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Translational Errors in the King James Version

Many adherents to the theory of an inerrant translation of scripture, namely those referred to as KJV-onlyists, are thoroughly convinced that Yahuwah has preserved His sacred written word in the English language through the translation of the King James Version, which is also called the Authorized Version. (The naming of this version is another interesting story that I will not go into here. Let it suffice that if you are interested there are many accurate sources available that tell that story.) These King James Onlyist people can (and usually do) get arrogant, violently agitated, and very rude with anyone who opposes their theory on any grounds, but especially on the grounds that the errors of translation that are there are quite obvious to anyone with an honest and discerning eye.

Let it be understood and rest assured that if there is ONE error ANYWHERE in ANY translated text of scripture, then that error is a fatal flaw in the idea of divine inspiration and therefore the version CANNOT be a divinely inspired translation, but the work of man. Our Eloah cannot and will not make ANY errors of ANY kind ANYWHERE .

Unhappily for the KJV-onlyists, there are many, many errors of translation found in the King James Version of the scriptures that can be readily seen by anyone who is honest in their evaluation of what they are reading. These errors on occasion cause the meaning of a particular verse or passage to be muddled and in some cases will even change the intended meaning to the point that it will be completely misunderstood by the average reader.

This cult of KJV-onlyists are for the most part at the extreme negative end of intellectual dishonesty in their defense of an untenable and basically indefensible position and I suspect that is why they get so arrogant, agitated, and rude. If they cannot defend their arguments with sound logic and scripture, then they will defend it with anger, false accusations, statements that demonstrate their ignorance and lack of understanding of scripture and its history and with brash and ignorant statements that make them look even more foolish.

In the interest of showing some of these obvious errors of translation in the KJV , I have made a list (below) showing a FEW of the ones I have run across in my studies. This list is not comprehensive but is a beginning work that will be under continuous construction as more errors are identified. And as these errors are confirmed and time permits they will be included in this article.

If the error is a general one, meaning that the error occurs in more than one place, the word or phrase is listed under the heading General Errors and the correct translation/definition will appear directly beneath the given word or phrase.

If the word or words are of a specific nature and generally confined to one verse or so, the verse(s) where they occur is/are shown in the section Specific Errors with the mistranslated word or phrase underlined in the verse with an explanation of why it is an error and possibly a better or more correct rendering.

The primary sources of these definitions are the Ibriy (Hebrew)/Greek Dictionaries found in the Exhaustive Concordance of James Strong and the BDB (Brown-Driver-Briggs) which are readily available to anyone who desires to check my statements and the definitions given. (Please do check them out for yourself!). If other sources are used they will be noted below the definition given. Something to consider with Strong's is that the first definition given is usually the most accurate with those following definitions apparently placed to satisfy the wording of the King James Version translators.

I have diligently compared the renderings in various versions, including those of the original languages. The Greek that I follow is the so-called Textus Receptus of Stephanus (1550 CE). I use the Ben Asher Ibriy text but I am working on getting the Ben Chayyim text on my computer so that I can use it in comparison also.

Take careful note of the words after the colon in the definitions listed from Strong's. These are the many different English words that are used by the translators to represent the same thought or word in the Ibriy. Sometimes this is okay, just as occasionally happens in English. Unhappily, sometimes these rendered words show a lack of understanding or worse of the passage by the particular translator and ultimately results in the wrong understanding of the passage for the reader. Sometimes these rendered English words actually have an exact opposite modern meaning to each other yet they are rendered from the same original language word and which sometimes does not have the rendered English meaning at all. It looks sometimes like a particular translator did not know the meaning of the word and so he guessed at what should be there. Then another translator who was working on a different section had the same problem with the same word and he also made a guess, but the two guesses produced completely different English words with variant or opposite meanings.


In order to see the Ibriy and Greek spellings, the appropriate fonts must be installed on your computer. These fonts can be downloaded from the Free Resources menu on the home page. They are in self-extracting ZIP format and will install when they are unzipped in the Fonts folder.


General Errors - errors of a general nature that occur throughout the KJV .


Specific Errors - by Verse

The Ibriy word rendered as "colours" in this verse is pas (H6446) and it literally means a tunic that reaches to the wrists and the feet. Note that the word "many" is italicized and therefore does not appear in the original language.



