Home > King James Only, Mallinak, The Word > Is the King James Version Inspired?

Is the King James Version Inspired?

November 27, 2009

Your argument is sound… nothing but sound.  —Benjamin Franklin

I, being of sound mind and body, am about to touch the third rail.  I do so reluctantly, yet resolvedly.  But before I do, I should like to say a very fond farewell to both of my readers (Hi mom!  Hi dad!) and it has been nice knowing you all.  Not that political suicide is the best way to go or anything.  I certainly wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.  But from time to time, it becomes necessary for one to sacrifice oneself for the sake of an important issue.  So, here I go.  I’m stretching forth my hand even as I type, reaching for that superconductor of electricity that is sure to send a shockwave through the ole’ system and land me flat on my back, perhaps pushing up daisies.  Just remember, I did it for the Gipper…

All Spark and No Fire

So, here go I.  Much of the controversy swirling around the King James issue centers on the question of whether or not the King James Version is inspired.  The English Preservationists have made this the particular sticking point on this issue, and of course, we who also consider ourselves KJVO’s are loath to challenge them on the question.  At least, if we value our place in the KJVO orbit, we better leave this one alone.

Which is exactly why I find myself anxious to address it.  First, there is just something about a third rail that is especially electrifying.  And secondly, I don’t believe that this particular third rail has enough juice to toast a piece of Wonder Bread.  It is all spark and no fire, or something like that.  I certainly don’t believe that this issue will be my undoing.  But then again, I’ve never stepped on a landmine before either.

The real issue here is in the definition of terms.  English Preservationists throw the term “inspiration” around as if it means nothing at all.  Then, they stretch the term around like Gumby, trying to make it sound rational to (a) deny double inspiration, and in the same breath to (b) claim inspiration for our English Version.  One might wish for a grain of honesty, just the size of a mustard seed, so that one could ascertain exactly what it is that they are arguing for, since they believe that the English version of the Bible is inspired, and deny that this means “double-inspiration.”

Since God inspired Hebrew words in the Old Testament and Greek words in the New Testament, and since, as far as we know, English words weren’t around at the time that holy men of old spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, we are faced with a dilemma.  If we deny double-inspiration, then we can’t argue that our English version is inspired.  If we argue that the English version is inspired, then we must necessarily believe in double-inspiration.

Either that, or else we will need to admit that we have elasticized the word “inspired,” turning “inspiration” into a clay humanoid figure.  Logicians call it “equivocation.”  When we use the same term in two different senses, all within the same argument, we are guilty of equivocation.  Equivocation is very popular in humor.  But equivocation is always mis-leading when we change the meaning of our terms mid-argument, without offering any sort of explanation for the suddenness of our switch.

Depends on What the Meaning of “Is” Is

When a man says that the King James Version is inspired, we understand that to mean that the English words proceeded directly out of the mouth of God.  That would be the plain meaning of the statement.  That is, if we are applying the commonly understood, 2 Timothy 3:16 meaning of “inspired” (theopneustos).  If that same man then turns around and denies “double inspiration,” well then, either he is lying, or he is equivocating the meaning of his terms.

Humorous arguments rely on equivocation in order to make their point, and we generally understand that.  For instance, a student was arguing that there are no such thing as black or brown feathers.  In order to make his point, he argued that since a feather is light, and what is light cannot be dark, therefore a feather cannot be dark.  You might recognize the equivocation in that argument.  It is humorous, so long as he isn’t serious.

Worse examples can be found.  My wife really hated the man who argued that women are irrational because the only rational being is man, and women are not men.  She had an almost irrational desire to bash his brains out of his head.  Fortunately, I was there to point out his equivocation.  Necessity once required us to bring a man before the church because he argued that Ray Charles is God.  He claimed that God is love, and love is blind.  Since Ray Charles is blind, he concluded that Ray Charles must be God.  In his case, he should have understood what the meaning of “is” is.

The Non-Inspired Argument

Unfortunately, not all equivocations are equally apparent.  On the question of whether or not the King James Version is inspired, the definition-shift befuddles and be-muses at times.  This is never more the case then when a man takes it in hand to explain how it is that he believes our English version is inspired.  One favorite trick that he will use is to argue that if the King James Version is not inspired, then we have an “uninspired” or “non-inspired” Bible.  Take this statement from Shelton Smith of The Sword of the Lord as an example.  Under the head “If not inspired, then what is it?” he makes this statement:

As I hold the King James Bible in my hands, if it is not the inspired Word of God, then what on earth is it?

Are you telling me that it is somehow the Word of God but yet not inspired?  Are you saying it is the uninspired Bible?

Ironically, the next section is entitled, “An Inspired KJB is not Double Inspiration.”  And Dr. Smith goes on to say,

None of the men that I know who believe in a preserved, inspired text believe in “double inspiration.”  We do not believe that the KJB translators were gifted (theopneustos) with God’s inspiration!

What we very strongly believe is that the Lord God Almighty promised to “preserve” His inspired Word.  He did use those translators to preserve the text for us so that we have an authentic English Bible.

To automatically equate our insistence on a preserved inspired text as double inspiration reflects neither reality nor the truth.

I repeat – we do not now, nore have we ever, advocatied or believed in double inspiration!

As a side note, we should point out that neither does Peter Ruckman.

Nevertheless, we do struggle to answer this charge. If we say that the King James Bible is not inspired, then are  we saying that we have an uninspired Bible?

The charge really is not so difficult to answer.  Instead, the reader should note the shift in the terms of the argument mid-stream, because what we have here is a sort of extended equivocation — yet another mis-leading use of ambiguity employed by Shelton Smith and those who make this same argument.  We are discussing whether or not a translation of the Bible is inspired.  If I say that the translation was not inspired in the same sense that the original Greek and Hebrew words were inspired, am I saying that my King James Bible is the uninspired Bible?  Absolutely not.

You see, whether intentional or not, this kind of argumentation is dishonest.  Those who make it are glossing over what they mean, and they are doing this by shifting terms back and forth.  First we are discussing a translation, then without any warning whatsoever, we shift the argument to Scripture.  The Scriptures are inspired.  The King James Version is a faithful translation of Scripture.  So, we can say that the King James Version is the inspired Word of God.  It is not, however, contradictory on our part to say that the Authorized Version is not inspired.  You ask how that can be so?  Very simply.  When I said that “the King James Version is the inspired Word of God” a moment ago, I was referring to the KJV as Scripture.  And we know that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God.  When I said that “the Authorized Version is not inspired” immediately afterward, I was referring to the KJV as a translation.  The translation was not inspired — that would require double inspiration.  But the Scriptures are still inspired.  And since the Scriptures are not lost in translation, the King James Version is the Very Word of God.

When a preacher insists that the King James Version is inspired, and insists in the next breath that he is not arguing for double inspiration, he is equivocating.  He should explain what he means when he says that “the King James Version is inspired.”  Is he referring to the KJV as an English translation of Scripture, or is he referring to it as Scripture.  When he calls the KJV inspired, what does he mean by “inspired?”  Does he mean that God breathed it out in the same sense that God breathed out the Greek and Hebrew words?  Does he mean that God divinely superintended the translators as they translated?  Is he referring to the fact that translated Scripture is still Scripture?  There is a significant difference between each of these meanings of inspiration.

The point is that he needs to do a better job of defining his terms.  All arguments aside, it really is mis-leading to argue that the KJV is inspired, and then to turn around and say that you don’t believe in double inspiration, without any kind of explanation in between those statements.  If a man believes in inspiration for any translation, if he believes that the translation itself is inspired, then he believes that God re-wrote the Bible, re-gave the words, this time as English or Spanish or Russian or Latin words.  If he doesn’t believe that, then he needs to find a better way to say what it is that he means.

Given by Inspiration

We have discussed this before in our comments section, but we thought it appropriate once again to attempt a more complete treatment of the question.  In 2 Timothy 3:16, the Bible says, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God.”  In English, this phrase is 8 words long.  It is the translation of 3 Greek words — and I apologize to the Greek purists who hate transliteration here, but — those three Greek words are, “Pasa graphe theopneustos.”  Literally, all Scripture is God-breathed.  Theopneustos is an adjective in the predicate position, hence the word “is.”

We have had some amount of debate in the past as to whether theopneustos refers to the product or the process.  In other words, does theopneustos refer to the process of giving the words, or to the words as the product of the process.  If we would understand the issue concerning the KJV and inspiration, we must understand the answer to this question regarding theopneustos.

Theopneustos is Product

An adjective in the predicate position makes an assertion about the noun.  All Scripture is theopneustos — God-breathed.  We understand the word “is” to refer to a state of being or existence.  We describe the nature of the existence of Scripture as “God-breathed.”  All Scripture exists as God-breathed Scripture, and that quality is never lost in any of those words.  In the past, we have argued that we know which words were the God-breathed words, because we still have them.  We have all of them.  Non-inspired words were lost, or lost for long periods of time before they resurfaced, thus proving that they were not God-breathed words.  The breath of God produced words, and those words formed Scripture.  All the writings of Scripture are God-breathed.

Theopneustos is Process

Our English Bible translates theopneustos as a verb — given by inspiration.  In fact, the phrase “by inspiration” modifies the verb “given.”  It explains how it was given, the instrument by which all Scripture was given.  If the product of theopneustos is God-breathed words, then the process must necessarily have been by God breathing out those words.  Our English Bible is correct then in its translation.  All Scripture is given by inspiration of God.  Inspiration was a process, and the result of inspiration was the product of the totality of inspired Scripture.

Inspiration as a process occurred over a fixed period of time.  We believe that God closed the canon, that God finished that process in time past.  The product continues, per the promise of God, forever.  But the process was completed almost 2,000 years ago.  God did not re-start or re-do that process somewhere around 1611.  But God did enable English-speaking men to give a faithful translation of His Words in English.  The product continues.  We have the ability to examine that product continually, and a great assistance in examining that product, through our English Bible.

But our English Version is not inspired.  To say that it is would be to say that God re-did the process.  Our English Bible is the inspired Word of God.  But that is different than saying that the English Version is inspired.  Our English Bible is the inspired Word of God because it faithfully translates God’s Word (the product) into English.  The product is not lost in translation, nor is the process re-done.

Much of the argument on this issue has revolved around the “breath of God” and whether or not it can be lost in translation.  I would agree with those who insist that the words retain that quality of being the “breath of God.”  But I would also point out the words that retain the quality of being the “breath of God” are not the English words.  The words that God originally gave, those are the inspired words.  We must understand our English translation in that context, or else we are undoing ourselves in this debate.

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  1. November 27, 2009 at 5:40 am

    Is that singed hair I smell? I know I smell burning shoe leather.

    This reminds me of a saying that my Dad uses to share, “Now, you’ve done gone and done it!”

    Brother Dave, not only is this good, I am going to share it with my church family, with your permission.

  2. Luke Townsley
    November 27, 2009 at 8:26 am

    Dave,

    As an aside, I have a question. You suggest the canon of scripture has been closed. Is there any direct scriptural support for that position?

    I am not suggesting any new books will or should be added at this time. However, it seems reasonable to me that we should expect some sort of written law or scripture or revelation if you will during the period immediately following the second coming of Christ.

    I know it is off the subject, but I would be interested in any comments you might have.

    Luke

  3. November 27, 2009 at 10:35 am

    Very interesting article, brother Dave! I am musing on your distinction between the King James Version and the King James Bible:

    “But our English Version is not inspired. To say that it is would be to say that God re-did the process. Our English Bible is the inspired Word of God. But that is different than saying that the English Version is inspired. Our English Bible is the inspired Word of God because it faithfully translates God’s Word (the product) into English. The product is not lost in translation, nor is the process re-done.”

    I for one don’t like referring to my English Bible as the King James “Version” for the very reason that I indeed believe it to be the only English Bible. I believe the term “English Preservationists” was coined by someone here (feel free to correct me if I am wrong) this term still throws me every time I read it. I feel I could be rightly called an English Preservationist, seeing I believe the King James Bible is the preserved words of God, the Scriptures, in the English language. I DO NOT believe that somehow the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek are NOT preserved. That would just be silly of me, not to mention ignorant and dishonest. I mean, Jesus read the Hebrew book of Isaiah, not a Greek or an English translation when He proclaimed “…this day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears…” They spoke Greek, but they still had the Hebrew words God gave to Isaiah!

    I am not a Greek, Hebrew, or Aramaic scholar, though I love using my Strong’s concordance, Sword Searcher Bible software, and Expository Dictionary of the New Testament. I have no problem in my own heart believing “… all scripture is given by inspiration of God…”, this meaning God literally “breathed” His words in the originals. I have no problem believing that God, per His promise, has preserved His words “…The words of the LORD are pure words….Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation forever.” I believe God had absolutely no problem “translating” His words as He did when He did in the Book of Acts when the testimony was “…we do hear them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God…” I am most determinately “King James only” if it is understood to be speaking of the English language.

    I am so much of a “KJVO”, that I do not look for a more modern translation into today’s much weaker and more degenerate English language. Unregenerate folk never were intended to receive the things of the Spirit of God, and God’s people have His Spirit and a good dictionaries available to us, other than disinterest and laziness, there is no reason we cannot understand the Word of God!

    Very good article. I am still “chewing on it all.” I find the whole issue a very sad commentary of the churches of our day. We (as in the modern Independent Fundamental Baptists) are more “para-church” then any of us are willing to admit. If we were truly dedicated to the local church that God placed us in, I think we would spend less time hurling javelins at one another around the table and more time believing the words of God we all agree that we have and serving our Lord Jesus Christ.

    -Pastor Dave

    • December 1, 2009 at 9:14 am

      Pastor Peterman,

      I failed to answer one question. When we say “English Preservationist” we are referring to those who believe that somewhere around 1611, God moved the Scriptures to the English language and began preserving the Word there, so that the KJV is the preserved word of God, and the Greek and Hebrew words were lost.

  4. November 27, 2009 at 11:00 am

    Dave:

    Well said. I think distinguishing between the product and the process is a great way to define terms on this and makes the issue easy to understand. The process was once and done; the product can be repeated with properly principled translation and Divine help. Would you agree that in some way the King James Translators were providentially helped to give us in English what He inspired in Hebrew and Greek? Was it just providential preservation, or was there actually grace involved in the translating?

  5. Bobby
    November 27, 2009 at 9:58 pm

    Brother Mallinak,

    You wrote, “Our English Bible is the inspired Word of God. But that is different than saying that the English Version is inspired.”

    Please take this question at face value. I don’t believe I’m being dense or difficult here. I just want to be precise in my understanding of your position.

    My question: Which “English Version” are you referring to that is “Our English Bible” that you write “is the inspired Word of God”?

  6. November 27, 2009 at 11:46 pm

    Dear Pastor Mallinak,

    Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. I appreciate that you wish to have a Biblical view of this matter. As you (almost surely) know, I think Peter Ruckman is a heretic, and am very much in favor of Greek and Hebrew, having read through the Greek NT twice, and currently teaching college and seminary Greek here in Wisconsin. I am against double inspiration–because I do not actually see the word “inspiration” used in Scripture for process rather than product. For this reason, I have no problem with calling anything we can call “Word of God” inspired, including accurately translated English words, and therefore have no problem with calling the KJV inspired. (And, I trust, I give sufficient reasons below–indeed, perhaps too much of a reason for some, though I think my exegesis may be of more value than much non-Scriptural huffing and puffing that takes more time to read.) I think if both proponents and opponents of the “inspired” term in connection with the KJV would interact with exegesis of the sort below, it would end the debate.

    I am sorry if this response is on the long side, but I am not aware, in the midst of the vociferous discussion of the question of whether one can call the KJV inspired or not, of anything that is comparable in its exegesis. I welcome comments and response, of course, although it may be a little while before I can reply (as the final week of my 2nd year and seminary Greek block class I am teaching is coming up!). The article below is available at http://thross7.googlepages.com as a PDF if someone wants it.

    Thoughts On the Word Theopneustos, “given by inspiration of God” in 2 Timothy 3:16, and the Question of the Inspiration of the Authorized Version

    Scripture teaches that God inspired words, and thus the entirety of the canonical Scriptures, 2 Timothy 3:16. God did not inspire people like Moses, Jeremiah, or Matthew, but the words that He gave to mankind through them. Since “inspired” means “God breathed,” and Matthew 4:4 states, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God,” believers are to live by inspired words. Since the present tense verb “proceedeth” in Matthew 4:4 represents continuing action, as is also found in other very closely related uses of the verb [footnote #1: See Matthew 15:11, 18; cf. Luke 4:22; Revelation 1:16; 19:15. Note the unquestionable continuing action in Revelation 22:1. A denial of continuing action in John 15:26 would overthrow the classical doctrine of the interpersonal relations in the Trinity by denying the Spirit’s eternal procession from the Father (and the Son). Note that while ekporeuomai is not very common in the aorist or perfect tenses, it is found in these forms outside the NT (2 Samuel 19:8 (LXX), aorist, clearly a one time action; Numbers 31:28, 36; Deuteronomy 11:10 (LXX), perfect tense, retaining the fundamental idea of the Greek perfect), although not within the NT itself.] , the breath of God, that is, inspiration, remains upon the words of the copies of the autographs, and men are to live by every word of those inspired copies. The fact is that neither 2 Timothy 3:16 nor Matthew 4:4 actually refer to inspiration as a process, rather than a product. [footnote #2: “The Greek word of this passage—Theopneustos . . . says of Scripture . . . that it is breathed out by God, ‘God-breathed,’ the product of the creative breath of God. In a word, what is declared by this fundamental passage is simply that the Scriptures are a Divine product, without any indication of how God has operated in producing them. . . . Paul declares, then, that ‘every scripture,’ or ‘all scripture’ is the product of the Divine breath, ‘is God-breathed,’ [and so] he asserts with as much energy as he could employ that Scripture is the product of a specifically Divine operation” (pg. 60, Revelation and Inspiration, Benjamin B. Warfield. Elec. acc. Rio, WI: AGES Digital Software, 2006). ] 2 Peter 1:16-21 does not employ the word “God-breathed” nor any phraseology like “proceedeth out of the mouth of God” like Matthew 4:4 does.

    If one wishes to use the word inspiration to refer to the process whereby God dictated His Words to the prophets, 2 Peter 1:16-21, I have no problem with that. However, it looks to me like the breath of God/inspiration remains upon every Word perfectly preserved in Hebrew and Greek, just as it does upon the original manuscripts. Thus, the Scrivener 1881/1894 Textus Receptus, the Greek words exactly underneath the KJV, represent, in my view, a text just as inspired as the original copies dictated to Moses, Paul, or Luke, as it is one identical to it.

    Recognizing inspiration as equal to the continuing action of “proceeding out of the mouth of God” that pertains to the PRODUCT of what was originally dictated by the Holy Ghost to men moved by Him (2 Peter 1:16-21) helps to solve of the debate over the propriety of the use of the word inspired for accurate translations such as the KJV.

    1.) Accurate copies of the Greek and Hebrew words are inspired, since inspiration, Biblically speaking, is product, rather than process.

    2.) Anything that we can properly call “God’s Word” is inspired, because, by definition, if God breathes out some words, He has inspired those words. “All Scripture is inspired,” 2 Timothy 3:16. The verse equates what is “Scripture” with what is “inspired.” [footnote #3: Thus, the equative relation pasa graphe Theopneustos establishes that all that is graphe is also Theopneustos. The reader who does not know Greek should note that the KJV is, although italicized, is clearly the correct verbal form in the Greek equative clause.] The two categories are identical—if something is “Scripture,” then it is “inspired.” Had the verse referred to the process of revealing Scripture it would have stated, “All Scripture was given by inspiration of God.” Since it refers to the product of that process, inspired words, it states, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God.” The breath of God is an inherent quality of all that is Scripture, all that is the Word of God.

    3.) Scripture shows us that accurately translated words are still Scripture. 1 Timothy 5:18, for example, refers to both the untranslated gospel of Luke (10:7) and the translated book of Deuteronomy (25:4) as “Scripture.” Indeed, 1 Timothy 5:18 is the only other reference to Scripture (graphe) in Paul’s epistles to Timothy, so it is natural for one to consider 2 Timothy 3:16 in light of this previous reference. The same Paul who tells Timothy that everything that is Scripture is inspired calls both the untranslated and accurately translated Word of God Scripture.

    4.) Thus, accurate translations are Scripture.

    5.) Since accurate translations are Scripture, they are inspired, since all Scripture is inspired. All Scripture has the breath of God upon it.

    Thus, since the KJV is an accurate translation of the perfectly preserved Hebrew and Greek Words dictated by the Holy Ghost, it is Scripture, and it is inspired.

    To avoid this conclusion one would need to say that the KJV is the uninspired Word of God, and it cannot produce faith (Romans 10:17), it is not quick, powerful, sharp, etc. and believers are not to live by it (Matthew 4:4).

    Two qualifications to the above must be made, however.

    1.) Only Greek and Hebrew words are directly inspired. Translated words are derivatively inspired. [footnote #5: While it is true that the specific phrase derivatively inspired is not found anywhere in the Bible, it is equally true that the word translation is absent. The implications of this paragraph, and the doctrine of derivitive inspiration, are simply the good and necessary consequences of the fact that accurately translated Scripture is still Scripture, and one can accurately translate Scripture in more than one way. Inspiration is derived in translated Scripture because the words in the receptor language derive all their authority from the original language texts that are correctly translated. The fact that translated words can be modified and still have the breath of God is the necessary consequence of the fact that “he doeth” and “he does” are both correct translations of the appropriate Greek or Hebrew phrases. Thus, one has no right to object to the use of the word derivitive in connection with inspiration, based on the absence of the word in the Bible, in connection with translations, unless he likewise objects to and abstains from the use of the word translation itself, never refers to Scripture as verbally or plenarily inspired, abstains from speaking of monotheism, or the Trinity, and so on.] The directly inspired Greek and Hebrew cannot be changed, jot or tittle. Translated words can be changed and still have the breath of God. Dropping the “eth” from KJV verbs would not make the translation lose the breath of God. One could, in like manner, say that the KJV is derivatively preserved, sharp, quick, powerful, faith-producing, and so on. This fact does not by any means make English, rather than the directly, verbally, plenarily inspired and perfectly preserved Greek and Hebrew (and Aramaic) words our authority.

    2.) When translations other than the KJV are accurate, in those parts they are also (derivatively) inspired. The NASV, for example, possesses the breath of God in the parts where it is not mistranslated nor translating a corrupt Greek/Hebrew text.

    This use of Theopneustos for product, rather than process, also seems to be the use of the Greek word in related Christian/Koiné Greek texts. For instance:

    Papias 10:1 Regarding, however, the divine inspiration [Theopneustos] of the book [i.e., the Revelation of John] we think it superfluous to speak at length, since the blessed Gregory (I mean the Theologian) and Cyril, and men of an older generation as well, namely Papias, Irenaeus, Methodius, and Hippolytus, bear witness to its genuineness. [Papias, who lived around the turn of the first century, reproduced by Andrew of Caesarea (563-637), Preface to the Apocalypse]

    Here the book itself, the Greek words, the product, is referred to as inspired. Process is not in view, but product.

    Sibyl. 5:406-407 But God, the great Father of all within whom is the breath of God [Theopneustos], they were accustomed to reverence with holy sacrifices and hecatombs.

    Here the unknown early Christian writer of the Sibylline Oracles refers to the breath God puts within people as Theopneustos. It is simply “breath from God.”

    It thus seems to me that consistency requires that we either refrain from calling translated Scripture “the Word of God” or we allow the use of the word Theopneustos for anything that has the breath of God upon it, including translated Scripture. That is the conclusion an examination of the use of Theopneustos in its Koiné background leads to.

    The affirmation that translations possess the breath of God in a derived sense is by no means an affirmation of Ruckmanism. Peter Ruckman’s doctrine is that the English of the King James Version is superior to the Greek and Hebrew words God promised to preserve (Matthew 5:18), and thus involves a denial of the perfect preservation of the words God gave in the once-and-for-all completed process of giving the Scripture (Psalm 12:6-7). Ruckman affirms that a move of God like that mentioned in 2 Peter 1:16-21 took place in 1611, a repudiation of the completion of the canon and a rejection of the warning of Revelation 22:18-19. I, on the other hand, deny that 2 Peter 1:16-21 pertains to any other than the original writers of the Scripture when they penned the autographs, but maintain that the original copies do not lose the breath of God when they are copied or (in a derived sense) when they are accurately translated. Indeed, recognizing the Scriptural fact that the breath of God remains upon copies and (in a derived sense) accurate translations destroys the foundational appeal of the Ruckmanite error. Ruckmanism claims that only if one affirms that another supernatural act of giving the Scripture such as is described in 2 Peter 1:16-21 took place in 1611 with the Authorized Version can one have a Bible in his hands today that is living, powerful, sharper than any two edged sword, and truly the Word of God. The fact that the breath of God remains upon accurate copies and accurate translations allows the believer to affirm that he does indeed have the very Word of God in his hand when he holds a King James Bible, without adopting the heresy of a re-opening of the canon in 1611 or denying the promises of Scripture that every Hebrew and Greek word God gave in the autographs is still available and is still the ultimate authority for the Christian (Matthew 4:4; 5:18; Isaiah 59:21).

    The only real argument I have every heard to restrict the Theopneustos of 2 Timothy 3:16 to the original manuscripts is that some sort of distinction is made in 2 Timothy 3:15-16 between the words grammata and graphe. One word supposedly speaks of the autographs, and the other word to copies. I am not even exactly sure how this argument is supposed to work, but its validity seems highly questionable since both words are used for copies.

