- The Superiority of the King James Bible
- HOW THE KING JAMES VERSION WAS MADE
- "A study of the history of the King James Version clearly reveals it to
be a God-guided translation of the holy Scriptures. It is said that from
four-fifths to nine-tenths of the King James Version is taken from the
version of William Tyndale, who published the first printed English Bible in
1525 and died a martyr in 1536. Other 16th century English Bibles which
influenced the King James Version are the Great Bible (1539), the Geneva
Bible (1560), the Bishops' Bible (1568), and (slightly) the Douay Version
- "Work on the King James Version began in 1604. In that year a group of
Puritans under the leadership of Dr. John Reynolds, president of Corpus
Christi College, Oxford, suggested to King James I that a new translation of
the Bible be undertaken. This suggestion appealed to James, who was himself
a student of theology and of the Scriptures, and he immediately began to
make the necessary arrangements for carrying it out. Within six months the
general plan of procedure had been drawn up and a complete list made of the
scholars who were to do the work. Originally 54 scholars were on this list,
but deaths and withdrawals reduced it finally to 47. These were divided into
six companies which checked each other's work. Then the final result was
reviewed by a select committee of six and prepared for the press. Because of
all this careful planning the whole project was completed in less than seven
years. In 1611 the new version issued from the press of Robert Barker in a
large folio volume bearing on its title page the following inscription: `The
Holy Bible, containing the Old Testament & the New: Newly Translated out of
the Original tongues; & with the former Translations diligently compared and
revised by His Majesties special Commandment'" (Edward F. Hills, Believing
Bible Study, p. 64).
- THE AMAZING INFLUENCE OF THE KING JAMES BIBLE
- "The course of history has made English a world-wide language which is
now the native tongue of at least 300 million people and the second language
of many millions more. For this reason the King James Version is known the
world over and is more widely read than any other translation of the holy
Scriptures. Not only so, but the King James Version has been used by many
missionaries as a basis and guide for their own translation work and in this
way has extended its influence even to converts who know no English. For
more than 350 years, therefore, the reverent diction of the King James
Version has been used by the Holy Spirit to bring the Word of life to
millions upon millions of perishing souls. Surely this is a God-guided
translation on which God, working providentially, has placed the stamp of
His approval" (Hills, p. 65).
- THE FOUR-FOLD SUPERIORITY OF THE KING JAMES VERSION
- The following study is by Dr. Donald A. Waite. Dr. Waite is a Baptist
scholar who has written in the defense of the Received Text for many years.
He is President of the Dean Burgon Society and Director of Bible for Today
ministries. He has earned a B.A. in classical Greek and Latin; a Th.M. with
high honors in New Testament Greek Literature and Exegesis; an M.A. and
Ph.D. in Speech; a Th.D. with honors in Bible Exposition; and he holds both
New Jersey and Pennsylvania teacher certificates in Greek and Language Arts.
He taught Greek, Hebrew, Bible, Speech, and English for more than 35 years
in nine schools. He has produced more than 700 studies on the Bible and
- The following study is a summary of Waite's book Defending the King
James Bible. This volume presents a four-fold superiority of the King James
Bible: (1) Superior Texts (Hebrew And Greek); (2) Superior Translators;
(3) Superior Technique; And (4) Superior Theology. We are thankful to
Dr. Waite for preparing this summary of his excellent book and for granting
us permission to print it in this Encyclopedia.
- We begin with a couple of introductory thoughts about Bible
- Readability and the King James Bible.
- Many people say, "The KJV is too hard for people to read, they can't
understand it." Well, if you consult the readability index called "Right
Writer" (a computer program) that is absolutely neutral on this subject, you
will find readabilities for the portions of the KJV examined as follows:
- Passage Readability Grade Level
- Genesis 1 8.13 8th Grade
Exodus 1 7.94 8th Grade
Romans 1 9.74 10th Grade
Romans 3:1-23 5.63 6th Grade
Romans 8 7.73 8th Grade
Jude 1 10.11 10th Grade
- From the chart you can see that the KJV is NOT too difficult to
understand--provided that you can read at a 6th to 10th grade level. Our
son, D. A. Waite, Jr., has written a study he calls Six Bible Versions
Compared on Readability--A Comparison of the KJB, NKJV, ASV, RSV, NRSV, and
NIV. He took the first chapter of every book in the Bible, from Genesis
through Revelation and compared the six versions of the Bible mentioned
above. In this sampling, the KJV, over all, has a "Flesch Grade Level" of
from 6.1 to 8.6. The NIV, on the other hand, has a "Flesch Grade Level" of
from 6.1 to 11.0!! The NIV is not only less accurate by far, but also less
readable than the King James! From this evidence, we see that it's not too
hard to understand the KJV.
- I know hundreds of people whose intelligence and educational levels have
not reached as high as some of these ... people who say they can't
understand this King James Bible, yet these people do understand it. How do
you figure that out? Remember 1 Co. 2:14 which states, `But the natural
man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness
unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.'
This verse is still true, regardless of which translation is used.
- Some people say they like a particular version because they say it's
more readable. Now, readability is one thing, but does the readability
conform to what's in the original Greek and Hebrew language? You can have a
lot of readability, but if it doesn't match up with what God has said, it's
of no profit. In the King James Bible, the words match what God has said.
You may say it's difficult to read, but study it out. It's hard in the
Hebrew and Greek and, perhaps, even in the English in the King James Bible.
But to change it around just to make it simple, or interpreting it, instead
of translating it, is wrong. You've got lots of interpretation, but we don't
want that in a translation. We want exactly what God said in the Hebrew and
Greek brought over into English.
- Do we need more "translations" of the Bible? It can be asked: "Do we
really need more `translations' of the Bible? Are these new versions really
In the back of our book
Defending the King James Bible, there's a chart that lists the
number of "complete English Bibles" by years. From the 1300's
through the 1900's, there were a total of 135 "complete English
Bibles." This is taken from a research that's been done on English
Bibles of all kinds. We notice that, on the average, there has been
one complete English Bible every 4.4. years. Do you think we need
Complete English New Testaments. In the same book, there is
a chart that lists the number of "complete English New Testaments"
by years. From the 1300's through the 1900's, there were a total of
293 "complete English New Testaments." This is, on the average, one
complete English New Testament every 2.1 years. Do you think we need
more New Testaments?
