Manuscript Evidence Supporting the King James Bible

UPDATED February 11, 2002

CLICK HERE to read Part 2 of this study, entitled "Missing, Incomplete, and Problem Verses in the NIV (and most other Bibles)". Added February 11, 2002

CLICK HERE to see (based upon the faith OF Christ) why I reject the New King James Bible.

This study will begin by quoting an article from the Encarta Encyclopedia 96 CD (emphasis is mine):

For a time, some Christian scholars treated the Greek of the New Testament as a special kind of religious language, providentially given as a proper vehicle for the Christian faith. It is now clear from extrabiblical writings of the period that the language of the New Testament is koine, or common Greek, that which was used in homes and marketplaces.

As confirmed by the above excerpt from the Encarta Encyclopedia, the Greek Manuscripts of the New Testament were written in the "common" KOINE GREEK, which was the dialect used by the common Greek speaking citizens of New Testament times.

The fact that the New Testament was written in KOINE GREEK is also confirmed by Mindscape Reference Library for PCs, copyright 1995:

New Testament, the distinctively Christian portion of the BIBLE, 27 books dating from the earliest Christian period, transmitted in koiné, a popular form of Greek spoken in the biblical regions from the 4th cent. B.C.

There is no question, then, concerning the fact that the New Testament scriptures were originally written in the Koine Greek dialect. Nor is there any doubt that in earlier days, a dialect known as ATTIC Greek had been in use. However, by the time the Apostles walked this earth, Attic Greek had evolved into the Koine Greek dialect, in which the New Testament manuscripts were written.

Nevertheless, some "Atticisms" were still retained by Koine Greek; and these "Atticisms" are helpful in determining the extent to which certain Greek manuscripts were altered by the scribes that copied them.

It should also be noted that most Greek manuscripts of the New Testament belong to a family of manuscripts known as the BYZANTINE TEXT, because these manuscripts were circulated in the region of Byzantium, where the apostles lived and traveled. The Byzantine Text is commonly known as the MAJORITY TEXT, since the vast majority of all New Testament Manuscripts are Byzantine in origin. Even with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, still 90% - 95 % of all New Testament manuscripts belong to the Byzantine family.

However, there is also a small number of Greek Manuscripts (5% - 10%), which is commonly known as the CRITICAL TEXT; and it is upon this Text that most modern Bibles are based. The manuscripts that belong to this family are known as the Alexandrian manuscripts, because they were copied in the area surrounding Alexandria, Egypt. But compared to the Majority (Byzantine) Text, these Alexandrian manuscripts contain a larger number of "Atticisms", and generally have shorter readings.

In the Second Century A.D., some scribes developed a tendency to add these "Atticisms" to the Koine Greek manuscripts they were copying. At that time, many Koine Greek manuscripts were therefore altered from the Koine Greek in which they had originally been written, with the addition of these "Atticisms".

In fact, Dr. Bruce M. Metzger (no friend of the King James Bible) describes a possible scenario, in which Second Century scribes could have added these "Atticisms" to the Koine Greek manuscripts. In his book, THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT (Third, Enlarged Edition, Copyright 1992 by Oxford University Press, Inc.), Dr. Metzger makes a reference to research that was published by George D. Kilpatrick. On pages 177-178, Dr. Metzger makes the following statement (emphasis is mine) -

"In matters on which no firm decision can be made
concerning the author's style, he (Dr. Kilpatrick) often
appeals to the criterion of Atticism, which became one of the
dominant tendencies in literary circles during the first and
second Christian centuries. He argues that scribes in the
second century introduced many Atticisms into the text of the
New Testament. Of two readings, therefore, one of which
conforms to Attic canons and the other does not, he (Dr.
Kilpatrick) is inclined to accept the non-Attic reading, even
though no early manuscript evidence may support it. In order
to justify his general disregard for the age and quality of
external evidence, Kilpatrick declares that BY ABOUT A. D.
TEXTUAL STREAM, and that thereafter scribes transmitted
the several forms of text with great fidelity. Thus, though a
variant reading may happen to be preserved only in a late
miniscule manuscript, if it is in harmony with what is taken to
be the author's style or reflects a non-Atticistic tendency,
Kilpatrick is disposed to regard it as original."

So again, there is no question that certain "Atticisms" were not in the "original autographs", but were added to the Koine Greek manuscripts at a later date. And since these "Atticisms" are more prevalent in the Alexandrian manuscripts of the Critical Text (upon which most modern Bibles are based), this evidence points to the probability that the Byzantine Text manuscripts (the Majority Text, upon which the King James Bible is based) could actually be closer to the "original autographs".

