Are the KJV "Only" authors giving you all the facts without bias?
The KJV is the best, in my opinion, version for use in Biblical studies, for the key reason that the Lexicons and Concordances are linked to this version. As anyone can see, if you’ve taken the time to read my studies, I often use the KJV for proving doctrine and research. However, when I first accepted Christ as the Lord of my life in 1988, I was given an NIV (New International Version) Bible by a precious brother in Christ. Not knowing one version from another, I was very pleased with this new Bible and immediately began to consume the bread of life. It changed my life! It was easy to understand and was influential in convicting me of my sins, and drawing me closer to Jesus. Never once, was my understanding of orthodox Christian doctrine, and conviction against sin in danger by reading this version.
In 1995, I bought a NKJV (New King James Version) on my return trip to Honduras. I spent many hours swinging in my hammock, consuming this version in depth. I can honestly say, that neither the NIV, nor the NKJV, led me to ANY other conclusion, than that of fundamental orthodox belief, and clarity in doctrine!
Although there ARE, many corrupted versions of scripture available today who translate the Bile to accomidate their false doctrines such as the Jehovah’s Witnesses New World Translation, NWT, and the Seventh Day Adventists Clear Word Bible, CW , I am NOT convinced that all modern translations are “corrupted” and I disagree that there is a conspiracy to change God’s Word by every Bible translation except the KJV as these "KJV only" adherents charge!
Although there ARE translations that are very perverted, such as those who turn God the Father into God the Mother, Paraphrased Bibles that basically interpret the scriptures according to their "opinion" of what the scripture is saying and the such, other translations, however, have truly attempted to research the available manuscripts and give a true renduring of God's Word!
Personally, I trust the following versions to be trustworthy for the Bible reader to grow in the knowledge of Jesus Christ which I will call "qualified versions": KJV; NKJV; NASB; RSV; NIV. I trust that there are other "qualified versions" in English as well as other languages which are not listed here! Obviously, non of these English versions would be useful to someone who spoke a foreign language! To download a variety of good translations for free, you may want to visit http://www.e-sword.net
I have always been bothered by the fact that many of those whom I have met of the KJV Only camp, instead of leading people to Jesus, were more intent on disputing over which version I use and were most often very divisive people. (Once, when I was walking the cross in N.C., a woman told my partner that he was going to hell, because he didn’t have the KJV Bible.) Instead of confirming Orthodox belief by asking questions on fundamental doctrinal issues, or looking for the evidence of the fruit of the Holy Spirit, their only concern was “Which version do you read”!
This kind of question, with the line of reasoning that the KJV is the ONLY version today that has the perfectly preserved Word of God, is nonsense to the Spanish hearer who responds that they read the “Spanish Reina-Valera”! Are you telling this Spanish speaking man that he must master the English language (even more yet, "Old" English) in order to hear the true gospel and be saved? I've actually heard about a KJV Only missionary that traveled to Spanish speaking Honduras to proclaim the KJV Bible! His work didn't last long!
After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;
This "English" pride is senseless, non-biblical and divisive! Unfortunately, the majority of the original manuscripts written by the Apostles themselves have turned to dust through time. While I believe that the original scriptures are "infallible", I simply do NOT agree that the translators are "infallible"! If this were true, every manuscript, and translation today, would be in agreement! Since they are NOT, somewhere along the line, the KJV Only adherents have suggested that the KJV translators have become todays prophets and that the KJV will be the chosen translation to reach the world!
As the Catholics have exalted the Pope to be infallable, the KJV Only adherents have exalted the translators of the 1611 version to be infallable too!
The dependability of the Bible
I think it is important to note, that the variations between the disputed texts constitute less than 2% of the entire Bible, leaving 98% pure without question. Of the 2% that is in question, NOT one affects an article of faith or precept of duty which is not abundantly sustained by other and undoubted passages, or by the tenor of Scripture reading. So the main point to gather here is that, no matter which of the "qualified" translations a Christian reads, their knowledge and walk in Christ will not be affected by which version they choose to read in order to live as a Christian believer!
The blood of Jesus
An example would be Col. 1:14 "In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:"!
Whereas the part that reads "through his blood" in Col. 1:14 is in question and is lacking in some ancient manuscripts and therefore is lacking in some versions such as the NIV, it is NOT in contest and IS fully present in a carbon copy verse
Ephes. 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, ..."
and therefore, it is present in these other versions including the NIV. While KJV Only adherents insist that the NIV and such versions are "bloodless" and have removed the mention of the blood from their text in order to change the gospel message, the truth is that they have only removed the blood from this one verse in Col. 1:14 which has been in contest with some of the early manuscripts. The same message about the blood appears elswhere in the NIV text and the gospel message remains FULLY intact and unchanged!
