Antique (Yet Strangely New) Bibles

I have a confession to make: I’m no longer an Independent Baptist Fundamentalist but I still love my King James Bible. Yes, she’s old-fashioned and in places she’s more than a bit obscure. And there are certainly plenty of trendy new Bible versions with stylish covers that scream to me from the shelves of the Christian bookstore about how much easier they are to read, learn, understand, ingest, and recycle. Some of them (if the advertising is to be believed) are even capable of reading themselves on my behalf to save me the bother.

I’ve brought a few of these versions home with me from time to time over the years and and set them next to my old KJV. But when the time comes to grab “my Bible” I know which one that is. It’s the leather-bound Old Scofield — the same Bible that my dad preached from for all those years when I was growing up. It’s the one with the “thees” and “thous” and thunder and blood and power and majesty in its pages. I’ll be disappointed if when I finally meet Abraham and Moses and Paul they don’t all sound like Alexander Scourby.

I’ll admit part of this appreciation is simple sentiment. It just sounds right to me. It contains the words I’ve got stored in my brain and hidden in my heart. It also contains breadth of vocabulary and poetry that allows me the childish joy of befuddling the general public when I allude to it (as I frequently do) in everyday conversation. But most of all, it’s simply a classic. A translation that for the past 400 years has been more read, memorized, disputed, preached from, quoted, hated, loved, railed against, treasured, denounced and cherished than any other printed work in the history of English literature. That’s pretty impressive.

I’m not unaware of the problems with this Grand Olde Version. It has a decidedly king-friendly political slant in some passages and some of its prose is downright prudish. I know that there are many people who, after having spent time in churches where the KJV is exalted more than the Saviour, can only hear in its archaic wording the language of judgment and wrath and prefer to turn instead to a fresher, gentler reading of text. And while I understand, I find it unspeakably sad that such a great old volume full of hope and truth should become a club swung at those those who need its message the most.

So why do I still turn to my KJV to refresh my spirit and comfort my heart? It’s not because it’s the only translation worth reading — there are quite a few good ones available (and I often double check my reading with more than one). It’s not because the Flesch–Kincaid readability test tells me that there may be a home-schooled third-grader somewhere in the world who actually understands most of it. It’s not because I feel that there is some magic in praying and reciting quaint phrases that have long since passed out of common use.

I suppose if I had to sum up my respect for the King James Version in few words, I’d say that it has in its translated pages a majesty and a nobility that rarely graces our speech and writing anymore. It is art. It is beauty. And it is inseparably entwined with my own spiritual journey.

When I read it, it transports me to memories of my father reading Proverbs at the breakfast table with its stern instructions that if “sinners entice thee, consent thou not.”

It evokes the images of my mother leading her seven children in recitation as we memorized entire books at a time including Philippians and its reminder of “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding.”

It leads me back to my grandfather’s graveside service with the hopeful words that “he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.”

While it may not be the best choice for everyone, I think it would be a sin to allow a handful of fundamentalists to claim sole ownership of such a treasure as the King James Version has been the the English-speaking world. My own copy in the old leather binding remains one of my most prized possessions. I only wish that I could say that i have learned to live its message as much as I have loved to hear its words.

All that being said, I’d be remiss, however, if I didn’t also include some links to past KJV-only craziness and other Bible related items that have been featured on this site:

The King James Bible Song
Claiming that the King James Version Is Easier to Read than Modern Versions
KJV-Only Author Gail Riplinger
Bible Covers
Leather Cover Wide-Margin King James Version Bibles

71 thoughts on “Antique (Yet Strangely New) Bibles”

  1. As for the topic, it’s important to remember that the King James is written, overall, in iambic meter. And portions of the translation that are rendered as high poetry in English were penned in very ordinary language in the original. The text of the Bible, in its original sense, is far less grand and majestic than the KJV, at least in most places. King James’ intent (among his other intentions) for the translation was to create an English masterpiece worthy of scholarship, public reading, and even performance. He succeeded. But the intent of the original authors was to deliver a message directly to their intended audience.

    The texts of the Bible were always intended to be *true*. They were not always intended to so oratorical. But I also like the KJV best. But I make sure I read other translations.

    1. But I also like the KJV best. But I make sure I read other translations.

      I should have just let you write the piece. It would have been quite a bit shorter and still said just as much. 🙂

  2. Well said, friend. I wish I had written those words. This just became my favorite post on this site.

  3. Love the Bible cover link. All the godly women at our church had hand made cross stitched covers. It shows that we were Proverbs 31 women.

