191 thoughts on “Sound Doctrine”

  1. Based on the logic above, I take it they must prefer having the KJV Bible in their own hands over Jesus being physically present, teaching from the originals? πŸ™„

  2. Regarding point #3 – I think if they continue to read in Jeremiah 36, they would find that the Lord instructs Jeremiah to write the words down again. Would that not be considered an original?

    1. Exactly Scorpio… also what does this have to do with any specific book of the canonized bible (especially ones that were written after Jeremiah)???
      But thats the magic of fundy sermonizing: never mind the details or truth I am the great and powerful Man-O-GID!!!!

    2. I believe they use Jeremiah to prove that the translation can still be inspired because it was written and destroyed several times but the author was still the same

    1. Interestingly enough, these guys defined their way right into “Stupid.”

      A dead language defines one that has “died” in the sense of not being passed on to the next generation – therefore it is no longer spoken. It doesn’t mean that it cannot be read. Hieroglyphics much older than the three languages mentioned are still being found and interpreted.

      That being said, this should only point them more to the glory and preeminence of God since He knew long before anyone that the languages in which it had been transcribed would, indeed, die. πŸ™„

        1. And libraries full of clay tablets at least as old as the oldest Egyptian texts have been found, translated, and republished.

    1. I get that the distinction between the second person singular and plural exists in the original languages, and therefore the KJV preserves that distinction by its usage of “Thou” and “You”. The trouble is that such a distinction no longer exists in English, and therefore is as dead as Koine Greek.

      1. Actually, the King Jimmy doesn’t. It uses thee and thou based upon English case (objective or subjective) most of the time. Thee is used to translate both singular and plural Greek verbs in the KJV. Please do not EVER use the pronouns in the KJV to try to determine whether the underlying is singular or plural πŸ˜€

        1. From what I understand (and I’m open to correction here, nor am I a “KJVO” guy, although I was raised that way), “Thou” and “Thee” is the distinction, in early modern English between the objective and subjective cases respectively, but both are singular. “You” and “Ye” carries the same distinction of case, but are plural.

          Furthermore, my current understanding, based on personal (but not exhaustive) study of the underlying texts and the KJV is that the distinctions above are maintained in English to match the underlying Greek (or Hebrew or Aramaic) grammar fairly consistently in both case and number. (Although English cases are far more “flat” — that is, English “objective” covers several Greek cases, and English “subjective” several others….but that’s usually preserved in translation by use of appropriate prepositions.)

          Have you found the above to be an incorrect understanding in any particular case? I’m quite curious for examples…because I haven’t found any yet, but like I said, my personal study has not been nearly exhaustive.

        2. Hold on…just re-read my comment…correction:

          Thou = subjective singular
          Thee = objective singular

          Ye = subjective plural
          You = objective plural

          Got the “ob” and “sub” backward in the original post. Oops.

          But the question stands.

        3. Steve, you’ve got the right middle english grammar rules. The problem was that the KJV doesn’t follow those rules in many cases, especially when you compare to the original languages.

        4. I don’t doubt it, but I have yet to see a case where it’s not followed. But like I said…my perusal has not been exhaustive. Could you point me to an instance or two?

        5. Steve,
          The most glaring example is the ten commandments. If we were to rigidly apply the rules of thee and thou, then apparently God was speaking only to Moses. Read through all of Exodus 20 and you will notice the inconsistent usage of ye and thee. for example in verse 2: Thou shalt not make vnto thee any grauen Image(sic) compared to verse 23: Ye shall not make with me gods of siluer (sic). I don’t contend that the Hebrew verbs are either singular or plural in the 10 commandments, but rigid application of middle English grammar rules do more to harm the obvious intended meaning.

        6. You seem to have misread what I said, I referred to “You” and “Thee” not “Thee” and “Thou”. “You” and “Ye” are plural, while “Thou” and “Thee” are singular. This is why the Quakers refused to call a singular individual “You”. “Thee” and “you” are dependent on case, but “You” and “Thou” are the singular and plural number. Where it breaks down is of course that Hebrew has a dual as well as a singular and plural, which is not represented in Early Modern English. Interestingly, in Shakespeare’s plays the language is used rather differently – “You” is used as a formal address, while “Thou” is informal. Ironic when you consider why some folk will not use “you” in prayer to God!

        7. No, the KJV doesn’t follow the singular/plural of the underlying text. If you want to check it out for yourself, go to biblos.com and look at the interlinear section. Pretty much any few verses in the gospels will show you this.

