***As of 5/18/17, this is a brand new post which I’m currently in the process of composing & editing, and will be under development until further notice. Please check back later! This notice will be removed upon completion, and I would highly suggest waiting until then before begging to read. Thank you for your patience!***
So, what’s the final verdict? Does it even really make a difference? I mean, at the end of the day isn’t it just a matter of opinion?
No doubt there have been thousands of books and articles written over the last half-century or so on these matters, and my intention is certainly not to re-invent the wheel, neither to belabor the point. The aim of this article will be to present a general overview, cover some of the most crucial points, and in as concise a manner as possible. Consequently, I will be me assuming the reader has a general understanding of both history and theology, and thus will be making certain statements without citing sources, assuming common knowledge. Therefore if you doubt or have questions about anything below, please feel free to contact me, and I shall be happy to provide historical/scriptural sources, etc. My intentions are simply to furnish you with the information necessary to arrive at an honest, balanced, and reasonable conclusion that we can be confident in. Following the article I will provide a list of some of the resources which I’ve found to be helpful in researching these matters.
I will start by stating my position. Because I believe that truth is not relative, and in the importance of making informed decisions, I would encourage you, even if you disagree, to continue to read, that you may at least understand the FACTS upon which my position has been reached. Keep in mind, this exposition primarily concerns the Bibles of the ENGLISH language, not only because this is my native tongue, but also because it’s the most universal language of the world today.
I most typically use the King James Version but am not a “King James Only-ist”, or at least not in the strictest sense. I definitely believe that other translations can be used both to the saving of souls, and to one degree or another, to be inspired. But more on all this later…
What IS the Word of God?
“For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost”-2 Peter 1:21
In other Words, God’s Word is contained in the scriptures. Naturally, common sense would indicate that this would then be contained in the language of the prophets themselves through whom God was inspiring to write (i.e. the Koine Greek of the New Testament, and the Hebrew/Aramic of the Old Testament).
Inspiration/Preservation if Scriptures
A Little History
From the very beginning, satan’s attack was upon..? you guessed it, the Word of God: “Yea, hath God said….?” (Gen. 3:1). Should we then be surprised if there is yet an attack on God’s Word?
Wicked men have always sought to destroy and repress the Holy Scriptures. Not only in ancient history, every time the Hebrew people were taken into captivity, but even leading up to the modern age. During the Papal Supremacy of Europe, the great controversy was between the errors of the formalized church (which were based largely on superstition and tradition) versus what the Word of God said. This was what sparked what’s come to be known as the Protestant Reformation.
Subsequently, those who appealed to the plain and simple teachings of the scriptures were ridiculed for “rejecting the authority of the church”, or “leaning on their fallible conscious/understanding”, and told that “only a priest could correctly interpret the scriptures”. And of course prior to the advent of the movable-type printing press, only they and certain elite families even had access to the Holy Writ. In time, the Bible was officially condemned in the “Vulgar Tongue” of the common man (i.e. in any language but the Latin Vulgate of Jerome), and those who sought to get the Bible in the hands of the Common man’s language endured the worst physical tortures and death. Thus this period has become to be known as “The Dark Ages”, with the Light of truth being so suppressed.
But God in his sovereignty did not leave the world in darkness. In His impeccable timing, God gave man the Gutenberg Printing Press, enabling Bibles to be printed quicker then they could be destroyed. But did you know that papacy has never officially removed the Bible from their forbidden book index? Specifically, any Bible Translations which are based on the Textus Receptus New Testament (also known as the ‘Byzantine Tex’t, or ‘Majority text’) and the Masoretic Hebrew of the Old Testament are condemned in the Council of Trent. Only those based on Jerome’s Latin Vulgate are accepted by the church of Rome (Keep this point in mind as it will come up again later).
After the first Bible translations appeared of Luther, Tyndale, Wycliffle, Geneva, Etc. It was decided a more excellent translation was necessary in the English language that incorporated the best aspects of the preceding translations. This has become known as the A.V. (Authorized Version) 1611 King James Bible. This Bible was also based on the Textus Receptus, and do you know what happened? The devil using his agents sought to foil this translation entirely through a plot to blow up the parliament in which King James who authorized and was financially supporting this great work resided. This has become known as ‘The Gunpowder Plot” and can be read about, for instance, in Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. But by the Grace of God, in His providence, the plot was discovered and prevented.
Naturally, when the Devil discovered that he wasn’t able to keep the Bible out of the hands of the people he would seek to mimic and counterfeit it to create confusion and in seeking to get men unawares to further his mystery iniquity. Just as was the case when the devil, after three centuries of extreme persecution using wicked men in seeking to destroy the early primitive church off the face of the earth under the pagan roman empire, inspired Constantine to declare “Christianity” the official state religion, albeit nominally, incorporating all sorts of pagan practices.
