Conspiracy of the Ages (Part 5)By Pastor Boffey on Saturday, February 28, 2009.
Conspiracy of the Ages (Part 5) THE CONSPIRACY OF THE AGES Conspire: “To combine privily for an evil or unlawful purpose; to agree together to do something criminal, illegal, or reprehensible." (All English word definitions in this study taken from the Oxford English Dictionary) I. Theories about conspiracy relative to human government are many and varied. A. Of particular interest to many theorists is the specter of a world government that renders national boundaries irrelevant. B. This study assumes that a move towards world government is a fact because Scripture prophesies of such. C. This study seeks not to affirm any particular theory of such a world economic/political conspiracy nor is it a denial of all aspects of such theories. D. This study assumes that no particular human or group of humans is the ultimate power in manipulating events to bring on world government. E. This study assumes that the real animating power of world government is spiritual: Satan, who is bent on unseating Jesus Christ from His heavenly reign over the creation. F. This study is designed to look at the topic of conspiracy towards world government from a seldom-considered objective: the necessity of eliminating the written word of God or its effect in order to bring such a world government into power. G. This study is a defense of the position that there is a preserved, inspired Scripture. II. Scripture teaches that conspiracy is a fact of human existence. JER 11:9; PSA 64:5-6; MIC 7:3. A. Men may bind themselves under extreme oaths in their conspiracy. ACT 23:12-13. B. Conspirators may collude with civil authority to cover their actions. MAT 28:11-15. C. Dark designs are sometimes covered by benevolence: charities can make excellent smokescreens. JOH 12:4-6. D. Religion may play an important part in conspiracy. EZE 22:25; MIC 3:11. E. People can be unwitting participants in conspiracy. 2SA 15:11-12; ACT 19:28-32. 1. Ignorance of the word of God is a factor here. ACT 2:36, 41 c/w ACT 3:17; 13:27. 2. Professing believers who are ignorant of Scripture could potentially be the most ardent conspirators against Jesus Christ and His truth. ACT 26:9. 3. Can you think of anything that Satan would love more than to dupe Christians into advancing his efforts at world government? 4. It should here be obvious how critical the truth of the word of God is to the frustrating of Satan's world program. F. A word of warning is necessary here. The spiritual forces at work behind world conspiracy are like the ways of a strange woman: moveable (PRO 5:6). Therefore it is unwise to try to find the earthly head of this Hydra and cut it off. III. Another caution is in order. A. The Bible teaches that oppressive civil governments are a tool in the hand of God to judge an ungodly people. ISA 10:5-12; JER 25:8-9; HAB 1:12: MAT 22:7. B. Nothing escapes the government of God: all powers ultimately serve Him. PRO 16:4; PSA 76:10; DAN 4:35. The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 1 IV. The nature of this struggle appears to be outwardly amongst men but the reality takes place in the unseen spiritual world. 2CO 10:3-5; EPH 6:12. A. The battle is fundamentally joined in the arena of doctrine and ideas: whether men will be led by God's truth to the best possible existence or by Satan's lies to a deceptive alternative that is actually oppressive and destructive. B. Spiritual forces are intricately involved in human politics and warfare. DAN 10:12-13, 20; 2KI 6:15-17 c/w PSA 68:17; 2KI 19:35-37. C. The ultimate conspiracy is against God and His Christ. PSA 2:1-5 c/w ACT 4:24-28. V. Scripture teaches that Satan once was the highest of God's creation but rebelled against God and was subsequently cast out of heaven with his co-conspirators, other angels. REV 12:3-4; EZE 28:12-19 c/w MAT 16:23; 2PE 2:4. A. Christians ought to be aware of the devices of Satan but not consumed with them. 2CO 2:11; ROM 16:19. B. The devil's great ambition is to usurp the sovereignty of God, to be “like the most High” (ISA 14:12-15). 1. The word Lucifer comes from root words: lux meaning “light”; and fer meaning “bearing” according to the O.E.D. 2. Also, the Hebrew roots for this name are words meaning “to shine, to make a show or boast; the morning-star (Strongs #1966 & #1984).” 3. Hence, Lucifer, the morning-star, or first light; the Ein Soph of Kabbalism. 4. Satan is transformed into an angel (messenger, bearer) of light. 2CO 11:14-15. C. Not all wisdom is of God. JAM 3:14-15. 1. Earthly wisdom is one of the most deceptive and dangerous forces opposing the cause of God. 2. Wisdom which contradicts, disregards or exalts itself over God's revealed wisdom is a certain path to idolatry, licentiousness, corruption, destruction and death. GEN 3:5-6; ROM 1:21-32. 3. This will be an extremely important point further on in this study as the error of gnosticism is considered. D. Scripture affirms that there are two other castings-out of Satan: one after the resurrection of Christ (JOH 12:31 c/w REV 12:5-9), the last at the final day of judgment. REV 20:10. E. The summary of history between the second and last casting out of Satan is of him hasting to implement his grand program which is hindered by the testimony of Christ. REV 12:12-17. VI. ISA 14:14 shows that Lucifer (Satan) desires to be “like the most High.” A survey of some of the attributes of God sheds light on that to which Satan aspires. A. God owns and distributes all wealth at His pleasure. 1CH 29:11-12. B. God is the only Potentate (a person endowed with independent power) and Distributer of power. 1TI 6:14-15; 1CH 29:12. C. God's will is always done in heaven and earth. DAN 4:35; 2CH 20:6. D. God requires unique and universal worship. MAT 4:10; ISA 45:22-23 c/w 2TH 2:3-7. E. God has absolute power over life and death. DEU 32:39. F. God is the Governor among the nations. PSA 22:28. G. God is clearly the Absolute Master of all spirits, men, nations, wealth, commerce, events, etc. His government is total and unchallengeable. 1. All such government is now in the hand of Jesus Christ. EPH 1:20-23; 1PE 3:22. The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 2 2. As a false christ and ape of God, Satan must convince men that he is the true Christ. 3. Does Christ rule over the whole world? Then Satan will concoct a counterfeit world rule that will be totalitarian. REV 13:11-18. 4. This is a world empire (supreme and extensive political dominion) by definition. 5. The prerequisite to world government is worship of Satan (LUK 4:5-7) which is exactly what Satan is looking for: a reclaiming of dominion lost because of the resurrection of Christ so that he can be declared God Who alone is to be worshipped. VII. Scripture recognizes eight viable world empires / beast governments. REV 17:7-11. A. By the measure of LUK 4:5-7 each of these empires would be sold out to Satan. B. At the time of the writing of Revelation, the Roman Empire was in power. It would have been the sixth “king” of REV 17:10. Two others would follow. C. Scripture identifies the first five as being Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia and Greece. VIII. The prototype of Satan's program was Old Babylon (GEN 11). An examination of Nimrod's kingdom reveals some interesting facts: A. GEN 10:8-10. The beginning of Nimrod's kingdom was Babel. B. GEN 11:1-9. Nimrod's kingdom was founded on a premise which directly violated the desire of God. v.4 c/w GEN 9:1. 