Riplinger's "The Language of the KJB" reviewed

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by franklinmonroe, Jun 12, 2011.

  1. franklinmonroe

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    For the record, above the title the cover states "Uncovers NIV, NKJV, KJ21, NASB Pitfalls."
    Below the title the cover states "Discover Its Hidden Built-In Dictionary."

    My only general comments now about the books appearance (I am a graphics professional and artistically trained) are that it is somewhat poor in design (although much better than her NABV), with lots of unrelated pictorials and with entirely too much 'white' (empty) space (in other words, it could have been a much shorter book).

    I have not read the entire book, yet. I am writing this review somewhat as I go through it. I have read the Introduction where the author lists 10 objectives. Mrs. Riplinger does indicate that the book is "merely an overview of the subject" (p. xvii) from an abundance of her research that she claims she may publish later (it has been 13 years since the original publication date, so I'm not expecting to see this alleged other data anytime soon).

    The book's first objective (Introduction, p. xvi) --
    Some comments resulting from the above quote--

    First, the clear implication throughout the book (literally from cover-to-cover) is that the so-called "built-in dictionary" is unique to the KJV. You will also notice that it is often stated that God is behind the KJV with the purpose to imply that only the KJV can be the Bible.

    Second, Gail A. Riplinger (GAR, an abbreviation I may use) does not identify any specific edition of the KJV text, although she is acutely aware that "All editions of the NIV, NKJV, and NASB are not the same" (this "Note" is found on the book's copyright page).

    Third, although not stated above, later she clarifies that she does not mean that the "built-in dictionary" literally defines each-and-every word in the KJV but rather just the "most difficult words" (Chapter 1, p.3). I find it curious that the king's revisers addressed only those English words that would be difficult for our generation! Wouldn't the potential difficult words be somewhat different in previous and subsequent generations? And as another poster pointed out in another thread, the difficulty of English words also varies among English-speaking countries. What educational levels is this "built-in dictionary" prepared to help?

    Fourth, when she refers to "Webster's" (she abbreviates as WEB) she is usually referring to the 1828 edition, although she occassionally will reference a Webster's New College edition (WNC) and three other Webster's publications. GAR lists 14 dictionaries or/ reference sources on an unnumber page of Abbreviations (across from a page listing some "Corrupt New Versions").

    Fifth, in my opinion the phrase "using the very words of the Webster's and Oxford English Dictionaries" is subtly misleading. The KJV cannot be "using" (suggesting the borrowing of) words from publications that did not yet exist (that is, prior to 1611); later she acknowledges that the dictionaries did come after the KJV (p.5). But the idea is planted more than once (p.3) --
    The words of the KJV may in fact correspond or parallel the dictionary definitions, but it may only be that dictionaries have been influenced by the presence of the KJV word usage, not proof of providential anticipation. I think an experienced writer would use a more precise word. Notice also in the above quotation the introduction of another key criterion: the "built-in dictionary" applies only to the first instance of the English word.

    There is much more I could comment on in the Introduction but will refrain for now so that we may go on the 'meat' of the material.
     
    #1 franklinmonroe, Jun 12, 2011
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  2. franklinmonroe

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    Chapter One: How do you find the Bible's "Built-in Dictionary"?

    In Chapter One, the author introduces us to Step One: "Look at the word next to the word in question". This is just the first of four steps. So, using the overall stated objective plus this Step One parameter while looking at some of her Step One examples we will want keep some questions in mind --

    Is the "built-in dictionary" (BID) really unique to the KJV, or do other versions have the same (or equivalent) defining words?

    Are these truly difficult words? Why or why not?

    Is the BID consistent, or are some difficult words left undefined?

    Is the very next word presented in the text actually a defining word? (This question only tests Step One only. The following Steps will have us looking for the definition within the same verse and other verses of the passage.)

    Is it a proper definition for the word in the context?

    Does the "built-in" definition actually match a dictionary definition?

