Why Certain Words Are Left Out Of Our English Bibles

Why Certain Words Are Left Out Of Our English Bibles May 23, 2019


The more I study the Bible, the more concerned I am with how translators have altered the texts to serve their own agendas.

Most Christians are unaware of the fact that this has gone on for centuries, and that some of these intentional mistranslations are intended to prevent people from knowing what the Scriptures actually teach on certain topics.

For example: For several hundred years Bible translators obscured the true identity of Junia in the New Testament because Paul called Junia “outstanding among the Apostles” and they weren’t happy with the fact that Junia was a female. So, to hide this from the masses, the Scriptures were used to give Junia a sex change and turn her into a male.

Another example is in 1 Timothy 3:11 where Paul [or Pseudo-Paul] is giving guidelines for Overseers and Deacons in the Church. Most English translations render the sentence like this:

“Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.”

Written this way, the passage appears to be providing a guideline for how the wife of the Deacon should behave. However, the word here is not the usual word for “wife” in the Greek. It’s actually the word for “women” which means the passage is more accurately translated as:

“In the same way, the women are to be worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything.”

Meaning, the women, or female, deacons should be evaluated “in the same way” as the male deacons.

How do we know this is more accurate? Because all throughout the New Testament we see female deacons like Lydia, Phoebe, Dorcas, and others who are called “deacons” (or “diakonus”) which simply means “servant” in the Greek.

Another example of how certain words were either left out of our Bibles or changed to serve an agenda, is found in 1 Cor. 14:34-35 where Paul appears to say that “women should be silent in the church” and that “women should not be allowed to speak as the Law says” and worse yet, that “it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.”

The problem with this is that it totally contradicts everything that Paul has already said in this very same letter about how women should prophesy and how everyone should participate together in the Body of Christ.

What’s more, Paul appears to appeal to the Law for instruction – something he spends a lot of time arguing against in his other letters – and even more concerning is the fact that the Law NEVER says that “women should not be allowed to speak”.

Paul was a Pharisee of Pharisees, by his own admission. How could he have made such a drastic mistake about what the Law said about women being silent?

Answer: He didn’t.

How do we know this? Because there is a word missing in most English translations in the very next verse after this section. The word is an exclamation which simply says: “What?!

And following that exclamation, Paul follows up with this:

“Did the word of God originate with you? Or are you the only people it has reached? If anybody thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord’s command. If he ignores this, he himself will be ignored.”

So, what is actually going on here is that Paul is quoting something the Corinthians had written to him in a previous letter (which Paul alludes to in this same epistle), and is responding negatively to their statements – not expressing his own views.

Another way we know that Paul is not silencing women in this passage is that, as we said, the Law never taught that women should not be allowed to speak. But, the Talmud did.

“The silencing of women was a Jewish ordinance. Women were not permitted to speak in the assembly or even to ask questions. The rabbis taught that a woman should know nothing but the use of her distaff.” [See “What’s With Paul And Women?” by Jon Zens]

Josephus, a Jewish historian, asserted that “the woman, says the law, is in all things inferior to a man. Let her accordingly be submissive.”

The Talmud clearly affirms the silence of females:

“A woman’s voice is prohibited because it is sexually provocative” (Talmud, Berachot 24a).

“Women are sexually seductive, mentally inferior, socially embarrassing, and spiritually separated from the law of Moses; therefore, let them be silent” (summary of Talmudic sayings).

The Talmud Called the Voice of a Woman “Shameful”

“It is a shame for a woman to let her voice be heard among men” (Talmud, Tractate Kiddushin)

“The voice of a woman is filthy nakedness” (Talmud, Berachot Kiddushin)

So, it’s the Talmud, not Paul, who tries to silence women. Paul’s own writings were quite egalitarian when left alone and not altered by translators who had an axe to grind against women.

Want to know another place where a word was left out of our English translations of Scripture in order to advance an agenda?

Let’s look at Philippians 2:10-11:

“…that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Now, many of us are well-acquainted with this verse of scripture. But what most of us don’t know – because our English translations leave something out – is that the word “gladly” is omitted from the passage.

Why is that significant? Because without the word “gladly” in this sentence, it’s very easy to teach that unrepentant sinners will one day bow their knees under compulsion and confess that Christ is Lord under protest, just before they get tossed into the lake of fire.

However, if you include the missing word it reads like this:

“that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow….and every tongue should GLADLY confess that Jesus Christ is Lord..”

The word for confess used here in the Greek is: exomologeō 

This word is translated as: “to acknowledge openly and joyfully

But, if you leave off the “joyful” and “open” part of the statement, you make it easier to suggest that God will eventually burn some of His children in the Lake of Fire for all eternity. Otherwise, you have to wrestle with the fact that this verse says that one day EVERY knee will bow, and EVERY tongue will JOYFULLY confess that Jesus Christ is Lord” and when paired with Paul’s other statement in Romans 10:9 that all who confess Jesus as Lord will be saved, you have quite a problem on your hands if you hope to drive home your doctrine of Eternal Suffering.

This is not an exhaustive list of verses in our English Bibles that have left words out on purpose to advance an agenda. We’ve not even started to scratch the surface.

But the point I want to make is that we cannot simply open our English Bibles and point to a verse and say “The Bible clearly says…” because our Bibles are not as honest or as accurate as we might want them to be.

If you’re curious about this topic, I’d suggest reading my latest book “Jesus Unbound: Liberating the Word of God from the Bible“.

If nothing else, be careful what you believe if it’s based on what your English translation says. There’s a good chance the Bible really doesn’t say what you think it says.


Keith Giles was formerly a licensed and ordained minister who walked away from organized church 11 years ago, to start a home fellowship that gave away 100% of the offering to the poor in the community. Today, He and his wife live in Meridian, Idaho, awaiting their next adventure.

His new book “Jesus Unbound: Liberating the Word of God from the Bible”, is available now on Amazon and features a Foreword by author Brian Zahnd.

He is also the author of the Amazon best-seller, “Jesus Untangled: Crucifying Our Politics To Pledge Allegiance To The Lamb” with a Foreword by Greg Boyd.

Keith also co-hosts the Heretic Happy Hour Podcast on iTunes and Podbean. BONUS: Want to unlock exclusive content including blog articles, short stories, music, podcasts, videos and more? Visit my Patreon page.

Join me this summer at one of these upcoming events:


*Costa Mesa, CA – June 22 “United We Stand”

*Hot Springs, NC – July 11-14 “Wild Goose Festival”

Want Keith to come speak at your church or in your home town? Learn more HERE


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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Wow. Superb. Do you have any more of these omissions you can share, Keith? They certainly are game-changers…

  • Bob Peacock

    Can not wait to get your new book Keith., we have talked to Pastor’s who continually put down the LGBTQSI Community and ask them to do their own research, read other materials, talk to Scholars., but in most cases to no avail., most are just lazy and depend on old sermons from their Grampy’s and other’s from days gone by to continue to spew hatred and keep Women in their place in the Church. Thank you.
    Bob and Lloyd Peacock

  • Margaret Chapman

    Thankyou for bringing to us how these verses of scripture should read. I have struggled to fully comprehend the meaning of some of these verses for a long time, and wouldn’t have thought one word wrongly translated or ommitted would make such a different to the text. Jesus is the exact representation of God the Father and its so important that scripture reveals God’s character truthfully, and not to suit some ones agenda. I realise that where man has a hand in things there is always opportunity for him to suit himself.

  • Jay Hinkelman

    Not to sound impertinent, but do you have citations for any of this? Especially the “What?!” omission. I don’t read the original languages, and if you could either help me parse the original text or point me to somewhere that explains this, I’d very much appreciate it. (I’d like to share these things with my high school students and the more evidence I have, the better.)

  • bill wald

    Talmud is commentary on the law. Dogma, catechism, creed, but not law, Torah.

    “Strong’s” lists several words and phrases that are banned from modern Bibles. see google.

    “God” is not proper noun but a generic reference to any sort of god. “I AM WHAT I AM” should be translated as (in polite modern lingo) “you have no need to know my name.”

