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12-1-12

I know my post is long but I really need some clarification & help!!!

Thanks for answering my post to the best of your ability!!! :)

**There are so many versions of the Bible now the 1611 KJV, NIV, THE AMPLIFIED, THE MESSAGE BIBLE, NASB, etc. How do you know which version is correct?? I normally read the KJV, but there are parts of it I just don't understand, so I also compare these verses to the NASB Bible. I purchased a NIV & I was shocked to find entire sentences that are in the 1611 KJV missing or omitted entirely!!! By omitting these verses it gives the content of what they are talking about in the 1611 KJV Bible an entirely different meaning!!! I also don't understand how they can just change around some of the original 1611 KJV which I know is the best translation they could do back in England from the original Hebrew, Aramaic & Greek & which is worldwide known as the closest you can get to read the original Hebrew, Aramaic, & Greek.

I plan on getting an original Hebrew, Aramaic & Greek Bible that has been translated into English. I even found some website that show you the original Hebrew, Aramaic & Greek translation with the English translation underneath.

GOD himself said in the book of Revelation 22:18-19 "For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book."

So my main question is how can you have Bible versions like the NIV omitting entire verses from the 1611 KJV & as I said by doing that they have changed entirely what the verse or chapter was saying or meant???

I still stick with the 1611 KJV & little NKJV & NASB when I need more clarification because the NKJV & the NASB talks more in our modern English language.

Is it wrong to have all of these Bible Translations & to compare them to the 1611 KJV??? And what about what GOD said in Revelation 22:18-19 about not changing one word or adding one word to the writing in this book ~ The Bible.

PLEASE HELP BECAUSE I AM TOTALLY CONFUSED WATCHING PREACHERS ON TV PREACH FROM THE NIV, THE AMPLIFIED, THE MESSAGE BIBLE ETC. & some of the verses or chapters are no where near or in the 1611 KJV Bible.

I must admit the first time I read the NIV it was so refreshing to read!!! I could understand every word of the Bible for the 1st time in my life & I like the way it flows smoothly to me. I am now scared to read the NIV or such versions of the Bible that have omitted or changed GOD'S word around so drastically!!!

I was comparing different translations of the Bible using my parallel Bible & now I don't know what to do because of this verse in the 1611 KJV of the Bible

Then when I heard different TV ministers saying how the NIV is not the Bible you should be reading & then they started giving examples of missing verses & chapters missing!!!

I was so shocked I googled the NIV missing & sure enough there are entirely different verses & chapters changed or missing in the NIV!!!

During my google search I came upon this website & it shocked me even more now I really don't know what to do???

Here are a few of the differences between the 1611 KJV & the NIV version that the below website gave as proof & I checked it out & they are right:

This is one of the websites that popped up with my Google search about missing verses or chapters from the NIV.

http://www.valueoftruth.org/bible/missing.html & Consider the following sample: KJV & the NIV,

** You need to pull out your Bibles if you have several like I do or your parallel Bible or go online to fill in the blanks to see what is missing from the above examples above comparing the KJV to the NIV translation.

I went to "Biblegateway.com" used their parallel Bible search feature which compares whatever verse or chapter you pick out of the Bible & shows you what the difference is. It's much quicker for me than pulling out my actual Parallel Bible & constantly turning pages ~ just a few clicks & the verses & chapters are there side by side. Love this feature :)

(KJV) Revelation 1:8 - I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, (NIV) Revelation 1:8 - "I am the Alpha and the Omega," ______ says the Lord God,

**What is at stake - Clarity that Jesus is eternal, not created.


(KJV) Revelation 1:11 - Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, ... (NIV) Revelation 1:11 - which said: ____ "...."

**What is at stake - Clarity that Jesus is eternal, not created.


(KJV) Revelation 5:14 - And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever NIV) Revelation 5:14 - ...and the elders fell down and worshipped ____.

**What is at stake - Clarity of the Lord being eternal, not created.


(KJV) Revelation 14:5 - And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God. (NIV) Revelation 14:5 - No lie was found in their mouths; they are blameless _____.

**What is at stake - They weren't faultless or perfect - but their hearts were right ... before man? No, before God.


(KJV) Revelation 20:12 - And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened; (NIV) Revelation 20:12 - And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened

**What is at stake - Clarity that all the dead shall stand before God...


(KJV) Revelation 22:14 - Blessed are they that do his commandments, (NIV) Revelation 22:14 - "Blessed are those who wash their robes,"

**What is at stake - Blessed for obedience or clean clothes??


(KJV) Revelation 22:19 - And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, (NIV) Revelation 22:19 - And if anyone takes words away from this book of prophecy, God will take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the holy city,

**What is at stake - It is no coincidence that the most changed book of the Bible would remove eternal damnation from the very curse for changing God's words!