It is therefore important to realize that a Christian's preference for the King James Bible is not based upon superstition, as alleged by some critics. Instead, our decision is based upon the fact that some New Testament manuscripts were actually altered from the Koine Greek, in which they were written, with the addition of these "Atticisms". If one fails to understand this fact, he will also miss the reason why the modern Bibles which are based upon these manuscripts that contain more "Atticisms" so often disagree with the King James Bible.

So the goal of this brief study is to show that, since the King James Bible is based upon the Byzantine Majority Text, which contains fewer "Atticisms", it is actually based upon more accurate Greek Manuscripts. By contrast, though, the New International Version, New American Standard Bible, Revised Standard Version, Berkeley, New World Translation, Douay, and all other modern Bibles are based to some extent upon the Critical Text Manuscripts, which contain a larger amount of "Atticisms".

These Minority Critical Text Manuscripts, upon which the modern Bibles are based, are also characterized by the fact that they are all missing certain verses which are found in the Byzantine Manuscripts (and therefore are present only in the King James Bible), while other verses have been severely modified. Before we adopt the attitude that the missing verses in these modern Bibles are of little importance, though, we must first ask - Who is to determine which verses are important, and which ones are not? Since "all scripture is given by inspiration of God" (2 Tim. 3:16), EVERY verse is important. If man is allowed to judge which verses should be retained and which ones should be cut, there will be no end to the mischief he can achieve.

There is therefore no doubt among scholars that the books of the New Testament were originally written in Koine Greek. The debate now concerns the vast number of differences between the Minority Critical Text and the Majority Byzantine Text. These differences arose early, as attempts were made to "reconstruct" the original Greek text in the 2nd through the 5th Centuries. The method adopted by those involved in this early reconstruction, however, was completely different from the method of the Textual Critics today. Whereas today's critics, for the most part, assume that "the older manuscripts are closer to the originals, and therefore more accurate", the earliest reconstructers of the Greek Text would regularly DISCARD older translations in favor of the NEWER, MORE POPULAR translations. As a result, the older, more accurate readings were gradually replaced by newer readings that, although "more popular", were much less accurate. The OLDEST readings, though, have actually been PRESERVED in the earliest translations of the Greek manuscripts into other languages (such as the Syriac, the Old Latin, etc). This is confirmed by another excerpt from the Encarta Encyclopedia (again, emphasis is mine):

Early Versions
Because the New Testament was written in Greek, the story of the transmission of the text and the establishing of the canon sometimes neglects the early versions, some of which are older than the oldest extant Greek text. The rapid spread of Christianity beyond the regions where Greek prevailed necessitated translations into Syriac, Old Latin, Coptic, Gothic, Armenian, Georgian, Ethiopic, and Arabic. Syriac and Latin versions existed as early as the 2nd century, and Coptic translations began to appear in the 3rd century. These early versions were in no sense official translations but arose to meet regional needs in worship, preaching, and teaching. The translations were, therefore, trapped in local dialects and often included only selected portions of the New Testament. During the 4th and 5th centuries efforts were made to replace these regional versions with more standardized and widely accepted translations.

As a result, since many older translations were "replaced" with more recent translations at an early stage, the current approach taken by most of the Textual Critics does not necessarily hold true. The older Greek Manuscripts of the 4th and 5th Centuries are NOT always more accurate than later manuscripts. Instead, there is much proof that certain Byzantine-type manuscripts which were written at a later date - since they preserve a more ancient reading in the text - match the "original autographs" of the New Testament writers more closely than the older Minority Text manuscripts which have been "corrected".

Listed below are 3 of the oldest Greek manuscripts, which contain a larger number of "Atticisms" than most Byzantine text manuscripts:

1. VATICANUS (Manuscript "B") - Discovered in the Vatican library in 1481; written probably about the fourth century.
4 Contains the Old Testament, including the Apocryphal books, which are included as part of the inspired Old Testament text (instead of being placed separately). Also contains much of the New Testament; however, Vaticanus leaves out Paul's Pastoral Epistles, Hebrews 9:15 through the end of Hebrews, and the entire book of Revelation. Vaticanus also includes the Epistle of Barnabas, a Pseudepigraphical book (or probable false writing), in which it is stated that the hyena changes sex yearly from male to female5. Kept in the Vatican library in Rome.

2. SINAITICUS (Manuscript "ALEPH") - Fourth Century manuscript found by Tischendorf in St. Catherine's Monastery on Mt. Sinai. Tischendorf firmly believed that the same hand that wrote Vaticanus also wrote Sinaiticus. This manuscript also contains the New Testament Apocryphal book, The Shepherd of Hermas. Currently in the British Museum.

3. ALEXANDRINAS (Manuscript "A") - Written in the 5th Century, in many places this manuscript resembles the Textus Receptus, from which the King James Bible is taken. For instance, Alexandrinas contains the last 10 words of Ro. 8:1, which are missing in Aleph and B. Currently in the British Museum.

