Translational Errors in the King James Version

A Very Poor Translation

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 will show the errant beliefs of the KJV-Onlyists. As more errors are discovered and confirmed, and as 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 your computer's Fonts folder.

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

  • The name of our Eloah, Yahuwah, appears almost 7,000 times in the Ibriy text. It is erroneously translated as LORD (all uppercase), GOD (all uppercase), and Jehovah.

  • The name of our Savior, Yahushua, appears over 1,200 times in scripture in both texts. It is erroneously rendered as Joshua, Jehoshua, and Jesus.

  • The pagan titles "lord" and "god" are used in the translations of both the Ibriy and Greek texts as titles and even names for our Eloah Yahuwah and Savior Yahuhsua.

  • The Ibriy word ben has been consistently misrendered as "children" indicating offspring of both genders instead of its true meaning of the male gender, son.

  • All names starting with or otherwise including the English letter J. This letter or its sound do NOT appear in the Ibriy OR the Greek and did not even become available in the English until after 1500 CE. Therefore ALL of those names starting with or containing the letter J are rendered incorrectly.

  • The Ibriy letter "tsadey" which should be represented in English as the letters TS is consistently rendered as the English letter Z.

  • The Ibriy letter "yod" which should be represented in English as the letter Y is consistently rendered as the English letters I and J. (This error is one of the biggest reasons for the incorrect names of our Father and Savior!)

  • The Ibriy letter "kaph" which should be represented in English as the letter K is consistently rendered as the English letters CH.

  • The Ibriy letter "qowph" which should be represented in English as the letter Q is consistently rendered as the English letter K.

  • The Ibriy letter "waw" which should be represented in English as the letter W is sometimes rendered as the English letter V.

Specific Errors - by Verse

    KJV Genesis 37:3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours.

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.

    KJV Genesis 36:24 And these are the children of Zibeon; both Ajah, and Anah: this was that Anah that found the mules in the wilderness, as he fed the asses of Zibeon his father.

  • H3222 ~miyE yem {yame} - hot springs

    KJV Genesis 49:6 O my soul, come not thou into their secret; unto their assembly, mine honour, be not thou united: for in their anger they slew a man, and in their selfwill they digged down a wall.

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.

    KJV Exodus 20:13 Thou shalt not kill.

  • H7523. ratsach, raw-tsakh'; a prim. root; prop. to dash in pieces, i.e. kill a human being), espec. to murder:--put to death, kill, man-) slay -er), murder -er).

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.

    KJV 2 Samuel 6:19 And he dealt among all the people, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine. So all the people departed every one to his house.

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."

    KJV 2 Samuel 10:16 And Hadarezer sent, and brought out the Syrians that were beyond the river: and they came to Helam; and Shobach the captain of the host of Hadarezer went before them.

KJV misspelled both names here. In the Ibriy text both names are Hadad’ezer. Hadad’ezer and Hadad'ezer are two different people.

  • H1928 rz<[,d>d;h] Hadar`ezer {had-ar-eh'-zer}

  • H2289 rz<[,d>d;h] Hadade'zer {had-ad-eh'-zer}

    KJV 2 Chronicles 1:16 And Solomon had horses brought out of Egypt, and linen yarn: the king's merchants received the linen yarn at a price.

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

    KJV Job 42:6 Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.

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

    KJV Psalm 8:5 For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.

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.

    KJV Psalms 77:18 The voice of thy thunder was in the heaven: the lightnings lightened the world: the earth trembled and shook.

  • H1534 galgal, gal-gal'; by redupl. from H1556; a wheel; by anal. a whirlwind; also dust as whirled):--heaven, rolling thing, wheel.

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

    KJV Jeremiah 31:2 Thus saith the LORD, The people which were left of the sword found grace in the wilderness; even Israel, when I went to cause him to rest.

  • H7280. raga', raw-gah'; a prim. root; prop. to toss violently and suddenly (the sea with waves, the skin with boils); fig. (in a favorable manner) to settle, i.e. quiet; spec. to wink (from the motion of the eye-lids):--break, divide, find ease, be a moment, (cause, give, make to) rest, make suddenly.

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

    KJV Jeremiah 36:26 But the king commanded Jerahmeel the son of Hammelech, and Seraiah the son of Azriel, and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel, to take Baruch the scribe and Jeremiah the prophet: but the LORD hid them.

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

    KJV Jeremiah 37:16 When Jeremiah was entered into the dungeon (H1004), and into the cabins (H2588), and Jeremiah had remained there many days;

  • H1004. bayith, bah'-yith; prob. from H1129 abbrev.; a house (in the greatest var. of applications, espec. family, etc.):--court, daughter, door, + dungeon, family, + forth of, X great as would contain, hangings. home[born], [winter]house (-hold), inside(-ward), palace, place, + prison, + steward, + tablet, temple, web, + within (-out).

  • H2588. chanuwth, khaw-nooth'; from H2583; prop. a vault or cell (with an arch); by impl. a prison:--cabin.

    KJV Jeremiah 38:7 Then took they Jeremiah, and cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah the son of Hammelech, that was in the court of the prison: and they let down Jeremiah with cords. And in the dungeon there was no water, but mire: so Jeremiah sunk in the mire.

  • H4429. Melek, meh'-lek; the same as H4428; king; Melek, the name of two Isr.:--Melech, Hammelech [by includ. the art.].

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."

  • H0953. bowr, bore; from H952 (in the sense of H877); a pit hole (espec. one used as a cistern or prison):--cistern, dungeon, fountain, pit, well.

