Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Use the King James Bible OR ELSE!!!

So I have been largely silent in the blogging world for the past few months. It's not that alot hasn't been going on in my life. I have been continuing my journey towards full time mission work. One part of that preparation has consisted of taking the Perspectives on the World Christian Movement course. It has been absolutely AMAZING. Also filled with great blogging thoughts and topics, but also taking all of my spare time that I would use for blogging. But this past lesson hit on something that I just NEED to type out.

The lesson was talking about how to best bring the Gospel to unreached people groups. One definition it emphasized was the "mother-tongue".

"This is the language people learn first at their mother's knee, in which they learn to think and talk about the world around them, interact with people closest to them and acquire and express their values. It is the language which becomes part of their personality and identity, and which expresses ethnicity and solidarity with their people." -Barbara F. Grimes

The emphasis was bringing the Bible to a people group in their mother language, rather than through translators or a second language. Like a common trade language in a region.

The clarity of the Scriptures can be missing or misinterpreted when not expressed in the mother language. So churches then are not able to sustain spiritual depth into succeeding generations. Also these churches lacking this vital translation of the Holy Scriptures will have difficulty answering false teaching, waging spiritual warfare and avoiding syncretism (the combining of different/contradictory beliefs).

As I was reading this, it hit me. This isn't unlike the "King James Only" adherents. I was raised in a religious group whose leader taught out of his King James Version (The Schofield Edition). It was the only Bible that was used when I was growing up. There were many times that I would just tune out the Scripture readings and then take the leader's word for what it said. An interesting side note, he would use the Emphatic Diaglott, published by the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society (Jehovah's Witnesses), as his 'Greek authority'. Unfortunately this was published with a JW doctrinal bias. But I digress.

I remember the first time that I dared open a New International Version of the Bible. I thought hellfire and brimstone was going to rain down from the heavens on me. But as I began to read and understand the Scriptures for myself, a whole new world was opened to me. Here I was, reading the same Scriptures that had been in front of me for twenty-one years. But even though it was English translation for English translation, it wasn't my 'mother language'. I had no clue what alot of the Olde English terms and nuances were really getting at. But then I had the Gospel presented to me in 'plain English' and my life has never been the same since!!

I now can see how so many could be deceived by someone teaching from something that isn't expressing how their mind thinks naturally. Not to say that everyone who reads or teaches out of the KJV is deceived. But my point is, I do see how it is easier to manipulate and deceive with a translation that doesn't speak to the very core of your being.

So as long as the translation is sound and accurately expresses the original text, I don't care what one you use. Just make sure it clearly expresses the Truth to you in your 'mother language'. Read the Bible for what it says!!! Don't let a man try and tell you "what it REALLY means". You'll be eternally thankful that you did!!!

PS. I wore my first NIV out in seven years because I read it so much. It literally started falling apart. Have you worn a Bible out from reading it yet?!? If not, start today!!!

PPS. Support Bible translation!!!!