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Jehovah’s Witnesses On The Worship Of Jesus Part 2

Jesus Is Worshipped

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Make Up Your Mind

The Watchtower’s transition away from the worship of Jesus has been an interesting (awkward) one to be sure. It took them quite a few decades to walk their way out of the teaching; as can be witnessed in their publications. In their first edition of the New World Translation in Matthew 15:9 [1], they translate “sebomai” [2] as paying respect. In the 1961 NWT they translate it as worship. In the first edition of the Kingdom Interlinear Translation “KIT” they translate it -under the Greek section- as “they are revering me” while in the English parallel it’s translated as worship. [3] Their latest version of the NWT (1984) keeps it as worship. It seems that they couldn’t make up their mind on how to translate this word which means religious worship.

They have had a similar problem translating Hebrews 1:6. [4] In both the 1950 and 1961 NWT they translate “proskuneō” as worship. It starts to get interesting when you compare the two Kingdom Interlinears. In the 1969 edition, they translate this word as “obeisance” under the Greek section and in the English parallel it’s translated as worship. [5] However, in the 1985 edition of the KIT they translate proskuneō in both sections as obeisance! It makes one wonder why they changed it. Their latest NWT maintains this word as obeisance. The majority of commentators that I have read on e-Sword say that Hebrews 1:6 is a reference to Psalms 97:7 but the 1950 NWT references it to the Septuagint (LXX) version of Deuteronomy 32:43. Robertson’s Word Pictures (RWP) agrees with the NWT’s reference, they say:

Let worship (proskunēsatōsan). Imperative first aorist active third plural of proskuneō, here in the full sense of worship, not mere reverence or courtesy. This quotation is from the lxx of Deut 32:43, but is not in the Hebrew, though most of the lxx MSS. (except F) have huioi theou, but the substance does occur also in Psalm 97:7 with hoi aggeloi autou.

Here’s the LXX passage of Deuteronomy 32:43:

εὐφράνθητε, οὐρανοί, ἅμα αὐτῷ, καὶ προσκυνησάτωσαν (proskunēsatōsan) αὐτῷ πάντες υἱοὶ θεοῦ· εὐφράνθητε, ἔθνη, μετὰ τοῦ λαοῦ αὐτοῦ, καὶ ἐνισχυσάτωσαν αὐτῷ πάντες ἄγγελοι θεοῦ· ὅτι τὸ αἷμα τῶν υἱῶν αὐτοῦ ἐκδικᾶται, καὶ ἐκδικήσει καὶ ἀνταποδώσει δίκην τοῖς ἐχθροῖς καὶ τοῖς μισοῦσιν ἀνταποδώσει, καὶ ἐκκαθαριεῖ κύριος τὴν γῆν τοῦ λαοῦ αὐτοῦ.

To be continued…




1. 1950 New World Translation pg. 77 Matthew 15:9 It is in vain that they keep paying respect to me, because they teach commands of men as doctrines. [IMAGE]

2. Strongs (e-Sword) sebomai: Middle voice of an apparently primary verb; to revere, that is, adore: – devout, religious, worship.

3. 1969 “KIT” pg. 99 [IMAGE]

4. (KJV) Hebrews 1:6 And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him.

5. 1969 KIT pg. 965 [IMAGE]

6. 1985 KIT pg. 949 [IMAGE]

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