Heb. 1:6, "Let the angels do obeisance to him."
"But when he again brings his Firstborn into the inhabited earth, he says:
'And let all God's angels do obeisance to him" The New World Translation, 1981.
The problem with this verse in the JW Bible is with the word "obeisance." In the Greek, the word is "proskuneo." It means, worship; fall down and worship, kneel, bow low, obeisance. Obeisance means, "bending the head or body or knee as a sign of reverence or submission or shame." While it is certainly true that people would bow down before Jesus in the Bible, the English word "obeisance" does not carry sufficiently the act of worship due Him because of His divine nature. Since the Jehovah's Witnesses deny that Jesus is God in flesh, they cannot have their Bible teach that Jesus was worshipped. Therefore, every single time that the word "proskuneo" is used in reference to Christ, it is translated as "obeisance" and never as worship. For proof of this, please see the CARM article The New World Translation and "Proskuneo" (worship) which has a chart of every occurrence of the Greek word and how the New World Translation renders it.
Jesus said in Matthew 4:10 that you should worship (proskuneo) God only, yet He willingly receives worship in Matt. 2:2; 2:11; 14:33; 28:9; and John 9:35-38. Just check any Bible other than the New World Translation and you can plainly see this.
In Acts 10:25-26 it says, "And when it came about that Peter entered, Cornelius met him, and fell at his feet and worshiped him. But Peter raised him up, saying, 'Stand up; I too am just a man'" (NASB). Here, Cornelius bows down before Peter. The Greek word here is "proskuneo." Peter knew that this homage is to be given to God alone. Jesus, undoubtedly, knew the same thing. Yet, when they bow down before Jesus, He does not rebuke them. Why? Because Jesus is worthy of worship. He is God in flesh (John 1:1,14).
In Hebrews 1:6, God commands that all the angels worship Jesus, not just give Him obeisance. The ASV, KJV, NASB, NIV, NKJV, and RSV all translate the verse to say "worship." Is the NWT correct and all the others wrong? Not at all. The New World Translation is simply a slanted Bible that is used to support Jehovah's Witness theology.
The Watchtower taught that Jesus was to be worshipped
Oddly enough, denying worship of Jesus is not what the Watchtower Organization has always taught. On page 216 of the July 15, 1898 edition of the Watchtower magazine it says:
"Question: The fact that our Lord received worship is claimed by some to be an evidence that while on earth he was God the Father disguised in a body of flesh and not really a man. Was he really worshiped, or is the translation faulty?
Answer: Yes, we believe our Lord Jesus while on earth was really worshiped, and properly so...It was proper for our Lord to receive worship in view of his having been the only begotten of the Father, and his agent in the creation of all things, including man."
In the book, New Heavens and a New Earth, on pages 27-28, published in 1953, it says:
"For example, to which one of the angels did he ever say: 'You are my Son; today I have become your Father'? And again: 'I shall be a Father to him, and he will be a Son to me'? But when he again brings his Firstborn into the inhabited earth, he says: 'And let all God's angels worship him.'"
Also, it is worth noting that the Watchtower organization changes the New World Translation as time goes by. In the 1970 edition, Heb. 1:6 is translated as the word "worship." In the 1980 version it is translated as 'obeisance.' Why the change? Simple, the Watchtower Organization is methodically altering the Bible to make it agree with their theology.
The Jehovah's Witness will probably answer this issue the same way he would with the false prophecies made by the Watchtower Magazine. He would say that "the light is getting brighter." This means that the early Watchtowers did not have the same information and light that the present Watchtower writers do. They made errors in the past, but now they know more and corrections need to be made.
But if this were so, then how can the Jehovah's Witnesses trust what is being said now? If the doctrines have changed before, what's to prevent them from changing again? How can a Jehovah's Witness be sure that what he is believing now won't be changed later? He can't.
God doesn't change and neither does His word. But, if you are a man-made religion that is still writing its doctrines, then you need a Bible that keeps up with those changes. The New World Translation is made to order.
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