God’s Word

Notes on the King James Bible or the Authorized Version of 1611

by Ken Brandt

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God has declared that He would preserve His Word. "The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation forever" (Psalm 12:6-7). Psalm 11:3 says, "If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?" God has five essential attributes that are critical to the preservation of His Word: His eternality, His immutability, His omnipotence, His omniscience, and His omnipresence. As long as God is all of these, we will have His Word.

Our faith is based upon the impregnable rock of Holy Scripture, upon the foundation of the Divine inspiration of the Word of God. Our faith stands or falls upon this very truth. If we deny that the Bible (the King James Version) is the very Word of God, then we are left without any ultimate standard or authority. If we believe that the Bible is a Divinely revealed communication of God's own mind and will, then we have the foundation of truth on which to stand. We must believe that the Bible is inerrant and infallible before we can study it, profit from it, and live by it.

We cannot overestimate the importance of the Divine inspiration of God's Word. We must defend it at all costs. Ken Taylor, editor of the Living Bible, said, "I would like to be like Tyndale in everything but his death." Tyndale was strangled and burned at the stake by those who hated God's Word. Taylor does not mind the one and a half million dollars he received in royalties for one year, but he would rather not die for his loyalty to the Word of God. The Word is the point at which Satan constantly attacks. This is no different than what he did in Genesis 3, when he cast doubt on God's Word by saying, "Yea hath God said?" The Scriptures have been the central object of his assaults, always with the intent of destroying God's truth. In the early days of the Christian era the attack was made openly by burning both book and men. Now the attack is more subtle in manner. It comes in the name of scholarship that attempts to destroy and discredit the Word's authority and authenticity by making new "Bibles" under the pretense of discovery of older manuscripts.

The Scriptures themselves attest to their Authorship and truthfulness. The verses quoted above from Psalm 12:6-7 speak of this, as do several other verses. "The Lord gave the word: great was the company of those that published it" (Psalm 68:11). "Forever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven" (Psalm 119:89). "I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth; for thou hast magnified thy Word above all thy name" (Psalm 138:2). "For verily I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled" (Matthew 5:18). "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away" (Matthew 24:35). See also II Timothy 3:16 and II Peter 1:19-21.

We know that no one can believe except it is given him from God. Faith is the key to believing that the KJV is the Word of God. The first five words of Genesis 1:1, "In the beginning God created," cannot be believed apart from Divine revelation. This ability to believe is God-given; Romans 10:17 and Ephesians 2:8-9 tell us how it is obtained. One individual in our group had someone tell them they believed the KJV was the Word of God, but that it was full of errors. The truth of the matter is that this person had an absence of faith. What good does it do us to have God's Word if we cannot trust it? As we examine the natural world we find innumerable proofs of a personal Creator. The same God who manifested Himself through His works has also revealed His wisdom and will through His Word. The God of creation and the God of the written revelation are One. The God who made heaven and earth is also the Author and God of His Word.

The greatest proof I have of the power and authority of God's Word is how it changed my life. "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free," says John 8:32. There are not many today who believe this, yet the Scriptures state in I Kings 19:18 and Romans 11:4 that there are 7,000 who have not bowed the knee to Baal. Let us never forget that God allows these perversions to be published. Satan is only the means for these perversions and is blinding the minds of men (II Thessalonians 2:11 and II Corinthians 4:3-4).

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The Bible is an inspired book

In my creedal statement, my first point reads: "I believe the Bible (KJV) is the inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God." I believe in verbal plenary inspiration. The word inspired means breathed. Verbal inspiration means that the words in the Bible are God-breathed. Plenary inspiration means that all 70 books are inspired. We know there was no English language when the Bible was written, so we must acknowledge an inerrant and infallible preservation (Psalm 12:6-7) of the Greek and Hebrew languages. This is where the Textus Receptus is important. The Bible was not breathed out in other languages. These all come to us as translations from the preserved copies of what were originally God-breathed, inspired, inerrant and infallible Greek and Hebrew words. Dean Burgeon states, "God gave to us His words, breathed out from Himself in the Hebrew and Greek text (a few verses in Aramaic), verbal. plenary, inerrant and infallible. That since God was so careful to give us God-breathed (inspired), verbal, plenary, inerrant and infallible words. that He has also preserved every single word according to His promise." (See Psalm 12:7.)

When we view the qualifications of the translators of the KJV. we can see the providence of God in assembling these men to give us His Word. Let the scoffers and critics rage on. Is not He who created the worlds out of nothing - yea, who spake them into being (Psalm 104 and 33:6) - able to preserve His Word for His people? Certainly! "Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual" (I Corinthians 2:13).

Not only does the Bible claim to be a Divine revelation, but it asserts that its original manuscripts were written with the wisdom which the Holy Ghost teacheth. The Bible nowhere claims to have been written by inspired men (this is where some of the argument comes from), but it insists that the words these men uttered and recorded were God's Words. Inspiration has nothing to do with the minds of the writers (as I Peter 1:10-11 says, many writers did not understand what they wrote), but with the writings themselves. "Scripture" is the writings in the Bible, and as II Timothy 3:16 says, "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God." Faith has to do with God's Words, not the men who wrote them down. They are dead and gone, but their writings remain. A writing that is inspired by God self-evidently implies, in the very expression, that the words in it are the words of God.

Now some say the Bible is not the Word of God, but that it merely "contains" the words of God. This is an unholy attempt to invalidate the supreme authority of the Word of God. What the Bible teaches about its own inspiration is a matter of Divine teaching on justification, sanctification, substitution. and so on. These principles all stand equally on the authority of the Scriptures - the final court of appeal for every question about revealed truth.

The teaching of the Bible concerning its inspiration is clear and simple. Add these to the references we have already quoted: "And the LORD said unto him (Moses), Who hath made man's mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD? Now therefore go, and 1 will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say" (Exodus 4:11-12); "The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and His word was in my tongue" (II Samuel 23:2); "Then the LORD put forth His hand and touched my mouth. And the LORD said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth" (Jeremiah 1:9).

What the Scriptures say about themselves demonstrates that they are entirely, absolutely the Word of God. "The law (Word) of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony (Word) of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple" (Psalm 19:7). The word "perfect" excludes any place for human infirmities and imperfection. "Thy Word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it" (Psalm 119:140). "Pure" cannot mean anything less than that the Holy Spirit so watched over all the Bible's composition and moved its writers that all error has been excluded. "Thy Word is true from the beginning: and everyone of thy righteous judgments endureth forever" (Psalm 119:160). Did God anticipate - yea, know from the beginning - the assaults of the "higher critics" on Genesis?

Luke 12:12 and John 14:26 give light on inspiration. "For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say." The disciples spoke, but the Holy Spirit taught them what to say. If the Holy Spirit would so control their utterances when they were in the presence of the magistrates (Luke 12:11), would He do less when they were communicating the mind of God to all future generations on things concerning our eternal destiny? NEVER! It is human to err, but this is not so in the perfection of Deity. One letter can change a word (for instance, "now" can become "not"), but in the Word of God not one jot or tittle can be errant. The blessed Holy Spirit supervised the writing of every letter of Holy Writ in order to guarantee its accuracy and inerrancy.

Another instance of verbal inspiration is the fact that words are used in Scripture with most exact precision. Notice, for example, the names of God as Elohim and Jehovah (God and LORD). These names are found thousands of times in Scripture, but are never employed loosely or used alternately. Each has a definite significance and scope. To switch them around would destroy the meaning of whole passages. For instance, the name "God" occurs throughout Genesis 1, for that is His creatorial title. In Genesis 2, "LORD God" is used. This is His title in covenant relation and shows His dealings with His own people. For example, Genesis 7:16 says, "And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him; and the LORD shut him in." God, as creator, gave the command, and the LORD shut him in, because God's action toward Noah was based upon a covenant relationship.

There are over 50 Divine titles in the Old Testament, and each is used with a definite significance. In the New Testament, "the Lord Jesus Christ" is His resurrection title. Satan has titles, too, such as "Lucifer"; "the Tempter"; "the Adversary"; "the wicked one"; "the serpent," etc. The same principle applies to Jacob and Israel. "Jacob" refers to the acts of the "old man," for Jacob doubted. "Israel." Jacob's new name, refers to the fruits of the "new man," for Israel believed.

Lastly, the most convincing of all proofs and arguments for verbal inspiration is that the Lord Jesus Christ regarded and used Old Testament writings as Scripture. In Matthew 4:4, 4:7, and 4:10, Jesus said, "It is written." In Matthew 19:3-4, when He was tempted by the Pharisees, He said, "Have ye not read that He which made them at the beginning ..." We must be very careful lest we detract in the smallest degree from the perfect and full inspiration of the Holy Scripture.

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Where the perversions go wrong

What has happened today with the many versions that call themselves "Bibles"? There is no question that the battle of our faith is centered around the authority and infallibility of God's Word. Satan is an imitator and a counterfeiter. An imitation Bible is not the real thing. Satan had someone betray the Lord Jesus Christ, and so he has betrayers of the written Word. We know this from II Corinthians 11:11-14. The book The Translators Revived (by Alexander McClure, published by Maranatha Bible Society) states "Many of the so called versions are not translations at all, but merely personal interpretation, and even the plain meanings of simple verses are obscured and mutilated to the extent that they mean just the opposite of the intended Word of God."

There are two methods employed in translation: dynamic equivalence and formal equivalence. Dynamic equivalence is not, however, a real translation. It is a paraphrase. By using dynamic equivalence, you add to, subtract from, or change God's words. You do not preserve the truth, for you can add words that are not in the original Hebrew or Greek. Dynamic equivalence does not give us what God said in His words, but rather it gives us what Dr. So-and-so thinks God meant. In the NIV, there are over 6,400 word omissions; the NASV has over 4,000 omissions; and the NKJV has over 2,000 (source: Gail Riplinger, Which Bible is God's Word. Hearthstone Publishing). All the perversions use dynamic equivalence, and they should be called paraphrases, not translations. Those who use this false method think it's a great technique, but they really aren't concerned with giving us what God said because it doesn't agree with their unregenerate minds. The word "dynamic" means "moving or changing," while the word "equivalence" means "the same or unchanging." God's Word is either changing or unchanging; you cannot have it both ways.