In addition, most early translations of the New Testament, some of which also contain the Old Testament, are from the Byzantine Majority Text. Only a few are from the Minority Critical text:

1. PESHITTA (or PESHITTO) - means "simple; easy to be understood". The Peshitta originated early in the 2nd Century (some even believe it originated in the 1st Century), as a BYZANTINE TEXT, the family from which the King James Bible comes. Later, however, efforts were undertaken to "revise" the Peshitta; therefore, there are actually TWO Peshittas. The older 2nd Century Peshitta matches the Textus Receptus (or, the RECEIVED Text of the King James Bible), since it was translated from Byzantine manuscripts. This 2nd Century Peshitta, also known as THE OLD SYRIAC, is older than the Diatesseron (mentioned below), and was a translation of the entire Bible. However, the later, "revised" version of the Peshitta matches the Minority Critical Text Manuscripts. The fact that there were TWO Peshittas, one in the 2nd Century, and one in the 5th Century, is also confirmed by the following two articles (emphasis is mine), again taken from the Encarta Encyclopedia:

Peshitta, Old Latin, Vulgate, and Targums
Other versions include, the Peshitta, or Syriac, begun perhaps as early as the 1st century AD; the Old Latin, translated not from the Hebrew but from the Septuagint in the 2nd century; and the Vulgate, translated from the Hebrew into Latin by St. Jerome at the end of the 4th century AD.

Pope Damasus I in 382 commissioned St. Jerome to produce a Latin Bible; known as the Vulgate, it replaces various Old Latin texts. In the 5th century, the Syriac Peshitta replaced the Syriac versions that had been in popular use up to that time. As is usually the case, the old versions slowly and painfully gave way to the new.
Concerning the Peshitta (or Peshitto), THE COMPANION BIBLE also states (again emphasis is mine):

"Of these, the Aramaic (or Syriac), i.e. the Peshitto, is the most important, ranking as superior in authority to the oldest Greek manuscripts, and dating from as early as A.D. 170.
Peshitto means a version simple and plain, without the addition of allegorical or mystical glosses.9

2. TATIAN'S DIATESSERON - means "before" . This is not a literal translation, but rather a Harmony of the Gospels, written by Tatian of Assyria - around 160 - 175 A. D. Tatian was a heretic, according to the Catholic Church. This Diatesseron was one of the "extrabiblical writings" mentioned on Page 1 of this study, which was written in Koine Greek, and which points to the fact that "the language of the New Testament is Koine, or common Greek, that which was used in homes and marketplaces".

3. THE OLD LATIN (the ITALA) - This is a 2nd Century Byzantine Text translation by Tertullian; later this Latin translation was "corrected" by Jerome, as described below:

4. JEROME'S LATIN VULGATE - In 382, Pope Damasus 1 instructed Jerome to "revise" the Old Latin. Jerome therefore "corrected" the Gospels so that they differed noticeably from their earlier form in the Old Latin, and translated the entire Bible into Latin; thus was born the Latin Vulgate. "For a thousand years this was the standard Bible in the Catholic Church."
10 Concerning the Vulgate, the ENCARTA ENCYCLOPEDIA again confirms much of this information (emphasis is mine):

Vulgate (Latin vulgata editio, "popular edition"), edition of the Latin Bible that was pronounced "authentic" by the Council of Trent. The name originally was given to the "common edition" of the Greek Septuagint used by the early Fathers of the Church. It was then transferred to the Old Latin version (the Itala) of both the Old Testament and the New Testament that was used extensively during the first centuries in the Western church. The present composite Vulgate is basically the work of St. Jerome, a Doctor of the Church.
At first St. Jerome used the Greek Septuagint for his Old Testament translation, including parts of the Apocrypha; later he consulted the original Hebrew texts. He produced three versions of the Psalms, called the Roman, the Gallican, and the Hebrew. The Gallican Psalter, based on a Greek transliteration of a Hebrew text, is now read in the Vulgate. At the request of Pope Damasus I in 382, Jerome had previously undertaken a revision of the New Testament. He corrected the Gospels thoroughly; it is disputed whether the slight revisions made in the remainder of the New Testament are his work.
As confirmed by the above article, Jerome "corrected the Gospels thoroughly", and possibly other books as well, in his Latin Vulgate. In addition, the International Bible Encyclopedia, Volume 3, page 1841, also has Jerome "correcting" the "unskillful scribes" who had written the earlier manuscripts. Thus we have two DIFFERENT early Latin translations - the OLD Latin (or the ITALA) of the 2nd Century, and the VULGATE of the 4th Century, which was Jerome's attempt to "correct" the Old Latin.

