Au Revoir, KJV

I don’t read the KJV for the same reason I don’t read a French Bible.

I don’t understand the language.

Please don’t misunderstand: I really appreciate the historical significance of the KJV. This version of the Bible has done so much for the English-speaking population of prior generations (and even some in our current generation)! It made an otherwise incomprehensible book (and message of salvation through faith the Lord Jesus Christ) accessible to the common English-speaking man. Unfortunately, the language of the 21st century is so different from that of 1611 that I am incapable of comprehending many phrases in the KJV.

For example, in Luke 2:49 KJV Jesus is quoted as having said:

wist ye not…?

The same verse in the NKJV reads:

Did you not know…?

These don’t even sound like the same language to me.

Unless I were to go back and learn the English of the 1600’s (or read it side-by-side with a translation I do understand) I would be at a loss while reading the KJV. For this reason I choose to read and study updated versions of the English Bible.

So, what do you think? Does the KJV still have a place in your library?


  1. I like the New Living Translation. The thoughts just flow so much easier for me even though I grew up reading and memorizing verses from the KJV.


      1. I actually think it was mostly your example from the King James (wist), and maybe my mood at the time. 🙂 In all seriousness, though, growing up I used the NIV, but I’ve come to appreciate the NASB bc it’s more literal. By the way, you might find that you could understand French surprisingly well, since it’s root words are so similar to Spanish.


      2. I see! I tried to keep my tone from becoming elitist. I’ve read a few articles by people on the superiority of the KJV that are very condescending, so I wanted to keep my rebuttal light. I don’t know if you remember but I referenced a Spanish Bible when I gave a message on Ephesians 2. Many foreign languages make a much more understandable distinction between “you” and “you all.” (Which is actually an argument in favor of the KJV (Thou and Ye)). All that to say that I might understand French, but I’ll probably stick with English for now 🙂

        On Fri, Oct 23, 2015 at 10:44 AM, Wills Osborn wrote:



      3. You definitely didn’t sound elitist! I think I remember that message and, yes, that’s interesting–in French, for example, the singular form of “you” is “tu” and the plural form is “vous” (although you can also use the plural as singular formal). Still, I think I’ll probably stick to English, too, for now. 🙂


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