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What Ever Happened to our English Bible?

J. Timothy Unruh

The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord. Thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever. – Psalm 12: 6-7

In the King James Bible we read in Luke 24:51: "And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven."

The New American Standard Version (NASV) says: "And it came about that while He was blessing them, He parted from them." The phrase "carried up into heaven" is missing in the NASV. Where He went it does not say. In other words we do not read that Christ has ascended – that all-important event which ended his earthly stay!

A Preface to the Brethren

And to all others to whom this vitally important matter may concern: Every person in the body of Christ has a function. The Bible tells us this (1 Corinthians 12:12-26). "And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord." Just as well, it pleaseth Him who worketh all in all to see the fruit, of even this meager and feeble member. However, I dare say, not all will give this matter a fair hearing, casting aside a vitally important substance simply because it is not a portion of their present belief system. The Word of God urges us, at the very least, to "try the spirits" (1 John 4:1-3). Many men who continue under the demands of pastoral, evangelistic, or administrative capacities, or as "full time Christian workers" often find that they have little or no time for personal reading, research, or testing the spirits as such, as others in the body may enjoy. Perhaps even others among the brethren have never had this matter brought to their attention. By God’s grace, this concern has been put upon this writer’s heart and has in the process of time led to many hours of prayerful consideration and joyful toil as ugly tares have been removed from his own prospect. May the same blessing come to the reader of this humble treatise. The purpose of this writing is not necessarily to persuade one that the King James Bible is the perfect word of God without error, but rather to bring the reader’s attention to the necessity of examining the Bible version issue carefully, especially since we claim the Bible to be our authority. Given the potentially sensitive nature of this subject among the brethren, it is my sincere hope that my readers, whoever and wherever they may be, will see me as a helper to them and not an antagonism. Jesus said in Revelation 3:19, "As many as I love, I rebuke." Most of the churches in Revelation received both a commendation and a rebuke. Are we any better than they? "…Judgment must begin at the house of God" (1 Peter 4:17).

Within the Christian community at large one will find a wide spectrum of convictions about the truths of the Bible. Many of the present day denominations were formed because people rallied behind and emphasized a particular point of doctrine and faith which they believed needed a special focus. Unfortunately this effect has, to a degree, worked against Christian unity. Yet at the same time many have, in the name of Christian unity, called for tolerance among Christians in light of such differing views. Thus it is an observed fact that there are marked differences in belief about issues even among Christians. This has been true since Biblical times. Even the Apostle Paul had his differences with some of the brethren on occasion (Acts 15:36-40).

Of a certainty, to be true to God’s Word is a most noble cause. Yet, inevitably bound up in that posture is a narrow walk, a walk of treading a fine line between holding tenaciously to one’s convictions and being accommodative of the view of others. It is a delicate walk requiring no little skill in "balancing the emphases." How does one maintain that careful and crucial balance between holding fast to his convictions and being patiently tolerant of the beliefs, opinions, and convictions of others? This struggle could be counted as one of the agonies of the Christian experience. To help calm the tempest on such dissension it has been said, "In the essentials – unity, in nonessentials – liberty, in all things – charity." However, among things, it is this writer’s humble assertion that the discussion which follows involves a matter that cannot be compromised because there is so much at stake as it bears on the Christian faith.

Such a matter deserves the reader’s careful consideration and fervent prayer. It is worthy of our attention because of its vital relationship to the health, safety, and welfare of the believer personally and the local assembly collectively. Of all the issues that bear upon the daily personal life of the believer, perhaps none is so important as that of being firmly grounded in the Word of God. The Bible believing Christian holds that the Word of God is his charter, creed, and rule of faith and life. The Bible is the fountainhead of true Christian conviction – about everything. The Bible Believing Christian holds dearly to the supernatural inspiration, authority and trustworthiness, and preservation of the inerrant Word of God as it was written by human agency over a period of no less than sixteen hundred years, by no fewer than 40 authors who were supernaturally overshadowed and guided by the Holy Spirit. That is to say, the Word of God was "God breathed" through these people. Hence, the Word of God as we have it enscriptured is of a perfection unmatched by any other book on Earth. This matchless book – the Holy Scriptures – represents the oracles of God for the Christian’s rule of faith and life. However, in our day, this book has been under attack on a number of fronts, including an unholy proliferation of modern day versions which have added to, taken away from, and changed the Word of God as we have known it, so faithfully preserved in our English Bible for nearly 400 years.

If there is to be named among those most hideous of sins, a sin perhaps second only to that of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit – which in the most practical sense in our day means to reject the Savior unto death – this most hideous of sins would be that of supplanting the Word of God. This second greatest of all sins, if we could even attempt to "categorize" sins, is against the Word of God itself. It is this writer’s contention that it can be easily demonstrated that a host of modern Bible "translations" have committed this great atrocity. The demonstration of this great breach is, among things, the point of this writing – a warning that, in a manner of speaking, "there’s poison in the soup!

The only Bible God ever wrote was written in two of the world’s most perfect languages. The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and the New Testament in Greek. It is these languages that God chose to accurately convey His message to man in writing. In these original writings, or in identical copies, abide infinite perfection which no human will ever be able to duplicate. Between this God-inspired Bible and other writings, or in identical copies, abide infinite perfection which no human will ever be able to duplicate. Between this God-inspired Bible and other writings, there exists an impassable gulf, over which no member of Adam’s race can ever pass in making another book comparable to it. Since the Word of God is the fountainhead of all true knowledge, it is of utmost importance to be circumspect in how we regard it. Because God inspired only one Bible, all other writings which are not in full agreement with it, cannot possibly be the true Word of God.

We as Bible believing Christians (by the way, there really is no other kind of true believer) hold that since God has supernaturally given His revelation in times of old, it follows that God has providentially preserved His Word to our day. We hold to this great principle because it is consistent with the nature of God Himself that in spite of accident, mutilation, human error and deception, neglect and loss, false emendation and destruction of manuscripts, incurred in the treacherous voyage over the sea of time, God’s Word has been supernaturally and providentially preserved for you and me today in its highest fidelity. It is within the nature of its author, God Himself, to guarantee such a result. Of this great truth, there is no lack of solid Biblical confirmation and extra-Biblical evidence. We have been singularly blessed by what God has wrought through His supernatural agency of preserving His Word unto the English speaking people of the world. However, there needs to be a sounding of an alarm: tares have been sown in our midst.

A great multiplicity of differing Bible versions are in circulation today. Never before in history has the Bible been rewritten in so many different renditions. The number of new "versions" has increased exponentially. This explosion of modern language versions of the Bible in our generation, all supposedly based on superior Greek and Hebrew manuscripts unavailable to the translators of our Authorized King James Bible, has resulted in a bewildering state of confusion. Many Christians are shocked to learn that this assumption has undergone even less questioning in evangelical circles than the theory of evolution has in the scientific world. It is, therefore, of vital importance to observe that there IS another side to this issue that is both cogent, academically defensible and espoused by a great many past and contemporary scholars, and most of all, vitally important to the child of God. This is an issue far too important, and carrying with it too many dangerous implications and consequences to be glossed over lightly.

Nowadays, during sermons and Bible studies, we often hear such phrases as "The King James Bible has a poor translation here," or "A better rendering is found in the so and so translation," or "This should read," or "A correct translation would be," or "The true meaning of this passage is lost in translation," and on and on we hear in the name of scholarship, many not knowing that in this there is a subtle trap to the unwary. The effect of this "scholarship" may well make the speaker sound intelligent to his congregation. It may lead them to feel that they need to go to him for advice in interpreting the Bible. These proclamations can only lead to an erosion of his ministry and the destruction of a congregation’s over-all faith in the Word of God which should be in words recognizable and discernible to even the simple, "Thus sayeth the Lord."

