Joseph Smith Changed The Bible

Author: Paul Gee

Chapter 2 (JSCB)

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"And unto the angel of the church in Smyrna write; These things saith the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive." (Revelation 2:8 – KJV)

"And unto the servant of the church in Smyrna write: “These things saith the First and the Last, which was dead and is alive.” (Revelation 2:8 – JST)

Notable changes to Revelation 2:8:
KJV: The angel of the church is mentioned. It is written, "the angel of the church in Smyrna."
JST: The servant of the church is mentioned in place of angel. It is written, "the servant of the church in Smyrna."

The King James Version (KJV) of Revelation 2:8 is addressed to "the angel of the church in Smyrna." On the other hand, the Joseph Smith Translation (JST) directs the message to "the servant of the church in Smyrna." This change shows different opinions on church leadership in Mormonism, compared to God using angels to help govern His church. Angels are depicted as heavenly messengers from God, who serve His church, humanity, and so much more. By addressing the message to "the angel of the church," the KJV suggests that the church is under God's protection. This is done through a heavenly guardian or representative from heaven.

In contrast, the JST's use of "servant" emphasizes a more earthly and human leadership role. Mormons believe that church leaders are ordinary individuals called by God to serve and guide his people. They highlight "servant" to attempt to show their willingness to serve in different roles of their church. A minor change is JST's capitalization of "First" and "Last" when referring to Jesus Christ. This is interesting as it shows the divine nature and eternal existence. Unfortunately, this was once taught in earlier parts of their church but not now. They say Jesus hasn't always been God, but became a God like the Father did, and their Father's also. This is what we call polytheism.

"And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges." (Revelation 2:12 – KJV)

"And to the servant of the church in Pergamos write: “These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges.” (Revelation 2:12 – JST)

Notable changes to Revelation 2:12:
KJV: The angel of the church is mentioned. It is written, "the angel of the church in Pergamos."
JST: The servant of the church is mentioned in place of angel. It is written, "the servant of the church in Pergamos."

The King James Version (KJV) of Revelation 2:12 is addressed to "the angel of the church in Pergamos." On the other hand, the Joseph Smith Translation (JST) directs the message to "the servant of the church in Pergamos." So instead of the direction from God by angels, we see God's servants receiving God's direction. This removes the role of angels, while giving that role to people. Angels are used by God to help protect, watch over, and witness to humanity. The JST attempts to remove the importance of angels from God's church. How "the angel of the church" is here is to help and protect God's people. This gives the proper role to angels in the KJV. Angels have been helping God's people since the beginning of time and continue today.

The difference between the two translations, the King James Version and the Joseph Smith Translation, is one important word. Can you guess what that is? You know already without me saying it. The word, “angel” was changed to “servant”. What does this do to the verse? It changes the importance of heavenly messengers and puts that importance upon man instead. What was designed for angels is not given to mankind. So, in this verse, an angel is no longer governing this church but a man servant on earth. Is this change in accordance with the word-for-word translations of the Bible we see today? The answer is, No. For that reason, God's wrath is upon Joseph Smith. He not only changed the wording of this verse in scripture, but thousands of others.

"And unto the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire, and his feet are like fine brass." (Revelation 2:18 – KJV)

"And unto the servant of the church in Thyatira write: “These things saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire, and his feet are like fine brass.” (Revelation 2:18 – JST)

Notable changes to Revelation 2:18:
KJV: The angel of the church is mentioned. It is written, "the angel of the church in Thyatira."
JST: The servant of the church is mentioned in place of angel. It is written, "the servant of the church in Thyatira."

The King James Version (KJV) of Revelation 2:18 is addressed to "the angel of the church." On the other hand, the Joseph Smith Translation (JST) addresses it to "the servant of the church." The role of angels is removed, while the role of servants in God's church is introduced. Therefore, Joseph claimed that angels are not helping govern the churches but people. In Christianity, angels are depicted as messengers from the Most High. They protect God's people and His church. By addressing the message to "the angel of the church," the KJV suggests that the church is under heavenly protection. I am speaking of guardian angels, which I am so grateful for.

The biggest change to the verse is from "angel" to "servant". And this isn't referring to angels as servants, but an earthly role of a human that is subservient to God. So, changing "angel" to "servant" changes the whole story. Looking at the term "servant", it highlights the humility and willingness of leaders to serve the flock. How God must have entrusted people to watch over His church. Since Mormons claim that Christ's church failed, God has now entrusted His church to a new generation of people. The JST is consistent with replacing "angel" with "servant" all throughout the book of Revelation. Therefore, the importance of priesthood authority and earthly leaders in running the church is put above that of angels.

"Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds." (Revelation 2:22 – KJV)

“Behold I will cast her into hell and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.” (Revelation 2:22 – JST)

Notable changes to Revelation 2:22:
KJV: Jezebel will be cast into a bed. It is written, "I will cast her into a bed."
JST: Jezebel will be cast into hell instead of a bed. It is written, "I will cast her into hell.”

The King James Version (KJV) of Revelation 2:22 contains a warning from Jesus Christ to the church in Thyatira. How Jezebel will be cast "into a bed." On the other hand, the Joseph Smith Translation (JST) declares that she will be cast "into hell." This alteration redirects people's thinking towards hell, and not understanding that "bed" refers to sexual immorality. In Revelation 2:18-23, there is a warning to the church about the presence of sexually immoral behavior associated with Jezebel. She was a self-proclaimed prophetess who led many astray. This evil spirit leads people into committing fornication and becoming sexually immoral before God. This is a theme in the passage, as Jezebel is accused of seducing and corrupting the members of the church into committing whoredoms, while in the bed.

The KJV's use of "a bed" speaks of sexual immorality that happens in the bed. This speaks of adultery and fornication, where there are eternal consequences for these sinful actions. I am talking about a literal place called "hell", and then the "lake of fire". However, this passage is speaking of what the spirit of Jezebel causes people to do. This serves as a reminder to turn away from these sins and to God. In contrast, the JST uses the term "hell" to directly refer to a real place where the wicked are punished. This is interesting since Mormons deny a literal hell with fire and brimstone, but refer to spirit prison. They teach their members about a place called "outer darkness" after judgment. They claim that this place is for apostates, and those who reject their specific baptism for the dead. Therefore, they will experience this eternal suffering. This is blasphemy.

"And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations." (Revelation 2:26 – KJV)

“And to him who overcometh and keepeth my commandments unto the end will I give power over many kingdoms." (Revelation 2:26 – JST)

Notable changes to Revelation 2:26:
KJV: Certain people are given "power over the nations."
JST: Certain people are given "power over many kingdoms", instead of over the nations.

The King James Version (KJV) of Revelation 2:26 contains a promise from Jesus Christ. Those who overcome the world, and do His works until the end, are saved. This is God working in us, which is the fruits of our salvation. The reward will be "power over the nations." The Joseph Smith Translation (JST) mentions keeping God's commandments as important. How people are given "power over many kingdoms" for doing this. So, people strive to keep God's commandments, in order to work their way to heaven. It is interesting that blessings are now worked for and not given as a gift. Notice how in the KJV people have power over all nations. On the other hand, in the JST, people have power over many kingdoms. This is a downgrade for sure.

In Christianity, the reward for overcoming the world and living for Jesus is associated with eternal life in heaven. It is a state of eternal bliss, in the presence of God. "Power over the nations" could be interpreted as ruling over all nations during the millennial reign of Christ. It is written, "blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years." (Revelation 20:6) This is when people will rule with Christ as priests of God. In contrast, "power over many kingdoms" is a more specific reference to literal places on earth.

Mormons believe that during the millennial reign of Christ, the righteous will reign with him over various kingdoms. This teaching is from the book of Daniel. It is written, "and the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom." (Daniel7:27) Therefore, Joseph thought John made a mistake by saying "power over the nations". So, he changed it to "power over many kingdoms". He was led to believe that people will reign with Christ during His millennial reign. However, Daniel specifically says that Jesus's reign will be over the whole earth and not just specific kingdoms.

"And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father." (Revelation 2:27 – KJV)

"And he shall rule them with the word of God, and they shall be in his hands as the vessels of clay in the hands of a potter. And he shall govern them by faith, with equity and justice even as I received of my Father." (Revelation 2:27 – JST)

Notable changes to Revelation 2:27:
KJV: God "shall rule them with a rod of iron."
JST: God "shall rule them with the word of God."
KJV: Speaking of the vessels of a potter, it is written, "the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers."
JST: "Vessels of a potter" is changed to "vessels of clay". "Broken to shivers" is changed to "hands of a potter". It is written, "the vessels of clay in the hands of a potter."
JST: An extra phrase was added to the verse. It is written, "and they shall be in his hands." "And he shall govern them by faith, with equity and justice."