  • Al Cruise

    Excellent. It’s education like is that will make the change to the truth. Education is the way to make change. It’s progress often seems too slow , but truth always marches forward. Religious conservatism will fade away through education like this, not persecution. Keep it coming, and share with everyone.

  • John

    What is your source material for these omissions?

  • Kate Johnson

    Yes, this is why I have such a problem with the inerrancy crowd and their addiction to certainty at the expense of truth.

  • Everett Kier Jr

    When you use words like “omissions” your language is incendiary at worst and at best disingenuous. The arguments are rather sophomoric and when I read some of the responses I find it hard to believe people are so ignorant of translation process and the reality of assumptions dictating your line of argument.

  • Deist1737

    Incorrect translations are a reason God would never attempt to communicate with people through human languages. The Deist Thomas Paine did a beautiful job of pointing this out in The Age of Reason, The Complete Edition when he wrote, “I believe it is only in the CREATION that all our ideas and conceptions of a Word of God can unite. The Creation speaks a universal language, independently of human speech or human language, multiplied and various as they may be. It is an ever existing original, which every man can read. It cannot be forged; it cannot be counterfeited; it cannot be lost; it cannot be altered; it cannot be suppressed. It does not depend upon the will of man whether it shall be published or not; it publishes itself from one end of the earth to the other. It preaches to all nations and to all worlds; and this Word of God reveals to man all that is necessary for man to know of God.”

    Progress! Bob Johnson

  • Rudy Schellekens

    WOW! What a beautiful performance of mental gymnastics! My applause! So, do you have other sources except your own writing? That seems a bit self-serving! And, by the way, who is Pseudo-Paul, anyway?

    I would like to ask you, that when you confess your sins, do you do that openly, gladfully and joyfully? After all, same word used in the Philippians text!

    And where did “What?” come from? I have spent a decade or four studying these texts ( and others) and this is the first reference to “What?” i have seen. SO, sourcing would be ever so nice (Other, of course, than what your book says).

    The starting accusation bothers me. “The more I study the Bible, the more concerned I am with how translators have altered the texts to serve their own agendas. Most Christians are unaware of the fact that this has gone on for centuries, and that some of these intentional mistranslations are intended to prevent people from knowing what the Scriptures actually teach on certain topics”

    “Intentional.” Serve own agendas.” Intentional mistranslations…” Knowing at least one scholar personally who has been involved with the NIV, I cannot imagine he would lend himself to such intentional mistranslations. I would ask him, but he passed away not too long ago.

    You tarnish the reputation of hundreds of scholar – without a single lick of evidence – nor any option for them to defend themselves. What courage!

    On to the next. Yes, there are LEGITIMATE questions whether it is Junia or Junias. But the text does not make EITHER an apostle. It means: The apostles spoke highly of her/him. Not that he/she was an apostle.

    Deaconesses – Yep! Phoebe was a “servant” (in Greek a deaconess). No issues there, Early Christian writings speak of deaconesses. But please, put your references where your mouth is: ” Because all throughout the New Testament we see female deacons like Lydia, Phoebe, Dorcas, and others” Phoebe is the ONLY one of those you name who indeed is referred to as a “servant,” or, as some ENGLISH translations (NIV being one of those; which BTW alsu refers to Junia instead of”-s”!) have it, “deacon(ess).”

    And γυναῖκας can mean either women of wives, so either is a possible translation.

    And that, Keith, is what you so conveniently leave out of your article…

  • Rod Bristol

    At 1 Cor 14:36, an interlinear will show the often untranslated word. ESV does translate the word with “or.” Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon, 1995 says It’s “A primary particle of distinction between two connected terms.”. It appears in Ro 2:4; 3:29; 9:35; 1 Cor 1:13; 6:2; 6:19; 7:16; and 11:22 with the sense of “NOT!” However, in the vast majority of cases in the NT, the same word just points to an either/or choice. In 1 Cor 11:22 ESV translates it as “or” but it parallels a strong negation, translated “What!”

    The translators are not quite as crass in their choices as the host here suggests, but they do generally have to produce a consensus product, which sometimes makes it hard to convey the full force of a passage. Careful comparison and reflection can drastically reframe some passages.

  • Al Cruise

    Your feeling threatened. We understand.

  • Bill Powers

    In 1 Timothy 3:11, the word translated as “wife” is Strong’s 1135. This noun is used over a hundred times in the NT. In almost all cases it is translated as “wife.” Translating it uniformly as “woman” would produce nonsense in many cases. However, the word is translated as “woman” in a few cases. A more generous comment would be that the word is in some cases ambiguous. Translating the Greek word as either “wife” or “woman” are both plausible, and not necessarily a nefarious intend of the translators. Regarding the 1 Cor. 14:34-35 passage, I can’t make any sense of your comments from my examination of the Greek text. Can you say what Greek word you are referring to with regard to this “What?” I find this in one translation (ASV), but I don’t know what basis they have for it. The lieral Greek reads, “A shame for it is for women in a church to speak. Or from you the word of God went out, or to you only did it reach?”

  • Rudy Schellekens

    Why would i feel threatened?? Keith is prejudicial and plain wrong in what he wrote. You COULD check that for yourself!

  • Al Cruise

    I have. He’s correct.

  • ashpenaz

    There is also no word for homosexual in the Bible–whatever arsenkoites and malakoi mean, it is not the same as what we mean today when we speak of someone with a homosexual orientation. And there is absolutely no mention of lesbians, even by inference, in the Scripture–unless you consider the relationship between Ruth and Naomi.

  • Rudy Schellekens

    So i am sure you could share the sources you used to support his being correct. Looking forward to hearing from you.

  • Rudy Schellekens

    So here is an exercise for you. At least 13 times in Romans the word “among” is used. Keith makes it mean that Junia is “a part of, one of” the apostles. Use that application, and see how well that works in the rest passages. To help you:
    Rom_1:5 through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles for His name’s sake,
    Rom_1:6 among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ;
    Rom_1:12 that is, that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other’s faith, both yours and mine.
    Rom_1:13 I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that often I have planned to come to you (and have been prevented so far) so that I may obtain some fruit among you also, even as among the rest of the Gentiles.
    Rom_1:24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them.
    Rom_8:29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;
    Rom_9:24 even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.
    Rom_11:17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the rich root of the olive tree,
    Rom_12:3 For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.
    Rom_15:9 and for the Gentiles to glorify God for His mercy; as it is written, “THEREFORE I WILL GIVE PRAISE TO YOU AMONG THE GENTILES, AND I WILL SING TO YOUR NAME.”
    Rom_15:26 For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem.
    Rom_16:7 Greet Andronicus and Junias [NASB; NIV uses Junia – either way, I am good], my kinsmen and my fellow prisoners, who are outstanding among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.

    I would suggest you do the same kind of study for Keith’s other idea, about GUNE – how to apply it as wives or women.

    And, of course, some of the other words he tells us were purposely mistranslated, abused etc. It is easy to make such statements – but a lot harder to support with FACTS (Other than his own book, of course.

  • Doug

    Perhaps “bias” would be a more accurate word than “agenda.” We all operate within generational bias. It is for this reason that C.S. Lewis recommended we read “old books,” those written outside our generational bias, so that we might escape the generational bias of our particular age. Realize much of this “new” perspective specifically involves women and comes from the contemporary teaching of Marg Mowczko. That said, most readers are not trained in the original languages of the Scriptures, so they cannot verify if these things be so. However, Jesus told us we could test the validity of interpretation on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Multiple confirming witnesses should be provided from ancient Hebrew and Greek scholars also, before a modern interpretation is accepted as valid.

  • Silverwolf13

    What the author notes is simply a continuation of what went on in the development of the Hebrew Bible. Note how the Books of the Law were “found” in the temple by the high priest Hilkiah during the reign of King Josiah. (2 Kings 22:3-20, 2 Chron 34:14-21)

  • Iain Lovejoy

    In every passage you quote, “among” does indicate the person is part of the group concerned, so I am not sure where you are going with that.
    I will give you the “what!” as not really working (my own view is that given that the section does contradict other Pauline passages and known early Christian practice, and the Greek used is “lalein” which means principally talking generally rather than giving a speech, the mention of husbands suggests he’s talking specifically of wives, and the passage is part of a section on good order at meetings, Paul is referring to believers’ wives chatting at the back, not a suitably instructed and qualified woman speaking at the front).
    I’ll also concede Keith is over-egging it with “gladly” confessing, but (according to Strong) the word certainly refers to freely confessing / professing something from the heart rather than some forced and reluctant admission that some try and make the passage refer to.

