The Farce James White calls "The Tenacity of the New Testament" - A Textual Study of 1 John
[Note: The purpose of this study is to show the confusion and uncertainty that results from following the misinformation of men like James White. It is a bit long. I deal with 38 verses that have textual variants in this epistle of only 5 short chapters. If you wish to skip the introduction, and just look at the verses, scroll half way down to where you see The Epistle of First John - A Comparative Textual Study of James White's so called "Tenacity of the New Testament"]
Poor James White. He has no complete, inerrant Bible to believe in, and he resents the fact that we King James Bible believers claim we do. On Mr. White's website he laments the conversion of a fairly well known Christian leader, William Schnoebelen, of With One Accord Ministries, to KJV Onlyism. You can see Mr. Schnoebelen's site here - http://www.withoneaccord.org
Mr. White says: "At times it seems like an epidemic. It's always the same tired arguments, refuted a hundred times before, that are being presented as some "new information," some great new insight into the truth...but another Christian writer has fallen for KJV Onlyism, and is helping to promote this divisive, a-historical, and utterly unbiblical theory."
Apparently Mr. James White considers it "unbiblical" to actually believe that God has preserved His inerrant and complete words in any single Book here on this earth today. As for "a-historical", you will search in vain for any church confession that even addressed the issue of the Preservation of Scripture before 1646. There are numerous examples of churches expressing belief in the inspiration and preservation of God's word, and not one of them ever mentions "only in the originals" until we get into the apostasy of unbelief in an inerrant Bible of the twentieth century.
Consider the Westminster Confession of Faith of 1646: “The Old Testament in Hebrew . . . and the New Testament in Greek . . . being immediately inspired by God, and BY HIS SINGULAR CARE AND PROVIDENCE KEPT PURE IN ALL AGES, are therefore authentical; so as in all controversies of religion, the Church is finally to appeal unto them.”
The same words were used in the London Baptist Confession of 1677 and the Philadelphia Confession of 1742. The Protestant Confession of Faith, London 1679, is even plainer and includes the Received Text English Bible in its statement of preservation: “And by the holy scriptures we understand, the canonical books of the old and new testament, AS THEY ARE NOW TRANSLATED INTO OUR ENGLISH MOTHER-TONGUE, OF WHICH THERE HATH NEVER BEEN ANY DOUBT OF THEIR VERITY AND AUTHORITY, in the protestant churches of Christ to this day.”
As for Mr. White's charge that the Bible version issue is "divisive", he is absolutely correct. You bet it's divisive. There are those of us who believe God meant what He said about heaven and earth passing away but His words not passing away and we believe that He has acted in history to give us a complete and inerrant Bible.
And then there are those like James White who SAY they believe the Bible is the infallible words of God, but when we ask him to show us a copy of this infallible Bible he PROFESSES to believe in, will never tell us. Why? Because James White HAS no inerrant Bible to believe in and he knows he doesn't. So, Yes, the Bible version IS divisive. Truth always is.
"Seek ye out of the book of the LORD, and read" Isaiah 34:16
William Schnoebelen, James' referenced "new" convert to King James Bible onlyism (around 1991), writes: "God's Word must be 100% perfect and pure because that is how it is defined repeatedly in the Bible. (Ps. 18:30,19:7, 119:140, 12:6; Prov. 30:5, James 1:25) It cannot be like Ivory soap, "99.44% pure." If there is the tiniest error or lie in it; then it obviously cannot be of God because God "doesn't make junk." (Mark 7:37, 2 Sam. 22:31)
We also have His promise that it would be preserved perfectly. (Ps. 12:6-7, Isa. 40:8, Matt. 5:18, 24:35, Luke 16:17, 21:33; 1 Pet. 1:24) Obviously, it would make little sense to preserve it imperfectly.
Would a parent give their teen a driving manual, telling him it was perfect, but actually knowing all along that dangerous errors were in it? Only a stupid or evil parent would do such a thing, and obviously God is neither of these. He promised it would be preserved perfectly and it is. As the first pastor who discipled us used to say, "God said it, I believe it, that settles it." (End of Mr. Schnoebelen's comments)
Then James White responds: "Here we have the standard "preaching" of the KJV Only position. It obviously sounds real good, as it traps many people. Most KJV Only advocates never get past this stage to apply their reasoning to their own position. The questions are too obvious for much comment: what was the "real" and "preserved" Word of God prior to 1611? Was the Geneva Bible a "good" one? How about the Bishops' Bible? Tyndale's translation? Wycliffe? What was the "preserved text" in the year 1000? How about before the English language evolved? Can Mr. Schnoebelen, or any of those upon whom he is relying, show us a single Greek manuscript from anywhere in the world that reads exactly like the KJV at every point? No, they cannot. So as much as they may want to believe that this is how God did things, the simple fact of the matter is, He didn't. God preserved His Word in a different manner than KJV Only advocates would like us to believe."
James White uses a tactic that is very common among the "Whatever, Who Knows For Sure, Probably Close Enough" multiversionist crowd. He rejects the clear statements of God's word about His preserving His inspired words, and instead relies on human logic and reasoning.
By the way, I have also written an article that deals with the question James White and other bible agnostics like him toss out asking "Where was the perfect Bible before 1611?" You can see it here, if interested -
"Was there a perfect Bible before the King James Bible?
James should know, and many other scholars admit, that literally thousands of Greek manuscripts and copies of ancient translations that once existed are no longer with us. They either turned to dust with the ravages of time or were deliberately destroyed by heretics and Catholic persecutors. So how does James know there never was any other language version or group of Greek manuscripts that matched the King James Bible word for word? He doesn't.