See also: Rev. 6:16, 11:17, 16:5


**This is only a small sample of the differences between the Bibles.

** What you just read is what the above website I found during my google search & there are thousands upon thousands of websites that show you the differences. You just have to check it out for yourself.

Again, I hope someone can help me with my original question: is it wrong to read some of these Bible translations that are going against GOD'S written word in Revelation 22:18-19.

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Welcome to the site! While this is relevant to Truth, it's a bad fit for this site. This is the classic "King James Only" stance. alwaysbeready.com/… There are resources all over the web debating both sides of the issue. You're asking here, which side is "Truth", which isn't what this site is meant for. I'd invite you to read the FAQ, as well as What Christianity.StackExchange is (and more importantly, what it isn't) –  David Stratton Dec 1 '12 at 13:47
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Could is guest separating your answer from the question? –  Affable Geek Dec 1 '12 at 13:57
    
Finally, remember that some of the words, while still English, had a different meaning at the time the KJV was written. (Example: "Perfect" in Rev 14:5). Biblical inerrancy as understood by KJV Only advocates doesn't apply to any current version from a Fundamentalist perspective (which, ironically, is the branch of Christianity most likely to hold to the KJV Only view.) See christianity.stackexchange.com/questions/9946/… for more on inerrancy and infallibility from a Fundamentalist perspective. –  David Stratton Dec 1 '12 at 13:57
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I think you would come to a much more useful understanding of translations by researching (and perhaps asking here) about what the purpose and methodology of each translation you are interseted in was or what translations use a methodology or priority set you are interested in. First you need to learn a little bit about the translation process however, it's not as simple as most people think. It's not a black and white choice between accuracy and something else... –  Caleb Dec 1 '12 at 20:06
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closed as not constructive by David Stratton, Pavel, warren, Jon Ericson, Andrew Dec 3 '12 at 5:24

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3 Answers

There's even better sites for questions about Bible - hermeneutics.stackexchange.com; perhaps this questions should be migrated there. I have searched there and found a few related questions: "Which 'modern' English translation of the Bible is considered the 'closest' or most accurate translation?" and Why do different English translations differ on Matthew 24:36?

Being Czech, I don't know details about these English translations, but certain principles are the same for translations from Greek/Hebrew/Aramaic to any language.

First: you can't just take a dictionary and translate on "word to word" basis - you would lose idioms and reduce the original word to some nearest equivalent, which often doesn't cover the full meaning of the word in original language or add some connotations that were not in the original language. Some translations focus on the "literal" aspect and are closer to the "word to word" (while meaning of idioms is either recorded in footnotes or lost), while others emphasize meaning and often translate idioms by idiomatic meaning, not by the literal one. There are not binary states but poles, and every translation is somewhere in between. Off course, there are translations which don't pursue any of these two goals very well, but emphasize readability over accuracy. Anyway, lot of information is lost. Looking to versions in original languages is good, but unless you understand them quite well, it's easy to miss some meaning. Do it, read the original languages, but remember that no translation is the "correct" and "perfect" one. Every translation catched only a part of the whole meaning just because the languages are different.

Second: what ancient versions of Bible were taken into account? Even the original manuscripts were not exactly the same, they differed in details. Sometimes the copyists just made an unintentional mistake, sometimes they "corrected" something (usually thinking they're just removing a mistake made by previous copyist). For a long time (all Middle Ages, in Catholic Church even longer) all versions of Bible were translated from latin version, Vulgate. King James Bible was translated from Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic texts known at that time. Since then many new manuscripts were found and Bible hermeneutics evolved a lot, so newer translations avoid some mistakes caused by KJV's sources. Today's standard is to use a broad scale of ancient texts, to compare them and to pick the version deemed to be most accurate (which may differ between different schools of Bible scholars).

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Regina, I am most definitely a Biblical Perfectionst, but even I have to take issue with many of your claims.

One in particular is

"how can u have Bible versions like the NIV omitting entire verses from the 1611 KJV & as I said by doing that they have changed entirely what the verse or chapter was saying or meant??"

Faulty Premise #1: What you view as "ommitted" probably wasn't there in the first place.

