The phrase “believe the KJV is true”

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Bob Krajcik, Apr 6, 2003.

  1. Bob Krajcik

    Bob Krajcik
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    The phrase “believe the KJV is true” is seen to be problematic in a sense, since there is serious division on what the phrase means. On the one side it is shown the phrase is acceptable, if it is at the same time allowed that readings that are clearly different in various passages, readings that give different meanings, are also counted as true. The other side using the phrase “believe the KJV is true” defines the phrase by saying contractions in meaning shown by various versions of teh same verses in different translations are not counted as true.

    If you agree with the phrase “believe the KJV is true” do you at the same time mean contradictory readings, readings giving different meanings, are also not true? Yes or no?
     
  2. HankD

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    I would say that the KJV is only true as to its faithfulness to the underlying text, in particular the Traditional Text.

    I am TRO. IMO, The Scrivener 1894/5 TR being the reconstructed text underlying the KJV NT.

    In my estimation, the KJV is not 100% faithful to the underlying text:

    For instance the term "God forbid" (For example Romans 6:2) is used in several places in the English text of the 1611-1769KJV where the words are nowhere to be found in the underlying original language text.

    This is one of those places where the most obvious inconsistencies are somehow glossed over with Orwellian double-speak.

    The Traditional Text alone is 100% true (imo). Every translation is flawed to one degree or another.

    HankD
     
  3. HankD

    HankD
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    I would like to make an addendum to my post above based upon a response to another post in another thread.

    After extensive research, I am not able to accept the W&H theory concerning the older and "better" manuscripts. Other believers can and do accept it.
    I respect their decision and put aside unfruitful judgments, all the while making my views known when there is opportunity, contending without being contentious.

    The Scrivener 1894/95 Greek text as far as I am concerned is the 100% reconstructed virtual text of the original NT as written and I treat it as such.

    However, if scholarly and believing work based upon clear evidence (I realize this is subjective) shows that the text should be ammended then by all means it should be ammended.
    This is the same view as of those who translated and published the 1611KJV as evidenced by the 4 major (and several minor) revisions to the work of 1611.

    HankD
     
  4. Johnv

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    I think the KJV is true. I just don't think the KJV is a perfect translation.
     
  5. Chick Daniels

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    I believe that every translation is 'True'. That is not the same as saying every translation perfectly retains the meaning conveyed in the original Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek. There is no translation that can claim perfect expression of the content of the originals. Of course there are translations that are less accurate, but they all contain truth.

    Furthermore there is no Hebrew or Greek text extant that can claim to be an exact replica in wording/spelling to the original manuscripts that were recorded in the 1st century.

    Also, it is simplistic to say the Westcott/Hort approach is a matter of Older/Better. Their theories were more complex than that. Futhermore, there are no scholars today that I am aware of that embrace the exact methods of textual criticism detailed by W&H. It is like comparing a 2003 Ford Windstar with a 1910 Model T. The methods used to build the one is vastly different from the other.

    Chick
     
  6. HankD

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    Correct, it is however the representative doctrine which is so grievous to those of us who support the Traditional Text.

    W&H:
    Older is better.
    Shorter reading is better.
    Traditional Text is conflated...

    Modern textual criticism has a "weight" system where a combination of the "older and shorter" reading very often is given a greater weight than the same "majority" or traditional reading.


    HankD
     
  7. Chick Daniels

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    Hi HankD,

    What do you mean by "representative doctrine"?

    The 'weight' system is another term for just plain old research. Scholars research the evidence to determine which of the alternative readings is the one mostly likely the original reading. There are times that the result of this research also happens to be the "majority" count of seperate pieces of physical paper evidence. But so what? The important thing is the majority of all research factors involved.
     
  8. HankD

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    Dear CD,

    "representative doctrine" or the W&H legacy...

    The Wescott and Hort legacy can be seen in Bibles which note certain passages and give the variant reading(s) based upon the witnesses of Codices Aleph, A, B, and C oftentimes in opposition to the greater majority of all the other witnesses combined (Traditional, Majority texts, translations-Itala/Peshitto, fathers, and lexicons).
    Sometimes an explanation such as "better (or older) manuscripts read…".
    For instance Luke 2:14:

    KJV Luke 2:14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

    ASV Luke 2:14 Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men in whom he is well pleased.

    Personally, I don't accept this skewed research criteria. Other believers may, I do not.

    Since this is a subjective call, I don't pass a personal judgment or present an ad hominem except to say that I disagree. Neither do I necessarily question the spirituality of those individuals who work with the W&H Legacy in determining the reconstructed "pure" Word of God.
    Spirituality and flawed logic seem often to coexist in the same person.

    I would hope that God has given me this common grace (assuming I have flaws [​IMG] ).

    HankD
     
  9. Chick Daniels

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    What is 'Skewed' about it? Again, I have stated that textual critics are not W&H followers, no more than the engineers at Ford Motors get their methods from the designers of the Ford Model T.

