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China Has Textual Critics, Too

By Justin Johnson

The most recent report about the Chinese government’s revision of the Bible is disturbing, but of course the West has been revising the Bible since before Mao Zedong.

This week a Catholic News service reported that a Chinese University textbook has drastically altered the Bible story of the women caught in adultery in John 8:1-11.

As the story goes, the woman was caught in adultery and brought to Jesus. Jesus turns to the accusers and says, “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”

After saying this and writing on the ground, the group departs, leaving Jesus with the woman.

It is at this point of the story where the accounts diverge. In the Bible, Jesus ends the account by saying, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.”

In the Chinese textbook, Jesus stoned the sinner to death saying, “I too am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead.”

This would be a perfect time for the shocked face emoji.

The Catholics who reported it were outraged, and the headline outrage continued as Protestants and Evangelical news services picked up the story.

What a shocking travesty that the Bible would be changed in such a way! Christians hold the Bible as the sacred and holy word of God, infallible, and not to be altered or changed.

English Revisions Predate Atheist China

These corruptions are outrageous. However, antichristian Communist governments are the not the first people to revise this Bible story.

If we are to listen to the elite textual critics and translators for the past 150 years in Europe and America the entire story needs to be removed!

Enter shock emoji once more.

Unless you have a King James Bible (or a Bible in line with it), the translators of your Bible think the story is not part of the Bible to begin with.

American evangelical textual critic Dan Wallace goes as far as to say it could be a sin (of the textual critical kind) to preach the story from a pulpit.

The story is found in almost every English translation, but you will find a footnote on John 7:53 that says it should not belong or is not found in the earliest manuscripts.

The translators do not think it is part of the Bible, but they print it in the Bible anyway fearing poor sales and reception by the populace. Their courage and integrity go as far as a footnote.

Where’s the Outrage About Bible Changes in English?

The change made to a Chinese textbook is disturbing and something not unexpected from an atheistic materialist Communist regime which has destroys churches, arrests ministers, and forces worship to their Chairman.

However, where is the outcry in the free and Christian West over the entire passage being removed from the text?

If the periscope adulterae (John 8:1-11) is not authentic, then who cares if the Chinese government changes it. It is an issue of preservation and authority. The King James Bible stands alone among the major translations including the story in the inspired text.

It should only be outrageous to those who actually believe the King James Bible is God’s perfectly preserved words.

At least the Chinese textbook contains most of the story except for the obvious corruption in the end. If it were up to most Western textual critics, the entire story would be thrown in the trash.

The change should matter far less to people who believe John 8:1-11 is not inspired scripture.

This includes the producers of the ESV, NIV, NASV, and most every other recent translation. For shame.

Changes to the Bible matters. This change in China is outrageous and blasphemous, because the story is part of inspired Scripture.

The King James Bible is the perfectly preserved words of God in English because it includes John 8:1-11 as inspired scripture when the other English translations don’t.

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Published: September 26, 2020
Last Modified: September 27, 2020
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