It is not the intent of this brief treatise to compare and expound Greek meanings where words have been changed by the modern translations, or to list all the words and verses which are in error, or have been added or omitted by these modern versions, though both would add significantly to the argument of this document. That is left for the reader to search out for himself and they are easy to find, as the few pointed out later in this document will clearly demonstrate. The intent of this study is to summarize a few important basic facts and bring these to the reader’s attention as a wake up call that there is a very real and very serious problem in our midst. Even in this, it should not be long before this problem is self evident to the reader. To discover the myriad of deviations to be found in the modern versions is an interesting pursuit in itself.

The publication of a new translation of the Bible should be an occasion for great rejoicing. The availability of Scripture in a new language, or a fresh rendering in "modern dress" for people already possessing the Bible, can be of great importance in propagating the faith. The faith should indeed be the central motive in any contemporary version. However, there are at least two other motives that dominate the contemporary scene: first, a financial motive, and second, an anti-Christian religious motive.

Book publishing is a billion dollar industry. The profit motive is, in its place, a godly and legitimate aspect of our daily economic life. By no means should it be condemned unless, of course, it is used for ill gain. Apart from a Biblically legitimate faith, every aspect of our life is under condemnation already; all life is out of focus, and things, pure in themselves, become impure in the hands of the ungodly.

As books go, it is a known fact that the Bible is the consistent best seller. There is no close second to the Bible in the number of copies sold annually. Hence, the annual sale of millions upon millions of copies makes it, therefore, a phenomenal sales item. Its potential as a money maker is thus enormous, almost staggering to the economically minded imagination. However, one factor must be reckoned with by the financially minded publisher, the Bible in its historical, and most popular English form, the King James Translation, is not subject to copyright. Any publisher can print it and enter into a highly competitive market where the margin of profit must be kept very low for competitive reasons. Hence the greatest single demerit of the King James Bible is simply that it is not copyrighted, and hence no organization and no scholar can profit thereby. In light of this self evident fact, it is no wonder that publishers, among others, have come to recognize the tremendous potential of a copyrighted Bible.

A copyrighted Bible is a bonanza to publishers, and a financial and prestigious asset to scholars participating as translators and editors. Not every publisher has compromised the faith issue for the financial consideration. Neither has every new translation been a money-making scheme, but many of them have nurtured this motive as a central concern. Thus "new Bibles" are big money, and their use in new concordances, commentaries, and a myriad of other Bible-aid byproducts by permission to further their popularity are likewise profitable. The sales value of these new versions seems to depend on new and novel readings. With all the money at stake in new versions, is it any wonder that people are urged, to their confusion, to believe in the necessity for new versions?

The purpose of the Holy Bible is to be the Christian’s charter and guide of true religion that he may be spotless before God (James 1:27). He cannot be thus under the instruction of a false bible. A vital question the reader of any new translation must ask is, does the given translation represent a minor difference in wording, or does it conceal a new religion. The answer may come quicker than expected to the careful reader. A comparison of Genesis 1:1-2 in the King James Bible with the same passage in the Anchor translation, for instance, offers one case in point. For instance, in the King James Bible we read:

"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved over the waters."

In the Anchor version we read:

"When God set about to create heaven and earth – the world being then a formless waste, with darkness over the seas and only an awesome wind sweeping over the water – God said, ‘Let there be light’" and there was light. (verse 3 included)

To the attentive reader it is evident that this rendition in effect introduces mythology into Moses’ account. If we look at the King James Bible verse we see three separate sentences, and the first sentence is a separate sentence paragraph. Paragraphing is a form of interpretation in itself, as is sentence formation. To set "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth" in a separate form is to declare in effect that this sentence is either an introduction to the account of creation, or a summary statement of creation, or both. It declares God to be the Creator, and then details the acts of creation.

However, in the Anchor version, verse 1 is made into a subordinate clause, "When God began to create the heaven and the earth." This now ceases to be a completed statement of fact. Instead we are now told what the condition of the universe was "when God began to create," namely that at least one segment of it was "a formless waste," and, as we learn subsequently, this "unformed and void" earth was not created but developed by God. As a result, instead of Biblical theism, we have the ancient dualism, the co-eternity of God and matter. The great void of being, the unformed chaos of matter, always existed, in this philosophy, and God did not create it; He merely acted on it, with varying degrees of success. Thus, in the new "translations" of Genesis 1:1,2, we have substituted for biblical theism an alien religion! We read of a God very different and greatly limited in contrast to the God of Scripture. Translation here has become the vehicle of a decidedly new religion, the instrument of the proclamation of "other gods," hence an instrument of idolatry. It becomes a deadly instrument of deception, not glorifying the one true God, not showing the way of true salvation because it depicts a God stripped of His eternal attributes, and consequently a bible with a message powerless to save. Whenever God is drastically changed like this a new man-made religion is created. By such changes, often too slight for many readers to detect, new meanings are read into the Scripture, and another bible and other gods are brought into fruition. A bad tree cannot produce good fruit. 1

In evaluating each new version of the Bible the Christian reader must consider the source. Can unbelievers, modernists and men faithless to their ordination vows, be expected to produce good fruit? Our Lord said it clearly:

"Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit." – Matthew 7:16-17

It should be noted that there is a further area of confusion regarding the many modern versions, and that is the important difference between a revision, translation, and paraphrase. A revision is essentially a change or amendment, maybe an "update", carrying with it the implication that a correction or improvement was necessary. A paraphrase is an attempt to put the original thought into modern thought forms. A paraphrase can be a useful help at times but it can never be a substitute for a translation. A paraphrase may seem to offer a better grasp of the textual meaning, but it often weakens or neutralizes many of the basic theological terms. A translation, however, is an exact and literal rendering of the original Greek or Hebrew into English. The King James Bible is not a paraphrase. It is both a revision of earlier translations in part, and, more importantly, a new translation in its day.

Among the objections to the King James Bible, perhaps the greatest single charge is that it is hard to understand because it is hard to read, hard to read because its language is archaic and obsolete, that is, out of date hence hard to understand because languages change. The answer to this is a simple one: it is intended to be. In 1611 the King James Bible was as "out of date" as it is today. A comparison between the writings of Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, King James I, and John Lyly with the King James Bible will quickly bear this out. The translators avoided the speech of their day for a basic English which would be simple, timeless and beautiful, and they succeeded. 2 Their version spoke from outside their age and tradition with elemental simplicity. The issue is not that the Bible should speak our everyday language, for this involves debasement, but that it should be understandable, and here, all arguments to the contrary notwithstanding, the King James Bible speaks a language which, while some times difficult because the matter itself is so, is more often simple, clear-cut and beautiful. None equals the King James Bible in its clarity and memorable beauty.

New versions boast of their substitution of the word "you" for the archaic "ye" and "thee," but do not understand that the King James Bible uses the word "you" two thousand times. It uses "ye" and thee" when needed, in order to distinguish between the Greek singular and plural; "ye" is plural, and "thee" is singular. By using these particular renderings, the King James Bible gives an exact representation of the Greek word. For example, if Jesus walked into a room with a married couple and said, "Ye are of your father the devil," the wife could not say, "He’s talking to you honey" because "ye" is plural. In certain places of the Biblical text the singular and plural become very important. The King James Bible is to be commended for its preciseness as well as its timeliness.

