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Bible Versions: The King James Only Debate, by David Malcolm Bennett

Coming in the Spring 2013 Issue:

Bible Versions: What is the Best Bible Translation?


1 James R. White, The King James Only Controversy (Minneapolis: Bethany, 1995), 3-4. (See also James White’s website: Alpha and Omega Ministries,
2 Alister McGrath, In the Beginning: The Story of the King James Bible (London: Hodder, 2001), 71-80, 86-88, 114-23.
3 McGrath, Beginning, 141-65, 172-88. King James particularly objected to some of the marginal notes in the Geneva Bible, some of which said uncomplimentary things about Kings.
4 See the Dedication to King James 1 in the different editions of the KJV. See also McGrath, Beginning, 188-96, who quotes from the KJV Preface, which does not appear in all KJV editions.
5 McGrath, Beginning, 164, 206-207.
6 McGrath, Beginning, 207, 277-85.
7 There had been major revisions of the KJV in Britain in 1885 (RV) and America in 1901 (ASV), but these never gained great popularity, F.F. Bruce, The English Bible (London: Methuen, 1963), 135-152, 185. The New King James Version has proved more popular but this was not published until 1982.
8 For a detailed, calm and rational discussion of the issues in this debate see D.A. Carson, The King James Version Debate (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1979).
9 Most people I have encountered who promote King James-Only views quote Riplinger more than anyone else.
10 Bob and Gretchen Passaintino, “New Age Bible Versions: A Critical Review”; Copyright 1994, Bob and Gretchen Passaintino, permission to quote granted by Answers In Action, P.O. Box 2067, Costa Mesa, California, 92628; Tel. (714) 646 9042.
11 G.A. Riplinger, New Age Bible Versions (Munroe Falls: AV Publications, 1993), 1-3. (Page numbers seem to vary slightly in the different editions.)
12 An Introduction to the RSV of the Old Testament (NY: Nelson, 1952), 83-88.
13 For a good introduction to textual criticism of the NT, see Carson, KJV Debate, 15-78.
14 For information about the Greek Text used for the KJV, see Carson, KJV Debate, 33-37.
15 Riplinger, New Age, 397. Riplinger also claims that God judged Westcott for his mishandling of the Greek text of the NT by making him virtually voiceless, New Age, 2 & 448. When these claims are examined, they are clearly a gross distortion of the facts, see Arthur Westcott, Life and Letters of Brooke Foss Westcott (2 vols. New York: Macmillan, 1903)1:198, 272-73.
16 Riplinger, New Age, 397-428. See also Westcott, Life and Letters, 1:117-19. For a balanced view on this see James May, “Westcott and the Ghostly Guild”, viewed 19 Oct. 2012,
17 Riplinger, New Age, 676-77, note 128.
18 B.F. Westcott in “The Response to the Appeal”, Borderland, Vol. I, No. 1 (July 1893), 11.
19 “William Wynn Westcott”, viewed 17 Oct. 2012,
20 For more information about Bishop B.F. Westcott, see Arthur Westcott, Life and Letters of Brooke Foss Westcott.
21 Riplinger, New Age, 14.
22 Riplinger, New Age, 14-22.
23 The correct pronunciation of the Tetragrammaton is now commonly believed to be “Yahweh,” rather than “Jehovah.”
24 For the uses of Jehovah in the KJV see Gen. 22:14; Ex. 6:3; 17:15; Judg. 6:24; Ps. 83:18; Is. 12:2; 26:4. Why there are these few exceptions is not always clear, but it usually appears to have to do with the Tetragrammaton being especially stressed and when it is being used with other divine names. For more information about this word see R. Laird Harris, Gleason L. Archer, Jr., and Bruce K. Waltke, The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (2vols. Chicago: Moody, 1980), 1:212-14.
25 James White has a Christ-honoring chapter that puts KJV-Only views on this subject under the microscope, Controversy, 193-221.
26 Riplinger, New Age, 332.
27 Riplinger, New Age, 264-65
28 For a good discussion on the text of this verse see Bruce M. Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament (London: United Bible Societies, 1975), 715-17. See also Carson, KJV Debate, 34-36.
29 White, Controversy, 196-97.
30 McGrath, Beginning, 222-28.
31 J.T. Chick, The Attack (Chino: Chick Publications).
32 Carson, KJV Debate, 39-40, 105-23; Passaintino, “Review”.


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Category: Biblical Studies, Pneuma Review, Winter 2013

About the Author: David Malcolm Bennett, Ph.D., is an Anglo-Australian Christian researcher and writer with over 15 books in print. They include The Altar Call: Its Origins and Present Usage, The Sinner’s Prayer: Its Origins and Dangers (companion website:, The Origins of Left Behind Eschatology, Edward Irving Reconsidered: The Man, His Controversies, and the Pentecostal Movement, and The General: William Booth. He is also the transcriber, editor and publisher of The Letters of William and Catherine Booth and The Diary and Reminiscences of Catherine Booth.

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