Quintessence of the KJV

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Aaron, Apr 19, 2001.

  1. Aaron

    Aaron
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    I was asked by Chris Temple to post my views on the KJV.

    Glad you asked!! :D

    I joined this fray as a Common Joe. I'm the guy who is trying to merely apply the Biblical admonitions to his life. So these views are born out of the day-to-day struggle with sin.

    1. In 1 Corinthians chapter 7 the KJV says, "It is good for a man not to touch a woman." The NIV says, "It is good for a man not to marry." Now which is it? When I check my Greek and Hebrew dictionaries I find that indeed, the KJV is the accurate reading, but more than that, the NIV rendering leaves the door wide open for the purely Western debauchery of dating. I know of one youth minister who counseled his charges that it was okay to kiss, because Paul was simply speaking of marriage here. In other words, it is good for a man to touch a woman. Is this important? As one who dated and now is the father of three girls, this is important. Fortunately, parental authority trumps pastoral and "youth ministerial" authority where the training of children is concerned. Not only in this passage, but in several others I will not post here in the interest of brevity, I find the NIV translators inordinately affected, if not brazenly promoting Western ideology in their "translation."

    2. Whether you're reading the CEV or the KJV, one has to know how to read. I find the charges of archaism moot and a cop-out as my nine-year-old can read the KJV like she was reading a Nancy Drew mystery. What happens when she runs into a word she doesn't know? We look it up in the dictionary! What a novel idea! Isn't that what college students do when reading any other text? Why do we think it unreasonable for those who read the Bible? And so what if the word is archaic? In many cases you will find that the archaic words are richer and better conveyors of the meaning of the Greek and Hebrew than our modern English. It is good to have a few archaic words in your repertoire, not to dazzle people, but to develope your mind. (There was a reason Latin used to be taught in American schools.) I don't deny that a need exists for a simpler translation, but that need is the direct result of poor education students are receiving in American public schools. Instead of dumbing down the English Bibles and extolling the new ones as "better" we need to be teaching folks how to read. And so what if some folks have to work at it a little? What kind of a whiney-butt objection is that? Since when has work been a bad thing? Who has ever said that hard work did not benefit them? You've heard the old saying, "Easy come, easy go," and that applies when reading the Bible as well.

    I will say here, that I have given the CEV to folks, knowing that babes are easily discouraged if the challenge is too much for them. Babes need sincere milk, but what do you think of the 30-year-old man still at his mother's breasts?

    There's more, but this is becoming an interminable post!
     
  2. Biblethumper1611

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    That thar is pretty good...

    Only thing is the Anti-KJV Guys are gonna have a field day with that one...

    The dictionary thign has been said so many times it isn't funny anymore. I am a firm believer in dictionaries. Some of these guys feel if you have to run to a dictionary then it shows how smart you really are...

    Kinda like when someone asked Einstein his phone number and he ran to a phone book and looked it up. The person asked why didn't he just memorize it...He stated "Why memorize it when I can just as easily look it up..." :D
     
  3. Blade

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Aaron:
    I was asked by Chris Temple to post my views on the KJV...I joined this fray as a Common Joe. I'm the guy who is trying to merely apply the Biblical admonitions to his life. So these views are born out of the day-to-day struggle with sin.

    1. In 1 Corinthians chapter 7 the KJV says, "It is good for a man not to touch a woman." The NIV says, "It is good for a man not to marry." Now which is it? When I check my Greek and Hebrew dictionaries I find that indeed, the KJV is the accurate reading, but more than that, the NIV rendering leaves the door wide open for the purely Western debauchery of dating...
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Aaron,

    I appreciate the original purpose of the thread you started. I was interested, like Chris, to find out your general views concerning the KJV and what you believe about it and the TR compared to the MVs/CT. Instead, you simply attack a specific reading with which you disagree in the NIV (BTW, I agree with you that the NIV doesn't literally translate the passage in question; however, there is a footnote in the NIV that gives a more literal meaning which you failed to mention).

    You said that you aren't KJVO; tell us how you aren't. The example you gave looks like any other KJVO argument that I see all the time.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I find the charges of archaism moot and a cop-out as my nine-year-old can read the KJV like she was reading a Nancy Drew mystery.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    The charges of archaism are very valid. That your nine-year-old can read the KJV so easily is a wonderful testament to her intelligence and no doubt to your emphasis at home; however, she would be the exception, not the rule. The simple fact is that many (if not most) children do not comprehend the language of the KJV as easily as KJVO proponents suggest. Forever Settled in Heaven often cites Dr. Gail Linham's (sp?) doctoral work that proves this with the KJV and 2 or 3 of the common modern versions (I hope he reads this and provides a quick refresher about it).

