Sunday, April 26, 2020

The Case of the Missing Verses

Many of my favorite preachers read from the old King James Version of the Bible. Personally, I have a hard time with its archaic English. That’s why I prefer using the New King James Version. It’s close enough to the KJV to where I can follow along and better understand what God is saying in HIs word.

Still, there are King James Only advocates who criticize translations such as the New International Version for missing certain verses and phrases. For example, Colossians 1:14 in the NIV says, “in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” It doesn’t include the phrase “through His blood” used both in the KJV and NKJV. 

Does this mean the New International Version dishonors the blood of Jesus? No! Six verses later it talks about “making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” Ephesians 1:7 in the NIV says, “In him we have redemption through his blood…” Revelation 12:11 refers to “the blood of the Lamb.” Many other examples could be cited. 

The above meme being shared on social media is misleading. The missing verses are included in the New International Version’s footnotes. So why weren’t they placed in the main text? The King James Version was translated from the Textus Receptus, a Greek edition of the Bible completed in the 16th century. The NIV and most newer translations are based on older manuscripts that don’t include the missing verses. This refutes claims made by some King James Onlyists that verses were removed by translators with a satanic agenda. None of those missing verses alter basic Christian doctrine.

The bottom line is no Bible translation is 100% perfect including the much venerated King James Version. That’s why it’s wise to use tools like a Strong’s Concordance and ask the Holy Spirit to guide us when reading His word. He will reveal truth to those sincerely seeking it.

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.” - Mark 13:31

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