As far as it supposedly being out of date, the fact of the matter is that out of the total of 791,328 words in the King James Bible only 618 of them have actually changed their meanings in the nearly 400 years since it was written in 1611. All of these words are in a good dictionary today. Only about a third of these would really need to be looked up by a reader not familiar with the King James Bible. Furthermore, the King James Bible of today is virtually identical to the King James Bible of 1611. In spite of this fact, there are some who would say that there are between 30,000 to 50,000 important differences in meaning. This simply is not true. 3

When we say the King James Bible is God’s Word kept intact, what is meant here is that it has been "not touched", "not harmed", "not defiled." The providential preservation of Scripture is one of the key doctrines of God’s revelation and a great source of confidence and comfort to the believer. To anyone who doubts for a moment that God has preserved His Word he should ask himself: Are we expected to believe in the inspiration of Scriptures without believing in the preservation of the Scriptures? If we say we believe in the inspiration alone – that in itself is a statement of unbelief. If only the original autographs are inspired, what we are really saying is that we have no confidence that the infallible Word of God exists in our present world. In II Timothy 3:14-17 God gave us His purpose in writing the Scriptures: "… for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness." Do we actually believe that God allowed them to become lost after giving them? If so, how could He use them to accomplish these purposes?

Obviously we do not have an original. The question is has God preserved His Word – the original text – although not the original papyrus or vellum on which it may have been written? The observant reader of the passage just cited will notice that it never made any reference with regard to the "original" Scriptures. Yet these are the verses upon which many of us base our faith and say we believe in the "originals." It is clear that these verses are not referring to the original manuscripts. We, as believers, in simple faith, trust that God has indeed maintained the fidelity of His Word throughout the ages. The doctrine of the sacred origin and preservation of Scripture is a part of the "General doctrine of the Scriptures concerning the controlling providence of God." This great fact of eternal preservation is consistent with the nature of God and His Word. Jesus Himself confirmed this when He said in Mark 13:31:

"Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away."

The King James Bible is the only translation that completely and accurately reflects, in English, the original Hebrew/Aramaic and Greek. When we use versions other than the King James Bible, we cannot be absolutely certain that in every verse, sentence, and word, they accurately translate the Hebrew and Greek words God has given us. Instead, we have man’s words all mixed up in them throughout. This is accomplished by the use of what has been conveniently called "Dynamic Equivalency." This technique is, in essence, a license permitting the revisionist to add, subtract, and/or change God’s Words without standing under the warnings against such as found in scripture. In the King James Bible the use of Formal Equivalency, that is, direct translation, rather than dynamic equivalency – interpretation not translation – gives no opportunity for "private interpretation" by scholars or translators." 4

That the King James Bible is directly in the "genetic" line of divine preservation of Scripture after 1611 to the present coupled with the fact that it has not been revised, only purified, becomes ever more evident over time to the fact-finding Bible student. This is a standing that none of the modern English versions can, in any sense, lay claim to. Our faith in Christ, our confidence in the very existence of God, all our understanding of His character and intent toward man, and our hope of salvation, all lays upon the foundation of what we call the Bible. The Authorized King James Bible most fully presents the central doctrines of our Christian faith (i.e., Trinity, deity of Christ, salvation by faith, et. Al.). The question of a trustworthy translation is all-important, especially since novelty is increasingly characteristic of many new translations. The important question is, what text of the Bible is being translated? At this point, let it be noted, we are departing from virtually all accepted scholarship. This however is no real hindrance, because, after all, the major break with "accepted" scholarship comes with acceptance of Christ as Lord and Savior, and the Bible as the inspired and infallible Word of God. Doubtless, scholarship has its proper place, however, Mark 12:37 relates that the "common people" heard Jesus gladly. With the exception of a few like Nicodemus and Joseph of Aramathaea, it was the scholars and religious leaders who contended with Jesus most vehemently.

The reason why many find that the King James Bible does not seem to be an accurate translation when compared to their modern versions is because these modern versions are not derived from the traditional Hebrew and Greek texts. The King James Bible is a very precise translation of these texts. For instance, of all the Greek New Testament manuscripts extant today, well over ninety-nine percent of these agree with each other. This is the text underlying the King James Translation. Until the year 1881 the King James Bible held the field as the text in practically universal use. 5

In 1881 two spiritualists, Brooke Foss Westcott (1825-1901) and Fenton John Anthony Hort (1828-1892), and other’s, changed this traditional Greek text in well over eight thousand places using the corrupt Vaticanus manuscript. 6 The Vaticanus was a by-product of Origen, who himself was declared a heretic by early church councils. What this says in effect is that God left His Church without the Word from A.D. 330, the time of the Vaticanus, until the year 1881, a period of over 1,500 years, when it was "restored" by Westcott and Hort. The "new" Westcott and Hort Greek text was "cloned" by Eberhard Nestle in 1927, and his son who became its warden confessed that "my father knew quite well that a certain one-sidedness adhered to his text." 7 The Westcott and Hort text was recently refined by a group of liberal scholars who announced in 1994 that fundamentalist Christians were "dangerous." 8

Since the days of B. F. Westcott and F. J. A. Hort, textual criticism has applied to biblical textual criticism a rigorously alien category of thought and "an essentially naturalistic method." This scholarship assumes man to be autonomous and ultimate rather than God, and it requires all documents to meet the same naturalistic tests with respect to their nature and history. The concern here is not that we enter into the intricacies of textual criticism, nor that we are qualified to do so, but that we are qualified to assert that most current criticism, both "conservative" and "liberal," rests on a radically non-Christian philosophy which cannot bear other than implicitly or explicitly anti-Christian fruit.

One does not need to be a "scholar," nor do they need to go far to see that almost all, if not all, the modern English variations of the Bible have made additions, omissions, and other changes that simply do not exist in the King James Bible. They stand together while the King James Bible stands alone. They will be found to be much more in unity with each other than any of them in unity with the King James Bible. Scholars understand the reason for this fact and this is because the King James Bible was translated from different manuscripts than these others. The King James Translation (The Holy Bible) was translated from the Textus Receptus while the others came for the most part from the Sinaiticus and Vaticanus texts, through the "scholarship" of Westcott and Hort. Neither of these men accepted many basic fundamentals of the faith. This fact alone should give us an important clue about the nature of these purveyors of origin for the many modern translations in circulation today, a matter which we shall take up shortly.

The Greek upon which the King James Translation was based was first printed in the year 1516 at Basle, Switzerland, under the editorship of the famous Dutchman, Desiderius Erasmus. The text contained in these manuscripts eventually came to be known as the "Textus Receptus" also known as the Received Text. It has also been called the Majority Text or Traditional Text, designations which also reflect the fact that Erasmus was recognized as an unparalleled scholar of the ancient texts, without peer before whom God had providentially placed at his disposal the manuscripts from which he published the Textus Receptus. The Textus Receptus was not his own but a careful compilation which resulted after years of travel, research, collecting and comparing of information, and writing. The text which Erasmus published was taken virtually without change from the original manuscripts. 9 A comprehensive description of the person and work of Erasmus is beyond the scope of this writing, however the reader is urged to obtain for his own edification at least some of the titles listed in the bibliography at the back of this writing. Most of these, if not all, to some extent, trace the history of the English translation.

