In a message dated 9/2/00 2:53:09 PM Eastern Daylight Time, Pastor Rich Pringle firstname.lastname@example.org writes: "I have been told (and my 'limited library' does not have what is necessary for the full research) that the 1611 is the same Bible as the 1769. There were only spelling changes that occurred"!
It seems that you have been misinformed. Are all current editions of the KJV exactly the same as the 1611 KJV with only updating of spelling and type? Some have made such claims, but are their claims accurate?
Evangelist BILL BRADLEY contended that "the King James Bible printed in 1611 reads the same as the King James Bible printed in 1997" (PURIFIED SEVEN TIMES, p. 115).
ROY BRANSON Branson claimed that since 1611, "only typographical errors have been corrected, and a handful of insignificant editing adjustments made" (KJV 1611: PERFECT, p. 5).
WALLY BEEBE suggested that the KJV "hasn't changed in hundreds of years" (April-June, 1997, issue of CBN, pp. 2, 13). Beebe claimed "that virtually the 1611 has not changed in over 300 years" (April-June, 1999, p. 2).
Beebe also wrote: "The early revisions were not revisions at all, but instead were corrections. There were misspellings, typographical errors, type changes (from Gothic to Roman), and many other things that took several years to accomplish before the King James Version was in the beautiful and pure form it is in today" (April-June, 1992, p. 9).
DAVE REAGAN stated: "The King James Version of 1611 has not been revised but only corrected" (KJV OF 1611, pp. 14-15). If you have read such statements in KJV-only books and accepted them as accurate, you have been misinformed.
Have any changes been made in the text of the 1611 KJV? Has the 1611 KJV been revised? The 1828 Webster's Dictionary defined revison as "the act of reviewing; review; re-examination for correction; as the revision of a book." Roget's Thesaurus listed "revision" and "correction" as synonyms.
An examination of the actual evidence would show that the 1611 KJV has been revised and that changes have been made in the text.
KJV defender D. A. WAITE admitted that there are "136 substantial changes" between the 1611 KJV and current KJV's plus "285 minor changes of form" (DEFENDING THE KJV, p. 244).
KJV-only advocate TIMOTHY MORTON acknowledged that there are "400 or so changes between the 1611 edition and today's that do affect the text" (WHICH TRANSLATION SHOULD YOU TRUST, p. 41).
The 1611 KJV did not have "of silver" (Exod. 21:32), "of God" (1 John 5:12), and "Amen" (Eph. 6:24) that present KJV's have.
The 1611 KJV began Jeremiah 38:16 with the wording "So the king sware" while present KJV's have "So Zedekiah the king sware."
Present KJV's have "the city of the Damascenes" (2 Cor. 11:32) while the 1611 KJV has "the city."
The 1611 KJV has "thee" at 2 Timothy 4:13 while current KJV's have "thee and the books."
At Eccl. 8:17, the 1611 KJV has only "seek it out" while current KJV's have "seek it out, yet he shall not find it."
At 2 Kings 11:10, the 1611 KJV only has "the Temple" while current KJV's have "the temple of the LORD."
If the 1611 KJV was immutable, how could one change have been made in it? The man that most carefully examined the various editions of the KJV was F. H. A. Scrivener. In his 1884 book THE AUTHORIZED EDITION OF THE ENGLISH BIBLE (1611), ITS SUBSEQUENT REPRINTS AND MODERN REPRESENTATIVES, Scrivener has an appendix A that lists the "wrong readings of the Bible of 1611 amended in later editions" (pp. 147-202). Scrivener also has an appendix listing the actual differences between the two issues of the KJV that were both dated 1611.
If the KJV is immutable, why do many variations exist within the various current editions of the KJV printed by different publishers?
At Jeremiah 34:16, the Oxford KJV has "whom he: while the Cambridge KJV has "whom ye."
One Oxford edition of the KJV has "fleeth" at Nahum 3:16 while a Cambridge edition has "flieth."
At 2 Chronicles 33:19, the Oxford KJV has "sins" while the Cambridge KJV has "sin."
At Nahum 3:16, the Oxford edition has "fleeth" while the Cambridge has "flieth."
The Companion Bible edition of the KJV has "LORD" in at least 133 places where most KJV editions have "Lord."
A present edition of the KJV published by the American Bible Society has many variations or differences when compared to other KJV editions. This ABS edition has "sneezings" (Job 41:18), "rearward" (Jos. 6:9), "since" (Ezek. 35:6), "thoroughly" (2 Tim. 3:17), and "hoisted" (Acts 27:40). The ABS edition of the KJV has "Elijah" (Matt. 16:14), "Hosea" (Rom. 9:25), "Beor" (2 Pet. 2:15), "Uzziah" (Matt. 1:9), "Hezekiah" (Matt. 1:10), etc. There are more differences in the ABS edition.
The edition of the KJV in the Open Bible also has some differences with many of them seeming to be the same as those in the ABS edition.
In fact, Wally Beebe's 1975 Bus Worker's Edition of the KJV has some differences in its text when compared to other editions. Beebe's Edition has "Joshua" in the text at Acts 7:45 along with other changes. The ABS edition also "Joshua" in the text at Acts 7:45. Was Beebe responsible for having a KJV published that changed the "immutable" KJV?
The above evidence shows that the claim that there were only spelling changes between the 1611 KJV and present KJV's is incorrect. Perhaps you should examine the actual evidence instead of repeating the inaccurate claims of others.
In Christ, Rick
DR. JOHN GILL [1697-1771]
"To the Bible, in its ORIGINAL LANGUAGES, is every TRANSLATION to be brought, and by it to be examined, tried, and judged, to be CORRECTED and AMENDED if this was not the case, we should have No INFALLIBLE RULE to go by."
(John Gill, 1697-1771, Body of Divinity, page 13-a).