The Japanese have overwhelmingly rejected Christianity.
It has not been done out of ignorance. Since the Meiji period (the modernization of Japan that began in the 1860′s) to this day, missionaries and Christian religious materials have flooded the country. All that effort has resulted in only a few conversions.
Censorship has been unnecessary – the Japanese simply do not accept Christianity.
A big part of the problem has been that the missionary effort coincided since the 1880′s with the ecumenical rot and textual criticism that has left the Japanese with a pitiful presentation of the gospel. Many of those allegedly delivering the gospel are unsaved cultural Christians modernists. During WW2 the government forced all protestant Christians into a single denomination that it could more easily monitor. Only a few protestant groups refused to join. Today that “united” church of compromised apostates is the largest single Christian denomination in Japan. This inept fraud is a cul-de-sac where any native curious about Christianity can have his interests safely extinguished long before he gets saved.
Some blame the lack of success on the fact that most of the missionary effort has used poorly translated bibles that have been based upon the fraudulent critical text of Westcott and Hort. The “Japan Bible Society” has sold millions of such so-called Bibles to the Japanese public … and the result is a goose egg. God simply will not honour the dark-ages Jesuit text that is filled with errors, omissions, and blasphemy (See, “New Age Bible Versions” by Gail Riplinger).
“Mightily Grew the Word of God and Prevailed”
It appears that there have been only two genuine King James Bible based translations made into the Japanese language. The first was the “Meiji Bible” produced by a committee of Japanese protestants headed by Dr James Heburn. The Meiji committee used the King James Bible as the source for much of its translation.
Of course, the destructive critics quickly attacked this work – its original 1880 New Testament was revised by the critical scholars between 1910 and 1917. The “Meiji Bible” – with revised New Testament – remained the mainstay Japanese Bible, despite being in “classical” language that is rather difficult for the average Japanese to understand.
Another work was the Nagai Translation of 1928 (or 1933). Mr. Nagai allegedly based his one-man translation on an edition of the textus receptus. It too was in “classical” Japanese. It didn’t catch on and was quickly forgotten.
So today’s ordinary Japanese public can only get an understandable “colloquial” Bible from the corrupt editions put out by the ecumenical apostates at the Japan Bible Society. It will be nearly impossible for them to obtain the original Meiji 1880 New Testament that was translated from the King James Bible – and even if they do – it will be extremely difficult to understand for two reasons: it is written in older classical Japanese language, and it contains unrecognisable “kanji” characters.
“Kanji” are the picture-word hieroglyphics that Japan borrowed from the Chinese alphabet. The symbols represent concepts – they are an image-based communication system rather than a sound-based one. Therefore kanji are inherently deceptive and unsound and unfit for Bible translation. Popular “Kanji” are used for tattoos and are connected to Oriental paganism. To emphasize the spoken word alone, the Japanese Bible that God will honour needs to be printed without any Kanji (it must be written entirely in Japan’s sound-based script systems, Hiragana and Katakana). Of course, the lack of Kanji makes the problem of visually distinguishing between homophones (words that sound the same but have different meanings) more difficult. However, if this problem can be solved in translation with the listening audience in mind, the page reader should be just as able to understand.
Nevertheless, “Kanji” memorization is diminishing every year and many of the “Kanji” that appear in old texts are simply not taught to the school children any longer.
The “classical” wording may be best for its directness or exactness – but is it comprehensible? The Japanese language keeps changing. The tight-rope to walk in modernizing the 1880 Meiji New Testament is to use easily understood words – yet avoid either “colloquial” talk that will trivialize scripture – or insert “politeness” into the text so that scripture loses its dramatic force, directness, and shocking dogmatism.
Most Japanese are ingrained with the compulsion to be “polite” in their speech – and that is a tone and attitude that is entirely foreign to the Holy Scriptures.
It will take bold Spirit-filled and Bible-believing Japanese men with a very unique combination of traits and abilities to successfully update the 1880 Meiji Bible into modern Japanese.
[to be continued]