Nazarene Space

Defense of ISR: Truth about "Halleluyah Scripiture Piracy


By James Scott Trimm

"Hopefully adults know that a lot of what they read on the web

is just not right, and just not true. But kids don't know that,

they read it and think that it says it, it must be true. …

There is no editor on the internet so people can put

stuff out there that is just absolutely drop dead wrong."
- Dr. Phil McGraw (Wed. 12-16-09)


"All that is required for evil to prevail

is for good men to do nothing."
-Edmond Burke

There has been a lot of false information sent around the internet about the so-called “Halleluyah Scriptures” and the ISR. In fact recently YahSpace stopped promoting the legitimate ISR “Scriptures” version and started promoting the piracy of the so-called “Hallelyah Scriptures” instead.

To begin with, in the interest of full disclosure, I am not an authorized spokesman for ISR. Also I should say that the ISR has been the publisher of the printed edition of the Hebraic Roots Version Scriptures since 2005. I do know the people involved and can speak to the facts in this matter.

ISR (Institute for Scripture Research) ( ) is an organization established in 1992 in South Africa. Chris J. Koster was the first director of the organization. It has been implied that the ISR was just a “title” Chris Koster did business under, this is not so, it is and was a full fledged organization with a Board of Directors.

Through this organization the first edition of “The Scriptures” was published in a small printing in 1994.

In 1996 Chris Koster passed away and his dear friend and colleague Wilhelm Wolfaardt succeeded him as Director of ISR.

It has been implied that some sort of death bed event occurred in which Koster asked Wilhelm to keep the ISR “Scriptures” available for free, asking only for donations to support reprinting. It has also been stated FALSELY that Koster left Wilhelm a sum of money to support this effort. This concocted deathbed event has been used to falsely claim that Wilhelm betrayed some sacred trust and therefore help justify the outright piracy of the “Scriptures” translation. This is a total falsehood, it never happened. In fact even the Halleluyah Scriptures publisher does not claim that this deathbed event happened (though he does wrongly claim that Koster left a sum of money to Wilhelm) instead it is thinly guised in an allegory about a painting, but the allegory leaves hearers with the impression that such a deathbed event occurred with Koster and Wilhelm. It is true that Wilhelm succeeded Koster as director of the ISR and it is true that the ISR had money in its account at that time, but this was not Koster’s money and it did not become Wilhem’s money, it was the ISR’s money both before and after Koster’s death.

In 1998 a new edition of The Scriptures was printed in a much larger printing. To better facilitate worldwide distribution, printing was done in North America.It was originally Chris Koster's idea to put a price on The Scriptures. He told Bill Meyer "we cannot keep on handing The Scriptures out like tracts as we will not be in the position to reprint." The shipping costs alone were killing th ISR.  A joint decision was made at the time by all seven remaining committee members of the ISR that it was necessary to begin actually selling The Scriptures version in order to guarantee the ability to keep the translation and other books in print. This was a legitimate decision that the committee members were fully empowered to make. Regardless of whether one likes or agrees with ISR’s decision, ISR has the right to manage its intellectual property (and the Scriptures was always the intellectual property of ISR even while Koster was alive).

Although ISR does not sell the Scriptures version for a profit, it would not be a Torah violation if they did (nor would it violate Mat. 10:8)
(See: )

The Halleluyah Scriptures publishers have argued that an alleged wish by Koster that the “Scriptures” be distributed free, gives them the right to publish them free if the ISR does not. The Church of God Philadelphia made the argument that Herbert W. Armstrong's intent that his books be distributed without charge allowed them after his death to hijack the rights and publish it free themselves since the organization owning the rights did not do so. The argument failed and this plainly violates international Copyright Law.

It has been implied that Wilhem and other ISR Board members “live in luxury” on profits that they receive from the sales of the Scriptures version. This is also an outright falsehood. Neither Wilhelm or any other ISR officer receives one penny from the ISR. Wilhelm has made a living for himself as a Civil Engineer. All of the funds received by ISR through the sale of the “Scriptures” version is directed into ISR accounts to be used for future printings of the “Scriptures” and other books. ISR does not aim at turning a profit on the ISR Scriptures, but only at selling each printing for enough to ensure future printings, this accounting for inflation and other variables, and allow future printings of ever increasing size (the larger a printing, the more cost effective). It was this process that put the ISR in the position of also publishing the HRV Scriptures as well (In the interest of full disclosure, I do receive a very modest royalty on the ISR publication of the HRV Scriptures. I think this is well earned in the hundreds (thousands?) of hours I put into the HRV, and it goes to support my continued research and teaching.)

