Jesus or Joshua?

by Will Kinney

Hebrews 4:8 "For if JESUS had given them rest..."

Bible correctors frequently drag out this dead fish and try to raise a stink about how the King James Bible is in error when it refers to "JESUS" bringing the children of Israel into the promised land.

These noted scholars try to place you in the position that you can never read your Bible and know for certain, "Thus saith the Lord", unless you first consult with them to find out if you have the correct text they approve of, and that the text that you have is translated properly according to what they declare to be the correct rendering. Yet none of them believe any single Bible out there is totally infallible and without error. They themselves become the Final Authority for what God REALLY said.

In Hebrews 4:8 we read: "For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day."

Likewise in Acts 7:45 we have: "Which also our fathers that came after brought in with Jesus into the possession of the Gentiles, whom God drave out before the face of our fathers, unto the days of David."

The Greek texts all literally have the name JESUS in these two places, though the contexts refer to the man Joshua. Joshua himself is a pictoral "type" of our Lord Jesus Christ. Joshua, along with Caleb, did believe God had given them the promised land, but the rest of the people entered not in because of unbelief. Later this same Joshua ('Jesus' in Greek) led the people into the land. The promised land typifies the spiritual rest from our own works which was accomplished by the greater Jesus, the Son of God Himself.

Other Bible versions that read JESUS in Acts 7 and Hebrews 4 like the King James Bible are Wycliffe 1395, the Great Bible, Taverner's Bible, Matthew's Bible, the Bishops' Bible 1568, the Geneva Bible 1599, Webster's 1833 translation, Darby's translation 1890, and the 1950 Douay version.

The Spanish 1999 Las Sagradas Escrituras also reads like the KJB, having: "Porque si Jesús les hubiera dado el Reposo..."

Joshua himself was called by four different names including Jeshuah Nehemiah 8:17; Joshua in Joshua 1:1; Jehoshuah in Numbers 13:16, and Oshea in Numbers 13:11. He is mentioned only twice in the New Testament, once in Acts 7:45 and again in Hebrews 4:8. In Greek his name translates as Insous, or Jesus in English. This is exactly the same way "Jesus" is spelled in every case.

There are also other people in the Bible whose name was Jesus. In Acts 13:6 we come across a false prophet and a sorcerer. He was "a Jew, whose name was Bar-jesus." Bar-Jesus means "son of Jesus". We also meet a fellow Christian worker in the book of Colossians 4:11 - "And Jesus, which is called Justus, who are of the circumcision."

In the genealogy of Christ, the Traditional texts, the Majority of all manuscripts including A, and the Syriac all read like the King James Bible, by mentioning "the son of Er, which was the son of JOSE..." (or Joseph). However the corrupt manuscripts of Sinaiticus and Vaticanus read: "the son of Er, the son OF JESUS", and so do the RV, ASV, RSV, Goodspeed, and the J.W. versions. The NASB, NIV have changed this to read: "the son of JOSHUA".

It is obvious that many people in the Bible were called by several names, as Peter, Cephas, Simeon, and Simon Barjona (all one man), and that there were many people with the same name. It is not too hard to figure out who is who just by reading the context.

Both Hebrews 4:8 and Acts 7:45 the literal Greek "Jesus" refers to the man Joshua, who himself believed God and is the "type" of the true Jesus, who indeed does lead us into the promised land and gives us rest from our own labours. The type and the antitype both have the same name. God Himself inspired the Bible in this way to teach a spiritual lesson.

John Gill remarks in his commentary that Joshua " was an eminent type of Jesus Christ. There is an agreement in their names, both signify a saviour, Joshua was a temporal saviour, Christ a spiritual one; and in their office they were both servants; and in their qualifications for their office, such as wisdom, courage, faithfulness, and integrity. Joshua was a type of Christ in many actions of his life; in the miracles he wrought, or were wrought for him; in the battles he fought, and the victories he obtained."

The King James Bible and all the others are not in error, as some allege. Rather it gives a literal translation of the Greek name Joshua, and reveals the "type" or divine foreshadowing of the fulfillment which was completed in the Son of God.

Will Kinney

2 Samuel 21:8 Michal or Merab?

Hello Brother Kinney! I had the privilege to read some of your articles. They were very helpful in defending Gods word! I have been challenged with a question. I am not sure if I have the correct answer. Can you please help me out with the below question.

