Many of you may be familiar with Pastor Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church out in Arizona. He’s been featured in videos on YouTube getting harassed by border-patrol, praying for President Obama to get brain cancer, and stressing the importance of urinating standing up – really, that last one is legit.
Pastor Anderson is back with more of his anti-NIV nonsense. This time, it’s some special mathematic revelation in the book of Mark as found in the NIV.
So the argument is this: there are 678 verses in the book of Mark found within the King James Bible. The NIV
lacks calls into question the last 12 verses of Mark, which means the NIV has (678-12) verses, or 666 for ease! Clearly this is no coincidence!
I don’t know what it is with King James Onlyists and trying to find special meaning in arbitrary math. I had thought that this type of ‘reasoning’ was limited to Gail Riplinger alone and her Titanic theory, but apparently it’s all over.
At the surface, we must say that this is incredibly silly. Even if it were true, what would this prove? Is the Devil trying to sneak little signatures into the NIV for King James Onlyists to discover? I think not.
Of course, not only is this silly at the surface, but it’s just wrong as even a cursory study would reveal.
The error was in assuming the NIV contains all of the verses the KJV has up to the last verses of Chapter 16. So we started with the assumption that if we count the last 12 verses of the NIV, we would have 678 verses in the book of Mark. Remove those verses and we are left with 666. This is wrong.
The long-ending of Mark isn’t the only portion of the book of Mark that is thought to be a deviation from the original text of the document. Several other passages are also not present in the NIV, due to lack of support.
Mark 7:16, Mark 9:44 and 9:46, Mark 11:26 and lastly Mark 15:28 are all easy examples. These are 5 verses that the NIV lacks in the book of Mark. But Mr. Anderson either didn’t feel like sharing this, or didn’t actually take the time to look at the very translation he was criticizing – either way, a ounce of research would have ruined his conspiratorial story-telling.
So when he take off another 5 verses, we end up with 661 verses in the NIV in the book of Mark. Sorry, Mr. Anderson, but we don’t find 666 verses in the NIV. Please apologize to your congregation for misleading them.