God teaches us that the purpose of Scripture is to lead us to Christ and then to guide our lives (John 5:39-40). In spite of the fact that God did not intend for His Word to be used for scholarly intellectual exercise, unfortunately, that indeed is precisely what His Word is being used for today. This has become a serious problem affronting the Christian community today. It behooves us to carefully consider the following questions:

  1. Would God inspire a text and then allow it to become lost? According to the diverse denominational backgrounds evident today wherein we find various confessions of faith, we always find statements regarding the Holy Scriptures which say something to the effect that we believe God gave the original Scriptures inerrant. This in itself is, in reality, a statement of unbelief if we believe not in preservation, which leads us to the second question:

  2. If God did inspire a text, would He not preserve it? As we know, the Old Testament was authored in Hebrew and the New Testament was written in Greek. However, there are no original manuscripts of the Bible in existence today. This brings us to the third question:

  3. Could we expect counterfeits of the originals to be in circulation? By the same token, can you think of anyone who has always hated God’s Word, has always wanted to destroy it, and has worked without ceasing to cloud its validity in the minds and hearts of man? According to Genesis 3:1 Bible corruption began with Satan. As we read in the third chapter of Genesis we see that Satan, the original Bible reviser, when he confronted Eve in the garden added to God’s Word, he subtracted to God’s Word and he diluted God’s Word and substituted his own doctrine for that which God had said. This activity has continued ever since. This continual destruction of God’s Word throughout history is nothing less than a continual Satanic attack on the Bible. It began in the garden and will continue until the end. 10

In our time, modern translations since 1881 differ, often significantly, from the King James Bible in wording as well as doctrine. Because the conflicting difference is so great the reader is faced with the dilemma that two conflicting texts cannot be inspired, infallible, perfect, inerrant, authoritative and trustworthy. The reader must therefore make a choice. The facts which follow should be helpful in discerning the truth of the matter.

An in depth study of text families and textual criticism is well beyond the scope of this essay. However, it can be said that all English versions of the Bible today trace their roots directly to one of two sources:

  1. The King James Bible, as mentioned, is based on the Textus Receptus which is made up of Antiocian texts, which  have avoided the corruption of Alexandrian scholars; and,

  2. All the others including the RSV, NASV, NRSV, NWV, NEV, NIV, NCV, the LV, and others which are derived from the Nestle’s Greek collation of Alexandrian texts. The words of God have been mutilated in the Alexandrian texts by many different Egyptian, Greek philosophy, and Humanist "scholars" among which was Origen Adamantius (A.D. 185-254). 11 Origen was a gnostic Alexandrian Greek Scholar and philosopher. Subsequently the modern versions since 1881, came to us through the work of Westcott and Hort, who are probably the most responsible for introducing Alexandrian texts into modern Christianity. Their text of 1881 which was collated into Nestle’s Greek New Testament in 1898 laid the foundation for modern "Christian" textual scholarship. Since Greek New Testaments, modern Bible versions, and textual scholarship are founded upon the teachings and fruits of Westcott and Hort, a closer look at these two men at this point may be in order.

Westcott and Hort were both Anglican priests at Cambridge University. They, posing as Protestant scholars, participated in the 1881 Revision Committee of the King James Bible. In their practical doctrine, belief, and practice, they were very Roman Catholic. These two men claimed that they had raised New Testament textual criticism to the level of an exact science. They concluded that their work should be regarded with the same degree of reliance as one would esteem a Newtonian theorem. From published letters by the two, either to each other or to family members, many insights are gleaned about the beliefs of these men. Hort wrote in 1896, "I agree with them in condemning many leading specific doctrines of popular theology . . . especially the authority of the Bible." 12 Westcott stated that the fall of man was an allegory covering a long succession of evolutions. He rejected the first three chapters of Genesis as history and denied the fall of man. He thought all women should be named "Mary" and in an entirely unprotestant gesture asked that his wife Sarah add Mary to her name. 13

Hort said, to his close associate Westcott: "Evangelicals seem to me perverted rather than untrue." In 1865 he wrote: "I have been persuaded for many years that Mary-worship and ‘Jesus-worship’ have very much in common in their causes and their results." Of Jesus’ atonement he said: "The fact is, I do not see how God’s justice can be satisfied without every man’s suffering in his own person the full penalty for his sins." Of miracles he said, "I never read an account of a miracle, but I seem instinctively to feel its improbability . . ." Hort praised his "prayer boxes" which he carried with him and which contained statues (idols) to which he is known to have prayed. In one writing Hort referred to the Protestant teaching of the "priesthood of the believer" as being "crazy horror." Like Westcott, Hort believed in neither a literal Garden of Eden or that Adam’s fall differed in any degree from that of his descendants. In an 1890 letter, Westcott concurred with Hort by penning: "No one now, I suppose, holds that the first three chapters of Genesis, for example, give a literal history – I could never understand how any one reading them with open eyes could think they did." 14

From the published quotes and biographical sketches it is clearly evident that these two were far from "Fundamental" yet "Christian" scholarship has followed their lead. The Alexandrian texts upon which modern versions are all based have a very disturbing history of corruption by Greek philosophy and secular humanism. Should we trust Egypt for God’s scholars, Origen for God’s words, and Westcott and Hort for our bibles? Does a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit? (Matthew 7:16-17) Until late in the 1800’s the Alexandrian texts were utterly rejected by orthodox Christians. 15

Both Westcott and Hort were under the influence of the Roman church, Unitarianism, pantheism, metaphysics, spiritism, and other involvements while holding little regard for the inspiration of Scripture. Both accepted Darwin’s theory of evolution and held it to be unanswerable. 16 Both denied that the death of Christ Jesus made the once for all vicarious atonement for the sinner. Westcott and Hort both thus denied the shed blood of Christ. This mere sampling of the proclamations by these men is not at all unlike the kind of declarations one finds when they carefully investigate Joseph Smith, the founder of Mormonism. Westcott and Hort categorically dismantled the foundational doctrine of scripture upon which every other sacred doctrine rests – that of the flat creation of all things ex nihilo in six literal days approximately six thousand years ago by the Almighty God of creation. In this veritable destruction of the Bible by these false prophets rests virtually every modern version today. Their writings extensively show that they rejected the Textus Receptus. From their writings one can only conclude that they were unbelievers. Only in the King James Bible do we find the true sanctuary and fidelity of God’s sacred Word kept intact.

As to Erasmus, critics say he could not have been providentially guided in the editing of the Textus Receptus because he was a humanist and a Roman Catholic. Erasmus was not a secular humanist as in the present day understanding but a "Christian" humanist – the term humanist having a different meaning in his day. As to the criticism that Erasmus was a Roman Catholic priest, Erasmus was himself an ordained priest. He did not oppose the teachings of the Roman Church, neither did he oppose the ritual but he wanted these to be accompanied by a genuine spirituality. He vehemently protested the abuses within the Church, and decried the emphasis on ritual in favor of the simple godly life. It was an aberration which he believed would be corrected by placing into every man’s hand the Bible in his own language. He taught Greek at Cambridge University. He was not a "great" man of faith – although he was completely committed to the truth and reality of the Christian faith. Even though Erasmus may not have been the "perfect" man, it is evident that, as in the case of Martin Luther who became bitterly anti-Semitic later in life, God used him mightily. Furthermore, Erasmus was a giant of faith in that he humbled himself and his intellect, professing that the Bible was the absolute Word of God. Neither the theology of Erasmus or his being a Roman Catholic has anything to do whatsoever with his Greek text. In producing the Textus Receptus, he did not create it, he merely followed the manuscripts which had been preserved by the usage within the Greek Orthodox Church, and which he recovered from the Roman Catholic Church setting after years of neglect imposed upon it by that cult. Before this, throughout Europe the true text had been preserved intact primarily in Latin, and it circulated outside the Roman Church among small groups of true believers. Erasmus knew that the Vulgate was a corrupted version of the original older Latin translation, and his humanist values led him to believe that he was getting to the source of God’s truth by turning to the manuscripts of the Greek Church. 17

Although it is not a particularly difficult task, it is not the purpose of this writing to trace and describe the entire ancestry of the English Bible. For that, it is urged by this writer, as previously, that the reader obtain and examine the works referred to and listed in the bibliography which are currently available in print through Christian sources. Even though we do not accept this "blindly" the important point to remember is that we are in unbelief if we deny that God has providentially preserved His Word to our day. That we should have a good idea why we believe in God’s supernatural inspiration and preservation of His Word is a given, for it is decidedly Biblical to believe so. However, inspiration without preservation is meaningless and unscriptural.