The King James Version (KJV) of Revelation 2:27 describes Jesus Christ's rule. How "he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers." This imagery suggests a harsh and forceful rule, in which Christ will use his power to crush and destroy those who oppose him. The Joseph Smith Translation (JST) significantly alters this description. It changes the method of rule from "a rod of iron" to "the word of God." This change emphasizes the power of God's word, and the importance of faith in Jesus Christ. Rather than ruling with force, Christ will rule through his teachings and the power of persuasion. Unfortunately, God is all powerful and what He says matters. No matter if it is harsh, we are to obey.

Joseph removed the phrase "broken to shivers" from the KJV. Instead, he describes vessels of clay being in the potter's hands. This change removes the implication of violence and emphasizes the potter's power to shape and mold the clay. Christ's rule will be characterized by his ability to transform and refine individuals, rather than destroying them. Additionally, the JST adds a description of the governing principles that Jesus Christ will use: "faith, equity, and justice." This change emphasizes the righteous and compassionate nature of his rule. Christ will govern his people with fairness, impartiality, and a deep concern for their well-being. Instead of a God being strict in His Ways, this makes Jesus only a God of compassion.

The changes to Revelation 2:27 reflect a distinct theological perspective and emphasize four different things. The power of God's words, the importance of faith, the nature of Christ's rule, and his commitment to govern with righteousness and justice. While this might resonate with some individuals, it doesn't mean what Joseph Smith did was right. We cannot discount the fact that the JST differs from the KJV in significant ways. The understanding of Christ's rule with the word of God is different from ruling people with a rod of iron. The differences in the KJV and JST highlight the contrasting perspectives of traditional Christianity and Mormonism. The nature of Jesus Christ's rule, and the principles that will characterize his reign, are significantly different. There was so much added to this verse, which makes the story so much different than the KJV.

"Observe and hear all these words which I command thee, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee for ever, when thou doest that which is good and right in the sight of the Lord thy God. When the Lord thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto the Lord thy God: for every abomination to the Lord, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods. What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it." (Deuteronomy 12:28-32)

Moses instructed us in the Holy Scriptures not to add, nor take away from God's words. Those commandments are clear in God's Word. Therefore, the changes made by Joseph Smith in the Joseph Smith Translation of the KJV Bible are highly problematic. This is because this new book substantially altered what was already a translated scriptural text. In Smith's version, over 3400 verses are different, ranging from minor tweaks to entirely new passages. This is very disturbing, indeed. What has been added and changed significantly alters the original meaning. Smith did not seem to regard the original Bible with the seriousness it deserved. Instead, he introduced a new version which found acceptance among the early followers of the Mormon church. They saw it as an inspired improvement on the existing scriptures.

God, Himself, gives people a warning against altering His words. It is written, "If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book." (Revelation 22:18,19) Therefore, anyone who changes the scripture could face severe consequences. According to these verses, those who make such changes, like Joseph Smith, are in danger of serious punishments from God. These individuals are afflicted with terrible plagues. Their names are removed from the book of life and are prevented from entering the new earth and new heaven.

One particular concern is the way the Joseph Smith Translation alters the Book of Revelation. Any corruption of this beloved book from God is a serious issue due to its prophecies and truth. Joseph Smith, founder of Mormonism, believed some verses of the KJV Bible were incorrect. Therefore, he set about writing his own version. This led to him purposely distorting the words in the King James Bible. The Bible clearly indicates that God does not approve of changing His Word. Indeed, the prophecy warns us that those who do this will find no place in heaven. Instead, they will be punished. For someone like Joseph Smith, who is accused of rewriting the Bible, the implications are severe. The Bible suggests such a person would be punished by God's plagues or by eternity in hellfire.

If we believe the words in the Book of Revelation, we should take offense to anyone purposely changing the words. Joseph Smith is included in this. He may be looked at as the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, but what he did to Revelation cannot be denied. If anyone adds to or takes away words from this prophecy, they will face dire consequences in the afterlife. Just one example in Revelation, chapter 2, is the word "angel" being replaced with "servant". Smith may have thought he was doing the right thing, but instead, God's judgments fell upon him. His actions warrant suffering in hell and, eventually, being thrown into the lake of fire after the final judgment. Amen.

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