    Is the referrence given really the very first occurrence? ​
     
    #2 franklinmonroe, Jun 13, 2011
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  3. franklinmonroe

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    Chapter One: the five examples on Page 6

    Riplinger gives 5 examples of 'difficult words' in her first table. Can you guess which 5 words below are the ones found in the book? The purpose of this games, of course, is to demonstrate the somewhat subjective nature of determining 'difficult' words. I will reveal the correct words shortly. I would doubt that some one could guess correctly all 5 (with only 5 attempts), but you should try!
    ABHOR
    ABIDE
    ABROAD
    ADAMANT
    AFFINITY
    AGUE
    AVERSE
    BRUIT
    CHARGE
    CHASTE
    CHOLER
    CHURLISH​
     
    #3 franklinmonroe, Jun 13, 2011
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  4. Amy.G

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    Can I play?

    I chose:

    Ague
    Averse
    Bruit
    Choler
    Churlish


    I probably got them all wrong knowing loony woman.
     
  5. Rippon

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    Ague,bruit,choler,churlish

    The rest are not so uncommon. The remainer just about any adult native speaker would know.
     
  6. franklinmonroe

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    Certainly you can play! You and Rippon guessed 4 of the same words, but you guessed only one the Gail Riplinger thought worthy of putting in her book -- AVERSE.

    Thanks for playing!
     
  7. franklinmonroe

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    I tend to agree with you. Although GAR states that the book is merely an overview, and I wouldn't necessarily desire exhaustive examples, it makes me wonder why she picks the ones she does and leaves out some others. Hmmmm.
     
    #7 franklinmonroe, Jun 14, 2011
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  8. franklinmonroe

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    Bearing in mind that words can have multiple definitions (depending on the context) some of which may be uncommon or even archaic, a simple list is an inadequate format to evaluate the comparative difficulty of a given word.
    BTW, those other obscure words I supplied are indeed found in the KJV. (and wasn't AdamAnt an '80s rock star?)

    Riplinger's book puts the above 5 words in a table: in the first column are the 'difficult' words with a scripture reference(s) underneath it; the second column quotes a bold "built-in definition" word next to the difficult word; the third column identifies the dictionary used; and the last column shows the dictionary's definition word in bold (corresponding with the previous bold word). This may be the best that I can reproduce that format --
    ABROAD
    Gen. 10:18 | "spread abroad" | OED | "wide spread"

    AVERSE
    Mic. 2:8 | "averse from war" | WEB | "This word includes the idea of from"

    ADAMANT
    Ezek. 3:9 | "An adamant harder than flint" | WEB | "A very hard stone"
    Zech. 7:12 | "An adamant stone"

    CHARGE
    Gen. 26:5 | "my charge, my commandments" | WEB | "synonomous with command"

    CHASTE
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chaste virgin" | WNC | "refraining from all acts, thoughts, etc. that are not virginal"

    There you have it: an open-and-shut case, right? Has she proved her point?
     
    #8 franklinmonroe, Jun 14, 2011
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  9. franklinmonroe

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    Is the referrence given really the very first occurrence?

    ADAMANT
    Ezek. 3:9 | "An adamant harder than flint" | WEB | "A very hard stone"
    Zech. 7:12 | "An adamant stone"
    Five of these verses on Page 6 do contain the first occurrence of the difficult word in the KJV. However, technically ADAMANT fails the qualification. The verse in Ezekiel is only a partial definition. How helpful is a dictionary that splits a definition into parts that are separated by many pages? Having two references for one word is a bit of a 'cheat'.

    Otherwise, I agree with Webster's 1828 edition that ADAMANT means "a very hard stone". BTW, I don't have ready access to an OED; maybe some one else would be willing to check those definitions for accurracy. Thanks!
     
    #9 franklinmonroe, Jun 15, 2011
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  10. franklinmonroe