The proliferation of differing Bible versions in circulation today has resulted in a state of bewildering confusion. Some versions omit words, phrases, and even chapter portions which are well known to be included in a number of the ancient manuscripts. Some of these new versions contain words and phrases that have been added which have no corresponding basic expression in authentic copies of the Hebrew and Greek. Among these the reader will not find the Bible which God gave when holy men spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit (II Peter 1:21; II Timothy 3:16). The scholars and publishers of modern versions circumvent the warnings against tempering with Scripture (Deuteronomy 4:2; 5:32-33; 12:32; 17:18-20; Proverbs 30:6; Jeremiah 26:2; Revelation 22:18) by making use of such euphemisms as "dynamic equivalence" and "transformational grammar" which means that in order for editors to bring about a new look in translation, they can sidestep the formal equivalency (direct translation) of the King James Bible by private interpretation and grammatical re-editing. A modern version can be sponsored by individuals and publishers who are accountable to no one, not even the Church. Thus, there is a real potential for faithfulness, accuracy, and correctness, to be sacrificed for the sake of readability, promotion, and sales.

Our task before us, as Bible Believing Christians, is to expose the modern day counterfeits which seek to supplant the Word of God in the singular translation which has been providentially given to the English speaking peoples of the world in our time.

Before proceeding, it should be realized that much intimidation against the King James Bible has been wrought through the use of the Hebrew and Greek Stronghold. During the past several decades, most conservative fundamental Bible colleges and seminaries have been discouraging the faith of their students with regard to the supernatural inspiration, authority, trustworthiness, and inerrancy of the Scriptures by imposing barriers of esoteric languages. As a result, most church pulpits are filled today by these former students. As a young and impressionable man of God enrolls for study and preparation to become a pastor, he is soon informed that the Bible was originally written in Hebrew and Greek and in order to understand it one must master these languages. Consequently, the student is presented with the imposing challenge and formidable task of having to learn two foreign languages. Eventually, he finds himself enrolled in a first-year Greek course, at the very least, with the ominous likelihood that he will be required to spend many more semester hours over the coming years in the study of these languages if he is to truly master the Word of God. 18

As soon as the student enters the class, something very peculiar, although very common, occurs. Not yet knowing Greek, he immediately finds himself placed at a great disadvantage. The professor almost invariably subjugates the student under his authority – not merely as an older brother to a younger, but with regard to all spiritual matters by virtue of his "superior" knowledge of the ancient languages. The clear impression given the student is not only that he is a "tiny fish in a big pond", but that he simply does not really have the Word of God because it was written in Hebrew and Greek. In other words, in all the years that he has been a Christian prior to this, he has been "missing out" on a major part of his Christian experience. The student thus finds himself faced with not only this discouraging predicament, but the virtually irresolvable dilemma of exclusion from knowing the "Holy" language. He thus finds himself at the mercy of his instructor who does. The student, now fully aware that he is only a "second class" Christian is thus placed in the appalling circumstance of submission to a teacher who not only may or may not know and truly love the Lord but who can manipulate him, inadvertently if not deliberately, and misdirect him to a false view of the inspiration and preservation of the Scripture and all its meaning. 19

This same scenario is repeated endlessly in seminaries and churches across the country as pulpiteers, set apart in Hebrew and Greek, wield their "expertise’ and lord it over their spiritual subordinates. We are often told that to "really" understand the Bible we should learn Hebrew and Greek. In many a Bible study it is said "let’s go to the Greek and see what is says". In other words, what does it say in the Greek (as if what we have is so different and deficient)? Appeals to the Greek are made as if the English translation is not efficacious. The problem is exacerbated by the fact of so many versions of the Bible. Unfortunately, through all of this, the poor student loses sight of the fact (if he ever had such "sight" to begin with) that all along he has had all the tools necessary at his disposal to "beat" these giants – with the King James Bible which is the best rendition of both the Hebrew and Greek ever written in the English language. The work has already been done. So what does it say in the Hebrew and Greek? That’s what is says – what we have in our timeless, authorized King James Bible IS the Hebrew and Greek, precisely translated. This great need has already been fulfilled by the extraordinary team of scholars who translated the Bible into English in 1611 under the providential superintendance of God.

The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, Thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever. Psalm 12:6-7

This writer can testify to a number of times he has been told that he cannot really know God’s word unless he, too, learns Hebrew and Greek. At the same time, this writer has no doubt that there is indeed great value to be gained by the careful and passionate study of these ancient languages. It should be a rich and rewarding endeavor in its own right. However, do these people who stress this as a prerequisite to holiness realize that they are denying a vital aspect of the supernatural inspiration of God’s Holy Word in doing so?

At this point perhaps a few comparisons between several well known popular versions and the King James Bible is in order. Many differences are very subtle requiring some thought (Doesn’t the Bible require thought anyway? – Psalm 119:97) while many others are very obvious. Undoubtedly, many of the men who have found themselves on committees to write new versions of the Bible are sincere, godly men with the best intentions in mind, but who in the end had little control over the ultimate result. Others have awakened to the folly of which they had a part and are justifiably disappointed, regretting that they were ever even involved. The hard lesson is that we must remember that deception often takes the form of a counterfeit or imitation of the real thing. Satan, who would be like the most High and whose magicians copied Moses exactly, himself masquerades as an angel of light. Galatians 1:6-7 tells us that there is "another gospel: which is not another; but . . . would pervert the gospel of Christ." So they change it "just a little bit" until we have another bible which is not the Bible. In the following eleven examples, the problem should become clear to the reader that the Bible has been tampered with by purveyors of modern versions.

