Inspiration, Canonicity, KJV

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Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
I was informed by some people that only KJV is the perfect bible

You should probably separate yourself from the KJO (King James Onlyists) cultists. They have made an idol of a particular translation.

The KJO isn't "perfect". Our confession teaches us, "The Old Testament in Hebrew (which was the native language of the people of God of old), and the New Testament in Greek (which, at the time of the writing of it, was most generally known to the nations), being immediately inspired by God, and, by His singular care and providence, kept pure in all ages, are therefore authentical".

As for translations, " But, because these original tongues are not known to all the people of God, who have right unto, and interest in the Scriptures, and are commanded, in the fear of God, to read and search them, therefore they are to be translated in to the vulgar language of every nation unto which they come"

So, if you are teaching folks who are experts in Early Modern English (Shakespearean scholars, perhaps), then the KJV might be the translation of choice. But it certainly isn't in the vulgar language of most of us these days.

For debates as to manuscript families, see earlier threads throughout the PB. But that is a separate, if overlapping, issue.
 

JimmyH

Puritan Board Senior
I too agonized over this KJVO issue for some time, and studied it, reading advocates on either side. In addition I used, and continue to use, translations other than the KJV to better understand what I'm reading in difficult passages.
Comparing the NIV, ESV, NASB with the readings in the KJV I find them to be saying the same thing in most cases. There are exceptions on certain controversial passages, and since I'm 69 years old, and cut my teeth on the KJV, I continue to use it as the primary study/daily reading Bible.
For some people in my congregation, from South Africa, Guyana, Cuba, and Korea, the KJV is too difficult, and they prefer the modern translation. Perhaps reading D.A. Carson's 'The King James Version Debate; A Plea For Realism', would be informative. Reading his 'The Inclusive Language Debate,' the chapter on translation is very effective in better understanding the issues with translation.
It is worth remembering that the Latin Vulgate was the primary translation extant for over 1,000 years. That non English speakers/readers all over the world have found salvation in Bibles written in their own language and continue to do so. The KJV, as great a translation as it is, it is not the only game in town.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I am speaking both general and translation because I was more confused about inspiration and preservation of the Bible.

I was informed by some people that only KJV is the perfect bible and all other translations are corrupted. So confusing


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The so -called KJVO position cannot be held as a legitimate position in regards to the textual sources of the English translations, as one can be preferred Critical text/MT/TR, but not be only one is the real one.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I too agonized over this KJVO issue for some time, and studied it, reading advocates on either side. In addition I used, and continue to use, translations other than the KJV to better understand what I'm reading in difficult passages.
Comparing the NIV, ESV, NASB with the readings in the KJV I find them to be saying the same thing in most cases. There are exceptions on certain controversial passages, and since I'm 69 years old, and cut my teeth on the KJV, I continue to use it as the primary study/daily reading Bible.
For some people in my congregation, from South Africa, Guyana, Cuba, and Korea, the KJV is too difficult, and they prefer the modern translation. Perhaps reading D.A. Carson's 'The King James Version Debate; A Plea For Realism', would be informative. Reading his 'The Inclusive Language Debate,' the chapter on translation is very effective in better understanding the issues with translation.
It is worth remembering that the Latin Vulgate was the primary translation extant for over 1,000 years. That non English speakers/readers all over the world have found salvation in Bibles written in their own language and continue to do so. The KJV, as great a translation as it is, it is not the only game in town.
So true, as there are many good English translations available to be used today. The KJV version is a good one, but not the only one that can be used.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
As well as the stated above, I have it on good authority (Ligon Duncan, Mike Horton), that Michael Krueger's work exposing higher criticism is good. I mean to get his books myself.........
How are you using that term though?
 

Gforce9

Puritan Board Junior
Higher critical

I mean it in two ways: 1) Pejoratively- I think little of their methods and 2) with respect to the proximity in thought to the Krauts in the 19th Century. Te KJVO folks didn't attempt to de-mythologize the bible or come up with liberalism, but they do engage in a deconstruction of sorts.

Since I haven't read Michael Krueger's books, I can't say exactly what he has dealt with. Probably not the KJVO issue directly (maybe he has?), but I'd bet there is enough in there about the reliability of Scripture to give one a good foundation in which to defend against the KJVO's......:2cents:
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Krueger’s “Canon Revisited” is worth reading and dismantles most arguments against the canon of scripture.

If you want some immediate gratification, James White has some debates on YouTube regarding KJV only and also canonicity.
What is sad on this issue is that we seem to have 2 extremes to be avoided concerning the KJV, one that is is the only authorized version by God to be used, and other that it is no good anymore.
 

Parmenas

Puritan Board Freshman
So, if you are teaching folks who are experts in Early Modern English (Shakespearean scholars, perhaps), then the KJV might be the translation of choice. But it certainly isn't in the vulgar language of most of us these days.

The English of the Authorized Version was not the common spoken or written English of 1611. It is Biblical English, and it is certainly the vulgar language (in the sense used in the WCF) of the English-speaking world. Biblical English is simply a different register of English.
 
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bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
The English of the Authorized Version was not the common spoken or written English of 1611. It is Biblical English, and it is certainly the vulgar language (in the sense used in the WCF) of the English-speaking world. Biblical English is simply a different register of English.

