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Zondervan faces $60M federal lawsuit over Bible, homosexuali

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By Tony Tagliavia

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) -- Christian publisher Zondervan is facing a $60 million federal lawsuit filed by a man who claims he and other homosexuals have suffered based on what the suit claims is a misinterpretation of the Bible.

But a company spokeswoman says Zondervan doesn't translate the Bible or own the copyright for any of the translations. Instead, she said in a statement, the company relies on the "scholarly judgment of credible translation committees."

That is to say, setting aside whether the federal civil rights lawsuit is credible, the company says Bradley Fowler sued the wrong group.

His suit centers on one passage in scripture -- 1 Corinthians 6:9 -- and how it reads in Bibles published by Zondervan.

Fowler says Zondervan Bibles published in 1982 and 1987 use the word homosexuals among a list of those who are "wicked" or "unrighteous" and won't inherit the kingdom of heaven.

Fowler says his family's pastor used that Zondervan Bible, and because of it his family considered him a sinner and he suffered.

Now he is asking for an apology and $60 million.

"To compensate for the past 20 years of emotional duress and mental instability," Fowler told 24 Hour News 8 in a phone interview.

He claims the company is misinterpreting the Bible by specifically using the word homosexuals. Fowler admits that every Bible printed is a translation, interpreted in some way, but he says specifically using that word is not a translation but a change.

"These are opinions based on the publishers," he said. "And they are being embedded in the religious structure as a way of life."

Fowler says he came across the discrepancy while researching a book. He says Zondervan Bibles published in the 1980s use the word homosexuals in the Corinthian passage in question, but earlier and later ones don't.

24 Hour News 8 went to a library to do some research of our own, and found Zondervan Bibles published both in the 80s and post-2000 use the word homosexuals in the passage.

Some translations, like the New American Standard, use the word. Others don't.

The (regular) American Standard version uses the phrase "abusers of themselves with men." The King James says "abusers of themselves with mankind." Still others, like the New American Bible, use the word "sodomites."

Fowler says the idea that those phrases are another way of saying homosexuals is a misinterpretation as well.

The Zondervan statement says the company never alters the text of translations it is licensed to publish.

24 Hour News 8 contacted a law professor and several biblical scholars for comment but they have not returned our calls.

http://www.woodtv.com/Global/story.asp?S=8644595

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I saw in another article where the guy was whining that in the 1970s, the Bible (the King James Version) said "abusers of themselves with mankind." Then he said that Zondervan revised it in 1982 to say "homosexuals", and revised it again in 2001 to continue to say "homosexuals". Apparently he didn't notice the fact that KJV still says the same thing, that the NKJV is the 1982 "revision", and the the ESV is the 2001 "revision".

Honestly, this guy does realize that the reason some Bibles say "homosexuals" instead of "abusers of themselves with mankind" is because they are new translations, and NOT revisions of the KJV? Does he also realize that "homosexuals" means the exact same thing as "abusers of themselves with mankind"? And if we're being honest, which one would he rather be called? I'd go with "homosexual", if I were him.

But whatever. He's just upset because people today recognize the meaning of the word "homosexual" faster than they recognize the words "abusers of themselves with mankind". Actually, I think this is just a guy who wants a quick buck and some publicity to be quite honest.

Oh, and he's an Obama campaigner. Shocking.

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The NIV doesn't just say "homosexual" - it says "homosexual offender", which actually is against those who offend homosexuals, not the homosexuals themselves (according to Virginia Mollenkott).

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The NIV doesn't just say "homosexual" - it says "homosexual offender"' date=' which actually is against those who offend homosexuals, not the homosexuals themselves (according to Virginia Mollenkott).[/quote']
:eek:lol:
:reality:

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The NIV doesn't just say "homosexual" - it says "homosexual offender"' date=' which actually is against those who offend homosexuals, not the homosexuals themselves (according to Virginia Mollenkott).[/quote']

Wow. So if a homosexual offender is someone who offends homosexuals, what is a sexual offender? :uuhm:

Some people will go to any lengths to justify their sin. :thumbdown

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The NIV doesn't just say "homosexual" - it says "homosexual offender"' date=' which actually is against those who offend homosexuals, not the homosexuals themselves (according to Virginia Mollenkott).[/quote']
Oh come on.....I think it's pretty clear:

1 Corinthians 6:9
"Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders"

People who offend homosexuals??? I think you're grasping at straws... :loco

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Two possibilitiesL

Either she spoke the truth - or the meaning was left deliberately vague. Either way, it is bad news. What DOES homosexual offenders mean? It is open for interpretation. ALL homosexuals offend against God and His Word - however, that term implies that there are homosexuals who don't offend. Just another corruption within a bookful of corruptions.