1. As a protective measure for their own good to restrain them from the full capacity of their evil hearts (GEN 8:21), God confounded their language. vs.6-9. 2. Mark that God's measure against a world empire is diversification of language. Any movement, therefore, which would promote the opposite is obviously not of God and is not in the best interests of humanity. C. God obviously intends that there should be boundaries to separate mankind (DEU 32:8; ACT 17:26). These boundaries are not necessarily racial but they are national. D. A trait of empires is to break down these barriers by mixing and mingling peoples. 2KI 17:6, 24 c/w ISA 10:13. IX. Up to the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ the government of mankind was commonly in the hands of one world empire after another, culminating in the iron-clad empire which was Rome. A. Subsequent to the coming of Christ, that pattern changed. B. The Pax Romana endured for a while but the Roman Empire eventually declined and fell and another empire did not step into its shoes. The machinery of Satan's world empire system had a monkey-wrench thrown into it. All the kings' horses and all the kings' men could not put Humpty Dumpty back together again. C. Post-Rome history has been one wherein Satan has worked to restore his system of human government and install the seventh and eighth world empires of REV 17:10-11. X. This brings us to a portion of Scripture which is oft-quoted in our day. REV 20:1-3; 7-9. A. In dealing with the book of Revelation, it must be remembered that this book is primarily written in signification. REV 1:1. 1. Signify: “To be a sign or symbol of; to represent, betoken, mean.” 2. Signification of necessity is a symbolic representation of its subject. JOH 12:32-33; HEB 9:8. 3. Caution is therefore especially needed in Revelation since its language is obviously The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 3 meant to often speak of something other than its symbol. B. Prophecy or symbolic language must be reconciled to the plainer passages of Scripture by comparative study. 1CO 2:13; ROM 12:6. 1. The O.T. revelation was much characterized by dark utterances such as parables, proverbs and figurative prophetic language. PSA 78:2; PRO 1:6; EZE 17:2; HOS 12:10. a. Similitude: “A person or thing resembling, or having the likeness of, some other person or thing; a counterpart or equal; †a similarity.” b. Prophetic figures are just that: figures, symbols or tokens of something else. 2. The N.T. is a clearer, brighter light, a “more sure word of prophecy” which came from the same Spirit that spoke to the O.T. prophets, and is in complete harmony with what had been revealed of old. 2PE 1:19-21; 1JO 4:6. a. It is by comparison, “great plainness of speech” (2CO 3:12-13). b. Plainness facilitates certainty. JOH 16:16-30. 3. Scripture is the best interpreter of Scripture by this method of comparative study wherein the plain (light) gives the proper understanding of the parabolic (dark) portions. a. Interpretations of dark utterances (such as are common to prophecy) without or contrary to Scripture's own plain statements are mere speculations. b. Such interpretations essentially fall under the censure of such texts as DEU 13:1-3; ISA 8:20; JER 23:31. C. REV 20 is describing a time when the devil would be bound for a period referred to as a “thousand years.” 1. This binding would put a stop to his on-going deceptive tactics with the nations for the duration of the thousand years. 2. After the thousand years expires, the devil would be loosed to revive his game plan, deceiving the nations once more to ultimately destroy all opposition to his government. 3. NOTE: If the devil were able to eradicate the churches of God (of which the members are called saints) he would have then overthrown God, Whose will was to preserve the church. MAT 16:18; EPH 3:21. D. By the comparative study method mentioned above, let Scripture define the word “nations” as here used in REV 20:3, 8. 1. “Nations” = “Gentiles” (as opposed to Jews). ROM 15:10 c/w DEU 32:43; ROM 15:11 c/w PSA 117:1. 2. These verses in REV 20 are therefore describing a time when the Gentiles would be released from the deception of the devil, then later be brought back again under the yoke of his conspiratorial scheme. E. Compare this with what we have already seen about the desire and program of Satan to establish world government. 1. That program went ALMOST unchallenged until the first advent of Christ, then collapsed, but is now gaining great momentum again. 2. There was one nation in O.T. times that generally stood apart from the system: Israel. 3. Israel was singled out by God for particular blessings and distinctions. ROM 9:3-4. 4. The Gentile nations were left in idolatrous darkness, ignorantly conforming to the devil's program. EPH 4:17-19 c/w 1CO 10:20; ACT 14:13-18 c/w ACT 17:29-30. 5. The CHIEF advantage that Israel had was the word of God. The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 4 ROM 3:1-2 c/w DEU 4:5-6; PSA 147:19-20. a. With the truth of God in hand Israel knew that there was one true Creator God Who was in heaven and that service to Him was to be in a specific fashion, separate from the manners of all other religions. b. By His word, Israel knew that God reviled the spirit of ecumenism which is such an obvious player in Satan's scheme. DEU 12:30-32; ZEP 1:5; ACT 4:11-12; 2CO 6:14-18. 6. Israel also knew by the Scripture that God in heaven had the keys of the after-life, not Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar, Caesar or any other man. a. When walking according to God's word, Israel was free from the spiritual bondage of the Gentiles who saw the emperor as divine. b. Men will capitulate to gross excesses of political authority if they believe that authority is divine. 7. The word of God is thus the primary hindrance to Satan's grand goal of true world government which admits to no rival authority, particularly a kingdom of God. 8. With the coming of Christ, the kingdom of God was taken from Israel and given to the church which became emphatically comprised of Gentiles. ROM 10:19 c/w MAT 21:43; 1PE 2:9. 9. The word of God (Scripture) once exclusive to Israel now went into all the earth. MAR 16:15, 20; ACT 1:8; COL 1:5-6, 23. 10. God called a special apostle for the task of carrying the light of God's word to the darkened Gentile world. ACT 9:15; 13:46-47; 26:16-18. 11. When received by the Gentiles as the word of God, it effected great reform in their lives. 1TH 2:13; 1:9-10. 12. Realizing that no man had the keys of hell and death except the resurrected Lord Jesus Christ (REV 1:18), believers everywhere were freed from their spiritual bondage of fear. HEB 2:14-15. 13. As a result of the dissemination of God's word, especially the “more sure word of prophecy” of the apostles, Satan was effectively BOUND from achieving his goals. F. In REV 20:1-3, an angel binds Satan. There is only one angel Who has the power to bind Satan. That is Jesus Christ, the angel or messenger of the covenant. MAL 3:1; GEN 48:16. G. Scripture teaches that Jesus Christ bound Satan at His first advent. 1. Satan is the prince of this world. JOH 12:31; EPH 2:2. 2. His kingdom is composed of principalities. EPH 6:12. 3. Christ spoiled principalities and powers by His death and resurrection. COL 2:14-15. 4. Jesus taught that binding PRECEDES spoiling. MAT 12:29. 5. Binding does not necessarily mean total restriction. ACT 24:23, 27. 