False Statements about Modern Bible Translations and Versions
"And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” Rev. 22:19
- “They make the Bible easier to understand.” Much of the King James Bible is at a 5.8 grade reading level (1) (Flesh-Kincaid Grade level indicator). The New International Version is at 8.4 grade level; New King James is at 6.9, and the New American Standard Bible is at 8.12. Besides that, it is the Holy Spirit that allows anyone to have knowledge of God’s Word, not man’s editing (I Cor. 2:14)1! Another motive is also behind “making the bible easier to understand.” That motive is to make money. If there are numerous changes, it can copyrighted, and its owner can earn money from its sales, as it is a new and different book. The King James Bible is not copyrighted, so no one makes anything by its sale!
- “They come from the originals,” or “originate from more reliable manuscripts.” The originals were never assembled in one place together. What some call more “reliable” manuscripts were the ones that were historically rejected by earlier believers because of their corruption, errors, and were seldom used. That is why some of the older manuscripts were in good condition.
- “They change ‘archaic’ words.” They do, but in many places the words replacing them change the meaning of the verse. There are less than 20 words, not including verbs that have “eth” added to them, in the KJV that are not commonly used today. It would make more sense to understand their meaning by the use of a dictionary, rather than to change the whole Bible. Many modern books have words that the reader often has to look up in the dictionary, and no one even thinks of rewriting them to make them easier to understand.
- “Scholars now know more than they knew then.” Many of the authors and translators of the new versions did not even know Hebrew or Greek; nor were they expert in over 10+ ancient languages, as were many in the 1611 King James translating committee. The translators of the King James were some of the most outstanding scholars and Christians.
- “They come from older manuscripts.” The Masoretic Hebrew Text and the Greek Textus Receptus used in the KJV are the older and more reliable manuscripts, not what is used in most modern versions. Some of what are called the “older texts” are not reliable at all. Historically they were avoided because of their known mistakes and alterations. Also, some of the “most ancient manuscripts” are actually over 100 years newer than those used in the KJV.
- “They are correcting errors.” There are no known errors in the King James Bible! Most of what people call errors are intellectual or spiritual problems people have with what God had said and had recorded. Changing His words may ease their consciences, but it does not make it God’s Word, will and way. If the new Bible versions are correcting “errors,” why are all 300+ versions different from each other? Don’t they have it right yet? Why are they still changing them? Several years ago, there was a web site rewarding a large sum of money to anyone who could find an error in the KJV. As far as I know, no one has ever found an error and has never collected a cent from the site!
- “The new versions are more reliable.” Most versions are written to teach the beliefs of the author(s), religion, or organization that produced the work. Scripture that was contrary to their beliefs was removed or changed. Also, the King James translators were honest enough that if they added words to make the context understood or to show what the Hebrew or Greek meant, they italicized the words. Most modern versions remove the italicized words or do not italicize them.
- “It is egotistical to think that only the King James in English is preserved.” There is a text that comes from the Masoretic Text and Textus Receptus for all the major languages, including: English, Greek, Hebrew, French, and Spanish. Most of the major languages also have the preserved Word of God available to them.
Stick with the King James Bible! It is the reliable, preserved Word of God!
** The King James Bible has 783,137 words, whereas the New International Bible has only 727, 969. **
1 Riplinger, G. A. New Age Bible Versions, Ararat, VA, 1995
You may also want to read:
God Kept His Word!
Examples of Changes in Modern Bible Versions and Translations
This article was featured in The Bible View #365.