It should also be pointed out to James, that neither is there ANY Greek manuscript or text that matches "word for word" his ever changing NASBs, ESVs or NIVs either. It seems that James White is cutting his own throat with this self contradicting objection of his. Who is the one who hasn't "applied their reasoning to their own position", James?
So how does James White think God preserved His words? Let's read what he has to say in his book, The KJV Controversy. On page 48 James refers to "the tenacity of the New Testament".
Mr. White writes: "Once a variant reading appears in a manuscript, it doesn't simply go away. It gets copied and ends up in other manuscripts...readings don’t just "disappear" in the N.T. The tenacity of the N.T. text, while forcing us to deal with textual variants, also provides us with the assurance that our work is not in vain. ONE OF THOSE VARIANT READINGS IS INDEED THE ORIGINAL. WE ARE CALLED UPON TO INVEST OUR ENERGIES IN DISCOVERING WHICH ONE IT IS."
How is it that James thinks it possible that God could guide him and others like him to find the true readings (though these scholars often strongly disagree with one another as it witnessed by all their conflicting versions), and yet it never enters his mind that God may have already gone through this sifting process and given us the true texts and the correct translation of those readings in the King James Bible?
I have read my Bible many times over and have yet to come across the verse that tells us "We are called upon to invest our energies in discovering which of those variant readings is indeed the original", as Mr. White claims. Who is this "we" he refers to and who gave us this "calling"?
Rather than talking like a Bible believer, James White sounds a lot more like the serpent who asked the first question in the Bible - "Yea, hath God said...?"
Mr. White's "Which One Is IT?" position ignores the Providence and Sovereignty of Almighty God in history. His idea of preservation is like saying that God's words are preserved in Webster's unabridged dictionary - they're in there somewhere, all mixed up with a bunch of words that are not the right ones, but "one of those variant readings is the original, and we are called upon to invest our energies in discovering which one it is.”
This so called "science" of textual criticism is a sham and a failure. I have a multitude of concrete examples of the constantly changing and conflicting nature of this so called "science" of Textual Criticism. If you want to see what those who "are called upon to invest their energies in discovering which one it is" have REALLY come up with, take a look and marvel at the fruit of their labors.
Matthew through Acts at http://brandplucked.webs.com/scienceoftextcrit.htm
Romans through Revelation at http://brandplucked.webs.com/sciencetextcromrev.htm
James White replies in his open letter to Mr. Schnoebelen: "Shall I accuse Mr. Schnoebelen of "stealing God's very own words out of someone's hand and trying to substitute his own authority for it" because he supports the KJV rendering of 1 John 3:1, while I support that of the NASB? The modern translations contain a very important phrase here that the KJV does not: "and such we are."
"This passage asserts that believers are truly the children of God. But the KJV doesn't have this phrase. Shall I say Mr. Schnoebelen is trying to steal God's words and put himself up as the final authority on the basis of 1 John 3:1? Or shall I follow the road of truth and point out that the reason the phrase is missing in the KJV is because the TR doesn't contain it? Should I point out that the TR doesn't have it because it was lost early on in the Byzantine text-type due to a simple error of sight (homoeoteleuton, the error of similar endings)? That would be the truth, but it sure doesn't "preach" as well as the other route! Of course, careful Christians will shun the sensational, and stick with the truth." [End of James White's comments]
Mr. White falls just a tad short of honesty when he makes such statements. The passage in question is 1 John 3:1, which in the King James Bible reads: "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God; therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not."
The words Mr. White refers to as being "very important" and not found in the TR (Textus Receptus) are in the NASB, NIV, RSV, ESV, NET and Holman. The NASB reads: "See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God, AND SUCH WE ARE. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him."
First of all, not only are these extra words not found in the TR, (The Textus Receptus, or the Traditional Greek Texts that God used to give us the Reformation Bibles in numerous languages all over the world), but neither are they found in the vast Majority (90 to 95%) of all Greek texts at all.
They are found primarily in FOUR so called "oldest and best" uncial (capital lettered) manuscripts which CONSTANTLY DIFFER FROM EACH OTHER, as we shall soon see in this study. A few other cursive copies also add these two additional Greek words, but they are by far in the minority number of all available Greek copies.
Secondly, I fail to see how this phrase is "very important" at all. It is merely redundant; it adds nothing to the sense of the passage. We are called the children of God. If God calls us His children, then we are His children. Mr. White says he is following the "road of truth" here, and says the phrase "was lost early on in the Byzantine text-type".
Well, we would also respond with equal supposition that these two extra words were added to a handful of manuscripts that are well known for their numerous corruptions and constant disagreement even with each other.
Thirdly, Mr. White says "careful Christians" will shun the sensational and "stick with the truth". If Mr. White is so concerned with the truth, why in his book does he recommend the New KJV as an excellent, reliable version, when it also omits these same "very important" words?
Apparently Mr. White thinks that if anyone disagrees with his views, then he is not a "careful Christian" and doesn't "stick with the truth". Far be it from James to take cheap shots at those who aren't in his camp. No, he's an "objective, impartial, unbiased and rational scholar" with no axe to grind or personal agenda to advance, don't ya know.
Fourthly, Mr. White accuses this KJB believer of "trying to put himself up as the final authority". How utterly ironic. Mr. Schnoebelen is placing the King James Bible as his Final Authority, not himself. Rather, it is James White who constantly corrects ALL bible versions, including his own NASB, who sets himself up as the final authority! He's the equivalent of the Protestant Pope of the New Vatican Versions.
