Home > King James Only, Mallinak, The Word > Gettin’ It Started

Gettin’ It Started

February 3, 2007

Not all KJVO’s* are created equal. I say that as one who is committed to the King James Version, and as a pastor whose church is and has been committed to the King James Version. I say that because among the KJVO’s, there remains much controversy about how KJVO we need to be. For some, we are too KJVO. For others, we are not KJVO enough. There is a temptation to cower before the traditions of men – ever seeking to exalt themselves above God. We must not do this. We stand before God, not before men. We answer to God, not men. Sin is transgression of God’s law. It involves transgression of or want of conformity to the law of God. Before we decide that a brother is in sin, we must hold him up to God’s law, not man’s tradition.

Mark 7:3-9, 15 For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, except they wash their hands oft, eat not, holding the tradition of the elders. And when they come from the market, except they wash, they eat not. And many other things there be, which they have received to hold, as the washing of cups, and pots, brasen vessels, and of tables. Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands? He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.

15 There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they that defile the man.

It is my goal to give a Scriptural position on this issue, and specifically, to reiterate what we are saying and what we are not saying. That means it is not my goal to place myself in anyone’s “camp”. We need to be careful on this issue. It seems that every different brand of KJVO wants to lay down the law as to “how” KJVO we’re all supposed to be. I have no problem with setting a Scriptural standard. But many in the King James camp want to add a list of their own traditions to the mix, and want to set their own standard.

13 Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.

Thus, while we are King James Only, we aren’t “King James Enough” for some, and are “Too King James” for others. None of these things move us. We must stand on the Word, and only on the Word. And when it comes to this issue regarding the preservation of the Word, we especially must take up our stand on defensible (and thus, Scriptural) ground.

With that in mind, we want to give a basic summary of our position. During the course of this month, we will be breaking this down to further explain what we mean. We welcome comments, criticisms, and concessions at this time. Please keep in mind that we will defend these things later.
What we are saying, what we are not saying:
1. We affirm that on the issue of versions, our most important duty is to be faithful to the Word and words of God.

2. We deny that innerrancy for a particular English Version of the Bible is necessary. We neither affirm nor deny innerrancy of versions – it is a non-issue.

3. We affirm that perfection should be defined not as “without mistakes” but as “what God has given and preserved.”

4. We affirm that God promised to Providentially preserve His Word in the original languages.

5. We therefore affirm that whatever God has preserved can be said to be perfect, regardless of whatever “mistakes” someone might dredge up.

6. We deny that canonicity and preservation are separate issues. Canonicity refers to words, not merely books and chapters, and canonicity is a recognition of what God has preserved, rather than an establishing of what should be included.

7. We deny that preservation rests in any translation, including any English translation.

8. We affirm that translations should be chosen, not particularly for their “accuracy” as for their faithfulness.

9. We deny that any form of “dynamic equivalence” can be considered to be faithful. We deny that any modern version that utilized “dynamic equivalence” can be considered faithful.

10. We affirm that “formal equivalence” is the only faithful method of translation.

11. We deny that reliance upon the Critical Text could be considered faithful. We do not say, however, that the Critical Text could not be considered to be the Word of God on any level whatsoever. We deny that the Critical Text could be considered a faithful text of the Word of God.

12. We affirm that the body of texts known as the Received Text and the majority text have been proven through the years to be a faithful text of God’s Word.

13. We affirm that any version which attempts to translate either the Received Text or the majority text faithfully by means of Formal Equivalence can be considered a faithful translation.

14. We deny that it is a “sin” (i.e. “transgression of God’s law”) to read an unfaithful version. (Mark 7:15)

15. We deny that there could never be any other English version of the Word of God that would be faithful.

16. We affirm that the 1769 edition of the King James Version should be updated. We affirm that plans should be made so that this can be accomplished in the not too distant future.

17. We deny that any publishing house, including Thomas Nelson, Inc. has any authority either to create a version of Scripture or to write a new edition of Scripture.

18. We affirm that the church is the pillar and ground of the truth, and therefore the church itself (i.e. local churches) must take charge of the care and maintenance of the Bible.

19. We deny that any parachurch organization can be considered “the church,” and therefore we deny that parachurch organizations can or should have any part in the translation or care of Scripture. We include parachurch “Bible” colleges, no matter how scholarly their professors.

20. We affirm that an educated laity, skillful in languages, adept at handling Scripture, faithful to the written Word of God, and diligent in preserving, inasmuch as is humanly possible, can handle the Word of God and translation issues far more adequately and reliably than any other organization of man’s invention.

* KJVO is “Internet lingo” for those who are King James Only.

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  1. February 3, 2007 at 4:22 pm

    One more of these that I should have considered before the posting is that we deny the modern eclectic text viewpoint. Would you guys stand with me on that? The Critical Text is in essence an eclectic text, but I’m speaking of a man choosing what the Words of Scripture are on a given Sunday morning.

  2. February 3, 2007 at 4:47 pm

    I think I agree with you on that, Kent. I don’t have a problem with a man studying and even pointing out other viable words that could be used in the same place, but to pick whether the word should be there or not, is not being faithful to the Word.

    Do you agree with that?

    Sometimes I’m not clear in what I’m trying to express.

  3. Bobby Mitchell
    February 3, 2007 at 6:13 pm

    “We believe that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God. We believe that God not only inspired His words as they were originally given (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:19-21), but we also accept His promise that He has preserved them perfectly for every generation including ours (Psalms 12:6-7; Proverbs 30:5-6; Matthew 24:35). We exclusively preach and teach from the King James Bible, believing it and accepting it as the Final Authority for our church. We hold to it as the preserved, inspired Word of God for the English-speaking world.”

    That is a statement I wrote for our church website and we stand by it.

    The following quotes are from the introduction of a family Bible (AV) that my dad owns. It was originally owned by James Garrison, my great-great-great grandfather. It was printed sometime between 1873 and 1877 as The New Devotional and Explanatory Pictorial Family Bible published by The National Publishing Company, Philadelphia, PA; Chicago, IL; St. Louis, MO, and Atlanta, GA.

    The quotes concerning the Authorized Version (KJV) from pages 10 and 11 of the aforementioned family Bible are as follows:

    “We are very sure that the results of all such investigations will be to heighten confidence in the present version, and fill the heart with unfeigned gratitude to God, for that blessed book which we now enjoy, and which, for nearly two centuries and a half, has been pouring its light and consolation wherever the English tongue is spoken. Let science toil, and diligence labor . . . let literature hold up her torch, and cast all possible light upon the sacred text, but we must and ever shall deprecate any wanton attacks upon our received version–any gratuitous attempts to supersede it by a new and different translation. It is the Bible which are godly fathers have read, and over which they have wept and prayed. It is the good old English Bible, with which are associated all our earliest recollections of religion. As such let it go down unchanged to the latest posterity. Let us give it in charge to coming generations, and bid them welcome to all the blessings it has conveyed to us. Let it be our fervent prayer, that the light of the resurrection morning may shine on the very book which we now read,– that we may then behold again the familiar face of our own Bible, the very same which we read in our childhood.”

