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I asked this question in the other Christian exchange and was directed here:

From my understanding and through examples in history and my life as well, God allows good and bad things to happen. Although I would always be curious as to why certain things happen, especially when it comes to bad stuff, I know His reasonings would go beyond my comprehension and understanding as He knows all.

God will only allow certain things to happen if He wants it to happen.

The devil, on the other hand, can only do things as he is allowed to by God.

With that being said, would it be possible for God to allow the devil to skew His Word (Bible) in any way, shape, or form?

Knowing that the devil is pure evil and one who deceives, manipulates, and twists the things of God, one would wonder what kind of things he would do prevent Christians from fully benefitting from reading God's Word and progressing in their spiritual life.

An example that I think could be something that he would do or has done is change certain words in the Bible. As you may be aware, one word or phrase can have the power to change a sentence or meaning completely, whether in the Bible or just everyday conversation.

John 3:16

For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. ~ NLT (New Living Translation)

For God so loved the world that He gave the only begotten Son, so that everyone believing in Him should not perish, but should have eternal life. ~ BLB (Berean Literal Bible)

Both are the same verse, that pretty much says the same thing, but one glaring difference is the words will not and should not.

Would it be fair to say that will not is pretty definitive, that if I truly believe in Jesus, I will be saved regardless of what happens afterwards?

As opposed to should not or shall not (in other translations), which would indicate that it could happen but not guaranteed.

For this verse, I would think that figuring out which translation or meaning is the true meaning would be pretty crucial.

One implies that I'm good once I'm saved and the other implies that I should be good to go once I'm saved but...

It would seem that either you can or cannot lose your salvation once you accept Christ. If you can't, then that would allow me to focus on other aspects of the Bible and if you can, then that makes me wonder what I must do to make sure that I keep it that way and not mess up (unforgivable sin comes to mind).

God is not one to cause confusion when it comes to those that want to seek Him and His Word, so I'm wondering to what lengths or permissions would He allow the devil to do his thing?

EDIT

If I add that these are beliefs from arminianism vs calvinism, which if I'm not mistaken, for this topic, is that you are good once you're saved vs you can be unsaved, respectively.

I'm not asking which view is correct, but clarification of which words would more accurately reflect the original texts/Scriptures. Would it be "will" or "should"?

Someone made a comment on the other page that said that will and should meant the same thing in the context of the 2 verses. I disagreed with the response below

And if you read my responses in the comments, I made a point about why I'm not convinced that they are the same words. Unless I'm misunderstanding something and that back in the day, those words meant the same thing or something, those two words do not convey the same meaning to me.

I would be much more convinced that something was or wasn't going to happen with the words "will/will not" than "should/should not".

  • Four quick comments. Firstly a translation will inevitably fall short to the original, eventually. Secondly Calvinism and Arminianism are two sides of the same coin. Arminius was a Calvinist, he said so himself. Traditionalism likewise falls short. I don’t subscribe to any of the three as I find all three unBiblical. Thirdly ‘should not’ can mean/convey ‘will not’ in certain contexts and certain parts of the English speaking world. As for whether satan can skew the Word, I’d have to write a response to answer that but certainly he did it with Eve at the tree, and Jesus in the wilderness – Nihil Sine Deo Jun 5 '19 at 3:37
  • Welcome to BH. Please take the Tour and you will see that questions on this site require to be about an actual text in scripture in order for the hermeneutical process to be put into action. 'Topic' questions are actually off-topic on this site, for that reason. – Nigel J Jun 5 '19 at 12:22
  • The particular inflection of the Greek verb ἀπόλλυμι (destroy/perish) used by the author of John is ἀπόληται, which means should perish/be destroyed. Look here for the various inflections of the verb. The NLT appears to be ignoring the Greek inflection in favour of a more certain outcome. – enegue Jun 6 '19 at 6:12
  • @enegue I am leaning towards should in my gut feeling. Know the original Hebrew verb equivalent? – mph85 Jun 6 '19 at 6:43
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    There is no primary source of John's words written in Hebrew. So, wondering what the equivalent Hebrew might be is pointless. One either trusts that God has preserved the intended meaning in Greek, or one doesn't. – enegue Jun 6 '19 at 14:42
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When we talk about if one being saved or unsaved, the judgement always belonged to God. When we address certain issue that concerning "Sin".

If someone who is sinning against God after he believed in God, would he be saved or not?

We can't help but to start looking at ourselves, we are same the sinners. What is it in me is better than the fellow who do wicked things? So say we look into the scriptures and see what doe God say about sin?

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. - Romans 6:23

All humans should perish. But the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ. Saying that hope can only be found through Jesus Christ. When you know about this, surely, you will praise God and say Amen!

In Matthew 24, Jesus talked about the End Time. Jesus talked about what will happen and what to expect when the end is near. Jesus talked about:

1.) Many will claim to be "the Christ"

2.) Wars and rumours of wars.

3.) Famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places.

4.) False prophets

5.) Lawnessness

And it continue with an encouragement from Jesus Christ:

But he who endures to the end shall be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. -Matthew 13-14

So, Jesus helped us to recognize that the world is wicked, will be wicked even more, as it closed to the End Time. But take courage that, we have works to do before Jesus' Second coming!

