KJV 1611 - A Witness Against the VPP doctrine
VPP stands for verbal (words), plenary (the complete), preservation of the Holy Scriptures. It is the complete preservation of every single word of the original (damaged or lost) autograph (in Hebrew/Aramaic of the Old Testament & in Greek of the New Testament). It is a new doctrine cooked up by some 'wise' men of the West, that in 1611 God inspired the KJV translators to produce/select a 100% errorless text, from which they gave us an errorless translation. So they want to indoctrinate us with this teaching, that must be accepted by faith and not by facts. Anyone who challenges them on these will be treated with scorn and sometimes with slander! Who are the chief proponents of this doctrine? They are none other than my 4 ex teachers at F.E.B.C. - who were greatly influenced by Dr D.A.Waite & company of America. They are very grateful to Dr. Waite for sharing this belief with them for they believe that any church without the perfect KJV as their only Bible will drift into neo-evangelicalism, neo-fundamentalism, into the World Council of Churches, into liberalism and what have you. Since there are man}' competing Bible versions, they felt there is urgent need to super exalt the KJV unto the status of perfection and to discredit or damn the rest. They have to resort to half truths & misrepresentations to defend their views. To them the end justifies the means.
Recently I bought a reprint of the 1611 KJV from their bookroom for I was curious to know whether there are evidences in it that would debunk this doctrine. Yes, I found them in some places, especially in 2 great Messianic chapters in Isaiah, the Gospel prophet. So let me share Isaiah 9:1-7 & 49:1-12 with you.
In particular I want the reader to notice that the translators themselves offered alternate readings in the margin at 9:3 & 49:5. For 9:3 - it is found in the Kethib, Syriac Peshitta, Aramiac Targum & 20 medieval Hebrew manuscripts; whereas the KJV reading is from the Masoretic Text. For 49:5 - it is found in the LXX (the Septuagint, the ancient Old Testament Greek translation) and in the DSS (the Dead Sea Scrolls), whereas the KJV reading is from the Kethib (Hebrew text). (From the textual footnotes of the NKJV & the Holman Christian Standard Bible & from the Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties.)
These alternate readings meant that the translators were unsure in certain places. This goes to prove that the translators did not have one pure text nor an absolutely without error translation. They relied on various texts and other language versions to give us the KJV. Most of the time they did their work correctly, as when they chose not to follow the traditional Hebrew Masoretic Text in for example Psalm 22:16, which the MT reads 'Like a lion my hands and feet' instead of 'they pierced my hands and my feet' and in Psalm 23:6, which the MT reads 'return' instead of 'dwell' - 'I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever'. Both corrections were influenced by renderings in other ancient versions of various languages.
Peter, what is your view concerning the preservation of the Bible?
My view is the traditional view, the view of the KJV translators and that of any balanced. sane, honest, conservative student of the Bible & practically all conservative Bible scholars. I do not rely on any Confession of Faith, whose statement on the Bible may appear ambiguous (which the extremist take advantage of to justify their stand). I believe that the original is letter and word perfect, directly inspired of God. But we do not have this kind of perfection available to us. But all the major doctrines pertaining to salvation and instructions in righteousness, of important records of persons, places and events, and God's various promises of blessings are left intact. Errors in one manuscript text can be found correct in other manuscripts and language versions. Many actual scribal errors can be corrected by studying the context and other internal evidences. That is why in the Bible we have a repetition of various accounts to aid us - for example events concerning the kings and others in the Old Testament and in the New Testament of various events and teachings of Jesus and His apostles. An error found in one account may not likely be found in another. There are discrepancies in the Bible which are only apparent, and can be resolved with some study. However some words are permanently lost as in for example 1 Sam. 13:1. Still the question remains? Why did not God preserve for us a perfect text since He gave us one in the beginning? My answer is: So that you and I may cast our eyes upon the Perfect Word of God, even the Lord Jesus Christ and called upon him for wisdom. So that you and I may use our intelligence and diligence to make sense out of the nonsense, as for example 2 Samuel 15:7, where the 40 years is clearly wrong. It should be just a few years according to the context, and Josephus, the Jewish historian, has it as 4 years.
What about those verses that says God will preserve for us a perfect text?
