Saturday, April 15, 2006

King James Only?

SCRIPTURES - We believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Bible. The Old and New Testament are definitely inspired word for word. We accept the Textus Receptus manuscripts from which came the King James Bible. The Scripture is the final authority in all matters of faith and practice...We stand for the King James Bible as the only Bible.

The above statement was pulled from the official website for Hyles-Anderson College. During a recent discussion with some members of First Baptist Church of Hammond, I was informed that apparently the position of FBCH had changed regarding the translation issue. The reasoning goes something like this, since Pastor Schaap does not teach the aberrant type of KJVO that views the KJ as the "incorruptible seed", he must not be KJVO. I have even been told that perhaps Pastor Schaap is King James Preferred and not coming out and declaring it because he is "handcuffed". These statements started me thinking that perhaps a little more investigation was in order.

I have written a letter to Pastor Schaap asking for some clarification on his stance and the official stance of FBCH/HAC regarding the Holy Scriptures. In the meanwhile I went ahead and pulled the statement above from the HAC website--this did NOT come from the warped site that Ken Christensen runs by the name of Baptist-City.



We will LORD-willing be addressing the blight of King James Onlyism again as we continue blogging at Bread and Circuses, but for now we will only declare the facts. First Baptist Church of Hammond and Hyles-Anderson College are unapologetically KJVO and have never publicly recanted or eschewed this divisive and dangerous teaching. I believe that those who would have us to believe that FBCH is not KJVO are just enjoying a little wishful thinking and desperately want to believe that things have changed and this is a new and fresh era at FBCH. I hate to be the one to put a wet blanket on their fire by informing them that until a public statement is made by Pastor Schaap and books by Hyles propagating this error are revised, they will forever wear the label of KJVO.

Here are a few questions for discussion--what do you think?

1. Is KJVOnlyism a heretical teaching?
2. Is KJVOnlyism a new doctrine or has it always been a part of historic fundamentalism?
3. Is it possible for a ministry to make a major change on doctrine and not announce it publicly?
4. Is KJVOnlyism just a crazy isolated teaching that good people can disagree on with no change in fellowship?
5. Could you disagree with your church on the translation issue and still be a member in good standing?


Phineas

36 comments:

1 L Loyd said...

Your questions, and my answers:

1. Is KJVOnlyism a heretical teaching?
I believe it is.

2. Is KJVOnlyism a new doctrine or has it always been a part of historic fundamentalism?
It is relatively new. Definitely a generation ago, and even in my lifetime there have been a large number of fundamentalists who prefered KJV, but allowed room for other versions. Some even prefered the ASV of 1901.

3. Is it possible for a ministry to make a major change on doctrine and not announce it publicly?
How is it a major change if they don't publicly stae it?

4. Is KJVOnlyism just a crazy isolated teaching that good people can disagree on with no change in fellowship?
This depends on the people. The KJVO that I know let it affect fellowship to some degree, some more than others.

5. Could you disagree with your church on the translation issue and still be a member in good standing?
In my last four churches, I could in two and not in the other two.


I want to take this time to say that I have enjoyed this blog, and I check in frequently. Keep posting.

Mike Hess said...

1. Absolutely. To say that the translators were somehow "re-inspired" is not only irresponsible, but also heretical. I do realize that not all KJVO people take this irrational stand, but many do and that is unfortunate.

2. Yes. By taking a short look at the history of the fundamentalist movement one can clearly see that the battle was not over what translation of the Bible was authoratative, rather, if the Bible itself was inerrant. I am not saying that all of the translations out there are worthy of our consideration. However, it is historically clear that this is an issue that came to fruition over the past twenty years or so as certain militant fundamental leaders lost a large portion of their constituency and were forced to beat a dead horse with something.

3. I don't believe it is. Especially when you are accountable to those who are sending their young people to your institution (if that's what you call HAC)..

4. That would be ideal (in regards to fellowship) but you know as well as anyone that nine out of ten times that just doesn't happen. Unfortunately, this has become the dividing barrier for many evangelical believers.

5. Good question. I believe that you could after taking an objective look at the issue. Much of this would depend on whether your position is one out of preference or conviction based on facts and not emotionalism that has its roots in man centered thought.

