A new bible translationfrom the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) group

The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) believes that we are in the “end times harvest” and as you could read in the previous articles, that dominionist movement asserts that God is restoring the lost offices of church governance, namely the offices of Prophet and Apostle, having present day apostles who support a new period and the 5° House in the development of Christianity. When we look at some of the churches of that religious group and hear how they easily play with bible verses to underline something they want to bring over, it does not surprise us they would love to find a bible taking such liberties as they do.

To translate the Word of God is a very hard and demanding job. It is also a very dangerous undertaking because the Giver of that Word warns us not to add anything to it. But how can we bring over the right idea and use the right words to translate that old Hebrew, Aramaic and ancient Greek into contemporary language?

Brian Simmons began his biblical studies with The New Tribes Bible Institute also known as the New Tribes Mission (NTM) now known as Ethnos360, a  theologically evangelical Christian mission organization based in Sanford, Florida, United States. NTM has approximately 3,300 missionaries in more than 20 nations. He continued on to earn his doctorate with Wagner Leadership Institute, which trains leaders to join in the movement known as the New Apostolic Reformation, an organization Charles Peter Wagner helped found. He got his doctoral thesis published, Prayer Partners with Jesus, available on Amazon.com.

As a believer in his task of missionary duties, laying the foundation for a global church, having the power and authority to execute God’s plans and purposes on earth, he must have worked hard to bring a Bible Translation which could be welcome not only by the NARapostles but also by the general public.

Claiming there will be a reformation greater in scale than the Protestant Reformation they also needed a bible translation underlining what their movement tries to convince the world. Being aware that there are enough Bible Translations which believe the literal meaning should have priority, that the Hebrew and Greek words should equal English ones, they believe there really is no such thing as a consistent word-for-word translation. They say

Yes literal meaning matters, but the full meaning of a passage doesn’t transfer from word-to-word.

In their general teaching they are convinced that the present main church of the ‘Old Order’ has mislead the people and has gone astray. Steeped in mysticism NAR apostles by the years got lots of people interested in their group because they were very successful in playing on emotionalism. Mr. Simmons and the people around him claim to have received a direct revelation from God and many allege that Jesus and angels visit them in person. Some of them even declare that they have visited heaven many times and had conversations with Jesus as well as the Prophets and Apostles. Brian Simmons counts also on such meetings with Jesus for having done such great work trying to bring over the Wishes of God.

Convinced to be anointed by the laying of hands to represent and speak for God here on Earth Simmons and these “Super Apostles” find themselves equal to the original Apostles – the ones who witnessed Jesus’ life, death and resurrection and were appointed by Christ Himself to the office. Feeling that they are the new chosen ones, commissioned by God, they find their authority may not be questioned and that they bring to the world that what God wants us to know in this time and age.

BroadStreet Publishing as the publisher of the NAR Bible “The Passion Translation” represents the passion of those ‘apostles’ for creating meaningful, inspirational products that share God’s truth to the world with beauty, quality, and creativity. The publishing house is thrilled to partner with Dr. Brian Simmons in this groundbreaking attempt to re-introduce the passion and fire of the Bible to English readers, keep the translation of the Bible in step with changes in the English language. They say

Our translation philosophy is that the meaning of God’s original message to the world has priority over its exact form, which is why our goal is to communicate the meaning of Scripture as clearly and naturally as possible in modern English.

Not being the first time Brian Simmons worked on a translation of the Scriptures, having authored several books, he took some years free to concentrate on this difficult task of bringing a modern English translation. As a genuine, gifted, intelligent and godly man with a passion for Jesus, who has put his best work into a project for years, in order to serve the church,  he must have sacrificed a lot and had to think hard

to trigger inside of every English speaker an overwhelming response to the truth of the Bible as it is unfiltered by religious jargon – unfolding the deep mysteries of the Scriptures in the language of love, the language of the heart. Accurate to the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek texts, but passionately powerful in a contemporary form.

Though about accuracy we must ask if certain words are not additions brought on by the teachings and thoughts of the NAR movement. We cannot neglect the impression we get that certain thoughts of that movement may have been so in-breath by the author that perhaps he himself is not conscious of NAR teachings and practices such as “prophetic singing,” the “transference of an anointing,” and the issuing of “apostolic decrees,” are presented as a supported good by the Bible – which of course is false.

When we look at some verses we see that The Passion “translation” inserts all kinds of concepts, words and ideas of which the original gives no hint whatsoever (despite the occasional footnotes which say “implied by the context”).

In Galatians 2:19, hina theō zēsō, which simply means “that I might live for God”, in the TPT has been “translated” as “so that I can live for God in heaven’s freedom”. To be clear: there is no indication whatsoever in the Greek of that sentence, or the rest of the chapter, that either heaven or its freedom are in view in this text. Here we can find that the translator has gone further than just translate or bringing over the context. It is namely an interpolation, or a gloss, or (more bluntly) an addition.

