Holly Pivec of Spirit of Error examines the Passion Translation which has been selling well. Has the author of this Bible been given new, divine revelation? Does he have special authority and insight to translate the Bible and to reveal new Scripture? Definitely not, says Pivec. Following are her reasons not to purchase this so-called Bible:
I’ve written a series of posts about Brian Simmons because I consider his new “translation” of the Bible, the Passion Translation, to be one of the most dangerous developments in the New Apostolic Reformation(NAR).
I recently ran across a television interview Simmons did last year on “Sid’s Roth’s It’s Supernatural,” where he makes a number of startling statements about his so-called translation–statements showing just how dangerous it is. I’ve highlighted some of those statements below, but before I list them, I want to be clear: this new translation of the Bible is not something that’s on the radical fringes of the NAR. It’s been endorsed by some of the movement’s most influential apostles and prophets, including Bill Johnson (of Bethel Church in Redding, Calif.), Che Ahn (formerly of HRock Church in Pasadena, Calif.), and James Goll (Encounters Network). And it’s selling very well. It needs to be on your radar. And if you know anyone who’s thinking about using it, warn them to run. I’ll show you why.
In short, Simmons claims to have received new, divine revelation that has given him special authority and insight to translate the Bible and to reveal new Scripture in the coming days.
Here are some of Simmons’ more disturbing statements during the interview. I’m not going to address every statement, such as his threatening God and his unsubstantiated insinuation to have singlehandedly brought conversion to an entire tribal village of more than 500 people. (I’d love to know what New Tribes Mission, his sending organization at the time, and his former New Tribes Mission colleagues think about this grandiose claim. I suspect they might not have the same recollection of events based on a comment left by a New Tribes representative in response to another post I wrote about Simmons’ translation.) And I won’t address Simmons’ other unsubstantiated miracle claims to have raised the dead and to be such a carrier of God’s presence that everyone he encountered one day, including a grocery store full of people and a school of 60 children, fell to the ground as he walked by them. Instead I will focus my comments on his statements about his translation.
Simmons receives divine ‘downloads’ and shows his cards
Simmons claims that, in 2009, Jesus Christ literally visited him in his room, breathed on him, and commissioned him to write a new translation of the Bible. He claims that, by blowing on him, Jesus gave him “the spirit of revelation.” In no way, he says, would he compare this “breathing” on him to that experienced by the original writers of Scripture. [Notice that he doesn’t say how it was any different.] He says:
“he breathed on me so that I would do the project, and I felt downloads coming, instantly. I received downloads. It was like, I got a chip put inside of me. I got a connection inside of me to hear him better, to understand the scriptures better and hopefully to translate.”
These statements made by Simmons show his cards. What do I mean? When he’s interacting with critics of his work, he claims he’s just working as a professional translator, in the ordinary fashion, painstakingly using his training to accurately render the words of Scripture into English from the original languages. He’s gone so far as to say he’s revised his translation based on objections he’s received from critics, including myself. See his admission here. Yet, when he’s speaking to a friendly audience of people in the NAR, he claims he’s received direct “downloads” of revelation from God to help him in his translation work. So which way is it?
If he’s receiving his translations directly from God and has been specially authorized by God to do this translation, then why is he changing the ways he’s worded verses after receiving criticism? If he wanted to be consistent, he should have stood his ground. Can you imagine the apostle Paul changing the text of Romans when he got some bad press over his choice of words? Continue reading