The most frequently
asked questions about the accuracy of the 1611 King James
“Easter” an obvious mistranslation in Acts 12:4? What is obvious is that
ministries, commentaries, Bible schools, Bible scholars throw out a key
fundamental of Bible Study: “Context”, “Context”, “Context”!!! We
who study our Bibles were always taught – do not take things out of context.
Even church organizations have started or been split because of such false
teachings that are the result of taking scripture out of context. One
example is the Church
of Christ denomination that doesn’t allow for musical instruments during their
So let’s simply
examine Acts 12:1-4: “Now about that time Herod the King stretched forth his
hands to vex (harass) certain of the church” (verse l).
This was the pagan Herod Agrippa I, grandson of Herod the Great, who murdered
the babies in Bethlehem (Mathew 2:1,16). (Acts 12:2):
“And he (Herod) killed James, the brother of John with
the sword.” Thus James became the first of Jesus Christ’s Apostles to be
martyred. Verse 3: “And because he (Herod) saw it pleased the Jews, he
proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the Days of Unleavened
Bread.)” Obviously, Herod wanted the Apostle Peter to be the next martyr.
Herod was not a nice person. Also, notice the time-line of the Spring Holy Days.
All the Holy Days are “the Feasts of the LORD” (Leviticus 23:2) They begin
with the seventh day weekly Sabbath (Leviticus 23:3); then the Lord’s Passover
(v.5) on the fourteenth day of the first month; next the Days of Unleavened
Bread for seven days beginning on the fifteenth day. (v.6) Acts 12:4: “And
when he (Herod) apprehended him (Peter), he put him in prison, and delivered him
to four quaternions (squads of four) of soldiers to keep him; intending after
Easter to bring him forth to the people.” The word Easter is translated from
the Greek word “Pascha”, which is translated “Passover” in it’s 28
other usages in the New Testament. Why didn’t they use the Greek word for
Easter? Because there is none! Even today in Greece the newspapers will have a
story about the Jew’s Pascha (Passover) and later, because Easter follows
Passover a short time later it will run a story about the Pope of Rome leading
Pascha (Easter) services. The people understand because of the “Context”!
Many common English words have several meanings, and we were taught in
Elementary School to view the “Context” to understand the word meaning.
So the 1611 scholars
(over 50 highly educated men – review chapter six of this writing) knew this
pagan ruler was keeping pagan days such as Easter that was soon to happen.
Otherwise, he would have had to wait a whole year to execute Peter. I don’t
think so. According to the “Context” Pascha had to be translated Easter.
(Note: Today a Christian may choose to keep Easter or not.)
B. Wasn’t I John 5:7
a deliberate insertion into the Word of God? On the contrary it was a deliberate
extraction “at the height of the Arian controversy in the fourth century…
(and) it would seem much more likely for Origin (of Alexandria, Egypt)…to
boldly remove the offending verse” (Dr. Henry M. Morris Commentary, p.1,969).
Again we need to
examine the “Context” of this verse, which is “Baptism”. Compare this
passage (especially from verse 5 through verse 13) with Matthew’s gospel in
chapter 28, verses 18-19: “And Jesus came and spake to them saying, All power
is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all
baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy
Ghost”. Now let’s examine verses 7 and 8 in I John: “For there are
three that bear record (witness) in heaven the Father, the Word, and the Holy
Ghost: and these three are one (v.7).
And there are three that bear witness in earth, the spirit, and the
water, and the blood, and these three agree in one.”
Notice the comparing
and contrasting of 3 witnesses in heaven and in earth. The NIV, NASV, and
other modern versions split v.6 into two parts and label one as v. 7. Also, the
first word “And” in v.8 is changed to “for”; and they leave out the
phrase “in earth”. Furthermore, Dr. Edward F. Hills noted that “the very
style of the passage seems to demand that there are two groups of three, and the
Johannine Comma (as Scholars call this passage) satisfies this demand. (Also)
the omission of the Johannine Comma involves a grammatical difficulty (in the
Greek). The words spirit, water, and blood are neuter in general, but in I John
5:8 they are treated as masculine. If the Johannine Comma is rejected, it is
hard to explain this irregularity” (The King James Version Defended, p.136).
I John 5:7 is in a few
Greek manuscripts, but in all the early Latin Bibles, except the Catholic
Vulgate. In the first
two centuries there are preserved early Church Fathers'
writings that quote this verse. In conclusion I
will quote the well respected eighteenth century commentator Mathew Henry who
wrote about this passage: “Here is the most excellent abridgement…of the
motives to faith in Christ, of the credentials the Saviour
brings with Him, and of the evidences of our Christianity, that is to be found.
I think, in the Book of God upon which single account, even wavering
(surrendering) the doctrine of the divine Trinity, the text is worthy of all
New Testament was preserved through the Greek Textus Receptus (Received Text) by
the Church, starting at Antioch. What “text” is preserved in Hebrew for the
Paul answers this for
us: “What advantage then hath the Jews? Or what profit is there of
circumcision? Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed
the Oracles of God.” (Romans 3:1-2) The Greek word for “Oracle” is logian,
meaning an “utterance”. Therefore these are the “utterances (Oracles) of
Almighty God, i.e. The Words of God.
H.S. Miller recorded
the eight rules (found in the Talmud) strictly followed by the Jews who were
given the responsibility to copy the Synagogue Rolls of the Old Testament canon
(General Biblical Introduction, 1960, pp.184-185). Among these rules the
copyist had to say each word out loud before copying it. If a mistake was made
(as each letter and word were counted) the scroll was destroyed. If a third
mistake were made the entire book was destroyed. Imagine being on the last
chapter (chapter 66) of the book of Isaiah and making that third mistake – I
don’t think that happened too often as they were
very dedicated. Another rule was the pen had to be wiped clean each time
“God” (Elohim) was written. Before writing “LORD” (YHVH) the scribe had
to take a bath! This traditional Hebrew Old Testament Text is referred to as Masoretic.
