Rick Warren did as much as anybody to distract us from the King James Version of the Bible, when he consistently used a variety of versions in his "Purpose Driven" books.
Now, fewer and fewer people can actually quote scriptures. I am not blaming Warren alone, but the irrational abandonment of the King James Bible has cost Christianity more than can be measured.
I know - people say that the King James Version is too hard to understand.
Well, that is arguable. I first read the entire New Testament when I was about 10 years old. It never occurred to me that it was too difficult to read. I seemed to understand it very well. I could easily follow the stories of Jesus in the Gospels. I was excited to read the stories in the Acts of the Apostles. I read the Epistles, and even the Book of Revelation. At eleven years old, there were a lot of things that I did not understand, but it wasn't because of its readability. It was because those things required an adult mind to fully appreciate.
All of my life, I listened to preachers preach from the King James Version of the Bible. The KJV never discouraged me from trying to understand every story I heard or read.
Then, at about the age of 15, as a member of a Bible Quiz team, I memorized the majority of the Epistles of 1 and 2 Corinthians. Again, I was able to understand amazingly well all the things that were being taught in those pages.I preached my first sermon at the age of 14, using a KJV Thompson Chain Reference Bible as my textbook. By the time I graduated from High School I had already preached about 100 sermons. Every sermon I prepared in those days was dug out almost solely from the King James Version of the Bible. I did not preach other people's sermons.
I prepared my own sermons directly from the Bible. I searched the entire Bible on various Bible topics. I learned how to find scores of verses on just about any subject that I wanted to develop. I was never hindered by "Thee" or "Thou" or the "Shalt" and "Shalt not." It doesn't take rocket science to know that Thee or Thou means you, or Shalt means shall.
By the time I was 21 years old, I could quote hundreds of scripture verses from all over the Bible. I could tell scores of detailed Bible stories and understand the underlying messages. The KJV never handicapped me. In those days, it was used almost universally.
But nowadays, you can scarcely find a King James Bible being used.
People who read the other versions almost never memorize verses. Even if they do memorize verses, nobody recognizes them, because there are so many versions out there.
And tragically, many people are not using other versions, but actual PARAPHRASES. No paraphrase deserves the appellation, "Bible." (How would you like for your love-letters to your spouse to be paraphrased by two dozen total strangers? You would certainly find many of their word-substitutes unacceptable.)When it comes to scriptural ACCURACY - "THE MESSAGE" is almost entirely worthless. I have spent over fifty years studying the Bible from cover to cover, and I can tell you that if your primary Bible is THE MESSAGE - you won't have a clue what the Bible says. You may like the way it speaks to you - but that cannot justify its pernicious, inaccurate representation of TRUTH. In my book, an inaccurate TRUTH is a lie.
In my strong opinion, the biggest single reason why Christianity should cleave to the KJV is for the purpose of maintaining a universal standard in the English language. We have utterly shot ourselves in the foot. Almost nobody can quote scriptures any more. Almost nobody can recognize where a verse comes from. That is much more serious - even tragic - than anyone is admitting.
Every English-speaking person should be able to recognize the Word of God and quote it in a common version. Otherwise, the practice of scripture memorization will be almost entirely lost.
I do not intend to make this article a comparison of Bible versions, but it is not difficult at all for you to GOOGLE "what's wrong with other versions of the Bible" to discover how many critical Bible passages have been tampered with or completely eliminated from most of the alternate versions of the Bible. I have a HUGE problem with that. NIV, RV, Amplified, Duoay, and others - while having a limited usefulness - are NOT reliable versions of the Bible.
Great and primary doctrines of the Bible have been mishandled in the alternate versions. Several of the most essential doctrines have been almost completely eliminated in some versions, including the doctrine of the Blood of Jesus, the Virgin Birth, God's Plan of Redemption and others.
At the risk of sounding like a radical (anybody with firm convictions is now a radical), I declare that Christians everywhere need to own a quality King James Version of the Bible. The biggest single reason why you won't like it is an unfounded or irrational mental block.
I am warning you... if you do not learn the Word of God from the KJV, you are at grave risk for being deceived or misled by errant and inaccurate versions. READABILITY is NOT the most important issue. TRUTH is the issue.
Yes, I know that many people argue that we have a better understanding of the ancient Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic languages than the King James translators had. That is also arguable. Many of the modern translations have a definite agenda behind them. NOBODY needs a translation that is done by scholars working with an agenda. The Word of God must be PURE and untainted by men's opinions or profit motives.
The King James Version was the world-wide standard for centuries. That alone leads me to believe that Almighty God ordained it to be the primary English version of the Bible. Call me narrow-minded if you want to, but I am telling you anyway, that if we want the Church to be strong in this hostile generation, we need a COMMON TEXTBOOK.
No other English version of the Bible deserves to be the universal textbook than the King James Version.
MUST READ! - Here is another powerful article that explains
WHY you should ONLY use the KING JAMES VERSION.
For thousands of pages of FREE Bible Studies on every subject, including PROPHECIES about the last days, visit kenraggio.com now!