This verse says absolutely NOTHING about "digging down a wall." In fact it is referring to the killing of Shekem and his people for raping their sister. In this frenzy they also hamstrung an ox.


In the general sense of "do not kill" if that is what this passage of the KJV meant then we could not eat, because in order for us eat we MUST kill. Yes, even vegetarians kill in order to eat.


The word "flagon" does not appear ANYWHERE in scripture. Note that the KJV translators qualified it with the phrase, "of wine," which is also not in that passage. The word there is 'ashiyshah and it actually means, "a raisincake."


Hadad?ezer and Hadar?ezer are two different people. KJV misspelled the name here. In the Ibriy the name is Hadad?ezer


Both underlined names in this verse are Yahuwzabad (H3075)


The "linen yarn" in this case is actually a place in Kilikia named Que.


The word is REJECT, not ABHOR. Note that myself is not there (italicized).


The Ibriy says "elohiym." If "angels" is correct here, then it should have been rendered as "angels" everywhere that they have rendered it as "God" including the creation account in B'ereshiyth (Genesis) one.


So the sounds were coming from a round object in the sky and were not thunder from a storm.


(Take note that Mr. Strong defined this word to mean two opposite things.)


HaMelek (Hammelech) means the king." This man's name was NOT Hammelech! The phrase actually reads "the son of the king."



Again, Hammelech is not this man's father's name at all. The word (with the definite article ha) means "the son of the king."


Ebedmelech is not a name of one word as rendered, but is a phrase meaning "servant of a (or the) king."


An imprecation IS a curse, and not an execration. Likewise to vilify does NOT mean to curse.


This word has NOTHING to do with men, mad or otherwise, as would be suspected by the innocent reader, but describes an area that is a high insult to their character and should have been rendered as such. Note that in the attempt to transliterate this place name, the translators lost the entire meaning of the passage.


At the time this was written, THE SON OF Yahuwah was not yet known. The Ibriy scripture says plainly "a son of eloah" (the indefinite article), which could be any being that they thought was divine, including their pagan deities.


"Christ" is transliterated from the Greek word christos, which literally means "anointed" (mashiach in Ibriy). It is not a name as it appears to be here. In the Greek there is the definite article preceding this word and this should have been rendered as THE Anointed.


Take note that the word "HOLY" is italicized. It does not appear in the TR. This should read, "blasphemy of the Spirit . . "


In the STE 1550 (TR), the word rendered as God (underlined above) is actually I AM. It should read, "I am not the Eloah of the dead . ."


What does it mean, to "strain AT a gnat?" The correct rendering is, "Blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!"


It was called "Gulgoleth" (H1538 - skull) and NOT the perverted and Anglicized "Golgotha!"


The word in the Greek is aion which literally, actually, and every other way, means age. The end of this age will occur when Yahushua returns. The end of the world, meaning the earth, will occur some one thousand years later.

Also the word "Amen" is the name of a pagan deity of Mitsrayim (see Shemot 23:13). The correct term is Amein (aw-mane).


The word my was added by the translators to "clarify" the verse, while in fact the definite article o` (the) appears in the TR and needs no clarification. This small omission and further addition changes the idea that is conveyed by the verse. With it saying THE Father instead of MY Father, the ONENESS of Yahushua and Yahuwah are seen and the pagan polytheistic trinity is refuted. This correction also puts it in agreement with Dabariym (Deuteronomy) 6:4 and many other passages.


KJV -onlyists go to great lengths in an attempt to justify the pagan word Easter here, but they are all in vain.


A MUCH better rendering of this verse is, "So they said, "Have faith in the Master Yahushua the Anointed so that you may be saved, you and your household."

The KJV gives the impression that belief alone (Baptist "faith alone") will produce salvation, while the passage actually says that belief will put you in a position to receive salvation.


The word in the TR is correctly rendered religious. The difference is that superstitions are irrational faith and religion is supposed to be rational faith. Unhappily many people of today are superstitious instead of religious.


The actual phrase in the TR is "the Divine I AM." There is no such thing as a "godhead" in scripture.