    “There is no book, says the illustrious Seldon, so translated as the Bible for the purpose. If I translate a French book into English, I turn it into English phrase, not French English . . . But the Bible is rather translated into English words than into English phrase. The Hebraisms are kept, and the phrase of that language is kept. The style of our present version, says Bishop Middleton, is incomparably superior to anything which might be expected from the finical and perverted taste of our own age.”

    I agree with those men.

    You guys have a good time hammering. I’m leaving for Florida in a couple of days so I doubt I’ll be on much.

  4. February 3, 2007 at 6:44 pm

    Thanks Bro. Mitchell. Don’t burn except with the knowledge of Jesus.

  5. February 3, 2007 at 6:49 pm

    Bro. Jeff, You sound correct. I usually say, “Could be understood as…” when explaining from the KJV. I never say “better translated” (even if I think it could be better translated) only because I think it is arrogant to say it, it runs counter to my view of Providence, and I don’t want my congregation to lose confidence in God’s Word.

    We would want people to understand that we encourage another edition of the KJV, not another translation. KJ wasn’t K in 1769.

  6. February 3, 2007 at 6:52 pm

    “It is the Bible which are godly fathers have read, and over which they have wept and prayed. It is the good old English Bible, with which are associated all our earliest recollections of religion.”

    Perhaps so, but it isn’t the Bible *their* godly fathers read. I think this statement is taking a position on the Bible and turning that position into a tradition of men (in addition to being a moving emotional appeal). Isn’t the definition of a ‘tradition’ something we do just because our fathers did it?

    When I left college, I would have agreed with this statement wholeheartedly. It is the position of someone who has forfeited the responsibility for the continued preservation of Scripture to a worldly publishing house (or just to no one), not of one who has taken it upon himself to guarantee that the Word of God is available in the “common tongue.”

    It is fortunate for the men who wrote that foreword that the KJV was translated in the 17th and not the 7th century. Otherwise only an educated elite could have read it (which was precisely how things sat before the King James and other less-published translations were published). They would have been arguing for a little-understood text rather than an easily understood text simply because of the passage of time.

    I think this position denies that languages drift, or at least that they will continue to drift from now on. If they could show how the Bible teaches that, then I’d be forced to conceed.

    I think we need to clarify that the King James’ Bible’s faithfulness is unquestioned. But it’s usefulness to the believers and churches is most closely tied to the day in which it was translated. As languages drift, eventually, some day, another update will be needed. The King James Bible has been updated several times, and should continue to be updated. Our churches’ complacency and abdication is what has caused revisions to stop.

    Until there is a universal language, there won’t be a universal translation. The Bible will need to be re-translated for each new people.

    Now to deflect some of the flak I’ll get for this post, let me now say that I have only ever used the King James Bible, though never the 1611. As I am quickly moving toward “old dogishness”, I doubt I’ll ever use anything else. I’m not calling for an abandonment of the KJV. I’m just saying that our churches have become complacent in the past couple centuries.

    Who knows? If we had not abdicated our role of faithful translation and keeping the Bible matched to the “common tongue”, perhaps the NIV and other corrupted translations might never have taken hold.

  7. February 3, 2007 at 7:09 pm

    Brother Brandenburg,

    Are you referring to better to marry than to burn or something else? Smiley right here.

    Nobody’s burning here. Just using great plainness of speech with warm and fuzzy feelings. No tone checks necessary.

    I’ll read all your articles when I get back.

  8. February 3, 2007 at 7:12 pm

    I meant sunburn, Florida, you Anglo-Saxon.

  9. February 3, 2007 at 7:26 pm

    Hey, you know that I’m paranoid. What did you think I would think? They’re all out to get me except you, and lately I’ve been nervous about you.

    I don’t care as much about the sun in Florida as I do that Gulf seafood. I’ve got flounder, grouper, fan-tailed shrimp and hush-puppies on my mind.

    OK, I’m seriously off topic, so I’ll just say that I need to get back to studying my King James Bible and maybe that will give this post some reason for being here. Over and out.

  10. February 3, 2007 at 10:57 pm

    Hi,

    You all have challenged us to come on over and interact, so I will try to do so. I don’t have a clever hammer or anvil type name, though. And lately, I have’nt had as much time for blogging as I used to (which is why this post will be short), but I’ll give it a shot (or should I say “give that hammer a swing” ?) anyway.

    Now, I assume this is just an introductory post, and many of its points will be elaborated on in future installments. So I do want to just bring up a few questions and not start an all out debate at this time. I just want to raise some questions and call for some clarifications regarding some of your points.

    Before I do so, I should commend you guys for starting off the discussion on a good foot, and trying to steer clear of many Ruckmanitish (is that a word?) errors regarding this issue. I know you guys are in an unfortunate spot, as almost everyone thinks Riplinger, Ruckman, and etc. when they think KJVO. In truth I hope your brand of KJVO will ultimately come to win the day for KJVO folk, and that they would avoid what sometimes amounts to blatant heresy in the more extreme forms of KJVO-ism. So, I respect your position, even if I differ with you.

    Okay then, here are the questions.

    If you affirm point 2, why are you so suspect of anyone stating that a word could be better translated as ___ ?

    Also, I know of some KJVOs who affirm point 2 but not one of them (besides E.F. Hills) would say the KJV has any error at all. So doesn’t that amount to saying the KJV is inerrant?

    To be honest, the combination of points 3 and 5 sound like you are trying to play loose with definitions in an attempt to keep your position firm. I hope you will eventually explain what you mean with these points.

    If you affirm point 7, and also affirm that either Beza’s 1598 edition or Scrivener’s 1894 edition of the TR is the closest Greek edition (some would say virtually an exact copy) to the original Greek Scriptures (autographa), then you are contradicting yourselves. The latter two texts are typically chosen as closest to the originals on the basis of the fact that they are believed to most closely represent the textual basis of the KJV (a translation). And so the location/identity of the preserved words is recognized on the basis of recognizing the superiority of one particular English translation. Thus point 7 would seem to mean nothing.

    Regarding points 12 and 13, by “Majority Text” I interpret you to mean the vast majority of Greek mss themselves, or something like the Byzantine text family [Burgon called this the “Traditional Text”]. I hope in further articles you will clarify that by “Majority Text” you do not mean the recent printed texts or editions which go by the name Majority Text or Byzantine Text, namely, Hodges-Farstad 1985, and Robinson-Pierpoint 1991. There is a translation based off this modern Majority Text, the World English Bible and I assume you would not recommend it even though it is an attempt at a fairly formal equivalent translation (being in large part an update to the ASV of 1901 but conforming the Greek to the Majority Text Greek).

    That about covers the questions I want to bring up at this point.