    For example, grammata is used of copies:

    John 5:47 But if ye believe not his writings [grammata], how shall ye believe my words?

    They Jews of the first century only had copies of Moses’ writings, obviously.

    The word is also used of copies, and with semantic overlap with graphe, in early extra-Biblical patristic works:

    1 Iren. 20:1 Besides the above [misrepresentations], they adduce an unspeakable number of apocryphal and spurious writings, which they themselves have forged, to bewilder the minds of foolish men, and of such as are ignorant of the Scriptures [grammata] of truth.

    Trypho 29: For these words have neither been prepared by me, nor embellished by the are of man; but David sung them, Isaiah preached them, Zechariah proclaimed them, and Moses wrote them Are you acquainted with them, Trypho? They are contained in your Scriptures [grammata], or rather not yours, but ours. For we believe them; but you, though you read them, do not catch the spirit that is in them.

    Trypho 70: Moreover, these Scriptures are equally explicit in saying, that those who are reputed to know the writings of the Scriptures [here both words together, ta grammata twn graphwn], and who hear the prophecies, have no understanding.

    3Theoph. 29 These periods, then, and all the above-mentioned facts, being viewed collectively, one can see the antiquity of the prophetical writings [grammata] and the divinity of our doctrine, that the doctrine is not recent, nor our tenets mythical and false, as some think; but very ancient and true.

    Graphe is also used of copies of Scripture:

    Matt. 21:42 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures [graphe], The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?

    The book that the Lord Jesus’ audience would hold in its hands and read was a graphe.

    John 5:39 Search the scriptures [graphe]; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

    Early patristic writings also use graphe for copies. One easy example is:

    1Clem. 53:1 For you know, and know well, the sacred scriptures [graphe], dear friends, and you have searched into the oracles of God. We write these things, therefore, merely as a reminder.

    Here the copies that Clement’s audience, the Church at Corinth, was examining were the sacred/holy scriptures. The Greek of 1 Clement 53:1 is tas hieras graphas, almost identical to 2 Tim 3:15’s ta hiera grammata. If there is some sort of technical distinction between the words so that only either grape or grammata refers only to the autographs, the distinction was lost already in the earliest post-NT document we have, 1 Clement, which was written by what appears to be the Baptist pastor of the church at Rome around the turn of the 1st century. [footnote #5: See my article “Images of the Church in 1 Clement” at http://thross7.googlepages.com; Clement teaches justification by faith alone, church independence and autonomy, and in every way looks like a good Baptist.] As noted above, grammata/graphe are also found together as early as Justin Martyr’s Dialog with Trypho 70, c. A. D. 120 or before. Moreover, these Scriptures are equally explicit in saying, that those who are reputed to know the writings of the Scriptures [here both words together, ta grammata ton graphon], and who hear the prophecies, have no understanding, clearly employing both grammata and graphe for copies, not original manuscripts.

    So I am not sure which word, gramma or graphe, is the one that is supposedly the technical word for the autographs, and why we are supposed to believe the one or the other does so in 2 Timothy 3:15-16.

    On a concluding note, when I made a cursory examination of Baptist confessions and similar material, there appeared to be no hesitation in employing the word inspiration for copies or for accurate translations. For example:

    “And no decrees of popes or councils, or writings of any person whatsoever, are of equal authority with the sacred scriptures. And by the holy scriptures we understand, the canonical books of the Old and New Testament, as they are now translated into our English mother tongue [the KJV, as is evident from both the time of the confession and the references and allusions to verses in the document], of which there hath never been any doubt of their verity and authority in the protestant churches of Christ to this day. . . . all which are given by the inspiration of God, to be the rule of faith and life. (Article 37, An Orthodox Creed, 1678, quoted in Underhill, Confessions of Faith and Other Public Documents).

    The Charleston Association of Baptist Churches in their 1802 circular #9, “On the Duty of Churches to their Ministers” (cited in Furman, A History of the Charleston Association of Baptist Churches) wrote, “We conclude in the language of inspiration—“Live in love and peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.” Note that the “language of inspiration” is the KJV.

    There did not appear to be any confession that either denied that the breath of God was upon copies or accurate translations, or that made some sort of distinction between gramma and graphe in 2 Timothy 3:15-16.

    • Chris Stieg
      November 30, 2009 at 7:15 am

      Thomas,

      I understand your point, but I would have to disagree.

      I don’t think that we should understand “theopneustos” in 2 Timothy 3:16 to be a “product” per se. According to all the normal laws of language and reality, “breathing” is a process, not a product. Scripture is the product of this breathing of God. The adjective “theopneustos” tells us that Scripture, the product, bears all the qualities of this process, “God breathing”.

      Also, we cannot read too much into the present tense in English “is given” as versus “was given”, since in Greek the verb is not present at all. The point here is not whether it is present or past, but that Scriptures bears the qualities of inspiration. Furthermore, it does not seem to be significant whether or not a copy or translation is in view. Inspiration was a one-time event for any given passage of Scripture, and of course the qualities of inspiration are not lost in the processes of copying and translation. Therefore, it is perfectly proper to say that the copies Timothy held were Scripture, and “given by inspiration of God.”

      In Matthew 4:4, I don’t think we should read too much into the present tense, which is quoting Deuteronomy. In Deuteronomy, the Word of God was in fact proceeding from God’s mouth in the present tense; however, we should not understand this to mean that God’s Word is being inspired now.

      Pastor Mallinak,

      Thanks for a great article!

    • Gypsyseeker
      February 22, 2010 at 12:36 am

      Bro. Ross and all:
      Scrivener is NOT the exact text/readings underlying the KJB. I’ve personally found more than 30 places where Scrivener uses a different text/reading than the one evidently used by the KJB translators. I’ve got another list of perhaps 30 or so which I am picking at and verifying from time to time. Of those latter 30, there are times when Scrivener could be given the benefit of the doubt due to the special use of some Greek grammar rules which would result in the translation as it stands in the KJB. However, Scrivener, unlike the KJB translators, limited himself to ONLY PUBLISHED GREEK editions to find his readings (see his preface and appendix).

  7. November 30, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    I’m commenting here before I even read Thomas’ comment, since I will need extra time to read that chapter. As an aside, I do think that we should strive to make our comments concise, if at all possible. It helps keep the conversation flowing more freely. But I want to answer the other comments first, and I will forget them if I wait until I have read Thomas’ chapter.

    First, Art, you are always welcome to use whatever I put up here. Secondly, Don, I do believe that God guided our King James Translators, that He gave them wisdom and special ability. As to degree, I’m not sure that I can say. I believe that God guides me in preparing sermons, and I trust Him to govern my mouth and mind as I preach. I also know that I have blown it in some big ways. Would I say that God providentially superintended their work more so than He superintends mine? Yes, I do. But I have no evidence for saying this other than the product itself, and the fact that in studying the KJV, and comparing it to the original languages, I find a marvelous work.

    Luke, I do believe that God has closed the canon. Speculation about what God will do in end times is not my cup of tea. He says nothing about adding to the canon in the end times, so I figure it is “not for me to know.”

    Bobby, I am speaking of the Authorized Version, the King James Version. I may have used too many synonyms for the sake of variety, but that is my assumption in calling it “Our English Bible,” especially given that it is the only English Bible that I believe to be faithfully translated and received by the churches.

  8. November 30, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    I do intend to get to Thomas’ stuff… but I will need more time before I do.

  9. November 30, 2009 at 6:38 pm

    Thanks, Brother Mallinak.

  10. November 30, 2009 at 8:03 pm

    Dear Chris,

    Thanks for your comment. I appreciate your desire to exegete the Bible and have the correct view on this matter. I cannot say that I agree with your arguments or your conclusion, however. The following are certain of my reasons.

    1.) The equative relation pasa graphe Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16 establishes that all that is graphe is also Theopneustos. The addition of the KJV is, although italicized, is necessarily the correct verb in this Greek equative clause. One cannot simply decide that was would have been better. It cannot properly be supplied. If one wishes to argue for “was” instead of “is” as the supplied verb, one must first produce clear syntactical parallels for this Greek construction where the past tense verb must be supplied. I trust that if you wish to maintain this argument, Chris, such parallels will be forthcoming, as we certainly cannot say that we can supply any verb we want just because there is no form of eimi explicitly found in the text. The syntax requires a present tense verb. Compare the following related adjective-noun-adjective equative verb constructions in the pastoral epistles, each of which supports this affirmation—note that a present tense form of to be must in each case be supplied: 1 Timothy 1:15, This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, pistos ho logos kai paseœs apodocheœs axios; 1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, heis gar Theos, heis kai mesiteœs Theou kai anthroœpoœn; 1Timothy 4:4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, hoti pan ktisma Theou kalon, kai ouden apobleœton; 1 Timothy 4:9 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation, pistos ho logos kai paseœs apodocheœs axios; Titus 1:12 The Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies, Kreœtes aei pseustai, kaka theœria, gasteres argai.

    2.) I do not find the affirmation that theopneustos is process rather than product at all convincing. The parallel texts I gave above from the Koiné support the adjective as product. Consider also the following uses (which are loose but relevent for comparison) of Theopneustos as product in the Sibylline Oracles 5:308, “God-breathed streams,” Pseudo-Phocylides 129, “God-breathed wisdom,” and Testament of Abraham (Recension A) 20:11, “God-breathed ointments and perfumes.” In each of these instances a divine quality is ascribed to the noun modified by Theopneustos. (Of course, a simply linguistic point is being made here, namely, that Theopneustos is a designation for a product—the propriety of the designation by the authors of these documents is not the matter in question, nor do I have any desire to defend these uses.) If, Chris, we want to say that Theopneustos is not a description of the product, the graphe, the Scripture, but is rather describing a process, we will need to do more than just say what we think is reasonable about how the word “breathed” is used. We will need to document actual parallels with the word in Greek. Greek speakers knew how to use their own language, and their actual usage will be far more important for exegesis than what we think about the English word “breathed.” Since (in what I have written above in my first comment and in this second one) I have given you every one of the parallel texts in the apostolic patristic writers and the pseudepigrapha (I looked also in the Greek apologists, nor in the apocryphal gospels, but the word was not found, and, naturally, it is not present in pre-Pauline texts such as the LXX, nor is it in Josephus or Philo), and in every case the word designates product, not process, I believe you will have a difficult task proving on the basis of the Greek language (rather than on the basis of what may seem like a good chain of reasoning in our minds, which think in English) that the word is a process, not a product.

    3.) As concerning Matthew 4:4, the fact is that a present tense verb for the Scripture proceeding from the mouth of God is what is actually employed. Christ could have used an aorist tense verb to indicate that inspiration was a one-time act that ceased with the autographs, rather than a description that a product has the breath of God on it, but He did not. I do not see how Deuteronomy 8:3, which Christ is quoting, assists your case. The Hebrew of Deuteronomy 8:3 likewise affirms that the words are proceeding as a continuing action from the mouth of God, and a present tense verb is found in the LXX. The reference is not at all merely to whatever happened to be coming out of Moses’ mouth as he preached the book of Deuteromony—the reference was to the entire canon of Scripture, all of which, Deuteronomy 8:3 affirmed, proceeded in a continuing way from the mouth of God. NT parallels for the present tense of “proceedeth,” such as Revelation 22:1, where a “pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, [is] PROCEEDING out of the throne of God and of the Lamb,” are clearly continuing action.

    4.) I would also point out that the “word” which Timothy was to preach in 4:2 refers to the God-breathed Scripture in 3:16 because of the anaphoric article in 4:2. Thus, Timothy was to preach an inspired Bible. Unless he had the autographs, inspiration must also extend to accurate copies and translations.

    Thus, I continue to believe that the term God-breathed, Theopneustos, in 2 Timothy 3:16 describes the product, the words of the Bible, and that accurate copies and translations of Scripture still possess the breath of God (directly and in a derived way), and thus I continue to believe, based on study of the Greek language, that it is proper to refer to the King James Bible as inspired.

    I commend you, however, for at least coming at the question from an exegetical standpoint, rather than just saying that I am a Ruckmanite or throwing out some other silly accusation. Thanks again for your thoughts, and the Lord continue to bless you in your service for Him.

    • Chris Stieg
      December 1, 2009 at 9:23 pm

      Dear Thomas,

      I am sure you are not a Ruckmanite, and I have utmost respect for your Greek and exegetical abilities. For my part, I do not have the time to search for parallel usages for the predicate position of adjectives being used in past tense. As a matter of fact, I also would be quite sure that there are none. My point was rather that since no verb (which contains the idea of tense and time) was inspired here, I would hesitate to make that the tense of that implied be-verb a major portion of my argument – i.e. that God’s words “continue to be” inspired. The point of 2 Timothy 3:16, as I understand it, is simply that Scripture has the qualities of God’s breath of inspiration, without explicit reference to the time or type of action concerning that inspiration.

      I appreciate the examples you have given for “theopneustos” being a product rather than a process, but even in those examples, it is not at all clear to me that that is the case. In “God-breathed wisdom”, “God-breathed streams”, and “God-breathed ointments and perfumes”, it would seem rather that “wisdom”, “streams” and “ointments and perfumes” are the PRODUCT, whereas “God-breathed” would be the PROCESS by which these products were said to have come.

      I realize I can’t match you for length and content, and there are many, many points that you have made that I realize I am not dealing with, but one other thing you said caught my eye.

      “…accurate copies and translations of Scripture still possess the breath of God (directly and in a derived way),…”

      I understand and agree with the “derived way” – original language texts are translated, and do not lose the qualities of inspiration in that translation process. However, in what way would you consider translations to have the “direct” breath of God? I know your position is not Ruckman’s, but doesn’t that sound dangerously close? If a translation has God’s direct breath, then it would seem to mean that it is supernaturally inspired.

  11. December 1, 2009 at 9:09 am

    Thomas,

    I’ve read through your first five page long comment. I for one would appreciate concise comments from you, inasmuch as this is possible. It helps our audience to be certain, so that they too can follow the discussion.

    I would also point out that you have cut and pasted that same essay in other comment sections. I am assuming that you will be interacting with what I actually said in my post, along with subsequent comments, in future replies. And so I will thank you in advance for answering me personally, rather than by using the “cut and paste” function to post other essays. Of course, you can feel free to link to any of the numerous essays that you already have available on the Internet. That would save space and enable us to read your particular comment at a glance. This sort of thing is always appreciated on the Internet.

    That being said, here are my responses to what you have written…

    (1) I always appreciate your efforts to stand on the Word, and I continue to commend your efforts to do so.

    (2) What you have argued for in your essay proves my point. You say that you believe that the King James Version is inspired, and then you qualify your statement. That is exactly what I am talking about in my post. When you say that the King James Version is inspired, you do not mean in the same sense that the Original Words are inspired. You proved that by calling it “derivative inspiration.” What I am arguing here is that this is equivocation. You are using a word that we all understand in a particular way, but you are using it to mean something different. When someone tells me that they believe that the King James Version is inspired, I understand that to mean that they believe that God inspired the English words in the same sense as he inspired the original Greek and Hebrew words. Why should I not understand it that way? By the way, I have no problem with your qualification (what you mean by “inspiration”). In fact, I argued for that in my post. In my post, I said that the KJV is the inspired Word of God. I said that this is so because the KJV is Scripture, and all scripture is inspired. So, I’m not arguing with your understanding of this. I am arguing with the language that you use to express it. I believe it to be harmful in this debate.

    (2) The Baptists (and others) who lived before the 1900’s did not have to deal with Ruckmanism. So, the fact that they did not hesitate to use the word “inspiration” when referring to the KJV doesn’t really matter in this day and age. We have to deal with Ruckmanism, so when we say that the KJV is inspired, our hearers will interpret that statement as Ruckmanitish.

    (3) I disagree with your argument against “theopneustos” as process. Here is why. First, I did not argue that “theopneustos” is exclusively process. I argued that “theopneustos” is both product and process. You make a good case for calling “theopneustos” product. I agree with you that “theopneustos” is product. But you have not proven that “theopneustos” cannot be process. Not by any means. In fact, since you are arguing that the KJV is inspired, you have to say that “theopneustos” is also process. The KJV translates “theopneustos” as “given by inspiration of God.” The word given indicates the process, the means by why the Words were given. By no means does the word “is,” inserted by the translators, limit “theopneustos” to product exclusively. All Scripture is — a present and continuing fact — given — a process — by inspiration of God. All Scripture has and keeps the quality of having been given by inspiration of God. How did we get Scripture? It proceeds out of the mouth of God. It was and is given that way. Since I believe that the canon is closed, I must also argue that no new Scripture is proceeding out of the mouth of God. I can agree with your argument from the present tense — the words of Scripture retain the breath of God. I believe that. But surely you can also admit that this implies a process by which those words were given.

    (4) I repeat myself here — but we will not win the debate on Preservation until we have squashed the Ruckmanite position. I say this because I notice that in every debate on this issue, the Critical Text position (and by the way, Thomas, that is the position of the institution that you are affiliated with) goes directly to the Ruckmanite position and argues against that. Using Ruckmanite language does not aid our position. That is the reason for this post. I do not beleive that we should call the KJV inspired when that is the language of Ruckmanites. When a person tells me that he believes that the KJV is inspired, I naturally think that he means that the English words are inspired. And that is why we should stop speaking this way.

    (3)

  12. December 1, 2009 at 9:57 am

    Thought provoking article here from the Mallet Factor.

    Here is a quote along the same lines from Peter Van Kleeck as he quotes Francis Turretin in his “Institutes of Elenctic Theology” [ Dr. Van Kleeck (like Terrutin) grapples with the subject of versions and their legitimate authority:

    “The authority of the apographa is both in its substance and word. The words of the apographa are the very words of the immiediately inspired autographa providentially preserved by God…The inspired truth content is carried over in the version and thereby gives the version its derivative authority. Terrutin says that this self-credible perfection is carried over into the version by translation. The version’s authority is derived from its fidelity and conformity to the apographa.” (Van Kleeck, Fundamentalism’s Folly, page 30)

    “Conformity to the originals is different from equality. Any version (provided it is faithful) is indeed conformable to the original because the same doctrine as to substance is set forth there. But it is not on that account equal to it because it is only human and not a divine method of setting it forth.” [Terrutin, page 126]

    Good article Pastor Mallinak.

  13. December 1, 2009 at 12:41 pm

    As I was headed to my Greek class, yet another thought occurred to me along the lines of my 4th point in the comment. In our discussion of this issue, we must remember that language, words in particular, will not be tied down or chained to a particular definition. Words change their meanings, and as different men float new theories, language changes.

    Peter Ruckman, whether we like it or not, has impacted the language of preservation. His influence in the debate is undeniable, and unalterable. So, when we say, “The King James Version is inspired,” we understand that differently than men would have understood that in the 1600’s, 1700’s, or 1800’s.

    The same would be true if I say that Thomas Ross is gay. I mean very gay, too. I’ve seen his family blog. He looks very gay in that blog.

    Men in the 1600’s, 1700’s, and 1800’s would not hesitate to use the word “gay” in regards to Thomas Ross. He is, after all, filled with the joy of the Lord, and thus is gay.

    But in our day and age, I think that we would all agree that the terms have changed, and saying that Thomas is gay has changed its meaning.

    Perhaps before the rise of Ruckman, men understood that when they referred to the KJV as “inspired,” they were speaking of it as Scripture, and as all Scripture is inspired, they would have understood that to mean that the KJV is Scripture, the Word of God.

    But in our day, thanks to Ruckman, when a man says that the KJV is inspired, we understand him to be saying that the very English words were God-breathed, in the same sense as the Greek and Hebrew words were.

  14. December 1, 2009 at 6:25 pm

    Dear Pastor Mallinak,

    Thank you for your reply to my post. I appreciate your desire to have a right view on this subject, which is why you wrote your post—love for God and His Word. (Naturally, that was also my motivation in my reply.

    I am glad to hear that you do not have a problem calling the KJV inspired. The two paragraphs below made it seem like you did not think so:

    The real issue here is in the definition of terms. English Preservationists throw the term “inspiration” around as if it means nothing at all. Then, they stretch the term around like Gumby, trying to make it sound rational to (a) deny double inspiration, and in the same breath to (b) claim inspiration for our English Version. One might wish for a grain of honesty, just the size of a mustard seed, so that one could ascertain exactly what it is that they are arguing for, since they believe that the English version of the Bible is inspired, and deny that this means “double-inspiration.”
    Since God inspired Hebrew words in the Old Testament and Greek words in the New Testament, and since, as far as we know, English words weren’t around at the time that holy men of old spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, we are faced with a dilemma. If we deny double-inspiration, then we can’t argue that our English version is inspired. If we argue that the English version is inspired, then we must necessarily believe in double-inspiration.

    I must have been confused by these paragraphs, as they looked to me like they denied that the KJV is inspired. It is true that in the next paragraph you offer another alternative, “Either that, or else we will need to admit that we have elasticized the word ‘inspired,’ turning ‘inspiration’ into a clay humanoid figure.” Since I did not think that you actually were arguing that we should do this “clay humanoid figure” thing, and the clay humanoid was presented as the only alternative to believing in double inspiration, it looked to me like you were very clearly arguing against the view that it is proper to call the KJV inspired. Thus, I am very glad to hear in your reply to my comment that you believe as follows: “In my post, I said that the KJV is the inspired Word of God. I said that this is so because the KJV is Scripture, and all scripture is inspired. So, I’m not arguing with your understanding of this.” I am not really sure how to reconcile this with the statement in your post that “If we deny double-inspiration, then we can’t argue that our English version is inspired. If we argue that the English version is inspired, then we must necessarily believe in double-inspiration. . . . Either that, or else we will need to admit that we have elasticized the word ‘inspired,’ turning ‘inspiration’ into a clay humanoid figure.” However you reconcile these statements, I at least am glad that you do indeed believe that “the KJV is the inspired Word of God.” Obviously my inability to understand how the statements above are not contradictory explains why, it seems, you drew the conclusion that I was not responding to your post, and stated, “I am assuming that you will be interacting with what I actually said in my post, along with subsequent comments, in future replies. And so I will thank you in advance for answering me personally.” I thought I was actually answering your post, but it seems that I was not able to understand the non-contradictory nature of your statements.
    I am not assuming in the rest of this paragraph that you disagree with me, since I am really not sure how to reconcile all of the statements that you made above that look very contradictory to me. However, assuming that a reader would get from your post that calling the KJV inspired requires turning the term “inspired” into a clay humanoid figure, I would argue, against such a conclusion, that it no more problematic to call the KJV inspired without qualifying it every single time than it is to call the KJV Scripture, or quick, or powerful, without putting in a qualification every single time. Since the Bible calls both translated and non-translated words “Scripture,” without making any qualification, I don’t see why we need to treat the one attribute of Scripture, namely, that it is God-breathed, differently from any other attribute (such as power, life, etc.), and must insist that we qualify the attribute “inspiration” every single time but not qualify any other attribute every single time. Unless we are going to charge Scripture itself with equivocation, why do we get to distinguish the one attribute of inspiration from all other attributes of Scripture, and insist that we always qualify “inspiration” when there is no Biblical evidence for such a required qualification?
    Pastor Mallinak wrote the following:

    Take this statement from Shelton Smith of The Sword of the Lord as an example. Under the head “If not inspired, then what is it?” he makes this statement:

    As I hold the King James Bible in my hands, if it is not the inspired Word of God, then what on earth is it?
    Are you telling me that it is somehow the Word of God but yet not inspired? Are you saying it is the uninspired Bible?
    Ironically, the next section is entitled, “An Inspired KJB is not Double Inspiration.”

    I don’t see why this is a poor argument at all, or why there is irony in the next section opposing double inspiration, unless we are going to say that there is irony in the fact that the Bible itself employs other attributes of the written Revelation of God without distinguishing between translation and non-translation.

    Pastor Mallinak also stated that Peter Ruckman did not believe in double-inspiration:

    “As a side note, we should point out that neither does Peter Ruckman [believe in double-inspiration].”

    However, Ruckman has made statements such as:

    The A.V. 1611 reading, here, is superior to any Greek text” (Peter Ruckman, The Christian’s Handbook of Manuscript Evidence, Pensacola Bible Press, 1970, p. 118).

“Mistakes in the A.V. 1611 are advanced revelation!” (Ruckman, Manuscript Evidence, p. 126).
    “The King James test is the last and final statement that God has given to the world, and He has given it in the universal language of the 20th century … The truth is that God slammed the door of revelation shut in 389 BC and slammed it shut again in 1611” (Peter Ruckman, The Monarch of Books, Pensacola, 1973, p. 9).

    How are these this less than an affirmation of double inspiration?

    Perhaps the key to Pastor Mallinak’s post is:

    When I said that “the King James Version is the inspired Word of God” a moment ago, I was referring to the KJV as Scripture. And we know that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God. When I said that “the Authorized Version is not inspired” immediately afterward, I was referring to the KJV as a translation. The translation was not inspired — that would require double inspiration. But the Scriptures are still inspired. And since the Scriptures are not lost in translation, the King James Version is the Very Word of God.