  • Pan Unicorn

    The Queen James Bible does something similar with the infamous homophobic passages, going in great depth about their origins, what the original texts said, and then providing a more accurate translation

  • Jon-Michael Ivey

    To be fair, the English word “Wife” used to mean Woman without any indication of her marital status. The word “woman” was originally “wife man” or “female human.” The word “man” is a cognate with “mind” and denoted “intelligent being” without saying anything about gender. The male equivalent of wifeman was “wereman.”

  • The bible says many things and various people at various times disagree because it seems implausible to them that certain conduct would be proscribed; this disagreement is self-absorbed lawlessness.

  • Many people ask for a sign and only one was given. Some people reject Josephus because he gave independent testimony of Jesus; a comment they cannot bear. If someone wants to verify certain scriptures the tools are available. With time and study anyone who tries can decide what is true and what they believe but more importantly why.

  • A description of the conduct is better than a word. Word definitions can be debated as the author points out.
    Leviticus 18:22 says, “[Men] shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.” Leviticus 20:13 says, “If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act.”
    God’s Word says the homosexual act is detestable; it is an abomination. So the actors, by whatever name, have the proscribed condut and are without excuse in this age or in previous ages.

  • Doug

    BTW, 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 does not say, “women should not be allowed to speak as the Law says.” It says, “women…are to subject themselves just as the Law also says,” probably referring to Genesis 3:16 where the LORD tells Eve, Adam “will rule over you.”

  • ProchDolor

    Hi Keith–quick question: what’s the greek word you’re referring to as the “What!?” word?

  • Kyllein MacKellerann “

    From Constantine onward, the Bible has been a political document intended to silence dissent and enforce a particular ruler’s viewpoint. Calling it the “Word of God” slanders God and makes twisted political agendas into divine law. Really, who needs it? God’s laws are IN us, not in a book intended to subjugate people.

  • Al Cruise

    This blog post shines the light on two types of Christianity. There is the Christianity that lives in the world of words. In this world theologians duke it out with each other trying to show off their mental prowess . The Evangelical Orthodoxy world is a prime example of this and it is a world of a faith that is dead. The other is the world of Jesus as he interacted with people in real life situations, and focuses on what Jesus “did” and what we should do. The majority of this happening while Jesus was interacting with the least among-st us. This Christianity is a faith that is alive and vibrant and brings froth the Kingdom of God. I have been fortunate to work with several “Junia’s ” . Women leader’s who preached and taught , and brought forth fruit that grew the Kingdom of God. Evidence that I have shown to hardened conservative evangelical men , in which they did not have a response. I one case it was one of their own children being delivered out of the clutches of evil addictions by a women pastor . There is not doubt the Bible is doctored to promote the world of orthodoxy with the goal of patriarchal dominance .

  • Danny Dingeldein

    So, which translation do you recommend?

  • Thanks for your very interesting article Keith. What do you think about deliberate English insertions? For example in Luke 1:34 where the Greek text does not contain the word parthenos (virgin), yet well-known English versions such as the NIV, ESV, and NAS render the following doctrinally driven translation:

    And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” (ESV)

    One of the few versions which do provide an honest and correct translation is the KJV:

    Then said Mary unto the angel, “How shall this be, seeing I know (ginóskó) not a man?”

    The primary meaning of the Greek word ginóskó is to come to know, to recognize, to perceive. Not content with the almost complete doctrinal subjugation of some translators, proponents of the Virgin Birth doctrine attack the only remaining honest translations and assert that the word ‘know’ (ginóskó) refers to knowing sexually whereas, except for Matthew 1:25, other New Testament occurrences of the word ginóskó refer to a state of knowledge, including all occurrences in Luke. Since the angel has just promised Mary that she would give birth to a child entitled to “sit on the throne of his father David,” the only interpretation that fits Luke’s narrative is that Mary did not know, she was not acquainted with, a descendant of David who could father the child entitled to sit on the throne of David.

  • Philip Devine

    So inclusive language, which takes out the word man when it’s there in the text, is nothing new. But the passage about women being silent in church, so far as I can tell as a non-scholar, is really there. If we reject it as an interpolation we end of rejecting the story of the woman taken in adultery, as well as “Father forgive them, because they know not what they do.” The best remedy for fundamentalism — and extreme liberalism as well — is actually to read the Bibiel

  • Ryan Brooks

    Perhaps this is what Leviticus means, however, unless you’re arguing that we begin to follow the old testament purity laws none of the rest of the Bible, especially New Testament, to which Christians are typically beholden says anything about homosexuality.

    We wear clothing of mixed fibers, we eat pork and shrimp, we don’t shun women for a week while they’re on their periods. Stop selectively using scripture to prop up your agenda.

  • You cant have it both ways. The statement was that, “There is also no word for homosexual in the Bible.” I replied that there was a description of the sexual component and produced it.

    The reference was for that limited purpose.

  • feetxxxl

    for 2000 years translators assumed we were under the law(being gay was considered a sin) and translated accordingly. we are under grace yet paul repeatedly speaks the wrath of god and the day of wrath. since we serve spirit, his love, joy, peace…………….romans 7. requires studying the original words(Hebrew and greek) to understand what was written. his grace is for everyone not just those of the faith, if grace covers all then all died to the law………….yet paul talks of god’s wrath………………… the day of the lord………………….a contradiction?????

  • douglas kraeger

    I agree that the devil wants translators to be his helpers. I would not agree with you on the relevance of leaving out gladly in Philipians 2:10. Question: Do you believe God is infinitely good and powerful enough to create free will such that when given truly infinite graces, each person will freely conform their will to conform to God’s Divine will, as all the Saints in heaven must?
    Also, are you aware that the Catechism of the Catholic Church ( the Church that teaches about Hell) teaches at 2814 that ” By the Holiness of His Name, God saves and makes Holy all creation”? This sounds like the Church is teaching that those in hell will be saved/ reconciled (CCC 579) as they suffer for ever and ever and ever, with thanksgiving and peace and joy, like Jesus on the Cross. Do you believe God can give us the graces to suffer infinitely with Him, with His peace?

  • Brigit Ard Inghean Aeda

    Truly, you can’t have it both ways. Jesus declared, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

    You don’t get to choose who your neighbor is. You don’t get to discriminate against or shun people who you judge afoul of certain Levitican laws. Those laws were for the Levites in a specific Covenant with God. Following those laws would make you a Jew, not a Christian. Paul himself was very clear about saying that following Jesus meant no longer following the Laws of Moses.

    Without an explicit directive from God to exclude and condemn homosexuals, the Christian community’s treatment of gay persons is in clear violation of what Jesus and the New Testament writers pointedly identified as one-half of God’s most important commandment: to love one’s neighbor as one’s self.

  • Joseph Soltero

    “It appears in Ro 2:4; 3:29; 9:35; 1 Cor 1:13; 6:2; 6:19; 7:16; and 11:22 with the sense of “NOT!””

    Does it though? For example:

    “For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from the works of the law. NOT! Is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also?” (Romans 3:28-29, ESV, translating “or” as “NOT!”)

    Does that make sense to you?

  • You have misread my comment as an anti-gay slur. It was not. It is an answer to a specific comment.

    As to your comment about exclusion and condemnation I think you are wrong. Our government, which Progressives hate, has done everything to be inclusive haven’t they? Our churches have the freedom to interpret the bible without government interference. The laity, of which you are a part, can pressure churches based on your interpretation of the Great Commandment but they don’t have to and in most cases won’t hear you.