  1. A telling aberration is evident in the New International Version (NIV) in a reading of Isaiah 14:12-15. In the King James Bible we read "How are thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! . . . (verse 12a) Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell" (verse 15a). However, in the New International Version (NIV) we read: "How you have fallen from heaven O morning star, son of the dawn . . . but you are brought down to the grave." The New American Standard Version (NASV), the Revised Standard Version (RSV) and almost all other modern versions read virtually the same as the NIV, using "morning star", "star of the morning", "O Day Star" and similar. Yet, historically, Isaiah 14 has been cited throughout the Church as the singular biography and identification of Lucifer. Lucifer, as we know from the rest of Scriptures, is Satan, that old serpent (Genesis 3:1-5; II Corinthians 11:3; Revelation 12:9), the tempter (Genesis 3:1; Matthew 4:3), the prince of the power of the air (Ephesians 2:2), the prince of the devils (Matthew 9:34), "your adversary the devil" goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8), who aspires to exalt himself (II Thessalonians 2:3-4) as God. As we see in Isaiah 14:12 of the King James Bible, Lucifer is in heaven; in verse 15 the same is in hell. From this passage, in the context of the rest of Scripture, it would be senseless to conclude anything other than the fact that Lucifer and Satan are identical. The new versions have removed the name "Lucifer" thereby eliminating oftlinethe only reference to his true identity in the entire Bible. This change is not the result of translation from the Hebrew language. The Hebrew, as well as all the old English translations prior to the King James Translation, rendered Lucifer as "son of the morning", not as the "morning star" or "day star." These terms refer to Jesus Christ as we see in the King James Bible (II Peter 1:19; Revelation 2:28; 22:16). However, it is not necessary to go to the Hebrew (or Greek) to see the problem. Through this error in a modern version, Jesus Christ has been categorically identified as, and equated with, Satan! Thus, we find nothing short of blasphemy in a popular contemporary version of the Bible in common use in churches across our fair land. 20  

    King James Bible verses are still widely quoted by an older generation of pastors, teachers and other brethren who have memorized its passages. Many salvations have resulted from this. The new birth thus continues to occur from the King James seed. In 1 Peter 1:23 we read: "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever." Then in Mark 4:14-15, we read (again, the King James Bible) about the sower – Christ or a minister of the Gospel – who soweth the seed (or word of God). In the same passage we continue, reading of those who, as the parable is interpreted, hear the word with no effect because of Satan who prevents them from the truth. We read on of those who hear the word and seem to receive it gladly but under hardship their faith is aborted because it is rootless and superfluous having been only in the strength of the flesh which gave them no endurance. Then we read of those who hear the word but, because of worldly cares and encumbrances, their faith is choked out as if by so many weeds in a garden. Then, of course, there are those who "sprang up, and bore fruit an hundred fold" (Luke 8:8a). The seed, as Luke explains, represents the word of God. Through the New International Version, assuredly a one world exploit, handed out to new converts by the thousands, in which sixty-four thousand words have been taken away 21, it seems as if even in this the Word is taken away by Satan and any possible life, as it were, is aborted. Hence, there seems to be a parallel, difficult to ignore, between two events that occurred in 1973; Roe vs. Wade – when the Supreme Court legalized abortion, and the publication of the NIV New Testament. The first attacked the babe in the womb while the second attacked the babe in Christ. The King James Bible is the Word of God incorruptible.

  2. In the King James Bible, we read in Colossians 1:14: "In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Whereas in the NAS, NIV, and Revised Standard Version (RSV) we read: "In whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins." We see here that a most vital element of the passage has been diminished ought from it (Deuteronomy 4:2). In other words, "Through his blood" has been completely left out here. Even though reconciliation and peace through the blood of the cross is stated sometime later (verse 20), the deletion of the blood atonement from the text at any time has to represent a very unfortunate de-emphasis. Dear reader, if you do not find these three most precious words in your "Bible" someone has tampered with it so that it is not the Bible!

  3. In a more subtle departure from the King James Bible, we find in the Revised Standard Version (RSV) the following mistranslation in Luke 1:34, where in the King James Bible we read: "Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?" The RSV reads: "Then Mary said to the angel, how shall this be since I have no husband?" For a woman to say she knows not a man is not the same as saying I have no husband. Women have children all the time without having a husband. In a similar mistranslation the RSV in Isaiah 7:14 reads: "Behold, a young woman shall conceive and bear a son…" That God was declaring that Mary was a virgin is an airtight case in the King James Bible as corroborated by Isaiah 7:14. However, in the RSV, unlike the King James Bible, the reader cannot divine from these verses that Jesus did not inherit Adam’s sin nature. The King James Bible makes it doctrinally clear that in regard to his humanity, not his eternal deity, Jesus inherited the sinless nature of His Father God as a result of the miraculous conception of Mary! The Scriptures teach unequivocally that one receives his "nature" (not necessarily character traits) from one’s father, not one’s mother. Thus, in the RSV we have a veritable demotion and isolation of Jesus from divinity to humanity alone. In other words, in this case, the RSV is denying that Jesus is God

    Fortunately, the RSV is not consistent in its mistranslations. In Matthew 1:18-20 the RSV tells us that Mary "…was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit." Unfortunately, few people read their Bibles consistently, or straight through from cover to cover and, consequently, are usually not in a position to catch these inconsistencies.

  4. In the NAS and NIV versions we find another demotion of the deity of Jesus in their rendering of Luke 2:33. The King James Bible reads: "And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him." Meanwhile, in the NAS and NIV we read "And His father and his mother were amazed at things which were being said about Him." The wording of the King James Bible is a meticulous affirmation that Joseph was not the father of Jesus. These two versions reduce Jesus to a mere human, born with a sin nature inherited from Adam.

  5. In the RSV we find that the resurrection is omitted by those who "take away from the words of this book" (Revelation 22:19). In Luke 24:6 we read in the King James Bible: "He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee," while in the RSV we read "Remember how He told you, while He was still in Galilee." In the RSV "He is not here, but is risen," is left out. Even though the RSV does mention the resurrection in the following verse, we can plainly see that reference to the resurrection has been left out in this verse. This may seem to be a trivial contention, however we are reminded in Matthew 4:4 (King James Bible) that Jesus said, "It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." Every word! With a commandment like that, can we afford to leave anything out of God’s Word? Sometimes these words that have been taken out of the Biblical text are placed in a footnote citing "other ancient authorities." However, footnotes are not usually comprehended by a reader as part of the text.

  6. Another example of how truth can be changed into a lie through modern "scholarship" is evident in Living Letters and The Living New Testament, versions which are paraphrases by K. L. Taylor. In Romans 2:11, we read the following in the King James Bible: "For there is no respect of persons with God." The Taylor paraphrase reads: "For God treats everyone the same." This is positively an untruth! God does not treat everybody the same, not even believers. Proof of this is found in Luke 12:42-48 and Revelation 22:12.

  7. It is common knowledge in the advertising industry that the word "new" is one of the top selling words on consumer products. That is why it appears so often on product labels. This word, attached to the label of one current bible version, has made IT a best seller. However, the changed words inside the covers of the New King James Version betray it also as a veritable counterfeit. The NKJV has over 2,000 changes from the actual King James Bible. It has been regarded by one expert as "the most dangerous of the new versions" not only because of its content but because of the use of certain marketing strategies. 22 The deity of Christ has disappeared in a number of places in the NKJV. That the Sonship of Christ is an essential doctrine of Scripture is evident by the accounts of those who questioned it as we see in Matthew 4:3,6 (the devil) and 27:40 (His mockers). I John 2:22-23 tells us that "he is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father." The King James Bible says in Acts 3:13, 26 that Jesus Christ is the "Son" of God. However, in the New King James Version, He is reduced to a mere "servant." Something very similar occurs again in Acts 4:27, 30. Another change in the NKJV is in Revelation 1:6, where instead of "God and his Father" the NKJV says "His God and Father." Regarding Abraham’s prophetic comment in Genesis 22:8 where he says in the King James Bible "God will provide himself a lamb" the NKJV has changed it to read "God will provide for Himself a lamb." We know this was prophetic because a ram was provided for Abraham, not a lamb; God himself became The Lamb.

    It might be argued that Matthew 12:18 in the King James Bible which reads, "Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased’ translates the Greek word in reference to Christ as "Servant," not son. However, a reader familiar with scripture will recognize immediately from the wording that this verse hearkens back to the almost identical wording of Matthew 3:17 where it says, "This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased." It leaves little doubt that the subject is Christ, the Son of God.

