by John Juedes

IN HIS SEARCH to "take a pure look at God's revealed Word," Dr. Victor Paul Wierwille founded a research ministry called "The Way International". Dr. Wierwille laid the groundwork and direction for the group through his own meticulous study. He claims:

I did not want to omit, deny, or change any passage for, ... If one word is omitted from the Word of God, is it still the Word of God? No, it has become private interpretation. By omitting one word, Eve no longer had The Word. [1]

Any teacher who actually completes this goal is worthy of followers. But, does this great ideal really show in Dr. Wierwille's own work? Or do his writings reveal many of the omissions, additions and substitutions he claims to avoid?

"Omissions from The Word"

Since Dr. Wierwille claims to handle God's Word so diligently and accurately, his careful readers are surprised to find that he and his followers often do omit words from biblical passages. His most common method of biblical surgery is misuse of "the critical Greek texts," and manuscripts. For instance, on the basis of a marginal reading found in only one, entirely obscure and unreliable manuscript, called MS-31, The Way deletes the word "death" from John 21: 19[3] . Again, Dr. Wierwille, himself, places the reading of a single manuscript over scores of others in order to delete the word "son"from Galatians 4:6 [4].

In this case, the manuscript he cites, (p. 46), is of high quality, certainly much better than the previously discussed MS-31. However, dependence on any single manuscript is hazardous, and in this case erroneous. Dr. Wierwille attempts yet another sleight of hand to delete the words "the holy" from Luke 10:21. He concedes only that "some critical Greek texts add" these words. However, the substantial majority of Greek texts, including the newest and most reliable of them, clearly expose his false omissions.[5]

As the evidence above shows, Dr. Wierwille often cites inadequate "evidence" in favor of his omissions, while at other times he ignores the powerful evidence against traditional deletions because he prefers them. To make the situation worse, at times he even neglects to cite any support at all for his omissions! In effect, he deletes words without telling you he is doing so! For instance, when he lists Acts 16;7, he entirely neglects the words "of Jesus." Every critical text except the outdated Textus Receptus (Stephens and Elzevir) of the 1600's A.D. contains these words. Dr. Wierwille's negligence omits the phrase, "of Jesus", from the verse in which it rightly belongs .[6] It is apparent that Dr. Wierwille misuses the Greek manuscripts and texts in order to omit whatever he desires.

Dr. Wierwille places great weight on the presence or absence of the definite article, "the", in a text. He writes, "To add the article 'the' is changing the text."' So we are especially surprised to find that he omits the article "the" from at least nine New Testament passages that speak of the spirit!"

We find the most outstanding example of The Way's omissions of biblical words in Dr. Wierwille's discussion of Acts 8:22. He changes "Repent ... if perhaps the thought ... may be forgiven thee" to "Forsake ... that the thoughts ... may be forgiven thee." His rationale: "the word 'perhaps' in the critical Greek text is literally translated 'that'." It is true that the basic meaning of the word "perhaps" (Greek = ara) is "that," or rather, "then, therefore." However, Dr. Wierwille completely neglects and omits, the word "if" (Greek = ei) which stands directly before "that" (ara) in the sentence. Ei is translated "if" almost exclusively in over 300 New Testament occurrences. When used with ara, it means "if perchance" or"in the hope that" as Mark 11:13 and Acts 17:27 indicate. Dr. Wierwille's omission of this word ie, reverses the true meaning of this passage.

"Additions to The Word"

Not only does Dr. Wierwille wrongly omit the words from Scripture, but he adds words as well. Commenting on 11 Corinthians 5:20, he emphasizes that "now then (not when we die, but right now)" we are ambassadors for Christ.[10] Other Scripture verifies that now we are ambassadors, but Dr. Wierwille adds "Now" to this verse to make it read that way! The Greek of verse 20 reads simply "therefore (oun) we are ambassadors for Christ." Dr. Wierwille also adds a word to I Corinthians 12: 11. He speaks of a "unique triple reflective ... with the emphasis made by one, self and same." "But the Greek doesn't use three words, but two, en ("one") and auto ("the same" or "himself"). Dr. Wierwille imposes the third word of his "triple reflective" on a verse in which it has no rightful place!

In spite of Dr. Wierwille's earlier assertion that "To add the article 'the' is changing the text," he goes on to do exactly that. he quotes Romans 3:22, "Even the righteousness of God which is by [the] faith of Jesus Christ unabashedly inserting the article "the" where there is none in the Greek text ![12] D-. Wierwille also favors the addition of "holy" to both Acts 8:18 and Romans 15:19, in spite of greater manuscript evidence to the contrary. [13]

Dr. Wierwille again implies, and in effect adds, a word to I Corinthians 12, this time in verse 7. He emphasizes the word "withal," implying a Greek word as its source: " 'Withal' gives the added understanding of superior benefits 'entirely or altogether,' in other words, immediately and ultimately."" From where does he get this special "added understanding"? There is no Greek source for it. The King-lames Version uses the words "profit withal" to translate a single Greek verb, sumpheron. If Dr. Wierwille was aware of this, he surely would have given the archaic meaning of "withal" which the King James Version's translators had in mind "therewith" or "besides." Instead, Dr. Wierwille creatively implies and emphasizes what doesn't exist.

"Substitutions in The Word"

Not only does Dr. Wierwille omit some biblical words and introduce new ones, but he substitutes some as well! For instance, he deletes the words in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." In their place, he substitutes the words "In my name,"[15] He admits that the New Testament manuscripts unanimously disagree with him, but he still refuses to listen to the scores of available copies!

