This page is designed to give you an opportunity to spend a little time in the Word, and read more about some of the things I talk about in my articles.
Below are links to two different English translations of the Bible for your convenience: the King James Version and the World English Bible.
Of course, at Blue Letter Bible you can choose from a wide range of translations, and also take advantage of a full range of convenient Bible study tools. However, the links below take you directly to the King James Version (my favorite) and the World English Bible (the default version I generally quote from in my articles).
1. The King James Version (KJV). The KJV has always been my personal favorite. It's the one I grew up with and the one I normally read and study, and it's also the one I always used to quote in articles when A Little Strength was a WordPress blog.
The KJV is considered by many to be more faithful to the original Hebrew and Greek than many modern English translations, although the archaic wording is a bit of a stumbling block for some. In spite of the Elizabethan English, however, some Christians steadfastly avoid using any other translation. In fact, there are people who worship the KJV to the point where even updating archaic spellings (such as aswage to assuage or astonied to astonished) is considered dangerously heretical.
In the process of turning my blog into this website, however, I made the decision to use the World English Bible (see below) as my default version. In the end, I just felt this would make my articles a bit more accessible and would be more appropriate for a general readership. It also allows me to deflect accusations of being a King-James-only snob, which I'm not.
That said, however, I do believe that no careful study of the Bible is complete without at least checking what the KJV says.
2. The World English Bible (WEB). The WEB is a recently completed project by a group headed by a man named Michael Paul Johnson whose goal was to produce a faithful, high-quality translation of the Bible into modern English that is completely in the public domain—that is, not copyrighted.
It may not seem so at first blush, but that is actually a big deal. What this means is that, unlike virtually all other modern translations, which are invariably restricted by copyright so that copying more than a page or two costs money and even quoting a single verse requires full attribution, the WEB can be freely reproduced in part or in full with no copyright restrictions of any kind (just like the KJV). That is one reason I chose the WEB over other modern English translations to quote in my articles.
Now, I am not suggesting there is anything inherently evil about copyrighting a translation of the Bible. Any translation (good or otherwise) represents years of hard work by many dedicated people who deserve to be compensated. On the other hand, however, there have been efforts over the years by various groups to produce translations that corrupt and water down certain biblical teachings.
Case in point: the gay-friendly "Queen James" Bible. God help us.
I'm just saying that it's really nice to have at least one good, modern English translation of the Bible that is not restricted by copyright.
I do also quote from both the KJV and the AKJV (American King James Version), which is basically the KJV with a lot of the archaic spelling and wording updated. Like the KJV and the WEB, it is not copyrighted.
A final note
All of this, of course, begs the question:
Why should anyone believe the Bible?
After all, the Bible is a piecemeal collection of 66 books written over a span of nearly 1600 years by over 40 individuals, only a handful of whom were contemporaries or in any way acquainted with each other.
Not exactly the curriculum vitae you might expect for a book claiming divine authorship.
Yet the result is jaw-dropping: a fully integrated message system that displays incredible elegance of design and exquisite consistency of detail, revolving around a single person (the Messiah) and a single act (the Messiah's death and resurrection to reconcile sinful men to a holy God).
Oh, and its Author must also exist outside the realm of time and space because it foretells historical events in advance, and does so with a degree of accuracy that silences all but the most woefully misinformed, wilfully ignorant, and rabidly biased critics.
9Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me;
10declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done; saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.
And then its Author mockingly challenges all other so-called "gods" because He knows they can do nothing:
21"Produce your cause," says Yahweh. "Bring forth your strong reasons," says the King of Jacob.
22"Let them announce, and declare to us what shall happen. Declare the former things, what they are, that we may consider them, and know the latter end of them; or show us things to come.
23Declare the things that are to come hereafter, that we may know that you are gods. Yes, do good, or do evil, that we may be dismayed, and see it together."
It unabashedly claims that every single pen stroke of its words in their original form are precisely the words that God intended to have written.
16Every Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness, 17that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
(2 Timothy 3:16–17)
I always get a kick out of talking to people who claim they believe in God, but are skeptical about the Bible's claim of divine inspiration. I put it to them like this:
So, let me get this straight: my God spoke the universe into existence by the Word of His mouth, a universe that contains hundreds of billions of galaxies, each containing hundreds of billions of stars. He also created millions of different forms of life culminating in man with the miracle of DNA, not to mention all the forces and physical laws that keep it all humming along.
And your God can't even get a book published.
The late astronomer Carl Sagan once quipped "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence," and the Bible certainly makes an extraordinary claim, to say the least. Volumes have been written on this question, and I have touched on it briefly in a couple of my articles.
This is absolutely crucial—there's no pussyfooting around on this one. You are faced with a decision: either the Bible is exactly what it claims to be, or it is nothing but a bunch of Jewish legends and noble-sounding philosophy that is no more capable of revealing anything about God to mankind than the Qur'an, the Bhagavad Gita, the I Ching, the Buddhist sutras, or the Chicago Sun-Times for that matter.
There is no middle ground—it's one or the other.
There are many articles on the Internet that deal with the topic of the inspiration of the Bible, and here is one that I feel does a good job in effectively communicating why millions of people through the centuries have been convinced beyond unconvincing that what we call the Word of God is literally the Word of God.
If you like this page, share it with someone!
1. Deriv. of "Sunset Over Grass Field" © AOosthuizen at Can Stock Photo
2. "Studying Bible by Candlelight" © ReedStudioUK at Fotolia.com
3. Deriv. of "Creation of Adam" by Michelangelo [PD]
(All PD works are via Wikimedia Commons.)
All Scripture is taken from the World English Bible, unless annotated as KJV (King James Version) or AKJV (American King James Version).