By David W. Daniels
What if you could buy a Bible with your own church`s doctrines written between its pages? The helps in study Bibles often contain a doctrinal slant. But what if the actual scriptures were "re-translated" to teach your favorite doctrines? Wait a minute. That would be tampering with the word of God! NOBODY does that! Or do they?
That is exactly what happened in The Clear Word Bible (2003) by Jack J. Blanco. His personal beliefs and cultic dogmas are written right into the Bible verses themselves. Here are some examples:
Jesus Christ is ... who?
In the KJV, 1 Thessalonians 4:16 is well-known: "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the Archangel..." But The Clear Word reads: "When Christ descends from heaven as the Archangel..." Wait a minute! Is Jesus the Archangel (a created being), or is he the Son of God? Let`s check other verses to make sure.
Jude 1:9 (KJV) begins like this: "Yet Michael the Archangel, when contending with the devil..." But The Clear Word says: "...the Lord Jesus, also called Michael the Archangel..." In Revelation 12:7 The Clear Word says: "God`s Son Michael and the loyal angels fought against the dragon and his angels." There you have it. God the Son, Jesus Christ is claimed to be "God`s Son Michael," "the Archangel." The only things "clear" about The Clear Word are the doctrines this man has added to holy scripture!
To be fair, the cover says "An expanded paraphrase." But it looks like a Bible, is formatted like a Bible and was originally called The Clear Word Bible! So it`s a Bible, and it clearly adds concepts to scripture that support Blanco`s cultic doctrines. But he doesn`t stop there.
He also takes away from God`s words. In Revelation 1:11 The Clear Word removes, "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last." In Colossians 1:14 it removes that redemption is "through his (Christ`s) blood." In Ephesians 3:9 it omits that God created all things "by Jesus Christ." Not only did Blanco add doctrines, but the Bible he worked from was a perverted Bible—from the Alexandrian stream of manuscripts that also omit these words. He didn`t trust the KJV, based on the preserved stream of Bibles from Antioch. (For more information on the two manuscript streams see Did the Catholic Church Give Us the Bible?)
Is it any wonder that The Clear Word even changed the scriptures that forbid adding to and taking from God`s words? Revelation 22:18 only warns not to "add anything contrary to what is written." And what is the punishment? Not that God will take away his part from the "book of life." He only cannot eat from the "tree of life." Big deal. Of course, The Clear Word also changed Psalm 12:7, no longer promising that God will preserve His words, but only "protect us and keep us safe" like the NIV and other Alexandrian Bibles.
God`s words are perfectly clear in the real Bible: "Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar" (Proverbs 30:6). And The Clear Word adds to God`s words. So it is a lying Bible. I ask again: once you start changing God`s words, where will you stop?
So choose your Bible carefully. God gave English speakers one Bible: the King James Bible, His preserved words in English. It is the only literal English translation of God`s preserved words and their correct meanings. And if anybody changes those words, according to the word of God, he is a liar.