Helping Christians Reach Jehovah's Witnesses
with the Gospel of Our Savior Jesus Christ
The New World translation
Ė by Dan Corner Ė
Permission to reproduce this article is hereby granted, but
only in its entirety, including author's
The New World Translation (NWT) of the Jehovahís Witnesses is a very important piece of evidence to examine when considering the self-exalting claims of the Watchtower Society (WS). Note some of the declarations the WS, which has produced this translation, made about itself:
Moreover, the WS has also stated that their own publication The Watchtower is Godís "means of communication to his people on earth."(5)
Such remarkable claims are indirectly examined when one inspects the NWT, the fruit of the world headquarters of the Jehovahís Witnesses, since they have produced it, market it and assert that it is the most reliable of all translations. The following shows how they esteem their own Kingdom Interlinear Translation (KIT):
It is the purpose of this short treatise to test this and other claims out of obedience to 1 Thess 5:21, remembering all the while that a false prophet is known by his fruit (Mt. 7:15) and will deceive many (Mt. 24:11). Furthermore, since the total number of NWT in print, as of 1984, was an incredible 39,500,000(7), the following examination is critically important for the sake of all those who are reading that translation.
John 14:14 and Word Omissions
When one follows the above guidelines of the WS for John 14:14, the evidence reveals that the NWT is not accurately translated. The exact Greek word-for-word rendering in the KIT for that verse is:
According to that Greek text, the Lord Jesus taught his disciples to pray to himself and he (Jesus) shall do it. In contrast to the Greek, the NWT inaccurately reads:
NOTE: Though it is clear that the Lord Jesus taught his disciples that they could pray to himself, this truth is concealed in the NWT by omitting the word me. Secondly, first-century Christians, who were in the truth, practiced praying to Jesus:
According to Acts 6:3, Stephen was full of the Spirit and wisdom and he prayed to Jesus.
Col. 1:16,17 and Uninspired Word Insertions
One feature of the NWT is the usage of brackets:
Their use of brackets is especially apparent at Col. 1:16,17 where the word other is inserted into those two verses four times. The NWT renders those verses as follows:
The reader should be aware that neither of the reasons cited why the NWT translating committee used brackets are applicable in Col. 1:16,17! Those two reasons, as previously stated are: (1) to make some application that is shown by the Greek word or (2) to show something that is understood along with the Greek word because of its grammatical form.
The truth is by inserting the word other in that passage, the NWT has distorted its meaning. Since they teach that Jesus is a created being and Col. 1:16 opposes this by stating that Jesus created all things, then basic logic would declare that Jesus canít be part of his own creation. By inserting the non-inspired word other, which does not appear in the Greek in verses 16 and 17, the meaning is changed, allowing for their erroneous interpretation. Again, the reader should note: The word other does not appear in the Greek text in those two verses! If the Holy Spirit had wanted the inspired writer of that Scripture to use the word other, he easily could have done so as in Gal 1:8,9,19; 2:13; 4:22; 5:17; etc. To insert this word other in Col. 1:16,17 doesnít clarify Scripture, but instead changes the meaning to a distortion that God never intended.
Phil. 2:9 and No Brackets!
When we come to Phil. 2:9, the NWT does not have brackets around the inserted word other, in violation to their own guidelines, even though it is clearly not in the Greek text and was added by the translators. That verse as rendered in the NWT as found in the KIT (1969 edition) is:
In contrast, the Greek in the KIT says:
Why did the Watchtower Society unjustly insert the word other in that verse?For anyone who knows the doctrines of the Jehovahís Witnesses, the answer is obvious. In their minds, apart from Scripture to back it up, they think Jesus is Michael the archangel and not deity. Hence, a created being could never have a name above the eternal God, especially when Psa. 83:18 and 148:13 declare:
Consequently, the word other is inserted in Phil. 2:9, which distorts the meaning of that verse, taking glory away from the Lord Jesus, as was done in Col. 1:16,17.
Is The NWT Pure and Consistent as Claimed?
Another claim of the WS about their NWT is that it is pure and consistent:
But when we check the Greek word translated worship when used for Jesus, it is rendered obeisance, but worship at other times! As previously shown, we see an attack on the identity of the Lord. Where exactly did the NWT inconsistently translate the Greek word meaning worship?
