"It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man."
Psalm 118:8
How to Play the Greek Game
Christopher J. E. Johnson
Published: Sept 7, 2012
Updated: Apr 15, 2017

Before we begin, the reader should know that I don't know how to read, write or speak any Greek whatsoever. I understand that will deter a number of new-age version users away from our website, since so many of them are obsessed with scribal authority. The reason I'm telling everyone this from the start is because I don't need to know one bit of the Greek language to understand the game that's being played by modern-day preachers, so don't be afraid to continue; you don't need to understand Greek to understand this article.

The first thing we need to understand is that most of these people don't use the King James Bible; they instead turn to their corrupt new-age versions that water-down the Word of God and remove key doctrines. For example, this author is one of those men who swaps around a multitude of versions to get the bible to say what he personally wants it to say, and concerning Mark 7, he says:
"This verse has been translated in as many different ways as there are different versions of the Bible, so we have to look at the original Greek to see what Paul was really saying."
-Cliff Leitch, "What Does the Bible Say About Homosexuality?" retrieved Dec 3, 2014, [christianbiblereference.org/faq_homosexuality.htm]

This man is only one of hundreds of thousands of church-goers that make similar claims. What he's actually doing is creating a guru status for himself; meaning that you can't actually read the Word of God for yourself, you need him to interpret it for you from "the original Greek," but in reality, he doesn't know much of anything about Greek, he just goes to his Greek grammar dictionaries (lexicons/concordances) and regurgitates it for you on his website or from behind the pulpit.

It's not only bad enough that they fool Christians into thinking they are standing on Biblical authority, it's worse that they teach these deceptive habits to the next generation. It's get so bad that some church building leadership puts children behind the pulpit to do the same corrupt things:
"I was a youth director at a church in Ohio, and we had a talent contest... all these churches got together, and they had a preaching contest, and a 14-year-old boy... got up and corrected the King James Bible from the pulpit. Now, do you think he knew Greek? Of course he didn't know Greek. He just got him a Bible commentary; probably learned that from his pastor."
-Sam Gipp, "The Greek Game," samgipp.com, 3166 Wildwood Circle, Massillon, OH, retrieved Aug 23, 2012, [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-C8J3tEzAwU]

The reason I make this point is to first get you to question the slight-of-hand illusion that's being done here -- if a 14-year-old boy can do this, it doesn't take a doctor of Greek in order to chop up the Bible and make oneself sound like a Greek scholar. We will now demonstrate how these leavened preachers give glory to themselves by playing this Greek Game, instead of giving glory to the Lord God, and fool other people into thinking they understand the Word of God.

We're about to give some examples of how this process works, but first, we need to go over the three basic rules of the game.

GREEK GAME RULE #1: You are more intelligent than other people.
The first thing you must do to play the Greek Game is ASSUME that the translators of the King James Bible were primitive and stupid. It has an evolutionary philosophy to it; that ancient man was dumb, and modern man is smart, and therefore, we need modern scholars, or we can't understand the Word of God. So first believe that you are smarter than anyone in the past because you live in a modern time, and therefore, all answers are up to you.

GREEK GAME RULE #2: Everything you say and do is directly from God.
You have to build up the prideful mentality that you have all understanding, and therefore, people need you to interpret the Bible for them. Following rule #1, we have to believe that people can't read the Bible in English and understand it for themselves, so you must ignore 1Jo 2:27 and be the guru of truth on their behalf.

GREEK GAME RULE #3: When the KJB translates a word, it's wrong.
Whatever the King James Bible says, if you have a choice, automatically ASSUME that it is wrong. You have to go to the Greek Grammar Dictionary to find a different way to translate the words listed out in the KJB.

Let's imagine you're the pastor of a 501c3 corporate business, you have a half hour to fill on a Sunday morning, and you want to really make your congregation believe you are worth the paycheck that's being compiled out of tithing plates every week. You need to blow their minds with your massive intellect.

First, you need to grab a concordance, like Strong's or Thayer's for example, but most new-age versions have made it easier for you and added in a mini-concordance and commentaries. So if you don't understand the verse, you can just read from the commentary, and if you do understand the verse, you can simply select words in the verse, look at your Greek Lexicon, and choose a new definition of that word to make a brand new teaching no one has ever heard before so you can look amazing in front of your church group.
(Read "Dangers of Using Lexicons and Concordances" here at creationliberty.com for more details about the authors of these concordances; they were authored by men who did not believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.)