Complete English Bibles and New Testaments combined. If you
put the charts together we can see that during the 612 years, from
the 1300's to the 1900's, there were a total of 135 complete English
Bibles, and 293 complete English New Testaments. This totals 428. It
means that, on the average, there was either one complete English
Bible or complete English New Testament published every 1.4 years.
Do we need more complete English Bibles or complete English New
Testaments? That's the question.
- Complete English Bibles.
- I believe that the major factor in the production of Bibles and New
Testaments is money. When the publishers discover that a certain version no
longer brings financial profit to their treasuries, that version runs out of
print in a hurry! Very few churches are doing what the Berean Baptist Church
in Greenwood, Indiana, is doing--printing Bibles and giving them out at low
cost. In fact, they give many of them away without charge. To my knowledge,
only those who have the real truth found in the King James Bible are doing
this. You will find few publishers of these false perversions printing them
at low cost or without charge! Now we move to the fourfold superiority of
the King James Bible:
- #1: The King James Bible Has Superior Original Language Texts
- The first reason for defending the KJV is because it has superior texts,
both Hebrew and Greek. This correctly implies that the various versions and
perversions of the Bible have inferior texts, both Hebrew and Greek.
- The KJV Has A Superior O.T. Hebrew Text
- There are two basic texts in existence in Hebrew, the false one, edited
by Ben Asher, and the true one, edited by Ben Chayyim. The Ben Asher is
exhibited in Rudolf Kittel's Biblia Hebraica (BHK) (1937) with all of his
suggested footnote changes, as well as in the Stuttgart edition of Biblia
Hebraica (BHS) (1967-77) with all of their suggested footnote changes. The
true text of Ben Chayyim on which our KJV is based is also available. It is
called the Daniel Bomberg edition or the Second Great Rabbinic Bible
(1524-25). We carry this Hebrew Bible in the Bible for Today ministry. It is
the Letteris text, printed in 1866. It has the Masoretic Hebrew text in the
center and the King James Bible in the margins. This Ben Chayyim Masoretic
Hebrew text was the unquestioned Hebrew text for the next 400 years. Nobody
questioned it. In fact, Rudolf Kittel, in his first two editions of 1906 and
1912, used that text in his Biblia Hebraica. It was not until 1937, that he
switched Hebrew texts and substituted the spurious and inferior text which
uses the Leningrad Manuscript (B19a or "L"). He used this because he claimed
it was the oldest single Hebrew manuscript, dating from about 1008 A.D.
- Both of these false Biblia Hebraica (BHK & BHS) Hebrew texts offer in
their footnotes about fifteen to twenty suggested changes per page. This
adds up to about 20,000 to 30,000 changes in the entire Hebrew Old Testament
text. One or the other of these false Hebrew texts, either BHK or BHS,
are used as the basis for the O.T. in all modern versions, as can be
shown by reading their introductory pages. How many of these changes in the
Hebrew text are you ready to accept? Do you want to accept 30,000? How about
20,000? 10,000? How about 5,000? How about 1,000? How many of you would like
to accept 500 changes?
- If you do not start with an absolute, you're going to continue to move
and to accept more and more changes. Where can you stop, once you have begun
to slide? Doubts will arise in your mind. We don't want to move from the
Hebrew O.T. on which our KJV is based. We must have an absolute.
- My personal belief is that the Traditional Masoretic Hebrew text that
underlies the KJV is not only the "closest to the original autographs," but
that it is IDENTICAL to those original autographs. I can't prove that to
anybody, but I accept it as a matter of personal faith. I believe we have
the very Words that God has preserved through the years. I believe every
Word in the Hebrew text is God's Word, preserved because He told us He would
preserve it for the next 20,000 to 30,000 years--to a "thousand
- The New Versions attempt to "CORRECT" The Hebrew Text in at least 19
different ways. The NIV uses all 19 of these, by the way. In effect, the
new version "translators/paraphrasers" might say, "Oh, I don't want to take
this Hebrew word here. I want to take the Septuagint (LXX) reading instead."
But the Septuagint (LXX) version for the most part is worse than a Living
Version. It is the Old Testament written in Greek. It is rotten. Its text is
corrupt. Even the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (ISBE) article
on the Septuagint (LXX) states that it has a very tattered and inferior
Greek text. Remember, the ISBE is no friend of the King James Bible's text.
The use of the Septuagint (LXX) by these new versions instead of using the
Hebrew text is a serious error.
- Another one of the 19 methods is when they have no textual proof at all.
It is pure conjecture. They might say, "I don't have any proof, but I think
it sounds better this way." When this is done, they often print in the
footnote an "L" which stands for "legendum," meaning in Latin, "which read."
I remember Dr. Merrill F. Unger, my Hebrew teacher at Dallas Theological
Seminary. He has written many books, including Unger's Bible Dictionary. He
was an apt and humble man, though he reminded me of an "absent-minded
professor" at times. He taught us Isaiah in our second year Hebrew class. On
one occasion, he read a verse in a way that differed from the Hebrew text. I
raised my hand and said, "Why did you read it that way? It doesn't read that
way in the Hebrew text?" Dr. Unger replied, "Well, I just thought it sounded
better that way, so I changed it." Dr. Unger went to the Johns Hopkins
University for his Ph.D. work. He was taught by Dr. Albright who was far
from sound in his theology. Perhaps Dr. Unger learned this doubt of the
Hebrew text from his professor. What was Dr. Unger doing? He was
"CORRECTING" the Hebrew text by conjecture.
- Some "CORRECT" the Hebrew with the Syriac Version. Some "CORRECT" the
Hebrew with just "a few Hebrew manuscripts" rather than the entire Masoretic
Traditional Hebrew text. Some "CORRECT" the Hebrew with the Latin Vulgate.
Some "CORRECT" the Hebrew with the Dead Sea Scrolls. With the Dead Sea
Scrolls, there are a few problems. Problem #1: How do you know which Hebrew
manuscripts this heretical cult (called the Essenes) took with them when
they left the temple of Jerusalem and went to the area of the Qumran caves?
