IN THE PREFACE to the NIV, we read the
following: "The New International Version is
a completely new translation of the Holy
Bible made by over a hundred scholars . . . .
including Anglican, Assemblies of God, Baptist,
Brethren, Christian Reformed, Church of Christ,
Evangelical Free, Lutheran, Mennonite,
Methodist, Nazarene, Presbyterian, Wesleyan
and other churches." This sounds good. But
did "accommodating" all these denominations
result in a confused Bible? If we take the time
to read through the New International Version
(NIV) of the Bible, we are forced to ask . . .
Who killed Goliath?
Every child who has attended Sunday school
knows that David killed Goliath. The NIV
describes Goliath, in 1 Sam. 17:4-7: "A
champion named GOLIATH, who was from
Gath, came out of the Philistine camp. He was
over nine feet tall . . . . HIS SPEAR SHAFT
WAS LIKE A WEAVER'S ROD . . ."
1 Sam. 21:8-9 reiterates the fact that David
slew Goliath in the valley of Elah: "DAVID
asked Ahimelech, 'Don't you have a spear or a
sword here? I haven't brought my sword or any
other weapon, because the king's business was
urgent.' The priest replied, 'The sword of
GOLIATH THE PHILISTINE, WHOM YOU KILLED
IN THE VALLEY OF ELAH, is here . . .'"
David killed Goliath--no doubt about it. That is,
until we read further ahead in 2 Sam. 21:19: "In
another battle with the Philistines AT GOB,
ELHANAN son of Jaare-oregim the
Bethlehemite KILLED GOLIATH the Gittite, who
had A SPEAR WITH A SHAFT LIKE A
WEAVER'S ROD . . ." So, who killed Goliath?
Some may argue that these are two different
Goliath's, but did they both have "a spear with
a shaft like a weaver's rod"?
Did Jesus lie?
Jesus Christ knew the Old Testament inside
out, that is, until the day He said in Mark 1:2:
"It is WRITTEN IN ISAIAH the prophet: 'I will
send my messenger ahead of you, who will
prepare your way.'" An unsuspecting reader of
the NIV may not think twice about the
reference to Isaiah, until they discover that the
quote is NOT IN ISAIAH but in Malachi 3:1:
"See, I WILL SEND MY MESSENGER, who will
prepare the way before me . . ."
Who's in control?
Few, if any, Christians would argue that man
can successfully run his own life without God.
The NIV, in Jer. 10:23, says: "I know, O LORD,
that a man's life is not his own; IT IS NOT FOR
MAN TO DIRECT HIS STEPS." This is why we
must be born again spiritually. Rom. 8:6,9 says:
"The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind
CONTROLLED BY THE SPIRIT is life and peace
. . . . You, however, are CONTROLLED NOT BY
THE SINFUL NATURE BUT BY THE SPIRIT, if
the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone
does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not
belong to Christ."
Christians are to be "spirit-controlled." Yet,
the same NIV in 1 Peter 5:8 says: "BE
SELF-CONTROLLED and alert. Your enemy the
devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking
for someone to devour." Titus 2:6 says:
"Similarly, ENCOURAGE the young men to be SELF-CONTROLLED."
Confusing? The NIV gets even
more confusing when it concerns
our eternity-bound soul . . .
Is salvation hard or simple?
Considering God's desire of "not wanting
anyone to perish" (2 Peter 3:9), you would
expect His plan of salvation to be straight-
forward and simple--and it is! The NIV says in
Eph. 2:8-9: "For it is by grace you have been
saved, through faith--and this not from
yourselves, it is THE GIFT OF GOD--not by
works, so that no one can boast."
Salvation is "the gift of God[.]" God does all the
saving; we are saved by His grace, NOT because
of our good works. Jesus Christ has ALREADY
paid the price for our sins. He bought the gift of
salvation for us.
We must repent, stop trying to earn our way
into Heaven, and simply trust in what Christ has
already done for us on the cross. It doesn't get
any simpler than that!
Yet, the same NIV quotes Christ, in Mark 10:24,
as saying: "the disciples were amazed at his
words. But Jesus said again, "children, HOW
HARD IT IS to enter the kingdom of God!"
HARD? What is so hard about receiving a gift by
When is a person saved?
In Eph. 2:8-9, the NIV says, "For it is by grace
YOU HAVE BEEN SAVED, through faith . . ."
Yet, 1 Cor. 1:18 says: "For the message of the
cross is foolishness to those who are perishing,
but to us who are BEING SAVED it is the power
of God." The NIV says two different things:
"have been saved (past)," AND still in the
process of "being saved (present)." Which is it?
Can we get saved today--right now?
The same NIV says God wants us to be saved
now--2 Cor. 6:2: "For he says, "In the time of
my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation
I helped you." I tell you, NOW IS THE TIME of
God's favor, NOW IS THE DAY OF
Yet, the same NIV, in Heb. 9:28, says we
have to wait to find out: "so Christ was
sacrificed once to take away the sins of many
people; and he will appear a second time, not to
bear sin, but to BRING SALVATION to those
who are WAITING FOR HIM." Which is it? Do
we have to wait, or can we know right now?
Does the NIV know?
Maybe it's baptism that saves . . .