The bottom line for a technique like dynamic equivalence is that it gives a human being the right to add to, subtract from, or change God's words, which is a sin, according to Deuteronomy 4:2, Proverbs 30:5-6, and Revelation 22:18-19. God pronounces the strongest possible curse on anyone who dares to do any of that to His Word. Those who use this technique are really paraphrasing rather than translating. "Paraphrase" comes from two Greek words, para, meaning "along side or beside," and phrasis, meaning "a word or phrase." It is to use a word or phrase that is beside the real meaning, to state something in other words. We should seek, as the KJV translators sought, to put into English the exact and accurate meaning of the Hebrew and Greek Words of God, rather than to have something that is "along side" the word or phrase. In his book Foes of the King James Bible Refuted (Bible for Today Press), D.A. Waite states, "God does not use that which contradicts His Word. Don't drag God into the NIV. I believe the NIV is the greatest perversion of our day. I have examined closely every word of the NIV for over two and one half years and I have found over 6,650 examples of dynamic equivalence."

On the other hand, formal (or verbal) equivalence aims primarily at reproducing the form and structure of the language, in the belief that the meaning is thereby most accurately communicated. This is what we have in the KJV - the forms of the words. as well as "verbal equivalence," giving us the words from the Hebrew and the Greek. The KJV translators did not transform the grammar. They did not take a noun and make a verb out of it. They brought a noun to a noun and a verb to a verb wherever possible. They were skilled craftsmen who had a proper concept of what "translation" really means. The word comes from the Latin trans latus, with trans meaning "across" and latus being the past participle of another word, fero, which means "to carry." Thus, translation is to "carry across" from one place or language to another. It is not to change, subtract, or add.

The KJV as we have it today was translated from the Hebrew and Greek of the Received Text, or Textus Receptus. It is the Greek manuscript of the Received Text that underlies the KJV. These manuscripts (over 5,200 of them) are written in Greek and are virtually identical. There are small variations in the spelling of names and other minor items, but the miracle of it is that they are all practically the same. This is not true of Codex B and Aleph, or Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, which contradict each other over 3,000 times in the Four Gospels alone (source: Herman Hoskier, Codex B and its Allies). The English translation of the KJV comes mainly from the Greek of Theodore Beza's 1598 fifth edition. The Hebrew manuscripts which underlie the KJV are called the Masoritic Traditional Hebrew text, edited by Ben Chayyim in the 1520's. We believe these copies contain the very words that God gave to the original writers of the Old and New Testaments. The 1611 KJV was translated from these original manuscripts accurately, reliably, and in a sound theological manner. As of 1967, the number of these manuscripts preserved for us today totaled 5,255, in the form of 81 papyrus fragments; 267 unicals; 2,764 cursives; and 2,143 lectionaries. A few more manuscripts have since been added to this figure since 1967.

The Elzivir brothers wrote, in the preface of their Greek New Testament, "Therefore thou hast the text now received by all in which we give nothing altered or corrupt." This is where we get the terms "Textus Receptus" or "received text." This text comes from over 99% of the manuscripts. It was once known as the Greek Vulgate (not the Latin Vulgate of Jerome). and is the same as the Syrian Peshitta of 150 A.D. It is also some 200 years older than the two ancient manuscripts (Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, from 350 A.D.) used by Westcott and Hort, who claimed to use the oldest manuscripts. Codex Vaticanus was found in 1481, lying dormant on a shelf in the Vatican library. Part of Sinaiticus was found in 1844 in a wastebasket in St. Catherine's monastary at the foot of Mt. Sinai, and was found not in its entirety until 1859.

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Forefathers of Westcott and Hort

What Westcott and Hort did was undeniably of Satan in his attempt to destroy the written Word. They began in 1853 to "revise" the Greek text from the Codex Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, a task in which they followed their forefathers (see John 8:37-47).

Origen (185 A.D. - 254 A.D.)

Every "textual critic" has followed in Origen's footsteps. Born in Alexandria, he used the Alexandrian manuscripts, which were corrupt. His chief ambition was to convert Christianity into just another pagan philosophy. According to some of his teachings, the Lord's supper has atoning efficacy (the same as the Catholic mass); all the wicked will be restored after suffering punishment and receiving instruction from angels (similar to Purgatory); and priests and bishops can forgive sins. It was Origen's "critical opinion" that many verses in the Bible were "absolutely unreasonable." He taught a universal salvation and believed that Peter was the "foundation of the church." He also believed that Jesus was a "created god" and that he would not return to earth (He couldn't, if He was only a god). It is recorded in Newman's Manual of Church History that he believed he could freely amend the New Testament whenever he felt it was in error - quite often, with his beliefs. He also accepted some of the Apocryphal books as inspired. He was responsible for writing a six-column language comparison, called the Hexapla, of translations of the Old Testament.

Eusebius (260 A.D. - 340 A.D.)

When Constantine requested 50 copies of the Bible, he put Eusebius in charge of assembling and producing them. Eusebius incorporated Origen's Fifth Column into these Bibles. This Fifth Column is called the Septuagent, or LXX, and when traced to its origin it is the same as the Codex Vaticanus, which is full of errors. When these Bibles were finally delivered, they came from corrupt manuscripts and were written on vellum (animal hides). The New Testament texts of the Textus Receptus were written on papyrus.

Eusebius was an Arian; that is, he believed that Jesus was a created being. He did not believe in a literal interpretation of the Bible, and held that the accounts of Adam and Eve and the flood were symbolic representations.

Marcion (84 A.D. - 160 A.D.)

Mardon was always called "the heretic." Among other things, he taught that Luke's gospel and the Pauline epistles were not to be acknowledged as Scripture. He also denied that Christ had come in the flesh.

These were the foundations on which Westcott and Hort began their Greek translation. This was the wrong foundation.

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Westcott and Hort

Both Westcott and Hort were spiritists and believed in the occult. They called the Textus Receptus "a vile text." In 1853, these two Cambridge professors began preparing a Greek text based primarily on Codex Vatican us and Sinaiticus. These two men are responsible for the link between us and the apostate past. They might well be called the "intellectual descendants of the ancient heretics." With skill and great subtlety they delivered to the church of the 20th century the religion of their fathers. "Ye are of your father the devil, he abode not in the truth because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar and the father of it" (John 8:44). They were masters of communication, their scholarship outweighed only by their theological ineptitude. Neither said they believed the Bible to be verbally inspired or inerrant. Hort praised Darwin's theory of evolution and questioned the existence of Eden; Westcott flatly denied the Genesis account of creation. In his own words: "No one now, I suppose, holds that the first three chapters of Genesis give a literal history ... I could never understand how anyone reading them with open eyes could think they did." (If God didn't create in the beginning, He could not recreate us to be new creatures in Christ Jesus.)

Westcott and Hort gave every indication of being Catholics under cover; they seemed equally as comfortable worshipping Mary or Jesus. Hort once wrote, "I have been persuaded that Mary worship and Jesus worship have much in common in their causes and results." Westcott wrote, concerning a statue of Mary and a crucified Christ, "Had I been alone I could have knelt there for hours." Westcott and Hort had a preference for Catholic dogma. Hart called himself a "staunch sacredotalist," that is, one who requires a priest, not Christ, to mediate between himself and the Divine. Hort wrote, "The pure Romish view seems to me nearer and more likely to lead to the truth than the Evangelical." He also wrote, "The popular doctrine of substitution (by Christ) is an immoral and material counterfeit." These are the men who changed the traditional text in 8,413 places using the corrupt Codex Vaticanus manuscripts (source: Gail Riplinger, Which Bible is God's Word?). Not only did these men produce the Greek text that all Bibles except the KJV are based upon, but they invented all the reasons why the church today should no longer rely on the true text.

What has taken place after Westcott and Hort finished their text is alarming. In one of the most infamous moments in Church history, the Codex Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, by way of the Westcott and Hort text, were slipped into the hands of liberal theologians who, in the latter half of the 19th century, convinced Protestants that these older manuscripts were better and were in fact the real Scriptures. What subtlety! This implies that for the greater part of 1,550 years we were with out God's Word until the 1881 Revised Version came along.

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What Westcott and Hort did

In 1853, Westcott and Hort began preparing this Greek text. In 1859, Charles Darwin published his "Origin of the Species." This makes for an interesting parallel. As the world was being offered an entirely new science, the church was being furnished with an entirely new Bible.

There are four ways the devil has stolen the sword from people:

In 1881, Westcott and Hort came out with two volumes called "The New Testament in the Original Greek." The first of these volumes contained the text of the New Testament as constructed by Westcott and Hort according to their own critical principles. But the rules that the translators were to follow were never followed. They were to introduce as few alterations as possible into the text of the Authorized Version (more information can be obtained on this matter in The Translators Revived). They were also to:

Instead, what Westcott and Hort did and what their writings imply is that we cannot appear to be uneducated and believe the Bible is the inerrant, infallible Word of the Living God. Even though 99.4 percent of the manuscripts agree with the Textus Receptus and only .6 percent of them agree with the Codex Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, the Westcott and Hort position is that the "errors" in the original Greek text - as they consider them to be errors and corruption - may be due to the "original writers." This would mean that there was never a time when we had an inerrant Bible. They questioned the very words of God!

Both Westcott and Hort were doctrinal apostates. Hort wrote to J.B. Lightfoot (who was on the revision committee) on May 1, 1860: "If you make a decided conviction of the absolute infallibility of the New Testament a point of cooperation, I fear I could not join you" (source: The Life And Letters Of Fenton John Anthony Hort). However, Prebendary Scrivener, who was also on the revision committee, writes of the choice of manuscripts: "They were entirely destitute of historical foundation."