  4. Darrell said, ” it is inseparably entwined with my own spiritual journey”. This is what seals the deal for me. I have seen lives changed and families restored under the teaching of many different versions, and I have been told that I’m not really saved because I wasn’t touching an AV 1611 when I prayed the sinner’s prayer. But in the end, it is the influence that the KJV has had on me personally that keeps me using it. Thank you for an amazing piece, Darrell.

  5. Wow, just wow. So much of this hits home & rings true in my own life experience & walk with Christ as well. Being saved & growing as well as drifting under the great old KJV has surely been used of the Lord to make my spiriyual journey richer. I doubt I’ll ever abandon it, I pray I never will, though I am also helped & blessed by other translations as well. Thank you for sharing your heart with us.

  6. I’m so happy to hear so many people talking so kindly about a version of the Bible that is dear to me. guess it’s pretty hard to think ill of it. After all, what did the KJV do to me? It’s people that mis-use a text. Anyway, awesome post, Darrell.

  7. I usually read the NASB or ESV, but I still like the King. In fact I just cracked it open and the King and the bulletin from one of my best friends wedding fell out.

  8. My favorite thing about the KJV is that it gives the best (by which I mean, the one that fits my life best) translation of 1 Tim 4:8a: “For bodily exercise profiteth little”. Every other translation sounds more like it’s giving assent to *some* value to exercise; but the KJV sounds so wonderfully disdainful. 😛

  9. Great post Darrell. Edifying as well. =)

    I just finished a blog series celebrating the 400th anniversary of the KJV and share similar sentiments. That said, I almost never use my printed KJV anymore. I want the ESV to be for my children what the KJV was for me.

    Grace to you.

  10. Even this unregenerate heathen loves the KJV for the poetry and majesty and power of its language. Other translations are more understandable and perhaps more accurate, but using another translation is rather like coming home and finding that someone has painted the rooms a different color and re-arranged the furniture. It’s home, but it’s not RIGHT.

  11. Pointless trivia: Scofield co-founded what eventually became Philadelphia Biblical University.

    Depending on what edition of the Scofield Bible you have, you may see on the title page (or near it) the list of names of the revision committee. Among the names is Clarence E. Mason, Jr.

    Dr Mason was a professor of my dad’s at Philadelphia College of the Bible (PBU’s name back then) in the late 60s, and also attended the same church that we did in the early 70s.

    1. Wow. I’m a PBU alum. Dr. Mason taught my dad when he was there, and I had him for a couple of classes. He was a Character, and his wife was a great blessing to me. And, yes, I have both Scofields. :mrgreen:

      1. Well, since someone else noticed/identified, here’s more trivia:

        Mrs Mason was my Sunday School teacher for a bit.

        James (Jim) P Vold was the pastor of the afore-mentioned church and another of Dad’s profs at PCB.

  12. Most of us who were raised fundy, memorized most of our Bible verses from the KJV. So, it will always be a part of our lives, in a sense.

    My kids will not really know the KJV, I think. It’s not the version used in our church, and I prefer Bibles my kids can read and understand (yeah, yeah, I know literate children can read and understand the King James–apparently mine aren’t so smart. :roll:)

    For me, the King James brings with it too much baggage for me to really appreciate even the poetry of it. I suppose it isn’t the version itself that I have a problem with, it’s more the associated memories. It is the way it was misquoted and misused by those who either didn’t know better, or did know better and did not care. I can’t see myself ever going back to reading the King James, but I understand that for some people it may evoke fonder memories.

    1. I completely agree with you RJW. Its words were capriciously twisted to fit foregone conclusions. Although my KJV is my most expensive Bible and easiest to hold and read, I just cannot bring myself to do it anymore because of all the bad memories. Besides I have no idea what the real meaning is supposed to be.

  13. I remember a dear old teaching elder whom I hold in high regard and learned much from his teaching once said.
    The best way to study Scripture is to get a plain King James Bible, with out references or man’s commentary… and read it.

    I did just that. I rescued a hard back plain KJV Bible from Goodwill and began. These days it is marked, highlighted, underlined and noted. It is now held together with duct tape and packaging tape. I hold it in higher regard than then the Large Black Leather Wide-margin Cambridge I paid a small fortune for. I love that little duct-taped refugee from Goodwill.

    That being said my disillusion with all things fundy has swept up my little friend as well. My aversion to the IFB and all I have experienced in the bunker system has separated me from the King James. While it is the Scripture that is committed to my memory and the version that makes up my internal concordance I find myself drawn to other versions.