In Mt. 2:11; 14:33; 28:9; 28:17 the Greek word is translated obeisance because it refers to the Lord Jesus, but when the same exact Greek word is used at Rev. 5:14; 7:11; 11:16; 19:4; 20:4 and Jn. 4:20 it is rendered worshiped because it doesnít refer to Jesus.
The same inconsistency is shown at Jn. 9:38 and Mk.5:6. It is translated obeisance when referring to Jesus, but worship at Heb. 11:21 when it doesnít refer to Jesus.
Moreover, the same Greek word is found at Mt. 2:2; Rev. 22:8 and Rev. 19:10. At Mt. 2:2, when Jesus is the recipient, obeisance is again used, but in the other two Scriptures, when the Lord is not the recipient, worship is found!
The NWT also wrongly translates John 8:58. Their strange rendering for this verse is:
The Greek word-for-word rendering states I am instead of I have been. Furthermore, the Greek words from which this translation comes is supposed to be:
But in other sources and at other times, the WS has contradicted their own statement about that by stating something different:
The truth is the Greek tense for EIMI (am) as found in Jn. 8:58 is present indicative active. Hence, the WS is wrong again. Furthermore, at this point it should be clear that the NWT has not been true to their own claims:
If the NWT was a literal translation like they claim, then Jn. 8:58 would not be rendered I have been, but instead I am like the Greek and many reputable translations read! But if that was done, then Jn. 8:58 would be too closely associated with Exo. 3:14, which the WS doesn't want. (In Exo. 3:14, God identifies Himself as I am.)
John 1:1 in the vast majority of Bibles reveal the deity of Christ:(14)
In contrast, the NWT renders John 1:1 in a most unusual way:
The footnote, from this verse, in the KIT reads:
The WS has appealed to a little-known Bible translation by Johannes Greber, a former Catholic priest, for support of their a god rendering of John 1:1. Greberís translation came about through contact with the spirit world. In fact, his wife, who was a spirit medium, helped him with this translation:
Strange as it may sound the WS denounced Greberís involvement in Spiritism and his translation as coming from demons in their Feb. 15, 1956 The Watchtower, p. 111. But for many years afterward the WS still continued to cite his demon-produced translation for support(16). So knowingly, the WS appealed to a Bible translation many times, which came from demons, for support of their own NWT. What the demons were communicating through Greberís translation is still being vastly spread today by the NWT.
My Lord and my God
The WS tries to distinguish between a god and the God, making only Jehovah the God. This concept, however, disintegrates at John 20:28. The NWT reads:
The actual word-for-word rendering of the Greek, which can be easily verified in the KIT, is substantially different:
Note: the definite article the before God with a capital "G." If only Jehovah is the God, as the WS teaches, then Jesus is Jehovah, according to their own Greek Bible footnote! By the way, the Father is also called the Lord in Rev. 4:11, as Jesus is in John 20:28.
Furthermore, the same exact Greek word translated God [with a small g in the NWT] at Jn. 1:1 is found in Jn. 3:16 and translated God, with a capital G in the NWT! The WS wrote elsewhere the following about the Greek word found in Jn. 1:1 that they render a god:
Rather than abandon their man-made doctrine about the Lord Jesus and just accept whatever Scripture teaches at Jn. 20:28 and elsewhere, that is, that Jesus is deity, the WS has two faulty answers for Thomasí statement to Jesus: (1) The words "My Lord" were directed to Jesus, while the words "my God" were addressed to Jehovah in heaven! This answer is both unreasonable and incredible, since Thomas directed his entire statement to him (singular), that is, Jesus, the one to whom he was speaking. (2) The Watchtower also states that Thomas spoke the words "My Lord and my God" as an expression of surprise. Apparently, the Watchtower doesnít know that would be blasphemy and Jesus would have rebuked Thomas for that sin.
Grandville Sharp Greek Grammar Rule
Scriptures which show the deity of Christ, according to the Grandville Sharp Greek grammar rule, are obscured in the NWT, e.g. Titus 2:13 and 2 Pet. 1:1. Notice how modern, reliable translations reveal the deity of Christ.
In contrast, the NWT renders these verses in violation to this Greek grammar rule:
The WS further confuses this issue as shown by their comment on Titus 2:13:
Trinitarians do not believe Jesus is the same individual as the Father, as the WS misrepresents! In other words, the Watchtower has erected a fictitious "straw man" regarding the Christian position, then attacks it to discredit this doctrine.