    Have a blessed Lord’s Day,

    Bob Hayton

  11. February 3, 2007 at 11:31 pm

    TR once was called the majority text until something else called the majority text (Hodges/Farstad) came out. By the way, there is no way what is called the majority text (H/F) could possibly be called that, because all of the manuscripts have not yet been collated. Until they are, no one knows what that is. However, until the 1980s, the term majority text was the TR. That means that for a bulk of history it was the majority text. I was sure that was what Dave Mallinak meant, since I know him. He believes in perfect preservation, which clashes with a “majority text” position.

    Bob, we have actually answered these kinds of questions before with you, but this may be your opportunity to do it in front of other people. That’s fine, but I wanted to give some context. You know you are welcome to comment here.

    Just to point out the quality of your interaction on our turf, consider the accusation that we are “suspect of anyone stating that a word could be better translated.” Who said that? I never said that. Anyone could read my comment above. And I also explained why I wouldn’t say it, even if I believe it. I believe the final say (authority) in matters is the text behind the English. That’s no different than what I have always preached and argued everywhere. I have no problem with someone saying the KJV is inerrant. That believe it is an accurate translation of an inerrant text, so that it is what? Inerrant.

    You say that #3 & #5 are loose with definitions. No they’re not. Copies had mistakes. Editions of the TR had mistakes. We have never said otherwise. This is a common red herring of what is now your crowd. The reality of textual attack is the admission of mistakes. We know that. We also believe we have a perfect Bible, however. Why? God preserved it.

    You actually are throwing in most of your best arguments in this first post, Bob. I know you have two or three left to pull out, but for now, you are throwing in KJV vector argument that Sproul and others spin us into Ruckmanites. Interestingly enough, when you read the published works of Ruckman, I have recently found that he didn’t believe in what most people say that he did. I hadn’t actually read him, so I didn’t know. I was basically taking for granted what other people said that he taught. However, you can’t take that particular point, #7, out of context from the other points. Then again, I think you know that.

  12. February 3, 2007 at 11:36 pm

    Bob,

    Thanks for the questions. I’m sure I can’t answer them all myself or all tonight, but I will attempt to answer a few of them.

    Suspicion: I think this is answered in this way. First, it is suspicion, not accusation, but when someone uses this phrase it lends itself toward creating doubt in the minds of the hearers. I would guess many preachers have used that phrase, but we would rather stay away from it. A man who says that is not a heretic, but a man who makes a practice of pointing this out may be arrogant (he thinks he is better than those that did the translation); he may not recognize God’s providence and he may cause his audience to doubt God. Again, saying this will not do that, but making a practice of it could.

    Inerrancy: Right now, I’m going to stick with the affirmation: it is a non-issue relating to translations (Korean, Spanish, Mongolian, French, and English).

    Loose and Firm: I think I can see the point you are trying to make here, and my reply is that I believe our viewpoint is entirely different. The landscape today starts with particulars (gnats) and attempts to prove their point by stating the opposing side has too many problem texts to be able to sustain their proposition. This is a method used by most on both sides of this issue. We’re not starting with missing words or variant texts. We’re starting with faith. Faith that God gave us perfection and promised to preserve it. We are not going to place our rules upon what God has said is perfect. (just like we don’t accept some critic telling us what qualities the Word must have to be considered inspired, we are not going to let a different critic tell us what qualities the Word must have to be preserved)

    Now I know that last statement will be controversial. And I don’t even know how my colleauges will respond to it. But, I think it’s a start at articulating our point of view….

  13. Chris Stieg
    February 4, 2007 at 6:11 am

    Good article.

    I assume you will clarify later, but I am also curious about #12 and #13. Is this just a starting point, to be made more specific later? Or would you accept any translation from any of the “Majority Texts” as faithful? By saying “TR” or “Majority Text”, it seems you have made a distinction between them.

    I realize that all the manuscripts have not been collated, as pointed out earlier, so from a critical standpoint, no one can say for sure what the “majority” reading is.

    Also, is it the “attempt” that makes it faithful, or the quality product?

    I realize I am splitting hairs here, but hopefully that won’t be taken in the wrong way.

  14. February 4, 2007 at 7:00 am

    16. We affirm that the 1769 edition of the King James Version should be updated. We affirm that plans should be made so that this can be accomplished in the not too distant future.

    17. We deny that any publishing house, including Thomas Nelson, Inc. has any authority either to create a version of Scripture or to write a new edition of Scripture.

    18. We affirm that the church is the pillar and ground of the truth, and therefore the church itself (i.e. local churches) must take charge of the care and maintenance of the Bible.

    19. We deny that any parachurch organization can be considered “the church,” and therefore we deny that parachurch organizations can or should have any part in the translation or care of Scripture. We include parachurch “Bible” colleges, no matter how scholarly their professors.

    20. We affirm that an educated laity, skillful in languages, adept at handling Scripture, faithful to the written Word of God, and diligent in preserving, inasmuch as is humanly possible, can handle the Word of God and translation issues far more adequately and reliably than any other organization of man’s invention.

    Dave,

    To these points specifically- it seems that these would be ideal circumstances in regards to an updated translation, for certain. However, if we applied the same principles to the KJV, would we not have to rule it out as well? I’m not certain how the authority of the British crown is superior to the American capitalist marketplace.

    It would perhaps be more consistent if you were defending, say, a Geneva Bible Only position. I just don’t see how association with an outfit such as Thomas Nelson alone would be enough to rule out the usefulness of a translation effort.

  15. February 4, 2007 at 9:14 am

    Chris,

    Did you read the section in my comments explaining the history of the terminology? For most of the 20th century, the TR was known as the majority text. Those terms were used interchangeably. Not until the Hodges/Farstad work did the term “majority text” apply to something else. My point was that there truly is no majority text.

  16. February 5, 2007 at 6:17 am

    Pastor Mallinak,

    “7. We deny that preservation rests in any translation, including any English translation.”

    I know that God never promised to preserve His word in any language, altough He did promise to preseve it. But does this mean that the KJV is not providentially God’s preserved word in English?

  17. February 5, 2007 at 6:52 am

    Billy, I think what we would say is NOT “that the KJV is not providentially God’s preserved Word in English” but that the KJV is not exclusively God’s preserved Word in English.

    A faithful translation from a faithful text would be God’s preserved Word in whatever language.

    Men, correct me if I’m misrepresenting our position.

  18. February 5, 2007 at 7:29 am

    Pastors B. & V.,

    Thanks for honestly interacting with my questions/observations. I think at this point, it will be best for me to just wait for future posts to comment specifically on various things. Especially since I have been rather busy of late.

    Blessings in Christ,

    Bob Hayton

  19. February 5, 2007 at 8:58 am

    Bill,

    Scripture teaches that God preserved the Words as they were written. Jots and tittle are Hebrew letters. A translation does not fulfill Scriptural teaching on preservation. Someone may want to believe that, but they wouldn’t be taking it from Scripture, I don’t believe. However, I believe that the KJV is an accurate translation of a perfectly preserved text.

  20. February 5, 2007 at 9:30 am

    Is it therefore, wrong (as in ‘unbilical’) to say that the KJV is God’s preserved word in the English language?

  21. February 5, 2007 at 1:14 pm

    Bill,

    No, it wouldn’t be wrong.