  • John

    Usually I like your posts that challenge traditional conservative beliefs, but in this one you do a disservice. For such examples source material is required. My guess is you only have second or third level source material that can be critically challenged, and no primary source. Essentially you made an accusation with no evidence. Thus you enable an unsubstantiated belief that from the looks of responses here, adds fuel to the fire. If it weren’t so sad it would be funny that people are now getting behind your argument as another reason to bash tradition. I guess they will cite you as their source. You are better than this Keith, and I for one would love to read the source material because I appreciate your intentions.

  • Al Cruise

    ” For such examples source material is required. ” There is no source material that you would ever acknowledge as legitimate that doesn’t line up with your admission that you have sold your soul to tradition. Very basic conservative mentality. Develop an ethos that lives in a loop and your safe.

  • John

    Really? That’s your response to my very legitimate questions. You have no idea of my position, beliefs or sincere inquiry into this issue. A shallow response Al Cruise.

  • Al Cruise

    Yes. I lived in that culture for over 30 years. I read between the lines very well. You’re attacking Keith, plus you are condescending.

  • John

    Please stop claiming my inquiry is not sincere. I regularly read Keith’s blog and understand his history and biblical positions. Honestly, I appreciate his approach on many issues. But my search for anything referencing the missing words in these verses has yielded nothing, not even a slight reference. To ask for reference is not an attack or condescending. My beef is when claims are made regarding serious issues, but without evidence or qualitative support, whether they come from conservatives or progressives. Your responses to me are of no value regarding the topic of this post, but you only offer accusation. That only furthers the divide and shuts down conversation, something I think Keith would even take issue with.

  • A large part of what we call, “The Bible,” which comes from the King James VERSION was added to and miss-translated.

  • James Elliott

    Oh, wow! I’m going to dig out my Greek New Testament and check this out. What has been raised is really good reasoning for handling the Scriptures carefully (like a sword? Isn’t that somewhere in there? lol). I appreciate the level of importance this brings to the table.

  • Andre Dennis

    So what about the other agendas? Slavery? Incest? Political corruption? Don’t make this a feminism thing. I agree with the one issue u been harping on but there are others that are just as harmful and should be brought to light too.

  • Rod Bristol

    Yes, the “NOT!” introduces a rhetorical question whose obvious answer is “no.”

  • Everett Kier Jr

    no way they are going to check that out! there is as much prejudice here as in any fundamentalist church I know.

  • Ignatz

    Some of your points are good, but the fact is that perfect translation is impossible, words in foreign languages often have no precise equivalents, and which English word you use is based on the assumptions you bring to the text. The claim that translators routinely intentionally mistranslate is a smear. They’re scholars, not tent preachers. In the vast majority of cases, your opinion of what the translation should be and theirs are both equally legitimate and defensible.

  • Joseph Soltero

    Hmmm, I’m not understanding your reasoning.

    For me, inserting the “NOT!” there makes Paul say that we are NOT justified by faith apart from works.

    Unless you’re taking “NOT!” more like “Oh, you don’t think so?” But that’s not what the writer of the article is claiming.

  • David Cromie

    The problem is not really mistranslations, or even deleted words; it is the fact that all of the so-called ‘bible’ is about cashing in on the fact that the intended audience were, fo the most part, semiliterate at best, but above all credulous because superstitious. The OT is nothing if not propaganda in the service of the political ends of those selling monotheism to the Israelites. Furthermore, the OT is a syncretically concocted mishmash of legends, myths, and folklore, mostly derived from already existing Pagan sources, such as the Laws of Hammurabi, or the Epic of Gilgamesh, for example.

    The NT is virtually manmade myth, from cover to cover, to serve the ends of the new religion, christianity, as instituted by Constantine. Thus a comparison of the earliest known ‘bible’, the Codex Sinaiticus (dating from the 4th cent. CE), with the KJV will bring to light the omissions, alterations, and additions which the so-called Early church fathers thought were necessary for an acceptable canon to progress the spread of their new religion across Europe (how that was achieved is another story). Note that the Codex Vaticanus dates from the same period, the 4th cent. CE.

    This being the case, why would anyone think that the so-called ‘bible’ has anything useful to contribute to knowledge or the human condition in the 21st cent. CE? Neither semantics, nor textual analysis and exegesis, will solve these real problems.

  • Rod Bristol

    I’m confusing things by using an explicit interjection in the wrong place. “NOT!” in popular culture comes at the end of a denied hypothesis. The Greek “he” sometimes introduces a rhetorical question, but usually merely connects two alternatives. When it introduces a question, the question typically (always?) implies a negative answer. “WHAT!” or “HEY!” (which sounds similar to the Greek particle) fits the sequence of words better than the emphatic “NOT!” Sorry to be confusing.

  • Ryan Brooks

    I may have been in error in my response in that you were simply pointing out that there is at least a very basic description of the homosexual act. I think my point still stands, however, in that we are not beholden to Levitical law, therefore it’s irrelevant to the discussion of whether homosexuality is sinful for Christians.

    Nowhere in Brigit’s reply do they claim any government interference. They’ve pointed out that it’s the CHURCH that has been condemnatory and exclusionary towards LGBT individuals. Neither of which are Christ-like attitudes. While the church has no requirement to listen to dissent, that makes them no less wrong in their attitudes or behaviors.

    As for the government, if you think it has done “everything” to be inclusive, you’re sadly misinformed. It may support “religious freedom”, but pretty much everyone else outside “white Christian male” has had to fight tooth and nail for every little bit of equality they have, and it’s only been worsening under Trump with his abominable “religious freedom” laws allowing healthcare individuals to discriminate against LGBT individuals because of their “beliefs”, and the establishment of anti-abortion laws in numerous states. The enshrinement of religious mores into law is contradictory to everything our founders believed, and yet it’s PROGRESSIVES who supposedly hate the constitution and country.

  • soter phile

    The view that this confession (as introduced by exomologeo) is an open and glad proclamation by every intelligent being in God’s universe runs into a number of exegetical and theological difficulties…
    [3 lengthy paragraphs later]
    It is better, then, to conclude on the last day every knee will bow and every tongue will ‘openly declare‘ that Jesus alone has the right to rule (cf.Rev.5:13, etc.).
    – Peter O’Brien, The NIGTC on Philippians

    No, Keith. Yet again, scholars have thoroughly wrestled with these exact things, and found that argument lacking.

    Your attempt to get people to doubt the adequacy of their English translations is a disingenuous plea to ‘create room’ for your preferred positions, but ironically forgets that your own position is contingent on the very same sort of confidence in a translation to English (namely, yours).

    As most Greek scholars readily admit: while there may be some added nuance to knowing the Greek, the variety of vernacular translations of the NT are abundantly sufficient to communicate the truths of the NT. And as one who can read the original languages myself, in the vast majority of study, one finds the scholars have accurately translated every word.

    Remember, people, this is the most read, most scrutinized text in history. It’s been checked & triple checked.

    Whenever someone says, “oh no, that’s not what it says! Translators got it wayyyyy wrong!”…
    you can google online interlinear Bibles or check Strong’s concordance. Surprise, surprise – that’s what it means – including some words that Keith doesn’t like… such as propitiation (Strong’s 2434).

  • Thank you.

    Please explain a little more why we are not bound by any of God’s Laws found in the OT,
    especially the Ten Commandments off which Adultery comes to mind? For some reference,
    it is said, “The content of the Law is spread among the books of Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, and then reiterated and added to in Deuteronomy (deutero-nomy is Latinised Greek for “Second reading of the Law”). This includes: the Ten Commandments. Moral laws – on murder, theft, honesty, adultery, etc.”

    Let’s be even more specific. Why is it forbidden to have sex with your neighbor’s wife? Or is it? Do we have sex and then ask for forgiveness or just continue to do it because we can?

    As to churches trying to follow God’s Laws, what specifically did Christ command to show the churches that those who break the understood Laws are not to be frowned upon?

    Are your comments about the abominable Trump misplaced? All states have limits on abortion do they not? These laws apply equally as far as I can tell. How does Trump control state legislatures that have had these laws on the books since Roe? Is it Governor Cuomo’s NY law that has breached the dike and caused this furor?

