Friday, 7 January 2011

Mythbusting: Bible Year 2011 (4)

Several of my recent posts have focused on the 400th anniversary of the King James version of the Bible and I make no apology for that. It seems to me that as this significant event is being acknowledged in the church, the media and wider society, it gives us a great opportunity to promote the value and importance of the Bible to our culture. Anything which encourages engagement with the Bible is to be embraced and treated as a gift not a problem.

bible readingHowever, I hope I have also sought to point out that what is most important is not a focus on one particular English translation of the Bible as a cultural artefact but reading the Bible in a translation appropriate for our own particular context today. I want people to discover that the Bible contains Good News for each of us, for our communities and wider society. This is certainly the focus of Bible Year 2011, which we are celebrating in Chelmsford Diocese, and of the many other initiatives across the country including Big Bible and Biblefresh.

There are several good blog posts drawing attention to some of the issues and problems raised by the King James translation and these are an important counter balance to some of the more effusive articles about the King James version.

Tim Goodbody raises a concern about the way in which the KJV has locked some people into an idealised "traditional" faith, holding back the church in mission.

Eddie Arthur has posted a couple of pieces on myths surrounding the KJV or Authroised Version of the Bible. Eddie and his wife Sue are Wycliffe Bible translators and he draws attention to fallacies about the KJB as an English translation and then widens out the debate from an international perspective.

What I find encouraging and exciting is that so much attention is being given to the Bible at this time and it would be a tragedy if we didn’t make the most of it.


eddie said...

thanks for the link, Phil. Much appreciated

nazia said...

nice sharing bilble year 2011 i really like your blog and i hope that every one will get it help full
thanks to share such a great information

english translation

David Sanford said...

Thanks! A big surprise tied into the 400th anniversary of the 1611 King James Version Bible:

Two scholars have compiled the first worldwide census of extant copies of the original first printing of the 1611 King James Version (sometimes referred to as the "He" Bible). For decades, authorities from the British Museum, et al., have estimated that “around 50 copies” of that first printing still exist. The real number is quite different.

For more information, you're invited to contact Donald L. Brake, Sr., PhD, at or his associate David Sanford at