Westcott and Hort's Greek text was a revolutionary change and attack on the traditional Greek text that had been received by the churches for 1,500 years. Dean Burgeon said, "The Codex Vaticanus and Sinaiticus were the worst manuscripts ever." The text behind the modern translations is the most error-ridden text that could ever be found. The Nestle-Aland text, taught at almost all the seminaries today, has its root in the Westcott and Hort Greek text. Nestle's Greek text was the interlinear text taken from Westcott and Hort's text. Kurt Aland was a textual scholar who co-edited the Nestle-Aland Greek text from 1940 until his death in 1994. He was a German apostate who did not believe in the Deity of Christ, His blood atonement, or His bodily resurrection. He specialized in the false texts that support the Westcott and Hort text, from which we get all the perversions. The reason the KJV does not seem to be an accurate translation of the NASV/Nestle interlinear Greek text is because the preface to Nestle's text says, "This is not the traditional Greek text." The KJV is, however, a very precise translation of the traditional Greek text. Dr. Wilbur Pickering says. "New versions differ from the originals in some 6,000 places. They are several times further removed from the originals than the KJV."

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How the perversions are different

There are three major areas in which the perversions have changed the teaching from the KJV: the Deity of Christ, the blood atonement, and eternal punishment.

The Deity of Christ

In changing the Deity of Christ, the perversions desire to make the Lord Jesus Christ nothing more than a created being. In I Timothy 3:16 in the NIV, "God" is changed to "He." This overthrows the entire meaning of the verse. Who is "He?" There is a footnote in the NIV which states that some manuscripts use the word "God." This is misleading, for most of the manuscripts use "God" and not "He." (Note the next two verses, I Timothy 4: 1-2.) In Philippians 2:5-6, the KJV says, "Christ Jesus, who being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God." The NIV states, "Christ Jesus, who being in the very nature of God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped." This argues against all the facts. Christ believed and knew He was coequal with God. See John 5:18-23, 8:58, 10:30, 14:9, 20:28-29, and many others.

In Revelation 1:8-13, the NIV omits the words "the beginning and the ending" and also changes "Lord" to "Lord God" to make it appear as though the passage refers to God and not Christ. "Christ" is omitted twice from verse 9. The words "I am the Alpha and Omega, the first and the last" are missing from verse 11. Verse 13 has one of the most significant changes, for the KJV says, "One like unto the Son of Man," while the NIV says, "One like a Son of man." In Ephesians 3:14, the KJV says, "For this I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ," and the NIV says, "For this reason I kneel before the Father." Acts 8:37 is gone from the NIV, as it is a distinct statement concerning the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ. The perversions have done all they can do to make Christ nothing more than a human creature. In John 9:35, when Christ speaks to the man who was born blind, the KJV reads, "Dost thou believe on the Son of God?" The NIV says, "Do you believe in the Son of Man?" The importance of this error is not to be taken lightly, for our eternal destiny hinges upon the Lord Jesus Christ being the God-Man sent from heaven by the Father to be the perfect, sinless Lamb slain for our sins. If He is only a created being, as the NIV says, then how can anyone can be saved by reading or hearing preaching from such a book?

One note concerning the virgin birth of Christ. The KJV says, in Luke 2:33, "And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of Him." The NIV says, "The child's father and mother marveled at what was said about Him." The KJV refers to Mary and Joseph, in Luke 2:43, as "Joseph and His (Jesus') mother," while the NIV refers to them as "his parents." Joseph is made to be the father of Jesus in the NIV. Matthew 1:25 in the KJV says that Mary "brought forth her firstborn son," while the NIV says "she gave birth to a son." (See Matthew 13:53-55 for more clarification.) This is where all the false cults go wrong: They make Christ into a created being. Read I John 4:1-3, where this error is exposed.

Blood redemption

Redemption by the blood of Christ is another subject that the perversions try to change. Luke 9:55-56 in the KJV says, "But He turned and rebuked them, and said, 'Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of; For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them.' And they went to another village." The NIV says, "But Jesus turned and rebuked them, and they went to another village." The KJV says, in Matthew 18:11, "For the Son of man is come to save that which is lost." This verse is omitted in the NIV. Colossians 1:14 says, in the KJV, "In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins." The NIV says, "In whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins." The blood is removed from that passage, yet in Ephesians 1:7 it is left in. Since an entire doctrine can be structured on the foundation of a single word, the removal of that word can cause the entire doctrine to collapse.

Another instance is Ephesians 4:6, which in the KJV says, "One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all." The NIV says, "One God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all." By deleting the word "you," the NIV reads that He is in everyone and not specifically just the saints. This lends to universalism, which is not scriptural. It does as much damage to the truth as to take "again" out of John 3:7. These omissions lead to the thinking that everyone has fellowship with God already and that there is no need for salvation or blood redemption.

Eternal punishment

The NIV is well-known, to those who know the truth, for omitting whole verses, such as Matthew 23:14, Mark 11:26, Mark 7:16, and the last half of Mark 6:11. Notice especially how eternal punishment is taken out. This logically takes away the necessity to teach about sin. In this age of reckless living, letting your conscience be your guide, doing what feels good, etc., men want more than ever to make light of and belittle the truth of eternal punishment. The NIV is of great assistance to them. The KJV, in the last part of Mark 9:45, says, "... into the fire that shall never be quenched." The NIV omits this phrase as well as all of verses 44 and 46. In Colossians 3:6, the KJV says, "For which thing's sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience." The NIV says, "Because of these, the wrath of God is coming." By these omissions, the individuality upon whom this wrath is to come is obliterated.

Because of their hatred for the Lord Jesus Christ, there is much meddling when it comes to His co-equality with the Father. In John 17:5, the KJV says, "And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was." The NIV says, "And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began." This leads us to believe that Christ was not co-equal with the Father in eternity. Such deception! In many of the greetings of Paul in his epistles, the NIV omits, "From God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." The NIV and other perversions simply do not want to give to the Lord Jesus Christ His rightful place as the Son of God, for to do so, they would have to bow to His Lordship. To further show this, we come to the teaching of His title as "Lord." The NIV removes the title of "Lord" 31 times, the title of "Christ" 45 times, and the title of "Jesus" 46 times. In Hebrews 10:30, the first instance of "Lord" is omitted in the NIV. I Corinthians 15:47 in the KJV says, "The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven." The NIV says, "The first man was of the dust of the earth: the second man from heaven." In Matthew 16:20 in the KJV, Christ acknowledges Himself to be the Messiah, the Saviour. "Jesus" means "Jehovah is salvation." Why is this omitted from the NIV? The answer is an obvious one.

In the 1881 version, the title of "Jesus" was only removed ten times. The NIV has removed it 46 times. We can see where this trend is leading. Its designs against Christ are self-evident. It's saying, "Get rid of Him! We want a Bible that's palatable to man. We will not have this man to reign over us!" (Luke 19:14)

On a different note, the title "Jesus" is added to the NIV 341 times; "Christ" is added 17 times; "Lord" is added 9 times, and other titles are included 11 times. Some additions replaced a pronoun, such as "He." But none of these added titles can be found in the Textus Receptus. Westcott and Hart's translation only recorded 19 of these 378 extra titles found in the latest edition of the NIV. Why did they remove the authorized titles and insert their own? To make Christ a created being and bring Him down to the same level as man. Certainly God knew exactly where He wanted these titles in His Word. God promised to preserve His Word (Psalm 12:6-7 and Isaiah 40:8). Because of II Thessalonians 2:10-12, we know that God is going to send them (the non-elect) strong delusion that they should believe a lie, and no the truth; that is, they will not believe He has only one Word. Try telling someone who uses the NIV that it is not God's Word.

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Why we must defend the KJV

What we see today is a plan set in motion to re-educate the people. It is cleverly devised by Satan, although within the constraints of the will of God, The idea is gaining popularity that if you are to be considered a Bible authority, you must stand with the other authorities, and that all dissenters ("KJV men") are divisive. In what better way can the enemies of the Bible bring it down than by pretending to be its experts (i.e. Westcott and Hort)? This has always been their strategy, but its success has never been equaled as it has in our day, and it's becoming more successful at an alarming rate. Seminaries, churches, pastors and educators teach it, and their deception is as firmly entrenched in the church today as the theory of evolution is in the world of science. Yet, while they try to stomp out every vestige of truth by their lie, God's Word, according to His promise, will not be destroyed. Let us stand. If God be for us, who can be against us?

Remember that these perversions offer the quickest route away from God that, perhaps, has ever been devised. In a very short time, multitudes have followed this deception to the worship of self and the creature (see Romans 1). The trend is toward a one-world religion. In the past, the Gnostics and Origen blended the Scriptures with the pagan view of Christ. Then Constantine, with the aid of these "Scriptures," blended Christianity with paganism. Now with these same "Scriptures," church leaders and theologians, under the delusion of Westcott and Hort, are blending Protestantism with Catholicism (Billy Graham comes to mind). Next, this will be blended with every other religion. Then, finally, this will be blended with the pagan world in a one-world religion under a one-world Emperor, the Anti-Christ.

We have a grave responsibility to believe and stand for the truth of the KJV, the Word of God. Our eternal destiny and that of generations unborn is at stake. The KJV is not simply another publication out on the open market of religious books - it is the Word of God, of which He Himself will not alter one word! (See Psalm 89:34 and 119:89.)

The Word of God stands or falls upon the foundation of Divine inspiration, and so does my faith and hope. To deny that the KJV is without qualification the very Word of God leaves us without any ultimate standard or authority. I must believe the Word of God is inspired, inerrant, and infallible, or I bring it down to the level of just another book. It is impossible to overestimate the importance of this Divine inspiration of God's Word. We must defend it at all costs if the next generation and beyond are to have any hope. What the men who gave us the Word of God in its purity did, we are now being called upon to do for the next generation. Satan does not have to do much when we are indifferent or when we fail to stand on the absolute inerrancy and infallibility of the Word of God. This will encourage these men to do even further damage to the Scriptures, which they have already damaged beyond belief. New versions are coming out with frequent rapidity for the profit of men's pockets. Since paganism lies at the door, mankind will wonder and say with Pilate, "What is truth?" (John 18:37-38)

Nowhere does the Word of God claim to have been written by inspired men. It does claim to have been written by holy men, and the words they wrote and uttered were God's words (II Peter 1:20-21). Inspiration has nothing to do with the minds of the writers, but with the writings themselves (II Timothy 3:16). There are five essential attributes of God: eternality, immutability, omnipotence, omniscience, and omnipresence. Since God is eternal, His Word is forever settled in heaven. Since He is unchangeable, His Word cannot change. Because of this, these new "Bibles," which have changed and which continue to change rapidly, cannot be His Word. The NIV is in its fourth edition and all of its editions are different. I am told that each new revision has to be changed by ten percent from the previous edition in order to obtain a copyright, and thus the changes made are not for clarity but rather for profit. All of these perversions are a part of Satan's masterpiece to deceive the people who use them. Be reminded that Hebrews 9:15-17 states there is only one will and testament, and it is unchanging. We will need to possess this will when we stand before God and give proof that we are indeed heirs.

