Bibliology – The Study of God’s Word and the Battle for Truth
By Adam Coleman
“In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). Our search for truth begins and ends in the Word of God. Consequently, God’s Word is the most important place to rest our surety, our study, and our loyalty. The devil is far more aware than we that this is the real battlefield for lost souls and has waged an information war to deceive God’s people. God wrote only one Bible. With roughly 900 English translations in print, are you sure you are actually reading the one, true word of God? Millions in the mainstream Christian (so-called) church have traded their one offensive weapon, the “Sword of the Spirit” (Eph. 6:17) for a dull, pathetic, user-friendly, seeker-friendly version with little edge. Hebrews 4:12 reads, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
The plethora of translations in our day greatly lack the kind of power of which Hebrews 4:12 speaks. Moreover, the testimony of such translations reveals that they have been hewn from a fruitless tree. In the time that these translations became prevalent, the Christian world has darkened, become powerless, and has severely lost momentum and effectiveness on the world stage. One could easily assume that there is something lacking in them as their fruit bears no witness to a book authored by the powerful God Who molded His divine character, law, moral will, and identity into it, as John 1:1 indicates. As Jasper James Ray puts it, “put poison anywhere in the blood stream and the whole becomes poisoned. Just so with the Word of God. When men add or subtract words, Bible inspiration is destroyed, and the spiritual bloodstream is poisoned.” I submit that this is exactly the reason for the hypothermic state of the Christian world today: a diluted, polluted Word of God. More than ever before, it is critical for Christians to be absolutely sure of the book they call God’s Word. Since the beginning, truth has been under assault by satanic forces. In the Garden of Eden, Satan brought truth into question by planting doubt when he asked Eve, “Yea hath God said….?” (Gen. 3:1), calling into question a clear commandment of God. His success quickly followed as he caused first Eve to sin, and then the fall of mankind quickly followed with Adam’s sin. “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into grace of Christ unto another gospel which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ” (Galatians 1:6-7). This shows that even in the very early Christian church, this deception was occurring. Satan knows that if he can provide a powerless gospel, a false Jesus, and a corrupt bible upon which Christians place their faith, he can rob them of fruit that can come only as a result of the one, true gospel of Jesus Christ. “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the God of this world (the Devil) hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel shine unto them” (II Corinthians 4:3-4). Satan’s zealous desire to scheme God’s people away from their Creator is undimmed in our day as it was in the beginning. Satan is just as successful now as he was then. “The Bible God wrote does not speak with “Words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but with (words) which the Holy Spirit teacheth” (1 Corinthians 2:13). It is evident that most modern Bible versions and paraphrases are the products of man’s wisdom, which has rejected the wisdom of God. II Timothy 3:16 says, “ALL scripture is given by inspiration of God.” Therefore, saving faith MUST accept the whole Word of God as an unbreakable unit. “The scripture CANNOT be broken (John 10:35)” (Ray). A faithless generation reveals a problem for sure, but it is only a symptom. The problem lies within the erroneous, man-made, paraphrased versions of Scripture. Romans 10:17 states, “…faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” “Faith can be no more perfect than God’s word which produces it” (Ray). So we can deduce the lack of faith and its expected fruitlessness in the Christian world today is a result of a false or polluted gospel lacking true Holy Spirit inspiration. It behooves us to be sure of the Bible we read.
Christians must believe above all else in the providentially preserved Word of God and accept it at face value as inerrant and God-inspired. This is good and necessary, but also very dangerous because Satan will hijack our blind trust. Every Christian must be able to defend the origin of the Bible they read. Most Christians do not read their Bible often enough to make a judgment call on its inerrancy or potency; they would rather rely on their pastor to know enough for them. An ignorant people is an enslaved people. Jeremiah warns in 23:1 of his book, “Woe be unto the pastors that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture!” You might ask why your pastor might lead you astray. The answer is that anything is possible with fallible men who perhaps themselves have been deceived, brainwashed, and abandoned the only reference point for truth, the true Word of God. “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works” (II Corinthians 11:13-15). Many do this unknowingly. When the Christian’s faith abandons logical reasoning and fool-proof research for cheap, emotional reactions based upon the heart, Satan can easily plug in and blind you. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9). It is thus imperative to know your biblical history. A diligent study will show that there has always been a counterfeit family tree of texts and manuscripts from which the vast majority of so-called bibles today originate. Of course, amidst the confusion of the many false bibles, God’s very own divinely inspired word has survived and is alive and well today. “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away” (Matthew 24:35). Further, “…Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled” (Matthew 5:18). This is what Christians today believe and accept to be true about God’s Word. They do so blindly, without knowing for sure just what their faith rests upon. But Satan is no fool. He won’t openly present himself as the contrast to God and truth. He would rather do this with subtilty so as to deceive. His way is to “appear as an angel of light” (II Corinthians 11:14), all the while concealing his dark, hideous countenance underneath his angelic cloak.