        8. I think we have strayed rather from my point, which is that, regardless of whether or not the KJV is always correct in its translation of the plural or singular pronoun (not verbs, pronouns, I have never been talking about verbs and I am not entirely sure where you got the idea that I was), the distinction is not something that exists in modern formal and written English, though distinctions do still exist in colloquial and dialect speech (“y’all” for Americans, and for an English example I can only think of “Cost” in Potteries Dialect, which is a contraction of “Couldst [thou]”). So even allowing for the sake of argument that the KJV is always consistent (never a good idea, given that the editing process seems to have been all but non-existent after the committees submitted their translations of the sections assigned to them. For the record, I never said that it was consistent!) in its use of pronouns, English does not work like that any more. And of course the Biblical languages also have grammatical gender, which English does not (though there are again a few places in the Old Testament where the KJV refers to inanimate objects as gendered, for example Ezra 3:3, “And they set the altar upon his bases”, which is just bad pedantry).

    2. Yup, Jacobin English isn’t a dead language at all. Yup, all common men can read it. It doesn’t require “interpretation” or nothing. Interpretation is what those Liberals do, anyways. Real Christians just read the word of God nice and easy like, in the 1611 KJV, as God intended.

      1. Jacobean, not Jacobin. “Jacobin” refers to a political position, narrowly one of the parties in the French Revolution, more broadly someone who supports a strong centralized republic. “Jacobean” is the name commonly given to the reign of King James I of England and VI of Scotland (same man, two crowns). ‘Jacobite’ is something else again, referring to those who supported the restoration of the exiled Stuart monarchy after 1688.

        1. Does anyone else think a “dancing clown” is posting whenever this Dan Dow guy posts?

  3. I’m convinced that many of the manipulating masses of fundamental institutions don’t believe this deep within themselves. I have had one on one conversations over coffee with men who stand in the streets screaming this message in public. Once alone, speaking calmly, I have been successful at getting this “maybe I’m wrong” out of them.
    That leads me to the likely conclusion that this is just part of the big picture. They themselves are terrified to speak against the establishment. It’s simply manipulation at it’s best.
    … and then… there’s just stupidity. πŸ˜•

    1. Shaking my head at the hypocrisy. As a follower of Christ, I want to know and love the TRUTH. I refuse to kowtow to falsehood to gain a reputation in the network or to win a soul.

  4. “If the originals existed, they could only be had by one person at a time. Like Jesus in the Temple.”

    Ummmmm. Pretty sure in Jesus’ day they had many, many, many copies of the Scriptures. That’s why there were people called scribes, to copy out the Scriptures.

    But it’s an exercise in futility to even try to answer someone who thinks this way. I do feel bad for the trees that were destroyed to print off this material.

      1. So true. Each synagogue had a copy of the Torah.

        What is disturbing about this argument against the “original manuscripts” is the denial of the work of the Holy Spirit. The New Testament as we know it was not gathered together for centuries after Christ. The early church copied with care the different gospels and letters to circulate them. To say the KJV is better than the originals–is to deny the care and love of the early Christians in being scribes of these letters and to deny the HOly Spirit’s work in their lives. And there are some who would read Mark’s Gospel and conclude that denying God’s work and accrediting the devil with that work is blasphemy.

  5. …it is as if the use of logic alone is forbidden.

    I have absolutely no problem with the use of a KJV, but have a major issue with statements like this and the stance of KJVo beliefs.

    I actually heard this taught from a “college professor” in a different lifetime. I won’t lie – I swallowed it: hook, line, and sinker. Years later, through a series of horrible events, I would find out truth, in the most (or what seemed to me to be) unlikely of places.

    I wonder, though, if they use the apocrypha? Not to mention, the entire canonization of our modern Bible is suspect and sketchy. I do have faith in the preservation of His Word, but with idiots like these guys…

        1. At least with the Muslims and their position on the language of the Koran there’s a lot more consistency than with the Fundies and the KJV. While we can poke holes in orignalism, it’s better than the Fundies’ whacked out logic on the KJV.

    1. God brought my family out of fundyland, not by verbal witness and reason, but through the observation of Christians who were doing so many of the things that we were brainwashed to believe were sin, but yet the earth didn’t open up and swallow them. In fact, it seemed that these things helped them share the good news, by placing them on humble, common ground. We also observed their work in social justice with the poor, orphaned, hurting, etc and we came to realize that this was in fact the gospel at work in their lives. Most of fundyland teaches that, while these things are nice gestures, they are not essential to the faith. I’m don’t remember much of what I was taught during my undergrad and grad years at BJU, but I don’t think it was the whole truth.

  6. Someone needs to pass along that most people who discuss “original manuscripts” are talking about the original language, no the actual substance on which it was written. I see this straw-man appear frequently. While I prefer the KJV (who started calling it King James Bible instead of Version?), it is NOT better than the faithful copies of the original languages.

    Good grief!