It has been stated that ISR is not really an organization, but a “ma and pop” operation run by Wilhelm. This is also false. The ISR is a very real organization. The decision to begin selling the Scriptures was made by seven committee members. When I negotiated the publication of the HRV Scriptures with ISR as the new publisher, I recall repeatedly having to wait for elements to be approved by the Board of Directors.

It has been suggested that the ISR has refused bulk discounts to those requesting them. This is also false, in fact ISR has a bulk pricing schedule on their website at and has had for years. ISR has also, at their discretion, given away copies free as YHWH provides.

Perhaps the most outlandish claim is made by Bob Field and his Hall of Lashon HaRa website which says “Two men: Wilhelm Wolfhaardt and Lew White teamed together and STOLE and PLAGIARISED [the Scriptures version]…” This is an outright lie, Wihelm was the legitimate successor of Koster at ISR and Lew White is only a US distributor who did not even become involved with ISR until the 21st Century! He then outright lies and says that Wilhelm and Lew are “living in luxury all gleaned from greed profits and donations given by unsuspecting believers who have been blinded by 'good works'...”

The attacker suggest that Scripture translations should not be copyrighted. It is necessary to copyright Scripture translations so as to maintain intellectual rights over the material to prevent its misuse and defacement by others. For example maintaining a copyright prevents the Mormons from printing an edition of the Scriptures that implements the Translation changes made by Joseph Smith jr. in his "Inspired Version" or from a non Sacred Name group hijacking the translation and printing a "Jesus" version of it.

Copyrights DO apply to Scripture translations, trust me I spent about a year last year in a Federal Lawsuit defending the copyright of the HRV from a challenge by The Way International. (One cannot copyright the ancient Hebrew, Aramaic or Greek, but a modern translation of them can be copyrighted).

One cannot say "YHWH told me to commit piracy so it is OK" otherwise we can all do anything we want and say "YHWH told me to..."

It is sad to say that a web of lies has been spun in order to defame ISR and excuse the blatant piracy of the producers of the so-called “Halleluyah Scriptures” and it is even more sad to see YahSpace promoting this outright piracy.







The day after I DARED wrote this blog in defense of the ISR and exposing the slanderous lies being told about Wilhem (and Lew White) on the Messianic Hall of Lashon HaRa my name was suddenly added as the third plaque in their so-called "hall of shame".  This is the most transparent retaliation I have seen in my life!  But with my name next to the ISR and Lew White - this is a badge of honor! They say they have me "under investigation" and want anyone to give them any dirt they have on me.  Now you see how these people operate. 


Folks I have been telling you for a long time, HaSatan is making a special target of those who teach Torah and Messiah (as Rev. 12:17 foretells) and slander, Lashon HaRa and accusation are one of HaSaton's major strategies (Rev. 12:10).  


A response to some of the slander that has been posted about me on the internet:



As many of you know The Way International had filed a lawsuit against myself and the WNAE (under our old name of SANJ) this last summer, alleging that portions of the HRV Scriptures infringed on the copyright of a translation they once published about twenty years ago.

We responded by arguing that the lawsuit itself was unconstitutional on the basis that Bible translation is Scripture interpretation and Scripture interpretation is doctrine. (The US Supreme court has ruled that the Establishment Clause of the Bill of Rights forbids the court from adjudicating property disputes between religious groups where hearing the case would require the court to consider, weigh or interpret doctrine, or resolve doctrinal
issues.) In this case hearing such a case would put the government in the position of regulating Scripture interpretation, and that we as an Establishment of Religion may interpret the Scriptures as we see fit.

We also responded by stating that the HRV is an original translation made directly from Hebrew and Aramaic sources and that close agreement with the AEINT is to be expected since both are (at places) literal translations of the Peshitta, and that such similarities fall within the legal doctrine of merger. Furthermore we argued that any use the AEINT made of the HRV was within the four criteria of the fair use law and was also permitted by an implied license, and thus did not constitute copyright infringement.