An other passages brings the apostle Paul greeting an other follower of Jeshua, also saying some things which can not be found in the original:

My name is Paul and I’m joined by my spiritual son Timothy, both of us passionate servants of Jesus, the Anointed One. (Philipians 1:1 Translated by the ASV as: Paul and Timothy, {1 } servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus that are at Philippi, with the {2 } bishops and deacons: {1) Gr bondservants 2) Or overseers })

and bringing a totally different wording than the original, in the next verse

We decree over your lives the blessings of divine grace and supernatural peace. (Philipians 1:2 Translated by the ASV as: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.)

When Paul expresses his amazement that the Galatians are turning aside “to a different gospel” (eis heteron euangelion), we find for Galatians 1:6: “a distorted gospel of salvation by works.” whilst in the text

I marvel that ye are so quickly removing from him that called you in the grace of Christ unto a different gospel; (ASV)

no mention is made to works or even salvation.

In the above quotes it are only a few added words but there are also places where we can find entire clauses inserted for no obvious reason. So, in Romans 1:8, is written:

“I give thanks to God for all of you, because it’s through your conversion to Jesus Christ, that you are becoming well known. For the testimony of your strong, persistent faith is spreading throughout the world.”

For us being familiar with

“ First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, {1 } that your faith is proclaimed throughout the whole world. {1) Or because } (Ro 1:8 ASV)

there is the part of thanksgiving and proclaiming of faith. Faith constantly being spread abroad in the whole world (WNT). That there has to have been a conversion is acceptable, but who is telling that there is a “testimony of strong persistent faithof people who would become “well known”?

Why is “hoti hē pistis humōn katangelletai en holō tō kosmō?” rendered with “ that you are becoming well known“. It looks like the person by a conversion to the faith of Jesus followers will become famous, though the Bible has it of the faith becoming spread all over the world.

faith is spoken of throughout the whole world. (AKJV)

When we look at Psalms we do find

(#Ps 22:29-31): 29 There they are! They’re worshiping!
The wealthy of this world will feast in fellowship with him
right alongside the humble of heart,
bowing down to the dust, forsaking their own souls.
They will all come and worship this worthy King!
30 His spiritual seed a shall serve him.
Future generations will hear from us
about the wonders of the Sovereign Lord.
31 His generation yet to be born will glorify him.
And they will all declare, “It is finished!”

Where we normally can find

“ All the fat ones of the earth shall eat and worship: All they that go down to the dust shall bow before him, Even he that cannot keep his soul alive. A seed shall serve him; It shall be {1 } told of the Lord unto the next generation. {1) Or counted unto the Lord for his generations } They shall come and shall declare his righteousness Unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done it.” (Ps 22:29-31 ASV)

“All they that are fat upon the earth shall eat and worship; all they that go down to the dust shall bow before Him, for none can keep alive his own soul. A seed shall serve Him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation. They shall come and shall declare His righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that He hath done this.” (Ps 22:29-31 KJ21)

Also for Psalm 139:5

“ Thou hast beset me behind and before, And laid thy hand upon me.” (Ps 139:5 ASV)


5 You’ve gone into my future to prepare the way,

and in kindness you follow behind me

to spare me from the harm of my past. a

With your hand of love upon my life,

you impart a blessing to me.

which we can not consider a literal translation nor a paraphrase, because taking to much liberty in wording what is meant.

Also in verses 11-12 which says

“ If I say, Surely the darkness shall {1 } overwhelm me, {2 } And the light about me shall be night; {1) Or cover 2) Or Then the night shall be light about me } Even the darkness hideth not from thee, But the night shineth as the day: The darkness and the light are both alike to thee.” (Ps 139:11-12 ASV)

in the TPT we get

11 It’s impossible to disappear from you or to ask the darkness to hide me, for your presence is everywhere, bringing light into my night. 12 There is no such thing as darkness with you. The night, to you, is as bright as the day; there’s no difference between the two.

Strangely enough there are verses which become very short in this translation. Like in Revelation 2

“ Remember therefore whence thou art fallen, and repent and do the first works; or else I come to thee, and will move thy {1 } candlestick out of its place, except thou repent. {1) Gr lampstand } (Re 2:5 ASV)

Just becomes

5 Think about how far you have fallen! Repent

and gets the note:

The Greek word for “repent” is metanoia and means more than simply changing one’s mind. It means “to take another mind.” Every believer needs to turn from his or her error and take “another mind,” the mind of Christ.

The publishers present their Book as a ‘translation’ and not as a paraphrase, and even promotes it by saying

“The Passion Translation is a new, heart-level translation that expresses God’s fiery heart of love to this generation using Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic manuscripts, merging the emotion and life-changing truth of God’s Word.

… The Passion Translation is an excellent translation you can use as your primary text to seriously study God’s Word … the text has been interpreted from the original language, carrying its original meaning and giving you an accurate, reliable expression of God’s original message”.

They admit

we believe there really is no such thing as a consistent word-for-word translation. Yes literal meaning matters, but the full meaning of a passage doesn’t transfer from word-to-word. Our translation philosophy is that the meaning of God’s original message to the world has priority over its exact form, which is why our goal is to communicate the meaning of Scripture as clearly and naturally as possible in modern English.