6. Only with eyes of spiritual understanding can this victory be seen. HEB 2:8 c/w 1CO 15:25-27; 2CO 4:18; 5:7. H. The binding would last for the thousand years. 1. Thousand is a term God uses to symbolically describe a complete number or period of time known only to Him. PSA 50:10 c/w PSA 105:8. 2. Given the symbolic nature of the prophecies in Revelation, the thousand years of binding here spoken of should not be taken to mean a natural period of time consisting of 365,000 twenty-four hour days. 3. It rather refers to a complete period of time known to God during which Satan The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 5 would be bound, howsoever many natural years that involved. I. Thus, the reason the world empire program was put on hold was due to the restriction placed on the devil by the spread of the word of God which is the basis of the Christian faith. 1. This agrees with Paul's observation that the God-usurping “mystery of iniquity” was not inactive but it was hindered. 2TH 2:7. a. Let: “trans. To hinder, prevent, obstruct, stand in the way of (a person, thing, action, etc.).” b. See also ROM 1:13 for a similar usage of “let.” 2. The spread of the gospel to the Gentiles was described as turning the world upside down (ACT 17:6). A major shift in human events was underway. 3. The Roman Empire recognized the political implications of the Christian faith which implied that Caesar or the State had only derived and limited temporal power. Thus, despots like Nero sought to destroy Christians. 4. Emperor Julian's dying words are supposed to have been, “Vicisti, Galilaee!” which means, “Thou hast conquered, O Galilean!” J. Satan's dilemma: The key to world government is the elimination of God's word which declares his defeat and exposes his agenda, supplanting his own doctrine in its place. But God has promised to preserve His words forever. PSA 12:6-7; 119:152, 160; MAT 24:35. 1. Remember that the only people for whom the word of God has a beneficial and effectual working are God's children who receive it in faith as God's word. 1CO 1:18; 2:14; 1TH 2:13. 2. Believers are the salt of the earth by which it is seasoned and saved (MAT 5:13) but only as long as they retain their savour. 3. If Satan could deceive God's people into believing that God's Holy Scripture was lost, the net effect would be the same as if there was no inspired Scripture. 4. Paul was concerned that the churches might be beguiled, or deceived in the same manner AS WAS EVE. 2CO 11:3 c/w 1CO 15:45. 5. GEN 2:16-17 c/w GEN 3:1-6. By CASTING DOUBT on the words of God, Satan plunged mankind into death and his program was underway. Satan's primary tactic of deception is casting doubt on plain truth. a. Remember, a basket of healthy food is of no saving value to the starving person who is deceived into thinking that it's all made of plastic. b. If the “plastic food” deception is insufficient to undermine the effect of the Holy Scripture in the mind of the Christian, Satan has another powerful means of accomplishing his goal: crafty footnotes and such like which set forth positions contrary to the plain text of Scripture and are revered more than the Scripture. 6. Since about 1870 there has been an onslaught of varying Bible versions in the English language, all of which have cast doubt on one Bible that changed the course of world history for hundreds of years: the AV1611 or King James Version. a. It is beyond dispute that AV1611 became the vehicle of a sustained revolution in the minds of English-speaking people which had profound social and political implications. b. Whereas there was once a time when English-speaking Christians in general had no doubt that they had God's word in their hand, that has changed. c. Today, relatively few English-speaking Christians believe that there is an infallible Bible preserved in perfect detail down to the last jot and tittle. As The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 6 such, how effectual could that word even be on people so numbed and deceived? Is it any wonder we see this world accelerating towards world government? d. One might wonder if the times of the releasing of Satan to “deceive the nations once more” are upon us. e. Remember that this deceptive conspiracy is ultimately against Jesus Christ, Whose kingdom must be preserved in order to maintain His sovereignty and therefore the final battle will be against the camp of the saints. REV 20:8-9. XI. The foregoing leads us to ask some very searching questions: A. What is Scripture? B. If there is such a thing as Scripture today, do we have it? C. How do we identify Scripture? D. How do we distinguish it from counterfeits? E. The most important question of all is not “Which Bible is the right one?” but rather “Is there such a thing as a preserved Bible?” 1. If there is not today a preserved, letter-perfect Bible, then it must be assumed that God was unable to preserve His word as promised. 2. It is hypocritical and deceitful for a Christian to say that his faith is built upon the infallible Scripture if he does not even believe that he has such. XII. Scripture is as the very voice of God in recordable and transmissible form. 2SAM 23:1-2; PSA 45:1; 2CO 13:2-3; GEN 12:3 c/w GAL 3:8. A. Scripture came by divine inspiration. 2PE 1:20-21; EXO 34:27; ISA 8:1-4; 30:8; JER 36:1-4; JOH 16:13. B. This inspiration is comprehensive (2TI 3:16). The inspiration extends to: 1. individual words. Christ and the apostles argued doctrine on the basis of a single word. MAT 22:42-44; HEB 7:21; 8:8-13. 2. single letters. Paul places the whole doctrine of Christianity on the basis of a single letter. GAL 3:16. 3. smallest details. MAT 5:18. (The jot was the smallest letter in the O.T; the tittle was a small line or point to distinguish letters in the Hebrew alphabet.) C. Scripture also has the following characteristics: 1. It can be searched. JOH 5:39; ACT 17:11. 2. It can be known. 2TI 3:15. 3. It is profitable. 2TI 3:16-17. 4. It can comfort. ROM 15:4. 5. It promotes conversion and growth. PSA 19:7; 1PE 2:1-2. 6. It is perfect, pure and unbroken. PSA 12:6; PRO 8:8; 30:5; JOH 10:35. 7. It would be preserved. PSA 12:6-7; 119:152, 160; MAT 24:35; ECC 3:14. XIII. Compare the above statements with the wisdom of modern theology as seen in the following quote from "New Testament Survey; A Syllabus" by Daniel Krusich. page 6 (a standard work among fundamentalists): “II. The Extent of Inspiration. A) Only the original text of the OT and the NT are inspired. The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 7 B) No copies made from the originals were inspired. C) No translations were inspired. D) Although we do not possess the originals, scholars say that we have copies which are very close to them. No important doctrine is affected because of this fact.” A. Advocates of this position, under a veil of inquiry, sincerity and higher learning, have actually affirmed that there is NO inspired word of God today. B. This is an appropriate place to set forth the warnings of God about worldly wisdom and reasoning (vain philosophy of men). ROM 1:21-23; 1CO 1:18-24; 2:4-8 COL 2:8-9. C. God is not restricted to our limited human intellect and reasoning. ISA 55:8-9. D. Consider some problems with Mr. Krusich's position. 1. If “scholars” have never seen the original autographs, how can they possibly know that their copies are close to them? a. This is tantamount to a claim to have had the substance of the original autographs mystically channelled to oneself. See DEU 18:10; EZE 13:6. b. This is a “snow job” argument at best, and a deceitful faulty premise. 