See "James White - The Protestant Pope of the new Vatican Versions", and examples of his rather dubious scholarly skills here -
For just one example of many where James White sets himself up as his own final authority even against his favorite new Vatican Versions, James White does not believe that Luke 23:34 - “Then Jesus said, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.” - is inspired Scripture and he says he would not preach on it.
See his short 6 minute video here where he tells us these verses (John 7:53 to John 8:11 (the woman taken in adultery) along with John 5:4 and Mark 16:9-20. are not part of the inspired Bible.
James White on Luke 23:34 - “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.”
James White is now denying that this saying of Jesus is inspired Scripture (big surprise;-) He says "there is a huge amount of doubt attached to it".
Here is my response to James White on this verse -
There is a short 6 minute video posted in July of 2013, ironically titled "Was the Bible Corrupted as Muslims Claim?" I say "ironically" because if you look carefully, you will see that a guy who calls himself "Muslim by choice" is the one who posted it. Thus we see the irony of James Wite Out thinking he is combating the Muslims, when in fact he is giving them the ammunition to throw in the face of Christians that they have NO inerrant Bible. But this irony is probably lost on James White.
In this video James White tells us this verse is not part of the inspired Bible and he would not preach on it. He also would omit John 7:53 through John 8:11, and Mark 16:9-20, John 5:4 and now Luke 23:34 from his preaching.
Back to 1 John and James White’s “tenacity of the New Testament”
Let's look at some specific examples of these variant readings found in the epistle of First John in the so called "oldest and best" texts that Mr. White and most modern versionists prefer.
So you will know I am not making these up, all this information can be obtained directly from the critical notes found in their own Nestle-Aland Greek text 27th edition, which is the basis for most modern translations like the ESV, NIV, NASB, NET, the modern Catholic versions like the St. Joseph New American Bible 1970, the New Jerusalem bible 1985 and the Jehovah Witness New World Translation. They ALL use the same basic critical text.
We will examine several passages from the book of First John, beginning with the very example Mr. White mentions regarding his “Tenacity of the New Testament” in 1 John 3:1.
In 1 John 3:1, the two added words (καὶ ἐσμέν) = "we are", are found in Sinaiticus, Vaticanus (B), Alexandrinus (A) and C (codex Ephraemi, 5th century). They are also found in the Latin Vulgate which reads - “Videte qualem caritatem dedit nobis Pater, ut filii Dei nominemur et simus.” - “See what manner of love the Father has given us, that we be called the sons of God AND WE ARE.”
ALL Catholic Versions contain these extra words. This includes the Douai-Rheims 1582, the Douay 1950, St. Joseph New American Bible 1970 and the New Jerusalem bible 1985. So does the Jehovah Witness New World Translation.
Lamsa's translation of the Syriac reads differently than them all. It says: "See how abundant the love of the Father is toward us, for he has called us sons AND MADE US; therefore the world does not know us because it did not know him."
These two Greek words are not found in the Majority of all Greek texts nor in the following Bible versions: Tyndale 1525, Coverdale 1535, the Great Bible 1540, Matthew’s Bible 1549, the Bishops’ Bible 1568, Geneva Bible 1599, The Beza N.T. 1599, Mace N.T. 1729, Wesley's translation 1755, Whiston’s N.T. 1745, Worsley Version 1770, Haweis N.T. 1795, The Thomson Bible 1808, Living Oracles 1835, Webster's 1833, The Pickering N.T. 1840, Julia Smith Translation 1855, Sawyer N.T. 1858, The Revised N.T. 1862, Noyes Translation 1869, The Smith Bible 1876, The Sharpe Bible 1883, Darby 1890, Young's 1898, Green's Modern KJV, KJV 21st Century 1994, Third Millennium Bible 1998, Hebrew Names Version 2014, English Jubilee Bible 2010, the Natural Israelite Bible 2012 and The English Majority Text New Testament 2013.
Other English Bibles that do NOT contain these extra two Greek words are The Word of Yah 1993, Interlinear New Testament Greek 1997 (Larry Pierce), Lawrie Translation 1998, The Koster Scriptures 1998, God's First Truth Translation 1999, The Tomson New Testament 2002, The Evidence Bible 2003, Complete Apostle's Bible 2003, Green's Literal 2005, The Resurrection Life N.T. 2005 (Vince Garcia), The Revised Geneva Bible 2005, The Pickering N.T. 2005, The Mebust Bible 2007, Bond Slave Version 2009, Hebraic Transliteration Scripture 2010, Holy Scriptures VW Edition 2010, Conservative Bible 2011, The Far Above All Translation 2011, The Work of God's Children Illustrated Bible 2011, the World English Bible 2012, The Modern Literal N.T. 2014, and The Holy Bible, Modern English Version 2014 - "Consider how much love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God. Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him."
Foreign Language Bibles
Foreign language versions that also omit these two extra words are the Italian Diodati 1649, Nuova Diodati 1991, Spanish Sagradas Escrituras 1569, Cipriano de Valera 1602, Reina Valera 1909 to 1995, the French Martin 1744 and French Ostervald 1996, Luther’s German Bible 1545 and German Schlachter 2000, the Portuguese A Biblia Sagrada, Portuguese O Livro 2000 and Almeida Corregida 2009, the Hungarian Karoli Bible, the Polish Updated Gdansk Bible 2013, the Russian Synodal Bible, the Tagalog Ang Salita ng Diyos 1998, the Afrikaans Bible 1953, the Czech BKR bible, the Smith & Van Dyke Arabic Bible, the Dutch Staten Vertaling Bible, and the Romanian Fidela Bible 2014.
the Modern Greek Bible - Ιδετε οποιαν αγαπην εδωκεν εις ημας ο Πατηρ, ωστε να ονομασθωμεν τεκνα Θεου. Δια τουτο ο κοσμος δεν γνωριζει ημας, διοτι δεν εγνωρισεν αυτον.
and the Modern Hebrew Bible - ראו מה גדלה אהבת האב הנתונה לנו אשר נקרא בני האלהים על כן העולם איננו ידע אתנו יען כי אותו לא ידע׃
So much for Mr. White’s “tenacity”. What he really means is the Vatican Versions as opposed to the Traditional Text of the Reformation Bibles in all languages.