There are verses that says His precepts, commandments, counsel, testimonies and the gospel will stand or endure forever (Ps.33:l 1, 100:5. 111:7-8. 119:152, 160, 1 Peter 1:23.25). but the following have been misused to support the perfect preservation view.
Psalm 12:5-8 - it
speaks of people preservation. Those who teach perfect Bible
preservation in the year 1611 will have to admit that between the time of David who
wrote the Psalm < about BC 1000) and 1611 the promise of preservation was not fulfilled.
The KJY translators say it refers to people preservation. See 1611 edition of KJV and
refer to the margin notes of this verse. Verse 6-8 is the people's affirmation of God's
promise of His protection of His own, in verse 5! There is a parallel verse in Ps. 18:30.
Psalm 19:7 - The law
of the Lord is perfect - refers to the testimonies, statutes, &
commandments that are perfect in converting the soul, in making him wise.
Isaiah 40:8 - The
word of the Lord will stand forever. The context refers to the sure
promise of the coming of John the Baptist and of the Messiah, the Lord Jesus.
Mt. 24: 35 - My words shall not pass away refers to the absolute certainty of
prophecies in the preceding 34 verses.
Mt. 5:18 - the law, not a jot or tittle will pass away. The law according
to the context
refers to the 10 commandments, the moral law. A figure of speech is used, to mean that
the complete (not one jot or tittle will pass away) moral law will never be done away with
(till heaven & earth pass away), but will have to be fulfilled.
John 10:34-35- And the scripture cannot be broken. It refers to Psalm 82:6 which
Jesus brought to the attention of the Jews who wanted to stone Him for calling Himself
the Son of God. He said this verse that supported Him cannot be broken (annulled)
because it is written in their law. their Scriptures. It refers to a particular verse and thank
God we still have it now in our Bible.
Luke 4:4 - It is
written, man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that
proceeds out of the mouth of God - It is written in Deut.8:3. Every word refers to the
commandments of God. If we obey them there will be both material and spiritual
blessings, and for those who feed on His words and His truth. Read the whole of Deut. 8.
Scribal shortcomings here and there in our Bible have not affected what we ought to know about Him, We can thank God that because of His providential preservation there is enough of Scripture even in the worst of translations for "doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness" 2 Timothy 3:16-17.
Please do not allow extreme views to unsettle us. If you are holding a Chinese CUV or a Modern Chinese version (whose N.T. is based on different text source than the KJV) and if you have a modern conservative English or another language Bible, do not allow anyone to discourage you of your possession. Indeed you are more blessed than anyone who has only a KJY. Personally I have 10 Bible versions to compare with. My favourite ones are the NKJV & ESV (for their accuracy, readability. & beautiful cadence). It is also good to possess a parallel Bible, say A KJV/Chinese Bible or A KJV/NKJV Bible, available at theTabernacle or FEBC book rooms. They help you to detect differing readings & errors.
# At F.E.B.C. where the new doctrine was first propagated they have at this moment 2 different statements on the KJV. One for the faculty - which says that the text underlying the KJV is closest (therefore not perfect) to the original autograph. The other is for the College itself- which says that the texts underlying the KJV is an exact copy of the original autograph (therefore 100% perfect). Folks, don't you think they need to set their own house in order before indoctrinating others?
1. Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties - Gleason L. Archer.
2. Alleged Discrepancies of the Bible - John W. Haley.
3. The Holy Bible - The KJV -1611 edition.
4. KJV - 150 errors - Peter Ong.
"In Isaiah 9:3 .. the Masoretic Texts reads /-. making lo to mean "not".
This rendering however, introduces a strange reversal in the flow of the thought: God has increased the nation; yet He has not increased their joy, and yet they rejoice like those who gather in a bountiful harvest. But even the Masoretic Jewish scribes perceive this to be an inadvertant misspelling; so they put in the margin the correct spelling l-w (meaning 'to him' or 'for him'). Then the verse means "Thou has multiplied the nation, Thou hast increased the joy for it; they joy before Thee according to the joy in harvest" Gleason L. Archer in his Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties
The Correct Reading according to the alternate reading in the margin
# Notice that the underlined in verse 5 parallels that of verse 6. Due to scribal error it is not so in the KJV.
And now, saith the LORD that
And he said it is a light thing that
shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to
restore the preserved of Israel:
I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that
thou be my salvation, unto the end of