Problem #2: How do you know the methods they used and the accuracy with
which they copied and recopied those manuscripts? It just so happens that
the Dead Sea Scrolls, probably 99% of the time, did concur with the Hebrew
text that underlies the King James Bible. But, in the places where they
don't, we should stick to the Masoretic Traditional Hebrew text.
- Some, like the NIV, use "quotations from Jerome" to "CORRECT" the Hebrew
text. Some use Josephus, an unsaved Jew, to "CORRECT" the Hebrew text. Some
use a "variant Hebrew Reading in the margin" to "CORRECT" the Hebrew text.
Some use "words in the consonantal text divided differently" to "CORRECT"
the Hebrew text. Some use quotations from Jerome, Aquila, the Samaritan
Pentateuch, or Symmachus to "CORRECT" the Hebrew text. Some use the Hebrew
Targums, Theodotion, or the "Juxta Hebraica of Jerome for the Psalms" to
"CORRECT" the Hebrew text. Why are they taking Jerome as a substitute for
the Hebrew Word of God? Was he there? Still others use a "different set of
Hebrew Vowels" to "CORRECT" the Hebrew text. Some use "an ancient Hebrew
scribal tradition" to "CORRECT" the Hebrew. Some use the Biblia Hebraica of
Kittel or Stuttgartensia to "CORRECT" the Hebrew. These are 19 of the
different methods that other English versions have used to "CORRECT" the
Masoretic Traditional Hebrew Old Testament text, thus changing the very
Words of God!
- God authorized the Jews to be the exclusive guardians of His Words. The
Jews were to be the guardians of the O.T. Hebrew text. God did not give that
privilege and responsibility to any other race or people. "What advantage
then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? Much every way:
chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God" (Ro.
- It was the Hebrew O.T. text that God preserved, not some text in Greek,
Latin, or Syriac, or any of these other documents. It must be Hebrew. There
were eight or more important, strict rules that were followed by the Hebrew
scribes who copied and recopied the Masoretic Hebrew O.T. text. These rules
were to insure that each letter, word, and sentence of the Hebrew text was
preserved exactly. The Jews were meticulous and reverent in the copying and
recopying of our Hebrew manuscripts. That's why I believe that we should not
change any of the Hebrew Words of God that underlie the KJV.
- The Ben Chayyim Hebrew Old Testament Text is available today. I hope
that the American Bible Society and the British and Foreign Bible Society
keep printing and circulating this Letteris Hebrew text. That's what they
call it, the Letteris text of 1866. This came out before Kittel decided to
scrap it for his false Ben Asher text. These same Bible Societies print the
false Hebrew texts, too. If they stop printing the true Ben Chayyim Hebrew
Old Testament text, by God's grace, we will do everything in our power to
see that it's reprinted and put back into circulation. We'll preserve the
very O.T. Hebrew Words of God ourselves, if that becomes necessary.
Sometimes this Hebrew Bible has gone out of stock at the American Bible
Society, but it has always come back in stock by a shipment from England.
- The KJV Has A Superior N.T. Greek Text
- There is a simple table in our book which speaks volumes concerning the
New Testament Greek text debate.
- Differences in the Greek Texts
- Textus Receptus Westcott/Hort Changes
- Has 140,521 Greek words Changes 5,604 places in the New Testament
Has 647 pages Changes include 9,970 words
Has 217 Greek words per page Changes 15.4 words per page
Has 100% of the Greek words Changes 7% of the Greek words
Has all 647 pages unchanged Changes total 45.9 pages in Greek text
- 1. The Greek Text That Underlies The KJV
- If you examine this table carefully, you will learn much about the
debate that is raging concerning the Greek N.T. On the left of the table are
some facts about the Textus Receptus that underlies the KJV. The Trinitarian
Bible Society has published this text and made it available to anyone. The
TBS took this text from that of Dr. Frederick Scrivener who was commissioned
in about 1885, by the Cambridge University Press, to come up with the exact
Greek text that underlies the King James Bible. Scrivener set down all of
the Greek words used by the KJV, but he did something else as well. He put
in bold face type all of the alterations made by editors Westcott and Hort
in their 1881 English Revised Version. He inserted the exact alterations in
the footnotes. These consisted of either additions of Greek words,
subtractions of Greek words, or changes of Greek words in some other way.
This Greek text edition has been reprinted by the Bible for Today. It is a
very useful tool. Scrivener's Greek text is also available on the LOGOS
Computer Program which enables the student to study more carefully.
- Missionary Jack Moorman counted 140,521 Greek words in the Textus
Receptus. Scrivener's Greek edition has 647 pages which would average 217
Greek words per page. That's what the Textus Receptus has.
- 2. The Greek Text Of Westcott And Hort That Underlies The Modern
- Though there was some scattered opposition to the Received Text in years
before, the concerted effort against the Received Text came in 1881, and
after. In 1881, two theological heretics (posing as conservatives) from the
Anglican Church, B.F. Westcott and F.J.A. Hort, published their Greek text
that rejected the TR in 5,604 places by my actual count. This involved 9,970
Greek words that were either added, subtracted, or changed from the TR. This
involves, on the average, 15.4 words per page of the Greek N.T., or a total
of 45.9 pages in all. It is 7% of the total of 140,521 words in the TR Greek
N.T. It was a radically new Greek text. Westcott and Hort concocted a new
Greek text and changed the TR that had been used in the Church from the
beginning of the writing of the N.T.
