Arminian Today

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Why the KJV Only Emphasis?

The reason for my emphasis as of late on the KJV only movement has simply been from interactions with a few KJV only folks.  Occasionally on a Sunday night, if I am off work, I will visit a local KJV only church.  I enjoy the fellowship, the singing, and the preaching.  However, the KJV only emphasis at the church has a cultic feel to it.  One man named Clarence is emphatic about the KJV issue.  The church has a testimony time and this man will stand and testify to the Lord saving him and then he will praise God for the KJV Bible.  He is of the opinion that the KJV Bible is the inspired, inerrant, infallible, and preserved Word of God.  He even told me that he believes that God inspired the KJV translators to add words in the English Bible for clarity and to avoid confusion.  He now believes that those words, the added words for clarity though not found in the Hebrew or Greek, are inspired by God.

I know that for many of you, the KJV only movement is not found.  It is small and contained.  Here in the South, the KJV movement is perhaps the strongest.  In my city of about 650,000, we have several KJV only churches.  They will often put this on their church marquee (KJV Only).  Most are independent, fundamentalist Baptist (IFB).  Most are small though one church nearby runs around 1,000 people.

The KJV only churches in our area are zealous.  They can be found most Saturday nights street preaching near the bars.  They do prison ministries, bus ministries, and other ministries to reach people.  They are zealous not just for people to be saved from sin but also to reach “neo-evangelicals” with the truth of the KJV.

Those then are the reasons for my emphasis as of late on the KJV only movement.  The KJV issue distracts people from what truly matters.  Further, the KJV controversy divides churches.  It also casts doubt upon the Word of God in various translations such as the ESV, the NKJV, the NASB, or the NIV.  Again, it is illogical to believe that only a 17th century Bible translation is the Word of God and that all other translations are corrupt, from Satan, and are not the Word of God.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

08/14/2013 at 10:53 AM

4 Responses

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  1. Yeah, it must be a regional thing. I know a lot of older folks who prefer the KJV, but none of them would demand it, it’s just what they grew up with. The only KJV only folks I’ve met around here are Mormons. 🙂

    Kevin Jackson

    08/14/2013 at 1:52 PM

  2. I’m in southern Ohio, and you see it here and there in this area. I think think of a few churches off the top of my head that have KJV-Only on their signs, and a few others that don’t have it on their signs but would be very uncomfortable if you read from anything other than the KJV during a service. I love the KJV, but I wish my own church was a little more open to other versions, even though we have no official KJVO stance. Most churches in the denomination probably aren’t preaching from the KJV, we’re just one of the smaller more rural churches that still has that preference.

    That said, I’ve had some contact with some IFB churches from the northern part of the state, and KJVO is so over-emphasized there that it frustrates me a great deal if I let it.

    • There is much I appreciate about fundamentalist churches but the KJVO issue drives me away. I am not desiring them to give up the KJV but, as you say, to be open to other translations.

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