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Summary: Why do some newer Bible translations seem to have verses that are missing from older translations? Are the new translations trying to hide something? Can we trust them? Let's take a look and see ...

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John 5:1-15 (Please open your Bibles to this passage.)

This passage is the account of Jesus’ healing of the lame man at the pool of Bethesda; an account which only appears in the Gospel of John.

Many Bible scholars (a person can be a Bible scholar without being a Bible believer …) believed that the pool of Bethesda never existed. Those who doubted the truth of the account believed that John invented the story to embellish the story of Jesus. Why?

To make Him look greater than just another prophet?

To make a prophet into the Son of God?

In other words, to create a God where one doesn’t really exist?

However, in the very late 1800’s an excavation was started in Jerusalem near the ancient sheep gate and guess what they found! The pool of Bethesda right where the Bible said it would be!

So, let’s go ahead and read John 5:1-15 and today I’ll be reading from the NIrV which is a variation of the NIV and is specifically for those who perhaps have limited reading skills.

--- Reading from NIrV Translation ------------------------------------------------------------

Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish feasts.

In Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate is a pool. In the Aramaic language it is called Bethesda. It is surrounded by five rows of columns with a roof over them.

Here a great number of disabled people used to lie down. Among them were those who were blind, those who could not walk, and those who could hardly move.

One person was there who had not been able to walk for 38 years. Jesus saw him lying there. He knew that the man had been in that condition for a long time. So He asked him, “Do you want to get well?”

“Sir,” the disabled man replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when an angel stirs up the water. I try to get in, but someone else always goes down ahead of me.”

Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” The man was healed right away. He picked up his mat and walked.

This happened on a Sabbath day. So the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath day. The law does not allow you to carry your mat.”

But he replied, “The One who made me well said to me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’ ”

They asked him, “Who is this fellow? Who told you to pick it up and walk?”

The one who was healed had no idea who it was. Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there.

Later Jesus found him at the temple. Jesus said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning, or something worse may happen to you.”

The man went away. He told the Jewish leaders it was Jesus who had made him well.

--- End of Reading from NIrV Translation ------------------------------------------------------------

Now, I do not know what translation you were reading from but if you were reading from a relatively modern translation the second half of the third verse and all of the fourth verse are left out, bracketed or footnoted but are found in other Bibles.


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