    1. Actually the discussion is not so much about the original languages as the question as to what was inspired – the original documents or the copies. Because of the uncertainty that the KJV-Onlyist sees in the fact that the copies of the originals were then subject to the same process of textual variation as any other manuscript, he abdicates all reason and affirms that the KJV is directly inspired by God. This would be opposed to the older Inerrantism of B.B. Warfield of Princeton, who affirmed the inerrancy of the original manuscripts, but also the fact of variation in the subsequent tradition and the resulting need for textual criticism. This KJV-Onlyism cannot allow, as it is by its very nature a hide-bound traditionalism that affirms “The KJV is best” for no real reason at all.

        1. As I said, because if only the originals were inspired, and the copies subject to the process of corruption common to all manuscripts, then textual criticism is needed to return to those originals, or as close as we can get to them. In fact this is the understanding that underlies the entire enterprise of textual criticism, or at least did when the discipline was developed. The state of the original text matters.

          On the other hand if copies are inspired, then textual criticism is actually evil, and should be discouraged. The KJV-Onlyists fall into two groups. The first wants us to believe that there is a Greek text (the arguments usually end up about the Greek) that is inspired in its copies, and therefore all textual variation is of the devil (instead of bad copying). The more pernicious sort (they’re both pernicious, but one more than the other) are those represented by this thing we’re discussing, who say that the KJV as a translation is inspired. But that’s why it matters.

        2. Why is it more pernicious to believe that the King James is the perfect book, than it is to believe that Beza’s New Testament is the perfect book?

          I think the TR position is built on more ignorance / dishonesty than the KBJO position.

        3. It’s more pernicious because it is making an English translation the standard, rather than a Greek text, and therefore places the standard at a greater distance from the original text. Don’t misunderstand me, I think the TR position, even when actually held, is pernicious too (though in my experience a lot of people talk about the ‘TR’ but actually mean the KJV, it is a smoke-screen). When it is actually held that the KJV IS the standard (whether that is admitted or not), it follows that to use the original language texts AT ALL is dangerous (as Gail Rilinger argues, for example), thus either people have to learn English to read the Bible, or (worse!) they have to translate the English into their own language. Why is this a bad thing? Look at the translation of the Psalms in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. They were translated into English from the Latin Vulgate, and the Vulgate Psalms were translated from Greek, which was translated from English. The results are at times… well, interesting.

    2. I did a series of lessons in my College and Career Sunday School class on the history of the Bible from the original Manuscripts to the current translations. During my research I realized that the Bible idolaters change KJV to KJB; and NASB to NASV. This is to show t

      1. George hit submit, I didn’t! All missed edits are his.

        Anyway, it was, in there usage, to show there is “only one true Bible”.
        In the study of ancient writings, or textual criticism, autograph = original, MSS = original language copy, version = other language translation. So version does not mean someones take on it, or their “version”. It means it is a translation into a non-original language.
        These supposed scholars display amazing amounts of ignorance.

        1. Translators always pick which text they translate from. Even the UBS/NA texts contain footnotes, lots of footnotes, listing all the variants for each verse. Unless a translator is just taking what is written on the page without considering footnotes, then he is, in fact, making a choice about what he believes is the original text. I don’t think any paid, professional translator just uses whatever UBS suggests, except for possibly some translators producing non-commercial Bibles for people groups.

        2. Exactly. Even Erasmus was a textual critic, even though he only had 4 incomplete texts his first time around.

  7. I once had a preacher tell me: “If the king ain’t on it (the spine of the Bible), the King ain’t in it!” And he was as serious as he could be. I know because he didn’t appreciate when I busted out laughing.

    1. So, if it was the exact same text, only with Authorized Version or AV1611 on the spine, God would magically know to have nothing to do with it.

      Right. Um, no.

  8. I am willing to accept that God deliberately chose not to preserve original manuscripts–to prevent people from worshipping objects rather than Him, for example. I am not willing to accept that He deliberately chose not to preserve original manuscripts so everyone could be exposed to the wonders and glories of the King James Bible.

    The amount of delusion in that image is overwhelming.

    I also love how apparently nobody can read koine Greek, Aramaic, and “Paleo Hebrew”… except, apparently, the inspired translators of the KJV? And evidently the Vulgate, but let’s hush about that, Catholics were involved.

    1. Sure, we can choose to believe whatever we want, with or without evidence. But to cite Jeremiah 36:23 as reason to believe that “God destroyed originals on purpose” is to leave the realm of sanity; to choose to be a fool in the biblical sense of the word.

      Not many decades ago, there was a theological and intellectual basis for fundamentalism. Some of it was good, and quite a lot of it was laughable even back then. These days, I never hear the good stuff anymore, while the stupid stuff has gone forth and multiplied.

      1. Yeah, I don’t think the original fundies had bad intentions. And probably they at least were still capable of simple logic. These days, however, it’s become such a cult of worshipping man that it seems nothing–not logic, not exposure of their leaders’ failings, not God Himself–can come between them and their leaders’ words.

