House Churches and Newer Bible Translations

Comment/Question:

“I believe liberalism is rampant in the church today. These new versions corrupt the word of God. And the house church movement is simply a part of the Boston movement and should be rejected by all loyal brethren. These are new ideas that are leading people away from God.”

Response/Answer:

“The churches of Asia greet you. Aquila and Prisca greet you heartily in the Lord, with the church that is in their house” (I Corinthians 16:19, New American Standard Bible). Greet the brethren who are in Laodicea and also Nympha and the church that is in her house” (Colossians 4:15). House churches are a new idea? They are simply part of a modern, man-made movement? That is totally and absolutely incorrect. We seem to have forgotten that to be “liberal” means to reject the authority of the Word of God. The Word authorizes meeting in houses. If we are to be a New Testament fellowship, guided by and ruled by the Scriptures, then we must submit to the Scriptures. They clearly authorize the use of private homes for church meetings.

It may be true that modern movements corrupt authorized practices, but that does not make the practice liberal or wrong. For centuries people have used the King James Version (and many others as well) to teach error. That does not mean we should throw out that version, or any other, just because someone took something that was good and used it for evil.

I really don’t know what to do about the newer versions. The Bible is totally silent on this issue, so I know I cannot make a binding rule or law for others. I deeply believe we must listen to and be guided by God’s revealed will, as written in the Scripture. But the Bible was written in Hebrew and Greek, not English. And we must make every effort to translate ancient texts into clearly understandable English (or German, or Spanish, etc.) so that modern people (who cannot read ancient Hebrew or Greek) can still hear the saving message of salvation.

This is what took place in 1611 when King James Version was first published. The language was modern and up-to-date for that era.

When that version was first published, the Catholic church fought its dissemination with all its energy. The Catholic church believed that the only authorized version was in Latin, and that only the priests could read and interpret it. That was wrong then, and the same thinking is wrong today. Most people in the world cannot easily understand 16th century English (as most couldn’t read Latin back then). Today we need good translations in modern English (and other languages) so that all people, of all walks of life, can hear God’s word and be saved, without any specialists having to interpret it from Latin or 16th century English.

We can debate about which modern translations are better or worse (and some are terrific while others are terrible), but we still need to keep translating the ancient and unchanging message into modern languages so that the entire world can learn and be saved.

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2 comments on “House Churches and Newer Bible Translations

  1. Pingback: Which Translation of the Bible Is Authorized By God? | Refresh My Heart In Christ

  2. “When that version was first published, the Catholic church fought its dissemination with all its energy. The Catholic church believed that the only authorized version was in Latin, and that only the priests could read and interpret it.”

    That’s just not true. There were lots of versions (most in German) that were just fine. The problem is that Protestants have a tendency to change the Scriptures for personal gain. If you wold like to learn about the canon and versions there is a book that you should read called Why Catholic Bibles are Bigger. It is a good book for you because it will show you how a lot of your theories are built on anti-Catholic propaganda and not fact.

    Pax

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