In the second half of the 19th century, the influence of the Oxford Movement was huge, and virtually every Anglican parish church changed from being a 'preaching house' to one where the altar was the focus of worship. Some parishes went further, defining themselves as Anglo-catholic, and evidence of their position survives today in the form of elaborate redecorations in the English churches. The Oxford Movement's influence on modern Anglican theology in England remains central, and Newman is often referred to as 'the father of Vatican II'.
Part of the fruit of this new movement by Rome was the English Revised Version of the Bible, which was not what it claimed to be. It was created by Westcott and Hort, great admirers of Newman and the Oxford Movement - and the Jesuits. The Jesuits met in Italy in 1825 to speak of the great work. They intended to take control of the Bible once again; the main target was the King James Version which they wanted to eradicate.
Modern Bible Translations
The starting point for understanding the problem with modern Bible translations are the falsely revered Alexandrian manuscripts, Codex Vaticanus & Sinaiticus. These are highly inferior manuscripts, but through successful marketing to the churches by Rome's agents, have been accepted by the majority of ministers and church leaders as authoritative, under the philosophy of 'the more you hear it, the more it is taken for truth.'
Sinaticus and Vaticanus are considered by most Bible scholars to be the oldest New Testament manuscripts available. They date back to the 4th century. Since they are considered to be the oldest, the scholars automatically consider them to be the best and most reliable manuscripts. But are they? Sinaticus and Vaticanus disagree with about 90-95% of all known manuscripts, and they even disagree among themselves. Both have a long history of corruption and obscurity (and almost certain tampering).
The Vaticanus is so named because it is contained in the Vatican library (several strikes against it right there); it is the sole property of the Vatican. It was discovered on a shelf there in 1481, where it had been forgotten for centuries. It is closely guarded by the Catholic church, and only certain individuals are allowed to see it. When a scholar is allowed to read it, they are watched carefully, and if the guard thinks that they have looked at a certain passage for too long or too closely, they will force the scholar to leave the manuscript. The Vatican has released a photographic copy of Vaticanus, but even this is suspect because they may have altered the text in the copy.
Sinaticus is so named because it was found in 1844 at St. Catherine's Monastery. located at the base of Mt. Sinai. It was found in a trash can, waiting to be burned. The monks knew that it was worthless, especially since it had been written over and corrected several times after it had been initially written.
Sinaticus and Vaticanus disagree with each other at 3000+ times in the Gospels alone. It is estimated that the two manuscripts disagree with each other at least 7000 times. These are major disagreements, not spelling or punctuation. Such disagreements mean that at least one, if not both, are in error at that specific passage.
There is much more to be said against them, but let's move on. I will write a separate article on the details.
At any rate, the Codex Sinaticus had over 14,000 "corrections" to it, and of course the Pope loved it. Shortly, from the Vatican Library emerged Codex Vaticanus, which Rome said was more ancient still. Manuscript experts deny its age or authenticity . However, these two MS were combined into what is now known as the biblical Greek text used throughout the 20th Century as the basis for all new modern translations.
In 1967, the United Bible Society entered into an agreement with the Vatican to undertake hundreds of Bible translation projects worldwide, using 'functional equivalence principles.' (Source: Eugene A. Nida Biblical Institute.) The term, ' functional equivalence' is a fancy way of saying "paraphrase." A paraphrase is putting it into other words - not the words of God, in the case of His Word, the Bible - but in the words of someone else. Each of these paraphrased editions became farther and farther removed from the original languages.
"Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God." Romans 10:17 . How do these 'words of others' influence the "faith that was once delivered to the saints?"
Example of changing God's Word. Almost all of the modern translations misquote Luke 18:8. Here is the NIV: " ...when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” The Greek reads "Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He find THE faith on earth." The definite article "the" is in the Greek. Interestingly, when I looked this up online I found the wrong translation even in the KJV, which either means it has an incorrect modern version, or that it was left out online. I found the Young's and Amplified Bibles to be correct online, and several commentaries had it correctly, including Scofield (KJV), hated so fervently by all of the New Age people. The addition of the article "the" makes all the difference in the world, since it speaks of faith in the whole body of Christian doctrine.
"...if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Matthew 24:24
In October 2008 delegates from the American Bible Society presented Pope Benedict XVI a special polyglot Bible that bears the seals of both the Vatican and the ABS. The ABS also publishes the Contemporary English Version, a newer Bible that has now completely removed the word "Antichrist" from its translation. In its place they have "enemy of Christ," removing half its original meaning. "Anti" means "against" and "instead of" - against Christ and a replacement for Christ, making provision for the man of sin. The understanding of Bible prophecy will surely be affected by how the words of God are translated. Some are even predicting that a new International Bible is being planned, one that will completely omit the Book of Revelation.
Through various Bible societies the Vatican now influences biblical translations in hundreds of languages around the world. The question all Christians should ask is this: After 1000 years of persecuting and murdering the saints, has Rome now turned over a new leaf, or is she simply pursuing new tactics to achieve an ancient agenda?
"And Jesus answering said to them, 'Take heed that no one may lead you astray..." Matt. 24:4