Which Bible Version?

A good summary answer is at least three. However, in many respects this is the wrong question. 

What is behind the question is, Which version of truth do I wish to accept? 

The answer to that question would seem simple. God's of course!

It is actually a bit more complicated than that!

Odoo • A picture with a caption

The key word is translation.

Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek.  Unless you are fluent in the original languages of the bible, like the vast majority of us, you will be relying upon a translation. There are quite a few challenges that we need to be aware of regarding translations.

The Character of God  needs to be the ultimate standard . Anyone seriously considering following the God of Israel, has to accept that His word is 'His word' and therefore what He conveys will ALWAYS be inline with His character.

Many Types of Translations

Depending upon who you talk to, you will find three to seven or more different methods of translation. The three major ones would be 

  • Word for Word

  • Thought for Thought

  • Balance

All have their uses and usually a number will be used in any given work simply because there is often no direct way to translate a word from one language to another. Instead the concept needs to be conveyed using many other words.

To give you an idea, the Hebrew Bible has 8,679 words. The equivalent text in the King James Old testament has  ~622,700 depending upon which addition. Consider it takes 71 times as many word in English to express the same in Hebrew. Staggering. Can you be sure what you are reading in English is reliable?

When it comes to the full truth, my answer is generally No! You need to do your own research. Having at least three versions and and a bible concordance is a good start.

Fortunately, today we have many online resources. I recommend the following, however, these are just recommendations.

  • Use a True Name Edition - Many are available, I use The Scriptures 2009. - Available on  http://www.bible.com

  • Restoration Scriptures, True Name Edition


Many Agendas

When we are dealing with translations, we are always dealing with agendas. It is said that the victors write history, well the same goes for bible translation. It would be naive to think that those translators throughout history didn't have agendas that affected their rendering of one language to another. 

This is not to say that all translators are bad or didn't have good intentions. I know not one translation that is perfect either from the translators perspective of my ability to perceive the correct understanding.

Does this mean, we can't ever know the real truth that God want to relay to us. Not at all. It simply means we need to do a bit more work and not blindly accept what is written without testing.

The more you study, the more you will find mistakes, deliberate mistranslated and reworded text to suit a particular doctrine, and words that convey a different meaning today than they did at the time of translation together with words that maybe aren't technically wrong, but certainly covey the wrong idea.

There is no need to panic. It is fairly easy to identify all these issues and I have some helpful ways of doing this that will be addressed elsewhere.

Essentially to take the view for example that the King James version is the only version, the inerrant Word of God is simply short sighted and plain wrong. There are many top linguists who can show you quite easily where the holes are in the KJV. That's not to say that the KJV is not worth using. It is, however as with EVERY version, it comes with caveats.

Missing Concepts

Problems arise when a word or more importantly a concept has no direct equivalent in another language. This happens a lot with the Bible and as a result different words get used at different times at different places for the same missing concept. The translator has often done their best to convey the meaning of the text, however, often the larger concept of the connecting thought is totally lost given often an incomplete or spurious understanding of the original meaning  of the text.

I'll touch on two Hebraic points here that are worth noting to be explained in greater detail later. The first is that while we take pieces and build up to a whole concept, Hebraic thought often works the other way around. A large concept is expressed, and then it is later refined. The other is the Connection, (Kesher). The Bible is full of connections. This is in fact how God communicates. These connections are largely lost in translation.

Try explaining the concept of a car to a cave man. A car is made up of many components. It has wheels, a body, steering, an engine, a transmission, not to mention all the modcons of modern cars including ABS, GPS, Smart phone connection, ESP etc.

As a cave man has no idea of what a car is, I can say that I drive my wheels to work. I drive my engine to work, I steer my car down the highway to work. None of these statements is wrong if I'm trying to say I drive my car to work. They just don't provide the whole picture and the cave man is left with only part of the pciture to try and understand what is being conveyed. In more ways than you can imagine, we are the cave man in this picture, trying to understand something we have no concept of.

Getting back to the Source

The majority of the Holy Scripture is written in Hebrew. This includes the New Testament. There are part of the Hebrew Bible that are written in Aramaic, and in some cases, the only surviving copies of the New Testament are in Greek. However, linguistic and archeological evidence is very clear, the primary language God used to convey His message is Hebrew.

It is therefore essential that we look to the source for meaning and understanding. Ideally, you will understand ancient biblical Hebrew. For most of us, this is unlikely and we will have to reply upon Hebrew language experts, linguists and biblical concordances and dictionaries to find meanings and uses of words.

Fortunately, there are many available. If you have grown up in the Western Christian Church, you will most likely be indoctrinated on Greek supremacy, especially when it comes to the New Testament. This will be a constant stumbling block for you. To continue with material on this website, you will need to have your own personal confrontation with the truth.

I suggest the 'Sons of Zion versus Sons of Greece' Volume One by Dr Miles Jones as a starting point. I have already done my research, traveled to the Holy Land, seen physical evidence that the doctrine of Greek Supremacy is false and has lead to multiple false doctrines.

However, as per Principle One, don't believe what I say, discover the truth for yourself and have your own personal confrontation. There is a treasure, worth giving up everything for, to be had if you really want it.