- You might rightfully ask, "How did you come up with this number of
changes?" That's a valid question. I took a copy of the original Scrivener's
Greek N.T. to a summer Bible Conference where I was preaching. During the
afternoon, when there were no meetings, I studied that volume carefully,
making notations on it as I read. When I indicate that there are 5,604
places in the Greek N.T. where Westcott and Hort actually altered the Greek
Textus Receptus used by the KJV translators, it is because I actually
counted that many places. I have the data in my copy of Scrivener's Greek
New Testament. These 5,604 places involve a total of 9,970 Greek words. How
do I know that? Again, I counted them. I saw from the footnotes exactly how
many Greek words each of the 5,604 places involved. As you might know, some
of the places involve twelve entire verses (Mk. 16:9-20 and John
7:53--8:11). In each of the 5,604 places, compared to the Textus Receptus
that underlies the KJV, Westcott and Hort either added Greek words,
subtracted Greek words, or changed the Greek words in some other way. You
can see that the Westcott and Hort alterations amount to just thirty words
short of 10,000 Greek words. This means that there are almost 10,000 Greek
words that are different in the Westcott and Hort Greek New Testament (and
probably about the same or more in the Nestle/Aland 26th edition Greek text)
as compared to the Greek text that underlies our KJV.
- This false Greek text, with its approximate 10,000 alterations, was the
basis for virtually all of the modern English versions and perversions,
including the ERV, ASV, NIV, NASV, NKJV, RSV, NRSV, TEV, JB, NEV, LV and
- Hort's own three estimates on the extent of the Greek textual problems
between his text and the Textus Receptus. In 1882, Hort wrote an
Introduction to the so-called Westcott and Hort Greek Text of 1881. In his
Introduction to the New Testament in the Original Greek--The Text Revised by
Brooke Foss Westcott, D.D., and Fenton John Anthony Hort, D.D., Hort made an
estimate of the differences between various Greek texts. His estimate had
three parts. Let me quote each of the parts:
- (1) Hort's estimate of the proportion of the Greek New Testament that
was virtually accepted by everyone. He wrote: "With regard to the great bulk
of the words of the New Testament, as of most other ancient writings, there
is NO VARIATION or other ground of doubt, and therefore no room for textual
criticism. ... The proportion of words virtually accepted on all hands as
raised above doubt is VERY GREAT, not less, on a rough computation, than
SEVEN EIGHTHS OF THE WHOLE. The REMAINING EIGHTH therefore, formed in great
part by changes of order and other comparative trivialities, constitutes the
whole area of criticism" (Hort, p. 2).
- Since the "whole" in numbers of Greek words and pages in the Greek N.T.
as seen in our table, is 140,521 Greek words (100%=647 pages), Hort's 7/8ths
of the Greek New Testament virtually agreed to by all would be 122,956 Greek
words (87.5%=566 pages). Hort's 1/8th of the Greek N.T. that he claimed was
in dispute would be 17,565 Greek words (12.5%=81 pages). In point of fact,
as seen in the previous table, the area of dispute between the Westcott and
Hort Greek text as opposed to the Textus Receptus that underlies the KJV is
only 9,970 Greek words (7%=45.9 pages). So Hort's estimate in this area is
- (2) Hort's estimate of the proportion of the Greek New Testament that
would still be in doubt if his principles were followed. He wrote: "If the
principles followed in the present edition are sound, this area may be very
greatly reduced. Recognizing to the full the duty of abstinence from
peremptory decision in cases where the evidence leaves the judgment in
suspense between two or more readings, we find that, setting aside
differences of orthography, the words in our opinion still subject to doubt
only make up about ONE SIXTIETH of the whole N.T." (Hort, loc. cit.).
- Since the "whole" in numbers of Greek words and pages in the Greek N.T.,
as seen in the previous table, is 140,521 Greek words (100%=647 pages),
Hort's 1/60th of the Greek New Testament still subject to doubt if his
principles were followed, would be 2,342 Greek words. This represents 1.76%
of the Greek words, or 11.4 pages in a Greek New Testament if put all in one
place. But we don't follow Hort's "principles" at all. Because of this, we
who hold to the Greek text that underlies the KJV are still disputing 9,970
Greek words (rather than only 2,342 Greek words). This represents 7% of the
Greek words (rather than only 1.76%), or 45.9 pages in a Greek N.T. if the
words were put in one place (rather than only 11.4 pages). So Hort's
estimate in this area is incorrect again. We still maintain that the of
Greek words in dispute are vastly more in number than Hort has stated.
- (3) Hort's estimate of the proportion of the Greek New Testament that
contains "SUBSTANTIAL VARIATION." He wrote: "In this second estimate the
proportion of comparatively trivial variations is beyond measure larger than
in the former; so that the amount of what can in any sense be called
SUBSTANTIAL VARIATION is but a small fraction of the whole residuary
variation, and can hardly form more than A THOUSANDTH PART of the entire
text" (Hort, loc. cit.).
- Since the "whole" in numbers of Greek words and pages in the Greek N.T.
, as seen in the table above, is 140,521 Greek words (100%=647 pages),
Hort's 1/1000th of the Greek N.T. that he thought could be called
"SUBSTANTIAL VARIATION" would be 140.5 Greek words (.1%=.647 pages). This
would be a little over one half a page in the Greek N.T. This is extremely
wide of the mark of truth! Since we don't follow Hort's "principles" at all,
we who hold to the Greek text that underlies the KJV are still disputing,
either in "SUBSTANTIAL VARIATION" or otherwise, a total of 9,970 Greek words
(7%=45.9 pages). It is Hort's last estimate that has been seized by his
modern day puppets and grossly distorted in order to fool people into
thinking that the problem is very tiny, when in reality, it is much, much
- The misquotation of Hort by his followers on the extent of the Greek
textual problems between his text and the Textus Receptus. Modern disciples
of this false Westcott and Hort Greek text have enlarged upon Hort's
estimates. They say, in effect: "If all of the variant readings between the
Westcott and Hort-type text and the Textus Receptus-type text were assembled
together in one place, they would amount to a little over one half a page in
the Greek New Testament."
- Hort's pupils are either knowingly or unknowingly misquoting their
teacher. They want to make the differences in the Greek texts very, very
slight so as to minimize the arguments against the false Westcott and
Hort-type Greek text. From the above quotations from Hort's Introduction,
his differences in Greek texts would be either 81 pages (1/8th), or 11.4
pages (1/60th), or .647 pages (1/1000th). Rather than merely "a little over
one half a page," Hort's 1/8th of total differences would amount to 81
pages. In reality, we are faced with 45.9 pages of difference!