The Catholic Connection
The previous Douay Rheims of 1582 made an awkward attempt to include the extra words from the Latin Vulgate saying: “Behold what manner of charity the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called AND SHOULD BE the sons of God.” Then the 1950 Douay has “…that we should be called the sons of God; AND SUCH WE ARE.” The St. Joseph New American Bible of 1970 and the New Jerusalem bible 1985 also include the extra words.
Versions that DO add these extra two words and translate them something like “AND SUCH WE ARE” are the UBS/Nestle-Aland/Vatican critical text versions like the Westcott-Hort Revised Version of 1881, ASV 1901, NASB, NIV, RSV, ESV, NET, Holman, Catholic versions and the Jehovah Witness New World Translation.
Those Greek manuscripts that add the extra words "and we are" to this verse are Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, A and C and several others, but they by no means make up the Majority of Greek manuscripts, which do NOT contain these two extra words.
In this same verse (1 John 3:1) we begin to see how these so called "oldest and best manuscripts" constantly disagree with each other. Keep in mind that these are the favorite manuscripts used to omit literally thousands of words from the traditional Reformation New Testament texts that underlie our King James Bible.
Also of note is the fact that though there are numerous disagreements among Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, A and C in just this one little epistle, this is one of the books where they are most in agreement when compared to the rest of the New Testament.
In the phrase "what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon US", Vaticanus reads "upon YOU", while the others read "upon US". In the second half of this same verse where we read "therefore the world knoweth US not", Vaticanus and A read US, while Sinaiticus original and C read "knoweth YOU not". So much for Mr. White's "tenacity", and we have just gotten started.
Speaking of the character of the two oldest manuscripts (Sinaiticus and Vaticanus) Dean Burgon says: "The impurity of the text exhibited by these codices is not a question of opinion but of fact .... In the Gospels alone Codex B (Vatican) leaves out words or whole clauses no less than 1,491 times. It bears traces of careless transcription on every page. Codex Sinaiticus 'abounds with errors of the eye and pen to an extent not indeed unparalleled, but happily rather unusual in documents of first-rate importance.' On many occasions 10, 20, 30, 40 words are dropped through very carelessness. Letters and words, even whole sentences, are frequently written twice over, or begun and immediately cancelled; while that gross blunder, whereby a clause is omitted because it happens to end in the same words as the clause preceding, occurs no less than 115 times in the New Testament."
In enumerating and describing the five ancient Codices now in existence, Dean Burgon remarks that four of these, and especially the Vatican and Sinaitic manuscripts "have, within the last twenty years, established a tyrannical ascendancy over the imagination of the critics which can only be fitly spoken of as blind superstition."
Let’s look at some other examples just in the small epistle of 1 John where these so called “oldest and best” manuscripts James White thinks demonstrate “the tenacity of the New Testament” disagree with each other.
The Epistle of First John - A Comparative Textual Study of James White's so called "Tenacity of the New Testament"
1 John 1:4 “And these things write we UNTO YOU, that YOUR joy may be full.”
The Majority, the TR and A and C read “UNTO YOU”, but Vaticanus and Sinaiticus omit these words. Then YOUR joy is the reading of the TR, A and C, but Vaticanus and Sinaiticus read OUR joy.
Even the older Catholic Douay Rheims and the 1950 Douay read like the KJB with “And these things write we UNTO YOU, that YOUR joy may be full.”
But the newer Catholic versions like St. Joseph and New Jerusalem STILL have “we are writing these things TO YOU” but they change “YOUR joy” to “OUR joy”, whereas the ESV, NIV, NASB omit “UNTO YOU” and change YOUR joy to OUR joy.
1 John 1:7 “…and the blood of Jesus CHRIST his Son cleaneth us from all sin.”
Here the word CHRIST is in the Majority of all texts, the TR and A and is even in the previous Douay Rheims and the Douay versions. However Sinaiticus, Vaticanus and C omit the word CHRIST and the more modern Catholic versions (St. Joseph, New Jerusalem) along with the ESV, NIV, NASB omit it too.
1 John 1:9 “…he is faithful to forgive us OUR sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
The word OUR is found in Sinaiticus and A, but omitted by Vaticanus and C.
1 John 2:4 “and the truth is not in him.”
So read the Majority, the TR, Vaticanus, C and A. But Sinaiticus alone adds “and the truth OF GOD is not in him.”
1 John 2:6 “He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also SO (οὕτως) to walk, even as he walked.”
The word SO (οὕτως) is in the Majority, the TR and in Vaticanus and A, but Sinaiticus and C omit this word.
1 John 2:7 “BRETHREN (Ἀδελφοί), I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard FROM THE BEGINNING.” (ἀπ' ἀρχῆς)
So read the Majority of all texts and the TR. However the critical text editions change “Brethren” to “BELOVED” (Ἀγαπητοί) and omit the second phrase “FROM THE BEGINNING.” (ἀπ' ἀρχῆς) So too do the Catholic Versions and the J.W. New World Translation.