Schaap looks to be backed into a corner with this one. However, from the sound of things I think that he is a long way from "reforming" FBCH into a solid, biblical, and Christ-centered ministry that focuses on keeping your methodology Scriptural and not based on gimmicks.

BeckyJoie said...

1.Q. Is KJVOnlyism a heretical teaching?
A. I believe so because it places the Bible version as the Saviour or as equal to the Saviour.It makes it co-redeemer with Christ.


2.Q. Is KJVOnlyism a new doctrine or has it always been a part of historic fundamentalism?
A. It has not always been a historic part of fundamentalism. You never read about it in D.L. Moody's books or other fundamentalist writings earlier on, for instance. I grew up in IFBXdom and never heard it until the Pastor of a church we were members at came back from Pastor's school in 1979 with this philospohy and a whole pile of extra-biblical propoganda.

3.Q. Is it possible for a ministry to make a major change on doctrine and not announce it publicly?
A. It is possible but not wise and highly unlikely.
In the case of HAC, I, too, hoped and went to their website only to find the belief still obvious although not as directly stated. Too, when I listened to Jack Schaap online the other day, he sounded like someone parroting Hyles. So, if he didn't believe KJVO, he sure didn't mention it and seemed, on the converse side to be promoting and standing for EVERY thing Hyles did or preached. I also doubt he would oppose his own father-in-law publically whether the latter be dead or alive.


4.Q. Is KJVOnlyism just a crazy isolated teaching that good people can disagree on with no change in fellowship?
A. I used to think so, but I now see that it is like standing by another person who gossips-you appear to endorse what you don't protest or else, you allow the gossip to continue and become a worse story. The same is true with false doctrine and elitism. Also, the Bible says to mark a brother who walks disorderly, whether by lifestyle or doctrine. Once confronted and unrepentant, we are to separate ourselves from them. I think I read an article on Fundamentally Reformed which dealth well with this KJVO issue. http://fundyreformed.blogspot.com/2006/04/selective-scholarship-and-wishful.html

5. Could you disagree with your church on the translation issue and still be a member in good standing?
It would depend on membership qualifications. If they made it a point of membership, then I could not pretend to agree, sign the membership agreement and then go on with a different opinion. I personally would have a hard time being a member some place where I did not agree with the vast majority of their doctrine and practice. (I mean like at least 95% and the areas of disaggreement would have to be on things not considered fundamentals.) Most KJVO tend to be "off" in more than just that area, IMO. Visiting a place like that is one thing. Having fellowship with those who believe KJVO is one thing, although if you don't believe KJVO, then they might not fellowship with you and consider you a heretic. Regular attendance or church membership, well, that is another thing alltogether, because by joining or regular attendance, you are kind of endorsing it. "Member in good standing" usually requires more than just attending and agreeing not to propogate a differing opinion on bible translations.

Mike Y said...

I think the sad part is many take this stand. I can remember having the discussion with several of my family members who are graduates of Hyles. I took out my Stephanus Text of 1550, since it was a significant factor in creating the KJV. It didn't matter what I showed as an inconsistency or as a mis-translation. So, the statement on their webiste about accepting the Textus Receptus isn't necessarily accurate.

Many of my friends have changed in recent years. I think I only have one who still insists on KJVO. Since most of these guys are pastors, I'd prefer they learn some Greek and look at the text rather than trust any particular version. I haven't made much progress there, yet.

-Mike

Chelle Y. said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
PT Barnum said...

Bro Loyd,

Great to see your post--I would have to agree that KJVP was the standard among true fundies of years gone by. Makes you wonder what kind of kool-aid I was drinking for so many years!

Matthew

PT Barnum said...

Mike,

Good to hear from you. I have some friends and family still in the grip of KJVOnlyism. The biggest problem with them is like you mentioned that they will not listen to reason. I was just like that for years and refused to admit any errors of any sort in the KJV. I was at the Pastor's School when Hyles threw out "false" Bibles into the crowd only to encourage them to be ripped up by an angry mob! Why I didn't walk out at that point will always be one of my greatest regrets.