"...to him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood" (Rev. 1:5b NIV)
"In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins..." (Eph. 1:7a NIV)
"God presented him as a sacrifice for atonement through faith in his blood..." (Rom. 3:25a NIV)
"Since we have now been justified by his blood..." (Rom. 5:9a NIV)
"...by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross." (Col. 1:20c NIV)
As noted in the above verses of scripture quoted from the NIV, the blood is NOT lacking in the NIV but contrariwise, the FULL message of the Blood, to free us from sin, the redemption and forgiveness of sins, for atonement, justification and peace through the blood of Jesus is FULLY printed and found in the NIV Bible translation thus exposing the deception of those who claim that the NIV is "Bloodless" and the false accusation that the NIV translators have a conspiracy to remove the blood from their version and water down the Gospel message.
Another attack from these KJV Only adherents, is to suggest that these other versions have removed words from their Bible or changed the word. An example is the charge that one KJV Only adherent makes, that the NIV removed the name of Jehovah from Exodus 6:3
And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name Jehovah was I not known to them.
The NIV uses the word "The LORD" in place of "Jehovah"! I don't know if this KJV Only adherent is a Jehovah's Witness, since our salvation comes through the name of Jesus Christ which is clear in all of these "Qualified versions" (Acts 4:10-12, Romans 10:9-13) but if it is a crime to substitute the word "Jehovah" with the word "The LORD", then the KJV is also guilty of the same crime over 6514 times. Jehovah, by definition, is "YHWH" Strong's number H3068, which we translate as either "Jehovah", or "The LORD"!
Of the 6521 times that the word "YHWH" appears in the Old Testament, the KJV translates it as "The Lord" 6514 times, and as "Jehovah" only 7 times. If you want a version that is consistent to use the word "Jehovah" in every case where "Jehovah" appears in scripture, you might want to pick up a 1901 American Standard Version where they always use the name of Jehovah where "YHWH" is mentioned! By comparison to the ASV on this issue, the KJV is the counterfeit!
Other arguments KJV Only adherents use, is an occasional lack of a word. For example, instead of using "Jesus Christ", the text might only use one word such as "Jesus", or "Christ". Of the 258 N.T. verses that contain the combination of "Jesus Christ", why would they suggest that it is a significant error for a few verses to use only the word "Jesus" or "Christ" to identify "Jesus Christ"? Remember, these versions are not simply changing "Jesus Christ" to "Jesus" by their own initiative, but as a result of certain ancient manuscripts which they feel hold a heavier weight of authenticity to what the early church fathers actually wrote. Whether or not they actually are the true words written by the apostles, which no one from either camp can prove, would ANYONE reading these other versions get the idea that "Jesus" or "Christ" alone would be referring to a different person than Jesus Christ? Is the Gospel message lost? How many times of the 258 verses showing Jesus to be the Christ, does it take for someone to realize that Jesus is the Christ?
The "Old" English itself, is nearly as much a foreign language from today's English as Spanish or French!
Since the 1611 edition, there have been several revisions to the KJV, in 1629, 1638, 1653, 1701, 1762, 1769, and two more, the last three by Dr. Blayney of Oxford. These varied in about 75,000 details, making changes, for example, in orthography and spelling. The orthography of a language is the letters and symbols used to represent the sounds. The KJV that people read today is a revision made in the 1800's. If you found a copy actually printed in 1611, you would have to slog through some strange symbols. It is unreasonable for the KJV Only adherents to reason that revisions up to 1881 are inspired by God, but any further revisions since then are of the devil! (Quoted from David Robert Palmer )
Here is an example of "Old" English as we see 1 Tim 3:16 by John Wycliff in his version of the Bible in the late 1300's which clearly shows how much the English language has changed through time.
And opynli it is a greet sacrament of pitee, that thing that was schewid in fleisch, it is iustified in spirit, it apperid to aungels, it is prechid to hethene men, it is bileuyd in the world, it is takun vp in glorie.
Here is 1 Tim 3:16 in the 1611 edition of the KJV, which is a bit more readable!
And without controuersie, great is the mysterie of godlinesse: God was manifest in the flesh, iustified in the Spirit, seene of Angels, preached vnto the Gentiles, beleeued on in the world, receiued vp into glory.