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Two possibilitiesL

Either she spoke the truth - or the meaning was left deliberately vague. Either way, it is bad news. What DOES homosexual offenders mean? It is open for interpretation. ALL homosexuals offend against God and His Word - however, that term implies that there are homosexuals who don't offend. Just another corruption within a bookful of corruptions.


The wording is awkward, but it still seems clear it's "anti-homosexual".

I've never cared for the NIV myself. I tried reading it many years ago and, for me anyway, it was one of the most frustrating versions I have attempted to read. I tried again some years later to read small portions each day using a little NIV devotional that was given to me. The same thing happened. I found the text frustrating and unedifying. I actually began looking at what the daily reading was in the NIV devotional and looking it up in my KJB and reading it from there...until I started another reading system; at which time I pitched the NIV devotional.

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Bible Publishers Sued for Anti-Gay References

http://www.newsmax.com/insidecover/man_ ... ode=65BF-1

Nothing funny here, this is furthering the cause of the homosexuals to get God's Word deemed hate speech.

I know not when our Lord is coming, but I know one thing, in the short time future anyone who stands on God's whole truth within the Bible will suffer for it.

Time of free speech is growing short for those who walk with God and proclaim His whole truths.

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The NIV also removes the word "sodomite" (which is pretty clear in meaning), and replaces it with something like "temple prostitute" - which severely restricts and limits the meaning. Yes, I am sure there were male temple prostitutes - but the Bible is against ALL homosexuality, not just those men that do it for religious purposes.

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I think it's also pretty clear, John.

About the "male shrine prostitute" thing... I can find one reference where it changes sodomites to male shrine prostitute. But I think we need to look at it in context. It's the "house of the sodomites" where women wove to a strange god. Is it possible that they were male shrine prostitutes? And that a man who's a prostitute is naturally going to be a homosexual? It seems likely to me.

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Hey guys, can we please not turn this into a debate over the NIV? This guy is trying to undermine our Christian freedoms by taking Truth to court, and I don't think this is a good place to argue about how the NIV words things, because it's pretty clear that he's no friend of the NIV either.

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This guy shouldn't have any standing in the court. What he is doing is basically suing for censorship rights. As well, Zondervan is absolutely correct in that they didn't choose the wording, they simply received the rights to publish what others had already written.

You are correct, this is an assault on the Word of God. This has been ongoing and will continue. Radical feminists hate all the male references in Scripture so they have pushed for the gender neutral and feminist-centric "Bibles" that are out there today.

There are ongoing efforts to declare homsexuals a "protected minority" and to declare anything a homosexual might take offense towards as being "hate speech"; including the Bible.

Like I said, this particular case should be quickly tossed as it has no real legal standing. Of course that doesn't mean some liberal judge won't "discover" some reason to allow it to proceed. Even if not tossed out of court, it should not win. That said, this case could give others similar ideas and these others may put together a more compelling argument that might see actual court litigation.

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This guy shouldn't have any standing in the court. What he is doing is basically suing for censorship rights. As well, Zondervan is absolutely correct in that they didn't choose the wording, they simply received the rights to publish what others had already written.

You are correct, this is an assault on the Word of God. This has been ongoing and will continue. Radical feminists hate all the male references in Scripture so they have pushed for the gender neutral and feminist-centric "Bibles" that are out there today.

There are ongoing efforts to declare homsexuals a "protected minority" and to declare anything a homosexual might take offense towards as being "hate speech"; including the Bible.

Like I said, this particular case should be quickly tossed as it has no real legal standing. Of course that doesn't mean some liberal judge won't "discover" some reason to allow it to proceed. Even if not tossed out of court, it should not win. That said, this case could give others similar ideas and these others may put together a more compelling argument that might see actual court litigation.


If they don't win now, that will not keep them from keeping on trying, this they will do till they win.

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From a practical standpoint' date=' if this or another ruling resulted in modern versions being made illegal, wouldn't that be a good thing in the eyes of many on this board?[/quote']

No - because it wouldn't be a very long step to having the KJB made illegal. The Pandora's Box idea...

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Fair point! Would be interesting to see what would happen, though. I know that if it happened in the UK almost all churches would be left without a Bible. I've only been able to find two churches that use an AV and they are closely connected and belong to a fringe group (<100 churches) of 'particular Baptists' who are very traditional and Calvinist. I doubt churches of any other denomination in the UK use the AV, except for perhaps one or two old CofE churches. I wouldn't be at all surprised if the figure were less than 1% of churches, but that is just speculation.

Anyway, back to the topic...

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This guy has no right to sue a Christian company over his sin :puzzled:


That is true, but few there be who will take personal responsibility for their sin, they want to put the fault on someone else's back. That makes them feel better plus gives them an excuse for being as they are.

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