    I must confess that I don’t really understand what Pastor Mallinak means here. It looks to me like there is an unclear use of the term “inspiration” in this paragraph (Product? Process?) and an unclear use of the word “translation” (The English words? The process of translation?) I don’t know what he means when he says that when he speaks of the KJV as not inspired he refers to “the KJV as a translation. The translation was not inspired — that would require double inspiration. But the Scriptures are still inspired. And since the Scriptures are not lost in translation, the King James Version is the Very Word of God.” Perhaps my failure to understand what he means explains why I thought I was replying to his post, while he concluded (I think?) that I was not responding to his post, but posting an unrelated essay. I am also confused by statements in his post such as: “Is he referring to the KJV as an English translation of Scripture, or is he referring to it as Scripture.” Here it appears that Pastor Mallinak employs the word “Scripture” of only the Greek and Hebrew words, but I would be surprised if he rejects the fact that the Bible itself calls translated words “Scripture” (1 Timothy 5:18), since Pastor Mallinak says that he agrees with what I wrote, and I pointed this fact out. I am also confused by statements such as “But our English Version is not inspired. To say that it is would be to say that God re-did the process. Our English Bible is the inspired Word of God. But that is different than saying that the English Version is inspired.”

    Pastor Mallinak also wrote, “All arguments aside, it really is mis-leading to argue that the KJV is inspired, and then to turn around and say that you don’t believe in double inspiration, without any kind of explanation in between those statements.” This was a response to the Shelton Smith article. While I have serious problems with Dr. Smith’s attack on the gospel by denying repentance/Lordship in conversion, and I have not read his article, I wonder if he really did explain his statements in his article where he affirmed both that the KJV is inspired and that he does not believe in double inspiration. I would hope (although this hope sometimes maketh ashamed) that someone who is writing an article on the subject would actually explain what he meant in his article.

    Pastor Mallinak wrote, “I would agree with those who insist that the [translated] words retain that quality of being the “breath of God.” But I would also point out the words that retain the quality of being the “breath of God” are not the English words.” Here again, I do not know what he means. What I believe Scripture teaches is that the English words do indeed retain the breath of God, which looks like his first statement, but looks like the opposite of his second statement.

    Pastor Mallinak disagrees (I think?) with my explanation of derivative inspiration. He wrote, “You are using a word [inspiration] that we all understand in a particular way, but you are using it to mean something different.” I do not think that “we all understand” that inspiration refers to process—or at least, if we do, perhaps we should consider carefully if that is how Theopneustos was actually used in Greek.

    Pastor Mallinak wrote: “When someone tells me that [he] believe[s] that the King James Version is inspired, I understand that to mean that they believe that God inspired the English words in the same sense as he inspired the original Greek and Hebrew words. Why should I not understand it that way? . . . In my post, I said that the KJV is the inspired Word of God. I said that this is so because the KJV is Scripture, and all scripture is inspired. So, I’m not arguing with your understanding of this. I am arguing with the language that you use to express it. I believe it to be harmful in this debate. . . . The Baptists (and others) who lived before the 1900’s did not have to deal with Ruckmanism. So, the fact that they did not hesitate to use the word “inspiration” when referring to the KJV doesn’t really matter in this day and age. We have to deal with Ruckmanism, so when we say that the KJV is inspired, our hearers will interpret that statement as Ruckmanitish.” I am not really sure what to make of this in its entirety, since it looks to me like it says we should not call the KJV inspired while it does, at the same time, call the KJV inspired. At least if I understand this part of it correctly, I disagree that we should cease to use Scriptural terminology because Ruckmanism has come into existence. If the Bible itself uses the term “inspiration” for copies and translations—and it does so in 2 Timothy 3:16, since the Scripture Timothy was to preach in 4:2 was the inspired Word of 3:16, both untranslated (NT) and translated (OT—Timothy did not preach the OT in Hebrew at the church of Ephesus), I am not going to let a heretical weirdo in Pensacola Florida prevent me from using the term “inspiration” the way God does it in the Bible. Thus, I disagree with Pastor Mallinak’s conclusion (if I understand it correctly): “Using Ruckmanite language does not aid our position. That is the reason for this post. I do not bel[ie]ve that we should call the KJV inspired when that is the language of Ruckmanites. When a person tells me that he believes that the KJV is inspired, I naturally think that he means that the English words are inspired. And that is why we should stop speaking this way.” Calling the KJV inspired is not Ruckmanite language, it is Pauline language, based on 2 Timothy 3:16-4:2. The way to defend the truth the best, it seems to me, is to carefully exegete Scripture and unleash it, rather than to give up the complete meaning of terms like “inspiration” because of Ruckmanism. (Perhaps, however, I do not understand Pastor Mallinak’s meaning, since here, he seems to say that we should not call the KJV inspired, but as noted already, he called it inspired himself earlier in his post.)

    In the section by Pastor Mallinak arging that the word “inspiration” is process, he seems (if I follow him correctly) to argue based on the English of 2 Timothy 3:16, rather than the Greek of the verse. I think we are not doing well to say that Theopneustos is translated “given by inspiration” and thus leave out half of the verbal portion of the clause—the “is” is very important, and it is no more optional in the translation than any of the other words. We do better to say that graphe Theopneustos is translated “Scripture is given by inspiration” rather than isolating Theopneustos and dropping the “is” as if it is not part of the necessary meaning of the phrase.
    Pastor Mallinak wrote: “I can agree with your argument from the present tense — the words of Scripture retain the breath of God. I believe that. But surely you can also admit that this implies a process by which those words were given.” Certainly there was a process—2 Peter 1 describes it. However, the word Theopneustos is not actually found in 2 Peter 1. So I believe that Scripture uses Theopneustos very clearly as a product, and only by implication as a process.
    Pastor Mallinak also wrote: “the Critical Text position (and by the way, Thomas, that is the position of the institution that you are affiliated with) . . .”
    Below is the statement that is now in the Baptist College of Ministry catalog, and which has been there since 2007:

    2007 BCM Text Position Statement

    We believe that God has preserved His Word for every age. We accept the preservation of the Old Testament through the Hebrew Masoretic text; and we accept the preservation of the New Testament through the time-honored Byzantine, majority text stream—represented by the Textus Receptus. We desire to teach the doctrines of inspiration and preservation in a faith-based, non-divisive manner. We use only the King James Version in our public ministry and academic work.

    So neither the institution that I would say I am most closely affiliated with, namely, my local Baptist church, Mukwonago Baptist Church in Mukwonago, WI, nor the church (Falls Baptist) that runs the school where I am an adjunct professor (as the church whose authority I am actually under, Mukwonago Baptist, thinks is appropriate), Baptist College of Ministry, takes a critical text position.

    Finally, Pastor Mallinak wrote:

    (1) I always appreciate your efforts to stand on the Word, and I continue to commend your efforts to do so.

    Thank you—I also think the same of you.

  15. December 1, 2009 at 7:45 pm

    I hope this is not a detraction from the discussion here. But I have a question for Thomas. I don’t think all of his arguments hinge on this position, but I believe it is important to him. How do we know that Paul was referring to translations when he called Deuteronomy Scripture? He was writing to a Hebrew (with a Greek father) who he had trained for a long time. Do we know that Timothy and Paul did not read Deuteronomy in Hebrew. Could they have? Could Paul be referring to Greek Scripture and Hebrew Scripture? If so, how do we know he wasn’t? Do we just presuppose that to bolster the “Translation is Inspired” argument?

    Sorry for not including the obligatory appreciations for efforts to stand on the Word before and after my comment. I do understand that we “essentially” are on the same team. I also understand that the more concerted (which comes from us understanding the issue the same way) our efforts are, the more fruitful they will be.

    Blessings to you all!

  16. December 1, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    Appreciated your response, Thomas, and I’m sorry for the confusion. As I look back, I see that it is indeed confusing for you when I deny that the KJV is inspired, and affirm that it is the Word of God. I hadn’t realized until your most recent response that you considered the two terms to be synonymous. For clarity’s sake then, let me just say that I deny that the English words are inspired, but I affirm that my English Bible is God’s Word. I do not consider those two terms to be synonymous.

    I also see, now that you have pointed it out, that by cutting and pasting one of your essays into our comments section, you were in fact interacting with my post. Somehow, the essay that you wrote (how many?) years ago answered my post point-for-point, and I was just too blind to see it.

    So, I just have one question for you, and it should be fairly simple for you to answer — like you could maybe answer this in 1-2 words. I of course recognize the great challenge that this could be to you. Nevertheless, I am sure that you will be willing to give a simple, unqualified answer, seeing as how you have the corner on Scriptural language and all. So, here goes my question. Again, it is very simple, and will require the simplist of answers from you…

    Do you believe that God inspired the English Words of the KJV in 1611?”

    I will await your answer ever-so-anxiously.

    I do have a follow-up question as well. As with the first, it will require no qualifiers. A simple “yes” or “no” answer will do. Here it is…

    Do you believe that the NIV is inspired?”

    Oh, and by the way, I would love to discuss BCM’s position on preservation with you sometime. Isn’t Dr. V on the board of the FBF? And what is his relationship to Baptist World? I do appreciate the strong stand that they are taking on preservation, what with not being divisive and all.

  17. December 2, 2009 at 6:21 am

    Dave,

    I am no defender of BCM, FBF, BWM, etc. But, in fairness to Thomas you wrote that BCM holds to a Critical Text position. He answered your assertion with fact showing that they do not hold to a CT position. Now, they seem to hold to a somewhat weak TR position, but theirs is not a CT position. Shouldn’t we rejoice in what truth is there? I think you would do yourself a service by simply retracting what you wrote about them. Throwing out BWM seems like a complete red herring to me. I would hope that one as skilled in logic and debate as you (I’m not being sarcistic) wouldn’t be relying on such tactics.

  18. December 2, 2009 at 7:33 am

    I am absolutely drowning in this alphabet soup. I am also ashamed that I don’t know what they all mean.

    FBF I know, and BWM I know, but who or what is BCM?

    Thanks for the illumination!

  19. December 2, 2009 at 9:45 am

    Bobby,

    You could be right. However, I am told that the pastor studies from Nestle-Aland and has been known to correct the KJV and the Greek with Nestle-Aland. I’m not sure that it is a complete red herring, considering Thomas’ position on this. However, I am willing to admit that my throwing it in was more for the sake of probing Thomas’ consistency on this issue, and I probably should leave it be for the time being.

  20. December 2, 2009 at 12:02 pm

    The Rosey (from “In the Garden…” – jab, jab, to the Mallet Factor) Rosetta:
    FBF – Fundamental Baptist Fellowship International
    BWM – Baptist World Mission
    BCM – Baptist College of Ministry, WI
    Dr. V – Pastor Wayne Van Gelderen Jr.

  21. December 2, 2009 at 8:10 pm

    Response to a question: “How do we know that Paul was referring to translations when he called Deuteronomy Scripture?”
    Answer: 1 Timothy 5:18a states: “For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn.” (legei gar heœ grapheœ, Boun alooœnta ou phimoœseis). The fact is that the words that are recorded here are Greek words: Paul writes, “the Scripture saith,” and then records Greek words that are called “Scripture.” Whenever people in the NT quote the OT, they speak in Greek, and they call the Greek that they are speaking “Scripture.” This is quite common, of course. The NT writers did not simply transliterate Hebrew characters and call that “Scripture,” but they called Greek words in Greek clauses “Scripture” when they quoted the OT. The question is not affected by Timothy’s knowledge/lack thereof of Hebrew.
    Furthermore, the Word that is to be preached in 2 Timothy 4:2 is the Word of 3:16, and it is very unlikely that whenever Timothy preached from the OT in the church at Ephesus he would not employ a Greek translation but would only quote the Hebrew without translating it.

    Response to a statement by Pastor Mallinak: “For clarity’s sake then, let me just say that I deny that the English words are inspired, but I affirm that my English Bible is God’s Word. I do not consider those two terms to be synonymous.”
    Do not words proceed out of someone’s mouth? Are they not what someone speaks? How can the English Bible be Words from God if God did not breathe those Words? Or is the English Bible not Words from God but “Word” in some lesser sense than “Words”? If so, why, and what Scripture teaches this? Which qualities of Scripture do accurately translated Words not possess (in a derived way), and what verses tell us that this loss happens? It appears that, in Pastor Mallinak’s mind, translated Words do not have the quality of inspiration (“I deny that the English words are inspired”), but, as far as I know, they are still living, powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, etc. according to Pastor Mallinak. How do we know that God’s breath is not on the English words but they have these other qualities? Or if God’s breath is on them, how can we “deny that the English words are inspired”?
    Pastor Mallinak wrote: “[S]eeing as how you have the corner on Scriptural language and all.”
    Response: I do not have the corner on Scriptural language. However, if by this statement Pastor Mallinak means that I am not going to abandon what Scripture teaches Theopneustos means, but am going, by the grace of God, to teach all involved in it, rather than surrender part of the term “inspiration” because Ruckman misuses the Bible and CT people slander preservationists as Ruckmanites, he is entirely correct. Indeed, I am required to do so by the command to preach and teach all that is in the whole Bible, 2 Timothy 3:16. I will follow my Baptist forbearers before Ruckman came on the scene and do what they did and correctly teach on inspiration.
    I also believe that correctly and carefully exegeting the Bible will do far more to win back to a Scriptural, faith-based position believers who have been led astray by Ruckmanism or by the critical text view than will abandoning the Scriptural meaning of Theopneustos because of a fear of Ruckman or of CT people who slander a faith-based view of the promises of God concerning preservation. Why would the Holy Spirit convict a believer that he needs to abandon the CT or Ruckmanism when we are refraining from using the Word, the Sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17), to its uttermost extent by teaching all that 2 Timothy 3:16 affirms? Why would fear of being lumped in with Ruckmanism by slanderous CT advocates require that we give up part of what God has said Theopneustos means? Calling or not calling the KJV inspired wouldn’t be a “third rail” topic that would cause people to huff and puff and split and spit and fight so much if the people who talked about the question would just exegete the Bible instead of doing all sorts of other things. Sadly, so many who are debating this topic from both sides of it have never even taken the time to study out what Theopnesustos would have meant to Timothy when he read 2 Timothy 3:16 in the first century. This, by the way, is my justification for posting my essay on Theopneustos—I have not seen any written composition besides what I posted by people arguing pro/con on the “KJV inspired” question that actually looks at the uses of Theopneustos and “Scripture” (graphe/grammata) in its Koine context for the purpose of understanding 2 Timothy 3:16 correctly. What could be more relevent?
    Pastor Mallinak asked: “Do you believe that God inspired the English Words of the KJV in 1611?”
    If this is intended as a inspiration-as-process question, the answer is “no.”
    If the question is whether the product translated, the words written down in 1611, were inspired as soon as they were written down and correctly translated in English, the answer is “yes.” For that matter, when someone taking 2nd year Greek in my Greek class correctly translates a verse for a homework assignment, those correctly translated words are inspired as soon as they are written down in the Fall of 2009.
    Pastor Mallinak wrote: “I do have a follow-up question as well. As with the first, it will require no qualifiers. A simple “yes” or “no” answer will do.”
    Answer: Both the first question and the follow-up questions must be clarified, and a simple “yes” or “no” is not sufficient. While I agree that we should try to be concise, I would rather be clear and be understood than concise and misunderstood if the two are in oppostion. I must confess that I still do not understand a substantial number of the statements Pastor Mallinak made in his post, which, I trust, are not contradictory in his mind, but are very confusing in my mind.
    Follow up question by Pastor Mallinak: “Do you believe that the NIV is inspired?”
    Answer: Whenever the NIV correctly translates a verse, that portion of the NIV is inspired and has the breath of God on it. As I stated in my first comment: “When translations other than the KJV are accurate, in those parts they are also (derivatively) inspired. The NASV, for example, possesses the breath of God in the parts where it is not mistranslated nor is translated from a corrupt Greek or Hebrew text.”
    This is why people can be saved while reading modern versions—they possess the breath of God when they are not mistranslated.
    Besides, sometimes the NIV and the KJV are even identical—in John 11:35 both the KJV and NIV say “Jesus wept,” or in Genesis 1:3 they both say, “And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.”
    Pastor Mallinak wrote: “Oh, and by the way, I would love to discuss BCM’s position on preservation with you sometime.”
    Answer: If Pastor Mallinak would love to discuss the position of Baptist College of Ministry on any doctrinal or practical issue, I would suggest that he speak directly to the pastor(s) of Falls Baptist Church. I am not even a member of Falls Baptist Church, and am only an adjunct professor at the school. All I did was point out the simple fact that BCM states in its own catalog that the school does not take the CT position. I will also point out the fact that the CT is not sold in their bookstore. Other than pointing out these facts, I will not say anything else, because if we want to understand why a church believes and practices as it does, or why a church runs a school the way it does, it would seem best to go to the leadership that makes those decisions, rather than to someone who is not a member of that church. I will simply conclude by stating that I agree with Pastor Mallinak’s actual words (however they were actually meant), “I do appreciate the strong stand that they are taking,” as I actually do greatly appreciate and rejoice in the many strong stands that are taken at Baptist College of Ministry.
    I conclude, in the words of inspiration, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit” (Galatians 6:18, KJV + NIV).

    • December 3, 2009 at 6:21 am

      When Paul wrote in 1 Timothy he was writing Scripture. Therefore that Greek is Scripture. He could still have been referring to the Hebrew Scriptures. What did Christ read in the synagogue of Nazareth? A Greek or Aramaic translation? or the Hebrew Scripture. Just because the NT refers to a passage in Greek does not mean that the Scriptures in hand were Greek.

      If he was using a translation, which one was it? Or did he only use the inspired portions of the LXX? If that is the case, then we have BIBLICAL warrant for pastors to use WHATEVER translation they want so long as they only use the portions that are correctly translated according to their judgment. And if that is true, what’s the BIG DEAL with textual criticism???

    • December 3, 2009 at 10:50 am

      Thomas said,

      I also believe that correctly and carefully exegeting the Bible will do far more to win back to a Scriptural, faith-based position believers who have been led astray by Ruckmanism or by the critical text view than will abandoning the Scriptural meaning of Theopneustos because of a fear of Ruckman or of CT people who slander a faith-based view of the promises of God concerning preservation. Why would the Holy Spirit convict a believer that he needs to abandon the CT or Ruckmanism when we are refraining from using the Word, the Sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17), to its uttermost extent by teaching all that 2 Timothy 3:16 affirms?

      I would point out that for most people, it would be very difficult to distinguish a difference between what you are arguing for (i.e. that the English words themselves are inspired) and what Ruckman teaches.

      And secondly, you absolutely are not teaching all that 2 Timothy 3:16 affirms. You are leaving out a very significant part of the teaching (specifically, that inspiration includes the process), and thus you are under-analyzing the passage.

    • December 3, 2009 at 10:59 am

      Thomas said,

      Pastor Mallinak asked: “Do you believe that God inspired the English Words of the KJV in 1611?”
      If this is intended as a[n] inspiration-as-process question, the answer is “no.”
      If the question is whether the product translated, the words written down in 1611, were inspired as soon as they were written down and correctly translated in English, the answer is “yes.” For that matter, when someone taking 2nd year Greek in my Greek class correctly translates a verse for a homework assignment, those correctly translated words are inspired as soon as they are written down in the Fall of 2009.

      And this is yet another example of the equivocation that you are using on this issue. Because, Thomas, as you know, when people read 2 Timothy 3:16 in English, they think “process.” Why? Because in English, in our KJV, 2 Timothy 3:16 says, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God…” English readers understand this to be emphasizing the process, thus the “given by” (or “is given by”). Either way, we understand that to be referring to the process by which we received Scripture. That is also why it is necessary that, when you say that the English words of the KJV are inspired by God, you must insert that little word “derivatively.” You insert that word because, when you say that the English words are inspired, you don’t mean what most people who make this same statement mean. Nor do you mean what most readers would naturally understand you to read. That is my reason for saying that this kind of arguing is equivocation.

      And furthermore, while you say here that “when your 2nd year Greek student correctly translates, the correctly translated words are inspired as soon as they are written down,” I notice that you did not say that those correctly translated words are “inspired by God.” Your students might think that a little strange if you said that, don’t you think? Again — equivocation.

    • December 3, 2009 at 11:02 am

      Thomas said (again),

      Pastor Mallinak wrote: “I do have a follow-up question as well. As with the first, it will require no qualifiers. A simple “yes” or “no” answer will do.”
      Answer: Both the first question and the follow-up questions must be clarified, and a simple “yes” or “no” is not sufficient.

      And again, I repeat myself here, that this is why I am saying “equivocation.” You must clarify because your answer would be misunderstood as Ruckmanism if you didn’t.

  22. December 3, 2009 at 10:29 am

    Jeff,

    I think those are good questions.

  23. December 3, 2009 at 11:13 am

    Thomas,

    As far as the BCM position goes, my point is not to ask “why” or “what.” I don’t need any further clarifications of their position. I know what it is, having spent some time with a professor who is a member of the church, and discussing it with him. What I would like to discuss with you involves yourself, especially in regards to the position that you are taking here. Do you take that same position in the classroom at BCM? I notice that whenever we broach the subject here, you come on with guns a-blazin’. Do you tackle the issue with the same vigor there? Have you passed your essay on Theopneustos on to your employer or discussed your position on this with him? Would he be in agreement with you?

    You don’t need to answer these questions here. I have wondered this for a while, and now, for the sake of clarity, I express the questions openly, lest someone think that I meant something else by my earlier statements. I am wondering, if you told them that you believe the English words to be inspired, what their response would be. Since you do not believe yourself to be equivocating when you make that statement, I wonder if you would be willing to make that statement there without any qualifier.

    I would love to hear your answer to that.

  24. December 3, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    Response to Pastor Mallinak:

    I would only call my employment of the term “inspiration” equivocal if we are going to call God’s use of the term in 2 Timothy 3:16 equivocal, or if we are going to call His use of the words quick, powerful, sharp, etc. equivocal. Unless Pastor Mallinak believes that we should not use the word “inspiration” in reference to product at all, I don’t see how his argument renders his position assistance—does he not refer to both process and product under the term “inspiration”? If so, is not his position equally equivocal, if not more so, than mine? If I am equivocating, is Pastor Mallinak equivocating every time he uses the phrase “Word of God” or “Scripture”? Or can it be that we simply have been instructed that inspiration means the process by which the autographs came, while we have received more complete instruction/employ more Biblically these other terms?
    I agree that someone who has been taught that inspiration is a process will think “process” when he sees the word “inspiration” in 2 Timothy 3:16. I also think that a Catholic who reads “eat my flesh and drink my blood” in John six will think of the Mass because of what he has been taught, or think of baptism when he reads “born of water and of the Spirit” in John 3. But this does not mean that Nicodemus would have thought of baptism, or Timothy would have thought of the process whereby the autographs came, when he read that the Scripture his mother and grandmother taught him, and which he is to preach, is inspired by God.
    I also question if my position is less clear than Pastor Mallinak’s. I cannot specifically point out why I think his position is less clear, however, because I don’t understand what it is.

    Response to Pastor Voegtlin:

    Please consider the following representative verses:

    Who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? 26 The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ. (Acts 4:25-26)

    For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. (Romans 4:3)

    Ga 4:30* Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman. (Galatians 4:30)

    Mr 12:10* And have ye not read this scripture; The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner:

    Joh 19:36* For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken.
    Joh 19:37* And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced.

    Ac 8:32* The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:

    Note that the Greek words are called “Scripture” quoting the Hebrew OT. (Many other examples of this could be given). Nor is the point that the document the verses are in is itself inspired. Certainly in each case the Greek words are Scripture because they refer back to the OT, but translated Greek words are still called Scripture. (This is good, because if they were not we had better not call our English Bible “Scripture” or “the Word of God,” etc.) In 1 Timothy 5:18, certainly a reference is made to Deuteronomy, but the fact is that the Greek words that are (in that verse, very literally) translated from Deuteronomy are called “Scripture.” “The Scripture says, [Greek words translated from Deuteronomy].” I am not sure what Christ had in His hands when He read in the synagogue.

    I do not believe that there was a single, authoritative Greek translation in the 1st century that was agreed upon by everyone. If there is no single, authoritative, accurate translation, you have to do the best you can with what is available. If a missionary is in a country where there is no TR Bible, or the Bible is a Bible Society translation that is not very good, he can still preach and teach (and hopefully he can get the process going to get a better translation available soon!). I believe that was essentially the situation in the first century. Thankfully, we are in a better situation today–we have a far better translation of the OT and NT in the KJV than the LXX (versions) were a translation of the Hebrew OT.

    It should also be kept in mind that some OT references are not direct quotes, but paraphrases, somewhat similar to what we do if we tell someone, “The Bible says, you need to be saved.”

    I conclude, in the words of inspiration, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit” (Galatians 6:18, KJV + NIV).

  25. December 3, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    I love Thomas. My family loves Thomas. My church loves Thomas. My friends love Thomas. That having been said about my love for Thomas, I want to say that I believe that pouncing on Pastor Mallinak’s essay does more damage than good. You say you are confused about what he wrote, Thomas. I understood it all. I don’t think I’m smarter than you. I thought what he wrote was clear. What he wrote was more clear than what you wrote. I could barely wrap my brain around what you wrote. I also thought your answer to Pastor Voegtlin was unclear and didn’t get the question answered. I thought your answer would provide some fodder for the critical text people.

    Pastor Mallinak is saying that the word “inspiration” is used by many, especially certain men within a certain fellowship, selectively without providing clear definition. As a result, the term “inspiration,” which is so important, is confused. It should not mean two things. I don’t believe it means two things. When I read what you wrote, my mind is swirling about what it means and I don’t think it is that difficult. You can say that you deny double inspiration, but your essay, in my opinion, comforts the double inspirationists.

