Should We "Wait" On Our Ministry?

By Gary Amirault

A man once believed that he was called into the ministry but that it had not developed yet. He believed that he was to "wait" until it came to fruition based upon a scripture found in the King James Bible:

"Let us wait on our ministering." (Rom. 12:8, KJV)

However, this is NOT what that verse means. His problem was with how he defined the English word "wait." The word "wait" was meant to be used as in a waiter waiting on a table, that is, to serve. Newer translations bring this out more clearly:

"Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophesy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives with liberality; he who leads with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. (Romans 12:6-8, NKJV)

The word "waiting" in the KJV is replaced by "let us use it" in the NKJV. The NIV renders it "let him serve." The NASB has "in his serving."

This is a classic case where one person's misunderstanding of a single word in the Bible can have a major impact on their life. There are thousands of places in the Bible where one can make such a mistake. The older the translation, the more likely one will make mistakes like this. Languages are fluid. Meanings of words change. Sometimes words take on opposite meanings. In the King James period of English history, the word "let" in addition to meaning "to allow," sometimes meant the opposite " to restrain or prevent." Example: "But was let hitherto" Rom. 1:13 and "he who now letteth will let." (2 Thess. 2:7; cf Exod. 5:4; Isa 43:13) In modern English this use of the word has disappeared. Ther efore, when one reads the King James Bible's version of that verse, it no longer conveys the original meaning of the Greek behind it or even what the English meant when written over 350 years ago.

As long as languages remain fluid, there will always be a need for new translations of the Scriptures. Those who seek to prevent new translations from coming forth are usually those who have enslaved themselves to "traditions which make the word of God of no effect." The light in them is dark light. "If the light in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!" (Matt. 6:23) In the twenty-first century, the King James Bible is definitely one of the most corrupt translations on the market. If one wants to perpetuate ignorance, the older the translation, the more likely one will succeed.

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