Which president rewrote the Bible?
Thomas Jefferson was known as an inventor and tinkerer. But this time he was tinkering with something held sacred by hundreds of millions of people: the Bible. Using his clippings, the aging third president created a New Testament of his own—one that most Christians would hardly recognize.
We can see this in the Jefferson Bible, which he produced by cut and pasting from the Christian Bible, removing all references to the supernatural. Thomas Jefferson famously rewrote the Bible with the moral teachings of Jesus of Nazareth while removing all miracles.
William Tyndale (1494?-1536), who first translated the Bible into English from the original Greek and Hebrew text, is one such forgotten pioneer. As David Daniell, the author of the latest biography of Tyndale, writes, "William Tyndale gave us our English Bible" and "he made a language for England."
Among other persecutions against Christians, Diocletian ordered the destruction of their scriptures and liturgical books across the entire Roman empire.
George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison were all committed readers of the Bible. Madison even studied Hebrew as a student at Princeton University so that he could better understand the Old Testament.
Therefore, The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth begins with an account of Jesus' birth without references to angels (at that time), genealogy, or prophecy. Miracles, references to the Trinity and the divinity of Jesus, and Jesus' resurrection are also absent from his collection.
Jefferson deleted all mention of miracles, of the Old Testament (Hebrew Bible) prophecies held by Christian tradition to foretell Jesus' role as the messiah, and of the Virgin Birth and Resurrection.
Over 30,000 changes were made, of which more than 5,000 represent differences between the Greek text used for the Revised Version and that used as the basis of the King James Version. Most of the other changes were made in the interest of consistency or modernization.
In 1611, the new British state headed by King James I issued its translation of the complete Bible, "newly translated out of the original tongues, and with the former translations diligently compared and revised. By His Majesty's special command.
But this translator, William Tyndale — who was burned at the stake on October 6, 1536 — was no lone renegade. Rather, he was a pivotal transitional figure, his work a step toward bringing direct experience of the Bible to a reading public.
Where is the original Bible kept?
Along with the Codex Vaticanus in the Vatican Library, the Codex Sinaiticus is the oldest Bible, meaning the Christian canon that brought together Jewish scriptures, and the New Testament.
Roman Catholic Repression of the Bible: The Roman Catholic church's repression of the Bible in vernacular languages has been documented since the Middle Ages, with a few highlights being Pope John X in 920 banning the use of the Old Church Slavonic translation, the Second Council of Tarragona in 1234 banning ownership ...
The phrases and cadences of the King James Bible influenced their written and spoken words. Its ideas shaped their habits of mind and informed their political experiment in republican self-government. The Bible left its mark on their political culture.
Lincoln may have had trouble taking the Bible as literal truth, but he had no trouble reading it. As President Lincoln said: “In regard to this Great book, I have but to say, it is the best gift God has given to man.
But not every president has used the Bible. In 1901, when President William McKinley was assassinated, his vice president, Theodore Roosevelt, was hastily sworn in as president with no book.
While rather private about his religious beliefs, George Washington was an Anglican. General Washington at Christ Church, Easter Sunday, 1795 by J.L.G. Ferris. (Library of Congress).
It was crafted in the fall and winter months of 1819 and 1820 when the 77-year-old Jefferson used a razor to cut passages from six copies of the New Testament—two in Greek and Latin, two in French and two in English—and rearranged and pasted together the selected verses, shorn of any sign of the miraculous or ...
Traditional Christian interpretation
Many Christians believe Jesus's miracles were historical events and that his miraculous works were an important part of his life, attesting to his divinity and the Hypostatic union, i.e., the dual natures of Jesus as God and Man.
His last recorded words are "No, doctor, nothing more." But these are perhaps too prosaic to be memorable. "Is it the Fourth?" or "This is the Fourth of July" have come to be accepted as Jefferson's last words because they contain what everyone wants to find in such death-bed scenes: deeper meaning.
Thomas Jefferson, raised Anglican, was reluctant to reveal his own religion to the public. Historians theorize that Thomas Jefferson was a deist, but he never publicly declared himself as such.
Why did they rewrite the Bible?
To settle disagreements over reforms in the Church of England and respond to pressure from the Puritans, King James in 1604 approved a new translation of the Bible, primarily because he knew that it would reinforce his image as a political and spiritual leader.
In 1868, a conservative Catholic church pushed back against the more liberal view, declaring God's direct authorship of the Bible. The Council of the Church known as Vatican 1 declared both the Old and New Testaments were: “written under the inspiration of the holy Spirit, they have God as their author.”
The Geneva Bible is one of the most historically significant translations of the Bible into English, preceding the King James Version by 51 years.
“King James wanted to solidify his own reputation as a good king by commissioning the translation,” Meyers says. “Maybe he didn't know about those passages about the limits of the king's powers, or think making them available to all might threaten his divine right as king.”
Apart from this community, the Book of Enoch was excluded from both the formal canon of the Tanakh and the Septuagint and therefore, also from the writings known today as the Deuterocanon. The main reason for Jewish rejection of the book is that it is inconsistent with teachings of the Torah.