Is it a myth that KJV has "archaic" English?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Logos1560, Sep 13, 2007.

  1. Logos1560

    Logos1560
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    Gail Riplinger wrote: “This author’s own word-for-word analysis of the English Bibles before the KJV destroys the myth that the KJV’s words are ’archaic’ English” (In Awe of Thy Word, p. 18).

    Is it a myth that some of the KJV's words are "archaic" English?
     
  2. readmore

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    I would say this quote alone proves that it is not a myth. :laugh:
     
  3. readmore

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    <cough> Seriously, though, it would seem to me that if leading KJVO advocates claim there are archaic words in the KJV--then there probably are. Dr. Samuel Gipp concedes this at http://www.biblebelievers.com/Gipp/answer/gipp_answer_04.html. The example given is the word "shambles" at I Corinthians 10:25.
     
  4. Logos1560

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    Yes, many other KJV-only advocates do in effect admit that there are archaic words in the KJV.

    They do vary in their claims concerning how many such words are found in the KJV. Some have claimed only as few as 12 to 24. KJV-only advocate Robert Sargent claimed: "No one denies the AV does contain some archaic words, albeit no more than a dozen" (Is the NKJB the Word of God, p. 4). Pastor Bruce Cummons claimed that there are "perhaps 12 or 14 at the most" archaic words in the KJV (Critique of the NKJV). Jack Moorman wrote that no more than twenty words in the KJV would cause a problem as "Old English" (Modern Bibles--the Dark Secret, p. 2). Lloyd Streeter maintained that "there are only about two dozen of these" 'difficult' words" (75 Problems, p. 279).

    In one book, Peter Ruckman asserted that “there are about eighty words” in the KJV that are archaic (Scholarship Only, p. 144). In a footnote, Ruckman indicated that there are "about 100" archaic words in the KJV (Christian's Handbook of Manuscript Evidence, p. 180). In one booklet, Ruckman suggested that “the entire list” of archaic words in the KJV “would not come to even one hundred words” (Alexandrian, Part One, p. 21). Ruckman again wrote: “There are not one hundred words that are ‘archaic’” (Alexandrian, Part Six, p. 26). While Ruckman provides evidence to refute the KJV-only myth that there are only twelve to twenty-four archaic words in the KJV, other KJV-only advocates give information that conflicts with Ruckman’s statements.


    It seems that KJV-only advocates cannot agree on how many archaic words are found in the KJV. KJV-only author David Cloud maintained that “there are only about two hundred words in the KJV that have become so antiquated that they have changed meanings or have dropped entirely out of common usage, so that you really need a dictionary to understand them” (Bible Version Question/Answer Database, p. 162). KJV-only author Floyd Jones wrote that “there are only several hundred obsolete or archaic words remaining within the 1611” (Which Version, p. 52). A booklet by KJV-only author David Daniels has “over 500 archaic words defined” (KJB Companion). In one of his books, D. A. Waite acknowledged that there are 618 words in the KJV whose meaning has changed since 1611 (Defending the KJB, p. 1).


     
  5. EdSutton

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    I'm just a dirt farmer from KY, but I know if I had over 618 cows, or 500 or even 200, I sure would have a whole lot bigger herd, if I had only 12, 14 or even 20.

    Ed
     
  6. David Lamb

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    Sorry, I don't understand. Why look at English versions before the AV/KJV to decide whether the AV/KJV contains words that are now archaic? Or is the question about whether words were used that were already archaic at the beginning of the 17th century? If so, surely a far more important question four centuries later is whether any of the words used in the AV/KJV have become archaic since that translation was made. The answer must surely be yes. Some words have just gone out of use, such as coney, cockatrice, bewray(eth), astonied, throughly, bowels (in the sense of "tender affections"), strait, quick (in the sense of "alive") and many others. Some have changed their meanings, such as abroad (then meant "outside", "in the streets"; now means "in another country"), advertise (then "advise", now "encourage people to buy something"), occupy (then "trade", now "inhabit" or "fill" (as in "occupy one's time"), prevent (then "go before", now "stop something happening"), and many similar changes. Then there are the words which used to be used in everyday speech, but which now are used as rude words. We have an expression occuring four times that includes a rude word for urination, for instance. Yes, although it is a great translation, the AV/KJV does indeed contain many words that are not longer in use, that have changed their meaning entirely, or that have become "bad language".
     
  7. readmore

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    Since it seems pretty well established that there are archaic words in the KJV, let me throw something more controversial out there... As someone who has read the KJV for almost his entire life and up until recently has vociferously defended its superiority over modern versions; may I suggest that not only are there archaic words, but archaic speech patterns?

    It's almost impossible to quantify, but when I read the KJV and compare it to modern versions (archaic words aside), it takes a lot longer to figure out what God is saying through the text of the KJV. As a random example, see Hebrews 5:12. In the KJV, it reads:

    For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.​

    But in the NIV, it reads:

    In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!​

    I'm fairly familiar with archaic words in the KJV and their meaning, and yet there are countless passages where I will struggle with the meaning in the KJV only to have the NIV bring it into crystal clarity.
     
  8. franklinmonroe

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    I just really like the way you think, Mr. Lamb! Will you adopt me, please?
     
  9. Logos1560

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    Gail Riplinger's argument was that the KJV did not update [except rarely] the language of the pre-1611 English Bibles of which it was a revison and that those pre-1611 English Bibles had simplier language than the KJV.
    Riplinger wrote: "The 1568 Bishops' Bible sounds like today's newspaper. The KJV is 'separate from sinners'" (IN AWE, p. 219). Riplinger asserted: "God permanently replaced the old simple Bishops' Bible to give the English speaking world a Bible that is memorizable and melodic, aids missionaries in bridging the language gap, transparently and precisely reveals the Greek and Hebrew texts, and most importantly whose vocabulary clearly distinguishes it from the voice of man" (p. 203).

