New World Translation

Is the New World Translation accurate?

When we consider Jehovah Witness Beliefs we are immediately confronted with a very corrupt translation. The Jehovah Witness Bible is called the New World Translation. The fact is that they had no known Greek or Hebrew scholars to produce this work. They also added words in numerous places that did not come from the original Greek that change the context to fit their own doctrine.

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Overview of content in this section is as follows:

Page Index

The New World Translation

No known Greek or Hebrew scholars involved with the New World Translation

Same Greek word translated differently out of bias of doctrine

Words added to text not in the Greek

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The New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures

The New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures is not a good translation at all; it is a biased translation based on Watch Tower doctrine, not on the Greek or Hebrew language.

I will start with a quote from pgs. 72-73 of the book titled The Kingdom of the Cults, by Walter Martin..  

  • “Let it be remembered that the New World Bible Translation Committee had no known translators with recognized degrees in Greek or Hebrew exegesis or translation. In fact, Frederick W. Franz, then representing the translation committee and now the Watchtower Society's fourth president, admitted under oath that he could not translate Genesis 2:4 from the Hebrew.

            From the Pursuer's Proof of cross-examination held on Wednesday, November 24, 1954, p.7, paragraphs A-B, Examining Fred W. Franz, vice-president of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society and sent as representative of the Society and the Translation Communications:

  • Q: Have you made yourself familiar with Hebrew?

A: (Franz) Yes.

  • Q: So that you have a substantial linguistic apparatus at your command?

A: Yes, for use in biblical work.

  • Q: I think that you are able to read and follow the Bible in Hebrew, Greek, Latin, Spanish, Portuguese, German and French?

A: Yes.
Later, during the same cross-examination:

  • Q: You, yourself, read and speak Hebrew, do you?

A: I do not speak Hebrew.

  • Q: You do not?

A: No.

  • Q: Can you, yourself, translate that into Hebrew?

A: Which?

  • Q: That fourth verse in the second chapter in Genesis?

A: You mean here?

  • Q: Yes.

A: No.

We asked a Hebrew teacher at Biola University/Talbot Theological Seminary if the fourth verse in the second chapter of Genesis was a particularly difficult verse to translate. After all, the pursuer's question would hardly have been fair if it were the hardest verse in the Old Testament to translate. The professor said that he would never pass a first year Hebrew student who could not translate that verse. This is an example of the ‘scholarship’ backing the NWT.”(End of quote)

To read these texts in the actual transcript download  the Walsh Trial PDF  here. Then look up page.7, paragraphs A-B and Then Page.102, paragraph E-F and onto
page 103.

After studying this you might be able to add to your questions for Jehovah Witnesses when they knock on your door.

There is a lot more said in Walter Martin’s book Kingdom of the Cults for those who care to read it. This book is now also available in MP3 audio.  (Links go to Christian Book Distributers) ( A lot of Jehovah Witness facts are found here)

Page Index

Same Greek word translated differently out of bias of doctrine

I have examined and found some problems trusting the New World Translation that I would like to share with you here.

I have the Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures 1985 Edition copyright by the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society. A Greek Interlinear shows both the original Greek language as well as the direct translation into English below the word. The full text in English is off to the side. I have included copies of some of these texts with my added comments for you on the following pages.

(Note: The download PDF version is 1969 and slightly different in places than my 1985 edition. Still my points remain the same)

The 1985 Kingdom Interlinear on page 5 states: (PDF pg.5)

  • "The Kingdom Interlinear English translation is specifically designed to open up to the student of the Sacred Scriptures what the original koine' Greek basically or literally says."

Take note of a couple of things in the following two copies from the 1985 Kingdom Interlinear. Take a good look at the Greek word translated as "did obeisance" in Matthew 14:33 and the same exact Greek word translated as "worshiped" in Revelation 7:11:

 

Matthew 14: 31-33 (PDF pg. 49)

Jehovah Witness Bible

 

Revelation 7:11-12 (PDF pg. 552)

The Kingdom Interlinear

 

Matthew 14:33 (PDF pg. 49)

Walsh trial

 

 

Revelation 7:11 (PDF pg. 552)

questions for Jehovah Witnesses

You do not have to be able to read Greek to see that these two Greek words that I copied and pasted are the same.
           
It seems as though the Watch Tower has changed the English translation of the Greek word. It appears that this Greek word was not translated two different ways to be true to the translation of the Greek, but rather to try to be consistent with Watch Tower theology.

In the context of Revelation 7: 11, we have worship of Jehovah God. In the context of Matthew 14:33 we have worship of Jesus. The Watch Tower cannot have the Bible showing worship to Jesus; this would be in direct conflict with their teachings, as they do not believe that Jesus is God or that He should be worshiped. Jesus Himself stated that worship belonged to God alone.

