Who Changed the Bible?


Just a quick poll. Curious where everyone stands on the issue as this is a common ‘Tactic’ used to show the CC is in error.

Arguments put Forth:

  1. Catholics Changed it at Trent: This argument basically says when Luther put forth his Cannon, the Church responded by added the 7 books with whatever Authority it Could

  2. Protestants Changed the Bible: This argument stems from Luther and other protestants saying that even though the books had been in the Bible since the Council of Carthage, Rome and Hippo, they felt that they were able to remove them because the Jews had a different Old Testament.

My personal belief is that Protestants changed the bible, but I want to hear from everyone else…

Please… Be Charitable as I know this is a touchy subject for many.

In Christ


Read Why Catholic Bibles are Bigger: the Untold Story of the Lost Books of the Protestant Bible by Gary Michuta. 332 Pages.

I did not read every word, but there are lots of quotes from scholarly works and oodles of footnotes and a nine page bibliography. So I think it is evident Mr. Michuta did a good job of research into this subject. If you were really into bible origins, or were a pastor or religious study student, I think those bits would be particularly (perhaps more) interesting. I myself didn’t need convincing.

It is pretty evident that Catholic Bibles are complete. Protestant versions, such as King James, would have these books missing, or perhaps relegated to the back and labeled “apochrypha”.

I will probably donate it to our church library.

God bless,


Luther REMOVED books as needed to support his thoughts. Best example I always think of is Maccabees in the OT which is where you can find evidence for the teaching of purgatory.


The weight of historical evidence is overwhelming in support of the fact that the seven contested books have been considered, from before the time of Christ, to be scripture. Since the time of Christ, several church councils and synods have put forward and approved the list of books that currently comprise the Catholic Bible. Martin Luther’s particular list of books is a novel one.


The OP presents the correct fact in number(2).

Kotton :thumbsup:


Considering the voluminous usage of the Deuterocanon in the earliest centuries, and that they were included in the first Protestant Bibles, it is pretty hard to say that it was Catholics. Moving the books to an “Apocrypha” comes from the Reformation. Removing the books entirely was an act of the 19th century Protestant bible societies.

Among other sources, Michuta’s book is an excellent, well-referenced treatment of this subject.


Neither is strictly true. It is my understanding that Catholics took the unofficial canon in use during Jesus’ time and the Protestants use the canon defined some years after Jesus in Jamnia.

So Luther did not remove books, but he used the canon that had fewer books. It is said he WANTED to remove some of the New Testament books but didn’t.

It’s interesting to note that the books were excluded from the Jamnian canon, in part, because no Hebrew versions were found. This was during a time of Hellenization and Romanization where the Jewish people were resisting becoming inculcated into the cultures that ruled them. Only Hebrew scriptures were considered authentic.

1 Maccabees was one of those excluded texts. It has since been found in Hebrew in the Dead Sea scrolls.


It is quite interesting that some protestants look to the council of Jamnia (sp) for their cannon. It is my understanding that this council started with a curse to all those that follow Jesus.

In Any case, I appreciate the responses thus far and would like to note that most of these things I have read/studied before. There is more behind this post, but would like to get more reasoning first. I am particularly interested in Protestants that believe that Catholics changed the bible (and or hold to the “former nun” Mary collins view)

As mentioned. The Charge that Catholics changed the bible is a common one and I wanted to know who actually believes it, especially among our Protestant Brethren

In Christ


Protestants. They remove the 7 Deutrocanonical Books from the OT by 1600s


I’ve heard (but never read) that Luther took out more than just the OT books. Does anyone have any information on this? It’s something that I never see mentioned when Protestants defend Luther on this matter.



This really isn’t a matter of opinion, it’s a matter of historical fact that Luther removed books from the Bible.

As for Luther’s thoughts on the New Testament, what looks to be a fair statement is here:


“Even as late as the 16th century, theologian and reformer Martin Luther questioned (but in the end did not reject) the Epistle of James, the Epistle of Jude, the Epistle to the Hebrews and the Book of Revelation. Even today, German-language Luther Bibles are printed with these four books at the end of the canon, rather than their traditional order for other Christians. Due to the fact that some of the recognized Books of the Holy Scripture were having their canonicity questioned by Protestants in the 16th century, the Council of Trent reaffirmed the traditional canon (that is for Catholics the canon of the Council of Rome) of the Scripture as a dogma of the Catholic Church.”

Note that Luther famously dismissed James as an “epistle of straw”.


Hi Heisenberg,

I think even Protestants admit that THEY changed the Christian Bible from what it was to the Jewish Bible. There is a strange inconsistency here. If they rely on the Jews for their Old Testament canon, on whom do they rely for the New Testament?



You might want to read Mike Gendron’s website or John MacArthur’s anti-Catholic rhetoric. Unfortunately, their analysis does not get much deeper than “Catholics changed it because they defined it at the Council of Trent.” It’s really rather sophomoric.


Luther didn’t remove the books, rather he put 7 Deutrocanonical Books in the appendix, as well as Epistles of James. He added faith alone in Roman 3:28.

The translation we have said:

28 For we account a man to be justified by faith, without the works of the law.

Luther’s translation have it written as:

28 For we account a man to be justified by faith alone, without the works of the law.

So let’s look at the question who changed the Bible?

Protestants changed it.


I voted “other” because Jewish Rabbis established the Hebrew Canon and removed the Deuterocanonical books, not Martin Luther. Martin Luther did not actually remove the books from the Septuagint, he decided to use the Hebrew Canon and classified the 7 removed books as the Apocrypha. So technically it was the Jewish Rabbis who removed the books. But Martin went against 1500 years of Christian Tradition without any authority to do so. Jesus used the Septuagint, yet no one accuses Him of adding books to the Bible:rolleyes:


Seems like I heard that he (Luther) wanted to remove Hebrews and Revelation too. Is this true?



The question as its stands is over-simplified.

IMO - it doesn’t really matter. Even if X were convicted of “changing the Bible”, what would that prove ? Certainly not that Y had not done so in other ways. And they might be far more destructive of the meaning & purpose of the Bible than anything X was accused of. And if either of them is innocent of one sin, he will be guilty of some other. So the whole issue, however interesting historically, is of no importance theologically. I think it is a temptation, leading people to find fault with the faith of others.

Even if the text had come down from Heaven & been preserved unaltered, it would be of no value if not heeded. What matters is, not how much one has, but how one uses what one has.


Catholics changed the Bible. They added the NT writings to the Hebrew Scriptures that they received in the 1st cent. They then canonized Sacred Scripture–the OT and NT–in AD 382.

From a Protestant source, The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (2nd ed., edited by F.L. Cross & E.A. Livingstone, Oxford Univ. Press, 1983, p.232):

A council probably held at Rome in 382 under St. Damasus gave a complete list of the canonical books of both the Old Testament and the New Testament (also known as the ‘Gelasian Decree’ because it was reproduced by Gelasius in 495), which is identical with the list given at Trent."

The canon of Scripture is important, as it is that which nourishes and regulates the Christian religion.


Well, Martin Luther was a liar. He took out several books that were already in the bible because the didn’t comply with his personal beliefs. And then he employed sola scriptura. WOW.:mad:


I had to vote other…
Originally, the Catholic Church changed the bible by writing and adding the entire New Testement, then luther etal changed it by claiming some of the OT books to be non-scriptural.:cool:

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