    Riplinger seems to be trying to invent arguments for saying that the language of the KJV should not be updated.

    In another thread, many examples have already been provided that shows that the KJV did update archaic words in the pre-1611 English Bibles, and examples were given where the KJV may have simpler language than the pre-1611 English Bibles.
     
  10. David Lamb

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    Thanks, but as I am only 12 years your senior, that might not be appropriate :laugh:
     
  11. Logos1560

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    Riplinger's argument that the KJV's words are not "archiac English" seem to be tied in with her argument that the KJV has a built-in dictionary for all its words.

    Gail Riplinger proposed: “The King James Bible contains God’s Built-in Dictionary, defining each word, in its context, using the very words of the Webster’s and Oxford English Dictionaries” (Language of the KJB, p. xvi). In her later book, Riplinger claimed that “the King James Bible has a built-in dictionary which defines all of its words” and that “the difficult ones are no exception” (In Awe, p. 286). Riplinger wrote: “The King James Bible’s built-in dictionary defines all of its vocabulary for you” (p. 49). She added: “The KJV gives the perfect definition of all of its own words” (p. 65). She commented: “The KJV’s fine-tuned vocabulary provides razor-sharp distinctions” (p. 157). Even if Riplinger’s claims are true concerning the few example words that she presents in her book, those examples are not valid evidence for her broad generalization that her claim is true for all the words found in the KJV.

    Riplinger seems to want to develop a case for implying that readers need no other sources or aids to help them understand the language of the KJV
    besides the KJV itself [and perhaps her books].
     
  12. Salamander

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    Um, he admitted that the word "shambles" is actually more accurate. I wouldn't call that conceding, but some would like for others to think Dr. Gipp did concede.

    That is the normal dishonesty we find quite often.
     
  13. Salamander

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    Her approach is limited to the entire volume of Scripture to compare Scripture with Scripture. And, of course, she holds firmly to the belief that the Bible clearly states The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, will guide you into all truth, regardless of what anyone else says to the contrary.

    I agree she needs to go into more detail in some areas, but she seems to have this one right.

    (Duck, Salamander! IN-COMING!!!!) 4 "!!!!"s for a reason.
     
  14. EdSutton

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    "[and perhaps her books]." might be very illuminative, no??

    At least that seems to be a fairly common idea among those who have had books published, from my experience over the last (quite a) few years. :rolleyes:

    Interestingly enough, it seems to rise up in Christian circles, as well as secular ones.

    As the late Mr. Fred Rogers might well have said, "Boys and girls! Can you spell 'royalty'?"

    [​IMG] [​IMG] :laugh:

    Ed
     
    #14 EdSutton, Sep 14, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 14, 2007
  15. kubel

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    I couldn't help but think of the King James Bible Companion when I saw this topic. It's from Chick Publications. Kinda gave me a chuckle when I saw it:

    coverfront.jpg (38KB)


    Then I read the back cover (particularly the second paragraph):

    coverback.jpg (46KB)


    Well then in that case... ::burns all other translations::

    It is quite useful though.
     
  16. standingfirminChrist

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    Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever... why should His Word change?
     
  17. EdSutton

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    Although actually, in this case, we are talking about selling price vs. printing costs, I'd say. :rolleyes: :laugh:

    Ed
     
  18. franklinmonroe

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    The poster 'readmore' wrote that "Dr. Samuel Gipp concedes this". What was "this"? The 'this' was that "KJVO advocates claim there are archaic words in the KJV". Notice these emphasized words from the website's Gipp article --

    QUESTION: Aren't there archaic words in the Bible, and don't we need a modern translation to eliminate them?

    ANSWER: Yes and No. Yes there are archaic words in the Bible but No, we do not need a modem translation to eliminate them.

    EXPLANATION: That there are archaic words in the Bible is very true. An archaic word is a word which is no longer used in every day speech and has been replaced by another. A good example of an archaic word is found in I Corinthians 10:25.
    "Whatsoever is sold in the shambles, that eat, asking no question for conscience sake:"
    The word "shambles" is archaic. It has been replaced in common speech with the word "market place", Indeed we can be certain that "shambles" was a much more accurate description of the ancient market place (and many around the world today). It has none the less passed from common use...

    So, it is ver clear that Gipp DOES affirm that there are archaic words. Gipp does not 'admit' that "shambles" is more accurate; rather, Gipp asserts that it is more accurate, but without offering any real direct evidence. That is, Gipp does not prove how/why "shambles" is more accurate than "marketplace". I happen to think that the archaic words of the KJV were the most accurate words available at the time, but its reassuring to see the explanation.

    The article goes on with a different (and lengthy) example from I Samuel 9:1-11, ending with the recommendation that "when preaching" just "tell the congregation" what the archaic word means. I have no problem with that advise, but the article does address what an independent reader is supposed to do when confronted with archaic words.
     
    #18 franklinmonroe, Sep 14, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 14, 2007
  19. franklinmonroe

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    I'm pretty sure that Moses, David, Paul, and probably Jerome all felt the same way.
     
  20. Rippon

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    SRiC : His Word doesn't change , but the wording has to in order to convey the meaning to a broad range of languages . And within those languages some words fall out and others come in . It's a Sovereignty of God kind of thing . ( What isn't ? )
     

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