1 John 2:9 “He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother ***is in darkness even until now.”
Here Sinaiticus adds the words *** “IS A LIAR AND” - (ψεύστης ἐστιν καὶ) - to the text, but they are not found in the other manuscripts.
1 John 2:14 “…because ye are strong, and the word OF GOD abideth in you”
Here Vaticanus omits the words for “OF GOD” (τοῦ θεοῦ), but they are not found in the others.
1 John 2:15 “…If any man love the world, the love of THE FATHER is not in him.”
1 John 2:20 “But ye have an unction from the Holy One, AND ye know ALL THINGS.”
Vaticanus omits the word “AND” (καὶ) but it is found in the others, and instead of “YE KNOW ALL THINGS” (πάντα), which is in the Majority, the TR, A and C and was even the reading of the Revised Version 1881 and the ASV 1901 along with the Douay, Wycliffe, Tyndale, Bishops’, Geneva, NKJV etc., YET Vaticanus and Sinaitus read “and YOU ALL KNOW” (πάντες), and so read the NASB, NIV, ESV, Holman, the Catholic New Jerusalem and the J.W. New World Translation.
1 John 2:25 “And this is the promise that he hath promised US (ἡμῖν), even eternal life.”
“He hath promised US” is the reading of the Majority, TR, Sinaiticus, A and C. But Vaticanus reads “he hath promised YOU (ὑμῖν)
1 John 2:27 “But the ANOINTING which ye have received of him abideth in you”.
The Majority, TR, Sinaiticus, A and C all read “THE ANOINTING ye received” (χρῖσμα) . But Vaticanus says “THE GIFT ye received” (χάρισμα)
1 John 2:27 “…but AS THE SAME anointing teacheth you of all things”
“AS THE SAME ANOINTING” (ὡς τὸ αὐτὸ χρίσμα) is the reading of the Majority, the TR and A, yet Vaticanus omits the word AS (ὡς) and then says “HIS anointing” (τὸ αὐτοῦ χρῖσμα), C has “AS HIS anointing” (αὐτοῦ) instead of “as THE SAME anointing” (αὐτὸ), but Sinaiticus original said “but as HIS SPIRIT (αὐτοῦ πνεῦμα) teaches you”, instead of “His ANOINTING” (αὐτοῦ χρῖσμα). NONE of the 4 “oldest and best” agree with each other here, let alone with all the others.
1 John 2:28 “And now, little children, abide in him; that WHEN (ὅταν) he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.”
"WHEN" (ὅταν) is the reading of the Majority of all texts and the TR.
However Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, A and C all unite to say “IF (ἐὰν) he shall appear, we may have confidence”. In fact, this is how the Revised Version of 1881 and the ASV of 1901 and the Nestle 21st edition 1975 interlinear translated it - “that, IF he may be manifested, we may have boldness”. The word (ἐὰν) CAN also mean “when” but it usually means “IF” and that is how some critical text versions translated it.
1 John 2:29 “If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one ***that doeth righteousness is born of him.”
So read the Majority of text, the TR and Vaticanus.
But Sinaiticus, A and C add an extra word AND (or, ALSO) to the text, and say “you know that every one ALSO that doeth righteousness” and this is how the RV and ASV and Dan Wallace’s NET version translate it. But the NIV, ESV, Holman and NASB omit this extra word that is STILL found in their own Critical Greek text.
1 John 3:5 “And YE KNOW that he was manifested to take away OUR sins; and in him is no sin.”
So read the Majority as well as the TR. However Sinaiticus alone reads “WE KNOW” (οἴδαμεν) instead of “YOU KNOW” (οἴδατε), and “OUR sins” (ἁμαρτίας ἡμῶν) is the Majority text, the TR and Sinaiticus and C, but Vaticanus and A omit the word "OUR".
“OUR sins” is also the reading found in the previous Douay-Rheims 1582 and the Douay 1950 and the NIV 1978-2011. But the newer Catholic versions omit the word “OUR” (ἡμῶν), because of Vaticanus and A, and just say “he was manifested to take away sins” and so do the NASB, ESV, Holman and NET.
In fact, Dan Wallace’s NET says “JESUS was revealed to take away sins” and there is no word in any text for “Jesus” and he doesn’t even mention the textual differences here between “OUR sins” or simply “sins”.
1 John 3:11 “For this is the MESSAGE (ἀγγελία) that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.”
So read the Majority of all texts, the TR and Vaticanus and A. However Sinaiticus and C both read “this is THE PROMISE” (ἐπαγγελία) that ye heard from the beginning…”
1 John 3:13 “***Marvel not MY brethren, if the world hate you.”
So read the Majority of all texts and the TR. However both Sinaiticus and C add an extra word AND (καὶ) at the beginning of this sentence, but it is not found in Vaticanus or A. The earlier Critical text editions (4th and 21st) did NOT add this extra word, but the latest Critical Text editions DO.
But all 4 - א A B C - do unite in omitting the word “MY brethren” and simply say “brethren” = Catholic versions, ESV, NIV, NASB, J.W. New World Translation.
1 John 3:14 “We know that we have passed from death unto life because we love THE BRETHREN. He that loveth not HIS BROTHER abideth in death.”
So read the Majority of all Greek texts and the Textus Receptus. “because we love the brethren” is “ὅτι ἀγαπῶμεν τοὺς ἀδελφούς”. However only Sinaiticus and not even Vaticanus, A or C adds a word and says “because we love OUR brethren” (ὅτι ἀγαπῶμεν τοὺς ἀδελφούς ἡμῶν).