Let's try it out and see how this works:

And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up [άναφέρω] into an high mountain apart,
-Matthew 17:1

Pronounced: "anafero"
(See Strong's Greek Lexicon G399)
I went to Strong's Lexicon and got the defintions for the greek word "anafero." According to Strong, there are a number of ways this can be translated:
άναφέρω - anafero
  1. 1. to bring up
  2. 2. to lead up
  3. 3. to offer up (upon an alter)
  4. 4. to lift up (carry)
  5. 5. to sustain

Now remembering game rule #2, the King James Bible is always wrong, we can skip the first definition of 'anafero'. Instead, we can choose '2. to lead up', and then talk about that for at least 10-15 minutes. (And there's half your sermon right there!) You can tell your congregation how the unfortunate the foolish King James translators were, and how you know better now because you are very smart and have a new-age version, and that 'anafero' actually means to LEAD up, not just bring up, because Jesus Christ is a LEADER, and how much he LEADS us in our every day lives, and how we get depressed when the dishwasher breaks down, we just need Jesus to be our LEADER through the dark times.

Folks, some of you may not like how I'm point this out (I've already had people rake me over the coals for this teaching), but this is EXACTLY how it's done. Most of these guys took a semester of Greek in their seminary college, and they lead you to believe their experts in the field, but they're really just reading this junk out of a commentary or concordance.

Or we can choose '4. to lift up, (carry)', and to show the congregation how impressive your brain is, you explain to them that these poor King James translators were too ignorant to understand that Jesus didn't just lead them up -- He CARRIED them up because the Lord must CARRY our sins and our burdens, so He CARRIED them up Himself to demonstrate to us that we must let him carry our burdens when we burn the turkey at our family's pagan Christmas dinner.

Some people might think '3. to offer up upon an alter' is a little harder to tackle, but you simply tell your congregation that Jesus knew there had to be a sacrifice, and He planned on offering up Peter, James, and John as sacrifices, but just could not bear to see His disciples be sacrificed, so He changed His mind and decided to OFFER Himself up instead, showing what a merciful God He is to us, and how we should learn to praise him more when we get ice cream headaches at church socials.

Many of you have heard this junk go on behind the pulpit of church buildilngs, but some of you may think this doesn't actually happen, or that people wouldn't actually believe this stuff. You would be surprised what people will believe if you wear a suit and stand behind a pulpit, or if you have an 'officially' published book about "Christianity." Take a look for yourself:
"Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up on a high mountain by themselves. Matthew 17:1 [NIV] ... These three men were becoming intimately connected with Jesus, and it was becoming instinctive for them to follow His voice. What encourages me most is that, even thoughPeter was accused of allowing the enemy to use him, Jesus still included him. The other word in verse one is led, or anaphero, which means 'to carry or bring up, to lead up men to a higher place.' I'm sure we can all think of a time when we felt we could have 'left behind.' Jesus doesn't work that way, though. He doesn't reject or exclude us. He includes us... We can then assume there was a work of repentance in Peter's heart for Jesus to lead him to a higher place."
-Sherry Budd, The Leader Who Followed: A Study on the Life of Peter, Tate Publishing, 2011, p. 69, ISBN: 9781615669776

See what I mean? There are huge leaps of ASSUMPTIONS when people hold their Greek Grammar Dictionary as their final authority in all matters of faith and practice, and it makes for really long, drawn out, and senseless explanation of someone's personal feelings.

"'Jesus led them.' Led here is anaphero which actually means carry. Two things we can be sure of. He knew where He was going and He was looking forward to blowing these guys’ minds."
-Terry Clark, "See Jesus In His Kingdom?" retrieved Dec 3, 2014, [catalystpeople.com/matthew-171-13-see-jesus-in-his-kingdom]; Clark is the founder of a 501c3 ministry.

This guy's changing it from bringing them up, to led, and then to carry, and then concludes that Jesus wanted to "blow their minds." This is the kind I'm referring to; the illogical, waste-of-time preaching that's based on ASSUMPTIONS and emotions.

Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge.
-Proverbs 19:27

Here's one more:
"Now it is Jesus who takes the initiative, leading his disciples to the 'burning bush' of the mystery of God. The word 'lead' (anaphero: to lift on high, to offer) used by Matthew conveys the idea of offering something in gratitude. Jesus wants to teach us that everything is a gift... It is precisely this offering that reveals the Master’s freedom of heart–he is not afraid to enlighten the world with the transfiguring power of a completely new kind of love."
-paoline.org, "The Light of Listening," retrieved Dec 6, 2014, [www.paoline.org/paoline/allegati/4263/II_domenica_Quaresima_eng.pdf]

Not only does this not make much sense, but it also wastes a lot of time. It's a lot of vain words designed to emotionally influence the reader, instead of getting to real Biblical teachings because most people who play the Greek game have no interest in the truth to begin with; they're more concerned with trying to impress others.

The new-age church buildings are so focused on emotion, church-goers will believe just about anything from behind a pulpit. After all, most of us are respecters of persons, and we worship our brains and human education instead of God, and therefore, when someone with a degree or pastoral position comes along and tells us a "fact," we tend to believe him/her over God without question.

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess... for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
-Matthew 23:25-28

Every time a preacher plays this Greek Game, church-goers think, "Wow, he really knows his Bible!" No, he knows how to fool people, but they still believe that he's actually read his Bible in different languages and studied this out. That preacher knows his Greek lexicon better than he knows his Bible, and that ought to raise red warning flags with any Christian who actually studies the Word of God.

I should also say that you can do this with a Bible commentary as well, and it happens more often than church-goers are willing to admit. I have been guilty of doing this exact same thing.

When I was a teenager (before I was saved), I had a Max Lucado NKJV study Bible (Lucado believes in a number of false doctrines, but that's another topic), and I decided to visit my mom and dad's adult Sunday school class. While I was in there, they were reading some verses from Peter, but the whole time they were reading the verses, I was reading Lucado's commentary on the side of the page in my new-age version. Then, I just waited for the right moment, and spoke up, paraphrasing exactly what the commentary said, and everyone was so impressed and thought I was really smart and knew my Bible, but I didn't know my Bible at all; I just read the commentary, and this exactly what many church-goers do.

Remember, the Bible commentary is NOT the Word of God. There are many pastors out there who correct the Bible from the Greek, based on what a Bible commentary said, not by what he actually read in the Greek himself. So the pastor's preaching is not really coming from what the Lord showed him, but what someone else told him it says in Greek.

The key to understanding what the King James translators did, and why it is the preserved Word of God, is not only that the new-age versions are translations of corrupt manuscripts, but the King James Bible is understood in its contextual use of words.
(Read "Why I Use a King James Bible" here at creationliberty.com for more details about the corrupt manuscripts)

So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.
He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.
He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.
-John 21:15-17

Read the Scripture provided from John 21 above, and notice where it uses the word love. The Greek is said to have a few words that can be used for love, but we will focus on the two that are found in Scripture:
άγαπάω - "agapae" VS "phileo" - φιλέω

Agapae (άγαπάω) means "to love dearly," which is a intimate, deep, selfless love.
Phileo (φιλέω) means "to like," which is more of an approving, friendly, casual love.

It is a common teaching today that Jesus asked Peter if Peter loved Him with agapae-love, which is intimate, deep, and selfless. Peter answered Jesus with phileo-love, which is approving, friendly and casual. Jesus asked Peter again if Peter loved Him with agapae-love, and Peter answered Jesus a second time with phileo-love. The typical Bible-lesson a preacher will give to his congregation on this will say: On the third time around, Jesus instead asked Peter if Peter loved Him with phileo-love, and here Peter was grieved because Jesus changed from agapae to phileo, and so Peter answered Jesus once again with phileo-love.

Here's an example:
"Jesus was graciously teaching Peter, since He knew that if Peter were to face judgment regarding his obedience to the greatest of commands, he would be found lacking. The greatest commandment requires us to 'agape' the Lord our God with all our heart (spirit), soul, mind, and strength (body) and to 'agape' our neighbor as ourselves. Peter admits that he indeed did not 'agape' his Lord, but rather he was only able to attain to the level of 'phileo' love. That is why Peter was so grieved when Christ pursued him with His line of interrogation."
-Dennis Bank, Sanctiprize: Restoration to the Person You were Created to Be, Holy & Without Blame, Embodying the Father's Love, Charisma Media, 2012, p. 12, ISBN: 9781616389819

I would contend that when our Bible says "love," it is talking of only one kind of love, the only kind of true love, which is intimate, deep, selfless love that is shown to us by our Lord Jesus Christ, and there is no difference between agapae and phileo in context, but for the sake of argument, let's use their ruleset here about agapae and phileo. The new-age Christian scholarship will say there is a definitive difference between agapae and phileo, and in the following test, I will provide the Scripture, and you will mark your answer as agapae-love or phileo-love based on the context of the verse.