    I believe we should call a translation Scripture. When we call the translation inspired, we are beginning to cause confusion about inspiration and even the nature of Scripture itself. I don’t think your New Testament quotations argument is a good argument. It actually undermines my Septuagint argument. I think there is a logical problem with the argument.

    Your logic seems to be this:

    All Scripture is inspired (2 Tim 3:16)
    A Greek translation is called Scripture
    Therefore, A Greek translation is inspired.

    Something is missing in your logic, in my opinion. The Bible becomes a puzzle to you where you plug your terms into your syllogism and out pops the right view. It doesn’t always work that way. The problem you have, I believe, is that God breathed out the original language. That was the graphe. Those are the Words and the jots and the tittles. He didn’t breathe out English words, for instance. The NT authors were referring to the Hebrew Words when they translated them and targummed them in Greek. In this, I believe we make an adjustment for the Word “Scripture.” In 2 Timothy 3:16, we’re talking about what God breathed out. He didn’t breath out a translation. When Paul and Jesus use the Word graphe, they refer to what was breathed out, the Words in the original language. I believe there is an assumption that God breathed out only the originals. When we make a translation, we say that Scripture says this, but that doesn’t mean that those Greek Words are what God said when He spoke in Hebrew. We should be happy that God gave what He gave. We should be happy to see that He wants us to have translations. However, the Bible doesn’t get more respect or have more power by twisting the meaning of inspiration. We can say “derivative inspiration,” but it seems that something of the meaning of inspiration itself gets lost when we throw that adjective on inspiration. It says that there are different meanings to inspiration, when in the Bible, I believe, there is one.

    The typical argument for “inspiration” of a translation that I hear is more emotional than it is scriptural. Someone asks, “Are you saying that my King James Bible isn’t inspired?” If you say, “No,” you’re in trouble, because you are saying that the Bible isn’t inspired. You aren’t saying that, but they are saying that you are saying that the Bible is less than inspired. That’s wrong!!! The Bible is inspired. It’s God’s Word. It isn’t man’s. And I have no problem preaching an accurate translation of God’s Word. I don’t have to believe that the translation is inspired. I don’t get what the necessity of that is. Some talk about the “breath of God” in the translation. Why are Jesus’ Words life? Why is that? Because of the authority that He has. Because He is a life giver. The power is found in the meaning of the letters and words, not in the words that are in the Bible. All those words are in the dictionary. That doesn’t make them powerful. There is power in the Word of God, but that is because of God. God makes them powerful. So if I preach what Scripture means, it’s powerful, but not if I open it up and preach what it doesn’t mean. There’s no guaranteed power when I’ve got the wrong meaning. God said, “Let there be light.” There was power in those Words. That doesn’t mean that I say, “Let there be light,” and those Words can have the same impact as when God said them.

    So what I’m saying is the God makes them powerful when I preach what God said, the meaning that He had. It’s Him that gives them the life-giving power, however. There is life in the Words, but that life is from God when what God said is preached.

  26. c
    December 4, 2009 at 12:09 am

    You guys care too much about what Critical Text scholars will think of you or your arguments. Critical Text scholars are unbelievers. Don’t fear and revere them. Fear God only.

  27. December 4, 2009 at 9:48 am

    C,

    It’s ironic that a guy who comes on anonymous claims that we’re afraid of critical text people. I want us to espouse a biblical position, period. We don’t do “better” or “stronger” with a position different than what the Bible actually teaches. In one sense, it is a liberal position since it is an unscriptural one.

  28. December 4, 2009 at 11:15 am

    Caring about the arguments of an opposing view is hardly born or fear; it’s born of wisdom and discernment. When I know that those who are under my pastoral care will inevitably hear the other side of issues, I am wise to prepare my response. Otherwise, I might lose some sheep, not because I was wrong, but because I was careless.

  29. December 4, 2009 at 11:16 pm

    Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

    Thank you for the kind words, and know that my affections are with you likewise.

    I am glad that you understood all of what Pastor Mallinak said. I didn’t, and still don’t. (I was hoping to hear what he had to say in answer to my questions before responding to this post, but when I had time to respond, I still only had this comment). As for clarity in my writing, certainly I can fail in clarity, and I trust I would be willing to clarify whatever needs it (as apparently some things in my comments need it).
    It seems to me (and I could be wrong in this) like Pastor Brandenburg is arguing that inspiration is not product, but process, or at least if inspiration is product then the product does not transfer into translated words (“When we call the translation inspired, we are beginning to cause confusion…”)

    I am not exactly sure where in the syllogism for my position set up by Pastor Brandenburg he sees the specific problem. If this could be clarified (proposition a? proposition b? invalid deduction from premises? etc.) that would be great. If there is no logical fallacy from the syllogism, and the premises are true, the conclusion must, of course, also be true.
    It looks to me like Pastor Brandenburg stated that the word graphe pertains only to the original language (“The problem you have, I believe, is that God breathed out the original language. That was the graphe.”) However, in 2 Timothy 3:16 graphe is translated “Scripture.” Pastor Brandenburg has stated that translated words are Scripture (“I believe we should call a translation Scripture”). I am not sure how to put all of this together–it would seem to lead to the conclusion that one cannot call a translation “Scripture,” but that is not what Pastor Brandenburg has affirmed.

    I also would like to know why we conclude that Theopneustos refers to a one time act that can be translated “breathe out” speaking of a process (not a product). Why isn’t Theopneustos an adjective in the predicate position in 2 Timothy 3:16, indicating that the Scripture has a particular quality, demonstrating that inspiration refers to the product of the Words? Wouldn’t we want a verb in the aorist tense if we were to represent this as a one-time act? Why do we get to make the assumption “that God breathed out only the originals” as the sense of 2 Timothy 3:16-4:2? Wasn’t Timothy to preach the inspired Scripture, but there were no originals in his hands? And why is inspiration a one-time act of “breathing out”? Doesn’t the Lord Jesus say that believers, with their copies, are to live by words that are proceeding out of the mouth of God as a continuing action in Matthew 4:4?

    When Pastor Brandenburg wrote, “In this, I believe we make an adjustment for the Word ‘Scripture,’” what is this adjustment? Could it be that the originals are Scripture in a direct sense, but, in a derived sense, copies are “Scripture”? (BTW, I liked the quote from Pastor Billy Hardecker by Turretin).
    By the way, I agree with Pastor Brandenburg that “The typical argument for “inspiration” of a translation that I hear is more emotional than it is scriptural.” That is one reason why there is such a big debate—too many people aren’t exegeting the text to get their position. We have probably, unfortunately, tried in this blog post to look at more verses than some do who write articles proclaiming their pro/anti inspiration of the KJV position and send them across the country.
    Also, while perhaps it is because I didn’t (and don’t) understand some of what Pastor Mallinak has said, it seems to me like he was making a utilitarian argument that we should refrain from calling the KJV inspired today although in the past Baptists have called translated Scripture inspired (that was, I believe, the point of his tongue-in-cheek comment where he said “Thomas Ross is gay. I mean very gay, too. I’ve seen his family blog. He looks very gay in that blog,” illustrating a past use of the word “gay” for merry.), and Pastor Mallinak himself called the KJV inspired in his post and critiqued me for writing as if he did not do so. In fact, he seemed to me to even agree with my exegesis (““In my post, I said that the KJV is the inspired Word of God. I said that this is so because the KJV is Scripture, and all scripture is inspired. So, I’m not arguing with your understanding of this.”) However, it appears to me that Pastor Brandenburg is arguing for a different position, one that would say that Baptists in the past who called translated Scripture “inspired” were incorrect and that inspiration is process, period, regardless of Ruckman. (Then again, as I said, I don’t understand how a lot of what Pastor Mallinak said is not contradictory, while Pastor Brandenburg does understand it, so perhaps I am off on these differences.)
    Finally, I think Pastor Brandenburg would not mean it in this way, but I think it is possible that a reader could make incorrect conclusions from statements such as “The power is found in the meaning of the letters and words, not in the words that are in the Bible. All those words are in the dictionary. That doesn’t make them powerful.” I think the words themselves, in their inspired sentences, chapters, and books, are inherently powerful. They have the breath of God on them. The literal jots and tittles are powerful. There is a difference between the best exposition, even if it is right on, and the power of Scripture itself. “[T]he words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life,” (John 6:63) said the Lord—the words themselves, have life in themselves, because they themselves have the breath of God. (Again, I don’t think Pastor Brandenburg would likely disagree with this—I am assuming we agree on it and I am putting it in for clarification).
    Finally–I missed that Bro Chris Steig had replied earlier. Briefly:

    1.) In “God-breathed wisdom”, “God-breathed streams”, and “God-breathed ointments and perfumes”, the writers were not saying that somehow God breathed out perfumes or streams as a process (??). They were ascribing the adjective “God-breathed” to these nouns (wisdom, streams, etc.) describing the character of them. They meant something like “divine/God-like streams, ointments,” etc. I don’t think, as I said earlier, that this is a good way to describe streams, ointments, etc., but I was pointing out that the word Theopneustos was used as an adjective ascribing a quality to a noun, rather than describing a process through which the noun came into existence.
    2.) When I said copies and translations have derived/direct breath, I meant that the original language copies had the direct breath of God, and the translations the derived breath of God. I do not affirm that the translated words have direct breath of God.

    I am glad that we can discuss this topic by looking at that Word the entrance of which gives light and understanding, instead of just spouting off our ideas without any regard to careful exegesis.

    I conclude in the words of the Charleston Association of Baptist Churches in 1802: “We conclude in the language of inspiration . . . ‘the God of love and peace . . . be with you. [KJV + NIV].’”

  30. December 5, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    Would it be wrong to include the question of “Why the KJV translators translated

    Theopneustos as given by inspiration of God (Describing how it was given

    (adjective)) and not as inspired by God(adjective)? Geneva and Bishops Bible both

    used “given by inspiration of God” I don’t Know if any other pre-KJV Bibles

    Translate it this way.

  31. December 5, 2009 at 1:35 pm

    Here’s what’s wrong with the syllogism, Thomas, just to be clear.

    All Scripture is inspired (2 Tim 3:16)
    A Greek translation is called Scripture
    Therefore, A Greek translation is inspired.

    First Scripture. What is it? Before we get into looking at the quotations of the OT in the NT, we should understand that graphe is what is written. When God breathed, English words weren’t what was written. The root meaning of graphe is what is written. Scripture does say what an accurate translation says that it says. Because of that, I don’t have a problem calling it Scripture, but it refers to “what is written.” So the problem with your syllogism is the definition of terms. That’s why just filling in the words don’t work. You have a false premise, the minor premise.

    “God breathed” has to do with product. You make too much out of “is” though. I find of interest your selective understanding of the present tense. You know there are many different usages of the present tense that don’t mean something continuous and progressive. I believe that it isn’t obvious that this is how it is used in 2 Tim 3:16. I think the meaning is inherent in the understanding of words being breathed. They don’t keep being breathed in a continuous sense. When I talk, for instance, breathing out words, the words that I breathed out I am finished breathing out as soon as they come out of my mouth. And this is not a perfect tense of verb, like “it is written,” “it is written” being tell-tale in this. Once written, it continues to be written. Just like he that believes is born of God—once born, he continues to be born. This is a present tense and it isn’t saying that graphe is breathed out and so what is written continues to be breathed out. It is better understood as something with gnomic force, as a general timeless fact. The main point of this from 2 Tim 3:16 is that in fact, what was written came directly from God—it came out of His mouth. From other verses, we can know that those Words have power, but we still have to understand why they have power, and that is because of God. I illustrated that with my “Let there be light” example.

    I agree with Dave Mallinak, in that Ruckmanism and Riplingerism has changed the debate. Historically translations are called “inspired,” and we’ve been fine with that. I have no problem with an understanding that the breath of God stays on the Words as a basis for that. The Words that Peter talked about were the ones that came out of Jesus mouth. Those would have been his original words, so if you get technical, that will be an issue for you. I think we should be technical. Of course, I know John 6 and that the Words are life. So are they life when they are in the dictionary? No. Are they life when they are taken out of context? Of course not. So you have to explain the verse. Do I believe that there is life in the Words of God? Yes, but it is in there because of God and because of the way those Words are said, mean, in their context.

    You never said a thing about the Septuagint argument problem that you have when you are done.

    And I never said there is power in the exposition. You put those words in my mouth. I’ve found through the years that this is not uncommon for you when you debate. I’ve also found that when people start putting words in your mouth, it’s because they aren’t confident in their arguments. I’m not removing power from the words, and I illustrated what I meant. You then proceeded to misrepresent what I said, and then interesting enough, you say this: “I think the words themselves, in their inspired sentences, chapters, and books, are inherently powerful.” So here you are putting certain qualifiers on the power of the Words—“in their inspired sentences, chapters.” Same thing that I said. I was saying nothing different than what you said.

    Obviously the Words themselves, the letters and the syllables, are different in the translation. That would seem to work against your power and life understanding. That would say that there is something to the meaning of the Words with regards to power. If I translate baptizo, to sprinkle, the word has lost its power because baptizo doesn’t mean, to sprinkle. If we argue honestly, we should be able to talk about that.

  32. December 5, 2009 at 3:53 pm

    I’m not going along with the idea of letting Ruckman and Riplinger whittle down my vocabulary any more than I would lose some words because of the pope, Mormons, Hyles, or anyone else. We should be able to use terms and, if need be, we can define them properly. Consider that my ha-penny since I don’t have a penny’s worth to add right now. This has been interesting reading and I thank all involved.

  33. December 5, 2009 at 6:10 pm

    Pastor Mitchell,

    Here’s what I’m saying about Ruckman and Riplinger. I think that historically, people said we have a translation that is the inspired Word of God. People really didn’t have trouble with it, because they knew it didn’t mean double inspiration. In one sense, you couldn’t actually back that up with Scripture, since inspiration has to do with the product and the product was in the original languages. But now you’ve got men that have turned that into double inspiration. So now we go back and are more careful and technical with the exegesis of 2 Tim 3:16-17. It’s always better to take the biblical position. Ironically, that’s the powerful, life-giving position, the inspired position 😀 . I think that, instead, what we have is people looking to defend the position from Scripture that never was Scriptural, and so Scripture must be twisted to come to it. That’s what I think.

  34. December 5, 2009 at 6:29 pm

    🙂 :0) 🙂

    Well, you know what they say . . .

  35. December 5, 2009 at 7:25 pm

    Dave Mallinak :Pastor Peterman,
    I failed to answer one question. When we say “English Preservationist” we are referring to those who believe that somewhere around 1611, God moved the Scriptures to the English language and began preserving the Word there, so that the KJV is the preserved word of God, and the Greek and Hebrew words were lost.

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    Thank you Brother Dave. As the term is defined, I can most assuredly say, I am NOT an English Preservationist! Whew, what a relief! 🙂

  36. December 5, 2009 at 7:26 pm

    Amazing, when I quoted Brother Dave, I had no clue he had typed so much “subliminally” 😮

  37. December 5, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    Bro. Peterman do you know Burton Gates, pastor of Liberty Baptist Church also in

    Philly?

  38. December 6, 2009 at 6:23 am

    Yes I do know Brother Gates. Liberty Baptist Church is in Kensington and we are in the neighboring section of Frankford.

    Bro. Gates has preached in our school’s chapel. My dad is a member of brother Gates church.

  39. December 6, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    Dear Pastor Brandenburg,

    Thank you for clarifying what you believe is the problem with the syllogism. I am very thankful for your desire to carefully study and obey wholly all in the Word—and certainly there will be power in the correct position, not in an incorrect one!

    In identifying what you see as problems in my syllogism, you wrote: “When God breathed, English words weren’t what was written. The root meaning of graphe is what is written. Scripture does say what an accurate translation says that it says. Because of that, I don’t have a problem calling it Scripture, but it refers to ‘what is written.’”

    I am not sure why we must conclude that God’s breath upon Scripture (“when God breathed”) refers to the process of giving the autographa, when Matthew 4:4 states that the words are continually proceeding out of the mouth of God. One can compare the image in Revelation as well of Scripture as a sword that proceeds out of the mouth of the Son.

    Furthermore, I agree that English words were not written when holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, of course. I agree that we can say, “Scripture does say what an accurate translation says that it says. Because of that, I don’t have a problem calling it [a translation] Scripture, but it refers to ‘what is written.’”—Why can we not say, “Inspired Scripture does say what an accurate translation says that it says. Because of that, I don’t have a problem calling it [a translation] inspired Scripture” because it refers to the original language documents with the direct, underived breath of God on them? I agree that a translation can properly be called “Scripture.”—Unless we are going to say that commands like “Search the Scriptures” (John 5:39) mean that everyone must learn Greek and Hebrew, we are both agreeing with the Bible here. Why can’t we call it inspired Scripture for the same reason that you have advanced that we can call it Scripture at all? When Timothy preached an inspired Bible in 2 Timothy 3:16-4:2, didn’t he preach a translated OT?

    Pastor Brandenburg wrote: “God breathed” has to do with product.

    Amen—I agree. As concerning the “is,” then, are we agreed that the predicate adjective Theopneustos is commenting on a quality of all that is called graphe? I don’t believe I need more than this to prove my point. A perfect tense verb actually would not prove my point like a present tense verb does, as the perfect does not say that the process of a verb continues, but that the result of that process continues. Thus, Scripture described as “it is written” supports a perfect autograph that continues to be available by preservation. This is, however, a different question.

    I don’t believe I am being selective in my understanding of the present tense. I look forward to hearing the explanation of Matthew 4:4, and why a present tense verb is used, when an aorist was definitely available in the Koine, as I demonstrated in an earlier post. Furthermore, even if we understand the “is” as gnomic, would it not affirm that the breath of God is an adjective that describes all that is “Scripture,” comparable to the examples I gave of Theopneustos in extra-Biblical Koine?

    Pastor Brandenburg wrote, “Historically translations are called “inspired,” and we’ve been fine with that. I have no problem with an understanding that the breath of God stays on the Words as a basis for that.”

    Amen—then perhaps our positions are not that far apart.

    Pastor Brandenburg wrote, “You never said a thing about the Septuagint argument problem that you have when you are done.”

    I do not see any Septuagint argument problem. What is the problem?

    Also, I was not attempting to “put . . . words in my [Pastor Brandenburg’s] mouth.” Please note that I wrote that I was assuming that you did believe that there was power in the Words. I put my clarification in because what was written in your reply made me feel that there could be the uncomfortable implication that both of us would not agree to in the paragraph. Although I was quite confident you did not believe what I wrote against (and hence specifically stated that), I, whether for a good reason or not, felt uncomfortable reading some of it. (Perhaps I was the only one—I won’t say I wasn’t.) I rejoice that my conclusion was “Same thing that I said. I was saying nothing different than what you said.” Amen.

    Thank you for your comments as we seek to understand God’s mind on this matter.

  40. December 6, 2009 at 2:32 pm

    So…. If the KJV is inspired, why should I study any Hebrew or Greek? How could a lexicon help me? To what purpose do you teach 2nd year Greek? Are all your students going to Greece as missionaries?

    If a good translation is inspired, then we need to invent a word to differentiate between the nature of the original words and the translated words. But, we don’t really need to invent….because the word inspired already makes that distinction.

    The LXX problem is this: If the writers of Scripture were using the LXX, rather than at the moment of inspiration giving a translation of the originals, then we have biblical warrant to use WHATEVER translation we want, so long as we use the parts of it that are correctly translated. IF that is true, we have no more reason to contend for the preserved Scriptures. We should just teach all pastors how to figure out which verses in the version they like are correctly translated. Then they could teach their flocks how to tell which verses are the right ones and which are not when they read their Bibles at home.

  41. December 6, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    Dear Pastor Voegtlin,

    Thank you for your comment and thoughts.

    If the KJV is not inspired, but is the Word of God, should we still study Hebrew and Greek? Does the lexicon help us? Is the KJV the Word of God? If the KJV is Scripture, should we still study Greek and Hebrew and use lexica? I believe your answer to these questions would be exactly the same as my answer about why we should do and use these things while we can call the KJV inspired.

    Concerning the LXX, what do you propose people do in countries today where there is no accurate translation?

    May the Lord continue to bless you as you serve Him and contend for the faith in Chesterton.

  42. December 6, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    Thomas,

    Was Jesus quoting the LXX in the NT?

  43. c
    December 6, 2009 at 9:35 pm

    You guys may be a bit behind the curve regarding the so-callled ‘LXX.’ You may be operating on a lot of myth on that one. Reformed theologians going way back laughed to scorn a notion of an ‘LXX’ (see John Owen, Biblical Theology). Also, when you say ‘LXX’ as if that means one thing you are off-the-mark.

    There is backsliding due to the fear of man going on here. (By the way, Gail Riplinger wouldn’t be English Preservationist by the definition given above. If she’s not, who is? Any sound translation from the Masoretic/Received Text is the inspired Word of God. All the great Reformation-era translations from the Masoretic/Received Text are the inspired Word of God. Notice all attempts to make a modern one based on the Masoretic/Received Text today *deviate*? There is reason for that. The famine of the end times. God puts stumblingblocks before man. Try not to stumble. Your race is not finished.)

  44. December 7, 2009 at 9:44 am

    I’ve been away from my computer for a few days, not that I needed to prove that I have a life or anything. Just that this is lower on my priority list.

    Thomas seems most confused about two statements that I am affirming, both at the same time. First, that I believe that there is no problem with saying that my English Bible is God’s Word, and as such, can be called the inspired word of God. That, by the way, is my practice as well. When we do our Sunday morning Scripture reading, I begin the reading with this statement: “These are the words of God.” When I read my English Bible, I understand that I am reading the Word of God, and I understand that the Word of God is inspired.

    Secondly, I believe that there is a problem with saying that the English Version is inspired. I have explained why I have the problem. I’ll save everyone the trouble of reading yet another explanation. But for Thomas’ sake, I would point out several differences between the two juxtaposed statements.

    (1) In the first statement, I am saying that my English Bible is the inspired Word of God. In the second statement, I am saying that the English Version is not inspired. Do you see a difference between these two statements?

    (2) In the first, I am referring to the Bible. In the second, I am referring to a version or translation.

    (3) In the first, I referred to the English Bible as the Word of God. The word “is” in the statement, followed by the noun “Word of God” makes the two interchangeable. The “is” acts like an equals sign, as Bible and Word of God are both nouns and are both synonymous.

    (4) In the second, I said that our English Version is not inspired. In this statement, the word “inspired” is a predicate adjective. In this case, the word “is” cannot be treated as an equal sign. The English language does not work this way. If I say that Thomas is nice, the words “Thomas” and “nice” are not synonymous, and thus are not interchangeable. Rather, the word “nice” describes Thomas. When you argue that the English Version is inspired, “inspired” is a predicate adjective referring to the noun “Version.” In other words, you are referring to it as an inspired “version.” Therein lies my problem.

    Of course, I recognize that further explanations often make things less clear. So, if I still don’t make sense to Thomas, I guess… I don’t… What… do…

  45. December 7, 2009 at 12:11 pm

    Brother Mallinak,

    In all honesty, this is starting to sound to me like “It depends on what the meaning of the word is is.”

    It almost sounds to my simple mind like we have a universal, invisible Bible that is represented by the local, visible Bibles. In other words, this sounds like the same idea as the universal church theory.

    I haven’t read everything Thomas has written here, so I am not stating that I agree with him on this, but I do understand his not understanding your position.

    This is very much reminding me of all the BJU boys back in the day that, when asked if the Bible they preached was the Word of God, would say, “Inasmuch as it is true to the original . . . ” If the Bible you are holding in your hand is God’s inspired Word in English, then you are stating that the KJV is God’s inspired Word in English. What else can you mean, but that you have the inspired version?

    I absolutely do not believe in re-inspiration, etc. God inspired His words in Greek, Hebrew, and whatever else the originals were written in. Those words translated in English are God’s Words in English. My KJV is God’s inspired Words in my tongue.

  46. December 7, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    Bobby,

    Dave can answer for himself, but I share his concern about the meaning of inspiration. I think we should keep it to a strict, biblical usage, applying it to the original languages. I don’t care about the parallels with the BJU universal church guys, because I’m rather X-ed from that camp of people probably more than you are. I’m definitely not under their influence in any way. God didn’t inspire English words, period. The product He inspired wasn’t English. The English language didn’t even exist when God breathed out the Words that we still possess today through preservation. If I want my people to understand inspiration, then I don’t want them to be confused when I say things that are extra-scriptural. You can’t be more certain than the most certainty that you can have. I also think that certain Words in the KJV could have been translated in a different way and it would have been fine. I don’t think we should or can change any of the Words that God actually breathed.

    We have a basis for translation, since we have a translation of Old Testament words into Greek in the New Testament. I think we should see it as Scripture. That’s enough for me. I think we can say, “This is Scripture. This is God’s Word.” However, these words were not the ones that God breathed out. They are a translation of those words. I’m not offended by your saying “These are inspired,” but I’m not going to say it and I don’t believe it. I think we can say that the words that He inspired remain inspired. They are also preserved. But a translation is not inspired. I believe we dilute the understanding of inspired when we make a translation inspired. Since you use qualifiers like “in my tongue,” I get what you’re saying, but it does change the meaning of “inspired” in my opinion.