These two words in the Greek are epiphero and orge. Respectively they do NOT mean "takes vengeance" but "inflicts wrath."


There is no definite article here in the TR. This should read, "However, in spirit he speaks mysteries."


The Greek word in the TR is boast. A better rendering of this verse is, "(as also you have understood us in part), that we are your boast as you also are ours, in the day of the Master Yahushua."


The definite article is here but ignored in the KJV . This should read, "when it pleased THE Eloah . . "


The Greek word here is thumos which literally means "passionate anger." The word that means "wrath" is orge and is properly rendered as such elsewhere.


The Greek word rendered "by" is dia. It means "through." There is a big difference in "creating by" and "creating through." The words beneath this verse show that all things were created BY the power of the Father THROUGH the agency of His Son. That also is shown in the creation account of B'ereshiyth (Genesis) One.


This verse has a couple of errors of translation. It should read, "Let all bitterness, passionate anger, wrath, outcry, and slander be put away from you, with all malice."


The Greek word here means "lowly." A better rendering is, "who will transform our lowly body . ."


Again the Greek word is dia. It still means "through." (See also Rhomaios [Romans] 2:16)


The word rendered here as "rejoicing" actually means, "grounds for boasting."


These words are of questionable origin. They do NOT appear in the Byzantine Greek texts (also called the Textus Receptus by some). They were not in the original Greek texts compiled by Erasmus but were in the Roman Catholic Latin Vulgate of Jerome. The first Greek text where they were seen was produced by a scribe at Oxford named Roy AFTER Erasmus made the statement that he did not include them in his Greek text because he had seen no Greek manuscripts that contained them. He then went on to say that if he saw just one that did, he then would include them in his texts also. It was not long after Erasmus' statement that the texts of Roy appeared with the words and Erasmus duly incorporated them into his text.

These words also do NOT appear in the Majority of the extant Greek MSS that make up the Textus Receptus and therefore should be considered as a MINORITY rendering.


Byzantine has "nations" while Stephanus 1550 has "saints."


From two Ibriy words, namely "har" (H2022 - a short. form of H2042 - a mountain or range of hills) and "meggidown"(H4023 - rendezvous).

So the correct rendering if it is to be pronounced AS STATED "in the Hebrew (Ibriy) tongue" MUST be Har-Meggidown and NOT Aramgeddon!

Also the word "Hebrew" does not appear in the original languages. It is properly IBRIY, which means "one from afar" (or a distant place).


Byzantine text does NOT include the phrase whereas the Stephanus 1550 does.


Ibriy Scripture - Consistency Errors

VALLEY - The English word valley has a reasonably direct meaning to most people. (If you are not sure of that meaning, check any modern English dictionary.) The translators however rendered FIVE different words as "valley" while only two of those words are even close to our dictionary definitions. The others mean "river," "dale," and "lowland."

The three immediately below do not mean valley and should not have been rendered as such. The use of these words, as you will see in other cases where incorrect renderings occur, leads the reader to the wrong view of the event or place. This is not conducive to good understanding.

The two immediately below really do mean valley, albeit they are two different types and this distinction should have been shown in the translation.


Greek Scripture - Consistency Errors

CROSS

CRUCIFY

HOLY GHOST

No "ghost" involved here. No spooks allowed. Just the Spirit of Yahuwah, and He is SACRED.

Example of Transliteration where translation should have occurred
BAPTIZE - used by many "churches" to denote their ordinance of sprinkling and pouring of water on someone as a means of admission into their "church." In reality it means to dip or submerge and is the means of attaining to the blood of our Savior in the likeness of His death, burial, and resurrection. Called by the Roman Catholic Church a "sacrament" and other apostate groups an "ordinance."

This word means "immerse" and should be rendered as such.

Italics: Sometimes Helpful, Sometimes Not
It is almost impossible to translate any passage from one language into another and have a word for word rendering. Also Ibriy and Greek idioms often do not translate very well into literal English.

Beginning in 1560 with the Geneva Bible, translators initiated the practice of adding italicized clarifying words to their translations in hopes of making the original language clear to the reader. The translators of the KJV also did this. Often the added italicized words did help make the meaning clearer. At other times the translators, through their doctrinal misunderstandings, added errors instead.