The fact is, also, that the King James Version itself was only a revision. It was a revision of the Bishop's Bible. At the time, the most popular version of the Bible among lay fundamentalists was the Geneva Bible. The Geneva Bible irritated both the clergy of the Roman Catholic church and of Church of England, and King James I of England, alike. The Bishop's Bible had been made in reaction to the popularity of the Geneva Bible among Protestant dissidents. When King James I commissioned the Authorized King James Version, these instructions were issued: that they should follow the text of the Bishop's Bible unless they found that the translations of Tyndale, Matthew (John Rogers), Whitchurche, and Geneva more closely agreed with the original text. And that original Greek text edition that the KJV translators consulted, was taken and edited from only a few if any of the best available texts of the 12th to 15th centuries, since it followed the 1516 and 1522 editions of Erasmus' Greek text. Since the KJV used the Bishop's Bible as its main base, that means it kept many old ecclesiastical words from the Catholic tradition, and many Latinisms, or Latin idioms translated into English.
But thanks be to God, God has raised up servants of his who have continued to update the English Bible. Noah Webster did a revision of the KJV. Then in England the Revised Version was a revision of the King James Version, and the American Standard Version was the revision of the KJV in America. Then came the Revised Standard Version and the New American Standard Bible. These are essentially revisions of the King James Version. And both the NASB and the RSV are good. (Quoted from David Robert Palmer )
Gail Riplinger's deception!
The reason I originally wrote this letter, is because I was given a copy of the book “The Language of the King James Bible” by Gail Riplinger. In reading her book, I pulled out my NKJV and compared it with some of her charges. In total dismay, I found that this woman was being very crafty and very deceptive in her charges. To those who took her charges at face value, without researching them, she gave a very convincing argument that the NKJV and all other versions except the KJV, were corrupt!
Master verses Lord!
For example! She noted a verse where the NKJV "removed the word 'LORD' "! The implication is that the NKJV was lowering Jesus down, from being LORD, to Master instead! In review of this contended verse I found that the scripture was a parable in which Jesus spoke about a servant who begged his "Master" for mercy, which, in fact is also a valid interpretation of the Greek word kurios!
But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord ("master" NKJV) commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. (KJV)
kurios, koo'-ree-os; from kuros (supremacy); supreme in authority, i.e. (as noun) controller; by implication Mr. (as a respectful title) :- God, Lord, master, Sir.
Instead of addressing his master as "Lord" in the parable, the NKJV used the word "Master"! The verse had NOTHING to do with removing the word LORD as addressing Jesus Christ himself! The fact is, that the NKJV STILL addresses Jesus as "LORD" in the many verses that address Jesus as Lord as illustrated here in Phil. 2:11!
And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (NKJV)
To further confound the deceitful intentions of Gail Riplinger, the AV 1611 KJV is ALSO "guilty" (if this is a crime) of using the word "Master", in the place of "Lord" where the Greek word "kurios" appears in such places as Romans 14:4, Eph 6:9, Col. 4:1 and Mark 13:35 Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: (KJV)
Mrs. Riplinger is certainly not a scholar in any respect and the above shows her ignorance in word studies and biased approach in condemning other translations!
Finding scholarly studies and answers!
In light of this event, I visited the local Christian book store and talked to the owner about this. He said that he will not even sell Mrs. Riplingers books which are unscholarly, biased and slanted. But he did recommend a book to me “The King James Only Controversy” by James R. White, Bethany House Publishers. You can visit James White's web page on KJV Only!
I was delighted to find the book to be scholarly, truthful, factual and unbiased, answering many of my questions about the early manuscripts of scripture and the origins of the KJV and other translations. Mr. White is not anti-KJV, but he simply gives a very scholarly and fair approach in explaining the facts about the modern translations and the available ancient Greek manuscripts used to translate these Bible versons. Mr. White also exposes many of the deceptive methods that Mrs. Riplinger, Mr. Ruckman and other KJV Only warriors are using to create division in the body of Christ by twisting the truth about the modern translations (as I encountered when I compared Mrs. Riplingers’ false charges against the NKJV).
For anyone who is struggling with this controversy, I recommend that you take the time to read and study this book.
KJV Only adherents have a list of objections about other versions. I found these two links from Wikipedia Encyclopedia on the KJV Only Movement, where these men deal with these KJV Only arguments. You may find some answers on these pages.
Whenever I encountered those who hold to the KJV Only camp, they have often been very mean spirited and cruel with their words and accusations, with little or no evidence of the Holy Spirit living in their heart. After sending out the above letter in an e-mail to my mailing group, one KJV Only proponent who refused to read the book I mentioned above, sent me this final note about the author, James White. (Personally, I cannot imagine any Spirit filled child of God writings such words. Forgive me if the following note is offensive to you, as my intent is to demonstrate the spirit behind the KJV Only people and the evil thoughts they have towards their brothers in Christ Jesus, IF, assuming this KJV Only person is even saved)
I guess you are right just because the publisher of the niv and the satanic bible are the same people does not mean anything.
and james white is a bastard, a son of lucifer, that is deleted from the niv and a name for jesus is substituted in that place....
KJV Only adherent
Satanice Versions of the Bible