  • Ryan Brooks

    Your reading comprehension is atrocious. If you’d bothered reading Brigit’s comment you wouldn’t even need to ask this question. I’m not continuing this conversation so don’t bother replying, but here is the answer to the only question you asked that follows my comment. I’ve chosen several links, because there are far greater authorities than I who speak to this subject, and if you read it a couple times it’ll make sure you actually get the essence of what is being said. I don’t mean this to be insulting but I will not engage in conversation with someone who continues to either intentionally or unintentionally misread what is being said by people in the conversation. It’s frustrating and wastes both our time.





  • Really. Criticize my reading skills and tell me not to reply because your time is to valuable.
    Someday you may understand that relying on “authorities” is perilous. When you do, as with your cites, you only know what they said and you have no idea if it is true or not. Until you can defend such a position on your own you are just prattling.

  • KontraDiction

    Wow that’s really beautiful!

  • David Cromie

    It is a pity that neither you, nor any other christer, has ever adduced the irrefutable, falsifiable, evidence for the real existence of any supernatural entity whatsoever. Without this evidence, the so-called ‘bible’ remains just a syncretic concoction of myths, legends, and folklore, derived from pre-existing Pagan originals.

  • David Cromie

    On Josephus, check out the Testimonium Flaviorum.

  • David Cromie

    Deluded, superstitious, religious people do nothing other than ‘prattle’. ‘Faith’ means believing that something is true, without any evidence in support of it.

  • Thanks for that illuminating series of what you believe to be important. However, you and I have already gone round and round and round on atheism.

  • Clint

    Regardless of the applicability of any particular Old Testament command on Christians, the reference to Leviticus is important because it defines exactly what Paul means when he uses arsenokoitai in 1 Corinthians 6:9. While I’ve heard people say they can’t know what this word means because it was so uncommon in Paul’s day, an honest consideration would see that Paul has taken it directly from the Greek LXX of Leviticus and using it as a compound word with only an inflectional change based on the grammar to mean those “men who lie with men” as one lies with a woman. It is the most generic, sweeping term speaking of homosexual acts and any attempt to limit it to some subset of “abusive” acts of Paul’s day has to explain why Paul did not use any of the other terms that already existed in Greek and were much more common in his day instead.

  • Clint

    I don’t expect to change your mind, but I contest the claim that the NT is manmade myth from cover to cover to serve Constantine. There is good evidence from the various names used in the gospels and the consistent use of disambiguation for certain names (especially in speech as opposed to narrative) that matches up with the names known to be common in Palestine in the 1st century. https://crossexamined.org/are-the-gospels-based-on-eyewitness-testimony-the-test-of-personal-names/ There is a video I saw on this a few years ago which also goes into the marked differences between the 4 canonical gospels as opposed to various apocryphal gospels known to be written later when it comes to usage of personal and place names, but I can’t find it right now.

    None of it proves the Bible is exactly what it says it is, but it does show it’s not something just made up centuries after the fact.

  • Clint

    I’m generally in favor of consistent literal renderings over paraphrases and such, but I believe the ESV is faithful to the meaning of the text in interpreting “knowing a man” as not having had sex with a man. While it may not be a common phrase in the NT, the Greek translation of the OT uses ‘know’ as a literal rendering of the Hebrew several times in relation to sex. (“Adam knew Eve his wife”…”And Cain knew his wife”, Genesis 4:1,17, 25; see also Genesis 24:16; 1 Samuel 1:19; 1 Kings 1:4). You might also consider the fact that it was only after Joseph had decided to quietly put Mary away because she was pregnant and the explained it to him in a dream that “he took his wife (same word used in 1 Tim 3:11, by the way), but did not know her until she had given birth to a son” (Matthew 1:24-25).

  • Clint

    There are some really misleading statements in this article, for instance: “the word here is not the usual word for “wife” in the Greek.” What is the usual word for “wife” then? Because γυνη is the only word in the New Testament used for “wife” as far as I know. It is true that the word also means “woman” as opposed to man, but the meaning is often very contextual. Considering that Paul specifically states that both overseers and deacons should be each “the husband of one wife” (1 Tim 3:2, 12; literally “one woman’s man” if you want to avoid husband/wife) and manage their households and children well, why is using “wives” as opposed to “women” in 1 Tim 3:11 considered an example of “intentional mistranslations…intended to prevent people from knowing what the Scriptures actually teach on certain topics”?

  • David Cromie

    Kings Cross railway station really exists in London, therefore Harry Potter books must be believable. It would have been self-defeating not to use common names, if the object were to attract the attention of the illiterate and superstitious, among the great unwashed. By the way, have you compared either the Codex Sinaiticus, or the Codex Vaticanus, with the KJV of the so-called ‘bible’?

    Constantine picked on monotheism as a way to halt the disintegration of his empire, and awarded christians the contract. Thus christianity was entirely a political tool, for the achieving of Constantine’s ends. It was so successful eventually, that Constantine’s Roman Empire was supplanted with the ‘Holy Roman Empire’, still with headquarters in Rome, with zealous leaders, and a ruthless army to enforce its will on all and sundry, creating a theocracy across Europe and beyond.

  • David Cromie

    The so-called ‘bible’ has been ‘checked and triple checked’, but against what? Why, then are there so many different religions, all claiming that their credos are sanctioned by the same texts, and each one of them claiming to be the ‘one true religion’?

  • Clint

    I would agree with you that Constantine manipulated Christianity and led to its large scale corruption by marriage to the State. My point of disagreement is that Constantine had no way to know what the common names in one particularly small region of his empire had been 300 years before his time. For instance, they were not the same as Jewish names in Egypt at that time. And the writers of the second and third centuries who invented gospels didn’t include many names besides Jesus himself and certainly didn’t have the detailed geographical descriptions which only come from local knowledge of a place. For instance, I’ve never been to King’s Cross in London, but I’ve heard it in enough stories that I could write it into one, but if I were to start talking about surrounding cities and neighborhoods it would quickly become obvious that I didn’t know what I was talking about. The gospels were written by three eyewitnesses and a relatively early convert with access to the facts at the time.

  • Clint

    To your question of manuscripts: I haven’t read any of the three in their entirety, though I do have facsimiles of all of them for the New Testament at least and I do generally use a critical version of the New Testament alongside the Center for New Testament Textual Studies critical apparatus.

    Are you aware that there are several hundred papyrus fragments that pre-date Constantine by a hundred years or more which, though fragmentary, substantiate the text of the gospels as in existence long before his time?

  • David Cromie

    That is the great thing about the so-called ‘bible’, or the Qur’an, one can construe either to mean anything one wishes, to support any personal world view one prefers, and to legitimise any atrocity, as deemed necessary in the circumstances.

  • Rudy Schellekens

    One CAN = but that doesn’t mean that the TEXT allows it. Unfortunately, it is like the law, which, according a commercial of a local lawyer, “…always grey…”
    So let’s do away with the law then, since it too, can be abused. Or, we can help people become more responsible in how they use the law, the bible, the koran…

  • Did “Testimonium Flaviorum” say Josephus lied?

  • John

    Good luck finding this in any source. I have asked for sources regarding this omission and searched myself, but to no avail. My guess is you won’t find any sources referencing this either, thus making Keith’s claim dubious at best. But so many people here bought it without question.

  • soter phile

    The discussion is over the reliability of the NT manuscripts. One does not need to be a Christian to acknowledge the archeological realities. The accuracy can be (and has been) checked against the earliest, most well-attested documents. Comparatively speaking, with regard to other ancient documents, the NT scholar has an “embarrassment of riches” to consider with extant evidence.

    Here’s a quick primer for the uninitiated:

  • James Elliott

    That’s why i want to look at the Greek for myself (i’m no expert, but i can check words out). I’ve never been much for just relying on something just because a person asks me to trust them. What i do appreciate about the points raised is that these do try to address some of the problematic issues.

  • David Cromie

    Fragmentary remains of manuscripts/papyri are no more to be taken seriously as the ‘word of god’ than the Dead Sea scrolls, or any other ancient collection of myths, legends, or persistent folklore. I do not deny that tribal myths and legends may persist for many years, but they remain just that; myths and legends, even when they are written down. During the folklore stage, these stories help to give a tribe a sense of cohesion, while being developed and embellished over time as they are told, and retold, around the campfire, which is why they are so important to tribal identity.

