A Voice in the
What the English-speaking world needs is, yet, ANOTHER Bible. (!!) A few years ago I wrote off for information on the KJ21 Bible, and apparently, still being on their list, I just recently received promotional literature for their newest, latest, "Third Millennium Bible."
They proudly proclaim that it is "word-for-word and unchanged" like the "Authorized Version of 1611." Only, words that have changed meaning in 400 years have been updated. Furthermore, to be in full adherence to the original "nonpareil (unequaled) Authorized Version" they have included the "beautiful and historically important" Apocrypha.
While they make some discrete comments about manuscripts, and lament "modern translations", their sales pitch has to do with things like, "Biblical English", the "art" of Scripture memorization, and the fact that it stands upon the solid foundation of... "Authorized Version of 1611" That their goal was to be "completely faithful to the Authorized Version of 1611."
While this may make some KJV-only people happy, especially the "1611" ones, let's also consider some other things which motivate these people. They revel in the 1) "exquisite language of worship and prayer which believers have been accustomed to for centuries" which 2) has "power to move men's souls." That this "Biblical English" is 3) most acceptable for liturgy, and is a "link among 4) Christians of all backgrounds as a reminder of a 5) common Christian heritage and purpose." That 6) "basic Christian concepts" have been preserved.
These statements prove my recent understandings and proclamations about the whole "Roman connection" of the KJV and NKJV, and now apparently, also the KJ21 and TMB. What is "liturgy?" From my trusty computer American Heritage Dictionary, "1) A prescribed form or set of forms for public Christian ceremonies; ritual. 2) The sacrament of the Eucharist." And let's face it, folks. #1 came out of #2. The Catholic "eucharist" is a continual "open sham[ing]" of Jesus Christ (Heb6:6) as they "re-sacrifice" Christ every time they celebrate. So, taking their words to logical conclusion: the AV1611/TMB aids in "proper" dishonoring of Jesus Christ ("liturgy"). Anybody see anything wrong with that concept?!
"Basic Christian concepts"? This is the modern ecumenical battle cry. Agree on the "basics" and "agree to disagree" on the "gray areas." When Jesus said, "..not one jot or one tittle shall in any way pass from the law until all is fulfilled. (Mt5:18) That's more than mere "basics."
The "language of worship and prayer" illustrates a total lack of understanding of what true worship and prayer is. "..they who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth." (Jn4:24) Not some "feeling" of worship because of the correct "liturgy" of how the "language" SOUNDS to the ear. "Pure religion" (Jas1:27) has nothing to do with the sound of the spoken "language" uttered during "feelings" of "piety." (Ed: see why Catholics and charismatics get along so well?? They're all part of the same ball game.) "Holy men of God"(2Pt1:21) were not "moved" by "liturgical language" but by the "Holy Spirit." It is by this same Holy Spirit, representing Christ in our lives, that we "live and move" (Acts17:28, eph5:18, Jn16:13-14) and pray. (Rom8:26)
What "common heritage" do we have? That, too, is the pope's arguments in his 1995 encyclical "Ut Unum Sint" (That they may be one). The common heritage as everyone returns "home" to "mother church" from all their various "backgrounds" to which they strayed. After all, all these backgrounds originate from their "mother." As their closing prayer (in the brochure) states, "that the TMB may help in some measure to illumine the path ahead toward the millennium of reconciliation in Christ -- 'that they all may be one'."