I am pleased to announce that after a process of discovery and taking of depositions, The Way International has chosen to settle their lawsuit rather than take it to trial. As part of the settlement they have issued us a permanent license with no monetary consideration. Also as part of the settlement we have maintained that there was no copyright infringement on our part, however we have also agreed as part of this license agreement, to henceforth give credit in editions of the HRV to the TWI version. (Thus allegations of copyright infringement are forever ended.).

We have always maintained that a final stage in the translation of the HRV involved comparing with previous translations of the Aramaic so as to insure that the HRV presented the best possible translation of each and every word and phrase, and so we have no problem giving them due credit. In fact we will be crediting several other works that were referenced as well.

We maintain our use of the TWI edition was legal fair use and was also permitted under an implied license, but for the record there is now a formal license as well. Where there is a formal license in place there can be no question of either copyright infringement or plagiarism.

With this suit behind us, we can now freely answer our critics who have accused us of plagiarism and copyright infringement. We have compiled a document from the evidence we had originally planned to present in court which demonstrates that the Hebraic Roots Version is an original and independent translation made directly from Hebrew and Aramaic sources, not infringing on anyone's copyright. This PDF document (about 50 pages) settles this issues once and for all and can be downloaded at:





Everybody look there's a new bandwagon in town
Hop on board and let the wind carry you around
Seems like there's not enough to keep us busy
till the Lord comes back
Don Quixote's gotta have another windmill to attack

Another Witch Hunt looking for evil wherever we can find it
Off on a tangent, hope the Lord won't mind it
Another Witch Hunt, takin' a break from all our gospel labor
On a crusade but we forgot our saber

There's a new way to spend all our energies

We're up in arms instead of down on our knees
Walkin' over dollars trying to find another dime
Never mind the souls 'cause we really haven't got the time

So send out the dogs and tally ho
Before we sleep tonight we've got miles to go
No one is safe, no stones left unturned
And we won't stop until somebody gets burned.
Bro Bro Bro Bro Bro Bro Brothers.



I want to thank you all for your support. This community has showed a determination to get more serious about financial support for this work.

This is a testimony to your willingness to support an overlord free community that endeavors to keep the unity of the spirit rather than divide the community.

Of course there is much work to do and this is only a start, it is a good start and a good sign that this community is willing to support the work of bringing Torah and Messiah to the lost, milk to new believers and nice juicy steaks for the mature believers.

Now is not a time to become complacent.

Thank you for your help in allowing us (all of us together) to do our Father’s business, may YHWH bless you in every way.

Don't forget to do your part.

Is this work worthy of your support? What other ministry provides this kind of teaching?
Now is time to step up to the plate!

You can donate by going to the chip-in counter at or donations can be sent by paypal to

Donations can also be made out to “Nazarene Judaism” and sent to:

Nazarene Judaism
PO Box 471
Hurst, TX 76053

Views: 9295

Comment by Michael A. Banak on July 7, 2013 at 3:01pm

Hi Bill.

I am pleased to report that I certainly did access the Koster Audios. I also took great pleasure in accessing his research on pronouncing The Name.

I downloaded some of those audios, but I think I should complete the task and download all of them.

In a spirit of openness, when I mention the beloved Elder Koster I do so with reverence, respect and love. My take on the pronunciations is a bit nuanced. I respect, uphold and endorse the 3-syllable pronunciation that he promoted. But I think other pronunciations are OK too. My research gave evidence of dialectal variety through ancient history. I wanted brethren to quit finding fault with the 3-syllable form, and thus needed to access Elder Koster's articulation, and his excellent research.

I notice elder Koster doesn't aspirate on the Heh as strongly as Americans do. Just one of many variations I see no need to argue over.

When I visit a group with a different pronunciation than mine, I am comfortable emulating them, for the sake of Unity.

Anyway, I have had a very, very rough year, and it's going to be this recovery will take a while. I am recovering, in a sense, from last year, which was a great year for betrayal for me. Thus many things in which i took delight seem elusive right now.