    Egyptian myths/historical events are carved in stone, and predate Constantine by thousands of years, so do we believe all we read about the various Egyptian gods and their magical ways?

  • David Cromie

    People, especially religiots, read into their ‘holy’ texts all sorts of meanings, which accounts for the thousands of brands of Abraham religions, including Islam, currently infesting the planet.

  • a Nagual in Arizona

    The OT has it’s own share of inaccurate translations and just plain tampering. The “inerrant word of God” is in fact crammed with errors, both accidental and deliberate.

  • Fantastic! Thank you!

  • DannyEastVillage

    now let’s talk about the word usually rendered, “eunuch.”

  • AntithiChrist

    Someone deliberately mistranslated holy scripture?

    I’m shocked. Shocked, I say!

    With recent scholarship showing that up to 11 of the books in the NT alone are flat-out forgeries, (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forged_(book) one has to ask, ‘at what point does a series of mistranslations, deliberate or otherwise, qualify the entire book as untrustworthy?’

    Inerrant word of a god? That ship sailed a long time ago. We are now at the place of asking whether any of it can be trusted as valid information.

  • All translation is interpretation. I think it is disingenuous to apply nefarious motives to the fact that a given translation reflects the time and social assumptions within which it was produced. We modern Patheos folks do exactly the same thing. For those of you who do not read Koine or biblical Hebrew in the original, I think you can get a good idea of this if you look into an interlinear Koine or biblical Hebrew text. An interlinear text gives the original (that is, standard textually edited) text, and then directly underneath each word it renders an exact English equivalent. Just read the English aloud to yourself and you will see immediately how convoluted it is. It is just plain unintelligible, really. If you stood up and read that next Sunday for the scriptural reading, no one would have any idea what you were saying. It becomes a readable ‘translation’ only as the translator reads each verse in context, what came before and what comes after, makes decisions as to verb tenses, word choices (there are many more English words – modern English draws from a number of language families – than there are words in biblical languages, for example, so word selections are necessary – if you woodenly always translated a given word only one way, it would sound like baby talk), word orders, pronouns, flavorings, nuances, and all of the other aspects that make it a translation and not just a rote rendering. In this process, the temporal assumptions of the translator inevitably adhere to the translation. This is why it is good to look at more than one translation, and probably also good to rely more heavily on versions that are the result of a team of translators, not just of one scholar.

  • Nik

    Which English translation would you consider the most accurate? I was always told the NIV.

  • billwald

    Personal opinion, the NIV is the worst translation. The poetry is gone out of the text. The NASB is probably the most accurate.
    I read the Jerusalem Bible. Ir reads well, the poetry is good, and the footnotes are interesting. I where I will disagree withthe translation and check a text online is the translation seems strange,

    https://www.biblegateway.com is handy. The free edition has almost most all translations available.

  • billwald


    wife (n.)
    Middle English wif, wyf, from Old English wif (neuter) “woman, female, lady,” also, but not especially, “wife,” from Proto-Germanic *wīfa- (source also of Old Saxon, Old Frisian wif, Old Norse vif, Danish and Swedish viv, Middle Dutch, Dutch wijf, Old High German wib, German Weib), of uncertain origin and disputed etymology, not found in Gothic. . . .

  • Nik

    Thank you, I will look into this.

  • Michael Tymn

    Very interesting. Although I can’t locate the reference, it is my understanding that the prohibitions in the Old Testament, in Deuteronomy and Leviticus, saying that the “dead know nothing” and that we should not be speaking with the “dead” — usually cited to condemn mediumship — originally referred to the “spiritually dead” and was intended to be a prohibition against speaking with low-level or earthbound spirits, not all spirits. It is difficult to reconcile the modern translation with that of John, who tells us to “test the spirits whether they are of God.” If they know nothing and we shouldn’t be talking with them, how can we test them?

  • gpenglase

    What!? What a childish response – is this how you counter when you don’t have anything useful to say?

  • gpenglase

    Quite right Rudy. There is little to no referencing in this twaddle and introduces elements, with no background proof, that sound like they’ve been copied from some other blog.

    if one is going to present an argument worth listening to, one must actually provide context and references. At least there are some blogs who present reasonable arguments for variations in scripture translation – this isn’t one of them.

  • Rick Brant

    Oh, not the old mixed-fibers and shrimp canard!

    The Apostles – at the Apostolic Council of Jerusalem, Acts 15 – taught us which parts of the law were still applicable to Christians. Not a word about shrimp, etc. However, immorality -which in the law and in the 1st century Jewish context included homosexual acts – is still verboten to Christians.

    Basically, the moral laws are still in force; dietary and ceremonial laws are not.

    The Apostles dealt with this further in their writings, as well.

  • Rick Brant

    Your tired old tropes about Constantine are worn out and should be left behind already. Actual history of the 4th century does not support your claims. Try reading some.

    By the way, back in the real world, Constantine’s Roman Empire was not supplanted by anything. It continued to survive – in unbroken continuity – in its Eastern provinces, for another thousand years.

    The ersatz conglomeration known as the Holy Roman Empire did not supplant anything, as for some time there had been no Empire for it to supplant in the West -and the actual Empire itself was still reigning in the East.

  • Jane Ravenswood

    ” There’s a good chance the Bible really doesn’t say what you think it says.” So what reason is there to think there is a god, when this god supposedly makes threats about changing this bible and does nothing?

    Many modern Christians do their best to claim that the bible “really” doesn’t say what it does. They don’t like the vicious god of the OT and of Revelation. So, again, we get claims of how this particular group or that one, has the “real” interpretation. If you can ignore parts of it, or claim that parts are metaphor, there is no reason to think any of it is literal, especially since there is no evidence for those parts either.

  • Emerson Fry

    The NRSV is pretty good too. The language is simple and straightforward, though not as elegant. It’s favored by academia (which can be a plus or a minus, depending on your perspective), so at the very least it’s a good translation to compare to for additional context.

  • Nik

    A translation that is favored by academia is preferable for me because I don’t want to read a version with a denominational slant. I want the focus to be what the original texts actually state without steering the reader towards a particular POV. Not sure how possible that is as things get lost in translation.

  • Kyllein MacKellerann “

    The KJV bible was intended to be a “Pacifier” to the Church of England British from the Episcopal Scottish James VI of Scotland Religion played no part in the matter, politics did.

  • Emerson Fry

    In that case, I would highly recommend the NRSV coupled with a good non-denominational study bible. I have a Harper-Collins study bible and have found it to be a great resource.

  • Kyllein MacKellerann “

    There is another problem with translations in that the same words don’t mean the same things when uttered contemporaneously. Add in centuries of change and social evolution and the problem only gets worse. Finally, season the whole thing with contractions and catch-phrases and a pinch of radically different cultures and then serve. Confusion is to be expected. Finally, serve political intentions as a dessert. Indigestion is to be expected, treat with either suppression, excommunication, or possible conflagration.
    It’s a wonder that anything in the KJB makes sense these days.

  • Kyllein MacKellerann “

    Actually it DOESN’T. It names an act, not a person. In the time of the first Hebrew State, children were a vital necessity as either future warriors or as future child-bearers, Literally, they needed all the kids they could get just to survive. Don’t go confusing a social necessity with divine law – the two are not even related.
    The whole Leviticus spoke to civil necessities, the need for population, not the word of the tribal deity.

  • Which I said at the beginning
    If what you said we’re true the conduct would not have been called abominable would it?

  • Nik

    This is very useful, thank you!

  • John

    Am I, and a very few others, the only one needing sources for such a statement? You all realize that a primary textual source is the only way to know Keith’s claim is true? A primary source, like a codex or manuscript showing such omissions between copies? I just don’t get the blind enthusiasm here.

  • John

    No response yet? There isn’t one. There is no source here. But it sure got the haters and cynics excited.