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The lineage of the KJV

"Words are of extreme importance, for God used the language of men to express Himself, first in the language of the Hebrew nation, then in the Aramaic and Greek of the New Testament. That the language has been translated into almost every tongue on earth is remarkable, and so is it that each rendering has remained as close to the original autographs." - Quote from The Translators Revived.

We can trace lineage of the Textus Receptus between the Apostles and the Word of God as we know it today.

Polycarp (69 A.D. - 155 A.D.)

Polycarp was a disciple of the apostle John. God's way of preserving His Word is miraculous. A letter Polycarp wrote, which still exists today, makes many references to the various parts of the New Testament and speaks of Paul's early ministry in the Philippian church - the same church that received Polycarp's letter!

Irenaeus (130 A.D. - 202 A.D.)

Irenaeus wrote a book called "Against Heresies" in which he took to task the Gnostics and other heretics. His writings made use of all the New Testament epistles and showed the unity between the Old and New Testaments. He was sent to Gaul and saw a great number of converts. He sent missionaries to other parts of Europe. It is thought that he died a martyr's death.

Chrysostom (347 A.D. - 407 A.D.)

Also known as John of Antioch, he was called "golden-mouthed" because of his great oratory. He wrote many commentaries on the Bible which go back to the books that now constitute our Scriptures. He was sent into exile because he offended the queen. He was no doubt the soundest preacher of Antiochian (Pauline) theology based upon pure exposition of the Bible.

Councils, synods, and other major events

The first Council of Nice, in 325 A.D., brought to the forefront the question, "What constitutes the Bible?" No verdict was rendered, yet from the list of men at the council we can trace the use of every book that now makes up our Bible. Other councils and synods were convened from 325 A.D.,to 787 A.D. In the writings of the Venerable Bede, who died in 735, we find that he translated the Gospel of John into Anglo-Saxon at the very close of his life. King Alfred ascended to the throne 200 years after the birth of Bede and translated the Psalms into Anglo-Saxon (approx. 850 A.D.).

The first complete translation that can be said to have been published and come into extensive use was that of John Wycliffe in about 1380 A.D. It was not made from the "original Hebrew and Greek of the Holy Ghost," but the Vulgate - a Latin version chiefly made by Jerome in the latter part of the fourth century. "Vulgate" means "vulgar," or "language of the common people."

John Wycliffe (1320 A.D. - 1384 A.D.)

John Wycliffe was referred to as "The Morning Star of the Reformation." Like Luther, he opposed the popish errors and corruption, though his opposition was limited to a few points. But prayer and study, as well as growth in grace, led him in a constant advance toward the purity of the truth. He died insisting that men acknowledge the Bible as the only source of truth and faith. He so infuriated the Pope that about 30 years after his death, the Pope ordered his body exhumed and his bones burned and scattered in the river. It was Wycliffe who proclaimed, "Truth shall conquer. " His translation (though not the basis for the KJV) was a handwritten Bible which enabled the Scriptures to get into the hands of more people.

Wycliffe's teaching and tenets continued to grow after his death. In 1408, an edict was adopted stating that, "The Holy Scripture is not to be translated into the vulgar tongue, nor a translation to be expounded until it shall have been duly examined, under pain of excommunication and the stigma of heresy." While Wycliffe probably did little of the actual translation, there is no doubt of his responsibility for this Bible. He always quoted the Bible and referred to it as the supreme authority. His work was continued by John Purvey (his secretary) and Nicholas Herford. Purvey began to revise this work, finishing in 1395 and greatly improving its style. Copies were widely used throughout the 15th century, and its readers were often persecuted. It is recorded that some people gave as much as five marks for a manuscript of the Bible, and others gave a load of hay for a few chapters of James or the other epistles. The English Bible was very limited in its manuscript form, yet there were enough copies in circulation to cause trouble for the monks of that day. One of them said, "This John Wycliffe hath translated the gospel out of Latin into English which Christ has entrusted only to the clergy and doctors of the church that they might minister it to the laity and weaker sort." So by this means, Wycliffe's translation of the gospel was made more common, open to the laity and even to women who could read. What was previously the chief gift of the clergy and doctors of the church was made forever common to all men.

If the publication of an English Bible in handwritten manuscript form caused such popish lamentations, we need not wonder how the mass production by printing should afterwards awaken such a fury. Martin Luther called printing "the last and best gift of Providence." The first Bible printed with metal type was printed in 1450 A.D. by Johann Gutenburg. Rowland Phillips, the papal vicar of Croydon, declared in a sermon in 1535, "We must root out printing or printing will root out us."

Erasmus (1466 A.D. - 1536 A.D.)

In 1504, Erasmus printed the first Greek New Testament: He was from Holland, and his New Testament was taken from the received text. His work laid the foundation for much of the work done by the reformers. Luther used this Greek New Testament for much of his own work. It was said, "Erasmus laid the egg that Luther hatched." Erasmus' work was followed up by such men as Theodore Beza, Robert Stephens, and the Elzivir Brothers. This Greek text, first collated by Erasmus and then improved by Stephens, became the basis for the work of the 1611 translators.

William Tyndale (1494 A.D. - 1536 A.D.)

Born in 1494, William Tyndale's works have never been duly appreciated. He was brought up at the University of Oxford and became proficient in all the learning of that day. He also read private lectures in divinity. He had a great zeal in the exposition of the Scriptures. Tyndale arose at the same time as Luther (who translated the Scriptures into German) and both moved equally to resist the corruptions and oppressions of a priesthood which sought to imprison and enslave the minds of all nations by keeping from the "the key of knowledge," the Holy Scriptures. Before long his stance on the Word of God and against Popish law and authority brought him before the Chancellor, where he was roughly treated, threatened and reviled. Not long after this, he refuted with Scripture one of the learned divines, who said, "It were better for us to be without God's laws than without the Pope's." This was too much for Tyndale, who replied, "I defy the Pope and all his laws; and if God spare my life, ere many years, I will cause a boy that driveth the plow to know more of Scripture than you do." He knew what the Holy Spirit could do through the Word of God, so he began to translate the New Testament into the English language.

The work could not be done in England, so he sailed to Hamburg and in 1525 began his work. He continued under cover and hardship from his foes, yet in ten years more than twenty editions, with repeated revisions by himself, were passed through the press. Many copies fell into the hands of the enemy and were destroyed, but many more were read in secret and powerfully prepared the way for the liberation of England from the yoke of Rome. This New Testament has been separately printed in not less than 56 editions, as well as 14 editions of the entire Bible. Most of Tyndale's renderings remain untouched in the KJV, except for words such as "charity" for "love" and "church" for "congregation." Tyndale was very loyal to the truth. He once said, in reply to Lord Chancellor More, "For I call God to record against the day we shall appear before our Lord Jesus to give an account of our doings, that I never altered one syllable of God's Word against my conscience; nor would to this day if all that is in the earth, either pleasure, honor, or riches might be given to me." (Contrast with Ken Taylor, who gave us the "Living Bible" and stated he wanted to imitate Tyndale in everything but his death.)

Some have questioned Tyndale's scholarship. Historians acknowledge his proficiency in Greek, and of his knowledge of Hebrew there can be no question. Spalatin, a friend of Luther, says in his diary, "At Worms, six thousand copies of the New Testament had been printed in English. The work was translated by an Englishman staying there with two others; a man so skilled in the seven languages, Hebrew, Greek, Latin, Italian, Spanish, English and French, that whichever he spoke you would suppose it his native tongue."

Early in 1535, Tyndale, who had been constantly hunted by the emissaries of his English persecutors, was betrayed by one Phillips. He was imprisoned where (like Paul the apostle before him) he was the means of converting the jailor, his daughter and others of the household. It was October of 1536 when he was brought forth to be executed. Upon being fastened to the stake, he cried, "Lord, open the eyes of the King of England!" He was then strangled and burned to ashes. To this day there is no monument to him, except the Bible he left to millions. His work did not die with him; it is estimated that 50,000 copies of his New Testament were in circulation before his death. During the last year of his life, nine or more editions of his testament issued from the press and found their way into England. On the day of his death a folio edition of his translation was printed at London with his name on the title page - the first copy of the Scriptures printed on English soil.

In 1537, two translations of complete Bibles were printed and made their appearance in England. One of these was Tyndale's version, completed and edited by his devoted friend, John Rodgers (AKA Thomas Matthews). The other was the work of Miles Coverdale and later came to be known the Matthews' Bible. To see the profound influence of Tyndale, consider that the Bishops' Bible was used as the foundation for the translation that became known as the KJV. The Bishops' Bible was a revamping of the Great Bible, which depended upon the Matthews text and was an edition of Rodgers' work on the Tyndale and Coverdale editions. As stated, Tyndale based his work upon the Greek of Erasmus, which is the very foundation of our present Bible. Tyndale also compared the work of Erasmus with the Latin Vulgate; however, the influence of the Vulgate does not appear. The German work of Luther was also used in the Tyndale translation.

Miles Coverdale (1488 A.D. - 1569 A.D.)

Miles Coverdale was born in 1488, probably in the district of Coverdale, England, near Middleham. His origin is very obscure. He was educated at the Augustine convent at Cambridge. There he was one of a group to meet and discuss the ideas "out of Germany." In 1525, he went to London, left the Augustinians and became a secular priest going about preaching against various current religious practices. In Cambridge, he had known Sir Thomas More and Thomas Cromwell. He wrote to Cromwell in 1527, "Now I begin to taste of the Holy Scriptures. Nothing in the world I desire but that God shall perform in me which He of His most Plentiful favor and grace hath begun" (see Phil. 1:6). Coverdale early acquired a reputation for being one wholly given up to the preaching of the Gospel. In 1528, he left England for Germany. He may have met Tyndale in Hamburg in 1529, but the evidence is doubtful. He is not heard from again until 1535 when his translation of the Bible was printed. Hoping to secure open circulation for it, he prefixed a full dedication to Henry VIII. This also distinguished it from the banned Tyndale translations. It appears that Cromwell encouraged its publication in view of a resolution of Convocation in 1534 for an English Bible.

