The History of the King James Bible

Episode 70

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Carl Joseph

Carl is a biblical scholar, minister, husband, father and life coach. In his mid-twenties he had a powerful encounter with God and saw miraculous healings as a result. He passionately shares these stories and empowers others to fulfill their God-given potential.

Holy Scripture is not only inspired and inerrant, but God also promised to preserve His Holy Word for every generation. This promise culminated in the paragon of all bible translations, namely, the King James Bible. Many brave Christians sacrificed their lives to get God’s Word into wide circulation throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, despite fierce opposition from Rome. God prophesied of seven refinements to His Holy Word (Ps 12:6), culminating with the infallible King James Edition of 1611. Join Carl now, as he shares the fascinating history of the Bible and the many sacrifices it took to get a copy into your hands…

Here is a complete transcript of the podcast (below)…

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There are two rivers that flow throughout history. One river is a river of life that leads to Grace through Faith. The other is a raging torrent of esoteric knowledge that leads to damnation of the souls of men. One river has its source in Antioch, of ancient Syria where they were first called Christians; the other has its source in Alexandria, Egypt from which the mystery religions were propagated throughout the ages. One river had brought us the Geneva Bible and finally the King James Bible which is the paragon of all Bible translations and the other river provides a passage for the ancient mystery religions of Gnosticism or modern day freemasonry. These societies falsely claim we may attain salvation through knowledge, instead of by saving Grace through faith.

Friend, Alexandria in Egypt, was so called because it was named after “Alexander the Great” who conquered that nation in 332 BC. Alexandria was one of the major centers of Greek thought. Its library was renowned for its size and dedication to housing the great Grecian classical works of Plato, Socrates, Aristotle, and Archimedes etc. Alexandria also appears to be the city of origin for heretical groups called the Gnostic’s who originated around the beginning of the 2nd century AD. The word ‘gnostic’ comes from the Greek word gnosis, which means “knowledge.” The Gnostic’s professed themselves to be wise but in fact became fools, as their pride blinded them.

They saw their knowledge as a secret path to enlightenment, by combining the philosophies of the Grecian’s with the ancient Hebrew Scriptures. For instance, they saw the physical, material world as evil while the spiritual was considered good. The Gnostic’s taught that Jesus Christ did not come in the flesh as the Son of God but a god who incarnated in bodily form. To them, Jesus was merely a phantom or apparition with only the appearance of physical presence. They also disparaged existing apostolic writings and mixed the revelation of God with contradictory Greek philosophies. Gnosticism did not include just one set of believers holding a unified set of doctrines. Instead, it presented a strange mix of groups espousing the equivalency of the modern New Age philosophy wrapped in a facade of Christianity. The Apostle John’s epistles were a sharp rebuke to the Gnostic’s, on the rise even in his time. Friend, the Gnostic’s generated their own text from the very beginning and these texts are outlined in three main codices found throughout the ages, they are Codex Sinaiticus, Codex Vaticanus and Codex Alexandrius. Now are you familiar with this scripture my friend? Let me read Ps 12:6-7:

The words of the Lord are pure words: As silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, Thou shalt preserve them from this generation forever.

Now it’s interesting that God’s word had been written in seven key languages throughout history, which are Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, Old Syrian, Old Latin, German and English but they do not constitute purified translations as this scripture testifies. Friend, did you know this scripture has come to pass literally? But how you might ask? In order to attain the King James version, there were seven refinements and these refinements are reflected in the seven major English Bibles that were printed: Tyndale’s Bible starting in 1526 and soon thereafter, Coverdale’s Bible, Matthew’s Bible, then the Great Bible, the Geneva Bible (which was carried on the Mayflower and the one that William Shakespeare used), then the Bishop’s Bible and finally the King James Bibles. 

That’s seven refinements, to produce the very best version which is the King James Bible. Today friend, I’m talking about the history of the Bible. The Bible is the single most important book of all time, selling an estimated 5 billion copies and it’s been translated into 349 languages. It’s been outlawed, confiscated and burned at different times in history and it’s even been smuggled into jail cells and across borders. John Huss was burned at the stake for teaching the Bible was the final authority for the Church, over any earthly church rulers dictate. Then there was John Wycliffe circa. (1329-1384) who was the most eminent Oxford theologian of his day. He viewed the words of the Bible as the word of God, having supreme authority over any Papacy’s self imposed and spurious claim of being Christ’s vicar or true representative on earth. Wycliffe and his associates were the first to translate the entire Bible from Latin into English by 1382. Three decades after his death, his writings were officially banned by the Vatican, and the Pope had his remains exhumed and burned in 1428. Throughout the ages, the Catholic Papacy were outraged that other translations of God’s word were in existence other than their own, so outraged in fact they would kill if anyone was found in possession of one.