    I know that the KJVO crowd cites Dr. Waite and Mrs. Riplinger and their syllable counting grade level analysis trash; it assumes a similar vocabulary among test passages and fails to take into account the differences in Elizabethian English and Contemporary English. In short, they misapply the apparatus and end up (by way of analogy) comparing the weight of apples and oranges when differences in quality of taste were the issue.

    Dr. Linham actually had children read passages and analyzed real comprehension and understanding. As far as any real evidence that Riplinger and Waite might provide about actual children reading the KJV with ease, it is always anecdotal.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Biblethumper 1611 posted:
    The dictionary thign has been said so many times it isn't funny anymore. I am a firm believer in dictionaries. Some of these guys feel if you have to run to a dictionary then it shows how smart you really are...<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Biblethumper,

    I, too, believe in dictionaries (they most definitely exist ;) ). However, I do not believe that God intended for us to have to look at a dictionary for the meaning of every other word (I exaggerate, I admit) in the Bible. If a translation requires the constant use of a dictionary for understanding (or even if you have a KJV with footnoted alternate definitions) this becomes a "millstone" around one's neck.

    And why?! So that we as Christians can appreciate the English language? That is not the purpose of the Bible. You can charge that education doesn't do its job today, you can charge that Christians are lazy by not wanting to use a dicionary, but in the end, proper education in English/frequent use of dictionaries is not what the Bible was intended to produce or require. Remember the plough boy...

    If you want to know all the alternate meanings of current words and what they meant in 1611 English, get a degree in English! Thee, thine, thou, -est, -eth we don't talk like that today. Having the Bible in one's own language/dialect allows you to focus on what it says and means; you don't end up morselizing a passage with a handful of definitions at the end that way.

    BTW, how many trips to the dictionary would it take to get the current meaning of 2 Corinthians 6:11-13?

    11 O ye Corinthians, our mouth is open unto you, our heart is enlarged.

    12 Ye are not straitened in us, but ye are straitened in your own bowels.

    13 Now for a recompence in the same, (I speak as unto my children,) be ye also enlarged.

    O.K., I, too am off on a tangent. Pardon my little adventure into already traveled territory. Seriously, though, I am interested in hearing the general reasons why some on this board who are not KJVO prefer the TR/KJV as superior to the MV/CT.

    [ April 19, 2001: Message edited by: Blade ]
     
  4. Kiffin

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    The KJV is a beautiful translation but like my car which has around 130,000 miles on it (Been a great car) it's time is about up. The KJV in the 1600's was a contemporary translation but no more. The charges of being archaic are very valid and many times the KJV hinders Bible interpretation and reading. The NKJV is much superior in clarity and even surpasses the KJV in beauty in it's translation of 1 Co. 13 in my opinion. One can use a Bible dictionary with the KJV but why if you can use the NKJV which clarifies many of the KJV archaic renderings. Why use a stick shift when you can drive a automatic?
     
  5. Kiffin

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    Biblethumper,

    I am not Anti-KJV. I love the KJV and I am glad you and others make it your Bible as you study God's Word. There are others who prefer other translations and do not regard the KJV as the Standard by which the NKJV,NIV, NASB are to be judged.
     
  6. Rockfort

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    &lt; . In 1 Corinthians chapter 7 the KJV says, "It is good for a man not to touch a woman." The NIV says, "It is good for a man not to marry." Now which is it? &gt;

    Shall we really consider these words? If it is "good for a man not to marry," why go on in v.2 and say " but becasue of immoralties, each man is to have his own wife?" The NIV is confusing here. But the KJV, saying "...good for a man not to touch a woman," would forbid a man from shaking hands with ladies in church. The NAS (my preference) translates the phrase the same as the KJV. The significant difference among these 3 is that the NIV has a footnote which says, "Or "It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman."" So is the meaning correctly conveyed by literally "do not marry," or literally "not to touch a woman," or by an explanatory clarification of the euphemism? If any man still insists on the KJV because it is KJV, he needs to be asked if he refuses to 'touch--' in any sense-- a woman.

    &lt; I don't deny that a need exists for a simpler translation, but that need is the direct result of poor education students are receiving in American public schools....Since when has work been a bad thing? Who has ever said that hard work did not benefit them? &gt;

    Why have any translations in the first place? Work isn't such a bad thing-- right-- so leave the scriptures in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, and work to learn these languages.

    That was sarcasm, in case it was not obvious. But that IS the reason for translations-- to make the Word comprehensible on the reader's own level. The Bible is not a linguistics textbook or a book of art, but a book of vital information. As a computer manual should not be written in archaic language forms, neither should the Word of God, which contains infinitely more vital information than a compute manual.
     
  7. Biblethumper1611

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Blade:
    Biblethumper,
    Thee, thine, thou, -est, -eth we don't talk like that today.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Ever heard of a Greek Professor by the name of A.T. Robertson? He stated they never used that language type in 1611..."You" had already been common...

    THey did that because it shows the second person third person way more effectively...
     
