Author: Ken Johnson, TH.D.
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Back Cover: Ancient Word of God
Is there a verse missing from your Bible? Would you like to know why it was removed? This book covers the history of the transmission of the Bible text through the centuries. It examines and proves, based on fulfilled Bible prophecy, which Greek texts faithfully preserve the ancient Word of God.
You will learn more about the first century cults that created their own warped Bibles and of the warnings that the ancient church gave in regard to the pure text. Over two hundred English Bibles are compared. Is the KJV more accurate, maybe the NIV, or perhaps the NASB or ESV?
Brought to you by Biblefacts Ministries, Biblefacts.org
Book Review: Ancient Word of God
Wow! I had no idea the degree of corruption that had crept into the churches and the Bible translations during the early days of the church and how prevalent it remains today. This is a timely and eye-opening look at the various Bible versions we’ve had throughout the ages. Well researched and informative.
In Ancient Word of God, Johnson shares a master list of 217 English Bibles! I had no clue that we had that many translations in our language alone! The topics he discusses in this book are as follows:
- Inspiration of Scripture
- Bible History
- LXX and Vulgate Old Testament
- The Majority Text (MT)
- The Critical Text (CT)
- Pre-18th Century Bibles
- 18th and 19th Century Bibles
- 20th Century Bibles
- 21st Century Bibles
- Key Passages
- Study Bibles
- Commentaries and Dictionaries
- Majority Text vs Received Text
- Critical Text vs Received Text
- Dead Sea Scrolls and Nag Hammadi
- Other Language Bibles
- Alphabetical Master Bible List
All these topics provided useful information, but I really appreciated that Johnson broke down the Bibles and their derivatives, as well as key passages that the reader can use to test out their Bible and any future Bible that they might consider buying. The question I wondered, and this book answered, is why does it matter what translation we read. While I’ve heard several answers to this question from others, I was curious to hear what Johnson would provide as a reason for his analysis of the various Bible versions and their accuracy…and why the accuracy should matter to us.
My thoughts about Ancient Word of God
Thought provoking to say the least. It definitely changed my perspective on some Bible versions that I felt were “safe” to read, because of the accuracy I believed they had…I was wrong. I really liked that Johnson took 217 Bibles and was able to narrow it down to a sound list of 12 Bible versions that we can trust for accuracy. Some made the list that surprised me while there were others that I expected to be there.
Regarding the reason the Bible accuracy should matter to us, I appreciated his perspective and agree with him. I also appreciated that he was open to the idea of reading various versions of the Bible, but isolated his 12 versions to those we can trust for our serious Bible study and trust that we have God’s Word in as much fullness that is available to us today. Why does that matter?
When I went through his section on the Key Passages and read the verses and the reasons for the omission of those verses, I realized the importance of having God’s Word in its entirety. Why? If we are who we are because of Jesus and if we are who we are, based on who He is, then it reasons to know who exactly He is, so we can know who we are in and through Him. Right? I believe so.
When a Bible version begins to remove the deity of Jesus or tamper with His pre-existence or the Triune Godhead, something is not right. I will admit that these topics will not bother some people, as they already don’t believe some of these are true anyway, but that’s a topic for another post. For me, I can say that I believe the Bible to be the inherent Word of God that was inspired by the Holy Spirit. I believe that God placed each word in His Word for a very good reason and when people begin to remove or add to it, then it’s no longer His Word, but a mixture of His Word and man’s theology. Dangerous to say the least, because we are fallible and fallen, even though we are redeemed by the blood of our Lord Jesus. Being that we are not perfect, while God is, we cannot see all His reasons for why He placed each word as He did, in His Word. With that being said, instead of keeping His Word intact and praying for greater revelation, man has chosen instead to change God’s Word to fight his ideology, rather than allowing God to change/renew our mind according to His Word.
If I read a corrupt version of the Word, that denies the deity of Jesus, I could eventually be persuaded that the truth is what I read, rather than what the truth actually is. Additionally, if I begin to believe, based on what I’ve read in corrupted versions of the Bible, that Jesus is not the deity He claimed to be, then the door opens for me to begin to questioning a lot in the Bible, like my salvation, God’s faithfulness, God’s love, my ability to overcome the enemy, my eternal stance in regards to what has been promised to the believers in Jesus. Given enough time, I can begin to doubt the Bible from cover-to-cover. Extreme? Perhaps, but is it not what we see happening today? So many believers simply don’t know who they are in Christ Jesus. Why? Because they fail to see who Jesus is. Once this happens, we can also fail to see the promises from God of what we have been given through Jesus, in this world and the one to come.
I’m not opposed to all versions of the Bible, but I will certainly be more careful of which versions I rely on to study from. I believe the food we place in our body matters for good physical health and I believe the food we feed our soul is even more important for our spiritual growth. When man messes with our food, i.e., GMOs, we see the potential for great damage over time, but we don’t see the damage as it progresses day-to-day, only later, after years of the corrupted food wreaking havoc on our bodies. I believe this is true of God’s Word too. If man corrupts God’s Word, that we consume each day for nourishment, we may not see the effects immediately, but over a period of time, we will eventually see the devastation show its ugly head. These can show up in small warning signs along the way like depression, anxiety, fear, anger, unforgiveness, bitterness, sexual sins, recurring and unresolved illnesses, loss of hope, doubt, and so much more.
I also really appreciated his list of recommended study Bibles, as well as trustworthy commentaries and dictionaries. We definitely own ones that did not make the list, some were gifts and some we bought. I have one proof text that I used prior to reading this book, that I’d do my best to see if I’d agree with the translation of the study Bible and commentaries and that is Revelation 6:2. If this is translated as Jesus, rather than the antichrist, then I put the book back down. For, the Bible tells us that Jesus is in heaven opening the seals, Revelation 6:1 and He does not come on His white horse until Revelation 19:11.
Thanks to Ancient Word of God, I will now have a few more proof text to help me decided if it’s a Bible I will use for my daily reading, as well as my Bible studies. Let me just say, no condemnation should come regarding the Bible one uses or the commentaries, dictionaries and study Bibles. I recently heard David Guzik say that the best Bible is the one that you will read. He said it’s great to have a 1611 KJV Bible, but if it’s collecting dust, that does no good.
It’s my belief that it’s good to continue to seek more accurate and faithful renderings as we grow in the faith. We don’t want to find that we are full of words, but lack the fullness of the truth of God’s Word (for the reasons I stated above).
Would I Recommend Ancient Word of God
Absolutely! It will indeed open your eyes to see what Bible versions have been corrupted over the years and in some cases, we can know motivation for the corruption and manipulation of God’s Word. This is an excellent book for both new believers and mature believers alike.
And, that’s a wrap… Ancient Word of God
I hope you found this review helpful. If so, please share it with your family and friends, so they can learn about this great book too. You can click here or on any image of the book on this page to see it on Amazon. Thanks for taking the time to read this review and God bless!
“When Jesus said “My words,” He was not referring to differences in spelling or transposed words, but the meaning of each individual word. So we need a word-for-word Bible translation.”
“If the “word” that will endure forever was “written for our learning,” it follows that it must be preserved here on earth. Otherwise, it will not accomplish its task!”
-Ken Johnson, Ancient Word of God, pp. 18, 19 respectively