Monday, January 7, 2008

Something Extra to Share - A Response to a Comment

The Comment on the Something More to Share post states:

"Some say the KJV is better because of its language. It is true that the modern English language seems to be going somewhat downhill with a lot of people - not that that's a bad thing completely - it's just that there won't be so much beauty to words and appreciation for words if the English language eventually turns into text message and IM language where words aren't fully spelled out.

I believe that proper English speech and grammar are very important and should have more importance in schools (even though I'm not the best at practicing them - I wish I were). This said, some people might prefer the KJV because they think of it as proper English and don't like the way newer versions are cutting down the text, like the NLT.

I appreciate the KJV even more for its language because it's part of history and I think the language is beautiful. Besides, I think that reading and interpreting (or gaining understanding from what you read) should always be easy. If you have a harder time reading the KJV, maybe it will motivate you that much more to look for its meaning and search for God's purpose in it.

A version is not more or less accurate based on its language and whether or not it's more relative to the current day. Much of the Bible seems to be irrelevant to modern day, but it isn't (that's another topic in itself). What we should base the accuracy of a version on is its content. How much of it has been changed? How accurate are the changes? Is it translated or paraphrased? etc."

For me, it's simple. I could care less about whether the language is "modern" or "archaic". I just want the truth. I would prefer not to have the concepts and principles of the Word restated for me in a way that it compromises the very message of the Word. Give me a good old fashioned King James Version any day and with the Holy Spirit as my forerunner and my faith as my shield, discernment and truth come alive!

I have to respectfully, but strongly, disagree with the statement that "reading or interpreting should always be easy". As a matter of fact, this thought process, has led to the wide, varied translations we see today.

The Word of God is not to be easily understood by our standards, but by HIS standards.

"For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned --1 Corinthians 2:11-14

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts". -- Isaiah 55:8-10

Needless to say, the Holy Spirit is needed for interpretation and discernment. But, only by faith, can it (Holy Spirit)be received.

The problem, I believe, lies in the "intellectualizing" of man. We have become a culture (I'm including Christianity as well) that places our "faith" in our (and others) education and knowledge that we are moving farther away from God as a whole. As Christians, we have a strong tendency to "lean on our own understanding" when the Bible clearly tells us not to, thus. we fail to instill the vital component when studying the Word....TRUST, in another important word...FAITH, in what HE SAYS regardless of understanding it's meaning/principle or not.

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.
A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. " --James 1:5-8

"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." --Proverbs 3:5-6

When we acknowledge the Word to be such a profound, life-altering source, we are humbled in this knowledge, of it's Author. We know, as mere men and women, our limited minds can only conceive of so much, we then, trust that the Lord is an examiner of our hearts, and will reveal, by His Spirit, the truths and understanding He has for us at HIS time and HIS discretion.

And when someone restates or paraphrases what can ONLY be spiritual discerned, and attempts to repackage the Living Word of the only God in a chewable format, what we get is a glut of translations attempting to make the knowledge of God (Word) fit in our fast-paced, modern life a bit easier. The only result that I (my own personal observances) can see from having a large variety modern translations is confusion, and in some translations, downright misleading others away from the truth, as Christians, pick and choose versions they "like", or are "easier" as opposed to diligently searching for the mind, and knowledge of God regardless of personal preference. Under this "personal preference" mindset, the person choosing a bible assumes ALL versions are created equal, hence, one of the many problems that plague the culture of modern Christianity.

Take these verses in consideration:
"My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee;
So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding;
Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding;
If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures;
Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God." --Proverbs 2:1-5

Having said all this, I believe I may have answered the questions in the comment above: "What we should base the accuracy of a version on is its content. How much of it has been changed? How accurate are the changes? Is it translated or paraphrased? etc."
Obviously, I cannot answer these questions with specific answers, but I do know Someone who has ALL the answers :) I can only share of my own personal testimony (which can be found at Translation vs. Paraphrase) of how I learned the NLT that I have been studying out of for so many years was paraphrased. I was lead by the Holy Spirit to this understanding after so many years of confusion of what I was reading in the NLT. The difference in "concepts" became clear when my husband gave me a People's Parallel Bible, which has the NLT and KJV side by side. I switched completely after consistent (more like persistent) differences, which was a period of a year or two. Only after, I switched, did I read the preface of a NLT bible which stated that it was paraphrased, and confirmed the Spirit's prompting of my studies in the NLT. My only answer to those questions is to be diligently faithful in search of the truth. Lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.

May God bless prosper you in His Knowledge, by His Son. Amen

Related Posts:

Translation vs. Paraphrase
Degree of Faith


  1. Your post is so true. The Word is alive within us. It transforms us individually into the light of God.

    Isaiah 48:6 (New International Version)

    6 You have heard these things; look at them all.
    Will you not admit them?
    "From now on I will tell you of new things,
    of hidden things unknown to you.

    We, do, rely on others to interpret what the Word says, but, God wants us to seek the truth and then to show us, individually the "Unknown"

  2. I have to apologize. I guess I had a bad typo. I really meant to say that it shouldn't always be easy to understand. I completely agree with what you've said.

  3. NYC,
    Darn those quick fingers, huh? :) You know I've been meaning to post about the subject for a VERY long while, so consider it a meaningful "typo"!

    Thank you for visiting my blog and sharing Isaiah 48:6 :)

    May the peace of Christ be on the both of you!


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