    2. As somebody pointed out further up in the replies, millions of people are speaking “paleo Hebrew” right now. Although the vocabulary is of course much larger and slang has developed as well, modern Hebrew is Biblical Hebrew, restored to daily use less than a century ago.

  9. The later copies had more words than the older copies, which to most people would be a sign of inclusion and not attrition. If 1 John 5:7, which has no original language support, why not the longer Daniel, which also has no original language support? The KJB *deleted* Susanna! Oh the perversion!

  10. The Dead Sea Scrolls produced a copy of Isaiah that was 1000 years older than the next oldest and they matched almost word for word with the exception of a few spelling variations. The KJVO pushers are morons.

    1. I’m serious. Ruckman-style KJBO is more intellectually serious than PCC-style Textus Receptus nonsense.

      Some of this guy’s points are correct, or at least more correct than what’ll come out in the Leaven in Fundamentalism series.

      As far as we know, there are no originals left. No scholar believes all the originals ever existed together in one place. And a common man could not read the entire Bible in his language.

      Of course, until some of the Puritan communities of the 1700s, and perhaps a few other instances, the common man was illiterate and so were many of the priests.

  11. #3 – God destroyed originals?? Did this guy even read Jeremiah 36.23? Pretty sure it meets the definition of blasphemy to blame the actions of an evil king on God…

    1. It was very hard. First, they couldn’t find the originals, and then the copies were scattered everywhere, and who knows what God shredded for the bird cage, then when they could find a copy, they had to learn 3 dead languages, wait their turn in a long line to read it, and when they finally got their change they had to read the whole thing instead of jumping straight to the prooftext with no context. And, wouldn’t you know it, they forgot a pencil to jot down their notes!

  12. Despite the regular (and highly inaccurate) vicious assaults on Roman Catholicism, King James Onlyists are in fact among the most hide-bound traditionalists in the world. While the Roman Catholic Church has the defence of a long history, the KJV-Onlyists do not. And just as the Medieval Church was guilty of anachronism in her view of the past and resulting claim to be “for ever the same”, so the KJV-Onlyists are anachronistic. Not one of the King James translators would have shared their views, and a number of them would certainly have clapped the KJV-Onlyists into prison for their teachings! Certainly every one of them would have forbidden the KJV-Onlyists to teach. The KJV is of course based upon Greek texts (printed texts, mind, not manuscripts) that were created by a process of textual criticism. And as we go down history we find that John Wesley, often cited by them, actually created his own revision of the KJV in his ‘Notes on the New Testament’. C.H. Spurgeon, often also cited by them, preached from texts in the Revised Version where he considered the RV to be an improvement on the KJV, and we could go on. Just as the Medieval monk who pictured St. Jerome in the habit of a Medieval Cardinal was in error, so too is the KJV-Onlyist who makes Spurgeon KJV-Only.

  13. The title to this post is so perfect in it’s summation of Fundyism that I don’t even want to disturb it with a comment…I’m just reading it over again like a mantra. My religious existence from age 9 until age 27 can be uncovered by merely grasping this statement.

  14. I was told in my fundy high school that the NKJV made Jesus “feminine.” It was never explained further than that. Does anyone know what that’s about?

  15. The longer I’m out of the “country of fundystan..”, the more I realize how much blind idol worship there was. Both of people and the kjv. They certainly do not like people asking questions.

  16. “Variety of translations is profitable for the finding out of the sense of the Scriptures…must needs do good, yea, is necessary, as we are persuaded.”

    pg 10 of “The Translators to the Readers” …..which for decades was published with the KJV

    1. Having been raised KJVO, this blew me away the first time I read it several years ago. I’m so thankful I don’t hold the KJVO position anymore, though it saddens me that people I love hold to it still.

      I love the KJV, but I do not worship it, and I find the NLT a lot easier to teach to my children.

    2. My favorite quote from the Translator’s Preface is:

      “Now to the latter we answer; that we do not deny, nay we affirm and avow, that the very meanest translation of the Bible in English, set forth by men of our profession, (for we have seen none of theirs of the whole Bible as yet) containeth the word of God, nay, is the word of God.”

    3. Greg, do you know what publisher had that in their print? I’d love to look it up. I’ve not seen that before and would love to look it up.

      1. John is awake:
        Oxford, Cambridge, and Westminster all had the preface in their published KJV’s. You can get a hold of one by buying a 1611 KJV (they’re cheap now on amazon) or by just buying the booklet entitled “Original Preface to the King James Version: Translators to the Reader” (which costs almost as much as a 1611 KJ). You could also read the preface for free here: http://www.ccel.org/bible/kjv/preface/pref1.htm

      2. JIA-I got a reprint of an AV1611 at Walmart a couple of years ago for about 5 bucks! They sold them in celebration of the KJV’s 400th birthday! I should have bought a case! It has “The Translators to the Readers” in it, but I wish it also contained the Apocrypha, which it does not! Walmart may have some more left, it would definitely be worth checking out at that price.

