Thursday, September 22, 2011

Why Don't KJV-Onlyists Believe the KJV?

The majority of KJV-onlyists are fundamentalist Baptists of one kind or another. Some would make the claim that the KJV is the most faithful translation while others would say that it is actually superior to the Greek and Hebrew that it was translated from. Aside from obvious questions about translation errors and the sheer randomness of designating the KJV as God's approved translation, I find something else even stranger. When the Jehovah Witnesses tell you that the New World Translation is the most accurate translation of the Bible, that's because the New World Translation has been translated in such a way to promote JW beliefs. But the KJV contradicts Baptist beliefs.

The Baptists claim that wine is sinful and therefore Jesus did not turn water into wine, but instead he turned water into grape juice. But the KJV says he turned water into wine.

The Baptists claim that "baptize" always means "immerse." But why didn't the KJV translate it as "immerse?"

The Baptists claim that baptism is an act where you testify of your own faith and has nothing to do with salvation. Why doesn't the KJV say that it is to testify of your own faith? Why does the KJV say things like "baptism doth also now save us" (1 Peter 3:21) and that baptism is "for the remission of sins" (Acts 2:38)?

If the Lord's Supper is just a memorial meal, why doesn't the KJV say that? Why does the KJV have Jesus saying that it's for the "remission of sins"?

There's a textual variant in 1 Corinthians 11:24. The KJV reads, "Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you." In other versions it says "given for you" instead of "broken for you" because of the textual variant. Personally, I think the reading in the KJV is the better choice but it does a very poor job of supporting Baptist doctrine. "Given for you" is preferable if you are trying to support Baptist teaching. The crucifixion accounts make it very clear that not a bone in Jesus's body was broken. The only time Jesus's body is broken is in the Lord's Supper itself when it is broken to be distributed.

From a Baptist perspective it would make a lot more sense to be a Living Bible-onlyist. The Living Bible by paraphrasing does a much better job of supporting Baptist doctrine both on the sacraments and on eschatology. But the KJV-onlyist will tell you that these modern versions water down and twist God's Word. I have to agree that paraphrases like the Living Bible certainly do water down God's Word but its because they twist the text to support Baptist doctrine. If a KJV-onlyist took the KJV seriously he would become a Lutheran.

1 comment:

Sage said...

Well, coming out of the Reformed Baptist camp the KJV is what got me to thinking that the doctrine the Baptists have - ok, Baptists don't have "doctrine" per se - but their beliefs didn't agree with what I read. I went to Grudem's dogmatics book to try and figure it out. No help there. I wound up ditching them for lack of consistency with the bible.

These days, I can see the benefits of different translations and enjoy the variety rather than thumping the KJV to death.

There may be other Baptist's like I was, that see the discrepancy between what they practice and what the bible actually says.