    What is skewed about the evidence from Luke 2:14?
    Early manuscript evidence supports the modern version rendering. This evidence is from both Alexandrian manuscripts Aleph and B, as well as the earliest uncial with Byzantine leanings, A.
    Western Text-type manuscript D supports the reading, as do a host of early versions and church fathers. Against this reading, and for the reading found in the textus receptus are a host of later byzantine manuscripts and later fathers.

    What is skewed about giving the nod to the earliest evidence here when this early evidence is from all three text families and versions/fathers? What would compel me to reject this for later evidence?

    Best wishes,

    Chick
     
  10. HankD

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    Luke 2:14 Traditional Text Evidences

    Aleph - Corrector of the manuscript
    B - Three successive corrections
    K
    L
    P
    Delta
    Theta
    Xi
    Psi
    053
    f1 (family 1 mss: 1, 118, 131, 209)
    f13 (family 13 mss 13, 69, 124, 174, 230, 174, 346, 543, 788, 826, 828, 983, 1689)
    28, 565, 700, 892, 1009, 1010, 1071, 1079, 1195, 1216, 1230, 1241, 1242, 1253, 1344, 1365, 1546, 1646, 2148, 2174
    Byzantine Lectionaries - Majority
    Peshitta - Harclean, Palestinian
    Coptic - Bohairic
    Armenian
    Ethiopic
    Gregorian
    Origen, Gregory-Thaumaturgas, Eusebius, Jacob-Nisibus, Basil, Apostolic Constitutions, Cyril-Jerusalem, Gregory-Nazianzus, Didymus, Epiphanius, Chrysostom, Cyril, Proclus, Thodotus-Aneyra, Cosmos.

    HankD
     
  11. Chick Daniels

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    Again I ask, What is skewed? You have listed the mss that contain the reading you favor. OK. Your list has many manuscripts that come from a common exemplar. The multiplication does little more to determine the original than if I hand copied 1000 copies of Aleph and declared that the reading favoring Aleph is in the 'majority' and therefore original. What is significant here is the EARLY reading that is in the Alexandrian, Western and BYZANTINE uncials. Again the vast presence of versions and fathers that are early agree and are stacked up against the later manuscript evidence. Why would one reject the evidence that is closest chronologically to the original manuscripts over against much later evidence?

    Best wishes,

    Chick
     
  12. HankD

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    To sum up, I believe my point is proven that in the face of sheer numerics the Traditional text greatly outweighs the WH reading of Luke 2:14 though all WH Bibles choose the Aleph and B reading.

    Even the Aleph and B codices are anciently corrected to the Traditional reading.

    Concerning your analogy of the 1000 copies of Aleph and the "exemplar" of the Traditional Text.
    The scribes of the Traditional Text were a multitude of personalities and native cultures separated in time in some cases by several centuries.

    The Traditional Text from the beginning of the WH controversy (1880) is viewed by many as the text of the orthodox and apostolic Churches of Asia Minor/Europe. These manuscripts are in overwhelming agreement among themselves while the Alexandrian texts are in an overwhelming disagreement not only with the Traditional Text but even among themselves and the product of a Church renown for heresy.

    This is the underlying reason why I skew the manuscript weight towards the TR.

    Two books "skewed" to the favoring of the Traditional Text both by John Burgon:

    The Traditional Text
    The Revision Revised


    http://www.deanburgonsociety.org

    Thank you for your clear and factual point of view. That it is informational as opposed to confrontational is sincerely appreciated.
    Folks (should they care) need to understand the basic polarizing facts.

    HankD

    [ April 10, 2003, 11:17 AM: Message edited by: HankD ]
     
  13. Chick Daniels

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    Hi Hank,

    I appreciate your tone of brotherly love in this discussion. Regarding ‘sheer numerics’, I do disagree as to the value of numbers in this discussion. I believe it to be too simplistic. It approaches a research task with the premise that the quantity of like variants from extant paper copies of GNT manuscripts is the sole or primary means to determine what the original manuscript contained. This connection, vis-à-vis, the correlation between count and the wording of the original, is artificial and arbitrary.

    The first question, is what do you count? Just manuscripts in the Greek? If you count the early versions, the vast number of versions extant from the early centuries generally agree with the Alexandrian text-type. There is no good reason to discount this evidence, especially when the variant is an issue of inclusion/exclusion which is more likely to show up in a translation.

    If you count the versions, the ‘sheer numerics’ are tipped more in the direction of Alexandrian text-type.

    The second question, is when do you count? If you count the evidence today, you receive different results than if you counted 100 years ago, or 500 years ago, or 1,500 years ago. This illustrates the arbitrary nature of such a technique. The originals do not change, and yet the approach of counting to determine the original would suggest that the originals themselves must always be changing. For instance, If I was a Christian living in the city of Alexandria, Egypt in 400 A.D., and I counted the extant paper evidence known to exist at the time, what would I declare as an advocate of the majority text position? I would find that the originals were much more like Aleph and B, rather then the Byzantine text-type.
    This is key: Any approach to textual criticism should be equally valid and applicable to any age in church history, because it is research methodology.

