Q. First, please accept my heart-felt thanks for your site and your articles. You will never know how greatly you are appreciated. Now, as to my question.
I was told last week that the New King James Version of the bible is Satanic – that it is the same bible that a well know denomination uses and even has the symbol attesting to this. I could hardly believe it – I have a copy of the New King James Version and know that many well known Biblical scholars use it from time to time. This person said that he only used the Old King James Version. I did not choose to argue with him and I am certainly no scholar but I know that you are and I would so appreciate your comment on this matter.
A. There is a group of people who believe that the Old King James is the only accurate English translation of the Bible. And it’s true that several of the newer translations have relied on an early New Testament source text that purportedly contains the influence of gnostic mysticism. Then there are the paraphrases that deserve even less credibility.
Personally I believe that blindly relying on any English translation of the Bible is dangerous. Words don’t travel easily between languages, English is quite simplistic compared to Hebrew and Greek, and all translators are human and therefore biased. The main advantage of using the Old King James is that by now all of its problems have been identified, but many of its words mean something different today than they did in 1611. That’s why the New King James was developed.
When I want to know what a passage really says, I look at the original language, learn what the words meant when the writer used them, and try to discover the historical circumstances in which the passage was written to get a better view of its context. It’s called the literal, historical, grammatical method. If you adopt it, you’ll gain both Spiritual and historical insight, and God’s Word will become even more meaningful. A Strong’s concordance or competent on-line service and a good Bible dictionary can really help with this.