    I am so very thankful for those whom the Lord gave the gifts and ability to translate Scripture into the English language, I do not believe it was a once and forever deal. I find I have little patience with those who believe that all English translations must use the King James as the standard, or that King James is somehow re-inspired. The King James Version was just that, a version. It was very much dependent on the versions that came before it, and to a certain degree modern versions have much of their heritage in the King James.

    Yet the Body of Christ has gotten to the point that it is so contentious that we must divide into camps regarding versions, on top of our divisions of denominations, music and a thousand other points of extra biblical dogma. There is truly a famine, not of a lack of the word, but a lack of true understanding of the word at the most basic level.
    By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

    1. “Let nothing be done out of strife or vain glory, but in lowliness of mind, let each esteem others better than themselves.” It’s so sad when people miss the MEANING of the Word and instead argue about the version itself. I truly want love to identify me as a Christian.

  14. I love the KJV; like most of you, it’s the version I’ve memorized (I have so much trouble helping my daughter memorize her verses for her Christian school in the NIV!) The words are familiar and comforting and beautiful and majestic. As an English teacher, I love the sound of the KJV. I appreciate its 400 years of history.

    Yet I’ve found that my familiarity with certain passages makes me more apt to zoom quickly through them without really thinking about the meaning. When I read newer version, the meaning often leaps off the page with the excitement of new insight. Still though I battle with feeling that “it’s not the REAL Bible.”

    1. Oh, I struggle with that so much too… it doesn’t help that the beautiful language is rather archaic compared to modern English, so I have a tendency to enjoy the shape of the words and not actually pay attention to what’s being said!

  15. I’m in agreement with you. I read and enjoy other translations, but I do have a particular place in my heart for the good ol’ KJV. One thing in favor for it that a lot of other translations miss is the style. In the KJV, the poetry parts read like poetry, the prayers read like prayers, and so on. I love that. For beautiful language, there’s no other translation I can think of that does better.

    I will concede that other translations are much better for understanding because they’re written in modern English. The simple fact that people still read and enjoy the KJV after so many years is pretty impressive, though. I can’t recall who said this, but I remember hearing someone once say that they know the KJV has issues, but at least we’ve had it so long we know where those issues are! (and that, by the way, is why I love annotated Bibles. Disagree with them if you like–and I do disagree with Scofield’s notes in many places in my Scofield KJV–but it’s very important, especially in the cases where the KJV just didn’t translate something very well)

  16. I’m sure everyone is familiar with this, but the actual irony of the dopes that defend the understandability completely missing the plain meaning of easy passages because it’s in old English (looking at you: “appearance of evil”) is just priceless. It’s makes you a laughingstock to defend the understandability when you can’t understand the *easy* passages due to antiquated language, let alone the difficult. I’ve often wanted to think the KJV is the best, but for all the poetic & fanciful language, it confuses far more than it enlightens, is pretty erudite, and anymore is almost always a strong symbol that “the crazies are welcome here”. I still have trouble adjusting to various new versions. Can’t say any of them will ever be as romanticized to me personally, but God’s presence have never sounded so elusive as when transmitted in AV.

  17. What a great post, Darrell. I must say, yours has been the only view of the KJV I have been able to respect, simply because there was not the slightest bit of the “if you’re not reading it you’re wrong” attitude about it. I don’t think I’ll ever go back to the KJV, mostly because, like a few others mentioned, it just has too many negative associations with it. When I read it, it’s so familiar that it’s tempting to fall back on what I used to be taught that a passage means instead of reading it with my own mind and heart. But I do agree that it’s a work of art and it’s sad that so many people have been beaten over the head with it that it is no longer valuable to them.

  18. Would you let this be republished? It was a masterpiece as far as I’m concerned. I feel the same way, but your eloquence was quite moving. I’d like to post it on my blog.

  19. My mother totally bought one of those because she said even the newly printed KJVs had errors in them

  20. I will say this: when I finally made it into a real institution of higher education I discovered that I had one distinct advantage. The language of Shakespeare, Milton and Donne were my native tongue. Where other students and even scholars had to stop and puzzle it out; it was like reading nursery rhymes for me. For that I am grateful.

  21. Oh, but if you haven’t read “God’s Secretaries” you will probably love it. It is just a fascinating read about how the translators were deeply flawed human beings with a variety of motivations. It shows that the KJV was not the language of the common people, even when it was written.