I agree that pastors ought to study the original languages--my pastor uses the KJV but almost always explains the text nearly word for word from the ESV or NASB--he is no doubt studying the Greek or Hebrew. Our church is KJVP as an official version but a long way from KJVO.

Matthew

PT Barnum said...

chelle,

My wife and I attended the church we are now members of for over a year before we joined--I had so many hangups from my 23 years at FBCH. I couldn't come to grips with women in britches or a pastor correcting the KJB! It is only by God's grace that we were delivered from hysteric fundamentalism.

I think I remember a Michelle from North Valley, but I am not for certain it is you. Did you sing in a singing group at HAC? I have lost all of my yearbooks unfortunately so I have a difficult time until I see pictures of people from HAC.

BTW, how did you find our blog?

Matthew

Chelle Y. said...

My husband, Mike, told me about it. He posted a comment just above mine. Our picture is on it, but that was taken during our "fundamentalist" days. :o) We do not look like that anymore. Well, not that much.

You are probably thinking of my sister, Kim, who sang in groups. She graduated from college the same year you did and married Wes Craig. (I was a "Little.")

Chelle Y. said...

Oh, and Mike informed me that the church we go to used the NASB. :o)

BeckyJoie said...

Brothers and Sisters, I just want to encourage you not to let the false guilt and "what if's" take over. I used to think, "What if I never went to HAC?" "If only I had I never listened to the HAC teacher and Bro Hyles about marrying my ex-husband? Would the many people in my life who suffered, including my child, be so permanently ill-affected? Would I be on the mission field somewhere? Would my life be better than now? Why didn't I see the false teaching all for what it was right away?" I've learned that you cannot look back and try to figure out the "what if's" and "If only's." This is where we need to be forgetting the things that are behind, our past mistakes, sins, etc. that led us to that place-- Not to close our eyes to it and pretend it didn't happen, but forgive and help others' eyes to be opened. Many of us were not old enough to even have a chance to know the truth. This stuff was fed to us from babyhood and the brainwashing took over. We were victims but are now victorious, I pray. As adults, the Lord gave us the grace to see through and know the truth. Praise God. Now we must move on without false guilt and expose the falsehood replacing it with God's truth and reality. I full well know how it is to look back and say, " What was wrong with me?" I came to realise that it was for the glory of God that I went through it. How did He get glory in my being there in that dark place? I think it is because of how He caused me to search the Scriptures. I also think that He took what was a weak, vulnerable person and made her into a strong, vibrant person. Not that I have anything to do with that strength. it all comes from Him. We may not always know why, but when we can't see His Hand, we can trust His heart.

Chelle Y. said...

Beckyjoie,
I do not think it is really guilt that gets me sometimes. I do think "what was I thinking" sometimes, but most of all, it's just for a good laugh.

I do not regret going to HAC. Some of my happiest memories were from there and I do keep in contact with a few of my friends that went to school with me. I do wonder why I conformed to "fit it," but come to think of it, I did not realy conform, but went along with what I thought was right at the time. I was always the "good" girl, doing what was right, always obeying the rules, but living a life of guilt because I knew my heart.

I did not really want to be in the bus ministry. I hated going soul-winning in the freezing Chicago weather, and I did not always enjoy the loud preaching in chapel. I missed my T.V. (especially when the A's were in the World Series) and wanted to see a movie now and then. :o)

But, f I had not gone there, I may have never known what "mean Christians" were and how to have real compassion for souls. I had so many people "just pray a prayer after me" that I am sure I have given many people a false assurance of salvation. I am just so thankful that now I know better to help my six year old son know the truth and hopefully will not live in Christian guilt all his life.

Mike Y said...

Hi Matthew,

I think one of the nice things, lately, is realizing I'm not the only one who has gone through this stuff. For years I went through the guilt that Becky is referring to. I came to a Fundamentalist church from a really nice Southern Baptist background. I was so beaten down for that I wanted to please my pastor. At the end of the day, I knew there was huge difference in doctrinal stances.