2. If they have never seen the inspired word of God, how do they know that “no important doctrine is affected?” The fact is that their position has destroyed the basis for all doctrine. E. The inspired text would be preserved in copies. DEU 17:18-19; JOS 8:32-35; PRO 25:1. 1. If the original autographs were the only thing that could be properly called inspired Scripture, what was Timothy doing with them? 2TI 3:15-16. 2. Likewise, how could the Bereans have daily access to them (ACT 17:11)? Weren't they previously hustled off to Africa by the Ethiopian eunuch? ACT 8:32. 3. If the originals are the only true Scripture, how is that Paul and Apollos were able to use them regularly in witnessing (ACT 17:2; 18:28)? Did they both have the stone tablets of Moses? 4. The apostles copiously argued from the Law of Moses as Scripture in their preaching and epistles. a. The original Mosaic Decalogue was smashed to bits. EXO 32:19. b. The replacement Mosaic Decalogue was sealed in the Ark of the Covenant and a penalty was due unto the person who presumed to look therein. HEB 9:4 c/w 1SAM 6:19. 5. Nothing less than a perfect Scripture will bring true, full and enduring conversion (PSA 19:7; 1TH 2:13). Are we to believe that the originals were shared by the apostles in their evangelistic outreach? F. God is able to also preserve His word in translations. 1. The same thing can be said in multiple languages. LUK 23:38. 2. Moses would have dialogued with Pharaoh in Egyptian (EXO 5:1-2), yet their words were recorded in Hebrew. 3. The O.T. was written in Hebrew, yet numerous O.T. passages are quoted in the N.T., which was written in Greek. a. Scholars now commonly affirm that Jesus frequently quoted from a Greek translation of the O.T. (Septuagint) which is imagined to have been written before Christ's first advent. b. STOP AND THINK! If Christ, when quoting O.T. Scripture, was doing so The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 8 from a Greek translation of the Hebrew, and the only thing properly called inspired Scripture is the original autograph (per Mr. Krusich, above), then: (1) The Greek Septuagint translation must be the original autograph, which is a logical absurdity, or (2) The Greek Septuagint was a valid facsimile of the original Hebrew, which means inspired translation, or (3) Christ quoted from something less than a perfect, inspired Scripture, which is ridiculous. Christ used a letter-perfect O.T. MAT 5:17-18; JOH 10:34-35. 4. The gospel would be preached to all nations, which would necessitate translation. MAT 24:14. 5. Paul makes his defense in Hebrew, yet this is recorded in the Greek N.T. ACT 21:40. 6. The Holy Spirit frequently translated within the sacred text. MAT 1:23; MAR 5:41; 15:22, 34; JOH 1:38, 41; ACT 4:36. 7. God translated His word into numerous languages. ACT 2:4-11. G. The fact that scholars and esteemed men might agree on any given position is a very poor barometer of spiritual validity. The wise religious people of Christ's day all agreed that He should be crucified. XIV. God ordained specific repositories for the preservation and transmission of His inspired word. A. In the O.T., the Scriptures were entrusted to the nation of Israel which was the church under the Law. ROM 3:1-2; 9:3-4 c/w ACT 7:38. 1. The law was “sealed up amongst His disciples” (ISA 8:16), particularly amongst the tribe of Levi and in the ark of the covenant. DEU 17:18; 31:24-26. 2. Of them, the priesthood were the designated scribes (those whose business is writing) and teachers. LEV 10:11; DEU 33:8-10; 2CH 15:3; MAL 2:7 c/w EZR 7:6, 10. B. In the N.T. times, the Scripture was given and entrusted to the N.T. church. 1TI 3:15; REV 12:17. 1. Submitted (baptized, churched) believers are disciples. ACT 11:26. 2. Submitted (baptized, churched) believers are priests. 1PE 2:5, 9. 3. Submitted (baptized, churched) believers are teachers. HEB 5:12; 2TI 2:2. 4. Jesus even promised that there would be N.T. scribes. MAT 23:34. C. The churches of Jesus Christ would be the object of intense persecution by a great religious system which bears a striking resemblance to Roman Catholicism. REV 17:1-6. 1. One major reason for the belligerence of that great world religious system towards dissenting, independent churches was this very issue: the authenticity and preservation of the true Scripture. REV 12:17. 2. Observe this quote from the preface of the Jesuit Rheims Bible of 1582, explaining why the Vulgate had been translated into Italian in 1300 and into French in 1400: “the sooner to shake out of the deceived people's hands, the false heretical translations of a sect called the Waldenses.” 3. “The Vulgate was born about 380 A.D. Nine hundred years later brings us to about 1280 A.D. This accords well with the fact that at the famous Council of Toulouse, 1229 A.D., the Pope gave orders for the most terrible crusade to be waged against the simple Christians of southern France and northern Italy who would not bow to his power. Cruel, relentless, devastating, this war was waged, destroying the The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 9 BIBLES, BOOKS, AND EVERY VESTIGE OF DOCUMENTS (emphasis mine, TEB) telling the story of the Waldenses and Albigenses.” (Which Bible, by D.O. Fuller, page 201) XV. From the foregoing information, it is evident that there has been a great warfare against God's word from the Garden of Eden and forward. A. Satan has always sought to oppose the true Scripture with alternates and counterfeits. B. The sum of this is that there are basically only two Bibles: the true Bible and a false bible which has many variations. C. The true Bible would come through and be preserved through God's true churches; a false bible would spring from and be promoted through a false church. XVI. Consider the ancestry of the true O.T. A. By the first century A.D. the complete Hebrew O.T. canon of 39 books had been in the possession of the Jewish people for about 400 years. B. The O.T. canon was confirmed by Jesus Christ as consisting of a threefold division: the law, the prophets and the psalms. LUK 24:44-45. C. Christ acknowledged the O.T. record of martyrs from first to last as given in these 39 books. LUK 11:50-51. 1. The slayings of Abel and Zacharias are recorded in Genesis and 2 Chronicles, respectively. 2. In a Hebrew Bible, Genesis is the first book; 2 Chronicles is the last book. 3. The books in the Hebrew canon are the same as in the AV1611 (KJV) Bible; only their order is different. D. Christ therefore did not recognize the uncanonical writings known as the Apocrypha. 1. The Apocrypha would have constituted a fourth division of the O.T. canon but Jesus only confirmed three divisions. 2. The Apocrypha records many martyrs in books like 1 & 2 Maccabees, yet Jesus made no mention of them in LUK 11:50-51. 