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Scripture Twisting: 20 Ways the Cults Misread the Bible Paperback – October 1, 1980


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 177 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Books (October 1, 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0877846111
  • ISBN-13: 978-0877846116
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #135,221 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

James W. Sire (PhD, University of Missouri), formerly a senior editor at InterVarsity Press, is an active speaker and writer. He has taught English, philosophy, theology, and short courses at many universities and seminaries. He continues to be a frequent guest lecturer in the United States and Europe. His InterVarsity Press books and Bible studies include The Universe Next Door (a worldviews textbook), Scripture Twisting, Discipleship of the Mind, Chris Chrisman Goes to College, Why Should Anyone Believe Anything at All?, Habits of the Mind: Intellectual Life as a Christian Calling, Naming the Elephant: Worldview as a Concept, Learning to Pray Through the Psalms, Why Good Arguments Often Fail and A Little Primer on Humble Apologetics.

More About the Author

Born on a ranch on the rim of the Nebraska Sandhills, James W. Sire has been an officer in the Army, a college professor of English literature, philosophy and theology, the chief editor of InterVarsity Press (a Christian publisher of books for thoughtful readers), a lecturer at over two hundred universities in the U.S., Canada, Eastern and Western Europe and Asia, and the author of twenty books on literature, philosophy and the Christian faith. His book The Universe Next Door, published in 1976 and now in its fifth edition, has sold over 350,000 copies and has been translated into 18 foreign languages. He holds a B.A. in chemistry and English from the University of Nebraska, an M.A. in English from Washington State College (now University) and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Missouri. His memoir is The Rim of the Sandhills (eBook on Kindle and Nook). His most recent book is Echoes of a Voice (Cascade, 2014), an in-depth analysis of signals of transcendence, those sudden, unbidden, unexpected, strange experiences that point to the Presence of a realm beyond the material.


Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I recommend it to anyone wondering if they may be in a cult.
J. E. Decker
This is probably the best resource I've seen on understanding how so many can read the same Bible and get entirely different meanings.
"jwhite265"
I first read this book about 15 years ago, and it is one of the most influential Christian books I have ever read.
Jason H. Kaiser

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

44 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Christi Young on August 23, 2000
Format: Paperback
Scripture Twisting By James W.Sire is, I think, the single best book on this subject. It is rare to find a book which does more than label and bash cults. This book does much more. It thoughtfully explains the errors of biblical interpretation and standard theological thought that leaders of major cults have had, in order to come to their conclusions about God. It is also very instructive for those of us who may be guilty of "misreading" our own Bibles to prove our own points or underscore our own personal theologies, rather than letting the Bible speak for itself.
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35 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on June 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book is quite instructional on how not to make the most common errors in biblical interpretation, but I always thought it should have been respectfully entitled, "Scripture Twisting: Twenty Ways We All Misread The Bible." It's just human nature to want to put all the blame on others, and feel that we are doing things "right." No matter what the others do, we certainly have enough folks in our own congregations (I am not excluded) who have misinterpreted passages even with the best of intentions.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful By "jwhite265" on January 30, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is probably the best resource I've seen on understanding how so many can read the same Bible and get entirely different meanings. Sire's clear and understandable writing style make the read enjoyable as well as informative. I give this book the highest recommendation I can to anyone, Christian or otherwise, as a great introduction to how to get at the intended meaning of the Bible.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By J. Lynne on November 14, 2005
Format: Paperback
It's true - none of us are perfect, and no one has 100% accurate understanding of the Bible. Yet Sire's little book is a great summary of 20 ways the Scripture gets twisted around (intentionally, and unintentionally). I found this a great teaching tool not only regarding cult teachings, but also for understanding errors within mainline denominational Scripture translations and interpretations, as well.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful By "kerry195" on May 30, 1998
Format: Paperback
Every old or new believer in Christ should have this book in his/her library. James Sire has created a 'classic' with this book. I recommend it to every and anyone- proper Biblical interpretation can keep one off the road to spiritual darkness and Mr. Sire's book provides a good basis for learning proper Biblical interpretation, evaluating the claims of such cults as Mormons, JW's, the Unification church and others who believers in Christ are confronted with in their daily walk.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jason H. Kaiser on October 29, 2006
Format: Paperback
I first read this book about 15 years ago, and it is one of the most influential Christian books I have ever read. It has provided an insightful guide to decoding and avoiding bad doctrine--both that presented by others and my own. His principles help clarify when I am making errors in my own interpretation of Scripture as well.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mike Robinson on May 28, 2010
Format: Paperback
A couple young men wanted to discuss God with me. They had badges on their white shirts that named each as an Elder. I thought it a bit odd that teenagers could attain Eldership. They said that it was "not that difficult for all male teens who go on a mission become an Elder, and beyond that the deacons in our church can be much younger." Additionally they contended that they could become gods in the future and that God the Father was a super progressed man. I then demonstrated that the doctrine of men becoming gods was a horrifying notion immersed in full blasphemy. I called them to repent and find pardon in the biblical Jesus (for they declared that Jesus was a spirit brother of Lucifer and a progressed man). They declined and hopped on their bikes. I felt sorry for them, that they, like so many cultists, were trapped in error by a false prophet and a group that twists scriptures. And the volume "Scripture Twisting," by James Sire instructs the readers how to properly understand and interpret the scriptures as you share the truth with people trapped in false religions.

This readable apologetics book discusses how cultists use:

- INACCURATE QUOTATIONS: A bible verse is referenced but is either not quoted in the way the text appears in the Bible or is erroneously credited to the wrong person.

- TWISTED TRANSLATION: The biblical text is retranslated, not in accordance with valid Greek scholarship, to fit a predetermined false doctrine of a cult. Like the JW's mistranslation of John 1:1 as "In the beginning the Word was, and the Word was with God, and the word was a god." A god is a false and blasphemous translation.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By C. O. Torres on July 9, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is true to its title. Not only will it help you to see and will show you how the Scriptures have been twisted, but will also assist you to understand the translation and paraphrasing process of the Scriptures. I believe it is a "must have" for those whose interest in the Bible as the word of God is genuine. It is easy to read, easy to follow and precise in its information. It is printed in a 10 or 11 typesetting which is very easy on the eyes (for those that may have problems with their vision). I could not put it down, and keep it very close for it has a quick reference (Apendix) section that comes in handy.
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