    All,

    Please forgive my absence. Had important things to do – skiing and Super Bowl…

    Bob,

    you said, “If you affirm point 2, why are you so suspect of anyone stating that a word could be better translated as ___ ?”

    I’m guessing that you read Kent’s comments and Jeff’s comments which were made before you said this, so I’m guessing that you just wanted to make a point. But, OK. I’m game. What do you mean by better? Better according to whom? Better according to what standard? Better for this time, as opposed to 1611 or 1769? Better in your opinion? Better in the opinion of a group of theologians? What is better? Why is it better? When you said “better”, did you mean “more correct”? Then why not say “more correct”? Wouldn’t that be “better”?

    I’m hammering that because it points out the arrogance of correcting the King James. Wouldn’t it be “better” if we simply explained and expounded on the meaning of the word, and then tried to reconcile the meaning with the actual word used, so that our listeners can better understand what the King James people had in mind when they used that word?

    Maybe you don’t agree. But then again, that would reveal the relativism of the term “better.” “Better” is in the eyes of the beholder. And if you are going to say “better,” I am going to ask why I should think so. “Says who?”

    That’s not to say that we’ve assigned any sort of infallibility to the KJV men. It simply means that we believe they were scholarly, that they were diligent, that their work stands the test of time, and that we are kinda puny next to them. I will correct their translation sometime after I get to the point that I can correct Tolkien’s translation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.

    Next, you said, “I know of some KJVOs who affirm point 2 but not one of them (besides E.F. Hills) would say the KJV has any error at all. So doesn’t that amount to saying the KJV is inerrant?”

    On this issue, I have to ask what you mean by “error”? Do you mean “wrong?” Do you mean “mistake?” Do you mean “could be better?” Do you mean “should be something else?” Is it possible that mistakes could be part of perfection? Or must we prove it to be mistake free in order to believe it to be inerrant?

    Then, you said, “If you affirm point 7, and also affirm… then you are contradicting yourselves.”

    How so? In what sense are you using the word “contradiction?” Are you saying that we both “deny and don’t deny?” Or are you saying that Beza’s and Scrivener’s are “translations,” not “editions” (as you called them)? My understanding is that these are “copies” or “editions,” not translations (into other languages). For clarity, when we said “translation” in #7, we meant translations into other modern languages.

    Finally, for you Greg:

    I love a good question, and that’s a good one. First, I would point out that the traditional American view of British Monarchy may not adequately explain this monarchy in an historical sense, and certainly distracts from the view of the church even as late as Spurgeon’s day (Spurgeon often spoke of his love for the Church of England, even as a dissenter). We view the monarchy with, shall we say, suspicion. The British in the 1600’s viewed them Providentially. Agree or disagree, he was the head of the English Church, and in commissioning the “Authorized Version,” he was acting in his role as head of that church.

    Nodoubt there are many things that could be said either for or against this. But that is the way things were. The point is that this was done by the Church, however suspect that might be.

    In that sense, there really is no comparison between the crown and the capitalist. The authority of the British Crown is vastly superior to Thomas Nelson, who shamefully copyrighted their version of Scripture. What were they saying when they copyrighted the Bible? Were they not saying that they own it? That it is their property? That it is THEIR translation? Then it isn’t the church’s.

    The copyright indicates more than mere “association.”

  22. February 5, 2007 at 2:05 pm

    Am I reading point no. 7 wrong, or does it need to be revised? (Oops – did I say ‘revised?’ O.k. maybe it needs to be restated ‘better,’ – -“I Can’t Believe It’s Not “Better”)

    BTW, thanks Pastor Mallinak for answering my question, I do have a follow up on that one, but I would like to wait for Pastor Brandenburg’s response before moving on.

  23. February 5, 2007 at 5:12 pm

    Bill, yes. We can say that, but then we expound a Scriptural doctrine of preservation; we say God preserved His Word in the languages in which it was written, which means the English isn’t God’s preserved Word. See the situation we have?

  24. February 5, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    God gave us His word. He gave it in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. If these ‘words’ are accurately (or even ‘faithfully’) translated into an adequet receptor language; aren’t those ‘words’ considered from God or substantively God-breathed words?
    Illustration: Diet Coke in can poured into a cup is still Diet coke. Container is different, but the substance is the same.

    On one level I can see why inspiration and preservation are strictly applied to the originals. But I like to think that the Bible I hold in my hands (i.e. the KJV) is God’s Word. Is it wrong to think like this?

  25. February 5, 2007 at 8:56 pm

    It isn’t wrong to think like that, even about a French translation, for instance, that is from nearly the same Heb/Gk words as the English, but should be respected.

  26. February 5, 2007 at 8:59 pm

    Dave,

    Far be it from me to defend Thomas Nelson. However, as I understand it, the Authorized Version was commissioned by James partly in an effort to shut down the Geneva Bible- the choice of the Puritans and Separatists. History bears out that the Pilgrims would have brought the Geneva Bible with them on the Mayflower, not our beloved KJV. Our Pilgrim forefathers would have concluded that the Church of England as ruled by James was no true church at all.

    Furthermore, to this day, in Great Britain, the KJV text remains under Crown Copyright and is jointly authorized and protected by copyright by Oxford University Press and Cambridge University Press.

    Again, I am not defending the copyright issue. I just don’t see that in itself as enough reason to reject outright the validity of a translation effort.

  27. February 5, 2007 at 9:35 pm

    Pastor Brandenburg,

    Thank you for answering my questions. I really do appriciate this topic. I look forward to bringing some more questions as you folks hammer this one out.

    To Mallet Factor, will you exPOUND on point no.7 perhaps some time in the near future?

  28. February 5, 2007 at 9:51 pm

    Bill,

    If I write a book in English, and my friend, Mario Monette, who is fluent in English and French, translates it into French, who is the author of the book in French? Of course, I am. Mario translated my book. Still, I am the author, and anyone would agree with this.

    God’s Word (Masoretic/TR) has been translated into English. That is the KJV. It is God’s Word(s) translated into English. It is the Word of God. God’s Inspired, Preserved Words have been translated into my language, English. My KJV is the English translation of the Inspired and Preserved Words of God.

    It is funny to hear men acknowledge that the King James is the Word of God, but then contend it is not the “preserved” Word of God. So, is it the non-preserved Word of God?!?!?! Huh???? What????

    The God-breathed Words have been translated into my language and I have them. Praise the Lord!

    The above also applies to other translations in other languages–translations from the right Hebrew and Greek.

  29. February 5, 2007 at 9:55 pm

    Greg,

    The church of England may have translated the Word of God into English, but from whence came the Hebrew and Greek that they had? It seems that it came from sound NT churches that “kept” the Word.

    The churches are the “pillar and ground of the truth.” As the pillar they preach it, proclaim it, promote it, and propagate it. As the ground they preserve and protect it. Those churches did just that and that is why the church of England had something to translate.

    God’s stamp of approval is on and all through the KJV. I’m glad you are committed to it there in Skowhegan.