The Grandville Sharp Greek Grammar Rule cites good points to make with the Jehovahís Witnesses, who deny the Lordís deity, but such cannot be made with the NWT, since it violates Greek grammar. The three examples that Dana and Mantey cite from that Greek grammar rule are 2 Pet. 2:20, which indicates that Jesus is both Lord and Savior; 2 Pet. 1:1, which means that Jesus is our God and Savior; and Titus 2:13 which asserts that Jesus is the great God and Savior.(19)
Taking In Knowledge or Knowing God?
In John 17:3, the NWT reads:
Another discrepancy arises when one checks that with the Greek word-for-word rendering in the KIT, which reads differently:
Clearly they are NOT the same! The Greek word found in John 17:3 is ginosko and is also found in the following verses. Please note how this word is used:
The Meaning is Relation not Knowledge
From these it is easy to see that the Greek word ginosko indicates a relation. So why would the WS teach something else? Because they also teach that they alone can correctly teach Godís truths. Hence, they interpret John 17:3 to mean knowledge, thereby bringing people into their organization by distorting Scripture. Again, they wrongly interpret this word knowledge:
Friend, ask yourself the question, "How much knowledge did the Philippian jailer have to take in to become a Christian?" Did he have to submit himself to a six month book study first or did it occur immediately after he heard the truth cited in Acts 16:31 and acted on it? What about Cornelius, how much knowledge did he have to take in? See Acts 10:43-48. Remember, the Greek for John 17:3 does NOT say knowledge, but instead knowing you, which is the same as relationship.
The Usage of Jehovah in the NWT
In the NWT, the Bible of the Jehovah's Witnesses, we read the following:
Why isn't the NWT consistent to use Jehovah every time Lord is found? Their reasonings are as follows:
Realizing that this is the time and place for it, we have followed this course in rendering our version of the Christian Greek Scriptures.(22)
Jehovahis Not the More Correct Way!
Since one of the outstanding features of the NWT is their abundant usage of the word Jehovah, how can they elsewhere admit that Yahweh is the more correct way to render God's name?
Why then did the NWT forfeit accuracy to use the word Jehovah, which began to be used in the 14th century? Their answer is because of people's familiarity with it. That is another way of saying that they have upheld the traditions of man's inventions since the 14th century at the expense of truth and accuracy, which they knew about. Notice again how many times this was done in the NWT:
How can the NWT claim that Jehovah is the restoration of the divine name to its rightful place in the English text, since they openly admit Yahweh is more correct? Shouldn't they rather have stated that knowingly they have omitted the more correct name for God, that is Yahweh, and substituted a different name which began to be used in the 14th century -- Jehovah. Furthermore, how can they claim that God's name Jehovah should be vindicated?
The Usage of Jehovah Came From Catholicism
Yet a different piece of Watchtower literature states the same embarrassing information about the word Jehovah, but elaborates as to its Catholic origin in 1270:
Please note: Hebrew scholars generally favor "Yahweh" as the most likely pronunciation.
Bruce Metzger, who criticizes the KJV's misusage of Jehovah, gives additional information:(27)
it is a combination of the consonants of the Divine Name and the vowels attached to it by the Masoretes but belonging to an entirely different word .... (1) The word "Jehovah" does not accurately represent any form of the Name ever used in Hebrew. (2) The use of any proper name for the one and only God, as though there were other gods from whom the true God had to be distinguished, began to be discontinued in Judaism before the Christian era and is inappropriate for the universal faith of the Christian Church.(28)
Remarkably, the Watchtower has exalted in their own literature the usage of the inaccurate name for God, Jehovah, to a salvation issue:
So if one takes in accurate knowledge about God's name and uses that accurate knowledge, as opposed to using the name Jehovah, then he will risk his own salvation, that is, if one accepts what the WS declares about this.
Salvation is Found in Only One Name!
Should a person call on Jehovah for salvation, which no one ever heard of until the 1270, or should he call on a different name? Let's allow the Apostle Paul to answer this for us, as he too refers to Joel 2:32. Paul wrote:
In Rom. 10:9-13, Paul explicitly stated: (1) that Jesus is Lord; (2) Jesus richly blesses all who call on him; and (3) that these truths refer back to Joel 2:32 in that same passage where YHWH is found in the Hebrew, but here applies them to Jesus! Either the Apostle Paul is wrong or the WS is wrong! They can't both be right, since Paul taught we are to call on JESUS for salvation and the Watchtower, in contradistinction, is teaching we are to call on a hybrid name for God which didn't even exist for 13 centuries ó Jehovah! By the way, the NWT is not consistent at Rom. 10:9 with the Greek word by rendering it Jesus, unlike they did at Rev. 4:11, where it is also used and translated Jehovah. If they had been consistent at Rom. 10:9, their NWT would read Jesus is Jehovah, which they would never allow.