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    CHARGE
    Gen. 26:5 | "my charge, my commandments" | WEB | "synonomous with command"
    I know that Riplinger is only concerned with the English words, but there is a Hebrew word for "charge" and a different Hebrew word for "commandments". What bearing does that have on the English? Well first, it means that the KJV translators did not merely invent this combination of English words because two words were already present together in the Hebrew text; therefore, any competent rendering would also have two similar words (more on this later). But secondly, it means that these two words are not supposed to be seen as referring to the same thing, which is then confirmed by looking at the verse in which CHARGE is part of a list --
    Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.
    While "voice", "charge", "commandments", "statutes" and "laws" may be seen as related they are NOT the same things. "Charge" can no more be defined by "commandments" than "statutes" can be defined by "laws". And if "charge" means "command", then maybe "voice" means "charge", and "commandments" means "statutes"; consequently, "voice" would mean "statutes", etc. Using her logic the verse might just have well said that 'Abraham obeyed my laws, kept my laws, my laws, my laws, and my laws'. We would be left with a singlular, bland, homogenous statement. No! The words of Scripture have meaning; they cannot be so easily dispatched. We ought to be looking for the significanct differences between the various words the Holy Spirit uses in this list, not trying to make them all synonymous. Different words have been expressed to convey different thoughts.
     
    #10 franklinmonroe, Jun 16, 2011
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  11. franklinmonroe

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    AVERSE
    Mic. 2:8 | "averse from war" | WEB | "This word includes the idea of from"
    Riplinger is ever the master of favorable editing. Here is the complete quote from a note in Webster's 1828 dictionary (NOT from the actual definitions) --
    This word and its derivatives ought to be followed by to, and never by from. This word includes the idea of from; but the literal meaning being lost, the affection of the mind signified by the word, is exerted towards the object of dislike, and like its kindred terms, hatred, dislike, contrary, repugnant, &c., should be followed by to. Indeed it is absurd to speak of an affection of the mind exerted from an object. Averse expresses a less degree of opposition in the mind, than detesting and abhorring. ...
    Fowler's Modern English Usage confirms --
    averse, aversion.
    Both words are followed by to, despite arguments (notably by Dr Johnson, challenged at some length in the Old English (up to 1150)D) that from should be used. ...
    So, it seems that "from" does not really make the word AVERSE clearer, but possibly makes it even more difficult to understand. According to her own source AVERSE is defined as "disliking; unwilling; having a repugnance of mind" or "unfavorable; indisposed; malign" and the preposition "from" hardly contributes toward a reader grasping this understanding.

    But perhaps the KJV translators were using AVERSE in an uncommon (literal) sense of 'to be turned away'. There is no evidence in the book that Riplinger is promoting this sense. Here is the entire verse --
    Even of late my people is risen up as an enemy: ye pull off the robe with the garment from them that pass by securely as men averse from war.
    The Hebrew word is shuwb (Strong's #7725) meaning to return or turn back. In its over 1100 occurrences in the OT it is overwhelmingly rendered "return" (391 times), "return again" (248), "turn" (123), "turn back" (65), and "turn away" (56) in the KJV text. The verse may be saying that the men are merely literally 'returning' from battle, or it may be figuratively commenting upon their mental state ('turning away' from war). Either way, the following word "from" is not defining AVERSE. This is the only verse in the entire KJV where AVERSE is used.
     
    #11 franklinmonroe, Jun 17, 2011
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  12. franklinmonroe

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    CHASTE
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chaste virgin" | WNC | "refraining from all acts, thoughts, etc. that are not virginal"
    Riplinger is so desperate to have the KJV's "built-in dictionary" work that she must employ many secular dictionaries. The WNC is Webster's New College dictionary since apparently she could find the word "virgin" present in definitions for CHASTE in the huge OED or Webster's 1828.

    This is another of her examples where two words in English are translated from two words in the original languge. The first word in Greek is hagnos (Strong's #53) which is rendered in the KJV as "pure" (4 times), "chaste" (3), and "clear" (in 2 Corinthians 7:11 making it actually the first occurrence in the Greek). The second word in Greek is parthenos (Strong's #3933) always rendered "virgin" in the KJV text. So this construction is not special, as any competent translation would have the adjective hagos describing parthenos. Assuming the reader already knows what the word "virgin" means then "chaste" should be further expanding the understanding upon the word it describes, not merely being circular or redundant.
     
    #12 franklinmonroe, Jun 18, 2011
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  13. franklinmonroe

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    ABROAD
    Gen. 10:18 | "spread abroad" | OED | "wide spread"
    Really? ABROAD is a difficult word? Don't people study abroad or travel abroad anymore?