We next hear of Coverdale in Paris in 1538-1539, superintending the printing of another English Bible, the Great Bible. He went back to England in 1539 under Cromwell's direction, but on Cromwell's death in 1540 he returned to Germany. He married and was awarded a Doctorate of Divinity by the University of Tubingen in 1543. In 1553, when King Edward died, he was deprived of his bishopric and was summoned to London with other reformers. He was allowed to leave England in 1555 and went to Denmark. From Denmark he went to Wesel in Germany where he preached to English refugees. He was in Geneva in 1558 when the Geneva Bible was in preparation. (However, he may not have had much part in it.) He was appointed rector of St. Magnus in England in 1563, but resigned in 1566 because he would not conform to the requirements of Queen Elizabeth's church laws. He continued preaching to large groups in various parts of London until he died in 1569.

An old picture shows him as a man of unattractive physical appearance, but his contribution to our English Bible is without price. In his dedication to the King he says, "I neither wrested nor altered so much as one word, but have with a clear conscience purely and faithfully translated the manifest truth of the Scripture before my eyes." (Contrast this with Westcott and Hort and the rest of the modern-day translators.) Coverdale seems to have used the Swiss German of Zwingli and Leo Juda, the Latin of Pagninus and the Vulgate, and the available translations of Luther and Tyndale. While Coverdale's Bible, like Wycliffs, is a secondary translation (i.e. not made from the original Hebrew and Greek), we are indebted to him for giving us the first complete English Bible in printed form. He was not of the creative, original, rugged nature of Tyndale, but he carried on what the earlier translator had begun and enriched his predecessor's work. His additions to Tyndale's translation were minor. For instance, where Tyndale said "goods," Coverdale used "the pride of life." Also, for Tyndale's "vanisheth," Coverdale says "the world passeth away." The 102nd Psalm of the 1611 varies only one word from Coverdale.

Coverdale's Bible was published with a long dedication to King Henry VIII and his wife, Queen Anne, stating it was finished on October 4, 1535. There is no indication as to a printer or place of publication, though is assumed to be in Marburg, Germany. No perfect copies of this Bible are now known, but a number have survived in good condition. In 1537, and again in 1538, the New Testament was printed alone. In 1538, Coverdale prepared an edition to satisfy the critics who said the truth could only come from the Latin. He said, "Or as if the Holy Ghost were not the Author of Scripture in Hebrew, Greek, Dutch and English." In 1549, an edition "conferred with the translation of Tyndale" was published and then reprinted in 1550.

John Rodgers and the Matthews Bible

Printed in 1537, the Matthews Bible brought together the best work of both Tyndale and Coverdale. Before his death, Tyndale had published only the Pentateuch, Jonah and some separated verses, but he had translated Joshua through II Chronicles. This manuscript apparently came into the hands of his friend, John Rodgers. Rodgers received a B.A. degree at Cambridge in 1525. He was so influenced by Tyndale that in 1537 he left the church, married and went to Wittenburg. He returned to England with his wife and eight children during the reign of Edward VI. In February of 1555, he fell an early victim to the persecution under Queen Mary and was burned alive at Smithfield.

The Matthews Bible was that of Rodgers, who changed his name to veil his association with Tyndale. The text of the Matthews Bible is more than the substitution of the unpublished work of Tyndale and the corresponding text in Coverdale's Bible. The New Testament is Tyndale's latest revision of 1535, with only a few alterations. "Matthews" edited the material carefully, restoring the Hebrew numeration of the Psalms, translating "Hallelujah" as "praise the everlasting," and adding individual marginal notes. But the real significance of this Bible of 1537 is that it set up the basic text of our present English Bible and is all that Tyndale translated, with Coverdale's completion of it. Sixty five percent of the Old Testament and New Testament was Tyndale's. The Bishops' Bible, the Great Bible, the KJV and its revisions are essentially revisions of this text. The Matthews Bible was published in 1537 in an edition of 1,500 copies, and probably printed in Antwerp with the King's license and a dedication to Henry VIII.

Richard Taverner and Taverner's Bible

In 1539, Richard Taverner edited and published what is known as Taverner's Bible. He was born 1505 and studied at Cambridge and Oxford. While at Wasley's College at Oxford he was imprisoned for reading Tyndale's NewTestament, but was released for his musical talents. He was a brilliant Greek scholar, often quoting the law in Greek. He associated himself with Cromwell; after Cromwell's fall in 1540, he was committed to the Tower for a time because of his work on the Bible. He went into retirement in the reign of Queen Mary, but reappeared preaching during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. He died in 1575.

The text of his Bible is that of Matthews with slight changes. In the New Testament he closely follows Tyndale, yet the changes are more numerous because of his Greek scholarship. He introduced a number of Saxon words, such as "parable" instead of "similitude." Aside from these few phrases, the influence of Taverner's Bible on later versions was slight.

The Great Bible

In 1539, the Great Bible was published. This version and reprints of it are often referred to as Cranmer's version, although Cranmer had very little to do with it. It was mostly the work of Coverdale and Matthews, as these were the only two forms of the English Bible in print. Their notes and prologues, however, gave such affront to many groups that King Henry VIII was frequently besought to provide a new translation free from interpretations. Cromwell was authorized to proceed and appointed Richard Grafton and Edward Whitechurch to print a Bible that should be an example of correctness and workmanship. Although his own translation had been published for but two years, Coverdale was willing to prepare a new text and to use other men's work in preference to his own. In June 1538, he and Grafton were in Paris writing Cromwell of the progress of the work. They followed not only the standard Hebrew text, but the Chaldee and Greek texts as well. It was written without any private opinion and only after the best interpreters of the Hebrew for more clearness of the text.

Now we digress to see the sovereignty of God even more in the preserving of the text of our KJV. The printing of 2,000 copies with funds advanced by Cromwell went along smoothly in Paris, with the English ambassador, Bishop Bonner, taking a very strong sociable interest in the work. He spent much of his time with the printers and entertained them at his home. But in December of 1538, relations between France and England became strained and Henry VIII complicated the project by issuing a prohibition against importation of English books printed abroad. On December 13, Coverdale, fearing trouble, wrote Cromwell that he had deposited some sheets with the English ambassador and that some might even have been sent to England. Four days later the Inquisition descended upon the press, arresting the French printer Regnault and seizing all the stock, the English correctors having fled in time. Cromwell at once appealed for the release of the printed sheets as he had invested 400 pounds in the venture. Action was delayed: the sheets were ordered burned, but the officer charged with this responsibility was willing to make a penny by selling four great dry vats of sheets to Anthony Marler to pack caps in. These and the sheets sent to Bonner eventually reached England safely. Not long after, Grafton was able to arrange to have the type, press, and printers brought to England where the edition was finally completed in 1539 at the expense of Marler. What Divine Providence!

The Great Bible gets its name from its format, for it was larger than any previous edition and very elaborately designed. In 1540, an edition with a preface by Cranmer and some revisions by Coverdale was published, followed by five other editions before the end of 1541. There were possibly 21,000 copies in all. The title pages of the 1540 and many later editions state, "This is the Bible appointed to be read in the Churches." It was explicitly an "authorized version." The third and fifth of these six editions carry a notice on the title pages that they have been "overseen and perused" by Bishops Tunstall and Heath. This was probably to remove any association with Cromwell, for he had fallen from favor and was executed. Thus, by a curious irony, Tunstall, the Bishop of London who had condemned Tyndale and his work, now officially authorized a Bible that was Tyndale's work.

The price of these Bibles was 10 shillings unbound and 12 shillings bound. At the rate of wages paid, a bound Bible would cost four weeks' wages, or 20 times the cost of a pair of shoes. The same sum would buy eight dozen candles to read the Bible by. A chain to hold it fast cost two days labor. It is evident from these prices that the ordinary man could hardly afford a copy. Thus they chained these Bibles in churches and colleges to prevent removal and make them accessible to a greater number of people. How little we prize our Bible, in comparison. Before the publication of the Great Bible, an injunction had been published stating that, by a certain date, every parish was to set up a Bible paid for by the parson and parishioners, and all were to read it. The King issued a declaration urging readers to approach Bible reading "humbly and reverently," and in cases of doubt as to the meaning of any passage, to have recourse to "such learned men as be or shall be authorized to preach and declare the same" (see Ephesians 4:11-12). Six copies were set up in St. Paul's church in London; crowds gathered about it to hear the reading of the long-denied Scriptures with eagerness. Old people, children, and parents learned to read. An old document states, "Englishmen have now in every church and place and almost every man, the Holy Bible and New Testament in their mother tongue." This was the answer to Tyndale's prayer. However, this great freedom lasted but a short time. For each eager reader there was a rebel.

In 1542, steps were taken to revise the Great Bible, making it more like the Latin. This, however, found little interest and fell through. In 1543, all translations bearing Tyndale's name were ordered destroyed, and Bible reading, privately or publicly, was prohibited for all women, children, slaves, husbandmen, etc., under pain of punishment. In 1546, Coverdale's New Testament was also ordered destroyed. Thousands of Bibles must have been destroyed and mutilated. But no sooner was this wave of persecution in full swing that Henry VIII died. Young Edward VI succeeded and was so devoted to the Bible that the printing of it began again. In his six and one-half year reign, 24 printings of the New Testament and 16 printings of the entire Bible were published. The Great Bible was restored to its place in churches and its' reading was urged. The truth shall make you free and ye shall be free indeed (John 8:32 and 36). During Queen Mary's reign, Rodgers and Cranmer were martyred and the scene of translation shifted to Europe. The last printing of the Great Bible appears to have been in 1569. From 1539-1557, numerous Bibles and New Testaments were printed, most of them reprints of the Great Bible, Taverner's, Coverdale's, and Tyndale's.