Later, in the 16th Century, several Greek Texts were compiled by various editors. The editors of these Greek texts had access to the Minority Critical Text, and to Jerome's Vulgate as a reference. However, these editors all rejected the Minority Text manuscripts, and unanimously based their Greek texts instead upon the Majority Text Byzantine Manuscripts, also known as the RECEIVED TEXT:

, using BYZANTINE manuscripts, edited 5 editions of the Greek New Testament (in addition to his translation of Greek into Latin in 1505): 1516, 1519, 1522 (he began including 1 John 5:7 in this edition), 1527, and 1535. Erasmus had access to Manuscripts unavailable to scholars today.

2. STEPHANUS, also using BYZANTINE Manuscripts, edited 4 editions of the Greek New Testaments in 1546, 1549, 1550, & 1551 (His last text began the practice of dividing chapters into verses). This text is the one that is usually referred to as the Textus Receptus.

3. BEZA published several Greek texts beginning in 1565; these basically followed Stephanus' Greek texts. Beza's 1589 text was the text generally referred to by the King James translators.

4. ELZEVIR - Yet another Greek Text based upon Byzantine Manuscripts; completed in 1624.

The editors of the above Greek texts all based their work upon Byzantine Text Greek Manuscripts, because the Critical Text Manuscripts were regarded as being inferior to the earliest translations of the Greek Manuscripts into other languages, as well as to the Byzantine Text itself. As previously covered, the earliest translations, in which the oldest readings are preserved, are "more valuable" than the oldest Greek Texts themselves, as THE COMPANION BIBLE states in an Appendix (emphasis mine): determining actual words, or their form, or sequence, their evidence even by an allusion, as to whether a verse or verses existed or not in their day, is more valuable than even manuscripts or Versions.

Subsequent ENGLISH translations of the New Testament, based upon the above compiled Greek Texts, were then made prior to the King James Bible in 1611. Again, many of these translations also contained the Old Testament. The editors of these Bibles also had access to various Minority Text Manuscripts, as well as to the Majority Byzantine Greek texts compiled by the above authors, yet - when determining which Greek Manuscripts to use for their work - the Minority Text was again soundly rejected each time. In addition to the Greek Texts of Erasmus and Stephanus, the COMPANION BIBLE states:

Beza (No. 3 above) and the Elzevir (No. 4 above) may be considered as being the so-called "Received Text" which the translators of the Authorized Version used in 1611

Although two of the English translations - Wycliffe's English translation, and the Douay Version - were translations of Jerome's Latin Vulgate into English (instead of being translated from Greek), the New Testament translators who translated from Greek unanimously chose the Majority Byzantine Greek Text:

1380 - John Wycliffe translated Jerome's Latin Vulgate into English.

1525 - 1534 - Tyndale's English Translation: Based upon Erasmus' Greek text, this was the first complete English translation taken directly from the Greek New Testament scriptures. Before William Tyndale's translation, the available copies had been those written by hand in Greek and Latin, which the common people could not read. Although the Catholic Church had been demanding strict observance of certain unscriptural practices for years, the faithful common people had no way of knowing that they were being deceived. Tyndale, an Anabaptist and a Greek scholar, had been studying in England, when he became angered by another student's assertion that an understanding of the scriptures was not necessary for the common people. When the student claimed that the pope's laws were more important than God's Laws, Tyndale vowed to "one day make the boy that drives the plow in England to know more of the Scriptures than the pope does!" From Germany, Tyndale printed the first English Bible to be translated directly from the Greek Manuscripts, a deed for which he was ultimately hung. Afterwards, his body was publicly burned as a warning to others. "Tyndale was a ripe Greek scholar and had access to the Greek text of Erasmus and other helps which Wycliffe did not possess."

1535 - Coverdale's Bible: Translated from a Latin version of Martin Luther's Bible, this version was mainly a revision of Tyndale's Bible.

1537 - Matthew's Bible: Printed by John Rogers, an associate of Tyndale's. Knowing his name would immediately be associated with Tyndale's, and unwilling to invite a similar fate, Rogers chose to call his translation Matthew's Bible.

1539 - Great Bible: Also printed by Miles Coverdale, who had been widely criticized (and still is) for translating from Latin which had in turn been translated from Greek. In answer to his critics, Coverdale then translated the Great Bible from Erasmus' Greek text, using Matthew's Bible as a guide.

1557 - William Wittingham's translation used Beza's Greek text, and Matthew's Bible. He also divided the text into verses, following the pattern set by Stephens 1551 text, and introduced the use of italics. This Bible was the first to use Roman-style print.

1560 - Geneva Bible: John Calvin wrote the prologue; he and Beza both oversaw the translation of this Bible. Translated in Geneva, John Bunyan quoted from it, Shakespeare read it; this was the Bible used by the Puritans. Also called The Breeches Bible, because it stated that Adam and Eve made themselves breeches from fig leaves.