    We fly south in a few hours, so I’ve got to get. I’ve decided to take my laptop with me, so I might be able to check in with you guys and watch the hammering.

  30. February 5, 2007 at 10:22 pm

    We don’t get theology from our own play on words. Is the Bible I hold in my hands the Word of God? Yes. So is It preserved? Yes. That settles it; Paul wrote in English. Now I shouldn’t conclude that, because that hammers a beautiful play on words.

    We should get our theology from Scripture. We don’t add or take away from that. From that theology are implications. The KJV is the preserved Word of God. I believe that. However, we must be precise by taking theological points from passages, so I say that God preserved His Words perfectly in the language in which they were written. The KJV, the English Bible, taught me that (Mt. 5:19). Who respects the English Bible more, the one who defends It with his own play on words or the one who defends the English Bible by using the English Bible? I’m just asking. 🙂

  31. Anvil
    February 5, 2007 at 10:36 pm

    Pastor Mitchell, I believe that Pastor Linscott’s point was that having a group of scholars from The Church of England (a “universal” organization, not just a local assembly, and already at that time an apostate one) under the authority of the crown translate the scriptures (even assuming that the texts they used had been preserved in the true churches), specifically violates point 19. You have a non-local-church group of scholars translating the Word, and one of the main reasons for this translation was to supplant the Geneva Bible which was the accepted version of the local churches at that time. Those men are only not para-church in the sense that they were all under the overriding authority of the Church of England. In the sense we use para-church today of organizations outside a particular local church, we could consider that group of men to be a para-church organization.

  32. February 5, 2007 at 11:21 pm

    The Geneva Bible guys were state church people too. See Mass. Bay Colony. God’s churches agreed on the KJV. Before that, they agreed essentially on the Words behind the KJV with few exceptions. I also thought Mallet’s explanation was pretty good at debunking the typical KJ was an evil man attack, akin to Westcott/Hort were evil men—the evil man mud flinging spectacular. We do say Providential preservation, not preservation that has finger prints and documentation, hermeneutically sealed baggies with DNA, etc.

  33. February 6, 2007 at 2:24 am

    I am looking forward to reading the posts and comments on this topic. There have been some great comments here already!

    Can you all (Jackhammr) recommened good books on this subject, which include a good history of the manuscripts behind the versions. Perhaps also a link to be able to purchase the books.

    I have a few books. One of the best I have is actually “English Bible Manuscript Evidence.” It is a college textbook from an independent Baptist church in Oak Harbour Washington. It is written in outline format for teaching.

    I have thought about getting the book Final Authority. Have any of you read it, and do you reccomend it. A friend of mine recently recommend this book to me.

    Thanks

  34. Anvil
    February 6, 2007 at 6:33 am

    Actually, I don’t think that who the men were that did the KJV was a problem. I do think, though, that the requirement that any new translation not be done by a similar grouping of men is unreasonable, for the same reason — God can providentially preserve a translation done by them same as he could the KJV.

  35. February 6, 2007 at 6:36 am

    Kent,

    Some of the Geneva Bible men were state church (Puritans), but some also had left the state church and had been severely persecuted for it, hence their journey to the New World (Pilgrims).

  36. February 6, 2007 at 7:18 am

    Bro. McGovern,

    While I am not part of Jackhammer, if I may recommend books,
    here are some books that I think would be helpful, in my humble estimation.

    1. The Lord God hath Spoken – by Dr. Thomas Strouse pub. by Emmanuel Baptist Theological Press.

    2. Believing Bible Study and Defending the King James Version – by Dr. Edward F. Hills pub. by The Christian Research Press. (ISBN: 0915923017)

    3. Myths about the Modern Bible Versions by David Cloud pub. by Way of Life Literature. (Of course Dr. Cloud has plenty of resources in his well known ‘Way of Life’ site.

    4. Thou Shalt Keep Them (A Biblical Theology of the Perfect Preservation of Scripture) – ed. by Hammer Time. pub. by Pillar and Ground Publishing.

    5. Defending the King James Bible – by Dr. D.A. Waite. (Dr. Waite has tons of helpful resources in his Bible For Today publications).

    6. Therea are two very interesting pamphlets (or booklets) to consider:
    a. The Ancient Text of the New Testament by Dr. Jackob Van Bruggen. pub. by Premier Publishing (ISBN: 0887560059)
    b. Fundamentalism’s Folly (A Bible Version Debate Case Study) by Pastor Peter W. Van Kleek. pub. by Institute for Biblical Textual Studies. (ISBN:0944355315)

    As for “The Final Authority” if that is one writen by Dr. Bill Grady, I don’t know much about that book. I have seen it, and read a little bit of it, but I really don’t know much about it.

  37. February 6, 2007 at 9:13 am

    That list looks good Bill. Add Dean Burgon material.

  38. February 6, 2007 at 11:52 am

    Greg,

    Thanks for the link. I hate to admit to my ignorance, but… I didn’t know that.

    Your points about the Geneva reinforce for me the possibility of more than one faithful translation in one language. On the other hand, I have to wonder out loud whether the crown copyright holds the same force as Thomas Nelson’s. For instance, would we need to seek the permission of the crown in order to publish a Bible (such as Local Church Publishers is doing)? Would we need the crown’s permission to revise/update or write a new edition of the KJV?

    I’m sure we would need Thomas Nelson’s permission to publish their Bible. What about the KJV? Do you or anyone else know that answer?

  39. February 6, 2007 at 11:53 am

    Pastor Mallinak,

    I must take a little time to respond to some of your questions. You are correct that I saw the discussion by Pastor V. and B. about being very careful to do anything which would cast doubt on the KJV. If the KJV is not inerrant (which your list of points above would seem to imply), why then is it an extrememly big deal to say it has an error here and here? What I see your points saying is this: the KJV does not have to be error-free for our position to stand. This idea is perfectly fine by itself. But it contradicts the way all the TR onlyists I know of actually teach and preach. None of them admit that the KJV has any errors at all. No mistakes either. And trying to get them to admit that the KJV translated a passage obscurely, is like trying to pull teeth. So then, do they really believe that it doesn’t matter if the KJV has errors or not? That is my point.

    As for what I mean by errors, I mean mistakes. I don’t know of any professing Christians who would intentionally err in translating Scripture, although I would disagree with some of the translation philosophies out there. But only the JWs or some other radical groups are fine with changing and twisting Scripture.

    The KJV translates both 2 Pet. 1:1 and Tit. 2:13 obscurely. In both cases a modern translation will make it clear that Jesus is being called God in those verses. The reason for this mistake is that the KJV translators did not understand Greek well enough on this point. Granville Sharp’s rule (a rule of Greek grammar) came out in the 1800s, and Granville proved that the particular Greek construction used in those verses can only refer to one person: Jesus, in the case of those verses. Another mistake or error would be Matt. 23:24 which says “strain at a gnat” in the English when the Greek has “strain out a gnat”. That mistake was due to a printer’s error, and even E.F. Hills admits it. One more uncorrected error would be the mistranslation of elpis as “faith” instead of “hope” in Hebrews 10:23. Every other time that Greek word is used in the KJV it is translated “hope” except in this place. The modern versions have “faith”.

