Bible Question:

Why is Acts 8:37 not in the most modern translations?

Bible Answer:

Acts 8:37 reads as follows,

And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” (NASB) Acts 8:37

This verse occurs in the middle of a section of scripture that describes the conversion of the Ethiopian eunuch. This verse has been either eliminated or retained with an explanation that the verse does not appear in the best ancient manuscripts.

The verse did not occur in the earliest and best manuscripts of the New Testament. The verse did not appear until about 500-600 A.D. in a manuscript now known as Codex Laudianus. This passage was apparently inserted by a scribe who wanted to explain why the Ethiopian eunuch was baptized. It is clear from the rest of scripture the eunuch was not saved by being baptized.

Scripture does not include every word that was spoken by a person or between people. It does not even try. If scripture did include everything the Bible would be either huge or contain many volumes. Listen to the apostle John,

And there are also many other things which Jesus did, which if they were written in detail, I suppose that even the world itself would not contain the books which were written. (NASB) John 21:25

Scripture does not try to explain every detail and event. Scripture seeks to communicate to us a message.


You may also be interested in a study at this site entitled, “How accurate is the Bible?” It explains how we know which verses belong in the Bible. It also explains why we can believe that modern Bibles accurately reflect the original documents which were written by the prophets and apostles. It is wonderful that our loving God did not leave us with a Bible riddled with errors. God wants us to be able to trust His Word.