Now here is where it gets interesting. The RV, ASV, NASB, ESV say: “because we love the brethren.”
But the NIVs 1973, 1977 and 1982 editions say: “because we love OUR brothers.” And so do the Holman Standard of 2003, and the Catholic New Jerusalem - “we love OUR brothers.” They put the Sinaiticus reading into the text, yet not even the UBS/Nestle-Aland Greek texts read that way.
Oh…but wait. Now the 2011 NIV has come out and it now reads: “because we love EACH OTHER.” They changed their text again. In fact, there is NO TEXT that reads “EACH OTHER”. They just made that up.
Then in the second part of this verse we read: “He that loveth not HIS BROTHER abideth in death.” So read the Majority of all mss. the TR and C, but Sinaiticus, Vaticanus and A omit the words “his BROTHER” and so the NASB, RSV, ASV, ESV, NIV, Holman, J.W. New World Translation and the Catholic versions simply read: “He that does not love abides in death.”
I John 3:16 KJB - "Hereby perceive we the love OF GOD, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren".
1 Jn 3:16 NKJV "By this we know love***, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren".
NIV, NET - "This is how we know what love is: JESUS CHRIST laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers." This is an example where the words "the love OF GOD" actually ARE in the Greek text that underlies the King James Bible. The NKJV does not follow the same Greek text here, and the NIV and Dan Wallace's NET version just make up the reading of "Jesus Christ" which is not found in any Greek text. For more detail on this verse see the following link -
1 John 3:19 “ AND*** hereby WE KNOW*** that we are of the truth, and shall assure our HEARTS*** before him.”
The first word here “AND” (καὶ) is in the Majority, the TR and in Sinaiticus and C. But Vaticanus and A omit the word and so do the NASB, NIV, ESV, Holman. Then instead of a present tense verb “WE KNOW” (γινώσκομεν), which is the Reformation text and even the reading of the Douay-Rheims, the Douay 1950 and of the NIV 1973, 78, 82 and 2011.
But the Critical text has a future tense verb “WE SHALL KNOW” (γνωσόμεθα א A B C) and so now read the modern Catholic versions, and the ESV, NASB, Holman and NET.
Then the Majority, TR, Sinaiticus and C all have a plural noun “our HEARTS” and so read the Reformation Bibles, the earlier Douay Rheims and Douay, Holman Standard 2003 and the NIV.
But the Critical text, based on Vaticanus and A have a singular noun “our HEART” and so read the ESV, NASB, modern Catholic versions and the J.W. New World Translation. Dan Wallace paraphrases this as “our CONSCIENCE”.
1 John 3:21 “BELOVED (ἀγαπητοί), if OUR heart (καρδία ἡμῶν) condemn US (ἡμῶν) not, then HAVE WE (ἔχομεν) confidence toward God.”
This verse is a real rats nest in the 4 “oldest and best manuscripts”. Instead of BELOVED, which is Majority, TR, Vaticanus, A and C, Sinaiticus alone has “BRETHREN” (ἀδελφοι).
And instead of “OUR heart”, which is the Majority, TR and Sinaiticus and C, but Vaticanus and A omit the word “OUR”.
Then instead of “condemn US” (ἡμῶν), which is in the Majority, TR, Sinaiticus and C, the Vaticanus and A omit the word “US”.
And finally, instead of “WE HAVE confidence” (ἔχομεν) Vaticanus alone reads “HE HAS confidence” (ἔχει)
1 John 3:23 “And this is his commandment, That WE SHOULD BELIEVE on the name of his SON Jesus Christ…”
The verb “that we should believe” is properly in the subjunctive (πιστεύσωμεν) and is the reading of the Majority, TR and Vaticanus. But Sinaiticus, A and C have a present tense verb “we believe” (πιστεύωμεν). Then A alone omits the word SON, but it is found in the others.
1 John 4:2 “Hereby KNOW YE the Spirit of God.”
“YOU know” (γινώσκετε) is the Majority, TR, Vatican, C and A reading. But Sinaiticus original reads “WE know” (γινώσκομεν)
1 John 4:3 “And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus CHRIST IS COME IN THE FLESH is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.”
This again is the reading of the Majority of all texts, and the TR. It is also the reading of the Reformation Bibles in all languages including Tyndale, Coverdale, Great Bible, Matthew’s Bible, Bishops’ Bible, Geneva Bible, the Spanish Sagradas Escrituras 1569, Cipriano de Valera 1602, Reina Valera 1909-1995, Luther’s German bible 1545 and German Schlachter bible 2000, French Martin 1744 and Ostervald 1996, Italian Diodati 1649, Nuova Diodati 1991, and Portuguese Sagrada Biblia and Almeida Corregida E Fiel, Lamsa’s translation of the Syriac Peshitta, the Modern Greek Bible -“ομολογει οτι ο Ιησους Χριστος ηλθεν εν σαρκι, δεν ειναι εκ του Θεου·”and the Modern Hebrew Bible - וכל רוח אשר איננו מודה בישוע האדון כי בא בבשר לא מאלהים
But once again we have a rats nest among the Critical text versions. Vaticanus and A omit the words “CHRIST IS COME IN THE FLESH” (Χριστόν ἐν σαρκὶ ἐληλυθότα)
But instead of “JESUS CHRIST is come in the flesh”, Sinaiticus reads “LORD JESUS IS COME IN THE FLESH” (Ἰησοῦν κύριον ἐν σαρκὶ ἐληλυθότα)
The Catholic versions as well as the ASV, NASB, NIV, ESV, NET, Holman and Jehovah Witness New Word Translation all omit the words “CHRIST IS COME IN THE FLESH” from this verse.
