…My heart standeth in awe of Thy word… Psalm 119:161
This Psalm sums it up. The God of the King James Bible has overtaken my world, become my white knight, captured my focus and fully engaged my soul. My whole life, I’ve longed to have a heart as inclined to God and His words as my mind and intellect have been. As a child, I struggled with the idea that “believing”–a mental faith if you will, in a historical event that somehow granted me eternal life if I but believed–albeit in a detached fashion, that Jesus had died for my sins…was any different than the warning in James 2:19,
Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
My daughter, feeling the same struggles as I did in those years, says in her testimony that she tried to feed her soul with her NIV, in vain and almost gave up the faith! It wasn’t until she received a KJV Bible that her heart quickened and responded to its purity and truth. This is from a girl who has loved the Lord, and out of obedience to Him (not anything I was requiring) dedicated the first of every day to reading His word. But it wasn’t changing her life. She wasn’t growing in her faith. Now she reads for over an hour every morning at 6 am. She has a stack of index cards with favorite scriptures she goes over every night before bed, writing them in her heart. The joy and peace in this 13 year old’s life is spilling over onto our entire family…
God was there for me also, all along, calling to me, but I didn’t understand the pertinence of the scriptures I was reading. The Bible seemed flat, my response to it “rote”. Reading it was something good Christians did. Keeping busy in the church helped me feel that I had “fruit” in my life.
Then two years ago, unbeknownst to me until recently, several KJV believers started to pray for me and mine. Tears are flowing as I type this…I was once so blind, thinking all manner of presumptous thoughts towards the King James Version, and people who loved it. I was the queen of skepticism, having been weaned on the common assumption that having an assortment of Bible versions from which to “choose” or “compare” was a good thing! I accepted without a second thought, the false claims of advertisers that the KJV was outdated, archaic and hard to understand.
Meanwhile I went with the flow, a bit confused at all the conflicting scripture passages in the various versions, but accepting other people’s expertise rather than thinking twice, and taking responsibility to do my own research. It bothered me to hear spiritual leaders correct the Bible, and point out so called errors, but as I said before, my inclination was to trust their judgment and go my merry way.
When all the red flares in my path finally lined up and got my full attention, the research materials were dumped in my lap, thousands of pages of them, and dvds galore–as if God had been bombarded by the saints’ prayers long enough already! I am soooo glad He never gave up on me, that His mercy is truly everlasting.
One of the overarching testaments to the KJV advocate is their scripture saturated approach to this debate. “What saith the scriptures?” “What does God say in His book?” is the underlying theme of everything they teach. How can you argue with God? You can’t if you have His words as your Final Authority.
In stark contrast, as a dear friend of mine put it so well:
The character of the opposition [to the KJV] becomes evident in only a few exchanges – no scripture, no mention of God, no mention of how Satan works, no spiritual perspective, no fear of God before their eyes (Rom. 3:18).
If you don’t know what this looks like, go listen in on a textual criticism class at your local Bible college. Or pick up James R. White’s The King James Only Controversy. I’ve experienced both. It’s a cold, detached, mathematical method, no awe for God as the Divine Author of scripture. No scriptural basis for their conjectures. Labeling and misrepresenting of people who don’t fall in line. And absolutely no love lost for the 99% of manuscripts forming the basis of the KJV Bible.
I love to talk about what God has done now, in my life, in preserving His living and life-changing words perfectly throughout history, and about all the relevant scriptures I’m discovering, with anyone who will listen, even the naysayers. Even when they revile me and ridicule my stand, and take me to task for things they don’t yet understand.
My head knew all along that there was life to be found in God’s words. Now, at long last, my heart does too.