Shockingly, the WS contradicts their own teaching about Joel 2:32 and Rom. 10:13 and their own NWT in the latter reference where they elsewhere write about the Son:
Salvation Is Found in No Other Name
Paul was not alone is teaching this way about Jesus' name. The Apostle Peter stated the same truth in different words and perhaps in a more clear fashion:
In first century-Christianity, the ones who were in the truth taught we are to call on Jesus for salvation. There is no other name, as the Apostle Peter taught! This fact, however, has been brushed aside and replaced by the WS with a different name to call on for salvation, which no one knew of for over 1,000 years!
BelieveOn Jesus For Salvation
In harmony with other Scriptures that exalt the name of Jesus, Paul and Silas taught:
Note: God's servants did not say, "Believe in the Lord Jesus and the Father and you will be saved." See also Jn. 3:16.
The Greek word believe (pisteuo) means:
Dear reader, if you aren't extending a trusting-submitting faith in Jesus for your salvation, then you aren't saved, regardless of your zeal and good intentions, according to Scripture. Furthermore, nowhere are we told in Scripture to trust in any organization for our salvation. Call on Jesus now, the one who has the only name under heaven in which salvation is found (Acts 4:12). Please don't be deceived by a Bible translation which inserts and removes words without Greek justification for the support of fabricated doctrines produced by a Bible-defined false prophet.
Come To Jesus For Life
To the surprise of many, the Lord taught one can read the Scriptures and still be without salvation. To get life one must come to JESUS, according to the Lord himself:
The WS doesn't allow their followers to come to me [Jesus] for the purpose of getting life, since they think he is merely a part of creation. They also deny that we should pray TO Jesus, by changing John 14:14. The WS has come out in their publications and boldly taught the same error:
In contrast to the WS, the same eternal truth as found in John 14:14 is reiterated at John 4:10 and linked to salvation:
The reason Jehovah's Witnesses don't ask Jesus for living water, as Jesus taught, is because they don't know (1) the gift of God or (2) that it is Scriptural to pray to the Lord Jesus, the one who was speaking to the woman at Jacob's well. Unfortunately, the Jehovah's Witnesses have been misled to believe that Jesus is merely Michael the archangel and hence one should never go to him for living water. Friend, the WS has deceived multitudes into believing something about Jesus that isn't true and the NWT has helped in this great deception.
Forgiveness is Found ONLY in Jesus' Name
Who has the name in which forgiveness is found? According to first-century Christians the answer is simple:
Clearly, Jesus is the one who has the name in which forgiveness of sins can be found. We are told to believe in him. After Cornelius heard that eternal truth, he instantly became a Christian. What an important key truth that is for salvation, but that is not what the WS teaches! NOTE: Jehovah is NOT the name in which forgiveness is found, as you might be believing. Consider also the following two Scriptures:
Call OnJESUS Like The Early Christians
In support of John 14:14 is Acts 9:14-21:
Saul of Tarsus persecuted Christians, both men and women, who are described in the above passage as those who would call on [Jesus'] name. The same truth about early Christians praying to Jesus is found elsewhere in Scripture:
Rom. 10:13, which is both immediately before and after two Scriptures that refer to the Lord Jesus, is fallaciously rendered in the NWT as:
Moreover, a footnote in the NWT wrongly connects the Lord of 2 Tim. 2:22 to Jehovah. Hence, it should be apparent that the NWT is fatally flawed and distorted to where one's salvation can be jeopardized by it. Friend, call on Jesus for salvation. Believe on him [Jesus] for your salvation. This was part of the message of the early Christians, who also recognized Jesus as the Apostle Thomas addressed him to his face: "My Lord and my God" (John 20:28).
The Lie Continues To Go Forth
In contrast to the facts, the Watchtower Society will continue to publish the following about their own NWT, to the spiritual detriment of those that will believe it:
A corrupted Bible translation, even if it has the above distinctive features, is still flawed and distorted thereby unable to help readers learn God's precious truths.
1. Does the NWT omit a word at John 14:14, which distorts its
1. The Watchtower, May 1, 1957, p. 274.
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