    Now with regard to “hope” versus “faith” there are several issues to bring up. One would be that hope and faith are very similar and can overlap in meaning. However if a translation is to be accurate and if we want to know God’s word here, shouldn’t the translation show us which word is correct and given by God? Another point, would be that it doesn’t make much difference, we still know the general meaning. If KJVO people start arguing like that, they will be denying some of their most fundamental arguments about how important the multitude of minor differences really are between the texts. A third point would be that some like Adam Clarke would say that the KJV followed one or two mss for their reading here, and so they have a textual support and this is not an error but an accurate translation. If such is the case, then it would still be an error because the TR has “Hope”. And this is an important point to bring up, in this place (possibly) and in other places actually (2 Tim. 1:18 “unto me”; Acts 19:20 “word of God”; etc.) the KJV disagrees with the text commonly held by TR onlyists to be the preserved Word of God. So either the TR is inaccurate or in error at that place or the KJV is inaccurate or in error.

    All that to say that if you have no problem with translations having mistakes, then what would be wrong with pointing out the KJV left the TR or MT (Hebrew) in this place or that? And what would be wrong with pointing out a copyist’s error or typist’s error here or there?

    Moving on now, regarding point 7, this is my point: which TR edition KJVO-ists or TRO-ists choose is based on those which are supposed to back the KJV. They don’t just pick the widely preferred TR (as in the best example of the TR “family” of editions), for then they would go with the English preferred choice of the Stephanus 1550 or they would go with the Continental Europe favored choice of Elzevir’s 1633 edition. These were the standard texts that were used and preferred by both academicians and by local pastors of congregations (those pastors who knew Greek). Today, many seem to place an 1815 Oxford edition of the TR in a “standard” place (this is what is used, I believe, by those who developed the modern Majority Text editions). But none of these editions are the closest match for that Greek which the KJV used. Beza’s 1598 is, except in about 140 places, the KJV sides with Stephanus’ 1550 edition. The Scrivener’s 1894 edition of the TR is not an actual edition. Instead it is a synthesis or collation of the Greek readings which Scrivener assumed the KJV translators accepted. It is largely identical with Beza’s 1598 but it is different in about 190 places. My point has to do with TR onlyists deciding which TR is the TR only on the basis of whichever one the KJV used. It seems you are just dodging the issue of whether preservation is bound up in a translation by getting into the Greek. Sure the Greek is where the preserved Word is, but the particular Greek you use happens to be chosen on the basis of which English words a particular translation used. So you are still in a very real sense binding preservation together with one translation. Especially so when you are not okay with admitting that that particular translation ever errs by departing from the Greek preserved Words.

    Well that should about answer your questions, I think. But we will both be left with disagreement and questions. I disagree and question how you can affirm some of those points. You disagree with me and wonder how I can dodge some of your points. I hope, however, this lengthier explanation will let you know where I am coming from and help with understanding my position. I look forward to future posts and future exchanges.

    God bless,

    Bob Hayton

  40. February 6, 2007 at 11:55 am

    Pastor Mallinak,

    Regarding permission to publish… Because the American Colonies shook off the rule of the British crown. We have our own copyright system. The Crown copyright, as I understand it, is only in effect in English territories. No one has ever made a big deal about the Americans using the KJV and printing it, as far as I know.

    But also, open your Bible and look, and you’ll find a copyright by whatever publisher published yours. I believe that copyright covers the typesetting and etc. It makes it so no one can just photocopy all the work they did and duplicate it. There are a few small local church publishers which don’t have copyrights at all.

    Just wanted to help on that discussion line a little.

  41. February 6, 2007 at 11:58 am

    Thanks. Speaking of Dean Burgon, I forgot about this book…

    “A Guide to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament”- by Edward Miller (Dean Burgon’s associate). This is made available through Bible For Today.

    Also, the Trinitarian Bible Society has some helpful materials as well.

  42. February 6, 2007 at 12:04 pm

    Pastor Mitchell said:

    The church of England may have translated the Word of God into English, but from whence came the Hebrew and Greek that they had? It seems that it came from sound NT churches that “kept” the Word.

    The churches are the “pillar and ground of the truth.”…..

    I don’t know as much on the Hebrew side, but this isn’t quite accurate on the Greek side. The vast majority of the Greek manuscripts which exist today, were copied in Scriptoriums or Monasteries of the Greek Orthodox church. And in fact most of them were copied between the 1000s and 1400s AD. By then, there were too many errors in the Greek Orthodox church for true Baptists (like most of you, I presume) to assume that these were local church institutions. Or that these Greek Orthodox churches were actual churches.

    Further, the Greek printed editions were produced by various publishers who saw a demand and filled it to earn some money, albeit certainly they saw it as important to disseminate God’s word, too. Erasmus, who operated under no local church auspices, was responsible for the first several editions of the TR. Then other fellows continued the editing job, but in such a way that there was not much change from Erasmus. Stephanus, was a printer, and so may have been a capitalist. Beza was Calvin’s successor, but no baptist and hence no true local church guy. The Elzevir brothers were also printers and I don’t know whethere they were local church guys, but they were capitalists.

    So local churches used the text they were given. They were so busy doing the Reformation, they didn’t take too much thought re: the textual dilemmas. Tyndale he just translated from Erasmus’ Greek. And many other local church guys did the same.

    So it wasn’t until the 1700s and 1800s, before the church really was able to do its own concentrated work on the Greek texts to make sure they represented the preserved text. And in large part, the modern critical text is a result of the church (again probably not local Baptist churches in every situation) improving the text editions which Erasmus and others hurriedly brought to press in the 1500s and 1600s.

    All this to say that while we may wish Pastor Mitchell’s statement to be true, it just isn’t. And truth be told, more local church guys (real Baptists even) were involved in the NKJV than in the KJV by far. The same goes for the NIV, NASB, and the ESV.

  43. February 6, 2007 at 12:05 pm

    Just so you all know, my lunch is over now and so back to work… I will perhaps comment again on a break, but don’t think I abandoned the thread.

    Blessings in Christ,

    Bob

  44. February 6, 2007 at 12:38 pm

    This is helpful in understanding the copyright issue:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_James_Bible#Copyright_status

    I would do a little more research if you wanted to write a book, though… 😉

  45. February 6, 2007 at 1:06 pm

    that was a great affirmation and denial. I find myself almost 90% with you on this, and where I come from, that’s not KJVO enough! Oh well…the only one that I have real reservations about is:

    “17. We deny that any publishing house, including Thomas Nelson, Inc. has any authority either to create a version of Scripture or to write a new edition of Scripture.”

    By the same token, who gave the authority to the king and government of England in 1604 to begin to publish a new version?

  46. February 6, 2007 at 2:33 pm

    Bob said, “If the KJV is not inerrant (which your list of points above would seem to imply), why then is it an extrememly big deal to say it has an error here and here?”