Could you please refresh that WEB link for me so I can access any remaining jewels. Here is what I have so far:

Can You See The King_59m_64kbps.mp3
Last day of Sukkot 1986 Sermon_53m_64kbps.mp3
Give Me or Make Me.mp3
Great Peace.mp3
Let My People Go.mp3
Love and Meekness.mp3
Songs - Fellowship Singing 1.mp3
Songs - Fellowship Singing 2.mp3
The Name Blasphemed.mp3

Yours in Yahushua,

Michael B

PS: I won't presume that you have time for this, but in case your are ever interested, the followoing talk from me is about 75min in length, and explains a path to unity with all these different pronunciations people needlessly fight over. PLEASE do not feel obligated to listen to all this. But I do mention elder Koster in the later half of the talk, in the context of the worldwide fellowship.

Pronouncing The Holy Name: A Call to Humility

Comment by Bill Meyer on July 7, 2013 at 3:07pm

Just a curios question...

How do people think Ken and Deb support their families?

They claim to be living in poverty as a choice to "do the good work". They claim to be working 14 hours a day on HS. That all donations goes straight to the printing of the HS. Now unless they are some miracle workers - there is no way that you can work all your productive hours on something that does not feed you. 

But this kind of noble-sounding talk while pointing at the "evil" one (us) makes for quite a compelling story for gullible people. 

The simple deduction is that they plagiarize other people's work, make up this amazing sob story about their noble efforts, slander the people who did the work, and use the income to sustain themselves. If I was not working for an income - then the ministry better be able to sustain me. But no - Deb would have us believe otherwise. What? Is the birds from heaven bringing them food everyday?  No. They are living from the donations and sales of their plagiarized material. Only - they are pretending that that is not so - meaning - she is blatantly lying. Yet again. That is why so many people are not receiving their copies which they donated for.

The ISR on the other hand is lucky in that sense. All of us have day jobs. None of us receive an income from the ISR. Simply because none of us need it. But I can guarantee you - if I have to work all my working hours with no other source of income, I will expect it to feed me. Not greed. Just simple facts of life. Because we have been publishing since 1993, I know. There is not the size of income to buy myself and all the directors a house, pay salaries and still be able to carry the costs without asking for donations with the price that we ask for The Scriptures. 

Deb preys on gullible people. Most of the people that she roped in and scammed that contacted me are remarkable giving and kind people. I have been honored in making their acquaintance. What gets me worked up most is to see how she is able to hide behind others and then sue them when they realize that she was scamming them. One way or another this evil must be purged from amongst the Messianic / Nazarene / Hebraic Roots movement. My suggestion is a properly constituted Beth Din made up of Torah observant elders in good standing that is impartial and that can make a ruling after hearing both sides. And if the one side decides to hide from the hearing - then judgement in absentia. Until such a body exist, and Deb continues to evade being called to account by hiding behind false identities and other people, this will end up in a street fight. I realize that - and although I respect the sentiments by Tom and Michael - I can promise you - then I will fight by street-fighting rules as she does. I will not fight this fight with both hands tied behind my back in an attempt to appear "noble". 

Comment by Bill Meyer on July 7, 2013 at 3:34pm

I am glad you got hold of the audio files Michael. One thing off my task list.

I will check with Wilhelm if there is still some more tapes. I visited At the pas few weeks. He and his father worked with Chris on The Scriptures since the 1980's. Incidentally the decision to use the Tetragrammaton in the text came from At. We discussed it at length last weekend when I visited him. Chris was in favor of the pronunciation as per his research to be transliterated. At's position was that there will always be different views on the pronunciation, and that The Scriptures is not the place to try promote one view over the other - hence the Tetragrammaton was used as is in the text. It is a remarkable decision when looking at it in retrospect. 

I am personally not doctrinal about the pronunciation. Had too many discussion with really knowledgable people who have very good merits for alternative pronunciations. Neither am I very insistent in the believe in many doctrines in general. Way past that. Be it the Oneness, Trinity, Duality or whatever mystical interpretation people want to hang onto and disprove all other views. Or the calendar interpretations. The way people wish to *prove* their doctrines is sometimes very annoying. I have no problem in accepting the merits in one or more conflicting views. The insistence on having only one viewpoint to the exclusion of all others is more damaging than anything else. The moment a "pet doctrine" takes hold of you that you must defend against at all cost, then you are really heading for trouble. 

Will see if I can get to your videoclip next weekend. 