  • Matthew 4:10” “Then Jesus said to him, ‘Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.”’ (See also Luke 4:8.)

Since Jesus did not rebuke them for worshiping Him in the boat in Matthew 14:33, this would make Jesus God. Therefore Watch Tower had to change the Bible to fit their theology, as they do not believe that Jesus is God. This is not being true to the translation from Greek into English.

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Words added to text not in the Greek

John 1:1-3 (PDF pg.210)

Jehovah Witness facts

 

Notice that the word “a’ is not under the direct translation from the Greek — yet it is added into the text on the right. Adding the word "a" to John 1:1, which is clearly not in the direct translation, the meaning of the verse is changed. Why would the Watch Tower add a word not found in the Greek, and change the meaning of the text? I believe that the change was made to change the Bible to fit their theology. Otherwise it would read as other translations, which make Jesus out to be God.

  • John 1:1: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (NAS)
  • John 1:14: “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (NAS)

 

Acts 20:28-30 (PDF pg.325)

Watchtower Bible

Looking at the 1985 Kingdom Interlinear published by Watch Tower, we can see that the word (Son) is not in the direct translation of the Greek. Why would the word (Son) need to be added to the text? Again, I believe it was added to change the Bible to their theology. Following is how this text appears in the New American Standard:

  • Acts 20:28: “Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.”

It is true that the church of God was purchased by the blood of Jesus, who is called the Son of God. However, that is not what Luke wrote in the Book of Acts. Luke was the author of the Book of Acts, and throughout attacks on the Bible Luke has earned credibility as a reliable Historian. Luke chose to say that God purchased the church with “His own blood”. Why should the Watch Tower have the say authority to declare that Luke wrote it incorrectly?

 

Collosians 1:16-17 (PDF pg. 453)

NWT

 

In Colossians 1:16-17 we can see that the Watch Tower added the word "other" four different times. The word "other" does not appear in the direct translation of the Greek.

In context, this passage is speaking about Jesus. The New American Standard translates this passage as follows:

  • Colossians 1:16: “For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities — all things have been created by Him and for Him.”

Why would the Watch Tower add the word "other" four different times when it is not in the original Greek? I believe it was added because without this addition, the verse refutes the doctrine that Jehovah created Jesus, and then through Jesus created all other things. Of course, this doctrine still falls apart when you read Isaiah 44:24.

  • Isaiah 44:24: “Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, and the one who formed you from the womb, ‘I, the LORD, am the maker of all things, stretching out the heavens by myself, and spreading out the earth all alone.’” (NAS)

Colossians 1:16 says that Jesus created, but Jesus is God; therefore, God is accurate in Isaiah to claim that He created and made all things “alone”, and by Himself.  But if one takes the view that Jehovah created Jesus, and then through Jesus created all "other" things, then we have a problem with Isaiah 44: 24.

 

Colossians 2:9 (PDF pg. 454)

watchtower

 

In Colossians 2:9 we can see that the word "quality" was added by Watch Tower even though this word is not in the direct translation of the Greek. By adding the word "quality", the meaning of the passage is changed. The literal translation in the Kingdom Interlinear reads, "Because in him is dwelling down all the fullness of divinity bodily."

Why would the Watch Tower add the word "quality", when even their own publication shows that this word is not in the Greek? I believe it was added because without it, the verse shows that Jesus is both God and man. This is contrary to Watch Tower doctrine; once again, I suggest that it is not the Bible that needs changing, but rather the doctrine of Watch Tower that needs changing.

Jesus does not exhibit a Godlike “divine quality”, as stated in the New World Translation; rather in Him is “the fullness of God” in bodily form.

  • Colossians 2:9: “For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form…” (NAS)
  • Colossians 2:9: “For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.” (KJV)

 

Revelation 1:8     (PDF pg. 542)

JW Books

 

The direct translation of Revelation 1:8 shows the word "Lord" as a direct translation. The N.W.T., on the right, translates this as "Jehovah God". Certainly Jehovah is Lord, but why change the wording? I believe it is because the context from the previous verse makes Jesus out to be God. They are trying to make it appear as though the speakers changed between verses 7 and 8.
           
The same Greek word used here in Revelation 1: 8, translated as “Lord” or “Jehovah God”, is also used in John 20:25, where it is specifically used concerning Jesus. This can be confirmed in the back of any Strong's Concordance using the Strong's numbering system. Both places use the word number 2962.

  • John 20:25: “The other disciples therefore were saying to him, ‘We have seen the Lord!’ But he said to them, ‘Unless I shall see in His hands the imprint of the nails, and put my finger into the place of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.’”

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