    I think what we said is that it is a non-issue, meaning that it is not important whether or not there are errors, the KJV being a translation and all. I realize that it is very important to your cause to get us to say or admit that there are errors.

    We have to ask two questions, once again: first, what constitutes an error; second, what would be the purpose in pointing out the errors to our people? Of course, we won’t underestimate your ability to smother us with information, but if we could get down to that issue, that would be helpful in the debate. “Why” is it important that we say there are errors?

    As far as the “errors” you point out, I have no problem with acknowledging the facts that you have pointed out. Who determines what is a “printer’s error”? Is that what “scholars” have determined, or did someone admit to this? And how did that printer’s error survive through all the various editions? By the way, I don’t have a problem with “admitting” that it is a printer’s error – if in fact it is. I would say that this is a reason to continue updating.

    Obscure translations certainly are not errors. You could make the case that it could be “better” translated, but then again, we get into the whole “better” issue. Having read the very long comment (#39), I won’t complain that you didn’t get around to answering that. The fact that we are (or were) learning more about the nuances of the Greek and Hebrew language reinforce the need for an on-going updating process, and a new edition of the KJV.

    As far as the “mistranslation” of elpis, I would not say “who cares.” I wouldn’t say that it is a huge problem either (nor do I think that you did). Can we say that the KJV men “mistranslated” by mistake, or did they have a purpose in using the word “faith” instead of “hope”? Rather than saying that the translators were in error, why not simply point out that the word is translated “hope” in every other place, but that in this verse, the word is translated “faith”? Why not give the people a possible/plausible explanation for why in this case they said “faith”? After all, there are many marginal readings in passages, and those marginal readings can be very helpful in getting the full sense of the word. Why insist that we call it an “error?”

    I think that our contention here is that, rather than critiquing the KJV to death, we need to simply remind people that there is Greek and Hebrew behind it, and that we need to go to that to fully discover the meanings of the words.

    As far as #7, I think we will be covering that from several different angles. One must remember that we are not writing on this issue merely to combat both sides. We realize that our assertions place us in between the two sides here, and that means that in answering one side, we get pegged by another. We’ll work on our agility.

    I’ll step out on a limb and say this without checking with my cohorts. This is what I believe right now… For now, suffice it to say that by “translation” we mean another language. We believe that God has preserved the “originals”, and that all those various copies of the TR are that. We believe that God, in His infinite wisdom, chose to preserve His Word in mountains of various and diverse copies. And we believe that this is perfect.

    We admit that the KJV men looked all over to find the best way (in their understanding) to give us the word faithfully. I’m sure that even Bob would agree. That sometimes meant that they looked in places that we wouldn’t have thought of. They were translators. They were making decisions, and trying to be faithful. We won’t bash them for it.

    Ultimately, we understand that Bob wants us to say that the KJV has errors. I’m sure that in his little, that is pretty important. I have my suspicions as to why.

  47. February 6, 2007 at 3:14 pm

    Please don’t insert suspicions into the debate. Thanks.

    Now I must admit I agree with much of what you are saying here. However, I would add that part of that ongoing updating process was the development of newer Greek texts and ultimately some of the conservatively produced new versions (ESV, NASB, etc.).

    When you say “God, in His infinite wisdom, chose to preserve His Word in mountains of various and diverse copies. And we believe that this is perfect.”, you are saying exactly what most conservative non KJVO people believe. That in the multiplicity of the textual evidence (both Greek/Hebrew and other ancient translations which serve as evidence as to what the Greek/Hebrew at that time may have read) God has preserved His Word perfectly.

    Now you and your crew would say any updating and revising must be done only among the TR texts. At least this is my assumption of your position. And when someone starts asking why should such updating and revising be limited to TR texts, you would supply an answer which would go something like this: God has preserved His Word and led the church to adopt the TR texts and they represent the majority of texts also, and finally God’s churches have been using the KJV and other versions which rely solely on the TR texts.

    However, this is where we part ways. And this is why I think it is important to jump into the minutia [minor errors, etc.] a little. Some of the arguments for the TR’s priority is based on the local churches’ use of the KJV. So in the church’s acceptance of the KJV, were they accepting the small errors (which would negate the TR as the preserved text) or the TR behind the KJV? If they are identical, which some have argued, then this issue is moot, and the mere fact that God’s churches used the KJV settles the matter as to which Greek Texts to use.

    Some would take issue with using the modern texts because they are collations from various manuscripts and not on one actual mss. But in this case, they were produced very much like Erasmus originally produced the TR.

    In your 2nd to last paragraph, you say we shouldn’t bash the KJV translators because they were looking in different places and were making decisions and trying to be faithful. The same can be said for the ESV translators, but people bash them.

    And in bringing up inconsistencies and errors, I am trying to show that there are small errors on both sides. Many people don’t know there are actual differences between the TR editions among themselves and between them and the KJV. But these people are told there are differences between the KJV and modern versions. Yes the size and scale of the differnences are greater between the modern versions and the KJV than between the TR editions among themselves, but still it is important to know that differences remain. There is no one book in the world that has all the God-preserved words in them inside one set of covers. Ps. 22:16 rules out the Hebrew, and I could provide places which rule out all as yet TR editions. And there are other errors (particularly in the OT) which rule out the KJV. We are left with what God wants us to have in His wisdom. Some (like Bart Ehrman) will trip up over these differences and not believe in God over them. But there is abundant reason to know that God has preserved His Word and that we have almost complete certaintly on almost every passage.

    Often in the KJV debate, people are hanging their hat on the fact that every single word inside the KJV is absolutely God’s Words and without that being true, they would see no reason to believe in Christ, or so they phrase it similarly. And such is actually not the case as you yourself have seemed to admit in the preceeding comment.

    Anyway, I’m just rambling on here, and not making sense probably. Hopefully, you can see why all this that I brought up in previous comments matters in the whole debate.

    Unless others require me to answer other questions, it’s probably best for me to just hold off and wait for future posts to see where and how you guys elaborate and build on these points.

    And truly, I desire God’s blessings on you all, and I respect your beliefs on this matter, and I pray I won’t be trying just to “tear down” but rather to provide thoughtful critique and enlighten others on the non KJVO, yet also God-honoring perspective.

    Bob

  48. February 6, 2007 at 3:46 pm

    Bro Bill,

    Thanks for the list! I will look into purchasing several of those books.

    Bro Kent,
    Is this book still availble from the list, “Thou Shalt Keep Them” (A Biblical Theology of the Perfect Preservation of Scripture) – ed. by Hammer Time. pub. by Pillar and Ground Publishing.

    Is there a link to where it can be purchased?

  49. February 6, 2007 at 4:50 pm

    There are a few copies of the first edition. I have none of those. Gary Webb does. Calvary Baptist Church, Carrboro, NC. Here is his email. churchcalvary@bellsouth.net. Our second edition should be out in a few months. We will be starting work on a second book, volume, to deal with the practical ramifications of what the Bible teaches.