    The third question, is what do you do when the count is equal? There are ample examples that when counting the manuscript evidence, the Byzantine evidence is split right down the middle, along with the other text-types, versions and fathers. What then? Certainly one would not say with conviction, “the total count is 576 support variant ‘A’ while 574 support variant ‘B’, so ‘A’ is the original.” No, one must still succumb to the methodology of textual criticism. So why not employ these methods from the start--recognizing that the raw count may not lead one to the right conclusion?

    Regarding Luke 2:14, there is still quite a body of evidence, even Byzantine evidence for the reading in the modern versions. There are actually harder cases out there to deal with. Furthermore there is no such thing as a “WH Bible”. There is no modern version today based on the Westcott-Hort text. Earlier ones at the turn of the century were influence by them, but the work coming out today is hardly limited to the model T ford of W&H.

    As to the ‘corrections’ of the Aleph and B, these prove little, except that someone later held these and decided to change them based upon a different mss they held. They very well could have been holding an erroneous mss, and afflicted an erroneous change upon Aleph and B.

    I still stick to my analogy of copying Aleph 1000 times. In fact, if someone had ravaged the Byzantine empire with warfare, and destroyed the thousands of extant copies in the Middle ages, so that today, there were equal numbers of Byzantine and Alexandrian mss, then things would certainly have to be viewed differently from the majority text position. Certainly one wonders what would be extant today if war had not ravaged north Africa/Arabia, destroying the many of Alexandrian text-type mss that no doubt existed.

    In fact, it really does not matter what many have viewed to be the text of the orthodox and apostolic churches. Through the ages, churchmen have used and propogated what was available to them. I am confident that had Erasmus had access to Alexandrian mss, he would have been overjoyed to employ them. In fact he had tried to secure B, but by the time his messenger returned with readings from B, he was deep into several TR revisions already, and no longer wishing to open up the issue.

    Finally, I am well aware of the Dean Burgon Society, a group that I wonder whether or not would admit Burgon, based on his belief that much work still remained to be done and was open to further revision.

    Let me also say, that I am not "anti-byzantine text-type" I fully recognize their value and importance. There are examples in my own study where I have found this evidence to tip the scales in a variant question. And there are examples where I believe the reading supported by the Byzantines to be the correct reading. Even the editors of the UBS4 text recognize the Byantines in a way far more balanced than ever...notice James 5:4 in UBS4 and tell me what you think.

    I wish to point out the resources of men like Dan Wallace, D.A. Carson, and others whose helpful articles should be widely read.

    Best wishes,

    Chick
     
  14. HankD

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    Thank You Chick,

    I too see a value for the Alexandrian type text.
    Even the Old Itala will agree with them on occasion (as they do with Luke 2:14).

    I also agree that the volume of extant manuscripts is in all probability only a small fraction of the whole.
    In fact, a while back I showed a trend of papyri readings which were decidedly traditional.
    Somewhere in this equation must enter the influence/providence of God.
    Apparently no one has completely figured it out yet including myself.
    Faith must enter in somewhere for without faith we cannot please Him.
    My faith choice is the Traditional Text but I both accept and respect the faith choices of others (yes even the KJVO, though I disagree that any translation can be "inspired").
    I know that there are several "eclectic" texts coming out of the WH 1881 text just as there are several TR's.
    The pivotal point in my musings on this matter being that the Traditional Text of the orthodox and apostolic Church is the most faithful text being more culturally hellenistic and more in line with the protection of the greek text.
    You are absolutely correct concerning John Burgon.
    He was in favor of correcting both the 1769 English King James Bible and the Greek TR as well.

    Peace
    HankD
     
  15. Dr. Bob

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    To believe the "KJV = true" and "non-KJV = false" is within a person's right. You can opt to believe what you chose.

    It is not valid or correct (imho) but your right to believe it.

    Appreciate the good points that Chick is making. The "weight" or number of documents all from the same family (copies of copies of copies) is not a valid determinant of what is "best". Same with the "oldest"; not valid to say it is "best".

    I support an eclectic text.
     
  16. HankD

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    I would agree Dr with the following qualification.
    As I indicated before, I believe that there is a reason why there are so many of one family of manuscripts surviving over and against another.
    The Byzantine types come out of an area which was the primary Gospel target of the Apostles (Paul in particular) in cultural alignment with the language of the NT. This seems to me to add "weight" to the quality of the text.

    On the other hand the Alexandrians took the time and expense to use leather as the manuscript material to insure their durability. This gives "weight" to the quality of the material.

    The TR is also "eclectic" so we are (so to speak) in the same boat.

    HankD
     

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