  • David Cromie

    NIV = Newly Invented Version

  • David Cromie

    “…the result of a team of translators…”, which describes the origin of the KJV.

  • As well as all of the important modern translation projects.

  • Kyllein MacKellerann “

    “Abominable” is a human determination. Remember, back then the tribes who would one day be called Jews were ruled by a Priestly caste. In some cases they didn’t have a king or anything like one. Even tribal chiefs were subservient to the priests, and the priests were not the most tolerant of people. They knew that anything that threatened their tribe (authority) was bad so they decided that any intimate behaviour that did not produce offspring was bad. Face it, these were early bronze age wanderers who lived in fear most of the time. They were still hunter gatherers when Egypt was a settled agricultural nation. When something risked the power in the priesthood, the declaration of either “Abominable” or “Unclean” was employed to block questions of “why?” These priests were not the nicest of people in any way shape or form. They were afraid ot their God, afraid of their neighbors, and afraid of being conquered. That meant they had specific requirements to enforce, and what easier way was there to do this than by crying “Traif” or “Unclean/abominable” to the things that they disapproved of?

  • Sounds to me like you are making excuses for a word you don’t like.

    “Face it, these were early bronze age wanderers who lived in fear most of the time.” Can you back up this statement?

  • I wish my name was Fred

    Sounds biased and actually he can’t prove that they’re pseudepigraphs either, which is the correct term for these writings and not forgeries. And a lot of the books didn’t even have names originally to begin with.

  • I wish my name was Fred

    I agree with the article and this is very frustrating when trying to do proper bible study. But the article seems to only focus on the gender translation errors, the bigger and more important issue are the meanings of the scripture getting across.

    Generally when i read the bible i have 3 translations open at once to cross check.
    My three main bibles i use are the KJV, The Jerusalem Bible(original one), and the NIV. Study bibles can help but generally they stick to doctrinal meanings and not always explain the words true meanings or historical context.

    The KJV is more stoic and flamboyant in it’s writing style but it does translate poorly in some areas. The name Lucifer is not in the original Hebrew and the word Easter is not in the original Greek. The KJV also mistranslated the Leviathan sometimes in the Psalms. It will use the word whale or twisted sea serpent without clarification.

  • fractal

    “An honest consideration would see that “Paul has taken it directly from…”

    I don’t think that is an honest consideration at all.
    I think it is your attempt at pretzel logic, to justify your bigotry in the name of Jesus.
    And anyway, Paul is certainly no Jesus.
    What he says is often interesting, but not something to build a whole morality upon.

  • fractal

    It certainly IS an anti-gay slur.
    And the government has done everything to be inclusive of LGBT because of progressives and in spite of Fundys.

    Stop being duplicitous and manipulative.

  • fractal

    If YOU want to be bound by Old Timey laws, go ahead.

    But you try to force me to be bound by your religious bigotry, and you are going to pull back a bloody stump.
    I promise.

  • fractal

    Faith is a cherished opinion, that has no evidence or personal experience supporting the assertion.

    In other words, it is a power play.
    Religion is the highest political game, because it invokes the ultimate authority, without any proof at all of its veracity.

  • fractal

    Sure it would.
    By nutters like you…

  • fractal

    Sounds like you are using a descriptive word to justify hate.

  • fractal

    We know that Jesus went East to study, and there were a lot of mystical traditions in the East.

    You know the sentence Jesus said which justifies Religious snobbery—

    Sure sounds like meditation instruction!
    Imagine Jesus saying to his disciples:
    “now sit comfortably, slow your breathing, quiet your mind, and repeat after me:

    I AM THE WAY…”

    This would mean that Jesus was trying to teach mysticism 101 to his followers, and was extolling them to look within, to their soul core, to discover the Spirit of Unity.

  • So you can’t back up your statement?

  • Triggerman1976

    It never ceases to amaze me how dishonest a”progressive Christian” can be.

  • Triggerman1976

    Translation has no relationship to the doctrine of inerrancy. Too bad that no one ever took the time to explain it to you. https://media0.giphy.com/media/qmfpjpAT2fJRK/giphy.gif

  • Chad Hoelzel

    I think the word is “boys” not men. Check back to a translation that isn’t written with an agenda.

  • Ken Allen

    In respect to your interpretation of 1 Corinthians 14:34-35, perhaps your interpretation is not correct. Here is another explanation for what Paul intends:

    For they are not permitted to speak. In light of 11:2-16, which gives permission for women to pray or prophesy in the church meetings, the silence commanded here seems not to involve the absolute prohibition of a woman addressing the assembly. Therefore (1) some take be silent to mean not taking an authoritative teaching role as 1 Tim 2 indicates, but (2) the better suggestion is to relate it to the preceding regulations about evaluating the prophets (v. 29). Here Paul would be indicating that the women should not speak up during such an evaluation, since such questioning would be in violation of the submission to male leadership that the OT calls for (the law, e.g., Gen 2:18).
    NET Bible.

  • Ann Kah

    Bob, bear in mind that the Bible speaks only to those who believe the Bible, and not all of it speaks to all Christians. We have learned a good deal in the last two millennia, at least some of us have. One of those things is that homosexuality is no more a matter of choice than heterosexuality, and another thing is that Christians cannot speak for non-Christians, nor can any particular flavor of Christian speak for all Christians. Nobody needs to make “excuses”.

  • Ok. I replied but the censor has to approve my comment because it was flagged. I must have used a word that is unacceptable.

  • Spot on!

  • The NIV is one of the worst. I recommend the NASB for a modern one, and Rotherham’s emphasized Greek for a reference Bible. Neither are perfect though, it takes study in all cases.

  • Checked & triple checked huh? Maybe you meant checked many dozens of times, since that’s how many different Bible translations there are? I have over two dozen English Bible and NT translations that don’t include the word HELL even once. Which one is correct? If none of these, which one is the correct one? You see the problem?

  • Tom Dye

    Personally, I have found David Bauscher’s Comparative 1st Century Aramaic Bible in Plain English & King James Version New Testament with Psalms and Proverbs to be very helpful to me as it has the King James and Aramaic translation (The Peshitta) side by side in two columns. The differences between these two versions or the NT are similar but illustrate perfectly the point of how a mis-translation of even one word can lead to very striking differences in the meaning of the scriptures. I find the Aramaic translation compelling as scholars contend that it has remained virtually unchanged for 1000 years.It seems to me and I am no Bible scholar but the wording seems more likely how people would have actually spoken during the first century. Besides Aramaic was the language of the disciples. Does anyone else have any thoughts on this?

  • fractal

    None of this would be necessary if we stopped thinking of “holy writings” as the Law of God.

    Can’t God also have a creative edge that changes, evolves and becomes ever more wondrous and imaginative with time and interaction with creation?
    Perhaps we were never meant to be resigned to an archaic book written for another time and place and people.

    Perhaps we should let Goddess unfold and allow Her to be what She is now, listening with our conscience and opening ourselves to Grace that comes most unexpectedly.

  • David Cromie

    “Can’t God also have a creative edge that changes, evolves and becomes ever more wondrous and imaginative with time and interaction with creation?”

    No, since an omniscient supposed ‘god’ would have taken care of all that ab initio, and for ever more.

  • fractal

    Says who?

    Amazing how Fundys delight in telling Goddess what She is and isn’t!
    Your idea of God is tired, stale and out of touch with reality.

    The principle of death is rigidity.
    The principle of life is flexibility.
    Everything that is young and alive is flexible.
    As something ages, it becomes more rigid, hard and unable to change and grow.

    Perhaps your God is a dead God.

  • David Cromie

    I do not believe in any ‘gods’ or ‘goddesses’. Such supernatural entities are the stuff of myths and legends.

  • fractal


    You just don’t like the fact that I refer To Goddess in the feminine.
    You would prefer that people continue hearing Goddess referred to in the masculine their whole lives—for obvious reasons.

    I don’t play that sick, sexist brainwashing game anymore.
    I suggest you try it sometime!
    For just one month—call Her Goddess, always refer to Her in the Feminine, and think of Her as such.