    Finally, a quick note about this last of her 5 examples so that I can move on to some other points. I disagree that "spread" in any way defines ABROAD; from her OED provided phrase I think "wide" is the word that more closely defines "spread" ("broad" being synonymous with "wide") although not completely, either.
     
    #13 franklinmonroe, Jun 18, 2011
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  14. franklinmonroe

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    Original or Unique to the KJV?

    ABROAD
    Gen. 10:18 | "spread abrode" | Bishop's
    Gen. 10:18 | "spred abroade" | Geneva
    Gen. 10:18 | "spread abroad" | KJV
    Gen. 10:18 | "spread abroad" | ASV
    Gen. 10:18 | "spread abroad" | RSV
    Gen. 10:18 | "spread abroad" | NASB

    AVERSE
    Mic. 2:8 | "averse from war" | KJV
    Mic. 2:8 | "averse from war" | ASV
    Mic. 2:8 | "averse from war" | WEB
    Mic. 2:8 | "averse from war" | DBY

    ADAMANT
    Ezek. 3:9 | "an Adamant, harder then the flint" | Bishop's
    Ezek. 3:9 | "the adamant, and harder then the flint" | Geneva
    Ezek. 3:9 | "an adamant harder than flint" | KJV
    Ezek. 3:9 | "an adamant harder than flint" | ASV
    Ezek. 3:9 | "like adamant harder than flint" | RSV
    Ezek. 3:9 | "an adamant harder than a rock" | YNG
    Ezek. 3:9 | "like adamant stone harder than flint" | NKJV

    CHARGE
    Gen. 26:5 | "my charge, my commandments" | KJV
    Gen. 26:5 | "my charge, my commandments" | ASV
    Gen. 26:5 | "my charge, my commandments" | RSV
    Gen. 26:5 | "my charge, my commandments" | YNG
    Gen. 26:5 | "My charge, My commandments" | NKJV

    CHASTE
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chast virgyn" | Wyclif
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chaste virgen" | Tyndale
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chaste virgin" | KJV
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chaste virgin" | WEB
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chaste virgin" | DBY
    2 Cor. 11:2 | "a chaste virgin" | NKJV

    These are by no means exhaustive findings, just limited sampling. Interestingly, the KJV translators chose much harder words than their predecessors at Micah 2:8 (often "turned") and Genesis 26:5 (often "ordinances"). So, it seems these other Bibles also have a 'built-in dictionary".
     
    #14 franklinmonroe, Jun 18, 2011
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  15. franklinmonroe

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    ABHOR
    ABIDE
    ABROAD
    ADAMANT
    AFFINITY
    AGUE
    AVERSE
    BRUIT
    CHARGE
    CHASTE
    CHOLER
    CHURLISH
    Remember this list? What about these other difficult words that GAR didn't use as examples? Will Step One of the KJV's "built-in dictionary" work for them?
     
  16. franklinmonroe

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    ABHOR, v.t.
    Lev. 26:11 | "shall not abhor you" | WEB | "To hate extremely, or with contempt" Not a match ("you" is a pronoun)

    ABIDE, v.i.
    Gen. 19:2 | "will abide in the street" | WEB | "To rest, or dwell." Not a match ("street" is a noun)

    AFFINITY, n.
    1 Kgs 3:11 | "made affinity with Pharoah" | WEB | "The relation contracted by marriage" Not a match ("made" is a verb)

    AGUE, n.
    Lev. 26:16 | "the burning ague shall consume" | WEB | "The cold fit which precedes a fever" Not a match ("burning" is an adj. here)

    BRUIT, n.
    Jer. 10:22 | "the bruit is come" | WEB | "Report; rumor; fame." Not a match ("come" is a verb)

    CHOLER, n.
    Dan. 8:7 | "moved with choler against him" | WEB | "Anger; wrath; irritation of the passions." Not a match ("against" is a prep.)

    CHURLISH, a.
    1 Sam. 25:3 | "the man [was] churlish and evil" | WEB | "Rude; surly; austere" Not a match (hey, at least they are all adjectives!)

    Of course, I would also have to check the OED and several other dictionaries to be certain there was no matches. But seriously, its not gonna happen. Step One of the KJV's BID fails in the overwhelming majority (if not all) of these examples. Later, I may apply her other Steps to these words.
     
