an authorized English version before 1611?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Logos1560, Jul 30, 2008.

  1. Logos1560

    Logos1560
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    If you were expecting this topic to be about the 1539 Great Bible or the 1568 Bishops' Bible, you may be surprised.

    The Geneva Bible was the authorized version in Scotland. David Daniell noted that a copy of the 1579 edition of the Geneva Bible printed in Scotland “was ordered to be in each parish kirk [church]” (Bible in English, p. 295). KJV-only author Robert Sargent acknowledged that the Geneva Bible “became the official version of Presbyterian Scotland in 1579” (English Bible, p. 197). John Eadie noted that editions of the Geneva Bible printed in Scotland had been “dedicated to him [King James VI] in 1576-9” (English Bible, II, p. 178). In his introduction to the facsimile edition of the 1560 Geneva Bible, Lloyd Berry wrote: “The Bassandyne Bible, as it was known, was a reprint of the second edition of the Geneva Bible, the folio of 1561, and contained a dedication praising James VI (later James I of England) for having authorized its publication” (p. 21).
     
  2. menageriekeeper

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    *******Warning*****Thread Hijack*******Warning*******

    Having only read the topic line this was the first thought that hit me:

    Who cares if a translation is "authorized" by a person or persons of the governmental nature that may or may not be a Christian.

    It makes me think that some believe that somehow God spoke to an English speaking king somewhere down through time and gave him a direct command to translate the scriptures into English. Knowing that for centuries only certain individuals ever saw the scriptures because other individuals thought they couldn't understand them for themselves, I'm thinking God was more likely to speak to some poor fella off the street since the scriptures says "God chose the foolish things of the world to confound the wise".

    ********End Hijack*******
     
  3. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Would this version not be "dedicated to" instead of "authorised by?"

    Can a 12 year old king authorise a translation?
     
  4. robycop3

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    Well, Roger, a king is a king, & I don't see why not if he wasn't under a total regencyship. But I wonder if the monarch of England could "de-authorize" a version "authorized" by his/her predecessor? I don't recall seeing any "de-authorization" of the Great Bible after Henry VIII died.
     
    #4 robycop3, Jul 30, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 30, 2008
  5. rsr

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    The 1579 edition (which contained the apocrypha, BTW) was authorized, but not by the king.

    The "authorized' aspect of the KJV stems from the assumed imprimatur of the crown, which sponsored the work. The Geneva Bible did not enjoy a similar "authorization"; its came from the General Assembly of the Kirk, which is what you referenced, and from the Scottish Parliament, which in 1579, to spur purchase of the new Geneva Bible, required wealthy Scots to purchase "
    a Bible and Psalm-book in the vulgar tongue" or face a fine (which happened to be twice the purchase price of the new Bible).

    The 1579 Geneva was on roughly similar footing as the Bishops Bible as far as "authorization." The 1571 Canterbury Convocation (which also formalized the Thirty-Nine Articles of Relgion) "required a copy to be kept in every archbishop's and bishop's house and in every cathedral, and, as far as could conveniently be done, in all churches. The Bishops' Bible, in fact, superseded the Great Bible as the official version, and its predecessor ceased henceforth to be reprinted ... " (from Fredric G. Kenyon in A Dictionary of the Bible by James Hastings published in 1909.)

    The Church of England did not officially adopt the authorized version, though the KJV bcame the de facto version of the church owing to legal pressure from the crown and decline of the Presbyterian faction after the restoration of the monarchy following Cromwell's protectorship. The Book of Common Prayer, in fact, retained the Great Bible readings until 1662, when it was revised with Parliament's consent, to include readings from the gospels and epistles from the 1611 version; the Psalms, however, remained those of Coverdale (and still are).

    James did not have the same authority over the Scottish church as he did over the Anglican church (certainly not in his early years). In 1581 the General Council adopted a thoroughly Preesbyterian Book of Discipline that said, for example:

    While James did attempt to bring the Presbyterians to heel, as with the Black Acts of 1584, he had mixed success, most of which came after he acceded to the English throne.
     
    #5 rsr, Jul 30, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 30, 2008
  6. Logos1560

    Logos1560
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    The Church of Scotland would seem to have been a more spiritual or godly church during the 1500's and early 1600's than the compromising Church of England.

    Compared to the Reformation in England and Ireland, MacCulloch pointed out that “the Scottish Reformation proved the most thoroughgoing” (Reformation, p. 368). Kenneth Bradstreet noted that “the leaders of the Scottish Church were true Reformation saints with a strong doctrine of grace apart from ecclesiastical works” (KJV in History, p. 84).

    Does the endorsement of a more godly church give a translation more authority than the endorsement of a more doctrinally unsound church?
     

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