A Voice in the
Wilderness

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                           *** PORTIONS ***

Re: They were with Jesus

"But beholding the boldness of Peter and John, and having perceived
that they are untaught and uneducated men, they marveled. And they
recognized them, that they were with Jesus." (Acts4:13 -LITV)

Without getting into the 'translations' controversy/debate right now,
one of the things that keeps me using Green's "Literal Translation" of
the Scriptures is the verb tenses. If you look at this verse in any of
the three recommended versions with "K-J-V" in their titles, you will
see that it ends with "they HAD BEEN with Jesus."

[Ed: Typically the MKJV tends to track with the LITV in these kinds of
things. However, it still does have "K-J-V" in it's title, so it
retains some KJV idioms, as in this case.  But these verb tense issues
are typical of the differences one will find between the NKJV/KJV
"roman" family vs. the "LITV/MKJV" non-roman versions. If you are not
familiar with the differences, please see the "Bible Text" menu at the
website.]

So... what's the 'big deal' whether it says "were" or "had been"? A
lot. Let us briefly understand the context. The apostles are standing
before the Jewish leaders because they are proclaiming salvation 
through Jesus Christ. They are being witnesses to those who crucified
Jesus, to Jesus' "resurrection". (Acts4:1-2) And are being told 'not 
to' preach in Jesus' name. It is noticed by the intelligentsia that 
they are not educated; but it is -quite- clear that they are 
representing Jesus. The difference in verb tenses is -key- as to "how" 
they are representing Jesus. And ultimately is also foundational to
centuries of "church" doctrines. Hopefully we will see why every "iota
and tittle" (Mt5:18,Lk16:17) of God's Word is so important.

If these disciples "had been" with Jesus, it meant that at the moment
they were being interrogated, they were not -at-that-moment- with Him.
They had been with Jesus IN THE PAST, but -not- PRESENTLY, while being
questioned.  Like typical college/seminary graduates; they went to the
school, and you can tell the kind of training they received because of
how they present themselves, but they are obviously NOT NOW -at- that
school. In other words, at the moment of interrogation, they were "on
their own". Alone.

Now, this view certainly fits with the way most of the "church" views
church history. They look to the "church fathers". And the Roman 
"church" looks at Peter as having been the "first pope". That it was
the -people- who began the Church, after having been 'trained' by Jesus.

But if we understand that "they WERE WITH Jesus", who were the leaders
seeing? These 'men'? Or Jesus?

Let me illustrate: At my store customers walk in to place their orders,
and again, to pick up their completed orders. One person may come in, 
and while we are talking, another person comes in. Sometimes the 
'other' person is ANOTHER customer. At other times, they are "with" the 
person I'm talking to; having gotten tired of waiting in the car.
Often, if they are behaving a bit 'familiarly' with the customer, I
will ask, "Are you -WITH- him?" ...so I know whether or not to move the
conversation along... If they say, "yes" the person I am talking with
is the "customer" and they are "with" the customer.  The one I'm
dealing with, and whose name goes on the order, is the -customer-, not
the person who is "with" them.  Simple enough... Yes?

These disciples were "with" Jesus. They "were" with Jesus.  
At-that-moment. Paul speaks of "put on the Lord Jesus Christ" 
(Rom13:14) If a person is wearing clothes that they have "put on",
others don't see the person, but their clothes. There is a saying, "the
clothes make the man". As these disciples stood on trial, the rulers
were not seeing these "men" but "Jesus". A Believer is one who is "in
Christ". (2Cor5:17) We have put on Christ as a "robe of righteousness".
(Is61:10) The world does not see us, but Christ. My -name- has no
significance. It is "Jesus".

Jesus kept His promise. He had said, "I will not leave you orphans; I
am coming to you." (Jn14:18) He had promised this through the Holy
Spirit (Jn16:13, Acts1:8)  These early disciples experienced and
manifested so others could see the fulfillment of Jesus' prayer...
"And I have given them the glory which You have given Me, that they may
be one, as We are one: I in them, and You in Me, that they may be
perfected in one; and that the world may know that You sent Me and
loved them, even as You loved Me." (Jn17:22-23)

As the apostates currently rewrite what they -call- their "bible",
Believers into Jesus Christ are careful regarding what God actually
said. Down to minute details. We presently have a small handful of
people working on proofing the LITV for the next printed edition. And 
from what I can tell from the nature of our communications, they seem 
to have a heart for the exactitude of the Scriptures.

Many people today (some of you, perhaps?) would not understand this 
difference we have just exposed. You see, that is one of the purposes 
of the "dumbing down" of our education systems, and consequently the 
-language-.  In years gone-by, when missionaries went into primitive 
areas, they also taught the natives how to read. Why? So they could 
read the Scriptures that were being translated into their languages. As 
education no longer teaches children to read properly, the apostates 
are also proliferating the "christian" bookstores with newer, more 
errant, "simpler" perversions which they call "the bible". Now, the
differences aren't even as subtle as this verse we just looked at, but
they totally rewrite sentences, add words, add sentences, delete
phrases...to where it no longer even remotely resembles God's Word as
the earlier perversions did. But it all started with the -subtle-
changes.

So, are Christians 'now' WITH Jesus? Or, 'HAD' the early disciples only
'BEEN' with Him, but now, as "church fathers", are 'in charge'? It is
not the "early church fathers" but the "Church of Jesus Christ". Jesus
had said "I will build My Church". (Mt16:18) How was He going to do
that if He was not "hands on"?  He did not say, "I'm training you, and
you will build My Church". No! No! No!  But this is what many from the
apostate "church" teach today!

Is He, as somebody wrote me recently, the "God of the KJV"?  or the 
"God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob"? (Ex3:15) Is He the god of the church 
of Rome and its 'vicar'?  or the "Church of the firstborn"? (Heb12:23) 
Is it the church of 'Mary'?  or the "Church of the LIVING God"?  
(1Tm3:15)  Does Jesus, as the old song said, "come with me, walk with 
me, and talk with me"?  Or do we yield, "I'll go where You want me to 
go"?  The Church is a living, growing Spiritual 'organism/body'
(1Cor12, Eph4, etc.) growing from the "Vine", Jesus Christ. (Jn15)

The starting point for what evolve into these bigger differences is at
the subtleties of what appear at first to be "minor insignificances".
What does it matter? They're both the same, right...?

No, they're not!

Earlier a -girl- had queried 'tough' Peter, "And this one was with him"
(Lk22:56) And others standing around agreed, "Truly this one also was
with Him, for he also is a Galilean."(vs59)  Unwittingly, Peter's
testimony 'showed'. They saw Jesus (of Galilee). At that time, fearing
for his life, he denied the Lord. But 'now', a couple months later, as
Peter (supposedly the "first pope") was standing before them, they saw
that he, Peter, was "WITH JESUS". And as he speaks what the Holy Spirit
is giving him "in that hour" (Mt10:19), he boldly proclaims, "Whether
it is right before God to listen to you rather than God, you judge.
For we are NOT ABLE NOT TO speak what we saw and heard" (Acts4:19-20)
No longer afraid, because he is "with Jesus".

Amen!