2 Samuel 6:23 - Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.

2 Samuel 21:8 - But the king took the two sons of Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, whom she bare unto Saul, Armoni and Mephibosheth; and the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite:

Did Michal have sons? How can this be best explained?

Mike Wegman

Hi brother Mike, thank you for the encouragement and for your stand on the King James Holy Bible as being the true and inerrant words of God. I have seen this one come up from time to time and there is a logical and reasonable answer without having to resort to the idea that God somehow messed up and has allowed His pure words to be lost or defiled with error.

2 Samuel 6:23 - Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.

In 2 Samuel 21:8 we read: "and the five sons of MICHAL the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel..."

Since another Scripture tells us that Michal was childless until the day of her death, it can well be asked: If she was childless, how is it that she brought up five sons? Are the Hebrew texts wrong? Is there a contradiction in the King James Holy Bible?

I believe God puts many things like this in His word to cause those who deny the inerrancy of Scripture to stumble. First of all, the Hebrew Masoretic text clearly says:"and the five sons of MICHAL the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel..." Notice it says "brought up FOR Ariel".

The translators of versions like the NASB, RSV, NRSV, ESV, The Message, Holman Standard, and NIV do not believe God has preserved His words, and they do not believe in the inerrancy of Scripture. They look at this verse and think the Hebrew must be wrong, so they "correct it" and change the name Michal to Merab, supposedly on the basis of a couple of Hebrew manuscripts (but not the Masoretic text) and SOME LXX copies. The NIV footnote says most Hebrew manuscripts and most LXX read Michal. My copy of the LXX says Michal, which agrees with the King James reading.

The Bibles that correctly read "MICHAL the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel" are the following: Wycliffe 1395, Coverdale 1535, the Bishops' Bible 1568, the Geneva Bible 1599, the Hebrew-English translations of both 1917 and 1936, the 1998 Complete Jewish Bible, Luther's German Bible of 1545, the Italian Diodati, the Spanish Reina Valera of 1602, 1909, and 1960, Webster's 1833 translation, Young's, the Revised Version of 1881, the American Standard Version of 1901, Rotherham's Emphasized Bible of 1902, the Douay Version of 1950, the Third Millenium Bible, KJV 21st Century Version, Green's Modern KJV 1998, the Hebrew Names Bible, the Updated Bible Version of 2003, the Modern Greek Bible, as well as the NKJV 1982 all correctly read Michal - which is what the Hebrew Masoretic text says.

The first major bible version to change the Hebrew reading of Michal to that of MERAB was the liberal RSV of 1952. Since then, the NRSV, NASB, NIV, TNIV, Message, ESV and Holman Standard have all fallen in line with this false and spurious reading.

Now for the explanation. Merab was the sister of Michal, and she was the wife of Adriel. See 1 Samuel 18:19. Michal was childless till the day of her death, as is seen in 2 Samuel 6:23. What must have happened is that Merab died, and Michal took her place in the nuclear family and brought up these 5 children in the place of her dead sister.

Jamieson, Fauccett and Brown comment: "the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel--Merab, Michal's sister, was the wife of Adriel; but Michal adopted and brought up the boys under her care."

John Gill comments: "and the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite - Michal had no children to the day of her death, nor was she the wife of Adriel, but Merab her sister, (1 Samuel 18:19) ; wherefore these sons were not whom she "bare", as the word used signifies, but, as we rightly render it, whom she "brought up" or educated, so the Targum, her sister being dead; and so the Jews say, Merab brought them forth, and Michal brought them up, therefore they were called by her name."

Even if you translate the Hebrew verb used here as "born to", which the KJB rightly did not do, you need to look carefully at how this word is sometimes used. In Ruth 4:17 the exact same word is used in the phrase: "There is a son BORN TO Naomi." Now Naomi was not the biological mother of this child, but Ruth was. Even here in this same chapter of 2 Samuel 21:22 we read of the brothers of the Giant Goliath, and it says "these four were BORN to the giant". Goliath was not their father, but rather he was their brother. God sometimes uses this Hebrew word to mean "born in relationship to a family member".

The King James Bible is correct, and the NASB, ESV, Holman, and NIV are false perversions written by "good, godly, pious, evangelical scholars", none of whom believes that any Bible or any text in any language is the infallible, inerrant, and complete word of God. That is the unvarnished truth.

To see a rather long list of scores of places where versions like the NASB, NIV, ESV and the Holman Standard all reject the Hebrew texts, and often not in the same places as the others, see the following two articles I have put together at my website:

King James Bible Defended!