Outrage Greets Danish Lutheran Group’s Rewrite of Bible to Omit Word ‘Israel’
The news that a Danish Lutheran group had rewritten the Bible in order to omit the word “Israel” has been greeted by outrage, with critics calling it a “surreal revision” and a gift to “Jew-haters and Israel-bashers.”
The Danish Bible Society’s translation of the New Testament refrains from using the word “Israel” and instead substitutes “Jews” and variations thereof — such as “land of the Jews” for “land of Israel.”
The words “Jews” and “Israel” both appear in the original text of the Bible as separate and distinct words.
The group claimed the move was to avoid identifying ancient Israel with today’s State of Israel, although other ancient names with modern equivalents, such as “Egypt,” are not omitted.
B’nai B’rith International reacted strongly to the news, saying, “We are stunned that the new Danish Bible Society publication of the Bible erases references to Israel — out of stated worry over ‘confusion’ with the modern Jewish state.”
“Yet this surreal revision causes confusion and worse: whitewashing of history, identity, and sacred scripture!” the group added.
Rabbi Abraham Cooper — associate dean and global social action agenda director at the Simon Wiesenthal Center — said the Society’s translation was “like cheesecake with zero calories.”
The translation, he pointed out, excluded “that nasty six letter word I-S-R-A-E-L, voila no more Israel.”
“Wow will Jesus be surprised,” he continued. “Jew-haters and Israel-bashers rejoice!”