    1. My parents who are KJV-only, have actually said to me, “But the translators of the KJV were HOLY men.” They really think they were extra special good guys (certainly not Anglican LOL) while the translators of newer versions were men of questionable faith and practice. This thinking drives me crazy. How can they have such blind faith that those men were so spotless and pure?

      1. Not to dis your parents, but to me, that reflects an immature understanding of how God’s work gets done. If it required spotless people to do the work, nothing would ever get done. Nothing. And Bible translations are no exception to that fact.

      2. Well, be sure to tell your parents how shocked you are that they consider gay men to be holy men. Because there was at least one gay guy and another guy who had trouble with hooch, and another who didn’t allow the sheets to cool between fair maidens. You have to remember, this was the “intellectual elite” of their day. They were a pretty rowdy bunch.

  22. Awesome post, I really enjoyed reading this. That’s how I feel about the KJV. Part of me will always feel like those are the words of God, and they shouldn’t be changed. It’s totally emotional, I understand it’s just one of several valid translations, but to me, it just feels sacred.

  23. Recently the BBC aired a show called “When God Spoke English” about the making of the King James Bible. They did a wonderful job showing the scholarship, the beauty of the language, the process, and even some bits about some of the translators that were very interesting. I learned a lot about the political motivations behind the translation regarding the division in the Church of England that James was trying to handle. I’d had no idea that the Puritans were so much a part of that, only ever seeing them from an American point of view. If there is any way you folks back in the States can see this, it is well worth the effort trying to find it!

  24. Darrell, thanks for this! I was desparate for a reasonable way to say this very thing, but I couldn’t do it without getting emotional. You have given me what I need! In a couple of months I will probably have to return to the box when the fundy KJVO missionaries return here to the UK. They know I don’t fall in with KJOVism. But my husband does not have a problem with KJVO, and he doesn’t understand why I do. I have been reluctant to try to discuss this with him because I was afraid I couldn’t say what I think without losing it emotionally and looking like an idiot. We have only been married a couple of years and he does not have the history with fundy crazies that I have. I have been praying about this. I found my answer this morning on SFL! Blessings on you!!

  25. The KJV is a wonderful thing, and I suspect that the poetic quality of the English is one of the things that makes it easier to memorize – I find I can memorize poetry better than prose. These days I preach mostly from the New King James (it’s what our Church uses), and I tend to read the ESV in private devotions, but I still remember the King James, and my rather battered KJV that my gradmother gave me when I was confirmed in the C of E has an honoured place in the library – next to my 1911 facsimile of the 1611 KJV (Apocrypha included!).

  26. Well said, Darrell. After three years, I am beginning to be able to read some passages in my Dad’s Old Scofield (I graduated from the school that Scofield helped found – do I get more points for that?) without getting triggered. But, I also have found that I like the Revised Standard Version. Same beauty of language, and Scholarship. I’m not sure why my dad always called it the Reversed Standard Perversion.

    LOL@Scourby reference. 😛

    1. I usually use the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV). It’s based partly on the KJV, but written in contemporary language, and with diligent attempts to correct the translation errors that are in the KJV. My edition also has footnotes indicating where there are controversies about the meaning of the original texts, and discrepancies between different ancient texts. I find those features extremely helpful. I also use the marginal notes that cite parallel passages in other books of the Bible.

  27. Darrell, Well and eloquently put. I use the KJV when I just read without a study motive. Even when I study I start with the KJV and compare in my parallel KJV/Amplified/NASV/NIV. While I am not KJVO I am deffinately anti-NIV. The editorial miss-translations are too much for me.

  28. I have no problem with KJV-Only churches as long as they actually preach from it. I’ve found so few IFB churches that do that.

    That said, I think I prefer the KJV myself.

  29. This is a very well-written piece. I find that I too do not want to turn loose of my KJV. I enjoy reading the language so much. For me, though I do not want to return to the fundy bunker, reading the KJV is a small piece of the familiar. It is nice.
    I am not KJVO by any stretch of the imagination, though that is what I read almost exclusively.

  30. I’ve used the KJV for oh 20 yrs now. And while I want to try another translation, I honestly don’t know how I’ll do with it 😛 My mom had us memorize a LOT of verses from the KJV.

    I do want to try something quite different from it: I think a NKJV would just bug me to death because it’s so close and yet different.