3. The Apocrypha is disqualified as the word of God because it disagrees with the Scripture. a. 2 Maccabees 12:41-46 teaches the offering of money and prayers for the forgiveness of the dead. ct/w DEU 26:12-14. b. Ecclesiasticus 3:33 teaches forgiveness of sins through almsgiving. ct/w PSA 49:6-8; 1PE 1:18-19; EPH 1:7; ROM 11:6. c. Wisdom 7:25 presents wisdom as an emanation from God. (1) This is the pagan/gnostic doctrine of emanations: deities emanating or emitting from God as offshoots from a sea of energy. (2) Jesus Christ is the wisdom of God. 1CO 1:24, 30. (3) Jesus Christ is not an emanation of God; He is God. JOH 1:1-3, 14. E. A very common flaw in virtually all modern English bibles produced since 1871 is that they are translated from Hebrew manuscripts which contain the Apocrypha as if it was inspired Scripture. F. The Hebrew Masoretes were families of Hebrew scholars who safeguarded the Hebrew Old Testament text and were especially active from about 500 to 1000 A.D. 1. They held to very strict rules regarding the copying of the Hebrew Old Testament. Two such rules are presented here as examples. The following excerpt is taken from Defending the King James Bible by Dr. D.A. Waite who is citing from General The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 10 Biblical Introduction by H.S. Miller. a. “The revision of a roll must be made within 30 days after the work was finished; otherwise it was worthless. One mistake on a sheet condemned the sheet; if three mistakes were found on any page, the entire manuscript was condemned.” b. “Every word and every letter was counted, and if a letter were omitted, an extra letter inserted, or if one letter touched another, the manuscript was condemned and destroyed at once.” 2. In 1525 Daniel Bomberg published his second edition of the Hebrew Old Testament text, edited by Abraham Ben Chayyim. This is the Ben Chayyim Masoretic text, the standard Masoretic text for the next 400 years. This was the Old Testament Hebrew text for the next 400 years. It is the text on which the King James Version is based in its Old Testament. a. Over against this Hebrew text is The Biblica Hebraica Stuttgartensia, produced by Nazi theologian Rudolph Kittel. b. Kittel's text differs in 30,000+ places from the Masoretic Text, yet it is sometimes referred to by its supporters as a Masoretic text. c. Kittel's text is the basis for virtually all modern English O.T. bibles. XVII. Consider the path of the true N.T. text, commonly called the Received Text (Textus Receptus), or the Byzantine Text or the Syrian Text. A. As of 1981, the Greek manuscripts which have been found and collated number 5366. Of these, 99% go along with the Received Text and only 1% go along with the corrupt text underlying the modern bibles. 1. The majority of quotes of Scripture by early Church Fathers (pre-400 A.D. pastors, etc.) favor the Received Text. 2. This would probably be most apparent in writings of Church Fathers that pre-date the influence of Origen of Alexandria, the Nicene Council (325 A.D.) and the influence of Emperor Constantine. 3. The Greek Orthodox Church has virtually always used the Received Text and rejected the corrupt Greek texts from Rome which opposed it. B. Remember that God had intended to preserve His word through His churches, or disciples. ISA 8:16 c/w ACT 11:26. 1. We should expect that the path of the true text of the N.T. would coincide with the perpetuity of the true N.T. churches of Jesus Christ. 2. We should also expect that Satan, as he has ever done, would establish a counterfeit of this order. 3. We should also expect that the spiritual battle lines would be drawn at these intersections. REV 12:17. 4. An overview of spiritual history from Christ's first advent and forward is one of God preserving His true text through His true churches which are opposed by a rival “Christian” system with its own text that it deems to be superior (and which it is willing to spill blood for in order to make it preeminent). C. Of special mention is the fact that the Gentiles were evangelized mainly through the ministry of the Apostle Paul, who was commissioned from Antioch of Syria. ACT 11:19-26; 13:1-2; 14:26-28. 1. Syria became the capital of N.T. evangelism. 2. A translation of the Bible into Syrian based upon the apostolic text appeared at The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 11 about 150 A.D. This is known as the Peshitto. 3. About the same time (157 A.D.), a Latin translation of the Bible appeared, known as the Itala. a. Its superiority over even the acclaimed Latin Vulgate of Jerome was admitted to by Augustine, the Catholic bishop and philosopher, in 400 A.D.: “Now among translations themselves the Italian (Itala) is to be preferred to the others, for it keeps closer to the words without prejudice to clearness of expression.” (Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Christian Lit. Ed., Vol. II, p.542) b. This version derived its name from the Italic district, the regions of the Vaudois, or the Waldenses. D. Italy, France and Great Britain were evangelized by Christians from Asia Minor. 1. Their Old Latin script Bibles were the Bibles of the Montanists, Donatists, and later the Albigenses and Waldenses who withstood Rome. 2. When the Pope sent Augustine to convert England in 596 A.D., he found Christians there with Latin Bibles that they had had since the days of imperial Roman power. a. Augustine's mission became one of not only evangelizing heathen England but also to subjugate the churches he found there to papal authority. b. A great area of controversy was the issue of which Bible should be used by English Christians: the one they had been using before Papal Rome's arrival or the Latin Vulgate. 3. There is some evidence that Asiatic Christianity and its Bible had already reached Ireland well before Roman Catholicism did. a. “Before they came together - The woman was espoused at her own, or her father’s house; and, generally, some time elapsed before she was taken home to the house of her husband: Deu_20:7; Jdg_14:7, Jdg_14:8. This custom has been immemorially observed among the inhabitants of Ireland, who have not only this, but many Asiatic customs, which, added to various authentic historic proofs, are collateral evidences that they received the Christian religion, not from the popes of Rome, but through the means of Asiatic missionaries.” (Adam Clarke Commentary, on Matthew 1:18) b. “The old Latin versions were used longest by the western Christians who would not bow to the authority of Rome--- e.g., the Donatists; the Irish in Ireland, Britain, and the Continent; the Albigenses, etc.” (Catholic and Protestant Bibles Compared, Jacobus, p. 200, n.15) D. For about 1000 years, Europe went into a period of time known as the dark ages. Roman Catholicism was the dominant spiritual-political power during this time, but she still had to contend with masses of dissenters who were scattered in small churches throughout Europe. 1. In 1453, Constantinople, the capital of the eastern part of the Holy Roman Empire fell to the Turks. In the ensuing flight, its citizens, many of whom were Christians and Greek scholars, dispersed widely into western Europe, carrying with them scores of Greek copies of the Scriptures. 2. As a result of this sudden release of suppressed information the next 100 years saw a great awakening from the sleep of the dark ages. Now we see the Greek N.T.'s of Erasmus (1516, 1522), Stunica (1522), Stephens (1546, 1550, 1551, 1559), Beza (five editions from 1559-1598), and Elzevir (1624). E. The Waldensians had a tremendous influence on the Protestant reformers. The The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 12 Waldensians were independent churches that can be traced far back into pre-Reformation history and they had a record of standing against the Roman Catholic church and its text. 1. In the preface to the 1st French Bible, the translators say of the Valdenses: “They have always had the full enjoyment of the heavenly truth contained in the Scriptures, ever since they were enriched with the same by the apostles; having in fair manuscripts preserved the entire Bible in their native tongue, from generation to generation.” (Concise History of Baptists, G. H. Orchard, p. 257) 2. Olivetan, a Waldensian, translated his Bible into French, which became known as the Olivetan Bible (1535). This in turn, became the basis for the Geneva Bible, the dominant English version up until 1611. 