  17. There’s a lot of funny stuff that goes on with the KJV. If you do an internet search for anything relating to KJV, all the top search results are American websites, most of which are dedicated to arguing over doctrinal matters about how the KJV is some kind of “best” or “perfect” bible.

    HOWEVER, if you restrict your search to only UK based websites, the flavour of the results is entirely different. You actually get historical websites, run by academic institutions and historical trusts based in the country which wrote the KJV.

    The KJV is the product of the British Crown, not American baptists. It is part of British Political and Cultural history first and foremost. It must be understood in the context of British and European history, before it can be seen in any way as aligned with American history.


    1. All of which goes to show the difference between the English and the Americans. The KJV-Only nonsense is very much an American thing, to the point that even manifestations of it over here can be traced directly back to the US.

      1. It has been exported to Brazil. πŸ™ Same TR argument used to push an archaic Portuguese version far removed from colloquial speech. I love watching the shock and awe on someone’s face when they start reading a more comprehensible version. “I can understand this!” πŸ˜† Of all the things to fight about you’d think fundies would be on the side of more people actually reading and understanding the Bible.

        1. Exactly! It baffles me how they can feelingly tell the story of the brave men who brought the Bible in English to the common man (and many of them were killed for it), yet when it comes to today, they want to insist on an old translation that many people find difficult to understand.

        2. No, they don’t want people to actually understand the bible. Then they would have discernment and know that the pastors aren’t teaching them the truth.

        3. I appreciate the sentiment, but I can’t agree that that’s the true underlying motive, at least in the cases I’ve been close to.

          In my opinion it’s more that KJVOism has been put out there as an Issue and now all good fundies feel they have no choice but to establish a “position” so they have a “standard”. Woe be to anyone who doesn’t even have a Position on one of the cardinal Issues of Fundyism.

          And woe to anyone who takes what would appear to be a Liberal/Loose/Left stance on such an Issue. The default is to trust (drink the Koolaid) the MenOG unquestioningly. The safest place for a Fundy is to position him/herself (inclusive language!) at the same position as an exalted leader or even better establish a new position further to the right. Then comes yet another round of comparing themselves to themselves.

          Which is why, in spite of other faults, I give props to BJU for not getting on the KJVO bandwagon–taking a stand against error. THAT’S True Fundamentalism of the kind I remain unashamed.

          The unthinking adherence to and justification of absurd extra-biblical positions (e.g. KJVO, music, Jesus’ wine had no alcohol content, &c.) Is to me equivalent to the quirky secret handshakes and funny hats and ultimately pointless rituals of some clubs and secret societies. It’s not that Fundy MenOG truly don’t want their constituency to understand the Bible; their absurd positioning is simply the price of admission to the club, the legitimacy of which is “proven” by loud acclaim–their own, of course. It’s their circular self authentication.

          A comparison to frat parties and hazing comes to mind: a bunch of guys drunk on their own ignorance and stupidity inciting each other to further extremes convinced that what they are doing is cool and that they’re actually having fun. Mobthink.

      1. A dear fundy-lite friend of mine, rightly concerned to not corrupt his son’s mind, is very careful what movies he is permitted to watch. He took offense that in the cartoon movie Robots (w/ Robin Williams), the robot Aunt Fannie (appropriately named) farted. Apparently bathroom humor is always inappropriate for Christians.

        Surely in 33 years Jesus let one slip, didn’t he? And traveling around with 12 other guys that apparently got (at least mostly) naked to fish–tell me they held it in until they could pull over at the next rest stop on the Sea of Galilee or walking through Samaria.

        I have wondered how James and John earned the nickname “Sons of Thunder”. Maybe they were fond of Don’s three-bean casserole? Interesting study on the name Boanerges: http://www.abarim-publications.com/Meaning/Boanerges.html#.UU3SE4y3O2c

  18. This isn’t directly related to the KJV only topic, but I think everyone will appreciate this story.

    I am sitting at work on lunch reading SFL. Not more that 2 hours ago an elderly customer of ours approached approached a friend of mine from our I.T. department, put her finger in his chest, and scoldingly said to him, “You need to stop living in sin! I know what you’re saying by wearing that shirt!”

    See, my friend tends to dress uniquely. Today, he had on a stripped shirt that was made of many pastel tinted colors. Apprently, she decided that it was a gay pride statement even though I’ve never seen a rainbow w/ any of the colors he was wearing.

    Even if he was gay (he isn’t), did she think scolding some stranger would cause him to repent and ‘ask Jesus into his heart?’ Thanks lady. Thanks for representing Jesus so well so that when I speak to people, I’ll be associated w/ your craziness.