So, they have re-included the catholic "Apocrypha" (like the AV1611) and proclaim it "a Bible for all of Christendom" which is "not exclusive." "Christendom" a good ol' "Lutheran" term. And everybody is able to join together. What happened to "come out from among them and be separate..and do not touch the unclean.."? (2Cor6:17) Faith in Christ [IS] "exclusive." It is distinct. And of non-Believers, "the rest no one dared to join himself to them." (Acts5:13)
In all the folds of the brochure, NOT ONE WORD about being "faithful to God's Word" or of drawing closer to Him, or of living lives pleasing to Christ because of growth due to His Word. It's all about tradition, auditory/sensory recognition, history, liturgy. Learning God's Word (memorization) is reduced to an "art-form." Not.. "hiding God's Word in the heart." (Ps119:11)
This is not intended to be a 1611-KJV-only bash session. But, seeing how this new "Roman" version stands upon it without reserve as their "foundation", and the Mormons proudly give it away free. Remember; all these ecumenical roads "lead to Rome." Whether it's Roman "catholic" or Roman "protestant." The Roman "church of England" produced a work. God allowed this to happen; and the KJV has been a portal to God's Word for millions of people over the years. God also used unregenerate Nebuchadnezzar as His "servant" to chastise Israel (Jer25:9) before he was humbled and repented before God. (Dan4:37) He used rebellious Israel to be "keepers" of His written word. (Rom3:2)
So, the "Sacred Majesty, Prince James" commissioned a work and was labeled its "Mover and Author." He was, after all, the "head" of that particular faction of the church of Rome. As such, was "vicar" (in the place of) of Christ. The praise for the work in the "Epistle Dedicatory" is to the "man" who commissioned it. ...NOT Jehovah!
Do we worship that "work" and the "man" or the Word of God it represents? When God said, "So shall My word be, which goes out of My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall certainly do what I sent it to do" (Is55:11) how can we know we can believe it? After all, God said it centuries before the AV1611 came into being. Do we stand on the "foundation" of a work which came AFTER THE ORIGINAL? God made no prophetical mention of "KJV" but rather, "Thus says the Lord" ... "I am Jehovah."
When a translation from the proper Masoretic/Textus Receptus texts is printed and read, is that printed/bound copy, God's actual Word? What happens at the end of the world when all these "works" are burned up? (2Pt3:10) When all the KJV, NKJV, MKJV, LITV are burned up and no longer exist, will God's Word have also been burned up? "They shall perish, but You shall endure.." (Ps102:26a) Jesus said, "the words that I speak to you are spirit and are life." (Jn6:63) And remember that the life He gives is "everlasting." (Jn3:16)
The Word of God is not "printed pages" but is God, Himself. He "endures forever." (1Pt1:25) Thus, His Word, when received into the heart, does so, "being borne along by the Holy Spirit." (2Pt1:21) The same Holy Spirit Who "propelled" the writers of the printed page, also drives the Word into our hearts. (Heb4:12) And so, "The word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart.." (Deu30:14) Thus, when we read a translation, a child of God knows if it is God's Word or not. A Christian knows, just from reading, that the Apocrypha is NOT God's Word as the 66 books are. (Recall the condemnation for "adding to" God's Word -Rev22:18) When the blinders are removed, he knows most of the modern offerings are not completely True to God's original Word. (They may "contain" Truth, but "are" NOT Truth) Not because of a label of "Sacred Majesty Prince James", Thomas Nelson Publishers, or Sovereign Grace Publishers. But the "anointing which [we] received" (1Jn2:27) discloses this to us.
The Foundation is Jesus Christ. (1Cor3:11) The foundation is the "apostles and prophets" with Jesus Christ, Himself, being the chief cornerstone. (Eph2:20) Only when people adhere to a false doctrine of "apostolic succession" and a work is created from such lineages, is another "false foundation" established. If such a "foundation" exists, then, the next logical step is to also proclaim "another testament of Jesus Christ" (as the Mormons do). There is no other Gospel besides what was already given. (Gal1:8-9) The "Faith" was "once delivered to the saints." (Jude3) THAT is our "Foundation." Not some product of Rome.
Thankfully, in spite of centuries of "tradition" and the current apostasy continuing to embrace it, there are non-Roman options, which didn't used to be available, which are much "closer" to God's Word and Sound Doctrine in "details" ...not JUST the "basics".