“… This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved … – Acts 4:11-12
Poor Jehovah’s Witnesses. We sometimes feel sorry for them. The harder they try to disprove the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, the more they unintentionally establish the fact that He is none other than Almighty God. When an opponent tries so hard at something, even when they have embarked on a foolish task, you almost want them to win a point now and then. But they will never win this debate because the Scriptures they use to support their twisted beliefs condemn them in the process.
Take, for example, their rendering of Romans 10:13 using their New World Translation: “… for everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved.” In the original Greek text it reads “…πᾶς γὰρ ὃς ἂν ἐπικαλέσηται τὸ ὄνομα Κυρίου σωθήσεται ….” and is literally translated “… whosoever may call on the name of the Lord will be saved …” Technically, this word “Κυρίου” cannot be translated “Jehovah” as the Witnesses have done in Romans chapter 10. Κυρίου means master or lord, not Jehovah.
But Christians throughout history have always used Κυρίου as a title for Jesus Christ. Jesus is Lord! The title Lord is freely used in both Testaments to refer to God and Jesus. In the Old Testament the Hebrew word אֲדֹנָי (pronounced: adonai) means Lord. In the Septuagint and the New Testament the word translated “Lord” is Κυρίου. In a sacred or religious sense these words were always ascribed to God. In common usage, they would mean “sir” or “master.” But in Romans 10:13 both Jehovah’s Witnesses as well as Christians would recognize that the context indicates Paul is clearly speaking of Deity, not as a title of an important human being.
The savviest of Jehovah’s Witnesses will argue that their New World translators[i] recognize that Κυρίου in this passage is more accurately rendered Lord and not Jehovah. At this point they will agree with the Trinitarians. But Paul, JWs will say, was quoting from Joel 2:32 where the Scripture says “…וְהָיָה, כֹּל אֲשֶׁר-יִקְרָא בְּשֵׁם יְהוָה—יִמָּלֵט…” which roughly translated means “…whoever calls the name of Yahweh (Jehovah) will be delivered…” Therefore, the New World translators have merely inserted the original Old Testament passage and have used the proper designation Jehovah instead of Lord. But that is not what Paul wrote in Romans 10:13. Paul used Κυρίου (Lord), not Jehovah. The New World Translation is mistranslated, and by doing so the Witnesses have unconsciously proven the point made in the Bible that Jesus Christ is the Jehovah God (יְהוָה) mentioned in Joel 2:32, although they intended to prove the opposite doctrine.
Can we all agree that the surrounding context of Romans 10:13 is speaking of Jesus Christ? In Him there is no distinction between Jews and Gentiles – the promise is to all people that calling upon the Lord Jesus Christ will save them from their sins. Hence Jesus is יְהוָה (Jehovah or Yahweh) and Κυρίο (Lord). Paul takes the Old Testament quotation that speaks of Jehovah as Lord and applies the term to Jesus. To call upon the name of the Lord is to call upon Jesus. Jehovah and Jesus are one in the same.
The Apostle Peter quoted the same verse from Joel and he intended to prove the identical point Paul did. “Everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved… [ii]”. We read later in the chapter that when the people asked what they had to do to be saved, Peter told them, “Repent and let each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ… [iii]“ Having just stated that calling upon the name of Jehovah (יְהוָה) or The Lord (Κυρίου) was a prerequisite for salvation, Peter tells them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Why didn’t Peter tell the new believers to be baptized in the name of Yahweh (Jehovah)?
The message is this: Salvation comes through acknowledging to God that the Lord Jesus Christ is God, and then believing in Him.
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CITATIONS AND NOTES:
[i] The New World Translation was produced by the anonymous New World Bible Translation Committee, formed about 1947. This committee is said to have comprised unnamed members of multinational background so we do not know if they are bona fide Greek scholars or not. Based on the faulty translation throughout we assume that (at best) the JW translators were not scholars at all and used an existing English translation to harmonize the text to conform to their heretical doctrines, or (at worse) they were indeed experienced scholars who purposefully mistranslated the Hebrew and Greek to achieve their goal in perverting the Scriptures.
[ii] Acts 2:21
[iii] Acts 2:38