    I have moved away from the “derivative inspiration” term, because I don’t think any inspiration is involved in a translation. Nobody has influenced that. No article as influenced it. Scripture is all that has influenced it, probably because it is inspired. I believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of Scripture. I’m thankful for your strong position on inspired originals and perfect presrvation of those Words, and your love for the God of the Bible and keeping what God’s Words say. I’m thankful you’re an opponent of double inspiration or reinspiration.

  47. December 7, 2009 at 1:14 pm

    C,

    I’ve read Owen’s Biblical Theology, where he talks about the Septuagint. I own the hardback edition. I’ve written about this myself at my blog about as much as anyone that I’ve read, so you’re behind the curve on what I’ve read and wrote. I have a high view of inspiration and preservation, so I don’t believe that Jesus quoted or even referred to the Septuagint. I’m not sure that Thomas doesn’t though.

    Do you have any more words about courage for me? In your anonymity and all, you’ve encouraged me in that. Shall we call you the secret disciple?

  48. December 7, 2009 at 2:46 pm

    Bobby,

    Actually, Thomas has made this debate about the meaning of “is,” as much as anybody else.

    Writing is an imperfect art, and if you aren’t understanding my position yet, then I will leave it at that. As I said before, once the mud is stirred, clarity cannot be achieved by further stirring, or even by rigorous stirring.

    If, on the other hand, you have some specific questions about what I have written, that would maybe clear things up in your mind (as far as what I am saying here), feel free to ask them. I will do my best to answer your questions.

    As far as the universal v. invisible church analogy goes, I must confess that I don’t get that. So, I guess we are even — you’re not understanding me, and on that one, I’m not understanding you.

    And finally, on the BJU statement of “inasmuch as it is true to the original,” you might note that this position was actually espoused by Thomas in regards to the NIV, the NASV, and etc.

    But that is not my position.

  49. December 7, 2009 at 7:03 pm

    Dear brethren,

    This response is through #51 above. (I often have to simply get the comments and reply to them later; so I got the comments through #51 and wrote a reply, which I now have the opportunity to post back here, and find out what the comments are after that time).

    Pastor Brandenburg asked, “Was Jesus quoting the LXX in the NT?”

    My answer:

    First, techically I don’t believe that there is a “the” LXX to use as a source in the first place. A critical edition of the Greek Old Testament does not even exist. Which is “the” LXX—Rahlf’s? Swete’s? the Göttingen LXX? If the Göttingen, in its text, or in its footnotes? The textual history of the LXX is notoriously unreliable. “Our LXX manuscripts are so full of corruptions that they constitute ‘a roaring sea of variants’ in which many, not the least [many of those in the] Biblia Hebraica, have perished” (Review of Peter Walters (formerly Katz): The Text of the Septuagint: Its Corruptions and Their Emendations. Edited by D. W. Gooding. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1973. Westminster Theological Journal, 36:2 (Winter 1974), pg. 235). It is extremely difficult to maintain with certainty much of anything about the Greek OT’s pre-Origin textual history. If I remember correctly, many people with an LXX on their computer or in their hands today simply have a copy of the Greek Old Testament as found in the codex Vaticanus.
    There appear to have been translation(s) of the OT into Greek in the first century, none of which, as far as seems provable, had obtained universal dominance or textual unity. I see no reason to conclude that, if someone had translated the OT into Greek in the first century in an accurate way, that Christ or the apostles would never quote from such an accurate translation of the OT into Greek. This does not by any means indicate that there was one standard Greek translation accepted by all (there was not) or that the Greek OT was considered canonical above the Hebrew OT (it was not by true believers, cf. Matthew 5:18; Luke 24:44), nor does it mean that the Lord or the apostles never paraphrased/(or to use Alfred Edersheim’s term, “Targummed”) the OT. We paraphrase the Bible today (“God’s Word says, “You need to get saved.”) but we certainly have the Bible translated into English.
    I believe Timothy, when preaching at Ephesus, would have encouraged members of the church who did not know Hebrew to read the Greek OT and do the best they can with it, just like we would today encourage believers in country X where no entirely faithful translation is available to do the best they can with what was available. I see no reason to conclude that Christ or the Bible Christians NEVER quoted Greek versions of the OT when they were accurate. I certainly am not aware of any way to prove that the Lord or the apostles NEVER quoted a partially accurate Greek translation. If they did, then if we want to follow their practice, in every mission field country where there is a critical text Bible Society version, but no faithful TR Bible, we would have to tell missionaries to entirely refrain from giving believers any Bible version at all, but require them to spontaneously translate the Bible directly from Hebrew or Greek every single time they quoted it during preaching—and require that every new believer be forbidden to use the critical text Bible Society version, but instead be instructed in Greek and Hebrew until they could likewise spontaneously translate the Bible every time they wanted to read or quote it.
    In English today, we have, in the KJV, a translation that is very, very far superior to the LXX (whether Swete’s, Ralf’s, the Göttingen, or any other!) rendition of the Hebrew OT. We can thank God that we do not need to try to pick through a variety of sometimes accurate, sometimes inaccurate translations into English and try to do the best we can, but can encourage people to read, meditate, memorize, and use exclusively in English the Authorized, King James Bible. Why choose the chaff (NASV, NIV, RSV, etc.) over the wheat (KJV)?

    Pastor Mallinak wrote: “First, that I believe that there is no problem with saying that my English Bible is God’s Word, and as such, can be called the inspired word of God.”

    My response: Great—I agree entirely. Furthermore, I am sure that Pastor Mallinak does not believe in double inspiration.

    Pastor Mallinak wrote: Secondly, I believe that there is a problem with saying that the English Version is inspired” [emphasis upon “version”].

    My response: If, by this, Pastor Mallinak is employing the word “inspiration” as a process word, and affirming that the translators in 1611 were moved in the sense of 2 Peter 1, I also would agree with him here, and deny this.

    If I am understanding him correctly, he is stating that “Bible” “God’s Word” and “inspired” can all be treated as synonyms, and on that basis, one can call accurately translated English words inspired. I agree. (I also do not believe that this is any kind of equivocation if the terms “Bible,” “God’s Word,” etc. are employed for both original language texts and translations, for God does this very thing in the New Testament).

    I believe, then, our disagreement would only be somewhat semantic. I don’t have a problem calling the KJV inspired because I am not aware of any translation errors in it. I don’t have a verse that specifically states that there would not be any, but I am not aware of any, and thus have no problem with saying that the KJV from Genesis 1:1 to Revelation 22 is inspired, in a derived way, as an accurate translation of the directly inspired original language documents. In this sense, I am not willing to call any other English version, in its entirety, inspired, because of translation errors and corrupt underlying textual variants.

    I don’t know if Pastor Mallinak would agree to the last paragraph or not, but it appears from what he said in his remarks that our positions are not that far apart. Pastor Mallinak, would you agree to the following formulation?

    The King James Bible, because it is an accurate translation of the perfectly preserved Greek and Hebrew Scriptures, is Scripture and is inspired in a derived sense. However, it must be made made clear that, while the providence of that God who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1:11) was certainly involved in the extremely important historical event of the translation of the King James Version, the process by which God moved holy men of old so that the words they spoke were from the Holy Ghost (2 Peter 1:16-21) was unique to the autographs and was by no means taking place as the translators produced the King James Version.

    I am reminded of the debate in the later 4th century between the homoousian and the homoiousian Trinitarians—perhaps we are seeing in this blog post a sort of pre-Council of Constantinople convergence, while the genuine problem elements (Ruckmanites comparable to the ancient Sabellian and Arian elements) are identified and cast aside.

    • December 8, 2009 at 2:51 pm

      Thomas asked for my agreement with this statement:

      The King James Bible, because it is an accurate translation of the perfectly preserved Greek and Hebrew Scriptures, is Scripture and is inspired in a derived sense. However, it must be made made clear that, while the providence of that God who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1:11) was certainly involved in the extremely important historical event of the translation of the King James Version, the process by which God moved holy men of old so that the words they spoke were from the Holy Ghost (2 Peter 1:16-21) was unique to the autographs and was by no means taking place as the translators produced the King James Version.

      Thomas, I have no problem with this statement because you qualified the word “inspired.” I have said that, and continue to say it. I would oppose the statement (specifically, calling the first sentence of it) if you failed to qualify the word “inspired.” And that, my friend, has been my point throughout this discussion. Without the qualifier, it means something entirely different than what you mean it to say, when read by the modern-day English-speaking Christian. And, without the qualifier, modern-day Christians would believe that the remainder of the paragraph contradicted the first sentence.

  50. December 7, 2009 at 7:23 pm

    In response to Pastor Brandenburg’s last comment:

    I agree with Pastor Brandenburg when he writes, concerning translation, “I think we should see it as Scripture. That’s enough for me. I think we can say, “This is Scripture. This is God’s Word.”” I would like to know if we can, in Pastor Brandenburg’s view, apply adjectives such as those in Hebrews 4:12 to a translation, or if these adjectives are only applicable to one who reads the original languages. Is the KJV living, powerful, sharp, etc.? If so, it is certainly not so in exactly the same sense as the originals–so is it not living, sharp, etc. in a derived way? If we can apply these adjectives to a translation (in a derived way), then why can we not apply the adjective Theopneustos to a translation (in a derived way)?

    Pastor Brandenburg wrote, “I’m not offended by your saying “These are inspired,” but I’m not going to say it and I don’t believe it.”

    I am glad to hear it–I think our positions are actually not that far apart.

    Pastor Mallinak wrote: “And finally, on the BJU statement of “inasmuch as it is true to the original,” you might note that this position was actually espoused by Thomas in regards to the NIV, the NASV, and etc. But that is not my position.”

    Perhaps I am (again) missing Pastor Mallinak’s point, but I would wonder how we could conclude anything good about the KJV without the provision that it is good because it is true to the original language. I also don’t see why we can’t conclude that a modern version has something good in the parts where it is not corrupt in its textual basis or mistranslated. If the NIV has exactly the same words as the KJV in a particular syntactical construction, how can it not be good in that place? I do not know how my position is different from Pastor Mallinak’s on this, but I would be interested in hearing it if he wishes to explain it.

    Remember the homoousios and the homoiousios.

  51. alastair peters
    December 7, 2009 at 8:43 pm

    I am only sharing this link in case it is of any assistance on KJV translation debate.

    Here are some sites I have looked at when seeking to understand KJVO positions. I did not take one solid view as a searched, but hoped to find myself convinced. I want to say that I have NOT read everyones comments, I skimmed about this topic on this page, and I am ONLY sharing this in hopes that it may be a resource. here are the sites, yours to do what you will..

    http://www.kjvonly.org/
    http://www.kjv-only.com/
    http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Psychology/kjvonly.htm

    (i do not claim to be in agreement or disagreement with these sites, I have used them in my own searching though)

  52. c
    December 7, 2009 at 9:35 pm

    Note on inspiration. If you all had (or had more) experience with great literature – secular – you would understand what inspired means. Some works can be discerned to have been shepherded into time, into their form, by higher forces. Secular works. A handful. Once you are able to discern this in the realm of secular literature it is not difficult to discern it regarding the English Bible, the crown of which is the Authorized Version 1611.

    The very fact that the great English Bible is the necessary foundation for all the modern garbage versions of scholars is telling. Without it their versions would be babble. If they didn’t have the English Bible to follow and deviate from *they wouldn’t even know the meanings of half the words in the Holy Canon.*

    The Homeric epics are inspired in a way Milton’s Paradise Lost isn’t. The works of Shakespeare are inspired in a way the plays of Eugine O’Neill aren’t. Many works of classical historians are inspired. Etc. That *means* they have unique and unusual provenance and level of influence; and *stand out* in this sense. The same can be discerned when one leaves these summit works and moves on to the beyond-summit work that is the Word of God. The AV1611 is inspired in a way the NLT, NASB, NIV ESV et al. are not.

    You may prefer Milton to Homer, but just don’t claim that they are equal. Milton himself wouldn’t, and didn’t. He had discernment for such things.

    To use the epic analogy further: the AV1611 is an organic epic, emerging from realms not accessable to individual man, over time. The modern versions are ‘literary epics’, constructed by individual man, usually *always* basing themselves – just as literary epics such as Virgil’s and Milton’s did – on the *real thing.* The real thing in the realm of epic poems being the Homeric epics; the real thing regarding the Word of God being the crown of the English Bible the Authorized Version 1611.

    • December 8, 2009 at 3:00 pm

      “c”

      (Note, it is little c, not big c)…

      The Mormons are applauding your view of inspiration. You, after all, apparently believe (as they do) that inspiration is not anything at all like “theopneustos,” but rather is “good writing” — one might even say, epic.

      And all of this is even more evidence that your mouse found the wrong blog.

      The KJV is inspired in the same sense as Homer. Wow. Whoda Thunkit.

  53. December 8, 2009 at 10:16 am

    c,
    So which edition of the AV1611 is truly inspired? Do you really use the AV1611 (facsimile edition)? What about the latest KJV edition by David Norton (2004)? Is the 1611 more inspired than the 1769? You seem to have “experience with great literature” and can understand what inspired means.

  54. c
    December 8, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    >So which edition of the AV1611 is truly inspired? Do you really use the AV1611 (facsimile edition)? What about the latest KJV edition by David Norton (2004)? Is the 1611 more inspired than the 1769? You seem to have “experience with great literature” and can understand what inspired means.

    The level of understanding of these issues that this question exists at is astonishing low for this site. One would think. This is the boilerplate nonsense that new James White followers post all over internet forums.

  55. c
    December 8, 2009 at 1:13 pm

    And regarding experience with great literature (do you deny ‘great’ literature exists? liberals in academia generally do, just wondering) you either have it or you don’t. Feeling insulted one way or another is an inane response.

  56. c
    December 8, 2009 at 1:17 pm

    But the fact that you couldn’t comment on my actual post tells me you have no experience with the level of literature or the analogy mentioned.

    • December 8, 2009 at 3:06 pm

      But the fact that you couldn’t comment on my actual post tells me you have no experience with the level of literature or the analogy mentioned.

      Keep telling yourself this, little c. Repeat it over and over and over and over. It will, no doubt, keep you feeling good about yourself.

      It is, I will say, refreshing though, to find one who believes that Homer was inspired by God. I suppose God helped him invent all of those gods as well?

      What’s next? Will we be recommending a revival of the worship of Zeus?

  57. December 8, 2009 at 3:06 pm

    c,
    Gotcha (not really). So which one is truly inspired?

  58. December 8, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    Bill,

    You have to keep in mind that it doesn’t matter. They all are, just like The Homeric Epics are. After all, don’tcha know that Homer wrote in Greek, just like the Bible? And also, c read Homer in English, just like in the Bible. Bingo!

  59. Dan Granquist
    December 8, 2009 at 6:20 pm

    Knowing that I had been discussing this inspiration issue, someone forwarded to me, a week ago, the link to this blog site. After reading the discussions and comments several times to try to figure them out, I found them sufficiently curious and confusing that I thought I would jump into the fray and enjoy the good fight.

    I confess up front that I am a novice at this blogging business, having never before participated in a blog like this. Therefore, I apologize if I’m not quite proficient in blog language, customs and formalities.

    Since I don’t have a Greek class, I can’t impress you with new thoughts that occurred to me on my way there, nor talk about my inspired students translating the Greek.

    But, without addressing all of the points and counterpoints of the blog, I do have some observations and questions to present with the sincere hope of clarifying the mud puddle.

    All this talk about inspiration in the article and more than fifty comments to it reminds me of someone lost in the woods. Lost people typically walk in circles when they don’t know where they’re going – they travel long distances without really getting anywhere but they don’t know it.

    Some of the ideas and positions stated in the blog are new to me and I’d like to flesh them out a little more to help me understand better. For the sake of discussion, consider some propositions to affirm or deny.

    Prop 1. “Bible” means the Bible; the Word of God; His Word; the Scripture.

    As a member of the mass of simple people, I have always used these terms (and heard them used) synonymously. Perhaps we commoners are not expert enough to decipher the difference, but this blog has not elucidated the distinction.

    Prop 2. “KJV” means the King James Version; the King James Bible; the King James Version of the Bible; the pieces of paper bound together in a book with words on them that are claimed to be the (current?) result of certain scholars/academics translating Hebrew and Greek words into English in, about or during 1604-1611, which Hebrew and Greek words originally came from God.

    Prop 3. I do not need to know Greek to believe and understand the Bible.

    The Bible tells me how to live and with study and spiritual illumination (the natural man receives/understands not the things of God), I can know what that is.

    Prop 4. We will speak Greek in heaven.
    Prop 5. We will speak Hebrew in heaven.
    Prop 6. We will speak English in heaven.

    Prop 7. The Bible never states that it “is inspired.”

    The only form of the word “inspired” that is used in the Bible is “inspiration” and it is used only twice: once in Job (which would be translated from a Hebrew word) and once in II Timothy where it states that “all scripture is given by inspiration of God.” There is no verse that says “all scripture is inspired.”

    Prop 8. “Give” is a verb.

    Although I have not had an English grammar class for many years, the last I learned “is given” is a verb form describing action/process, not an adjective. But maybe parts of speech have changed over the years. “Given by inspiration” and “moved by the Holy Ghost” are both action phrases. Also, since “as they were” are supplied words (KJV italicizes them), this would read “holy men of God spake – moved by the Holy Ghost” and “as they were” is past tense and “moved” is a verb form.

    Prop 9. “Inspiration” means God-breathed.

    The plain, common sense meaning is that “inspired” words proceeded directly from God. That is, God breathed out (expired, theopneusted) His words and gave (there’s that “give” word again) them, specially, to holy men of God in a way that He does not now give/breath out/theopneust (since the canon was closed).

    Prop 10. The scripture that was given by inspiration of God was the original, “inspired” writings.

    Only the words breathed by God are God-breathed. A valid tautology? If/since English was not breathed by God, then the KJV is/was not inspired.

    Prop 11. The original, “inspired” writings (the “autographs”) did not contain errors.

    Prop 12. “Inspiration” has not occurred since the canon was closed.

    We are told not to add to the Bible (nor to subtract from it). God is no longer giving/breathing out (inspiring) any words (since the canon was closed). And the Bible does not say that all scripture is translated by inspiration of God.

    Prop 13. The KJV is not inspired.

    The English words in the KJV did not proceed directly from God. They were translated. Accurately to be sure. But they were not given/breathed out directly by God. Someone asked, “…if [the King James Bible] is not the inspired Word of God, then what on earth is it?” Can we not say simply that it is the preserved Word of God? And asked again, “Are you telling me that it is somehow the Word of God but yet not inspired? Are you saying it is the uninspired Bible?” Can we not correctly answer yes, yes?

    Prop 14. The KJV originally published in 1611 included the Apocrypha.

    If the KJV is/was “inspired,” then why did God give us the Apocrypha? If part of the “inspired Bible” is not inspired, then what parts are we to believe are inspired?

    Prop 15. The Bible we use is not the KJV that was published in 1611.

    The KJV has undergone many editions/revisions since original publication in 1611. Some of them, like the Wicked Bible, the Murderer’s Bible and the Printer’s Bible, actually contained errors.

    Prop 16. The KJV has undergone revisions.

    The first revision in 1613 brought over three hundred changes. There were succeeding revisions in 1629, 1638, 1701, 1762, and 1769. Which one is/was inspired? Will the real Bible please stand up?

    Prop 17. God preserves the Bible.

    God makes sure His Word (as originally given/breathed out) is available (via copies and translations) for ever. He will preserve them …for ever. For ever…His word is settled in heaven.

    Prop 18. The KJV is a preserved Bible.

    God has made available His Word in English. The KJV is the preserved Word of God because it accurately translates God’s Word into English.

    Prop 19. The KJV is not the only preserved Bible.

    God preserves His Word in successive Greek copies (the Scrivener 1881/1894 Textus Receptus is a copy and not the original God-breathed writing/manuscript, and e.g., consider the care in copying at Qumran) and translations into other languages and indeed other translations in English as well. The KJV is not exclusive. God providentially helps with copying and translating (preserves), but does not re-breathe His Word.

    Prop 20. “Is” is supplied in IITim3:16.

    “All scripture – given by inspiration of God.” Why not supply “has been”? Why does the syntax require a present tense verb? (The answer may be too lengthy for a blog response, but I pose the question in hope of someday understanding.) Regarding “equative relation,” I ask, showing my ignorance of, as well as interest in, this issue, whether these verses that use “was” would serve as “syntactical parallels”: Lk2:25 (man was just); Lk9:29 (raiment was white); Rom7:8 (sin was dead); Heb3:5 (Moses verily was faithful); Rev4:1 (door was opened).

    Prop 21. Accurate translations are scripture.

    This is due to God’s preservation of His Word, not re-inspiration. And one can accurately translate scripture in more than one way.

    Prop 22. The English Bible can be words from God even though God did not breathe those words.

    God preserves the words He did breathe (when His Spirit moved holy men).

    Prop 23. Words that a second year Greek student correctly translates are not inspired.

    They are simply accurate. And to that extent God is preserving His Word. But He didn’t “breathe” (“theopneust”) those words to the student, no matter how holy he is.

    Prop 24. Derivative inspiration is dangerous.

    It is a slippery slope to talk about emanations of divine breath. It is not a good and necessary consequence to the doctrines of inspiration and preservation. What if a missionary does not know Greek or Hebrew but translates the Bible from the KJV into a native language? Is that derivative of derivative inspiration? Or triple inspiration?

    If you are not too worn out from all the prior discussion, I look forward to your further analysis/critique of these propositions.

    • December 8, 2009 at 7:15 pm

      Dan (Mr.),

      You ask many good questions. Most of which are obviously answered just by asking them. I’ll leave real interaction with your comments to the others.

    • December 9, 2009 at 8:26 am

      Dan,

      I’m not sure I understand what you mean by this statement:

      All this talk about inspiration in the article and more than fifty comments to it reminds me of someone lost in the woods. Lost people typically walk in circles when they don’t know where they’re going – they travel long distances without really getting anywhere but they don’t know it.

  60. December 8, 2009 at 6:32 pm

    The comments by “c” illustrate why many good men are not willing to call the KJV inspired in the sense in which I have defended it—his argument is loony, has nothing to do with the exegesis of Scripture or the term Theopneustos, and, actually, if taken seriously, would lend itself to neo-orthodox or modernist views of inspiration. (Of course, others are also are not willing to call the KJV inspired because they believe such a conclusion is not based on sound exegesis—at least from what Pastor Brandenburg has written above, he would fall into the latter category.) I must be hard on “c” since his sort of looniness is really, in my view, what makes the largest group wary of the position I am here advocating.

    Not only is “c” totally off on inspiration, he doesn’t know what he is talking about concerning great literature either. In the very first sentence of Milton’s Paradise Lost, Milton claims that his poem is better than Homer or Virgil (“above th’ Aonian mount”). However, “c” seems to know that we don’t know much about great literature. I suppose he was not just an undergrad English major at the university that is supposed to have, in some categorizations, the #1 English program in the country, as I was, and did not only have his concentration in the relevent genres, as I did, so that I engaged in courses that, for example, spent an entire semester studying Paradise Lost, and not only has “c” taught English, including epic poetry, as I have, but “c” must have done all of the above at graduate and post-graduate levels, and also has a second Ph. D. in mind-reading, so that he is aware of all the knowledge that all the writers on this blog have of great literature, although his mind-reading skills have already crashed and burned once in this very discussion—note comments #50, 54.

    “C,” I would highly recommend that you be quicker to hear and slower to speak (James 1:19).

    Actually, “C,” if you are not just speaking without thinking about what you are saying, but you really believe “higher forces” shaped pagan works by devil-worshippers like Homer, and therefore have an alleged “inspiration” that is in any way comparable to the inspiration of the Holy Scriptures spoken of in 2 Timothy 3:16, perhaps you need to examine yourself to see whether you are in the faith. Please study carefully Bible studies #1-6 on my website, http://thross7.googlepages.com, and be sure you have come to the true Christ in repentance and faith.

  61. December 8, 2009 at 8:02 pm

    I agree with Thomas a gigantic portion of the time to the point where it is as if we would never disagree. It’s just that when we do disagree, we have done so in public and in a combative way. That’s been OK. We hope to sharpen each other. I could say more about that, but I’m not going to. I appreciate his comments about “C”s comment, which seems to be the T. S. Eliot argument for the King James Version.

    I enjoyed Dan Granquist’s propositions. Thanks for joining us Dan. I essentially agree with you. We are taking the same position. I do believe that the KJV translators said “is given by inspiration of God” because of the meaning of theopneustos. In reality, however, there is no verb in the Greek, just three words with a supplied “is,” something like this: All Scripture is God-breathed. But we are left with, All is Scripture is given by inspiration of God. Keep coming by and commenting Dan. We will be nice.

  62. December 8, 2009 at 8:05 pm

    Dear Derek,

    Thanks for your thoughts. I won’t comment on lots of them, as some of them either are answered above or will be answered, I trust, by replies by Pastor Mallinak or Brandenburg.

    I will simply comment upon: “I do not need to know Greek to believe and understand the Bible. The Bible tells me how to live and with study and spiritual illumination (the natural man receives/understands not the things of God), I can know what that is.”

    Yes, we can understand the Bible if we have it accurately in our language, but Greek and Hebrew is very useful, and the underlying langauge texts that have the words directly inspired and preserved by God are our authority.

    “Prop 7. The Bible never states that it “is inspired.””

    2 Timothy 3:16 could be rendered “All Scripture is God-breathed/inspired by God,” although I have no problem with the way the KJV translated it.

