The Johannine Comma: Bad Translation, Bad Theology

For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.

The portion of 1 John 5:7-8 ... has long given Biblical scholars pause for thought. This “fragment” has been scrutinized so thoroughly that it has a special name: the Johannine Comma, a comma in this sense being a portion of a sentence or phrase, with the implication being of something that has been inserted.

The Johannine Comma is a scripture which is used by some Christians, especially those of the evangelical or conservative persuasions, as proof of the doctrine of Trinity. “The Father, the Word and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” What could be more straightforward an indication that the godhead is one, just like the Nicene Creed says? However, translations newer than the Authorised Version (the King James Version) omit the Comma, almost without exception.

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Author: Marc A. Schindler

Keywords: Johannine comma, Johanine comma, Johanine coma, Johannine coma, John's coma, John's comma, Spurious verse, Spurious, Forgery, Forged text, Inserted text, Text inserted, Verse inserted Johannine comma, Scriptures corrupt, Corruption, Trinity, Three gods, Three witnesses, Father Son Holy Spirit, Father Son Spirit, Father Son Holy Ghost, Father Son Ghost, Blood and water, Water and spirit, Bogus passage, Fake passage, Scribal error, Scribal forgery, Comma Johanneum, comma, corruption of Scripture, textual corruption

Bible reference(s): 1 John 5:7-8

Source: Marc A. Schindler “The Johannine Comma: Bad Translation, Bad Theology,” Dialogue: a Journal of Mormon Thought, vol. 29 no 3, Fall 1996:157-164.

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