Bullied By the Bible

Posted: June 10, 2013 in Thoughts on art ministry and life
Tags: , , , , , ,

If you think this is going to be a piece against Scripture in any way, you’re going to be disappointed. I love the Scriptures and believe beyond being the Word of God (which is primary) they are a force for good in our world. I have often lamented society’s and at times even the church’s desire to bend the Word to the will of the people, political correctness (is that an oxymoron?) etc. We are not supposed to change the Scripture, the Scripture is supposed to change us. I love the Bible.

So what is my complaint? Well when I was searching, I decided to try to read the Bible. The one we had in our house was the King James and, at that point in my life, I found it almost incomprehensible. Eventually I came to Christ in 1986 and when I did the church gave me a Bible—The New International Version which came out in 1984. I loved it, finally a Bible I could understand. I devoured it and I memorized a lot of verses. I’ve used the 1984 version of the NIV ever since all the way through my ministry to this very moment.

Over the years the folks who put the NIV out have dabbled with rewording it and updating it. The TNIV that they tried to make gender neutral comes to mind. Some people were up in arms about it and frankly I didn’t care. TNIV was an additional translation I could ignore. I kept right on rolling with the 1984 NIV. Recently, they changed it again, I didn’t like it either. They changed the wording on some of the verses I’ve memorized and to my mind the meaning has changed.

Case in point, one of my life verses and the naming verse of the church I planted 2 Corinthians 5:17.
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone and then new has come.” now says “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” Somehow it looks different to me. What is this new creation that has come? In my version, I am the new creation and to me that’s far better.

That’s just one of many. Again I didn’t like it, but that was okay. I could still use the 1984 version on Biblegateway to download the scriptures for writing sermons, etc. and I was happy. Then a few months back I noticed it no longer appeared. When I checked into it, it appears they feel that this translation is the latest and the greatest, most accurate translation of the text. It appears they have taken this approach with most if not all of the Bible software companies. I’m frustrated and aggravated by this and frankly feel a little bullied. It feels a little like, “you will use the newest version and like it, resistance is futile.” Let’s put it this way. I will use my 1984 version until it wears out, and then I will search out a new translation.

But it won’t be the NIV.

Please forgive the rant we’ll be back to arts ministry tomorrow.

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