1568 - Bishop's Bible - Commissioned by Queen Elizabeth, this Bible was a revision of the Great Bible and the Geneva Bible.

1582 - Douay Bible (from the Critical Minority Text) - A Roman Catholic Version, translated from Jerome's Latin Vulgate, this is the generally accepted English version of the Roman Church.

1604 - Dr. John Reynolds suggests to King James that a new translation be made to create ONE version with authority, combining the best of all the above. King James therefore appointed 54 scholars to undertake the task; 7 of these 54 died before its completion in 1611. These scholars based their work upon the Masoretic Text of the Old Testament, since it had been firmly established as being the correct text for the Old Testament (that proof, however, is beyond the scope of this study). The King James scholars based their translation of the New Testament upon Beza's Greek Text for the New Testament. These translators never claimed to be inspired, as some supporters of the modern versions have charged. Their first and most important step was to identify which Greek text to use, since the entire outcome of their work would be based upon this. A wrong choice here would invalidate their entire work; therefore, they chose Beza's Greek text, which was based upon Byzantine Manuscripts.

Johann Griesbach (1745 - 1812) was the first critic of any note to reject the Byzantine Text, which contains 85 - 95 % of the Greek Manuscripts, and instead based his work upon the rarely used Minority Critical Text. He gave more "weight" to the smaller count of the Minority Text, and justified his decision to reject the larger count of the Majority Text, by arguing that the evidence should be "weighed, not counted". He therefore decided upon an ARBITRARY classification of the Greek manuscripts into 4 separate "families" that share common characteristics, in order to give more "weight" to the Minority Text.

Several other Greek Texts have since been compiled, all based largely upon the Minority Critical Text manuscripts. In addition to the previously mentioned Greek text by Griesbach, we now have other Greek texts compiled by Lachmann in 1842-1850, Tischendorf in 1865-1872, Tregelles in 1857-1872, Alford in 1862-1871, and Wordsworth in 1870. In order to justify the use of the Minority Critical Text manuscripts in these Greek Texts, Wescott & Hort developed their Geneological Theory, based upon Griesbach's earlier classification of manuscripts into 4 families. Wescott & Hort next developed the CONFLATE THEORY, based upon only eight verses, in order to apply their genealogies. This Conflate Theory makes the assumption that copies of the "originals" were split into two "families" of manuscripts in two separate geographical regions, with the Eastern family residing around Alexandria, Egypt, and the Western family in Rome, Italy. According to this theory, copies were then made and handed down, and "scribal errors" soon crept in at each location, thereby uniquely marking each "family" with its own shared set of errors. Later, some scribe supposedly sat down with manuscripts from each "family" and combined both into the Byzantine Majority Text, which was a "conflation" of the two.

The Conflate Theory is based upon only 8 verses, found in 2 New Testament books: Mk. 6:33, 8:26, 9:38, 9:49, Luke 9:10, 11:54, 12:18, & 24:53. The Eastern (Alexandrinan) texts all have similar characteristics; all have the shorter reading. The Western texts also commonly add to the text. The Conflate Theory has since been proven false by Dean Burgon (1882), Bousset (1894), Burkitt (1904), Voobus (1947), Dr. Edward Hills (1950), and others. Of these, Dean John Burgon lists 7 "notes of truth" for his rejection of the Conflate Theory, and his subsequent endorsement of the Majority Byzantine Text:

1. Antiquity
2. The Number (or the COUNT) of the witnesses (the vast majority of Greek New Testament manuscripts are of the Byzantine type) is more important than the WEIGHT.
3. Variety of the evidence (called Catholicity)
4. Continuity
5. Respectability (the WEIGHT of the evidence)
6. Context
7. Internal considerations (internal evidence)

Consider John 7:53 - 8:11, for example, which is omitted by many of the older (Critical Text) manuscripts. Beginning in John 7:45, after Jesus' appearance at the Feast of Tabernacles, the officers are talking alone with the chief priests and Pharisees, including Nicodemus. Jesus is nowhere in the picture. If we follow the "older" manuscripts and jump from John 7:52 to 8:11, suddenly Jesus is there in the midst of them in the Treasury, teaching in the Temple (verse 20). The context of the passage changes too abruptly in the Critical text manuscripts; therefore, the INTERNAL evidence is that John 7:53 - 8:11 should be retained in order to give a smooth transition. In addition, these "missing" verses (or portions of them) were cited by Papius 1n 150 A. D., and also by Didache in the 2nd Century.

However, the question then arises: How can verses that are not supposed to be in the Bible (since they are not contained in the "best" Greek Manuscripts) be quoted before these Manuscripts were written?