1 John 4:6 “We are of God; he that knoweth God heareth us; HE THAT IS NOT OF GOD HEARETH US NOT.”
Manuscript A omits all these words - “He that is not of God heareth us not.” but they are found in the others.
1 John 4:7 “…and every one that loveth *** is born of God.”
Manuscript A adds the word “GOD”, but it is not in the others.
1 John 4:10 “Herein is love***, not that we loved God, but that he loved us”
Sinaiticus alone adds “Herein is love OF GOD…” But it is not found in the others.
1 John 4:15 “Whosoever shall confess that Jesus***is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.”
Vaticanus alone adds “CHRIST”, but it is not in the others.
1 John 4:19 “We love HIM, because HE first loved us.”
Agreeing with the King James Bible “we love HIM, because he first loved us.” are Tyndale 1534 - “We love him for he loved vs fyrst.”, Coverdale 1535, the Great Bible 1540, Matthew’s Bible 1549, the Bishops’ Bible 1568, the Geneva Bible 1587 - We loue him, because he loued vs first.” John Wesley N.T 1755, Young’s 1898, J.B. Phillips N.T. 1962, New Life Version 1969, NKJV 1982, Third Millennium bible 1998, Jubilee Bible 2010.
Also reading this way are the Modern Greek Bible - “ημεις αγαπωμεν αυτον, διοτι αυτος πρωτος ηγαπησεν ημας.” and the Modern Hebrew Bible - “אנחנו אהבים אתו כי הוא קדם לאהבה אתנו׃
The foreign language Reformation Bibles also read like the KJB “We love HIM, because he first loved us.” Among these are Luther’s German bible 1545 and the German Schlachter bible 2000 - “Lasset uns ihn lieben; denn er hat uns erst geliebet.”, the French Martin 1744 and Ostervald 1998 - “Nous l'aimons, parce qu'il nous a aimés le premier, the Italian Diodati 1649 - “Noi l’amiamo, perciocchè egli ci ha amati il primo.”, the Spanish Sagradas Escrituras 1569, Cipriano de Valera 1602 and the Reina Valera Gómez 2010 - “Nosotros le amamos a Él, porque Él nos amó primero.” and the Portuguese Almeida Corregida 1681 and La Sagrada Biblia em Portugués - “Nós o amamos a ele, porque ele nos amou primeiro."
But Vaticanus and A and a few other manuscripts merely say “WE LOVE (Ἡμεῖς ἀγαπῶμεν) because he first loved us.” and so do the ASV 1901, Darby, NASB, NIV, ESV, NET, Holman, the Voice, Jehovah Witness New World Translation and the Catholic versions.
The Catholic Connection
The Catholic versions change the meaning among themselves by how they translate even the wrong texts they are following. The Douay-Rheims 1582 and 1950 Douay make it an exhortation, saying: “LET US THEREFORE LOVE, because GOD first loved us.” The word GOD is not in any Greek text but is taken from the Latin Vulgate.
Then the 1968 Jerusalem bible continues the exhortation but omits the previous "GOD", saying: “WE ARE TO LOVE, then, because he loved us first.” But the 1970 St. Joseph New American Bible paraphrased it as a statement with: “We, for our part, love because he first loved us.” And then the 1985 New Jerusalem went back to an exhortation with: “LET US LOVE, then, because he first loved us.”
And now in 2009 the Catholic Public Domain Version has come out and it reads: “Therefore, let us love GOD, for GOD first loved us.”, thus combining the reading from the Sinaitic manuscript - “love GOD” - and adding the word GOD to "God first loved us", from the Latin Vulgate.
Sinaiticus and a few other manuscripts reads: “We love GOD” (ἀγαπῶμεν τὸν θεόν) The Wycliffe bible 2001 follows this reading and says: “Therefore love we GOD, for he loved us before.”
One known copy of the Old Latin (ar), one Vulgate mss. and an Ethiopian copy read “we love ONE ANOTHER” (ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους). The Worldwide English New Testament 1998 reads this way saying: “ We LOVE OTHERS because God first loved us.” and the New Living Translation 2013 reads; “WE LOVE EACH OTHER because he loved us first.”
And the Coptic Sahidic version and another Coptic Boharic manuscript say instead “WE KNOW” (οἴδαμεν)
The 2014 ISV Critical Text version (International Standard Version) has “We love[a] because GOD[b] first loved us.” Also reading “GOD first loved us” are the Good News Translation 1992, the Contemporary English Version 1995, Easy to Read Version 2006 and the Common English Bible 2011 - ALL Critical text versions.
There is no text that reads GOD here, but then the ISV footnotes tell us that “Other manuscripts read “We love HIM”, and still other mss. read “We love GOD”. And then they make up their own translation based on zero manuscripts saying “We love because GOD first loved us.”
Folks, this is what these new perversions are doing to the words of God. They make it say whatever they want it to say, and nobody agrees with everybody else on how they think the passage should read. And NOBODY who uses any of these modern versions actually believes they are the inerrant words of the living God.
God did not inspire three or four different readings in the same verse at the same time. One is right, and the others readings are not.
But we live in a time when most professing Christians really don't care and think that if a person actually believes in the inerrancy of any Bible, then he is some kind of an idolater who "deifies" the Book God wrote. This way they can feel better about themselves and justify their own position of unbelief in the inerrancy of the Scriptures.
