I have a lot of friends who believe that the KJV is the only version fit for human consumption, and that all others are corrupt; That God was true to His word and preserved every last jot and tittle of His Word and saw to it that only the KJV would contain those every subtle pen strokes.
Personal opinion: that’s sad.
Actually.. lemme correct that. That’s bad.
Why would a person want to embrace one man’s translation (the KJV) and preach it as the only infallible Word of God when God never rubber-stamped the 1611 KJV? Honestly? I’ve never understood that. That’s just a modern day version of “teaching as doctrines the traditions of men” ..or perhaps I should say “But in vaine they do worship me, teaching for doctrines, the commandements of men“. (Matthew 15:9, KJV 1611)
I’m sure we’ve all heard the mantra “If the KJV was good enough for Paul and Jesus, then by golly, it’s good enough for me!” But seriously, answer the question: where did God ever say that the KJV (1611 or otherwise) was the infallible Word of God? God never said that – man did! I still haven’t gotten a straight answer to that question from my KJV-only friends. Maybe someday they’ll answer how/why God hid His word from the world until King James came along, and then allowed only a select few to be able to get His pure Word – but only if they happened to speak the goode king’s English. Maybe they have an interesting interpretation of Isaiah 6:9-10. I dunno. But I digress.
For all the manuscript debating we can do, all we’ll do is rehash the same old arguments and rebuttals. One man’s manuscript evidence is another man’s forgery; one man’s sacred scripture is another man’s deviation from the original. It never ends. So I’ll not debate those (very relevant) issues at this time.
There is another line of thinking that’s a bit more interesting: the KJVthumper bashers (peole who like to bash the people who swear on the KJV 1611) will tell you that the 1611 KJV didn’t use the English of the day. Well, my tape recorder was broken when I visited the goode king in his palace back then, so I suppose it doesn’t come as any surprise that I don’t have any hard evidence on my shelves to convince you. However, the discussion needn’t stop there: Using this lovely medium we call the “Internet”, we can quickly ascertain whether the “KJV English” language was common for books and Bibles of the day. If it was, then who cares if it was written in a given style for one translation: the style was either common or not common, period, and that’s a more relevant question (to my mind, at any rate).
How do we check whether the “KJV English” was popular in that day? Simple! We’ll use any number of websites and READ FOR OURSELVES from the versions of Bibles that were available before and after the goode ole KJV 1611 was written. Namely, use www.studylight.org. (there are lots of other websites that do the same thing)
So.. Here’s Luke 3:36 in a variety of translations from around the time that King James authorized his 1611 Bible (King James & Co weren’t the only ones putting out Bible translations back then, y’know):
Tyndale New Testament (1526)
which was the sonne of Cainan: which was the sonne of Arphaxat: which was the sonne of Sem: which was the sonne of Noe: which was the sonne of Lameth:
The Bishop’s Bible (1568)
whiche was the sonne of Arphaxad, whiche was the sonne of Sem, whiche was the sonne of Noe, whiche was the sonne of Lamech:
The Geneva Bible (1587)
The sonne of Cainan, the sonne of Arphaxad, the sonne of Sem, the sonne of Noe, the sonne of Lamech,
The King James Version 1611 (Authorized)
Which was the sonne of Cainan, which was the sonne of Arphaxad, which was the sonne of Sem, which was the sonne of Noe, which was the sonne of Lamech,
Daniel Mace New Testament (1729)
son of Cainan, son of Arphaxad, son of Sem, son of Noe, son of Lamech, son of Mathusala,
Wesley’s New Testament (1755)
the son of Heber, the son of Sala, The son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, The son of Methuselah,
The King James Version 1769 (Authorized) – This is the version most KJVers use, even though they think it’s the “1611″
Which was the son of Cainan, which was the son of Arphaxad, which was the son of Sem, which was the son of Noe, which was the son of Lamech,
Ok, so maybe they started and stopped their verses in slightly different places, but so what, they’re saying the same thing and by James, they all sound like the King James! So, there you have it! Proof in the pudding; end of discussion! All things considered, I don’t suppose the KJV reads too terribly different from the other Bibles that came out around the same time. Discussion settled. The language used in the KJV was not some tortured archaic uncommon language.
See – that was simple.
Did I just notice that ALL of these translations show that Luke MISQUOTED Gen 11:12 and 1 Chronicles???
And Shem liued, after he begate Arphaxad, fiue hundred yeeres, and begate sonnes and daughters. And Arphaxad liued fiue and thirtie yeeres, and begate Salah. (Genesis 11:11-12, KJV 1611)
Adam, Sheth, Enosh, Kenan, Mahalaleel, Iered, Henoch, Methushelah, Lamech, Noah, Shem, Ham, & Iapheth. (1 Chronicles 1:1-4, KJV 1611)
And all this time I thought that every jot and tittle of the Goode King James was perfectly preserved for all time!!??
(Take heart: There are several ways to deal with this, but the KJVers definition of ‘infallibility’ is not it)