The verses that have been "omitted" are ones that were clearly inserted after the inerrant autographs were created. You ask how they could be left out, I ask how did these get in there in the first place. The Johannine Comma - 1 John 5:7, for example, illustrates a verse that can be shown to be an addition. The earliest manuscripts simply don't have it. When the Kjv was translated, this was not known. What I can tell you, however, is that i John 5:7 looks suspiciously like an explanation of 1 John 5:8. As such, just about every scholar who has examined this has came up with the same answer - a scribe accidentally incorporated a "gloss" - just like one of those notes in your Bible today - and made it look just like it was part of the Scripture. It was an innocent mistake, but it kept getting repeated. If we go back to the earliest manuscripts, it wasn't there.

Over time, scholarship can reconstruct autographs and show what was originally said. Scripture does add a woe to anyone who would add or subtract from His Scripture (or at least the Book of Revelation) but nowhere does it say that God will prevent man from sinning in this way.

The manuscripts of the KJV were, by all accounts, a translation of the Textus Receptus - the "received text," based on the library of manuscripts stored in the monasteries of the Byzantine empire. Over the course of 1500 years, scribes copied older manuscripts, and as they did, sometimes they accidently incorporated notes that were added in the margins, or else misspelled words. These are exceedingly minor variations but they are variations. These texts can be shown to have been copied from one another, and using a critical apparatus one can even see the history of these manuscripts.

The KJV was based on manuscripts available in 1611. We've found many more and many older manuscripts since then. In the 1800s, for example, Tischendorf stole found a manuscript in a monastery in the Sinai Peninsula that does back to about the 400s. We can see the (exceedingly minor) differences - but we can also see how the scribes messed up. There are clear things, like for instance, some of the changes you point out, that can be shown to be errors that crept into the text.

The question then, is whether you believe the original manuscripts to be inspired, or the 1611 translators.

Faulty Premise #2: The 1611 translators were perfect.

Man is an imperfect, fallen creature. Man makes mistakes. This is true both in copying (remember, the printing press was not around for the first 1453 years of Christianity!) and in translating. The question is, do you want to elevate a group of translators in the early 1600s to the status of God, or are you willing to accept that man is flawed?

If man is flawed, then he will always need to contend with change. Our vocabulary changes, our body of manuscripts change (and check out my question on how little that has happened!), and the rigor with which we approach things changes.

You will not find any reasonable doctrine that hinges on a particular manuscript. The witness of scripture is too broad for that. And, in any case, I don't worship the words in a Book, I worship the Word, who became flesh and dwelt among us.

I believe that Scripture was inspired, and that Paul, the Gospel Writers, the Prophets, etc... were divinely told what to write. I wholeheartedly believe that. But, I don't believe that God inspired the copyists or the scribes. I don't see anything in Scripture that prevents publishers from making mistakes (see, The Adulterer's Bible for instance.).

The question is - who did God inspire? The original authors (whose manuscripts we know differ in precisely the ways you point out) or the later translators? I find it hard to believe that God would only bless the English with his perfect Word.

I take the Scripture very, very seriously. I have read the Hebrew, I have read the Greek. (Ok, I have not read the Aramiaic in Daniel!). As far as translating the sense of Scripture into English goes, the KJV was good but not perfect. But then again, we all agree that anytime man is involved, he never is.

Faulty Premise #3: We still speak the same language that Shakespeare did

What's charity? I'm willing to bet that when I use that word, you are thinking about giving alms to poor people, or somehow giving something to people less fortunate than you. And yet, if you asked William Shakespeare, he would have said charity is that impulse of two people who love each other and desire the best for each other, stripped of all its lustful aspects.

That's why, if you read 1 Corinthians 13 in a KJV, it says that "Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up." Modern day translations say "Love." Greek scholars read "Agape." The point is that our language changes, even if the original Scriptures do not. Are there etymological roots? Sure! But don't assume that our language is fixed, because its not!

Thee and Thou, in particular, were already relics by the time of the KJV - the translators wanted to preserve the formal and informal you, however, so they used it. (And, incidentally, Thou is informal saying that we should approach God as a Father and a close friend, not a formal King!)

Even 10 years ago, if you were on a facebook, it's because the cops had taken the time to put your face into a collection that witnesses could you to pick you out as a criminal. Language changes, and that's a large part of why the KJV may not be the best text for today.

