Repentance, Salvation and The New Bible Versions: (Yes, it Really does matter!)

(This is another great article by Ed Lane from Orlando Florida. Ed is a former die-hard NIV user who woke up to the corruption of the modern versions, and is now taking a stand against them. Great write-up here Ed! P.B.)

by Ed Lane @ Following Jesus Christ

“I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish….” Luke 13:3,5

“Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.” Acts 3:19

“And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent….” Acts 17:30

“But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Matthew 9:13

In my experience, it has been very rare to attend a church that consistently teaches the narrow road to Jesus Christ…the road that travels through his blood, shed freely for our sins on a cold hard cross.

I recently attended a church where the pastor teaches frequently and powerfully against the false, broad-road, happy-go-lucky Jesus, which is so prevalent today. This man, without equivocation, states that the road to heaven is narrow and that few find it. He boldly teaches that the only Jesus who saves us from the consequences of our sin is the one described for us solely in the Bible, and that Jesus is full of love, grace, and mercy…but also unmitigated vengeance in His time. Hell and the Wrath of God

Despite the fact that this pastor uses my former love, the NIV 84, I was able to sit through a few of his sermons, since the substance of the messages were not affected by the textual differences between translations. However, in a recent sermon, this changed, and the truth of God was greatly, and horrifically obscured due to a serious doctrinal change from the Textus Receptus to the newer, critical Greek text, reflected in the differences between the KJV and the NIV/NASB/ESV, et al. The Bible Version Controversy Explained

The sermon in question was on Matthew 9:9-13, and the parallel passage in Luke 5:27-32. The substance of these passages centers around the fact that Jesus surrounded himself with publicans and sinners, and frequently ate and drank with them. In Luke 5:29, the text states that Matthew, who had just been called by Jesus, held a feast in his honor at his own house. However, the pastor, while using Luke to expound on the nature of the dinner (a feast vs. a quiet gathering) focused on the passage in Matthew and noted that, when questioned by the legalistic religious leaders as to why he would spend time with such undesirables, Jesus answered:

13 “But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:13 NIV

I believe that this verse is critical for understanding the heart of Jesus Christ towards mankind. It even explains why he left the glory of heaven …”to call sinners….” Yet the critical Greek Text, which is followed closely by the NIV and all of the other new Bible versions, deletes out THE key phrase at the end of verse 13. Jesus did not just “call sinners” to come and party with him, as so many megachurch preachers want us to believe – and justifiably so using the NIV/NASB. Jesus Christ did come to earth did to call sinners, and he called them to repentance.

In the KJV, and in it’s underlying Greek Text, the Textus Receptus, the Greek word “metanoia” is present at the end of of verse 13, and that word completes this important passage perfectly. Below is Matthew 13:9 in the King James Bible:

“But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”(emphasis added). ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭9:13‬ ‭KJV‬

Jesus did not call the unrighteous to further unrighteousness or to simply to hangout with him, as the passage without the repentance language could easily imply to a new believer, a pastor interested in attracting people with a worldly “gospel,’ or to an antinomian (hypergrace proponent). Instead, the God of heaven and earth called the sinners, tax collectors and publicans he loved so dearly, not to fulfill their fleshly lusts, but to turn to him from the wickedness of their sins via repentance. The celebration with Jesus and his disciples was not a time of gluttony and drunkenness. It was a time of true joy – the kind of joy that comes when we know that we are safely hidden in the shadow of God…resting in the freedom and peace that accompanies a broken and contrite heart towards God as a result of an awareness of and hatred for our sin. Sin, Repentance and the Cross

The deletion of repentance in Matthew 9:13 (and in Mark 2:17) brought to my mind another well-known passage, this one addressing those who though they were saved but, shockingly (to them), were not. “Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets. But he shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity.” Luke‬ ‭13:26-27‬ ‭KJV‬‬‬‬‬‬

I have always wondered who those people were (in the passage above) and why they were so deeply deceived about something as important as their eternal destiny. I think I now understand. They were those who chose to spend time with Jesus, eating, drinking, and perhaps even sitting under his teaching on occasion…yet they refused to turn their hearts away from sin to him via repentance. In other words, they viewed Jesus just as the NIV and most other new Bible versions do…as a cool God/man who really just wants us to follow his ways and hang out with him…no judgement, no pricking of our consciences, no repentance…just chill with Jesus and his posse, and maybe debate some theology over a craft beer or two. After all, isn’t that how Jesus rolled?? Sadly, that Jesus is a fake one, manufactured by our own lustful desire to cling to our sin…and even our Bibles and many of our “churches” affirm that Jesus.

