NOTE: Dear Bible-believer, this post is full of details and facts you need to read. Don’t forget to print it out here (pages 5-8) for your notebook and study your bible with it.
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There’s another tale about two cities, have you heard it? Its the story about where our bibles come from: Antioch, Syria (where they were first called Christians and where the first church started) or Alexandria, Egypt (a place commonly referred to negatively in scripture). <—Yes,that is true.
And, remember, every word of God is put in its place for a reason by God, he’s God-enough to be able to do that. Egypt is a picture of the world in scripture and I’ve been told its almost always negative. Just look up every time Egypt is mentioned in the bible and do a study on it if you’re curious.
Today’s post is centered around a timeline of how the King James Bible came from Antioch, Syria and how the modern versions are traced to Alexandria, Egypt. This will be pages 5 -8 of your printable bible study notes.
One page will include a nearly full-page of this timeline, don’t worry its made to fit an 8.5 x 11″ page 🙂 . Regardless, I want to type out for you what the side columns of the timeline say since the wording is so small. I want to help make it easy for you to read. I know I get tempted to skip over a lot of tiny print, but we need to read this. I’ve added a couple notes from me in blue. So here goes.
1 The Two Cities
Dr. Jack Moorman, who spent many years in researching the question of Bible versions has stated that the transmission of the Greek text of the New Testament is essentially a “tale of two cities”, viz., Antioch and Alexandria. Dr. Moorman writes: “Just as surely as the King James text was woven into the spiritual life of Antioch in Syria, so was the modern versions text in Alexandria. Today a person must decide whether he is more comfortable with a Bible whose roots go back to one or the other of these two cities … certainly Antioch has by far the most glorious heritage.”
ANTIOCH: Here was the springboard for the Gentile church. It became the center for Gentile Christians just as Jerusalem was for the Jews. “The disciples were called Christans first at Antioch” (Acts 11:26). Antioch was the center for the outreach of the apostle Paul and his missionary journeys. Many of the disciples also visited Antioch. Antioch was the ‘heartbeat’ of Christianity.
ALEXANDRIA: The place where most of the modern texts and translations originated had no such glory. It is true, however, that Alexandria became a center of intellectualism. Such men as Clement and Origen were active in this area. It was also noted as a place where every deviant sect was represented. Religious corruption and false doctrines were prevalent including Gnosticism, Arianism, pagan philosophy, etc. Alexandria was the place where the intellectuals of Christianity were attracted.
2 THE TWO ESSENTIALS
Since God has inspired his Word has He also preserved His Word? Has He preserved it for every generation?
The Westminster Confession (1545) states: “The Scriptures were immediately inspired of God and under His singular care and providence kept pure in all ages.” The Bible has the final say in the matter: ‘The words of the Lord are pure words… Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, Thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever. (Psalm 12:6,7).
If we accept the Inspirations of Scripture we must also accept that every word has been and will be Preserved through the ages in the church. Both together are essential doctrines.
3 THE TWO HERETICS*
CLEMENT: He accepted Greek philosophy and the Apocrypha as divinely authoritative. He was head of the catechetical school at Alexandria and believed that salvation could be obtained through various means including baptism, faith and works., faith alone, etc.
ORIGEN: He also became head of the catechetical school. A man of superior intellect he however denied the Bible’s historicity, eternal punishment, the Holy Spirit’s eternality, salvation by grace, etc. He was given to the allegorizing of scripture.
*Data from: “Final Authority” by William P. Grady.
4 THE TWO FALSE WITNESSES **
Discarded and hidden for 1500 years, these two corrupted manuscripts form the basis of all MODERN VERSIONS. They disagree with each other in over 3000 places in the Gospels alone. It is the VATICAN MSS (which include the Apocrypha) that the translators mostly relied upon. Both had their roots in Alexandria and show the influence of Origen.
**Data from H. C. Hoskier’s “Codex B and its Allies”.
A total of 43 other manuscripts indicate some support for this text compared to 5210 which support the Traditional Text. † <—- Traditional Text refers to the manuscripts used in the KJV translation.
John W. Burgon states: “These are two of the least trustworthy documents in existence…” (‘Revision Revised.’)
5 THE TWO APOSTATE REVISIONISTS
Westcott and Hort: Both were apostates. Westcott did not accept: Genesis 1-3; Bodily resurrection of Chris; Miracles and literal coming of Christ. Was partial to Romish ways. Hort did not accept the infallibility of Scripture. He also favored Darwin’s theory of evolution. Both men did not believe in eternal punishment or the vicarious atonement (Data from, ‘Life & Letter’s, 1896, 1903).
6 CHANGES COMPARED WITH THE TRAD. TEXT* (Traditional Text refers to the manuscripts the KJV comes from).
GREEK WORDS: ADDED = 306 OMITTED = 2987 <—————- Check it out! Is your bible Holy or hole-y?
VERSES: OMITTED = 20 <————- Check it out! Holy (KJV) or holey (many if not all modern versions)?
*Data from E.W. Fowler’s “Evaluating Versions of the N.T.”
Note: Most of these changes originate in the W-H text and most have been carried into the modern versions.
Let God’s Word have the final say in this post:
“Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you.” Deuteronomy 4:2
“Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.” Proverbs 30: 5-6
” For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” Revelation 22:18-19
Print out this post including the larger version of the timeline here. These will be pages 5-8 of this study, in case you are printing them out.
Need the previous pages? See below. But the whole KJV Series can be found here.
- Pages 1 & 2: Servant or Slave? How Romans 6:22 got changed in these versions.
- Pages 3 & 4: How the ESV, NIV & other bible versions take Jesus out of Malachi 4:2.