William Wittingham and the Geneva Bible

William Wittingham published the Geneva New Testament in 1557. Wittingham was an English reformer in asylum in Geneva (Geneva housed many reformers who sought safety) and a brother-in-law to John Calvin. He succeeded John Knox as pastor of the English church at Geneva for three years before returning to England in 1562 and dying in 1579. Wittingham's New Testament was the first to have the chapters divided into verses. Also set in italics were words not in the Greek, but necessary in English. He included long prologues, chapter summaries and marginal notes. Shortly after this Geneva New Testament was published, work was begun on a careful revision of the whole Bible. This took two years, day and night. Wittingham seems to have been aided by Anthony Gilby and Thomas Sampson. This version was based upon Tyndale's work and a Latin testament by Theodore Beza. The English scholars at Geneva were stimulated by other groups at work on Bible translations in French and possibly Italian. (How different from the picture of Tyndale working alone in hiding 30 years before.) The revisers were clearly competent scholars. The 1557 New Testament was a careful correction of Tyndale's text by Beza's Latin New Testament. A few of these changes were not improvements, for Beza was a better interpreter than a critical scholar, but on the whole his was the best text available, and the Geneva revisers used it to good advantage.

In 1560, the first edition of the Geneva Bible was printed in Roman type with division of verses. One of those most actively interested was John Bodley, father of the founder of the Bodleian library in Oxford. The Geneva Bible rapidly became the most widely read English version, as its type and size gave it great popularity with the common people. It.has been estimated that from 1560-1644, 140 editions of the Bible and New Testament in this version were issued. After 1611 many were printed in Amsterdam and Dort. It is this edition that is commonly called the "Breeches Bible" because of the use of the word "breeches" for "aprons" in Genesis 3:7, although the same rendering appeared in the Wycliff Bible. The Geneva Bible had great influence upon the English people. It was for many years the Bible of the home, while the Great Bible or Bishops' Bible was that of the church. Many copies came across the Atlantic with the early settlers of our country.

John Green, an English historian, gives the following picture of the place held by the Bible in the life of the English people at this period of time. "No greater moral change ever passed over a nation than passed over England during the years which parted the middle of the reign of Elizabeth from the meeting of the long Parliament. England became the 'people of a book,' and that Book was the Bible. It was the one English book that was familiar to every English man. It was read at churches and at home and everywhere its words kindled a startling enthusiasm." The Geneva Bible was trusted by the Puritans. This was a period of great awakening and the Bible was read in virtually every place. Only for a brief period was this activity quieted. This was during the reign of Mary, for there were no Bibles printed in the English language during her reign of 1553-1558. Because of her strong Roman Catholic persuasion and violent means of disposing of her foes, she earned the title of "Bloody Mary."

Matthew Parker and the Bishops' Bible

In 1568, the Bishops' Bible, a revision of the Great Bible, was undertaken by Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury. This revision was the undertaking of about eight bishops among the group of scholars. Parker himself revised Genesis, Exodus and part of the New Testament and also did the final editing. At the end of some sections he placed the initials of those responsible for those parts. When he sent in his part the Bishop of Ely wrote. "I would wish that such usual words as we English people use might still remain in their form and sound so far as the Hebrew will well bear." The Bible was translated in the language of the people. and the Great Bible was the basis of this revision.

The revisers were better Greek scholars than Hebrew and their work in the New Testament is much superior to that in the Old Testament. The changes in the Old Testament reflect principally the influence of the Geneva Bible, but in the New Testament more independent changes were made on the basis of the Greek text, some of which are preserved in our 1611.

Richard Challoner and the Douai-Rheims Bible

In 1582, the Douai-Rheims Catholic Bible appeared. Based on the Latin Vulgate text of Jerome, it was revised and reprinted many times. Later editions became known as Challoner's Bible because of extensive editing by Richard Challoner. This Bible was a product of exiles in the low countries, for just as the Protestant reformers were exiled during the reign of Mary, upon the ascension of Queen Elizabeth, many Roman Catholics fled to France and Flanders. This translation was not intended for the common reader, but for the use of scholars and the clergy. It was the notes rather than the text that made the book so strongly sectarian. There have been a number of revisions and editions, but these have been based largely on Challoner's Bible, which itself differs so much from the original edition that the title "Douai-Rheims" is no longer accurate.

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The 1611 KJV comes into being

The 16th century came to an end with the death of Queen Elizabeth in 1603. England was now a power in Europe. The Spanish Armada had been defeated. Sir Francis Drake had sailed around the world and Sir Walter Raleigh had tried to establish colonies in America. With the death of Queen Elizabeth, the English church was now definitely separated from the church at Rome, and England and Scotland were united around one crown. James VI of Scotland rose to the throne of England where he became James I. One of his first tasks was the reconciliation of various religious parties. One of the more serious difficulties was the difference of opinion over the Bible versions. The Bishops' Bible and the Great Bible were in the churches, but the people were using the Geneva Bible as it was coming from the presses in England and the Netherlands. It was not certain which version James would uphold.

In January of 1604, James called a conference at Hampton Court that would issue in the preparation of the version now bearing his name. At this conference Dr. John Reynolds pressed the King to authorize a new edition of the Bible. Reynolds was a Puritan and spokesman for this group. His proposal was a new translation that would have the approval of the whole church. The king at once fell in with the idea and proposed that "this be done by the best learned men in both universities." Then the work would be reviewed by the Bishops, then the chief learned men of the church: from them it would be presented to the Priuie Council and lastly would be ratified by his Royal authority, thus binding the church to it and no other. During the summer, 54 learned men were appointed to a committee. Due to death and other circumstances. the eventual committee was 47 in number. These men were very competent and skilled in the languages, but were to be guided by a definite set of rules. (You can read this in-depth in The Translators Revived.)

Four years passed and the first revision was completed. The second revision took a committee of twelve men about nine more months to finish. The sheets were delivered to be set in type and about two more years passed before the 1611 version was finally completed. This totaled seven years and there never was - nor ever will be - a more thorough and careful work done by any group of scholars. It had been about 75 years since Tyndale made his version, and what started with Wycliff, then passed to Tyndale, Cranmer, Erasmus, and Coverdale, had become a reality. God had answered Tyndale's prayer, "Lord, open the eyes of the King of England."

Now a quote from The Translators Revived: "No other Bible ever printed has been admired and loved by so many, nor has any other Bible ever had such violent attacks brought upon it. There is no historical evidence that the KJV ever received official eccesiastical or legislative sanction and so the words 'Authorized Version' refer to the fact that King James did authorize the revision and subsequent printing of it. Although the Geneva Bible was firmly entrenched in the minds and hearts of the people, the KJV gradually became the Bible of the common man. By the middle part of the 17th century the 1611 Authorized Version became the English Bible, both in the homes and churches. Thus the translating and printing of the Bible in English is a most important event in modern history. Far beyond any other translation it has been and will be to multitudes which none can number the living oracle of God, the sure teaching on all that effects their eternal welfare."

So what Tyndale had begun became a reality. It was through his perseverance and at the cost of his life that the Scriptures were given to the lay people in. their own tongue, establishing them in the truth which freed them from the snare of Rome.

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The rules

The KJV's translation committee strictly followed a list of rules designed to preserve the integrity of God's Word. These rules are as follows.

Rule #1: Make the new Bible adhere as closely as possible to the Bishops' Bible, which had been in use since the 1580s and originated in Geneva.
Rule #2: Use the mode of spelling proper names that was then in use.
Rule #3: Keep the old ecclesiastical words, such as "church." In the case of a word with different meanings, usage should conform to the use of the most ancient fathers with regard to "the propriety of the place and the analogy of the faith."
Rule #4: Division into chapters must be altered as little as possible.
Rule #5: All notes or comments are prohibited, thus making the translation as plain as possible without the intrusion into the text being made by "helps."
Rule #6: Marginal notes or references to parallel explanatory passages are allowed.
Rule #7: Each man is to examine separately the same chapter(s), then the whole company must come together to compare what they have done and agree on what is to stand. (Each company would produce 6-10 carefully prepared revisions, with the whole being compared together and digested into one portion of the Bible.)
Rule #8: As soon as any company, according to Rule #6, completes anyone of the books it is to be sent to each of the other companies to be critically reviewed by them. If any company, after reviewing a book, finds anything unsatisfactory, they are to return the book with the notes and their reasons of objections. If that company does not agree with the findings then the matter is to be disposed of finally at a general meeting of the chief men of each company. (All in all each part was scrutinized at least 14 times.)
Rule #9: In the case of any special differences, letters were to be sent to any of the learned men of the land in which they asked for his best judgment in the matter.
Rule #10: Every bishop will notify each of the clergy in his diocese about the work going on and will "move and charge as many as being skillful in the tongues and have taken pains in that kind, to send his particular observations" to anyone of the companies.
Rule #11: This rule appoints the directors of each company.
Rule #12: Five other translations will be used "when they agree better with the text than the Bishops' Bible." (These translations were Tyndale's, the Matthews Bible (Tyndale & Rodgers), Coverdale's, the White church Bible (Cranmer's), and the Geneva 1587. The object was to avoid party preference of any kind.)

There was one rule not included in the fourteen. It states that, besides the six directors of the companies, "three or four of the most ancient and grave divines in either of the universities not employed in the translating, be designated to be overseers of the Translation, as well as in Hebrew and Greek," for the better observation of the fourth rule.

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How correct is the KJV?

The translators wisely clave to the language of the common people and it was the best language of any shire in England. We have a version as easy to comprehend as any. It is the most precious boon possessed by the masses. It speaks in their own tongue the wonderful works of God. Well does the Translator's preface speak of God's sacred Word as "that inestimable treasure which excelleth all the riches of the earth." When we hold the KJV and say it is God's Word, there are many who ridicule and laugh and try to convince us otherwise. They use all the arguments and most haven't even studied out the lineage of what they say is a "Bible" also.

From The Translators Revived: "We don't claim absolute perfection for our English Bible. But this blessed Book is so far complete and exact that the ordinary man may read it and enjoy the delightful assurance that, if he studies it in faith and prayer and gives himself up to its teachings he shall not be confounded or mislead as to any matter essential to his salvation and his spiritual good. It will safely guide him into all things needful for faith and practice as would the original Scriptures, if he could read them in the original tongues. That by God's providence we have a translation so exact, plain and trustworthy that we can follow it with all confidence as a lamp to our feet and a light to our path."