As a result of breaking from our IFB church, God led me to a Calvinistic Baptist church where I studied Greek and Hebrew for a couple of years. I also developed an extensive library of tools to assist my studies too. In the end, the church turned out to be a Calvinistic IFB church. My wife and I had no idea until after we left that it was as messed up as it was. God uses these times to equip us and to conform us to the image of his son. For that I am so very grateful, though I don't always understand it as I'm going through.

Now, we are attending and participating in a pretty terrific church, which you can find on my site. They're Calvinistic and believe in soul-winning, though they don't do the decisionism and they discourage high pressure tactics.

It's good to see where you are and I hope I can be a friends and a help to you.

-Mike

D.J. Cimino said...

May I ask a question? Since leaving IFBx, KJO churches last year, my wife and I are going to see my mom in another state in May. She attends an IFBx, KJO church. I wiggled out of going to one of the services with her since my Brother-in-law pastors a "liberal" (accorsing to IFBx people) IFB church, but that still leaves me with 2 services to endure (yikes!).

Now she endured 3 services in the calvinist SBC church I now attend, so is it "fair" that I attend these 2 services in what I believe to be a church teach false doctrine(but they still love Jesus)?

In other words, should I make a big deal out of this or just endure it? Thanks for any though on this subject.

DJ Cimino

Mike Y said...

DJ, your concern is really thoughtful and considerate. I think God will bless you either way. In practice, I would like to suggest that there is no way to win or be fair. Both sides believe their own stance.

One scripture comes to mind and was a help to me when I dealt with the same:

1Tim 4:16 "Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee."

Now, continuing in them and strictly going to such services are two different things. The point is to worry about your own spiritual growth before you worry about others. It's a lot like the safety demonstrations on the airplanes. In the event the cabin loses pressure, put your mask on before assisting others.

I hope this helps you.

-Mike

D.J. Cimino said...

Thanks Mike

Joshua R said...

DJ,
I would say endure by His grace. :) I have much the same situation, and will eventually visit FBC again. I don't see a visit necessarily as a stamp-of-approval. There still are many dear friends and sincere Christians there.

Mike Y said...

Just so you know, Chelle and I have visited North Valley Baptist a few times since being out of the movement for a while. Each time, my anxiety level goes through the roof. But in all frankness, I enjoy my time visiting long time friends.

Now, when we were on vacation with some family, they kept dragging us to this one IFB church that made me want to slit my wrists. At one point, I think I tried to go to a charismatic black church just to get a good cleansing. I will not go back to that church. Not worth the torture.

-Mike

PT Barnum said...

DJ,

If you do not go with them you may cause them to just become more entrenched in their defense of the KJB! My family from FBCH typically doesn't go to my church when they are here for a weekend--they usually make a point to go back up to Hammond. That makes my situation much easier in that I don't go to theirs and they don't come to mine. If I was in your shoes I would go to show them goodwill and also you can be quite entertained by the IFBx antics! Some of the best monologues on this planet happen at IFBx churches on a weekly basis!

Thanks for visiting B&C!

Matthew

PT Barnum said...

Mike,

Great to hear some more of your journey from IFBX to a Christ-centered ministry. I hope and pray that this blog is used to help people who have come out of the man-centered ministries or are currently debating whether to bolt from one. Having grown up in the middle of IFBx Mecca Josh and I feel our experiences could be used by God's grace for the benefit of others. I appreciate your kind words and look forward to some more of your insights.

Matthew

D.J. Cimino said...

Thanks for the input everyone! My gut feeling was to go ahead and go so I think that what I'll do.

Mathew, I think you are right. If I don't go they might be even more confident that I have "fallen way from the truth" and it might inspire further KJV worship so that they don't fall away too. Crazy stuff, eh?

Mike Y said...

DJ, Matthew, et al,

You can always go to Sovereign Grace Publications and purchase one of their Interlinear New Testaments. That is sure to be a conversation piece as it has the Stephanus Text of 1550 as the Greek, a literal translation off to one margin and the KJV in the other margin.

This is what I've carried for a few years now. If you can't traverse the Greek, the literal translation may come in handy as you can do a side-by-side comparison with the KJV.

The reason I like this is Jay Green is particularly sensitive to helping the KJVO crowd with his interlinears hence his use of the TR vs. NA27 text along with the KJV text. I think it's a great work and it has served me well.