  8. Chris Temple

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    Great post, Blade. Thanks a heap! :D
     
  9. Aaron

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Blade:
    Dr. Linham actually had children read Passages and analyzed real comprehension and understanding. As far as any real evidence that Riplinger and Waite might provide about actual children reading the KJV with ease, it is always anecdotal.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Puh-leeze! And Linham wasn't anecdotal? I read the report. If I remember correctly wasn't there a big deal made about some of the children actually crying? That might have worked with me if I had not seen my 6-year-old cry when required to sound out words in her first-grade reading assignments and answer review questions.

    Yes, yes, yes. The KJV is bad for the children!!

    LOL!

    [ April 20, 2001: Message edited by: Aaron ]
     
  10. SaggyWoman

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    I like driving a stick shift over an automatic any day. I can understand my car better when it is time to change gears, and keeps me active in driving rather than passive, as does the automatic.

    Automatics, to me, is the lazy way out.

    But then, I am not KJV-only, either.

    Though I love the KJV.
     
  11. Blade

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Aaron:
    Puh-leeze! And Linham wasn't anecdotal? I read the report. If I remember correctly wasn't there a big deal made about some of the children actually crying?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Dr. Linham's "report" (actually, it was a dissertation) was not anecdotal. If you suggest that it was, then you don't know the definition of the word and very little about research.

    Linham's study was very structured. She had randomized groups of both 'churched' and 'unchurched' children and subdivided those further to be tested with a random passage from the KJV or a MV. She then used both objective and subjective methods (written testing and story re-telling) to collect data on their comprehension. From this data, she published the results and her conclusions.

    I work with research every day. It is typical that I read roughly 5-10 papers per week that compare new treatments to others and their respective outcomes, or evaluate some new diagnostic test, etc. I can safely say that while Dr. Linham's research may not be perfect, it is sound. I have seen nothing that compares actual children reading the KJV to those reading MVs from anyone who advocates the absurd idea that children have no (significant) difficulty with the KJV.

    The issue about the "kids crying" is not unusual in research writing and is consistent with her results. This remark was commentary on her methods/materials used (one of the 5 typical sections of an abstract and corresponding section in a research article). It was an observation made during data collection that supported (probably epitomized) her conclusions concerning the data. Her conclusions stood with or without that comment.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Yes, yes, yes. The KJV is bad for the children!!<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    The KJV isn't bad for children. The KJV is not the best choice for children trying to understand the word of God.
     
  12. Aaron

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    Blade,

    The fact of children crying was emphasized for only one reason, and that was an underhanded attempt to suggest that "science" proves that using a KJV to teach children may be harmful. That kind of tactic in my eyes renders the study "anecdotal." I'm not going through life with my eyes closed, and I know that one's biases and hidden agendas determine which "commentaries" are included with published test results and which ones get ignored in any "scientific" endeavor.

    It is an incredible leap in logic to suggest that the MV's are better translations because children can handle them better (which is the implication you and Forever were trying to push). BTW, haven't children's Bibles been published for decades?

    I'm curious, are there any peer reviews of the study, and if so, how could I peruse them?

    I'm no stranger to 19th century literature. I've read the works of folks like Edgar Allen Poe, Ernest Hemmingway, Ambrose Bierce and Mark Twain. None of them read like the King James Version, though hands down that was the English Bible.

    My only real exposure to 18th century English is Matthew Henry's celebrated commentary. But again, it reads like the morning paper (except for his common use of Latin phrases which he is kind enough to interpret). No thee's or thou's characteristic here except in the Scripture quotations.

    I've read 17th century English also, not just the KJV (which, by the way, is NOT indicative of the vernacular), but I'm most familiar with John Bunyan (not just the Pilgrim's Progress, but some of his sermons also) and John Donne, who was ministering at the time the KJV was being translated. Again, no thee's and thou's, -est's and -eth's except in their poetry. Their sermons are strikingly bare of those terms erroneously thought characteristic of 17th century English vernacular.

    How does the readability of the KJV compare to Twain, Henry or Bunyan, (or even the grade-school primers for that matter) and what did all those poor children do who only had the KJV to learn from for three hundred years?

    C'mon, Blade. Get real.
     
  13. Forever settled in heaven

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    u get real, Aaron.

    the work by Linam (that's the spelling) is AVAILABLE, so stop making things up. if u're truly interested in readability, go get your copy from UMI and come back with some examples of the cloze passages that were used and the page where the children are said to burst into tears.

    otherwise, put up.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Aaron:
    The fact of children crying was emphasized for only one reason, and that was an underhanded attempt to suggest that "science" proves that using a KJV to teach children may be harmful. That kind of tactic in my eyes renders the study "anecdotal." I'm not going through life with my eyes closed, and I know that one's biases and hidden agendas determine which "commentaries" are included with published test results and which ones get ignored in any "scientific" endeavor.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
     

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