Frank Logsdon, in his book From the NASV to the KJV, asks the question, "How correct is the KJV?" He then states that it is entirely correct and gives the following reason: Because Biblical correctness is predicated upon doctrinal accuracy, and not one enemy of the KJV has ever proven a wrong doctrine in it. Rather, the opposite is true. They change the doctrine to suit man's thinking rather than submit to God's.

Of all the revisions of the KJV, most of them were in the chapter divisions and punctuation. There were some words updated, but never was the meaning changed. As Coverdale said, "I never wrested or altered one word." We do not claim word-for-word perfection for the Authorized Version, but we do claim verbal perfection and inspiration. Some words have gone through a change of meaning, since they were used several hundred years ago (i.e., Col. 1:12, where "meet" is now "fit"; 1 Thess. 2:7, where "letteth" is now "hinder"; and Phil. 1:22, where "wot" is now "know."). You and I can't answer all the arguments. These so-called "scholars" or "textual critics" go into areas where none of us have been. And without faith, they do it with the motive of disproving God and changing it to fit their intellects. They lack the one thing needful to know God: faith (Rom. 10:17). If they don't have God's pure Word they can have no faith.

God's Word does not need to be defended - it defends itself. It needs to be believed and lived. We must ask ourselves some questions to determine the source of our Bible. These questions come from the preface written by R.E. Rhoades to The Translators Revived:

The starting point of all truth is God's Word. All doctrinal discussion must be based on it. All truth and doctrine stands or falls on the Divine inspiration of the Word of God. If we surrender the tenet of verbal plenary inspiration (as all those who hold to the perversions have done), we are left without an anchor on the stormy sea of time, without any standard or Supreme authority. It is useless to discuss with anyone (or with yourself) any doctrine taught by God's Word, until acknowledgement is given that it is the final court of appeal. Where else can we go? What great comfort there is in a "thus saith the Lord." The strategic center of our Christian theology is the Divine inspiration and preservation of His Word. How do we know this? Witness the attack of Satan as he hurls all his hellish battalions at the Scriptures. All these perversions are his assault on Christ. He has many helpers in professors and ministers who attempt to discredit and destroy the authority and authenticity of the 1611 KJV. These attempts will all be proven to be unsuccessful, as the Sovereign One has said in Psalms 119:89, "Forever, 0 LORD, thy word is settled in heaven." See also Matthew 24:35.

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How do we know the KJV is God's Word?

There is strong internal evidence that the KJV is God's Word. Read II Peter 1:19-21. True Christianity is the religion of a Book, the impregnable rock of Holy Scripture. It is the starting point of all doctrinal discussion. As stated before, Biblical correctness is based upon doctrinal accuracy, and no one has ever proved a wrong doctrine in the Authorized Version. Upon this Divine inspiration of the Bible stands or falls the entirety of Christian truth and our faith. It is useless to discuss any doctrine taught in the Bible unless you acknowledge that the Scriptures (Authorized Version) are the ultimate standard and final authority. When we believe that the Word of God is a Divine revelation and communication from God's mind and will to us, then we can advance to a study of its contents, which is both practical and profitable. The Word of God does not fear investigation. Rather we are told to study it, see what it says and find it out (John 5:39; II Timothy 2:15; Acts 17:11).

Yet the general neglect of the Bible verifies the Scriptures and gives proof of their authenticity. Man does not want to read of his awful condition or face a Ruler over him. The contempt with which it is treated shows that human nature is exactly what God's Word says: fallen and depraved. We have unmistakable evidence that the carnal mind is enmity against God. When we acknowledge the Bible to be the Word of God, we find it has unique credentials. There are internal marks which prove it to be of God and there is conclusive evidence to show that its Author is Divine. As we examine the natural world, we find innumerable proofs of the existence of a Personal Creator and the same God who has manifested Himself through His works has also revealed His wisdom and will through His Word. The God of creation and the God of written revelation are one.

Because of God's teachings about Himself

What do the Scriptures say about God? Five essential attributes are spoken of.

Although the preceding attributes are important, they are by no means the only attributes mentioned in the Bible. Here is a partial list of some others.

This God is as far beyond man's conception as the heavens are above the earth. No man, nor any number of men, could invent such a God as this God. In all the libraries, archives and religions of the world, nothing can be found that can be compared to the sublime and exalted description of God's character which is given to us by the Scriptures.

Because the Bible's teachings about man are unique

The Scriptures contain a description of man that is unlike any other teaching. Man is represented as being totally depraved; that is, he has no spiritual ability to approach God. He is dead in trespasses and sin. Psalm 39:5 says, "Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah." According to Isaiah 64:6, instead of having a noble character that gets better, man's righteousness is as "filthy rags"; he is a lost sinner, incapable of bettering his condition and deserving only of hell. In Mark 7:21-23, instead of making Satan the source of all crimes, we read, "out of the heart of man," and, "from within..." Romans 3:10-18 gives a totally different picture than what man draws, a picture so different from man's ideas and so humiliating to his proud heart. Jeremiah 17:9 is a concept that never originated in any human mind.

Because of the teachings about the world

Man says the world is getting better and he thinks highly of it. All this goes to prove he is either ignorant or crazy. The Scriptures condemn the world. It is Satan's domain, for he is the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience (Ephesians 2:2). Christ told His disciples in John 15:18-19 that, "The world hateth you because they were not of this world, even as He was not of this world." James 4:4 says, "Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God." See also I John 2:15-16. Also, in I John 5:19 we read, "And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness," under the domain of the wicked one.

Because of the teachings on sin

Man regards sin as a misfortune and always seeks to minimize its enormity. He calls it ignorance or denies its existence altogether. The Scriptures strip man of all excuse. Sin is never praised or overlooked. It displays sin's heinousness and corruption. In Genesis 18:20 it is called "very grievous." I Kings 16:2 says it will "provoke God to anger." Psalm 51:4 says all sin is "against God." Romans 7:13 it is "exceeding sinful" I Corinthians 8:12 says sin is committed against Christ. Hebrews 3:13 speaks of the deceitfulness of sin. I John 5:17 says, "All unrighteousness is sin." Rebellion, disobedience, pride, lawlessness and open defiance against God are also called sin. The Word of God condemns all sin alike and all men alike (see Romans 3:23). No human mind ever invented such a description of sin or imagined it so vile in God's sight.

Because of the teachings on the punishment of sin

A defective view of sin certainly leads to an inadequate idea of what is due to a sinner. Minimize the gravity of sin and you reduce the sentence it deserves. Men today are crying out against the justice of eternal punishment. They say the penalty does not fit the crime and that for a "short span of life" it is unrighteous for a sinner to suffer eternally. This argument is invalid because all sin is committed in a short moment. The problem arises when we don't view sin as God does. Eternal punishment is just if it is seen from God's view. Thus the Scriptures are given to correct our ideas of sin and teach us what an awful and vile thing it is. Mary Baker Eddy taught that there is no such thing as sin at all. How does God view it? Adam and Eve were banished from the garden of Eden for one sin. Canaan and all his posterity were cursed for it. Korah and all his company went down alive into the pit. Moses was prohibited from entering the promised land. Achan and his family were stoned to death. Elisha's servant was smitten with leprosy. Ananias and Sapphira were cut off. All this shows us the terribleness of sin against a thrice holy God.

When we realize it was sin (OUR sin) that put the Lord of Glory to a shameful death, then we realize nothing short of eternal punishment meets the demands of justice upon sinners. Yet in our day we have the teaching that "God loves everybody" and that God is too merciful and kind to ban one of His creatures to endless misery. Had the Word of God been written by uninspired men it certainly wouldn't have taught the eternal conscious torment of all who die outside of Christ. However, it was written by men who were "moved by the Holy Spirit." Thus we have God's Word as clear and as solemn and as awful. The doom of the Christ rejecter is a conscious, never-ending, and indescribable torment. So the NIV omits Mark 9:44, 46, and 48, as well as the last phrase in verse 45, which says, "Where their worm dieth not" (the worm is the memory; there is no hope of restoration or mercy). Revelation 20:10 describes a lake of fire and brimstone. In Luke 16:24, the rich man in torment is denied a drop of water to cool his tongue. Jude 13 describes "the blackness of darkness forever." John the Baptist warned "to flee the wrath to come." The portion due to the lost will be unbearable, yet it will have to be borne and borne forever. What mortal mind could have conceived this fate?

Because of the teachings on Salvation from sin

Man's thoughts are defective and deficient. Psalm 55:7 says, "Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon." Left to himself, man sees no need of salvation; rather, he mistakes morality for saving grace, so we have Arminianism and the thought that man has a spark of good in him. This is not Scriptural and on God's terms is not salvation. Man's only hope is to be as the penitent sinner in Luke 18:13, who said, "God be merciful to me a sinner" (see also Romans 9:15-16). Man is ignorant of the way of God. Even when brought to see his need, he goes about to establish his own righteousness (Romans 9:30-10:3). He thinks he must turn over a new leaf to make some personal reparation for his past wrongdoings. He wants to do something to merit the esteem of God and win heaven by a reward for his doing good and the supposition that his good will outweigh the bad.

But God says that pardon and life are a free gift (Romans 3 through 6), and that faith is not of works, lest any man should boast (Ephesians 2:8-9, Titus 3:5), That God would lay hold of poor, fallen, filthy, depraved men and women; lift them up out of the miry clay; make them His very own by His own free grace in Christ; call them heirs and joint-heirs with His Son; bring them to a heaven higher than that occupied by fallen angels to be forever with Him and make them one with Him in His Body - these are higher thoughts than man can comprehend, apart from Divine revelation. No carnal imagination could ever have conceived the truth of II Corinthians 5:21 or I Peter 3:18.

Because of the teachings concerning the Saviour of sinners

The description which the Scriptures furnish of the Person, Character, and Work of Christ is without parallel. I think it easier to suppose that man could create a world than he could write these things of our adorable Redeemer. None but the Holy Spirit could have produced the portrait that is found in Scripture of all His excellencies. A.W. Pink stated, "In the Lord Jesus Christ every grace is found. He was meek yet regal; gentle yet fearless; compassionate yet just; submissive yet authoritative; human yet Divine; and possessed the nature of man, yet was sinless."