    Your whole viewpoint will change and She will richly reward you!
    Perhaps you will begin to skim the surface of understanding how women feel in your brand of religion, and the appalling disservice you do yourself, by your stubborn insistence that Goddess is a bogus concept.
    You lose half of the concept of Divinity that way—take care for your soul.

    We all know that Goddess is beyond masculine and feminine—the fact that you cannot stomach the thought of Her in the feminine form, says way more about you than it does about Her—And you are going to have a lot to answer for!

  • fractal


  • Leighton Cooper

    First which I’m sure you know about is Strong’s concordance, which lists the hebrew and greek words. Next look at the words that are the roots in other words. like there might be a long word, look at the first couple of letters in hebrew, that couple of letters might be a word. and you can create a table of related words. You can do this in english too, but the family of related words is going to be different. 2nd There are two volumes called the Key of it all. by David Allen Hulse Eastern and Western languages and this is a set of extensive reference sections about the sacred words in many languages Hebrew and Greek are there as well as other languages. It lists all the sacred words that belong in these different languages. Scriptures exist to be explored. There is no one size fits all Theology and people that believe that turn into very right wing evangelicals and I refuse to deal with them!!!


    The right wing Christian evangelists are trying to stripped the Bible that smack of compassion, progressivism, liberalism, helping thy fellow man, etc.

  • David Cromie

    You might have something both interesting and to the point if you, or any other religiot, were able to adduce the irrefutable, falsifiable, evidence for the real existence of any supernatural entity, whatsoever.

  • This article is so much junk at so many levels! First of all, the author apparently has no idea what the text is actually saying and is reading into the passages what he thinks OUGHT to be there instead of what actually IS there!

    For example, he claims that 1 Corinthians 14, about women not allowed to speak in church, is contradicted by a missing word—“What?!” That word shows up in the King James Version, but it is not justified by the Greek it translates. (It’s neither in the Textus Receptus nor in the later scholarly editions.) All modern translations, without exception omit the word because it’s not there to begin with. The KJV translators, who were experts in classical Greek, likely added the word because there was an obscure occurrence in classical Greek literature. They were not experts in the Koine Greek that later generations became familiar with after the discoveries of ancient Greek papyri in Egypt. (The word in question, “ē” [Greek, η], occurs twice in the verse and indicates the first part of an “either … or …” statement.)

    Regarding Junia, this author ought to parrot scholars who actually investigated the language of the passage in depth: https://bible.org/article/junia-among-apostles-double-identification-problem-romans-167

    The author has an agenda to push. Even if it’s a noble one, he had better put in some real legwork and get some real research to back up his claims.

  • David Cromie

    The problem with scribblings, such as are found in the so-called ‘bible’, is that no matter how it was translated, or by whom, it still remains a book of myths, legends, and folklore, derived mostly from extant Pagan sources. The current version(s) date essentially from the 4th cent, CE, whether you go for the Codex Vaticanus or the Codex Sinaiticus, which are the earliest known attempts at codifying ‘bibes’ for general use by religious leaders (note; only a very small percentage of the population at the time were able to read and/or write).

  • fractal

    Doesn’t really matter whether a myth is true or false; all cultures have their myths—some of them based in truth.
    For instance, Americans have the myth that we are a nation that supports democracy worldwide—how much truth is there in that cherished myth?

    What matters is whether a myth is alive or dead in a culture. The myth of a patriarch Deity with unlimited
    power, is very much alive in certain segments of our culture.

    Changing that belief in others won’t usually work.

    BUT, you can change the way people relate to, and think about their Deity, and make the myth more healthy psychologically for the people who believe.

    Also, it just makes more sense if there is a Deity, that S/He would embrace all pronouns.

    Any step in the right direction is a good start.

  • David Cromie

    By what twist of logic do you arrive at that conclusion? You might as well argue that it makes sense to deduce that the world must be balanced on the back of a cosmic supernatural turtle with wings.

  • fractal

    The “twisted logic” place I learned that from, was a college course in comparative religion.

    We are talking sociology, anthropology, philosophy and psychology here.
    You must be one of those STEM nutters who think that if something isn’t made of matter, it isn’t worth investigating.

    Guess you would be a dud in a poetry class…

  • David Cromie

    So you majored in BS, finally, because you never did figure out that there is no irrefutable, falsifiable, evidence for the existence of the supernatural, and therefore think religious belief in a sky-daddy can be ‘modified’ to make it, somehow, less toxic in the real world.

  • fractal

    What a dull boy you are.

    Try to open your mind for a moment.
    Not everything is about cut and dried facts.
    If you want to understand people, you must understand their stories; our whole lives are just stories we tell ourselves and each other.

    You have this story about how facts are precious diamonds, and everything else is junk.
    You worship facts; that is your religion.
    Fair enough.
    But not everyone is widdle ole’ you.

    You can either sneer at everyone who doesn’t think and feel EXACTLY like you—which stinks of fundamentalist arrogance…
    You can approach the subject from a different POV, as anthropologists do, and actually find interesting and helpful ways of working with their cultural stories, to understand and even move their culture in a better direction by improving their stories.

    Sorry you are unable to grasp that concept.
    A liberal arts education would do you a world of good.
    But just like a fundamentalist, you would not be able to appreciate it, because your mind is fearful of being “wrong”, so you adopt this thin veneer of snotty materialism for protection.

    I guess you are way more interested in being “RIGHT” than you are in understanding people and their culture.

  • xxpat

    Think just for a moment what is being said here. Bible translations are done by committees of scholars checking and double checking for accuracy, liberals, conservatives, but mostly linguists with a mastery of the language.

    So now an American with a basic seminary grasp of the biblical languages says that all of these scholars are a part of a vast conspiracy to advocate an agenda that they all agree to foist on an ignorant public.

    What utter nonsense. And sadly many who don’t understand the process will fall for this conspiracy theorist. Shame.

  • mia

    Jesus said the homosexual act is detestable? I think not. He never even mentioned it.

  • mia

    Adam’s ruling over Eve was a curse from the fall. It was not intended by God.. Ever. Unless of course Jesus isnt exactly like the Father, which he claimed.

  • Thanks for the reply. I tried to answer you but the censor decided otherwise.

  • Dw

    Mia, Adam’s rule over Eve was never implied by God to be a curse. Its re-emphasis in Genesis 3:16 was a remedial course of action. It was designed to keep the previous situation from happening again. I say “re-emphasis” because Eve should’ve assumed her subjection to her husband from the start due to the order of creation, as Paul points out. That said, the NT instructions to wives about submitting to their husbands is the same thing the LORD tells Eve in Genesis 3:16, just another way of phrasing it.

  • honesttoGod

    On this argument, that would seem to leave sexual contact between women free from condemnation. At least, it is not an abomination, anyway.

  • Craig Morrison

    Decalogue… would you include the injunction to “Observe the Sabbath Day…” as a Christian. Otherwise you’re just picky-choosy.

  • Dw

    Adam’s rule over Eve was never implied to be a curse. The apostle Paul tells us it should have been assumed from the order of creation. Nevertheless, it’s reiteration to Eve by the LORD was as if by a Physician. It is medicine not punishment.

  • James Keegan

    No,actually, it doesn’t. Which is the point of the post. See https://www.forgeonline.org/blog/2019/3/8/what-about-romans-124-27

  • A reply to the comment that because a specific word is not in the bible then the conduct it proscribes is allowed. It is not.
    Proverbs 14:12 King James Version (KJV)
    12 There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.

  • Jan

    God defined marriage in Genesis.

  • Jan

    There are three kinds of Law. Moral- Ten commandments. Ceremonial- temple sacrifices, food, etc. Jesus fulfilled all those. Civil–In the Ten Commandments and our government laws.

  • So say the Protestants but not the Catholics. I wonder who is correct?

  • Jan

    Look at the Catholic statement. Is it something they say comes from the Bible or their tradition. They believe both.

  • James Keegan

    The Bible is an irrelevant collection of myths, legends, and stories. There is no part of US Jurisprudence which derives from or depends on the Bible in any way, shape, or form.

  • Hardly. Our laws are based on English commom law which came from biblical laws. You can try to run from history and may fool yourself but not the majority.