- A current illustration of this practice of distorting the facts in this
area is found in a tape-recorded message given by Dr. Kenneth Barker, the
chairman of the translation committee responsible for the New International
Version. Dr. Barker spoke in the Sunday evening service, September 12, 1993,
at the Southside Baptist Church in Greenville, South Carolina. A friend
recorded the message and gave me a copy.
- Dr. Barker stated:
- "There are over 5,000 Greek manuscripts, and all of them are AGREED 98%
of the time. So all of this debate that Carson refers to in The King James
Version Debate, all of this debate, all of the hullabaloo is over less than
2% of the entire text of the New Testament. And in that less than 2%, you
can select any reading that you wish among the manuscripts, (that's not our
approach, but you can) and it won't change Christian doctrine one bit."
- Dr. Barker is wrong on TWO COUNTS! (1) His "less than 2%" difference
between any of the Greek manuscripts would be 2,810 Greek words (12.9
pages). The truth of the matter is that there is a 7% difference between the
Westcott and Hort Greek text and the Textus Receptus that underlies the KJV.
This would be 9,970 Greek words (45.9 pages). This is a most serious error.
It is a blatant falsehood that is being promulgated by the chairman of the
NIV translation committee. It would give false confidence to the pastor and
members of this church that had just recently given up the KJV in favor of
Dr. Barker's NIV. (2) The second serious error is Dr. Barker's statement
relative to the fact that variations in manuscripts "won't change Christian
doctrine one bit." In our book, we specify 158 such passages. Jack Moorman
lists 356 such passages. These two falsehoods, from someone who should know
better, are the major ones used to lull Bible-believing Christians into deep
slumber concerning the Bible version controversy that has been raging.
- The King James Bible's Greek text is worth fighting for! The Greek Text
of the New Testament is truly a BATTLEGROUND! Someone might say to you that
there is really very little difference in the two Greek texts. They may tell
you that you shouldn't be fighting about these differences. It seems to me
that almost 46 pages of the Greek N.T. ARE worth fighting about. 9,970 Greek
words are worth fighting about. 7% of the Greek N.T. is worth fighting
about. This is a BATTLEGROUND! We must not retreat. We must do battle for
the Lord's Words! We must stand fast. If we lose in this battle between
truth and error, there's no stopping the onrush of more error. In the tug of
war with truth and error, there is no middle ground. Those of us who believe
in standing up for the Lord Jesus Christ should remember His Words:
"Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this
adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be
ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels"
- The KJV Greek Text Attested by the Evidence
- %MSS WH/TR
- As of 1967, Kurt Aland, of Munster, Germany, counted a total of 5,255
Greek manuscripts still in existence. Though there are a few others since
1967, I use these figures which are still very close. Aland is the lead
editor of the 26th edition of the Nestle/Aland Greek New Testament which is
being used as the critical text of today. I am using Aland's 1967 figures.
- As you can see from the table, there are 81 (now 88) papyrus fragments.
There are 267 uncial manuscripts. These are large, capital letter documents.
There are 2,764 cursives manuscripts. These are the flowing hand
manuscripts. There are 2,143 lectionary manuscripts. These are portions of
Scripture that were read on certain days of the church year. This totals at
least 5,255 Greek manuscripts of the N.T. that have been preserved and are
available for us today.
- The table gives the approximate number and percent of each type of Greek
manuscript that supports the Westcott-Hort (WH) Greek text, as well as the
number and percent of each class that supports the Textus Receptus (TR)
Greek text. These approximations are taken from the careful research of Jack
Moorman in his book Forever Settled (see Bibliography). The WH figures are
given first and those for the TR second. For the papyrus fragments the score
is 13 to 75 (15% to 85%). For the uncial manuscripts the score is 9 to 258
(3% to 97%). For the cursive manuscripts the score is 23 to 2,741 (1% to
99%). For the lectionary manuscripts the score is 0 to 2,143 (0% to 100%).
For the totals for all classes of manuscripts the score is 45 to 5,210. This
is a ratio of less than 1% to more than 99%!
- The King James Bible's Greek Text has been preserved by God. Which of
the two kinds of Greek text has God preserved? How do you define
preservation? The Scripture says: "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 for ever"
- Obviously God has "KEPT" and "PRESERVED" His Words in the 99% of the
evidence, rather than in the 1%. By very definition, this is "PRESERVATION."
Suppose I had 100 million dollars to begin with and a thief stole it from
me. Suppose I reported this to the police; and after long investigation,
they were able to recover 99 million dollars out of the 100 million dollars.
The thief would keep one million dollars. Which of the two parties could
most accurately be described as having "PRESERVED" the 100 million dollars:
the thief who had the one million dollars, or the police who recovered the
99 million dollars? The one million would be a "PRESERVATION" of practically
nothing (1%) compared to the 99 million (99%). And so it is with the Greek
manuscripts of the N.T. The fulfillment of God's promise to "KEEP" and
"PRESERVE" His Words is to be found in the more than 99% of the manuscripts
we have today. And these support the Greek Text that underlies the KJV, and
NOT the Greek text that underlies the modern versions and perversions!
- The false Greek texts of "B" and "ALEPH" contradict one another in over
3,000 places in the Gospels alone. In the total numbers of manuscripts,
you'll notice that the Westcott-Hort type has only 45 manuscripts that go
along with it as over against 5,210 that go along with the TR that underlies
the KJV. This 45 includes "B" (Vatican) and "Aleph" (Sinai) and forty-three
of their little heretical puppets that follow them. The theory behind the
acceptance of these less than 1% is that "The oldest are the best." The
oldest are not necessarily the best, especially if they have been tampered
with by heretics!
- Both Dr. Frederick Scrivener and Dean John William Burgon agreed that
the greatest pollution of the stream of pure manuscripts was accomplished in
the first 100 years after the New Testament was written! So the oldest are
not necessarily the best! This is especially true since the heretics had
their knives out "correcting" the Greek N.T. almost as soon as it was
written. The Egyptian scribes and editors of "B" (Vatican) and "Aleph"
(Sinai) were some of the most vicious "correctors" of God's Words; yet these
two Greek texts form the very bedrock of the new versions and perversions of
our day. "B" and "Aleph" contradict each other, as Herman Hoskier has so
accurately pointed out in his two volume work entitled Codex B and Its
Allies, in over 3,000 places in the four Gospels alone! So, they are not
good witnesses. They are false witnesses indeed!
