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13 minuten leestijd

Much has been spoken and written about the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, which was presented with much ado to the public on September 30, 1952. According to news publications, two thousand six hundred rallies were held over the United States under the auspices of the National Council and its local councils of churches. These celebrations occurred before people had an opportunity to examine the Bible and to consider it in any critical way.

We cannot see that all this celebration is a work of God, and much less this new version of the English Bible. I have never heard that there was a praying need of the true church of Christ and its God-sent servants for a new version of the Bible. The King James version has been a blessing for young and old for so many centuries, why should we desire a so-called better version at the evening-tide of this world? Do not the signs of the times teach us that the second coming of Christ is approaching rapidly? We cannot see a work of God in this all, but rather a work of Satan and his instruments. If we make a comparison between the men whom the Lord used in olden times to translate the Bible out of the original tongues, and the men who are the authors of this Revised Standard Version, we must come to the mentioned conclusion.

On my recent journey home from Sheboygan by train, a porter noticed my Bible, and after an exchange of conversation about this dear Book, he gave me a small booklet concerning the “New Bible,” in which I have been very much interested. The booklet has been distributed by Rev. Carl McIntire, pastor of the Bible Presbyterian Church, Collingswood, N. J., and answers the question sufficiently why christians should not accept this Revised Version. After reading it and making comparisons, I was soon convinced that this Revised Standard Version is not a work of God. I hope that all of our readers shall come to the same conclusion after reading and studying some particulars quoted from the above mentioned booklet.

“The prophecy of the virgin birth of Christ is eliminated from the Old Testament. Isaiah 7:14, the beloved passage used particularly at Christmas time, has been changed. The word “virgin” in reference to the coming Messiah has been removed, and the words “a young woman” have been substituted. Yet, Matthew 1:22 specifically declares that this prophecy was given by the Lord—”spoken of the Lord by the prophet,” and had been fulfilled in the birth of Jesus Christ of the virgin Mary.

The King James Version of Isaiah 7:14 reads:

“Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

The new National Council Bible reads:

“Behold, a young woman shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

The NCC Bible has a tiny footnote (and there are many of them on almost every page) which indicates that the reading here could mean “virgin.” The note says, “Or virgin.” This, however, in no way relieves the responsibility for translating the text itself leaving out the word “virgin.”

The authority of the New Testament, with the Apostle Matthew, under divine inspiration, quoting the verse as “spoken of the Lord by the prophet” and using the Greek word for “virgin,” should have settled the matter. But, no.

To break the force of the predictive nature of this passage of Isaiah, written 750 years before Christ was born, in such a way, is inexcusable, and we do not believe the true church will accept such handling of God’s infallible Word.

Confusion and contradiction are introduced, for in the new Bible in Matthew 1:23, which is supposed to be a quotation and a fulfillment of Isaiah 7:14, the word “virgin” is retained. Who is right and who is wrong? Thus Isaiah and Matthew do not agree; yet Matthew appears to claim that Isaiah said something which he did not say?

The virgin birth of Christ has been one of the key points at which the whole modernist attack upon the Scriptures can be tested. The late Dr. J. Gresham Machen, author of “The Virgin Birth of Christ,” the most exhaustive and scholarly study of the subject of the virgin birth ever produced in the history of the Christian church, made this point specifically. Now the NCC’s new Bible emphasizes all this afresh.

The Deity of Christ—A check of key passages in the Old and New Testaments referring to the deity of the Messiah reveals that the NCC translators consistently removed or toned down references to Christ’s deity.

Micah 5:2—The King James Version reads:

“But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.”

The Revised Standard Version reads:

“But you, O Bethlehem Ephratah, who are little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose origin is from of old, from ancient days.”

According to the King James Version, the Babe of Bethlehem had an eternal pre-existence, and this has always meant His deity as second person of the blessed Trinity.

According to the Revised Standard Version, the Babe of Bethlehem had an “origin” previously but this was limited to “ancient days.” Christ’s eternal pre-existence and deity are removed.

Psalm 45:6—The King James Version reads:

“Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever; the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.”

The Revised Standard Version reads:

“Your divine throne endures for ever and ever. Your royal scepter is a scepter of equity.”

The salutation of this person sitting upon the throne as God is thus removed. Christ’s deity is taken away.

Hebrews 1:8 quotes Psalm 45:6 and in the Revised Standard Version it reads:

“But of the Son he says, ‘Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever, the righteous scepter is the scepter of thy kingdom.’ “

The Hebrews passage ceases to be a quotation of Psalm 45 and breaks the force of this New Testament claim of the deity of Christ.

Psalm 2:11, 12—The King James Version reads:

“Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.”

The Revised Standard Version reads:

“Serve the Lord with fear, with trembling kiss his feet, lest he be angry, and you perish in the way; for his wrath is quickly kindled. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.”

The new version leaves out all reference to the Son. This removes His deity.

Zechariah 9:9 — The King James Version reads:

“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.”