Take care and I hope the visit goes well DJ.

-Mike

reglerjoe said...

Greetings fellow HACers!

Josh and Matt, thanks for the link!

Question for all: has anyone heard of Young's Literal Translation? Do you like it?

Mike, I'll be sure to checkout that interlinear NT - thanks for the info.

PT Barnum said...

http://www.ccel.org/bible/ylt/ylt.htm

I have used it from time to time as it is on www.studylight.org I recently found it in its entirety at the above link. Sometimes it is hard to read because very few assumptions are made especially in tenses--he uses a lot of present tense when others use the past tense. Don't mention about the link--we fellow former Hacers need to stick together! Just be sure to keep it between the ditches!

Matthew

Mike Y said...

reglerjoe, I use YLT on a regular basis when I'm doing parsing out difficult passages. As I tend to do all of my own literal translations before diving into a passage, I tend to open up in Bibleworks the following texts:

1) KJV
2) NASB
3) YLT
4) Stephanus Greek Text
5) NA27 Greek Text

This allows me to get a good idea of any variant readings between the two major Greek texts. Then I can also compare against these English versions to see if there is something not expressly captured by the text. More often than naught, YLT is one of my handiest tools.

Studylight is definitely a great resource to use. The creator of the site is a friend and he has gone to great length to make the original languages available to all, along with all of the gramatical information. Plus, he's great at accepting feedback and recommendations for enhancements.

-Mike

Remo said...

SCRIPTURES - We believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Bible. The Old and New Testament are definitely inspired word for word. We accept the Textus Receptus manuscripts from which came the King James Bible. The Scripture is the final authority in all matters of faith and practice.

SCRIPTURES - We believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Bible. The Old and New Testament are definitely inspired word for word. We accept the Textus Receptus manuscripts from which came the King James Bible. The Scripture is the final authority in all matters of faith and
practice.

I cannot see the last line you typed ("We stand for the King James Bible as the only Bible.")
in either the College Handbook (PDF Format) or the official HAC Website. The times they are a changin' ??????????

Joshua R said...

Remo,

It can be found on HAC's official website under the 'Maybe you wouldn't like' section.

"We stand for the King James Bible as the only Bible..."

PT Barnum said...

times may be changing...I am still waiting for a response from Pastor Schaap on the letter I sent to him. No doubt he is busy, so I will wait a few more weeks before sending it again. I think I should probably send a couple copies of the letter to McCormack and Duff--no doubt they could tell me the official position of the church and ministry. Remo, I pray you are right about the changes in Hammond--forgive me if I am a bit skeptical before hearing it from the horse's mouth so to speak.

Matthew

jellyfish said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Remo said...

1. Is KJVOnlyism a heretical teaching?

Yes

2. Is KJVOnlyism a new doctrine or has it always been a part of historic fundamentalism?

New

3. Is it possible for a ministry to make a major change on doctrine and not announce it publicly?

It is possible to move from a radical position to a more moderate position over a period of time.

4. Is KJVOnlyism just a crazy isolated teaching that good people can disagree on with no change in fellowship?

I have not been placed in a position where it has affected me at all.

5. Could you disagree with your church on the translation issue and still be a member in good standing?

I haven't had a tithe check returned to date.

PT Barnum said...

Remo,

don't make me blow the proverbial whistle on you to your Preacher! You just might find that you have been ousted from your lofty perch in the center balcony and relegated to the mezzanine or worse yet behind a "K" beam!

Matthew

Joshua R said...

Fellas, here are the correct answers to the "pop quiz":

1. Is KJVOnlyism a heretical teaching? Y

2. Is KJVOnlyism a new doctrine or has it always been a part of historic fundamentalism? NEW

3. Is it possible for a ministry to make a major change on doctrine and not announce it publicly? N

4. Is KJVOnlyism just a crazy isolated teaching that good people can disagree on with no change in fellowship? That depends on many variables

5. Could you disagree with your church on the translation issue and still be a member in good standing? That depends on many variables. I myself think it wise to strive to be on the same page so to speak as my pastoral staff regarding issues of major importance--IMO this is one of those issues. An abundance of heat with little light if any has been generated in IFBx circles concerning the text and translation issue. This ought not so to be.