3. Luther used the Tepl Bible, considered to be a pre-Reformation German translation of a Waldensian Bible. This spurred him to use the Greek text of Erasmus to translate the Luther Bible. 4. An Italian version of a Waldensian Bible was translated, called the Diodati (1607). 5. The AV 1611 translators had four Waldensian influenced Bibles and six Waldensian Bibles to access. F. A Spanish Version (1569) and a Czech Version (1602) were based upon the Received Text. G. A number of English Bibles leading up to the King James Bible used the Received Text: Tyndale’s Bible (1525), the Coverdale Bible (1535), the Rogers Bible (1537), the Matthews Bible (1537), the Taverner Bible (1539), the Great Bible (1539-41), the Geneva Bible (1557-60), and the Bishops’ Bible (1568). H. Finally, the King James Bible (AV 1611) was produced from the Masoretic Text and Received Text. It quickly outpaced and displaced all previous English versions and became the dominant spiritual and moral force for the next three hundred years. 1. Cultures which were under the sway of the AV 1611 enjoyed its fruits of evangelism, liberty of conscience, political liberty, justice, strong morals, prosperity, etc. 2. Ethics were based upon the moral absolutes of an absolute authority deemed to be given by God Himself. There was no doubt as to what constituted proper sexual behavior or legitimate marriage or whether the deliberate termination of a pregnancy was the killing of human life. 3. But something happened which reshaped the thinking of Western (particularly English-speaking) civilization about the Book which they once thought of as being the very word of God. 4. Remember, as noted many times already, Satan could not eliminate the Scriptures because of the faithful promise of God to preserve them. But he could eliminate their effect by casting doubt upon them. XVIII. An overview of the last two hundred years or so shows that there have been two major “doubt attacks” leveled against the Holy Scriptures which have diminished their influence in the cultures they once shaped for the better and these have paved the way for the deception of the nations. A. The introduction of the theory of old earth/long geologic ages (uniform processes over eons of time) and its attendant Darwinian theory of macroevolution (species to species change over time) has caused great doubt in people about the credibility of the Bible. B. The rise of a concocted “need” for Bible revision and the subsequent ongoing proliferation of “a = non-a” bibles (particularly in the English language) has ultimately caused nothing but doubt in the word of God. C. One could expect the irreligious, atheist or humanist element of any given culture to The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 13 advance the old earth / Darwinian model of origins since they do not like the idea of being accountable to God and this theory accommodates their desire. D. The real damage to the influence of the Bible has been done by religious men, churchmen, so-called Christian leaders. 1. Christianity by and large (particularly its leadership) surrendered the field to the anti-God humanistic philosophy of evolution, preferring to accommodate it, adopt it and assimilate it rather than fight it with sound Scriptural doctrine (and good science). 2. Similarly, Christianity and its leadership have undermined the credibility of God's word and people's trust in it by advancing the deception that only the original autographs could be the word of God. 3. The focus of this study is the doubt cast on God's word by the promotion of the idea (through Bible revisionist theory) that we do not have God's word. 4. Mind that both of these errors share a theme: a coronation of human wisdom over the wisdom of God (ROM 1:22-25; 1CO 1:20-21). This will be a very relevant concept as we look into the underpinnings and beginnings of the majority of modern Bible versions. XIX. One of the arguments used by modern Bible revisers is that the older the manuscript, the closer it should be to the truth. A. With relatively recent manuscript finds in the last 200 years or so pre-dating manuscripts used by the AV 1611 translators (going back to the 4th century), we supposedly now have a better Bible. B. Problem: People lied and made mistakes before the 4th century. Corruption of the text of God's word started well before 300 A.D. GEN 3:1-7; ROM 1:25; 2TH 2:2; 2:17. C. Beware of the “older manuscript” faulty premise (older = better). 1. A later manuscript may not read the same as an older one. 2. But if the reading on the later manuscript can be proven to pre-date the older manuscript (for example, church fathers in even older documents quoting the text of the later manuscript as being Scripture), then all the older manuscript can claim is that its paper is older, not its reading. 3. Conversely, what if the older manuscript can be proven to have been the product of a corrupt hand? Does its age redeem it? D. Beware also of the “older manuscript” blowfish ploy. 1. There are primarily only a few older manuscripts that form the basis of modern textual criticism. 2. It has been noted by critics of the 19th C. Bible revisers that those who directed the course of the 1881 Revision Committee consistently steered it towards two old Roman Catholic manuscripts. XX. Corruption of the text of Scripture through human frailty (typographical errors, etc.) is one thing. Corrupting Scripture deliberately because of a particular bias is where the real danger lies. A. God has given strong warnings against such corrupting of Scripture. PRO 30:5-6; REV 22:18-19; DEU 4:2-3. B. DEU 4:2-3 shows a connection with Baal worship. “The Baal, as the head of each worshipping group, is the source of all the gifts of nature; as the god of fertility all the produce of the soil is his, and his adherents bring to him their tributes of firstfruits. He is the presiding genius, patron or cause of all growth and fertility, and baalism, originating, The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 14 probably, in the observation of the fertilizing effect of rains and streams upon the receptive and reproductive soil, became gross nature worship. Joined with the baals there are naturally found corresponding female figures known as Ashtoreth, embodiments of Ashtoreth. In accordance with primitive ideas which assume that it is possible to control or aid the powers of nature by the practice of 'sympathetic magic', the cult of the baals and Ashtaroth was characterized by gross sensuality and licentiousness.” (Encyclopedia Brittanica, Vol.2, 14th edition, p.834) C. Around 306 B.C., Ptolemy Soter, ruler of Egypt. established a school in Alexandria, Egypt. For the next 300 years, until Alexandria was subjugated by the Romans in 30 B.C., the intellectual activity centered around scientific and literary pursuits. 