We are not quite sure if Brian Simmons and other reviewers have sought to remain faithful to the original biblical languages by preserving their literal meaning, or if they where so taken by their NAR philosophy that they even did not come to see or hear they were adapting the words into their NAR teachings. It is not bad to try to be flexible enough to convey God’s original message in a way modern English speakers can understand, but we have to be very careful with that, not introducing extra thoughts.

As a reader you shall have to examine it, like we still have to examine it further to come to know if they succeeded to bring

a balanced translation that tries to hold both the Word’s literal meaning and original message in proper tension, resulting in an entirely new, fresh, fiery translation of God’s Word.

A big problem are also the notes when you look at them, all clearly based on trinitarian thinking but also pushing for that thought telling people something is not at all indicated in the original text.

For example the note for Luke 15: 32 where they give as text:

32 It’s only right to celebrate like this and be overjoyed, because this brother of yours was once dead and gone, but now he is alive and back with us again. He was lost but now he is found!’” a

Clarifying with the note

a 15:32 Jesus spoke three parables unveiling and revealing how the Trinity desires to bring people back through the Son, by the Spirit, to the Father. The Son came as a shepherd, seeking and sacrificing to find the lost sinner. The Spirit seeks the lost like the woman with the light of illumination for the lost coin until she found it. And the Father welcomes the returning sinner back to his house. It is the work of the Trinity to bring us back to God. In Matt. 28:19, it is the sequence of the Father, the Spirit, and the Son. Here in Luke 15, it is the Son, the Spirit, and the Father.

People have to treat this translation with caution. Prudence not only for the biblical text but even more wariness for the additional notes and clarifications.

Moments where Jesus says he is saying something they dare to translate:  “I am the I AM who speaks to you.” which comes from their trinitarian view, but is not written in the original bible text, where is simply written “Jesus said” or “I speak to you”.

A horrible translation error, or a purposeful act of twisting the Word of God we can find in Romans 10:17 where the change the word Kristos into ‘God’.

So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing, by the Word of God.

instead of

“ So belief cometh of hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” (Ro 10:17 ASV)

It might look a harmless exchange of names, because it is true that by hearing God His Word people can come to know Him and can come to the faith. But the apostle is here talking about the teachings of the Nazarene master teacher Jeshua (Jesus Christ), the only begotten beloved son of God. He does not have it about the divine Creator. But by changing Christ into God the translator gives the impression it is about one and the same person or being, which it is not.

Incredible fast this translation has become available in software programs. It can well be that fools rush in where angels fear to tread. Coming from a very fast grown church movement with a lot of financial backing the public relations of that group may be so successful they managed to get different publishers of Biblical material interested in their effort to spread the Word of God.

It may be a nice translation to have an ‘easy read’, giving some fluent contemporary language and offering some food for thought. But do not forget how and why they translated certain things in certain ways. We can not put away our impression that this Bible translation has come into existence because a religious group  wanted a bible version in line with its thinking. as such words and phrases where so composed as to support their own particular strain of theology.
We advice to only use this bible as an interpretation and too freely paraphrased version, not to be used as a study bible, and always to be conscious that it is written from the point of view of the NAR teachings.


Preceding articles

Place for a fifth and sixth house in Christendom

History of the NAR cult infiltrating the marketplace

What is the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International (FGBMFI)?

C. Peter Wagner – The Don Quixote of Evangelicalism (Part 1): Knighted as a General

Using Alexander Dowie’s “altar call” system to suggest that they are God’s instrument to furthering the Kingdom of God here on earth

What is the Shepherding/Discipleship Movement (SDM)?

What Doctrines came out of the Shepherding/Discipleship Movement (SDM)?

Wagner the NAR and new wineskins


Additional reading

  1. From Two new bibles, a look at one created with passion for creating meaningful, inspirational products that share God’s truth to the world


Further reading

  1. The Church Needs Theological Checks and Balances
  2. That’s scary, Part 2: The spookier reason for the Passion Translation New Testament’s Oct. 31 release date — Spirit Of Error >
  3. That’s scary, Part 2: The spookier reason for the Passion Translation New Testament’s Oct. 31 release date
  4. Dr Michael Brown recommends NAR Bible & endorses its author Brian Simmons.
  5. Brian Simmons and The Passion Translation Deception
  6. I Will Keep my promise
  7. a new Bible is out called, “The Passion Translation
  8. The NAR’s “Passion Translation” of the NT set for Oct. 31st release!
  9. Some notes on a new bible translation
  10. Book Club #2
  11. In Fun Fact Friday: Wait you can see how a saying by David is twisted and how “Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!” Psalm 27:14 NKJV, becomes in the Passion Translation: “Heres what I learned through it all: Don’t give up, don’t be impatient, Be entwined as one with the Lord. Be brave, courageous, and never lose hope. Yes keep on waiting For He will never disappoint you!
  12. “Uncontainable Praises”
  13. Which Bible Translation Should I Use?
  14. Problems with Some Bible Translations, including the King James
  15. The one good thing about The Passion Bible “Translation” . . .
  16. Quiet times with Little Women

One thought on “A new bible translationfrom the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) group

  1. Pingback: Brian Simmons and The Passion Translation Deception | Bijbelvorser = Bible Researcher

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