- #2: The King James Bible Has Superior Translators
- The second reason for defending the KJV is because it has superior
translators. This correctly implies that the various versions and
perversions of the Bible have inferior translators.
- Let's take a brief look at the superior translators of the KJV. Why do I
say that the KJV translators are superior? I say they are superior because
they ARE superior! I think that there is no question about the expertise and
ability of the translators who gave us our KJV. The new version people often
say that the KJV translators were rather ignorant and didn't know as much
about translating as the "translators/paraphrasers" of today. This is not
only prideful, but completely false. Their linguistic qualifications are
- The accomplishments of Lancelot Andrews. Let's mention Dr. Lancelot
Andrews. He was certainly a superior KJV translator. He had mastered fifteen
languages. Someone said that if Dr. Andrews had been present at the
confusion of tongues at the tower of Babel, he could have served as
interpreter general. I don't know any of the modern "translator/paraphrasers"
who have mastered fifteen languages, do you? Send me their names, if you
have proof of this.
- The acumen of William Bedwell. How about Dr. William Bedwell? He was
famed in Arabic learning. I don't know how many of these new men who are
"translating/paraphrasing" for these modern versions and perversions who
have studied as much of the Arabic language as he had. In fact, he published
in quarto, an edition of the Epistles of St. John in Arabic with a Latin
version. I don't know how many men today could do that. Dr. Bedwell left
many Arabic manuscripts in the University of Cambridge, with numerous notes
and a font of types for printing them. In fact, he wrote an Arabic lexicon,
or dictionary, in three volumes. He also began a Persian dictionary which is
among Archbishop Laud's manuscripts, still preserved in the Bodleian Library
at Oxford today. I don't think anyone among our modern "translators/paraphrasers"
of today has done this or could do this! Do you know any of these men who
have written an Arabic dictionary and begun a Persian dictionary, or done
anything similar in the scholarly world that will even come close to the
accomplishments of William Bedwell? If so, send me their names and the
proof. In our day, many people watch too much television. They attend too
many football games, baseball games, and basketball games. We are
ignoramuses today compared to the scholars who gave us our KJV!
- The acceptability of Miles Smith. Look at the acceptability of Dr. Miles
Smith. He was an expert in Hebrew, in Chaldee, in Syriac, and in Arabic.
They were almost as familiar to him as his native tongue. Dr. Smith went
through both the Greek and Latin church Fathers, making annotations on them
- The activities of Henry Saville. Sir Henry Saville was proficient in
both Greek and mathematics. He became tutor in these two subjects to Queen
Elizabeth. I don't know how many queens or kings our modern "translators/paraphrasers"
have tutored, do you? Saville translated the histories of Cornelius Tacitus
and published the same with notes. He published, from the manuscripts, the
writings of Bradwardin against Pelagius, The Writers of English History
Subsequent to Bede, and Prelections on the Elements of Euclid. He was the
first to edit the complete works of Chrysostom, the most famous of the Greek
Fathers. He was a profound and exact scholar.
- The academics of John Bois. John Bois was expert in Hebrew as well as
Greek. He studied at his father's knee. In fact, at the age of five, he had
read the whole Bible IN HEBREW!! At the age of six, John Bois was able to
write Hebrew in a clear and elegant style. If you know anything about the
Hebrew letters, it's difficult to write in an elegant style, or in any
style, for that matter. Much more could be said about John Bois.
- The superior translators in general. Have you ever heard of Gulliver's
Travels? It tells of Gulliver's adventures with the inhabitants of Lilliput.
Do you remember what the Lilliputians did to poor Gulliver? They were tiny,
tiny people, and Gulliver was like a giant to them. While he was asleep,
they tied up Gulliver with tiny cords so he couldn't move. I liken the KJV
translators to the giant Gulliver and the "translators/paraphrasers" of
today to tiny Lilliputians. It states in Ge. 6:4: "There were GIANTS in the
earth in those days..." It was true also from 1604 to 1611, when these
profound scholars gave us our incomparable King James Bible! They had
mastered English as well as the Hebrew/Aramaic and Greek. They also knew the
cognate or brother-sister-cousin related languages that shed light on the
Hebrew/Aramaic and Greek such as the Aramaic, the Arabic, the Persian, the
Coptic, the Syriac, and the others. When the modern "translators/paraphrasers"
come upon a word they don't understand, they throw up their hands in dismay.
The KJV translators did not meet with such difficulty because they knew the
cognate languages so well that they could unlock such mysteries. Our modern
"translators/paraphrasers" are linguistically illiterate when compared to
the men who gave us our KJV. They truly were "GIANTS"!!
- #3: THE KING JAMES BIBLE HAS SUPERIOR TECHNIQUE
- The third reason for defending the KING JAMES BIBLE is because it has
superior technique of translation. This correctly implies that the various
versions and perversions of the Bible have inferior technique of
- The KJV translators used the superior technique of verbal equivalence
and formal equivalence--not dynamic equivalence. The modern versions and
perversions have used, to a greater or lesser degree, the inferior technique
of dynamic equivalence and have disdained both verbal and formal
- Alleged Dynamic Equivalencies In The KJV
Some people allege that the KJB translators
used dynamic equivalence in their expression "God forbid." Even if
it were the case (and I do not accept that it is), it is found only
fourteen times in the New Testament: Ro. 3:4,6,31; 6:2,15; 7:7,13;
9:14; 11:1,11; 1 Co. 6:15; Ga. 2:17; 3:21; 6:14. It is a rendering
of "mE genoito" which is "may it not be" or "let it not be." This is
perfect 1611 parlance for "God forbid." It was quite literal in
1611. If you don't believe it, consult the Oxford English Dictionary
which gives you the meaning of "God forbid" in 1611. It is found
only seven times in the O.T.: Ge. 44:7,17; Jos. 22:29; 24:16; 1 Sa.
12:23; 1 Ch. 11:19; Job 27:5. It is a rendering of "chalal" which is
"may it be something profane" or "may it be far from me." Again,
"God forbid" is a perfect 1611-parlance for the Hebrew words used.