    #16 franklinmonroe, Jun 18, 2011
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  17. franklinmonroe

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    The posts above mostly only covered the 5 examples Riplinger offers on Page 6 of Chapter One. Its obvious that there is too much in the book to review in one thread. I'm planning on finishing Step One here (just 1 more page!), and then greatly abbreviating my comments on the other Steps in Chapter One.

    There are actually 10 chapters in the book covering about 135 pages (several pages are blank, and some chapters are less than 6 pages long). The Appendix is about an additional 30 pages (some are excerpts from her other books); the Glossary adds 10 more pages; next is a 5 page Index; finally, there is a 15 page Catalog of other publications, Bibles, videos, etc.

    Here are the titles of the other nine chapters --
    2. Why does God use words with the same meaning?
    3. What other methods does God use to help the reader understand the meaning of words?
    4. How does the built-in dictionary work for uncommon measurements?
    5. Might this built-in dictionary always be correct when Strong's, Vine's, and Webster's are often wrong?
    6. How do you answer those who want to 'update' some of the words in the King James Bible?
    7. Can we change the spelling of the KJV?
    8. Could we alter the word order of complex sentences?
    9. Does the Bible have other built-in referrence works?
    10. Updates & Summary
     
    #17 franklinmonroe, Jun 20, 2011
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  18. robycop3

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    Problem is, Riplinger has some writing ability, and she's banking on the fact that many people will take her at her word, without bothering to check her material for VERACITY. That's how a master deceiver worx. She's out to sell boox, and keep herself a hot item on the lecture circuit, to heck with the TRUTH.
     
  19. franklinmonroe

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    Here are Riplinger's "additional examples" for Step One from Page 7 --
    CHAMBERING
    Rom. 13:13 | "chambering and wantoness" | WEB | "wanton"

    CHAPMEN
    2 Chron. 9:14 | "chapmen and merchants" | OED | "a merchant"

    CURRENT
    Ge. 23:16 | "current money" (Modern usage 'currency') | OED | "of money" "Circulation of money" (A current of water moves.)

    DIVERS
    Deut. 22:9-11 | "divers sorts" | WCT | "all sorts of"

    DURST
    Esther 7:5 | "durst presume" | NRTDF | "presume"

    Well, if you thought her first 5 examples were frought with problems, wait 'til you get a load of these!
     
    #19 franklinmonroe, Jun 22, 2011
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  20. franklinmonroe

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    Is her example really the first occurrence?

    DIVERS
    Deut. 22:9-11 | "divers sorts" | WCT | "all sorts of"
    Here's another example of a little cheating: she gives a referrence that includes 3 verses. Why? Because the actual first occurrence is in verse 9, but her example given of the BID is taken from verse 11! Full context --
    9 Thou shalt not sow thy vineyard with divers seeds: lest the fruit of thy seed which thou hast sown, and the fruit of thy vineyard, be defiled.
    10 Thou shalt not plow with an ox and an ass together.
    11 Thou shalt not wear a garment of divers sorts, [as] of woollen and linen together.
    In the very first KJV useage of "divers" the next word is "seeds"; but "seeds" doesn't help the reader define the word "divers" at all, so a little s-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g of the truth is required.

    Interestingly, the two "divers" are actually two different words in the Hebrew. The word in verse 9 is kil'ayim (Strong's #3610) which literally derives from 'dual-separation' (the idea being that two kinds are held apart); the KJV renders this word both as "diverse" and "mingled" in Lev. 19:19 (a preceding parallel passage for Deut. 22). Until about 1700 "divers" & "diverse" were two spellings of the same word. The KJV translators choice of either DIVERS or "diverse" then seems rather arbitrary.

    The word in verse 11 is sha'atnez (Strong's #8162) meaning a fabric of linsey-woolsey or mixed weave; in its only other occurrence the KJV renders it "linen and woollen" (same Lev. 19:19). Why would the parallel Deuteronomy passage be less specific than Leviticus when the same word is used in Hebrew?
     
    #20 franklinmonroe, Jun 22, 2011
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