18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” - Matthew 28:16-20

We must also come to know that what Jesus has taught us!! Other than kept ourselves rejoicing about receiving the gift of eternal life, have you not heard about the parable of 10 virgins? Where 5 foolish one having no oil in their lamp and 5 wise one have oils in their lam. They became drowsy and felt asleep, then suddenly the bridegroom came.

We must also come to acknowledge that, God has called us (with authority), more like an order from a master to the slave, saying,

"Go and make disciples of all nation, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."

It seemed I was off topic, but bear with me. When it comes to addressing the world we are living in, we should question about:

Why does Satan wanted to deceive us? Wanted to lie to us? in many ways. I could only think of that, the Satan doesn't want to gospel to be spread!

A thought came out from my mind, relating to the Revelation 20. When the End Time comes, it talks about Satan being throwed into the lake of burning sulphur!

Brothers and Sisters in Christ, we are called to share gospel to all the nation. We are called to "Go" and "Make disciples". We have to be mindful of out mission! We have no answer about why is that it has to be this way, why is the lawlessness shall strive. But we lived by the hope that God has promised to us in the Word of God.

There is no other purpose of life! Everything else is meaningless if not for the purpose of God. And be watchful of the deceiving world! And focus nothing or no one but Jesus Christ in the storm of life. Embrace the trails so that we may grow, and hold fast to what we have set to do. May the grace of the Lord be upon all those who fear God and do his Will. Amen

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"God vs. Devil - How much does God allow?

1. “How much does God allow?

My observations and comments:

First, God allows it for a greater purpose for His glory & to bless us. He set the limit according to His Sovereignty and His good will, i.e.

  • Job 1:10-12-permmission & set limit; Job 42:5 -more glorious ends to Job and for God.
  • Abraham -Gen. 22: 15-18 -God was very pleased and blessings promised to Abraham, and he gains honor of "My friend."
  • Jesus after 40 day fasting - Mt.4:1-11 -For conquering the devil and his works; to glorify God

Second, How could He allow it? -He could afford to allow it knowingly the risks. Because, He is who He is - Almighty, Omniscience, Omnipresence, Eternal & Infinite, Holy and Sovereign. No consequences of His such permission can be a surprise to Him.

Note: The grand plan of "The Day of the Lord" is in motion, the Day of Reckoning for devils, but for saints, the glorious day of the Kingdom of Heave, "new Heaven and Earth". Glory to God, and Peace, Joy and Victory for His people who kept the faith fought fight and overcame!

Third, It is NOT the good/perfect will of God in the first place!

Jer. 29:11, "For I know what I have planned for you,' says the LORD. 'I have plans to prosper you, not to harm you. I have plans to give you a future filled with hope."

Ps. 139, "His saw our unformed substance and in His book, everything of (our) life was written (read entire Psalm 139).

Fourth, Devil's scheme cannot succeed until we become an accomplice!

  • Devil attempts his evil schemes against Holy God through human being, i.e. Adam and Eve.

  • He can cause a havoc to us with various tactic but would not succeed when we resist in the Name of Jesus, as the Bible says in James 4:7:

-"Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." (ESV)

Fifth, God has loving provisions for His children:

  • 1 Cor.10:13, "No trial has overtaken you that is not faced by others. And God is faithful: He will not let you be tried beyond what you are able to bear, but with the trial will also provide a way out so that you may be able to endure it."

  • His will for His children is good ones.

Summary:

Devil can infringe our life and make it miserable when we allow him or when there is a crack in our relationship with God.

Also, by how we respond in a time of crisis we will aggravate or lessen the degree and duration. i.e. Abraham, the next day, "rose early in the morning" to obey God. His immediate unwavering response ends sooner.

The best response is "do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 4:6-7).

2. In regard to the integrity of the Bible,

There some minor infractions entered into copies of manuscripts, but not anything major to alter the integrity of God's messages. It is however confusing that are there so many versions(translation) with different syntax and word choice of nuance, etc.

More preferable ones are; ESV, NET, KJV, NKJV.

Never pick up any of the private translations or "New World Translation (Watch Tower)".

To assist your study of the Word,

I would suggest trying free Bible apps, to begin with," Biblehub.com. " It has parallel Bibles, 27 different versions, with many user-friendly features, interlinear Bibles, commentaries, dictionaries, language tools for word study of Heb. & Greek. You will be greatly appreciated and enriched by using it. You will find an answer on John 3:16 (Aramaic version sometimes clear up ambiguities).

3. About security of your salvation,

There are two major opposing theological views:

"O.S.A.S -once saved always save" and "one can lose the salvation."

Both views have strong textual basis, respectably. One of the major verse for each view is:

John 10:27-30 & Hebrews 6:4-6 are two major scriptural supports of respective view, which is one of the major unsolvable theological quandaries.

Scripture has many more "prescriptive words"on our salvation and security than OSAS' views. And we should not "break the Scripture -the Word of God which is written (John 10:35) and negate any of such Words to accommodate one's theology.

