I was on a chat site recently and am again amazed at the blinding brilliance of ignorance. A Christian was lambasting someone who dare suggest the Noah’s ark story was allegory. I read the exchange, my typing fingers twitching in anticipation, and took a deep breath and stayed out of it.
The initial debate morphed into biblical criticism, specifically the validity of the K.J.V. Bible. While defending the Bible the Christian wrote that the K.J.V. was a new translation from the original Greek and Hebrew. Apologists have made this claim dishonestly. By throwing the word original into the mix proponents hope people will assume this means original copies. Alas, it does not. There are none!
In fact the dozens of scholars that supposedly did the translation did very little. How can we know this? During this period the English language was rapidly changing, leaving old English behind. Yet somehow the K.J.V. Bible was written in the old Shakespearean style of 100 years earlier. How did this Happen?
About 100 years before K.J.V. a man named Tyndale translated the Torah and New Testament into a poetic English. It was easy to read and well done so the church executed him for his troubles. Forty years later the Geneva Bible finished what he started, copying most of what Tyndale wrote. Tyndale had little access to Greek and Hebrew texts. He used the Vulgate which is known to be flawed. He may have had Erasmus’ translations in Greek and Hebrew but even these were not originals either.
Erasmus had only fragments of books and letters in Greek and they did not predate Jerome’s Vulgate. In places where sections of Greek were missing he used the Vulgate to fill in the blanks. Erasmus was disappointed in the scribal copies he saw and the poor Latin used in the books and Epistles, so he admits to “cleaning it up”. Jewish Scholars have suggested the Old Testament in Hebrew may be translated from Greek. So how did the K.J.V. Bible end up sounding like Tyndale’s? Simple the editors of K.J.V. copied his writings. The proof is in the archaic words and style, not used in the 1600’s.
I actually enjoy the poetic-archaic language of that Bible but am annoyed by dishonest and ignorant bible thumpers.