William Tyndale was strangled and burned for translating the Bible into English, but why? Because he made the bold declaration to a Catholic clergyman that, “If God will spare my life, ere many years pass, I will cause a boy that drives the plow, shall know more of the Scripture than you do.” Tyndale was born on the Welsh Border between England and Wales in 1494. This brave man was of course the first to translate the New Testament into English from the original Greek text. Friend, we owe so much to William Tyndale because did you know that Tyndale’s Biblical translation accounts for 84% of the NT and more than 75% of the OT, of what we now possess in the King James Bible.

When King James XI of Scotland became the King of England and adopted the name James I, in 1611, the King James Version of the Bible was completed. He commissioned 47 scholars to go back to the original Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic texts and translated the Bible to the best of their ability. The best translators were employed, taking advantage of more than 5556 manuscripts. The result was a crowning achievement of the Protestant movement of the time. The King James Version of the bible was a thing of beauty and without doubt the paragon or measuring stick of all Bibles and the 7th purification in the refinement of God’s Holy Word as I mentioned previously. This Bible was translated from the Textus Receptus which means in Latin, the Received Text. One person who should not go without mention is the Dutch scholar Desiderius Erasmus. He was instrumental in translating the Greek manuscripts of the NT into Latin and produced a Greek and Latin parallel Bible so the languages could be compared in 1516. He produced five editions which served as the foundation for what became known as the Textus Receptus, which means “the received text” in Latin. Martin Luther then went on to form his own German translation from the second edition of Erasmus Greek NT manuscript. This was the start of the Protestant Reformation and William Tyndale later utilized this text to translate it into English.

Now some people make out we have a lack of manuscripts to validate the Bible in our possession today. But friend, we have 5,800 Greek New Testament manuscripts which reflect the Textus Receptus in our possession currently. In contrast, fewer than 1600 ancient papyri of Homer’s Iliad still exist and about 250 manuscripts of Plato have survived. Friend, if you believe in the writings of Plato as the professors in our universities seem to worship, you should be 24 times more confident in the writings of the NT and the existence of Christ for that matter because we have so many more manuscripts at our disposal. Any scientist should agree the abundance of manuscripts authenticates the value of the message contained therein as fact, not fiction and part of our historical narrative. What’s more, the earliest manuscripts of Plato date from 1300 years after he lived, and there’s a 400-year lapse of time for Homer, yet we know the NT was completely written by 100 A.D., soon after the death of all the apostles, so its contents were hot off the press. Because of this, when compared to other ancient literary works, the New Testament provides a voluminous measure of documentation and should never be questioned for its authenticity, as a record of truth.

Now here is where the rubber meets the road in this broadcast and I might even ruffle a few religious feathers when I share this and particularly if you’ve never heard it. Did you know that the source text for all moderns Bible translations after the late 1800’s does not stem from the same source text as the King James Version? And that’s the reason why thousands upon thousands of words have been omitted or amended by the modern day Bibles as I mentioned in yesterday’s broadcast. That’s why the NIV has 33,681 fewer words than a King James Bible for example. The reason for this is they were not even translated from the same underlying Greek texts or codices. Unfortunately, in the 19th Century a nefarious movement by ungodly men who weren’t even believers in god for that matter, began to translate from other sources, instead of the Textus Receptus and in fact, returned to the corrupt codices of the river that ran from occultic Alexandria in Egypt. The three corrupt codices are as follows:- Codex Sinaitics, Codex Vaticanus and Codex Alexandrius as I mentioned earlier.

Finally, two English scholars called Brooke Foss Westcott and Fenton John Anthony Hort came along. Westcott and Hort were also two Anglican churchmen who had contempt for Erasmus Greek NT text, also known as the Textus Receptus, because they didn’t like what was written in it, even though it had been the basis for the true word of God for four centuries and the source text for the King James Bible. If ever there were two men who stuck a knife into the heart of God’s word it was this dastardly duo. Westcott and Hort created an entirely new Greek New Testament to reflect their own doctrines and ideas but not based on the clear meaning of God’s Word, which they didn’t like because they chose to change it instead of repenting and conforming to it.

