Jehovah Witness Faulty Translation on the Deity of Christ - Part 2



The Jehovah Witnesses Faulty Translation
on the Deity of Christ - Part 2

The Jehovah Witnesses (aka JW) hold that Jesus Christ was not the God but a god.  They believe that Jesus was the first and highest of God’s creation and through Him God created all other things that exist whether they are spiritual or physical.  In their minds God is One Person not Three Equal Persons.  Therefore they see Jesus Christ as a creation (a god) and the Holy Spirit an impersonal force of God.

The problem they encounter is the clear testimony of Scripture that Jesus and the Holy Spirit are God, equal to the Father in every way.  Since they are determined that their view of God is right, the only alternative left to them was to create a new translation in which they could change the text of Scriptures in order that they might hide the Deity of Christ and the Holy Spirit.  The New World Translation (aka NWT) was the product of this work.  In our first segment I showed how they altered John’s clear declarations that Jesus was God (Jn. 1:1).    In this segment I intend to show some additional examples of the mistranslations that characterize the NWT.

1) Since the JW believes that Jesus was God’s first Creation, they take the word “beginning” in John 1:1 and Gen. 1:1 to speak not of the creation of everything but rather the creation of all that comes after Christ.  The reason they do so is because Jn. 1:1 indicates that Jesus dwelt before the beginning.  If the “beginning” was the start of all things created, one must conclude that Jesus existed before the “beginning” as God.  This creates a real problem for them when considering the words of Paul in Col. 1:16-18.   Please note the literal rendering of the Greek text by the New Kings James Version (aka NKJV).

    Col 1:16-17, “For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. 17 And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.”  NKJV

Paul clearly declares that by Christ all things created were created by Christ indicating clearly that Christ is not a creation but everlasting God.  This is further emphasized in the statement that Christ “is before all things.”  This creates a problem for the JW and so they add the word “other” which is not found or implied in the original text in order to alter the translation to fit their doctrine.  They even recognize the addition of this word by placing it in brackets ([ ]).

    Col. 1:16-20, “Because by means of him all [other] things were created in the heavens and upon the earth, the things visible and the things invisible, no matter whether they are thrones or lordships or governments or authorities. All [other] things have been created through him and for him.17Also, he is before all [other] things and by means of him all [other] things were made to exist. “

2) Jesus is the “Jehovah” or better yet the “Yaweh” of the Old Testament.  The JW put a great deal of emphasis on the name “Jehovah” which is an English derivative of the Sacred Name of God which, in Hebrew, is pronounced “Yaweh.”   It is the JW’s position that Jehovah of the Old Testament is the One and Only Eternal God and separate from Jesus, His creation.  However they are confronted once again with a problem to their theology in light of John 8:58 where Jesus says, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM" (NKJV).  The name “I Am” was given by Yaweh (Jehovah) as His sacred name to Moses and the nation of Israel in Ex. 3:14-26.

Ex 3:14-16, “And God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And He said, "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.'" Moreover God said to Moses, "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel: 'The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My memorial to all generations.” NKJV

Yahweh is translated “I AM,” speaking of the fact that God existed (unlike the gods of the nations) and He existed eternally.  So sacred was this name of God that it was later considered a serious offense if one was to pronounce it verbally.  Therefore, when Jesus declared in John 8:58 that his name was the “I Am,” He in essence was declaring He was the God of Israel in the Old Testament.  This of course causes the JW position serious problems and so they once again mistranslate these passages to hide their open declaration.  Take note of their translation of John 8:58.

Jn. 8:58, “Jesus said to them: “Most truly I say to ​YOU, Before Abraham came into existence, I have been.” NWT

The Greek word translated “I Am” (eimi) is a first person, singular, present, active, indicative.  Such a word must be translated in the present tense.  To dodge this declaration of deity the JWs translate the word as past tense even though this violates the Greek grammatical rules.  Note how the NWT translates the same word where it does not deify Jesus in Matt. 22:32.

Matt. 22:32I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob’? He is the God, not of the dead, but of the living.” NWT

Also note how they have avoided the translating “I Am” in the Ex. 3:14-16 passage lest someone might see the connection with John 8:58.

