Eugene Peterson's “The Message” Exposed

By David J. Stewart
August 2007 | Updated January 2017

       One of the most dangerous Bible revisions on the market today is “THE MESSAGE.” This horrible PERversion which butchers the Word of God was published in 2002. Admittedly, it is a poor paraphrase authored by Pastor Eugene H. Peterson (born 1932). Unfortunately, tens-of-millions of churchgoers have been deceived, embracing Mr. Peterson's demonic paraphrase as the authoritative Scriptures...

NavPress is the publishing arm of The Navigators. On their website list of their various ventures, the promo for NavPress is: "This ministry of The Navigators publishes books, Bible studies, periodicals and The Message Bible to enrich the spiritual walks of some four million people annually."

According to NavPress, publisher of Eugene Peterson's The Message The Bible in Contemporary Language, there have been over 10,000,000 readers of The Message. Although it is a paraphrase based on Eugene Peterson's opinions and beliefs, and not a word for word or thought for thought translation, many today are using it as their main source of study or as a secondary source of what they would call God's Word.

Pastors are preaching from The Message, and people of all walks of life and beliefs are reading it as a source of inspiration. Many firmly believe it is the Bible in modern American language, regarding it with the same authority as their other various translations. Others believe it tears down barriers and allows this book to be understood by Believers in Jesus Christ as well as those who do not know Him.

Many also believe that, for example, the language of the King James Bible is archaic and people cannot understand it, and Eugene Peterson's words clarify and make it all easy to understand. However, it is also viewed as an easier version to understand than the NIV, NASB and so on, making those versions, also promoted with the idea of modern language and easier to understand, suddenly obsolete.


There is so much wrong with THE MESSAGE (MSG) translation that it speaks for itself. Below, on the left side, read the faithful, accurate Authorized King James Bible; on the right side, read the irreverent, inaccurate, poorly translated, “The Message.” ALL of the corrupt modern Bible revisions originate from the Alexandrian, Egypt, corrupt manuscripts, which were made famous by heretics Brooke Westcott and Fenton Hort in their Greek perversion, “THE NEW TESTAMENT IN THE ORIGINAL GREEK,” published in 1881. It is upon this demonic work that the modern corrupt Bible revisions have been translated. They share all the same corruptions.

As you will read for yourself, some of these corruptions in THE MESSAGE are shocking!!! Take a look at the first one, how they completely REMOVED Acts 8:37. Without this important Bible verse, Acts 8:36-39 now teaches the false doctrine of Baptismal Regeneration (i.e., the lie that you can get to Heaven by getting water baptized). This omission of Acts 8:37 exists in ALL the modern PERversions based upon the Alexandrian texts!

King James Bible (KJB) THE MESSAGE (MSG)
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Acts 8:36-39, “And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? 37And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him. And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.” [emphasis added] THE MESSAGE (MSG)—Acts 36, 38-39, “As they continued down the road, they came to a stream of water. The eunuch said, “Here’s water. Why can’t I be baptized?” He ordered the chariot to stop. They both went down to the water, and Philip baptized him on the spot. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of God suddenly took Philip off, and that was the last the eunuch saw of him. But he didn’t mind. He had what he’d come for and went on down the road as happy as he could be.”

*Verse 37 was completely removed! This is a brutal attack on the Deity of Jesus Christ and the plan of salvation. Getting water baptized doesn't bring salvation. Baptism is simply a snapshot, an outward picture of what has happened inwardly, that is, a person is saved by believing the Gospel. Baptism symbolizes Jesus' death, burial and resurrection. We are saved by faith alone in the Gospel.

KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

*All of the Alexandrian PERversions remove the word “begotten,” thus attacking the Deity of Christ.

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—John 3:16, “This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life.”

*Notice how Mr. Peterson changed “everlasting life” to merely “a whole and lasting life.”

KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—John 20:17, “Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” THE MESSAGE (MSG)—John 20:17, [Jesus said, “Don’t cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go to my brothers and tell them, ‘I ascend to my Father and your Father, my God and your God.’”]

*Jesus told Mary Magdalene not to touch Him, because He needed to ascend with His shed blood into Heaven, to sprinkle that liquid blood on the Mercy Seat (Hebrews 9:12, 24; 12:24). If Mary had touched Him, she would have corrupted the blood sacrifice.

KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Matthew 8:2, “And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.” THE MESSAGE (MSG)—Matthew 8:2, “Then a leper appeared and went to his knees before Jesus, praying, 'Master, if you want to, you can heal my body.'”

*All of the modern versions change every mention of people “worshipping” Jesus to a mere “knelt” before Him. You can bow or kneel down before a king without worshipping him. Again, this is an attack on Christ's Deity.

KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—1st Timothy 3:16, “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.”

*ALL of the Alexandrian based revisions water down this precious Scripture, thus attacking Christ's Deity. Who is “He.” Also, “appearing” in a body is VERY different than God “manifesting” Himself in the flesh.

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—1st Timothy 3:16, “This Christian life is a great mystery, far exceeding our understanding, but some things are clear enough: He appeared in a human body, was proved right by the invisible Spirit, was seen by angels. He was proclaimed among all kinds of peoples, believed in all over the world, taken up into heavenly glory.”
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—1st Corinthians 1:18, “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” THE MESSAGE (MSG)—1st Corinthians 1:18, “The Message that points to Christ on the Cross seems like sheer silliness to those hellbent on destruction, but for those on the way of salvation it makes perfect sense.”

*The KJB says believers “ARE SAVED,” not “ON THE WAY OF SALVATION.” Also, the preaching of the CROSS, that is, the Gospel, is the “POWER OF GOD” unto salvation to them that believe (Romans 1:16). Look how the MSG poisons God's Word, reducing the “POWER OF GOD” to “IT MAKES PERFECT SENSE.” There is a drastic difference in meaning!

KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Romans 1:16, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” THE MESSAGE (MSG)— Romans 1:16, “It’s news I’m most proud to proclaim, this extraordinary Message of God’s powerful plan to rescue everyone who trusts him, starting with Jews and then right on to everyone else!”
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Mark 1:15, “And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” THE MESSAGE (MSG)—Mark 1:15, “After John was arrested, Jesus went to Galilee preaching the Message of God: “Time’s up! God’s kingdom is here. Change your life and believe the Message.”
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Romans 10:9-10, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”

*The MSG preaches another Gospel. Not one verse in the Holy Bible tells us to declare Christ as our “Lord” (Master) to be saved. 1st Timothy 4:10 says Jesus is “the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.” To be saved, we must receive Him as our Saviour, and then He automatically becomes our Lord. You don't make Jesus Lord, HE IS LORD!!!

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—Romans 10:9-10, “Say the welcoming word to God—'Jesus is my Master'—embracing, body and soul, God’s work of doing in us what he did in raising Jesus from the dead. That’s it. You’re not 'doing' anything; you’re simply calling out to God, trusting him to do it for you. That’s salvation. With your whole being you embrace God setting things right, and then you say it, right out loud: 'God has set everything right between him and me!'”

*We are saved by BELIEVING the Gospel (1st Corinthians 15:1-6), not saying some magical words: “Jesus is my Master.” Lordship is a matter of discipleship and growing in grace, not a matter of sonship (salvation). Eternal life is the free gift of God (Romans 6:23).

KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—John 3:5-6, “Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

*The MSG is bizarre in this passage. Jesus plainly tells us that the “water” is the fleshly birth, or human birth. Jesus said, “the flesh is the flesh.” This is the first, or natural, birth. The second (or spiritual) birth is by the Holy Spirit of God (John 1:12-13). Notice that the KJB spells “Spirit” with a capital “S,” indicating the Holy Spirit. Eugene totally blunders this passage of Scripture. He misidentifies the Holy Spirit for the human spirit, speaking of becoming a living spirit. That's not what John 5:6 means. 1st John 3:24, “And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.” This is the Holy Spirit, Who indwells every born-again believer.

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—John 3:5-6, “Jesus said, “You’re not listening. Let me say it again. Unless a person submits to this original creation—the ‘wind-hovering-over-the-water’ creation, the invisible moving the visible, a baptism into a new life—it’s not possible to enter God’s kingdom. When you look at a baby, it’s just that: a body you can look at and touch. But the person who takes shape within is formed by something you can’t see and touch—the Spirit—and becomes a living spirit.”
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Matthew 5:13-16, Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

*The MSG Bible version is ridiculous garbage theology. Unlike the controversial MSG food additive that Mayo Clinic says hasn't been medically proven to be bad for humans, the MSG version IS DEFINITELY SPIRITUALLY DANGEROUS for the soul!

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—Matthew 5:13-16, “Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage. Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.”
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—1st Peter 3:1, “Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives.”

*Notice how the MSG reduces wifely subjection to merely being good to her husband. This is wicked!

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—1st Peter 3:1, “The same goes for you wives: Be good wives to your husbands, responsive to their needs. There are husbands who, indifferent as they are to any words about God, will be captivated by your life of holy beauty.”
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Romans 1:25, “Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.”

*The MSG completely changes the context and meaning of the passage. The KJB says wicked people CHANGED THE TRUTH OF GOD INTO A LIE; the MSG says they traded the true God for a fake God. That's not what the Bible says.