    Concerning propsition #8, the Greek text of 2 Timothy 3:16 has Scripture coordinated with the adjective Theopneustos, “God-breathed.” 2 Peter 1 does not employ the word “inspiration.”

    Concerning proposition #9, please note the discussion above on Matthew 4:4. Some of the following propositions assume a process view of inspiration; on which note my comments above.

    On proposition #14, the 1611 KJV not only included the Apocrypha, but it also included a very extensive preface, a variety of tables, calenders, engravings, etc. The Apocrypha was not considered inspired any more than the preface of the tables. If it was considered inspired, it would have been put in with the canonical books, as it was in Catholic Bible translations. It was a study help, a tool with valuable historical information about the inter-testamental period.

    As concerning KJV revisions, whether one translated the Hebrew verb “stand” with an archaic final “e” as “stande” or “stand” would not change the fact that God’s breath is upon the accurately translated words, and the overwhelming majority of the changes in these “revisions” of the KJV were of this nature.

    Concerning proposition #20, I have answered the question above and proven clearly that “is” must be supplied in 2 Timothy 3:16 in my response to Bro Chris Steig.

    Concerning proposition #24, if the missionary translates the Bible from the KJV instead of the Greek and Hebrew texts the words are derivatively inspired only if they end up accurately translating the Greek and Hebrew. If they do not, they are not inspired in any sense at all.

  63. c
    December 9, 2009 at 12:23 am

    >It is, I will say, refreshing though, to find one who believes that Homer was inspired by God. I suppose God helped him invent all of those gods as well?

    Yes, that’s exactly what I said. Excellent response.

    >You have to keep in mind that it doesn’t matter. They all are, just like The Homeric Epics are. After all, don’tcha know that Homer wrote in Greek, just like the Bible? And also, c read Homer in English, just like in the Bible. Bingo!

    Great mocking! Heard it before. We Christians get mocked a lot by you critical text types (stealth or fully out of the closet!)

    >The comments by “c” illustrate why many good men are not willing to call the KJV inspired in the sense in which I have defended it—his argument is loony, has nothing to do with the exegesis of Scripture or the term Theopneustos, and, actually, if taken seriously, would lend itself to neo-orthodox or modernist views of inspiration.

    Actually I believe the Bible is inspired in any sound translation from the Masoretic/Received Text. Many Reformation era bibles qualify. We don’t have any modern translation like that simply because God obviously doesn’t want any to be around. Any effort that gets started *deviates.* The spirit of the times – which is the spirit of disobedience – doesn’t want it either. My analogy applied to the real kind of inspiration the Holy Spirit controls where a work comes into time and form *over time* beyond the hands of man. The way the canon was formed is similar (though I’m sure I will get responses now that the Roman Catholic church is responsible for giving us the canon). Did my analogy say Homer was special revelation (or Shakespeare)? Um, to anyone who can read clearly no it didn’t. I intentionally didn’t explain the role of such general revelation type influence in works of literature that are not special revelation so as not to write a treatise. When I wrote ‘higher forces’ I said to myself: the usual shallow suspects are going to go wild. You did.

  64. December 9, 2009 at 8:45 am

    Dear Alastair Peters,

    The websites you listed are very unreliable and quite tabloid-like in their material. For reliable information about the preservation of Scripture, please visit:

    http://thross7.googlepages.com

    or

    http://wayoflife.org

    For information about Doug Kutilek, one of the lead writers on the websites you listed, please read “Kutilek’s Incredible Errors” at the first website listed above. Thanks.

  65. December 9, 2009 at 8:46 am

    BTW, I am not going to respond to “c” any more. He does not write material that deserves to be taken seriously.

  66. c
    December 9, 2009 at 10:05 am

    >BTW, I am not going to respond to “c” any more. He does not write material that deserves to be taken seriously.

    Spoken like a wet intellectual delinquent.

  67. December 10, 2009 at 11:14 am

    Some (not all texts that fit the categories are listed below) instances of graphe [Scripture] + modifying adjective in the NT:

    Rom. 1:2 (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,)
    Rom. 1:2 ho proepeœggeilato dia toœn propheœtoœn autou en graphais hagiais,

    Can we not call our English Bible “holy scriptures”? (If not, we had better scratch out “holy” from the “Holy Bible” on the front of them!)

    Rom. 16:26 But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:
    Rom. 16:26 phaneroœthentos de nyn, dia te graphoœn propheœtikoœn, kat’ epitageœn tou aioœniou Theou, eis hypakoeœn pisteoœs eis panta ta ethneœ gnoœristhentos,

    Notice that the “Scriptures of the prophets” are used to give the gospel to all nations—so, since all nations do not know Hebrew and Greek, accurately translated Scripture is still prophetic Scripture.

    2Pet. 3:16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
    2Pet. 3:16 hoœs kai en pasais tais epistolais, laloœn en autais peri toutoœn; en hois esti dysnoeœta tina, ha hoi amatheis kai asteœriktoi streblousin, hoœs kai tas loipas graphas, pros teœn idian autoœn apoœleian.

    It would be nice if false teachers only twisted the orignal languages, but unfortunately they also twist translated Scripture to their own destruction!

    Consider the related language in Hebrews 4:12:

    Heb. 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
    Heb. 4:12 zoœn gar ho logos tou Theou, kai energeœs, kai tomoœteros hyper pasan machairan distomon, kai diiknoumenos achri merismou psycheœs te kai pneumatos, harmoœn te kai myeloœn, kai kritikos enthymeœseoœn kai ennoioœn kardias.

    It seems everyone on this blog agrees that translated Scripture is still “the Word of God.” (We certainly practice like it is!) Here, then, translated Scripture has the adjectives “living,” “powerful,” “sharper,” “piercing” (adjectival participle), and “discerner” applied to it.

    In a related text, James 1:21 speaks of the “engrafted word, which is able to save your souls” (emphyton logon, ton dynamenon soœsai tas psychas hymoœn), where “engrafted” is an adjective and “which is able to save” is an adjectival participle—and certainly people can be saved from hearing the translated Word, or I suspect nobody reading or writing on this blog would be born again!

    2Tim. 3:16 All scripture is . . . profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
    2Tim. 3:16 pasa grapheœ . . . oœphelimos pros didaskalian, pros elegchon, pros epanorthoœsin, pros paideian teœn en dikaiosyneœÇ;

    Would we not want to say that the adjectives listed here in 2 Timothy 3:16 pertain to the translated Word Timothy was to preach (4:2)—and, unless he learned Hebrew as his first language, his mother and grandmother taught him the Scriptures in Greek first (3:15)—but, regardless, is not translated Scripture profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction? If Scripture in translation does not have these adjectives, everyone who doesn’t know Greek and Hebrew is in trouble!

    So—translated Scripture has the adjectives “holy,” “prophetic,” “able to save,” “living,” “powerful,” “profitable,” etc. properly applied to it.

    2 Timothy 3:16a:

    All scripture is given by inspiration of God
    pasa grapheœ theopneustos

    Why doesn’t translated Scripture have the adjective Theopnesustos, “God-breathed,” if it has all the other adjectives listed—including ones later on in the verse itself? What is the exegetical basis for the difference? If there isn’t any, why should we silence part of our exegesis of Scripture because of fear of Ruckmanite wackos?

    I also add that, while it is true that the specific phrase derivatively inspired is not found anywhere in the Bible, it is equally true that the word translation is absent. The implications of the facts adduced above, and the doctrine of derivitive inspiration, are simply the good and necessary consequences of the fact that accurately translated Scripture is still Scripture, and one can accurately translate Scripture in more than one way. Inspiration is derived in translated Scripture because the words in the receptor language derive all their authority from the original language texts that are correctly translated. The fact that translated words can be modified and still have the breath of God is the necessary consequence of the fact that “he doeth” and “he does” are both correct translations of the appropriate Greek or Hebrew phrases. Thus, one has no right to object to the use of the word derivitive in connection with inspiration, based on the absence of the word in the Bible, in connection with translations, unless he likewise objects to and abstains from the use of the word translation itself, never refers to Scripture as verbally or plenarily inspired, abstains from speaking of monotheism, or the Trinity, and so on.
    I would also point out again that not only is the “God-breathed” adjective appropriate to translated Scripture in a derived sense, because of its accurate representation of the original language, but so is the adjective “profitable” in 2 Timothy 3:16 only relevent to translated Scripture in a derived sense—and so are the adjectives “holy,” “able to save,” etc. Translated Scripture is derivatively holy, living, able to save, powerful, profitable, and inspired.

    • December 10, 2009 at 3:07 pm

      If “theopneustos” refers to product only, then you have a point, Thomas. I may have missed it, but I haven’t seen any offer of a proof that “theopneustos” refers to product only. I am aware that this is your position. I just haven’t seen the argument made for saying that “theopneustos” cannot possibly mean process. I hate to extend the discussion out too much further, as it could result in weariness for our beloved readers. But since your argument depends on “theopneustos” meaning product alone, I think you owe it to us all to tell us why “theopneustos” absolutely cannot be referring to process, why you believe it to be exclusively product.

  68. c
    December 10, 2009 at 12:43 pm

    >The KJV is inspired in the same sense as Homer. Wow. Whoda Thunkit.

    More evidence the highly excitable never actually read a post they respond to. What does the metaphor summit work vs. beyond summit work mean to you. Kind of wholly different.

    I love how you all fall into Sarah Palin type language (mocking that type of small town America language). This is evidence of a juvenile elitism. I’m accused of not being an ‘intellectual’ when its the last thing I would want to be seen as. I’m a John Bunyan Calvinist, for the record. I could care less about intellectual wannabees with seminary degrees (and one and even maybe two semesters of See It and Say It In Greek! which makes you an expert in biblical languages).

    Thomas Ross lectures me on Milton and Homer while exposing a total ignorance of organic vs. literary epic. The main point of my analogy. You kind of have to actually have read Homer and Milton to know the difference. Again, the common shallowness of modern day Christians. Calling Homer a ‘devil-worshiper’ is also about as dumb as it gets. Kind of like dismissing the worth of Tolstoy because he described a Masonic initiation in War and Peace.

    You all seem to, on the one hand, be running away from various types of fundamentalist upbringings while on the other hand still clinging to the worst of such an upbringing. I see you types throughout the denominations. Some of you go wholly over to the authority of scholars and adopt their bible products; some just seem to be stuck in a lukewarm in-between position angry at the fundamentalists yet embarrassed to go over completely to the man-fearing scholars.

    You need to be able to *stand* on your own, *with understanding of all sides*. I understand the fundamentalists. I understand the critical text types. I understand you in-between types. I don’t see any reason that I have to be any part of any of you. I know the Word of God because I have the Holy Spirit in me which enables me to discern the voice of the Shepherd (the Masoretic/Received Text int he crown English translation the AV1611, that I *look up to* as something I receive rather than look down on as a mere document that needs scholars more than they need it). I fear only God (which means I have zero fear or reverence for man). This is really your problem: you fear man too much.

    You also fear influences. Higher influences. You can’t be a dope and be a follower of Christ. *No caveats to that statement.* You can start off a dope, yes, but if you remain one it’s guaranteed you will be led by the world and the devil and your inner Old Man into fear and reverence of man sooner or later. You can’t be a dope and be a follower of Christ.

  69. December 10, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    You keep saying what your are “c” and yet never having the honesty to actually tell us who you are.

    These that you accuse of “fearing men” have rather plainly and boldly expressed their beliefs while the whole time using thier own identities.

  70. December 10, 2009 at 3:12 pm

    I don’t see any reason that I have to be any part of any of you.

    —– “c”

    For which, we all humbly give thanks.

  71. December 10, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    c is all spark and no fire.

  72. December 10, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    I understand your point, Thomas, but I still believe that you take it too far. In the grammar of 2 Timothy 3:16, the product is what is inspired. In other words, inspiration goes to the actual Words. However, the adjective speaks of the process too, because it is God breathed. Some adjectives, as you know, have a verbal idea to them. This one does. The question still is this: Did God breath out a translation? Answer: No.

    We diminish too, I believe, the language which God breathed. I understand that is why you are reserving the word “derivative” for this other concept of inspiration, but why not leave inspiration alone and then say something like this? “God’s breath is found in accurately translated Scripture.”

    We can read what Scripture says when we read a translation. That’s what we get constantly in the OT passages quoted or referred to in the NT, that is, “Scripture says.” Sometimes when it says, “Scripture says,” it doesn’t give a translation, but a targum of the text. So what is Scripture in that instance? Is it the targum or is it the Hebrew passage to what the NT author or Jesus or Paul refers? If you are going to get technical with the word “Scripture,” then what do you say to texts being quoted by a NT author in Greek that do not match up with exact Hebrew words of the Hebrew Old Testament? If everything we believe is right, then it will come out consistent here.

  73. December 11, 2009 at 2:46 pm

    Response to Pastor Mallinak’s #57 above:

    Pastor Mallinak agreed with the statement:

    The King James Bible, because it is an accurate translation of the perfectly preserved Greek and Hebrew Scriptures, is Scripture and is inspired in a derived sense. However, it must be made clear that, while the providence of that God who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1:11) was certainly involved in the extremely important historical event of the translation of the King James Version, the process by which God moved holy men of old so that the words they spoke were from the Holy Ghost (2 Peter 1:16-21) was unique to the autographs and was by no means taking place as the translators produced the King James Version.

    Amen—if he can agree with this statement, our positions are very close one to the other. I can also agree that it is wise to explain what one means if he calls the KJV inspired. To use what is a more extreme example, when I have been asked before by Catholic apologists if I eat Christ’s body and drink His blood, I say “yes,” and then explain that I mean what Christ meant in John 6, namely, that I have come to Him in saving faith. I agree that if a phrase is controverted, we do well to explain that we mean by the phrase what the Holy Spirit meant when He used human penman to give us the Scripture. If, as Pastor Mallinak wrote in #57, “And that, my friend, has been my point throughout this discussion,” then I agree with him on this as well. Amen!
    In Post #80, Pastor Mallinak wrote:

    If “theopneustos” refers to product only, then you have a point, Thomas. I may have missed it, but I haven’t seen any offer of a proof that “theopneustos” refers to product only.

    I believe that the burden of proof actually lies upon the one who says that Theopneustos speaks of the single act of the giving of the autographs in 2 Timothy 3:16. I haven’t seen any proof of that advanced by anyone in these posts. How am I supposed to prove a universal negative (“Theopneustos never means the process of giving the autographs”) from the words of 2 Timothy 3:16, when the positive meaning I contend for, that the word designates the product, the breath of God upon the Words, has already been conceded by Pastor Mallinak to be taught in 2 Timothy 3:16? If a paedobaptist asked us to prove that no instance of baptism in Scripture could possible be consistent with sprinkling or pouring, we would reply that the burden of proof is not on us, but on him, to prove that baptidzo does not have the commonly acknowledged sense of “immerse.”

    While the burden of proof is not on me, but on Pastor Mallinak, in 2 Timothy 3:16, I have demonstrated that product, not process, is in view in every comparable instance of the Koine Greek use of Theopneustos. For ease of reference, here are the texts, as already mentioned above:

    Papias 10:1 Regarding, however, the divine inspiration [Theopneustos] of the book [i.e., the Revelation of John] we think it superfluous to speak at length, since the blessed Gregory (I mean the Theologian) and Cyril, and men of an older generation as well, namely Papias, Irenaeus, Methodius, and Hippolytus, bear witness to its genuineness. [Papias, who lived around the turn of the first century, reproduced by Andrew of Caesarea (563-637), Preface to the Apocalypse]

    Here the book itself, the Greek words, the product, is referred to as inspired. Process is not in view, but product.

    Sibyl. 5:406-407 But God, the great Father of all within whom is the breath of God [Theopneustos], they were accustomed to reverence with holy sacrifices and hecatombs.

    Here the unknown early Christian writer of the Sibylline Oracles refers to the breath God puts within people as Theopneustos. It is simply “breath from God.”

    Consider also the following uses (which are loose but relevant for comparison) of Theopneustos as product in the Sibylline Oracles 5:308, “God-breathed streams,” Pseudo-Phocylides 129, “God-breathed wisdom,” and Testament of Abraham (Recension A) 20:11, “God-breathed ointments and perfumes.” In each of these instances a divine quality is ascribed to the noun modified by Theopneustos.

    In none of these instances is a process involved—God was not thought to have literally breathed out the ointments and perfumes when they were first concocted by whoever put them together, but they were thought to have a certain quality.

    As I said to Bro Chris Steig:

    If . . . we want to say that Theopneustos is not a description of the product, the graphe, the Scripture, but is rather describing a process, we will need to do more than just say what we think is reasonable about how the word “breathed” is used. We will need to document actual parallels with the word in Greek.

    So, while the burden of proof is not on me to prove that Theopneustos is a product, not a process word, I think I have done a lot more than required to sustain my position. Unless we can produce clear examples of Theopneustos as a process, and demonstrate why the process of God giving the autographs is what Paul meant Timothy to understand in the context, and demonstrate why 2 Timothy 3:16 must be in the very rare category in Scripture where a text has two meanings at the same time, it seems to me that we must give 2 Timothy 3:16 only one meaning, that of product.

    I note also that the other adjectives I listed in post #79 (that Scripture, indeed, even translated Scripture, is “holy,” “prophetic,” “able to save,” “living,” “powerful,” “profitable,” etc.) are words that describe the product of Scripture, not the process of giving the autographs (the context of Romans 16:25-26 demonstrates that this passage is not an exception).

    I conclude my reasoning, however, that the burden of proof here is not on me.
    I conclude my reply with an expression of commendation to Pastor Mallinak for engaging in the discussion and wanting to derive his position from Scripture.

  74. December 11, 2009 at 2:46 pm

    Response to Pastor Brandenburg’s post #85:

    First, I note that Pastor Brandenburg wrote:

    “God’s breath is found in accurately translated Scripture.”

    I am delighted to hear his expression of agreement with this statement. This is essentially what I am contending for, and, indeed, what I believe is the point of Pasa graphe Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16. Although Pastor Brandenburg does not want to call translated Scripture “inspired” with the English word “inspired,” if he says that “God’s breath is found in accurately translated Scripture,” I am very happy with that statement.

    Pastor Brandenburg wrote:

    In the grammar of 2 Timothy 3:16, the product is what is inspired. In other words, inspiration goes to the actual Words. However, the adjective speaks of the process too, because it is God breathed. Some adjectives, as you know, have a verbal idea to them. This one does.”

    I would ask Pastor Brandenburg, as I did Pastor Mallinak, if we have any clear instances in the Koine where process MUST be included in the idea of Theopneustos. It is not enough to say that the word by its very nature has a process idea to it, for the “God-breathed streams” and “God-breathed perfumes” mentioned above have no process idea. At no point did God breathe out the original perfume bottle, etc. The burden of proof is upon he who sees the process of giving of the autographs in 2 Timothy 3:16 to prove his position.

    Pastor Brandenburg wrote:

    I understand that is why you are reserving the word “derivative” for this other concept of inspiration, but why not leave inspiration alone and then say something [else]?

    I don’t see why we should leave the word “inspiration” alone when we don’t leave any of the other adjectives describing Scripture alone. We call the English Bible holy, life-giving, powerful, able to save, etc. Why should we drop remove one adjective from 2 Timothy 3:16 (Theopneustos), and say that the Word of God translated is NOT Theopneustos, but retain the other adjective in the very same verse, and say that the Word of God translated IS “profitable”?

    Furthermore, if we say that the process of giving the autographs is in view in 2 Timothy 3:16 with Theopneustos, I do not see how we can fit this in with the context. Even if one wanted to argue that Timothy’s mother and grandmother did not teach Timothy the Greek language of his own father (“his father was a Greek,” Acts 16:3) as his first tongue, but taught Timothy Hebrew instead from his infancy (brephos, infant/child, 2 Timothy 3:15), so that Hebrew, not Greek, would be what Timothy knew from infancy, and maintained that Timothy preached the OT in Hebrew to the Gentile congregation at Ephesus (4:2), both of which propositions are, in my view, extremely unlikely, it would not be enough for the advocate that Theopneustos refers to the giving of the autographs—for whatever is Theopneustos is what Timothy was to preach, and what he had known from a child, so Timothy’s parents would actually need to have possessed the autographs, and Timothy would need to be preaching the autographs at the Ephesian church, for the idea that Theopneustos speaks of the one-time act of giving the autographs to meet the requirements of the context. The process-of-giving-the-autographs view does not, therefore, fit the context.

    In response to Pastor Brandenburg’s question about paraphrasing/”targumming” the OT, I believe the use of “Scripture” in such an instance has the same referent as we do when we say, “The Bible says that you need to get saved.” While it is possible that someone who says such a thing may be making a technical reference to the autographs, most of the time when we make such a statement in English, at least, we simply refer to the Bible we are holding in our hands as we are preaching to/evangelizing the person to whom we have just said, “The Bible says that you need to get saved.”

    I freely admit that paraphrase of the OT takes place in the NT. Such an admission does not in any wise undermine my position that the adjective “inspired” pertains to “All Scripture,” including Scripture when translated. As far as I can tell, to undermine my argument that Timothy learned the Bible in Greek from his grandmother and mother, and preached the OT and NT in Greek to the church at Ephesus, Pastor Brandenburg (not I) has the burden of PROVING that, in his words, “I don’t believe that Jesus [or, I assume, Paul or Timothy, in Pastor Brandenburg’s view] quoted or even referred to the Septuagint [by which Pastor Brandenburg means (if I follow him correctly) any Greek translation as we both agree that there was no single authoritative and textually stable Greek translation accepted by all].”

    This proposition by Pastor Brandenburg will, I believe, be very difficult to defend. I would like to hear his response to what I had written above on this:

    I believe Timothy, when preaching at Ephesus, would have encouraged members of the church who did not know Hebrew to read the Greek OT and do the best they can with it, just like we would today encourage believers in country X where no entirely faithful translation is available to do the best they can with what was available. I see no reason to conclude that Christ or the Bible Christians NEVER quoted Greek versions of the OT when they were accurate. I certainly am not aware of any way to prove that the Lord or the apostles NEVER quoted a partially accurate Greek translation. If they did, then if we want to follow their practice, in every mission field country where there is a critical text Bible Society version, but no faithful TR Bible, we would have to tell missionaries to entirely refrain from giving believers any Bible version at all, but require them to spontaneously translate the Bible directly from Hebrew or Greek every single time they quoted it during preaching—and require that every new believer be forbidden to use the critical text Bible Society version, but instead be instructed in Greek and Hebrew until they could likewise spontaneously translate the Bible every time they wanted to read or quote it.

    Is not the above the consequence of Pastor Brandenburg’s affirmation?

    Also, how do we answer the Matthew 4:4 point that the breath of God is a present possession of the Words of Scripture—they are “proceeding out of the mouth of God” in a continuing-action sort of way? If one wishes to affirm a process idea in 2 Timothy 3:16, why would not the process be that of Matthew 4:4, rather than that of the one-time action of giving the autographs? Why would not the idea be that the product, the Words, possess the breath of God as much now as they did when originally spoken by holy men of old as they were moved by the Holy Ghost? What in the context requires a reference to the autographs in either Matthew 4:4 or 2 Timothy 3:16?

    For that matter, how can we call something “Word of God” but deny that it proceeds from the mouth of God, and is therefore God-breathed/inspired? Don’t words proceed from someone’s mouth? How can the English Bible be the Word of God but not have God’s breath—of if we say it has God’s breath, how do we prove that Theopneustos refers to something other than God’s breath, namely, to the one time act of giving the autographs?

    I conclude my reply to Pastor Brandenburg with thanks to God for what He has done through his faithful service to the Lord at Bethel Baptist Church, and for Pastor Brandenburg’s strong commitment to soundly exegeting the Bible—and I rejoice as well that we agree:

    “God’s breath is found in accurately translated Scripture.”

  75. December 11, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    Response to all that has been said above:

    I believe that all this discussion has been very helpful, and should also prove of definite assistance of readers who wish to understand what Scripture teaches about the question of translations and inspiration. We have had good interaction on the significance of the passages in question. We have had a representative of the “KJV be inspired, and I’ll give you all sorts of wacky and non-exigitical resuns for it—and if you disagree you are a heretic and part of the Conspiracy” view with us to present his position. And, out of the discussion, Pastor Mallinak and I have agreed:

    The King James Bible, because it is an accurate translation of the perfectly preserved Greek and Hebrew Scriptures, is Scripture and is inspired in a derived sense. However, it must be made clear that, while the providence of that God who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1:11) was certainly involved in the extremely important historical event of the translation of the King James Version, the process by which God moved holy men of old so that the words they spoke were from the Holy Ghost (2 Peter 1:16-21) was unique to the autographs and was by no means taking place as the translators produced the King James Version.

    Pastor Mallinak has also stated, and I agree, that:

    “[T]here is no problem with saying that my English Bible is God’s Word, and as such, can be called the inspired word of God.”

    I also agree with Pastor Mitchell, when he stated:

    “I’m not going along with the idea of letting Ruckman and Riplinger whittle down my vocabulary any more than I would lose some words because of the pope, Mormons, Hyles, or anyone else. We should be able to use terms and, if need be, we can define them properly. . . . I absolutely do not believe in re-inspiration, etc. God inspired His words in Greek, Hebrew, and whatever else the originals were written in. Those words translated in English are God’s Words in English. My KJV is God’s inspired Words in my tongue.”