    I’m sure she’ll run off to her little church and tell everyone just how godless our organization is.

    1. “an elderly customer of ours approached approached a friend of mine from our I.T. department, put her finger in his chest, and scoldingly said to him, β€œYou need to stop living in sin! I know what you’re saying by wearing that shirt!”

      If that happened in the UK, you would be within your rights (and even encouraged) to advise the customer that this kind of opinion was not welcome in the company, customer or not.

      1. If they were told that, they would be happy because it would mean that they were being persecuted for their faith – and earning a crown in Heaven.

  19. 1) The Bible was NOT written in Paleo-Hebrew. The oldest manuscripts we have are in perfectly formed inter-testamental Hebrew, which, with the exception of vowel markers, matches AD rabbinical Hebrew perfectly. It is only assumed that some of the OT was written in paleo-Hebrew because, you know, Moses wrote the Pentateuch, and Hebrew wasn’t around then (paleo-Hebrew looks a bit like Phoenecian. If you’ve ever seen that Ben Hur movie about Moses, look closely at the two tablets. That’s pretty close to proto-Hebrew). However, pretty much all textual scholars on the planet agree that the Old Testament was compiled from oral and written sources after the deportation.

    2) There are those who are persuaded by emotion, and those who are persuaded by facts. If we follow the facts we find that the KJV is based upon fractured and faulty mss. Ironically, when I was at Fundy U, we had these series of propaganda videos called “The Text is the Issue” about why the KJV was the only acceptable version. Not being a sheeple I said to myself, “ok, let’s do some research”. They were right – the text is the issue. Its the issue why the KJV, for all its beauty, does not accurately represent the Scripture.

    3)I have to admit, I am a little proud of these people for displaying their sheer stupidity so openly. That takes…something.

    1. What language were the source documents of the Old Testament written in? I see the assertion true in its basic form. I have always held that Peter Ruckman to be more astute than a student who buys the Kool Aid from the college down the road.

      Of course, I’m not a Ruckmanite and reject the assertion that there has to be a perfectly preserved or re-inspired book. Because, for one thing, even if the KJB is perfect, who understands it perfectly? An unrealistic longing for certainty underlies all of this.

      1. Well, we don’t know. It is only hypothesized that there were source documents. Some texts, like Daniel were never really “polished” and still show up in multiple languages (well, two). So, at least some of the court documents in Daniel are Aramaic. But there are some pretty sophisticated theories out there (all educated guesses, however).

        1. Daniel isn’t the best example to use because the book expressly presents itself as dating from the time of the Exile. Move back to some of the books of history, or the Torah proper– even if they were compiled during / after the Exile, a reasonable working hypothesis is that they were written in Paleo-Hebrew. It’s not proven, of course.

          Peter Ruckman is abrasive and not terribly well educated, but he does have a PhD (from Bob Jones) and does show awareness of textual issues beyond anyone at PCC or even BJU / DTS for that matter. It’s just that he starts with the presupposition we must have a perfect Bible and reasons from there.

          My question is, and has always been, was there no Bible and was nobody saved between, say AD 60 and AD 1611? Maybe I once knew how Peter Ruckman would answer that but if so, I’ve forgotten.

          And beyond that, what possible justification can be found even in the text of the 1611 for believing that God chose to make the English language the one He’d use to re-create the Bible? Saying that English is the most widely spoken language might make sense but there’s no justification for it in the text. It’s intensely personal– Peter Ruckman wants to remove any doubt that what HE believes is right, and is so insecure that he will spin up a theology that damns billions of people and over a dozen centuries of human beings to hell just to feel secure.

        2. Actually, Daniel is the pretty standard example, because the Hebrew portions are identical to the rest of the Pentateuch. Tremper Longman has done some pretty good work on this. Even the “older” books like Job are written in similar Hebrew. This doesn’t mean that the Torah (or parts of it) didn’t exist in the pre-exilic times, it just means that the only texts we have date from then. So, the quest to reconstruct the “original” texts bumps up against the wall at some point. Regarding your (excellent) questions, the author of Hebrews says that Abraham was saved by faith. Not by a perfect text (which didn’t exist yet anyway). In fact, I’m pretty sure the author of Hebrews is making the point that all of God’s people are saved by faith. So, I’m not sure how Ruckman would come to terms with that.

        3. Call me crazy, but wouldn’t it be best to base this on research by Hebrew Scholars that don’t have an attachment to the bible? Hebrew was mostly a dead language by the time the bible was put together and it was only recently resurrected. The words you see in ancient texts didn’t have to deal with the constant revision required of living languages, making it much more likely to be unchanged over time.

        4. “Hebrew was mostly a dead language by the time the bible was put together and it was only recently resurrected.”

          We are talking about the Old Testament. Hebrew most certainly was not a dead language when it was put together.