1. The second period of intellectual activity was from 30 B.C. to 642 A.D. when the Arabs destroyed Alexandria. The predominant movement of this period was of a “...character largely determined by Oriental gnosticism and containing Jewish and later, Christian elements. The second Alexandrian school resulted in the speculative philosophy of the Neoplatonists and the religious philosophy of the Gnostics and early church fathers.” (Ibid, Vol.1, p.581) 2. Gnosticism is a system of philosophy that incorporates the basic tenets of pagan, mystery religions which boast a mystic revelation and secret knowledge. a. Gnostics believe that one must be equipped with sacred formulas and symbols in order to secure heaven. b. They profess the doctrine of emanations, which asserts that the supreme being emanated a lesser being which in turn emanated a lesser being and so on. This supreme divinity correlates with Baal, the god of fertility, the life source of the universe. D. In Scripture, Egypt is seen as a place that opposes the interests of God. 1. Egypt was renowned for its earthly wisdom. ACT 7:22; 1KI 4:30. 2. Egypt oppressed the O.T. church as well as resisting the God thereof, His word and His ministers. EXO 5:1-2; 2TI 3:8. 3. God called His church out of Egypt. HOS 11:1. 4. God commanded His church to not return to Egypt. DEU 17:16. 5. God straitly commanded His church to not appeal to Egypt for help. ISA 30:1-3; 31:1. 6. Certain Alexandrian Jews opposed the truth of Stephen. ACT 6:8-14. 7. Identifying with such a place as cursed Egypt is a questionable thing at best. c/w JOS 6:26. E. Alexandria, Egypt was the source of major corruption of some scripture manuscripts. “Looking down into this poisoned well of the past reveals: 1.) the reservoir of ‘ideas’ spawning much of the ‘New’ Age and 2.) the course of contamination found in the ‘New’ versions. The well fed by Egypt, Greece, and Rome is today ‘dished out’ to New Agers and New Christians alike. The ‘New’ versions agree in many particulars with the ‘New’ Age because they flow from the same source. We will examine the philosophies of six men: Saccas, Philo, Plato, Clement, Origen and Eusebius – to see why new versions have New Age leaven. We will trace the origen of the handful of ancient papyrus and uncial New Testament manuscripts which were altered to agree with the esoteric philosophies of these men. These manuscripts (Aleph, B, D, P75, etc.) were resurrected by Westcott and Hort to ‘correct’ the Traditional Greek text [ed. the Received Text]. New versions are based on this corrupted Greek text.” (New Age Bible Versions, G.A. Riplinger, p. 516) 1. Philo. He was a Jew educated at Alexandria. He attempted to synthesize the O.T. The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 15 with Greek philosophy. He allegorized the O.T. and believed God to be without quality. He thought God could not have contact with finite things without violating his purity and loftiness. God therefore generated the logos or supreme idea through whom the world is created and who is the mediator between God and man. This is gnosticism. 2. Clement of Alexandria. This man played a founding role in the school at Alexandria, around 200 A.D. a. He embraced the heresies of Tatian, who had already imbibed the gnostic position as witnessed in his work, “Christianity.” (The Diatessoron of Tatian, by J. Hamlyn Hill, p.9) b. Clement expressly intended to mix Christian teachings with pagan philosophies, which he did. (The Revision Revised, by Dean Burgon, p.336) 3. Origen. A student of Clement, educated at Alexandria. a. Origen was for some time the head of the philosophical school at Alexandria. He is the prime culprit of corruption of the few Old and New Testament manuscripts which were in Egypt. He did most of his corrupting work in the early third century. From Pg. 526 of New Age Bible Versions by Gail Riplinger we read the following, “The History of Heresy calls Origin a ‘Christian Gnostic’ who was pronounced a ‘heretic’ by a series of general synods.” b. “Blavatsky summons Origen dozens of times in her Isis Unveiled to pander her occult doctrines. Her Theosophical Glossary places him where he belongs, as a “disciple” of neo-platonism at the Alexandria School of Ammonius Saccas. She sees Clement and Origen as apologists for her occult world view: ‘It is maintained on purely historical grounds that Origen…and even Clement had themselves been initiated into the Mysteries, before adding to the Neo-Platonism of the Alexandrian school that of the Gnostics, under a Christian veil.’” (Ibid) c. There are many more details which can be stated, but for sake of brevity he was a pagan gnostic who was declared a heretic because he held the following beliefs, all of which are contrary to the clear teaching of the Bible. These points are from Pg. 529 of New Age Bible Versions. (1) The Logos is subordinate to the Father and has some characteristics similar to the Logos of the Gnostics. (2) The soul is preexistent; Jesus took on some preexistent human soul. (3) There was no physical resurrection of Christ nor will there be a second coming. Man will not have a physical resurrection. (4) Hell is nonexistent; purgatory, of which Paul and Peter must partake, does exist. (5) All, including the devil, will be reconciled to God. (6) The sun, moon and stars are living creatures. (7) Emasculation, of which he partook, is called for for males. d. He maintained a three-fold sense of Scripture: grammatico-historical, moral, and the pneumatic or allegorical sense, which he believed was the highest. (1) He stated that: “The Scriptures are of little use to those who understand them as they were written.” The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 16 (Origen, McClintock and Strong Cyclopedia) (2) On Pg. 528 of New Age Bible Versions, further information is given from Corrine Heline author of New Age Bible Interpretation: “Cites Origen and his belief that ‘The entire bible is written so that it has one meaning for the masses of the people and another for occult students.’” e. Origen compiled the Hexapla, which was a multi-version O.T. in 6 columns and made a Greek translation of the O.T. in the 5th column (now called LXX or Septuagint). (1) He added the Apocrypha, which was never recognized in the Jewish canon of Scripture, nor by the Lord Jesus Christ. (2) He admitted to willful alterations of texts which did not conform to his reasonings. (Berlin, Origenes Werke, Vol.10, pp.385-388) f. This man, probably more than any other, poisoned the pen of the scribes who should have adhered to the existing apostolic Received Text. 4. Eusebius. He was an admirer of Origen and a student of his philosophy. He was ordered by Constantine to publish fifty copies of the Bible to be used in the churches of the empire. He chose Origen's translations for the task. 5. Jerome. About 380 A.D., he produced a Latin version of the Bible known as the Vulgate. It was based on the corrupted texts as well, containing the Apocrypha. Jerome admitted that the Apocrypha was not Scripture, but the Pope endorsed them. 6. The Jesuits eventually produced a Bible in English based on the Vulgate to counteract the Waldensian-influenced English Bibles which were gaining great acceptance. The N.T. appeared in Rheims, France around 1582; the O.T. from Douay being compiled in 1609-1610. The Douay has been continually up-dated to keep pace with the King James Version. Catholic Cardinal Wiseman acknowledges this. (“Douay Bible,” The Catholic Encyclopedia) 7. The Codex Vaticanus (B) turned up in 1481 A.D. In 1859, Tischendorf discovered Codex Sinaiticus (Aleph) in a wastebasket in a convent (he should have