The New World Translation Is Not The Word of God
One of the marks of a cult is their claim to be the only true church. Since this is such an exclusive claim, it's not unusual for them to have their own extra biblical revelation from God. In the case of the Jehovah's Witnesses, one of those revelations is the New World Translation of the Bible.
At the very onset, two of the most important questions we could ask are: What is the New World Translation and is it the Word of God? Though many answers could be given, we will content ourselves with just a few given by the organization itself and then look at some passages of scripture retranslated by the Watchtower Society in the New World Translation to see that it is not the word of God. It might also be added that there is a great deal of dishonesty on the pat of the Watchtower in their New World Translation (NWT).
The NWT is defined by the Watchtower in their Reasoning from the Scriptures as "a translation of the Holy Scriptures made directly from Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek into modern day English by a committee of anointed witnesses of Jehovah" (p.276).
Some Christians may ask, "Why the New World Translation?" Evidence bears out the fact that the Watchtower Society thought that all the other translations (KJV, ASV, etc.) had been corrupted where the Bible tranlatory actually let their religious bias show through their renderings (The Watchtower, 10/15/85, p.21, Insight on the News).
David Reed, an ex-Witness, says in his book, Jehovah's Witnesses Answered Verse by Verse that basically the New World Translation came into being for the sole purpose of supporting Watchtower doctrines showing their own bias (pp.17-18). Reed says, "So, during the 1950's, Watchtower leaders went beyond interpretation by producing their own version of the Bible, with hundreds of verses changed to fit Watchtower doctrine. And, their New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures continues to be rewritten every few years, with additional changse made to bring God's Word into closer agreement with what the organization teaches."
The New World Translation systematically sets out to eliminate evidence for the deity of Christ. Instead of falling at Jesus' feet to worship Him, people did "obeisouce" to Him. John 1:1 no longer says "the Word was God" but "the Word was a God." Jesus did not say, "Before Abraham was, I am" but rather to avoid association with the "I AM" of Exodus 3:14, Jesus's statement becomes, "Before Abraham came into existence, I have been."
The most widespread change in the Watchtower Bible is the insertion of the name JEHOVAH 237 times in the New Testament. Of course, it is appropriate for a translator to choose to use the divine name JEHOVAH or YAHWEH in the Old Testament where the Tetragrammator YHWH actually appears in the Hebrew text. However, the Watchtower has gone beyond this by inserting the name JEHOVAH in the New Testament, where it does not appear in Greek manuscripts. One need only look at the word-by-word English that appears under the Greek text in the Society's own Kingdom Interlinear Translation to see that the name JEHOVAH is not there in the Greek.
Why the bias concerning Christ? Because the Watchtower teaches that Jesus is a mighty god, but not the almighty God, a creature rather than the Creator. To cite "proof" for this, they will point you to Col. 1:15, and say that since he is the first born of all creation, he has to be the first thing (an angel) that Jehovah God created. It matches up with the view that Jesus is not Jehovah.
The term first born in the Bible doesn't mean created. It is often used in Scripture to signify priority in importance or rank, rather than actual birth order. It also refers to Christ having a preeminient position which is a theme throughout the book of Collossians. Moreover, the term first born elsewhere in scripture in referring to Christ means only begotten.
So, as the only begotten Son of God, Christ if God. What God begats is God, just as what a human begats is human. Christ was begotten, the `Very God of Very God' <197> He is God in the flesh!
The Watchtower Society presents the New World Translation as the anonymous work of the New World Bible Translation Committee and resists all efforts to identify the members of the committee. They claim this is in order that all credit for the work will go to God. However, Reed points out, "an unbiased observer will quickly note that such anonymity also shields the translators from any blame for errors or distortions in their renderings. And it prevents scholars from checking their credentials.
"In fact, defectors who have quit Watchtower headquarters in recent years have identified the alleged members of the committee, revealing that none of them was expert in Hebrew, Greek, or Aramaic - the original languages from which the Bible was translated."