        5. Proctologist:

          I have never understood why a book that claims to be written during the Exile can be used as a standard by which to judge the authorship and original language of books that claim to date from the time of Moses.

          I do understand that, at the very least, the pre-Exilic books were updated, polished, cleaned up, what have you. But Daniel’s relatively unpolished appearance has no bearing on the original form of the Torah. It’s always seemed to me to be a shaky theory.

          And it’s my opinion, of course, but I think it’s more reasonable to assume that the components of the other books were written in an archaic form of Hebrew, if not another language entirely.

        6. I’m not sure what you’re saying, Elijah Craig, I think we may be talking past each other. To be honest with you, I do this a lot in discussions of textual criticism, because I have something like 30 graduate level credit hours in the original languages. Sometimes I have these ideas that I take for granted and forget to share with the general audience, so I’m sorry for that. I will try to be more clear. The point is that when scholars (not just Christian, but also Jewish Torah scholars) compare the Hebrew form of Daniel with the rest of the Tanak it turns out that the language form is the same (similar to comparing Shakespeare with the KJV. We have older Hebrew forms and proto Hebrew writings, so the logical conclusion is that oldest manuscripts we have were last edited at the same period in history as Daniel (I think the window estimate is around 500 years). We don’t have any texts older than the Dead Sea Scrolls. So OT textual criticism can not “get past” perhaps 500 BC in their reconstructions. What that says about the quest for the perfect underlying text is open for debate.

        7. Fundystan– I have studied ANE languages at the graduate level also but am much more familiar with Greek (Attic and Koine) than Hebrew (any type).

          I think it’s a matter of what you mean by “written.” I have no problem accepting that Daniel is similar to the final form of the books of the Tanakh. However, I think that only speaks to the final edit of the Tanakh NOT what they were “written” in.

        8. I think we probably took classes from many of the same men. They have names like Gentry, Seifrid, Garrett, Pennington, Schreiner…

        9. Hey, that’s pretty cool! Although, I actually took most of my language classes at Southwestern. I did my classes on comparative ANE language at the Fuller extension campus in Houston. And now I manage a Fortune 100 company in the tech industry. God has a sense of humor πŸ˜‰

  20. I can’t help but think back to 1996 in the Chicago International Auditorium, (the only year Hyles ran Pastors school in a bigger building since FBC was under renovation to what it looks like today.)

    Pastors School 1996 Al Lacy rambled for two hours on the KJV and how he and Hyles would “beat up anyone carrying an NIV or NKV”.

      1. Dear mum2h:

        I wondered if anyone was going to catch that.

        One of my favorite lines is this:

        ‘There comes a time in the life of every man in which his IQ and his “waste line” trade places.’

        Christian Socialist

  21. Hello – I’m a former Fundy and a longtime reader.

    So…the “fact” that the originals were never assembled into one book (is this even true?) makes them inferior to a translation?

    I thought I’d heard everything on this topic, but that’s a new one on me.

  22. My guess this “Word” isn’t good enough either.

    John 1
    King James Version (KJV)
    1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

  23. So, which one of those 7 points is NOT true?

    Someone has a FETISH about the “precious” “originals” and wants to worship them as if ONLY they are the word of God and that God could not get his words into any language. It CAN and he DID. This forum is all in the (guess what?) universal language of the world – ENGLISH, the one God allowed England to spead around the world in HIS timing. God USED them to put HIS WORDS into English, it IS superior to the unseen (by anyone living today) “originals”

    1. The one, true, and only reason for English, especially the words King James used is that such language was what WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE, THE VERY BARD OF AVON HIMSELF used, that tongue of flame the very angels themselves do not question. 😎
      Need I say more?

    2. If God can put his word into Shakespearean English, he can also do so with modern English. And Spanish, and German, and Mandarin.

      You know. Languages that people today can easily understand.

      1. Also, #3 states that God destroyed the originals on purpose. He didn’t. An evil king did.

        #5 If the originals existed today, digital copies would be easily transferred throughout the world so that everyone could access them.

        #6 is irrelevant. The Chapter and Verse markings have been used over and over again to distort the word of God, by taking individual verses out of context rather than applying them in the manner they were intended. Which is, of course, why the IFB love Chapter and Verse markings so much.

        #7 Even the original translators were humble enough to acknowledge that their translation was not perfect. It was the best that the English speaking world had at the time.

        1. “#6 is irrelevant. The Chapter and Verse markings have been used over and over again to distort the word of God, by taking individual verses out of context rather than applying them in the manner they were intended. Which is, of course, why the IFB love Chapter and Verse markings so much.”

          So very true! I find myself having to tell people time and again that those divisions are entirely artificial. A typical KJV response is “But Jesus refers to the Second Psalm”. Leading of course to the double face-palm, as the Psalms are of course separate compositions in the first place, and not like chapter divisions.

