The Inclusive New Testament

Craig R. Smith, ed., The Inclusive New Testament. Brentwood, Maryland: Priests for Equality, 1994.

This volume is a revision of Scripture according to the latest canons of political correctness. It was produced by dissident Roman Catholics who in 1975 formed the organization Priests For Equality. The organization's charter states, "Language, seemingly innocuous and inconsequential, is in reality an area which reveals unconscious attitudes, prejudices, stereotypes and patterns of discriminatory thinking. Conversely, care in language is a first and necessary step in raising consciousness. In itself, it can help to educate us toward equality." In the preface of the Inclusive New Testament, the translators characterize it as "a re-imagining of the holy scriptures and our relationship to them." They apologize for some remaining sexism, pleading that sometimes "the point of the passage was so encrusted that to remove the sexist language would necessitate removing the text itself," but in general they go to great lengths to remodel portions of Scripture which offend them. Two examples:

John 8:3.

New American Standard: "And the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery ..."

Inclusive New Testament: "A couple had been caught in the act of adultery, though the scribes and Pharisees brought only the woman ..."

Colossians 3:18-19.

New American Standard: "Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives, and do not be embittered against them."

Inclusive New Testament: "You who are in committed relationships, be submissive to each other. This is your duty in Christ Jesus. Partners joined by God, love each other. Avoid any bitterness between you."

The Old Testament, completed in 2001, appeared in three volumes according to the traditional Jewish division: the Law (Torah), the Prophets (Nevi'im), and the Writings (Ketuvim).