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“Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.” – Psalm 119:140

CONTINUING IN THIS SERIES OF modern Bible perversions, I land next on the “English Standard Version”. If the translators ( of this heap of garbage are to be believed, the ESV is an exceptional translation which “emphasizes word-for-word accuracy, literary excellence, and depth of meaning.” Noble as that may sound, the actual product falls far short of these lofty standards. In these pages, I will demonstrate as much by noting some of the many major perversions which comprise the ESV text.

Actual photo of the ESV translators at work.

#1: MARK 10:24

Mark 10:24 (King James Bible): “And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God!”

Mark 10:24 (English Standard Version): “And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God!”

Demonstrating its first example of “word-for-word accuracy”, the ESV fundamentally alters the meaning of this Scripture by deleting the phrase, “for them that trust in riches”. Rather than this verse teaching that men who trust in riches have difficulty trusting Christ, because their pelf and pride convince them they do not need a Savior, it instead implies that it is difficult for anyone to be saved. The ESV’s corruption of Mark 10:24 echoes the patently false sentiment of modern Bible perversions, which insists that believing on Jesus Christ is insufficient for salvation unless good works and steadfast obedience of his commandments accompany such “faith”.

This is a gross misrepresentation of a crucial Scriptural truth. Nowhere in the King James Bible are we told that salvation is “difficult” or “hard”, because salvation is simply placing one’s faith in Jesus Christ – not placing faith in Christ, plus giving up sinful ways, or turning over a new leaf, or following Jesus as “Lord”. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness (Romans 4:5).

Before I address the next perversion, I hear a distant rumbling. It’s getting closer. Why, it is the shriek of ESV defenders, accusing me of duplicity for neglecting to mention the ESV footnote for Mark 10:24 reads, “Some manuscripts add for those who trust in riches”. That doesn’t sound like fair treatment of the words the translators deliberately struck out of the text. Rather, the phrase, “some manuscripts add”, seems better designed to cast doubt upon the King James rendering of Mark 10:24, than to legitimize it. In that case, should we refer to the ESV as “some manuscripts” which subtract “for them that trust in riches.”

#2: JOHN 3:36

John 3:36 (KJB): “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”

John 3:36 (ESV): “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.”

There are two issues with this passage. The first lies in the ESV’s rendering of “on the Son” to “in the Son”. I think of James 2:19, “Thou believest there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” To be saved, it is not enough merely to “believe in” Jesus, as in, to believe he exists. Men must believe on Jesus, as in trusting him alone for salvation after realizing their sinnership and their inability to deliver themselves from hell.

The second problem with the ESV’s perverted translation is their changing of “believeth not” to “does not obey.” I scarcely need to explain the difference between these two phrases, or that a works-based salvation of keeping God’s commandments is baked into the ESV translation of John 3:36. We who have been saved by faith in Christ – not by obeying his commandments – subsequently obey Jesus because we love him (John 14:21), not because we hope our doing so can help us avoid condemnation. The phrase “obeying the gospel”, which is employed throughout the New Testament, simply refers to trusting Christ as Savior. It does not mean we must keep his commandments to be saved, because his gospel and his commandments are two very different things with two very different purposes. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth (Romans 1:16). His commandments are those things which it is our whole duty to keep (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Obeying Jesus is a matter of discipleship, which every believer should pursue after being saved – never as a pretext to or condition of being saved.

#3: 2 CORINTHIANS 2:17

2 Corinthians 2:17 (KJB): “For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.”

2 Corinthians 2:17 (ESV): “For we are not, like so many, peddlers of God’s word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ.”

I have before me the second college edition of Webster’s New World Dictionary of the American Language. Here are the definitions it provides for “corrupt” and “peddle”:

corrupt (adjective): changed from a sound condition to an unsound one; spoiled; contaminated; rotten 2. Deteriorated from the normal standard, specific., (a) morally unsound or debased; perverted; evil; depraved (b) taking bribes; venal (c) containing alterations, errors, or admixtures of foreignisms: said of texts, languages, etc.

peddle (verb): to go from place to place selling small articles (2) to deal out or circulate (gossip, ideas, etc.)