left it there.) They are thought to be two surviving copies of Eusebius' fifty. a. Believing B and Aleph to be the purest texts, Westcott & Hort prepared a Greek N.T. They dominated the Revision Committee of 1871 which produced the Revised Version of 1881. Their Greek N.T. altered the Traditional or Received Texts in more than 5700 places. b. Westcott and Hort were admitted evolutionists, aeonists, and Mariolaters, which would account for their tenacious clinging to the two Catholic texts when they had 3000 manuscripts available. c. Furthermore, Westcott and Hort were spiritualists who had strong leanings towards occult philosophies. They founded at least two societies which were steeped in “new-age” pursuits: the Hermes Club and the Ghostly Guild (Hermes is acknowledged among occultists as another name for Satan). (1) The manuscripts which they preferred, interestingly enough, were from the pens of corrupted individuals like Origen and Marcion, who were principals of the Gnostic theology which sought to synthesize occult, pagan religion with Christianity. (2) It is also interesting that Madame Helen Blavatsky, one of the most important occultists of all time, derived much of her Luciferian The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 17 doctrine from Philo's Alexandrian school. She has nothing but praise for the efforts of Westcott and Hort, believing them to have done great service for the cause of Lucifer by revising the bible to reflect the “secret doctrine.” d. Hort--On the coming Revision: “The errors and prejudices, which we agree in wishing to remove, can surely be more wholesomely and also more effectively reached by individual efforts of an indirect kind than by combined open assault. At present, very many orthodox but rational men are being unawares acted on by influences which will assuredly bear good fruit in due time, if the process is allowed to go on quietly; but I cannot help fearing that a premature crisis would frighten back many into the merest traditionalism.” (From Life and Letters, Vol.1, p.400) (1) Later Hort would write, “I am in favor of indirect dealing.” (2) Contrast this with JOH 18:20; 2CO 4:2. e. Hort--On the textual changes: “I do not think the significance of their existence is generally understood. It is quite possible to judge the value of what appears to be trifling alterations merely by reading them one after another. Taken together, they have often important bearings which few would think of at first....It is, one can hardly doubt, the beginning of a new period in Church history.” (From Life of Hort, Vol.2, p.102) e. Westcott--On the Revision: “The value of the Revision is most clearly seen when the student considers together a considerable group of passages, which bear upon some article of faith. The accumulation of small details then produces its full effect.” (From The Four Gospels, Streeter, p.30) 8. Westcott and Hort's Greek Text, based upon the corrupt Roman Catholic (Vaticanus, Sinaiticus, etc.) texts which are based upon the corrupt texts of Origen, are substantially the rootstock of modern bibles. a. This includes the NASB and the NIV. b. The NKJV is a hybrid which purports to be in the same family of texts as the KJV, but has numerous readings from the Catholic manuscripts. 9. Some defenders of modern versions say there is nothing to the claim that those bibles reflect Catholic heritage or are sympathetic to Catholic theology. a. If the NIV, Living Bible, Good News Bible, for example, did not concur with Catholic theology, why would they be available in Catholic editions with an official imprimatur? b. The KJV has never been thus available. 10. The following is a sampling of how modern versions accommodate Catholicism. a. The evidence is substantial that the religious monstrosity called “Mystery, Babylon the Great” (detailed in Revelation) well describes the Roman Catholic Church (RCC). b. The NIV and NASB have made a significant change which directly affects the exegesis of REV 17:9-10. (1) KJV: “...The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. And THERE are seven kings....” (2) NIV/NASB: “...The seven heads are seven hills on which the woman sits, and THEY are seven kings....” (3) This change tries to make a connection between the hills and the kings, which detracts from the conclusion that the seven hills are The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 18 the city of Rome. c. Rome historically eliminated contrary Scriptures along with their owners. (1) The KJV in REV 19:2 says that God shall avenge the blood of His servants “...at her hand.” (2) The NIV has omitted the words “at her hand” so the harlot won't be caught red-handed. d. The KJV in HEB 1:3 says, "when he had BY HIMSELF purged our sins.." (1) The NIV/NASB omit the phrase “by himself.” This accommodates the doctrine of Mary being a co-mediatrix and co-redemptrix. (2) The NIV also denies the finished salvation work by rendering the verse, “...after He had PROVIDED purification for sins...” He didn't accomplish it---only made provision for it. e. The KJV in MAT 1:25 says Jesus was "...her FIRSTBORN son..." The NIV/NASB omit “firstborn,” accommodating the RCC notion that Mary was a perpetual virgin. f. The KJV in JOH 6:33 says, “For the bread of God is HE which cometh down from heaven...” The RSV and NASB change “he” to “that” and accommodate the RCC heresy of transubstantiation. g. The KJV in 1CO 9:27 reads, “...I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection.” (1) NIV: “I beat my body...” (2) NASB: “I buffet my body...” (3) LB: “I punish my body and treat it roughly...” (4) These renderings accommodate the RCC notions of will-worship asceticism (monasticism, celibacy, the extant practices of ritual self-denial and self-punishment like flagellation). Note 1TI 4:1-3. h. The KJV in 1CO 8:4 says, “...an idol is nothing...” The NASB renders this, “...there is no such thing as an idol...,” thus accommodating the RCC use of religious icons. i. The KJV in ACT 17:22 says of idolaters, “...in all things ye are too superstitious.” A number of modern versions read like this, “...in every way you are very religious.” Again, this is sympathetic to idols and icons in worship---marks of the RCC. j. The KJV in MAR 7:4 says, “And when they come from the market, except they wash...” and then describes other articles which the Jews ritually washed. (1) The NASB renders that verse, “And when they come...they do not eat unless they cleanse themselves...” and then describes other articles which the Jews ritually washed. (2) It attaches a footnote which defines “cleanse” as “sprinkle,” thus intimating that these washings were sprinklings, which accommodates the notion that baptism is by sprinkling, since the underlying Greek word here is baptizo. (3) This is manifestly wrong. These ritual washings were provably immersions and the Scripture distinguishes between washings and sprinklings. LEV 6:27; NUM 19:21. k. The KJV in JOH 1:18 reads, “...the only begotten Son...,” thus supporting the Biblical doctrine of the Incarnate Sonship of Christ. The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 19 (1) The NASB reads, “...the only begotten God...,” thus agreeing with the pagan and Mormon concepts of gods begetting other gods. (2) This also accommodates the Catholic (and Protestant and some Baptist) heresies of the eternal sonship of Christ, to wit, that He was eternally begotten in a Trinitarian sense. The Conspiracy of the Ages 9-27-08 Page 20