Who would conceive of redemption by the blood? Or that the Creator of the world would take the form of a servant and be made in the likeness of men? Or that the Lord of Glory would born in a manger? Or that the One who owned the universe and was the object of angelic worship had nowhere to lay His head? Or that the One before whom the seraphim veil their faces (Isaiah 6:2) would be led as a Lamb to the slaughter to be spit upon by vile men and allow the creatures He made to scourge and buffet Him? Or that the Son of God should become obedient unto death, even the death of the cross? The Scriptures contain their own evidence of Divine inspiration. Every page of Holy Writ is stamped with Jehovah's autograph. The perversions are not. The uniqueness of its teachings demonstrate the uniqueness of its Source: that it is in truth a revelation from God. (See Psalm 19:7-10 and 138:2.)

Because of the fulfilled prophecies in the Bible

Isaiah 41:21-23 suggests an infallible criterion by which we may test the claims of religious imposters (Deuteronomy 18:20-22), and. it calls attention to an unanswerable argument for the truthfulness of God's Word. Jehovah bids the prophets of false faiths to successfully predict events lying in the far-distant future, with their success or failure showing whether or not they are gods or pretenders and deceivers. The true God has declared the end from the beginning (Isaiah 45:21 and 46:9-11). Prophecy is God's history. His Word declares the end from the beginning and shows that He is God. The Scriptures are His inspired Revelation to mankind. Again and again men have attempted to predict future events, but have met with the most disastrous failure. Most know of Jack Van Impe and his continual predictions which he changes whenever they don't come to pass. There are those who follow someone who says that "God told them" something, then sell everything and move to some mountain cave, Man stands before an impenetrable wall of darkness, unable to foresee the events of the next hour. None knows what a day may bring forth. To our finite minds, the future is filled with the unknown.

Old Testament prophecies and their New Testament fulfillments
Zechariah 11:12-13The price of His betrayalMatthew 27:9-10
Psalm 69:21"Gall for my meat and vinegar for thirst"Matthew 27:28-46
Psalm 69:4"They hated me without a cause"John 15:24-25
Psalm 41:9"Mine own familiar friend"John 13:18
Zechariah 9:9Riding on the colt of an assMatthew 21:1-3
Isaiah 7:14His virgin birthMatthew 1:21-23
Jeremiah 31:15Rachel weeping for her childrenMatthew 2:17-18
Isaiah 53:4"Borne our griefs, smitten of God"Matthew 8:17
Isaiah 42:1"Mine elect, my Beloved"Matthew 12:17-18
Isaiah 50:6Shame and spittingMatthew 27:30

So how do we explain the hundreds of detailed prophecies in Scripture that have been fulfilled to the letter, hundreds of years after they were uttered? All the books of the Old Testament were written years before the incarnation of Christ, thus the actual and accurate fulfillment of these prophecies can only be explained by I Peter 1:21. None other than the mind of God could have disclosed the future and unveiled beforehand these far-distant events. Revelation 19:10 says, "the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy." The Lamb of God is the one great object and subject of the prophetic Word.

In Genesis 3:15, 4,000 years before it came to pass, it was spoken that the seed of the woman would bruise the serpent's head. In Genesis 22:18, Abraham was told, "in thy seed shall all nations of he earth be blessed." This descendant would be an Israelite of the tribe of Judah, the kingly tribe Matthew 1:1); a descendent of David (II Samuel 7:12-13); the exact place of His birth, Bethlehem of Judea, was foretold (Micah 5:2), as was the very time of the Messiah's appearing (Genesis 49:10) and future appearing (Daniel 9:24-26). Then there were the prophecies of His rejection by His own kinsmen (Isaiah 53:2-3); they despised their long-awaited King, the very Hope of Israel. These prophecies were predicted centuries before, and details about His death and its very manner were fulfilled to the letter. No mere man could do this. There were 52 prophecies precisely fulfilled on the day of the crucifixion. (Someone put this into a computer and the odds of this happening were 85 billion to 1.) Compare the Scriptures on the previous page to see the Old Testament prophecies and their New Testament fulfillments. Also compare the prophecies of Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53 with the New Testament accounts of the crucifixion.

The Bible's indestructibility

Here is proof that the Bible's Author is Divine. Its survival is very difficult to explain, if it is not in truth the very Word of God. Books are like men - they are dying creatures. A very small percentage survive more than 25 years; a smaller percentage survive 100 years; and only very few survive 1,000 years. Amid the wreck and ruin of ancient literature the Holy Scriptures stand out in very testimony that their Author is Divine. When we think of the never-ending persecution to destroy the Bible, the wonder of survival is changed to a miracle. It is the most loved Book, and the most hated. For 2,000 years men's hatred of it has been persistent, determined, relentless, and murderous. Every possible effort has been made to undermine faith in its inspiration and authority, all with the intent to consign it to oblivion. Edicts have been issued to have every known copy destroyed, and when this failed, commands were given that every person found with a copy in their possession be put to death. That the Bible has been singled out for such persecution causes us o wonder of its survival.

It is the best Book in all the world, yet it has produced more enmity and opposition than all the books in all the libraries combined. Why? It convicts men of their guilt and condemns them for their sins. It takes away their works for appeasing God and leaves them to beg for mercy and believe the gospel. When we remember that no appointed army has defended it and that no king ever ordered its enemies to death, our wonderment increases. The cities of the ancients were lighted with bonfires made of Bibles and for centuries only those in hiding dare read it. How do we account for its survival? Only that a Sovereign God wrote it (Matthew 24:35).

In the first three centuries of the Christian era the Roman Emperors sought to destroy God's Word. Diocletian believed he had succeeded. He had slain so many Christians and destroyed so many Bibles that when the lovers of the Bible remained quiet for a season and kept in hiding, he imagined he had made an end of the Scriptures. He had a medal made with the inscription, "The Christian religion is destroyed and the worship of the gods restored." If he could return today he would find that the Word of God lives and is now translated into over 400 languages and gone into all the earth. A.W. Pink states, "Centuries after the persecution by the Roman Emperors, when the Roman Catholic Church obtained command of the city of Rome, the pope and his priests took up the old quarrel against the Bible. The Holy Scriptures were taken away from the people, copies of the Bible were forbidden to be purchased and all who were found with a copy of God's Word in their possession were tortured and killed. For centuries the Roman Catholic Church literally persecuted the Bible and it was not until the time of the Reformation at the close of the 16th century that the Word of God was again given to the masses in their own tongue."

In our day the persecution of the Bible still continues, although the method of attack has changed. Modern scholarship is engaged in the work to destroy faith in Divine Inspiration and man's hope. Westcott and Hart say that Genesis is a book of myths; the teaching of the Pentateuch is immoral; Jonah is only a story; Daniel is not accurate; the last 12 verses of Mark do not belong, etc. We must not succumb to these lies - we must stand forever on the knowledge that we have God's Word. It has been burned, drowned, chained, put in prison, torn to pieces, yet it has never been destroyed. Why? Because God is its Author. He declared in Isaiah 40:8, "The Word of our God shall stand forever." It is the Epistle of love written to His beloved children and He shall preserve it forever (Psalm 12:6-7).

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Our attitude toward the Word

The knowledge that the Scriptures are inspired by the Holy Spirit involves definite responsibilities. What should be our attitude toward the Word of God? We need to:

Seek forgiveness for neglecting it

To neglect God's gift to us is to despise the Giver, to say He made a mistake in going to so much trouble to communicate it to us. We are commanded to read, study, and search it.

Realize it is the final court of appeal

What saith the Scripture? (Romans 4:3) What does the Word of God, rather than man's opinion or a churchcreed, teach? God has spoken, and that ends the matter. We must bow to His authority and submit to His Word. "Speak, Lord, for thy servant heareth" (I Samuel 3:9-10). The phrase "It is written" must be our bedrock. Luke 16:19-31 signifies that the authority of the written Word is of greater worth than the testimony and appeal of miracles. Note the finality of its authority by Christ Himself when vindicating before the Jews His claim to Deity in John 5:32-39; when He appealed to the testimony of John the Baptist (vs. 32); in His own works (vs. 36); in the Father's own witness at His baptism (vs. 37); and the climax, "Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which TESTIFY OF ME" (vs. 39).

Understand it is the ultimate standard for regulating conduct

How can I be just before God? How can he be clean that is born of a woman? How can a man be saved? Where can one find peace? Search the SCRIPTURES! How can I please God? How can I be holy? How can I walk worthy of God? Search the SCRIPTURES! They are a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. The pattern of righteousness is clearly marked out. Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles, has said, "Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, DO: and the God of peace shall be with you" (Phil. 4:9).

Know it is a sure foundation for our faith

We all want certainty. Surely on our death bed we will want more than a "perhaps," or an "it's the best translation." We will want God's Word and we have it in the 1611 Authorized Version. In it I read, "I know that my Redeemer liveth"; by virtue of His death, burial. and resurrection, and His bearing my sin on the cross, I have passed from death to life. He is my Peace, my Righteousness, my justification, my sanctification, my life and my hope. The Word of God says so. It speaks with absolute assurance and finality. Its promises are certain, for He cannot lie (Titus 1:2).

Treat it as a unique Book that demands unique attention

Job 23:12 says, "I have esteemed the words of His mouth more than my necessary food." Deuteronomy 8:3 and Matthew 4:4 say, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." And finally, II Timothy 3:16-17 says, "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctribe, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works. Someone once said, "Know it in the head, store it in the heart, show it in the life and sow it in the world." That's not bad advice.

References used:

Cimino, Dick. The Book.
Wonderful Word Publishers

Logsdon, Frank. From the NASV to the KJV.

McClure, Alexander. The Translators Revived.
Maranatha Bible Society

Pink, A.W. Divine Inspiration of the Bible.
Bible Truth Depot

Riplinger, Gail. Which Bible is God's Word?
Hearthstone Publishing

Salliby, Chick. If the Foundations be Destroyed.
Chick Publications

Waite, D.A., Foes of the King James Bible Refuted.
Bible for Today

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