Anyone who understands plain English should be able to see the vast difference between these two words, and their connotations, in this particular usage. The King James Bible warns of many who would corrupt, or alter, the word of God (like translators of modern Bible translation committees). The ESV warns of those who would go from place to place selling the word of God. The King James Bible’s rendering of 2 Corinthians 2:17 makes perfect sense, with the existence of books like “the English Standard Version” serving as tangible proof of that stern warning. The ESV translation, on the other hand, will leave every reader scratching his head. Peddler’s of God’s word? What fault is there in that?

Now, if the ESV warned about “peddlers of corrupt Bible translations”, their verse would have more merit. But that would defeat the purpose of their original corruption. While the ESV condemning “peddlers of God’s word” may seem ridiculous to the casual reader, it does make sense in the context of criminals attempting to cover their tracks. By delating such an incriminating word as “corrupt”, and replacing it with a nonsensical rendering “peddler”, the warning against men of corrupt minds, like the ESV translators, has been removed. Does this brilliant perversion signify the “literary excellence” the ESV translators so boasted of?

#4: 1 JOHN 5:7-8

1 John 5:7-8 (KJB): “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. (8) And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.”

1 John 5:7-8 (ESV): “For there are three that testify: (8) the Spirit and the water and the blood; and these three agree.”

This alteration speaks for itself. A clear pronouncement of the Trinity is trimmed out of the Bible, and replaced with a garbled mess of butchered nonsense. So the Spirit and water and blood agree. What significance does this have? When the Trinity is removed, the rest of this passage ceases to make sense, and the doctrinal potency which the King James Bible wields is emasculated in favor of a weak, wimpy line of gibberish. A clear, firm passage is made vague and feeble.

The King James rendering of this Scripture provides clear proof of the Trinity: the Father (God the Father), the Word (Jesus Christ – see John 1:1, Revelation 19:13), and the Holy Ghost. They three are one. The Father, Word, and Holy Ghost testify in heaven; the Spirit, water, and blood testify in earth. Or, perhaps, I am in error. Perhaps there is nothing wrong with the ESV yanking the Trinity doctrine out of the Bible. After all, this may simply be a feature of their wonderful “depth of meaning”, and too profound for boorish luddites like myself to appreciate.


Philippians 2:6 (KJB): “Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God.”

Philippians 2:6 (ESV): “who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped.”

Keeping with the trend of diminishing, or outright deleting, Jesus Christ’s deity at every opportunity, the ESV has gifted us with this little gem of junk scholarship. Since even the perverted ESV rendering of John 3:36 which was discussed above says Jesus is God’s Son, we have much confusion in Philippians 2:6, which implies Jesus is not equal with God after all. So which is it? Is Jesus not God? If he is God, is he a lower-tier god, beneath God’s power and hierarchy? Are they competing gods with different powers, akin to the deities of Greek mythology?

The King James Bible puts the matter at rest. In searching the Scriptures, we find that Jesus Christ is God’s only begotten Son (Matthew 16:16, John 1:18, 3:16). He is God in the flesh (1 Timothy 3:16). He is not a “demigod” or “half-god” or subordinate god, but is God Almighty. The deity of Jesus Christ is at the heart of the Trinity doctrine, and when garbage like the “English Standard Version” attacks, or even deletes references, to both, the result is not sound Bible doctrine, but pagan foolery, half-truths, and New Age confusion. God is not the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33). And he most certainly is not the author of the ESV’s abominable book of perversions, which contradicts both itself and the King James Bible in multitudes of ways and on multitudes of occasions.


John 10:30 (KJB): “I and my Father are one.”

John 10:30 (ESV): “I and the Father are one.”

Can you spot the problem with this seemingly innocent change from “my” to “the”? If not, I suggest you read the Gospel of John from the King James Bible until you can see why this subtle change is so dangerous. Why is the ESV so interested in questioning Christ’s deity? I think I know (2 Corinthians 2:17).


The English Standard Version is nothing short of garbage. That may not be a very scholarly summary of this article, but it is the truth. What else can be said, about a work which renders the lucid labyrinthine, turns truth into error, and replaces light with darkness? No so-called “Bible translation” which removes references to Christ’s deity, obliterates the fundamental doctrine of the Trinity, and makes salvation an onerous, difficult process, is deserving of anything but the fiercest contempt. If you continue to use the ESV in the face of this evidence, you demonstrate what little regard you have for the purity of God’s words.

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