    KJV Jeremiah 38:6 Now when Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, one of the eunuchs which was in the king's house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon; the king then sitting in the gate of Benjamin;

    H5663. Ebed Melek, eh'-bed meh'-lek; from H5650 and H4428; slave of a king; Ebed-Melek, a eunuch of king Zedekeah:--Ebed-melech.

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

    KJV Jeremiah 44:12 . . . . they shall die, from the least even unto the greatest, by the sword and by the famine: and they shall be an execration (H0423), and an astonishment, and a curse (H7045), and a reproach.

  • H0423. 'alah, aw-law'; from H422; an imprecation:--curse, cursing, execration, oath, swearing.

  • H7045. qelalah, kel-aw-law'; from H7043; vilification:--(ac-) curse (-d, -ing) :--(ac-) curse (-d, -ing).

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

    KJV Jeremiah 48:2 Also thou shalt be cut down, O Madmen; the sword shall pursue thee.

  • H4086. Madmen, mad-mane'; from the same as H1828; dunghill; Madmen, a place in Pal.:--Madmen.

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.

    KJV Daniel 3:25 He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.

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.

    KJV Matthew 2:4 And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.

"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.

    KJV Matthew 12:31 Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.

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

    KJV Matthew 22:32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.

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 . ."

    KJV Matthew 23:24 Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.

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

    KJV Matthew 27:33 And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha, that is to say, a place of a skull,

    KJV Mark 15:22 And they bring him unto the place Golgotha, which is, being interpreted, The place of a skull.

    KJV John 19:17 And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha:

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

    KJV Matthew 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

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).

    KJV John 10:30 I and my Father are one.

  • STE John 10:30 evgw. kai. o` path.r e[n evsmen

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 Acts 12:4 And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.

  • G3957. pascha, pas'-khah; of Chald. or. [comp. H6453]; the Passover - the meal, the day, the festival or the special sacrifices connected with it):--Easter, Passover.

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

    KJV Acts 16:31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

  • swqh,sh| - verb indicative future passive 2nd person singular

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.

    KJV Acts 17:22 Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars' hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.

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.

    KJV Acts 17:29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.

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

    KJV Romans 3:5 But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man)

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

    KJV 1 Corinthians 14:2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.

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

    KJV 2 Corinthians 1:14 As also ye have acknowledged us in part, that we are your rejoicing, even as ye also are ours in the day of the Lord Jesus.

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."

    KJV Galatians 1:15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace,

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

    KJV Galatians 5:20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

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.

    KJV Ephesians 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

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.

    KJV Ephesians 4:31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:

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."

    KJV Philippians 3:21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.

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

    KJV Hebrews 1:2 Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

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

    KJV Hebrews 3:6 But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.

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

    KJV 1 John 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

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.

    KJV Revelation 15:3 And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.

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

    KJV Revelation 16:16 And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.

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).

    KJV Revelation 21:24 And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.

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.

  • H8219. shephelah, shef-ay-law'; from H8213; Lowland, i.e. (with the art.) the maritime slope of Pal.:--low country, (low) plain, vale (-ley).

  • H6010. 'emeq, ay'-mek; from H6009; a vale (i.e. broad depression):--dale, vale, valley [often used as a part of proper names]. See also H1025.

  • H5158. nachal, nakh'-al; or (fem.) nachlah (Psa. 124 : 4), nahk'-law; or nachalah (Ezek. 47 : 19, 48 : 28), nakh-al-aw'; from H5157 in its orig. sense; a stream, espec. a winter torrent; (by impl.) a (narrow) valley (in which a brook runs); also a shaft (of a mine):--brook, flood, river, stream, valley.

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

  • H1237. biq'ah, bik-aw'; from H1234; prop. a split, i.e. a wide level valley between mountains:--plain, valley.

  • H1516. gay', gah'ee; or (short.) gay, gah'ee; prob. (by transm.) from the same root as H1466 (abbrev.); a gorge (from its lofty sides; hence narrow, but not a gully or winter-torrent):--valley.

Greek Scripture - Consistency Errors


  • G4716. stauros, stow-ros'; from the base of G2476; a stake or post as set upright), i.e. spec.) a pole or cross as an instrument of capital punishment); fig. exposure to death, i.e. self-denial; by impl. the atonement of Christ:--cross. (The cross-arm style structure is NOT a stauros.)


  • G4717. stauroo, stow-ro'-o; from G4716; to impale; fig. to extinguish subdue) passion or selfishness:--crucify.


  • G40. hagios, hag'-ee-os; from hagos an awful thing) [comp. G53, H2282]; sacred phys. pure, mor. blameless or religious, cer. consecrated):--most) holy one, thing), saint.

  • G4151. pneuma, pnyoo'-mah; from G4154; a current of air, i.e. breath blast) or a breeze; by anal. or fig. a spirit, i.e. human) the rational soul, by impl.) vital principle, mental disposition, etc., or superhuman) an angel, daemon, or divine) God, Christ's spirit, the Holy Spirit:--ghost, life, spirit -ual, -ually), mind. Comp. G5590.

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."

  • G907. baptizo, bap-tid'-zo; from a der. of G911; to make whelmed i.e. fully wet); used only in the N.T.) of ceremonial ablution, espec. techn.) of the ordinance of Chr. baptism:--baptist, baptize, wash.

  • G911. bapto, bap'-to; a prim. verb; to whelm, i.e. cover wholly with a fluid; in the N.T. only in a qualified or spec. sense, i.e. lit.) to moisten a part of one's person), or by impl.) to stain as with dye):--dip.

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