The English of the KJV was most certainly the ordinary English spoken during Elizabethan times and before (which is why it was already considered somewhat out of date by 1611). If it wasn't the ordinary English of the time, no one would have understood the Bible. There's no such thing as "biblical English."

Also, no translation (in English or in any other language) is inspired. Only the original Hebrew and Greek autographs were inspired. All translations (most certainly including the KJV) are defective to one degree or another.
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
The English of the Authorized Version was not the common spoken or written English of 1611. It is Biblical English, and it is certainly the vulgar language (in the sense used in the WCF) of the English-speaking world. Biblical English is simply a different register of English.

:rofl:
 

OPC'n

Puritan Board Doctor
The English of the KJV was most certainly the ordinary English spoken during Elizabethan times and before (which is why it was already considered somewhat out of date by 1611). If it wasn't the ordinary English of the time, no one would have understood the Bible. There's no such thing as "biblical English."

Also, no translation (in English or in any other language) is inspired. Only the original Hebrew and Greek autographs were inspired. All translations (most certainly including the KJV) are defective to one degree or another.

So only the text in its original language is the inspired word of God? This is news to me. What's the point in arguing with others and defending the doctrine of infallibility/inspired word of God if our translations aren't the inspired word of God?
 

moral necessity

Puritan Board Junior

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
So only the text in its original language is the inspired word of God? This is news to me. What's the point in arguing with others and defending the doctrine of infallibility/inspired word of God if our translations aren't the inspired word of God?

Because inspiration has to do only with the original writings (which we no longer possess). See 1 Peter 1.21, which applies only to the original writings (the Hebrew and Aramaic of the Old Testament and the Greek of the New Testament). The very fact that English translations will often translate the same word or phrase in slightly different ways shows that translations are not inspired - not to mention translations of the Bible into all the other languages!

The point of arguing is that it is a way for us to hone our translations to make them better. There are no inspired translators.
 

Jeri Tanner

Administrator
Staff member
A section from the above old thread linked to:

Assertion (bookslover): "Inspiration, infallibility, and inerrancy apply only to the original autograph manuscripts of the Scriptures, none of which has survived (in God's providence). No translation from the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek (into whatever language, including English) is to be considered in these terms."

Reply (MW): "This is contrary to the New Testament witness. Timothy was not raised with the original autograph mss., and yet the apostle Paul explicitly ascribed the quality of theopneustos to the Scriptures which Timothy read. Furthermore, we have Greek translations of Hebrew Scriptures quoted in the New Testament accompanied with the assertion that these are the words of the Holy Spirit."



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OPC'n

Puritan Board Doctor
Because inspiration has to do only with the original writings (which we no longer possess). See 1 Peter 1.21, which applies only to the original writings (the Hebrew and Aramaic of the Old Testament and the Greek of the New Testament). The very fact that English translations will often translate the same word or phrase in slightly different ways shows that translations are not inspired - not to mention translations of the Bible into all the other languages!

The point of arguing is that it is a way for us to hone our translations to make them better. There are no inspired translators.

This is what MW had to say and I have to agree with him, "You seem to be leaving out of view the fact that the original autographs are described as being immediately inspired by God. When the sense of the original is accurately translated into another language it retains its quality as the inspired Word of God, or what may be called mediateinspiration. Hence, in Heb. 3:7ff, we read that the Holy Ghost says the words of Ps 95 in Greek (or English in our version), which was originally written in Hebrew. The fact has not been altered that this is the inspired word of God even though it has been translated into another language."
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
You fail to understand mediate inspiration vs immediate. From what you propose, none of us have bibles.

(1) There's no such thing as "mediate inspiration" (just as there's no such thing as "biblical English" [does that mean there's "biblical Flemish," too?]); (2) All of us have Bibles when we have a copy of a legitimate translation (no paraphrases, please!).
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
This is what MW had to say and I have to agree with him, "You seem to be leaving out of view the fact that the original autographs are described as being immediately inspired by God. When the sense of the original is accurately translated into another language it retains its quality as the inspired Word of God, or what may be called mediateinspiration. Hence, in Heb. 3:7ff, we read that the Holy Ghost says the words of Ps 95 in Greek (or English in our version), which was originally written in Hebrew. The fact has not been altered that this is the inspired word of God even though it has been translated into another language."

If a translation (into English or any other language) accurately reproduces the original Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, then you have an accurate translation of the Bible. However, it's no more than a translation, done by uninspired men and women. As far as I know, no reputable translator has dared to say that the product of his work is "mediately inspired."
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
[Moderator]
This is a split thread from AJAY's original question about canonicity. It may not be likely that this conversation will be edifying or fruitful, but we can at least keep it from obscuring good answers to a very important question.

It is still important on this thread to argue rather than simply assert. Some of the posts above do not pass muster in this regard.
[/Moderator]
 

OPC'n

Puritan Board Doctor
If a translation (into English or any other language) accurately reproduces the original Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, then you have an accurate translation of the Bible. However, it's no more than a translation, done by uninspired men and women. As far as I know, no reputable translator has dared to say that the product of his work is "mediately inspired."

No is stating that the Apostles hand wrote the translations of the Bible into every language. What at least I'm saying is that the inspired, infalible and authoritative truth is found in these translations. If you wrote a sentence in English and i translated it into Spanish it would say the same exact thing in Spanish as it does in English because i would translate it in the proper manner to reflect that meaning.
 
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