Translation wars of the Bible


MANY of us revere the people who compiled and translated the Bible, not as mere mortals, but as people who were chosen and inspired by God.
We also revere the Bible as the ‘Word of God’ not to be trifled with, but here is the surprise.
The translators and compilers of the books of the Bible were mere mortals.
They trifled with the ‘Word of God’ and even went on to kill each other out of jealousy and hatred, just as mere mortals do.
For instance, the introduction to the Revised Standard Version of the Bible says the first English Version of the scriptures and the first to be printed was a direct translation from the original Hebrew and Greek.
It was the work of William Tyndale who met bitter competition, opposition, envy and finally, betrayal, from fellow Church scholars.
He was accused of perverting the meaning of the Scriptures and his New Testaments were ordered to be burned as ‘untrue translations’.
In October 1530 he was publicly executed and burned at the stake.
Yet his executioners continued to use his work as the bases of their translations such as the Great Bible 1539, the Geneva Bible 1560, and the Bishop’s Bible 1568.
In 1582 a translation of the New Testament made from the Latin Vulgate and published in Rheims was based on Tyndale’s work.
The questions to ask here therefore are why was Tyndale killed?
Were his executioners inspired by God whose ‘Word’ was being revised and translated?
Can their translations and revisions, which are clearly based on Tyndale’s work, which they themselves condemned as ‘untrue translations’, really be called ‘God’s Word’?
What exactly was it that the Church scholars did not like about Tyndale’s translations which they had to remove and remain with what they wanted?
The following observations may help answer these questions.
In 1937, the revision of the King James Version was authorised by vote of the Council, not by God.
It was designed for use in public and private worship.
Its qualities were applauded as having given it “a supreme place in English literature.”
And for two-and-a-half centuries, the King James Version became the ‘Authorised Version’.
Yet, with all these accolades, the King James Version still had grave defects.
By the middle of the 19th century, the development of Biblical studies and the discovery of many scriptures more ancient than those upon which the King James Version was based, made it clear that these defects were so many and so serious as to call for further revisions.
That task was undertaken, by authority of the Church of England, in 1870.
The English Revised King James Version was published in 1881-1885, and its variant, the American Standard Version embodying the preferences of American scholars, was published in 1901.
Referring to The Lost Books of the Bible and The Forgotten Books of Eden, Dr Frank Crane implores us to remember that many people may not understand that the Bible is not a book written by a single person, but several books composed by various people in various countries.
It is therefore curious to know upon what grounds some books were accepted and others rejected.
With the publication of the Lost Books of the Bible and the Forgotten Books of Eden, the ordinary person is now invited to take his place in that Council Chamber which accepts and rejects the various writings of the scripture.
The publication of The Lost Books of the Bible and the Forgotten Books of Eden will, therefore, do a lot of good in taking away the veil of secrecy that has hidden for many years the act of the Church in accepting certain scriptures and rejecting others.
We can now examine the books of the scriptures in the so-called ‘authorised versions’ and then read those which have been thrown away by various councils to come up with reasons why indeed they were eliminated.
One clear answer why they were thrown away is provided by the title itself, The Lost Books of the Bible and the Forgotten Books of Eden.
The reader has to be reminded that in our previous article, ‘Where is Eden?’ we established that Eden refers to Africa according to both the Bible and the world map.
So when we talk of The Forgotten Books of Eden we are simply talking about The Forgotten Books of Africa which the Catholic Church omitted from its Bible as unsuitable for the world to know.
This explains why, while the illustrations of people in the Forgotten Books of Eden/Africa are all Africans, those of the Bibles authorised by the white Church have been changed into Caucasians/Europeans.


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