"He that hath ears to hear, let him hear." Luke 8:8
1 John 4:20 KJB - “…for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, HOW CAN HE (πῶς δύναται) can he love God whom he hath not seen?
1 John 4:20 ESV - “…for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen CANNOT (οὐ δύναται) love God whom he has not seen.”
The reading of HOW CAN HE (πῶς δύναται) is that of the Majority, the TR and A. It is also the reading of the Reformation Bibles, Tyndale, Coverdale, Bishops’, Geneva, Lamsa’s translation of the Syriac Peshitta, and even the earlier Catholic versions like the Douay-Rheims and Douay 1950.
The reading of “CANNOT” (οὐ δύναται) is that found in Sinaiticus and Vaticanus. This is now the reading of the UBS/Nestle/Vatican critical texts, the modern Catholic versions like St. Joseph NAB, New Jerusalem bible, ESV, NIV,NASB, NET, Holman and the Jehovah Witness New World Translation.
I John 4:21 “And this commandment have we from HIM.”
Here manuscript A (Alexandrinus) says “from GOD.” but the others do not.
1 John 5:1 “…and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him ALSO (καὶ)that is begotten of him.”
The little word ALSO (καὶ) is again that of the Majority of all texts, the Textus Receptus, Sinaiticus and A. It is also found in the RV, ASV, Holman and the NIV.
But it is omitted by Vaticanus and is gone from the NASB, ESV and NET.
Actually, the ESV says “everyone who loves THE FATHER loves whomever has been born of him.” There is NO Greek text that says “the FATHER”. Guess who else has done this. The Catholic St. Joseph and New Jerusalem bible, and Dan Wallace’s NET version also say “everyone who loves THE FATHER loves THE CHILD” Neither is there any Greek word for CHILD in this verse either.
The Holman Standard 2003 paraphrases the whole thing and says: “…everyone who loves THE PARENT also loves THE CHILD.”, and so does Dan Wallace’s NET version but it omits the word “also” as well - “everyone who loves THE FATHER loves THE CHILD fathered by him.”
1 John 5:6 -“This is he that came by WATER AND BLOOD***, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but BY WATER AND BLOOD***”
In this verse alone, both Sinaiticus and Alexandrinus say “came BY BLOOD AND SPIRIT”(αἵματος καὶ πνεύματος) instead of “came by WATER AND BLOOD” (δι' ὕδατος καὶ αἵματος). And in the second mention of “but BY WATER AND BLOOD”, A reads “BY WATER AND BY SPIRIT”.
1 John 5:7-8 KJB - "For there are three that bear record IN HEAVEN, THE FATHER, THE WORD, AND THE HOLY GHOST: AND THESE THREE ARE ONE. AND THERE ARE THREE THAT BEAR WITNESS IN EARTH, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one."
1 John 5:7-8 - ESV, NIV, NASB - "For there are three that testify: the Spirit and the water and the blood: and these three agree."
For a far more complete study on these verses see -
1 John 5:10 “He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness *** in himself; he that believeth not GOD hath made him a liar”.
Here Alexandrinus reads both “hath the witness OF GOD in himself” and “he that believeth not THE SON (instead of GOD) hath made him a liar”. But the others do not.
1 John 5:13 “…that ye may know that ye have eternal life, AND THAT YE MAY BELIEVE ON THE NAME OF THE SON OF GOD.”
All the capitalized words are in the Majority texts and the TR. But they are omitted by Vaticanus, Sinaiticus and Alexandrinus, but not one of these three even agrees with the other two in their wording of this verse.
1 John 5:14 “…if we ask anything according to his WILL, he heareth us.”
Here Alexandrinus alone says “according to HIS NAME”.
1 John 5:18 “…but he that is begotten of God keepeth HIMSELF, (ἑαυτόν) and that wicked one toucheth him not.”
“Keepeth HIMSELF (ἑαυτόν) is again the reading in the Majority of all texts and the TR and Sinaiticus and A correction. It is also the reading of the Reformation Bibles including Tyndale, Coverdale, the Great Bible 1540, Matthew’s Bible 1549, the Bishops’ Bible 1568, the Geneva Bible 1587, Darby, Youngs, NKJV and even the ASV of 1901.
But Vaticanus reads “keeps HIM” (αὐτόν) instead, and this is the reading of the Catholic bible versions and the ESV, NIV 1982 edition, NASB, Holman, NET and Jehovah Witness New World Translation. The NIV 2011 says: “…born of God keeps THEM safe” but there is NO text that reads this way. Again, they just made it up.
What James White is really referring to when he talks about "the Tenacity of the New Testament" is in fact the ever changing UBS/Nestle-Aland/Vatican's Critical Greek text that is the direct result of a formal agreement with the Vatican to produce an "inter confessional" text to unite "the separated brethren" under the umbrella of the whore of Babylon. Nobody seriously believes that any of these new Vatican Versions like the ESV, NIV, NASB, NET, Holman, ISV, etc. are the inerrant words of God; not even the people who keep churning them out.
God is calling His people to "Come out of her" (Revelation 18:4) and James White is luring many into her arms. See the documented proof from their own Nestle-Aland critical Greek textbook, the UBS homepage and the Vatican's own website that these things are in fact true.
Undeniable Proof the ESV, NIV, NASB, Holman Standard, NET etc. are the new "Vatican Versions"
“Mystery, Babylon the Great, The Mother of Harlots and Abominations of the Earth..is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit...and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication...Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins” Revelation 17:2-5; 18:2-4
Get yourself the King James Holy Bible and stick with it; Accept no phony substitutes.
All of grace, believing the Book,
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