Another example is the "long ending" of Mark 16:9-20, which is missing from ONLY two Greek Manuscripts - Sinaiticus, and Vaticanus. These verses are, however, contained in 216 Greek Manuscripts, as well as in the earliest translations called the Syriac (the Peshitta), the Old Latin, and Jerome's Vulgate. In addition, Papias referred to verse 18 around 100 A.D.; Justyn Martyr quotes verse 20 in 150 A.D.; Ireneas quotes and remarks on verse 19 in 180 A.D.; Hippolytus (190 - 227 A. D.) quotes verses 17-19; Vincentius (A.D. 256) quoted two verses at the Seventh Council of Carthage, held under Cyprian; the Acta Pilati quotes verses 15 - 18 in the 2nd Century; they are contained in the Apostolotical Constitutions (3rd or 4th Century); Eusebius (325 A. D.) discusses these verses; Chrystosom (A. D. 400) refers to verse 9, and states that verses 19 & 20 are "the end of the Gospel"; Jerome includes them in his Latin translation (the Vulgate); and finally, Augustine (in A. D. 395 - 430) discusses them as being the work of the Evangelist Mark, and asserts that they were publicly read in the churches.
16 However, because ONLY Vaticanus and Sinaiticus do not contain this long ending, it is placed separately from the rest of the book of Mark in most modern Bibles, thus casting doubt upon the authenticity of these verses. Those who would refer to these verses in support of some particular doctrine are therefore doubted, since these verses are not contained in the "better" manuscripts.

Again, though, the question must be raised - How could these verses be quoted or referred to by so many historical witnesses, if they were never contained in Mark's Gospel in the first place?

In fact, those who ascribe to the Conflate Theory fail to follow their own logic in many cases. For example, although Manuscript "B" (Vaticanus) is SUPPOSED to be the "best" manuscript, certain modern Bible translators fail to accept its reading of verses which actually match the Byzantine Text Manuscripts in passages such as Mt. 22:30, 27:46, 27:49-50, Ro. 13:9-10, or Rev. 11:11 & 12:5. Although Vaticanus and Sinaiticus BOTH match the Byzantine Text (and therefore the King James rendering) in such passages, these modern translators chose instead to base their translation of these verses upon an Eighth Century Manuscript ( "D"). Although Manuscripts A, B, and Aleph are supposed to be superior, Nestles' Greek Text also rejects these manuscripts in their rendering of Mk. 3:8; John 4:51, 8:38, 10:22, 12:12, 14:7; Ro. 15:15, 1 Cor. 4:17, and Eph. 4:32 & 5:32.

In Luke 24:12, Manuscripts A, B, Aleph, and P45 (supposedly the "best" Greek Manuscripts), as well as the Syriac, all agree with the Byzantine Text; yet these are rejected in favor of D, a 5th Century manuscript.

Finally, there is also much controversy over the authenticity of the "Johannine Comma" of 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.

I hope to address the evidence for the above passage in a future study. In the meantime, though, English Roman Catholic Bible scholar Monsignor Knox had it exactly right in the footnote in his 1944 translation, when he stated:

"This verse does not occur in any good Greek manuscript. But the Latin versions may have preserved the true text".

Remember, the Old Latin, being a 2nd Century Byzantine Manuscript, is much closer to the "originals" than any of the Greek manuscripts, for the simple fact that it was not "corrected" as were the later Manuscripts. As stated on page 2 of this study, "During the 4th and 5th centuries efforts were made to replace these regional versions with more standardized and widely accepted translations."
3 In addition, on page 4 of this study, it is noted that THE COMPANION BIBLE states in an Appendix (emphasis mine): " determining actual words, or their form, or sequence, their evidence even by an allusion, as to whether a verse or verses existed or not in their day, is more valuable than even manuscripts or Versions."12

The oldest translations, then, could very well preserve older readings, in addition to preserving verses that have been deleted at a later date (such as the Johannine Comma). In fact, F. F. Bruce, in The Books and the Parchments, on page 210, actually confirms this likelihood. After stating that there SHOULD be no Greek Manuscript evidence for the Johannine Comma (based upon the Conflate Theory), Bruce then admits that Greek Manuscripts do indeed exist which contain this verse.

In fact, the full text of 1 John 5:6-8, as it appears in the King James Bible, was actually preserved in the "Old Latin" (also known as the "Itala"), which was the 2nd Century Byzantine manuscript translated from Greek into Latin by Tertullian (who lived from about 160 A.D. to about 220 A.D.). Tertullian was actually the first known Latin writer to distinctly express the concept of a Trinity. Although some may claim that Tertullian did not actually believe in the Trinity as it is taught today (this can be debated), he did include the complete text of 1 John 5:6-8, as it now appears in the King James Bible, in his translation of the Old Latin (as witnessed by the manuscript which is designated "r", which was written approximately 550 A.D.). At about the same time, Saint Cyprian, the leader of the Christian church in Africa (Cyprian lived from about 200 A.D. until 258 A.D. when he was beheaded), also made a direct reference to 1 John 5:7, as it now appears in the King James Bible.

