“The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts. His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them.” (Psalm 10:4 & 5)

The modern versions, ever falling short in wisdom and discernment, presented confused renderings such as:

RSV: “4 & 5 In the pride of his countenance the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, “There is no God.” His ways prosper at all times; thy judgments are on high, out of his sight; as for all his foes, he puffs at them.”

NIV and NKJV “…His ways are always prosperous…”

I was reminded of this perversion of scripture while reading Gail Riplinger’s In Awe of Thy Word. This was one of many examples that she provided for how the modern versions have not only perverted and omitted God’s word, but have turned it completely upside down by presenting its exact opposite. I should go through most, if not all of her examples in future articles.

How does one come up with prosperous in this context? Can someone who ignores the judgments of God be called prosperous? The modern self-indulgent, yuppie soccer mom might think so, but the authors of the Psalms were of a different mentality.

This is another outright stupid error on the part of the RSV, NIV, NKJV, ESV, HCSB, and other modern versions, and it should have embarrassed their alleged scholars, but I suspect that anyone who would ignore God’s injunction against adding to or taking away from his word has no shame to start with.

The verb in question is xul (or xyl), which has the basic meaning to twist or turn. It is used in many metaphorical ways, and they often refer to painful movement such as writhing or the pains of childbirth.

Writhing is, of course, associated with grievous pain. This is a verb that always merits discussion in Hebrew classes every time that it pops up, because it confuses students and professors alike. Consideration of context and spiritual discernment are always called for when looking at this verb.

The error of the modern versions stems from a misunderstanding created or perpetuated by Gesenius who confused this verb with the Arabic verb Hala, which relates to strength and firmness.

This misunderstanding is reflected in the ASV’s: “His ways are firm at all times; Thy judgments are far above out of his sight: As for all his adversaries, he puffeth at them.” The later version variants are simply extensions of this concept.

Simply reading this verse should have been enough to alert anyone of average intelligence that the opposite of strength is intended, and that this should have been clear even to the modern translation committees even though they did not have the Holy Spirit to guide them.

I suppose the NIV translators, et al., either were of below average intelligence, or their sinful natures overrode whatever intelligence they did have.

John Hinton, Ph.D.
Bible Restoration Ministry
A ministry seeking the translating and reprinting of KJV equivalent
Bibles in all the languages of the world.