Another oft-quoted verse that, in the NIV appears to justify unmitigated sin, is the famed Romans 8:1:

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus…” NIV

I have had an unmarried Christian brother quote this verse to me after nights of skinny dipping and heavy drinking. His point to me, when I was attempting to encourage him to flee from sin to the Jesus of the Bible was, “I’m saved, so don’t even talk to me about repenting and turning my heart away from my sin. There is no condemnation no matter what I do.”

Well the King James Bible tells a different story. It states:

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” Romans 8:1 KJV

The point is not that one has to be perfect to walk uncondemned before Jesus Christ. Instead, the extra clause emphasizes the fact that, if we are truly in Christ Jesus, while we will stumble and fall as we make our way through this wicked world, we, as lovers of Jesus Christ and his precious blood, hate our sin and seek, with all of our hearts to walk not according to our fleshly lusts but according to the spirit. Paul said it best to Titus when he described what should happen when we truly understand the grace of God:

11 “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ….15 These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.” Titus 2:11-13,15

I could go on and on quoting important doctrinal changes to new version Bibles via the underlying critical Greek text, but for the purposes of this article I am simply illustrating how the new versions can absolutely corrupt ones understanding of God’s grace…even when a solid pastor is preaching. If we truly believe with our hearts (per Romans 10:9-10), that Jesus Christ paid for our sins with his blood, free of charge, than we will seek to turn to him from our sin, and honor him…not as works unto salvation, but as love. Jesus himself states:

21 “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.” John 14:21-24

We must all, as disciples of Jesus Christ, desire only the pure milk of the word, and thus, cast off all of our adulterated Bible versions, no matter how easy they are to read and no matter who accuses us of being legalistic. The evidence in favor of the KJV and it’s Greek foundation are overwhelming. See, The Bible Version Controversy Explained .

We are told by Jude to contend vigorously for the faith, but how can we do that if we are quoting watered down Bible versions that delete out the clarion call to repentance, a call given by Jesus himself twice in a row in Luke 13 (see the top of the page)? Even Muslims I meet on the streets when I am evangelizing point to the fact that Christians have over a hundred different Bible versions, all of which say different things, while they only have one Quran. Therefore, they cannot even consider trusting the Bible or Christianity. What a brilliant scheme by Satan to easily convince 2 billion Muslims that Christianity has to be false since their holy book contradicts itself in hundreds of places! While I gladly inform them that only one English Bible is actually true while the rest are counterfeit, and I note that I would be glad to explain to them the history of the Textus Receptus and KJV, they simply laugh and say that the KJV is only one of hundreds of Bibles, and why should they believe me. Such is the brilliance of satan’s handiwork….

EPILOGUE

I loved the NIV and NKJV for 25 years, and I believed what was taught in seminaries and bible colleges about the superiority of the Greek foundation for the new versions (the critical Greek text, whose primary component is Codex Siniaticus and Codex Vaticanus). However, after my wife (like me, an NIV’er at the time), raised serious questions as to why the KJV was so different doctrinally than modern Bibles (after reading straight through six different versions), I decided to dig beyond what I had, like a sheep, been fed. So…I studied the issue for myself and found well over a hundred serious doctrinal changes, many of which lined up with catholic church doctrine (Acts 8:37, 2 Tim. 2:15, James 5:16 are a few off of the top of my head). My previous in-depth article (linked in the previous paragraph) lays out my findings in much greater detail.