John D. Chitty said...

1. Maybe not heretical, but certainly harmfully divisive.

2. No, King James Onlyism was not originally part of historic fundamentalism. But, my take on the development of the movement is that when they separated from modernists over modernists abuse of intellectualism and academics, and many to some degree "separated" from intellectualism and academics, a theology developed to fill the void left in many fundamentalists understanding of textual criticism and its application to Bible translation.

3. It's not possible for the totality of a ministry to make a major change without public announcement, but it's is possible for the leadership to be in transition behind the scenes while maintaining some facsimile of the status quo until the time is right for the public stand on the change.

4. No. KJVOnlyism by definition is separatistic. I maintain personal friendships with a number of King James Onlyists but they don't want to worship with me, but I can a occaissionally do, since I'm married to a KJV Onlyist and have KJV only adult children. I'm able to have fellowship with KJV Onlyists which they can appreciate as long as I keep my mouth shut about how I feel and embrace unquestioningly how they feel about everything.

5. My former church has a clause specifying the exclusive use of the King James Version. At one point months before I insited our family leave that church, I told my pastor that I now believe the English text of the KJV is subject to the manuscripts from which it is translated. This he interpreted as my declaring that I don't believe the King James Version is the Word of God. When I finally insisted that we leave that church and had my final conversation with my former pastor, he said that technically, the church could have discontinued my membership over my view on the KJV, but because he's so magnanimous, for the sake of my family, he tolerated my remaining in place. I wish he'd done what he thought he should have.

In spite of all of that, the answer to your question is that it depends. My KJV Only pastor was not a particularly loving person, but many are, and many who have KJVOnlyism as a literal clause in their articles of faith, may not agree that this means a member must be immediately kicked out for differing on that point.

Charles Church said...

I believe in using the King James version, as did Spurgeon.... not that it is infallible, and all that nonsense, but just that it is a better translation.... long story, but I wanted to make that much clear. I wanted to post the following link, as I see much gloating over the Johanine Comma issue, as though there were only one clear side to the discussion. I found the following link excellent:

http://kjv.landmarkbiblebaptist.net/1John5-7Boyd.html

Blessings

Charles Church said...

1. Is KJVOnlyism a heretical teaching?
Depends upon how you define "heretical". In its extremes it can be divisive, and this would be a technical yes. But is it heretical such that men who hold it should be put out of the church? That would be to commit the same error as they.

2. Is KJVOnlyism a new doctrine or has it always been a part of historic fundamentalism?

Depends upon how you define KJVOism. Correcting the Greek by the KJV? Certainly not. Persuasion that it was the best translation, and that any translation from the polyglot produced by apostates? Certainly so.


3. Is it possible for a ministry to make a major change on doctrine and not announce it publicly?

Sure is POSSIBLE. Doesn't say much for the profundity of their "change".

4. Is KJVOnlyism just a crazy isolated teaching that good people can disagree on with no change in fellowship?

If not, then we are no different than the most extreme elements of KJVO.

5. Could you disagree with your church on the translation issue and still be a member in good standing?

If I went to a KJVO church, I doubt it. I might be technically, but I reckon I'd be "persona non grata" despite that.

PT Barnum said...

Charles,

Thanks for leaving your comments. I too attend a church that has the KJV as its official version. I must teach my SS class using the KJV but I can correct/clarify it as oft as I wish. I think that there are many textual disputes that have good arguments on both sides--that is the whole point of our position. We don't advocate ripping up Bibles that are not our favorite version--Hammond does and I saw it with my own eyes. We believe good Christian brothers can debate the issue and they can both be committed Christ-followers.

King James Onlyism was not a part of the original fundamentals. James Gray wrote clearly about this in Volume 2. King James Preferred is completely a different animal than the KJVO position.

I personally believe that King James Onlyism is a direct attack on the Word of God. There is no perfect translation but yet there have been many sects that have claimed this apart from any Biblical reference. Maybe we should all just live the Bible that we choose to read.

Thanks again for stopping by lately--I trust that you will come back again soon.

PT Barnum