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King James Error

Hi Rod,

Thanks for your mail and the opportunity to explain myself.

>>Well, you certainly have enough degrees for a half-dozen fellows. I only have two. As to being strongly in favor of the KJV, I plead guilty and, what is worse, I prefer the Dake's Annotated Reference Version (editions published prior to the Price complainst on racism)<<

I certainly don't have objections to those who love the KJV. Keep using it by all means. My objections originally resulted from the unchristian behaviour of KJ radicals who targeted me because I didn't accept their claims. The fact there are many KJ editions presents a problem for them. Personally, I prefer a version that's easy to read, understandable and accurate.

>>I'm age 79 and my KJV is showing much wear, but not because it is my only Bible. I haven't counted them (most are in storage in the attic as the result of a home 'Downsizing" a few years ago), but I probably have nearly a dozen of them. When the NIV came out I first read it and disliked the New Testament particularly. Next, I started again with the KJ NT and the NIV NT side by side and read each line by line, marking the NIV NT where I thought the wording varied importantly from the KJV. At the end of this effort, which took quite a few days (I was employed at the time), I saw what seemed to me a lessening of the emphasis on the divinity of Jesus. I suggest you might try the same exercise--it certainly won't hurt you and might even be beneficial in either correcting your viewpoint or in giving you more ways to support your opinion of the NIV.<<

Regarding Christ's divinity:- Did you compare the KJV with NIV on John 1:18, Titus 2:13 and 2 Peter 1:1? The NIV emphasizes Christ's divinity where the KJV doesn't. In fact, the KJV never uses the word 'deity' regarding Jesus, but the NIV does (Col.2:9). So modern versions do affirm His deity which isn't determined by comparing versions, nor based on one version. When using the KJV as the standard to judge other versions, one assumes its always right and never wrong. That viewpoint could misdirect our faith from God's Word to faith in a human translation. But you are right, comparing versions often reveals the thoughts of the translator(s) which can be very interesting.

>>Another reason I like the KJV is that some of the people involved in bringing it to the people paid for their efforts with their lives. As we say here, that tends 'to make the cheese more binding' ! Some of the competitors for the KJV were published with a strong profit motive in mind and none were done, as far as I know, while the writer's lives were threatened.<<

Yes translators have died to give us the bible in English, German, Spanish, Chinese, etc., and often threatened and hated. But their objective was not just a particular English version.

As any book, no bible is free of cost. Millions of Chinese were brought to Christ through Mandarin transitions. Many suffered in the Cultural Revolution which almost destroyed bible work, but since 1987 the Amity Bible Press in Nanjing has been producing over 2 million bibles a year. It's nonprofit and donations keep it going. Many English speakers today are unlearned, they can't grasp the KJV. Should we withhold new bible versions so they won't get saved?

>>I do believe your article is a wonderful exposition. I'm not sure you have looked into the background of Westcott and Hort as intensively as some other writers have done.<<

Thanks for the compliment. I'm happy to read their 'background' if you email it. I know some critics don't stop with Westcott and Hort. They condemn any involved in bible translation. They say that since the KJV was finished in 1611 the Greek and Hebrew manuscripts have become unreliable and useless. If true, all study of the cultural and historical context of a passage and its words is useless. For them the English language has become the final authority on the meaning of a text. So studying bible languages are a waste of time, its better to study Elizabethan English.

>>And worse yet, I wonder if you have completely ignored the possibility that the Holy Spirit may have directly inspired some of those old fellows struggling to get a Bible into the hands of the people. I think people back then had a much more meaningful belief in God, more so than many people do now. Can you see people back then allowing 30 million babies to be killed by abortion as a matter of the woman's choice? <<

Well I believe the Holy Spirit watched over 'those old fellows'. What a great work they did. They desired common folk have the bible their tongue. Not that they assumed their translation would be the last. Sure the world is not getting better but a "meaningful belief in God" is not measured by those 'back then' but by Scripture.

>>That is an estimate I read as to the number in the USA since Roe vs. Wade. When you pick up your NIV and read it, is it an intellectual event, or does it affect your heart and emotions? Do you really believe there is a Holy Spirit roaming around taking an occasional hand in human affairs? Are the "end times" prophecies actually being fulfilled beginning with the 1948 return of the Jews to their purported homeland? Are you just another life form, the result of evolution, or are you a spiritual being temporarily residing in a material body? Do prayers actually ever get answered or is it just a coincidence? When you die, what will you find after death? Nothing? Is the ever growing amount of hate, crime, killing, self destruction and vice merely the lack of education and proper homelife or is there a prime mover imanifesting itself in the affairs of men? Is there actually any such thing as sin ?<<

So is the KJV the standard for godly living? Would we say that only through the KJV and the KJV alone can we truly know God? If so, anyone who comes to Christ via any other version is not really saved but must be apostate.

The fact is, God speaks clearly and effectively through modern English versions. He uses them to feed, speak and guide His people into the whole counsel of God. Their faith is as real as yours. I know of many great men of God who have held correct doctrine, and yet haven't made the KJV their first choice.

Thanks for writing Rod and sharing your thoughts. May God bless you.

Kind Regards