WARNING: If you answer all agapae, you will fail. If you answer all phileo, you will fail. Just read the verse, and answer the questions based on the context of what you are reading.

Fill in all the questions first, then go back and look at the answers to count your score.

Luke 11:42
But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God:
Question #1 Agapae
John 5:42
But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you.
Question #2 Agapae
Matthew 10:37
He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
Question #3 Agapae
Revelation 3:9
behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.
Question #4 Agapae
Revelation 3:19
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
Question #5 Agapae
Matthew 23:6
[v2]The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat... [v6]And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
Question #6 Agapae
John 12:25
He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.
Question #7 Agapae
Luke 11:43
Woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye love the uppermost seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets.
Question #8 Agapae
John 5:20
For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth:
Question #9 Agapae
John 16:27
For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God.
Question #10 Agapae
2 Timothy 3:4
Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
Question #11 Agapae
John 11:5
Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus.
Question #12 Agapae
John 20:2
Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved,
Question #13 Agapae
1 Corinthians 16:22
If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha.
Question #14 Agapae
Romans 5:8
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Question #15 Agapae
1 Corinthians 16:24
My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen.
Question #16 Agapae
2 Timothy 1:7
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
Question #17 Agapae
Romans 12:10
Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;
Question #18 Agapae
1 Thessalonians 3:12
And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you:
Question #19 Agapae
Titus 2:4
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,
Question #20 Agapae
Ephesians 5:28
So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
Question #21 Agapae
1 Peter 2:17
Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.
Question #22 Agapae
Hebrews 13:1
Let brotherly love continue.
Question #23 Agapae
Titus 3:4
But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
Question #24 Agapae
1 John 2:5
But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
Question #25 Agapae

Don't worry if you didn't score 100% because you just demonstrated that the context of the verses you are reading defy the Greek grammar rules, or in other words, what the new-age "scholarship" is teaching is in contradiction with the Word of God. So now I'm going to ask you the most important question of all:
If a Greek grammar book has a rule, and the Bible contradicts that rule, which book is right? The Bible or the Greek grammar book?

If you are struggling to answer that question, let me present a bonus question on your exam to help you out:
1 Thessalonians 4:9
But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.
Question #26

How could I know you're wrong when I do not know your answer? Because even though this verse is talking about the same kind of love, it uses both agapae AND phileo interchangably. The phrase "brotherly love" uses phileo, and the phrase "love one another" uses agapae, so if you play the Greek game, you'll often be wrong, but if you simply read the Bible in its context, it will always be right.

The context of God's Word defines God's Words. So we have to choose who we allow to interpret God's Word for us -- do we allow God to do it, or do we turn to our own brains, selecting interpretations we prefer from Greek grammar dictionaries?

And they said unto him, We have dreamed a dream, and there is no interpreter of it. And Joseph said unto them, Do not interpretations belong to God? tell me them, I pray you.
-Genesis 40:8

Of course, the average preacher who plays the Greek game behind the pulpit will say that they do not worship their own brains and Greek lexicons. Likewise, their fellow church-goers who have thirty pairs of shoes in their closet will say they don't covet shoes. Those church-goers who take advantage of others for money say they aren't lovers of money. Those church-goers who put doctors and pastors on high pedestals say they aren't respecters of persons. Those church-goers who break their word say they aren't liars. Are we Christians naive enough to think a Greek-game preacher is going to openly admit he serves another master?

No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
-Matthew 6:24

This is more evidence that we are not required to know Greek and/or Hebrew to understand God's Word. The Lord God has preserved His Word for us in the King James Bible so the average layman can read it and understand it.

The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.
-Psalm 119:130

Because we Christians tend to worship human education, whenever someone starts off a sermon says "The Greek says," we tend to believe everything he says automatically, but hopefully now you know that it's just a game. It's a game that gives a pastor a pyschologically intimidating "academic" advantage over his congregation, so he can appear to be an educated authority over God's Word, but in reality, he is teaching from a lexicon (his master), not from the Word of God.

Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.
-Proverbs 30:5-6

There are some games we shouldn't play.
(Read "Video Games: Causing Witchcraft to Prosper" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

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