Are there grave defects in the Bible?
In the preface of the Revised Standard Version (1971), one line reads, “…Yet the King James Version has grave defects….”
Muslim have latched on to this and claim this is evidence that the Bible has grave defects.
When asked what the grave defects are, no Muslim has an answer because they have never even read the preface in full! You can read it here yourself.
First of all, it says the King James Version (KJV) has grave defects. KJV is only a TRANSLATION that was made less than 500 years ago! The Bible is around 2000 – 3500 years old.
The man-made translation of 1611 has grave defects does not mean the Bible in the original language has grave defects! That’s like saying if there are defects in the in the English translations of the Quran, e.g. Pickthall or Yusuf Ali, this means that the Arabic Quran has defects. Does that make any sense? Of course not. That is ridiculous.
What are the “grave defects” of the KJV anyway?
If you actually read the preface in it’s entirety, you will learn that…
“A major reason for revision of the King James Version, which is valid for both the Old Testament and the New Testament, is the change since 1611 in English usage. Many forms of expression have become archaic, while still generally intelligible—the use of thou, thee, thy, thine and the verb endings -est and -edst, the verb endings -eth and -th, it came to pass that, whosoever, whatsoever, insomuch that, because that, for that, unto, howbeit, peradventure, holden, aforetime, must needs, would fain, behooved, to you-ward, etc.”
This simply means that many words used in KJV are old English that are no longer used because language is dynamic.
“Other words are obsolete and no longer understood by the common reader. The greatest problem, however, is presented by the English words which are still in constant use but now convey a different meaning from that which they had in 1611 and in the King James Version.
These words were once accurate translations of the Hebrew and Greek Scriptures; but now, having changed in meaning, they have become misleading. They no longer say what the King James translators meant them to say.
Thus, the King James Version uses the word “let” in the sense of “hinder,” “prevent” to mean “precede,” “allow” in the sense of “approve,” “communicate” for “share,” “conversation” for “conduct,” “comprehend” for “overcome,” “ghost” for “spirit,” “wealth” for “well-being,” “allege” for “prove,” “demand” for “ask,” “take no thought” for “be not anxious,” etc.”
This simply means that many words used in KJV now carry a different meaning. Even in our everyday use of language, we see this is true.
I remember 30 years ago if someone said, “I’m gay”, it simply meant he was just happy. Now it has taken on completely different connotations! Many people today don’t even realize that the word “gay” was completely non-sexual originally!
Did you know that in the 1611 KJV, the letter “f’ in the text, is really our letter “s”?
That means a sentence that might read as thus: “The disciples saw the storm and were so afraid.”
would have been written like this in the 1611 KJV: “The difciplef faw the ftorm and were fo afraid.”
Why? Because that was how “s” was written in old English; like an “f”!
Were there grave defects?
“The difciplef faw the ftorm and were fo afraid.”
YES THERE WERE GRAVE DEFECTS!
Hence the need to produce a more accurate translation where the archaic “Thou” is translated as “You”, “Thine” as “Your” and “The difciplef faw the ftorm and were fo afraid” as “The disciples saw the storm and were so afraid.”
But these revisions do not revise the writings in the original language! It is the translations that are revised to make it more accurate and more easily understood by English speakers.
“The Revised Standard Version Bible seeks to preserve all that is best in the English Bible as it has been known and used through the years. It is intended for use in public and private worship, not merely for reading and instruction. We have resisted the temptation to use phrases that are merely current usage, and have sought to put the message of the Bible in simple, enduring words that are worthy to stand in the great Tyndale-King James tradition. We are glad to say, with the King James translators: “Truly (good Christian Reader) we never thought from the beginning, that we should need to make a new Translation, nor yet to make of a bad one a good one … but to make a good one better.”