  8. In the King James Bible we read in I John 3:5 "take away our sins", while some new versions drop the word, "our", and just say, "take away sins". Whose sins we’re not told. The same occurs in Hebrews 1:3 where the King James Bible reads, "by himself purged our sins." New versions omit "our" and "by himself" leaving only "purged sins." In 1 Peter 4:1, the King James Bible says, "Christ hath suffered for us" while the NIV drops "for us." For all we know from this, Christ just suffered; maybe he suffered because of the cruelty of the people, or maybe he just had a bad day. However, we know from the King James Bible that He was suffering for us.

  9. Time after time we see another gospel that isn’t the Gospel. In Mark 9:42, the King James Bible says, "believe in me." That is how we are saved; we believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Some new versions just say, "believe." There are lots of things to believe – crystal power, Hare Krishna, 2+2=5, etc., since the "in me" is gone. New versions present a works-based salvation that is compatible with the religions of the world. The King James Jesus says in Mark 10:24, "Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God!" New versions contort the verse and say, "how hard it is to enter into the kingdom of God." Who would want to tell a child that it is hard to enter into the kingdom of God? It is easy! The Bible tells about the simplicity that is in Christ (II Corinthians 11:3). In Matthew 7:14, the NKJV changes the King James Bible from "narrow is the way," to "difficult is the way." In John 3:36, the King James Bible reads "believeth," which is how we are saved – by faith, while new versions change to "obey." By the same token, "Unbelief" in Hebrews 4:6, is changed to "disobedience." Consistently these new versions are changing the gospel. The resurrection is similarly desecrated.

  10. First Corinthians 15:4 presents the second part of the gospel. It is extremely important. It says, "he rose again the third day." The gospel of Christ includes the resurrection. New versions often veil the resurrection, the ascension, and the post-resurrection appearances of Jesus. In Acts 26:23 the King James Bible reads, "rose from the dead." New versions change it to, "proclaim light." This has no meaning whatsoever. The NASV is most notable in this regard as it omits or brackets almost every mention of the ascension, bodily resurrection, and appearance of Jesus Christ after his death. The NASV omits the very important part of Luke 24:51-52, where the King James Bible reads, "he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him." The NASV says instead, "he parted form them." They omit that "he was carried up into heaven," and "they worshiped him." These omissions, or non assertions, in effect, deny the deity hence Lordship of Jesus Christ. This makes silent concord with New Age philosophy that says "He never left, and he cannot return because he has always been here."

  11. Perhaps our sampling would not be complete without at least one more look at the Old Testament. In Genesis 11:1, in the King James Bible we find "And the whole earth was of one language and one speech", whereas in the RSV we find, "one language and few words." In jesting, one man has said, "There must not have been many women in those days!"

Among the many things that we see from this very limited selection is that words and ideas have consequences. The fact is that Christian soldiers cannot win with man-made armour. Every believer is referred to as a Christian soldier, who has been chosen and called into service by the Lord Jesus Christ (II Timothy 2:3-4). He is called to put on the full armor for the battle against the Satanic enemies described in Ephesians 6:1-18. We are instructed to ‘Put on the whole armour of God, and above all, to take the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God: Praying always." Suppose we mix truth and error, a bible of man’s own making. It would be like fitting a soldier with a shield made of iron and clay and handing him a plastic sword. That is why it is imperative that the utmost fidelity in God’s Word is assured, and in the King James Bible alone do we find it. In no other book do we find its equal. This is because of its divine pedigree, shared by no other.

In Matthew 4:4 (King James Bible) Jesus said, "It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by ever word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." This verse is very specific. It is clear from this verse that we as Christians are to live on every word out of the mouth of God. How is the believer to follow this commandment if all these versions – NASV, NEW, NIV, NKJV, NRSV, RSV, etc., say different things? God is not the author of confusion and He does not contradict himself. It might be objected that they all contain the doctrines, they all have the gospel, and they all basically teach the same ideas. But, read the commandment again; not just ideas or basic truths, not just the Gospel – Every word!

Again, it might be objected that only the original manuscripts in original languages, which are lost forever, contain the original words of God, and that no translation or copy can carry over God’s words perfectly, and furthermore we do not know exactly what the words were. How can we find God’s words?

Such objections are repeatedly shown to be false in Scripture. For instance, many times in the New Testament, the Old Testament is quoted. The Apostle Paul quotes from the Hebrew Old Testament and writes it in Greek under the superintendence of God. No one says these translations are imperfect! Paul refers to the Old Testament Hebrew texts as "Holy Scriptures." In II Timothy 3:15-17 (in the King James Bible) we see that Paul wrote to Timothy and tells him assuredly that the Scripture Timothy read when he was a child was Holy Scripture. Timothy had read copies of texts, not originals. Paul calls this scripture inspired.

It is also argued that when the Bible is translated from one language to another, it always loses some of its meaning. Besides the Biblical proof that this is a non argument, it is nothing less than phenomenal that people who will believe that God called into existence the entire universe and its complexity of wonders cannot believe that God can and has translated His Word from Greek to English perfectly! God has promised that He would preserve His words (Psalm 12:6-7, King James Bible). He promised that his words would not wither away in lost or destroyed manuscripts (I Peter 1:24-25). The Bible believing Christian holds that God had His inspired word, scribed by sinful men, like you and me, yet to turn around and doubt that He could and would overcome the limitations of mere mortal sinful men by His omnipotent superintendence and preserve His Word is not only nonsensical but is an exhibition of ignorance about His promises. If this were true, Jesus made a commandment that the people even in his time could not obey. Jesus assured us that God’s words matter and that this is no side issue. Psalm 33:4; 50:16-17; 107; 10-11; 119:57, 139, 140; 138:2; and Proverbs 138:2 all bear that out.

There will never be another English bible as reliable as the King James Bible because publishers and bible societies insist on copyrighting their versions to insure that the profits (not the prophets) return to them. Modern translations have inevitably complicated the language and made more difficult their reading. Almost all of the words in the King James Bible are one or two syllable Anglo-Saxon words. Since the King James Bible has already laid claim to them first, the derivative copyright works must replace them with more difficult, Latinized words which often have three or more syllables, often with suffixes and prefixes. For example: In Ephesians 4:16 the King James Bible reads "joint" whereas the NIV reads "supporting ligament." In II Chronicles 2:2 the King James reads "told" whereas the NIV reads "conscripted." In Hebrews 1:3 the King James reads "image" whereas the NIV reads "representation," and so on.

The results of a recent nationwide survey indicated that only a third of church members today believe that the Bible is the Word of God. The vast majority believe that the Bible "contains" the word of God. 23 The King James Bible is the Word of God. New versions contain some of the word of God. As new versions replace the King James Bible in sales and in use, it is no wonder people sense this void. In defense of their work, unsaved scholars say that the omissions in new versions are not wholesale – that the doctrine is compromised only partially. As long as doctrine can be found somewhere in their versions, they claim such versions are acceptable. However, this contention fails when tested by Scripture. The words of the Bible tell us that "a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump" (I Corinthians 5:6). The Bible is of necessity a unified whole. All Bible doctrine is interdependent. When there is an error in one place in the Bible, its entirety is muted or destroyed by the poison.