In 1 Peter 3:21, the NIV says, "and this water
symbolizes BAPTISM THAT NOW SAVES YOU
ALSO--not the removal of dirt from the body but
the pledge of a good conscience toward God. IT
SAVES YOU by the resurrection of Jesus
Christ," while, in Mark 16:16, the NIV says,
"Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved,
BUT WHOEVER DOES NOT BELIEVE WILL BE
CONDEMNED." In other words, we can get
baptized and yet be condemned because we did
not believe. Confusing, isn't it?
Can we even save ourselves?
In 1 Cor. 15:2, the NIV says: "By this gospel
YOU ARE SAVED, IF YOU HOLD FIRMLY to the
word I preached to you. OTHERWISE, you have
believed in vain." So apparently we can save
ourselves if we hold firmly to the end.
Or can we? In Matt. 19:25-26, the NIV says:
"When the disciples heard this, they were
greatly astonished and asked, 'Who then can be
saved?' Jesus looked at them and said, 'WITH
MAN THIS IS IMPOSSIBLE, but with God all
things are possible.'" Are we to "hold firmly"
when it is impossible to do so? Furthermore, In
2 Tim. 1:9, the NIV says: "Who has saved us
and called us to a holy life--NOT BECAUSE OF
ANYTHING WE HAVE DONE but because of his
own purpose and grace. This grace was given us
in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time."
Who keeps us saved?
2 Tim. 2:12, in the NIV states: "IF WE ENDURE,
we will also reign with him. If we disown him,
HE WILL ALSO DISOWN US."
However, John 10:28-29 in the same NIV,
says: "I give them eternal life, and THEY SHALL
NEVER PERISH; NO ONE CAN SNATCH THEM
out of my hand. My Father, who has given them
to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch
them out of my Father's hand." Jesus, in John
6:39, also said: "And this is the will of him who
sent me, THAT I SHALL LOSE NONE of all that
he has given me, but raise them up at the last
day." Which is it? Do we hang on to Jesus
Christ, or does He, as Saviour, hang on to us?
Does the NIV really know?
Maybe it doesn't really matter . . .
The NIV states in Rom. 2:6-8, that, "God 'will
give to each person ACCORDING TO WHAT HE
HAS DONE.' to those who by persistence in
doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he
will give eternal life. But for those who are
self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow
evil, there will be wrath and anger."
Yet, the NIV also says it really doesn't matter
what we do! Eccl. 9:2, says: "All share A
COMMON DESTINY--the righteous and the
wicked, the good and the bad, the clean and
the unclean, those who offer sacrifices and
those who do not. AS IT IS WITH THE GOOD
MAN, SO WITH THE SINNER; as it is with those
who take oaths, so with those who are afraid to
Why is the NIV so confusing?
In the preface to the 1978 edition of the NIV,
we read the following: "The New International
Version is a completely new translation of the
Holy Bible made by over a hundred scholars . . .
. This group, though not made up of official
church representatives, was
transdenominational. Its conclusion was
endorsed by a large number of leaders from
MANY DENOMINATIONS . . . . including
Anglican, Assemblies of God, Baptist, Brethren,
Christian Reformed, Church of Christ,
Evangelical Free, Lutheran, Mennonite,
Methodist, Nazarene, Presbyterian, Wesleyan
and other churches--helped to safeguard the
translation FROM SECTARIAN BIAS."
Safeguarding the translation from sectarian
bias means that the translators did not want the
NIV to primarily reflect any one denominational
doctrine. Consequently, the NIV's wording,
accommodates, or at least, does not conflict
with, the doctrinal beliefs of ALL the
denominations mentioned. The NIV tries to
please everyone . . . except God, that is.
This "accommodating" can easily lead to
confusion when one tries to compare NIV verses
against themselves (as we have been doing).
By contrast . . .
The King James Version (KJV) says, "God is not
the author of confusion" (1 Corinth. 14:33). And
within the KJV, we don't find the verses we've
looked at, conflicting with one another. Together
they reveal ONE consistent plan of salvation.
You'll find it written on the back [below] . . .
IF you were to die today, are you 100% SURE
you would go to Heaven? The Bible says
YOU CAN BE SURE (1 John 5:13).
BUT FIRST, you must realize that what keeps you
from going to Heaven are your sins, because:
"...your iniquities [sins] have separated
between you and your God," Isaiah 59:2.
In fact, in God's eyes YOU ARE A SINNER: "For
all have sinned, and come short
of the glory of God;" Romans 3:23.
SECONDLY, you must realize that there is
NOTHING you can do to save yourself and earn
Heaven: "For by grace are ye saved through
faith; and that not of yourselves: it is
the gift of God: Not of works, lest any
man should boast." Eph. 2:8-9 Baptism, good
deeds, church membership, self-righteousness are
all examples of good works that cannot save you,
because, "Not by works of
righteousness which we have done, but
according to his mercy he [Christ] saved
us," Titus 3:5.
THE ONLY WAY you can get saved is through
Jesus Christ. He said: "I am the way, the
truth, and the life: no man cometh unto
the Father, but by me." (John 14:6) THAT'S
WHY: "...while we were yet sinners, Christ
died for us." Romans 5:8-9
THEREFORE: You must REPENT (change your
mind); admit that you are a Hell deserving sinner
and can't save yourself. And call upon Christ, and
Him alone, to save you. "if thou shalt confess
with thy mouth the Lord Jesus [REPENT], and
shalt believe in thine heart [TRUST] that God
hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be
saved." Romans 10:9
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