  50. February 6, 2007 at 7:59 pm

    Good grief, guys. Your hammering is starting to leave a pretty big mess.

  51. February 6, 2007 at 10:06 pm

    It’s a discussion, Bobby. I wouldn’t call it a mess. I have a very good understanding of what I believe to the “T” on this. I’m not sure everyone else does, and that’s fine. They might. I’m hoping not though, because the multiplicity of manuscripts and eclectecism are not my position, and we’ll have a hard time fitting those two into a perfect preservation position.

  52. February 7, 2007 at 8:20 am

    Kent,

    Discussion is fine. And I know what you believe and I don’t have a problem with it. I was just under the impression that the three of you were writing together from a unity of belief. If it is really the three of you hashing things out, then I understand that now and I’ll keep it in mind. As it stands, I don’t think what has been produced so far is helping the cause of defending the Masoretic/TR and KJV. Of course, that is just my opinion, and my opinions are definitely fallible. My other concern is that those who are confident in their KJV may have their faith shaken by some of what is being thrown around here.

    I hope the weather there is as pleasant as it is here. God is good.

  53. Anvil
    February 7, 2007 at 9:18 am

    Pastor Mitchell, speaking as one of those laymen in the congregation, Pastor B. is right — pastors can’t try to hide the truth from us and give us 30-second sound bites in the name of not having our faith or confidence in the KJV shaken. It doesn’t take a lot to know that there are many different Bibles/translations available today. The only question we need ask is “why is that?” to send us down the road of wanting to know more about the whole situation. It’s things like trying to hide the details that shake our confidence, not open admission that we don’t understand everything about how God works. Since my wife reads hers often in her native language (not English), we can already see that the Words of God she has are not exactly the same as what I have, even when both translations are from the same text.

    These are issues that pastors need to handle openly and honestly with their congregations. Not dealing with it, or dealing with it by bald assertions will not give them the confidence you are seeking, and in fact in most cases will do exactly the opposite, even if it doesn’t appear that way on the surface. I am not completely in agreement with the positions of the men on this site, but I applaud their attempt to deal with this as openly and honestly as they can, knowing that they will get shot at from both sides.

  54. February 7, 2007 at 9:12 pm

    I am open and honest about this. Maybe you think that English-speaking people should be textual critics of the English text that has been given to us. I don’t. Honesty for a pastor is not spending twenty hours showing every single difference in the translations. My job is to preach the Gospel and perfect the saints. This includes protecting the flock. I can warn them about the modern versions, but I’m preaching the Word, not churning out English Bible textual critics.

  55. February 8, 2007 at 10:21 am

    “Since my wife reads hers often in her native language (not English), we can already see that the Words of God she has are not exactly the same as what I have, even when both translations are from the same text.” ANVIL

    What is her native language?

    I know Tagalog (Filipino Language). And I do compare the KJV with the tagalog translations that I have (two Tagalog translations for that matter). It is very interesting to say the least.

    Of course, I don’t know Greek but I am certainly persuing it. and I think if a person can, that they should try to learn it, and not just stop at that, but go on to Hebrew, and other relevant languages. Hey, I am having a rough enough time with English (as you can see – Ha!) but to know more of and about God’s Word- – there ain’t nothin’ wrong with that.

  56. Anvil
    February 8, 2007 at 12:23 pm

    My wife uses a Luther German Bible, but also some other, more modern, German translations as well — Luther’s German is even more antiquated than KJV English. Her command of modern English is good, but her command of KJV English is not as good. Reading in that translation often confuses her more than enlightens, so we also have a number of modern English translations. My main Bible is a 1611 reprint, and I’ve been very happy with that one.

    “but to know more of and about God’s Word- – there ain’t nothin’ wrong with that.”

    Can’t disagree with you there!

  57. Cynicalman
    February 12, 2007 at 12:44 pm

    I have followed this for the last few days and appreciate the overall levelheadedness of the discussions. It is very refreshing. Personally I have mixed emotions on both sides of the debate.

    However I wanted to share my quick observations and thoughts – many I am still thinking about myself:

    1. If I were imprisoned, persecuted, etc, I would want a bible in my hands regardless of the version…well except the Message – blech 🙂

    2. Why any sane scholar accepted the CT as a reliable source amazes me. If one discovers docs that have many areas marked out, revisions by multiple people on it, sections that appear to be erased, why in the world would it be considered authoritative. At best it would be handy for comparison against other less blemished documents.

    3. The KJV is as much a translation as the ESV is – both are revisions. Personally I find the Tyndale NT to be much more “in your face” and the KJV much more “churched” in many places. As it is a revision how does that affect the discussion?

    4. How does Tyndale, Geneva fit into the debate. Many of the “verse charts” on KVO sites would have in some cases these versions on the “dark side.”

    5. I know many strong, faithful people who read other versions. I am very careful in my discussions with them as I do not want to do anything to cause them to read scripture less. For some KJV is a struggle.

    6. The plethora of versions has lead not only to confusion in the church but in the home. Should households be united in a version. I think so. If so and you have little ones is it best to use the KJV.

    Ok time for some confessions:

    1. I have spent way more time studying, worrying and debating the issue over the last few years than reading the Bible. I am activly trying and praying to change that behavior.

    2. Umm….well…I really enjoy the HCSB..a lot…there I’ve said it.

    Feel free to igonore my ramblings. For whatever reason I felt like typing some this afternoon.

  58. February 12, 2007 at 1:24 pm

    Cynic,

    What is the HCSB?

    If I were imprisoned, etc, I would be thankful for the Scripture I had memorized, and would wish that I had memorized more. But you are right, I might not be so picky, either. But then, hypotheticals are not authoritative.

    There are plenty of arguments against the CT. You gave one.

    It is interesting to note the difference between translations, and how cultural emphasis will impact it. In our Academy, we read many classical/ancient literature texts. One example would be the difference in translations of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, an excellent read. JRR Tolkein translated it and so did Marie Borroff (sp?). Borroff’s translation is more majestic and elegant, while Tolkien’s is more plainspoken and understandable. Both would be a challenging read.

    Certainly households should be united on a version, and so should churches. Most importantly, we must choose a version based on its integrity and faithfulness to the received word, rather than on personal preference.

    Be sure that you spend gobs more time reading your Bible than you spend defending it. Must we defend it? Or must it defend us?

  59. Cynicalman
    February 12, 2007 at 3:57 pm

    Dave,

    The HCSB is the Holman Christian Standard Bible. It originally started as a MT translation until Farstad died and the editorial group changed it to UBS/NA for the NT….sigh.

    Still have yet to see a KVO site deal with the fact that KJV is a revision not a “from scratch” translation or deal with the KJV teams margin notes – which reading is inspired/preserved.

    Any thoughts on the New Cambridge Paragraph Bible and its revised KJV. I have the companion volume tracking all the changes but do not have the time yet to go through it.

    I do think a modern font, paragraph format, wide margin, well bound KJV would be spiffy. 🙂

  1. February 6, 2007 at 4:35 pm
  2. February 22, 2007 at 10:01 am
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