I care about one thing and one thing only – that people escape satan’s wicked lies and pass from death to life via repentance through the blood of Jesus Christ. I have no other agenda than that, and this goal can only be accomplished if we are ALL teaching, exhorting and rebuking with an accurate Bible, a Bible that demands more than that sinners simply follow Jesus. Instead we must demand a Bible that repeats over and over and over again the call by both Jesus and his apostles that all men everywhere must repent for the remission of sins.

15 “These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.” Titus 2:15

Click link for edits and deletions in the so-called New King James Bible

I welcome your input!

If you have comment or criticism please use the section below. Overly long comments may be edited for length.

Thank you for visiting my site.

Author: Paul Benson

My Website is at www.paulbenson.me. My blog 'Let's Get It Right!' is at pbenson.me.

4 thoughts on “Repentance, Salvation and The New Bible Versions: (Yes, it Really does matter!)”

  1. Imagine a world where there are no more printed Bibles. What would people do then? No words to argue over. No translation discussions. We know we all have a selfish nature. One that falls daily. Yet, we recognize the mistakes and get back up to Follow the Light. The human race has a long history of ‘following the letter’ and not the ‘spirit’ of any law. Using tradition and precedent to make excuses for bad behavior. We all need a heart of ‘flesh’ that responds to Holy Spirit. You KNOW when you messed up. No excuses!

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    1. Hi Frances;
      Yes, sadly many make the Bible version issue a matter to fight about and be contentious. And it’s not very edifying to anyone. But the danger of perverting the Word of God is real, as is the damage to the understanding of those being confused by the alterations to the modern versions. It is producing an altered Gospel!

      The Scriptures were given us for good purpose. 2Tim. 3:16-17 says All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

      You said imagine a world where people had no Bible to argue over. God has breathed into me a vision of a world where the Bible is perverted into such a mixed up and misleading mess that people are steered away from the true path unto a delusion which causes them to fall into the hands of the enemy thinking they are following Christ. We are living in that world now! Yet the Church is asleep to the confusion and false understandings birthed by the alteration of God’s Holy Word.

      Not everyone who raises the issue of the corruption of the new bibles is looking to be contentious or argumentative. Some of us do it out of a love for the truth, and a desire to obey the call of God upon us to warn the Body of Christ.

      Much of the Church has a spirit of confusion upon them; and a major cause for this is the conflict between not only the versions, but between what is preached out of them and what the Holy Spirit is saying. Not all of us are grown up or have developed good discernment. Baby Christians (and immature or feeble others) trust their pastors and elders to speak the truth to them. And when preaching and bible versions don’t jive with the voice of the Spirit not everyone is mature enough to sort all that out.

      The bible version issue is an important one! The Body of Christ is being damaged and misled by these perversions of the truth! It needs to be more fully addressed by today’s believers; not ignored because some people behave in an ungodly manner over it. To suggest we do not need the Bible because we have the Holy Spirit is unsound thinking. The Spirit and Word agree; and give witness together to the truth. We need both in operation in our midst in an uncompromised fashion to be a healthy end-time remnant. The delusion is growing stronger by the day, and we need an accurate representation of God’s Word to light the path.

      Blessings to you Frances;
      Paul Benson

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  2. The bible version issue is an important one! – Yes, no arguments there. I purchased an NIV years ago and just couldn’t ‘get into it’. Something about it just grates my gears! (I do enjoy using internet & computer resources to study the source texts, though. Such a blessing for us!) Too bad the ‘legalists’ use the ‘letter’ as a blunt instrument. How many died over the years in deadly squabbles over doctrine? William Tyndale was killed for translating the Bible into common English. More examples here http://www.historyextra.com/article/feature/murderous-history-bible-translations Many saints are even now pleading under the altar: How long before we are avenged? Rev 6:9-10

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  3. This is why I try to get here as often as I can. Speak the Truth, and do it boldly. You seem to do it so well. I agree we live in the age of deception, and perverting GOD’S written word is under full attack. Truth for lies, and lies for Truth. Well done PB, thank you

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