There are many instances of this in the KJV and all you have to do to discover where they occur is to look up the actual reading in the original language and then read it with and without the italicized words. You will be surprised at how many of those "clarifying words" not only were NOT needed but actually should never have been placed to begin with.

A very good demonstration of this is in Yahuchanan (John) 8:28 where the translators added the word he to the statement of Yahushua. What Yahushua was saying there is that He is the Great I AM, which is the name of Yahuwah stated to Mosheh (Moses) in Shemot. This statement identifies Yahushua as being the very Creator and King of Yisra'el, but the insertion of the word he by the translators made it a simple expression that in effect denies the divinity of Yahushua. This same denial of His Divine Nature is the very major complaint that the KJV-onlyists have against the "modern" versions.

Insertion of text from other sources
The Greek text commonly called by the Latin title Textus Receptus (Received Text) is a compilation of many Greek manuscripts (MSS). The MSS from which it is compiled is also referred to as the Majority Text due to the fact that most of the several thousand manuscripts and pieces of manuscripts agree with each other to a very high degree (within 2%). The King James Version is supposedly based on those Majority Texts but in fact there are several readings in it that are directly from the Latin Vulgate of Jerome.

In fact, the Greek text of Erasmus, which was the forerunner of the Textus Receptus, actually has phrases and passages that were inserted from Jerome's Vulgate because there were blanks in the manuscripts from which he worked. These insertions became a part of the Textus Receptus and so on into the King James Version itself. While this is hardly proof of any wrongdoing or error, it is something to keep in mind when reading the vitriolic ranting of the KJV-Onlyists. One of their major points of contention is that the Alexandrian MSS were corrupt and anything from them must also be corrupt. The Vulgate is from those MSS (in the form of the LXX) and therefore following their line of reasoning the King James Version, since it contains passages from that source, must also be corrupt.

Consider This:
No translation is completely free of errors of translation. That in itself should be ample evidence that the statement of preservation of His word had nothing to do with various foreign language versions but with His original language text, which has been preserved in accordance with His word. Take note that even with the change of the letter structure of the Ibriy language from "Paleo-Ibriy" to the modern square test, the same meanings and wording are preserved. This is amply demonstrated in many places, such as some of the "Dead Sea Scrolls" that have been released to the public view.

Sometimes these errors of translation are introduced unintentionally by well-meaning people who have missed the point of a phrase or maybe they just made a human error of transcription (copyist error) and there are thought to be a few of these in the original language texts that we have today. But those suspected errors in the original language, unlike those errors of translation, have no impact on the meaning of the passage where they occur.

Sometimes the translational errors are deliberate attempts by some individual or class of individuals who want to make a case for their particular body or group, such as the so-called "African-American Bible" that has been translated, if it can be called that, in such a manner as to make all of the characters in scripture appear to be Negroid who used Negro "jive talk" (i.e., "Yo, Bro!") in their daily speech. Other versions have appeared that prop up various religious groups, such as the Roman Catholic Church (with several versions), the Mormon version of Joseph Smith, and the New World Translation of the Jehovah?s Witnesses. Needless to say, none of these translations are inspired and most of them not worthy to be called the word of our Creator, even though they were all supposedly rendered from valid source documents.

The very apparent errors of translation in the KJV, and a lot of them have been carried over into other versions, have also produced the greatest majority of so-called "contradictions" of scripture and so given the opponent a solid basis for denying the divine inspiration of the original language texts. Listen to the naysayers of scripture and see if that is not the message you hear. Then look at the particular passage under attack and even though what they say is in accordance with the KJV, it will not be in accordance with the underlying original language text.

So the only honest and legitimate conclusion possible is that there is no "divinely inspired" translated version of scripture. Since that is the case, and you are responsible for what you believe, it behooves you to take no man?s word for what is in scripture. Get the original language scripture and learn how to decipher it for yourself. The texts are easily obtained and with the language tools available today the decipherment is not as hard as you may imagine.


Related Articles:
The Bible
Some Answers to KJV-Onlyists
Knowledge vs Science
Corrupt vs Peddle

C.F. Castleberry
http://www.considerthis.net
buck@considerthis.net