Comment by Bill Meyer on July 7, 2013 at 4:12pm

One of their fb page posts:

We wish to personally thank all those who knew and worked with Dr. Chris Koster on the translation and have confirmed his vision is from the Father. There are a number of you and we thank you for your loyal support to this project.
We have had a number who worked on the project with Dr. Chris and they have all confirmed the vision and are extremely pleased that the project is being reinstated.

Blatant lie. Never - not once did they mention a single name. But very effectively used to mislead gullible people. I always kept in the background - and one evening I received a one word email from Wilhelm. "Help"

We had discussed the HS thing, and left it to Wilhelm to handle. He did it by answering very humbly and kindly. Not pressing the issue. And this is exactly what Deb loves. Humble and meek people. I think James never even know my name, and it was my suggestion that we take over the publication of the HRV. 

When I entered the "battle", Deborah was totally caught off-guard. She though the ISR was Wilhelm and Lew!

She refused to believe that the ISR was registered in 1993. She even stated a number of times that we forged the registration. She and alan Horvath even insisted that the South African Company Registration office was just for movies. Did she repent when I for more than two years answered and refuted her slanderous claims and lies. No remorse. No repentance. She even started inventing new ones. Like the one quoted above. Now after years of asking her to present the proof - nothing. But she still use this lie anyway. She even claims that the "original people" are supporting the HS!!!! Not one of the people on the original registration ever supported her - and that is a fact. 

Comment by Michael A. Banak on July 7, 2013 at 4:49pm


Your statements of goodwill, regarding doctrinal differences, resonate with me more than you could know. I will long treasure your remark as follows:

The moment a "pet doctrine" takes hold of you that you must defend against at all cost, then you are really heading for trouble.

You nailed it. In eternal dimensions, you understand!

Mighty shalom,


Comment by Bill Meyer on July 7, 2013 at 5:23pm


Thanks. One of the best Sukkoth's that we attended, there was three different interpretations of the calendar. Each one respected the other persons viewpoint. We were enjoying the fellowship so much that there was not time to argue about the calendar. I tried to understand every person's specific doctrinal view - or rather position on calendar, names, kosher food and various other things. I realized in many cases that the other person has very good merits - and that it does not affect my life if someone does not agree with my particular point of view. Messiah has not personally come down and given me a specific doctrine. So I make an educated call for myself without pretending it is cast in stone. When someone ask me about a specific viewpoint that I don't agree with, I send them to someone who really believe and understand that viewpoint - rather than giving them a stern talk to for "forsaking the Faith" in <insert doctrine here>. 



Comment by Bill Meyer on July 14, 2013 at 2:55pm

Message from


"We have gotten multiple reports of people NOT getting their BIBLES or CASES OF BIBLES that they Paid for and Ordered. The situation has gone beyond that of tolerating the problem so our links to their site is being removed until we get satisfactory response that these problems will be resolved. Additional issues have also been reported that we find best be prayed about and then reviewed by ELDERS in the congregations to resolve. This is NOT a good way to BUILD THE BODY by taking money for items you did not diliver to people. As FOLLOWERS of YHWH and MESSIAH we should KEEP OUR WORD and DO WHAT WE SAY, even if we may take a while to get it done, we should do it!"

Comment by Mikha'ELa on November 21, 2013 at 10:23pm

amein and amein. Have been reading this here all inclusive comments on the excellent research work James has been doing ac. this sad subject of defaming other reliable, honest and excellent scribes and researchers like James and Lew. This defamation job among brethren has to stop, it is lashon hara in its worst.. I stumbled about those lies cursing around in the net some time before and also came over hallelyah ministry. In my work as a translator I was asking them if they would need a translator. I got some very strange answers because I let them know that I also translate for both Lew and James sometimes. NOW I KNOW WHY.!

Now there is something I came the other day over, and to make sure this is not just another hoax, I would like your humble and honest opinion about a website called  It was said there that they send you a beginners package if you e-mail  and ask for it, and I did, not being aware of that this will be a package with the ISR Scriptures.! In the answer I got today I can see that the holder of the website is affiliated somehow with same ISR. On the other side the holder of the website wants also commission my art works in rendition to narrow gate.! I thought this is a great offer.  He left this message on my guestbook. As I am not at all familiar with how and who works with ISR or is affiliated to. I may be can get a honest opinion about this website of you? It looks very good to me, but I want to make sure this is .  Thank you with many love & shalom blessings to you all.


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