It is named from the Hebrew word masor (meaning “to hand down”).
This “Masoretic O.
T. Text” was used by the King James Bible translators. Specifically it is the
“Ben Chayyim (or, Hayyim)” edition of the Bomberg edition of 1516-1517,
called the First Rabbinic Bible. This text was faithfully used in all language
editions, be it German, French, Spanish, ect, and of course the English Bibles
of 1535 (The Coverdale Bible); 1537 (The Mathews Bible)
1539 (The Great Bible); 1560 (The Geneva Bible); 1568 (The Bishop’s Bible);
and of course the 1611 King James Bible.
This Ben Chayyim
Masoretic Text lasted until 1937 when the new addition of Biblical Hebraica (by
Rudolf Kittel) switched it to the Ben Asher Masoretic Text, which is solely
based on the Leningrad Manuscript of 1008 A.D. This has no Jewish
“masoretic” scribal tradition. In Kittel’s Biblical Hebraica it is noted
that there are above 20,000 variations between these editions, some major and
some minor. The text handed down by the Jews would not have such variations.
Yet, in the “Prefaces” of the NIV, NASV, NKJV, and the other newer versions
it is admitted that they set aside the traditional “Ben Chayyim Masoretic
Hebrew Text” for the questionable “Ben Asher”.
A highly, dedicated
Bible scholar Dr. Robert Dick Wilson (who mastered some 45 languages and
dialects), after 30 years of study gave this testimony: “I can affirm that
there’s not a page of the Old Testament in which we need have any doubt. We
can be absolutely certain that substantially we have the text of the Old
Testament that Christ and the Apostles had and which was in existence from the
beginning” (Which Bible, 1st edition, by Dr. David Otis
is the value of the Septuagint in regard to the understanding of the Old
It is of no value!
Because it is a forgery of the Hebrew Text. This is very controversial.
However, if you read on I will present solid evidence to prove that it is a
fake. First of all just what is the Septuagint? It means “70” and is
symbolized by LXX. The story by a fellow name Aristeas told in a letter is the
only evidence that scholars have to support this document. He wrote this letter
(which is debated by scholars to its genuineness) to reveal that a plan was made
for a Greek translation of the Old Testament. This was desired by the Egyptian
ruler, Ptolemy II Philadelphus and was to be done in Alexandria, Egypt. Seventy
– two Jewish scholars (6 chosen from each of the 12 tribes of Israel)
translated the Hebrew into Greek at around 250 B.C.
Wait a minute. Let’s
examine this carefully. There were 72 translators and not 70. These Hebrew
scholars from Israel would not do this even if they were expert in Greek. Simply
because the copying and preserving was given only to the Tribe of Levi as noted
in Deuteronomy 17:18; 31:25, 26 (Also, review part C in this appendix). Notice
the reference to Alexandria, Egypt, the home of the 45 spurious (false) Greek
manuscripts used by Westcott and Hort to undermine the New Testament in the
modern versions of today. Also, it is the home of the Gnostics, who are
actively anti- Christian. Today this Letter of Aristeas can be found in a
collection titled The Forgotten Books of Eden.
Some scholars note
that the historian Eusebius of Caesarea (260-339
A.D.) makes reference to this translation, but his claim is weak with no exact
sources. Philo (20 B.C.-50A.D.) cites this undertaking. But note that Phio was
both a Jewish Gnostic and a philosophical mystic who lived in, of all places,
Alexandria, Egypt. The only possible ancient manuscript of a Greek copy of the O.T.
Hebrew is the small Ryland Papyrus (#458), which contains only portions of
Deuteronomy 23-28. This is dated around 150 B.C., which is about 100 years after
the LXX. All other such findings are A.D. dated (and only a few). Some scholars
believe this could be part of a personal work.
We must also note that
the Septuagint has the Apocrypha (non-inspired books) woven throughout, much
like that in the Catholic Bible. The early English Bibles from William Tyndale
to the KJB all had the Apocrypha placed between the O.T.
and the N.T. and made reference that it was not scripture. The most accepted
source by the scholars who oppose the genuineness of the Septuagint is the fifth
column of Origin’s (185-254 A.D.) Hexapla. Some say his original text is the
LXX. His dubious credentials include being a Gnostic in Alexandria, Egypt. It is
documented that he traveled around Palestine collecting N.T. Greek manuscripts
that he (with others) deliberately altered. These are the same manuscripts that
were used by Westcott and Hort, whose Greek N.T. is the foundation of the newer,
modern translations (Who Was Who in Church History by Eligin S. Moyer,
The allegation that
Christ and the Apostles copied and quoted the Septuagint is false as God through
the Holy Spirit gave them their inspiration. However, Origen and his fellows
could copy the N.T., but of course with changes. Not quite convinced. Please
note the following admission from a supporting source: “The history of the
origins (of the LXX)…embellished with various fables…Little is known with
accuracy on this subject…we possess no information whatsoever as to the time
of place of their executions (accomplishments)…some have thus supposed that
the translation was made by Alexandrian Jews.” This confession is presented in
the Introduction of the highly recognized edition published by Zondervan, The
Septuagint Version of the O.T.,
For an advanced and
highly critical analysis, consult Dr. Floyd Nollen Jones book The Septuagint (6th
Edition; 2000). See Bibliography for more details.
Copyright 2011 Stephen and Lola Lee
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