The Textus Receptus
“God’s Bible is descended from both the inspired and preserved manuscripts and ideology of the Jerusalem/Antioch Greek Text, known as the received or traditional text, The Textus Receptus, which has been preserved in the majority of early Greek copies of the Bible. This true Bible was carried forth in “Old Latin” and by the Greek Orthodox churches. Included in this lineage of Bibles is the Peshitta, the Italic, Celtic, Gallic, and Gothic Bibles and the medieval versions of the Waldenses and Albigenses. This text was carried forth by the Reformation Fathers and is most well known in the Greek Text of Stephens (1550), which (with the Elzevir Text of 1624) is commonly called the Textus Receptus” (Gayman). “The Bible God wrote has been providentially preserved for us in the Greek Textus Receptus, from which the King James Bible was translated in 1611. Any version of the Bible that does not agree with this text is certainly founded upon corrupted manuscripts” (Ray). “The Authorized King James Bible is descended in a straight line from the good family tree of Bibles. Any bible not descended from this lineage belongs in the family tree of Satan” (Gayman). The following list in chronological provides the Bibles from the Holy Family Tree of the Textus Receptus: Peshitta Bible (AD 150); Italic Bible (AD 157), Latin Vulgate Bibles (AD 400), Wycliffe’s Bible (AD 1382) , Erasmus Bible (AD 1522), Tyndale Bible (AD 1530), Luther’s Bible (AD 1534), Miles Coverdale Bible (AD 1535), Matthew’s Bible (AD 1537), The Great Bible (AD 1539), Greek Text of Stephens (AD 1550), Elzevir Text (AD 1564), Geneva Bible (AD 1560), Bishop’s Bible (AD 1568), Beza’s Bible (AD 1604), Authorized King James Bible (AD 1611).
The Authorized King James Version of 1611
Under the public appointment of King James on July 22, 1604, fifty-four Hebrew and Greek scholars were to produce the Bible later to be known as the Authorized King James Version of 1611. “These men were organized in to six groups which were to meet separately. Two groups met at Cambridge, two at Oxford, and two at Westminster. Each group was designated a certain portion of scripture to translate in the English language. Each scholar first made his own translation, then passed it on to be reviewed by each other member of his group. When each section had completed a book of the Bible, it was sent to the other five groups for their independent criticism. Each book went through the hands and minds of the entire body of translators. To guard further against possible errors, another committee was formed by selecting two from each of the three companies. The entire version came before this group where all differences of opinions were ironed out. It was a thorough work of organized cooperation where the direction and discernment of the Holy Spirit were desired” (Ray). There has not since been such scholarship, diligence or resources involved and dedicated to a translation of the Bible. “No language today is as highly developed and widely spoken as English. For this reason it is considered the lingua franca for the Western world and has been chosen for the transmission of God’s Bible. The King James Bible was translated when the English language was in the flower and apex of its development” (Gayman). Needless to say, the Authorized KJV has no equal. This is why I place my faith in it alone as God’s preserved, perfect word, just as I urge Christians everywhere to do.
The Satanic Alexandrian Text
“Satan’s counterfeit bibles are all descended from both the manuscripts and the ideology of Alexandria, Egypt and are reflected in the philosophy that denies that the Holy Scriptures are both inspired and preserved through time” (Gayman). From this family tree one can find the Egyptian Text, Local Text, Hesychian Text, or Minority Text “also borne in the corrupted hand-written copies known as Vaticanus (AD 331), Sinaiticus (AD 331), and Alexandrinus (AD 450)” (Gayman). The following false bibles come from this unholy family tree: Jerome’s Latin Vulgate (AD 400), Alexandrian Text (AD 450), Ephraem Text (AD 450), Douay Bible (AD 1582), Clementine Vulgate (AD 1592), Griesbach Bible (AD 1805), Lachmann Bible (AD 1850), Tragelles Text (AD 1870), Wordworthh Text (AD 1870), Tischendorf Text (AD 1872), Alford’s Text (AD 1872), Westcott and Hort (Revised Version – 1881-1884), American Standard Version (1901), Revised Standard Version (1952), NASB, NIV, Dynamic Equivalency Version, Today’s English Version, Good News for Modern Man, The New American Bible, Jerusalem Bible, New Revised Standard Version, Ferrar Fenton Translation, Amplified Translation, Sacred Name Bible, and the New World Translations. “The Revised Version of 1881 is the source translation from which all current bible translations filling the Christian bookstores, pulpits, and pews of the Christian world descend” (Gayman).
The battle for truth is nearing its climax. Every Christian is involved in this war because we base our faith in the God of the Bible. But is your faith properly placed and fed by the true, living, and breathing Word of Jehovah God? Will you be deceived like the majority of the Christian world today by Satan and his schemes to counterfeit God’s holy Word? I pray you read this article and find an Authorized King James Version of the Bible to read, study, and memorize. “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (II Timothy 2:15).