Again, in his commentary on John 1:18 he substitutes "only-begotten Son" for "only-begotten God . " [16] The "evidence" he gives for this substitution seems to be of enough quantity, but is qualitatively inferior. When he examines Hebrews 11:5 in the first printing of "Power for Abundant Living. he asserts that the Greek word anablepo must mean "'look with one's eyes' or literally to see someone die". [17] However, no Greek text available contains the Greek word anablepo in Hebrews 11:5. While Dr. Wierwille's definition of anablepo is open to serious question, he has corrected his mistake in a subsequent edition and replaced anablepo with eidon. That verb (eidon), however, cannot bear the exclusive definition of seeing with one's eyes. For example it is used of Jesus "seeing" men's thoughts (Luke 9:47), of seeing God's mercy (Romans 11:22ff) and of Jesus' body not seeing corruption (Acts 2:27, 31). Thus while Dr. Wierwille has particularly corrected his error, he has allowed to stand the old definition that does not apply to the word actually used in Hebrews 11:5.

The last word substitution we will mention here is the best example of a carefully engineered and concealed deception. Dr. Wierwille cleverly relates the wording of Isaiah 43:7 to that of the creation account; especially Genesis 1:26 and 2:7. He points out that the Hebrew word yatsar is found in both Isaiah and Genesis 1:26. He also leads his reader to believe that a third Hebrew word, asah ("made") is found in both Isaiah and in Genesis 2:7, "man become a living soul." Here he ties asah to the Genesis verse: "The soul, nephesh, of man is the part God made, asah, by breathing into his formed body the breath of life. God put life into Adam; He made man a living soul."" Dr. Wierwille leaves his reader with the distinct impression that asah ("made") is found in both Isaiah 43.7 and Genesis 2:7. However, when we examine the original Hebrew, we find that the word asah can be found nowhere in Genesis 2:7. Rather, "became" comes from the Hebrew hayah. Dr. Wierwille subtly leads the reader to believe asah is found there, in effect inserting this word into the text. His presupposition is: "If God's Word means what it says and says what it means, these words cannot be synonymous, otherwise words are useless as a means of communication.""

Dr. Wierwille knows that he must wrongly lead his reader to believe that asah is found in Genesis 2:7, or his entire argument disintegrates under his own premise that the Hebrew words cannot be synonymous. What is the source of Dr. Wierwille's repeated omissions, additions and substitutions? Many times the source is apparently ignorance in one form or another. In a sloppy, overzealous effort to "expound" on parts of Scripture, Dr. Wierwille depends on and emphasizes the King James wording over the actual Greek text. This is apparent by his emphases on "now" in 11 Corinthians 5:20 and "selfsame" in I Corinthians 12:11. In his discussion of Hebrews 11:5, he perhaps guessed at the Greek word behind "see"-and was wrong. Other times, his ignorance is perhaps that of a lack of knowledge rather than sloppiness. His naive comments on Galatians 4:6 and John 1:18 suggest this.

In other cases the source of Dr. Wierwille's emendations of Scripture is likely not ignorance, but careful manipulations based on preconceived theology. His linguistic sleight-of-hand with asah in Genesis 2:7, his acceptance of the most slipshod "evidence" to support the omission of "death" from John 21:19, and his elimination of "if"from Acts 8:22 are likely examples of manipulation.

Dr. Wierwille probably did not have himself in mind when he wrote, "We omit a word or we add a word or we change a few words. We arrange The Word to suit ourselves and, therefore, we do not have the true Word ."[20] Even so, this description fits him very well. He repeatedly omits, adds, and changes words. He arranges the Word to suit himself and does not end up with the true Word. This failure to rightly work God's Word reveals his bankruptcy as a Biblical teacher.

Dr. Wierwille accuses translators who capitalize god" in John 10:33 of wrongly forging Scripture. Dr. Wierwille's forgeries are much more numerous and serious than the translators' alleged forgery. Even more, Dr. Wierwille often executes his forgeries in deceptive and misleading ways. When his forgeries are exposed and when they collapse under close scrutiny, his entire theological system collapses with them. "To knowingly and deliberately forge scripture is sin," he writes." Forgery of Scripture is sin-and Dr. Wierwille is the greatest of offenders.


1. Jesus Christ is Not God, rear book flap.

2. Receiving the Holy Spirit Today. p. x, Power for Abundant Living p. 253.

3. The Way Magazine, May-June 1975, "The Integrity of the God-Breathed Word," Walter Cummins, p. 7.

4. Jesus Christ is Not God, p. 146.

5. Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 304. The texts that expose Dr. Wierwille's omission include United Bible Societies (UBS), Nestle-Aland, Westcott-Hort, Alford. Tregelies, Tischenclorf and Lachmann.

6. Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 32 1. 7.Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 164,

8.Mat. 12:18 (Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 290), John 3:8 (Ibid, p. 307), Acts 2:17 (lbid, p. 313), Acts 4:31 (lbid, p. 314), Acts 15:8 (Ibid, p. 320), 1 Cor. 12:9 twice (lbid, p. 334), 1 Cor. 14:14 (Ibid, p. 335), Revelation 5:6 (Ibid, p. 356).

9. Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 117, 10. Power for Abundant Living, p. 343.

11. Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 178. 12. Power for Abundant Living, p. 340.

13. Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 317, 330. 14. Receiving the Holy Spirit Today, p. 171.

15. Jesus Christ is Not God, p. 19. 16. Jesus Christ is Not God, p. 115.

17. Power for Abundant Living, 1971 printing, p. 191. 18. Jesus Christ is Not God, p. 60-61.

19. Jesus Christ is Not God, p. 58-59. 20. Power for Abundant Living, p. 254-255.

21. Bibliography-Jesus Christ is Not God, "Forgers of the Word," p. 22

John P. Juedes, C. Personal Freedom Outreach, 1984

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