    3. No, no-one has a fetish about the originals, nor is tempted to bow down to them and worship them. That is a straw man that does not even resemble a real person. If anyone is making a fetish it is those who are saying that the KJV is the perfect Word of God and therefore above all criticism or correction.

      “There are no such things done as thou sayest, but thou feignest them out of thine own heart.” (Nehemiah 6:8)

      1. I think Steven “pisseth against the wall” Anderson is on record as stating that he worships the King James because it is the Word of God and John 1 refers to the Word as God.

        Don’t try explaining the Greek philosophical construct meaning of “word”… he believes the Bible.

        1. I did hear him say that on a you tube sermon. I’ve heard snippets of his most famous, or should I say rediculous, ones. :mrgreen:

  24. The originals to the KJV don’t exist anymore. The original translator’s autographs were lost within 100 years. So they are hoist on their own petard.

  25. There is one advantage the KJV has had over later translations: the translators never hid the Bible’s vulgarity (though I will note that the NIV’s translation of Ezekiel 23:20 is a paragon of clarity).

        1. Just google Anderson pisseth against the wall. You’ll find out all you need to know and more.

        2. Wow, that IS an awful treatment of “pisseth against the wall”! At first glance, he’s another full-blown idiot.

          BUT, check out his church’s website–he rejects dispensationalism and the pre-trib rapture demonstrating that he’s actually evaluating classic Fundy doctrinal positions in light of Scripture and willing to confidently swim against the very strong current of fellow IFB pastor opinion. Maybe there’s hope for him. Keep studying the Bible Stephen!

          OTOH, he outright rejects Calvinism–probably because he’s still under the impression that you can’t be Calvinist and a “soul-winner” at the same time.

  26. I can’t remember the exact quote, but I watched a video once that said something to the effect of:

    “Why are these IFBs so attached to a translation of Eastern Orthodox manuscripts, compiled by a Roman Catholic, and translated by Anglicans at the request of a homosexual king?”

    1. Good point!

      My parents warned me against reading C. S. Lewis because he was Anglican but also insisted that the KJV was the only good Bible because (among other reasons) the translators were such holy and educated men. They utter such contradictions with total seriousness.

      Of course, if the translators were so wise and godly, why don’t my parents pay attention to WHAT THEY SAID IN THEIR INTRODUCTION!!!!! *insert emoticon here of me tearing out my hair in frustration*

    2. The idea of sexual orientation that we have today is not something that 17th century people had. In modern terms, James would be regarded as bisexual, as he had a fairly normal sexual relationship with his wife.

      Though the underlying text of the KJV is broadly “Byzantine”, many of its oddities (1 John 5:7, for example) come directly from the Latin Vulgate tradition – which is of course to the Fundy “Papist!!!!” There are several places where the KJV follows the Latin rather than the Greek, in some cases rather egregiously including readings that are found in no Greek text whatsoever.

  27. Back at AbekaVSBobJones…seems no one caught the connection. Hyles, Hyles, Hyles! SFL wouldn’t have half the posts it has if it weren’t for that man!

    After his “alledged” affair with secretary, this is the bandwagon he instigated big time in IFBdom. He found something to distract from his scandal and injured reputation, to unite IFBdom under his influence again. It was also, another scheme to draw lines and seperate from the rest of Christendom, and non-Hyles supporting IFBers.

    Guess it worked, cuz it’s now officially part of Fundie doctrine!

  28. The King James Version Only debate. I remember it well.

    I came from a KJV-only family. After we “got saved” my mom got involved in a lot of ultra-conservative-fundamentalist stuff, got loads of pamphlets and literature. Dad, of course, was along for the ride.

    When I went to BJU, my first Bible class addressed the KJV only issue and put that to rest. Facts are really quite important. BJ showed good history, and did not subscribe to the idea that the manuscripts that Westcott and Hort and Tischendorf discovered were corrupt perversions of Scripture.

    And when I got married, my wife presented me with a copy of the NASV for a wedding present.

    So I take her out west to meet my parents and family. During the course of our time there, my sister saw me carrying the NASV, was shocked and called me a heretic for reading from it. She used the standard inane fare, and I asked her to pick a verse and compare the versions.

    She ran away, screaming that I was trying to destroy her faith.

    Relations with my family deteriorated, and we haven’t been back in nearly 30 years.

    1. That is so sad. I’m sorry for your loss.

      Fear, fear, fear, fear, fear. Fear of everything and everyone, even people you’ve known your entire life, if they put a toe past the line you drew across your ability to reason. Fear of bogeymen, of looking bad, of love that doesn’t obey a written prescription. So much poisonous fear!

      May everyone reading here who chooses to attend a service next Sunday have a joyous and fear-free Easter.

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