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—Romans 1:25, “And all this because they traded the true God for a fake god, and worshiped the god they made instead of the God who made them—the God we bless, the God who blesses us. Oh, yes!”
KING JAMES BIBLE (KJB)—Psalms 12:6-7, “The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.”

*This is perhaps the most wicked corruption in the Alexandrian texts, which exists in ALL of the modern Bible PERversions. Since they keep publishing new versions, they had to change this promise from God to preserve His words unto every generation. Instead of God preserving “THEM” (His words), the MSG changes it to “US” (the saints). Do you see how evil and dangerous the Alexandrian texts and modern versions really are!

THE MESSAGE (MSG)—Psalms 12:6-7, “God’s words are pure words, Pure silver words refined seven times In the fires of his word-kiln, Pure on earth as well as in heaven. God, keep us safe from their lies, From the wicked who stalk us with lies, From the wicked who collect honors For their wonderful lies.”

God only authored one book... THE BOOK. That's the blood-sprinkled Book, the precious, preserved, perfect, inerrant, holy, pure, inspired, King James Bible. According to the American Bible Society, there are approximately 900 existing English translations of the Bible. How can people use these two radically different Bibles and actually have a Bible study without utter confusion? Satan has crept into most of the churches today, tricking people into using his corrupt Bible translations. It is human nature to defend one's position, no matter how wrong one is. This is our sinful pride. A godly person knows that God wants us to always be willing to change our views if we are proven to be wrong. God didn't author 900 English Bibles. They can't all be correct.

The Alexandrian Greek texts from Egypt differ drastically from the “Textus Receptus” texts from Antioch, Syria. Our beloved King James Bible was translated from the Textus Receptus (or “Received Text” used by the 54 King James translators). These two manuscripts are contrary to one another—one is true and one is false. Most churches today use, search and promote BOTH of these manuscripts, confusing everyone in the congregation, just like Satan planned. I have warned numerous Baptist pastors over the years, who scolded me instead of repenting of their own woeful ignorance and wickedness. I will be vindicated on Judgment Day.

Those wicked pastors, who knowingly reject the knowledge of the truth (Hosea 4:6), will not receive a “crown of glory” (1st Peter 5:4) in Heaven. Notice that God's people were destroyed because of the PRIESTS (religious elders), who knowingly REJECTED KNOWLEDGE (i.e., THE TRUTH). Hosea 4:6b, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me...” 1st Peter 5:2a commands Christian elders to “FEED THE FLOCK OF GOD.” There is no way that God is going to award the crown of glory to irresponsible pastors and evangelists who POISON their flock with the modern Bible PERversions!!! Bob Jones University (BJU) are poisoning their students by supporting the Alexandrian texts. They will not receive a crown of glory for poisoning the flock of God. The average Baptist pastor today COULDN'T CARE LESS when warned about the satanic modern Bible revisions. Sad to say, our nation's Baptist churches are going to hell as fast as the Presbyterians.

I have shown you THE TRUTH!!! Nevertheless, even after reading this comparison, some people will still defend each Bible version as being true and right. They can't all be right because they contradict each other! Sadly, these people don't want to face the facts—because they are sinfully proud and are so determined to be “right,” even in the face of irrefutable facts. A wise man will consider his ways, but the fool won't. He'll keep on going in his folly—and paying the price!!!

(an awesome sermon by Dr. Al Lacy)

1st Peter 1:23, “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.”

A man with two watches never really knows what time it is;
And a man with two Bibles never really knows what the Word of God is!!!

Psalms 116:15, “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.”

“Every word in this Bible is inspired by God almighty!”
—Dr. Jack Hyles (a great quote from the classic sermon, “
A Friend At Midnight.”)

“The only inspired Words of God are in the King James Bible!”
—Dr. Jack Hyles (an awesome quote —Dr. Jack Hyles (THE REAL BATTLE!”)

“And brother, any time anybody ever casts any reflection upon the accuracy and the inspiration—verbal inspiration—of this Bible, I'll guarantee you he was inspired by the demons. I'll guarantee you! I don't care if he's got a 'reverend' in front of his name. I don't care if he has a clerical collar on. I don't care what school he's been to. He's of the Devil if he says that the Bible is not verbally inspired by God!” —Dr. Jack Hyles, a great quote from the awesome MP3 sermon titled, “Satan's masterpiece

(MP3 by Dr. Hyles, “The King James Bible crowd is going to come out on top!”)

Ye Must Be Born Again!

You Need HIS Righteousness!

Believe The Gospel

“. . . ye have PERVERTED the words of the living God. . .”
Jeremiah 23:36