Yet Again Comments on my KJV Video

Yet Again Comments on my KJV Video

I’m not going to embed it again, but there were a couple of recent comments on my video Why I Hate the KJV.

I can’t believe you hate the KJV. Ridiculous. Not fond of, understandable, but regardless of your use of it, the KJV is a masterpiece.

This sort of comment was only to be expected, considering the provocative title I used, but at the same time it demonstrates that the commenter didn’t actually watch the video.  In fact, the video is a response to those who ask me “Why do you hate the KJV?” as I state right at the beginning.

Indeed the KJV is a masterpiece, but it’s a masterpiece of translation with tremendous literary qualities, and should be treated as such.

But the second comment is one of those moderate sounding ones that I think is somewhat dangerous, and it was the reason I decided to respond:

I often use the lesser modern versions when trying to get various facets of a text or passage. Admittedly they can be of some use though they need to be used advisedly as if they are not potentially they can do more harm than good!!

(You can find both of these comments and many more at the video page to which I link above.)

Of course one must be careful with modern translations.  One must be careful with any translation precisely because it is a translation and something is lost no matter how well the job is done.  That is why I recommend using multiple translations if you cannot learn the source languages.

But that is not a characteristic just of modern translations; it is a characteristic of all translations, including the KJV.  A translation does not become more authoritative than the source text.

And that is the danger here–that someone will take the KJV as the reliable source against which modern translations will be tested.  It too is a translation with all of the failings that entails.  It’s a wonderfully literary translation, perhaps the single greatest accomplishment in Bible translation (though I can think of some good competitors) but it doesn’t replace the texts from which it was translated.

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