God's word become clear, when we read the Bible with an open mind, without a "color-filter"(metaphor)and with honest prayer for illumination, understanding, and discernment of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit, our "Paracletos* (παράκλητος - Advocate, Helper, etc) God has sent for us through Jesus Christ ready for us.

Jesus said (John 16: 13)

-"When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth, for He will not speak on his own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak, and He will declare to you the things that are to come." It means He is not only helping and teaching you of the truth, but to understand the Word unbiased.

God is Truth, His speaks the truth, and Truth does NOT contradict, but is ONE VOICE uniting His people and Christ's Church. Division is NOT of God, but of the devil.

Also, there is a warning to watch out for anyone twists and changes the Word or even tries "eisegesis" (the interpretation of a text of the Bible by "reading into" it of one's own ideas) instead of "exegesis" (let-the Bible-speak approach). Eisegesis is NOT of the Holy Spirit!

4. Lastly, as you said it, God is NOT the one causing confusion, disagreement, and division, nor the truth, the Word of God does it. We, human do that. Our ego, zeal, and ambitions, etc, and behind scene of all these, the devil breathing into it. Theology is not above Bible, theology does NOT save. Our eternal destiny is hangs on the Word, and we are responsible for how we take the Word of God and applies to our life. Jesus warns us about "hearing and doing," " doing in unlawful way is as bad as not doing it. Please read Matthew 7:24-27; 7:21-23!

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ἀπόληται | apolētai

Matches with ἀπόλλυμι Strong's Number 622.

The word help
622 apóllymi (from 575 /apó, "away from," which intensifies ollymi, "to destroy") – properly, fully destroy, cutting off entirely (note the force of the prefix, 575 /apó).

622 /apóllymi ("violently/completely perish") implies permanent (absolute) destruction, i.e. to cancel out (remove); "to die, with the implication of ruin and destruction" (L & N, 1, 23.106); cause to be lost (utterly perish) by experiencing a miserable end.

μὴ | mē

Matches with μή Strong's Number 3361.

The word help
3361 mḗ (a particle which functions as an adverb) – no, not. 3361 (mḗ) negates "subjectively," ruling out any implications ("suggestions") that could be involved with what should (could, would) apply.

3361 /mḗ ("not") negates the underlying idea (concept) of a statement, ruling out its possibilities, i.e. all that it suggests on a conceptual or hypothetical plane.

[3361 /mḗ ("not, no") then negates the implications (suggestions) that naturally spring from the negated statement.]

Translation Philosophy

  • will not perish ~ NLT (New Living Translation)
  • should not perish ~ BLB (Berean Literal Bible)

In both cases the translators work towards translating the word μὴ | mē

In Greek there is two main forms of negation:

  • Subjectively μὴ - The Source does not throw the verb.
  • Objectively οὐ - The Source throws the verb but targeted elsewhere.

Examples using the Hose

  • Subjectively: The water is not turned on, "The target will not dampen" ~ NLT
  • Subjectively: The water is not turned on, "The target should not dampen" ~ BLB

What does John 3:16 say?

Thus indeed, God agaped the cosmos and as the one generated son did give, in order that the faithful in him stops dying, but has eternal life. (The what it says version)

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The OP's original OQ was "With that being said, would it be possible for God to allow the devil to skew His Word (Bible) in any way, shape, or form?"

Answer= If one believes that God's ways, intents, "will" are fixed and will never change and that we humans KNOW that and we have God locked securely where He cannot do anything that violates our concept, then, NO. it is NOT POSSIBLE. If the truth is elsewise, then whether "allowed" or not, it is certainly possible, and scripture seems to bear that out.

I also would prefer, at this point in my walk, the term "devils" rather than "devil". Jesus certainly revealed a real, personal, powerful Satan, who had no revelation to speak of in the OT, and all other NT coloring is derivative of Jesus's words on that wicked Being. But there are many devils. There are "spirits", spirits of unclean demons, demons, disobedient sinful Watchers, rebellious angels, a Jezebel-like "Babylon" female-identity-entity of great power and ability that appears in both OT and NT. Maybe worst of all, generational heathens that conjure up from our hearts all sorts of evil, which Jesus glaringly revealed.

I can see no scriptural warrant for the idea that, given all the evil that is propagated by evil beings, such evils EXCLUDE scriptural tampering. Manuscript "wars" alone are enough to awaken one to the idea that Satan and other malevolent beings have ALWAYS sought to block, destroy, or hijack The Word, the same as they sought to snuff out any divinely-ordained human instruments like Moses of the bullrushes, or Jesus Himself at birth. The Word has had a similar trek, like the "hidden child of promise", going underground, passing through many faithful hands many of whom were victims of bloodshed, in order for the "Bible" to finally emerge on the scene of human interaction with such force that it cannot now be contained. Satan used The Church to try to bury forever the Word, but the effort spectacularly failed, over the course of an improbably long time. In our own day once again something posing as "The Church" [churches] is being weaponized against the Word to convince us that it doesn't actually say what it says, and that God has changed his view of a number of important subjects.

Though tempted by some other answers that conjure up the meaning of "salvation" in English translations, I'll stick with the OQ.

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