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"The earliest manuscripts simply don't have it. When the Kjv was translated, this was not known." Actually, it was known Affable. They just chose to include it anyway because it was in the margin of the manuscripts they were currently using to produce the KJV. –  H3br3wHamm3r81 Dec 1 '12 at 18:21
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The Holy Scriptures, especially the Gospels, had enemies from the beginning (Matthew 27)

12 And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large money unto the soldiers,
13 Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept.
14 And if this come to the governor's ears, we will persuade him, and secure you.
15 So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day.

So, even when apostle Matthew wrote - until this day - the enemies were a reality. Saint John Chrysostom mentioned in 4-th century, in his Homilies on Matthew:

For many sects have had birth, since their time, holding opinions opposed to their words; whereof some have received all that they have said, while some have cut off from the rest certain portions of their statements, and so retain them for themselves. But if there were any hostility in their statements, neither would the sects, who maintain the contrary part, have received all, but only so much as seemed to harmonize with themselves; nor would those, which have parted off a portion, be utterly refuted by that portion; so that the very fragments cannot be hid, but declare aloud their connection with the whole body. And like as if you should take any part from the side of an animal, even in that part you would find all the things out of which the whole is composed—nerves and veins, bones, arteries, and blood, and a sample, as one might say, of the whole lump—so likewise with regard to the Scriptures; in each portion of what is there stated, one may see the connection with the whole clearly appearing. Whereas, if they were in discord, neither could this have been pointed out, and the doctrine itself had long since been brought to nought: for every kingdom, says He, divided against itself shall not stand. But now even in this shines forth the might of the Spirit, namely, in that it prevailed on these men, engaged as they were in those things which are more necessary and very urgent, to take no hurt at all from these little matters.

This sad reality become more intense over the time. Lot of false prophets has mutilated the Scriptures, in books full with heresies, lies, fables, miss-interpretations, false-named as: "Gospel of Thomas", "Revelations of Abraham, Isaac, Iacov", "Psalms of Solomons", etc. The fathers of the early Church, guided by Holy Spirit, had ecumenic concils and states lot of canons to keep the church safe from heresies. One of the canons is the canon of Holy Bible which established the biblic books which we know today.

If these were the facts in early ages of the Christianity, what can we say today?
Since we have bible scholars, translators, historians, printers, computers, can we say that we succed to keep our books safe and clean?
Without have a tradition built upon keeping God's words alive this is not possible.
And this tradition is based on this principle: the apostles keep the God's words unchanged, the disciple of apostles keep the God's words unchanged, the disciples of disciples of apostles keep the God's words unchanged... and so on.
But how can we keep God's words unchanged?
By having super-printers and super-translators, super-scholar academies?
No.
Words of God are alive, and they will stay with us only if we work in our life these words.
Because these words are not letters to be printed on papers.
These words are semantics to be collected with hearts.
We can reach them only if we dedicate our life to them.
But from where we can take these words?
From our ancestors which had maintained this tradition: to practice God's words in their life.
The best examples we can find in the life of the martirs, parent of deserts, the askets, the monarchs, which run away from a secular life, only for God.

If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:26-27)

To conclude, having perfect translations of the Bible, is not so important.
Having a scholar community, doesn't help too much, because our modern minds became weak to keep the God's words. Our saturated minds became lazy, and hearts become hardened, excited by modern pleasures and confort and sins.
They cannot keep the spirit, cannot reach the semantics, just only the letters.

Salvation cannot be obtained by studying Bible, it comes from the practicing word of Bible (saint Gregory Palamas against heresy of Valaam).

Solution is to read our bibles, not exercising our modern minds, by giving our personal interpretations, or group interpretation.
We need to go back to the old texts, to early fathers of the Church, to catch their semantics, and their spirit, and to translate in personal actions of our life, not in discourses to the audience.
When we will read their interpretations we will be surprised that we, the moderns, are not so evolved comparing to them.
Actually we are much devolved, our "academic" semantics are too weak comparing with theirs.
Within one simple sequence we can see to them one or few heresies destroyed with few words.
By killing the heresies from our souls, one by one, we will reach to the semantics of life - ethernal life.
Because Holy Spirit, talk through them.

A practical exercise is to read again any Gospel of Matthew translation, following the interpretation of saint John Chrysostom, in his Homilies of Matthew: http://www.monachos.net/content/patristics/patristictexts/522-chrysostom-homilies-matthew-link
And you'll be gladly amazed and suprised with the conviction that: the teaching of Holy Spirit cannot be changed or stopped.
Because this church:

the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. (Matthew 16:18)

This is Orthodoxy.

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