Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Jehovah speaks: "...they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son" - Zech.12:10, KJV; cf. NKJV, NIV, NASB, NEB, REB, ASV, AB, KJIIV, ETRV, Douay, Beck, Rotherham, Lamsa.

This scripture is interpreted by many trinitarians as meaning that, since Jesus was "pierced" by the Jews, then Jehovah God is Jesus.

However, many other scholars admit that an alternate reading is undoubtedly the correct one:
"...when they look upon him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him" - RSV. Also in agreement with this rendering are NRSV; GNB; MLB; NAB (1970); NAB (1991); LB; Mo; AT; JB; NJB; NLV; BBE; and Byington. (ASV says in a footnote for "me" in Zech. 12:10: "According to some MSS. [manuscripts], `him'." Also see Rotherham footnote.)

Even the context tells us that the latter rendering is the correct one. Notice that after saying that they will look upon me (or him) God continues with "they shall mourn for him"! Notice how the KJV contradicts itself here. The "me" in the first half simply does not agree with the "him" of the second half. Since there has never been any question about the accuracy of "him" in the second half, the disputed word of the first half (which has evidence for both renderings - see ASV and Rotherham footnotes) must also be properly rendered as "him" (or "the one").

The testimony of the first Christian writers (the 'Ante-Nicene Fathers': all those who wrote before the Roman Catholic council of Nicaea in 325 A. D. which began the official introduction of a trinity doctrine into Christendom) confirms the non-trinitarian meaning of Zechariah 12:10 ("him"). Ignatius, Irenaeus, and Tertullian (repeatedly) rendered Zech. 12:10 as "him whom they pierced"! This is especially significant because trinitarians themselves claim these particular early Christians (including Origen who doesn't quote Zech. 12:10 at all in his existing writings) are the very ones who began the development the trinity doctrine for Christendom!

If any of the earliest Christian writers, then, would use a trinitarian interpretation here, it would certainly be these three. Since they do not do so (nor do any others), it must mean that the source for the 'look upon me' translation originated sometime later than the time of Ignatius, Irenaeus, and Tertullian (early 3rd century A. D.)!

The OT Greek Septuagint uses "me" (in existing copies, at least - 4th century A.D. and later), but it is significantly different from the Hebrew text: "They shall look upon me, because they have mocked me, and they shall make lamentation for him, as for a beloved [friend], and they shall grieve intensely, as for a firstborn [son]." - Zech. 12:10, Septuagint, Zondervan, 1976 printing. In other words, (1) they will look upon God whom they have mocked [not "pierced"] as their judgment arrives and (2) they will mourn Christ. The two are not the same person here, nor the same God!

"The [Hebrew] text of Zech. 12:10 is corrupt. The [Greek] LXX text reads: ... ('they shall look upon me whom they have treated spitefully') .... The text in [Jn 19:37] does not follow the LXX; but it has also avoided the impossible ['me'] of the Hebrew text." - p. 195, John 2, Ernst Haenchen, Fortress Press, 1984.

The JPS translation of Zech 12:10 in Tanakh (NJV) also reveals that the text of Zech 12:10 is corrupt.

The NJV (New Jewish Version or Tanakh published by the Jewish Publication Society) is highly praised for its accuracy by noted trinitarian Bible scholars Sakae Kubo and Walter F. Specht in their popular book So Many Versions? which analyzes and critiques modern Bibles:

"The NJV is a monument to careful scholarship .... It ranks as one of the best translations of the Hebrew Bible [the Old Testament] available." - p. 143, SMV, Zondervan Publ..

A footnote in Tanakh says that the Hebrew sometimes rendered "when they look upon" is "uncertain." Although it uses the pronoun "me," it renders Zech 12:10,

"they shall lament to Me about those who are slain, wailing over them as over a favorite son and showing bitter grief as over a first-born." - Jewish Publication Society, 1985.

But most important of all, compare John 19:37 (even in the KJV) where this scripture has been quoted by John! All translations show John here translating Zech. 12:10 as "They shall look upon him whom they pierced." So we have this Apostle and inspired Bible writer telling us plainly (and undisputed even by trinitarian scholars) that Zechariah 12:10 should read: "They shall look upon him (not 'me')." Therefore, Jehovah is speaking in Zech. 12:10 of someone else who will be pierced - not himself!

Also see:
Zech. 12:10 / John 19:37 (DNWT)

Zech. 12:10 (In Defense of the NWT)

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