Based on what we now regard as the corrupt Vaticanus and Sinaiticus documents, these two men began a work in 1853 that 28 years later resulted in their version of the Greek New Testament. This effort undoubtedly took additional time for the simple reason they had to reconcile all the differences found between the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus. Friend, a codex is simply an ancient manuscript, and they chose to use the manuscripts that stemmed from the corrupt Gnostic region of Alexandria, the very area where the teachings that the Apostle John combated in his epistles all those years ago. Now Westcott and Hort questioned Genesis, and twisted the truth of God’s word into something other than what the literal text said. They developed the Revision committee of the Textus Receptus  in 1870. They did two things 1) Revise the English words of the King James Bible and 2) Revise the underlying Greek Text by choosing the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus Codices instead.

These corrupt manuscripts came from Alexandria not Antioch. In fact later, from published letters between Westcott and Hort; we find out exactly what these men really believed. Brook Westcott was a Catholic and held Jesus and Mary worship as synonymous. John Hort was a fan of Darwin’s Origin of Species and denied the Genesis account. They even sent their corrupt translation to the Vatican for approval because it was indeed based upon their source text in the first place. These were the authors of what became known as the Revised Version of the bible.

Not everyone received this Revised Version with approval however and many godly scholars and ministers at the time vehemently rejected it. Dean John Burgon said of it, “for this is nothing else but a poisoning of the river of life at it’s sacred source…and Westcott and Hort stand convicted of having deliberately rejected the words of inspiration on every page.” When the revised version of the bible was finally published in 1881 by Westoctt, Hort and the committee, Burgon went on to add, “the Revision of 1881 must come to be universally regarded as what is most certainly is the most astonishing, as well as the most calamitous literary blunder of the Age.”

Friend if you have an ESV or NIV, OR NASB, or NLT, in your possession know this. These Bible translations stem from the corrupt texts published by ungodly men like Westcott and Hort. Even though they were widely accepted within academic circles in the early 20th century, they are corrupt because they were translated from codices from the occultic region of Alexandria, not those that stemmed from Antioch where Christianity was first named. Would you trust the Wolf to guard the hen house friend? Likewise, would you trust men who don’t even believe in Christ as their savior and deny many if the doctrines in the Bible to write another version of your bible? I don’t think so, but that’s exactly what happened when Westcott and Hort duped the academic community with their degenerate text. And when you study their omissions and amendments in the modern day versions, you’ll quickly realize there has been a deliberate and evil agenda to undermine the authority of Christ and His Holy Word. I know this topic has been heavy friend but I needed to share this with you for sure.