When the Greek text of the New Testament was beginning to be assembled in the so-called Middle Ages, there was enough evidence for the authenticity of 1 John 5:6-8 that Desiderius Erasmus included the entire passage in his 1522 edition of the Greek New Testament. Again, Erasmus actually had access to certain manuscripts and other material in his time to which today's scholars no longer have access.

Several years later, Stephanus produced his own Greek New Testament, and the edition he produced in the year 1550 again included the entire text of 1 John 5:6-8 (this Greek text is the same Stephens 1550 Greek Text referred to in this study). Later, Theodore Beza (who succeeded John Calvin to become the head of the Protestant Reformation) refined Stephens Greek text to some extent. As a result, while the full text of 1 John 5:5-8, as it appears in the King James Bible, may not be contained in the majority of Greek manuscripts, there is compelling evidence for its authenticity.

The above information is readily verifiable, and offers ample evidence that the full text of 1 John 5:6-8 was not simply added by the men who translated the King James Bible itself. Instead, the full text is actually contained in the Received Text from which this Bible was translated (including certain Greek manuscripts), and there is sufficient evidence to indicate that the words were actually penned by the apostle John himself.

In addition to the above mentioned references, here are some additional footnoted references:

1 Encarta 96 Encyclopedia CD
2 Mindscape Reference Library for PCs, copyright 1995:
3 Encarta 96 Encyclopedia CD
4 THE THOMPSON CHAIN-REFERENCE BIBLE, Fourth Improved Edition, 1982, Topics & Texts, Pages 180 -181
5 DISPENSATIONAL THEOLOGY by Charles Baker, Grace Bible College Publications, Fourth Printing, 1986, Page 87
6 Encarta 96 Encyclopedia CD
8 THE COMPANION BIBLE, Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids Michigan, First Printing, 1990
10 THE THOMPSON CHAIN-REFERENCE BIBLE, Fourth Improved Edition, 1982, Topics & Texts, Pages 180 -181
11 Encarta 96 Encyclopedia CD, "Vulgate"
12 THE COMPANION BIBLE, Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids Michigan, First Printing, 1990, Appendix 168, Page 190
13 IBID, Appendix 94, Page 137
14 THE THOMPSON CHAIN-REFERENCE BIBLE, Fourth Improved Edition, 1982, Topics & Texts, Pages 180 -181
16 THE COMPANION BIBLE, Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids Michigan, First Printing, 1990, Appendix 168, Page 190

Part 2:
Missing, Incomplete, and Problem Verses in the NIV (and most other Bibles)

ADDED February 11, 2002

In view of the above study on manuscript evidence supporting the King James Bible, it should be noted that the NIV actually deletes numerous passages (while casting doubt upon the authenticity of others), because it is based upon the above-mentioned "Critical" Text. In the following addition to this study, partial omissions and variant words in the Greek Texts are noted by underlined words in the King James passages. Entire omissions are also denoted.

Mt. 17:21, King James Bible - Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.
Mt. 17:21, NIV - Missing

Mt. 18:11, King James Bible - For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.
Mt. 18:11, NIV - Missing

Mt. 23:14, King James Bible - Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
Mt. 23:14, NIV - Missing

Mt. 27:35, King James Bible - And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.
Mt. 27:35, NIV - When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots.

Mark 1:2, King James Bible; quoting from Malachi 3:1 - As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
Mark 1:2, NIV - It is written in Isaiah the prophet: "I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way" (again, the quote is from Malachi 3:1; NOT Isaiah the prophet.)

Mark 7:16
, King James Bible - If any man have ears to hear, let him hear.
Mark 7:16, NIV - Missing.

Mark 9:44, King James Bible - Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.
Mark 9:44, NIV - Missing.

Mark 9:46, King James Bible - Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.
Mark 9:46, NIV - Missing.

Mark 11:26, King James Bible - But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.
Mark 11:26, NIV - Missing.

Mark 15:27, King James Bible - And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, And he was numbered with the transgressors. (quoted from Isaiah 53:12.)
Mark 15:28, NIV - Missing.

Luke 9:55-56, King James Bible -
55: But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of.
56: For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.
Luke 9:55-56, NIV -
55 But Jesus turned and rebuked them,
56 and they went to another village.