"God Save the King." Another favorite allegation of dynamic
equivalency in the KJV is the expression "God save the king." Even
if it were the case (and I do not accept that it is), it is only
found four times in the O.T.: 1 Sa. 10:24; 2 Sa. 16:16; 2 Ki. 11:12;
2 Ch. 23:11. It means "may the king live long" or "may the king be
preserved or safe." Well, if the king lives long, he is "saved" is
he not? [Editor: The term "salvation" was used in a much broader
sense in past centuries.] So why not let the 1611-parlance of "God
save the king" alone? The fact is that such examples are very, very
few in the KJV, whereas they abound in the modern versions and
perversions because in those, the dynamic equivalent technique is
the rule rather than the exception.
- "God Forbid."
The KJV basically uses the technique of verbal equivalence and formal
equivalence. Verbal equivalence means that the very words, wherever
possible, are brought over from Hebrew into English and from Greek into
English. The KJV also uses the technique of formal equivalence, that is, the
translators brought over, wherever possible, the very forms of the Hebrew
and Greek words into English. They didn't transform the grammar. They didn't
take a noun and make a verb out of it. They brought a verb into a verb and a
noun into a noun wherever possible. They were skilled craftsmen who had a
proper concept of what "translation" really is. It comes from translatus
which in turn comes from two Latin words, trans ("across") and latus which
is the past participle of fero ("to carry"). It means to "carry across" from
one place to another, or from one language to another. It does not mean to
CHANGE, or to ADD, or to SUBTRACT!
Let me illustrate "translation." If I have my wife's pocketbook and I
want to translate it from one side of the church to the other, I would
simply pick it up, take it across the aisle, and put it on the other side of
the church. I wouldn't leave any of it behind, even though there may be some
things in it I wouldn't want to take over. I wouldn't add anything to it,
and I wouldn't drop any of it in the center aisle. Now that's translation,
translatus. That's what the KJV translators did. They just simply took the
Hebrew words and put them into English. They picked up the Greek words and
put them into English. That's translation. That's the superior technique.
The Modern Versions' Use Of Dynamic Equivalence
I have a computer print-out research of three of these modern
versions--the New King James, the New American Standard, and the New
International. When compared to the Hebrew and Greek texts, I found that the
New King James Version had over 2,000 examples of dynamic equivalency, that
is, adding to, subtracting from, or changing the Words of God. In a similar
study of the New American Standard Version, I found over 4,000 such
examples. In a similar study of the New International Version I found over
6,653 such examples.
What is meant by dynamic equivalency? "Dynamic" means "moving or
changing." "Equivalence" means "the same or unchanging." You can't have it
both ways! It is either changing or unchanging. Those who use this false
technique in the various "translations/paraphrases" think it's a great
technique. The bottom line for such a technique is that it gives a human
being the right to ADD to God's Words (which is sin), to SUBTRACT from God's
Words (which is sin), or to CHANGE God's Words (which is sin). God
pronounces the strongest possible CURSE on anyone who dares to do any of
those three things to God's Words!! Those who use this false technique are
really paraphrasing rather than translating. Paraphrase comes from two Greek
words, para ("along side or beside") and phrasis ("a word or phrase"). It
means to use a word or phrase that is along side of the real meaning. It is
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 give something that is "beside" or "along
side of" the word or phrase.
#4: The King James Bible Has Superior Theology
The fourth reason for defending the KJV is because it has superior
theology. This correctly implies that the various versions and perversions
of the Bible have inferior theology.
Some Denials That Theology Is Affected By Greek Or English Versions.
It is said by those who use the new versions and perversions of the
Bible that there is no difference in any of them when it comes to theology.
It is also said that there is no difference in any of the Greek texts in the
matter of theology. This is even said by those who are looked up to as Bible
believing leaders. There are two phases of their theological denial:
- The KJV's Verbal And Formal Equivalence
- These men believe that the Greek textual variants between the
two basic Greek texts do not affect theology or doctrine. They
believe that the false Westcott and Hort Greek text (when compared
to the Greek text of the KJV) contains nothing that is theologically
deficient or doctrinally incorrect. This is false.
- These men also believe that the modern English versions do not
contain changes from the KJV that affect theology or doctrine. They
believe that you can take any modern English version you wish and
when you compare it to the KJV, that version does not have anything
in it that is theologically deficient or doctrinally incorrect. This
is also false....
- Dr. Sumner wrote: "The rare parts about which there is still uncertainty
do not effect [sic] in any way any doctrine." This is false! Doctrine IS
affected. Dr. Robert L. Thomas, John MacArthur's professor in his California
Seminary, wrote: "No major doctrine of scripture is affected by a variant
reading." False, again. Dr. H.S. Miller wrote: "No doctrine is affected."
False again. Dr. Stanley Gundry stated: "Only a few outstanding problems
remain, and these do not affect doctrine or divine command to us." False
again. Dr. Ernest Pickering wrote: "Important differences of textual
readings are relatively few and almost none would affect any major Christian
doctrine." False again!
- Some Examples Of Theology That Is Affected By Greek And English
- I have given 158 examples of the theological superiority of the KJV in
my book. I selected these from Jack Moorman's compilation of a total of 356
doctrinal passages that have been changed in the Egyptian heretical Greek
texts of "B" (Vatican), "Aleph" (Sinai), and others. I'll give you some
examples of doctrines that are affected by these false Greek texts and new
- 1. John 3:15. "That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but
have eternal life."
- Do you know what the "B" (Vatican) and "Aleph" (Sinai) manuscripts do to
the three words, "should not perish"? They REMOVE them. So, in the two false
Greek texts, there's no hell in Jn. 3:15. What versions follow these
corrupted Greek texts? The NIV follows them, the NASV follows them, and the
NKJV in the footnotes, follows them. So do the other modern versions and
perversions. For them, there is no hell in Jn. 3:15. Is this not a major
- 2. John 6:47. Let me see if you can accurately lead a soul to Christ
using exclusively Jn. 6:47 as rendered in the new versions. Note John 6:47
in the KJV, where the Lord Jesus declared: "Verily, verily, I say unto you,
He that believeth on me hath everlasting life."