That the world is encroaching ever further into the life of the churches is an observation that cannot be contradicted. That more and more seminary graduates deny special creation, the historicity of the angelic and Adamic fall, the entrance of iniquity, the dilemma of sin, the virgin birth of Christ, His divinity and oneness with God the Father, his sinless life, atoning death, resurrection, and the second advent, is also very evident. As newer versions of the Bible are published, and as these modern versions conform to standards of contemporary scholarship, worship, and church membership lifestyle, so does the profit increase. What we are witnessing in the world today is no less than a wholesale covert agenda of diplomatic fraud which seeks to destroy faith in the plenary-verbal inspiration of the Bible. The great battle of the Christian faith today is indeed centered on the inspiration, authority and infallibility of Holy Writ. For in God’s Word alone do we find the Way, the Truth, and the Life in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Included among the many disquieting consequences of the proliferation of modern versions of the Bible is the fact that they have brought about disorder in public worship – no longer can we read the word of God in unison from the Bible because each person has a different version. This is a grievous loss in our time, especially when church unity is at a premium. There is also great confusion among students of the Bible. Rarely can one attend a Bible study where there is not a disconcerting array of versions. Hence we see not only a subtle division in, but a deterioration of what we as Christians hold dear – that sweet fellowship in the Truth. A grievous loss of church unity has occurred because of the divisiveness of modern versions.

Finally, to more or less summarize what has been said: God’s Word has been kept intact for all English speaking peoples through the King James Bible. That it should be set apart from all other books is evident by its unique design. This is true for a number of vital reasons including the few that follow:

  1. The King James Bible is built upon the foundation of superior original language texts, having been translated from what is called the traditional Masoretic Hebrew Old Testament text and the Traditional Greek New Testament Received Text. These are the exact texts – the timeless changeless texts which underlie the Textus Receptus and the King James Bible.

  2. The King James Bible was translated by a company of men who were superior in their linguistic qualifications, superior in their working knowledge of the original language texts, superior in their scholarship, and extraordinary in their dedication and walk before God. None of the translators were paid for their work. These men fervently believed that the people needed to read the Bible.

  3. The King James Bible is superior in its translation technique. It was a coordinated effort by a company of some 47 men divided into six groups of scholars. Each man in a group working independently on his assigned book had to be skilled in Hebrew or Greek. Their work was then compared with the results of others in the company who had translated the same portions of Scripture. The work was not finished until all were agreed on the finished product.

    In contrast to this, translation committees of today usually have a few men skilled in some books and a few skilled in other books, and a few others on the committee who are more or less bystanders whose work is to check other versions and smooth out some of the English style. All of these, in turn, work under a select few who are the "brains" of the committee who do most, if not all, of the actual translation work.

  4. The King James Bible is superior in its theology. It is not affected by the doctrinal changes brought about by paraphrase and the use of variant minority language texts. Almost all modern versions are derived from theologians who refused to accept the Textus Receptus.

  5. The language of the King James Bible has a majesty and a beauty of its own in its style and poetry, and when you read it aloud there is no doubt that you are quoting the Bible. When you hear a reading of the King James Bible, you know you are hearing the very Word of God.

  6. The lofty or formal language always connotes a great degree of importance. It is a language style commensurate to the Lord and a style of which He is deserving. Almost all the modern translations try to reduce the language of God’s Word to a common or worldly level. The King James sets the Bible apart from all the other books of the world, and appropriately so, for it cannot be treated other than as Scripture – the distinct Word of God.

  7. Other translations and paraphrases come and go in and out of popularity, but the perennial King James Bible is always in use, and in it God’s Word will always be with us. Furthermore, among things, and neither have we exhausted its virtues, the King James Bible is a great and enduring language stabilizer.

An objection often raised against the said "King James Only Crowd" is that people learn something from the other (modern) versions, too, and that some even get saved: but I dare say that this occurs in spite of these errant versions, not because of them!

The Authorized Version of 1611, or, in other words, the King James Bible, stands alone in its uniqueness, integrity, and fidelity to the truthfulness of God’s Word. Among reasons why this writer holds this conviction is because of the great harm done not only to the Word of God, but the detriment wrought in the local church in its public worship, and, of course, because of the confusion created in countless group and individual Bible studies. After all, it could be said: How do you think your professor would think or feel if all of his students used different text books in his class?! In our case, God is our Great Professor! He alone is the one true God, who hath walked among us upon this earth and left us the living and enduring legacy of His Word and His Spirit. Until He comes, Amen.

"The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand forever." Isaiah 40:8


Bibliography

NOTE Regarding the Bibliography: The authors of the books listed here do not interpret, they do not translate, neither do they paraphrase they simply point out the magnitude and seriousness of a problem that has become so prevalent as to be promiscuous even to the casual observer. The adulteration and abuse of God’s Holy Word has become so commonplace that the future of The Bible does not look good. For the reader who discovers the aberrations for himself, just as those before the present writer, it should be evident that there is no turning back to this Sodom and Gomorrah of our day.

  1. I. Rousas J. Rushdoony, Translation and Subversion, pp. 7-9.

  2. Rushdoony, Op, cit., pp. 4-5.

  3. D. A. Waite, Defending The King James Bible, pp. 1, 4-5.

  4. Ibid, p. 89.

  5. Gail Riplinger, Which Bible Is God’s Word?, p. 70.

  6. Ibid., p. 70.

  7. Ibid., p. 71.

  8. Ibid., p. 70.

  9. Floyd N. Jones, Which Version Is the Bible, p. 54.

  10. Jones, op. cit., pp. 5-6.

  11. D. A. Waite, Defending The King James Bible, pp.38-41.

  12. Floyd N. Jones, Which Version Is The Bible?, p. 54-56.

  13. Ibid., p. 56.

  14. Floyd N. Jones, Which Version Is The Bible?, p. 54-56.

  15. Ibid., pp. 183, 206.

  16. Ibid., p. 58.

  17. Floyd N. Jones, Which Version Is The Bible?, pp. 61-62.

  18. Jones, op. cit., pp. 16-17.

  19. Jones, op. cit., pp. 16-17.

  20. Floyd N. Jones, Which Version Is The Bible?, p. vii.

  21. Gail Riplinger, Which Bible Is God’s Word, p. 117.

  22. D. A. Waite, Defending the King James Bible, p. 124.

  23. Gail Riplinger, Which Bible is God’s Word? p. 116.

Fuller, David Otis, True or False, Grand Rapids International Publications, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1973.

Fuller, David Otis, Which Bible? Institute for Biblical Textual Studies, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1970.

Hills, Edwards F., Believing Bible Study, The Christian Research Press, Des Moines, Iowa, 1967.

Jones, Floyd Nolen, Which Version Is The Bible?, KingsWord Press, The Woodlands, Texas, 1999.

Ray, Jasper James, God Wrote Only One Bible, Eye Opener Publishers, Junction City, Oregon, 1955.

Riplinger, Gail A., New Age Bible Versions, A. V. Publications, Ararat, Virginia, 1993.

Riplinger, Gail A., Which Bible is God’s Word?, Hearthstone Publishing, Ltd., Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, 1994.

Rushdoony, R. J., Translation and Subversion, Trinity Episcopal Church, Victoria, Texas, 1964.

Van Bruggen, Jakob, The Ancient Text of the New Testament, Premier Publishing, Winnipeg, 1976.

Waite, D. A., Defending the King James Bible, The Bible for Today Press, Collingswood, new Jersey, 1992.

Waite, D. A., Fundamentalists Distortions on Bible Verses, The Bible for Today Press, Collingswood, New Jersey, 1999.


Compiled, Edited, and Written by
J. Timothy Unruh 
Logos Pax Vitalis 
P. O. Box 1034
Rocklin, CA 95677-1034

Copyright © 2001 © 2002

Published with Permission by European-American Evangelistic Crusades, Inc.

 

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