Sinope's heresy that the question of canon brought the redactions to an end.

    The Masoretic tradition of the 7th century was Jewry's answer to ending the redaction process as well. Thus the inspired text is that which offers a completed text, not the text in its infancy, at least not in the eyes of the religious authorities that invented the canonization process to begin with.

    I know a lot of people are used to hearing something else, but that is the way it has always been. The inspired books are those agreed upon when the official discussions of canon were closed. For Jews that was the Masoretic era and for Christians it comes in two parts, the New Testament canon closing in the late 300s and the Old Testament for Latin Rite Churches with the Council of Trent (there is no official Protestant O.T. as there is no authoritative body among them to make this finalized decision--most accepting the Masoretic canon).

  • kaik

    Mistranslation in the Bible exist for 15 centuries. During medieval times when only handful bibles were in existence and often available only to the royal family, there were already disputes on translation and meaning of the text. Therefore, often secondary text occurred immediately after the major edition. This problem became more prevalent when Greek and Latin bibles were translated into local languages starting in the 15th century.

    WT bibles will follow the same issues that faced medieval scholars in the monasteries rewriting and copying old test into a new Bible. I often looking into different translations of the bible online, because the differences in the text can be significant.

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