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  • After much research, being a “Berean”! I’ve come to the conclusion that the KJB for me is preferred/best, and I’m a TR/Majority/Byzantine text only person. I do utilize Bibles from this family type: pre-KJV Reformation era Bibles, and the post KJV- NKJV, MEV, Original Jerusalem Bible, MLV(Modern Literal Version). Here’s my testimony of how I came to this understanding, and conclusion. As a kid in the 70’s, being raised in a conservative evangelical church, and family. Most believers in our circle for the most part used the KJB. I began to figure out that I was a different kind of learner, mostly audio/visual oriented. So traditional school learning was challenging for me. I also had a stuttering problem in my speech. When I was 11 years old my pastor( I believe, and am convinced he was inspired/guided by the Holy Ghost/Spirit) gave me a copy of the KJB on cassette. He told me to play it while I slept at night, also when I read the Bible. He said it would help me? About the same time my best friends mom(who was an English/music teacher) started working with me, and was aware of what our pastor was having me do. She told the Elizabethan English is the highest form of the English language, and our contemporary English was a degraded form! She also said what I was doing would help me greatly, because the poetic form, and flow of the KJB help in memorization! She had me doing vocal exercises, using music to help my speech. This where I discovered my voice as a singer(and eventually a Bible teacher as well), this was part of God’s plan for me, and part of my development as a Christian! Around this same time I was introduced to the NIV(1st-78 then the 84), and the NASB(1st-77 then the 95). I started using them, though they seemed easier to read I could not memorize them! There are other aspects to this story particularly with my learning difficulties, but due to time I’ll be happy to share later. One thing always bothered me was when I came across missing verses, phrases, Jesus, or Christ, and so on? So my primary Bible’s that I used for 30 years was the KJB, NIV, NASB, and occasionally the Amplified Classic. I have always been a natural Berean, always seeking out the truth! In my late teens I learned of the differences in manuscripts, philosophies, and views of this. I began reading pretty much everything I could find on the subject, the traditional side, and modern critical side. So here is what I discovered in addition to what you mentioned. Westcott and Hort had found a manuscript on an expedition to Alexandria, Egypt, and realized that it was a Greek bible text? They said this is older, so it must be better? To understand what they found, you need to go back 1500 years their time(1700 years from ours) to the time of Jerome. As in the first century the Apostles had to deal with Gnosticism, and 3 centuries later had become even worse. The Alexandrian’s had created their own version of biblical texts, and and Jerome learned of this he got ahold of a copy. Jerome like most of the previous early church leaders(except those who were from Alexandria-like Origen) knew only authentic Biblical manuscripts came from Antioch. He then examined the Alexandrian manuscripts comparing them to the Antioch manuscripts. What he found was the book of Revelation from Alexandria 50 years after John penned it was totally corrupt! The rest of the NT by the end of the 2nd to the beginning of the 3rd centuries was totally corrupted! So Jerome along with the other leaders they invoked Jewish scribble protocols, and ordered all known Alexandrian copies were to be destroyed(burned)! They had the Alexandrian’s running scared, but they were so rebellious, stubborn, and unrepentant they managed to bury one copy? This is what Westcott and Hort found, and so started the great deception! Most people think Erasmus only had a few manuscripts that weren’t that old, but in some of his lesser known writings he states that he had multiple dozens of Greek manuscripts that were from Antioch, or could be traced back to there. He did not use the Latin Vulgate(similar because they came from the same source) to back translate the end of Revelation, that he had complete manuscripts. He also said that the Catholic Church had given him a copy of the codex Vaticanus to examine, and use. Erasmus said that after he examined the Vaticanus , determined it was created in his time period a fraudulent/fake. He said that he monitored, and pressured by the Catholic leadership, and even feared for his life! Next is the Codex Sinaiticus, supposedly mid 4th century? So we have the case of the two Constantine’s, Constantine Simonides, and Constantine Tischendorf. David Daniels at Chic Publications has a whole series about the Sinaiticus, in correlation with Simonides, and Tischendorf. He shows systematically how, and why Constantine Simonides created this document in the early 19th century, and Constantine Tischendorf was a money hungry, liar. David also said he has documentation of independent chemical testing showing that the ink on the “Codex Sinaiticus” was from the 19th century! So it validates that Constantine Simonides created this supposedly ancient document, and is nothing but a fraudulent/fake document! What I also discovered is that many modern scholars are ignorant, or just ignore the fact that all the missing verses have plenty of support from the early Church Fathers quotes(besides the manuscript support)! They also seem to ignore that the 3 oldest Bibles in the world: the Syrian, the Greek Orthodox(for English they only use the KJV) date to the mid 2nd century. The third Bible dates from is the Old Latin it dates from 90AD. This was started by the Apostle John, and his disciple Poly Carp, and was completed by Poly Carp, Irenaeus, Tertullian! All three of these of these Bibles match the TR, and the KJV! One other thing I discovered is back in 2012 manuscripts were discovered in Antioch dating from 135-150, and they match the TR, and the KJV. This is why I am a KJV preferred/best, but I do utilize other traditional text Bibles. I suspiciously think that there is an agenda?

  • Hi
    I believe the Catholic Church has changed the bible over the years to suit their agenda. Even pictures of Jesus as a white man. The bible clearly states no false idols but people pray to the pope. I believe the Old Testament was from God, but he didn’t understand us because he is a God. This is why Jesus was sent as a human to learn about us, he then explained to God we can’t be the same as him because we are not Gods. Jesus is our translator, that is why we have to go through Jesus to get to God. Therefore I only feel the New Testament is needed because it is based on what God had learned about us from Jesus. Anyway can someone please send me a link to a copy of the New Testament that is in modern language but the closest to the Tryndale version. I know you say the KJ is closest but I’m sure there are several versions of this as well. I need more information please. Thanks

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