Mark 16:9-20, King James Bible -
9: Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils.
10: And she went and told them that had been with him, as they mourned and wept.
11: And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.
12: After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country.
13: And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them.
14: Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.
15: And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
16: He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
17: And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
18: They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
19: So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.
20: And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.
Mark 16:9-20, NIV - The authenticity of these verses is questioned.

Luke 17:36
, King James Bible - Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
Luke 17:36, NIV - Missing.

Luke 23:17, King James Bible - (For of necessity he must release one unto them at the feast.)
Luke 23:17, NIV - Missing.

John 3:13, King James Bible - And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.
John 3:13, NIV - No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven--the Son of Man.

John 5:3-4, King James Bible -
3: In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water.
4: For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.

John 5:3, NIV - Here a great number of disabled people used to lie--the blind, the lame, the paralyzed.
Verse 4 - Missing.

John 7:53-8:11, King James Bible -
53: And every man went unto his own house.
1: Jesus went unto the mount of Olives.
2: And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.
3: And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,
4: They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.
5: Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
6: This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.
7: So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
8: And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
9: And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
10: When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
11: She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.
John 7:53-8:11, NIV - Missing.

Acts 8:37, King James Bible - And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
Acts 8:37, NIV - Missing.

Acts 15:18, King James Bible - Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world.
Acts 15:18, NIV - that have been known for ages.

Acts 15:34, King James Bible - Notwithstanding it pleased Silas to abide there still.
Acts 15:34, NIV - Missing.

Acts 24:7, King James Bible -
But the chief captain Lysias came upon us, and with great violence took him away out of our hands,
Acts 24:7, NIV - Missing (along with the last portion of verse 6, and the first portion of verse 8).

Acts 28:29, King James Bible - And when he had said these words, the Jews departed, and had great reasoning among themselves.
Acts 28:29, NIV - Missing.
Romans 8:1, King James Bible - There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
Romans 8:1, NIV - Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus

Romans 11:6, King James Bible - And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.
Romans 11:6, NIV - And if by grace, then it is no longer by works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.

1 Cor. 10:28, King James Bible - But if any man say unto you, This is offered in sacrifice unto idols, eat not for his sake that shewed it, and for conscience sake: for the earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof: (Quoting from Psalms 24:1)
1 Cor. 10:28, NIV - But if anyone says to you, "This has been offered in sacrifice," then do not eat it, both for the sake of the man who told you and for conscience' sake

Eph. 3:6, King James Bible - That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:
Eph. 3:6, NIV - This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus. (The words "with Israel" are added, with absolutely no manuscript authority whatsoever.)

Colossians 1:14, King James Bible - In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
Colossians 1:14, NIV - in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Col. 4:8, King James Bible - Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know your estate, and comfort your hearts;
Col. 4:8, NIV - I am sending him to you for the express purpose that you may know about our circumstances and that he may encourage your hearts

1 John 4:3, King James Bible - And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
1 John 4:3, NIV - but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.

1 John 5:7, King James Bible - For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.
1 John 5:7, NIV - The above words are missing (although the last half of verse 6 is combined with the first half of verse 8, in order to form a "pseudo"-verse 7).
Rev. 1:8, King James Bible - I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
Rev. 1:8, NIV - "I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, "who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.

Rev. 1:11, King James Bible - Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.
Rev. 1:11, NIV - which said: "Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea."

Rev. 5:10, King James Bible (here, the context concerns "the four beasts and four and twenty elders" of verse 8) - And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
Rev. 5:10, NIV (here, the context would concern the men of verse 9, who were purchased "from every tribe and language and people and nation") - You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.

Rev. 5:14, King James Bible - And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever.
Rev. 5:14, NIV - The four living creatures said, "Amen," and the elders fell down and worshiped.

Rev. 8:13, King James Bible - And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!
Rev. 8:13, NIV - As I watched, I heard an eagle that was flying in midair call out in a loud voice: "Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded by the other three angels!"

Rev. 11:17, King James Bible - Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.
Rev. 11:17, NIV - "We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, because you have taken your great power and have begun to reign.

Rev. 13:1, King James Bible - And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
Rev. 13:1, NIV - And the dragon stood on the shore of the sea. And I saw a beast coming out of the sea. He had ten horns and seven heads, with ten crowns on his horns, and on each head a blasphemous name.

Rev. 21:24, King James Bible - And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it…
Rev. 21:24, NIV - The nations will walk by its light…

Ben R. Webb
The Berean Dispensational Site

Só use as duas Bíblias traduzidas rigorosamente por equivalência formal a partir do Textus Receptus (que é a exata impressão das palavras perfeitamente inspiradas e preservadas por Deus), dignas herdeiras das KJB-1611, Almeida-1681, etc.: a ACF-2011 (Almeida Corrigida Fiel) e a LTT (Literal do Texto Tradicional), que v. pode ler e obter em, com ou sem notas).

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