  31. In the GARB church I grew up in, KJV, ASV, RSV, and NASB were mixed pretty freely, and without controversy. If someone was reading from another version, sure a word here and there might be different, but you could still follow along. Then the NIV came along. The leaders in our church weren’t so much KJVO as anti-NIV, and for many years, those who preferred the NIV quietly deferred to them, while reading the NIV privately.

    I wanted to like the NIV, I really did. And I found numerous murky passages suddenly clearer. But even after reading it for twenty years, the NIV still sounds so awkward in places. And when I’m looking for a familiar passage and can’t remember the reference, it still takes two concordances (or an Internet search) for me to find it. Then I discovered the ESV. I find it every bit as clear as the NIV’s best passages, but with the passages familiar in the KJV still recognizable as old friends. I found every advantage people claim for the KJV in the ESV. (Except Shakespeare.) I’ll still quote the Lord’s Prayer and the 23rd Psalm from the KJV. In fact, that’s how I’ll quote almost anything I have memorized. But it doesn’t grate on my ears to hear them quoted from the ESV, and in fact, that’s the version I have my children memorize from.

    1. The trouble with the NIV is that there’s too much interpretation in the renderings for my liking. Mind you, the GNB is legend for its over-simplifications. I remember an Anglican clergyman commenting to me, “If I hear about ‘God’s Covenant Box’ one more time, I think I’ll go crazy!'”

  32. “It evokes the images of my mother leading her seven children in recitation as we memorized entire books at a time including Philippians and its reminder of ‘the peace of God, which passeth all understanding.'”

    Yes. This! Having grown up with the KJV, and having so much of it memorised, it’s still very dear to my heart. I primarily use the ESV now, when I’m not using my Greek New Testament (my iPhone has this app where I can pull up both on the same screen–pretty neat and has caused my concentration to wander from the pastor on Sunday mornings). But I’ll always treasure the beautiful KJV.

    Still, I remember long ago when I, a much-confused littl girl, tried to convince your brothers and sister that the KJV was wicked because it contained discrepancies. Sometimes, looking back, I’m pretty sure the whole KJV controversy on our island got started in my family’s living room. 😕

    1. “I primarily use the ESV now, when I’m not using my Greek New Testament (my iPhone has this app where I can pull up both on the same screen–pretty neat and has caused my concentration to wander from the pastor on Sunday mornings).”

      Yes! Yes! Same here. I usually have the GNT as the first one on my BibleReader app and I cycle between ESV, KJV, CSB, R60, and LSG on the second one. I’m getting better at this, but my mind *does* wander from time to time because of it. However, I wouldn’t have it any other way! It makes it near impossible for me to passively agree with sermons like I used to in Fundamentalism. 😀

  33. For the first 32 years of my life, I read the KJV about 5 times. This is when I had a unregenerate heart and my mind was set on the flesh.

    I have been saved for over three years and study/teach/read from the ESV.

    Yet, every single time I try to read from the KJV, my brain bottoms out on any thee, thou and thy.

    For example, you quoted: “sinners entice thee, consent thou not”

    That read to me, “sinner entice what, consent who not”.

    For the life of me, I have to think hard about that sentence. Reading my Greek New Testament is infinitely easier for me than the KJV.

    I say that not to put it down (my dearest friend in the world is a KJVer). I say, have grace for those who don’t read KJV.

  34. Enjoyed reading the post and the replies.
    I started using another translation in 1980 after being raised on KJV and memorizing the KJV in Awana for 6 years. The transition was hard. Memorized and familiar verses just did not read right. I had to slow down to understand the verses. Using the new translation gave me a better understanding of the text. Even though I was experiencing expository preaching at church, the phrases I rotely read came to life, verses that I thought I understood had new meaning.

    Not having a strong literary background, I do not understand the literary attachment to the KJV. I do understand the emotional attachment to a translation. Mine is to the Bible I use on a regular basis (Not KJV). I bought it in about 1980. I have been through alot with it. It’s binding is broken, pages torn, some not readable. I just can’t replace it. Just as the scars in my mind and body define me, the torn, underlined pages define my Bible.

  35. It’s KJV for the poetry, but in my mind RSV for the sense (with a touch of poetry)

    And can someone tell me what the problem is with “the appearance of evil”?

    1. Off the top of my head: “Avoid all appearance of evil” is usually assumed to mean “don’t do anything that anyone watching could think you were doing something wrong.” This doesn’t seem to fit with Jesus’ own example, however, as He ate and drank with sinners and allowed a woman of bad reputation to wash His feet.