INTENT is 9/10ths of the Law
Whether it’s to promulgate one’s dearly coveted opinions, just the facts, to control others, to set men free, to gain power, or what have you; everyone and everything, whether realized or not, has an ‘agenda’, either good, bad, or indifferent.
William Tyndale, who’s translation a great majority of the King James Version draws directly from, in light of centuries of papal persecution, is famously quoted as saying “If God spare my life, before many years I will cause a boy that driveth the plow to know more of the Scripture, than he [the pope] does.”, “I perceived how that it was impossible to establish the lay people in any truth except the Scripture were plainly laid before their eyes”, “I call God to record against the day we shall appear before our Lord Jesus, that I never altered one syllable of God’s Word against my conscience, nor would do this day, if all that is in earth, whether it be honor, pleasure, or riches, might be given me”, “The preaching of God’s word is hateful and contrary unto them. Why? For it is impossible to preach Christ, except thou preach against antichrist; that is to say, them which with their false doctrine and violence of sword enforce to quench the true doctrine of Christ.”
Like the 40+ Godly and learned men who gave us the King James Bible, underlying the work was a belief in importance for the common man to have access to the scriptures, because of Their power to transforms life and society for good. Then, from the preface of the KJV we read statements such as “…the preaching of God’s sacred Word among us; which is that inestimable treasure, which excelleth all the riches of the earth; because the fruit thereof extendeth itself, not only to the time spent in this transitory world, but directeth and disposeth men unto that eternal happiness which is above in heaven“, “…out of the Original Sacred Tongues, together with comparing of the lanours, both in our own, and other foreign languages, of many worthy men who went before us, there should be a one more exact translation of the holy scriptures into the English tongue…reap good fruit thereby“, “”, “…maintaining the truth of Christ, and propagating it far and near“, “…writing in defense of truth, (which hath given such a blow unto that man of sin, as will not be healed)”, “things of this quality have ever been subject to the censure [condemnation] of illmeaning and discontented persons..who therefore will seek to malign us…Popish persons“, “…to make God’s holy Truth to be yet more and more known unto the people, whom they desire still to keep in ignorance and darkness“, “we may rest secure, supported within by the truth and innocency of a good conscience having walked the ways of simplicity and integrity as before the Lord”, etc.
So as you can see, these people literally believed that they were handling the Inspired Word of God, and therefore for were concerned above all else, with producing an unbiased, honest, and accurate translation of the Word. And then, in perceiving its sacredness, and inherent goodness and power, to get it into the hands of as many men as possible. They also understood the necessity to ‘call a spade, a spade’, and expose the hypocrisy and evil done in the name of Christ, especially as these matters were actually foretold in the prophecy of the Sacred Scriptures themselves.
Now that we’ve laid forth the agenda behind KJV ‘Reformation’ Bible, lets see if we can discern the agenda behind some of the most popular subsequent translations.
NIV, ESV, ASV, RSV, AMPLIFIED
What do the above translations have in common? Rather than being based on the Textus Receptus, which has roots that can be traced back to the very 1st century church of the apostles in Antioch, known as the Peshitta Bible, they are rather based Wescott & Hort’s pro-catholic Jerome’s Latin Vulgate Greek text, which is based on on manuscripts, namely the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, which do not agree with the majority of extant texts. Proponents of their school essentially argue because they’re “older” manuscripts, they must be more accurate. This of course requires us to overlook facts such as the Sinaiticus agreeing with the manuscripts of the pagan-msytic school of Alexandria, and being found in garbage can awaiting to be burned; or that Wescott & Hort had a totally unbiblical theology, which invariable is going to have an impact in translation decisions; or for instance the influences of individuals such as the Jesuit Carlos Martini on Bibles such as the NIV.
But lets examine a couple quotes from Wescott and Hort themselves:
Oct. 17th – Hort: “I have been persuaded for many years that Mary-worship and ‘Jesus’-worship have very much in common in their causes and their results.” (Life, Vol.II, p.50).
Dec. 23rd – Westcott: “My faith is still wavering. I cannot determine how much we must believe; how much, in fact, is necessarily required of a member of the Church.” (Life, Vol.I, p.46).
I wont belabor that point, explore the article and book excerpt linked above above if you care to invest more time researching their heretical, anti-christ beliefs. At this point, let’s just consider some of the changes and departures in contrast to the KJV:
Ye shall know them by their fruits
-found. of america
-attack on KJV
-memorization of scripture
The Perfect Bible
-new translations copyrighted