The Revised Standard Version reads:

“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Lo, your king comes to you; triumphant and victorious is he, humble and riding on an ass, on a colt the foal of an ass.”

The reference to the coming Messiah as a just one is removed and “triumphant” inserted. The reference to His salvation is replaced by “victorious.” These references to His person and work have been removed.

Romans 9:5—The King James Version reads:

“Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever, Amen.”

The Revised Standard Version reads:

“To them belong the patriarchs, and of their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ. God who is over all be blessed for ever. Amen.”

Here the deity of Christ is removed entirely.

There is confusion, contradiction, and elimina-tion of clear passages affirming the deity of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To use such a Bible would be dishonoring to the Lord Jesus Christ by those who have been redeemed by His precious blood and who believe that He is the fullness of the Godhead, the eternal pre-existent second person of the Trinity become man that He might be the only Mediator of the new covenant.

Thee and Thou, and You and Yours

One of the purposes of the new translation, widely heralded as a reason for the acceptance of the new Bible, is to replace old English terms by newer meanings. An illustration of this can be found in the words “thee” and “thou” being replaced by “you” and “yours.” The King James Version, however, universally uses “thee” and “thou” whether these pronouns apply to God or to man. If the translators of the new version were going to follow through uniformly they should use “you” and “yours” universally. But, for some reason—purely an arbitrary decision— they decided to retain “thee” and “thou” in the passages where deity is referred to, and “you” and “yours” elsewhere. Apparently, “thee” and “thou” in their opinion had a little more of a respectful connotation. This decision, and surely it was an unscholarly decision, has led to a multitude of conflicts and contradictions.

For example, in Matthew 16:16, the great confession of Peter in Caesarea Philippi, one would expect to find the reply to the question of Jesus, “But who do you say that I am?” translated, “Thou art the Christ.” But, instead, the answer is, “You are the Christ.” So He is just a man, etc.

Psalm 2:7, a messianic Psalm, in the King James Version reads:

“I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my Son! this day have I begotten thee.”

The quotation of this in Hebrews 1:5 represents it as a proof of the deity of Christ, and the King James Version quotes it as such:

“Thou art my son, this day have I begotten thee.”

But with the new NCC Bible, it is all different. In Psalm 2:7 the words are: “You are my son.”

While in the quotation in the Book of Hebrews the words are: “Thou art my Son.”

The New Testament group of translators evidently believed that this quotation did refer to deity, while the Old Testament group of translators believed that it refers only to a man. They apparently did not even compare notes.

The decision to keep “thee” ‘and “thou” even in some places may be the very thing which will defeat this Bible, for here the translators have yielded to the hold which these expressions have on the hearts of people in indicating reverence and respect

The two credible arguments used for the acceptance of the Bible are: first, words have changed in some instances; and second, additional manuscript information has been brought to light since the King James Version was produced. But it should be said that most Bible students know what these words are that have changed and recognized them, and there is not a sufficient number of them to justify doing away with the King James Version in favor of one which eliminates the virgin birth, tones down the deity of Christ, produces confusion and contradiction between the Old and New Testaments, and actually is the child and tool of a partisan Council of Churches.

Who are the men who translated this Bible? They are modernist, liberal scholars. The committee is headed by Dr. Luther A. Weigle, former head of Yale University Divinity School, an outspoken modernist, and former Federal Council president.

There is not a man on the list who would be considered a fundamentalist or evangelical in the historic sense of the word.

It should be observed that four of them are of Union Theological Seminary, New York City, hotbed of modernism and socialism; three of Yale Divinity School, a center of socialism and modernism.

It may be said that we have ignored favorable things that could be said about the RSV. When there is arsenic in a loaf of bread, one does not spend his time discussing the good ingredients of the bread, but warns against the arsenic—and properly so! The changes and defects in the RSV we have pointed out here are more dangerous to human souls than arsenic is to the body.

Very many people favor this Bible, but on the other hand, vigorous opposition is beginning to be felt. Preachers are speaking against it from their pulpits, and some who were led to believe that the changes were only minor, in phraseology, and in no way altered the meaning are joining in vigorous activity to inform and alert God’s people. The impact of this new Bible is far greater than one can begin to realize. It will indeed be the modernists’ Bible, and one will be able to tell, as time goes on and the lines are more clearly drawn, just who are the modernists and those who delight to follow the modernist leadership in the country.”

Dear readers, judge yourselves whether such a Bible should be found in our homes and churches, for us and our children. Is it any wonder that a certain Rev. Wm. Denton of Akron, Ohio, has shown his just disapproval by burning this modern Bible in the presence of others?

I am sorry to say that in the Netherlands also such an unworthy and evil work has been accomplished by man, for which God’s people can have little or no respect. This new Holland version has caused much strife and sorrow. It is my sincere wish that all of our Holland speaking and reading people will cleave to and esteem greatly our old “Staten Bijbel.”

May God’s Word continue to be a great blessing during the dark times in which we live, that many may truly understand the following words of Peter: “For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: But the Word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the Word which by the gospel is preached unto you.”

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