    I agree with Francis Turretin/ Van Kleek, as referenced by Pastor Hardecker:

    “The authority of the apographa is both in its substance and word. The words of the apographa are the very words of the immediately inspired autographa providentially preserved by God…The inspired truth content is carried over in the version and thereby gives the version its derivative authority. Turretin says that this self-credible perfection is carried over into the version by translation. The version’s authority is derived from its fidelity and conformity to the apographa.”

    I agree with Pastor Brandenburg:

    “God’s breath is found in accurately translated Scripture.”

    I therefore conclude, in agreement with the Charleston Association of Baptist Churches in 1802, quoting the KJV:

    “[I]n the language of inspiration . . . ‘the God of love and peace . . . be with you.’”

  76. December 11, 2009 at 3:44 pm

    When the comments grow long, attempting to follow the argument can be daunting to a reader, and discouragement may keep some from reading. For that reason, we should probably try to wrap this up soon.

    I am surprised to see Thomas insisting on only one possible meaning for a passage of Scripture, when in fact, there are many, many cases when words can be taken in several senses. I am struck with this even more as I study Greek. My teacher (Thomas, you know him), has pointed out the number of times a noun can be both Genitive and Ablative, when an aorist tense can be constative and ingressive in meaning. John Gill often enumerates the number of different ways we can understand a phrase or statement of Scripture. To say that I have the burden of proof to show that “theopneustos” refers to both product and process is surprising. Essentially, you have set up an “either/or” where an either/or is not required. You are insisting that it cannot be both. Why not? You have proven that inspiration refers to product. I agree. If you would scroll up to the original post, you would note that this was stated in my post. But the KJV translates as process as well – namely, in the fact that inspiration is translated “given by inspiration of God.” I don’t include the word “is” because the “is” is supplied on the basis of the grammar — “theopneustos” is a predicate adjective, and therefore the verb of being is implied. But even if I did include the word “is,” the argument would stand. The KJV translates this with an emphasis on process.

    I have to ask why it can’t be both.

    As far as the questions you asked Pastor B, I would like to weigh in on just one, related to what I am arguing in this comment. You have put a great emphasis on the words of Scripture containing the breath of God. I believe that they do, and that this “breath” is retained even in translations. No problem there, except that we have to say that the Original Words must shape our understanding of the translated words. In other words, we are not free to understand the English words in the way that they are currently used. We must refer back to what the Greek/Hebrew/Aramaic word meant, and that must govern our understanding of the English word. For that reason, we cannot simply take the English word as the very word of God in an equivalent sense as the original word is. So, we must qualify our understanding of inspiration as product.

  77. December 11, 2009 at 11:16 pm

    Response to Pastor Mallinak post #89:

    Pastor Mallinak wrote:

    “I am surprised to see Thomas insisting on only one possible meaning for a passage of Scripture, when in fact, there are many, many cases when words can be taken in several senses.”

    “Can be taken” does not mean that it HAS more than one meaning. It means that people think there are a variety of interpretive options. Nonetheless, Scripture MEANS one thing. The single meaning of Scripture is a fundamental principle very closely connected to sola Scriptura.

    I wouldn’t say that an aorist tense is both constative or ingressive. It is either one or the other. Furthermore, there is a tremendous difference between saying a particular verb form EMPHASIZES one thing or another (starting an action or simple snapshot action, say, with the ingressive/constative distinction) and saying that one adjective (Theopneustos) refers to two entirely different things, one, a quality of words that are from God at all times, and two, a one-time act from many centuries ago where autographs were produced. Also, Gill mentions the various views given to verses often, but he does NOT say the verses mean all of those things he mentions—he gives a lot of views and then gives his own view, typically.

    The only evidence I have seen anyone produce for process in 2 Timothy 3:16 is that we think it seems to fit better with our view of the English of 2 Timothy 3:16. However, I agree with Pastor Mallinak:

    [W]e have to say that the Original Words must shape our understanding of the translated words. In other words, we are not free to understand the English words in the way that they are currently used. We must refer back to what the Greek/Hebrew/Aramaic word meant, and that must govern our understanding of the English word.

    I have seen nobody produce any evidence whatsoever from parallel texts in the Koine that Theopneustos was a process word, nor any evidence that Paul was referring to the autographs in 2 Timothy 3:16. I have given clear instances where the word Theopneustos is product without any regard to process. If Pastor Mallinak has a chance, I would be interested in finding out what kind of proof of a universal negative he would accept for Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16, and would be interested in a demonstration of how this requirement of proof that a verse does NOT mean something before we accept that it does not have a particular meaning could at all be sustained as a hermeneutical principle for the Bible in general. For example, how do we prove that the word baptidzo does NOT mean “pour” in Mark 7:4, apart from doing just what I have done with Theopneustos? To use a more extreme example, how do we prove that the word in Mark 7:4 does NOT mean “when the cow jumps over the moon, ride the cow?” Isn’t the burden of proof on the one who says a word means something to prove that it means that thing?
    I would also be interested in a refutation of the other problems with process that I brought up in #86 above.

    • December 14, 2009 at 10:39 am

      Thomas,

      I disagree that process and product are so entirely different that they cannot be contained in the same statement or word. You are asking me to demonstrate the possibility of proving a universal negative — that when Christ said “wash,” he did not mean “when the cow jumps over the moon, ride the cow.” But I am not arguing that a word can mean whatever we want it to mean. Nor I am demanding that you prove a universal negative. I am asking you to show me why “theopneustos” could not possibly refer to process. Since the KJV translates the word “given by inspiration of God” (which indicates process), I am asking you to show me why it cannot be process. The universal negative argument is a way of shrugging off my question.

      As far as whether a word or phrase of Scripture can mean one thing only or not, I have to disagree with your assessment. But the debate goes back to the nature of language and words. Every word has a breadth and depth of meaning. Some words are more narrow than others, some statements are left purposely ambiguous. I believe that God does this because He wants us to understand that He has a depth of meaning to His Word. In many cases of Scripture, the scope of possible applications is very broad.

      You said,

      The only evidence I have seen anyone produce for process in 2 Timothy 3:16 is that we think it seems to fit better with our view of the English of 2 Timothy 3:16.

      I admit, I have used the English translation as further evidence. But process is implied in the word “theopneustos.” God-breathed implies process. How did we get God-breathed words? The only way I can think of is that, well, God must have breathed them. In a process sort of way. I said this in my original post…

      If the product of theopneustos is God-breathed words, then the process must necessarily have been by God breathing out those words.

      It seems like you admitted in an earlier comment (I can’t remember which one) that “theopneustos” at least implies process. Maybe I am mistaken about that, but it seems like this is something that you would admit. Am I wrong? Would you disagree with me that the clear implications of Scripture are included as part of the meaning? If not, then I would need an explanation as to why the plain implications of God’s Word would not count as part of the meaning.

      Besides all of those arguments, I would have to argue in terms of harmonizing Scripture. 2 Timothy 3:16 emphasizes inspiration as product, although it does not exclude inspiration as process. 2 Peter 1:21 emphasizes the process of inspiration. This is how God breathed the words, the process of theopneustos. But it does not exclude product. When holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, their speaking produced something. It produced the prophecy of the Scripture. We harmonize the two and understand how God produced the Word, and what the Word is that was produced. And it is also why I balk at calling a translation inspired, as in “inspired translation.”

      Maybe that is why I grow weary as we now approach 100 comments on this issue. What have we been arguing for here? The argument is a very technical argument, and yes, a semantic one, about whether or not we can use the word “inspired” to speak of translations. Earlier, I asked Thomas if, when one of his Greek students correctly translates a passage of Scripture, he says to his student, “your translation is ‘theopneustos’.” Would he say that? Because if not, then Thomas agrees with us, and is simply arguing for inspiration in a very strictly qualified sense.

      But anyone who has had the patience to follow this tedious discussion (and my hat is off to you if you have) already knows that Thomas does not believe that translations are “theopneustos” – inspired by God. That is why he qualifies the word “inspired” with the adverb “derivatively.” He does not believe that the King James Version is given by inspiration of God. He does not believe that his students, diligently translating in class, are producing words that are “given by inspiration of God.”

      The bottom line is that Thomas believes that “theopneustos” has to mean “either” product “or” process — one or the other, but not both. And I am saying that it refers to both at the same time. We disagree on that point. But we agree that the English translations of God’s inspired words are not also given by inspiration of God, not in the same sense as the words that holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. Translated words are not equally inspired with the inspired words.

      My argument throughout this discussion, and the original point that I was making, was that we cannot refer to a translation as inspired in the same sense as the original words were inspired. I maintain that point, and I am not aware of any disagreement between Thomas and I on that point.

  78. December 12, 2009 at 11:48 am

    So because the KJV tranlators tranlated theopneustos “given by inspiration of God”

    Pastor Mallinak sees process as well as a way to describe the product “inspired

    (God-breathed”) Because he(PM) belives the process is implied by the way the KJV

    translators translated theopneustos, He believes we should not call a translation

    inspired. However he along with Pastor Brandenburg, belives that all scripture

    including translated scripture has the qaulity that makes it God’s Word ( the

    breath of God). Bro. Ross does not see what the difference between having the

    breath of God and being inspired is.

    Is that a good assessment?

  79. December 14, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    Is double inspiration similar to double creation?
    God created the heavens and the earth and everything in them. Many of us say when a child is born that God created it. Is this part of the original creation process? Or, did He just put everything into motion to start with and “let’er fly”?
    You people have waaaay too much time on your hands.
    Every time someone is born again he or she is a new creature. Why don’t you get up and go find someone to tell about Jesus and participate in the present day “Creation”?
    http://www.AndresUSA.com

  80. December 14, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    Dear Pastor Mallinak,

    As I can see you have a desire to conclude our interaction, I will only respond briefly to selective portions of your arguments. I do not agree that the simple fact that the word Theopneustos is ultiimately derived from Theos + pneo necessarily implies a process in each use of the word, unless we wish to say that “God-breathed streams” or “God-breathed perfumes” and some of the other examples that I gave of the adjective implies that there was some point in the past where God breathed and a river, or ointments, came out, which certainly was not what the authors of the documents I already quoted meant. To establish that 2 Timothy 3:16 speaks of both product and process we need to give parallel texts in the Koine where Theopneustos HAS to mean both, and then show why 2 Timothy 3:16 must be one of those instances. The burden of proof is on the process advocate. This alleged implication is the only argument that has been advanced for process in 2 Timothy 3:16 apart from an alleged implication of the English. I will say no more about arguing in favor of a view of the Greek from the English of the KJV. Of course, 2 Peter 1 does indeed describe a process by which we got the Bible, but 2 Peter 1 does not employ the word Theopneustos, so I do not see why the glorious fact of the teaching of 2 Peter 1 is an implication of our view of the meaning of the predicate adjective Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16. BTW, yes, I would say that, in a derived sense, an accurate translation by one of my Greek students is Theopneustos, just as, in a derived sense, it is profitable, holy, living, powerful, able to save, etc. but it is not, in a direct sense, profitable, holy, living, powerful, inspired, able to save, etc. The English translation both is and is not “inspired” in 2 Timothy 3:16 in the same sense that it both is and is not “profitable” in 2 Timothy 3:16. (By the way, concerning comment #92 by Phil, I agree with his assessment of my position, but I will let Pastors Mallinak and Brandenburg speak for themselves on whether he has assessed their views correctly.)
    If Pastor Mallinak wishes to introduce new arguments or evidence on this point of the meaning of 2 Timothy 3:16, I will probably respond, but if he does not introduce anything new on the verse, I will probably not respond further to him. (If he wishes to get a “last word” in after I do, that is just fine—he can have it. I will, Lord willing, probably respond to Pastor Brandenburg if he comments again, as he was coming at the subject from a different angle than Pastor Mallinak.)
    It would be a different discussion to get into hermeneutics here, but I am actually quite surprised that Pastor Mallinak is arguing: “As far as whether a word or phrase of Scripture can mean one thing only or not, I have to disagree with your assessment. . . . [S]ome statements are left purposely ambiguous.” I hope I am misunderstanding Pastor Mallinak here (I seem to have done so earlier on other things in the discussion above), but this looks like (which I have somewhat confident hope it is not) an argument against what I firmly believe is the Biblical truth of Sola Scriptura, and its hermeneutical corollary, the affirmation of single meaning in Scripture, held consistently by historic Baptists and also affirmed by classical Protestantism at the time of the Reformation and subsequently, against the Catholic view of multiplicity of meaning, as affirmed by Thomas Aquinas and other medieval Romanists. (I hope it is not so, as Pastor Mallinak’s next sentence is: “In many cases of Scripture, the scope of possible applications is very broad.” Perhaps somewhere he shifted from speaking about single interpretation to multiple applications, and I missed his transition—but if he is speaking about the many different ways verses apply to our lives in the 21st century, as opposed to the single interpretation of what they meant when originally written, I do not see the particular connection of multiple applications to the question of the nature of the single interpretative meaning of 2 Timothy 3 or other texts.) I do have confident hope that Pastor Mallinak is commited to sola Scriptura, and that perhaps his language above, if I have not misunderstood it (as I very well might have done), is a slip of the tongue rather than a deliberate commitment to reject the hermeneutical corollary to sola Scriptura of single meaning in Scripture in favor of the Romanist view of multiple meanings.
    Concerning multiplicity of meaning versus singularity of meaning, I quote Daniel Wallace, that modern neo-evangelical Greek grammarian who has low views of inspiration, and has rejected classic, orthodox Protestant views of Scripture, and his argument in favor of multiplicity of meaning, from page. 136 of his Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics:

    “One of the reasons that most NT grammarians have been reticent to accept [a] category [where Wallace affirms multiple meanings] is simply that most NT grammarians are Protestants. And the Protestant tradition of a singular meaning for a text (which, historically, was a reaction to the fourfold meaning employed in the Middle Ages) has been fundamental in their thinking. However, current biblical research recognizes [the error of the classic Protestant view] . . . Significantly, [some] of the finest commentaries . . . are by Roman Catholic scholars [who recognize plurality of meaning, in line with the medieval Catholic four-fold meaning, and against the singular meaning view of the Reformation]. Tradition has to some degree prevented Protestants from seeing this.”

    As Robert Thomas, defending the classic orthodox position of single meaning, wrote:

    Closely related to the dimension that, according to the traditional method, fixes the meaning of a text in relation to its original historical surroundings is the guiding principle that a given text has one meaning and one meaning only. Terry states the principle thus: “A fundamental principle in grammatico-historical exposition is that the words and sentences can have but one significance in one and the same connection. The moment we neglect this principle we drift out upon a sea of uncertainty and conjecture.”
    Ramm states the same another way: “But here we must remember the old adage: ‘Interpretation is one, application is many.’ This means that there is only one meaning to a passage of Scripture which is determined by careful study.”
    The issue of whether to assign a fuller sense to a passage than grammatical-historical examination warrants is not too remote from the issue of the principle of single meaning. The practice of doing so has characterized Roman Catholicism for centuries, and amounts to an allegorical rather than a literal method of interpretation. . . . Recently Protestant evangelicals have begun advocating the incorporation of this “fuller meaning” too. Remarks in the earlier discussion [in the article which I have not quoted about] “historical dimension” and “single-meaning” reflect the disharmony of sensus plenior with traditional grammatical-historical interpretation. [Robert Thomas, “The Hermeneutics of Progressive Dispensationalism.” Master’s Seminary Journal 6:1 (Spr 95) p. 79ff.]

    Here I am very firmly in agreement with the axiom of what Wallace calls the “tradition” of single meaning in Scripture, in agreement with Robert Thomas, historic Baptists, orthodox Protestantism, and conservative evangelicalism, against Roman Catholicism and weak neo-evangelicalism as represented by Daniel Wallace.

    I would consider post #88 above as a decent summary of what the various writers on this comment thread have agreed upon.

    • Chris Stieg
      December 15, 2009 at 4:08 am

      Dear Thomas,

      I am still not sure why you would insist that theopneustos in “God-breathed streams” or “God-breathed perfumes” must necessarily refer to product.

      You say:
      ————————
      …unless we wish to say that “God-breathed streams” or “God-breathed perfumes” and some of the other examples that I gave of the adjective implies that there was some point in the past where God breathed and a river, or ointments, came out, which certainly was not what the authors of the documents I already quoted meant.’
      ————————

      Of course, God did not breathe out a river or ointments, but how is that we know that this is not what the authors of those documents intended? Of course, it would probably more poetic rather than literal.

      But in those parallel examples, it would seem, to my mind at least, that “rivers” and “ointments” are the products, and “God breathing” would be the process by which those products were said to have been produced.

      I understand theopneustos to be a kind of verbal adjective (as evidenced by the suffix ‘tos’). Thus, the verbal quality of theopneustos would refer to the process of God breathing. The fact that it is an adjective modifying pasa graphe would mean that the qualities of that inspiration apply to the Scriptures.

      Is that a fair assessment? Or let me know where I am going wrong.

      As far as speaking in English about English translations, “inspired” is a passive (i.e. past) participle of the verb “to inspire”. As a passive/past participle, it can be used as an adjective.

      All Greek aside, when we say in English, without qualification, that a translation is “inspired” (or even “preserved” for that matter), it could very easily give the implication that the translation itself was produced by God. No major participant in this discussion believes that.

      I agree with Pastor Mallinak, that if we are going to say “inspired” to refer to a translation, then we had better explain what we mean.

      I do not believe this will cause people to question their faith in God’s Word. Rather, their faith will be strengthened as they rightly understand the issue. If they misunderstand the issue, it leads to more confusion and doubt.

    • December 17, 2009 at 3:11 pm

      Just a follow up on the above comment from Thomas:

      I would point out to those still attempting to follow the discussion on this topic, a few interesting smidgets from Thomas. First, Thomas believes that there is only one meaning for any Greek word. That is what we have been discussing, and Thomas insists that he believes in a “single-meaning.” This, he says, is part of being “sola Scriptura.” Thomas believes in one meaning only. And, Thomas believes that the KJV is theopneustos. Since Thomas believes the KJV to be inspired, this means that Thomas believes that the KJV is given by inspiration of God. He likewise believes that whenever his Greek students accurately translate a NT passage, that their translation is similarly given by inspiration of God. Because, Thomas says that he believes their translation to be “theopneustos,” and the KJV translates theopneustos “given by inspiration of God.” So, Thomas believes that their translation is given by inspiration of God (theopneustos). He also believes that the KJV is given by inspiration of God, as it also is theopneustos.

      I have argued that for any word, there could be a variety of possible translations. I believe that the KJV translators agree with me, seeing as how they translated the same Greek word with two different English words, sometimes in the same verse. Other times, they put marginal readings in the margins, in order to show other possible translations. But, Thomas believes in “single-meaning.” It has to be either product or process. It cannot be both. And, no, he doesn’t have to prove that, because he says that the burden of proof is on me, since I am arguing a universal negative.

      Of course, when Thomas says that the KJV is inspired, you should all understand that he is speaking of product, not process. Of course, the word “inspired” is a verb, which would indicate process. So is the phrase “given by inspiration of God.” But pay no attention to that. When Thomas says “inspired” or “derivatively inspired,” he is not speaking of process. Of course, if something is “derivatively inspired,” we understand that to be the process, that it was inspired indirectly. But, once again, that is beside the point. Pay no attention to that little man called Reason standing behind the curtain. Thomas says that when he says that the KJV is derivatively inspired, he is not speaking of process at all. Inspired is not a process. It is a product. God breathing is not a process. It produces a product, that is all.

      Hope you all got that.

  81. December 15, 2009 at 6:54 am

    Hi Folks,

    Maybe we can get this post to 100 comments!

    It’s been so long, I maybe speaking out of turn, but… I have no problem saying God-breathed out rivers or perfumes. After all the Bible tells us “And God said,…” in the process of creation. SO, God breathed and there were rivers, God breathed and there was light, God breathed and there was perfumes, God breathed and man became a living soul, and God breathed and we have the Word of God.

  82. December 15, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    In relation to Bro Steig’s question about Theopneustos as a verbal adjective, I see no reason to disagree with it, but that does not make every use of the word allude to the one-time act of the production of the autographs. God’s breath is on the Words of Scripture as Matthew 4:4 states that they are, in a certain sense, continuing to come from the mouth of God. They continue to be His Word, and His Word is something that comes from His mouth. Timothy did not have the autographs at the church at Ephesus, neither did his mother or grandmother, but he was to preach the Theopneustos Scripture.
    I also agree, as I stated above, with Pastor Mallinak (and Bro Steig) that we do well to clarify what we mean when we refer to anything as inspired, or preserved, etc. as there is a lot of confusion and we do well to seek to always define terms carefully.

    Here is the Koine reference from the Testament of Abraham with a lot of context:

    Abraham_A 20:1 Abraham said: “I beseech you, is there also an unexpected death? Tell me.”
    Abraham_A 20:2 Death says: “Truly, truly, I tell you in the truth of God that there are seventy-two deaths. One is the just death, buying its fixed time, and many men in one hour enter into death being given over to the grave.
    Abraham_A 20:3 “Behold, I have told you all that you have asked, now I tell you, most righteous Abraham, to dismiss all counsel, and cease from asking anything once for all, and come, go with me, as the God and judge of all has commanded me.”
    Abraham_A 20:4 Abraham said to Death: “Depart from me yet a little, that I may rest on my bed, for I am very faint at heart.
    Abraham_A 20:5 “For since I have seen you with my eyes my strength has failed me, all the limbs of my flesh seem to me a weight as of lead, and my spirit is distressed exceedingly. Depart for a little; for I have said I cannot bear to see your shape.”
    Abraham_A 20:6 Then Isaac his son came and fell upon his breast weeping, and his wife Sarah came and embraced his feet, lamenting bitterly.
    Abraham_A 20:7 There came also his men slaves and women slaves and surrounded his bed, lamenting greatly. And Abraham came into indifference of death.
    Abraham_A 20:8 And Death said to Abraham: “Come, take my right hand, and may cheerfulness and life and strength come to you.”
    Abraham_A 20:9 For Death deceived Abraham, and he took his right hand, and straightway his soul adhered to the hand of Death.
    Abraham_A 20:10 And immediately the archangel Michael came with a multitude of angels and took up his precious soul in his hands in a divinely woven linen cloth.
    Abraham_A 20:11 And they tended the body of the just Abraham with divine [Theopneustos] ointments and perfumes until the third day after his death, and buried him in the land of promise, the oak of Mamre.
    Abraham_A 20:12 But the angels received his precious soul, and ascended into heaven, singing the hymn of “thrice holy” to the Lord the God of all, and they set it there to worship the God and Father.
    Abraham_A 20:13 And after great praise and glory had been given to the Lord, and Abraham bowed down to worship, there came the undefiled voice of the God and Father saying thus,
    Abraham_A 20:14 “Take therefore my friend Abraham into Paradise, where are the tabernacles of my righteous ones, and the abodes of my saints Isaac and Jacob in his bosom, where there is no trouble, nor grief, nor sighing, but peace and rejoicing and life unending.”
    Abraham_A 20:15 (And let us, too, my beloved brethren, imitate the hospitality of the patriarch Abraham, and attain to his virtuous way of life, that we may be thought worthy of the life eternal, glorifying the Father, Son and Holy Ghost; to whom be glory and power forever. Amen.)

    Here is some context for the Theopneustos references from the Sibylline Oracles:

    Sibyl. 5:302 For He who thunders from on high will utterly destroy all the shameless men,
    Sibyl. 5:303 with thunderings and lightnings and flaming thunderbolts,
    Sibyl. 5:304 on those who are his enemies, and he will destroy them as ungodly
    Sibyl. 5:305 so that dead bodies will remain on the earth more numerous than the sand.
    Sibyl. 5:306 Smyrna too will come bemoaning her minstrel
    Sibyl. 5:307 to the gates of Ephesus, and she will perish more thoroughly.
    Sibyl. 5:308 And Cyme, the foolish, with her God-breathed [Theopneustos] rivers,
    Sibyl. 5:309 hurled down by the hands of godless men, unjust and lawless,
    Sibyl. 5:310 will not so much as put forth a branch toward heaven,
    Sibyl. 5:311 but will remain dead by its swelling streams.
    Sibyl. 5:312 And then they will groan together awaiting an evil doom.
    Sibyl. 5:313 They will know when they have a token of why they have labored,
    Sibyl. 5:314 that stubborn folk and shameless race of the Cymaeans.
    Sibyl. 5:315 Then when they will bemoan their wicked land reduced to ashes
    Sibyl. 5:316 Lesbos will be for ever destroyed by Eridanus.

    Here is another reference with a lot of context:

    Sibyl. 5:397 Quenched from you was your house, desired of old,
    Sibyl. 5:398 when for the second time I saw your house hurled
    Sibyl. 5:399 headlong down, lapped with fire, by an unholy hand,
    Sibyl. 5:400 your ever flourishing house: the temple that guarded your god,
    Sibyl. 5:401 made with holy hands,
    Sibyl. 5:402 and such as men from their soul and body itself trusted would be ever immortal.
    Sibyl. 5:403 Not recklessly do they praise a God of senseless earth,
    Sibyl. 5:404 nor did a cunning workman among them make a god of stone:
    Sibyl. 5:405 no ornament of gold to lead souls astray do they worship.
    Sibyl. 5:406 But God, the great Father of all within whom is the breath of God, [more literally, “the great begetter-God of all the God-breathed [Theopneustos] ones,”]
    Sibyl. 5:407 they were accustomed to reverence with holy sacrifices and hecatombs.
    Sibyl. 5:408 But now an obscure unholy king has gone up
    Sibyl. 5:409 and cast it down and left it without inhabitant
    Sibyl. 5:410 with a great multitude and with doughty warriors.
    Sibyl. 5:411 But he himself perished when he landed on the mainland from the Eternal Sand,
    Sibyl. 5:412 and no such sign has yet been made on men
    Sibyl. 5:413 that others should think to lay in ruins the great city.