Ex. 3:14-16, “At this God said to Moses: “I ​SHALL PROVE TO BE WHAT​ I ​SHALL PROVE TO BE.” And he added: “This is what you are to say to the sons of Israel, ‘I ​SHALL PROVE TO BE​ has sent me to ​YOU. 15 Then God said once more to Moses: “This is what you are to say to the sons of Israel, ‘Jehovah the God of ​YOUR​ forefathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob, has sent me to ​YOU.’ This is my name to time indefinite, and this is the memorial of me to generation after generation” NWT

The Hebrew verb is in the Qal stem indicating a present state of being not a future event as the NWT translates it.  Likewise the idea of “prove” is not found in the Hebrew word nor is it implied.   Once again a mistranslation to deceive the reader concerning the person of Jesus Christ.

Other indications of Jesus being Jehovah can be found in the names assigned to Him.

a) Jesus is called the Mighty God.  Even the JW’s recognize that this is the name given to Jehovah.

Isa. 9:6, “For there has been a child born to us, there has been a son given to us; and the princely rule will come to be upon his shoulder. And his name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.”  NWT

However, to avoid this connection, the NWT avoids translating the same name given in the Hebrew lest the connection be made between Jesus and God.  I have underlined the NWT mistranslation of the same words as found in Isa. 9:6.

Gen. 49:24, “And yet his bow remained in place, and his hands stayed strong and agile.  This was from the hands of the powerful one of Jacob, from the shepherd, the stone of Israel.

Jer. 32:18, “The One exercising lovinkindness toward thousands, and repaying the error of the fathers into the bosom of their sons after them, the [true] God, the great One, the mighty One, Jehovah of armies being his name” NWT

However, even in the NWT they slip up and indicate that Jehovah (v. 20) is the Mighty God.

Isa. 10:20-21 “In that day those remaining of Israel And the survivors of the house of Jacob will no longer support themselves on the one who struck them; But they will support themselves on Jehovah, The Holy One of Israel, with faithfulness. Only a remnant will return, The remnant of Jacob, to the Mighty God.” NWT

b) Jesus is called the Holy One.  In the previous passage of the NWT, please note that it describes Jehovah as the “Holy One of Israel.”  This same title is given to Christ in the Rev. 15:3-4.  Take note how the NWT translates “Holy” as “Loyal” One in order to break any tie between Jesus Christ of the New Testament with the Jehovah of the Old Testament.  It should be noted that the Greek Word for “Holy” never has the meaning of “loyal” but is used almost exclusively of righteousness or holiness.”

Rev. 15:3-4, “And they are singing the song of Moses the slave of God and the song of the Lamb, saying: “Great and wonderful are your works, Jehovah God, the Almighty. Righteous and true are your ways, King of eternity.  4Who will not really fear you, Jehovah, and glorify your name, because you alone are loyal? For all the nations will come and worship before you, because your righteous decrees have been made manifest.” NWT

Rev. 15:3-4, “They sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying: "Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty! Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints!  4 Who shall not fear You, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy.  For all nations shall come and worship before You, For Your judgments have been manifested." NKJV

3) The JW view of God causes another serious issue.  Even in the NWT, the Scriptures declare that God will not tolerate any other gods before Him.  However, they call Jesus “a god” which would be in violation of the Old Testament Scriptures.

Ex. 20:3, “You must not have any other gods against my face.” NWT

Isa. 45 14, “This is what Jehovah has said: “The unpaid laborers of Egypt and the merchants of Ethio′pia and the Sabe′ans, tall men, will themselves come over even to you, and yours they will become. Behind you they will walk; in fetters they will come over, and to you they will bow down. To you they will pray, [saying,] ‘Indeed God is in union with you, and there is no one else; there is no [other] God.” NWT

Isa. 45:21, Make ​YOUR​ report and ​YOUR​ presentation. Yes, let them consult together in unity. Who has caused this to be heard from a long time ago? [Who] has reported it from that very time? Is it not I, Jehovah, besides whom there is no other God; a righteous God and a Savior, there being none excepting me? NWT

There are many more examples that could be given of the JW’s cover up of the Deity of Christ.  However, this doctrine cannot be concealed but only denied through self-imposed blindness.  In my next segment I will cover one other matter that the JWs use to prove their doctrine and then I will discuss why the deity of Christ is so important.