- That verse is as clear as a bell, on how to receive "everlasting life."
But, the Westcott and Hort Greek text, following the "B" (Vatican) and
"Aleph" (Sinai) manuscripts, takes out those two vital and precious words,
"on me." Because of their reliance on these false Egyptian Greek texts, the
NIV also removes "on me." So does the NASV. So does the NKJV in the
footnotes. So do the other modern versions and perversions. If you're trying
to lead a soul to Christ with those new versions and perversions, using Jn.
6:47 exclusively, you'll never lead them to Christ, because "on me" (Christ)
is gone from that verse in their perversions! All they say is something like
this: "Whoever believes has everlasting life." Believes what? Their verse
doesn't say. Their verse merely says "believes." ... That's major false
doctrine in my judgment, and it stems directly from false Greek texts and
false English perversions!
- 3. Romans 1:16. Here's what it says in the accurate KJV: "For I am not
ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation
to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek."
- The heretical Greek texts of "B" (Vatican) and "Aleph" (Sinai) remove
the two words "of Christ" in this verse. Because of this, the NIV also
removes these words. So does the NASV. So does the NKJV in the footnotes. So
do the other modern versions and perversions. This certainly is doctrine.
"Gospel" means "good news" or a "good announcement." What "gospel" could be
inserted there instead of the "gospel of Christ"? Was it the good news about
a pay raise? Was it the good news about a new car, a new hat, or a new
house? No! It's the gospel or good news about Christ. That's doctrine!
- 4. John 7:8. Was the Lord Jesus Christ a liar? If you believe the false
Greek text, "Aleph" (Sinai), and some of the versions, He was. Note Jn. 7:8:
"Go ye up unto this feast: I go not up yet unto this feast; for my time is
not yet full come."
- According to the Greek text "Aleph" (Sinai), the word "yet" must be
removed. The NASV omits it also. So does the NKJV in the footnotes. So do
some other modern versions and perversions. Why do I say this removal of
"yet" makes the Lord Jesus Christ out to be a liar? Because He went up to
the feast in question. If He told his brethren that He was NOT going up to
the feast, and then later went up to that feast, He would have told a lie,
would He not? This certainly is a major theological doctrine. As in all of
the other 356 doctrinal passages [which are corrupted in the modern versions
and listed in Jack Moorman's book], the KJV has superior theology here. The
perversions are inferior in their theology and doctrine! Stay away from
- Concluding remarks: I believe that in the King James Bible we have the
Word of God kept intact in English. I believe we should defend the KJV for
four reasons: (1) It has superior original language texts (Hebrew and
Greek); (2) It has superior translators; (3) It has superior technique; and
(4) It has superior theology.
- We ought not to be ashamed of the Book of books that has stood the test
of time and will continue standing. Let's stand for it and with it. ... The
KJV, which is being hammered and beaten on every hand today (by so-called
"friend" and foe alike), can be very much likened to the "ANVIL" in that
famous poem with which I close:
- THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE 1611 KJV AND THE PRESENT KJV
- In the New King James Version they have the history of the King James
Bible in the back. On page 1229 of my edition, the editors wrote:
- "Over the years from 1611 to 1616, words and phrases in the King James
Bible were changed, and printing errors were corrected.
- "In 1629 the first edition of the Authorized Version, printed by the
presses of Cambridge University, underwent a thorough and systematic
revision of the text, the italics and the marginal references. Dr. Samuel
Ward and Dean Bois [he is the one who read the Hebrew Bible when he was
five] two of the 1611 translators, participated in that revision. A still
further revision, more thorough than the first, was carried out in the
Cambridge edition of 1638. This carefully supervised revision covered `from
the beginning of the volume to the end.'
- "The first Bible to contain dates of biblical events in the margin was a
three-volume edition in 1701 ... In 1762 Dr. Thomas Paris, a Fellow of
trinity College, Cambridge issued a major revision of the King James Bible;
and seven years later the Oxford Revision, the work of Dr. Benjamin Blayney
was released. ... Marginal notes were increased to almost 65,000, half of
which were cross-references."
- Basically, those were the revisions up to 1769. The question is, how
great were those revisions? How much was the wording changed? That is why I
compared the present day Old Scofield King James Version and read the
original 1611 and looked not just at the spelling changes. Some say there
are 40,000 to 50,000 changes, and if you listened to them you would think we
don't have anything like the original today. That would be a tremendous
number of changes in my judgment. More confusion. They want an excuse to
give us a "new" King James Version. That is why they give the history of the
changes, to make us think this is JUST ONE MORE CHANGE. If there are 40,000
to 50,000 changes, they are related, by and large, to spelling differences,
NOT to changes in the meaning or sounds of words.
- For instance, take John 9, the account of the man born blind. Now, the
word "blind" in verse 1 is spelled "blinde." It's a change. But is "blind"
any different from "blinde"? If that is a change you're talking about, it
doesn't affect the ear. Now, in the second verse, "sin" is spelled "sinne."
That is a change. Then the word "born" is spelled "borne." But the sound is
the same. What I did, was to count only the changes that could be HEARD. And
from Genesis to Revelation, did I get 30,000? No. Did I get 20,000? No.
1,000? No. I got 421 changes to the ear, that could be heard, out of the
791,328 words. Just 421. That is actually one change out of 1,880 words. As
for those 421 changes to the ear--most of them minor, just changes in
- There were ONLY 135 SUBSTANTIAL CHANGES that were different words. The
others were only 285 minor changes of form only. Of these 285 minor changes,
there are 214 very minor changes such as "towards" for "toward"; "burnt" for
"burned"; "amongst" for "among"; "lift" for "lifted"; and "you"; for "ye."
These kinds of changes represent 214 out of the 285 minor changes of form
only. Now you're talking about only 136 real changes out of 791,328 words.
Many people imply that the King James Bible is completely changed from what
they had in 1611, that there are THOUSANDS of differences. You tell them
about the mere 136 changes of substance plus 285 minor changes of form only.
(D.A. Waite, Defending the King James Bible).