    Here is the reference from Pseudo-Phocylides:

    Phocyl. 124 Speech to a man is a weapon sharper than iron.
    Phocyl. 125 God distributed to every creature a weapon; the ability to fly
    Phocyl. 126 to birds, speed to horses, and strength to the lions;
    Phocyl. 127 he clothed the bulls with their self-growing horns, he gave stings to the bees
    Phocyl. 128 as their natural means of defense, but speech to man (he gave) as his protectioin.
    Phocyl. 129 But the speech of the God-breathed [Theopneustos] wisdom is best.
    Phocyl. 130 Better is a wise man than a strong man.
    Phocyl. 131 Wisdom directs the course of lands and cities and ships.
    Phocyl. 132 It is not holy to hide a wicked man (so as to go) unconvicted,
    Phocyl. 133 but it is necessary to return an evil-doer forcibly.
    Phocyl. 134 Those who are with the wicked often die with them.
    Phocyl. 135 Do not accept from thieves a deposit, stolen and unlawful.
    Phocyl. 136 Both are thieves, the one who receives as well as the one who steals.
    Phocyl. 137 Render to all their due, and impartiality is best in every thing.
    Phocyl. 138 In the beginning be sparing of all things, otherwise in the end you come short.
    Phocyl. 139 Do not take for yourself a mortal beast’s portion of food.

    In the references from the Sibylline Oracles, it is clear that the statement is simply made that the river has a “divine” quality to it, and the people have the breath of God in them. In the Testament of Abraham, no reference to God creating ointments and perfumes is found; they are “divine” ointments and perfumes. The same is true for the wisdom in Pseudo-Phocylides.
    These are uninspired references, by writers who are probably very strange theologically and unsaved. And, of course, Scripture’s inspiration is more than simply having a divine quality to it. Nonetheless, they illustrate the use of Theopneustos as an adjective. To read into these references allusions to Genesis and God creating everything by speaking, or creating man by speaking, and thus that ointments, perfumes, people, and everything else in the world must be God-breathed, and so on, simply is not what the writers had in mind. The reference in Pseudo-Phocylides is likewise simply that God gives wisdom—no reference to, say, the Bible as inspired by God is in the context.
    I do not really have more to say on this, I think. If someone really wants to argue that since God created the world by speaking, all ointments and perfumes are God-breathed, and anonymous psudepigraphical writers who are almost surely not Biblical Christians are making cryptic allusions to Genesis one, I suppose you can—I don’t think it is there at all. Also, if we want to say: “SO, God breathed and there were rivers, God breathed and there was light, God breathed and there was perfumes . . .” then we would also have to say, “God breathed, and there was the apocrypha, God breathed, and there was the book of Mormon, God breathed, and there was the Koran, God breathed, and there was the idol of Moloch, etc.” I don’t think this is a good argument. It isn’t what these references are saying—they aren’t process. Also, we shouldn’t take their theological positions seriously—they are psudepigraphical and strange. All we should take from them is the use of Theopneustos as an adjective, so that we see that “inspired by God” describes Scripture in 2 Timothy 3:16 just like profitable, prophetic, able to save, living, etc. do.
    By the way, I certainly believe that there was a process through which we got the Scriptures, referred to in 2 Peter 1, although I am not convinced that this process is in view in 2 Timothy 3:16. I do think that the paradigm of God speaking in connection with the production of the autographs is found in various places of Scripture, and so I am fine with calling that process “inspiration.” In fact, I am fine with saying that that process is consistent with the use of the word Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16, although I don’t think the process is by any means the main point in 2 Timothy 3:16. The breath of God, which is continually upon the Words of God, Matthew 4:4, began to be upon them at one point, the point of the unique act of the composition of the autographs. That process, which we often call inspiration, certainly was not involved in the production of the KJV or any other translation. If we refer to the process of the production of the autographs as inspiration, then neither the original words on the original manuscripts, nor copies, nor translations are inspired, because the words, even on the original manuscripts, are not a process, but a product. If we refer to the product of that process as possessing the breath of God, that is, as inspired, then the words on the original manscripts and the words in the Textus Receptus are inspired by God, and accurately translated words, as in the KJV, are inspired in a derived way.
    I wonder if this last paragraph is something that we could all agree upon. If so, then, hopefully, as a result of all this discussion, we have sharpened and clarified our views on this important matter, and if someone says that it seems like the discussion was overly lengthy, I will reply, bringing our minds to the period before the Council of Constantinople in A. D. 381: Remember the homoiousion and the homoousion.

  83. December 18, 2009 at 2:55 pm

    In response to Pastor Mallinak’s #96, I will not make any arguments concerning his comments on my view of 2 Timothy 3:16, as I am happy to let him have the “last word,” and I assume that his comment was his last word. I am thankful that we can agree on what was stated in post #88. (If I have misunderstood his position in my clarification below, I am more than happy again to have him give another statement, and if he wishes to argue/rebut something that I have to say again as another “last word,” that would be fine. I see no new factual material being advanced, so I see no need to make any further arguments.) Also, in case readers have not noticed it, for some reason posts by Pastor Mallinak sometimes get bumped to an earlier place in the “cue” of posts than they should be in—his post #96 was written two days after both post #97 and #98, and something similar has happened to earlier comments of his as well.

    I am glad to see that Pastor Mallinak (if I understand post #96 correctly—sometimes I have difficulty understanding the nature of Pastor Mallinak’s arguments, as we have seen from the discussion above) does not actually deny that Scripture has only one meaning, but simply affirms that words can be translated in more than one way. I, of course, agree with this affirmation, and have stated the like in posts above. I am hoping that this is what he means in post #96 because he did not defend either the Romanist or neo-evangelical type of argumentation, as represented by Daniel Wallace, nor did he attack the classic Baptist and orthodox Protestant position articulated above by Robert Thomas, but simply argued that words can be translated in more than one way. If I am correct, then, I can reconcile his statements above in the following proposition:

    “Individual Greek words, apart from context, can be translated more than one way/have a semantic range that encompasses a variety of meanings, but Greek words, in their syntactical content in Scripture, express one meaning, the meaning God intended when He so moved holy men of God that what they said was spoken by the Holy Ghost, and believers can know that meaning for certain.”

    If Pastor Mallinak agrees with that proposition, then we are in agreement, and I rejoice in it. If I have correctly reconciled his statements in the above proposition, then his position on 2 Timothy 3:16 is as follows:

    God intended, by the use of the word Theopneustos, to convey a meaning that refers to the product of the Words of God recorded in the autographs and perfectly preserved until today (and, in light of our agreement in post #88, inspiration applies in a derived sense to translated words such as Timothy actually was to preach in 2 Timothy 3:16-4:2), but God also intended in 2 Timothy 3:16, simply because of the inherent nature of the word Theopneustos and because of the way the KJV English translates the word, to refer to the process of giving the autographs. To deny that Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16 refers to the process of giving the autographs requires one to “[p]ay no attention to that little man called Reason standing behind the curtain.” Both the product of the words in Timothy’s hands and the process of giving the autographs are necessarily contained and necessarily intended by God through the use of the word Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16, or at the least, we are to assume that they both are present unless process is proven wrong in 2 Timothy 3:16 through various criteria that I trust Pastor Mallinak believes he has made clear above.

    My position is the same as that listed above, except it removes the second half of the position:

    God intended, by the use of the word Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16, to convey a meaning that refers to the product of the Words of God recorded in the autographs and perfectly preserved until today (and, in light of our agreement in post #88, inspiration applies in a derived sense to translated words such as Timothy actually was to preach in 2 Timothy 3:16-4:2).

    I should also state that it appears that Pastor Mallinak believes that the KJV English “Scripture is given by insiration of God” means that the KJV translators thought that reference was made to the one time act of giving the autographs because of the English translation, while my view is that such a conclusion would involve the English “Scripture was given by inspiration of God” and the translation “Scripture is given by inspiration of God” indicates that the Words of Scripture possess the quality of continuing to come from God’s mouth, as indicated by the continuing action verb in Matthew 4:4, so that “Scripture [the Words] is God-breathed/has God’s breath upon it” and “Scripture is given by inspiration of God” mean the same thing, and that this conclusion is supported by the Greek which is the ultimate authority, as Pastor Mallinak and I agree.

    I will not make any arguments in favor of my position or against Pastor Mallinak’s position in this post—I will simply refer the reader to what has been said before. I hope my summary of his position is accurate; I trust I have summarized my thoughts on 2 Timothy 3:16 accurately and clearly. My thoughts on process are found in post #98 and earlier comments as well. I hope that what I have written above is an accurate summation of our disagreement, and I rejoice that we can agree on what was stated in post #88.

    I therefore conclude, in agreement with the Charleston Association of Baptist Churches in 1802, quoting the KJV:

    “[I]n the language of inspiration . . . ‘the God of love and peace . . . be with you.’”

  84. December 25, 2009 at 7:35 pm

    Comments 66 and 67 are “time stamped” at the same time….very nice. I just can’t stand this thread to end at 99 – gotta get to 100 you know. Merry Christmas to all.

  85. December 29, 2009 at 12:17 am

    Dear brethren,

    Visiting family, I had the pleasure of being at Bethel Baptist Church in El Sobrante, CA, where Pastor Brandenburg is the undershepherd, this last week. In conversation with him, I found out that his objection to my position above on calling translations inspired in a derived sense relates to the question of what is going on in verses that say something like: “Scripture says, [paraphrase of Hebrew OT].” He doesn’t want to call paraphrases inspired–a very commendable desire. I didn’t exactly catch before that this was the specific nature of his objection. My response is as follows.

    Certainly at times phrases such as “it is written,” “Scripture [says],” “[it was] spoken by the prophets,” etc. are followed by a synopsis of the OT or paraphrase (or, as Edersheim said, “Targumming.”) I would say that these texts are the same as if we said, “The Bible says you need to get saved” or “Scripture says that you should not take drugs.” The statement that follows is certainly not an exact quote of the OT or NT, and it is very clear that we don’t think it is an exact quote. In the statement, “The Bible says you need to get saved” the section after “the Bible says” is actually not really a quotation from the Bible, so it is not “Scripture” at all–it is a summary of Scriptural teaching (the teaching that “you need to get saved”!). A summary statement of this nature is not really “Scripture,” and so it is not really “inspired” in either a direct or a derived way. Thus, in verses in the NT where a phrase such as “it is written” or the like is followed by a summary of Biblical teaching, the summary is similar to our English “The Bible says [summary of Scriptural teaching]” and the summary is not a translation of the OT at all. Summaries of Scriptural teaching are not inspired in a derived sense–but accurate, literal translations of directly inspired Greek and Hebrew words are, in a derived sense, inspired.

  86. January 2, 2010 at 5:56 pm

    Not to beat a dead horse or to drag on a long thread. I have had some time to really digest what Bro. Dave posted in the original article…
    Thank you Brother Dave. You have articulated what I have believed for years!

    Thank God for His Word!

  87. January 28, 2010 at 11:40 pm

    I am thankful for all who did solid exegesis here.

  88. February 22, 2010 at 7:02 pm

    Dear Gypsyseeker,

    I am not aware of any DEFINITE, CLEAR instances where the KJV does not agree with Scrivener. The best instance is one place where kurios is translated “God,” but the LXX does that quite frequently. Perhaps you could give a few of the DEFINITE, CLEAR instances where Scrivener differs from the KJV. (I have no idea why your comment became #9, instead of #105).

  89. February 22, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    Gypsy seeker’s comment is news to me as well. Thomas reads out of the Greek NT every day, Gypsy Seeker. And I do many days in a week. So I agree that I would like you to show examples, please.

  90. February 23, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    While I am on my third time through the Greek NT, and I have Greek reading scheduled in weekly as part of my system of reading for devotions, I don’t read the Greek NT every single day.

  91. April 30, 2010 at 1:03 am

    Dear brethren,

    I have updated my article:

    “Are Accurate Copies and Translations of Scripture Inspired? A Study of 2 Timothy 3:16”

    at: http://sites.google.com/site/thross7/

    some of the content here has been included in the revised and improved version, such as the material in endnotes #2 & 3 (unfortunately Greek has gotten garbled):

    “The Greek word of this passage—Theopneustos . . . says of Scripture . . . that it is breathed out by
    God, ‘God-breathed,’ the product of the creative breath of God. In a word, what is declared by this
    fundamental passage is simply that the Scriptures are a Divine product, without any indication of how God
    has operated in producing them. . . . Paul declares, then, that ‘every scripture,’ or ‘all scripture’ is the
    product of the Divine breath, ‘is God-breathed,’ [and so] he asserts with as much energy as he could
    employ that Scripture is the product of a specifically Divine operation” (pg. 60, Revelation and Inspiration,
    Benjamin B. Warfield. Elec. acc. Rio, WI: AGES Digital Software, 2006; orig. pub. New York: Oxford
    University, 1927).
    Nevertheless, the Greek-English Lexicon to the New Testament, J. Parkhurst (2nd ed. 1794; elec.
    acc. http://books.google.com) defines qeo/p neustoß as: “from qeo/ß, God, and pepneusai, 3rd pers. sing.
    perf. pass. of pnew, fut. pneusw, to breathe. Breathed or inspired by God, divinely inspired, given by
    divine inspiration . . . 2 Tim 3:16.” The perfect tense root underlying qeo/p neustoß would make the idea
    of a completed action in which the Scriptures were dictated, with the result that the breath of God remains
    upon the words, possible, and thus gives some justification for employing the word inspired for the process
    of giving the Biblical autographs. However, the actual use of Theopneustos in 2 Timothy 3:16, and
    frequently in Koiné Greek, for a product, indicates that considering actual original language copies of
    Scripture as both inspired and profitable is the correct exegesis of the verse. The predicate adjective
    wÓfe÷l imoß, profitable, in 2 Timothy 3:16, does not specify a process, but a product—so does the predicate
    adjective qeo/p neustoß. Of course, if Scripture has the quality of being qeo/p neustoß, when it came into
    being, it must have been supernaturally spoken by God, so there is nothing wrong with speaking of
    inspiration as the process of the giving of the autographs. To deny, however, the fact that 2 Timothy 3:16
    ascribes the breath of God as a quality to apographs of Scripture and shut up Theopneustos to only the
    giving of the autographs is to neglect the exegesis of 2 Timothy 3:16, and the idea expressed in that text by
    the Holy Ghost through the apostle Paul, because of a secondary, although certainly legitimate, sense of the word

    and footnote #3:

    G. W. Lampe’s Patristic Greek Lexicon (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2007, 20th ed.)
    reads: “qeo/p neustoß . . . divinely inspired . . . of Scripture (cf. 2 Tim. 3:16) . . . qeo/p neustoß . . . as a
    frequent epithet of grafai/ or of grafh/ or applied either to contents of scriptures or to the actual
    volumes.” Lampe provides vast amounts of evidence for the use of qeo/p neustoß as a quality of copies of
    Scripture in patristic literature, including passages where the actual copies in hand that were being read
    among the Christians are called inspired (qeo/p neustwn aÓnagnsma¿twn) and it is obvious that no
    reference to the one-time process of giving the autographs is in view. When the classical Greek-English
    Lexicon of H. G. Liddell & R. Scott (9th ed., New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1996) provides
    examples of the adjective qeo/p neustoß used for dreams (o¡neiroi) and artwork or craftsmanship
    (dhmiou/rghma), clearly employing qeo/pneustoß as a quality of the substantive modified, not making
    reference to God breathing out a piece of artwork in a one-time process. The Greek-English Lexicon of the
    New Testament and other Early Christian Literature, 3rd. ed. (BDAG), William F. Danker (ed.), (Chicago,
    IL: University of Chicago Press, 2000), mentions, among many other examples, the “God-breathed
    ointments” (muri÷smasi qeopneu/s toiß) of the Testament of Abraham 20:11. Similarly, Warfield
    documents the very common use of qeo/p neustoß as a quality of apographs through patristic quotations
    such as: “truly holy are those letters . . . and the writings or volumes that consist of these holy letters or
    syllables, the same apostle consequently calls ‘inspired by God, seeing that they are profitable for
    doctrine,’”; “sing . . . the inspired Scriptures”; “All bread is nutritious[.] . . . All Scripture is God-inspired
    (pa◊sa grafh\ qeo/pneustoß) and profitable”; (Revelation and Inspiration, chapter 7, “God-inspired
    Scripture”).

  92. Christopher
    July 19, 2010 at 5:13 pm

    Men of God who believed that the King James Bible is the Inspired Word of God, Not just the originals.
    Dr. Bruce Lackey
    “I believe that the King James Version is a correct translation of uncorrupted manuscripts in both Hebrew and Greek and is worthy of being called the inspired Word of God.”
    Dr. Herb Evans
    The Bible that we have today (A.V. 1611) is alive! Inspired! It still has God’s Breath in it and will never ever expire, because it lives and abides forever (I Peter 1:23)!
    Dr. Jack Hyles
    ““God has preserved His inspired Word for us. It is preserved in the Hebrew Masoretic text and in the Greek Textus Receptus. It is also preserved for us in the English in the King James Bible. What He at first inspired, the Lord God has now preserved. Therefore, when I hold the King James Bible in my hand, I hold the inspired text. It was inspired and now that inspired Word has been protected, preserved and provided for us!”
    Dr. Lee Roberson
    ““Whether in sunshine or rain, it will help us to have these inspired words before us: HAVE FAITH IN GOD.”
    Dr. Shelton Smith
    God has preserved His inspired Word for us. It is preserved in the Hebrew Masoretic text and in the Greek Textus Receptus. It is also preserved for us in the English in the King James Bible. What He at first inspired, the Lord God has now preserved. Therefore, when I hold the King James Bible in my hand, I hold the inspired text. It was inspired and now that inspired Word has been protected, preserved and provided for us!
    Though the question of double inspi¬ration is a legitimate one, and it is reason¬able that it should be raised, that is not how we came to have an English Bible that is the Word of God. There are two concepts – inspiration and preservation. Because the Lord chose to do it that way, the English Bible I hold in my hand is the inspired Word of God!
    If what you have is not the inspired Word of God, whose word is it? If you do not have the inspired Word of God in your hands, would you kindly define for us what it is you think you have? If your Bible is not the Word of God, then I think we have a problem!
    Dr. James H. Sightler M.D
    “The greatest richness, beauty, poetry, and power in all literature is given to us in the inspired King James Bible and only in that singular revelation.”

    Dr. Sam Gipp
    “Thus, to believe in a perfect set of originals, but not to believe in a perfect English Bible, is to believe nothing at all…Thus we have God promising to preserve the same words that He inspired.”
    Dr. Thomas Cassidy
    “How then should we refer to our King James Bibles? Should we publicly state that our English Bibles are the inspired, inerrant, preserved word of God? I believe we should.”
    David Cloud
    “I believe 2 Timothy 3:16-17 refers not only to the original giving of the Scriptures but to the fact that the copies and translations are inspired, as well, as long as they are accurate. Obviously Timothy did not have the original manuscripts which came from the hands of the Bible writers. I believe therefore that the King James Bible is the inspired Word of God.”
    John Burgon
    “I am asked whether I believe the words of the Bible to be inspired,—I answer, To be sure I do,—every one of them: and every syllable likewise. Do not you?—Where,—(if it be a fair question,)—Where do you, in your wisdom, stop? The book, you allow, is inspired. How about the chapters? How about the verses? Do you stop at the verses, and not go on to the words? … No, Sirs! THE BIBLE (BE PERSUADED) IS THE VERY UTTERANCE OF THE ETERNAL;—AS MUCH GOD’S WORD, AS IF HIGH HEAVEN WERE OPEN, AND WE HEARD GOD SPEAKING TO US WITH HUMAN VOICE. Every book of it, is inspired alike; and is inspired entirely. … THE BIBLE IS NONE OTHER THAN THE VOICE OF HIM THAT SITTETH UPON THE THRONE! EVERY BOOK OF IT,—EVERY CHAPTER OF IT,—EVERY VERSE OF IT,—EVERY WORD OF IT,—EVERY SYLLABLE OF IT,—(WHERE ARE WE TO STOP?)—EVERY LETTER OF IT—IS THE DIRECT UTTERANCE OF THE MOST HIGH! … ‘Well spake the Holy Ghost, by the mouth of’ the many blessed Men who wrote it.—The Bible is none other than the Word of God: not some part of it, more, some part of it, less; but all alike, the utterance of Him who sitteth upon the Throne;—absolute,—faultless,—unerring,—supreme!” (Sermon III, pp. 75,76,89).
    D.L.Moody “I know the Bible is inspired because it inspires me.” “

  93. July 21, 2010 at 4:50 pm

    Christopher,

    Question for you. Do you believe God breathed out English words to the Apostle Paul?

  94. Keith Whitlock
    July 31, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    God-breathed the exact words of modern corrupt bibles like the NIV.
    Where in the scripture does it say that God breathed his words into his holy prophets?
    God spoke,
    God revealed,
    God wrote in a book,
    The holy prophets ate God’s words,
    Mrs. Gail Riplinger’s and Mrs. Bryn Shutt’s new book Hazardous Materials Greek and Hebrew Study Dangers The Voice of Strangers Burning Bibles Word by Word is a masterpiece of scholarship.
    I personally checked out over 400 of their quotations and found them all to be accurate and in context.
    This “originals onlyism” heresy is of recent origin expounded by Benjamin Brecxkenridge Warfield an apostate Calvinist (Augustinian) Presbyterian scholar from Princeton in 1858.
    All this prevalent Greekspeak serves nothing but to insinuate distrust in the Holy Bible.
    Strainig at gnats, the current Nicolaitan past-time.
    Check out 490 Slides to the Plumment From the Summit on HAC Alumni and Traitors, Heady and High-Minded for the accurate truth about the issues of preservation and inspiration

    Keith Whitlock

  95. July 31, 2010 at 9:02 pm

    I’m fine if people want to keep commenting here, but if they do, they really ought to know what the post is about. If you wish to post a new comment, and you are new to the thread, please state at the beginning of your comment whether or not you have read the post and the comments up to the time you are posting, so that others can know if you are credible or just want to get your say in. And, yes, I have read the entire post and all the comments.

    I thought that the following excerpt, from pgs. 69-70 what is argumably the Dutch 2nd Reformation’s most widely distributed work, The Christian’s Reasonable Service (a systematic theology in 4 volumes) by Wilhelmus à Brakel, was interesting. Brakel ascribes plenary but not verbal inspiration to translations, and he speaks of the testimony of the Holy Spirit to His translated Word (for Brakel, the TR-based Dutch Bible). The comment is interesting as historical theology. Brakel’s work, by the way, does a tremendous job of making application of each doctrine; something that is too often neglected today in systematics. You can download his work as a PDF at http://www.abrakel.com/p/christians-reasonable-service.html from the blog of the man who translated it into English from Dutch (Bartel Elshout). Anyway, here is Brakel’s quotation:

    As accurate as a translation may be, it nevertheless is neither authentic [Brakel is using a technical term for something only in the original languages in context] nor infallible. The meaning of a given word can be inaccurate and therefore when there are differences of opinion, a careful comparison of each translation to the original text is a necessity. A faithful translation will convey all that is contained in the original text; however, since it is a different language, there will also be distinct linguistic differences as far as vocabulary is concerned. The original texts are directly inspired by God and originate with God—both as to doctrinal content as well as the words. In translations, however, only the doctrinal content is divinely inspired, not the words. An unlearned person, being incapable of comparing translations with the original languages, can nevertheless be assure of the veracity of the doctrinal content of the translation if he may perceive the internal doctrinal cohesiveness and harmony of a translation. There is also the witness of the Holy Spirit who in speaking through this Word bears witness to the veracity of God’s Word in its translated form. In addition to the approbation of both scholars and the godly, the veracity of the translation is also confirmed by the powerful effect the Word has upon one’s own heart, as well as the hearts of others. Yes, even the enemies of true religion who are conversant with both languages must attest to the veracity of this translation, agreeing that it is both faithful and accurate. . . .

  96. Aaron Sanders
    October 26, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    Brothers in Christ, I truly think that there are some great comments here, but the truth is that the KJV is an accurate translation word for word of the manuscripts that we have whether Hebrew or Greek. I think that the original God Breathed manuscripts were inspired, if accurately copied as we know they were and accuratly translated as we all accept, and know by the evidence of the power that many of us by God’s Grace have witnessed: then what is the argument? there should be none! The King James Bible or Version is an accurate translation, therefore copy of the inspired Word, therefore it can be said that it is the Inspired Word of God, it is not the translation, or the translator that was inspired but the words, no matter what language.
    If a man wrote a book and it was copied 500 times by hand but accuratley would it not still be the same book with the same author regardless of what language it may be copied in?

  97. April 25, 2013 at 5:18 pm

    Valuable further resources on this question at at http://faithsaves.net.

  98. August 12, 2013 at 5:49 am

    God promised to PRESERVE His Word. You are getting off track with this whole INSPIRED goose chase. The Originals were Inspired, all subsequent translations that are from Him are the preservation of the original.

  99. May 8, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    This article is linked to (with other relevant material) here:

    http://faithsaves.net/bibliology/

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