      I believe a better translation of the Greek is “Avoid evil in whatever form it appears.” You may, for example, be prepared to not give in to lust, but you daily give in to fits of rage. Or you try to be humble when talking with others but don’t realize that your annoyance when your plans are interrupted are another form of pride.

      Fundamentalists have used this verse for a long time to condemn Christians being involved in culture in any way. We can’t wear fashionable clothes because it might appear “evil”; we can’t eat in a restaurant with a bar because someone might think we’re drinking; we can’t go to the movies; we can’t use drums or guitars to praise God; we can’t raise our hands in worship because we might APPEAR to be Pentecostal. If they found out that that verse doesn’t mean what they think it means, it rips out the foundation of most of their standards they preach as necessary for the Christian life.

    2. The “appearance of evil” is a term that the Independent Fundamental Baptists and other Cults of Legalism have latched onto in order to keep the sheeple in line with the will and whims of the M-O-g. When there is an attitude or action that the leadership, or the pulpiteer wants to see in his flock then he trots out this reference and proceeds to beat his flock into submission until they are acceptably programmed that “x” appears evil… so then… we must avoid “x” at all costs.

      That’s not what that passage means in context but in a legalist cult who cares about such minor details as context? Usually what you will hear goes something like this: They will read the verse about the appearance of evil and will launch into their sermon with, “With that in mind I’d like to preach to you this morning on this thought…” Then proceed to start flogging away at the standard dead horse the preacher loves to beat into glue.

      It’s like being slapped with a day old salmon just for the halibut… it stinks.

    3. Think of this this way, one of the fave “appearance of evil” sermons they’ll invent is that IBC rootbeer should be avoided, because it appears like a beer bottle color and that could be construed as evil.

      I think that explains it all, no?

      1. Sorry, I wasn’t clear. I understand (boy, do I understand) the way it is used, I thought someone was saying it was a mistranslation or a KJV error of some description.

        1. As PW says, the Greek sentence means something like, “Avoid every occurance of evil,” or “Avoid evil in every form.” It doesn’t mean “Avoid anything that looks like it might be evil.”
          This example is not so much a translation error in the KJV as an example of a word (“appearance”) that has changed its meaning in English since the early 1600s. In 1611, “Avoid every appearance” meant “Avoid it every time it shows up.” Now its primary meaning is “Avoid everything that resembles it.” Not the same.

          Another (probably more innocent) example that pops into my head is that a phrase in the KJV says “I [God] prevent the dawn.” (Sorry, I can’t remember where that passage is.) The KJV translators used “prevent” according to its Latin roots, to mean “come before.” They didn’t mean God stops the dawn from happening, which is the current (2011) meaning of “prevent.”

        2. YES! I didn’t know there was KJV verse that used that but it drives me insane remember when Wesleyan’s refer to “prevenient grace” (sp?) and “preceding grace” interchangeably. I now know they mean the same when they came up w/ the terms, but totally sounds bizarre!

  36. Brilliant post, man. I prefer the NASB these days for learning and understanding. But the KJV is a thing of beauty, and indeed we should allow ourselves to enjoy it for what it is: poetic, influential, and enduring.

  37. I have to say the last topic made me uncomfortable. I thought it was going to veer off into a attack on the Bible. I can laugh and mock at a lot but not the Book. Use what ever version you want but the Bible is the only direct external link to God we have. We need it.

  38. Hey, this is a great post! I agree with Antony Flew – the KJV is the greatest work of English literature ever written. That being said, I have two problems with it.
    1. The text from which it is derived is a critical text taken from a very small sampling of manuscripts and edited by a Roman Catholic. For this reason severe problems exist, such as the comma johanneum, where Erasmus followed the vulgate instead of the Bible. The TR differs significantly from the majority Byzantine in over 1,800 places in the NT alone, no small inaccuracy.
    2. The KJV translators did not have a very good grasp of Hebrew, and as a result some infinitival phrases and especially reduplication have been mistranslated throughout the OT.

    Nevertheless, it remains one of my favorite books to just read!

  39. I know I’m coming late to the party on this post, but I just had to comment. Although I am halfway out of Fundyville, I still love my KJV. I was raised on it, and no other version (even NKJV) seems quite right. Even as I read other versions, my mind fills in the KJV as I read. It just feels so wrong to here anything else read. I love the poetry and I too have a leg up when it comes to Shakespeare. Thank you for this beautiful post. It truly sums up what I feel about my precious KJV, even if I am not KJVO anymore.

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